Take Control of Your Health: A Common-Sense Guide to Prevention
The centerpiece of Dr. Jeffrey Sterling’s preventive health care presentation to this month’s Black Health Matters Fall Summit was his list of 25 basic tips to improve and protect one’s health, delivered with style and humor. (“Start eating more fish—not talking about fried fish, not talking about Filet o’ Fish, talking about some good old-fashioned baked fish.”)
But his reason behind his list deserved just as much attention: The high cost of health care and the disparity in care for Black people in the United States, is drastically shortening lives, and every step to counteract that in everyday life must be taken immediately.
“It is absolutely ridiculous that we would think that our seeing our primary care physician once a year is a good enough equation for us to deliver adequate health care outcomes,’’ said Sterling, the CEO of the health care consulting firm Sterling Initiatives, and founder of SIMPCO, devoted to preventive health.
“What are we supposed to do those other 364 days out of the year?” he continued. “Well, the answer to that question is that we are supposed to be better stewards of our own health care. But we don’t even know how to be empowered and how to take advantage of things that are the most basic of preventive health care services.’’