totally unnecessary procedures during annual exams, including screenings and tests that require more patients’ time and our health care dollars.
A 2009 study showed that, for many cancer screening tests, a patient who undergoes 14 screenings has more than a 50 percent chance of a false positive.
So what can we do now?
Start being accountable for your own health. No one can do this for you. You must move. A lot. Any daily movement is great. Walking 10,000 steps is great. But if want to bring it up a notch to optimize? Add little 30 second sprints to any exercise outing. Here’s a rule of thumb about how fast sprints should feel: make sure you break into a sweat and the thought of doing it more than 30 seconds makes you want to die.
Exercise daily, and no marathon sessions of ‘cardio’, just short bursts of what I call Perfectly Paleo Exercise. Strength building, stretching, and getting out in the natural world- these things build true strength, health, and fitness. Gyms are another place to avoid- do it yourself, at home and outside.
You really may not need yearly physicals unless you have underlying health conditions. Nearly 80% of all chronic diseases can be combated by proper diet or exercise.
You may not need to see the doctor for colds, or a stomach flu, or a fever that lasts less than one week either. Besides cancer screenings, there’s really nothing you’ll get out of your yearly physical that you can’t do yourself. Save yourself some money and time and take care of your body yourself. If you’re exercising with sprints, eating a healthy diet low in sugar, and generally feeling good, then checking in with the doctor every few years is quite adequate.