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Being My Own Advocate

Updated: Aug 31, 2021

Okay okay okay... A lot of people look at me and assume that I have always been "healthy" or into fitness but that could not be farther from the truth. The truth is, although I tried to eat a healthy and fulfilling diet growing up, I never knew what exactly "healthy" meant.

When I was little, I suffered from allergy problems, constant colds to hormonal imbalances. And although I reached out to doctors, I was usually put into the "one size fits all" category. It was not until I was around the age of twenty when I started looking into why I had some of the health problems that I did in fact have. I was tired of being put into just one category, so I started doing more research online. I started working at a supplement and nutrition store to learn more about how the body utilizes certain vitamins, minerals, herbs, and other supplements on the market. And finally, I started going to multiple doctors. I went to specialists, general doctors, sports-centered doctors and even homeopathic doctors.

This was when I realized that in order to be YOUR OWN advocate, you have to do YOUR OWN research. It is true that doctors can help adjust our lives, but how can they when you do not even know what needs adjusting? To begin asking questions and understand what needed to be done for me, these are the questions and ideas I brainstormed with my doctor's about:

1. Diet related q's: Is my diet okay? How should I change/adjust it? Should I have a food androgen test done to see if I have any food sensitivities?

2. Hormone related q's: Based on blood-work, are my hormones in a normal range? Should I take hormones? Do you recommend natural supplements (like herbs) to help hormonal imbalances, if so which one(s) and why? Should I have my hormones checked again next month or so to see if there are any changes?

3. In-general q's: How much exercise is recommended for someone like me? If there is a specific workout style I should follow, which one(s) is it? Based on my blood-work, is there any other change I can make in my life that would benefit my health? Should I see another specialist for a second opinion? Is there a medication that would change or benefit my health, if so, what is it and why should I take it?

Although these are just a few questions I have asked my healthcare providers, they are questions that have given me the advantage of being my own advocate. I do not feel stuck anymore. I feel empowered to be able to be informed and assisted by my doctors because I know that I am asking the right questions and I am doing the best I can to make sure that my health is at its best. Do not be left in the dark, be informed and use that to your advantage. Knowledge is always power.

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