Anything worth having requires some effort to get it. If you want a vibrant marriage you need to put time into maintaining the relationship, if you want a successful career you have to sacrifice to make it to the top, if you want well-adjusted children you have to dedicate quality time to nurturing them throughout life. It is the same principle with health. If you want great health full of energy and vitality you need to be willing to put the effort in to get it.
Once I met a really interesting patient in clinic who was unfortunately quite sick. He had multiple illnesses affecting almost every organ in his body. My heart went out to him and I began sharing how he could reverse some of his disease with good nutrition and better lifestyle choices. He listened politely and in a most jovial tone said “Doc I am not ready for all that. I want you to put that all in a little green pill and I will gladly take it.” I laughed with him because we both knew there was no such thing. He had been taking tons of pills and was still sick. For sure I did not have the perfect little green pill to restore his health. As he stared into my eyes he wanted me to help him feel better but he was not prepared to put forth the effort to get the results he so badly wanted.
The secret to great health is really no longer a secret. It is actually confirmed by the laws of nature, sound science and healthy communities around the world. The key to great health can be found right inside your own home. We don’t have to travel to an exotic clinic of natural healing, we don’t have to empty our retirement fund to buy products upon products filled with promises of well-being. It simply starts with a commitment to yourself to make better choices every day. Great health is a culmination of the little choices we make every day. And every day you get a chance to reclaim the health you deserve.
What are these every day little choices that add up to great health. First make the choice to move to an unprocessed plant diet. That may sound like a strange combination of words but it simply means eating foods from plants that are as close to their original state as possible. “Oh boy” you say, that sounds like green salads all day long. Absolutely not! An unprocessed plant diet is overwhelmingly full of variety. Eat all kinds of foods from the group of vegetables, fruits, roots, beans, peas, nuts, seeds and grains. That’s a whole lot of food to choose from. Next ditch those sugary drinks and make the choice to drink lots of water. Pencil in outdoor exercise a few days a week and breathe deeply as you get your work out in the fresh air. Going to bed early has not gotten the credit it deserves and many of us rob ourselves of adequate sleep each night. This will have to change in your quest for great health. Burning the midnight oil only leads to a lowered immune system, chronic fatigue and weight gain. Stress control should be high up on the list when we have a goal of being healthier. Stress kills. It can’t be said any plainer than that. If you find yourself constantly involved in multiple stressful situations make a plan for how you will decrease that stress level and keep it under control. It doesn’t matter what you eat, if something is eating you up on the inside you’re guaranteed to get sick.
I don’t know if my patient ever found that little green pill he was hoping for but I hope that you will find better health as you make better choices each and every day.