As women, we take on the responsibility for the health of our families, our community and ourselves. Many times it is the women who establish the lifestyle habits and build the foundation for their loved ones health and well-being. Re-establishing our habits in the areas of what we eat, think and do can be healing and life giving instead of disease producing. Through activity and exercise, positive thinking and optimal nutrition each woman can do their part in creating health for themselves, their families and the community.
Strength is defined as “power, force, vigor, moral resistance”. We all need this attribute in order to attain and maintain health for ourselves and our families. Our healthcare system needs us to be much stronger and disciplined in our health habits as we watch that system buckle under the weight of costly treatment options for the management of advanced stages of chronic diseases such as heart disease, type II diabetes, many cancers and autoimmune diseases, obesity and others, albeit with very little success. Simply put, our bodies and our healthcare system need us all working much harder at being healthy. Our mission at Natural Medicine & Rehabilitation (NMR) is to create a stronger, healthier community via health education on therapeutic lifestyle changes and holistic based therapeutic options. Through the concept of the Triad of Health which addresses our physical, emotional and nutritional components, we strive to create increased awareness and support women’s active roles as pillars for change in our homes, schools and community.
Nutrition impacts every aspect of our health. Food is not merely fuel for our bodies, it becomes our body as the nutrients are utilized to create structures that make up our muscles, bones, hormones, organs and brain! Therefore all the systems in our body are influenced greatly by what we eat. The quality of our food has far reaching impact on just about any chronic health condition and every meal can bring us closer or further from illness. Understanding this simple but fundamental truth will give you a powerful tool that you can use multiple times a day and throughout your lifetime. We are at a point in medical history when strong scientific evidence has us understand that the most common debilitating chronic illnesses are created by our lifestyle. For the vast majority type 2 diabetes is a choice! Although the application of these principles is just as valuable for men and women alike, I strongly believe that women can have a far greater impact when it comes to implementing these principles in their lives and homes.
Physical activity has a direct connection to mental health and confidence. Although all types of physical activity are encouraged, I would like to place emphasis on strength training for women. The benefits of training with weights include, to mention only a few: improved body composition and metabolism, optimized hormonal balance, better self-esteem and confidence, improved bone density and improved overall function in the long term. In women of all ages but more evident in the later stages of life, decreased strength is associated with increased frailty, decreased mobility and function, depression, increased risk for falls and fractures and loss of independence. Starting a strength training program under the supervision of a professional for a female at any age is one of the most useful gifts for increased longevity you can give yourself. Teenage girls can safely start a supervised weight training program to improve posture, self-esteem and create a positive and healthy body image. For our moms, improving strength will decrease the risk of musculoskeletal pain and dysfunction and improve stamina. Even if you have been diagnosed with osteoporosis it is not too late. Scientific evidence shows that strength training, supportive nutrition and correct supplementation will improve bone density in the long term and will decrease the risk of falls and fractures.
Stress has an adverse overall effect on all aspects of our health. Our “happy hormone”, serotonin which is believed to be deficient in states of depression, is synthesized mostly in our gut. 70% of the serotonin production is directly related to the state of our gastrointestinal system. What we eat can greatly influence how we feel physically but also emotionally.
The inability to properly manage stress has an adverse overall effect on all of the aspect of our health. We all know that stress causes disease, and the opposite is also true: happiness causes health. Studies show that prayer, meditation and spiritual practice are efficient ways to manage stress, improve happiness and optimize health.
Our bodies are wonderfully and innately designed to heal, repair and thrive. At NMR we believe that “we are what we eat, think and do”. Establishing healthy lifestyle choices within these areas will create a stronger, healthier community by empowering all individuals to create better health and better life for themselves and their families.