Doctor Sheperd and I (Dr. Kingslea, Family Nurse Practitioner) had the opportunity to attend the Integrative Healthcare Symposium (IHS) in New York City this February. The IHS brings together multi-disciplinary healthcare professionals dedicated to improving patient care. I want to keep y’all in the loop of the exciting future of our practice.
What is Integrative Healthcare?
In addition to our passion for Dermatology, healthy skin, and healthy living, integrative health care motivates our transition to the Sheperd Medical Institute and patient centered care.
The topics of most interest to us at the conference included cardiovascular health, nutrition, fertility, gut health, autoimmune conditions, integrative nursing, and mind body spirit medicine.
Our focus is tailoring a person’s healthcare to their individual characteristics, medical conditions, genes, circumstances, and values. Putting the patient at the center of the plan, not the disease, will advance personalized, proactive, and patient driven medicine.
How are we going create health and prevent disease?
An Integrative approach includes care based on prevention rather than treatment while fostering continuous healing relationships. The patients (you!) are the source of control with customized care according to patient needs and values.
Compare this to a more traditional medical approach where the physician or insurance company in more in control of the health care choices and where the insurers limit visits and restrict them to conditions where illness is present, rather than educating on prevention.
Fundamentals of Health
1. Stress management
2. Diet/Nutritional status & Detoxification
5. Connectedness/social support system
I like to think of these as your “Top 5 for Ultimate Wellness”. Dr. James Gordon from the Center of Mind Body Medicine gave an enlightening lecture on creating health and promoting whole body wellness, watch an interview with him here.
You can meet these 5 criteria by:
1. What are ways you like to cope with stress, these can be very personal. Such as meditation, massage, counseling, exercise, social activity, and prayer.
2. No Alcohol, No Smoking, How can you incorporate clean eating and non-toxic substances into your daily routine?
Superfood Immune Supporters include: Almond, Apple, Broccoli, Carrot, Chile pepper, Cocoa, Cranberries, Halibut, Pumpkin, Sweet potato, Tumeric, Scallions, Brazil nuts, Eggs, Spinach, Onions.
3. Walking (not running) 30 minutes at least 5 times a week. Start slow and build yourself up for this. If you are an athlete, remember that walking engages the immune system, not running.
4. Sleeping 8 consecutive hours nightly.
5. Having 2 social activities a week with 2 or more people that are not related to you (spouses don’t count), think a book club, bowling league, or spiritual devotion.
Complementary Alternative Medicine (CAM), such as Chiropractic and Acupuncture, practitioners were also represented. I was able to participate in ear acupuncture, also known as auricular therapy, widely used for many conditions. Auricular therapy emphasizes a holistic approach to medicine, an approach that treats the whole person. The acupuncture points found on the ear help to regulate the body’s internal organs, structures, and functions.