Movement and Food as Medicine


By: Dr. Dawn DPT

“Our food should be our medicine and our medicine should be our food.” ~ Hippocrates, Physician

“The doctor of the future will no longer treat the human frame with drugs, but rather will cure and prevent disease with nutrition” ~ Thomas Edison, Inventor

“Those who think they have no time for exercise will sooner or later have to find time for illness.” ~ Edward Stanley, English statesman

“Today, more than 95% of all chronic disease is caused by food choice, toxic food ingredients, nutritional deficiencies and lack of physical exercise.” ~ Mike Adams, The Health Ranger

There are a plethora of quotes throughout the ages from a wide variety of people regarding the importance of nutrition and exercise for good health. From Hippocrates to Mike Adams, all signs point to the use of food and exercise as our best choices to living a healthy life. So why is 95% of the population still sitting in front of the computer or television screen eating cheetos and drinking soda? Why is there a greater percentage of Americans considered obese than average weight?

Using food and exercise as medicine is not easy. It takes forethought and effort. Many find it easier to take a pill or an injection to treat their illnesses than actually take ownership of their poor choices and work to change them. Accountability is sorely lacking and stressful lives leave us feeling exhausted. Procrastination doesn’t work well either because fast food and snacks are easier to acquire than healthy freshly made meals and exercise usually doesn’t happen if it’s not scheduled.

Grocery shopping must be done weekly to keep a healthy array of fresh produce and lean clean protein in the house. If you can’t get to the store regularly, there are reasonable home delivery options through yummy.com, spud.com and uswellnessmeats.com. Make sure to have plenty of healthy snack foods on hand as well – raw veggies and fruits, nut butter, nuts, etc. Pack your lunch and snacks for work or school to ensure plenty of good food choices throughout the day. If your week days are just too long and busy to cook dinner, consider cooking for the week over the weekend. It will make week nights much less stressful and hectic and McDonalds or Taco Bell won’t need to be the only option.

Exercise needs to be scheduled into each day (5-6 days/week). When you put it on your schedule like a meeting or an event to attend, it will happen! And don’t forget that parking at the far end of the parking lot, taking the stairs, walking the dog, or bike riding with the kids all count as exercise/movement. Anything that gets us out of a chair or off the sofa is worth counting as activity. Yes, even playing movement-based interactive video games like the Wii. Also, consider signing up for a small group exercise program. Many people are more likely to keep their exercise date when they are accountable to others. Small groups are also a source of supportive community to ensure continued exercise and healthy food choices. Don’t let arthritis or other musculo-skeletal aches and pains stop you. Movement and stronger muscles will actually serve to reduce that pain. Seek out a physical therapist to help you establish a safe exercise program.

So please consider making movement and food your medicine. The only side effect is a healthier more vibrant you! You have to admit this side effect is much more palatable than the extensive list of issues created from pills and injections!

To quote an anonymous source from Pinterest,  “punch that laziness in the face and have a great day!” Start living your best life and set a healthy example for others. It’s not only possible but necessary for a long health-filled existence.

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