Freebies For Your HealthWe often take the free things of life for granted. The fresh air we breathe and the life giving rays of the sun are invaluable blessings. We especially note their value when the air becomes polluted or we experience a string of dark, cloudy days.
Humans can live for weeks without food, days without water, but only minutes without air. Brain damage can result after only seven minutes without oxygen. Breathing from the diaphragm is necessary for good health. Tight-fitting clothing should be avoided. Shallow breathing diminishes one's ability to concentrate, and may result in fatigue. To help better oxygenate the indoors, one should use live plants in the house. To avoid indoor air pollution the household cleaning products used should be non-toxic.
Exposure to sunlight provides a number of healthful benefits. The rays of the sun have the ability to kill microorganisms and prevent the growth of mildew and molds. Sunshine also helps to lift the emotions and fight off depression, especially SADS during winter months. Exposure to an appropriate amount of ultraviolet rays from sunlight generates cholecalciferol in the skin, which the body converts into vitamin D.
Fifteen to 20 minutes in the sun usually produces enough vitamin D except during the winter months for those who live at a latitude above 40 degrees north. Adequate vitamin D is necessary for bone strength, and provides protection against certain cancers. However, too much sun can give us freckles, sunspots, wrinkles and skin cancer.
Author: Winston Craig, MPH, PhD, RD.
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