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My Philosophy of Health

My name is Meryl. I am a registered nurse with a Masters Degree and close to 30 years in the medical profession. Along with being a nurse, I study Eastern philosophy and complementary medicine as well as bodywork. Add to that, a passion for psychology, sociology and personal transformation, and there I am, in a nutshell.

Early in my nursing career, I specialized in public health. That means I have spent my professional life working with people who have no political clout. I advocate for people with less than high school education, people who can’t read or write, single parents of small children, the undocumented, the frail elderly, the developmentally and intellectually challenged, the homebound, the homeless, the drug abusing and the impoverished. These are our “vulnerable populations.” It has been my honor to work with these people for most of my career.

As a nurse specializing in “vulnerable populations,” I also get to audit charts for large insurers. After all these years, I am still surprised when I see the lifestyle-health choices some people make, and the results of those choices over time. However, I am even more surprised by the options many board-certified, medical providers will offer their patients as ways to manage a looming health crisis. More often than not, patients are given a prescription (or 2 or 3). They are rarely offered counseling. They are told to come back for another appointment in X number of weeks or months.

Of course, everything the provider offers is optional. You know, nothing can be forced on anyone. Further, whatever is prescribed is subject to insurance company payment approval or rejection. Because of all this, it is still surprising to me that often, the first and more urgent push is toward medications, not lifestyle changes. Surprising because the medicines will only (possibly) work with the symptoms of diabetes, obesity, high blood pressure, heart disease, and other chronic illness. The root causes of the illness(es) will be untouched. Then there is a predictable way the illness(es) and management will go. And let me say, generally speaking, it isn’t pretty. It isn’t toward greater health. It won’t create increased feelings of vitality or well being. In fact, more often than not, using medicines to manage lifestyle illnesses leads to more medicines, more illness, and further debilitation.

So, you ask…..What’s a person to do? (Bring up a scene of a wide-eyed kid, joyfully in a library, seated at a large table, pouring through a stack of big, thick reference books)

After years of practicing and experimenting on myself, along with studying the American medical complex and other health care methods, I have come to one firm conclusion. There are definitely more effective ways to support health that have been shown to work better to handle the root causes of chronic illness. These other ways involve the few things we can control:

  • What we consume (food, drink, thoughts, media)
  • Do we exercise
  • How well we rest
  • How we manage stress
  • How well we breathe
  • How we/do we connect to a positive, supportive community

The good news is that improvement in all of the above generally go well with whatever a medical provider would recommend. No one would deny that we all have to eat, rest, manage our stress levels, and breathe. Exercise is usually recommended, too, no matter the diagnosis. As a precaution, though, do talk to your medical provider before drastically changing your diet or exercise routines. There may be important things for you to consider, especially if you are taking certain medications.

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2 Comments

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  2. Meryl Fury on August 28, 2020 at 5:23 pm

    Nice to hear from You! Stop by anytime. Meryl