The whole person - your body, mind, spirit, and emotions - need to be in balance to achieve an optimal health and wellness.
If one level doesn't function properly, all the other parts will be affected. For example, if we suffer from an emotional trauma, it can cause problems in the physical, mental and spiritual level as well. Everything is connected.
Holistic wellness aims to look at the person as a whole and understands the interconnectedness of all of its aspects. It doesn't only focus on fixing the symptoms or imbalances, but aims to find the root cause for them.
It recognizes every person has individual needs for optimal wellness, not a one-size-fits all therapy.
Anything that's helping you maintain physical, mental, emotional and spiritual balance can be consiredered as part of holistic wellness. This can be different things, but I mainly focus on these 6 pillars of holistic wellness:
EAT: Holistic Nutrition
BREATH: Meditation & Pranayama
MOVE: Physical exercise
LOVE: Cultivating compassion and gratitude
SLEEP: Natural Lifestyle
+ Ayurveda and different alternative therapies that support these 6 pillars.
Holistic nutritionists look at every person as individual instead of applying generic guidelines for everyone and use nutrition as a tool for achieving balance.
Holistic nutrition isn't just a diet - it's about adopting a sustainable lifestyle that promotes natural healthy foods.
The nutrition that we get (or don't get) from our food is literally what all of our cells are made of - so it only makes sense that what we eat and what our body is able to digest has a huge impact in our wellbeing.
It's proven that healthy diet can not only prevent various diseases such as several cancers, heart disease, diabetes, and Parkinsons disease, but sometimes even lead to remission.
Along with disease prevention, some of the other benefits include improved sleep, mood, energy levels, detoxification and weight loss.
BREATH- MEDITATION AND PRANAYAMA
It's crazy how many spend large sums of money on expensive wellness practices whereas the most effective practices are free - all you need to do is learn how to sit still and breath!
Ok, maybe it's a bit more complicated than that, but meditation and Pranayama can be incredibly beneficial if the proper techniques are learned.
The benefits of meditation include lower blood pressure and heart rate, decreased stress hormones, anxiety and depression, improved digestion, mood, resistance, concentration, memory, learning to slower/reversed biological aging.
Pranayama is the control of our life force energy (prana) through our breath and it also has a wide variety of benefits. Different exercises can achieve different effects but mainly pranayama is used to prepare for meditation.
MOVE -PHYSICAL MOVEMENT
Physical exercise is really important for our health and wellbeing.
Regular physical activity can improve your strength and boost your endurance.
Exercise delivers oxygen and nutrients to your tissues and helps your cardiovascular system work more efficiently. And when your heart and lung health improve, you have more energy to tackle daily chores.
There are many different ways to bring movement and exercise in your life and what works for everyone is can be very different. Depending of your physical body and your life situation, different exercises may be beneficial. While some might love long-distance running, others will be more at home in a gentle yoga class.
The most important thing is to find a way to move that brings you joy.
LOVE - GRATITUDE AND COMPASSION
Even though many would like to get away with doing inner work, it's almost always necessary to some extent in order to truly feel well.
We might be eating all the right things and doing all the right workouts but if you're living in fear and have no real compassion for others, you're likely not going to feel better.
With practice of gratitude, compassion and caring for others and your environment you can start to notice a positive impact you can create around you and also feel better.
SLEEP - NATURAL LIFESTYLE
Simply spending time in Nature and being in contact with it's electromagnetic field (grounding) has several stress relieving and anti-inflammatory effects.
Following the natural cycles of nature, and getting lots of sunlight have important effects on our hormonal balance and sleep especially.
Poor sleep has detrimental effects to our health and leads to premature aging. Therefore, it's important to adopt a natural way of living and avoid "unnatural" things such as excessive use of technology, blue light exposure, staying indoors and getting exposed to toxic synthetic chemicals through processed food, personal care products, furniture etc.
These "unnatural" things don't only affect our sleep, but our overall health and wellbeing as well. To put it simply - the further we get from nature - the sicker we get.
+ AYURVEDA & DIFFERENT ALTERNATIVE THERAPIES
Ayurveda is an ancient medicine system originated from India and it literally means AYR=LIFE & VEDA=KNOWLEDGE. In Ayurveda perfect health is defined as a balance between body, mind, spirit, and social wellbeing.
So basically it's just an ancient version of holistic wellness! Talk about reinventing the wheel, right?
Therefore, Ayurveda and other alternative therapies (such as Reiki) can work to support the above-mentioned pillars and help to maintain optimal balance.
According to Ayurveda, all things in the universe, both living and nonliving, are actually of the same five natural elements: space, air, fire, water, and earth which combine to three doshas: Vata, Pitta & Kapha.
The goal is to maintain balance between these elements, because imbalance is believed to be the root of all diseases. Practise of Ayurveda focuses on prevention (maintaining the balance, but also cure (restoring the balance) in natural ways.