Are You Sick and Tired?
I went to doctor after doctor for over a year trying to figure it out, but with no conclusions and no change as to how I felt, I was desperate.
By Karla S. Hardin, M.S., LPC
By Karla S. Hardin, M.S., LPC
ARE YOU SICK AND TIRED?
That was never a question I expected to answer “yes” to in my early twenties. But when I found myself sleeping 14 hours a day and simply unable to do basic functions I was forced to take my health seriously.
I went to doctor after doctor for over a year trying to figure it out, but with no conclusions and no change as to how I felt, I was feeling desperate. Then a friend of mine, Lynda Gilbert, asked, “Are you willing to try a natural approach?” I replied, “Honestly, I will try anything as I have no life like this!”
My own health crisis was the beginning for me to try to understand the body I lived in and start to work with it in a way I had never done before.
So now, almost 40 years later, I want to share how my total paradigm shift in my twenties helped me regain my health, get off all medications and help others reclaim their physical and mental health as well.
FIRST, I learned health is not as complicated as you think!
We have nine systems in our body and each system has a primary organ that directs it. Our heart governs our circulatory system, our brain the nervous system and the list goes on.
Every primary organ is composed of tissues that can be broken down into individual cells. These individual cells require 5 things to function and maintain their health, which translates to the overall health of that system.
The 5 things that an individual cell needs is:
Sounds easy enough, doesn’t it? But sadly most Americans are not keeping to these basics!
The problem is this: Most of us don’t honor the fact that our bodies are 100% organic.
What this means practically is that our body can’t utilize anything that is inorganic.
And guess what? Preservatives in food, GMO’s, dyes, fragrances and a myriad of other substances we are exposed to daily are inorganic and totally unusable at a cellular level!
So what happens in your body when we ingest these substances? Your body gets overwhelmed.
These foreign substances pose threat to the body so the Immune system turns on – much like a thermostat, it starts trying to fight the ill effect of these unusable substances.
This creates a problem because if we have constant intake of inorganic matter, then our immune system never turns off and it begins to wear out. Hence we have autoimmune diseases such as chronic fatigue, lupus, inflammatory bowel disease among others.
Chemicals in our foods as well as artificially induced growth through hormones in our meats and vegetables all throw off our natural balance.
This is most noticeable in our gut health.
is being talked about much more as we have seen such a rise in irritable bowel syndrome, allergies, arthritis, Crohn’s Disease and obesity.
But what many people don’t know is that poor gut health such as a “leaky gut” is being linked to mental illness!
As researchers have discovered the brain and the gut are bi-directional, thus what is happening in the gut is directly affecting the brain. For example, 90% of your serotonin is produced in your small intestines, so if you have gut issues you are also more likely to be depressed!
As a counselor, I am seeing this relationship of our overall health directly affecting mental well-being. In addition to these foreign toxins derailing the way our body’s systems work, we also are consuming nutrient deficient foods —setting our bodies up for not only failing health but also failing mental health.
In addition to just wanting to feel better in our daily lives, Christians have even a higher motivation to taking care of their bodies. One of the most powerful images of the importance of our bodies is seen in,
1 Corinthians 6:19-20
19 Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; 20 you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.
Our body “houses” the living God.
—An amazing thought to grasp. And if we look in the Old Testament to see a model of how the Temple of God was seen and cared for we quickly realize it was taken very seriously. When you and I see ourselves in this honored role it hopefully causes us to not be so flippant in the way we care for ourselves.
It makes me realize to be self-indulgent or simply neglectful of those 5 basic needs of a cell is actually missing an important area where we can and want to glorify the Lord in.
So, where do I begin?
I want to give a simple approach to growing in this area:
FIRST: Begin by deciding that your health is an important way that you can honor God.
SECOND: Begin to operate with a three-step approach to taking care of your body at the cellular level.
CLEANSE: Eliminate as many toxins, chemicals, and preservatives as you can from your diet and environment.
BUILD: Start with your personal weakest system of your body and research the specific nutrients that system needs to repair itself. Eat foods rich in these nutrients and use vitamins and herbal supplements to make up the amounts you need.
SUPPORT: Determine to adopt a clean eating policy where you eliminate as many processed foods as you can and follow a more Mediterranean diet such as found in the Omni Diet. Divide your body weight by 2 and that is how many ounces of clean water you need to drink. Make sure you move actively and get a minimum of seven hours of sleep.
All in all, seeing our bodies as the temple of our Lord not only honors Him but in doing so it gives us the best possible health to live our daily lives!
Read or follow some of my favorite resources to get STARTED TODAY!
Dr. Mark Hyman (More on gut-brain connection and anti-inflammatory diet)
Health Blog Wellness Mama (Health/life hacks for living toxin-free)