7 Day Wellness Challenge

It’s now April and there are some signs that the snow is gone until winter and spring is finally here. You’re decluttering your house, cleaning everything in sight and making room in your wardrobe for your summer clothes but what are you doing to spring clean your health? Follow these simple health hacks to spruce up your body and mind for the new season ahead…

DAY ONE: Drink Up

Water is an essential nutrient and is to our body what oil is to a car, we can’t function without it! Our bodies are 50 to 70 percent water and much of that water has to be replaced every day. If we are well hydrated, everything works better. We feel fuller for longer and the temptation for snacks to get us through to our next meal will lessen. You’ll have much more energy and your skin will look and feel great. As a lot of us hold excess water (fluid retention) when we don’t drink enough, you may find you lose a little weight as your body flushes out what it doesn’t need anymore. For one week, try to give up all other beverages apart from water. Don’t panic, this can include herbal teas but stay away from caffeinated drinks like coffee and sugary, fizzy drinks. 💧💧💧

DAY TWO: Get more sleep

Some of us get by on 6 hours, some need 8 to feel revitalised in the morning. 8 hours is the recommended amount of sleep we need every night but not all of us are getting that. Getting a good nights sleep makes us wake happier, makes us more productive, lowers our stress levels and can help you lose weight. Try to go to bed an hour earlier each night for a week and see if you feel the benefits of it. Some of us aren’t able to get a restful sleep due to various reasons like work commitments, stress levels, young children. Take a look at my blog, Detox Your Sleep to find out how you can make the most of your sleep even if it’s broken with a few hours here and there. Sweet dreams. 💤 💤💤

DAY THREE: Go Outside

Government guidelines say we should walk at least 10,000 steps a day. Unfortunately a lot of us don’t do this. Those of us with office jobs can be sitting down at a desk for 5hrs + a day. This is bad news for our posture, mental wellbeing and fitness levels but you can do something about that. For those of us that are able, walking is an easy start to getting fit. It’s low impact, you don’t need any special equipment, it’s free, it improves your fitness, can help you lose weight and help your sleep. If you have access to a green space, getting outside and being at one with nature can help your mental wellbeing too. Take in your surroundings, marvel at the wildlife and take a big breath of fresh air. Give up your desk lunch and take a walk for an hour a day instead. See how you feel after 7 days and track those steps on your phone. 🚶🏼‍♂️🍁🚶🏻‍♀️🌞

DAY FOUR: Laugh

There is nothing better than catching up with friends and laughing through the night or watching a comedy that makes you laugh so hard your sides hurt. Laughter is clinically proven to have a powerful and positive effect on physical, emotional and mental health and wellbeing. It heals and renews the body and mind, and nothing works faster or more dependably to bring the mind and body back into balance after a tough week at work or emotional experience. It works so well there are even laughter therapy groups available to those in need of a natural antidepressant. Watch a comedy tonight or call that friend who’s guaranteed to make you LOL! 🤣🤣🤣

DAY FIVE: Fill Up on Good Bacteria

The gut is often referred to as the second brain which is why we must look after it. Probiotics are great for many reasons. They help keep nasty stomach bugs at bay, help relieve symptoms of digestive disorders such as IBS, help our gut recover after a dose of antibiotics when a lot of our good gut bacteria is killed off and generally help to keep our gut healthy and working as it should plus many other health benefits. Probiotics can be found naturally in some fermented foods like yoghurt, kombucha and sauerkraut however the amount of beneficial bacteria in these foods is unsure and therefore it is advised to supplement with tablets. Do your research and pick a supplement that has many strains. My favourites are by Natures Aid. Probiotics need food to survive in the gut, this food is called prebiotics. These can be found in certain foods including and not limited to mushrooms, artichokes, apples, leeks, garlic and onion. See if your gut health improves by taking a probiotic daily and including prebiotics in your diet. 💊💊💊

DAY SIX: Be Mindful

Many of us lead such busy lives that we don’t take enough time out for ourselves and our mental health. This leads us to feeling stressed and run down both physically and emotionally. I am a BIG believer in mindfulness and when I can’t switch off, I use the magic of meditation to help me unwind and get a better sleep. Switch off your tv, settle in a relaxing position and find a mindfulness app that works for you. My favourites are Buddhify , Calm and Headspace. You can use these before you sleep, when you wake, on your commute or whenever you need to switch off and zone out for a bit. Give it a go and see if you can find your zen. 🙏🏼🤯🧠

DAY SEVEN: Cut the sugar

There is so much evidence that sugar is dangerous for us and yet we still struggle to put the sugary treats down. Too much sugar in our diet can lead to many physical problems from diabetes to faster ageing skin. Swap your daily sugary treat/s for something more healthy like a small handful of nuts, some fruit or make yourself some protein balls. I’ll be posting a recipe for my own protein balls soon so look out for that. Post Easter is the perfect time to ditch the sugar after a weekend of over-indulgence. Be prepared to feel sluggish for a few days whilst your body kicks its addiction to the white stuff, bare with it, you’ll soon start to feel the benefits and will no longer be craving a 3pm sugary pick-me-up. 🍫🍬🍭

Give the challenge a try and use the hashtag #7daywellnesschallenge across social media to let me know how you’re getting on. Good luck!

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