I used to be the person who would stuff my face with McDonald’s three times a day and call it good because I actually ate. For a little while, I would even get my breakfast wrap without the wrap and get my burger without the bun. My justification was that I was still in line with the Atkins program, I was cutting out the carbs.

During these years, I would go to the doctor, and I would do whatever they told me to do, as long as it didn’t require too much of me. Sure, I could actually start cooking for myself with fresh, whole foods, but who has time for that?

Then I had kids, and I started really learning about needing to take care of myself and my family. I started learning that yes, I do need to cook for myself and control what goes into my home and my body.

It also started me down the journey of the “natural health” world. This was scary for me at first because my view of the world was that this natural stuff was associated with the occult and witchcraft. I look back at that now and I simply laugh.

As I have come more in line with natural approaches to things, I have had to wrestle with the balance between natural health and conventional medicine. This is especially poignant for me right now as I sit writing this the night before my son is starting chemotherapy for a rare brain tumor we found a few months ago.

Before looking down any option for action, it is extremely important to understand the goal of your approach. Let me explain some of what I have come to terms with, and see if this makes sense to you too.

The Goal of Natural Health

Natural health has gotten an interesting reputation because of the idea of using natural herbs and substances to cure disease. This is actually a relatively modern concept, and not really how we should think about natural things.

I firmly believe that God made all things to work together. He made our body and the intricate way it works. Did you know our bodies have genes specifically designed for suppressing tumors? I had no idea until recently, but that is how intricately our bodies were designed.

God also designed all of nature. He designed each part of nature to work together. That means that he made plants and our bodies to work together. For instance, did you know your body has an endocannabinoid system? That means you have receptors for cannabinoid compounds...those things found in hemp, CBD, and even pot. This is not an endorsement to go light a joint or partake of the funny brownies.

Rather, it is simply a nod to how intertwined all of creation was designed. So what does this have to do with natural health?

When you consider that all of nature is designed to work together, it is easy to see that the purpose of this integration is to spur good health. It is not a solution for when something breaks, but rather is to help it work properly in the first place.

Keep It Working Well

Do you remember the Tin Man from The Wizard of Oz? When Dorothy first comes across him, he needs her to provide oil to his joints. You see, he hadn’t maintained his body, and now something wasn’t working properly.

If we can take care to provide our body what it needs and avoid things that do damage, we keep our body working well. It is like putting good fuel in your car and doing regular maintenance to keep it working properly.

However, just like a car, things still may break. The more you know about your body, the more you can look for signs that something is slightly off. This allows you to head off major breakdowns. However, they may still happen, and then you need to deal with it.

The big goal of natural health is not to heal disease or prevent it entirely. Rather, it is to reduce the risk you will have a major breakdown that requires significant intervention of any kind. If you can keep that in mind, it helps to manage your expectations while you experience the joy of feeling well for longer.


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