During over twenty five years working as a yoga teacher and massage therapist I have studied and explored widely differing ideas on health , wellbeing and fitness from both Eastern and Western viewpoints. I’m particularly interested in both evolutionary science and what that means for health and the body/mind and Asian traditional medical systems , particularly those from India and Thailand.
I have a fairly earthy view of this subject including a healthy skepticism around some fads , and a discomfort around elitist unrealistic regimes . Whilst there is definitely a place for short term detox regimes or retreats to boost or restore health, preferably whatever we do needs to be sustainable over the long term, be enjoyable and fit in with our lives. I also believe in the maxim that one persons medicine can be another’s poison . There are generalities that we can all find benefit from , such as getting enough sleep and a healthy diet and some exercise, but the details won’t look the same for everyone.
My own view is that health is a combination of factors: feeling physically strong enough, energised and balanced; feeling mentally/emotionally comfortable with oneself and others; and having some sense of connection with community, nature and the wider world . Add to that satisfying not overly stressful meaningful work, with enough enough proper downtime. It’s also not always that easy to create this amidst the demands of life.
Whilst it is certainly not the only way, for me a combination of yoga, meditation, some cardio exercise, a sauna when possible, receiving and massage now and again, a decent diet and making time for hobbies , community and social activities has been winning combination in staying well amid the demands of a full life. Some phases of life may be more conducive than others for this . It sounds time consuming , but not nearly as time consuming as being ill is, and the improvement in day to day quality of life is worth it in my humble opinion.