Tuesday, July 7, 2009

How is Brian M. Green healthy?

Most of my behaviors that others would consider healthy actually started for me as a teenager as “neuroses.” At that age, feeling uncomfortable in my body, and not feeling masculine or attractive enough for what I thought was the “gay male standard” I was determined to at least stay “young and healthy looking.”

I have never “dieted,” but I haven’t eaten red meat since I was 17. At that age I read a lot about nutrition and learned to enjoy eating a balanced and healthy diet. I’ve never felt like I had to “sacrifice” eating or not eating certain foods. I’ve always been very active, whether that means walking, riding my bike, using the stairs instead of an elevator or escalator. I don’t “exercise,” but I’m the opposite of sedentary. I don’t smoke or use drugs, I have a daily skin care regimen and avoid excessive sun exposure, and drink (fairly) moderately :)

As I’ve grown older, and more comfortable with whom I am, my ideas of “healthy” have changed dramatically. I find that the single most important thing for me is a positive outlook and finding or creating positive energy around me. While I may not always allow myself the mental space to relax, I know I can always do so when I need to by enjoying my surroundings. An easy way for me to do this is to think about the beauty of nature or music or art, or watching dogs and children playing in the park, or simply thinking about all the things and experiences that I have been blessed with during my life.

While I promote annual health checkups and trust in health care professionals, I also believe in a healthy level of skepticism about medicine, treatment options, and health information. Prevention is always the best cure, and knowing how to stay healthy is half the battle. I believe in reading as much as I can about a health condition and making informed decisions after discussing options with a health care provider and being open to new studies and information.

-- Brian M. Green


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