5 Lifestyle Mistakes that Keep Your Family from Wellness

From a wholistic point of view, one that understands your mind/body/spirit are interconnected and regulated by an innate intelligence, you can pick any place to start changing your life for the better at any moment and that action will impact your whole being.

Mistake #5 – Lacking a Positive Attitude

Taking yourself to task for having a crummy attitude can be like trying to find the beginning of a circle or ring. But because you are an interconnected being that “bad” attitude could be originating with other common obstacles to wellness. However, while they may take more time and effort to achieve, changing your mental state through a practice of gratitude can be done with immediate and measurable effects on the rest of your being.

The social, physical, and psychological benefits of gratitude have been well documented and research suggests these benefits are readily available because, gratitude:

  • Boosts feelings of optimism, joy, pleasure, enthusiasm, and other positive emotions
  • Reduces anxiety and depression
  • Strengthens the immune system, lowers blood pressure, reduces symptoms of illness, and makes us less bothered, by aches and pains
  • Encourages us to exercise more and take better care of our health.
  • Helps us sleep better: get more hours of sleep each night, spend less time awake before falling asleep, and feel more refreshed upon awakening
  • Has been found to help people recover from traumatic events, including Vietnam War veterans with PTSD
  • Makes us feel closer and more committed to friends and romantic partners

Mistake #4 – Living Bodies Need Living Foods

Seems logical, right? A living seed placed in the soil has all of the nutrients and life force to grow generations of plants for years to come. But take that same seed and slather it in pesticides and herbicides, jam some foreign animal DNA into its gene make-up, irradiate it, ship it an average of 1500 miles to the grocery store where it will sit on a shelf before being shoved in a nutrient killing microwave… well, you get the idea. Most of our food supply, while “edible” and filling to our stomachs, is dead on arrival.

What are living, whole foods? Food that is in its natural state, preferably organic, local, and seasonal. Most of these foods are found around the perimeter of your grocery store.

“Many people feel that if they can’t eat their favorite junk foods, they are being deprived. In reality, the sooner you switch your eating habits, the sooner you’ll enjoy increased energy, normalized weight, a better mood and improved health overall. Knowing this, many initially succeed at implementing an improved diet, but then fall back into old habits… and therefore, the ‘old’ body,” says Joseph Mercola, MD. “To avoid this, I recommend you make the changes to your diet gradually, starting with making one meal a day raw, then increasing from there.”

Mistake #3 – Not Getting Enough Sleep

For decades, studies have related a lack of sleep to health problems and cognitive impairment but there is still little attention paid to sleep as a part of health. “One of the failings in the field of sleep research over the past 40 or 50 years is that we went in search of the one single Holy Grail function of sleep. We now realize that sleep is necessary for a whole constellation of different functions for both the brain and the body,” says Matt Walker, an associate professor of psychology at UC Berkeley and Principal Investigator at the Sleep and Neuroimaging Laboratory, in an interview with the Greater Good Science Center.

Additionally, a study of mice published in 2013 in the magazine Science showed an unrealized function of sleep: to wash away trash from the brain. “The trash, including pieces of proteins that cause Alzheimer’s disease, piles up while the rodents are awake. Sleep opens spigots that bathe the brain in fluids and wash away the potentially toxic buildup,” writes Tina Hesman Saey, in Science News. “The discovery may finally reveal why sleep seems mandatory for every animal. It may also shed new light on the causes of neurodegenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases.”

Mistake #2 – Lacking Fitness or Physical Activity

The tagline that describes society’s pandemic of inactivity was introduced in early 2013 when the Harvard Business Review published “Sitting is the Smoking of Our Generation,” by Nilofer Merchant. “The common denominator in the modern workday is our tush,” wrote Merchant, a corporate director at a NASDAQ-traded firm and a former founder and CEO of Rubicon. “As we work, we sit more than we do anything else.” Add in the time we sit at home, and we’re averaging 9.3 hours of sit time every day.”

The parallel between sitting and smoking isn’t metaphoric – it’s real. According to a November 2012 Lancet study, “On the basis of a meta-analysis of published studies, derive an estimate of 5.3 million deaths worldwide attributable to physical inactivity, and contrast this estimate with the 4.8 million deaths attributable to smoking in 2000.”

The American lifestyle – of working at a desk all day – is mostly to blame for Americans finding themselves lethally sedentary. But so is the American past time of television watching. In 2012, an Australian study found that for each additional hour of television a person sat and watched per day, the risk of dying rose by 11 percent, according to The New York Times. James Levine, a researcher at the Mayo Clinic, is a leader of an emerging field called inactivity studies, which has challenged long-held beliefs about human health and obesity. In an interview with the New York Times in 2011, Levine shares that he campaigns against “the chair-based lifestyle” which he says sickens more than our bodies. “Go into cubeland in a tightly controlled corporate environment and you immediately sense that there is a malaise about being tied behind a computer screen seated all day,” he said. “The soul of the nation is sapped, and now it’s time for the soul of the nation to rise.”

Mistake #1 – Lacking a Healthy Nervous System

Just as the seed mentioned above carries all of the information it needs to grow into its full potential in the right conditions, every cell in our bodies carries the capacity for full health and wellness – with the right conditions. It is the human nervous system that is responsible for delivering over 100,000 messages per second to each cell, organ, bone, muscle and blood vessel. These messages are delivered at 325 miles per hour across 45 miles of nerves.

What happens when the vital life-giving and regulating messages of the nervous system are blocked in subtle or overt ways?

Chiropractic care addresses these subtle or overt obstacles, called subluxations, to your nervous system’s optimal functioning through adjustments to your spine, which houses and protects the superhighway of messaging to the body, the spinal cord. Subluxations can be caused by stresses that overwhelm the body’s ability to function properly: physical stresses, like a car accident, a fall, improper posture, or emotional stresses, or chemical stresses from the use of prescription or illicit drugs, inadequate nutrition or environmental toxins.

Freeing your body from subluxations, the interference of the nervous system allows the full expression of the nervous system and its ability to regulate and move your body toward optimal wellness. As long as these nervous system communications are open and flowing at 325 miles per hour down 45 miles of superhighway, the human body largely has
the innate intelligence to maintain health.

Dr. Harper is dedicated to providing you with the absolute best in family wellness care. So take a moment today to discuss with your Family Wellness Chiropractor any concerns you may have regarding your family’s overall health and wellness.


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Dr. Kim Harper

Dr. Harper's pre-med study was completed at the University of Iowa followed by her doctorate from Palmer College of Chiropractic. Upon graduation in 1993, Dr. Harper began practice in the Indianapolis area and has continued to work with families on the north side ever since.

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