Real Thoughts with Debbie Potts.
What is a health optimizer?
What does it mean to “stay healthy”?
This slogan given to the world the last two months actually drives me crazy. Why don’t we teach people HOW to GET healthy as most of our country is NOT healthy. We are told to STAY home, STAY safe and STAY healthy- but what happens when you leave your house and get exposed to the “scary” world out there? Suddenly we are now afraid to walk out our front door and spend time with family as well as friends. How do we transition to the next phase? We need to be with our family and friends again. We need to be able to go to shopping again – besides Costco, Target, Home Depot and the Grocery Store! Plus I need a manicure and pedicure!
Be a HEALTH OPTIMIZER!
What is a health optimizer?
Wikipedia describes HEALTH as…
What is the simple meaning of health?
Health is “a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease” according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Physical is about the body. Mental is about how people think and feel.
Health Definitions pronounced by WHO …
“Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” 1948.”a resource for everyday life, not the objective of living.
Health is a positive concept emphasizing social and personal resources, as well as physical capacities.” 1986https://www.who.int/about/who-we-are/frequently-asked-questions
What is the definition of healthy in the Dictionary?
1a: enjoying good health
b: not displaying clinical signs of disease or infection
2: beneficial to one’s physical, mental, or emotional state : conducive to or associated with good health or reduced risk of disease… healthy foods and a healthy lifestyle… walk three miles every day … a beastly bore, but healthy. Generally, a BMI of 19 to 25 indicates a healthy weight.— Mayo Clinic Health Letter
3: showing physical, mental, or emotional well-being : evincing good health, a healthy complexion, has a healthy appetite
The best thing about a good sense of humor, of course, is that it’s a sure sign that you have a healthy attitude—always a refreshing check in the plus column.—Glamour
4a: PROSPEROUS, FLOURISHING
What does health mean to you?
We have been told for the past two months to “stay at home”, “stay safe” and “stay healthy”….but what does that exactly mean?
What is an OPTIMIZER?
As I focus on spreading the message of taking ownership of your own health by becoming a HEALTH OPTIMIZER but what does that mean?
Be a HEALTH Optimizer…
Definition of optimize
transitive verb: to make as perfect, effective, or functional as possible optimize energyhttps://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/optimize
Instead of giving the public tips how to stay healthy – which in my world that means building up your immune system and gut health by eating real food, exercising, sleeping… and the other essential elements of what I call
So now I am creating my own definition of what is a HEALTH OPTIMIZER… my rough draft:
Health = the condition of being sound in body, mind, or spirit; freedom from physical disease, the general condition of the body, a condition in which someone or something is thriving or doing well and/or a general condition or state
Optimizer = to make as perfect, effective, or functional as possible
Health Optimizer = to optimize the function of the body, mind and spirit to optimal level (homeostasis) so we are able to thrive each day in life and improve vitality. -Debbie Potts
We talk about staying home and isolating ourselves from others so we can stop the CV virus from spreading- but my daily thought is HOW we can spread the word of SELF CARE tips to build up our own immune system. We can share simple tips that are free (sleeping, exercising outdoors and moving more) or affordable (eating real food).
Sadly, the history of political nutrition and big pharma are always going to win over our small community of nutritional therapists, FDN practitioners and other health practitioners. We don’t make anyone billions of dollars – but it depends on how value life, health and vitality… which you can put a price tag on human life.
My dream, mission, passion and purpose is to get your help in spreading the message of simple self-care tips we can share with our family, friends and co-workers so we can all get back to our NEW NORMAL way of life!
Staying home, staying scared and staying “safe”- doesn’t help build your immune system up the last time I check.
What do we mean when we say “be resilient” when discussing health and immunity?
The capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness or the ability of a substance or object to spring back into shape; elasticity.Webster Dictionary
As I follow my curiousity and dive down more rabbit holes to find the true meaning of being “healthy” is all about… I googled RESILIENCY and IMMUNITY to see what comes up.
