In this blog I’ll explain the meaning of a whole health team, who should be in it, how to build one and how to rely on it so you benefit from having this team backing you up.
Most people don’t know the concept of having a whole health team on hand. They only consult 1 person when they’re ill. Usually an MD, their family doctor. Now, there’s nothing wrong with consulting your MD, but it is even better to have a whole health team to support you when you’re battling an illness.
Why is it important to have a whole health team?
Your body is not just the sum of different parts. It is one, entire, living organism. An incredible system where everything is connected. That’s why a whole body approach is the way to go. Everything is connected by veins, nerves, muscles, fascia, bones, …
You need people that understand the whole body. Sometimes you can find this in one person. Sometimes, this means you will need to consult different health practitioners that work together: a whole health team. And often it is just good common sense to get a second opinion. Because after all, it’s our health we’re talking about. Nothing to go over lightly.
WHO SHOULD BE IN IT?
This is very individual. There are different aspects you can take into consideration while assembling your whole health team:
- Personal relationship w the health practitioner
- Age (neonatologist, pediatrician, geriatrician, etc.)
- Gender (gynecologist)
- Body part (dentist, lung specialist, nephrologist, orthopaedist, optometrist, etc.)
- Hobbies (runners/athletes often go to physiotherapists)
- Personal preferences e.g. some people like massages and have an RMT in their WHT, others don’t mind needles and go to get acupuncture
If we’re talking disciplines, your personal list can consist of the following health practitioners: medical doctor, endocrinologist, dentist, surgeon, herbalist, naturopath, homeopath, traditional Chinese medicine doctor, acupuncturist, registered massage therapist, chiropractor, physiotherapist, nutritionist, dietitian, optometrist, osteopath, yoga teacher, … the list can be ongoing!
HOW TO PUT THE TEAM TOGETHER
This part is easy. Especially because we created a beautiful “My Whole Health Team”PDF you can download.
1. Put 2 names to every discipline. Why two? If your first health practitioner is fully booked, you can consult the next one. This way, you’ll be sure to always get help asap.
2. Put the list some place you can access it easily. So when the times comes and you need it, you don’t have to go searching.
TIP: Whenever an issue arises, trust your gut to lead you in who you should contact.
Feeling a bit sick after reading about all these different types of doctors? Well… The best remedy is preventing you get sick! So you won’t even need your whole health team. The following tips will help you to avoid a doctor’s visit:
TIPS TO NOT HAVE TO USE YOUR WHOLE HEALTH TEAM
- Use food as medicine: eat greens every day, eat organic, plant based, whole food
- Minimise eating anything processed (canned, boxed, pre-packaged, ...)
- Supplement with Vitamin C, Magnesium and Iodine to boost your immune system whenever needed
- Hydrate with clean, filtered water
- Pay attention: listen to your body when you feel something
- Get enough sleep
- A big part of the healing starts in our head (if you want to read more about this, check out this book: Mind over Medicine).
FIRING & HIRING YOUR WHOLE HEALTH TEAM
Imagine this: if you’re taking your car to mechanic and every time a part is replaced, you pay the bill but you keep having issues. Would you go back to that same mechanic? I didn’t think so. You’ll Google the sh*** out of it and find another, capable mechanic you feel good with, trust and believe does the best job they can.
Why wouldn’t we work similarly when hiring a “body mechanic”? We only have one, precious body so we better treat it with the highest respect.
Take care of your body. It’s the only place you have to live - Jim Rohn
Get the point? Don’t be afraid to step up when your health is at stake. You matter.
Now you know the value of having a WHT, who can be on your list, how to assemble your list, and the importance of keeping it close.
At the end of the day, if you do need to consult a health practitioner, the best healing will come from going to someone you feel safe with, trust and believe in. Just like going to the best mechanic in town to get your car fixed.
Whenever you feel something coming up. Trust your gut feeling and see the person you want to see. Advocate for your health. You’ve got this!
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Watch and listen to Nicolette's personal stories and learn how she makes optimal use of her whole health team.
Stephie Hennekam likes to think of herself as a knowledgeable foodie, wandering traveler, teacher, active yogi, lover of nature, free spirited writer & life long student. She loves going off the beaten path, following her (gut)- feeling and isn't shy to try new stuff. After all, nothing beats experiencing something yourself.
As a former university college teacher, researcher, independent (sports)dietitian and jack of all trades at a vegan restaurant, she has now discovered her life goal of teaching & helping others to work towards a healthy, energised life filled with love, peace & happiness.