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The Truth About Wellness


Wellness is a concept that is foreign to most Americans, because the American healthcare industry is geared toward treating sickness, as opposed to keeping people well. Think about it. Do you go to the doctor to make sure you're in good health (a very very small percentage of us do), or do you go only when there is a problem? Do doctors typically give you advice on ways to remain well, or do they analyse your symptoms and prescribe medications to make them go away?

The healthcare business (reactive medicine) focuses on treating the sick because people only become customers when they are stricken by and react to a specific condition or ailment. Nobody wants to be a customer here, any more than they want to be involved in an auto accident.

The wellness business, on the other hand, is proactive, seeking to keep people from developing illness and disease. The focus is more progressive, and more appropriate since people who remain well live more enjoyable and productive lives, with less stress, income loss due to sickness, and fewer limitations on their activities. People voluntarily become customers - to feel healthier, to reduce the effects of ageing, and to avoid becoming customers in the sickness business. Everyone who knows better wants to be a customer of this earlier-stage approach to health.

WHY WELLNESS MAKES SENSE

If you needed to be convinced that wellness is the preferred approach to health in America, consider these facts:
  • 1.5 million dollars is spent every year on healthcare to treat illness
  • More than half of American families can't afford adequate health insurance
  • Millions of dollars are lost to employee downtime due to illness
  • The cost of remaining well is a small fraction of the cost of treating illness, especially considering that certain preventable conditions lead to multiple diseases and complications.

WELLNESS AND THE IMPORTANCE OF DIET

The human body requires a daily intake of 13 essential vitamins, most of which the body cannot manufacture itself. These vitamins, along with certain minerals are necessary to sustain millions of chemical reactions in the body that lead to proper biological balance and health.

Chemical flavourings in junk food are actually formulated to encourage you to ingest more of the non-nutritious foods, and this leads to a less balanced diet. It also dulls your desire to consume the proper variety of foods that our bodies naturally require, resulting in nutrient deficiencies. These nutrient deficiencies interfere with your body's normal chemical process, resulting in lack of energy, mood swings, joint pain, failing eyesight, and thousands of other ailments that medical science tells us to just accept with the ageing process. Over the long term, these illnesses lead to cancer and heart disease, two of the top killers in the United States.

Western medicine has ignored the importance of diet and nutrition in part due to the constant barrage of propaganda disseminated by the fast food industry, and certain other interest groups, who benefit from encouraging us to consume things that are not necessarily healthy choices. During the 20th Century, while Western medicine was ignoring the importance of diet and exercise, in preventing disease and ageing, the amount of activity performed by individuals declined due to labour-saving devices in the home, and to machines in the workplace. The quantity and variety of vitamins and minerals in our diets dropped as food became more processed and less varied. Ad the per cent of fat in our diets increased by 75% - from about 20% of our calories in 1910 to about 35% today. These and other factors contributed to the epidemic in obesity and ill health we have today in the United States.

WHAT WE NEED TO DO NOW

The American healthcare system is finally beginning to understand the importance and value of focusing on keeping people well, as opposed to reacting to illnesses when they arise. The spiralling cost of health insurance has finally made it impractical to continue business as usual since half of Americans can’t afford proper coverage for their families.

Americans need to find ways to return balance to their lives, and that starts with focusing on a balanced and nutritious diet, proper amounts of physical activity, adequate rest, and even mental and spiritual health.

Another aspect of balancing in this new approach to wellness is exploring the opportunities to reduce healthcare expenses through medical savings accounts and using high deductible health insurance to assure that families are covered.

With the focus on a balanced lifestyle, Americans will enjoy greater vitality, more meaningful relations with friends and family, and overall more abundant enjoyment of life. Be sure to do your part to make that happen for the people who matter to you, by taking care of yourself and sharing with others the information they need to do the same.

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