Back in 1965 the WHO gave the definition of optimal health as: “a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity“.
This leaves us with a challenge, healing from disease is not easy but once we find a cure, we can say that this is not a major obstacle for our health. However, well-being is a subjective state. We can imagine well-being as a peaceful life, in peace with our environment, while our neighbour may see it as a successful career with many responsibilities. Optimal health is subjective and different for each person. What’s the road to a long life in optimal health?
A long life…
The data from the Swiss Statistics Institute confirm that, we live longer. Life expectancy in Switzerland is 81.7 years for men and 85.4 for women (OFS – Espérance de vie).
A healthy life?
There is another, more frequently ignored statistic- healthy life expectancy has decreased, from 69.4 to 67.7 for men, and from 70.3 to 67.9 for women. (MONET – Espérance de vie en bonne santé)
We live longer, but not in good health– that should make us think.
On one hand, infectious diseases are being eradicated from developed countries, but cardiovascular diseases have arisen as a new challenge. These diseases are not as immediately deadly, but they worsen our quality life slowly and we suffer from them for many years.
On the other hand, we find the intermediary states of health, we suffer from stress, digestive problems, being overweight, and from back problems (4 out of 5 Swiss citizens have suffered). These are symptoms that our health is not optimal, but we close our eyes and we keep going…Why don’t we live our health fully?
Are there any solutions to this problem? How do we approach health differently?
There’s one thing in common between the diseases that are the main cause of death in countries like Switzerland and the intermediary states of health, they have a link without lifestyle.
If we think about one of the major challenges, cancer, 4 out of 10 cases are preventable with lifestyle changes (World Cancer Research Fund-cruk.org/prevention)
Holistic health will confront you to a well-known fact, you are the major actor of your health, every decision you take now has an impact on your immediate and your future health.
Confronted with this reality, the only way to optimal health is accepting our responsibility. We need to think about our lifestyle and slowly improve it. Start meditation, get back to running, eat less sugar, get in contact with that friend we don’t see anymore, sit straight in our work chair, less use of smartphone- easy to say but how do we change our habits?
Holistic health and the practitioners
Today we have a better understanding of the relationships between our mind, our body, our spiritual side and our environment. There are hundreds of articles that show us how to start changing and finding balance. Even with all this progress, there is no one-size-fits-all path to optimal health.
Every person is different, and we need different and personalized changes to apply to our lives on our way towards optimal health. How do we start? The same way you wouldn’t repair your car on your own or wouldn’t change the plumbing of your apartment is the same here-consult a health professional.
Unfortunately, traditional healthcare is based on the resolution of specific problems, not in lasting change. Holistic health is the only practice that follows a prevention approach and a positive conception of medicine where your practitioner is a reference that will help you to make better decisions in your day to day and start working towards a healthy longevity.
How to choose a practitioner
Here is where you start your journey in holistic health. The universe of complementary medicine is wide and complex. How do you choose between shiatsu, acupuncture, nutrition, hypnosis, reflexology, massages and many other disciplines?
There are two truths if we take a look at optimal health from a holistic approach.
First, none of those disciplines has all the answers, a complementary technique is an entrance door to a world that you need to explore yourself with the help of your practitioner.
Second, if we ask a practitioner what the key factor for a positive experience is, s/he will probably say that that a relationship of trust is key.
We need to approach preventive health with an introspective attitude and the will of continuously improving. If you feel like you could improve the way you eat, contact a nutritionist, if you have migraines, shiatsu or acupuncture can be a good option. No matter what you choose, the key factor will be to establish a good connection with your practitioner.
To help you on your search and encourage you to act we have created MedTip.
In our community you will find:
- A single page for every practitioner with a personal description of where you can immediately see if your way of understanding health matches with the practitioner
- Advanced filtering to make the choice easy (languages, availability on weekends, etc.)
- Explanation of the different disciplines
- Articles to encourage you to take action
- Articles to better understand complementary insurance
- A Facebook community to inform you about the latest news of alternative medicine in Geneva and all around the world
At MedTip we write our own content to help you gain a better understanding of alternative medicine and inspire you to take action.
We want you to be in the greatest health of your life, physically and mentally.
If you want us to write on a specific topic, let us know 🙂