Every accomplishment starts with the decision to try – John F. Kennedy

One of the key principles in Dr. Julie Reardon’s LIVE IT Philosophy, and the first “I” word in that acronym is the idea, INCORPORATE.

The LIVE IT Philosophy is something Dr. Reardon coined years ago to help her remember the Integrative Medicine model when during her fellowship with Dr. Andrew Weil she was being introduced to so many new concepts.  The acronym LIVE IT – standing for Learn, Incorporate, Vitalize, Exercise, Imagine, Thank – represents her belief that being healthy shouldn’t be complicated, but rather supported every day by adopting a lifestyle that supports wellness.

Learning to incorporate new changes into your life is a key factor in Integrative and Functional Medicine – or personalized medicine. Unfortunately when it comes to health there is no one size fits all solution. At Lake Travis Integrative Medicine we work to find the solution that works best for you. We recognize that health does not happen at the doctor’s office – it happens at home, at work, and in your day to day life. This is why we work with each patient to co-create a plan to develop a lifestyle that will support their quest to get well.

Although there is no magic pill solution, there are many things that you can incorporate into your lifestyle that have been shown to help alleviate symptoms & improve well being. Some of the most important heathy lifestyle goals are:

  1. Decreasing Inflammation: Inflammation is a root cause of the majority of disease conditions. Avoiding processed foods and getting enough sleep both decrease inflammation. In some cases nutritional supplements and even medications are helpful.
  2. Diet: Eating an anti-inflammatory, modified mediterranean diet has been shown to dramatically decrease symptoms for most people. Other specific dietary changes might be called for if you show sensitivity to gluten or have gut permeability issues.
  3. Movement: There is no movement too small. Find simple ways to add extra movement to your day in ways that works for you. Incorporate breaks to walk, stretch, do a few minutes of yoga. If these ideas are too much try taking the stairs, parking far from the grocery store entrance, or jogging to answer the doorbell. Your body will thank you.
  4. Self Care/Stress Management: When it comes to relaxation, watching tv and having a glass of wine don’t always count. Explore ideas that will work for you – meditation, tapping, or breathing techniques can have have a huge positive impact on well being.
  5. Community: Never underestimate the power of the company you keep. Seek out empowering, supportive relationships in your life. And make sure to spend time with those you love.

Incorporating all of these at once can be overwhelming. To get started, look through these points, identify which would be the most feasible for you, and create a plan to incorporate that one thing into your life.

Creative Exercise

Think about what a typical day looks like you for you. What are the things – no matter how big or small – that you do to feel great? What brings you joy? Write down a list of things you do to feel your best. This list can be as simple as waking up 10 minutes earlier to have a cup of tea or have breakfast or taking 5 minutes to stretch or take a walk at work. Are you setting aside time in your day to fit those things in?

Sometimes lack of planning can be planning for failure. If the lifestyle changes that Dr. Reardon has outlined for you are overwhelming, working with a Health Coach may be a good fit for you. We all deserve extra support when faced with the transformational experience of an illness.

© 2018, Lake Travis Integrative Medicine