I’m sure you’ve seen those commercials featuring a famous celebrity talking into the camera about an important social issue like education or the environment. It’s a long standing initiative by NBC titled “The More You Know” as a public service initiative to share knowledge to improve lives. Each commercial was thought provoking and personal with the underlying message that the more you know about a particular topic, you will make better decisions for yourself and those you care about.
Educating ourselves starts from birth. We learn to find our thumb to comfort ourselves, we learn to crawl then walk and run, feed ourselves, and play. It continues into school, summer employment, and athletics. Growing up, our brains are like a sponge, absorbing information to make us smarter. We knew that knowledge was a requirement to get us into adulthood so we could become an independent, contributing person in our society. However, reaching that benchmark does not mean that learning stops there. In fact, it is only the beginning. Learning is a life-long process that earns us new jobs, promotions, higher education, plus takes us through all of life’s transitions like parenting and retirement. You see, the more you know, the more you empower yourself to not only do the right thing, but to understand why it’s the right thing.
Many would argue that our present day health crisis is a result of a lack of knowledge coupled with taking things for granted. This path has limited our ideas of what is really good for us and how to keep ourselves truly healthy. We should never stop acquiring knowledge, especially when it comes to our health. Depending on who is delivering the message, the information shared might be skewed to fit a particular agenda. This phenomenon isn’t new. Politicians, lawyers, and lobbyists take some information and use it to fit whatever purpose they need it for – to help win votes, defend or prosecute an accused person, or gain support for new legislation. In the healthcare industry, pharmaceutical companies have the money to advertise everywhere. Over and over again. The question we need to ask ourselves is, does that mean that’s the truth?
Recently, cholesterol lowering drugs have come under fire for having an adverse affect on a person’s insulin level, causing a higher incidence of type 2 diabetes. Does this new truth affect the advertising on the companies who make this drug? The point is this, educate yourself on what it really means to be healthy. Do not take the latest fads, diets, and drugs at face value. The more you know, the more good you can do for yourself in the long run. Don’t let misconceptions dictate the course of wellness you take, either. Misconceptions about professions like chiropractors have kept people in pain longer than they should be. However, when people discover the immense benefits they are amazed.
Don’t let the volume of advertising you see on television and in print determine how to best care for yourself and those you love. Choose to go deeper and arm yourself with the best defense – knowledge. Because the more you know, the more you can empower yourself.