Health Matters a great deal

Health matters a great deal. It has always mattered but for the past year and a half, it has become the topic of conversation in all circles of society and the subject of health remains at the center of every decision we make on a daily basis, where the medicals, the politicians, the economists, the lawmakers, and law enforcement people take their turn to opine, legislate and execute decisions that affect us all on a daily basis on based on our health. Health is at the center of everything we do today. This blog article is based on some extracts from Chapter 22 of my book “This Is Your Quest“.

Native American Theory of Existence “Everything on the Earth has a purpose, every disease an herb to cure it and every person a mission.”

From the beginning of time, health mattered a great deal

Life in the Ancient World was a dangerous endeavor. For most of history, living was a dangerous occupation with most people at risk of dying from war, famine, disease, epidemic, or childbirth with the average lifespan much lower than it is today. In those days, people relied heavily on the good graces that their favorite Gods were willing to dispense over them in order to maneuver all those perils. People prayed and made offerings to their favorite Gods in order to keep them healthy. A healthy person was recognized as being in the “goods books” of the Gods; being sick on the other hand, meant that you were being punished by the Gods for some bad deed you did. In Greek society, the most favored God for healing was Asklepios. Sick people traveled for days to seek healing in “Asklepion” or sanitariums. These sanitariums were similar in some ways to the modern spa. Asklepions were located in remote and beautiful areas and provided baths, healthy food, and sanctuary rooms intended specifically for sleep and meditation.

Health matters a great deal. Never underestimate the power of ginger and lemon tea. Photo by freepik via

By the 5th century BC, physicians started to develop and exercise a more scientific medical profession. Hippocrates, the most famous physician of antiquity, started writing medical textbooks. From such writings, we see that ancient physicians knew that draining and cleaning infected wounds promoted healing and they knew of certain herbs that had healing and disinfecting properties. Wild ginger for example and a particular clay found on the Greek Island of Lemnos was believed to be helpful for ailments such as dysentery. The clay contained elements such as kaolin and bentonite, which are used in modern medicines to treat diarrhea. During those times, healing was very much focused on the idea of a body-mind relationship. Hippocrates believed that the body and mind are in unity, and to affect one is to affect the other.

Health mattered a great deal for Hippocrates of Kos the father of Modern Medicine

Hippocrates of Kos[1] also known as the “Father of Modern Medicine” is considered one of the most outstanding figures in the history of medicine. Hippocrates is credited with being the first person to believe that diseases were caused naturally, and not because of superstition and Gods. He separated the discipline of medicine from religion, believing and arguing that disease was not a punishment inflicted by the Gods, but rather the product of environmental factors, diet, and living habits. Hippocrates conducted the first clinical studies by observing people and comparing their health habits. He noticed that bodies grow relaxed and sluggish through sedentary lives which led to various illnesses. Those who walked more stayed well longer. So, he often prescribed exercise. This was a very forward way of thinking coming from someone who lived in the Ancient World.

Health matters a great deal. Hippocrates the father of Modern Medicine. Photo by freepik via

Fast-forward to today, this concept of walking every day to make you healthier has been vindicated through many studies; a recent National Cancer Institute study conducted on more than 650,000 people found that those who walk briskly for just 150 minutes a week, or 22 minutes a day, gained an average of 3.4 years of life expectancy.[2] No drugs required and so simple!

Hippocratic medicine was humble and passive. The therapeutic approach was based on the healing power of nature. According to this doctrine, the body contains within itself the power to re-balance and heal itself. Hippocrates was reluctant to administer drugs, the medicine he prescribed was very kind to the patient, treatment was gentle, and emphasized keeping the patient clean and sterile. His favorite treatment included fasting and the consumption of apple cider vinegar. He also used potent drugs but only when absolutely necessary.

Hippocrates meticulously examined his patients’ urine, stools, pus, and sweat; but he also observed their personalities, home environment, relationships, diet and even their facial expressions before diagnosing and treating them. He believed that it was impossible to understand illness without understanding the whole person.

Let your food be your medicine and your medicine be your food. The strength that is in each of us is our greatest doctor. Man must harmonize mind and body. It is nature that heals the sick.


He recognized that when people ate mainly a fresh, plant-based diet, they developed fewer diseases. Hundreds of years later, this concept has now been proven clinically; a new study has shown that an intensive weight management program can reverse type 2 diabetes.[3] Hippocrates’ primary form of treatment was usually improving a patient’s diet.

Everything in excess is opposed to nature. The same remedy could heal in one dose but could cause harm in greater doses. Unless you have real evidence that a medical treatment was helpful, you shouldn’t use it. To do nothing could also be a good remedy, depending on the case.


[1] Hippocrates of Kos (460 – 370 BC – Greece) – Physician. Best known for being the father of modern medicine. The “Hippocratic Oath” that newly qualified doctors take, bears his name.

[2] National Institutes of Health – Increased physical activity associated with lower risk of 13 types of cancer – 13 May 2016 –

[3] A new study – the Diabetes Remission Clinical Trial (DiRECT) suggests that remission of type 2 diabetes may be achievable through intense weight management programs supported by routine primary care –

And this, my dear friend, is your Quest.

Personal Note

DDI Chat – Personal Growth – One-to-one Chat with Joanne Reed

In addition to publishing my articles on my website, I have also been publishing on Medium. I have been working closely for the past months with Data-Driven Investor (DDI) Publication.  DDI has recently launched a new marketplace/platform where people can book a paid one-to-one session with an expert of their choice.  DDI asked me to join their panel of advisors/experts in the Leadership, Coaching, and Personal Growth category.  Here is my profile. If you wish to book a one-to-one chat with me you can do so on this platform.