Abstract in a study:
Resilience is the process that allows individuals to adapt to adverse conditions and recover from them.
This process is favored by individual qualities that have been amply studied in the field of stress such as personal control, positive affect, optimism, and social support.
Bio-psychosocial studies on the individual qualities that promote resilience show that these factors help protect against the deleterious influences of stressors on physiology in general and immunity in particular.
The reverse is also true as there is evidence that immune processes influence resilience.
In general, resilient individuals have a different immunophenotype from that of stress susceptible individuals.
It is possible to render susceptible individuals resilient and vice versa by changing their inflammatory phenotype.
The adaptive immune phenotype also influences the ability to recover from inflammation-induced symptoms.
The modulation of these bidirectional relationships between resilience and immunity by the gut microbiota opens the possibility to influence them by probiotics and prebiotics.
However, more focused studies on the reciprocal relationship between resilience and immunity will be necessary before this can be put into practice.https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30102966/
I recently recorded two podcasts with Kiran, the CSO of Microbiome Labs that you should listen to or watch as he is my favorite microbiome expert and explains how our microbiome and immune system is connect . If you want to BE HEALTHY, GET HEALTHY and STAY HEALTHY then we need to be working on improving our microbiome diversity, gut wall lining (no “leaks” in our barrier). I recently did the BiomeFX functional lab test to evaluate my gut biome as well as the DUTCH test and GI test then I just finished an individualized gut repair protocol with Bio-Botanicals and Microbiome Labs TGR program.
Learn more on my podcast (The Low Carb Athlete) or on the video version… and check out the Total Gut Restoration Program here.
I want to educate the world on how the immune system works and how it works with the microbiome. We have the innate and adaptive immune system. Our body is made up of all different immune tissues and cells – around 80% of our immune system in located in our gut!
If we want to “stay healthy” then doesn’t it make sense that we optimize our GUT health to build our immune system? The microbiome is talking to our immune system all the time!
The INNATE immune system and the adaptive immune system is explained in previous blog posts as well as INFLAMMATION.
How many fires do you need to put out? The immune system gets over worked and broken, as all of our body systems, if it is activated all the time! If you are young, you should have a strong immune system but do you have any clues of gut dysfunction as food sensitivities? Bloating? Gas? Constipation? Burping? Skin breakouts?
The GOLDILOCKS Effect once again!
It is just not age … you may have a pre-existing condition of auto-immune issues. Allergies? Food Sensitivities? Skin Rash?
Maybe you have a dysfunctional immune response. Age is not the only factor to how strong your immune system is…as asthma, joint inflammation, and gut dysbiosis.
Are you stressed daily? Feeling overwhelmed?
Chronic stress is linked to leaky gut – leads to chronic low grade inflammation – chronic disease.
You may be healthy on the outside – but how healthy are you on the inside under the hood?
Chronic stress impacts your gut health – microbioime- leaky gut- inflammation-mitochondria function-brain health… the connections continue as the body is all connected.
Do you have the resilience to deal with these antigens or enemies?
Environmental toxins are all around us… think of Glysophate in our soil – filled with chemicals and unnatural products. The environment is toxic including our personal care products, cleaners, and more chemicals are everywhere. Check out www.ewg.org to learn more about the products you are using daily!
Don’t think that you are invincible and super human just because you exercise and you are younger. You could have a broken immune system at any age!
How do we build our gut health so we can build our immunity and build resilience?
You can check out my immune system series of blogs and wait for my new E-Book on the Immune System (Self Care with The WHOLESTIC Method) but for now- in summary:
- Stress Reduction
- Movement (outdoors)
- Digestion & Gut Health
- Happiness, Play and Gratitude
Let’s start with WHAT you are eating.
Are you eating REAL, nutrient dense food? Or are you eating fast food, take out and processed foods with excess refined sugar, vegetable oils and ingredients that are fake foods?
