Our mission is to simplify, beautify, and transform the lives of everyone we come in contact with through sharing eight principles to healthy, whole living.

Let’s be real about our health for just a second, okay?   Most of us live life with the chaos level turned all the way up. Between the latest super food that promises to cure everything from cancer to dandruff and the newest way to lose a few hundred pounds, there seems to always be one more thing we need to feel good about ourselves and have a healthy lifestyle. But the solutions we’re offered often have their own hidden side effects (#itscomplicated), which adds more weight to a life that’s already bursting at the seams with careers, educational pursuits, and relationships. Well, good news for you, friend. Eight: the health lounge seeks to take a match to this modern picture of health. 

Eight: the health lounge brings us back to our raw roots and helps us see that achieving a healthy you doesn’t need to feel hard like calculus (which we all know is, like, super hard), and it doesn’t need to feel like a fruitless search for a magical unicorn. In fact, we believe that everyone can have a whole, healthy life through following eight simple secrets. Yup, just eight secrets that we want to share with you and the rest of the world. And they’re not secrets because they’re only for the elite, but because they’re so simple, most of us miss them. They’re oh so accessible, and if you take them seriously, they’ll transform your life.

We follow these eight principles in our own personal lives, and in doing so, we’ve discovered some paradoxical truths: you don’t need more things to have a beautiful life, just the right things. We’ve learned that healthy people are whole people, and our own lives have become simpler, less burdened, and lovelier as we’ve embraced the power of less. 

And we want the same experience for you.

Keep It Bright

In a world where we have choices, choices, and then more choices, managing our health can be a little overwhelming. But hey, take a deep breath. At Eight, we believe there is a light at the end of the tunnel—and it’s the sun. When it comes to ticking things off your health checklist, there’s always kale to eat, water to drink, and burpees to ... burp (that was awkward). But one of the simplest principles of good health is getting enough quality time in the sun.

Take a minute to enlighten yourself.

Spending time in the sun allows your body to do things like manufacture vitamin D. And you can get almost a whole day’s supply of vitamin D just by spending half an hour in the sun. [1]

Sounds earth-shattering, right? 

Yeah, we didn’t think so either.

That is, until we learned that vitamin D just might just be the Arnold Schwarzenegger of the vitamin world. Vitamin D helps form strong bones and lowers your chances of getting diseases such as osteoporosis (which would make your bones brittle, like dried pasta) and osteomalacia (which would make them soft, like, well, cooked pasta). [2] If you’re getting enough vitamin D, you may also be less likely to die from prostate, breast, colon, and lung cancer. [3]

But there’s more. Soaking up the sun also releases nitric oxide in the body, which helps lower your blood pressure, which could potentially lower your risk of stroke and coronary heart disease, which could, in turn, increase your chances of being happy and living longer. [4] We could go on, but we’ll spare you.

Now, granted, skin cancer is a legitimate concern. But the research seems to say that moderate time in the sunshine is beneficial. So just don’t go crazy, okay? If you’re out in the middle of the day, grab a hat, a shirt, and some sunscreen. [5] If you’re lighter skinned, be extra careful.

Time in the sun—it’s a pretty simple health principle, and hopefully we shed some light on it and given you more reasons than not to keep your life bright.

Keep It Fluid

We clean with it, wash our clothes in it, play in it, bathe in it, take pictures of it, pay big bucks to live by it. We even install ivory bowls into our houses so we can relive ourselves and hygienically wash away our waste with it. Let’s face it - water is kind of a big part of our lives. The ironic thing is that even thought life is this fluid adventure, we often don’t put water in one of places we need it most: our bodies. 

An adult body is made of up to 60 percent of water. And if you consider the fact that our hearts are 73 percent water, they’re not much different from the sponge in your kitchen sink. Same story with your brain. Face it. You’re basically a walking Dasani bottle. So it makes sense that as we sweat and do life, our bodies would need water to continue functioning optimally. 

For women, 2.2 litres of fluids a day is considered adequate and for men it’s 3. Water us hands down the best fluid out there, but you wouldn’t guess by looking at it how awesome it is. It’s not as if fireworks go off or glitter rains from the sky when you turn on you faucet. So you might not know that kids who drink water may perform better in school. Or that if you drink, say, two or fewer glasses of water a day, and you bump that up to five or more glasses a day, you might cut your risk of dying from heart disease in half. It’s no joke!

