I bet it has never occurred to you how your wardrobe might contribute towards your health problems. And no, I don’t mean the big wooden thing standing in the corner – (though if you tried to move it, then it probably would physically damage you).
I am referring to the clothes you wear, your shoes and other fashion accessories.
The contents of your wardrobe are one aspect of the lifestyle choices that can help you stay healthy.
Follow these tips and choose wisely when it comes to clothing, shoes and bags.
1.Wear the correct size.
Clothing which is too small and too tight can cause you too feel uncomfortable and unable to relax.
If you have tried to squeeze into an outfit which is obviously too small you may attract unwanted attention and criticism thereby affecting your emotional health.
Tight clothing can cause circulatory problems and aggravate high blood pressure.
Clothing which is tight around the midriff can place pressure on the digestive organs and cause you to suffer gut related health problems.
Clothing which is tight around your chest can prevent you from breathing properly and deeply. Poor oxygen intake will also lead to poor bodily function.
So make sure you buy clothing that fits comfortably.
2. Dress for the climate.
I would have thought that this was kind of obvious. But anyone with a teenage daughter will know otherwise.
Let your local weather forecast help you decide what to wear. Not taking adequate protection during winter conditions can lead to colds, respiratory infections or at worst hypothermia.
High heat and humidity is easier to bear when you’re decked out in light weight and loose fitting gear. Over-dressing in a tropical climate can lead to heatstroke.
3. Protect yourself from the sun.
Unless you are using natural sunscreen let your clothing provide defence against the sun. Hats will protect your head and neck year round. Cotton shirts, tunics or sarongs will help protect your skin from too much sun.
4. Wear Natural fibres where possible.
Clothing made from natural fibres such as silk, cotton, hemp or wool is a much healthier choice. Your skin can breathe better and natural fibres will handle perspiration more effectively.
Natural fibres are generally more comfortable for human skin. Synthetic fibres can aggravate skin complaints such as eczema or psoriasis.
Synthetic materials such as polyester, acrylic and the like are made using petrochemicals. Various chemicals such as formaldehyde are often applied to man-made fabrics to stop shrinkage. Much synthetic clothing, especially trousers, are now being treated with perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs) to make them last longer and prevent wrinkling. If your trousers say “Don’t Iron”, they’re probably treated with PFCs. Synthetic fabrics don’t hold dye as well as natural fabrics. This means they have to be sprayed with a chemical fixative which is made from heavy metals.
All of these chemicals will add to your toxic load. Toxic chemicals and heavy metals are implicated in many chronic and degenerative diseases.
5. Measure your heels.
High heels may look sexy but the misalignment can trigger pain and posture issues. Give your feet a break by looking for styles with good support and alternating with flats some days.
6. Wear appropriate footwear:
Flip flops provide little support for your ankles and knees. They’re convenient at the pool but put on walking shoes if you’re covering longer distances.If you are going for a hike make sure you have sturdy walking shoes which provide good ankle support.
If you have weak arches, flat feet or other foot problems wear a good trainer type shoe with excellent cushioned support.
Poor footwear choices can lead to problems with your feet and in turn postural problems which can lead to back problems, sciatica etc.
7. Drive responsibly.
Bare feet and flip flops can be dangerous behind the wheel.You may slip or find your toe caught under a pedal. It’s worth the time to change into footwear that grips well.
8. Choose Appropriate Handbags
(The clue is in the name HAND…, not mini suitcase or overnight bag). Many women seem to carry most of their possessions around in their handbags. Your handbag probably weighs more than you think, so lighten up your load. Constantly carrying a heavy bag on one side of the body can lead to postural problems, muscle damage or back problems. Do you really need such a large handbag?
9. Switch sides.
It’s easy to get in the habit of carrying stuff on one side of your body only, which leads to overuse over time. Make a conscious decision to alternate from one shoulder to the other throughout each day, or wear your bag across your body. Even better, pick a style with straps that you can wear across your chest or back. It will distribute the weight more evenly and take the pressure off your shoulders.
10. Choose carefully
Make sure you wear quality jewellery especially in piercings (ears, navel, nose) or directly next to the skin. Metals such as gold and silver are generally safe but other cheaper metals such as nickel can be the cause of allergies and infections. Cheap costume jewellery often contains toxic chemicals such as lead, cadmium, chromium, mercury and arsenic. These substances have been linked to acute allergies, birth defects, impaired learning, liver toxicity and cancer.
Do you have any experiences where the wrong choice of clothing, footwear or accessories has contributed to a health issue? Do share.