The Fountain of youth... begins with common senese
As medical professionals, we are dedicated to helping people. Sometimes the best way to do that is to get back to basics and give them direction.
Before you reach for those expensive creams, miracle cures, and expensive procedures, start with a little common sense. That’s the advice being given by three highly respected medical experts and authors of the book Stay Young: 10 Proven Steps to Ultimate Health, by Dr. Mark Anderson, Dr. Walter Gaman, and myself.
For as long as time itself, both men and women have wanted to turn back the clock and regain their youth. Everywhere you look, there’s a new product or new solution that is “guaranteed” to work—and American’s are buying in with over $9.5 billion dollars a year spent on beauty products and treatments.
Why does our society spend money on things like cigarettes and then additional money on treatments and procedures to erase the lines that smoking caused? Go out in the sun and then shell out hundreds of dollars on creams to erase skin damage? Chug down an energy drink and then buy sleeping pills to cure the insomnia? Maybe it is a sign of where we have been, but finally people are starting to take note of what is important once again.
Keeping a youthful appearance and staying healthy is something that most people long for. That may be why our Staying Young Radio Show has really taken off and people are sitting up and taking note. The idea for the show stemmed from our latest book, Stay Young: 10 proven Steps to Ultimate Health. My co-authors, of Executive Medicine of Texas wanted to leave our patients with more “take home” advice. We took the time to create a ten-step program that would engage the patient, creating a journal that becomes a health record and plan for improvement.
Health is a step-by-step process
Resources for Health Advice
While the internet has its benefits, it also has its downfalls. It used to be that only experts in their field made it to print and in front of readers, but now things are much different. Everyone seems to have an opinion and most of the ones on the internet are just that—an opinion. Good health advice comes from reputable sources like Radius magazine, medical sites, and books that are written by credentialed individuals. Internet sites that are run by official authorities, such as the American Cancer Society, The American Heart Association, and others are also a good source for trusted information.
You can search just about any symptom online and convince yourself you have cancer, heart disease, or some rare disease that most have never heard of. Just the same, your neighbor was bound to know someone who died from whatever you think you have. Don’t be an alarmist! Those same symptoms can be related to a simple virus or even the flu. Monitor what you read and never get worked up unless your physician has confirmed that you should be concerned.
Each of the ten steps listed in the book is backed by research and proven to work. The best part—most of the advice is based on doing things that are free. For example, “Step #9…Sleep Your Way to a Younger You” explains how much sleep you need, how to get it, and why it’s important. Likewise, the favorite step of all time “Step #8… Have Sex Often” gives research-backed evidence that a healthy sex life is good for immunity, brain function, and can help you live longer. The chapter continues on to give a list of foods that are good for libido.
Prevention is at the very core of staying young and saving on health care costs. These seem to be the two buzz topics on everyone’s mind, yet little practical advice is given to the general public. So many people drift day to day and never take the time to think about their health or their health status. While many of the steps to a better you are virtually free, some things cost money, but are worth their weight in gold.
One of the best things you can do for yourself is to understand your basic health status. Just like anything else in life, you have to know where you are before you can formulate a plan of where you want to be. Good health starts with a physical examination that will help you and your physician determine what your health risks are. That is why “Know Your Current Status” is Step #2, second only to “Know Your Family History.” Since most patients don’t know what tests to ask for, we devoted a whole chapter to things that can or should be included in a good physical exam. This allows our readers to take the driver seat and steer their health in the right direction.
Taking Charge of Your Health
Years in the medical field have taught me that most people want to know more about their health but don’t know where to start. Unfortunately, many have come to rely on health care coverage policies to dictate if they need a particular test. This practice is not wise and can often lead to misdiagnosis and disease progression. Only your healthcare provider can determine what tests are necessary and how often you should have them. Each individual is different and has different risk factors; yet policies for health coverage take a blanket approach by treating everyone the same.
You can take charge of your health by writing your family history, logging any unusual symptoms, and charting your medical and surgical history. Be sure to do all of this before you see your healthcare provider—your visit will go much smoother, and your care will be much more comprehensive. No doctor, no matter how good he/she is, has a crystal ball; therefore, you must be a partner in your health and wellness journey.
Be a Good Example
Whether you are a parent, boss, or neighbor, be a good example to those around you. Encourage those you love to make healthy choices and good decisions. The other day I was reading that Canada has passed a law that makes smoking in a car with a child a crime. Let me be the first to congratulate them on having the courage to stand up for the tiniest of lungs among us. This is one of those things that once again should be common sense, but hasn’t yet hit all Americans at the conscious level.
Be aware of how your decisions affect your wellbeing. Take time to care for yourself and for others at the core level and you’ll be surprised at how big your circle of influence can be. The biggest mistake you can make is to underestimate the impact that each individual can make.
Understand that good health starts with good decisions. Take the opportunity to journal your health and pick up a copy of Stay Young: 10 Proven Steps to Ultimate Health at your local bookstore or on-line. You can also listen each Sunday at 11:00 a.m. central time to the “Staying Young Show” on 660 KSKY, which is streamed on www.ksky.com.
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"The Fountain of youth... begins with common senese"
Judy Gaman has a degree in Health Sciences from the prestigious George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences and is part of the Executive Medicine of Texas team. She is a co-author of multiple books including Stay Young: 10 Pro...