When you visit your healthcare provider, beware of a one-size-fits-all approach. Advice should be tailored to your current health concerns, past history of illness, and any significant genetically based illnesses in your family history.

A good example to note here is soy. While it may seem like an innocuous little bean, soy poses a number of potential health issues – and should always be avoided by women with estrogen-positive breast cancer.

Be selective when choosing a healthcare professional. He should listen carefully to your health concerns and respect your thoughts on treatment options. I can’t tell you how many stories I have heard about doctors who make their patients wait an hour, only to breeze in for a five-minute visit – just long enough to write a prescription. Or doctors who become defensive and indignant when their patients come armed with information or pose questions about alternative treatments.

If your doctor will not spend the time and make the effort to understand your personal situation and history, or if he is offended by your wish to educate yourself about your treatment options, seek a new doctor. Immediately. Likewise, if the advice you receive seems one-sided, or the doctor seems to be a “do as I say, not as I do” kind of guy, go elsewhere.

Evaluate your doctor the same way you would evaluate any service professional. You wouldn’t go to a financial planner who is destitute. Nor would you put much faith in a personal trainer who is obese. And neither should you patronize a doctor who appears not care for his own health.

[Ed. Note: One of the best ways to protect your health? Arm yourself with knowledge. You can get the latest health breakthroughs, inside information from leading health experts, and easy-to-follow strategies for improving your fitness and diet with ETR’s natural health newsletter.

The holidays are coming up, and nutrition expert Kelley Herring can help you sail through them without ruining your waistline. Check out her brand-new recipe e-books – Guilt-Free Desserts and Healthy Holiday Hors d’Oeuvres – for more than 60 healthy recipes you can easily make at home.]

Kelley Herring

Kelley Herring is the Founder & CEO of Healing Gourmet – a multimedia company that educates on how foods promote health and protect against disease. As a young adult, Kelley battled a debilitating health condition that went misdiagnosed by multiple doctors for more than a year. Finding no help from “modern medicine”, she turned to her own knowledge of biochemistry and her passion for health research. She soon learned that her symptoms were related to nutrition and within weeks, she charted a course back to health with nothing more than simple lifestyle changes and the power of the plate. The lessons she learned spawned the creation of Healing Gourmet.
Kelley is a firm believer in vigorous exercise, moderate sun exposure and delicious, healthy, home-cooked meals. She is also the creator of Healing Gourmet’s Personalized Nutrition Software and Editor-in-Chief of the Healing Gourmet book series published by McGraw-Hill including Eat to Fight Cancer, Eat to Beat Diabetes, Eat to Lower Cholesterol and Eat to Boost Fertility.