Hmm .… the quest for good health. Everyone wants to be healthy and of course so do you. Yet, do you really know what you are after?
What is good health? Is it the absence of disease? Is it the absence of discomfort? Is it the approving nod and smile from your doctor? Is it when the lab numbers perfectly lining up in a normal range? Who decides when you are in good and bad health? You? Your doctor? The labs? Or the Mother Nature?
So, what is health?
I asked this question to many people. I mostly got this: “You are healthy when you feel good”. It sure sounds reasonable, yet… it is nowhere close to the truth. See the three points below.
1. Can you get good health from drugs?
Consider this: a few days after a blood work you receive a phone call from your doctor. Your cholesterol is up. What a surprise! You did not know that. You’ve been feeling good all along. But now your doctor wants you to use a cholesterol drug. Apparently high cholesterol is not a sign of health. Are you still healthy? If not why haven’t you been feeling unwell? And if you are healthy then why should you be on any drug?
2. Can you get good health from test avoidance
What about mammography, bone density, or even blood pressure. When the results are bad, but you feel good, who decides whether you are in good health? And if you feel good, should your health decline the day of the diagnosis? Or maybe you should you forgo the the tests to avoid the bad news? If you feel good and have no bad news, then you should be in good health, right?
3. Can you get good health from chocolate chips
Coffee and chocolate will perk up most of us and let’s face it.. that’s why we swarm around Starbucks, Baskin Robins, and Godiva chocolatiers. Yet, that mouth-watering sugar fix that makes you feel good for at least half an hour isn’t really a health treatment. If good health could be judged by how you feel, then then you should be healthier with every chocolate chip cookie, a pint of beer, and a soothing painkiller. Nonsense. Isn’t it?
Are you healthy?
Everyone of us is healthy (at least somewhat), because in order to be alive we have to have at least a bit of health left in us. Zero health equals zero life. But even a slight notch above zero, the line of good health gets very blurry.
One day I asked my 70-year old patient on multiple drugs if he thought he was healthy and I got an answer: “Most of the time yes, sometimes I do not feel so good”. That was rather surprising considering that he needed three medication for blood pressure, two for diabetes, and one for prostate. The fact that he was intensely medicated for his ailments escaped his attention.
He FELT well, but was he? He wanted to feel invincible, so he made himself believe that he is “in good health for his age”. Apparently lots of his friends were no longer alive. He outlived them. He was still around. Was he not right about his health, then?
Give it a thought…
- Are you in good health when you are on a prescription drug and have no symptoms, because of it?
- Are you in good health when you are on a prescription medication, your lab results are great, but you feel bad?
- Are you in good health when you have symptoms because you didn’t take the medication?
- Are you in good health when instead of medication, you take CBD oil instead to reduce your symptoms?
Give it a thought. What is good health: the feeling, the medication, the lab values, the supplements, that daily coffee, or that marijuana puff that keeps you sane. Are you in good health if you need any corrector at all?
The illusion of good health
Everyone wants to be in good health, and if that’s not possible, at least feel that way. It is a natural phenomenon to convince ourselves that whatever health we have it must be good. Not being in good health is very stressful and no-one needs more stress in their lives.
The truth is that very few of us are really in good health. And it is not because we don’t care, but we really do not know what it is.
Health is a continuum
Your doctor may have convinced you that there are only two states: health and disease. But health is not a absence of diseases. It it is a continuum that goes from great, to good, to average, to poor, ends in very poor health. You can see the progression on the graph.
The problem with identification of health level is that a gradual decline is difficult to spot. Minor discomfort are easily missed, symptoms can be managed, and disease takes years to develops.
Fortunately, there is a simple way to check your body’s health status AKA, how it feels, how it looks, how it functions, and what capacities it has. To find out your ABC, go to our Uthing System: