How can we live a “life less stressed?” With all that’s going on in our world — global crises to family fights, agricultural turmoil to 5G in our backyards — is it really possible to mitigate stress in our daily lives? Dr. Ron Ehrlich believes it IS possible, and today, he offers practical advice how to go about it.
Dr. Ron is an author, health advocate, and like Dr. Weston A. Price, a dentist with a holistic approach. Today, from his book, A Life Less Stressed, he covers the five pillars of his model that help us build physical, mental, and emotional resilience: sleep, breath, nourishment, movement, and thought.
He discusses why we shouldn’t shortchange ourselves on sleep, the importance of nasal breathing (while awake and sleeping), how to make absolutely certain we are eating a nutrient-dense diet, and more. This conversation reminds us to take control of our health, to build resilience, and be the best we can be.
Visit Dr. Ron’s website: drronehrlich.com
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Within the below transcript the bolded text is Hilda
Dr. Ron Ehrlich gives practical advice for how to mitigate stress in our lives & build resilience.
This is episode 222. Our guest is Dr. Ron Ehrlich. He is one of Australia’s leading holistic health advocates. He is a podcaster and the President of Australasian College of Nutritional Environmental Medicine. He has over 35 years of clinical practice. During that time, he has developed a comprehensive model of how stress impacts our lives and how to reduce it. He is the author of A Life Less Stressed.
In this episode, we cover the five pillars of his model that help us build health in the face of life stressors. The discussion covers so much, including why we need a good amount of sleep, the importance of nasal breathing, how to make certain you are eating a nutrient-dense diet, and much more. This conversation is perfect as we look to take control of our health, build resilience, and be the best we can be.
Welcome to Wise Traditions, Ron.
Thank you, Hilda. I’ve been looking forward to catching up with you again.
I love your perspective on holistic dentistry and regenerative agriculture. You get the whole big picture about wellness, don’t you?
People’s diets affect their oral health, and their oral health affects their whole health. It’s all connected.
I like to think so. It’s a learning experience for me. I’ve been in practice for over 40 years. I’m starting to get a grip on what’s going on. Along the way, I’ve picked up a lot of interesting perspectives and structure for asking all the right questions anyway.
Tell me about how you first got into this whole field of holistic dentistry and wellness. I know that you had finished dental school and were practicing in London when you had an a-ha moment when a patient came in that needed some adjustment on her crown. Is that right?
That’s what got me started on this journey. It was quite unexpected.
Tell us the details.
I was six months out of dental school working in London and a patient came in. Every patient was a new patient then for me. A part of their history was they had a crown done five years earlier that was uncomfortable and I looked at it. I thought, “We could adjust it probably a little bit higher.” I did that. She came back a week later and I said, “How’s the crown?” She went, “It’s fine. The interesting thing is these headaches that I’ve been getting every day for five years have gone.” That surprised me. In the few months after that, I looked at a few other patients and a similar thing happened.
I came to realize rather unexpectedly that dentistry was a whole lot more than just a tooth but there was a whole person attached to the tooth. If the tooth on the crown or anything I did were out of balance, it would affect, in this case, muscles around the head, neck, and jaw, causing chronic tension headaches and neck aches. As I’ve learned over the years, there’s a hell of a lot more going on there than that. It was a real a-ha moment that there was much more happening in the person’s mouth than their teeth and their gums.
They didn’t teach you that at medical school and dental school.
Dentistry is challenging, technically. The short answer to that is no, they didn’t. It’s such a shame that they didn’t. It’s a technically challenging course. When you are setting people out in the community and they are going to be picking up drills that they put in people’s mouths, you want to be sure that they know what they’re doing with the tooth. They are challenging the mouth.
By the time you get out of dental school, you’ve had enough experience to do a filling, a crown, or some minor surgical work. Looking at the whole person, it’s a pity that it wasn’t an introductory part. Once you graduate, this is the beginning of your journey and not the end. I often joke and say, “I wish I knew as much as I thought I did the day I graduated.”
