As a person, patient, and doc, I had to fully accept that reality isn’t always fun or easy to talk about. That said, I firmly believe that if we don’t address what motivates us to make the choices we do, any “medical treatment” or pursuit of genuine contentment will be sub-par. I know; I’ve lived it. I’m living it. To Live Your Value doesn’t mean always making perfect choices. Often it means two steps forward, one back, and then two more forward. It isn’t always easy—but the results are life changing. However, before we can get to the good stuff, we need to face the hard stuff.
Let’s take a look at some current stats:
- According to the World Health Organization, in 2016, more than 1.9 billion adults worldwide (over 18 years old), were overweight. Of these, over 650 million were obese. In America alone, The National Center for Health Statistics estimates that, for 2015-2016 in the US, 39.8% of adults aged 20 and over were obese (including 7.6% with severe obesity) and that another 31.8% were overweight.
- Based on the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) estimations, approximately 20-22 students in a typical high school of 800 students will experience subclinical eating disorders. Those same students will also be more likely to experience medical co-morbidities such as depression, anxiety, substance abuse, and suicidal ideation. Nearly 30 million Americans will experience a clinically significant eating disorder in their lifetime. The annual health care costs for these individuals will be nearly $2000 greater compared to individuals without eating disorders.
- In the United States, 23% of all adults, or more than 54 million people, have arthritis.
- As of 2015, more than 100 million US adults live with diabetes or pre-diabetes, and 30.3 million Americans, or 9.4% of the U.S. population, have diabetes. (CDC)
- Coronary artery disease is the most common type of heart disease, and 365,914 people died from it in 2017. About 18.2 million adults age 20 and older have CAD.
- Nearly 38 million American adults smoked cigarettes (“every day” or “some days”) in 2016. About 4.7 million middle and high school students use at least one tobacco product, including e-cigarettes. Each year, the United States spends nearly $170 billion on medical care to treat smoking-related diseases in adults.
- Excessive alcohol use led to approximately 88,000 deaths per year between 2006–2010 and shortened the lives of those who died by an average of 30 years.
- In 2018, there were 2,457,118 reported cases of sexually transmitted diseases (including Chlamydia, Gonorrhea, and Syphilis). At the end of 2016, an estimated 1.1 million people aged 13 and older had HIV.
- Only 28% of Americans are considered “financially healthy,” according to a survey conducted by the Center for Financial Services Innovation. In addition, their survey showed that approximately 44% of respondents said their expenses exceeded their income in the past year and they used credit to make ends meet. Another 42% said they have no retirement savings at all.
- According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the US, affecting 40 million adults. In addition, major depressive disorder (or MDD) affects more than 16.1 million Americans. It is the leading cause of disability in individuals from 15 to 44 years of age.
So What Does Choice Have to Do With It?
If we look at these ten examples, every single one of them can be improved or aggravated by the choices we make day in and day out. There is a lot of talk now about the ‘social determinants of health.’ One of the greatest contributors to disease processes and discontentment are simply the choices we make every day. These choices are driven by our thoughts and, in essence, our self-value. Think of every choice like a fork in the road. One direction leads you closer to health and the other leads you farther away. Living Your Value means consistently making more choices that reflect your self-value and lead you toward health.
#LiveYourValue Isn’t a Maybe, It’s a Must
The Live Your Value Lifestyle is a must for anyone who wants to improve their current condition and is even more critical for anyone who appears not to care about it. I would very much like to share my passion for all of us to achieve a healthier and more content life through learning how to truly live our value one choice a time—an integrated approach.
If you’d like me to share my Live Your Value presentation in person, please don’t hesitate to ask through the Book Dr.D option on the home page. Thanks! And remember to Live Your Value, one choice at a time.