Five key concepts by Dr. Amy Shah that promise to help you stay physically and mentally healthy
As a child in India, my diet and lifestyle were dramatically different than they are today. Then, moving to America and going through nutrition schooling and grueling medical training, I radically changed everything. As I put the pieces back together, I was shocked to discover these five key concepts.
1. ½ teaspoon of turmeric
A half a teaspoon of turmeric can help your working memory and blunt your insulin levels after a meal. In addition, just half a teaspoon is shown to selectively grow brain stem cells but will stop the growth of cancer cells, just add it to your chai like I do or sprinkle in your tea with agave and some ginger.
2. Circadian rhythms
The Nobel prize and medicine went to Jeffrey Hall and colleagues for their discoveries about the molecular mechanisms of circadian rhythms. This is around the time that I was in my health crisis. I couldn’t believe that 80% of our genes are influenced by our DNA cycles also known as circadian rhythms. This is when I started overnight fasting and getting morning sunlight and a fasted workout every single day.
Personally, I feel as though my health has improved tremendously and my energy levels have increased dramatically. In fact, a recent new study supports circadian rhythm syncing for the prevention of brain related diseases.
Whole plant foods such as legumes, seeds, fruits, vegetables and lentils are amazing for your body. In fact, growing evidence shows that adequate fiber intake can benefit your digestion and reduce your risk of chronic disease. These benefits are mediated by your gut microbiota, which are the millions of bacteria that live in your digestive system. Human cells don’t have the enzymes to digest fiber but intestinal bacteria do have the enzymes to digest many of these fibers. This is why dietary fibers are essential for health as they actually feed the good bacteria in the intestine and function as prebiotics. Check out this study on the importance of fiber.
4. It’s not just what you eat, it’s what you feed your mind
Feed your mind a balanced diet and you will become a happier person. Just like eating, feeding your mind in moderation is key. Limit negativity by choosing your worries wisely, watching your news sources and being very careful of who you choose to associate yourself with. Pay attention to your feelings and understand if certain information or situations heighten your anxiety. If so, try feeding your brain happiness, kindness and focus on situations and people where you feel safe. Choosing your brain food wisely will allow you to be more productive and able to address issues with a clear head and with confidence. We must actively decide to give our mind the balance it needs by choosing positivity. We, as individuals have choices, so make the correct ones! Here is a great article that studies the negativity bias in the brain.
5. Aging as we know it is a social construct and not a medical diagnosis.
Biologically, you can get older yet get younger in many ways! Scientific fact: we don't all age at the same rate and our lived experiences, both negative and positive, can alter this pace of aging. One negative life experience, like surviving an extreme event, can lead to chronic inflammation and the early onset of some age-related diseases. Managing stress and improving sleep can help reverse some of this damage.
I hope these 5 tips help you on your individual health journeys. Remember, life is short so live it well.