Oct. 31, 2022

Look After Your Health - It's Your Biggest Asset

Look After Your Health - It's Your Biggest Asset

I got up this morning, after a rough night of endless coughing.  It's so annoying when you have a cold, and that constant itch in your throat just won't go away. Lemon tea, throat lozenges, good old Buckley's and more water.  Did I mention there is a huge roll of toilet paper on the bedside table for that runny nose?  I can't say I am feeling very attractive right now, with my red nostrils and watery eyes. 

I was sick quite often when I was a child. I had whooping cough, chicken pox, strep throat, tonsils out, mono and many other chronic issues.  I never let it get in the way, but I do recall so many days of laying in bed with a hot water bottle on my head to try to alleviate ear aches, or a can of Ginger Ale on my side table.  As much as this forms part of my childhood memories, it also goes hand in hand with the memory of my mom, and the wonderful care she gave her children. I remember a time when I had been sick for a number of days, and Mom brought home a bright yellow book with a picture of a horse on the front. It was a hard covered children's story book about farm animals. It meant so much to me.  We didn't have the luxuries that most kids have today.  No cable television or internet. If you were home from school sick; you stayed in bed and read books.  A new book was quite a treat, and it's funny how I often think of that little yellow book whenever I am feeling unwell.

I got a little frustrated yesterday because I have many things I am trying to accomplish this week, and being contagious means you need to stay away from others. In the midst of placing my online order for groceries, I realized just how lucky I really am.  In the old days, if you were home with a cold, you either threw on your woolly scarf and went out in the cold, or you stayed home and a kind friend or relative would do your shopping for you.  I placed my order online today, drove to my favorite store, and made sure I didn't get close to the lady with my groceries. Although my Covid tests were negative, I kept my mask on even though I was outside. It was important to me to be respectful and not pass on this cold virus to the woman who brought out my groceries. It's the right thing to do. 

I came home and made incredible chicken soup today. It wasn't pretty, but wow did it taste good! I credit my mom for this one. She didn't make chicken soup often, however she made the best hamburger stew. I used to beg her to make that hamburger soup, full of big chunky potatoes and carrots. I always had room for seconds!  There was always a big pot of turkey soup after the holidays, and she would often say "have some of that soup, it will put hair on your chest." Goodness gracious, it's a good thing she was joking because I consumed a lot of hearty soup when I was growing up.

Today when I was cutting up the vegetables for my soup, I thought about how fortunate I am to have vegetables. Carrots, peas, corn and red pepper added color to the crockpot and filled my taste buds with happiness. How you eat can really have an impact on your general health, and this can be so challenging for people who are struggling to make ends meet. It's a reminder to all of us when we are donating to the food bank, to do our best to donate wholesome yummy foods and not just the item from the back of our shelf.  

Compare your body to a car, or any type of automobile. If you were driving a diesel engine, and put gasoline in, or vice versa, you can pretty much kiss that ride goodbye.  A little bit of water in the gas line can cause the car to sputter and have issues.  Our bodies are no different.  We need to have the right fuel in order to thrive and survive.  

In my late teens I developed a minor eating disorder, and thankfully I was able to pull myself out of that funk before it got too dangerous. I fully credit my family doctor who took the time to address it and steer me in the right direction.  A telltale sign was when I was visiting a relative at the hospital, and I passed out beside her hospital bed. My older sister was a nurse, and happened to be on the pediatric ward that day.  One of the nurses knew she was my sister, and sent me down to see her.  Jeanne, as always, was looking out for me.  She found a sandwich for me, and suggested perhaps I had low sugars. Yes, she was right.  You can't run on empty. I didn't confess to her about my diet of crackers, but she knew.  Of course she did, she had been my guardian angel many times and knew me better than I did.  

Today as I took my poodle out for a 5 km walk, with my wad of Kleenex in my pocket, I noticed an increase in the amount of take-out food containers on the side of the road.  Everything from tin foil lids to disposable coffee cups stuck in the trees, and I thought about why people insist on so much take-out food. I don't remember our parents having to go and buy a take-out coffee before they went to work. Instead, they plugged in the percolator and had a cup before they ever left the house.  Is it the novelty of the readily available selection of coffee and snacks, or is it because people are too busy to shop and cook?

Many years ago I attended a sales seminar in Kelowna, BC.  A renowned motivational speaker was presenting at that seminar, and one of the topics he covered was health. The late Jim Rohn had a quote that has stayed with me for life.  "Take care of your body. It's the only place you have to live".  He was so right.

I have experienced loss of family members from heart failure, Alzheimer's dementia, cancer and ALS. Each and every one of those situations was tragic and gut-wrenching. I want to do my best to try to keep this engine running smoothly, for as long as I can. I have many more miles to travel. The laryngitis and hacking cough are simply a minor setback, and with good sleep, hydration and nutrition, I should be able to kick this virus in no time.  It's just a matter of putting everything into perspective. 

I did not record a podcast this week because I sound like a frog in a wind tunnel.  Hopefully I will be back behind the microphone next week.  In the meantime, bring on the veggies, vitamins and Zinc, chicken soup and yes, a little bit of potato chips!  

I included my chicken soup recipe in the main photo.  If you decide to give it a try, I'd love to hear how it worked out for you!  Here's how you can reach me: 

Have a great week everyone!