Six Health Mistakes You Don’t Want to Make

I am always getting questions like “is it okay to microwave my food?” or “which bottled water is the safest to drink?” or “which supplements are the best?” and while these questions do relate to our health, there are much bigger issues you should focus on if you want to ensure your long-term health.

Big Mistakes

I’ve created this list of top Health Mistakes You Don’t Want to Make because it will give you an idea where to best focus your energies.

Yes, you should consider which bottled water you should be drinking (if you should be drinking any bottled water), but the areas Health Mistakes below are where you are going to get the most bang for your buck. Some of them are not easy (actually most are not that easy), and the reason why most people don’t do them. But choosing to take care of you requires a bit of dedication because we live in a world that supports our ill health and not our good health.

Take a look the following Health Mistakes and see how well you are taking care of yourself.

1. Not Investing in Yourself

Most people will throw money at a new car, new TV, or new cell phone before they will spend the extra money on their anything to do with their health. You, by the way, are worth spending money on; once you’ve lost your health, you’ve lost everything (including your new cell phone). Investing in yourself means not only making sure you visit your naturopathic doctor, chiropractor or other health practitioners, but that you also you consider your health a priority and invest in yourself by buying supplements, reading books about health, getting massages and exercising.

2. Eating Sugar and Foods that Act like Sugar

This is probably the toughest one on the list and the topic of my book Sugarettes, but there is not a single thing you do every day that will cause more harm to your body than eating sugar and foods that act like sugar. When your blood sugar rises, your body pays the price.

3.Not Getting Enough Sleep

Sleep is so important; it should be considered a vitamin in itself. There is good research that shows that not getting enough sleep harms memory, concentration, mood and poor sleep even has been linked to heart disease. How much sleep should you get? The answer is individual to each person, but it is generally recommended to get somewhere between 7 and 9 hours of sleep.

4.Not Exercising

Outside of the food that you put into your mouth there is nothing than can have a bigger impact on your health than maintaining a lifetime exercise program. Exercise improves blood sugar control, can help with weight loss, improves mood, reduces anxiety… exercise is so powerful it is almost a panacea. Walking is enough, but cycling, running, swimming and other forms of exercise are great.

5.Not Relaxing

Here is the funny thing, we all know how to keep busy and get things done, but very few of us know how to truly relax. In order for the body and mind to rejuvenate, we all need a rest period. This can be as simple as taking a 15 minute walk after lunch. Better yet, try taking a week off every year to focus on relaxing; this is not a typical vacation where you are running around, but a time to just hang out and do nothing.

6.Avoiding the Sun

If you are typical, you are probably a bit sun-phobic, but you shouldn’t be. The dangers of the sun have been highly overblown. Yes, you should avoid being burned, but we need sun like we need water and food. We tend to live and even travel in boxes that block out the sun and fresh air. Get out of your boxes and see the real world.

The Best Investment You’ll Ever Make!

Focusing on your health is well worth it; especially as you age. Some of the above tips are hard, but working on your health will pay great dividends. When asked what they fear the most, older people tend to fear having to have someone take care of them in their old age. Do you really want someone dressing and feeding you? You can avoid this kind of fall into ill health by making a small investment in your health over time. Start Today.


  1. Hi Dr. Scott,
    I graduated with a B.S. in Nutrition and planned to continue my education at an Osteopathic Medical School eventually. I have taken 3 years off to have children and buy a house etc but am now itching to get started again. The views that you have on health and nutrition is right in line with what I believe to be true and I can’t wait to make it my full time job to help people lives healthier lives. (I am currently a financial counselor) I have recently come across Bastyr University and am very interested in completing an N.D. My only concern is that I would not be able to generate enough income after graduating to justify the amount of money spent on medical school. What has your experience as well as the other N.D.’s that you know? I have done searches online and see that the income varies greatly from $40k to $200k. It concerns me so much so that I am considering going to an M.D. school and then doing a fellowship in CAM to ensure that I will be making enough to repay my loans and provide for my family. I appreciate any feedback that you have.

    1. Deanna,

      This is a great question. I would say that most NDs don’t make enough to pay their bills; mostly because they don’t understand that they have to be independent business people. I, personally, found it hard to manage my own business and be an effective doctor. I practiced for a few years, but then turned to research and writing and I still struggle.

      What I would say, though, is this. When I graduated there were only about 1,000 naturopaths in the United States. There are now close to 3,000 and they are becoming more accepted all the time. I think this is because no other alternative medicine practitioners have the extent of the education that we have and are able to guide a patient between standard medicine and natural medicine (Imagine trying to decide if you should try chemotherapy for your cancer or use an herb; or if your heart condition would respond to exercise or if you should have a bypass operation – these are the questions naturopaths excel at).

      For me, though, I wouldn’t trade naturopathic school for anything. While I still have a large debt that I am paying off, naturopathic school was one of the only times in my life where I truly felt at home. I have spent most of my life feeling like the odd-ball (I eat well, exercise, and take care of myself and most people find that very odd). Naturopathic school was a chance to be around people who truly shared my vision of health. Even more important, naturopathic school gives you a sense of what health truly is. Hint: it is not a medical model; you can’t simply take a medical model and then use vitamins, herbs, homeopathy and expect it to work. Natural medicine is distinct from standard medicine, not only in tools, but approach. If you went to medical school you would be respected more, but you might miss the whole philosophy of natural medicine.

      I wish you the best, if you want to talk directly reply to this post with your e-mail address (I won’t publish it) and we can arrange a time to talk on the phone or just trade e-mails.


  2. Thank you Dr. Scott for not “sugar-coating” 🙂 the truth about taking care of ourselves. Many want an easy way out with no sacrifice and work. But how you are helping people by your work is a reflection of how you truly care.

  3. I follow your blog for quite a long time and should tell that your articles always prove to be of a high value and quality for readers.

  4. Great advice and a great reminder that how you treat your mind and body has a huge effect on how your mind and body perform. And, balance counts!

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