WHEN are you eating?
Are you doing intermittent fasting for 12 to 16 hours overnight each day or weekdays? Perhaps one 24-hour fast is your goal to build up to once a month? Are you eating too close to bedtime?
WHY are you eating?
Often we eat out of boredom or when near food (especially if you are home all day working and near the kitchen!). Instead we should be learning how to listen to our body and eat when we are actually slightly hungry (don’t wait too long that you binge!)… and eat MINDFULLY. I see and hear most people struggling with their relationship with food – emotional eating versus eating to nourish their cells/fuel. Choose to eat mindfully instead of MINDLESSLY!
HOW are you eating?
Are you sitting, relaxing and focusing when you eat? Or are you eating while doing ten things at once and at your desk? Are you eating in the car or when watching T.V.? Are you eating slowly, chewing your food and putting our fork down in between bites? Are you taking Digestive Enzymes, HCL and Ox bile type of support to help with digestion? Pre and Probiotics to improve the microbiome? You may be eating real food but are you able to properly breakdown, digest and absorb the nutrients? Not if you have low HCL, low digestive enzymes, poor liver/gallbladder function and a leaky gut with damaged mucosal barrier wall.
Choose to eat mindfully, slowly and enjoy the process- taste your food!
Are you getting functional lab tests to measure your health on the inside?
You don’t know if you are HEALTHY unless you test. I suggest investigating if you are healthy by running a few specific functional lab tests to assess and find your missing pieces of your unique puzzle so you can repair, rebuild and restore the WHOLE you back to optimal function.
I know… I recently did my hormone panel with DUTCH Complete and I am operating at a pretty good level (good energy, and sleep) but my hormones are in the tank. I don’t want to settle for this as my “new normal” – I want to be a HEALTH OPTIMIZER and run at full capacity.
You may be doing all the things you are “supposed to do” or that you think is “right” to be “HEALTHY” but you may have hidden internal stressors.
Take ownership of your health. EMBRACE the new changes and allow our new “normal” to become a HEALTH OPTIMIZER.
How healthy is your environment?
How healthy is your mindset? How healthy are your relationships… including with yourself? We can sometimes be our own worst enemy and become a source of chronic stress by feeling depressed, low self esteem and poor confidence.
Are you doing enough SELF CARE with the eight essential of THE WHOLESTIC METHOD to become more resilient?
You may not be working right now and perhaps you are stuck at home with kids while you are trying to work full time but what can you do to take care of yourself …put the oxygen mask on first!?
When STRESS is on… the IMMUNE SYSTEM is depressed.
When stress is on… the blood sugar is elevated. I learned in Nutritional Therapy- “Every stress response is a blood sugar response”.
Chronic stress creates a flood of inflammation in the body so take time to slow down, reset and reboot the WHOLE you. Acute stress is a healthy dose but CHRONIC stress is not a beneficial stress.
I won’t start going down another rabbit hole discussing how increased blood sugar levels and insulin resistance is connected to depressed immune system. That should be another blog post this week!
Let’s work on taking ownership for our health as you do for your own car!
Health is a choice. You choose how you eat… when you eat… what time you go to bed… if you go outside for a walk a few times a day…how much television you watch a day. It is all on you.
Do something about your health today.
Take control… Take action and become a health optimizer now.
Don’t you want to run your “Car” at full capacity? Don’t settle for your new “normal” and also don’t ASSume that you are healthy… don’t wait to find out if your immune system is strong enough to fight off the CV-19 virus.
Take control of your health today. Don’t wait until it is too late.
I am here to help so let me know if you want to chat and schedule a discovery call to dive into your struggles, concerns and goals!
I am NOT going to say… “Stay Home. Stay Safe. Stay Healthy”.
BUT I will say…
Become a Health Optimizer.
Be EMPOWERED by wellness. Spread the word! Pay it forward.
Take charge and take ownership of your HEALTH on the inside and out.