My Healthy Habits That Are Non-Negotiable
For the most part, I really like all of my daily routines. Sticking to them allows me to flow through the day more efficiently and make the most of my time and efforts. However, I also know that it’s important to be flexible and spontaneous at times. That being said, there are a few daily habits that are non-negotiable for me. Even on the random days that I’m being spontaneous, these are the healthy habits I refuse to break from.
My Healthy Habits That Are Non-Negotiable
Honestly, I think I have some PTSD from when I first became really sick from Hashimotos. Gluten is such a big trigger for me that there is absolutely no way I would ever knowingly eat it. I won’t even eat food that was cooked in the same pot, if the pot wasn’t washed first. Within minutes of eating something with gluten in it, my face will start itching, and then hives will start to show up on my jaw and neck. By morning my eyes are puffy and red and will remain that way for about a week. Because gluten cause’s the immune system to flare up, the symptoms can take weeks and even months to resolve themselves and calm back down. Nothing in the world is worth that to me.
If a gluten-free diet is new to you, I know it can be at times confusing and overwhelming. These are my tips for shopping and eating out.
At The Grocery Store
Always read the ingredients and check for the Certified Gluten-Free Logo. A product can still be gluten-free even if it doesn’t have the logo. But there’s a chance that it could be processed in a facility that also makes other products with gluten ingredients. In that case, there’s always a chance of cross-contamination.
Out At Restaurants
A lot of restaurants will now note if a dish on the menu is gluten-free. If you’re in doubt, ask your server, and be sure to let them know it’s an allergy, not a preference. If your dish is fried, find out if it’s cooked in the same oil as other non-gluten-free food items. And lastly don’t be shy about requesting modifications. Just explain that you have some bad allergies and always be polite.
Even though I was raised vegetarian, I was never really into eating dairy. Although cheese and butter were the exceptions to that statement. My mom on the other hand was all about her dairy products. Even to the point where she would wake me up at 5 am and force me to milk the neighbor’s cows with her. This of course only made me dislike dairy even more. Even so, I never thought that I would end up fully vegan one day. As fate would have it though, dairy eventually became a big food trigger for me and was completely cut out from my diet 8 years ago. When the dairy went, so did the rashes on my face and neck as well as the bloating and uncomfortable stomach pains.
I aim to drink 12 cups of water every day. Somedays it’s much harder to do so than others. But besides the frequent bathroom trips, I really feel much better for it. It helps me eat less during the day, my digestion is better, and my skin looks healthier. To make life a little easier, every morning I fill up my glass cup and water bottle. Then throughout the day, I refill my cup when needed. It makes it easy to take the big bottle to the gym, and the cup in the car when I’m out driving.
Morning and Evening Skincare Routine
Sometimes I wonder if I’m the only one that thinks that I’ll instantly age 10 years if I skip my skincare routine. I don’t know, but it’s something that never gets forgotten. As someone that has always struggled with acne-prone skin, the idea of sleeping with an unwashed face is anxiety-inducing. Although my fears may be somewhat irrational, I do know that starting and ending the day by taking some time to do something for myself feels good.
I don’t make it to the gym as much as I’d like to these days, although I’m working on getting better at it. But on days that I’m not working out at the gym, I still try and go out for a walk or do something at home. Sometimes I leave weights in the middle of the floor where I have to walk past them. Then every time I walk to the bathroom I’ll do some squats and deadlifts. With all that water I’m drinking, the sets really add up throughout the day!
As a single parent with a toddler, this one can at times be very difficult. Although I prefer to wake up early in the morning and have an hour to myself before Rama wakes up, he has other ideas. It’s like as soon as I open my eyes in the morning he can sense it and within one minute he’s walking in to ask for breakfast! So now after his bedtime, I sit in the shower for a very long time. It’s pretty much the only part of the day that I have silence and a chance to sit with my thoughts. Without that regular alone time, I’m not a very happy person.
I think it’s really important to always strive for growth and be working on ourselves. To be learning something new about ourselves and the world. For me, journaling is one of the ways that I get to reflect on my life. How things are currently going, what I want to be doing in the future, and what I need to do to reach that place. I also like listening to podcasts and audiobooks, while doing my morning routine or driving in the car. It’s the easiest way for me to learn from experts and thoughtful thinkers in fields and subjects I care about.