Happy New Year! Dr. Doni shares her goals for 2017 and tips for making simple changes that can have a real, positive impact on your health this year.
It’s that time of year again. The time when we start thinking how we’re going to make ourselves all new and improved. Well, how about something like: Clean Eating, Adequate Sleep, Reduce Stress, and Exercise (Hey, that spells C.A.R.E.!) and then repeat? These four simple steps will have a huge impact on your health and well-being. But, be warned! These steps might sound simple, but they can also be hard to implement.
Here are the main things I find stop people from accomplishing this goal:
- Thinking you are a robot. As if you and your body should function perfectly at all times and never have any symptoms. Ever. The reality is that you are human (I’m pretty sure that is the case if you are reading this) and that human bodies react and respond to their environment, which means that symptoms are inevitable.
- Thinking you are separate from your body. As if you are living in your brain and the body you walk around in is optional. If there was such a thing as a “body store,” I would send you there so you could get a new body, but I’m sorry to say, that is not possible. Your body is you, and you are your body, and the only option is to take care of you and your body in order to feel good.
- Thinking that it doesn’t really matter. I’ve seen cartoons joking that if you can’t eat what you want, drink what you want, do whatever you want, then what is the point in living longer anyway? Well, how about all the other amazing, enjoyable things in life – like family, pets, nature, travel, love, sleep, and laughter? While I can see the perspective of “live it up and let it end when it will,” I tend to come from the perspective (and have since a very young age) of “enjoy each day and take care of yourself so as to get as many days as possible.”
- Thinking that you have to be hard on yourself whenever you mess up. Okay, so let’s think this through. Say you eat some sugar, then you get mad at yourself for eating sugar, then you feel bad for eating sugar, then you get mad at yourself for being hard on yourself, so you eat something sugary to make yourself feel better – you’ve basically just set yourself up to do it all again. Just stop. Stop being hard on yourself. Any time you do something that makes you feel worse, it is a lesson – a lesson in how to take care of yourself. Nothing to feel bad about; just to accept and love yourself more.
So here is the thing – You Matter!
Not just to others in your life but to yourself too. And every choice you make – whether to exercise or not, to eat sugar or not, to take a vitamin or not – really comes down to your decision to take care of you.
We are not so used to putting ourselves at the top of the list. I, for one, have felt guilty or ashamed to say that I do things purely to benefit myself. Whether as a doctor, a woman, or a mother – culture says we are supposed to put ourselves second, or even last. But what the heck! If we don’t take care of ourselves, we can’t be there for others.
So, to me, this year – 2017 – is all about being willing to openly share the things I do for myself, and the lessons I learn from doing things that are not so supportive of myself. Because it is not about being perfect. It is about being human, messing up and loving ourselves anyway then making new choices the next day, and the day after that. When we all do that, things will begin to shift and it will no longer be about which type of medicine is best or living up to a certain societal role. It will be about choosing what we know is best for us, at this point in time, based on the information we have – because we all matter, regardless of our age, gender, or status.
You Are the Only You
We don’t need to be cookie cutter humans. My belief (and this is based on science) is that we are all unique, and therefore we each need a unique approach. We have a unique set of genes. We have a unique response to stress. Just as we each have our own fingerprint, we also each need our own treatment plan. Of all the thousands of patients I’ve worked with over the years, I have never recommended the exact same thing for two different people.
That’s why the Stress Remedy Program is designed to be a guide – it gives you support and ideas and teaches you to check in with your body, your mind, and your life, and determine what you need in order to feel well.
Why do I call it the Stress Remedy? Because stress in various forms is at the root of all health issues. So if we figure out how to support our bodies to deal with stress, we will have mastered optimal health. That sounds like a line from my book, The Stress Remedy!
Don’t just think mental or emotional stress. Think food stress, toxins stress, lack of sleep stress, and so on. Anything that causes your body to veer away from optimal to handle it, is a stress. And stress – as you’ll know from reading my book – affects four major systems in your body: Digestion, immune system, nervous system, and hormones (all of them). The result it adrenal distress, leaky gut, and blood sugar imbalances (along the lines of diabetes). By the time all of this happens, you’ll be feeling fatigue, pain, bloating, and anxious, or depressed, or both.
Now, if you are ready to put this new perspective into action, you may want to consider joining me for the Stress Remedy Program.
In January we are doing the Stress Remedy Program together – sign up here by January 13th.
You could also do the program on your own starting any day you choose, for either 7 or 21 days, because I like to give you options so you can choose what fits into your life best.
Come join us in the Stress Remedy Program where we will plant seeds of wellness to help you take good C.A.R.E. of yourself.
Let’s get rid of the foods that are likely increasing inflammation, causing leaky gut, and making you feel not so good. Then as you feel better, you can add back certain foods to see how you feel, or leave them out when you see how much better life is when you feel good. You can adapt the meal plan in the Stress Remedy to be paleo, low-carb, and even vegan.
No matter where you are starting in terms of sleep, the program helps you put attention on your sleep and sort out what could help you sleep better and longer.
There are so many ways to reduce stress, and no right way to do it. So it is going to be a matter of you testing out a bunch of options until you find which works best for you.
Whether you are already exercising 45 minutes 4 times per week, or if you haven’t exercised in 4 years (or more), the program meets you where you are and encourages you to make exercise a part of your regular schedule.
There you have it – The Stress Remedy Program in a nutshell.
All my years (really it was over a decade) of science classes and then almost two decades of helping patients has taught me (not to mention more than four decades living in my body) all this. And I’m here to share it with you, because you matter, and healing is possible.
If you’d like to find out more before joining in, you may want to listen to a Q&A webinar from me. We recorded the webinar and can email you the link – click here to receive it. This way you can listen, learn, and think about whether you are ready to start learning what your body needs and how to give it.
Here’s to a healthy and stress-free 2017.
9th January 2017