Holistic Living & Prophetic Traditions
Samah Medlej, a 31 year old mother of 3. Samah is a Holistic Health Coach as well as a dōTERRA Wellness Advocate.
We caught up with Samah to delve further into the topic of Holistic Health & Living, as well as following the prophetic traditions.
What did you study and what sparked your interest in what you do?
I studied a bachelor degree in Exercise and Sport Science, Master in Human Nutrition and a certificate in Health Coaching. I have always been an active girl and weary of my health in my teens, so I guess it all started when I studied certificate 3 and 4 in Fitness in 2008. I realised there was more to health and wellness than just exercise alone; nutrition plays a huge role, as well as emotional wellbeing, and the environment we live in and the amount of exposure to toxins in our day to day life which can all have an effect on our wellbeing.
When I experienced essential oils in 2019 I was just mind blown with how easy it made everything seem more simple to achieve. That’s when I was confident enough to incorporate the education of essential oils into my work and then it just flourished and bloomed. The amount of lives it has changed and the amount of friendships I have formed with like minded women has just made me a better version of myself that I am super proud of and so thankful for.
Let's dig more holistically...
We hear living holistically a lot, but what does it actually mean?
- Holistic living is the concept of interconnecting a number of systems as a whole in order to live a healthier lifestyle.
- This includes:
- Physical activity (movement, exercise, active hobbies)
- Nutrition (nourishing closer to nature wholefoods)
- Environment (exposure to toxins & pollutants, relationships, friendships, family)
- Spirituality (Belief systems, meditation, Prayer, love)
- Self-care (physical, physiological and mental).
What's your recommendation to someone reading this blog, wondering where to start their holistic living journey?
- Something I like to share often is that we should always try our best to live a healthier lifestyle. There is no perfect way to live “healthy” however we need to focus on ourselves and our home and strive to improve on the little things that can be improved in our day-to-day life. It is a journey not a destination. Therefore, small changes with time will accumulate and form larger changes long term. It may take months, it may take years, it is never too late to start, but we need to start somewhere. My recommendation is to write a list of the little things that are easy to change and make those switches and changes and tick them off as you go week by week. As you form these new habits and switches are made confidently, I assure you with time you will say to yourself ‘Wow! I have improved so much in the past so and so!’.
What are your top 5 tips?
- Self-care is not being selfish. If you take care of yourself first then you will be able to take care of others more effectively.
- Always including dark leafy greens in 1-2 meals daily.
- Sleeping early enough to obtain adequate hours of sleep can set your body clock to work more efficiently
- 5-10 minutes daily of physical activity that gets your heart rate up is better than nothing. Say it in your mind and believe it because it is true.
- Daily affirmations; your bodily functions respond to how you think and speak about yourself. Little story; a participant in a study had to physical press a button with his right thumb and the left thumb he would have to just think he is pressing the button but not actually physically press the button. Results revealed a significant increase in the cross section of the right thumb’s muscle mass and also a slight increase in the cross section of the left thumb’s muscle mass despite not physically moving the thumb. This goes to show how powerful the mind is.
What are some prophetic traditions around living holistically?
Our body is given to us with the responsibility to care for it and maintain a healthy state as much as possible. Over the years we have been relying more on medicine and not so much on spirituality and natural remedies prescribed by Islam such as spirituality, nutrition and physical activity. There is scientific research that shows religious beliefs and prayer aid in the prevention/treatment/recovery of any ailments be it mental or physical.
The prophet (saw) says the Quran’s versus and chapters by God’s will could bring about healing from disease and distress. Let’s talk nutrition! The prophetic teachings were to eat in moderation, fill one third of your stomach with water first, and then fill one third with food, and leave one third empty for comfort.
The Quran contains many versus to advise us about healthy eating example:
- (Quran 2:172) “Eat of the good things which We have provided for you.”
- (Quran 2:168) “Eat of what is lawful and wholesome on the earth.”
The Quran mentions many foods of healing such as olives, fig.
Now physical activity!
Our prophet (saw) and his companions were naturally fit as the life was more tough in their days as they walked long distances, horse riding, and archery hunting for food to survive, and there was no time for useless entertainment that made them lazy like in the 21ST century today.
Note that the availability of meat in the prophets time was scarce and minimal unlike today the abundance of meat in our diet is not a healthy thing as many assume it is.
Therefore we need to be mindful of our Islamic teachings and always go back to practicing the above ways as a holistic approach to maintaining health and wellness.
Why do you recommend essential oils? For those who may find them daunting, what should they look out for?
- Let’s go back to the prophet’s (saw) time where there were no pharmaceutical medicine; how did they treat their ailments? Of course with nature’s gifts of the earth. I find essential oils are just pure goodness from God’s perfect creations. Everything on earth has its purpose as the essential oil protects the plant we obtain it and use it to protect us.
- It can be daunting to start using essential oils when you do not have a guide or a mentor to assist you on your journey. That is why I call myself an oil mentor because I am passionate in assisting my customers to use their oils effectively, efficiently and safely. And the joy it brings me when they tell me how much the oils have helped them in so many ways.
5 tips to using essential oils:
- When choosing essential oils purity is so important as you know there are so many EO companies out there. Many are adulterated and tampered with to make them more affordable but we should see essential oils as a health investment by incorporating the purest. The perfect chemical constituents of an essential oil depends on where it is obtained from; that its from its motherland where the plant thrives naturally in the perfect soil, perfect climate, atmosphere and so on.
- A carrier oil such as fractionated coconut oil is a great way to use your essential oils topically onto your skin not only to avoid skin sensitivity as the oils are super potent but to get a greater coverage area of the skin. Always ask for guidance on dilution for age groups.
- Keep your oils in arms reach on your kitchen bench or on your dresser in your room where they are visible to grab and enjoy. Have you ever realised we rarely to never have a moment to stop during the day and just close our eyes and take a deep breathe!? Well now I find that many times during the day I reach out to an oil that I intuitively pick and I apply one drop to the palm of my hand rub together and inhale and that’s my few seconds of meditation.
- Always read the labels on the bottle!
- Your oils do have an expiry because they have to, but if you keep them in a cool dark place they can last longer. What are some of your recommendations to establishing healthy every day routine? Set yourself with a good night sleep with sufficient hours of 7-8 hours. A few minutes of movement let’s say dynamic stretches or perhaps 50 star jumps before enjoying a nourishing breakfast sets the day to success. Throughout the day eat something nourishing just before hunger strikes to avoid over-eating or making bad choices. Having a common daily routine is healthy for the mind and for your body clock. I also believe do what you enjoy and have a passion for and you will blessed with success mentally and physically.