When should you call the doctor? How much do lifestyle, diet and our everyday food choices guide us on our path to wellness? What’s the difference between Health Care and Sick Care? These are the many questions that come up from time to time when people take up the path to holistic healing or want to dramatically change their health for the better. But even as people gain knowledge there is still confusion sometimes as to what to do first: continue with natural healing or call the doctor when feeling ill? The reason why this is so is because there is no ‘one size fits all approach’ to health and wellness; it is specific to the person and this is why we call it ‘Holistic’ in the first place.
There are however some general guidelines that people can follow when they are well: “Always treat food and diet as a medicine first.” Keeping up with this is the first rule of Holistic Nutrition and Naturopathic Healing. What we absorb eat, breath, think and believe; believe it or not has a more to do with our health and wellness than many of us would like to admit. How can you begin to treat food as medicine if you haven’t done so already? It’s very simple to do. Simply changing the way we look at vegetables and fruits by eating more of them in their most whole form is the best way to start. Eating cruciferous vegetables more often like kale, cabbage, collards broccoli and the like provides your body with the anti-oxidants and allow your body to detoxify carcinogens from your body in a natural manner. Likewise with fruits and berries, these manage a healthy weight and promote wellness every time you eat them.
Even with this sometimes people still find themselves either taking medications because they are treating an ailment or because they’ve been told to and may not know when to stop. All medications have side-effects, so while you may have to keep taking them, there is nothing stopping you from eating the healthiest and cleanest you can. In many cases, when people change their diet to alkaline or completely plant-based: their doctors have taken many of them off their medications because their health improved completely, but this is a case by case basis.
On the flip side, many times people do ignore the signs that signal they should go to a doctor to be seen for treatment. Ignoring these warning signs could have serious consequences for your health. You should always contact a doctor (either Naturopathic or Allopathic if you prefer) when you experience:
Rapid breathing, labored breathing (especially with children), severe and persistent abdominal pain, changes in behavior or mental status including disorientation, persistent diarrhea with vomiting and a consistent fever above 103 degrees for more than three days.
Many times these symptoms are linked to a bigger cause, getting it observed and diagnosed is always being safer than sorry. Usually taking the first approach that we talked about; the nutritional approach to healing interrupts many of the symptoms that we just talked about, however: no one is invincible all the time, there may be times that a doctor’s opinion may be needed. When you are well and no longer in need of a diagnosis: that’s when you are your best doctor and the natural and healthy eating foods are the best medicines of all. With health and wellness to you and your families.
Daud Scott –CHNP;CPT.