Risk is part of life.
And we manage it all the time.
Consciously or unconsciously.
Systematically or erratically.
When you take responsibility for your health, you start making your own risk management decisions. Whether you are aware of it or not.
If you let a doctor take the lead on your health decisions, they assess risk for you.
Doctors are always weighing the potential benefits of a particular treatment against the potential risks. That is part of what we ask them to do, as medical experts.
You don’t need to be a medical expert to know how to manage risks relating to the interventions you undertake to improve your health.
You just need to be systematic. I’ll tell you how!
Risk Management for Health
When we take responsibility for our health by engaging in nutritional and lifestyle interventions, we can manage risk for the actions we decide to take. And the actions we decide not to take.
Because there can be risk in inaction, too.
We can also consider risk when deciding whether to include (or exclude) pharmaceutical or other therapies as part of our health management strategy.
Start with Questions
Start the process by asking the following questions: Continue reading
We had a really big, bad financial surprise last week.
It caused a huge amount of stress.
Even as we’ve been experiencing this stress, I’ve been observing how we’ve been reacting to it.
Matthew and I have responded differently:
- He’s had a major flare of autoimmune symptoms as well as a significant increase in nausea. All the progress he made through his recent biofilm & yeast-busting protocol evaporated almost overnight. Not necessarily permanently. But for the time being, he’s back to where he was at this time last year. Hardly able to eat. Not able to do much.
- I have been experiencing increased anxiety, but I have also been noticing a decrease in my brain’s ability to function and I’ve been feeling spaced out and irritable between meals. Which I know from experience is related to a blood sugar imbalance.
We already know that Matthew is acutely susceptible to stress. So we aren’t learning too much from the reaction that he’s having.
But I am learning a lot about my own physiological responses to stress, and how it affects my blood sugar and my brain.
Stress, the Brain and Blood Sugar
I have a new crush.
I get them. Big intellectual crushes. On people who are doing really innovative work in the field of measurement.
I have a long-standing crush on Michael Quinn Patton, originator of Developmental Evaluation.
My new crush is Dr Skye Barbic, who has created the Personal Recovery Outcome Measure (PROM). I spend a blissful hour and half this week learning all about it.
The PROM questionnaire is designed for people who are recovering from mental illness. But it can be used by everyone.
In fact, I think it should be used by everyone.
The World Health Organization (WHO) defines mental health as “a state of well-being in which every individual realizes his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community.”
Clearly we don’t need to be recovering from a debilitating mental illness to be pursuing improved mental health. In fact, the WHO definition for mental health could be the definition for purpose in life.
The PROM questionnaire is designed to help anyone realize their potential and cope with stress. Continue reading
Joanna Frankham and I are collaborating on a series about Women and Weight on the Autoimmune Protocol (AIP).
We knew weight was top-of-mind for many women on the AIP, because we’re pretty plugged in to the community, but we had no idea it was such a big issue until we started our research.
So far, we’ve surveyed 20 long-term AIPers and have also conducted in-depth interviews with six women.
Last month, Joanna published the first post in the series, which outlines some findings from this research, including that the AIP (by itself) isn’t the solution for weight issues for most women.
So what is?
There’s nothing like a serious chronic illness to help re-set priorities. And we’re clear: our priorities lie with supporting others in their efforts to heal.
Matthew and I are developing a new platform that will offer individualized support for people who are taking personal responsibility for their health.
We’ve been working on this platform since the summer and we’ll be launching it soon.
The new site will be based on the idea that when it comes to health and healing, we are all unique. It’s the variations in our health status, goals, environment and genetic expression that determine the individualized pattern of living that will best support our well-being.
Eventually, once all the phases are rolled out, the new site will support the process of figuring all that out.
There are a thousand things you could do to improve your health.
Last week I outlined nine of them.
Nine is a lot!
And those nine don’t include things like addressing the impacts of gene mutations; figuring out if you have an electromagnetic sensitivity; or hacking your sexuality.
Once you decide to take responsibility for your own health, it can feel like there’s no end to the things to address. And that can be stressful.
The solution is to assess leverage.
In this post I’ll share a tool to help you do that. If you use it, you’ll always know that (to the best of your knowledge at any given time) your energy is being invested for maximum returns.
Assessing leverage will help you pick one thing, the right thing, out of a thousand possibilities. Continue reading
In part 1 of this post I suggested that you don’t need to do everything at once.
Start with one thing!
I also covered four areas to focus on for health.
Here are four more:
5. Connectedness (to nature)
We get issued our genes at conception, and there’s not much we can do about that. But our environments alter the way our genes express themselves.
If our environment supports our well-being, that encourages our genes to switch to the ‘health promoting’ position.
So, one way to keep your genes working for you is to attend to the health of your environment.
There are lots of ways to create healthy environment. One powerful strategy is to connect with the healthiest environment there is: nature.
The natural world is where humans evolved, and research now proves that ‘nature-deficit disorder’ negatively impacts our health (and gene expression) in all kinds of ways. Continue reading