We are living in terrifying times.
Three days ago, Jacob Blake, a 29-year-old unarmed black father was shot in the back by a police officer while getting into his SUV while three of his children witnessed this attempted assassination. Mr. Blake survived the shooting but is now paralyzed from the waist down from 4 of the 7 shots that were fired at him from point blank range.
Lately, I’ve been overwhelmed with the brutality of systemic racism and how its impact continues to send the message that Black Lives DON’T Matter. As a black man, I feel that silence is not an option.
Systemic racism plays a role in our healthcare system as well. I feel it is my duty to support people suffering from health challenges that have systemic racism at its core.
Obesity rates are on the rise and we’re still in the middle of a pandemic in which people of color, affected by obesity and diabetes, are dying at an alarming rate.
Over 180,000 American families are mourning, yet the federal government hasn’t instituted a national healthcare program to cover all Americans to reduce the risk of death. Universal Health Care during these times seems like a no-brainer. A preventative system with fitness and nutritional coaching to avoid Type 2 diabetes and obesity seems like common sense. So why don’t we have it?
In the past, I believed educating people on proper nutrition and providing support by making modifications to live healthier was the right approach. I’m beginning to wonder…is it enough?
I believe it will take more to create sweeping change in the health disparities between people of color and white people.
My hope is to empower people of color to view wellness as a widely ignored cultural struggle and not just their personal one. Your belly fat challenges could be a systemic tool keeping your children and grandchildren unhealthy and disadvantaged. They may not be aware of this continual cycle contributing to their weight management difficulties.
How does it play a role in the lifestyle and behavior in the communities of people of color? How has it affected our ability to maintain proper health to avoid high blood pressure, diabetes, and obesity?
I’m starting to believe that it is more than just simply nutritional education. It is much deeper than that. Our communities have lacked stores that have quality foods. These same communities haven’t had adequate access to healthcare.
People of color want more fulfilling lives to be less stressed and healthier, however, their communities don’t reflect those desires. They have been treated as if their lives don’t matter.
We are making changes.
So, going forward, I would like to make a few changes to Therapeutic Thursday. We need change now.
If you have been receiving messages throughout your entire life, from your schools, neighborhoods, and workplaces, that black lives don’t matter, and you are a person of color, you are not alone.
How has that impacted your life…your well-being…your health?
How has it affected your habits and your behavior?
Do you value your life? If you are obese, is that a sign that you value your life?
I believe having a better understanding of where these behaviors are coming from will help us be better at modifying them.
First, we can no longer continue pretending that our health has, in some way, not been a result of systemic racism. Second, we can’t go on thinking that there is nothing we can do about it. Third, we need to know we are not in this alone. If you need support reducing unwanted body fat text me at 904.236.5858.