Do you only think about self-care when you’re already in trouble? You want to eat healthier because your doctor says you need to lower your cholesterol, or you decide to start meditating because job stress is keeping you up at night. Or perhaps you wait until you have a symptom or a diagnose to become proactive with your health. Many of Americans think this way, which is why we have a functional family medicine practice that provides a functional medicine coach. Functional medicine is looking for the root cause of the condition and providing natural solutions to help you get back on the path to self care.
Self-care is more effective when it’s an ongoing part of your life. Otherwise, you’re stuck trying to catch up, and you may increase your risk for many serious health conditions. Almost 80 percent of heart disease, stroke, and diabetes could be prevented with positive lifestyle changes, according to the World Health Organization. Functional family medicine looks at the whole aspect of the person and through the use of a functional medicine coach helps a person get back on track with the use of diet and lifestyle changes, supplemental support, and holistic healthcare services.
A functional medicine coach will guide you to being more proactive about self-care. adopting new habits that will enhance your physical, social, and psychological wellbeing. Since we are a functional family medicine practice, we also work to establish self care in the individual as well as in the family unit. We believe that by strengthening the family unit and the family bond we can help not only individuals become healthy, but families as well.
Self-Care Habits for Your Physical Wellbeing:
- Lose weight. Obesity puts a heavy strain on your heart and joints. Take off excess pounds by eating nutrient dense food and reducing your portion sizes. Preparing meals at home instead of dining out will give you more control over the ingredients. Staying away from diets and building this more into a lifestyle is something a functional medicine coach can help you achieve. Combine that with eating dinner at the table surrounded by family helps to establish greater routine and bonding. Functional family medicine looks at these family routines and helps guide the individuals as well as the leaders in the home through the process of health.
- Eat more produce. Plan your daily menu around vegetables, fruits, and other whole foods. Most plant foods provide fiber and important vitamins and minerals with relatively few calories. In functional family medicine, we recommend you actively doing this as a family encouraging and educating children on healthy eating habits. A functional medicine coach can help you with establishing meal plans and helping support you through the process of eating healthy as a family.
- Cut down on salt and sugar. The average American consumes 3 times the recommended amount of sugar, and almost 90% consume too much sodium. Avoiding most processed foods will help you to stay within safe limits. A functional medicine coach, can provide alternatives and educate you on how to support the taste of the food while also balancing the nutrition of the food.
- Exercise regularly. Aim for at least 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic activity or a combination of intense and moderate workouts. Train for strength and flexibility too. A functional medicine coach can provide you a training program to meet your needs or refer you to a personal trainer, pilates studio, or another physical therapist to help you build stability, flexibility, and strengthening.
- Sleep well. Your body and mind need adequate sleep to function well. Darken your bedroom and block out background noise so you can get 7 to 8 hours of quality slumber each night. A functional medicine coach, will look at your sleep cycle and sleep habits so they can advise you on what steps you may need to take for healthy sleep. In functional family medicine, we look at the role of the families sleep habits and adjust accordingly so that the entire family receives the most restful sleep necessary.
- Quit smoking. Tobacco causes cancer and damages your heart. Most smokers need five attempts or more to quit permanently so keep trying. Speaking with your functional medicine coach can help, as we determine the root causes and motivations behind your smoking. There are many natural solutions that can be provided to accomplish this including clinical hypnotherapy, our 21 Day SmokeFree program.
Self-Care Habits as encouraged by our Functional Medicine Coach for Your Social Wellbeing:
- Eat family dinners. Eating together strengthens family connections. In addition to enjoying the conversation and shared experience, you’re also likely to eat a more balanced diet. Functional family medicine, encourages these connections with each other to build a deeper family bond and support.
- Cultivate friendships. Supportive friendships enrich your life by building your confidence and resilience. Schedule standing dates for coffee and lunch. Call a friend when you’re upset or when you want to share happy news. A Functional Medicine Coach can provide you the support that you need in order to build healthy boundaries, cultivate healthy relationships, etc.
- Join a club. Functional family medicine providers believe that loneliness can be just as hazardous to your health as smoking. If you’re searching for a sense of community, do volunteer work or join a club where you can find others who share your interests.
Self-Care Habits for Your Psychological Wellbeing as defined from our Functional Medicine Coach:
- Live mindfully. Meditate daily or engage in other practices that help you to focus on the here and now. Slow down and concentrate on one activity at a time. Conscious living is a practice, a Functional Medicine Coach can teach you methods of consciousness including how to be more conscious, steps to build awareness, and how to maintain conscious awareness in every day life.
- Find a hobby. Fill your leisure hours with rewarding projects. Learn to play a musical instrument or study a foreign language. Cook gourmet dinners or build wooden furniture. There are many inexpensive hobbies or pastimes where you can earn some income to cover the costs. Doing these things will expand your mind, build confidence, and encourage more effort. As a functional family medicine practitioner, we also encourage to support your child’s hobbies. Make sure to provide positive insights as to their progress and only speak positive and encouraging words to them. It may take them awhile to be successful at their hobby, but if you encourage and support them in the process you never know what they will do with their new skill.
- Laugh it up. Find the courage to laugh at yourself. Brighten up a tough day by watching a funny video or listening to your coworker’s jokes. Life can be pretty serious, so choosing moments to laugh and relax is key to the overall health of the person. Taking classes such as laughter yoga, watching a funny movie as a family, or even doing silly activities such as jump places are great ways to make things light hearted and playful.
- Manage stress. Enjoy deep breathing or other relaxation methods that work for you. Take frequent breaks throughout the day to relieve tension and restore your energy before tackling your next task. Replace anger and sadness with forgiveness and gratitude. A functional medicine coach, may encourage you to do a gratitude journal, or recommend other deep relaxation techniques such as yoga or breathwork. Functional medicine family practitioners also teach how to teach your children stress management techniques early on so they can learn to process emotions in a healthy manner.
Life is full of challenges. You’ll deal with them more successfully if you practice healthy lifestyle habits consistently. The path to proactive self-care will help you to look after yourself and keep enjoying the activities you love.After all the more proactive you are with your health the more likely you are to prevent disease.