Massage + A Healthy Diet: The Perfect Combination to Balance Summer Stress
Aug 5, 2012
Summer time is a great time to enjoy the bounty of our backyard gardens and farmers' markets. I also find that I am drawn to my favorite summer comfort foods: potato salad, BBQ, chips, and ice cream. All it takes is the smell of my neighbor grilling next door to make my mouth water and the cravings to start. With a little planning that favorite summer meal can be delicous and healthy. Although my middle son and I decided to go vegetarian this past January, we still are drawn to those favorite grill smells. We have found having some options that work for our new food choices ready in the fridge or freezer allow us to stay on track while fulfilling our summer cravings.
Eating healthy is never an easy task. While the summer months provide many opportunities to eat light and avoid over-indulging, challenges will always exist. Get an early start to forming your healthy eating and de-stressing habits this season by calming your digestive system and balancing your body with these quick tips.
Healthy Eating Habits:
Prepare yourself and your meals – Ensure your schedule has time for good health by planning ahead. Plan out your meals and make the trip to the grocery store or local farmer’s market early to stock your kitchen with a nutritious array of foods and on-the-go-snacks.
Manage your plate size – Try to fill only half of your plate with lean proteins (tofu, fish, chicken) and complex whole grain carbs. The other half should consist of fruits and vegetables.
Drink water – The goal here is to drink at least six eight-ounce glasses a day. This amount increases based on your activity level. Drinking water throughout the day aids your body’s detoxification process and boosts energy and digestion.
Do not skip meals – Eating smaller meals more frequently can boost your metabolism and your ability to burn calories. Be sure to eat breakfast, even if it consists of a small portion of fruit or a homemade smoothie of your favorite nutritious ingredients. Carry healthy snacks throughout the day to remedy your cravings with a nourishing solution.
Sleep – A sufficient amount of sleep can act as a mental reset button as well as help you to maintain an ideal weight by omitting cravings for both sugar and carbs. Seven to eight hours is an adequate amount of sleep for the average adult. Despite what some may believe, the attempt to recapture lost sleep on the weekends does not benefit the body as much as maintaining a consistent and healthy sleep pattern will.
Massage and The Digestive System
Therapeutic massage sessions can promote a healthy digestive system by relaxing tense abdominal and intestinal walls, as well as stimulating activity of your major digestive organs (kidneys, colon, small and large intestines) to improve circulation and waste removal. When combined with a healthy diet of fruits, vegetables, lean proteins and complex carbs, massage therapy can help regulate your bowel movements, flush out the toxins in your system and leave you feeling more energetic and rejuvenated.
Find Balance for Your Body With Therapeutic Massage:
Studies have found massage helpful for stress relief and for balancing your body by aiding its ability to handle anxiety and depression, as well as boosting immunity. Massage has been shown to help regulate naturally-occurring chemicals in the body (hormones including norepinephrine, cortisol and serotonin) that are associated with stress and relaxation.
These benefits of regular massage can help you cope with stress when it’s occurring — and also develop a stronger everyday resilience to future stress.
Whether you need to release tension, reduce stress or simply relax and feel your best, regularly scheduled therapeutic massage sessions are essential for promoting your overall mind and body well-being. Regular monthly massages provide relief to people of all ages and all walks of life. It is the perfect recipe for helping you unwind and prepare yourself for a happy healthy summer.