Health is a measure of how well the body is working.
Three levers for improving health:
Stress. Recovery. Food.
Three indicators to evaluate health:
Digestion. Inflammation. Hormones.
Stress & Recovery
Stress and recovery are both required for health. The type and amount of recovery depends on the type and amount of stress.
Stress can be divided into three categories: physical, mental and emotional.
Physical stress is load placed on the bones, tendons and muscles. Physical recovery happens when the load is reduced. Load is characterized by both quantity and duration and can be broken into three levels: atrophy, adaptation or injury.
Thinking creates mental stress (firing neurons). Mental recovery happens during sleep. Recovery is required to clear out the byproducts of neural activity and replenish fuel for thought. Learning (forming and strengthening neural connections) also takes place during recovery.
Emotional stress releases hormones. For health, two types of hormone releases are particularly important: Flow & Distress. Emotional recovery from flow requires relaxation to recharge hormone levels. Emotional recovery from distress requires identifying and removing the cause of the distress, relaxation to heal and flow to establish a healthier hormone profile.
Food can be broken down into three categories: plants, animals and unknowns.
Different combinations of food will produce different levels of enjoyment for different periods of time. Being familiar with the effects of food on digestion, inflammation and hormones provides the best opportunity for selecting food which provides the most enjoyment for the longest period of time.
Digestion can be broken down into three parts: stomach acid, gut walls and gut flora. Stomach acid plays a critical role in both disinfecting whatever is consumed and digestive signaling. The gut walls and gut flora play vital roles in absorbing nutrients and maintaining the body’s protective barrier.
Inflammation is the bodies quick response mechanism. Inflammation is a generic immune response composed of heat, swelling, pain, redness and loss of function. Excessive or chronic inflammation is both an indication of chronic illness and a cause of chronic illness.
Hormones work well as indicators because they have effects which are easily noticed. Mood, energy and body composition are all driven by hormones and can all be adjusted using the levers of stress, recovery and food.