Become the healthiest, happiest version of yourself: Health – whole and holy:

By Christine Carey

How do you define health? Is it a measure of your physique or absence of disease?

Many of us think of health quite differently and the motivation behind why we try to live healthier also has wide variances.

For some, a healthy lifestyle means eating ‘clean’ or exercising, specifically to look a certain way. For others, it means not consuming animal products, or gluten or sugar. For others it is exercising regularly in order to have the freedom to eat and drink whatever they want.

There are two definitions of health that I would like to share and what I believe is the key to lasting motivation.

In 1948, the World Health Organisation published the following statement of meaning for health: “Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”

For the past almost 70 years, this has been the most popular definition throughout the world and has remained unrevised. In my opinion, it is a fairly good declaration in that it includes physical, psychological and community wellness. But it is missing an important aspect of our existence – spiritual well-being.

As you may know by now, I am a believer in a holistic study and understanding of our lives. In order for us to really create a healthy state of being we must consider all aspects of what makes us human.

French philosopher and Jesuit priest Pierre Teihard de Chardin is quoted as saying, “We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience.” So if we are spiritual beings (which of course we are) then spiritual health must be factored in to a greater definition and method for attaining true health.

I came across an interesting article written by American naturopath, alternative medicine advocate and author, Dr Herbert M Shelton, on the etymology (study of word origins) of “health”.

He says that our words “health”, “whole” and “holy” are all derived from the Anglo- Saxon word root “hal”. “Healing” is derived from the same word root and means “to restore to a state of wholeness, soundness, or integrity”.

“Holy” comes from the same root and signifies wholeness and purity of mind and spirit. According to Dr Shelton, “health” has come to mean “completeness and perfection of organisation, fitness of life, freedom of action, harmony of functions, vigour and freedom from all stain and unholy corruption.” That is an interpretation that definitely warrants a deeper look into its meaning. But very simply translated, health is a sound mind and spirit in a sound body, or to be healthy is to be whole; is to be holy.”

So what is the method for ensuring good health?

This is my mantra – eat a diet rich in whole foods, minimise processed foods, do not eat too much, reduce acid forming stress, increase activity, enjoy life and heal relationships.

What could be the ultimate motivation to continuously live a healthy life?

The key to lasting motivation is found in the “holy” of health. You must find your purpose so that each day you have something that motivates you to be the best version of yourself; mind, spirit and body.

If you know why you want to be your best then choosing great foods that work well for your body, having loving relationships, positive thoughts and actions, and a physical activity that you truly enjoy will become just like breathing; a subconscious action which does not require will power. True health can be yours.

• All health content in this article is provided for general information only and should not be treated as a substitute for the medical advice of your own doctor or any other health care professional. Christine Carey is a board certified holistic health coach (www.christine-carey.com), partner at Liquid Nutrition (www.liquidnutrition.com) and director of Lifestyle Management at 242 Consulting (www.242consulting.com). With over ten years of coaching experience, she works with individuals and groups to assess and define their health and lifestyle goals with a strong focus on increasing knowledge and implementing tools for success.


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