Introduction

You may be wondering why the first step in preventing disease and maintaining your health is focused on disease. After all, aren’t we supposed to be focused on health? But to understand your health you need to understand disease and identify your disease risks. This allows you to have realistic health expectations and plan your health goals. If you don’t invest the time to understand your specific disease risks you will not only waste time and resources, you'll worry unnecessarily. At the same time you could be putting your health in jeopardy by not understanding and recognizing the real threats to your health and the habits associated with them.

In this module, I'll help you become familiar with the diseases I call the "Big 6." These 6 categories of diseases account for nearly 70% of all deaths in the US. I'll go over each of the 6 disease categories in detail. You will have a clearer understanding of the diseases in each category, how prevalent they are, and what's known about prevention.

In addition to the Big 6, there is another category of disease we need to be concerned about. I call this category the "Life Quality Health Issues." These are chronic diseases and conditions we cope with such as allergies, migraine, tension or sinus headaches, irritable bowel syndrome, fibromyalgia, arthritis, and hundreds of others. These diseases and conditions tend not to be life-threatening in the near term but can have a dramatic impact on our life quality and may lead to life-threatening diseases in the future.

No discussion about disease is complete without mention of inflammation. Inflammation has become a health buzz word but most people are confused about what inflammation means for their health. I'll help you sort out the different types of inflammation and get you clear on how it could be undermining your health.

Finally, I'll provide you with some tips and guidelines for identifying your specific health risks.