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How to Achieve Personal Growth and Balance II - living in our bodies

Updated on April 2, 2011

Let’s start with the body. What do I have to do, each moment of each day, to make sure that my body is functioning optimally?

The obvious things are adequate exercise and adequate rest. Naturally nutrition is also important. Seeing to it that my body gets enough of what is good for it – eating a healthy, balanced diet is essential for the continued well-being not only of the body, but of the mind and spirit as well.

There are countless books on the market about diet and the connection between diet and health, and these can be very useful.

The body, as Jesus said, is the “temple of the Holy Spirit” and it should not be defiled with lots of artificial stuff. While looking after the body it is important to remain aware that the body is a part of the whole that makes up a person, not something separate. What affects the body affects the mind - and vice versa.

Vitruvian Man by Leonardo da Vinci, Galleria dell' Accademia, Venice (1485-90). Image from Wikipedia
Vitruvian Man by Leonardo da Vinci, Galleria dell' Accademia, Venice (1485-90). Image from Wikipedia

Food and growth

"We are what we eat" say some. If this were literally true we would have some problems.

There is no doubt that what we eat has a rather direct impact on our well-being. Faddist diets are not the answer to keeping our bodies adequately nourished.

What is important is to reduce fats and foods high in cholesterol, to drink alcohol moderately.

I think that common sense will show that a few very simple ideas about diet are quite sufficient to keep the body in optimal condition, when allied with adequate exercise and adequate rest: reduce fats, salt and sugar, don’t eat too much red meat, do eat fruit and vegetables (as much as possible uncooked), whole grains and pulses. As much as possible eat food sourced in or near where you live which is preferably grown organically.

(Marcel Duchamp. ''Nude Descending a Staircase, No. 2'' 1912. Oil on canvas. Philadelphia Museum of Art.. Image via Wikipedia
(Marcel Duchamp. ''Nude Descending a Staircase, No. 2'' 1912. Oil on canvas. Philadelphia Museum of Art.. Image via Wikipedia

Take a hike!

"Walking is the most powerful creative tool that I know. Although it has fallen into disuse in our hurried times, it may e the most powerful spiritual practice known to man." - Julia Cameron, in The Vein of Gold (Pan, 1997)

The body also suffers when exposed to too many stressful situations, and that means, in my view at least, that exercise should not, at least for us in daily life who are not sports people, gentle yet aerobic, like a good brisk walk at least five times a week. Walking is naturally calming and opens the mind as well as keeping the body functioning well. When your life seems to be getting too hectic and stressed, take a walk. When you have a problem that seems insoluble, take a hike! The mind works best when aerated, so take a walk to get the lungs full of air. Walking is also cheap – you don’t need a whole lot of apparatus or special clothes, just what you normally wear.

Reading on

This Hub is part of a five-part series on balance and growth.

The other four Hubs can be found here:

Copyright Notice

The text and all images on this page, unless otherwise indicated, are by Tony McGregor who hereby asserts his copyright on the material. Should you wish to use any of the text or images feel free to do so with proper attribution and, if possible, a link back to this page. Thank you.

© Tony McGregor 2010


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    • tonymac04 profile imageAUTHOR

      Tony McGregor 

      6 years ago from South Africa

      Thanks for stopping by - and I hope you get back on that bike really soon!

      Love and peace


    • Wesman Todd Shaw profile image

      Wesman Todd Shaw 

      6 years ago from Kaufman, Texas

      I know one thing for sure, my body is suffering from lack of exercise - I LOVE to ride my mountain bicycle down the rural roads...but it has been far too hot, and always is, during the Summers.

      I'm ready for Fall, and improved fitness!

    • tonymac04 profile imageAUTHOR

      Tony McGregor 

      7 years ago from South Africa

      Micky - so good to see you here. Young Dimitris was getting lonely!

      Thanks for stopping by and for the kind words.

      Love and peace


    • tonymac04 profile imageAUTHOR

      Tony McGregor 

      7 years ago from South Africa

      Dimitris - well, what can I say? I took it for granted that people understand the benefits of sex!

      You have at least been joined here by my brotherman Micky!

      Thanks for stopping by

      Love and peace


    • Micky Dee profile image

      Micky Dee 

      7 years ago

      Very good start Tony. The body is the Temple for the Holy Spirit. Great work brother man.

    • De Greek profile image

      De Greek 

      7 years ago from UK

      You left out sex :-)

      And why am I the only one commenting here?


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