We present a message of hope and a starting point for patients to take control and live life to the fullest.
– derek olsen, rn
After many years providing bedside care between England and the U.S., I was working in an open-heart unit in California and I began to wonder if there wasn’t a better way to treat and heal my patients. There had to be some way to improve their diagnosis and possibly even prevent the issues they were having. I began researching and eventually found Dr. Dean Ornish’s book Program for Reversing Heart Disease. It gave me so much hope for these patients, beyond medication or surgery.
For the next few years, I recommended this book as a starting point for my cardiac patients to really take control of their lives and health IF they wanted to. I also discovered Dr. Fuhrman’s nutritional research on the impact that both diet and lifestyle have on almost all diseases – this became another tool to help my patients.
Despite learning about these programs, I talked the talk but didn’t walk the walk. By my 40’s I had put on weight, was on three BP meds, using cholesterol medication and had regular bouts of gout. I generally felt horrible most of the time. In 2011, I started to follow my own advice.
By August 2012, I had lost 20 pounds, I reduced my BP meds, was in a new relationship and feeling better than I had in years – things were looking up. That’s when I was hit by a car while riding my motorcycle. I ended up in the ICU for 2 weeks, 11 of those days on the ventilator followed by 2 more weeks on the ortho and rehab floors and then 8 months in a wheelchair, waiting for my leg to heal.
I was no longer able to work on my feet for any long period of time, but I was incredibly lucky to have a wonderful partner. She gave me the time to mend and the time to figure out what work I could do. Because of the accident I had the time to attend lifestyle and plant-based medicine conferences that really taught me about the true path to good health. By focusing on the right foods (and eliminating those that hurt us), exercising properly, participating in our communities and allowing love into our hearts, we have everything we need to heal.
This is why I believe in the power of Lifestyle Medicine. This is why I am passionate about DOKS Lifestyle Medicine. Not only do we present a message of hope, we provide the starting point for patients to take control, feel better and live life to the fullest
EDUCATION / certifications
Student Nurse, Barnet/Edgware – London England
Cooper Institute Life Coach
CHIP (Complete Health Improvement Program) Certified Facilitator