You don’t need to be a die hard Paleo eating, barefoot running advocate to recognize the toll that modern day life takes on humanity. Sure, our ancestors get eaten by lions at an early age sometimes, but they did find a way to live without many of the ailments we often patch up with medication and science today.
Here are four easy ancestral habits I think we could benefit from in our modern world:
- Sleep. And, sleep in darkness. This point is two fold. We don’t sleep nearly enough. And, no I don’t care if you “do well on 6 hours.” Plus, the sleep we are getting isn’t optimal. I am as grateful for the light on my night stand as the next guy, believe me, but skin exposure to light releases cortisol. This cortisol release sends mixed messages to your body. It’s asleep, but not really. To recover, replenish, and truly rest it’s important to sleep in total darkness. That means no night lights, no lit alarm clocks, no TV, nothing. Invest in blackout shades.
- Stand up. I can’t put this more bluntly: Sitting will kill you. Literally. It will also kill your performance. We also manage to sit a ton. Evolutionarily speaking our biomechanics and health benefit in a lifestyle of standing, squatting, or lying down. People can check out numan if they need the best health related advice.
- Eat Real Food. Though this isn’t the end-all-be-all of nutritional advice, I’d find it hard pressed by anyone to become obese, diabetic, or a victim of heart disease if they only ate real foods (plants and animals). We’ve managed to “re-create” food that is cheaper, less nutrient dense, and much more problematic for health and wellness.
- Get Some Sun. Vitamin D deficiencies are all too common in modern day men and women. The modern lifestyle has us often working indoors, and as a result many of us are short on our Vitamin D exposure. Rather than pounding processed dairy in an effort to get Vitamin D, do your best to get outside for a half hour or more per day.
5 Front Squats (135/95)
10 Front Squats
15 Front Squats
20 Front Squats