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Making Great Health a Habit
Are we indeed ¡°creatures of habit¡± and if so is that
a bad thing? Habits rule our behavior as much as
choice, yet free will and making the right choices
creates good habits. The biggest challenge for all of
us in pursuit of great health lies in making choices
that lead to healthy habits. Or put another way,
doing the simple things every day that add up over
time to promote health.
In guiding patients to great health I encourage them
to consider the ¡®keys¡¯ for great health. The keys
include attitude, diet, exercise, sleep, stress manage-
ment, digestive health, detoxification, supplements
and hormone balance. The first 5 keys are primarily
up to the patient to implement and as such rely on
consistent efforts. Just how can we build those great
health habits?
Health, like so many things, does not rely on a
secret key that suddenly unlocks the pathway to
success. We can¡¯t have instant success, instant loy-
alty or trust, instant weight loss, or instant health.
Success starts with a desire, a vision, and a plan. It
happens over time due to effort and perseverance.
But, ultimately it is achieved with everyday deci-
sions that compound over time to produce results.
Attitude means making the easy decisions every
day that add up to great health. So we make the de-
cision to have the right attitude. Now, to make the
right choices, that¡¯s where habits come in. And here
is where is gets hard. Often great habits involve
making changes and change brings stress to our
brain. We don¡¯t do so well with change. One prob-
lem is we try to change too much too fast or change
is so overwhelming that we can¡¯t imagine how to
make it happen.
¡°The journey of a thousand miles begins with the
first step,¡± wrote Lao-tzu, the Chinese Taoist philos-
opher and founder of Taoism, over 2000 years ago
in his book ¡®Tao Te Ching¡¯ or ¡®The Book of the Way¡¯.
And so it is with change - what seems impossible
habits? Pick one the 5
keys and start. Choose
an area you know
you need to do better
with. Make one small
change. Tomorrow
do it again. When
you have that change
established you have
created a new habit.
It feels good. Make
another small change.
Pick another key to
health and start with
yet another small
Getting help with
establishing good
habits is always a great
idea. This might mean
finding a buddy to
exercise with. When
the weather is cold, my
wife is usually the one
that encourages me
to leave the warm fire
and get bundled up
for our morning walk.
And of course once I¡¯m
out there I¡¯m glad to
keep the habit going!
Have lunch with the
co-worker that ap-
preciates good healthy
food and encourages
you to eat smart.
Get a Health Coach
Working with a health
coach is an easy and
affordable way to help
you establish goals and
stick with them.
is usually possible, but one has to start somewhere.
Many years ago as a house painter I encountered
what I called the ¡°overwhelming paralysis¡± of
wondering where to start and how in the world I
was going to finish painting some giant house all
by myself. I quickly learned to quit thinking and
start painting. Just pick a corner, preferably in the
shade, focus on a small area, and start. A week
later it was done. After a while what once seemed
overwhelming was routine. It was a habit.
Same thing happened the first week of medi-
cal school - overwhelming paralysis. How in the
world could any human being ever get through all
the material we were expected to read, never-mind
remember it well enough to pass a test! I quickly
reminded myself that many before me had man-
aged to pull it off so I had faith I would be able
to ¡°get ¡®er done¡± and just started reading. That
started the habit of getting up at 5am to study - still
do, 7 days a week, and most of my columns are
written early in the morning. Old habit.
Tips for developing great habits
Kaizen is a Japanese term that means ¡®improve-
ment¡¯ or ¡®change for the better¡¯. It is a process that
is embedded into the culture and leads to changes
in everything from healthcare to industry. A con-
tinuous process of analyzing, rethinking, and mak-
ing changes that lead to improvements in health
or improvements in production. The key is that
Kaizen emphasizes small but continuous changes.
Again... SMALL changes.
