Week 11: Your Healthcare Team

Q. How do I know if I’m working with the right doctor for me?
A. It’s important to find a medical professional that aligns to your goals and the care you would like to receive.  If your goals are around prevention, avoiding the use of prescription medications and living a healthy lifestyle, then it’s important to make sure you feel that your doctor is on board with this.  If you feel like your current provider isn’t keeping you in line with these goals, its ok to “shop around” for a new provider, or to challenge your doctor’s recommendations with any concerns that you have.

Q. If my doctor recommends a prescription, but I’m not comfortable taking one, what should I do?
A. There are a few options. First, discuss why he/she feels you need the medication to see if there is an underlying issue that you can tackle through nutrition or lifestyle modifications.  For example, if you’re having heartburn, ask if you could trying doing a “food challenge” to alleviate symptoms.  Or, if you are having trouble sleeping, ask what he/she recommends for lifestyle recommendations to improve sleep, like reducing sugar/caffeine, or doing yoga in the evenings before bed.  

Also, ask what your “exit” plan is for the medication. For example, how long does he/she expect you to need it? And, what you would need to do to make sure you can keep reducing the dose to eventually get off of it.

Finally, you can ask what other considerations you need to make for any side effects.  For example, if you’re going on an anti-biotic, get a recommendation for a pro-biotic.