5 Daily Healthy Fascia and Brain Habits to Start the Year
Happy New Year! We are grateful for all the support over the years. Wishing you healthy Fascia and improved Brain function in 2020
Here’s what this article hits on:
- Food Hygiene
- Strategies to Resist Overwhelm
Did you know that to have a sustainable, pain-free body and active lifestyle, the body has to have a strong and solid foundation? This, of course, starts with the fascia and lines of tension. The intrinsic involvement of the fascia during stress, digestion, sleep, and movement is undeniable.
If you have a lean to the right and forward head posture, I can guarantee there will be pain or injury at some point. Loading a weak foundation is a recipe for disaster. This postural change can put pressure and compression on all your organs, muscles, bones, and digestive system, including your brain.
I have many people asking me about their diet, their workout program, and why they are in pain or always bloated. One lady complained of bloating, back pain, and fatigue for years. She offered she is on a meatless diet, and eats enough protein as required, she did the research online and is adamant that her program is the right program. I agreed. I said if it is working, then continue doing it. If in the last five years since you changed your diet, you developed osteoporosis, diabetes, and wasting of the muscles, then it’s the right approach. She did not reply.
If your program is giving you the results you desire; then it’s the right program. If not, then it might be time for a change.
5 Daily Practices That Can Help
With instant access to information on the web, finding the right approach can be very frustrating and stressful for people, and I can sympathize. I too have tried nearly every popular diet, treatment, and exercise program that has been glorified as the new savior of human needs. In order for me to have an opinion, I try as many techniques and diets that are out there and look at the science behind it.
When I was in the height of my concussion or even when I was under a lot of stress, using weights made my body swell, even though working out was “healthy” it wasn’t for me at the time. My injuries compressed my body, and doing weights continued to put more pressure on an already tight structure. My lymph rebelled; what I needed was expansive work, pilates, and stretching. Eating a protein-rich diet at that time caused me more swelling as I was unable to digest and absorb the food. What our bodies need can change over time. The ability to understand that is essential. Things work until they don’t.
I like to look at diet as more of a lifestyle eating plan instead of a diet. When your strategy stops working or is unsustainable, it’s time to lean on principles. It’s easy to get caught up in the ‘why am I gaining weight?, Why am I so stiff? Why is this not working?’ Remember, things work until they don’t. As our bodies change, the workout program, the treatment program, and the nutrition program may need to change as well. Every year or as needed, re-evaluating your health program to see what needs to be changed and then create a plan to achieve that new goal.
What is essential to your fascia, brain, and body? The essentials: Sleep, Stress Management, Hydration, Food Hygiene, and Movement. This article outlines the basic principles that I believe make the most difference.
Sleep is the time when our body regenerates and processes what has happened to us that day. It is part of recovery for an athlete, helps heal the brain, and is essential for the release of human growth hormone. When we take our supplements at night, the body uses them for repair.
Unplugging an hour before bed is essential. We often want to have our phones near us to check social media, and the other excuse is it is your alarm. One of the most important things you can do for your brain is to switch off the phone or even better, the wi-fi in the house. Science has not caught up to or has not published the effects of wi-fi on the increase in mental illness, disease, and cancer.
I have noticed in my practice that wearing an Apple Watch or Fitbit a night has caused adhesions under the watch, in the muscle and fascia of the wearer.
How much sleep?
The fastest way to hurt your brain is lack of sleep. It decreases the circulation of the brain. A study by A M Williamson, Anne-Marie Feyer in Occup Environ Med 2000;57:649–655 shows that those who are drunk perform the same as those who are sleep deprived. Sleep experts suggest that we all get 7 to 9 hours of high-quality, uninterrupted sleep. This is the bare minimum that is widely accepted by sleep experts and health professionals. Optimally, we would all get 7-9 hours of high-quality sleep.
- The temperature of the room matters. I like to be warm when I go to sleep, if the room is too cold, I can’t warm up to fall asleep. After I am asleep, I turn the temperature down (automatic). Experts suggest keeping the room below 70 degrees or 20 degrees for good night sleep.
