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The Five Pillars of Good Health

Want to keep it simple in the New Year? Here are Dr. Andrew Weil’s five most fundamental and powerful pieces of health advice. Practice all five, and 2015 promises to be your healthiest year yet. In the true spirit of integrative medicine, these tips don’t cover only physical health – there is wisdom for the mind and spirit here, too.

1. Eating Right/Proper Nutrition
Learning the principles of good nutrition and applying those in your own life. Understand what you are putting into your body, and strive to make good decisions when it comes to eating. With the new year upon us, take this time to evaluate how your nutrition has been in the past, and make a commitment to improving your diet in one way or another for 2015. The key here is to make small improvements over time rather than drastic changes all at once. Small improvements in your eating will lead to good habits that will last a lifetime. If you are looking for more information on how nutrition can impact your health, click here.

2. Physical Activity/Exercise
The most important part of physical activity is finding a way to exercise consistently. Similar to eating right, we must build physical activity into our habits in order to make these changes sustainable over the course of a lifetime. Understand how frequently you should be exercising, and commit yourself to following through on your routine. For some, this may mean taking a 30 minute stroll three to four times a week, for others it may mean lifting weights four to five times a week. Everyone differs in the magnitude of physical activity they need or want to do, but in order to receive the benefits of exercise and see changes in our health, we all need to focus on be consistent with our efforts over time. Click here to read more about the benefits of regular physical activity.

3. Neutralize Stress
Learning and practicing methods of neutralizing stress is a key component in maintaining and flourishing a healthy lifestyle. We all know what it is like to be over-stressed, and what affects that can take on our body. By committing to managing and neutralizing stress, we can practice methods which will help us find relaxation easier and control the stress in our lives. Here is a link to some stress management techniques and practices.

4. Social Connectivity
Maintaining social and intellectual connectivity as we go through our lives serves to keep our mind sharp. Loneliness can also have dramatic effects on our health, we recommend staying in touch with family and friends, and making a concerted effort to connect with others whom you care about. For more information on the importance of social connectivity click here.

5. Spiritual Well-Being
Attending to our spiritual well-being is one of the biggest ways we can improve the non-physical dimension of our lives. There are a number of different ways we can engage in spiritual practices. In my experience I have found it best to be open to trying new things when it comes to maintaining our spiritual well-being. It is best to follow your personal preference and continue to do what works best for you. For more information on ways to maintain your spirituality, and the many benefits of these practices please click here.


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