The World Health Organization defines health as a “…state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease…” (link for reference). This definition emphasizes wellness as an integral component of health. Further contemplating the concept of the absence of disease leads to the understanding that this can be accomplished either through prevention of disease, which has some overlap with promotion of wellness, or through treatment of disease.
The traditional medical paradigm has focused, almost to the exclusion of the other components, on the treatment of disease. Even the so called prevention guidelines, such as annual mammograms or screening colonoscopy, are more geared towards early detection of disease at a time when treatment can be more effective than true prevention. This is not to say that these strategies are not essential elements of healthcare but is more to emphasize that traditional medical care has not prioritized promotion of wellness or prevention of disease, which are both essential elements of overall health as indicated by the World Health Organization.
The foundational philosophy of Darin Davidson, MD Consulting is to use data and best practices in order to integrate each of the three foundations of health: promotion of wellness, prevention of disease, and treatment of disease. This can be accomplished for patients and healthcare providers alike. The benefit of addressing comprehensive health amongst these populations will be a greater overall state of health. The combination of developing each of these components of health is termed optimal performance as it is the integration of each of these areas of health that allows each of us to perform at our best. Amongst patients this may take the form of promoting health and preventing disease so that goals can be pursued and life can be lived with the greatest quality of life possible. When disease does occur, optimal performance can be thought of as treating the ailment and recovering as quickly as possible to allow for resumption of these pursuits. Amongst healthcare providers these benefits are similar as for patients and there is also the additional aspect of maximizing the level at which they provide care to their patients not only optimizing the health of their patients but of themselves as individuals as well.
For both patients and healthcare providers, training the core elements of sleep hygiene, nutrition, exercise, and mindset training leads to optimal performance. Amongst patients, treating disease involves combining the evidence based traditional medical treatments with the complimentary aspects of sleep, nutrition, exercise, and mindset to allow for better overall recovery and resumption of life activities.
This philosophy can update the medical paradigm of emphasizing treatment of disease by incorporating promotion of wellness and prevention of disease. This combination can truly lead to a greater whole than the sum of its parts!