The Key to Health is Self-care

The importance of self-care

The Key to Health is SELF-CARE and NOT Health-care


Health, like wealth, needs to be earned, saved and properly managed for it to last. Health is the cause and effect of how we look after our body. Every day and every meal matters. Our body is fair. It can only yield what we have sowed. If we do not take care of our body responsibly, even the best medicine in the world will not be able to help us.

Drug Treatment

Today, almost everyone living in this world is sick because modern medicine has come up with a disease name for almost every human condition. Pharmaceutical marketers sell drugs by selling diseases -- a system known as "disease branding." Illnesses such as panic disorder, restless legs syndrome, bipolar disorder and ADHD were once considered rare until a marketing campaign transformed the brand in order to sell more drugs. Children once known as shy are now being branded as suffering from social anxiety disorder and have to be medicated.

According to CNN report on October11, 2010,

"If all drugs were harmless, disease branding would be relatively harmless, too. But no drug is completely benign ... Detrol can make elderly people delirious and may cause memory problems. Paxil is associated with sexual dysfunction and dependence ... Side effects like these are part of every drug. But they are never part of the brand."

It is very common now to find people taking spoonful of medication every day from vitamins, supplements to prescription drugs. Seniors are the most heavily medicated group and they are spending more money on drugs than foods. The long-time abusive use of drugs is killing people faster than healing them. 

In October 2010, the over consumption of prescription drugs together with medical errors have moved up to become the LEADING cause of death in the US. In another study, the US with top medical expenses, advanced medical science and technology was only ranked 49th for life expectancy as compared to other countries worldwide. Today, people are much sicker than ever before and the next generation is predicted to have a much shorter life expectancy than their parents. What is even more revealing is that many centenarian studies done around the world concluded that people living furthest away from modern medicine lived the longest life, irrespective to their diets or lifestyles. All these messages are loud and clear that modern medicine is not the answer to health and longevity.  

Natural Treatment

If we look back at human history, people had lived long without modern medicine. Take China for example. It has over 5000 years of history and Chinese race today has grown into over 20% of world’s total population. What has proven to work should be worthy of our consideration.

In Chinese culture, health tops all other priorities in life. Chinese diet, exercise and lifestyle are all designed with health and wellness in mind. People regard health as wealth and see sickness as a financial burden because healthcare has never been funded by the state and people have always been fully responsible for their healthcare expenses. This has proven to work in motivating people to stay healthy. In the event of sickness, people will use tried-and-true kitchen remedies first to try to recover. Other treatments include herbal remedies, tai-chi, qi-gong, meditation, exercise, message and acupuncture. They are all natural treatment modalities with no side effect, cost very little and work internally and externally to restore health quickly. They are simple, easy to learn and apply by ordinary people to take care of health. This self-care approach in prevention and cure is making people fully accountable and responsible for their health. 

As compared to our modern healthcare system today, we are totally dependent on specialist care which is in much higher demand than supply. The ever increasing medical costs are bankrupting both governments and individuals. Most families in the U.S. are believed to be only one bad diagnosis away from financial ruin. 

The Medicine of Self-care

All these are compelling reasons for us to re-examine how we should manage our health and what are the more cost-effective and sustainable health care options. Instead of relying on others to give us health, we should rely on ourselves first and do everything we can to better our health. Self-care is preventive care and is better medicine than cure. Self-care requires discipline in maintaining healthy diet and lifestyle in order not to create sickness in the first place.

For health problems caused by wrong diet or nutritional imbalance such as diabetes, using food therapy to manage the disease is safer and more cost-effective then using prescription drug. Food therapy should also be used in all other cases to shorten the usage and dependency on drugs.  

To prevent sickness from taking root, we should be fully aware of our body's condition at all time. Any symptom of abnormality such as low or high blood pressure, low or high body temperature, tiredness, fatigue, lack of appetite, insomnia, head ache, chronic cough, constipation and constant pain are all signs of imbalance. They have to be investigated and acted on promptly. Degenerative diseases and cancers can take up to ten years to form. Early detection and intervention by changing the internal body conditions can help our body to fight back, repair, rejuvenate and restore health. 

In the event of sickness, it is important to do enough research to fully understand the nature of problems, the implication on the whole body and other alternative treatment options.

Sickness can happen at any level of our body: from the physiological or chemical level, to the electrical or energetic level, to the mental or psychological level and to the upper spiritual level. These different levels are all inter-related. If we eat poorly, nutritional deficiency can affect not only the lowest physical level, it can in turn affect all other levels as well. It can affect the energetic body where the nervous system and cellular communication takes place. It can also cause chemical or hormonal imbalance which in turn creates malfunctioning of electron in cells which then affects our mind, emotion and spiritual health.

Treatments at the physical level can be diet therapy, exercise, chiropractic, surgery, physiotherapy and osteopathy, etc. Treatments at the energetic level can be acupuncture, message, qi-gong, radiotherapy and neural therapy, etc. Treatments at the mental level can be psychotherapy, homeopathy, mental field treatment and hypnotherapy, etc. Treatments at the spiritual level can be prayer, meditation and self-healing. Identifying the real cause of problem is the key to selecting the right treatment option.

Holistic or naturopathic doctors are more willing to look beyond symptoms and use a combination of treatments to help patients to recover. Conventional medical doctors have to abide by their practice and treatment protocol of using drug and surgery. They often ignore the simpler, safer and more cost-effective natural healing modalities. It is up to us as consumers to decide which option can better serve us for our own long-term good. 

Modern medicine has its place and advantages but the treatments are usually harsh on the body with side effects and complication not fully known. Modern medicine certainly does not know all about the magic of how our body works in harmony. But modern treatments are mostly irreversible. It is only to our best interest if we can get fully informed first before deciding on the treatment option. 

Health is only possible if we take full responsibility and control and be proactive in self-care, disease prevention and health management