Health & Wellness

5 Ways to Improve Your Health without Medication

September 21, 2018 By

Chronic illnesses like diabetes, heart disease and many cancers cost Americans billions of dollars every year. They rob people of their longevity, diminish quality of life and fill the final years of life with doctor’s visits.

SteadyMD Dr. Dani Urcuyo practices takes a whole-person approach to medicine. He helps address the root cause of illness rather than just treating the symptoms with medication. We asked him to come up with his top 5 ways to improve health without prescription medications. Here’s what he said:

 

1. Whole foods

Much of the food we see in grocery stores is highly processed thereby making it low in important nutrients and often toxic to our metabolism.  Eating whole foods as close to their natural state as possible helps us get nutrients in the amount and proportions that nature intended.  Furthermore, it allows our body to break down protein, fat and carbohydrates in a healthy way.  For example, eating an orange and drinking orange juice has vastly different effects on our blood sugar because of the fiber that whole oranges contain.

2. Eat the rainbow

Eating a variety of foods, particularly those that are in season, provides us with a diverse array of micronutrients and phytochemicals.  These compounds have powerful anti-inflammatory effects and are prerequisite to a healthy and balanced diet.  Look for colorful foods and try to eat fruits and vegetables from the different colors of the rainbow.

3. Eating with intention

With today’s fast-paced lifestyle is often hard to slow down and be present for a meal.  Taking the time to enjoy your food without other distractions not only helps digestion but helps to down regulate our nervous system and be more balanced overall.  Try turning off your cell phone and other electronic devices when having your next meal.  If eating alone, perhaps try eating in complete silence.  You will be surprised how much more you’ll enjoy your food!

4. The role of supplements

Unfortunately, due to soil erosion, much of our food is less nutritionally dense than it was in the past.  Therefore, many people have turned to supplements.  However, supplements are just that, supplements, and they are to be used in conjunction with a diverse whole foods diet. Work with your physician or registered dietitian to select which supplements are right for you.

5. The importance of sleep

Even with a healthy diet, sleep deprivation can throw your metabolism for a loop.  Most people need 7-9 hours of sleep and along with the diverse whole foods diet. Folks can dramatically decrease the risk of developing chronic diseases such as high blood pressure, diabetes and certain cancers. Sleep is also critical for weight loss and improving body composition.