EP33 – How to Avoid Getting Sick

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To watch the video recording of this episode, click here

This week on The Coders’ Startup, Carter and I discuss health and wellness, which are important considerations for anyone who owns their own business. After all, if you are ill and cannot run your business, no one else is there to do it for you!

The bottom line? If you get sick, your business will suffer!

I am deathly afraid of getting ill. I haven’t vomited since I was 18 years old, and I hope to continue that streak for many years to come. With this goal in mind, I have developed a few tips and tricks for staying healthy. Carter also has a few suggestions he has gathered over his years as an entrepreneur.

Trevor’s Tips for Staying Healthy

#1: Exercise. This is one of those tips that everyone knows. Regular exercise is unquestionably good for you. It keeps you in shape, keeps you feeling well, and builds up your immune system, which decreases your chances of becoming ill.

When it comes to exercising, it’s all about getting your heart rate up, because that’s how your body benefits from the activity.

Many people have difficultly finding the time and dedication to visit the gym every day. Luckily, you can always integrate exercise into errands that you already have to do. For example, you could walk or ride your bike to and from the grocery store, or even to doctors’ appointments.

I like to listen to podcasts while I bicycle. I also take my dog for a brisk walk (the keyword here is brisk!) every day, sometimes two or even three times. Carter suggests turning housecleaning into an aerobic activity as a way of getting done two less than fun activities at the same time.

Brainstorm ideas for combining exercise with your other daily chores, and you’ll get much better at sticking to your regimen!

#2: Visit a naturopathic doctor. I used to be a very sick kid in college. It seemed like I was always sick with something, but I never knew why I kept getting ill. The doctors I saw didn’t know, either.

After I met my fiancĂ©e, she suggested I look into naturopathic medicine to discover the root cause of my chronic illness. Naturopathy differs from traditional medicine in that its practitioners try to achieve a larger perspective of the patient’s overall health instead of simply treating their symptoms.

I went to see a naturopathic doctor, and she asked me to describe every physical malady and complaint that I had. I talked about this for over an hour. At the end of my session, the doctor suggested that I might have some food allergies. I was subsequently tested and discovered that I am allergic to eggs, diary and gluten.

For all of my life, I had been making myself ill because I did not know about these mild allergies. Once I knew, I was able to change my diet and improve my health immeasurably.

So the most important thing I learned from naturopathic medicine was…

Good Nutrition=Good Health!

All of our bodies react a little bit differently to food. There are some universal guidelines that apply to everyone equally (e.g. eat plenty of vegetables and avoid fatty foods), but sometimes it can be difficult to predict how eating a certain food will affect you.

That’s why you need to familiarize yourself with your own personal list of problem foods. To this end, try keeping a food journal. Document what you ate, when you ate it, and if you had any adverse effects. Once you learn which foods trigger bad health events, you can work on avoiding those foods so you don’t hamper your ability to be productive!

Carter has never been a food health nut. He grew up in the south, where they fry everything, and he never bought into the healthy eating craze until he moved to Boulder, Colorado.

Once immersed in his new health-conscious environment, he started to take note of how the food he ate affected his body. For example, he learned that heavy meals cause mind fog and overeating causes drowsiness, both of which are severe detriments to productivity.

Know if the food you are eating is good or bad for you, and avoid the bad food. Apply your common sense when you can! And if you need advice, consult a nutritionist or dietician!

Healthy Foods You Should Be Eating

To help you eat healthy, I’ve compiled a list of foods that are really great for your body. Most of these support your immune system health.

  • Yogurt
  • Oats and barley
  • Garlic
  • Shellfish
  • Chicken Soup
  • Tea (decaffeinated is preferable)
  • Beef
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Mushrooms (raw is preferable)
  • Any green vegetable (especially leafy)

Additionally, Carter has an easy recipe for a tea that he claims will help you get well quicker if you are ill. He learned it from a pilot who sat next to him on a flight out of Mexico. The recipe is:

  • Boiling water
  • A lot of ginger powder
  • Locally-source honey
  • Lemon juice

Ginger is an immune-boosting herb, so it’s doing most of the work in this beverage. Flavor to taste and drink up!

Carter’s Book and App of the Week

Book: The 4-Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss. This one is a classic. Carter recommends checking out the whole 4-Hour series by Ferriss, especially The 4-Hour Chef.

App: nvALT is a word processor and text editor that lets you create tags for your documents. Later, you can search for files using these keywords. It’s a big time saver when you’re looking for a particular file but can’t remember what you named it or where it was saved. Unfortunately, the app is only for Mac. Evernote is a PC-friendly alternative that I use.

That’s it for this week’s post. Do you have questions about food and nutrition? Feel free to ask me! I’d be happy to tell you what I know. Also, if you enjoy the podcast, please take a moment to rate it on my itunes page at Codersstartup.com/itunes.



The 4-Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss

nvALT App

Evernote App