Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Sick and Tired of Being Sick and Tired

Image result for Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food

"Sick and tired of being sick and tired." 

This is a silly phrase my dad says, but more importantly it is a very real message I have heard patients express. People present to the doctor with a laundry list of symptoms. The most common include (but NOT limited to): fatigue, pain, diarrhea/constipation, weight gain, sleep issues, headaches, stress, anxiety. All of these are serious symptoms that debilitate their days and ruin their quality of life. 

I feel terrible and want to help... but what is the cause?

Digging deeper into every patient's problem, there are always a few common qualities. 
-Sleep habits: irregular bed times, LOTS of screen time prior to bed, caffeine into the wee hours of the night, and long daytime napping. 
-Life Stress: work, bills, relationship conflict and no "you time" to decompress, relax or enjoy an activity
-Diet: eating on the run, eating out, skipping meals, snacking all day, alcohol, caffeine, processed foods and minimal water.

SPOILER ALERT: there is no magical pill to fix it all overnight. I am always stumped on what habit to tackle first and how to convince my patients they NEED to care for themselves. 

With all of this said, I looked at my own life. Fatigued- YOU bet I am! Sleep habits- Terrible. (thanks residency) Diet- NEEDS an overhaul.

Today it is time to lead by example and make changes. My plan......Whole 30: google it! I am not a spokesperson or even know that much about the program, but the idea of eating REAL food for 30 days sounds like a terrific idea. Goodbye dairy (my skin will thank me #acne), sugar (everyone knows my candy addiction), grains, alcohol (I hear the gasps now) and legumes. 

Difficult? Sure it will be hard, but who am I to encourage my patients to make difficult lifestyle changes without doing it myself.

Be on the lookout for my weekly updates and new recipes that fit the program's guidelines. 
XO


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