Being healthy isn’t all sunshine and roses for some of us. It’s not a walk in the park – especially, if you are dealing with decades worth of bad habits. However, it is possible for all of us! We only need to decide that we want that healthier life.
Make the decision that this is what you want
You need to make a decision. Do you want to be healthier — to live a healthier life? Hmm…maybe that isn’t the right question.
Are you tired? Tired of being too tired, of feeling down, icky, blah, of adult acne? What about brain fog or no energy? Tired of going shopping and having to buy that size 20 dress?
If the answer to any of those questions is yes, then the next question you have to ask yourself is what are you willing to do about it? Are you willing to take the steps needed to feel better both emotionally and physically?
These are all questions I have had to ask myself with each step of my personal journey. Despite what the media and the billion dollar weightloss industry tells you, there are no quick fixes to health. This is a choice – one (or many) that you have to make on your own. I mean, it helps to have a friend that will do the same journey with you, but the decision to make that journey is yours, and yours alone (just like Frodo and the one ring).
So, the first step is to decide that you want to live a healthier life.
Find a healthcare professional that is willing to help you on your journey
If you’ve read my previous post, then you know this might be a lengthy process. Most healthcare professionals only want or can spend 10-15 min with you. Or they see dollar signs as soon as you walk through that door. I have dealt with both extremes. The healthcare folks that see dollar signs will always try to sell you specific products, some will recommend gobs of expensive tests.
Science is all about data. To get that data you have to test – so I am not anti-testing. What tests to take requires discernment based research on your part. The dollar-sign doctors will love you if you take everything they say at face value. Bring a notebook to each doctor’s visit write down what they recommend and what plan they want you to agree to, then go home and exercise that keyboard. Read, read, and read. There’s just no way around it.
I am, however, anti-specialized products, because most of the time the products are to make the doctor money. Do you really need that $100 specialized vitamin pack? Or do you just need to increase your Vitamin D levels? This is where a test will help to answer that specific question.
So, once you have decided to take this journey the next step is to find a good doctor – whether they are an MD, DO, ND – as long as they have the training, care about YOUR health, and want to help you live a healthier life.
My First Step to a Healthier Life
In my last post, I delved into my personal trigger – a mysterious illness that took 6 months of my life. (We all have one – hopefully, yours wasn’t as extreme or worse than mine.)
If I hadn’t made the decision to fight for my health I would still be experiencing that illness – I have no doubt. Doctors were starting to label me as a hypochondriac and telling me they could not help me. I even had one doctor say that the one doctor at the time that was trying to help me was too much of a bleeding heart female.
My decision to see an ND was my version of a “hail mary” at that time. After 2 hours, she diagnosed me with an infection that was in my pleura, which wasn’t anything new. The pleura lining doesn’t get as much blood flow to typically requires an extended dose of antibiotics as a result. However, because the doctors were so paranoid about causing a super bug, they did not provide a continuous enough duration of the antibiotics which put me in a vicious cycle of improvement and relapse. Each time this happened it killed off the weaker bugs leaving the stronger bugs. I told her that the diagnosis is what all the other 11 doctors concluded.
This is where she diverged from all the other doctors. Her treatment plan was to boost my immune system as much as possible, while treating my gut. What a lot of doctors won’t tell you is that antibiotics don’t care which bacteria it kills off. It kills off everthing so my gut flora needed to be reinoculated.
After one month of her treatment plan I got better and started to work on regaining the strength I had lost from 6 months of not being able to do anything.
It Won’t Be Easy to Work Towards that Healthier Life
I wish I could say that living a healthier life is easy. We are constantly bombarded with food commercials, and pictures of these skinny people eating fast food hamburgers. (I mean, really, when you are 40+ there’s just no way to do that unless you are blessed with a super fast metabolism. Well, meaning friends will say things like “Oh, you can splurge this once” or “why get up to work out?” Been there heard it ALL! Ijs!
Along with all those comments, you will be fighting urges and habits that you have worked at establishing over the course of years. (In my case, it was decades. 3 decades of bad habits. I used to love McDonald’s. Now the thought of McDonald’s makes me sick.)
Find a picture of someone who has a similar body type as you that is smiling and skinnier. I.e., if you are hour glass shaped then find a picture of someone who is hour glass shaped. Put that picture on your fridge, desktop, cell phone wallpaper – some place, any place you will see it all the time to help remind and motivate you.
Seek out a friend that will help you stay positive about your decision or, better yet, will do the journey with you.
When you get tempted, look at the picture or call your friend. Stay focused on that goal and remember it is a marathon journey not an overnight quick fix.