As a doctor who’s been on tour with music industry elites such as Steven Tyler, The Rolling Stones, Bruce Springsteen, Dave Navarro, and Mark Ronson, Dr. Gabrielle Francis, a naturopathic doctor, chiropractor, acupuncturist, and licensed massage therapist, knows just how to keep even the most indulgent of party-like lifestyles in check. In her new book, The Rockstar Remedy, Francis delivers some of her famous advice for ways you too can stand a little detoxification and lead a healthier lifestyle.
1. Boost your energy
Pay close attention to ingredients
We could all use a pick-me-up when fatigue hits and we’re struggling to get through the work day, reach the summit, or are just too tired to finish out the day’s to-do list. In times like these, Francis cautions people to be wary of energy bars. “There’s a fine line between energy bars and savvy marketing that puts a healthy-sounding twist on what’s essentially a Snickers,” Francis says. “If you’re looking for a great alternative bar, look for brands that contain at least 10-15 grams of protein coming from hemp, nut butters, whey protein, or pea or rice proteins.” According to Francis, it’s best to avoid ingredients such as soy isolates, chemical sweeteners, preservatives, artificial colors or flavorings, casein, and anything hydrogenated. “Switch to all-natural raw protein bars, which are high nutritious energy boosters,” Francis suggests. “They contain a few simple ingredients such as nuts, nut butters, seeds, and fruit.”
Add boosting foods to your diet
Look for long-term energy results by incorporating the right foods into your diet. “Add boosting foods to your diet including complex carbohydrates, such as whole grains, legumes, vegetables, nuts and seeds, organic meats, wild fish, and fruits,” Francis says. “Eat several small meals or snacks daily with protein to keep energy up and avoid quick-fix pick me ups.”
Don’t neglect your environment
Whatever space you spend most of your time in needs a little energy-boosting love, too. Francis suggests having a diffuser in your home or workspace, filled with essential oils of rosemary and basil, which are natural energizers.
2. Catch some rays
Sunshine is a wonderful thing, whether you’re a worshipper of it or not. Of course, fair skinned men and those with olive skin tones alike should be cautious when spending hours on end in the sun, but some rays on your face will pack a vitamin D punch. “The benefit of 20 to 30 minutes of sun exposure per day — sans sunscreen and sunglasses — includes loads of vitamin D, which bolsters immunity, balances hormones, activates melatonin and serotonin,” Francis says. “It’s Mother Nature’s Prozac.”
Although time in the fresh air is needed for both mental and physical health, it’s important to keep in mind that there are indeed potential dangers and risks. The Skin Cancer Foundation cautions people of all complexions to take precautionary steps in efforts to stop or reverse sun damage, such as exfoliation, hydrating, and visiting a dermatologist.
3. Get a solid night’s sleep
Eat the right foods at the right times
According to Francis, poor sleep quality is a big problem for anyone with a work-hard, play-hard lifestyle. In an effort to combat insomnia, she recommends that individuals nourish and hydrate. “Eat foods that promote sleep — oatmeal, yogurt, cheese and turkey — and a high protein snack, like eggs and nuts before bed to keep metabolism high,” Francis says. “In the evening, avoid sugar, alcohol, chocolate, caffeine, and nicotine, stimulants that will keep you awake. Boost serotonin, lower cortisol, and ease stress with magnesium glycinate (300-500 mg before bed), melatonin (3 mg before bed), omega-3 or flaxseed oils (1 tablespoon daily), phosphatidyl serine (50 mg before bed), and theanine (100 mg before bed).”
Try herbal remedies
Instead of going right for the heavy prescription sleeping pills, give herbal remedies that support sleep a shot. Francis recommends ashwagandha, chamomile, hops, passionflower, skullcap, and valerian root.
You don’t need to be a yogi in order to reap some serious benefits from taking a little time for yourself. “There are many physiological benefits to meditation that have been researched, including improved sleep,” Francis said. “Some studies show that just twenty minutes a day equals anywhere from two to six hours of sleep per night.”