For more on this subject you can purchase my book This is Your Quest online at BookLocker, from Amazon or from Barnes & Noble.  The Ebook version is available on Amazon (Kindle), Barnes & Noble (Nook), Apple (iBooks) & Kobo. Check out my Amazon Author Page here or my listing on

Life is a beach

Here comes the summer, which is often associated with trips to the beach, splashing around in the ocean, or lazing around perfecting your tan. I love the beach and being born and raised on an Island (Reunion) was very fortunate because the beach is never far away. Life is a beach. You should make the most of it.

Did you know that the beach used to be a treatment prescribed by doctors? Sea-bathing as a form of therapy was invented by the British, the same nation that gave the world the steam engine and the Industrial Revolution. The beach became a popular destination during Britain’s Industrial Revolution mostly because doctors were prescribing it. The British doctors’ orders were to go to the beach to breathe in the fresh air, soak up vitamin D, de-stress, exercise, and boost your immune system.

It’s widely believed that spending just an hour outside on a sunny day can supply a human with their daily dose of Vitamin D, which is credited with helping people get stronger bones, healthier teeth, helping your immune system function properly, and walking barefoot at the beach can help you save a few bucks on pedicure treatment. Sand is a natural exfoliant and will help you shed dead skin.

Research finds that spending time by the ocean makes you feel all Zen and meditative. The color blue has been found to be associated with feelings of calm and peace. Staring at the ocean actually changes our brain waves’ frequency and puts us into a mild meditative and creative state.

“B.E.A.C.H.: Best Escape Anyone Can Have.”


In addition to all the health benefits, you can learn a few things or two if you take some advice from the beach, the ocean, or marvel at the sunset over the horizon.

Life is a beach, make the most of it

Life is a beach. I bumped into Princess Arielle/Little Mermaid. Photo taken by Joanne Reed featuring Alize Reed. Boucan Cannot. Reunion Island

The beach is that place where you feel the warmth of the sun, the soft white sand, the ripples of water, as the waves crash to the shore, then pull away again for another encore. That place where you can smell the salty ocean air mixed with suntan lotion.

Advice from the beach

Life is a beach. Have a Blue State of Mind. Photo taken by Alize Reed. Boucan Cannot. Reunion Island

Wallace J, Nicholas a marine biologist and author of the book “The Blue Mind” believes that we all have a special connection to the color blue. It turns out that the blue color symbolizes serenity, stability, inspiration, wisdom, and health. The blue color represents the soothing effect of nature on the human mind.

When we spend time on our vacation at the beach or by the lakeside, we look for a sense of calm and clarity from these water sources. But what if you don’t have the opportunity to go to the beach or to a lake? I suggest that you head to the bathroom and have a long shower. Have you ever wondered why the best ideas always seem to strive your mind when you are taking a shower?

The relaxing solitary environment in your shower allows the brain to wander freely, you are more open to new ideas and can feel the creative spark. It’s a place where people can be unburdened (if only for a few minutes) by outside distraction, a place where you are not trying to accomplish anything. This allows our brain to shut down, which allows another part of our brain to light up.

Soak up the sun. Sea the best in others. Take time to play. Navigate life’s shifting sands. Don’t be gull-ible. Roll with the waves. Breeze through each day! Ilan Shamir

Ilan Shamir

Advice from the Ocean

Life is a beach. Advice from the Ocean. Make waves! Photo taken by Joanne Reed featuring Alize Reed. Boucan Cannot. Reunion Island

The ocean is ever-changing and constant at the same time, rhythmic, random, and unpredictable. One should never take the ocean for granted, it can go from calm and inviting to menacing and dangerous, and if you pay attention, you can learn some valuable life lessons from the ocean.

Be shore of yourself. Come out of your shell. Take time to relax and coast. Avoid pier pressure. Sea life’s beauty. Don’t get tide down. Make waves!

Ilan Shamir

Advice from the sunset

You cannot talk about the beach and the ocean without mentioning the sunset. At the end of each day, you should let your worries drift away. Sea life’s beauty. Adopt to changes tides. Harbor strength and perseverance no matter what.

Show your true colors. Take time to reflect. End Each Day with beauty. Make a dramatic exit. Stop and be present. Keep your inner fire burning. Be amazing!

Ilan Shamir

Life is a bitch, a helpful lesson from the oyster

Life is a beach. Don’t get tide down. Photo taken by Joanne Reed featuring Alize reed. Boucan Cannot. Reunion Island

Pearls are the result of a biological process, i.e. the oyster’s way of protecting itself from foreign substances. The formation of natural pearls begins when a foreign substance slips into the oyster between the mantel and the shell which irritates the mantle. The oyster’s natural reaction is to cover up that irritant to protect itself. The mantle covers the irritant with layers of the same nacre substance that is used to create the shell which eventually forms the pearl.

Sometimes, life can be a bitch. The lessons we can learn from the oyster is that when external factors enter and disrupt your life; the normal reaction would be to try to get rid of this external element in order to get back to your usual state; but once you realize that there is nothing you can do to get rid of it, the best thing to do is to settle down and go with the flow; and before you realize it this process could lead you to produce the most priceless and beautiful thing in the world.

Excellence takes time. Achievement takes patience. It is a pursuit that must be tenacious. When external events cause a disruption in your life and once you realize that there is nothing you can do to eliminate these events; think of this irritation, not with fear and anxiety, but as a pearl in the making.

And this, my dear companion, is your Quest.

For more on this subject you can purchase my book This is Your Quest online at BookLocker, from Amazon or from Barnes & Noble.  The Ebook version is available on Amazon (Kindle), Barnes & Noble (Nook), Apple (iBooks) & Kobo. Check out my Amazon Author Page here or my listing on

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