The day I graduated, I thought, “I’ve done five years of dental school. I’ve been taught by the best professors in Australia. I know it all.” I quickly realized, “No, I don’t. This is the beginning of a journey and not the end.” It’s been a learning experience ever since. People often do ask, what is holistic dentistry? It’s quite simply a dentist with an attitude. That attitude is that there’s a whole person attached to this mouth, and there is an awful lot going on in the person’s mouth that they need to be aware of.
As a matter of fact, there’s a whole lot going on in the whole body that impacts oral health. Isn’t that so?
Absolutely. The mouth is the beginning of the digestive tract. If you think breaking down food and preparing it for digestion is important, a well-functioning masticatory system is important. It’s the gateway to the respiratory tract. If you’ve got a narrow jaw or crowded teeth, and this was something that I know Weston A. Price explored to his surprise, not only is a narrow jaw or crowded teeth but it also shapes the upper airway. The nasal passages and sinuses and the way you breathe can be affected. It’s the home of the two most chronic infections known to man, woman, or child, tooth decay and gum disease.
If the hardest thing in your body decays because of what you eat, imagine what’s going on with the rest of your body. You don’t have to. You have to look at the statistics in both our societies in America and Australia. There’s the whole toxicity issue and chronic pain issue. People’s diet affects their oral health and their oral health affects their whole health. It’s all connected.
I want to return to something you said. You said that the hardest part of our body decays because of what we eat. In Western society and a lot of the world now, we think the teeth decay because we don’t have proper oral hygiene.
That’s an interesting one. Hundreds of years ago, tooth decay was rampant. It affected almost every tooth and everybody’s mouth. Tooth decay has certainly reduced in the last several years. Interestingly, it’s reduced in both fluoridated and non-fluoridated countries, the key being that people are now brushing their teeth more. Tooth decay remains the most common, non-communicable, infectious disease in men, women, or children.
According to the statistics, 90% of the adult population, that’s anybody over twenty, have had some experience of tooth decay. That’s still quite an extraordinary statistic. Even with oral hygiene, that is still happening. Diet plays a big part in this whole process. Looking at some of the preventable, chronic, non-infectious diseases, degenerative diseases that are now common in our society, heart disease, cancer, 80 autoimmune diseases, diabetes, mental health, all connected to our food. Overlaid on that is the fact that 90% of the population have some experience of tooth decay. There’s a lot of connections.
I’m letting that sink in for a moment. With all of our modern techniques, the electric toothbrushes, the floss, the fluoridation of water, which I understand isn’t to our benefit, be that as it may. All these supposedly advances and yet we’re besieged by chronic illnesses.
Let’s not dismiss it. Oral hygiene is an important thing. Those brushing and flossing and all of that are important because it is the reason why tooth decay has come down globally in the last several years. It’s come down across the globe but it remains such a huge problem. It’s something that people need to give serious thought to.
The fact that you tie our oral health to the nutrient-dense foods or the nutrient-poor foods that we eat, is that related to your study of the work of Dr. Price? Tell us when you came across his work.
Part of my journey early on, within a year or two of graduating, was exploring this. I went around and did a lot of courses and I stumbled upon one in the early ‘80s, about 1982 or 1983, where a model of stress was presented to me which said, “Our health is affected by stress.” It was quite a breakthrough at that point because stress wasn’t the word it is today, ubiquitous. He said, “Our stress is a combination of emotional, environmental, postural, nutritional, and dental stress.” That’s the model of healthcare that I’ve been using in my practice for over 35 years.
Being in my mid-twenties at the time, I wasn’t comfortable with dealing with the emotional stress part. Environmental stress was a new thing. The environment wasn’t talked about a whole lot more. Rachel Carson had talked about it but it wasn’t as accepted as it is today. I explored nutrition early on and I did my first nutrition course in about 1981. That led me to explore. I’ve stumbled upon an old copy of Western A. Price’s book and I was blown away. This guy had set out looking for tooth decay and uncovered a hell of a lot more than he expected. I still refer to it as probably the most important bit of research ever done and probably even more important today than it was then.
