5 Things Healthy People do Every Morning before Work
"Love it or hate it, utilizing the morning hours before work may be the key to a successful and healthy lifestyle."
-wellness writer Jennifer Cohen
If you're like most people, your day officially starts at work. Yet, between getting the kids out of bed and running to the shower after the school bus has gone, some of us manage activities that promote our health and well-being.
Getting the upper hand on the morning seems to be a trait of a rare few. We recognize these people because:
- They appear to be awake before 10 AM, seemingly without coffee
- They appear to be focused on tasks and goals
- They appear to be calm and composed
- They appear to be relaxed and centered
Rising even ten or fifteen minutes early every morning can pay dividends in wellness, and for healthy people, five simple lifestyle choices can assure a more stress-free, productive and healthy day. They need not be difficult.
Here are five small steps that experts promote for a better morning and a more productive day.
5. Milk Thistle
Available as an extract, milk thistle, or Silybum marianum, is a supplement everybody should consider. This common, gentle herb is best known for promoting liver health and fighting liver toxicity, but has also shown positive results in fighting cancerous tumors, lowering cholesterol, and normalizing blood sugar numbers.
Milk thistle is also being tested for its effects combating obsessive-compulsive disorder.
Milk thistle carries very few side effects, and because so many potential benefits outweigh the risks, there's no reason not to supplement your diet with it.I like NutriGold 70:1 extract, readily available from Amazon.
NutriGold Milk Thistle
4. Meditation with Light Stretching
We may feel that we have no time to meditate or attend a 45-minute yoga class. Who does? That doesn't mean that five minutes carries no benefit. Just five minutes of controlled, light stretching daily can improve balance, circulation and posture and improve muscle tone in the thighs, stomach and upper arms.
Relaxation techniques reduce cortisol levels which have been known to increase belly fat and fat in other problem areas.
As you stretch, use the time mentally to "check in" with your body as the various muscle groups balance and work. Don't think of the day ahead; simply breathe and be in the moment.
For guided, five-minute meditations, consider calm.com, which has a smartphone app.
Perfect in Ten Yoga is a DVD that offers simple exercises to do any time of day.
Perfect in Ten Yoga
3. Psyllium Husk
According to reports, most Americans do not get enough fiber in their diet. It's an easy fix with Psyllium Husk.
Husks from the Indian Psyllium seed, found in such over-the-counter products as Metamucil, expand as they soak up water. In doing so, they serve as an excellent source of soluble fiber, which can naturally lower cholesterol and help control blood sugar.
Psyllium Husk acts as a fiber broom that helps clear the impurities from the GI tract as it moves through, but there's another benefit as well: unlike chemical laxatives, Psyllium Husk generally does not cause restroom urgency at inconvenient times.
Moreover, Psyllium's "sponge" effects help to prevent loose, tarry, or inconsistent stool, and maintain GI regularity.
The importance of moisturizer cannot be overstated. Dry, cracked skin can be the source of microinfections on the surface of the skin, and can exacerbate and speed up sun damage. Dry skin can also cause acne, as dead skin and oil clogs pores.
An excellent moisturizer can act as a protective sealant against harsh environmental factors like sun and wind. A moisturizer should contain:
- Natural oils, butters, essential fatty acids, and antioxidants.
- A non-irritating SPF-15 sunblock ingredient, such as Titanium Dioxide.
- Green Tea Extract to nourish the skin.
- Alpha Lipoic Acid to reduce the signs of aging.
- Vitamin C to brighten, tone, and protect the skin.
Daily moisturizer prevents aging of the skin and restores a youthful glow, and those who do it as a daily routine often look significantly younger than their sun-damaged counterparts.
Juice Beauty makes a fantastic line of moisturizing products.
Juice Beauty Apple Moisturizer
Often called "the most important meal of the day," breakfast still remains the most neglected and the most rushed. Yet, a modestly-sized breakfast kick-starts the metabolism and staves off hunger cravings that can lead to a mid-morning trip to the vending machine.
When people think of breakfast, they often think of heavy, greasy fare like bacon, eggs and sausage. Lighter fare can equally start the metabolism and give you more energy for the rest of the day.
You don't have to become a vegetarian or a vegan to enjoy the lighter properties of vegetarian and vegan food, especially in the morning.
Julieanna Hever is a dietician who promotes a plant-based diet. She likes vegan cooking, because it contains "health-promoting fibers, phytonutrients, antioxidents vitamins and minerals and lacks saturated fats and dietary cholesterol." Plant-based eating also excludes wheat gluten, which can lead to uncomfortable bloating and gas throughout the day.
Honeydew Mellon is an excellent source of natural sugars, which give you energy to start the day, and fiber, which naturally cleanses the body of impurities. It is high in potassium, low in calories, and low in fat.
Oatmeal in soy or almond milk are also excellent plant-based breakfast additions.