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Become the architect of your own health

Updated: Oct 23, 2023





To build a strong foundation for our current and future health and well-being, it is important to take a holistic approach that incorporates all 6 building blocks - nutrition, hydration, movement, sleep, rest + stress management, and connection.


Good nutrition is about making sure your body has what it needs to work as it should. This means that we need to make sure we eat a variety of foods that give our bodies the proteins, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals it needs to function optimally. Bodies that are functioning optimally help us to look, feel and perform at our very best. So what can we do? When it comes to nutrition my advice is to keep it simple, the more whole plant-based foods the better. Limit or better still remove ultra-processed foods that do not serve you.


Hydration is essential to our survival. In fact, approx. 60% of our bodies is made up of water. This means that adequate hydration is essential for our bodily functions. Adults need approx. 2 litres of fluid per day (more if exercising, sweating, living in a hot climate). If you only drink water when you are thirsty, you are already dehydrated! The best indicator of hydration levels is urine colour, urine should be a pale straw colour. Dark urine is an indication you are not properly hydrated. My Tip: Find a bottle with a known quantity, fill with water, sip regularly and refill throughout the day to ensure you are adequately hydrated.


Move your body in the way that it was designed to MOVE!. As with good nutrition, regular movement/physical activity/exercise (whatever you like to call it!), is ESSENTIAL for our physical and mental well-being.


Research into the benefits of physical activity is very clear. Being active not only helps us to perform our daily activities with more ease and helps us to feel good, but it also reduces our risk of developing disease in the future (like type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, even some cancers).


You might be interested to know that physical inactivity is now considered to be the 4th leading risk factor for global mortality. This follows high blood pressure, tobacco use and high blood glucose (WHO, 2009).


When it comes to movement my advice is to find what you love and do it more!


Good sleep (7-9 hours) is so important to our health and well-being. It plays a role in our immune function, helping us to fight infections and reduces inflammation. It keeps our heart healthy by improving our blood pressure and cortisol levels. This has a knock-on effect on our insulin sensitivity and blood glucose control, which helps us to manage our weight better. When we get good sleep regularly, it helps us to focus, problem solve, think clearer, be creative, learn new information and helps us to regulate our mood and emotions better.


Rest and Stress Management: In today’s busy world, many people live in a constant state of “fight or flight”. Overtime, this can have a negative impact on our health and sense of well-being and is why stress management and proper rest is more important now than ever before.

While some stressful situations in our life are unavoidable, we can however, control how we respond to these situations and incorporate daily habits/practices that help us to properly wind down and recover.


Connection is vital to our well-being. Research shows that people who have strong social connections have better immune health, higher self-esteem, recover from illness faster, have lower levels of anxiety/depression and increased longevity. Research also shows that connection to nature and our pets can make us happier and healthier too!.


To build a strong foundation for our current and future health and well-being, it is important to take a holistic approach that incorporates all 6 building blocks - nutrition, hydration, movement, sleep, rest + stress management, and connection.


As these building blocks are so intricately connected, one impacting on the other. We must look at them all together if we really want to improve our overall health and well-being.


Let me know in the comments below what you do to be healthy and well.


Dr Jen x




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