No matter what the illness, obtaining optimum health demands that you keep your body as fit as you possibly can.
When we first acknowledge we are chronically ill, we tend to withdraw into the belief that our life is over. In our heads, we believe we have nothing else to contribute to this life. We are marking time and waiting on that last breath.
That is the self-pity raising its ugly head. Of course, if we listen, we trap ourselves in wretchedness. However, we have another avenue. We can acknowledge that we have the illness, determine what our limitations are and push the envelope right up to those limitations without crossing the line into additional pain.
We can still participate in physical activities. There are activities that allow us to exercise our body and get our heart pumping and that valuable blood flowing through our veins.
There are times when even stretching is unbearable. However, when we are ready to change our situation, stretching our muscles is a good place to start.
At first, it may be tiring. Never the less, continue it. Eventually you will intuitively know which muscles need stretching. When you cannot do anything else, but you want to do something, stretch!
If you are healthy enough to walk, count it as a blessing. A blessing that you previously took for granted. Chronically ill patients, who cannot walk, number in the millions. However, if you can, WALK. Walk, even if it is just walking around your room, your house, or your apartment. Move your body.
Following surgery, you may walk that same day. I was surprised following my first knee replacement. The transfer person entered my room and announced that my doctor wanted me to walk. In my head I am thinking not only is this transfer person crazy, my doctor is insane as well. Never the less, together, we maneuvered me out of the bed and down the hallway. Then slowly but surely I returned to my bed. Following surgery, moving your legs helps the blood flow and reduces the opportunity of blood clots forming, traveling to your heart, and killing you. It is hard work, it is painful, but it will not kill you. A blood clot can.
Getting outside and breathing fresh air is everything. Taking deep breaths of clean fresh air is not only good for your lungs, but it can help to clear your thoughts. That is one of the reasons I encourage my chronically ill readers to start BAG GARDENS (NOTE: I do not receive any funds from these gardens). Working a garden will get you outside and allow you to interact with nature. While working the garden, it will get your mind off how sick you are, how much suffering you have been through and how much pain you are in. You might even learn a little something about your neighbor. You know the ones you were always too busy for when you were working.
Gardening may be the furthest thing from your mind. OK! You might be an artist, who chose another profession to support the life style you thought you needed. Now, that you are disabled, it might be just the time to take up your passion. Laura of Designing Woman does just that. When her health allows, she paints designer furniture. The work is so detailed; you can just imagine her losing her pain in her artwork.
Healthy eating is imperative. Eating fresh vegetables (I personally prefer them raw) will supply you with natural nutrients and help your system work at its finest. The importance of fresh vegetables is why I am dedicated to finding ways to introduce them into each meal.
If you are just too ill and have neither energy nor the area to grow a bag garden, multiple vitamins are certainly a good substitute. Be cautious, some vitamins can interact with your medication. ALWAYS talk with your doctor before adding them to your diet.
Attitude is everything. Our condition is not a curse. In most cases, the illness stops us long enough to allow us to choose a new direction. How we feel about our illness can be a hindrance or it can thrust us into an exciting new life. If we listen and are open to making the positive changes, our life enriches to a degree that we never knew existed.
My position is this, whatever steps you need to get your body as healthy as it can be, take those steps toward your future. All of your previous steps brought you here to the very place you are right now.