The Six Pillars of Self-Care
Self-care may be a simple organic concept, but it would be good to remind ourselves, that it has distinct components and that they are all interlinked. In a nutshell the six pillars of self-care are: 1. Health Plan - You are your very first healthcare provider and YOU know yourself best. So, you need to establish a health care plan for your life that should be adapted to the stage of life journey you are in, your health needs, preferences, possibilities and your cultural health beliefs. Make sure that you know your health condition, you are familiar with any illness you might be facing. As you are your first care provider, it is useful to be confident in managing your health through acquiring self-care competencies. 2. Healthy Weight Management - More and more studies link overweight and obesity to poor health. Obesity is a proven risk factor in developing many diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure and cancer among others. It leads to many other health problems requiring regular care and treatment. 3. Healthy Environment - Our environment has a great impact on our health. Toxic elements of our environment include pesticides/ preservatives/antibiotics in our food as well as in daily care products and cosmetics use. An enabling environment includes green areas, access to affordable fresh food, water, security and shelter, access to community and care provider support. 4. Healthy Eating - Food provides pleasure and comfort. Food provides energy for our body to function and healthy food will play a large role in keeping it healthy. Here’s a super quick summary to easily remember the building blocks for healthy eating: • Drinking: mainly water • Understanding Food Components: Sugar, Fats, Proteins, Fibres and Nutrients • Healthy plate: what do we put on our plate? What quantities of which component? Fresh-raw-processed-steamed-grilled-friedorganic-colourful?
5. Healthy Moving - Keeping active is essential to the body’s healthy functioning. Nowadays our busy lifestyle does not allow enough physical use of the body. With this sedentary lifestyle, there is a need for organising dedicated time for physical activity. Exercise needs to be about balance, strength, endurance. Exercise helps to: • burn calories, • ensure effective blood circulation (facilitate the delivery of nutrients and hormones to organs and perform their dedicated tasks), • circulate water through the body thus avoiding water retention (reduce weight, keep kidneys healthy) 6. Healthy Lifestyle - Lifestyle is the way of living one chooses, reflecting his or her values and attitudes. It is influenced by the surrounding community, peer behaviours, role models chosen, cultural background. Lifestyle has a huge influence on health because of its constituent parts. The interconnected building blocks of lifestyle are: • Food • Physical Activity • Rest and Sleep (this is actually a very active time as it gives an opportunity to regenerate and reenergise) • Stress and Emotions • Toxic Load (smoking, toxic environment) • Hygiene Keeping these in mind will help to empower women with sustainable health management skills and knowledge to make informed health choices. It’s about time women started putting the ‘Self’ back in ‘Self-care’
You need to establish a health care plan for your life
Dr Anbreen Slama-Chaudhry is a Health Entrepreneur. She is a medical
doctor (GP), Health and Wellbeing Consultant, Chronic Diseases Patient Education and Self-Care specialist. She is the CEO and founder of Medical Training Services. Her expertise are: - Care Providers-Patients/Community Health Empowerment, - Capacity Building, - Self-Care Education