I couldn’t agree with you more. How did you apply it to your life? How did it change your dental practice?
There were four things that I consider. I read a chapter in a nutrition book in 1996 as a result of all this and it’s called Complementary Therapies in Dentistry. The overlying principle was that all food should be whole, a variety, free of sugar, white flour, and preservatives. They were guiding principles. The whole journey around what nutrient-dense food means has been an experience that still goes on to this day. Our biggest challenge is that the food that we consume is nutrient-dense. Understand what that means and why we all need to be aware of the whole food and agriculture industry. It’s something that affects us all.
You and I were speaking about how, in your podcast, you interviewed many people on the theme of regenerative agriculture. You are digging deep into the roots of where our nutrient-dense food comes from and why that matters.
I did a review and I thought, “Here it is.” I laid out what all my guests were particularly talking about. Regenerative agriculture was a theme we came back to often from different perspectives. Food and agriculture should be on everybody’s mind. It affects everything important to us. It affects our health and our environment. It’s a cultural thing. We can see what’s happening in terms of immigration as systems break down and how much disruption occurs in immigration in various parts. It affects food security and food safety. It’s a whole world and whole-body experience and the two are intimately connected.
Our whole world is connected to the land. We eat every day. This is something we do. At least we try to eat every day to nourish ourselves. The whole world should be concerned about this. It informs our health on a lot of levels. You contributed to a book on complementary dental therapies. You’ve also written the book A Life Less Stressed. Can you talk to us a little bit about what motivated you to write that and what the pillars are?
Over the years, I have explored those five stressors. They are emotional, environmental, postural, nutritional, and dental. A Life Less Stressed is something that I still to this day aspire to. It’s certainly not autobiographical. Everybody that I’d say, “I’ve written a book called A Life Less Stressed.” They go, “I must read that.” I hope they do because almost everybody acknowledges that stress is impacting their health in some way.
Clinically, in my practice, I defined stress as anything that had the potential to compromise your immune system or to promote chronic inflammation. I viewed our health journey as a balancing act, if you like. On the one side, if stress is affecting us in that way, compromising our immune system and promoting chronic inflammation, and it’s a problem, then it always helps if you’re going to solve a problem to know what that problem is. Looking at stress from that five stressor model is a good way of identifying and minimizing the stressors that affect your health and life, mentally, physically, emotionally.
Food and agriculture should be in everybody’s mind. It affects everything that is important to us.
The other side of the balancing beam is to build resilience. In our modern world, given everything we’re exposed to, it’s arguably never been more important to build resilience into your life. If you’re going to do that, it helps to have a structure. I’ve come up with five pillars, this is common, and those five pillars are sleep, breath, nourish, move, and think.
Our world is becoming more complex, confronting, challenging, and stressful. The solutions are remarkably simple. On a personal level, focusing on those five pillars is important. They’re all interconnected. Thinking of them in a linear way is not necessarily holistic but let’s talk about them one by one. Sleep is an important one. This is confirmed by lots of research that your sleep is your built-in non-negotiable life support system. I’ve heard that said and I love that phrase and it’s true.
A consistently good night’s sleep will give you the mental, physical, and emotional energy to deal with the challenges of life. Every single measure of health is affected. A consistently good night’s sleep is a function of quantity. For 90% of the population, that is getting between 7 and 9 hours sleep a night. Interestingly, the people that only get 3 to 4 hours sleep a night know they’re not getting enough sleep. Every health measure is affected by that.
It’s the group that sleeps six hours a night that is the most interesting because they think they’re getting enough sleep but they perform as badly as the 3 to 4 our people. Our hormones, memories, emotional health, cardiovascular, and all-cause of death are affected. It goes on and on and on. It’s a question of quantity and quality, which means putting your head on the pillow isn’t enough. You’ve got to be breathing well, while you’re asleep.
