Holistic ways to keep away the ravages of age.
THIS is the second and final part of my prescription for achieving optimum health.
What is meant by optimum health? It is the state where your cells and organs – and therefore you – are in the best achievable state of health, applying the current and latest knowledge and technologies.
It is impossible to be in perfect health, but it is possible and practical to improve your current state of health if you address all the different factors that affect your health.
If you start when you have already aged faster than you should, then regaining your health, and pushing it to optimum levels will reverse your ageing.
If you continue to maintain optimum health, then you can expect a slower rate of ageing thereafter.
For continuity, the first 10 steps explained in the previous instalment is available at www.superqigong.com.my The remaining steps are as follows:
11. Healthy weight
Obesity is the mother of many diseases – hypertension, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, cancer and so on. By now, most of you are aware of the importance of a healthy weight, and the guideline has improved from mere height-weight charts to body mass index (BMI). Asians should keep their BMI below 23.
12. Healthy body composition
However, even BMI is inadequate, as many people with “healthy” weights and BMI are actually not so healthy because they have excess fat and too little muscle.
Body-builders, on the other hand, have very high BMI but they are healthy with very little fat and tons of muscles. Most of us need to lose fat but gain muscles. Some may gain weight in the process.
So it is important to know your body fat percentage. As a rule of thumb, healthy men should not exceed 20%, and healthy women 25% of body fat composition.
For optimum health, it should be 15% and 20% respectively, achievable only if you are trim and exercise or workout in the gym regularly.
The healthiest composition can only be achieved with adequate hormones, a balanced nutrient-dense diet, and daily exercise.
13. Daily aerobic exercise
The previous advice of 30 minutes of aerobics two to three times per week has been revised to daily because cardiovascular health maintenance requires daily exercise.
This is the most basic physical fitness requirement as heart disease is the number one serious chronic disease, although in advanced countries, doctors have managed to keep heart patients alive, making cancer become the top killer.
A US study showed that 40-year-old-men who did an hour of moderate to intensive exercise daily became as fit as healthy 20- year-old young men after six months. This is the only consistently proven anti-ageing method.
14. Flexibility, bones and muscles
For optimum health and age-reversal, aerobic exercise should be complemented with stretching, flexibility, muscle-building and mind-body exercises like qigong.
Due to the lack of physical work in our modern affluent lifestyle, coupled with poor diet, and unhealthy habits like smoking, many of us develop bone and joint problems. After menopause and andropause, osteoporosis causes a steep rise in vertebral, hip and other fractures.
So, apart from aerobics, you should include stretching, flexibility, and weight-bearing exercises in your routine. While most exercises can be done daily, muscle-building exercises should be done on alternate or even every third day for best results.
15. Detox your body
A major reason why cancer is becoming an unstoppable menace is the amount of toxins that accumulate in us throughout our lives. The ways you can detox include eating a high fibre diet (supplement if necessary), drinking plenty of fluids, detox teas, fasting (juice, water or total fasting), body wash/scrub, dry body-brushing, sweating through exercise or sauna, coffee enema (stimulates the liver) and colon hydrotherapy/irrigation.
Accumulation of heavy metals is blamed for many diseases, including atherosclerosis (which causes clogged arteries). They can be removed through sweating, oral chelation, and intravenous chelation therapy.
Environmental pollution has caused the air we breathe, the water we drink and the foods we eat to be at risk of serious contamination. You should detox your air with an air filter/purifier.
Better still, enhance the health benefit with an ioniser. You should make sure your water is purified by the various methods available.
Finally, you should purify and detoxify your foods by ozonising your fruits, veggies, meats, rice and other foodstuff.
16. Immunise and avoid infections
Simple hygiene habits like hand washing can prevent infections. A healthy diet and nutritional intake, with a healthy lifestyle and adequate exercise, will boost your immunity against many infections, and allow faster recovery even if infected.
Many chronic diseases, cancer and even heart disease are now linked to certain infections. Immunisation has saved many of us from death and debility due to infections.
17. Avoid injuries
While we cannot always avoid accidents and infections, making prudent precautions and having healthy habits can reduce our risk. There are safe pedestrian, cycling and driving tips we can abide by to avoid road accidents, as there are safety rules at home and at work to avoid accidents and injuries.
18. Stress management
Stress is now recognised as a major contributing factor in premature ageing, many chronic diseases, and cancer. The connection is becoming more evident that some scientists have proposed that major stressors be included in a stress-induced syndrome, just as hypertension, obesity, hypercholesterolemia and hyperglycemia together make up the metabolic syndrome.
19. Regular medical examinations
You should not assume you are well. You must have objective proof that you are healthy. Physical examinations and screening tests have helped many seek early treatments for problems discovered during routine check-ups.
20. Medical insurance
Since nobody can guarantee that you will be free of health problems despite doing everything prescribed above, what more against accidents, injuries and infections, you must insure yourself adequately. Let not the cost prevent you from getting the best treatment.