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Healthy Living is the Best Revenge

In a recent health tip I commented that we Americans hadn’t learned much when it comes to taking care of ourselves. Over a decade’s time, our smoking habits had leveled off rather than diminished and we were actually exercising less, getting fatter, and making more unhealthful food choices.

I added, with a justifiable sense of pride in my patients, that these statistics didn’t apply to our WholeHealth Chicago practice. That although your bodies may be feeling buffeted by different manifestations of stress, you do take good care of yourselves and that I actually see fewer patients with heart disease, emphysema, cancer, and diabetes than most of my physician colleagues.

Taking this a step further, a notable study appeared in the current issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, the actual title of which is the same as the title of this health tip.

Epidemiologists working at the German Institute of Human Nutrition, in cooperation with our own Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta, tracked the lives of 23,153 German adults between the ages of 33 to 65 over a period of 7.8 years. Investigators wanted to count how many participants in this group would develop any of the following conditions, the “big four” of chronic illness in Western societies: diabetes, heart attack, stroke, or cancer.

During the period of the study, they asked whether or not participants had engaged in any of the following lifestyle choices:
1. Not smoking.
2. Performing 3.5 hours per week of regular exercise.
3. Having a BMI (body-mass index) below 30 (i.e., normal weight). To calculate your BMI, click here.
4. Adhering to healthy nutrition principles (high intake of fruit and veggies, whole grains, low meat consumption).

Pretty straightforward scoring: participants could have zero, 1, 2, 3, or 4 “healthy factors.”

At the end of the 7.8 years, 2006 participants (or 3.7%) developed at least one of the four illnesses. And as you might have figured, there was a direct correlation between the number of healthy choices engaged in and the risk of developing the various diseases.

To keep it simple, those in the study who had four “healthy factors” had virtually no chronic illness. They scored better than people with a score of three or fewer.
Common sense tells us that these would be the results. Major insights into the obvious.

Despite the simple, straightforward way this study shows us how to avoid chronic illness–and the shortened life expectancy that usually follows–it also challenges us to answer questions that require a bit of self-exploration, including “Why am I not living a healthful life?” or “Could it be that I really don’t care whether or not I feel less than well and will just take my chances when it comes to developing a chronic illness or dying prematurely?”

I wonder if a lot of us might be making unhealthful choices because we’re struggling with symptoms of unrecognized mild depression. And maybe, just maybe, you’re tendency to eat high-carb junk food, drink too much alcohol, light up a cigarette, or loll around thumbing the remote control is your personal way of dealing with this mild but lurking depression.

Trust me on this last statement. Every time you think you’re a complicated individual, know that underneath, you’re far more complicated than you could ever imagine.

Be well,
David Edelberg, MD

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**Join us for a demonstration of Taoist Tai Chi® internal arts of health
Saturday, August 26th at 11:00AM – 12:00PM
There is no fee for this program
WholeHealth Chicago
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This demonstration of Taoist Tai Chi® arts will give you an opportunity to learn more about this ancient path to good health of body and mind. Taoist Tai Chi® arts help to promote a healthy, balanced life style and a simple way to manage stress. Taoist Tai Chi® arts offers a chance to discover a powerful adaptable, and accessible tool for all ages, including seniors, and people with specific health concerns. These arts can be used to help people take responsibility for their health on its own or as a complement to medical treatment they may be receiving.

 

**Facial Rejuvenation Guasha Class
The Ultimate DIY Anti-Aging Facial!

With Mari Stecker, LAc
Thursday September 21, 2017, 6:30-8PM, $65 course fee

Join us and learn a traditional Chinese facial rejuvenation technique that you can do yourself! Guasha treatment is a 2,000 year old Chinese massage technique that uses a flat tool to apply pressure to the skin to increase circulation as it moves along acupuncture channels.

Facial guasha is an easy to learn technique that:
* encourages blood flow and promotes radiance
* prevents wrinkles
* activates cells to regain facial elasticity
* drains fluids to detoxify skin and reduce puffiness
* sloughs off dead skin cells
* uplifts and tones skin
* firms up facial muscles
* minimizes dark circles
* promotes a healthy, younger and more radiant look

Space is limited and registration is required.
Register online or call WholeHealth Chicago at 773-296-6700
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**Vaginal Rejuvenation
October 12th, 6:00pm – 8:00pm  Fee: $65
With Mari Stecker, LAc & Renee Zambo, RYT

Are you experiencing vaginal dryness? Or pain with intercourse? Have you been told you have vaginal atrophy due to menopauseAre you frustrated because you believe your sex life is overWell, it doesn’t have to be!

Come learn easy, non-pharmaceutical, non-hormonal, low cost techniques that you can do at home to help alleviate vaginal dryness, atrophy, thinning of vaginal skin and/or painful intercourse.

This class is appropriate for any woman who is experiencing discomfort during intercourse, pelvic exams or daily activities due to vaginal dryness and atrophy as well as women who are experiencing vaginal changes due to perimenopause, menopause, cancer treatments, hysterectomy or medications.

This class will include information on specific instructions for self-treatments that can be done at home as well as yoga postures and meditation that focus on the pelvic region.

Movement and breath will draw awareness to the pelvic floor, and facilitate both the full relaxation and activation of pelvic floor muscles. A short guided meditation will reconnect awareness to the feminine energy held within the pelvis.

Space is limited and registration is required.
Register on-line or by calling (773) 296-6700.

 

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