Why You Should Alkalise Your Body

Maintaining the natural balance of your body in regards to your pH levels is important for several reasons. Both your immune system and the amount of inflammation in your body can be affected by whether or not you are in the correct alkaline range. When we consider that immune system function and inflammation are two of the biggest factors contributing to optimum health, then we can see how important it is to maintain balance in the body!

Immune System

The reason that your immune system becomes compromised when your pH is out of balance is that the cells in the body aren’t getting the minerals that they need. This means that less oxygen is being circulated and your immune system therefore doesn’t function as well as it could!

When you have the correct alkaline balance then your body is better equipped to prevent and deal with infections and illnesses.

Inflammation

Chronic inflammation is a leading cause of illness and diseases, and can soon become a problem when normal levels of inflammation start to increase.

Acidic foods are known to cause inflammation in the body. When you consume excess amounts of acidic foods then your body is going to have to work extra hard to neutralise this acidity. One of the ways in which your body can do this is to take essential minerals from other parts of the body, which can of course be detrimental to your overall health.

Balancing Your pH Levels

If the foods and drinks that you are consuming are too acidic then your pH levels are quickly going to get out of whack. However, your lifestyle and overall diet also contribute to your pH levels.

Foods that are high in magnesium, phosphorous and calcium are great for restoring the alkaline balance in the body.

Unprocessed vegetables are the perfect choice for alkalising your body, especially citrus fruits. Garlic, ginger, apple cider vinegar and turmeric are also beneficial choices. Eating your greens will also help with this, and you can aim to include broccoli, wheatgrass, chlorella and spinach in your diet regularly.

If you do not consume many processed and packaged foods then you are going to give yourself a head-start when it comes to alkalising your body. They can be incredibly acidic, and it is an amazing idea to replace these products with whole food options!

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Simple Steps to Striking a Balance

Finding balance in life can be a complicated process. This can relate to several different parts of your day, such as your diet, your sleep, your work etc. Creating a balance between all of the things that you have to do, and all of the things you want to do, will help to keep your mind focused and your mood stable. When things become out of balance then your mood is likely to fluctuate and you can experience increased stress levels.

Although it may seem impossible to achieve complete balance in all that you do, there are certain techniques that I suggest you implement to work towards this concept. The following suggestions will not only help to restore some peace in your day, but will also help you to feel more in control.

First of all, I can not stress enough the importance of taking the time to breathe. Although we are all obviously breathing during every minute of every day, not many actually take the time to pay attention to this process. Taking a moment to focus on your breathing, and to breathe deeply and consciously, can really help to calm your mind and re-focus your energy. This promotes mindfulness and will keep those stress levels down.

Secondly, ensure that you always make time to adequately hydrate during the day. This will help to keep your energy up. This will also help to keep fatigue at bay, which is a great way to maintain balance. When you become worn out by your day, it can often be an attractive prospect to slow down and not accomplish your goals for the day. A combination of water, fresh juices and herbal teas will keep you on track!

Stretching is a great way to energise yourself and to promote balance. Stretching regularly throughout the day also helps you to avoid injury and promotes optimal muscle health. Stretching can range from a few simple movements to going to a regular yoga practice. If you work a desk job then it is particularly important to stretch. In this case, getting up to walk around often will help you to maintain balance in your day as you won’t become demotivated by the constant inactivity.

Finally, paying attention to your diet is one of the most important ways to keep balance in your life. Optimal nutrition is essential to keep your body healthy and only a healthy body can achieve balance in life. Aim to include an adequate amount of fresh fruits and vegetables as well as including whole grains in your diet!

To learn more about nutrition and how it can help you with many aspects of your life, head to The Flexi Foodie Academy!

Plant Based Foods to Beat Anxiety

Anxiety is a worldwide problem and manifests in many different shapes and forms. It can range in seriousness from slightly inconvenient to completely debilitating and relief is sought in many different places. Approximately 40 million adults in the United States currently suffer, have suffered or will suffer from some form of anxiety disorder. This equates to over 18% of the population! That huge number demonstrates just how many of us are afflicted with this condition.

Many people immediately turn to medication to manage their anxiety but in some cases it can be addressed through diet and exercise. Medication can cause some unfavourable side effects so if it is possible to avoid it then it is always worth exploring alternative options. Additionally, medication often only masks the root of the anxiety and as soon as treatment stops the problem can resurface. Finding ways to naturally treat imbalances in the body is the optimum way to move towards better long term mental health.

So let’s take a look at the things you can aim to include in your diet to combat the causes and symptoms of anxiety.

Green tea is cheap, simple and delicious. It is generally calming for the mind and when consumed regularly can work to decrease anxiety overall. Some variations of green tea are believed to have a positive effect on cortisol production in terms of balancing levels of this stress hormone in the body.

Turmeric is an amazing spice, both in terms of colour and taste and is known to enhance your mood. This spice contains antioxidants called curcuminoids which has neuroprotective qualities. Studies into the effectiveness of turmeric to combat depression have yielded encouraging results.

Avocados are an all round super food and can be useful for tackling anxiety. They contain high levels of potassium which works to control blood pressure, which in turn can help to keep your mood balanced. Avocados also contain a wealth of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants which help to keep your brain functioning as it should!

Finally, asparagus can also be consumed regularly in an effort to reduce feelings of anxiety. This is because it contains folic acid which is connected to the health of your neurological function. Impaired neurological function can be an underlying cause of anxiety and it is always worth making sure you get ample amounts of folic acid in your diet. As an added bonus, asparagus contains a small amount of potassium too, which as mentioned previously helps with that all important blood pressure!

