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Did you know that self-love can lower your risk of heart disease? Well, Dr. Arnike Redelinghuys confirms that people who showed themselves kindness and self-love had thinner walls of carotid arteries than those who felt inadequate or disappointed in themselves. 

Dr. Redelinghuys is a homeopathic doctor who practices in and out of South Africa. As a clinical and integrative Homeopathic practitioner, she offers natural treatment options for acute or chronic medical conditions with a special interest in on allergies, digestive health & autoimmune diseases. By primarily focusing on the individual rather than simply treating the given disease, she strives to educate her patients so they can make informed decisions regarding their well-being.

She spoke to us about how having self-compassion and self-care is important for our health. 

So, what is self-love? 

Self-love, as Dr. Redelinghuys would simply describe it, is, “taking time out for us to be kind to ourselves.” She adds that we need to disconnect from things that are negatively stressing us, be it social media. 

Taking time out to de-stress can be difficult for us because our time is centered around work, family, and running a household. We want to make a good impression at work, we want to be there for our family, and we want to provide a safe environment for our children. All of these factors can be time-consuming and stressful at times, but also leaves us very little time to take care of ourselves. 

self care

Dr. Redelinghuys further elaborates that a study released by The Journal of Psychiatry revealed that smoking, poor diet, depression, and anxiety are not necessarily the contributing factors to low self-love.

You could still have self-love, but be depressed. You could have a poor diet and have self-love.

The study revealed that those who had self-love and had a good or bad lifestyle had healthier blood vessels and their risk for heart attack and stroke was less.

We all know that our bodies react positively to positive stipulations. So, it would make sense that it would react negatively to things that are simply not good for us, like excessive drinking and smoking.

Dr. Redelinghuys further goes into detail and mentions that our cortisol, our flight and fight hormone, releases quite a lot when we are feeling scared, anxious, or angry. When we have too much cortisol for a long period of time, it causes inflammation in our bodies. This can cause headaches, high blood pressure, and an increase in sugar in our blood. 

So, the question lies, how can we be kind to ourselves? 

It’s easy to say that you need to love yourself and be kind to yourself, but putting it into practice is another. Dr. Redelinghuys provides these few tips for practicing self-love:

  • Taking a 10-minute walk – This could be a nature walk, down the road from your house walk, a hiking trail, or anything to feel the sun on your face. Plus, vitamin D is good for your skin.
  • Connecting with a positive person – This doesn’t necessarily have to be friends. It could be someone you trust such as a family member, pastor, or colleague. Someone who has a positive influence on you.
  • Meditation – Now we all know that there are different forms of meditation. Pick a form that aligns with your beliefs and get going! This helps you clear your mind and disconnect from the outside world.
  • Eating health foods – Eating textures food or multicolored food helps you use your senses instead of just gobbling down your food. It allows you to focus on what you are eating.
  • Self-affirmations – Don’t underestimate the value of words. It is said that our thoughts power our actions. So, if you believe you are bad or not good enough, then you will be. But if you believe that you are great and wonderful, then you will start to believe it.

Self-love is about creating time for yourself, finding something you love, and taking care of yourself. So get started on being a happier self and a healthier self.

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Zizi Stamper

Zizi Stamper

Zizi Stamper is a Bachelor of Arts graduate, who found her way into teaching after college. Since then she has been extending her digital skills to writing and marketing . She recently joined to follow her passion for writing.

The content in this editorial is for general information only and is not intended to provide medical or other professional advice. For more information on your medical condition and treatment options, speak to your healthcare professional.

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