By Deborah S. Tukua,
author, natural health and wellness writer
Remember Aesop's fable of the Tortoise and the Hare? Both set out to run the same race, but they went about it entirely different. Let's pretend for a moment that they were running a race toward wellness. Which runner reflects your mindset and lifestyle?
Don't be a Hare -
The Hare started the race with great gusto, but then stopped to do whatever struck his fancy along the way, too easily distracted by things that weren't conducive to reaching his ultimate goal. He reacts instead of planning ahead. His impulsive, self-gratifying attitude leads him to eat anything that looks good; giving little consideration to nutrition or how the food he consumes will affect his energy or health. Hare tires easily and has a lax, lazy attitude. He sees the sun shining outside and considers going for a brisk walk, but it's time for his favorite TV show and a long nap.
Unfortunately, much of our society seems to have adopted Hare's mentality. We go on crash diets, setting unrealistic weight loss goals to achieve in breakneck speed, thus, setting ourselves up for discouragement and defeat. We are distracted from working toward our wellness goals too often by whatever imitation carrot or vise is dangling before us at the moment. Exercise is something we'll get around to later. For the moment we're pretty comfortable slouching on the sofa. We pop pills to numb aches and pains. We don't hesitate when spending money on a fine dinner out, but spend our own money to go to the doctor, never! As a last resort, we go to the chiropractor, when we just can't bear the pain any longer.
Be Like the Tortoise Instead -
The Tortoise understands that reaching optimal health and wellness isn't a quick race or a sprint. It's a journey for life that progresses with each positive step we take in the right direction. The Tortoise is proactive, consistently and consciously making wise health choices. Tortoise takes preventative measures to keep moving ahead, living and functioning at a healthy pace. He lives a balanced life: gets adequate sleep, eats healthy, natural foods, takes supplements, exercises and gets regular chiropractic adjustments. He'd rather pay to stay well than pay to get well. He knows his health is important and valuable and that paying to get well is far more expensive than living a healthy lifestyle.
Like the Tortoise, we must be proactive, instead of reactive, choosing a healthy lifestyle and put our shell into motion, doing the things that we know we should. When we stumble, and we will, it is imperative that we get back up and continue on in the right direction. We must persevere with the steadfastness of the Tortoise.
Chiropractic Care -
Instead of going to a doctor or pharmacist for quick, temporary pain relief, or pills to help us lose weight, we should look to the source of the problem and seek a long term, effective solution. Chiropractic care should be an integral part of our wellness program.
Most people have yet to hear how chiropractic offers so much more than mere back or neck pain relief. While it is very likely that you will experience partial or total relief from various aches and pains with your first chiropractic adjustment, the scope of potential health benefits are vast. Once the pain has eased, set your health pursuits toward maintaining a healthier lifestyle and body. What if you aren't aching? Don't wait until you experience pain or injury to go for an evaluation. Getting regular chiropractic care is a great move toward achieving optimal health for the whole family. In fact, I believe you can't achieve optimal health without chiropractic. Children greatly benefit from chiropractic care as well. Like the wise Tortoise, prevention and perseverance is the surest path to wellness.
Our nervous system controls the communication and coordination of all activity throughout the body. When our spine is out of alignment or has abnormal range of motion, it negatively affects nerves that connect to organs in our body. It is important to remember that MOST of the time this is painless, but it always interferes with the flow of communication from our brain through our spinal cord and nerves. There are many factors in our day-to-day living that may cause these misalignments, such as: physical stress,(eg. weak posture, pregnancy, carrying a heavy shoulder bag or backpack daily, falls, and sports injuries), mental stress, or even chemical stress from toxins in our food, air and water. Some people think it is only important to go to a chiropractor when you have pain, but since the misalignment and nerve interference is usually painless, that would be like saying you should only go to a dentist when you have a toothache! Chiropractic care works to correct spinal misalignments and restore nerve function, thus improving joint mobility, increasing energy and, most importantly, aiding our body to heal itself and function optimally. Thus, monthly chiropractic maintenance visits are essential in maintaining wellness and keeping your body in good working order!
Remember slow and steady wins the race - the long haul journey of wellness never ends. It's a life quest that's meant to be run with vigor and vitality. The race is our life and chiropractic helps us run the race that is before us one adjustment at a time!