Why I get upset when you tell me you want a “magic pill”

I hear it often – you enter my clinic or gym and you give me an essay of health goals.

This, I love.

I love hearing that you want to change your health for the better.

That you’re sick of feeling sick all the time, want more energy to be able to do everything you want to do, actually have a desire to improve your eating habits and perhaps lose some weight along the way.

This lights my heart up.

I also love when you are willing and committed to making the changes you need to make in order to achieve your health goals.

You want more energy? Your sleep needs to improve. Quality and quantity – both are just as important as each other.

You’re sick of feeling sick constantly? Some magical herbs and a few dietary changes may be just what you need to feel better. 

What I don’t love?

When you ask me for “that magic pill”.

Yes, sometimes I wish it existed too.

But fortunately or unfortunately – it doesn’t. Most things in life take a lot of hard work, effort and commitment for you to achieve them.

That time and effort you put in at work to achieve the outcome your boss wants? Imagine you put the same time and effort into achieving your own health goals.

Being healthy is both extremely complex and very simple.

In short? Here’s my health manifesto:

  • Move every day (in some way, including some type of weight training into your week)
  • Eat lots of different coloured vegetables, a few pieces of fruit, a good amount of meat/chicken/fish or vegetarian sources of protein at every meal, gentle carbs including potatoes and white rice
  • Focus on variety and foods that are as close to nature as possible
  • Get good quality sleep
  • Rest and relax throughout the week to reduce your stress levels and, lastly:
  • Spend quality time with family and friends –

…simple, right?

The complex version is when you’re doing all of these things but you’re not yet achieving your health goals. Trust me, as someone who has an auto-immune condition, I get it. You can do ALL the right things, but still have symptoms that the average Joe has never experienced (even though he eats a crappy diet, doesn’t exercise and sits for hours every day at a desk job.)

I understand your frustrations and why you wish a magic pill existed – and that’s why I say sometimes I also wish the same.

However – in naturopathic medicine there is an analogy that views your body like an onion.

Every layer that you peel off of that onion, reveals another layer underneath it. Each health change you make is peeling off one layer, but you have multiple layers that need to be peeled in order to get down to the root of what’s really going on.

Plus – as I’m sure you’ve experienced – this thing called “life” often gets in the way of you achieving your goals.

I remember being extremely determined in late August last year to get back to the gym after a winter filled with colds and flus…but I fell pregnant (which is of course an absolute blessing), but it meant that it was NOT the time to start a new exercise regime. It was the time I needed to stop and listen to what my body really needed – lots and lots of rest!

Maybe your health goals keep being interrupted with a busy work schedule. Or you keep getting sick with a cold or a sore throat every time you think you’re getting back on track. Whatever it is, I’m here to tell you that there is no magic pill to get you to where you want to be, it takes small but consistent steps in order to get there…and slowly, layer by layer, your onion will be peeled and you will achieve the healthy outcome you’re after.

Baby steps all the way 🙂 

Have a great weekend!

Dina x

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