You are hitting the nail on the head. I heard a story of a DJ in the 1950s who decided he was going to pull a three-day no sleep marathon and it was one of those little build-some-buzz-for-our-radio-station things. People came in to watch him. He started the little experiment by waving at the audience. He was in a great mood. As time wore on, being sleep deprived, his mood went sour. He became anxious and irritable. He never recovered. He ended up losing his job. His whole life shifted because of the intense sleep deprivation he had. Our situation is different, but it goes to show how much our body depends on that sleep to restore itself and to be properly functioning.
Hormones are affected. Growth hormone goes down. We need growth hormones for repair. Insulin resistance goes up. That’s the common denominator in many diseases. Leptin, which helps us metabolize fat, goes down, so we become more obese. Ghrelin, a hormone in our stomach that tells us we’re hungry, goes up. We start to make irrational decisions.
It’s not just weakness. It’s hormones going out of balance. That part of our DNA that promotes our immune system is downregulated, so our immune system goes down. That part of our DNA that promotes chronic inflammation goes up. A part of our brain that’s involved in memory, the hippocampus, shuts down. That part of our brain that affects emotions called the amygdala goes crazy.
When you’re not getting enough sleep, of course, you’re more emotional because that part of your brain called the amygdala is firing on all cylinders. It’s the big one. A consistently good night’s sleep is important. It’s not 1 or 2 nights. This is a lifelong goal. The key to a consistently good night’s sleep is to prioritize it, make it important. That leads you into a whole discussion about sleep hygiene and what that means.
There are a lot of tips that we can give and I’m sure we can direct people to your website for resources on that. I’ve made it a priority. I’m thankful for the ways in which it’s restorative sleep that I’m getting allows me to function properly. Let’s go on to your next pillar. Breathing is important even as we sleep, right?
Absolutely. The secret to living a long life is to keep breathing for as long as we can. That’s not a big breakthrough. The secret to living our lives in good health is to breathe well for as long as you can. There’s a big difference between breathing and breathing well. On a localized level, breathing is all about warming, humidifying, and filtering the air before we take it into our lungs.
Breathing well involves breathing through your nose, slowly and gently breathing from the diaphragm. If you’ve got a set of lungs, you may as well use the whole lot. Breathing from the diaphragm as well. Nasal breathing and from the diaphragm have whole-body effects that are quite profound. It affects body chemistry, the acid-alkaline balance. It affects nitric oxide production, which is an important regulator. The use of the diaphragm on 8 to 12 breaths per minute slowly but gently also massages internal organs and also promotes pelvic floor muscle tone.
The whole body effect and the way you breathe also affect your head posture. If you’re a mouth breather, you’re far more likely to have a head forward posture, which in our world is a big enough problem anyway as people look at their computers or look down at their phones. If you’re a mouth breather, that’s a real problem too. Breathing well is another important pillar.
I’m happy that you’re bringing this up. This has been at the forefront of my mind. It’s getting more attention in the US, how we breathe. I’ve been making an effort to breathe more through my nose, be intentional, pay attention to how I’m breathing. How can we possibly do that while we’re sleeping, Ron?
We promote a company in America and it has got a wonderful product. The use of micropore tape, a little bit of hypoallergenic, low allergy, thin paper tape on the mouth at night can be an interesting thing to try. Before people rush off to do this at night, they can do a two-minute test in their own home diagnostically.
What they do is they take this thin hypoallergenic tape and put it on their mouth to keep their lips closed and then breathe gently and slowly through your nose. One of three things will happen, the first alternative is you’re breathing well through your nose. That’s great. You can do this at night. The second alternative is a person thinks, “My nose is blocked. I won’t be able to do this.” Paradoxically, when they put this tape on and they breathe gently, as their body chemistry corrects itself, their nose miraculously unblocks. In which case, they can try it at night.
