"One lesson that stood out to me was when my partner and I were teaching the students about the relationship between physical activity and emotional health. Growing up, I never learned that physical activity has an effect on anything else but my physical health. However, in this lesson, we explored the effects that engaging in physical activity can have on our emotional well-being."
This week’s recommendation for Health Beyond the Blog is the novel, Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End by Atul Gawande. As a surgeon specializing in endocrine and general surgery, Gawande explores the concept of death in current-day society and how medicine has changed how we approach death. He proposes that while medicine as greatly benefitted from science and technology, sometimes prolonging the life of a patient through difficult practices that diminish the quality of a patient’s life may sometimes do more harm than good. He highlights difficulties in today’s practice of medicine and offers ways in which medicine can be approached to improve patients’ quality of life. One such example is the concept of nursing homes, which can often be controlling and diminish an individual’s quality of life. Gawande suggests a shift from nursing homes to assisted living, where individuals can live in their own space while still benefitting from similar services as being in nursing homes. Being Mortal explores many concepts regarding death and aging, and offers a holistical approach towards the practice of medicine.