Another year has arrived, 2014, a time when we re-evaluate life, look at our priorities, and set new goals. Many will make health resolutions. I think this is worthy as our health is a most valuable asset. However, many men I know spend more time with their cars or sports’ sections than they do with their bodies. If you lose your health, you lose so much! One recent study estimated that half of us will make promises to improve ourselves in various way in 2014. The statistical success rate of said goals: 8 percent.

    A few months ago, a 56-year-old man came to my office who had recently experienced a heart attack. He was in dismay. He came to see me because he knew I was interested in understanding “why” things happen. If we understand why, it helps us in the treatment greatly. “How could I have a heart attack? I exercise every day, eat a healthy diet, have a perfect cholesterol and blood pressure, do not take medications and have a low stress life.” I asked him how old his dad was when he had his heart attack. He told me his dad had his first heart attack at age forty. Genetics play a role. Without the healthy lifestyle his heart attack might have come years earlier.

    Unfortunately modern medicine mainly focuses on symptoms especially when chronic disease is the issue. Modern medicine does wonders for acute emergencies like a heart going too slow, a heart attack, a broken bone, or a sick gallbladder. For chronic conditions we are our own “best” physicians. I like to try to find what is stressing the system in treating chronic disease. This is usually multi-factorial including bad genetics, poor nutrition, lack of rest, a stressed brain, toxins, and the list goes on. Once the major stressors are identified, making changes that help the chemistry of the body is usually best made one step at a time… moving toward health, not necessarily getting there in one big swoop, though this would be nice, it rarely happens this way.

    At Heartwise, in 2014 we want to move you toward better health one step at a time. We want to love you and not judge you. We want you to share your successes with us. We also want to be there to help guide you when you have a medical question that needs an unbiased answer. I must admit, nowadays, it is hard to sort through who is telling the truth. I will continue to blog about what is being written about in the media and put a balanced spin on the given subject.  Everyone wants to feel better, look better, and enjoy better health. It is possible. Let’s take the first step.

    Among the 5 most common resolutions for the new year are losing weight, exercising more, and eating healthier. To increase the success rate, I believe a relationship to encourage is vital. A relationship with God will help. Make the time to worship God at least 12 minutes a day. This could include reading scripture, praying, walking in nature, being thankful, serving the needs of another, and the list goes on. Ask God to help you have the power to make the first change. Also have a friend, a website like Heartwise, or even an app to help keep you on track. Here are some potential useful apps. To lose weight, the app Nutrino is a helpful for some. For exercise, Human is an app which helps use location to track activity. Fooducate is an app that scans grocery bar codes and grades the nutritional content. The bottom line is, as you make changes that work for you, include relationships, especially the relationship with God.

    How do you make this doable? Let’s review:

    1. Move toward health one step at a time. Do not try to do too much. This might just be drinking more water for a month, eating less snacks, or moving more.
    2. Include Relationships. This is so important. God wants to help you.
    3. Be positive. Love yourself.

    Moving toward health is a journey. We are here to pray for you, encourage you, and give you something to think about and share with those you serve. We want to have a relationship with you. We want you to share and have relationships with others. If we continue to move toward good, we can achieve better health and change the world.