If you are like me, then you hate taking meds. I have never met a person who enjoys taking pills (let’s leave tramadol out of this). We take pills because we want to be healthy and medications have become such a big part of our living so that when I say I have not swallowed a pill in the past 3 years and before that, I stayed 2 years without ‘popping’, I am called a liar or a show-off.
Pills are really not meant to be a part of your diet – supplements perhaps (I still don’t think them a necessity but that is not my call to make). You can do without the pills and I am not talking in the Christ Embassy sense (they do have a point though). I am not speaking in terms of faith but in terms of some very basic science we are all supposed to know.
Our health is our responsibility and not the Doctors’ so get off your bum… actually I don’t care! you can sit and read this. Now let us run through some tips you would be glad you knew.
WARNING – This article is not for lazy people. Afterall, a card of Paracetamol is N50 only. That seems to be an easy way out of most pain… smh.
HEALTH TIP 1 – Water is your friend.
I cannot overstate this fact. Our bodies are made up of more water than anything else, so before you think of food, you should know that you need water to function. Even though my heart goes out to them, Cancer doesn’t ‘sneak up’ on anybody – neither is it sent from the village (My naija folks know what I mean). It is caused, in the most sense by negligence (My heart goes out to all those who have had to deal with cancer… but still).
If you have to wait till you are feeling thirsty before you drink water – that is like waiting till your car shows a yellow light before you top up fuel – that does not work for your engine (look at it which ever way you like). A fully grown adult is to have at 2.5 litres of water a day to keep their body hydrated; that being said you need 3 litres at least. Once you wake up, the first thing you should do (before even brushing your teeth) is to drink 640ml of water. This goes a long way in cleaning your system and making you all-round healthier.
HEALTH TIP 2 – Watch your food.
I admit it, there is a thing in pastries and junk food which makes human beings feel good. There is a lot of stress in the world so we need to feel good so we don’t jump off a building. Finally, junk food is cheap! So do the math. The downside however is that you will spend a good part of your life ‘going through’ health challenges and sometimes even mood issues. I indulge in junk food once in a bit, but let’s face it, that is no way to live.
Cook your own food, limit the seasonings and use natural things like peppers, scent leaves, and dabinu (that Hausa thing which is ‘ducking’ sweet) to give taste and flavour to your food. Do not eat till your stomach bulges (you ain’t no snake) and stop all meals at 6pm latest; go on fruits and vegetables only after that time.
So what of the fruits and vegetables? Eat them in raw states (they are more nutritious that way). Eat cucumbers, tomatoes, carrots, cabbages, oranges, watermelons (eat the seeds too), sour sop and all that ish… Boil your pineapple backs and drink it as tea. There is a LOT you can do to boost your immune system and overall well being, and these things are part of what you should be eating on the daily. Someone will go and say “let me just buy this N100 doughnut and use it to take drugs”…. come, are you high?
HEALTH TIP 3 – Work it out
I always say that an overweight person who is in the habit of exercising is healthier than a skinny person who does not exercise. Work out does a lot for your health. It gets the blood to circulate better, it helps balance your moods (you better believe it) and of course a good sweat never hurt no body.
Some of my Naija folks think you only exercise to lose weight. Shame on you and shame on the person who made you start thinking like that. Exercise is crucial for anybody who wants to succeed at life, quote me anywhere.
Have you noticed that all successful business people – actors, politicians and the – likes have their workout programs cut out for them? (Okay fine not all, but you know the laws of physics and life don’t apply to some parts of Nigeria. Let’s think outside Nigeria for a bit). Exercise gets you thinking right, it teaches you discipline, helps you wake up early, gives you that sense of focus and if nothing else, trains you in the art of setting goals and accomplishing them in bits. What more could you ask for?
HEALTH TIP 4 – Close your eyes.
When I say close your eyes, I mean sleep. The human body needs that sleep. Daytime and night-time sleep both do their parts in optimizing your health. When we close our eyes and sleep at night our bodies release melanin and I won’t even begin to go into the details of how this benefits us as human beings. The point is that you need to sleep so your body – and mind – can recover from the previous day’s stress.
While I may not completely agree that adults need to sleep a whole 8 hours every day (wetin you dey sleep abeg?), I do encourage at least 4 – 5 hours at least (with regular vacations where you can afford to sleep through the day).
HEALTH TIP 5 – Feel Good.
Where do I even start with this one? If you follow the four points above, you can’t help but feel good. However, this is a point which should be covered on its own. Watch your emotions. Fear, anger, depression, envy and hate are the things which will actually end up killing us. An example is that sad and depressed people drink more and consume more junk food – there we have it. Until the sadness and depression can be cured, the junk food and harmful substance addiction will continue.
Most times, our terrible habits are rooted in some negative emotionS we are too proud to admit. I am not a ‘shrink’ and I won’t swallow Panadol for another person’s headache, but if you have emotional issues, get help. There are lots of safe ways to manage our emotions but I would recommend following these tips. A healthy and happy mind will not blindly run to unhealthy habits.
Let me end by saying that a lot of people who are walking around are not healthy even if they think they are and it is only when things show up to test their health will they find out that they are not healthy, and it may be too late then.
Follow these tips, and they are actually simple to follow. It can be a bit of a strain stopping pill-popping addiction, but those who care enough about their health will put in the effort.