For a long time I’ve been trying to write this blog, but it’s been difficult. I had this idea quite a while ago, to document my own personal attempts to improve my health, but, despite ample ideas and anecdotes, something stopped me from writing. Maybe it was a combination of being too busy with too many other priorities to complete, or perhaps it was because I needed to replace my old school laptop that looked, and acted, as if it had been through a war zone (and given the 4 years of constant studying and research papers it went through with me, I’m surprised it even still worked). I think though, when I really ask myself why, the answer becomes clear. I was afraid.
You see, those in the public, at least many of those with a basic awareness of naturopathic medicine, often perceive naturopathic doctors as nutritionally perfect teetotalers who were naturally born with a predisposition to choosing vegetables over pizza. When I go out with friends they often seem to feel they need to apologize for any perceived inadequacy in their diet or lifestyle, as if I’d never intake anything that was not perfectly wholesome in every way.
Well, to be perfectly accurate, I should say that they really only tip toe around me until the inevitable point when they discover exactly how much I love nachos and chocolate. I crave them because I’m human, and they are delicious. I’m sure there are some naturopaths where their greatest joy is eating a big hunk of broccoli, but I, unfortunately, am not one of them.
So, I was worried that the revelation that I’m human, with the limitation of human taste buds that don’t crave a good leafy green under normal circumstances, might feel to a patient a lot like Dorothy felt when she pulled back the curtain on the Wizard of Oz and discovered he was just a short little man from Kansas.
But, given that you’re reading this blog, I’ve clearly decided that there is nothing to fear. When I really think about it, were I to go looking for a naturopath, I would want someone exactly like me, with all my human limitations. Why? Because if I naturally wanted to do the healthy thing all the time, me working with patients to improve their dietary choices would be like a bird telling a fish how easy it is to fly. Most people do not crave vegetables naturally, because, if they did, they wouldn’t need a naturopath to tell them to eat more vegetables. So having one person who naturally loves to eat vegetables telling you how you should also love to eat vegetables probably won’t really help too much. You want the person talking to you to also hate vegetables, and yet eat them, because they know it’s best for them.
To be fair, I don’t actually hate vegetables…anymore. Now I live in peaceful coexistence with them, well, peaceful enough until the point where I chop them into little pieces or boil them whole. But that peaceful state didn’t come out of nowhere, it took me years of slow effort. Getting to this point was only a small step in my journey towards balance, but every day I take another little step. I’m hoping with this blog, I’ll be able to chronicle each step, including both those I’ve left behind me and those I still need to take, and that in that you can find a traveling companion in your own quest for health.