The Values and Benefits of Holistic Living
We may each be as unique as our fingerprints, but over thousands of years, mankind has discovered numerous, wonderful things that benefit us all. Some work towards our physical health, others focus on our mental well-being. While certain actions play a role in developing strong emotional foundations. When these actions and practices share their positive impact with those around us and work to heal and protect the planet, they earn the definition of a ‘holistic lifestyle’.
This often means living as natural and chemical free as possible, choosing organic, fair trade products and implementing daily habits that center the body and mind.
A famous practice that incorporates many of these principles is Ayurveda, Ayur = life, Veda = science, an ancient Indian system based on the science of life, designed to bring healing and balance through the connection of the mind and body. This may sound odd at first, but the basic principle is that the mind and body are two distinct units inextricably entwined so as each one affects the other. This idea created an entire system of living and health in an effort to heal the body through the mind and protect the mind through the body.
Indian culture puts great emphasis on meditation as the art of awareness and mindfulness. By utilizing this tool it directly impacts the well-being of the body. Science has confirmed what ancestors already knew, the act of balancing the mind brought balance to cortisol, adrenaline, oxytocin, serotonin, dopamine, other assorted endorphins and our bodies’ neurotransmitters. If you want to know more about the impact of meditation, head over to our deeper look at this ancient practice.
When our hormones are in check, our stress levels go down and our emotions are more neutral. We can think clearly and make better decisions. If clearing your mind is difficult, take a look at Terra Origin's Healthy Inner Balance or Healthy Brain supplements. Meditation is a wonderful holistic practice that helps us to react more positively to others around us and to the planet as a whole.
Along with the art of breathing to quiet our thoughts, the impact of food on the health of both the body and the mind is essential. They believe that the relationship of each person with themselves can best be labeled by a Dosha, or elemental connection. This can help you bring attention to how food effects the balance in your mind and body. Ayurveda places good digestion as a key to overall health as this is how we absorb all the energy we ingest, both through diet and our senses.
Ayurveda works off of several principles like the six primary tastes: sweet, salty and sour or pungent, bitter and astringent, food selections based on colors, density and moisture and choosing meals with regards to their elemental qualities, such as earthy for heavy and creamy, watery for moist and cool, airy for light and dry and fiery for hot, spicy and warm foods.
Science has confirmed that bringing awareness to our eating habits can show imbalances in our moods, energy levels, triggers in health conditions or chronic diseases, sleep patterns and general well-being. They have also shown that mindful eating can help us regulate hunger, cravings and inflammation. But sometimes our systems need a little support to bring about that awareness. If your gut health is weak, take a look at our Healthy Gut or Bone Broth Proteins to get you back on track.
By incorporating more colors, textures, flavors and characteristics in our diet we broaden our nutritional choices and can avoid eating predominantly animal products or the same foods. With more variety on our plates, we help the planet to conserve resources, rotate crops to avoid soil depletion and level out supply and demand. This would qualify Ayurvedic food principles as part of a holistic life choice, but we don’t always have the time or energy to be creative in the kitchen. If you want to eat from the rainbow, take a look at Terra Origin's Fruit Nutrient Powders and Greens Superfoods Powders. Getting what you need doesn’t have to be difficult!
Another prime element to holistic living is quality sleep. Many of us simply do not sleep enough as deadlines and to-do lists take over our nightly shut-eye. The body heals itself during sleep and gives the mind a much needed break. When we do not sleep enough, it can impact our choices, moods and how we interact with society and the planet. Securing your 6 to 8 hours is a simple and vital part of living life to the fullest. Knowing this and doing it are two different things altogether. If you have trouble turning off at night, consider Terra Origin's Healthy Sleep supplement to help regulate your sleep-wake cycle.
One of our favorite holistic lifestyle practices has been taking over the world of science, our connection with nature. Simply walking through a green park or shady forest can lower your stress, sooth your mind, ease negative emotions and modern science is now showing forest therapy can be useful in preventing heart disease, high blood pressure and depression. The Japanese call it Shinrin-Yoku, or “forest bathing.” Yet again an example of ancestors knowing how to heal the body through mindfulness in nature. We don’t need to bottle that! Head outside and find the nearest trail that takes you away from the buzz!
Ayurveda was one form of thought which influenced our principles and product design, but we focused on a fully holistic approach in choosing to develop only things which help bring our bodies and our minds into unison for a healthier planet, stronger community and better self. Following these simple guidelines can be all you need to turn things around and start living the life you’ve imagined.