Now, most of us grew up being told we should drink water (Probably by the same person who told us that we’d get warts if we didn’t eat our vegetables). So it’s not that we don’t know we need to drink water. The hard part is just staying motivated and building the habit. If you struggle to remember to chug your H2O, try buying a reusable water bottle and carrying it with you, so you always have it nearby. If you have a hard time getting past the taste, trying adding a section of lemon or lime.

The benefits or water far outweigh the effort it takes to swallow it. So, our advice? Just relax, and pratice taking a life sip at a time. 

Keep It Fresh

Believe it or not, one of the best pieces of health advice you’ve ever heard probably didn’t come from some professor of neurology and Russian ethical studies at Harvard. You probably heard it from your mom when you were just a kid. Maybe you were in the school play and you were nervous or maybe you’d been crying. Either way, at some point in your childhood, someone told you, Take a deep breath.

At Eight, we believe one of the best things you can do for your health is to make sure you take deep breaths of fresh air every day. And in a world where we need play-by-play directions to make a pop tart, this principle is phone-dropping simple and heavy on benefits.

The basic idea with fresh air is that your body needs oxygen. So taking deeper, longer breaths of fresh, clean air clears your lungs and gives your cells more oxygen. Giving your cells more oxygen comes with a whole host of perks, like helping to keep your mind clear (and who doesn’t need that?). [1] You can also skip the energy drink and save money because your body can be naturally boosted by fresh air and being around trees and dirt and nature-y stuff like that. [2] And by getting outdoors in the fresh air, you’re helping to protect yourself against germs as well. See, when you spend a lot of time indoors, you also spend a lot of time with the germs of the people you share an office or home with. Getting fresh air gives your body a break. [3]

However, the benefits of fresh air aren’t just short term. Research is showing a link between air pollution exposure and dementia. [4] So this is no joking matter. By taking the time to breathe in good air now, you may be paving the way for a healthy mind years down the road.

So go for a hike in the forest. Adventure at the beach. Take your lunch break in the park. Even if you can’t make it outside to smell the roses as often as you’d like, don’t freak out. Try bringing the outdoors in by buying plants. One study showed that, after introducing plants into a 50,000 square foot office building, productivity increased by 20%. [5]

Take away? Keep it fresh and you’ll thank yourself later.

Keep It Inspired

Everyone has their own idea of what it means to be healthy. Some people can’t shut up about the benefits of goji berries and flax seed or the half-marathons they run every other morning. Still others make sure you know all about their bi-weekly coffee enemas and all the ins and outs of that procedure (no pun intended). 

But, at Eight, we believe in a slightly different narrative when it comes to health. Don’t get us wrong—we’re all about marathons and flax seed (not sure about those enemas). But there’s more to health than those things. The word health actually comes from an Old English word that was related to the word whole. We believe good health comes when we address the whole person, which includes the heart and mind, not just diet, exercise, or some other merely physical aspect. 

One often overlooked element of health is spirituality. Science has seen over and over again how powerful the mind is, so naturally, what we think and believe about God, faith, and morality is going to have effects on our physical health. 

At Eight, we welcome people from all backgrounds and walks of life. We ourselves are Seventh-day Adventist Christians and believe in the God of the Bible. We believe He’s beautiful in the extreme and actually helps us become healthier, whole people—not just physically, but mentally, emotionally, socially, and spiritually. You could say, He’s our inspiration and that inspiration has made us who we are. Spoiler alert though: we’re not going to try to convince you of His existence. We’re a health organization, not an apologetics debate center (we think making smoothies is more fun).

But we can show you from a scientific perspective what spirituality and morality can do for your health and wellbeing. For starters, some research suggests that if you have regular spiritual practices, you might actually increase your longevity. [1] In Psychology Today, it was noted that, besides helping us be nicer, trust more, forgive better, and have more self control, prayer can help us reduce alcohol consumption and guard against the negative health effects that come with financial stress. [2] It’s also been shown that good self-esteem and optimism are connected with good health and people often find religion to be an excellent source for these attributes. [3] One study found that people who were altruistic—selflessly looking to help others—even when they were undergoing stressful situations, had lower mortality rates than those who didn’t take the time to help others when they were stressed. [4]

But hey, you don’t need to 20 pages of Harvard research to know that, at the end of the day, we humans want our lives to have meaning, our relationships to flourish, and our work to have purpose. We’re wired to know that our lives are more than just eating, working, sleeping, and reproducing. We thrive when we practice empathy and forgiveness toward others. You know—without anyone telling you—that when you live selflessly, it changes you on the inside and answers a deep inner longing.

Now, obviously, you don’t need to believe in anything in order to smile, help an elderly person across the street, and not get wasted. You don’t need faith to have morals or be nice, but at Eight, we’re persuaded that morals don’t make sense with a non-believing worldview. A non-believer can be kind, but they lack a logical premise for doing so.

We’ve found that a biblical worldview gives us a framework for life that makes sense on both a mind and heart level. Our belief in the God of the Bible has improved our sense of purpose, our meaning in life, our wellbeing, and our passion for health.

We don’t know what you think of when you see the Bible or someone mentions God. But if you’re open, we’d love to help you explore the God we know. If you’re not sure where to start, try reading the gospel of John. You can also try saying a prayer to God. Don’t worry about trying to figure out the right words. Just talk to Him as you would to your bro. 

And if all that feels just too strange for you, but you’re still kinda curious how we got to be so weird, we’d love to talk and share with you what keeps us inspired.

Keep It Moving

We live in a technologically advanced age, no doubt about it. You grandma didn’t text seven people while sitting on the toilet or make a conference call with her coworkers from Dubai and Italy while waiting in the drive-thru for a burrito. Life is definitely more complicated now, so who has time to exercise?

Well, here at Eight, we think the better question is, who has time to not exercise? Everybody and their mom knows movement is good for your body, but do you know how good? If we knew, we might not be so quick to work long, grueling hours at the office or binge on Netflix. Not only can regular exercise act as an anti-depressant [1], keep off the extra pounds, prevent cardiovascular disease, and boost your energy [2] but research shows exercise will actually make you a better learner. When you exercise, your body creates a substance called BDNF (brain-derived neurotrophic factor).[3] BDNF is a protein that sparks new neuron growth , [4] which puts your mind in place where it’s ready to explore and take in new information. When you exercise, it also triggers your memory, attention span, and motivation.[5] Basically, if your mind is a bucket of dirt, exercise is the fertilizer. So, instead of spending 12 hours on that project for your boss, you might get more done if you cut one hour out just to hit up the gym.

But, hey, don’t freak out yet. We get it. The thought of devoting a few hours a week to your treadmill can feel like death to those of us with friends, jobs, and lives (which is basically the entire human race). So remember that change starts with little things. Try walking or riding a bike to work, taking the stairs instead of the escalator, or learning a new sport with a friend. Research shows that even a high-intensity ten-minute workout can be just as effective as a fifty-minute standard session. [6]

Don’t think of it as conquering Mount Everest. Just think of it as a lifestyle, the kind where you keep it moving.

Keep It Relaxed

The great irony of growing up is that the things that used to be punishments when you were a kid become rewards in adult life. Take naps, for example. Imagine if your boss told you that, because your work wasn’t quite up to par, you needed to go take a nap. That sounds awesome, but those days are gone, right? Success is made on four hours of sleep and under-eye circles darker than the fifteen cups of black coffee you drink, right? Winners in life are the ones who burn all the candles at all the ends, right? Heck, they build bonfires! ...Right?

Think again. 

The effects of a proper night’s sleep can actually be a golden ticket to, not just good health, but improved productivity. It sounds counterintuitive and a little crazy to say that if you want to learn well and focus [1], you should get 7-9 hours of sleep in a night [2], but it’s true. So we’re OK with sounding crazy. Obviously, getting enough sleep helps us not feel sleepy, but it also gives our bodies time to recharge and rebuild. Experts have found that “many of the major restorative functions in the body like muscle growth, tissue repair, protein synthesis, and growth hormone release occur mostly, or in some cases only, during sleep." [3] Hmm...Some of those things could be important, if you’re like, ya know, trying to live or something.

