By Sunao Gilbert, MD, FAARFM, ABAARM
Do you ever wonder why a 70-year-old person may not look a day over 40? Conversely, we have all met the 40-year-old who sadly looks 70.
We are pretty clear on how to age more rapidly than we should e.g., alcohol, tobacco, drugs, fast food, and sodas. But why are we less aware of how to stay young?
Why is it okay to diplomatically receive the answer, “…it’s a part of aging” when you ask your physician “Why am I always tired and have no energy?”
Wellness, youth, what does it mean? Self-esteem? Energy? Low Stress? Quality sleep? Firm and glowing skin? A happy mood? Thick and shiny hair? Strong bones? A fit body? Quality sex? A positive outlook on life? It’s all of the above and it is achievable. However, it takes patience, persistence, and time.
It is an erroneous belief that youthfulness is unattainable and that it is inevitable to spend the golden years of life dilapidated and chronically ill. This myth has been disproven. In fact, there are documented ways to reverse your biological clock. However, it seems that it’s a well-kept secret. But now is the time for the veil to be lifted.
We are not a slave to our genes as was previously taught. We may have a predisposition to a certain illness based on our genes, but what determines whether those certain genes get “turned on” and whether illness becomes a reality, is the environment in which we house our genes.
We know that we are what we eat, and we know it’s important to exercise and maintain a healthy weight, but there is more, much more. So, what is the answer?
The answer is Functional Medicine also known as Regenerative or Anti-Aging Medicine.
Functional Medicine looks at the body as a whole symphony and works to optimize the body on a cellular level so that each organ, its systems and all the body processes are working at an optimal level. When each cell is functioning optimally, the body can work and heal itself as it was designed. Functional Medicine works to fine tune each organ system, biochemically on a cellular level, for the systems to harmonize like a beautiful symphony. It employs advanced testing and in-depth questioning to look for answers and then uses micronutrients, bio-identical hormones, supplements, peptides, pesticide free foods, lifestyle changes and many other modalities to replenish and rebalance the body and mind. It focuses on minimizing environmental toxic exposures, helping the individual achieve quality sleep, good gut health, a healthy weight, a balance between work and relaxation and does not neglect the importance of a robust libido.
Functional Medicine sees complaints such as lack of energy, pain in the joints and rashes as a harbinger of a much larger problem. It looks to find the cause of the symptoms instead of prescribing a medication to quiet your body’s cry for help.
Unfortunately, our current system of medicine focuses on disease, not dysfunction. Consequently, most symptoms are just quelled until they fester into a huge problem that can then be labeled as a disease. Only, then are your medications and testing hopefully covered by insurance.
Your health is an investment. Just like we siphon off earnings into a 401k, we should likewise invest in ourselves so that we may have a quality life, not just a long life. It is well known, what we don’t pay now, we will have to pay later with interest.
So, I invite you to take a deep dive into your health. I dare you to stay young!
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