The third alternative is they put the tape on and after ten minutes, they cannot breathe through their nose. Take the tape off and go and see either an integrative doctor who can assess why your nose is blocked and whether you should be avoiding certain foods. There may be something within your house, mold or dust mite, that is causing your nasal passages to be inflamed. Maybe they need to go and see an EMT specialist whether there’s a physical obstruction. That’s a diagnostic test that can take you two minutes to do.
Once you’ve established that either your nose is fine or you thought your nose was blocked but unblocked, then you can use it at night. It’s good to practice this while you’re watching TV or reading a book, not just before you go to bed. The use of micropore tape on the mouth has had some interesting research done.
There was an article in the Journal of Otolaryngology – Head & Neck Surgery in 2015, which did some fascinating study showing that it was an effective way of even treating mild obstructive sleep apnea. I’ve been using it personally for the last several years. I thought it would overcome my snoring. It didn’t do that but it did promote a better night’s sleep. I still use it to this day. I’ve recommended that too to many patients. We gift them this $2 roll of tape.
A company that is involved in the sleep space has come up with a product called SomniFix. We’ve got it in our practice and I give a sample out to everybody with their roll. That works well. My point is practicing that at night can have a profound impact on your sleep and on your energy levels. It is not the be-all and end-all. There are little nuances attached to it. That’s an example of how you can use something simple.
That’s exciting. I know that’s not the only brand. People can look around. It’s an intriguing concept. It’s great for sleep. It might not be so good for the love life.
I demonstrate this in my surgery when I show them how to use it. I do warn people, I say, “Don’t walk into your bedroom with tape on your mouth because it’ll send the wrong message to your partner. It’s not the most romantic thing to do.” That can be a nice little ritual that you develop where you caringly and carefully put a little bit of tape on the bedside table of your partner and say, “Have a good night’s sleep.” You can build a good ritual into it.
Coming up, Ron breaks down exactly what we need to eat for a nutrient-dense diet and he hits on the last three pillars for A Life Less Stressed.
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Another pillar is nourish. Nourish is a big one. Getting a good night’s sleep and breathing well while you’re asleep helps you make better decisions about what you’re going to eat. This is very much as we said about a nutrient-dense diet. There are 118 elements in the periodic table and the human body needs 60 of them. We know 25 to 30 of those are. A nutrient-dense diet means that you are getting a good spread of those 60 elements that we need.
We hear a lot about plant-based diets. Vegetables grown in healthy soil are important. Vegetables are not without their problems. You could have oxalates, phytates, FODMAPs, a whole range of things in vegetables. Let’s say vegetables are an important part of a diet. Healthy fats are critical. What we’ve been told over the years about what a healthy fat is wrong.
It has set us up for all of these disease problems we’ve had. Healthy fats are traditional fats, fats that we’ve had a relationship with for thousands of years. Those fats often come from animals that have been ethically grown, raised, nurtured, and honored. We’ve had a relationship with animals throughout our entire human history.
Moving is important, and it turns out less is more. You don’t have to do a lot to make a difference.
We were talking about a hero of both of ours, Allan Savory. Allan Savory said to me and I’m sure he said to you too, that it’s not the resource that’s the problem, it’s the way it’s managed. Things need to be managed in a holistic context. This is why my focus is so much on regenerative agriculture. Animals are not the problem, although the way they are managed is the problem. They are very much part of the solution.
Healthy fats from healthy animals, of course, olive oil, and nut oils are okay as well. Weston A. Price foundation is fantastic at expressing that seed oils are a major problem to our health even though they are endorsed by many health authorities. Our health story is a great economic model. It’s not a good health model. Healthy fats and a moderate amount of ethically grown protein. Also, what’s good for an animal is generally good for us. What’s good for the animal and us is generally good for the planet. That’s a win-win as far as I’m concerned.
