Dr. Kaushik Sridhar

Food: The Fourth Root of Happiness

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“Energy” is the body’s electricity. Like the wiring in your house, the energy circuits in your body need to be clear of short-circuits to flow. In your desire for energy, you may consume drinks, power bars, magazines, videos, or exercises – but beware of “false energy,” which can harm you even on the cellular level.

Fast food with few nutrients gives you momentary energy that quickly burns out. Stress, depression, and anxiety engage your body in a constant physical struggle and deplete your energy. Anger, envy, fear, shame, and grief use up “false energy,” as you try to outrun them. You may be a victim of technology, responding to every e-mail and phone call.

Research shows that fad diets don’t work. Instead, to become healthy you must make a long-term commitment to building good habits. Cut the fat in your diet to 20% or less of your total daily caloric input. Eat three portions per week of fish high in omega-3 fatty acids, and lots of fresh fruit and vegetables, particularly broccoli, beans and blueberries. Green tea is a source of health protecting antioxidants.

Workaholism is the accepted addiction of our time. It is the socially accepted method of escaping from your self, your family and your life. The patterns you learn in childhood stay with you throughout life, so teach your children good eating habits. Sit down to dinner with your family. Turn off the television, especially at dinner. Too much TV is linked to obesity and underachievement. Control what your children eat by controlling the foods you keep in the house. Set a good example. “If you believe that everything happens is an opportunity for your growth, it is easier to have real confidence in your life.” “Unmindful consumption” of food, entertainment and stimuli can lead to a health crisis.

Nourishment does not include only food; all your senses need nourishment. Aromatherapy offers a feast for the nose. Treat your ears to music. Satisfy your eyes with art. Paint a room or buy clothing in your favourite colour. Stimulate your sense of touch by feeling the textures in your surroundings.

Protect your energy by guarding your time. “Real energy” comes from deep awareness and connection to yourself and the things you love. Declaring your intentions creates energy in that direction. Prioritize your intentions and identify what you need to do to achieve them. Don’t become distracted by the “busy-ness” of others. Sources of real, healthy energy include reading, wisely using and saving money that you’ve earned through hard work and engaging in creative activities.

Living proactively means asking yourself what action you can take to get the results you want. Each action is a learning process. Follow up by reflecting on your actions to get better results next time.

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