Several months ago my Dad, who is 91, bless his wonderful heart, fell. He was in the hospital for about 10 days. Needless to say we were worried and concerned for his health and recovery. He has since made a 100% recovery and is pretty much back to his old self again.( Again I say bless his heart!)
During the time he was in the hospital and also when he had come home to recover, he had attentive care by hospital staff, visiting nurses and my 86 year old mother(bless her heart as well.) I am very grateful for the quality of care he received. I know there is a huge range of care and outcomes in a situation like this. Fortunately, in this situation, the care and outcome were good all around.
Being the curious health and food investigator that I am, I was on hyper alert.I observed the food he was given in the hospital and I ate in the hospital cafeteria a couple of times myself. I am always amazed at what they serve people who are staying in the hospital- people who are there to get well.
If you have read my blogs before, you know by now I believe food is a powerful healer and food is medicine. Have hospitals really not gotten the memo on this? Hospitals are notorious for having bad tasting, less than healthy food. Doesn’t that seem counter-intuitive? They serve juices and puddings loaded with sugar and other processed foods loaded with salt, fried food, farmed fish and lots of canned vegetables. There are many discrepancies in what is supposedly good to eat when one is in the hospital and on different types of medications. All foods have properties that affect our bodies in different ways. It can be confusing and overwhelming if you think you have to know or memorize every food and all its properties. We think when we are in the hospital being taken care of that the Dr and staff are the ones to be in charge and pay attention to the these details. It can cause even more anxiety to try to remember everything.
Hospitals do their best to try to feed and nurture people back to health, but still there is a lot missing. Why is it that the hospital is the number one place to get most of the germs we often go into the hospital to get rid of in the first place? Hospitals are businesses too. They need to make a profit in order to stay open and continue doing business.
Who is really doing the nurturing?
As I witness my parents aging and the overall society around me, I see there have been many fundamental choices made about how to care for people. Choices that I personally would not make and do not agree with. I see more “drug” store chains going up. Stores like CVS, Walgreens and Rite Aids, and these stores are now offering shots and vaccines.
The good news is, I also see more successful healthier lifestyle changes, Farmer’s Markets, more organic foods in main stream grocery stores and Whole Foods Market is attracting more people.
Who is in charge of nurturing?
We are! We are in charge of our own health and our own bodies. We are the ones who need to be pro active, meaning, taking charge all along the way, not just when we get sick or fall, all along the way!
Each time we eat, we choose what is best to go into our bodies to nurture ourselves. Each time we shop we choose how best to stock our fridges and pantries to have a good healthy clean foundation. So, when we choose, we choose well every time.
When we defer to others who we think know better than ourselves, we are not taking action. We are trusting that the grocery store, the pharmacy, the hospital and yes, even the Doctor knows better than we do about our own bodies. Yes, Doctors have more medical training. They can guide you, but you know your body best. Do not be afraid to ask questions. When your Doctor says, you have such and such take this pill. You ask, Why Doctor? What does it do? Is there something else I can do instead? Are there side affects? Why do you prescribe this? Have you taken this? Would you? Would you give this to your family? Do you trust this company? Do you get money from the pharmaceutical company for prescribing it? We are not sheep. We do not need to defer to other people, even people we think have more information than we have. We are in charge of our bodies!
When you are at the store and you see something that you may have even seen on TV, it does not mean it is good for you. Ask your local store to stock healthier foods- more organic, more gluten free, whatever you want to have at the store that supports your overall health and healthier life style. We are the customer, the consumer; they need us!
Take charge of your own body. Trust that you know more about your body than anyone else. Ask questions, even if they are difficult questions; especially if they are difficult questions. That is how to get to the bottom of what you are looking for. There is always something deeper to explore. You will often be surprised at what you learn and how that makes a difference in your health and life.