How to Embrace Body Positivity

A massive amount of people struggle with eating disorders and a driving factor behind this issue is a perceived negative body image. Struggling with the way you see your body is completely natural but you can overcome it! Being body positive all the time might seem like a challenge but when you take the time to re-evalute your relationship with your body then you can work towards this way of living!

Looking at yourself with more love is the key to improving your body image. You have to realise and accept that you are perfect the way you are. You must also understand that the body you may envision will not make you a happier person or improve other areas of your life. Take the time to notice things about yourself that you love, things about yourself that do make you happy. This in turn will encourage a healthier state of mind when it comes to thinking about your body. Spend time affirming these thoughts in your mind or even saying them out loud. Be sure not to allow negative thoughts to seep into this process and if they do then take a deep breath and get back on track!

We talk frequently about nourishing our bodies but it is absolutely true that our minds need nourishment too. Our minds are constantly taking in information from the things we see, the people we talk to and the sounds we hear. If this information is persistently positive than it is much easier to remain happy and confident. When we exist like this it is much easier to love ourselves and our bodies because positivity is being encouraged. When negative interactions appear during the day then the potential to extend this negativity to all of our thoughts becomes very real. Nourishing your mind in a constructive way and being sure to avoid destructive situations and people is essential in the journey to happiness. This in turn will help with your body image because this self-love will continue to grow.

If you regularly turn to exercise in an attempt to align your body with the way you think it should be then try substituting a workout session for a yoga lesson. Yoga teaches us relaxation and focus. It also teaches us that it is the journey which is important, not the end goal. Applying this thought process to your exercise regime will help you to apply it to every other part of your life. When you stop thinking of life in terms of milestones to reach and specific achievements that you have to accomplish then you can truly just enjoy the path you are taking.

Learn to Love Your Body

Experiencing negative thoughts about our bodies is something that happens to every one of us. When it comes to our appearance, self-doubt is a concept that has become next to natural as we’re constantly bombarded by mass-media creations of what perfect is. This doubt about your body can quickly build a negativity that will lead to self-doubt in other areas of your personal and professional life.

You might often find yourself thinking that certain situations or opportunities are influenced by your perception of your body. For example, “Did I miss out on that promotion because I don’t look the part” or “Would my relationship be better if I was ten pounds lighter”.

Overcoming this doubt can be a long process but it will lead you to a place of positivity where your body image no longer has an impact on your day to day life. Learning to love your body will mean that you are less susceptible to perceived criticism from other people in regards to the way that you look. But of course, that’s easier said than done so how can we all reach this point?

Affirmations are a great way to encourage a positive body image and should be something that you aim to work into your daily routine. Starting the day with a body positive affirmation and having a list that you can refer to throughout the day for encouragement is something I strongly advise! When you start to feel the negativity creeping in, you can say one or more of these affirmations out loud or in your head.

Focusing on the things you already love about your body is one of the best ways to eradicate unhappy thoughts about the things you wish to change. Everyday when you look in the mirror, focus your thoughts on one of these things and remind yourself why it is you chose that particular feature. Whether it’s your skin or your muscles or a part of your face, there has to be something about yourself that you do find attractive and this is a good start for spreading that love for yourself.

Finding an exercise regime that works for you, and continuing to fill your body with healthy foods that promote optimum wellness, are both important parts of self-care. By caring for yourself in these ways, you will help to grow the love you have for yourself and that will extend into love for your body also!

A Daily Dose of Epsom Salt

This is a favourite of mine that sadly seems to have declined in popularity in recent years. Epsom salt is more likely to be something your parents tell you about rather than something you have come across yourself. This mineral compound is made from sulphate and magnesium and has been used for many hundreds of years to treat a wide selection of minor health issues. As well as being used to cure ailments, Epsom salt can be used for various other reasons such as for beauty as well as around the home and garden.

One of the most common reasons people use Epsom salt is to alleviate stress. Stress can often be caused by heightened levels of adrenaline as well as a magnesium deficiency. Drawing yourself a hot bath and dissolving Epsom salt in the water will easily allow your skin to absorb it and this will replenish your magnesium levels. In turn, the magnesium helps to produce serotonin which is great for lifting your mood. In addition to this, it is thought that bathing in Epsom salt at least three times every week will increase your energy levels. Approximately two cups of the salt should be enough for each bath! You will note that after several of these baths, the Epsom salt will also put a stop to any unwanted foot odour.

Eliminating toxins from your body is another fantastic function of Epsom salt. Again, add two cups to your bath and bathe for at least ten minutes every time. The salt will draw toxins out from the body and you will soon notice any existing muscle pain beginning to ease. This pain relieving property isn’t restricted to just muscle aches and you can also use Epsom salt to treat any headaches or migraines that you might be experiencing.

Your skin has much to gain by incorporating this salt into your beauty regime. For example if you mix just one cup with a tablespoon of coconut oil, then you can apply this to your face as an exfoliating cleanser.  You can also make an effective blackhead remover solution by adding a teaspoon of Epsom salt to three or four drops of iodine and mixing with half a cup of boiling water. While it is still hot, use this mixture to wipe over any blackheads and notice the change!

If you prefer to put this salt to use around the house then you will find that it is fantastic for cleaning the tiles in your bathroom. To do so you will have to combine an equal amount of salt to a liquid detergent (any of your choice) and scrub away. Make sure you rinse well afterwards and you will really see them shine! It is also possible to sprinkle a dash of Epsom salt over your plants and grass areas once a week to promote healthy growth and appearance. The extra dose of magnesium will encourage greener grass as well as giving supplemental nutrients to all of your plants!

To discover more great ways to cleanse your body, don’t forget to enter my Radiance Cleanse competition!