Self-Care 101
Better Nutrition|November 2021
How to create a nourishing self-care routine that can help you feel calmer, more centered, and better able to face the challenges of the world around you.
EMILY KANE, ND, LAC

Q: I want to take better care of myself, but I’m having trouble committing. Any tips for creating a good routine?

A: Intention is key! That’s the best place to start. You said “routine,” which may sound less-than-exciting; but, honestly, excitement is overrated. In fact, our bodies respond very well to routine at all stages of life. And we feel so much better, and act more considerately, when applying consistent self-care.

The basics include making healthier dietary choices, getting enough sleep, being well-hydrated (with mostly water!), moving every day, and practicing forgiveness. There are so many triggers that can throw you off balance. Some you can control (such as how much sugar you put into your mouth) and some you cannot (such as, let’s be honest, other people). Keeping your emotions on an even keel goes a long way toward maintaining composure and equilibrium. You’re less likely to get bent out of shape, if you maintain your own inner calm, deep breathing, and intent for harmony.

Finding Balance There’s no one-size-fitsall healthy eating plan, but in general, we could all benefit from bending our diets more towards the keto and vegetarian ends of the scale. That might seem like a contradiction, but it really can be done. One of the reasons the U.S. was so hard-hit by Covid-19 is sadly due to the prevalence of preventable “co-morbidities” such as obesity, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes.

Catastrophic environmental disturbances are one of many relatively new, and crushing, stressors that can throw us off balance, along with the constant bickering in the news and on social media. I strongly recommend taking breaks from your screens and devices. It can be incredibly healthy to set aside one day a week for traditional fasting (water only) and one day a week (maybe the same day) for “screen fasting.”

Managing Stress

You can’t completely turn off stress, of course. It’s actually critical to human survival, creativity, and productivity. Stress motivates us to get things done, to take on difficult projects, or try to reach physical goals.

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