by Dr. Linda Mundorff MPH, MSN, ND, RN, CNC, CTN
What does it mean to live a healthy life? Does it mean the absence of illness? Having a positive attitude? To feel good? Does feeling good mean the absence of symptoms? Does the treatment of symptoms cure, thereby vanishing the problem? Is there a genetic predisposition to healthy living?
I submit that healthy living is not about genetics, nor a lack of illness, or an ability to perform unassisted activities of daily living. I offer a definition that states, "healthy living is a mind-set, an ability to be intimately in touch with our inner thoughts. Our inner thoughts ground us, provide us with the insight to our emotional and physical well-being.
Healthy living is finding the positive when there is negatively all around us. It is the manifestation of vitality and finding the strength to see beyond the daily experiences of life. Healthy living encompasses the ability to feel comfort in one’s own skin, being happy with who we are, and not about material possessions.
It is about understanding oneself and how we deal with life in general. It is exploring and circumventing the barriers that potentially prevent us from moving forward. It is about contentment, joy, love, and peace. Healthy living is a process.
We live in a society of quick-fixes, squeezing as much stuff into our day as possible. Those quick approaches do not always lead to permanent solutions. No one said that life is easy, however life doesn’t have to be so hard either.
Recurring problems cannot be fixed by merely placing a quick-fix band-aid on it. The band-aid will eventually fall off and expose the wound. Suppressing the issues will only lead to a deeper exploration of the problems. Take the example of pressure spots, a common ailment of immobilized patients. If the skin is kept clean, dry, well lubricated, and the patient is repositioned every couple of hours, the potential for ulcerations will be reduced.
Unfortunately, prevention takes work, and many of look for the quick-fix or shortcut. Short cuts usually lead to more pain and discomfort, and more problems than solutions.
Below are sample questions taken from one of my intake forms, that you can take to determine a starting point for developing a plan for a life of healthier living.
1. Do you get angry easily?
2. Are you generally dissatisfied with life?
3. Do you dwell on the negative rather than the positive in your life?
4. Do you have an illness that you blame everything on?
5. Are you always surrounding yourself with things to make yourself feel better?
6. Are you sad a lot but don’t know why?
7. Do you blame others for your problems?
8. Do you envy your friends or co-workers because you think their life is better than yours?
9. Does it take you a long time to forgive?
10. Do you eat to self-comfort?
If you answered "yes" to more than 3 of the questions above you are in need of re-evaluating your current healthy living process.
Dr. Mundorff is a Board Certified Naturopath, and not a medical doctor. The information in this column is for educational purposes only and should not be used to self-diagnose and treat diseases.
Naturopathy is a complementary practice to health care and should be used in conjunction with a competent health care practitioner.
Many herbal and homeopathic remedies can actually be contraindicated in many health conditions, with certain prescriptions, and over-the-counter medications. Please consult your physician before starting any alternative modalities.
Dr. Linda Mundorff is the author (Rener) of Medical Terminology: A Student Workbook, and Memories of My Sister: Dealing With Sudden Death. You can email your comments to Linda.Mundorff@rrcc.edu