Dr. Deepak Chopra, 76, has an essential list of habits he sticks to for better health and wellness like a diverse food palette and spending time with others. But one of Chopra's most important daily practices is his morning routine.
"My morning routine is about two and a half hours," Chopra tells CNBC Make It.
How a person starts their morning helps set the tone for the rest of the day, and Chopra, who practices alternative medicine and serves as the current chief wellness officer for the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, aims to never start a day without two key steps.
Every morning, Chopra blocks off the hours of 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. to prioritize the routine.
Here's what the wellness guru does each morning to maintain his mental and physical health.
1. Meditation, yoga and breathing exercises
Chopra typically starts his days engaging in activities like meditation, yoga and breathing exercises, he says. And when his wife, Rita, wakes up, they meditate together, he told The New York Times in 2018.
"Then I practice body and breath awareness while asking myself, "How can I have the most joyful day?" he told the publication.
2. Two to three cups of coffee before noon
Like many people, coffee is a huge part of Chopra's morning routine. He drinks two or three cups of coffee before noon to avoid having the stimulant too close to bedtime, he adds.
"The latest research on coffee shows it mitigates against five types of cancer," Chopra tells CNBC Make It. "It also mitigates the risk of Alzheimer's disease."
"Numerous studies have shown that coffee drinking is associated with a lower risk of dying from all causes of death. However, associations with cancer overall or with specific types of cancer are unclear," according to the American Cancer Society.
While more research needs to be done to determine the effects of coffee on the development of Alzheimer's disease, a study published in 2012 "followed people with mild cognitive impairment (thinking and memory problems beyond normal ageing) and monitored their caffeine levels and their cognitive ability over the next two to four years. The researchers found that people who did not develop dementia had twice as much caffeine in their blood as those who did," according to Alzheimer's Society.
On Sundays, Chopra wakes up at 5 a.m. and devotes his entire day to improving his wellness, he told The New York Times.
After conducting his typical morning practices, he heads to a park with his wife to get their steps in around 9:30 a.m. Their walks are about two hours long, and the location ranges from Central Park to different neighborhoods in Brooklyn or Queens.
"I specifically go to ethnic neighborhoods like Chinatown and Little India because it's different. I enjoy sensory experiences like color, taste, and people," Chopra told the New York Times.
"We walk a minimum of 10,000 steps. Usually it's 20,000, or 5 to 10 miles."
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