Welcome to the first blog post! I thought it would be best to share the intent of my blog before I jump right in. Sort of the preface to the book. That along with a little background may help readers get more benefit and encouragement for reliable health support.
My passion for good nutrition and a commitment to providing others with real solutions for better health is my mission. I’m very thankful for the opportunity that I’ve had over the years to help make positive and lasting changes for many people’s health. I hope to expand this impact nutritionally by reaching more people with practical and effective solutions. This means addressing the greatest cause of health problems today, and providing the best, ok basically the only successful approach, to get one’s life back.
The overwhelming growth of health problems in our country is not because we’re suddenly being ‘attacked’ by more disease. It’s because of the significant changes in our dietary and lifestyle habits that have come about in the relatively recent decades. Even though the rest of the world is experiencing more diet related health problems, the US is by far the most troubled. In my following posts, I will delve into the gamut of our escalating health problems, how dietary factors influence them, and what can be done. My intention is to do it in an interesting – yes, I said interesting – and helpful way that can be motivating but also educational. My goal is to help people make positive changes and that means putting some new information into action. And that’s the hard part, right? – change. Yet despite any challenges, the trends toward better foods, healthier eating practices and nutritional therapies are making a significant impact in countless lives.
My story started at a young age when I took a strong interest in science and also cooking. I grew up like many in my era - a handful of decades ago, eating the classic meat and potato diet. Unfortunately, also intermingled with decent meals were the classics; frozen tv dinners, processed and packaged foods, deep fried this and that, and of course the always-alluring fast foods. So, what’s the big deal - what was wrong with that? After all, everyone was eating that way, and the processed and fast food empire was only getting warmed up.
However, after losing my Father to brain cancer when I was only 23 and then watching my Mother’s health deteriorate after that, eventually passing away several years later, it left me with many questions, like why? And how do I prevent that from happening to me? Nevertheless, I continued through school and on to my careers, and as all young people do, feeling invincible while planning for many active years ahead. But it didn’t take long to realize the limitations of my physical health. Multiple sports injuries and arthritis catch up with you quickly!
Earlier in my education and work in clinical science, I had the plan of eventually attending medical school. However, along the way I began having doubts. I have no idea how I foresaw this, or if it was just coincidence, but I felt a serious lack of confidence in the medical approach to disease. The “take 2 aspirin and call me in the morning” approach to health problems didn’t seem to be a solution. I didn’t know at the time that I couldn’t have been more right-on. Don’t get me wrong, I like medical doctors. I refer and consult with them all the time. Should I be badly injured, God forbid, the trauma docs are going to be my best friends. Our country has the best trauma and emergency medicine centers in the world. However, when it comes to all the chronic diseases which dominate our healthcare crisis, the medical / drug-based approach continues to fail.
Now as a chiropractic physician, I have spent the focus of my training in natural and nutritional approaches to overcoming disease. My training with food and cooking has just been an added bonus. Looking back, I can’t help but wonder how things could have been different for my parents had there been better information. But my own personal journey has probably taught me more than anything about how our lifestyle decisions inflict the greatest effect on our health, yet, befittingly it’s also the best road to restoring health.
It’s through my experiences that I have come to be so passionate about nutrition and helping change people’s lives. To see my patients ‘get it’, when they implement a positive change and overcome years of distress, it’s like defeating the biggest monster. When people feel their body heal, stop having the pain, become energized with restored hormones, or cured of digestive disorders, they actually transform with a certain radiance. And that is exciting!
For me now, daily exercise is a habit and eating as clean and organic as we can is what my wife and I strive for. Any health issues we have had, we address through diet and nutritional therapy - we don’t take any prescription drugs. And regardless of any back pain, I just don’t take many pain meds. I can count on one hand the times I have taken Ibuprofen over the last 10 years. I treat my arthritis just as I prescribe to my patients, with the intent to support and heal the tissues, and possibly reverse the metabolic disturbances that come about. (See my other posts about the natural approach to arthritis).
When it comes to dietary habits, hey, I’m just as tempted as anyone by the delectable images in advertising, and the way-too-easy accessibility of junk food. But know this - the dietary behaviors of our society have deteriorated significantly in a short amount of time. While it’s not entirely our fault, we must understand we have to make the right choices. Our environment of food is more dangerous than a mine field. The food industry is BIG business, and trust me, they-don’t-care about our health. A better understanding of your fundamental nutritional needs, what I am dedicated to, will be your strongest defense against poor decisions driven by the latest fads, popular media and of course, commercial interests.
Chronic disease in the US is responsible for 7/10 deaths, 81% of hospital visits, 91% of prescriptions and 99% of Medicare spending! For this group of leading diseases, medical care has no answers. Our health problems are overwhelmingly under siege and our Western pharmaceutical approach is ineffective. The message that I can’t emphasize enough is this; your health is in your own hands. To think that we can partake in the standard American diet (SAD), overconsume sugars, disregard nutrient dense whole foods, and not be part of the statistics above, is just wishful thinking. Fortunately, there is a solution and it’s available to everyone!
My mission, is to educate about the pitfalls of our modern food mine field, and support the highly successful nutritional path to overcoming the most chronic health problems of today. Whether you’re a savvy health advocate or you feel lost in a strange land, whether you hope to overcome certain disease or create a healthier life for you and your family, I hope you will stay with me and share your insights and successes!