There is no doubt that conventional medicine has made incredible strides when it comes to extending the human lifespan. Since 1950, the average life expectancy has increased by over 10 years in the U.S. and by over 30 years across the globe. Much of this progress is due to advances in medical care and screening protocols that have made diseases associated with old age manageable. This makes living into the 70s and 80s possible for many, with some even planning on living to 100 and beyond.
However, despite impressive progress in increasing life span through medical advances, conventional medicine alone often focuses on the quantity of years lived without fully considering the quality of our later years, or our “health span.” By relying too heavily on pharmaceuticals and primarily treating the symptoms of disease, as opposed to the underlying causes, many of us are left to deal with chronic, ongoing conditions as we age. We may be living longer, but little thought is given to helping us live those years in good health. Nevertheless, many people are seeking ways to extend their health span past 100, which is now entirely possible with an approach to health care that goes beyond the scope of conventional practices.
By adopting a whole-person health care strategy that prioritizes the root causes of disease rather than individual symptoms, you can achieve a longer, fuller life by focusing on “optimal health.”
What Is Optimal Health?
Optimal health is the difference between a life spent managing symptoms and maintaining the status quo of health, and a life spent disease-free, feeling energized, balanced, active, mentally sharp, and emotionally well. One way these pieces can be brought together is through a health care strategy that goes well beyond conventional practices in medicine through a personalized, whole-person practice known as precision health care.
Of course, optimal health will mean different things for different people. One person may want to be able to run a marathon, while another might be content with daily walks around their neighborhood. These differences are why optimal health goals are ultimately determined by a patient. With the help of a precision health care provider, they can reach this level of health through pathways unique to them, such as specialty testing, personalized recommendations for supplementation or lifestyle changes.
However, optimal health should not be thought of as something you can achieve overnight. Reaching and maintaining optimal health requires committing to work with your provider to understand what works best for your mind and body so you can take the right steps every day to support your health.
Strategies for Achieving Optimal Health
You can make optimal health a more achievable and realistic goal by following a few strategies for improving the long-term quality of your life.
- Find a provider who gets to know you personally
It has become all too common for many conventional healthcare providers to treat patients like a collection of symptoms, rather than an actual person. But who we are, how we live, and what we want to get out of life are intricately woven into what optimal health looks like for each of us. That is why it is so important to work with a provider who is interested in getting to know you as an individual and has the time to do so.
For instance, an Essential Health provider gives you the time you need to talk about any and all health concerns. Provider-patient relationships begin with a comprehensive assessment for a full picture of your current health and personal goals so you can receive the best possible care. This assessment includes a full physical exam and review of your health history, as well as biometrics, a functional exam, and diagnostics. Robust specialty lab testing is also completed in order to more fully understand the steps required to reach optimal health.
- Address the root causes of your conditions
As we’ve mentioned previously, the U.S. has some of the highest rates of chronic disease in the world. This is largely because the conventional healthcare system we rely on is more focused on treating singular illnesses and their symptoms instead of the root causes of disease. This can trap us in a cycle. Without a whole-body approach that considers the underlying reasons or lifestyle factors that may be contributing to a condition, optimal health will remain out of reach for many.
Building a strong, healthy mind and body to last well into old age requires you to consider all of its needs. Instead of focusing just on short-term relief, Essential Health providers work with you to determine a comprehensive plan for addressing the core reasons your health may not be reaching its full potential. For example, if you suffer from high blood pressure, an Essential Health provider will dig deeper into the reason why this condition is occurring. They will go beyond medication and help you make lasting adjustments to your diet and lifestyle so that you can take control and feel better long-term.
- Invest in specialty programs
Another reason why our overall quality of life typically lowers as we age can be traced back to our modern lifestyles. Constant anxiety, a lack of consistent and high-quality sleep, poor nutrition, dehydration, and hormone imbalances can all have a significant effect on our overall health. Conventional medicine providers rarely understand how these factors ultimately reduce our well-being over time and keep us from achieving optimal health.
Essential Health offers a variety of specialty programs to address these challenges and help you feel your best. For instance, Essential Health primary care provides a personalized approach to whole-person care, with longer appointment times, 24/7 access to a provider, and little to no wait time for appointments. Other specialty services like bioidentical hormone replacement therapy and peptide therapy may result in benefits such as enhanced recovery from physical training, faster weight loss, and improved sexual health. IV therapy can help reduce inflammation, improve the immune system, and raise energy levels. All specialty programs are administered by qualified professionals and are part of our comprehensive approach to helping you achieve optimal health.
Optimal health is within your reach. It’s time to take action and start changing your approach to how you think about healthcare. Learn more about our precision healthcare approach by scheduling a complimentary meet and greet today.