Be Your Own Advocate

By Tracy Gowler 5 years ago
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I had a conversation with my bestie this evening around some recent health struggles she has had.  She told me that because it has impacted her so much she now realizes that she has to become your own advocate.  She can’t just rely on the medical community to do the right thing for her health.  She also suggested that I should write about it in my blog this week.  The conversation revolved around the way health issues sneak up on you as you get older despite being active, eating healthy, and looking after yourself in general.  Her question to me was “Why?”

She has never struggled with health issues until now, mid-fifties.  She went to the doctor for some help and they prescribed medication to support her hormones without even asking her.  She refused the medication but now what?  If we didn’t have a connection, she wouldn’t have alternatives, and this really bothers her.  The fact that being over fifty has brought on issues that she never thought she would have to deal with because she was so conscious of her health and it has opened her eyes.

It is difficult for me to answer “Why” but here goes. 

There are many different aspects to the answer.  And it usually isn’t just one of these, it is very likely a combination of several.

  1. Most people don’t eat as healthy as they think they are. If you eat gluten, dairy, sugar, GMO’s, artificial colors and flavors on a regular basis, you are not eating healthy. And if you are eating more fruit than veggies on a regular basis, you are not healthy.  And if you are vegan, your body is probably struggling.  Your thyroid needs meat protein to operate properly.
  2. When you decide to get healthy, are you supporting the healing needed in the body? Or do you expect that the new diet will solve everything?  If you have led an unhealthy lifestyle and then just decide one day to convert to being healthy, your body is likely going to need additional support to get it over the hump.  So, the effects of treating your body badly will eventually get to a point that you will see some issues.
  3. The standard paleo or keto diet isn’t going to do the same for everyone. We are all a little different meaning we will require different support, different food category portions.  And as you age, what you require will shift and you will have to shift the way you support your health with it.  It really is a good idea to evaluate your state of health once a year through specific testing to help determine what you need.  Not in your doctor’s office.  You will need to evaluate it through functional medicine testing.
  4. We have grown up thinking that symptoms are normal. They are not.  Most do not pay attention to the whispers of the body.  We only pay attention once it starts screaming.  If you haven’t seen my What Being Health Really Means recorded webinar you should.  It talks about the 4 stages of dysfunction and guess what?  Your body goes through 3 significant phases of dysfunction before you have symptoms.  So if you are struggling with any kind of symptoms, you likely have leaky gut or a balance with your microbiome.  That needs to be fixed before you are going to get healthy.
  5. We are exposed to so many chemical toxins, metal toxins, stress, etc, etc. It has become part of our lives.  For example ladies, what type of chemicals are in your daily makeup and skin care products.  I recently heard that women will ingest over 2lbs of lipstick over the course of their lives.  Gross and what is in that lipstick.  If you aren’t paying attention to what you are exposed to daily, you probably should be.  If you aren’t supporting your body to help offset the effects on your lives, then it will eventually contribute to health issues.
  6. There are 4 lifestyle factors that play a role in being healthy. Diet, Sleep, Exercise and Stress Management.  How well are you managing all 4?  If you aren’t, you need to be.  All are required to be healthy.
  7. Emotional health plays just as big of a role in your health as diet, exercise, sleep, and stress management. What I mean by this is that if you have experienced trauma and haven’t found a way to release it, it sits and festers in your body no matter what you do to heal.  Emotional healing requires the same amount of effort.
  8. If you are a negative person, spending a lot of time with drama and judgement, you have taken the energetic frequency of your body down and disease will set in no matter what you do physically.
  9. Genetics will eventually kick in if you aren’t providing your body the right kind of support for health. For most, they don’t have to be kicked off, but they will if you aren’t diligent in supporting your body in the right way both physically and emotionally.  For some, they will activate no matter what you do but if you do get sick and you have been supporting your body in the right way, your chances for healing and beating the odds are better.

All of these things contribute over time to dysfunction in the body and will go on without you knowing.  The body can only handle so much before things start to go sideways.  And when they do, it is a sign that there is some clean up work that you must do.

For some of us it will happen earlier, some later.  It depends on your vital reserve meaning your bodies resilience.  The reality is that only about 3% of Western population is truly healthy.  That is a sad and scary fact.  10% are critically ill and need the medical community to survive.  The remaining 87% of the population is struggling with dysfunction in the body and it is only a matter of time until it manifests.

What are you willing to do to stop it because you can? 

You absolutely can turn it around.

I always recommend to my clients that you start with diet.  I know I’ve said it isn’t always enough, but it can be tough, and it does take time to work through the mental barriers to eating healthy.  Start with a Paleo diet and stick to it.  Make it your lifestyle.

If you are struggling with sleep, you might be having hormone issues, chronic gut infection, adrenal fatigue, etc.  and that means you might need some help to get it resolved.

If you don’t have enough stamina to exercise, you will probably need some help as that is a sign of other issues in the body.

Stress can be external or internal.  External stressors are on you to manage.  Internal stress is dysfunction in the body and that will require some guidance and investigation to see where it is coming from.

Emotional health.  Big topic that I am starting to dive into but there are answers that are easier than I initially thought.  I will have more on this in weeks to come.

So the answer to “Why” is literally in your lifestyle, your exposures, and your genetics. 

If you sit and look back on your life to this point, you will find the contributors to your current state of health.  It is on you now.  You can no longer hide your head in the sand and just hope for the best.  I prefer to be my own health advocate.

Question for you.  Are you going to stand in front of the storm which represents your health issues and just let them sweep you away while they steal your quality of life or are you going to become your own advocate and stop that storm?  Completely up to you.  Choose wisely.

How do I work with my clients to support their health?  That sounds like a great question for next weeks blog.  See you then.


Photo by Morgan Sessions on Unsplash

  Autoimmune Disease, Hashimoto's Thyroiditis, Hashimoto's triggers, Healing from Autoimmune, Healing from Hashimoto's, Health, Tracy's Corner
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 Tracy Gowler

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