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Guest Blog: Optimal Health Defined

It’s a pleasure to introduce our guest blogger, Dr. Wayne Andersen. He is a board certifiedwayne andersen critical care physician, the Medical Director of Medifast and the chief architect of Take Shape for Life. His book, Habits of Health (releasing this summer), provides the knowledge and support needed to achieve optimal health. Through his book and accompanying workbook, Dr. Andersen provides a road map for people to choose a better life. You can see Dr. Andersen here at DietsInReview.com every Tuesday during July!

I have spent the last few years determining the definition of optimal health. Optimal health is defined as: “Being the best you can be with what you got.” Optimal health is different for everyone. About 5% of the population has achieved optimal health, and the rest of us are in between being sick and obtaining optimal health. Sleep, weight, eating right and stress are just a few of the components to optimal health, and Habits of Health offers a great assessment to determine where you are.

Most of us are born optimally healthy and then we let life attack us. We fall into a pattern of putting other things before health, which leads to less movement, less sleep and a little extra weight gain. Then we find ourselves saying, “I’m doing okay,” but we really are not healthy.

There is no such thing as a straight line. If you are not actively creating health, then you are heading toward a path of sickness and disease. Just as life is about choices, so is optimal health. It is a path we can choose to embark upon, and it’s all about making daily choices that support optimal health. Sure, we may not be able to do the same things at 80 years old compared to when we were 20, but we are able; you are able.

So many people who are in their 40s-70s are taking medications and think they need to be on them for the rest of their lives. When I ask doctors the last time they lowered or eliminated a medication for a patient, I often received a blank stare. An increase in dosages or adding medications is not always the answer to taking care of symptoms and treating disease. People want to live longer, and there is no pill to make you live longer.

Weight loss is just the first step on the journey towards optimal health. Recreate health in your life. Start having fun, enjoy life and make good daily decisions. There has never been a better time to thrive in this country than now.

July 1st, 2008

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5 Responses to “Guest Blog: Optimal Health Defined”


Mark Salinas
Jul 1st, 2008
8:22 am

“Weight loss is just the first step on the journey towards optimal health. Recreate health in your life. Start having fun, enjoy life and make good daily decisions.”

Dead on!

Nice post!


Dr.A
Jul 2nd, 2008
3:24 pm

Thanks Mark. As a society the burden of health is being shifted to the individual. The importance of organizing our lives around what matters most to us is one of my key focuses in helping the individual create optimal health in an obesigenic world.
It is not that hard once you understand how to change your daily choices to support what is fundamental in our lives.


CWT
Jul 27th, 2008
9:25 am

Thought this program was doctor supervised, but I am being treated as a healthy person or just as anyone else who walks off the street to join this plan and after 1 month, still waiting for blood work. In order to teach someone how to change their lifestyle with food, one must eat food, not these pre-packaged powders of food. The pictures you show are false advertising. The meals are terrible. Wish I had never started this diet, but now into the program with big money. Do not recommend anyone start this program, especially if you have medical problems. Get with your own doctor. Consumer beware.


Julia Havey
Aug 21st, 2008
10:16 pm

CWT, it sounds like you don’t have a health coach that is as active as you need. You can call the company and asked to be switched to someone else. As for the blood work, you may want to go to your generalist and have some levels taken so you know where you are now, and measure again months from now after sticking with the eating plan, you should see some great improvements.

The pictures show the healthy meals you make for your 1 in the 5-1 plan, and numerous other such ones you will enjoy in maintainence phase. I am “anti-diet” by nature and was turned off by Medifast inititally but I kept having people realizing results and loving it, so I got involved.

Like everything, it has it’s pros and cons and may not be for everyone, but it will work for everyone!

I would work with you if you desire a new health coach and are willing to give it another try!
julia havey


PronOdore
Sep 21st, 2008
8:04 pm

favorited this one, brother