Three Things I learned at the Vet’s Office

Yearly I make my trek to the doctor for my physical. They take my height, my weight, they listen to my heart, they take my blood pressure. She makes sure I am healthy. She will ask me questions about my lifestyle, She ask questions about my family history, she will even ask me questions about work, my home life, my kids, my hubby. She always asks a lot of questions. Her goal is to get a good picture of me. She pronounces me healthy and I am off.

At times I visit my doctor when I am ill. Usually when I’ve waited well past a few days of being miserably sick and now I want relief or at my family’s insistence, they want relief from me. She again takes my height, my weight, looks, listens, and feels to determine what is wrong. She pronounces her findings and I am off.

Same scenario but just a bit different.

My dog, Buddy, also goes to his yearly doctor visit. They take his weight, listen to his heart, feel around to make sure all moves well. His doctor will also ask questions. But his first question always intrigues me, “What do you feed Buddy?” I didn’t think about this much until Buddy got sick.

While at this sick care visit, they did weigh him, they didn’t do much else. The vet came right in. His first question was “What was going on with our sick dog?” After describing how he was acting, his next question stunned me.

“What are you feeding Buddy?”.

I wasn’t at the vet for his nutritional counseling. I wanted him to help my dog feel better. I needed his help in that way. Of course Buddy wasn’t eating very much food but no one does when they are sick. The vet wasn’t as interested in what he had that day as much as what he is normally fed. In fact the dog doctor was directly linking my dog’s health with the food he was consuming.

Yes, Buddy, had an infection but the doctor explained how his regular diet had contributed to his poor health. I walked out of the doggie doctor’s office thinking "No duh, what applies to dogs applies to us humans too!"

Three Things I learned at the Veterinarian’s Office to help me from getting sick.

1. A healthy eating plan gives your body what it needs to work optimally, not just survive.

2.  Health–Ful means it contains a whole lot of foods that make me healthy.

3. A few bites of “under the table” foods are okay once in a while but I can’t make a habit of them.

So what does this miracle way of eating look like?

1. For us humans filling our plates with lots of vegetables, lean protein, a small portion of healthy fats and drinking lots of water.

2. Find foods that are high in the good stuff while limiting the foods that are highly processed is our key.

Eat as many “colorful foods” as you can throughout the day; real food - think fruits and vegetables. Eat green, purple, red, yellow, and blue. Nature has a very simple way of letting us know which foods are really healthy and full of nutrients - color.

3. While there isn’t any ‘bad’ food, there were some foods that don’t have the bang for the buck (or calorie) we are looking for. Those are foods we have in moderation. It’s a balancing act. Include whatever treats you want into an overall picture of a healthy diet. It’s not about totally taking them out but finding their place in your plan.

My Vet taught me that consistently feeding my animal great food, getting him some exercise, giving him access to water all the time, while limiting the treats was best for his health. It actually helped Buddy not get sick.

Why would I do less for me?

To your best health,

Coach Nancy

About the author

Coach Nancy

Nancy Carlson is a Certified Professional Fitness Trainer with the National Exercise and Sports Trainer Association, a Level 1 Youth Conditioning Specialist with the International Youth Conditioning Association, and is a Level 2 Certified Precision Nutrition Master coach. Nancy was recognized in 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017 as the “Best of the Best” Fitness Trainer in Southern NH by the Hippo Press.

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