We are all striving for something in life; whether we like to set goals for ourselves and thrive as we reach these or if we simply have dreams that we aspire to ‘one day’.
Or maybe it’s the small things in life that kindle excitement, like an invigorating morning shower, a flowing yoga class or the smell of freshly made coffee which arouses our senses.
These different perspectives, experiences and ambitions are the things that make us feel ‘alive’.
It’s hard to explain that sensation of feeling ‘alive’ – is it being right there in that moment? Is it just feeling present, content or courageous? If you could bottle it, you would have a treasure richer than gold. It is achievable every day for all of us, we just need to provide our bodies with the resources to be able to do so.
There are three key ingredients for living a life feeling alive: energy, calmness and recovery.
Here we will explore ways you can enrich yourself with these vital pieces of the life jigsaw, so you feel unstoppable in your life no matter what the challenge:
Energy is a seemingly unrelenting force, and as humans, we should be using this to our advantage. As with most things in life, quality trumps quantity when it comes to energy, and we know highly refined sugary foods which are over-stimulating to the body should be avoided when you are hoping for sustained energy.
The better energy sources include healthy fats, complex carbohydrates, and proteins, as well as some key micronutrients such as B vitamins and essential fatty acids (EFAs). Salmon, avocados, oats and eggs are all foods fit for energy.
Clarity and calmness can be hard to find in our day when we are under continuing pressure. Even though as humans our bodies crave this harmonic state, we are often not able to channel into this side of the body when we are stressed. Studies have demonstrated that even 15 minutes a day of ‘me time’ can make a big difference to our overall wellbeing. Whether that’s taking a walk outside, setting time aside in a morning to meditate, taking a Pilates class or just having 15 minutes alone on your sofa (without the TV on!) clearing the mind. We all need to recoup. Augment the experience with a cup of green tea which acts as a natural stress reliever.
Life encompasses both the day and night, and rest and sleep are part of living. As a society we are encouraged to ‘work hard, play hard’ to get the best out of life. However, why live life in a hazy daydream, when you can really live in the moment? To get the best out of your waking day, you need to be sleeping well on a night and for a sufficient amount of time. In Matthew Walker’s defining book Why We Sleep, he states that “two-thirds of adults throughout all developed nations fail to obtain the recommended eight hours of nightly sleep”. Deep immersing sleep allows our body to restore, reboot, and reinvigorate to burst into life the next day.
COMING BACK TO LIFE
Bouncing back to life may take time but when you get there it is exhilarating. Treating our bodies with respect, elevating ourselves with the optimal diet and changing our lifestyles for the better are all movements towards a life of ‘aliveness’.
Start discovering who you are again by living a life feeling ALIVE.
3 ENERGY enrichers: here are some additions to the diet which will increase energy and liveliness, to make the most of everyday:
- B vitamins: helps the body to access energy from food so a great supplement to increase vitality.
- Coenzyme Q10: required for energy at the cellular level, especially for organs with high energy demands like the liver and the brain.
- EFAs: salmon, mackerel and sardines provide an ample source of EFAs, which have been shown to be particularly important for regulating energy supply to the brain enhancing its function.
3 CALMNESS enrichers: nutrients and certain foods help to ignite our inner calm:
- Magnesium: may restrict the release of stress hormones which cause anxiety, depression and brain fog, helping to maintain systemic balance.
- Holy Basil: has been shown to counter the effects of psychological stress through its anti-depressant properties.
- Baobab: in African cultures, the Baobab tree is often referred to as the “Tree of Life” due to its wondrous effects on wellbeing and general health.
3 RECOVERY enrichers: nutrients and foods may boost recovery and restorative sleep:
- Vitamin D: this sunshine-necessitating vitamin is important for quality sleep. The sun on our skin is the best source, but it is also found in eggs yolks and oily fish.
- Lucuma: due to its effects on stabilising blood sugar, it’s the perfect nigh cap before bed to ensure there are no waking sugar dips during the night.
- Tart cherry: its anti-inflammatory properties may improve recovery from training and enhance performance.