There is probably no aspect or context in life where there isn’t a challenge or some sort of resistance towards achieving success. Even the simple act of taking your next breath can be challenged if there was something obstructing your mouth and nose! Taking care of our health is challenging, and various aspects of our health can come in the form of daily battles. For example, adhering to an eating plan can be a battle that is not easily won for some. For others, it may be getting adequate activity or exercise on a regular basis which is an ongoing battle to be fought. Many fight the battle to overcome an illness, heart disease, or high blood pressure by proactively pursuing and practicing certain habits in order to become successful in managing or overcoming those conditions.
And there are times despite doing the right things, the battle appears to have been lost. For example, an individual may be exercising and eating right, but still have high cholesterol or high blood pressure. Others may appear to be doing all the wrong things yet live to a 100! These scenarios are not common, and should not be an excuse for a passive or complacent lifestyle.
Taking care of our health and our bodies is a lot like applying a scientific principle. Science attempts to explain a phenomenon through observation, and the better the observation, the better the explanation. Likewise, the better the instrumentation, the better the observation and the more reliable and valid the prediction. Science makes no promises but a forecast an outcome, and is never a guarantee of causality. Applying certain health principles like exercising and eating certain foods would likely influence some kind of predictable and positive outcome, but is never guaranteed. In other words, applying successful actions in regards to our health is likely to produce various benefits that are desirable. Conversely, negating successful actions or gravitating towards harmful behavior would predictably lead to negative consequences to our health, such as acquiring illness or disease over time.
Last month I was hospitalized with pneumonia for 4 days despite doing what appeared to be vigilant practice with regards to taking universal precautions for healthcare providers. Some aspect of my immunity was overwhelmed, and a major battle was lost despite an ongoing habit to win. It is perhaps possible that this battle may have been lost even sooner and perhaps to a greater degree had there been idleness in certain areas of my personal inventory of health practices. I certainly am not perfect, and there are, of course, areas of my health that I could (and should) take greater responsibility in. And losing this recent battle has me reflecting on what could be better or improved in order to be successful in the future, and perhaps to plan for contingencies if similar situations arise.
Most of us do not intend on losing battles with regards to our health, and some battles can still be lost despite good tactics. But a habitual loss of battles, or a lack of effort to win when it comes to our health practices will certainly, and predictably lead to a war effort that leads to loss and consequential risk to our health. As individuals, it is a good idea to take personal inventory on the battles that are being fought, or identify areas where we need to fight a better fight with regards to building a productive and proactive lifestyle that allows us to thrive in our environment. Perhaps it is time to find allies and disconnect from our enemies, and in some cases build a fort around values that are important and meaningful to the success of our future health. Good luck everyone, and remain vigilant!
Dr. Adrian Pujayana has been providing drug-free solutions for health and wellness to adults, athletes, and youth since 2000 through his private practice at Family Chiropractic Center of South Pasadena, a place for strength training and nutrition based health care.