Ever feel like a hamster on a wheel — huffing and puffing and going nowhere fast?
Do you work long hours then run from one thing to the next, only to stop off for fast food just to fill your and your kids bellies? Are you consumed by daily deadlines, projects, answering emails, update statuses and tweets, simply losing touch with those that matter most?
As a physician and mother of 4 boys (8 and under), I very often get lost between work, children, Zumba, cooking, cleaning, writing books and articles, blogging, traveling to speak to various audiences and other public appearances. One day spills into the next, and by the end of the month, it all seems like a blur. Many of my patients are in the same boat – same lifestyle; they and their children have one or more chronic diseases and are suffering emotionally, physically, spiritually and mentally, and have all but lost touch with themselves and their body’s needs.
One of the biggest complaints I get is that healing the body naturally and living a healthy and wholesome life doesn’t come cheap. Getting top-quality supplements, eating organic, locally produced foods and other important steps toward living a healthier life are often out of reach for most struggling American households. Clearly, something has gone wrong with the way things are. It is my passion to find the cheapest and most efficient ways that anyone can easily fit into their busy lives, to heal the body.
What is chronic disease?
The common denominator of all chronic diseases is chronic inflammation. – Tweet this!
It is a hidden, smoldering fire created by an immune system trying to fight off bad food (sugar, processed foods and inflammatory fats), stress, toxins, allergens, overgrowth of bad bugs in the gut, and even low-grade infections, gradually destroying the beautiful system we were born with. Most people have no idea how to treat their inflammation. What’s worse, instead of addressing this root cause of chronic diseases, many doctors are prescribing pharmaceuticals for a quick “fix” of the symptom until the issue is just manageable. Band-aiding the blaze without turning off the ignition, will only work superficially to keep symptoms at bay, but never really addresses the root cause of the blaze (I know, it’s sad!).
To be truly effective at managing and/or overcoming a disease, we need to address these processes that can lead to inflammation at every level. What causes inflammation and how can we effectively treat it? Any deficit of the factors below can eventually lead to inflammation and add/initiate the fire in our bodies that can potentially lead to chronic disease.
Addressing any deficit in these factors will help you combat inflammation and chronic disease.
Here’s where you can start:
I cannot begin to emphasize how important this first step is, and that’s why I put it at the top.
Food is a multi-billion-dollar market, and most of that effort goes into attracting people toward processed, empty-calorie and addictive foods that underlines many chronic diseases and increases profit for the food industry. – Tweet this!
Incorporating these simple dietary changes can dramatically improve your health in two ways:
Allow your child to play and run—better yet, play, chase and tackle your children accompanied by tickles, hugs and kisses. Older children can be encouraged to use a pedometer to count steps. Pedometers are easy to use and the best motivator. The idea that something is monitoring your movements is enough motivation for most people to get up and move around when they normally would be sitting down. Many of my patients have downloaded an app on their smartphones that allows them to more accurately monitor their movements, calories burned, and other measurements.
Walking is low impact and a great place to start. In fact, adding any type of exercise will help reduce inflammation. But if you’re starting at zero, go slowly so you don’t injure yourself and end up in forced sedentary confinement.
Stress causes more than 80% of patients’ complaints.
Managing stress is essential in any healing and disease-prevention program, as our thoughts, feelings and emotions directly affect our physical health. – Tweet this!
Being thankful helps create a subconscious world of positivity that governs 90% of our thoughts and actions. – Tweet this!
The positive energy boosts optimism, which in turn helps prevent disease, improves our health and immune system and has been proven to add years to our lives. As soon as your child wakes up in the morning, take a moment to sing about 10 things you are all grateful for. This may be a challenge in the beginning, but with regular practice, you’ll find that the morning’s gratefulness exercise starts to permeate your day, leaving your child optimistic.
Starting their morning on a positive note influences the rest of the day. It guarantees that they always get up on the right side of the bed, helping them make the most of their day! Have fun with it!
Your family’s diet is crucial to the ability to live a healthy life and have a strong immune system. However, any deficiency in your nutritional levels can interfere with the healing process, so consider adding minimal supplements like vitamin D, probiotics (or sauerkraut) and fish oil.
Supplements help support the immune system and offer that extra push your child needs toward restoring your body to health and balance. – Tweet this!
Toxins are all around us and are often invisible. Regular exposure can slowly accumulate toxins in their little bodies and force their liver to work extra hard to remove them.
A high body burden of toxins can cause problems at every level, creating havoc in a child’s internal world, unable to eliminate what the body doesn’t want.
One key to combating environmental toxins is clean eating and a healthy lifestyle. Choose non-toxic personal products and cleaners, using glassware for eating, drinking and cooking are easy ways you can ensure a healthy child inside and out!
Take charge of your family’s heath! Adding these simple, easy cost and time effective tips to your family’s daily life can help optimize health helping to create a bright future for those that matter most! If I can do it, you can too!!! Be sure to consult with your healthcare practitioner before starting any new supplement or dietary program.
What cost effective ways have you found to improve your quality of life towards health and healing? Please share your thoughts below!
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Madiha Saeed, MD ABIHM
Holistic Mom, MD
I am a practicing family physician and an integrative holistic family physician, in Illinois!My book “The Holistic Rx: Your Guide to Healing Chronic Inflammation and Disease” was #1 new release in 4 categories and a best seller on Amazon, all before the official launch.The book has since been picked up by medical schools. We are changing the face of medicine!!!I’m the director of education at Documenting Hope - a national organization dedicated to heal chronic disease in children, a writer for Holistic Primary Care and a proud mother of 4 holistically-raised boys (who share their healthy habits on YouTube). On social media I'm HolisticMomMD . I speak nation wide igniting the world with my energy and passion to start a healing revolution! I have appeared on the Thriving Child Summit and I am the featured speaker for many more summits including the Shift Network's Winter of Wellness 2018 Summit – the most prestigious holistic online event (www.winterofwellness.com). I will be the featured guest on multiple episodes of the Emmy nominated medical lifestyle show Ask Dr. Nandi speaking on parenting and healing chronic illness.