Water is still the best drink. Although getting it to our house is one thing and what we do with it once we turn the tap on is another. In my home, I have a reverse osmosis water filter. It strips every mineral, chemical, everything out of the water. I take a few grains of Himalayan rock salt and I put that in the water, bingo, I’ve got pure and clean mineral water that is available on my tap. Salt is another thing that’s been demonized. We need salt and good salt. A processed salt only has two minerals in it, sodium and chloride. A healthy salt like Himalayan rock salt or Celtic Sea Salt has up to 40, 50, or 60 elements in it. That’s an important part of our diet.
Your words are music to our ears. At the Weston Price Foundation, we’re all about nutrient density. We know how that helps us function well on all these levels and that eliminates a lot of stressors on the body. When we eat processed foods that contain preservatives or additional additives and chemicals that our bodies don’t know what to do with, that’s a stressor. By eating nutrient-dense foods, we’re going to take those pseudo foods out of our diet and let our bodies function with the food that they can best absorb and make use of. Your next pillar surprised me, Ron. It’s postural. Is that right?
It’s to move. This is the balancing beam here, Hilda. On one side are the five stressors and on the other side are the five pillars. What sits in between are our genes and our epigenetics, the way our genes express themselves. That’s a whole other discussion. The other pillar is move. That’s rather liberating when you look into it.
It turns out that less is more. What I mean by that is if you did 10, 15, or maybe 20 minutes of high-intensity intermittent training incorporating functional movements, meaning bending and stretching, twisting and turning, pulling and pushing, they are functional movements. If you incorporate them along with some weight-bearing exercise into a 15 or 20-minute workout, your metabolism will be raised for 24 to 48 hours. If you go for a ten-kilometer run, it might be raised for 6 to 8 hours.
People go for long runs for lots of reasons and a lot of it is meditation. It’s relaxing. There’s a whole range of reasons. We don’t have to do that. Less is more. All we need to do is 3 or 4 times a week, those 15, 20-minute workouts. Also, incorporating walking into your life. Walking is a wonderful exercise because it’s safe, social, sustainable, and you get out into the world. That is another thing.
Postural stress also involves our relationship with our technology. For the last few million years, it’s been quite a challenge balancing this ten-pound ball on our spine, which we call our head. That’s been a big challenge, posturally, for us. If you tilt your head down 5, 10, 15, or 20 degrees as you look in any public space and you’ll see people looking down at their devices, suddenly you turn that ten-pound ball into a 40 or 50-pound ball and that creates postural stresses.
Our sleep position is postural stress. If you sleep on your stomach, that’s the worst position to sleep in for your head, neck, jaw, airway, and lower back. Sleeping on your back is a little bit of a problem, particularly as we get older because our jaw drops back and our tongues attach to our lower jaw. That can block the airway and cause snoring or obstruction. Sleeping on your side turns out to be the best.
I got into chronic pain early on in my career. I did a lot of interesting research with a podiatrist. Foot mechanics are an important picture to consider, particularly when people are in chronic lower back pain problems. That’s a problem in our society. Foot mechanics are potential postural stress. The last one is how we sit on the toilet. For millions of years, we’ve been squatting. Our large intestine, our colon, our rectum is well designed or it has evolved to be in that squatting position.
God bless having a toilet. I’m not criticizing having a toilet. The seating position on the toilet can be postural stress. Having a little stool around the toilet that allows you to squat while sitting on the toilet can have a profound impact. Moving is important. It turns out less is more. You don’t have to do a lot to make a difference.
That’s encouraging. A lot of times, we think more is more. We’ve got to be sweating profusely and giving our all until we’re exhausted. What I hear you saying is a variety of movements is important but it doesn’t need to be as intense or as long to get the benefit that we need.
That’s right and it’s quite liberating.
Talk to us about the last pillar.
The last pillar is think. It’s one thing to say we don’t have much control over events and people perhaps in our lives but we do have control about how we think about it. That’s easier said than done. That’s why it’s important to build resilience. That’s why a good night’s sleep is important and breathing and nourish. Mood and food have a lot of connections.
