Some people (my mom included) think it's funny to call me a "Certified Health Freak". Others have even implied that health coaching is not a real job like being a dietician or a doctor. You may think that my being a health coach is a joke, but I have to disagree with you on that. In fact, I have proof that it's anything but.
Tonight I started thinking about how dramatically my health and the health of my family has improved since I started seriously studying holistic health and nutrition. I talk about it all the time, and so does my family, but what proof did I really have? Then it hit me -- my medical bills. How much money had our family actually saved in medical expenses since we started this journey?
I went to my trusty file drawer and grabbed the file marked "Medical". With the exception of some routine visits, check-ups, screenings, and the like, I couldn't find any significant doctor bills or hospital expenses for the last 3 years. I don't keep medical receipts and insurance statements much longer than that, so I honestly can't tell you how long it's been since I went to a family practice doctor for anything.
Then I remembered that, because we own our own business, we have to submit our medical expenses to a third party for approval every year. So I decided to look up our total medical expenses for the past 6 years, and see if the amount we paid out had gone down. I was shocked by what I found!
In 2009, our total family out-of-pocket medical expenses were $36,861.00! Keep in mind that as self-employed people, we pay a LOT more out of pocket than other families with group insurance. But even so, I found that amount staggering! Three years later, after I had become an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach and was practicing serious holistic health at home, our expenses had gone down to $7155! We had reduced our medical expenses by 80%! Last year our medical expenses totaled $10,762, with one less member of our family on the insurance plan. I attribute the increase to a change in insurance companies, higher premiums, and a cancer scare for my husband which involved some pricey tests (He's fine -- don't worry).
The reason I'm sharing this is because it's so important to me that you understand that the kind of things you put into your body REALLY DO MATTER! Your health is no laughing matter, so I would never kid about this. Eating organic, whole foods in their most natural state is absolutely vital to your health. Getting plenty of physical movement, having a spiritual practice and connection to a higher power, being involved in something you are passionate about, and having loving, supportive relationships are equally as important.
Your body is not a machine. You don't get another one if you wear this one out. Be grateful for your body. Give it love, not hate. Drink your water, get plenty of rest, and have fun every single day. Yes, I have some initials behind my name that prove I'm certified to talk to you about this. But more importantly, I and my family are all walking, living proof that it can be done. And that's no joke!