Asking our bodies to work, work, work without getting good sleep is a bit like opening every single app on your phone and then never charging it. Actually, it’s worse, cause your phone eventually turns off, whether you like it or not. But when your body is sleep deprived, things go downhill. Your brain can’t sort information correctly or access stuff you’ve already learned. It also negatively affects your decision-making ability and judgment. [4] And we’re not just over-rating this sleep thing. In the long-term, sleep-deprivation is connected with serious health conditions, like diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure. [5]

So, if you’re interested in, like, happiness and getting stuff done, try reconnecting with your inner child and clocking in those Zzz’s tonight.

Keep It Under Control

Based off the latest evidence-based research, experts estimate that the average human makes approximately a bazillion decisions every day. Some are easy: should I wear the red dress or the blue one? Should I clip my toenails or let them grow? (Just kidding. That shouldn’t even be a question.) And some are a little more intense: should I buy this car or a different one? Should I take this job offer or stay put?

When it comes to how we make decisions, we generally live in a “yes” culture. If you want it, get it. If you think you can, go for it. If it feels good, do it. But when it comes to decisions about health, one of the best principles you can adopt is temperance. Who knows what that word means to you, but we’ll tell you what it means to us: temperance means moderation or self-restraint when it comes to misguided desires.

Now, in a world that’s built around extremes and proving that you can actually eat 45 hotdogs in seven and a half minutes, this sounds like high treason. Saying no to our desires is countercultural. Everyone wants to be happy, and if I feel like a specific activity will make me happy, why hold back?

Well, that’s the thing. Sometimes our feelings are—how can we say this nicely?—liars. We might feel like doing something or eating something will make us happy—and it might for a little while—but in the end, it comes back to bite us in the butt. Eating a whole tub of ice-cream might not seem like a bad idea—until your immune system goes down and you catch a cold. Staying up late for a movie marathon can put you on cloud nine at first, but the next day your brain will feel like it’s made of porridge.

Temperance isn’t about saying no because you want to be a health Nazi who doesn't believe in joy. Temperance is about saying no to things that hurt you so you can say yes to things that give you longterm happiness. Saying no to alcohol means we can say yes to a fully functioning liver and a mind that can think and love coherently. [1] Saying no to cigarettes means we can say yes to cancer-free lungs and fully engage in life. [2]

The irony is that we want extreme pleasure, and we think telling ourselves no will take that potential away. But in reality, temperance is about maximizing pleasure. When we save our yeses for the best things, our senses are heightened. We feel more, taste more, engage more. 

That sounds pretty extreme, if you ask us. And that’s the way we like to keep it under control.

Keep It Whole

From the time we’re old enough to spit up blended squash, we’ve heard it’s important to get good nutrition. But what does good nutrition actually look like? Is it half an acre of wheat grass in your smoothie? Is it an ethically sourced berry from Java that can cure heart-disease and dandruff? There are a lot of opinions out there, so think about it for a minute (while you pick the chia seeds out of your teeth).

Here at Eight, we like to keep things simple. And our watchwords when it comes to nutrition and what we feed our bodies are whole and plant-based. While it’s easy to get caught up in Pinterest-driven food fashion, those trends change as often as we update our Facebook status. But the thing is, nutrition is actually a lot more simple than that. All of the above can be good for you, but no one food is the answer. Research shows that a diet that emphasizes whole foods and is plant based may be the best diet on the market. When it comes to treating and even reversing some of the Western World’s top killer diseases, a plant-based diet can be more effective than those pills you pop every day or the bazillion dollar surgery your doctor suggested.[1] For example, if you want to protect yourself against pancreatic cancer (and who doesn’t?), eating just a couple handfuls of nuts a week may do the trick. [2] Or if you want to be happier, research suggests that 7 servings of fruit a day could literally boost your mood [3] Um, yes please! 

So, eat the mangosteen imported from Asia, the locally grown green beans, and the whole grain bread you picked up at the farmer’s market. Eat a variety of fruits, veggies, grains, and legumes. Just remember, the trick is to keep it whole and plant-based.

Eight Principles

Taste the change

We believe you don’t need more things to create a beautiful life, just a handful of the right things.

Approximately eight of them.