HealthCare vs Caring for Health – Let’s do More than Manage Disease

What an entertaining and dramatic election, huh? You may be happy, sad, mad, or just plain relieved it’s over.

But as you are counting how many friends you have lost the last few months for being a little too vocal about your positions, allow me to suggest that there is one topic that should remain top of mind, and on the tip of our tongues.

Healthcare. But NOT what you are thinking now.

healthcare vs disease managementFrankly, I hate the word “HealthCare.” Why? It’s completely misleading. What has become known as “healthcare” in America is often nothing more than DISEASE MANAGEMENT.

There are wonderful exceptions to this rule (some of whom are clients of ours), definitely, but most of our “healthcare” system is NOT designed to care for, nurture, or encourage health … but rather to simply manage disease.

We care far too much about removing symptoms than correcting root causes.

When you are given Lipitor to lower cholesterol or Coumadin to reduce blood pressure, you haven’t fixed the reason your numbers were elevated.

When you are placed on Januvia or Metformin after being diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, you are not eliminating some dietary deficiency of pharmaceutical drugs.

When you start taking Humira to reduce pain, you aren’t actually correcting what was causing the inflammation.

When you have your tonsils, adenoids, gallbladder, or appendix ripped out, you aren’t removing a foreign organ that wasn’t supposed to be there.

In all of these situations, you are simply turning off the alarm, disabling spellcheck, changing the rules, redrawing the lines, removing players from the game, or choosing a different consequence … however you want to phrase it …

Now the aforementioned may be some emergency steps that need to be taken in certain situations to prevent immediate further complications (and thank God for the people skilled enough to prescribe or perform them) … but … and it’s a big but … they are NOT improving or restoring proper biological function.

Translation – they aren’t addressing root causes. They aren’t restoring health. They are only managing disease.

Now I don’t mean to sound discouraging. In fact, quite the opposite. I’m trying to wake people up and help them save themselves many wasted years of unfulfilling life … and furthermore, save their families needless loss and heartache.

Look at these numbers. If our healthcare system was actually caring for our health, these numbers wouldn’t be so staggering:

Look at the number of people who die EVERY YEAR from these diseases and conditions, in spite of the U.S. spending more than TWICE the average developed nation on healthcare per person:

Heart disease: 614,348
Chronic lower respiratory diseases: 147,101
Stroke (cerebrovascular diseases): 133,103
Alzheimer’s disease: 93,541
Diabetes: 76,488
Nephritis, nephrotic syndrome, and nephrosis: 48,146

Here’s the good news. Most of these deaths are completely preventable through lifestyle change (including being able to remove physiology-changing drugs from your system! (but do so when you and your doctor decide they are no longer needed)

Being overweight and / or smoking are far and away the 2 biggest contributors to every one of these listed categories. (sleep deprivation is also a serious and growing problem, especially regarding dementia)

And though I didn’t list them above, we now know even a third of cancers are caused by particular lifestyle factors. (we do have much to learn yet about about the other 2/3rds)

While drugs and surgeries are incapable of actually making you healthier, YOU have the power to do so. And realizing that is quite exciting!

Heres the verdict: we could save over 1 MILLION of our own lives every year by simply moving more, eating less (and sleeping regularly).

But let’s bring that home: you could literally save YOUR life by moving more and eating less. You could prevent YOUR family heartache and loss. You could actually live FULLY until the day you leave this earth!

Relying on “healthcare” is a painful mistake that will rob you of time, money, peace, joy, and independence.

Caring for your health, by contrast, will not only increase both the quantity of your years, but also the quality of every second, minute, hour, day, week, and month with which you are blessed.