I’m turning FORTY this year. It seems like just yesterday I was panicked about turning 30 and here passes a whole 10 more years. But I’m not panicked this year. In fact, I am celebrating this whole last summer of my 30s. So do I suddenly love aging? Well, I have to admit, I’m not a huge fan of grey hair or the crinkles that are beginning to show on my face, but that’s all minor. What I love is that I feel better at 39 3/4 than I ever felt at 30. You see at thirty, I didn’t know that I was killing my body with lack of sleep, too much alcohol and sugar and not enough (or no) exercise. My joints were swollen, I had migraines, and my mood — well let’s just say it was unstable to say the least. In my mid-thirties, my body had enough of the Pepsi and Dorito breakfasts, the skipped meals and an utter under-use of my physical body. I lived in my head, not in my body. I used my brain all day long, but very rarely used my body or fed it anything that would benefit it. My body exemplified my lifestyle until it broke. Suddenly I was going to the hospital 2-3 times a year with Ulcerative Colitis flares. It would take 6-8 weeks to be able to get out of bed. For several years, I went to doctors who would give me many different pills to help with pain, inflammation and some that just they thought would help but didn’t really know why. Yet I returned to the hospital over and over. Being in bed for half the year was no way to live. So I attended the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, just to find some relief, which I found. I learned about living in my body. I also learned about taking care of my body. The shocking thing is, I did it in small steps that didn’t feel like I was having to give up things, but rather gain things – like peace in my body, having more energy, reducing the mood swings and becoming a happier, more productive human being.