Robert Maurer, PhD and author of ¡®One Small Step
Can Change Your Life: The Kaizen Way¡¯, explains
that small continuous changes are what adds up
to success in the long term. Successful fortune 500
companies get to the top by making small, steady,
and well thought out improvements. Weight loss
may happen by first eating only one bite less with
each meal, then later two bites less. Starting an
exercise program might begin with simply walking
around the block and each day going just a little bit
further. This is the Kaizen way.
How do we incorporate Kaizen into our health
2014 April
Pg 6 - The Sunshine Express
Health & Nurturing
In Harmony
by Scott Rollins, M.D.
Coaches are trained to analyze each individual¡¯s
strengths and weaknesses and turn health goals
into achievements. I recommend and refer to our
health coach regularly because I see it work to help
patients establish great health habits.
Health coaches differ from the traditional medical
paradigm in which we doctors give information
to the patient and expect them to implement that
information. Coaches guide patients toward their
health goals by focusing on behavioral changes.
This involves setting goals, identifying obstacles
that interfere with goals, and providing the sup-
port necessary to make changes. Coaching empow-
ers patients to help write their own prescription
for great health and holds patients accountable for
implementing their plan.
A great health plan starts with that ¡®first step¡¯.
(Scott Rollins, MD, is Board Certified with the
American Board of Family Practice and the
American Board of Anti-Aging and Regenerative
Medicine. He specializes in Bioidentical Hormone
Replacement for men and women, thyroid and
adrenal disorders, fibromyalgia, weight loss and
other complex medical conditions. He is founder
and medical director of the Integrative Medicine
Center of Western Colorado ( and
Bellezza Laser Aesthetics (
Call 970.245.6911 for an appointment or more
A lady went to a psychiatrist complaining that, ¡°Every
time I lay down on my bed, I get a terrible fear that there
is something underneath it.¡±
¡°Like all phobias, it can be treated,¡± said the psychia-
trist, ¡°but it will likely take around 20 sessions at $80 a
session, but trust me, it¡¯s well worth it.¡±
When the lady didn¡¯t call or come back, the psychiatrist
gave her a call and asked her, ¡°How come I didn¡¯t hear
from you?¡±
¡°Well,¡± responded the lady ¡°when I told my husband
about the problem and how much it would cost, he
came up with a free solution.¡±
Curious, the psychiatrist probed, ¡°I must know, what
was his method?¡±
¡°Simple,¡± she said, ¡°he cut the legs off the bed!¡±
A Home Remedy
Expanding Understanding
New ¡®Food as Medicine¡¯ Institute will focus
on community nutrition education
National College of Natural Medicine, on March 5,
announced the formation of the Food as Medicine
Institute (FAMI), the latest in its line-up of commu-
nity-education initiatives. The institute¡¯s mission is
to provide nutrition education for healthcare pro-
fessionals and the general public. FAMI will offer a
variety of lectures, workshops and conferences for
healthcare pros who want to expand their under-
standing of the relationship between nutrition
and health as a means of preventing and reducing
chronic disease. It will also provide public classes
and workshops for those who wish to deepen their
knowledge about the value of whole-foods nutri-
tion and preparing delicious, healthy meals.
FAMI joins NCNM¡¯s roster of education insti-
tutes that offer programs to the public, as well as
to healthcare professionals. The list includes the
Women in Balance Institute, and Traditional Roots
Institute. Leading the new Food as Medicine In-
stitute are co-founders Drs. Courtney Jackson and
Julie Briley, naturopathic physicians and NCNM
NCNM President David J. Schleich, PhD, notes
that since NCNM began its focus on community
education in nutrition, there is heightened focus on
nutrition and health. ¡°NCNM teaches our students
the correlation between food and health-food as
medicine is literally the foundation of naturopathic
education. We¡¯re delighted that this knowledge is
going mainstream, with grocery stores now stock-
ing organic foods-even fast-food chains are mov-
ing toward healthy menu options,¡± Schleich said.
¡°NCNM¡¯s Food as Medicine Institute will continue
to be at the forefront of this exciting re-awakening
about the importance of whole foods and farm to
table nutrition.¡±