Our food habits and dependencies rule our lives: we eat to beat stress, eat because we are supposed to, or because we are used to do it like that. We buy cheaper products, but then we pay for them by something more expensive - our health and happiness. However, there is no magic system or a set of rules that would work for everyone. Therefore, it is worth to try different ways and see what happens. When you figure out your own eating preferences, you will know yourself a bit better and become a lot happier.

Eat fresh food. Something that has just been cooked is better that something that has waited for you for one or two days in the fridge. Try to prepare as much as you need for now.

Eat slowly. Chewing your food properly, you help your digestive system to extract maximum benefit from it. In addition, you will feel full with much less food.

Eat only as much as you need. We have many strange eating habits. For example, we often eat not when we are hungry, but when it is time to eat; or we eat everything on our plate even if we are already full. It is very nice when someone offers you food, but try nor not eat if you are not hungry.

Eat two hours after waking up and two hours before bedtime. Your consciousness, body and mind need some time to wake up in the morning. The same happens to your stomach. Drink a glass of warm water with a drop of lemon juice, which will give you energy to wait for a good time for a meal. The same is in the evening: free your digestion from the extra work and stop eating for a couple of hours before to make your sleep more pleasant.

Start your day with a fruit or vegetable. It is highly important how you start your digestive process. Let your first food today be fresh. It will be easier for your stomach to start with a carrot or an apple than with bacon and eggs. In addition, fruits and vegetables contain natural enzymes, which aid digestion.

Drink plenty of water. Drink clean water between meals. It helps to saturate the body with moisture and clear your body from harmful substances. You can also eat watery fruits and vegetables, as they are the source of pure water.

Eat less refined and chemical products. Eat less sugar, butter, white flour and rice, canned and pasteurized products. Glutamates, preservatives and thickeners loosen and thicken our body, which brings no good. Everyone who tried to reduce the presence of such food in their lives became much healthier and happier.

Use gentle methods of cooking. Fried food is the most harmful, because the oil heated to extreme temperatures becomes a carcinogen, which is poison. Boiling is healthier frying, and steaming is better than boiling, because the lower the cooking temperature, the more natural substances you get, which are necessary for your energy recovery.

These principles are simple, but following them in real life may be not easy. Treat them easy like a game and start small. Try to apply one rule a day. For example, today eat fresh fruits and vegetables before breakfast. Tomorrow, take a bottle of water and make a sip every time you think of something sweet. The day after tomorrow, prepare food yourself, reading the composition of each product carefully.

Remember that your health is in your own hands and welcome to the club of conscious gourmets.

1. Requirements to the world are the most preposterous, as this is the demand that the outside world must meet your expectations. Such requirements most often occur in statements such as "It should have been different!" in relation to the government, life in general, justice, etc. Change occurs through action, not complaints.  If you want something changed, stop insisting on the impossible and use the opportunities you have been given to work positively towards making that change. Luckily, there are usually plenty of positive options to change a bad situation.

2. Requirements to others can destroy any relationship very quickly, because they quickly turn into aggression. We get stressed mainly when dealing with people around us. It may be hard to admit, but this is often our own fault, because we believe that it is faster and easier to express our thoughts by requirements and demands. This approach does not work, because a demand is a militant form of communication.

How can this be avoided? Pass from requirements to requests. The main difference between them is that you must accept that your request may be refused. If you want to be heard, it is better to build your request from three parts: the main part (what you are asking); explanation (why you are asking); and positive reinforcement (praise or the promise of a reward for the request). If you can change all requirements into requests in your daily life, you will easily avoid quarrels and significantly reduce your stress level.

3. Requirements to yourself to be smarter, more successful, or more beautiful than anyone else are patently unattainable. Therefore, such goals result in disappointment, self-aggression and depression. Nevertheless, it certainly does not mean that we should not strive for perfection. Quite the contrary!

Here is one excellent example:  Coronary heart disease and heart attacks are not typical for most Japanese people. A thorough long-term study carried out in the United States determined that Japanese raised in the US in the traditional Japanese culture differ from typical Americans in one important feature: they are not as prone to competition and do not compare themselves with others.

This study has revealed an extremely important fact: human health and predisposition to heart attacks are highly dependent on education methods. In Japan, one of the basic principles of children’s development and learning is the idea that they should always compare themselves not with others, but with themselves. Children should strive to become better than they were yesterday, being told: "Today you have handled a challenge better than yesterday, and tomorrow you can perform even better."  This principle directs the child to the achievable goal of self-improvement, reduces the number of internal and external conflicts and, furthermore, promotes good health for the future.

During his practice, Albert Ellis noticed that negative emotions and neurotic behavior arise not from external events, but because of the irrational beliefs, opinions and thoughts that exist in the human mind. Putting it simply, psychological problems are caused not by an event itself, but by how we have decided to accept that event.

For example, if someone has their foot stepped on, that person might see it merely as an accident and forget about it instantly, or they might shout obscenities and be angry all day as a result. As you see, one event may cause totally different interpretations and responses.

According to Albert Ellis’ theory, most psychological problems arise in people only because of the presence of some irrational beliefs. Ellis identified three categories of these irrational beliefs:

1. The world must give me the things and provide the conditions in life that I want; I must be protected from all troubles, otherwise life will become unbearable and I will never be happy.

2. You must treat me fairly based on my subjective expectations; you have no right to disappoint or upset me, otherwise, you are a bad person.

3. I must do each task well and/or must be supported and recognized by people who are important to me, otherwise I am not worth anything.

If we think about the items on this list carefully, it becomes clear that all of these points can be summed up in one word - requirements. They are requirements of the world, of other people and of ourselves.

In the following article, Luminosity will discuss these three requirements in more depth. In the meantime, tell us, are our requirements of the world a mechanism of self-destruction?

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