As medical providers, we have the privilege of long term, deep, one-on-one relationships with our patients. This is really the heart of primary care medicine. We get to know folks in all dimensions – spiritual, emotional and physical – and therefore influence them deeply, connecting dots that may otherwise be missed. For example, did you know that depression increases the risk of heart disease and diabetes and is often caused by the metabolic abnormalities that lead to these conditions? In other words, it’s a vicious cycle.

Now throw into the mix our knowledge that exercise is one of the best therapies for depression and that antidepressant meds while often very helpful can cause sluggishness and weight gain. While being aware of all these factors, we can construct and closely follow an exercise regimen, providing encouragement and adding in meds only if clearly needed. We can also get our counselors involved for deeper spiritual/emotional support. Do you see how effective this approach can be? Your medical provider has not only scientific knowledge but perhaps more importantly a deep, long term caring relationship with you. Who better to partner with you for good health by watching for early signs of disease and pulling it out by the roots?