6 min read

HitPoint Health Weekly 7/23: How to Eat Healthy Throughout the Week, Break Time Stretches, B Vitamins, and more

HitPoint Health Weekly 7/23: How to Eat Healthy Throughout the Week, Break Time Stretches,  B Vitamins, and more
Photo by S'well / Unsplash

Good morning, hope this Sunday is going well for you and that this email finds you well. I've been having a lazy weekend myself, catching up on my video game backlog and practing some more guitar techniques. Without further adeu, let's get into it!

Stuff I Did This Week

Baldurs Gate 3

In addition to playing more of Like a Dragon, I spent a lot more of my time this week getting hyped up for the release of Baldurs Gate 3 by playing more of the beta. My first playthrough of the beta was more of an evil one, whether that was intentional or not, and I also did not meet some of the companions, as it was a mostly blind playthrough. So, this time I am going through it trying my best to do a mostly good playthrough.

The most incredible thing to me is how different the game feels on this second playthrough; I have been seeing and doing things I haven't in the first run, to the point that it feels like a new game almost. All of the changes that are being added to the base game upon release are exciting for me as well, and I'm beyond ready to see how everything that has been built up in act 1 will change, or play out. As far as the mechanics go, I'm unsure of how I feel about that changes to the racial ability score bonuses will make me feel, being an experienced dungeons and dragons 5e player, but I'm sure that I will continue to love the game nonetheless.

Simple Meal Prep

Throughout my work week, I typically try to mash together any kind of simple meal that I can before I start on my commute, which can make staying good and consistent with my diet relatively difficult. So, in true health conscious person, I decided to make a large pot of rice, and divide it out into 5 portions so that I can have a quick and easy meal throughout the week. So, with that out of the way, I had a breakfast of protein powder and yogurt, with a lunch of rice with olive oil and a pack of salmon and 2-4 soft boiled eggs, and for dinner I'd make whatever I was craving on that day, albeit really simple and easy dishes due to being tired after work.

But, long story short, I ended up increasing the amount of time I can sleep in the morning, by reducing the amount of time it takes me to get ready, by having some grab and go meals available to me! And of course, just making a large pot of generic rice isn't always for everyone, and some days I prefer to be lower carb, so maybe rice wouldn't be a good option that week. Perhaps some cauliflower rice, or low carb grain replacement of some sort. Nonetheless, it has been a quick change, and yet a real game changer when it comes to meeting my protein and calorie targets for the day, trying to gain muscle mass.

HitPoint Hacks

Breaktime Stretches

Whenever you're starting to feel cooked, tired or some variation of exhausted, taking a break is one of the best things that you can do. Both for your physical and mental health, as well as for your productivity! So, what are some of the best, quickest, and easiest ways for you to start feeling better and getting back on track? For me, I think that there are three techniques that help me to get back to where I want to be. I use each of these interchangably, depending on how I feel at the moment. These techniques are:

Yoga Nidra

Yin Yoga


Seems pretty straightforward right? And it is! Although generally, while in the office you might not be able to get away with an extended session of yin yoga, and yoga nidra risks making you sleep through the rest of your shift. But, I don't think that this has to be the case. I like to perform what I call "snack" versions of these whenever I am feeling out of it.

Whenever I feel excessively fatigued or tired, or had a rough night's sleep, I'll resort to yoga nidra. While I'm at work, I'll tend to stick to a relatively quick 10-20 minute session, with 15 being the sweet spot, that way you can perform this during a break. I'll even do it sitting in a chair, which I know isn't exactly protocol, but it seems to help me feel better all the same.

If I'm feeling tightness anywhere in my body, or a bit of a headache coming on, I'll opt for some yin yoga poses, holding them while releasing. If I can get away with it I'll generally do these at my cubical while continuing to work on a project. Standing in forward fold for a bit, or even something like a pigeon or warrior pose, just getting a little stretch and movement in can really enhance your day, and increase body awareness, making it easier to identify and release each following time.

And finally, of course there is meditation. I like to take a few interspersed breaks throughout the day where I can just close my eyes and center myself, and meditation is great for this purpose. I call it my mid day reset. A mid day meditation really can help me get on track to remain productive into the second half of the day.

B Vitamins

Similar to magnesium, there are many different types of B vitamins, and they each perform different functions in the body. I touched on magnesium in a previous article, so now I'll briefly touch on the different forms of B vitamins, and what benefits they have for the body.

Thiamine (B1): Thiamine is a coenzyme used by our bodies to metabolize food for energy and to maintain proper heart and nerve function. A deficiency can lead to a disease called beriberi, resulting in weakness, fatigue, and nerve damage. Thiamine supplementation might be necessary for individuals with poor nutrition, alcohol dependency, or even some health conditions

Riboflavin (B2): Riboflavin is vital for growth, red blood cell production, and cellular function and energy production. A deficiency can result in a condition called ariboflavinosis, with symptoms such as sore throat, skin and hair problems, and anemia. Those with dietary restrictions, like vegan or vegetarian diets, might benefit from supplementation as B2 is primarily found in animal products.

Niacin (B3): Niacin is essential for converting carbohydrates, fat, and alcohol into energy. It helps maintain skin health and supports the nervous and digestive systems. Niacin deficiency can lead to a condition called pellagra, causing skin irritation, diarrhea, and dementia. This disease is actually the reason that niacin is added to many grains and flours in the United States. A fascinating book, The End of Craving goes into great detatil on this. Niacin supplements are also sometimes used to help lower cholesterol levels.

Pantothenic Acid (B5): B5 helps convert food into energy and aids in the production of cholesterol and hormones. Deficiency is rare but can lead to symptoms like fatigue, depression, and sleep disorders. Anyone who may be under a lot of stress or recovering from surgery may benefit from extra B5.

Pyridoxine (B6): Pyridoxine is important for the production of neurotransmitters, substances that transmit nerve signals. A deficiency can lead to depression, confusion, and anemia. Supplementing B6 can be helpful for those with high homocysteine levels in their blood, as B6 can help to lower these levels, potentially reducing the risk for heart disease.

Biotin (B7): Biotin helps the body metabolize carbohydrates, fats, and amino acids, and is commonly associated with improved hair, skin, and nail health. Biotin deficiency is quite rare, but if present, can cause hair thinning, brittle nails, and skin rash. Supplementing B7 is often recommended for improved hair and nail strength.

Folate (B9): Folate aids the body in making DNA and other genetic material, and is crucial for proper brain function. Folate deficiency can lead to certain types of anemia. It's also critical for pregnant women, or those trying to conceive, to get enough folate as it helps prevent neural tube defects in the fetus.

Cobalamin (B12): B12 helps in the production of DNA, prevents certain types of anemia and supports nerve health. As B12 is primarily found in animal products, vegans, vegetarians, and those with absorption issues (like individuals with pernicious anemia or older adults with decreased stomach acidity) may need to supplement.

Photo by Kayla Maurais / Unsplash

And that's it for this week! I hope that you found something useful in here, and that you are having a great weekend. I will see you next week. Until then,

Keep those HitPoints up!