How to adopt an integrated approach for optimum health

Getting to the root of the problem for an effective fix

Tired of seeking an ever-elusive summer body? At this time of year we’re inundated with instructions to slim, firm and tone and while we’re as determined as everybody else to get the perfect silhouette, we know this can’t be created in the gym alone. Our appearance is only ever the result of exercise, internal balance, good mental health and properly functioning organs – it’s only when we address these collectively that we can make a perceptible difference.

So often symptoms of imbalance and health issues manifest in our appearance but so few of us take the time to really assess what the cause might be. We prioritise work, family, friends and business before our own health, seeking quick fix solutions rather than identifying and treating the cause of complaints. Whether it’s bloating, weight gain or loss, skin complaints, digestive issues, hormone imbalances, trouble sleeping or lack of energy; these common complaints can have a negative impact on appearance and in turn, our sense of self-worth.

Modern medicine often looks at these issues in isolation, but the mind and body are inextricably linked. Exercise for example, should not only be seen as a means to a better body – it promotes improved mental health too. Grace Life Coach, Padma Coram, continually references the mind-body connection in her practice. ‘Exercise releases endorphins, the body’s “feel-good hormones” that trigger a positive feeling in the body and can calm the nervous system,’ she suggests. ‘The single biggest oversight we have is not being aware of how connected the whole body is. When we are sad, frustrated, depressed or exhausted our body quickly becomes unfit.’ Low physical energy leaves us less likely to workout, metabolism may be slowed, many will over – or under – eat and all of this quickly manifests in the negative symptoms we described earlier.

Recognising the importance of an integrated approach is what led us to creating the Body Revolution – a dynamic programme that see’s personal trainers working closely with other in-house experts to tailor a transformational experience. For some, it can take as little as eight weeks for new habits to form while others will be given three months or more of structured workouts, sleep therapy, nutritionally balanced meals, acupuncture or detoxifying treatments such as Remodelage or Capri Palace Leg School® – whatever best suits individual needs.

DNA tests and physical assessments identify each client’s unique makeup – and prescribe new practices accordingly. ‘DNA Fit can reveal a lot about individual responses to training,’ Grace Personal Trainer Jason Reynolds explains. ‘ Whether you’re more or less pre-disposed to genetic diseases, how well you metabolise toxic pollutants, intolerances and even your body’s response to injury and recovery. With this personalised knowledge we can eschew fad diets in favour of long-term lifestyle choices that really work.’ For some of us this will mean regular, high intensity workouts while others might require a low FODMAP diet, gentle exercise and colonic hydrotherapy. There’ll be those that need physiotherapy to ease injuries and others that use a combination of acupuncture and sleep therapy to ease insomnia.

Thinking of a full body overhaul? ‘For a 360 approach to optimising your mental and physical health arm yourself with knowledge; Jason advises. Make time (even if it’s just in the notes section of your phone!) to record the following:

  • Sleep patterns – our perception of the quality of sleep we have is almost as important as the rest itself. Note down when you drop off and any disruptions through the night, along with how many hours you’re getting. Regular, quality sleep is essential in minimising degenerative diseases and optimising brain function.
  • Times during the day/month when you feel particularly energised and motivated – and equally those times you feel less positive – and what stressors might be causing this. Internally, this can reveal hormone imbalances or elements of our lifestyle that need readdressing to minimise the negative impact they have on our wellbeing.
  • Food – keeping a food diary is an excellent way to quickly see any imbalances in your nutrition. A healthy diet can still be too high in sugar (if you’re opting for fruits like bananas, apples, pears, mango and pineapple), difficult to digest fibre, or lacking adequate amounts of protein to support your training. It’s also sensible to record any digestive issues or symptoms of IBS alongside these records and begin to identify foods that affect your body negatively.

Make these the foundations – not for a summer fitness plan, but for a new approach to living well and looking and feeling better than ever. For a complimentary consultation and to start planning your transformation, click here. Non-members can benefit from exclusive access to Grace medical, gym and personal training, award-winning spa, restaurant and wellbeing services for up to 12 weeks with a tailored Body Revolution Programme.

Content sponsored by Grace Belgravia, one of our expert contributors. Click here for more information on the Body Revolution at Grace or to contact the club directly on [email protected] 

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