I have been asked many times what I am most passionate about and in previous blogs I have discussed how I believe all children deserve to be as healthy as their genetic capacity allows.
A secondary adjunct vision is my desire to help parents or carers improve their health literacy, for the long term objective of strengthening their health and the health of their children.
What do I mean by this exactly??
When an individual improves their health literacy on any health topic they gain greater awareness. From this awareness they then move forward
–with confidence to ask questions and seek further knowledge or advice,
– they make empowered choices that best suit their needs.
Most often through awareness people realise the importance and benefit of asking GOOD questions. In fact, the quality of our health is determined by the quality of healthy questions we ask ourselves and our health practitioners.
For example, if our child suffers with constipation and laxatives have been recommended as a treatment option, then as parents we can access as much information from the internet or from health practitioners as we can about constipation.
We may learn that there are many causes for constipation and that simply addressing the symptoms – the constipation – will not resolve the underlying cause of the problem. One would agree, there has to be a reason the constipation developed, no??? Laxatives will create a short term fix but at what cost for our child’s long-term health?
Through our investigating we may realise that our child may:
a) not drink anywhere near enough water. Remembering that soft drinks and juice do not count as water. Water is critical for good function of the digestive system.
b) not eat enough quality fibre, in fact they eat very little fresh fruit or vegetables. Can you calculate how many pieces of fresh fruit or vegetables you think they may eat in a day? Alternatively, they may live on white flour products for breakfast, lunch and dinner which are literally clogging up their bowels.
c) and/or they may have had an accident or fall, or a series of falls that have created nerve dysfunction between the brain and nervous system, influencing the messages that are then re-layed to their bowels. This may then lead to a decrease in bowel function and progressive constipation.
When we improve our health literacy we discover that we have many avenues to gain further wisdom, relief and support. When we empower ourselves with knowledge we then become conscientious health consumers who make informed decisions about what we purchase and what we consent to.
We realise that taking a drug to cover up the symptoms, constipation, makes absolutely no sense at all. In many cases laxatives make matters worse and create bowel laziness. It could be likened to covering up the fuel gauge in our car when it reads EMPTY and presuming that in doing so it will resolve the issue once and for all.
As we become more selective about our choices, we become more motivated and inspired to learn more about ‘real health.’ We source further information on other important health topics and so the cycle continues, all the while were empowering ourselves with knowledge. Further more, we learn how to navigate our family’s health outcomes.