- Remove all electronics from your bedroom. This is not the norm now. But the new pattern in health is ADHD and anxiety, cancers, brain fog, and fatigue are on the rise.
- For those that don’t have animals and you need an alarm to wake, its best to go with the old school alarm but turn the light away from you so it will not interrupt your sleep.
Sleep Practice Protocol
- Stretch before bed, it helps to release any tension and gets your lymphatics moving.
- No caffeine after 4 PM for some, even 2 PM for others.
- Get up on the first alarm and get moving; this will prevent slanginess the rest of the day.
Without water, we can not survive. Fascia loves water and needs it to stay pliable and elastic. I had a lady in her 80’s who had complained of cramping and muscle aches that would be so painful she would break down and cry, not being able to function. She had a car accident in 2012, and after that, the pain started. When I heard her story, I asked her how much water she drinks a day. She said three glasses of distilled water. The car accident caused some fascial issues as she had a broken sternum and ankle, which the doctors only discovered a year later. The muscle cramping was 100 percent due to dehydration. Her prescription was taking electrolytes daily and drink, sipping 2 to 3 liters of water per day. She suffered for ten years because of dehydration.
What Water Does
Water is the key to looking and staying young. It helps prevent wrinkles and helps maintain the lubrication of our joints. It is the main form of transportation of nutrients, oxygen, and waste across cells and through our blood. Our muscles are 75 percent water, and it keeps tissues moist, such as eyes, mouth, skin. Dehydration can wreak havoc on your body and mind. Here are some symptoms of dehydration:
- Loss of muscle pump
- Brain fog
- Tight fascia
- Sipping water thought the day is key
- Aim to drink about ½ your body weight in fluid ounces of water per day. 2 to 3 liters depending on activity, altitude, and activity
- Colour of your pee matters, clear means too much water, light yellow just enough, dark yellow means you need to start drinking
Stress is the number one cause of disease. Whether it is a good stressor (working out, getting married, having a baby, etc.), or a bad stressor (late for work, constant worry, physical injury), the body responds the same. Stress creates the stress response and puts the body into fight or flight; during this state, the body does not heal.
- Practice at least one activity that brings you some joy or calmness each day
- Breath is essential for reducing stress and anxiety, set reminders to breathe throughout the day
- Get outside in the sun and move
- Take a bath with lavender, Epsom salts, or an infrared sauna
- Listen to Solfeggio frequencies to help reduce stress
- Napping helps reset the mind
- Spend time with a loved one or pet
- Unplug from social media
- Get support, EMDR, or counselling; it helps the brain to share or unload stress
- Gentle exercise can help reduce stress, low resistance, stretching are best
Healthy habits for the brain and fascia. Eat real food, reducing processed food helps support your immune system and your ability to absorb nutrients. If your body is continually trying to process chemicals and toxins, it can cause premature aging, disease, and cancers.
- Eat protein with every meal – try eating salmon for breakfast
- Eat carbs such as potatoes a night – will help your sleep
- Focus on quality – within your budget
- Vegetables or fruit with every meal
Sit down and eat your meal; it helps with digestions and absorption. I see so many people eating in their cars; this is better than not eating. But take the time to allow the body to do its job.
Create an exercise or movement program that works for your body. Being consistent is the key. After having several concussions, my working out went from five times a week to zero for four years. It affected my mind, my body, and my social life. Although I physically could not work out due to nerve damage and concussion symptoms, I kept moving, walking, doing 5000 steps a day. Simple daily practices to start.
- Move while you are sitting at your desk, move your arms above your head and behind your back
- Every 15 minutes get up and walk around
- Stretch daily before you get out of bed or before you go to sleep
- Park as far away from the door as possible
- Take the stairs
Over the next six weeks, add 5 to 10 minutes of movement to your day until you reach 60 minutes. Step by step.