DR. PETE WEISS: Getting a Radically Healthy Lifestyle – Bit by Bit
By Peter Weiss, MD // February 23, 2017
Take a small step. Then keep stepping.
HEALTH DISCIPLESHIP — A couple of weeks ago over lunch, a friend and I got to talking about our respective health. As a reader here, you know that I pay attention to my health and lifestyle. This guy does too. We’re both relatively lean and fit middle-aged men, and we both eat a “healthy diet.”
So I was a little surprised to find out that his cholesterol has been “too high” for years and perhaps he was similarly surprised when I revealed that some of my fasting blood sugars have been “too high” off and on.
How could that be when we’re doing everything right?
Well… Good question. All is not controllable of course. Metabolic disorders can and do occur, even in folks who are doing “everything right,” for genetic or other reasons.
“Just bad luck I guess” summed up the next few minutes’ conversation as we consoled ourselves. But then we came around – “Honestly, are we doing everything right? Are there actions that could improve our health (and bring those lab results back into the ideal range)? What else can we do?”
We came up with the typical list of incremental solutions – lose a couple of pounds, exercise a bit more, reduce snack foods/desserts/simple carbs/etc. – before getting radical. Sure those are all good, but how about eating vegan?
No meat, no dairy – that’s radical! Would it help? Almost certainly. Will we do it? Maybe, maybe not. It’s hard to make such a radical change.
Yet we both have been improving our habits over the years. We both already live lifestyles that represent radical departures from those of average Americans. I do eat a lot less meat and more vegetables than I used to. How did that happen? For me at least, a little at a time. Bit by bit. Learning, growing, adjusting. It’s been a slow process.
Our conversation brought to mind the book Eat to Live by Dr. Joel Furman, which I have read several times. If you only want to read one book on healthy eating – this should be the one. It’s radical, too radical for most of us.
Frankly it’s been too radical for me, but eating the way he recommends does cure people. I’ve seen it. Reading it again last week reminded me that I have farther to go.
There is more that I can do. There is more I will do. I probably won’t do it all at once, but I’m going to keep at it.
How about you? Not ready to make the big changes that you know are indicated? Fine. Take a small step. Then keep stepping.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Dr. Peter Weiss is a physician, healthcare executive, author, speaker and health coach with a passion for helping others to health and wellness. His book on personal health, More Health, Less Care, has drawn excellent reviews, and his newest book, The Love Fight, was released in November 2014. Formerly CEO of Health First Health Plans, Dr. Weiss currently serves as Senior Vice President at Florida Hospital in Orlando, part of the Adventist Health System. You can find him on the web at Healthdiscipleship.com