FRAMINGHAM – Have you seen the movie My Big Fat Greek Wedding? That’s my life… except It’s the Italian version so that’s fun.
I married a 3rd generation Framingham “townie” so Framingham was always part of the package. My wife and I started a Chiropractic office and a family here and when my office was destroyed in a fire a few years back, both the City of Framingham and its residents helped me rebuild that practice, and for that I owe you one…
With COVID-19 rates dropping throughout the state and city, I thought NOW might be the appropriate time to shift the conversation and culture away from sickness and toward a focus on wellness and building a resilient immune system.
In November of 2019, JAMA (Journal of American Medicine) reported that life expectancy in the US had already been on the decline since 2017.
Meanwhile, life expectancy continued to increase in other nations
during this same time period.
The last time the US saw a 3 year decline in life expectancy was during the 1918 Flu pandemic.
The largest subgroup driving this decline in life expectancy was, shockingly, the 24-36 year old population from alcohol-related deaths, suicide, and opioid abuse. The authors called this the “Triad of despair”. We were already in the midst of a health care crisis before Covid so this conversation is long overdue!
When both my children and my patients have a problem, my first question is always, “What is your objective/goal?” As a culture, it seems that our goal is to avoid getting sick.
Social distancing, staying home, mask wearing, washing hands, and not touching your face are all strategies for not getting sick. Prevention is a good thing but does it make you healthier?
What about wellness? Your choices dictate your outcomes. What you do and what you focus on matters.
There are 3 levels of health care; treatment, prevention, and promotion.
Treatment and prevention get the lion’s share of the attention these days. Treatment and prevention are important but they do not make the body healthier. Treatment and prevention do not make your body more resistant and resilient to disease. Treatment and prevention are reactions. Promotion is action and now is the time for action.
Promotion is making sure you’re eating a diet of whole foods, not processed.
Promotion is making sure you’re getting 8 hours of sleep.
Promotion is choosing to avoid the news before bed for better quality sleep.
Promotion is choosing to exercise, even though it’s hard.
Promotion is recognizing that mental health is part of overall health.
Promotion is understanding community and connectedness is part of overall health.
I tell my children and my patients that you tend to get what you focus on.
The choices you make today dictate your outcomes tomorrow. The best way “to stay safe” has and always will be “stay healthy”.
When my office burned our community took action to help us rebuild
and for that I will be forever grateful.
Now is the time for all of us to take action on our own behalf and promote the wellness that will see us through this and whatever lies ahead.
Christopher A. Hauck D.C.