Personalized Lifestyle Medicine
It has long been recognized that nutrition and the prevention or reversal of disease are flip sides of the same coin, and that the two are very closely inter-related. Going all the way back to Hippocrates, who allegedly said, “Let they food be thy medicine, and thy medicine thy food”, it has been known that a person’s diet has a major influence on general health. When good nutrition is combined with a healthy lifestyle, it can work wonders in terms of preventing or managing chronic disease, and in some cases, even causing a reversal.
Importance of good nutrition
In the United States alone, a little over 36.5% of all people are obese, which is well over one-third of the population. Another 32.5% are overweight, and that means that more than two-thirds of the entire population are either overweight or obese. Most of these people can expect future complications with their health, brought on by being overweight. Whereas a healthy and well-balanced diet would help immensely to ward off diseases, the majority of Americans choose to ignore this fact, and fill up on fast foods, while also eating bigger and bigger portions at meal time. The number one cause of death in this country is heart disease, which is one of several diseases that are more likely to occur in people who are overweight or obese. Others are type II diabetes, metabolic disease, and some types of impaired brain function, which lead to mental disorders and a deterioration of mental health as well as physical health.
Making better choices
If the information above sounds scary, it really should. More than half of all Americans will suffer from at least one chronic disease that was preventable, and could have been avoided by having a healthy diet with regular exercise. There is of course, a certain percentage of the population which may be unaware of these facts, and continue with poor eating habits and an unhealthy lifestyle because they were simply never taught about what is most important about nutrition.
The majority of Americans who will end up suffering from chronic disease due to poor nutrition, are aware of the consequences of bad eating habits, and persist with them anyway – there’s usually an underlying reason for these choices and its important, in this case, to work with a healthcare provider who is skilled in personalized lifestyle medicine to get to the root of the issues and to help facilitate healthier choices.
As more and more research becomes available, it is becoming increasingly clear that a healthier lifestyle can be just as effective, and sometimes even more so, than using medications to offset the problems of poor lifestyle choices. And unlike using drugs, adopting a healthy lifestyle can actually remove the threat of disease, rather than simply managing the downstream effects.
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