With all that is going on currently with the new administration looking to scrap the ACA, there is much uncertainty and fear, well deserved fear I might add, about what a new insurance system will look like to the American people. Here's a quote from the Commonwealth Club website and a link to it. "The U.S. spent more per person on health care than 12 other high-income nations in 2013, while seeing the lowest life expectancy and some of the worst health outcomes among this group, according to a Commonwealth Fund report out today. ". http://www.commonwealthfund.org/publications/press-releases/2015/oct/us-spends-more-on-health-care-than-other-nations
I think it goes without saying that finding and implementing a perfect healthcare system is a long ways off, as it is an infinitely complicated system with whole lot of financial interests at stake. The pharmaceutical industry is a huge sector of the American economy. Here is another mind shattering quote, "Total pharmaceutical revenues worldwide had reached over one trillion U.S. dollars in 2014, with North America responsible for the largest portion of these revenues, due to the leading role of the U.S. pharmaceutical industry." https://www.statista.com/topics/1764/global-pharmaceutical-industry/.
I think it a good question to ask, is whether or not, our interests are at the forefront of decisions involving healthcare, or do they take the back seat to propping up the industry itself. This brings me to the topic of this post. Although we can't with the wave of our hand, put into a place, a fair, just, affordable health care system with the interests of PEOPLE as the primary objective, we can however, adopt certain practices so that we will have a much less chance of having to rely on the Health Care System in the first place.
Chronic disease is on the rise, it has already reached epidemic proportions. If it keeps rising at this rate, it will be very difficult to keep the rising costs from getting out of control. Worldwide it is a huge problem. "Chronic diseases, such as heart disease, stroke, cancer, chronic respiratory diseases and diabetes, are by far the leading cause of mortality in the world, representing 60% of all deaths. Out of the 35 million people who died from chronic disease in 2005, half were under 70 and half were women." http://www.who.int/chp/en/. In the United States, " at least 80% of premature heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and at least 40% cancer could be prevented to healthy diet, exercise, and avoidance of tobacco products." http://www.who.int/chp/chronic_disease_report/usa.pdf?ua=1
Chronic disease is a slow gradual process that incrementally takes away from our health and vitality, making it much more difficult to enjoy our lives, as we succumb to the myriad related subjective symptoms of things like fatigue, anxiety and depression, poor digestion as the process is wholly degenerative in nature.
But there is hope. Because Chronic Disease is largely preventable, we can alter and optimize many aspects of our lives in a way such that not only will be preventing, and reversing the disease process, but we will have the freedom and energy to fully enjoy our ideal life.
Here is a list of what I would say is the foundation to living a life like that, with the most important at the top of the list. Within each of these foundations, one can get more and more refined in the optimizing of it, and often it can be quite individual, but for the most part the description giving is a great start. For further "dialing in" of that foundation, please refer to the rest of this blog, or one of the other great blogs out there and commit to learning more about it day by day. But start with these Foundations.
Nutrition: Avoid all processed foods, and severely limit all refined products, especially sugar.
Exercise: This can be a bit tricky, as if you are ill, or severely adrenal fatigued, too much exercise can limit your bodies ability to heal. Suffice it to say, that if you exercise and you do not feel energized afterwards, you did too much. Some of my patients ideal amount of time when exercising is no more than 6 minutes when they are trying to build up their energy. If you don't have lots of time, check out Body By Science. http://www.drmcguff.com/
Hack your sleep: Get enough sleep for your body, most people need at least 7-8 hours of quality sleep. If you are not getting quality sleep, you are missing out on an ESSENTIAL aspect of your health regimen. Here is a link to some sleep tips..http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-28488/how-to-hack-your-sleep-for-better-rest-by-understanding-your-sleep-wake-cycle.html
Meditate: Meditation can activate healing responses in the body, there is tons and tons of evidence in that regards on the web. For instance, check out this link. https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/feeling-it/201309/20-scientific-reasons-start-meditating-today
Community: Get involved with your community, hang out with your friends and family more, get a dog or cat. There is tons of evidence supporting the fact that your social connections are a major contributor to overall mortality rates. Translation: hanging out with other people make you more healthy! Here is a link to some info about that. http://www.pnas.org/content/113/46/12980.full
Thats a great start, and its fairly easy to implement. If you have any questions, or comments please reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or leave a comment below. '
To your Health and Happiness,
Thomas Cobb MS L.Ac.