Your Ultimate Guide to a Holistic Lifestyle
If you’ve ever had an interest in holism, you have probably heard the expression “the whole is greater than the sum of its parts,” which is a great way to summarize holism, but what does that mean to you as a coach, or more importantly, what does this mean to your client?
The basic principles of holism are not new, having been around at least since the time of Hippocrates in the West, 2500 years ago, and even earlier in the Eastern healing traditions of Ayurvedic and traditional Chinese medicine. As you might suspect, the healers and physicians who practiced the art and science of holistic medicine all treated the whole person – body, mind, and spirit.
The word holistic denotes interconnectivity. Prioritizing a Holistic lifestyle means understanding the importance of various factors in health, and how they are interconnected. It means that for a healthy lifestyle, one needs to take multiple steps in their physical and mental health and within their home.
Creating a Holistic Body
Routinely Meditate: Sit down, relax and focus on your breathing. Meditation is proven to be a very effective method of dealing with stress and helps people make more sound decisions.
Be and Stay Active: If you have the energy after work, go for a jog or a hike when you come home. Keeping your body constantly active improves stamina and you will feel great about yourself afterward.
Eat Superfoods with Every Meal: Salmon, kale, avocado, flax seeds, chia seeds, hemp, blueberries, quinoa, spinach, and apples—these foods help you cleanse and strengthen your immune system, so you can fight infections easily and recover from illnesses faster. Keep reading to learn more ways you can eat holistically.
Try Holistic, Natural Remedies: Ginger, garlic, vitamin C & Zinc have been used for fighting colds & flu. Honey, arnica & tea tree oil have antibacterial agents ideal for cuts and scrapes. Acupuncture is used to treat hormonal imbalances & herbs are a great way to detox & boost your energy.
Adopt Ways to Manage Stress & Practice Them Daily: Did you know that weight gain, illnesses, and lack of energy are mostly due to stress? Meditating, practicing yoga and consciously deep breathing are a few good examples to keep your stress levels in check.
Get Enough Sleep: It is one of the most important ways, and yet the highly neglected method of staying healthy. It does not mean lying in bed for 7 -8 hours but getting a sound sleep. If needed, use herbs like Passion Flower, and Valerian root to calm your brain and improve your quality of sleep. Another right way of improving sleep quality is light therapy or just getting enough sunlight.
Creating a Holistic Home
Holistic health and well-being are essential to overall life success. Each of us possesses an “inner healer” of sorts, which is something that is known to reside in our hearts. Here are five simple ways to bring wellness and holism into your home:
Go for Comfort: Humans all have a strong need for safety and security and we often look for those qualities in our environment. Evaluate the physical comfort of your home—your furniture, floors, and temperature to name a few. You might be able to make it cozier with simple changes, like a small carpet by the bed, or decide to start saving for larger items, like more comfortable chairs.
Bring The Outside In: Studies show that even short contact with nature can significantly reduce stress, reduce anger and fear, and increase pleasant feelings. So if you have views of trees or other plants or natural elements, place a comfortable chair where you can enjoy them. You can also add indoor plants, aquariums, or art with a nature theme and get much of the same effect.
CUT OUT The Clutter: A cluttered, dirty, or confusing environment can cause us to feel worried, sad, or helpless. You can start to tackle clutter one small area at a time. For example, start by clearing a counter, de-cluttering a shelf, or organizing a messy drawer. This will give you a sense of success that will motivate you to work on larger areas of your home.
Use Natural, Unscented Products when Possible: The skin is the largest organ in the body and everything that you put on your skin is absorbed into the bloodstream, so make sure your personal care products use natural ingredients.
Get Outside and Garden: Research point to the many benefits of having a garden, and the closer it is to your house and the more you visit it, the more positive effect on stress. Gardening is also good exercise!
Think Small with Purpose: One way to start is to choose a room or corner that you can make into a healing space. You will want to consider what activities you find most healing and design the space around those activities. For example, if you love to read you can move a comfy chair and reading light into your healing space.
How to Eat Holistically
Whether you’re interested in tweaking your diet with new holistic options, or are ready to completely overhaul your eating regime, these principles will help point you in the right direction for better health. Our diet affects us spiritually, mentally, and physically. A holistic approach to nutrition is focused on eating yourself healthier. It all begins with eating whole foods, that you find in nature. The key to holistic nutrition is eating natural unprocessed, whole, organic foods whenever possible.
Eat Whole, Raw Foods: This is nutrition in its simplest form and is as easy as it sounds. When clients are looking for a healthy snack, you can recommend that they eat an apple, banana, carrot, celery, grapes, melon, avocado, or their favorite fruit or vegetable the way nature intended – raw and unprocessed!
Go Organic: Avoid pesticides, herbicides, antibiotics, and hormones in your food by selecting organic options whenever possible. Plus, organic food tastes better and may be more nutritious.
Lose the Sweet Tooth: Refined and artificial sweeteners may taste sweet, but their impact on your client’s health is anything but. It will take time, but by replacing sugar, corn syrup, and sweeteners with naturally sweet alternatives like fruit, you will reap significant health improvements for your clients.
Drink Water: There’s nothing new here – at least eight glasses a day are recommended to promote good digestion and health. Also, encourage clients to avoid (or significantly reduce) soda, alcohol, and all caffeinated beverages.
Reduce Your Sodium Intake: Sodium is one of the key factors in developing hypertension or high blood pressure. Although the ideal daily sodium consumption is between 1,500 and 2,300 milligrams, many people (clients included) eat much more than they should. Reduce your salt intake by avoiding processed food and by keeping the salt shaker off the dinner table.
Buy Local Produce: Produce that’s grown locally not only looks and tastes better; it can be more nutritious. In fact, it’s often better to eat local, fresh produce that’s not certified organic than it is to buy certified organic food that was shipped a long distance. If your clients are up to it, you may suggest they consider growing some of their own fruits and veggies or visit their farmer’s market for local produce.
Eliminate White Flour: A holistic nutrition coach may recommend the elimination of all wheat from the diet. If this isn’t an ideal option for you, go with whole-grain options instead when purchasing cereals, bread, rice, or pasta since the white varieties are stripped of most of their nutrition and fiber.
Eat Healthy Fats: Healthy fats are important for good health, so be sure to incorporate moderate amounts of organic cold-pressed oils like extra virgin olive oil or flaxseed oil in your meal preparation. For high-heat cooking, select oils that can stand up to the heat such as organic canola or coconut oil. However, avoid trans fats from hydrogenated oils and saturated animal fats from red meat and dairy products.
Everything in Moderation: Food is one of life’s greatest pleasures. Have fun with food, indulge in a treat occasionally, and give yourself permission to enjoy your favorite, not-so-healthy meal once in a while. Healthy eating shouldn’t be about deprivation, it’s about making good choices most of the time for sustained success. Even when you’re clients are eating healthy food, it’s still important that they are mindful of their portion size. A serving of meat should be about the same size as a deck of cards, while a healthy serving of pasta is about half a cup.
Become a Certified Holistic Health Coach. Holistic health and well-being are essential to overall life success. Now you can earn a credential and gain the skills to help your clients achieve this success.
If you focus your work in the “holistic” areas of health, fitness and wellness, the Certified Holistic Nutrition Coach course is your next step. Without this knowledge and certification, you won’t have everything you need to help all your clients.
Our programs are open to anyone with a desire to learn and help others. There are no prerequisites.
That’s it for now.