I referenced in my book the work of Martin Seligman, who is a professor of psychology on the East Coast of America. He’s been a champion of positive psychology. He’s focused on health and wellness and had what he called a PERMA model. The P stands for positive emotions, being positive. The E stands for engagement. This is a way of thinking about how you impact your health and wellness. Are your thoughts positive? You have control over that. Are you engaged in what you do? That’s important.
The R is for relationships. There’s an interesting study that’s been going for over 75 out of Harvard. It’s the longest study on health, wellness, and longevity that’s ever been done. They found the best predictor of health, wellness, and longevity were relationships. If you are fortunate enough to have a significant other, that’s fantastic. It doesn’t rely on that. It’s about relationships with family, with friends, with the community, with sporting clubs or churches, or whatever it is that you’re connected to. Connecting with real people, not just friends on Facebook, not just texting X, Y, or Zed, but real face-to-face people is important. That’s the R.
The M in the PERMA model is meaning. Is there meaning in what you do, the relationships that you have, and the time that you spend doing whatever you do? The A is acknowledged. These are some accomplishments in what you’ve done. Interestingly, there’s been an added letter. The letter added to the end is H, PERMAH. The H stands for health. Focusing on health makes it a lot easier to think more positively.
The thing that I have learned most from that whole journey, if you like, is the power of gratitude. We have so much when we reflect on it to be grateful for. It’s such a simple thing to do that is good for us and good for the people we express gratitude to. That’s a powerful tool that we should all be using a hell of a lot more.
It flips a switch in me from bitterness, anger, or unhappiness to positivity. By that simple act of thinking what I’m grateful for as my head hits the pillow at the end of the day or taking a little time to journal at the beginning of the day sets the course for my mood for my day or my sleep. I found it to be a phenomenal tool.
Thoughts are real things. There are little chemicals called neuro-transmitters and they attach to our cell membranes and they cause our genes to express themselves in a particular way. We need to build resilience that allows us to have thoughts, which are promoting good health. It’s easier said than done. I’ll acknowledge that. Having a structure to reduce stress and build resilience helps achieve that.
This conversation is pointing us in the right direction to thinking about our health and what the stressors are on our lives and considering pivoting and adopting some of these techniques and tools that you’ve given us in the conversation. Thank you so much.
It’s a pleasure, Hilda. Thank you.
I have one final question for you. I know there are five pillars. I don’t know if you’re going to pick one of those. If the readers could do one thing to improve their health, what would you recommend that they do, Ron?
The best predictor of health, wellness, and longevity is relationships.
The most important thing, without a doubt, is to accept that your health is too important to leave to anybody else. You have to take control of it yourself. That is an important step. If you’re going to do that, then you need to have a structure by which to do it and we’ve talked about some of that. The most important step in that process is to accept that you are responsible for your own health and work out the balance.
We live in a real world. I’m not 100% all the time. You’ve got to work out what your percentage is. If it’s a 50/50 split of doing good things and not-so-good things, that’s not good enough. You’ve got to work out what your percentage is. For me, 80/20 is what I consider achievable and doable. When I’m on fire, I’m 90/10, doing 90% great things for my health. I live in the modern world 10% of the time. Give me a break. I’m not perfect. If I ever get to 100%, I might be a social outcast and I’m almost certain my family wouldn’t want to even talk to me. It is about prioritizing your health and finding that comfort, that sweet spot where you’re being in the modern world and being realistic about how you approach it.
That is a great word to end on. We’re going to do that. We appreciate your time, Ron. Thank you so much.
Thank you for having me, Hilda.
Our guest was Dr. Ron Ehrlich. Learn more from him and his work on his website DrRonEhrlich.com. You can find me on my Holistic Hilda YouTube channel. Thanks for reading, everybody.
- Australasian College of Nutritional Environmental Medicine
- A Life Less Stressed
- Unstress with Dr Ron Ehrlich
- Journal of Otolaryngology – Head & Neck Surgery
- Holistic Hilda – YouTube
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