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The 5 Keys for Health and Healing (An Unconventional Path to Modern Medicine)

In the previous article, we mentioned the five key principles of High Yield Health. You can also see them in the diagram below. These are the backbone of what my team and I are trying to achieve in our newsletter.

You might be wondering why the five principles are positioned in such a way in the diagram. To give you an idea about it, I usually start with medicine, nutrition, exercise, sleep, and then joy. I am a doctor so most people expect me to talk about medicine first. Then most people would agree that food is medicine. And after talking about food, people then most think about exercise. Lastly, many will nod and agree that sleep is important.

So what’s the connection between all these principles? If you think about it, you need sleep to repair cells and muscles in your body. You need sleep to be able to eat a healthy, balanced meal and avoid unwanted or unnecessary cravings. You need sleep to exercise properly. And what is the role of joy? Joy helps you sleep properly at night. And to be able to maximize the benefits of medicine, nutrition, and exercise, you need to have joy.

Allow me to explain each of these principles in detail…

High Yield Health follows these five key principles

  • Modern Medicine

As everyone has a bias, please know that I am no different. I started on this journey in learning modern medicine. As a MD physician, I am rooted in the traditional curriculum of medical school and the academic rigor of research from my years at Johns Hopkins. So I start with the principle of modern medicine as I approach health and healing.

I love having been trained as a MD medical doctor. I celebrate the marvel of modern medicine but alas, it is limited.

Modern medicine is about disease, illness, and sickness, and is seen as a system that categorizes whether a person is “sick” or “not sick.” We would like to emphasize that “not sick” does not mean a person is healthy or living the life he or she wants. Despite its binary nature, we love modern medicine because it enables us to leverage the power of science in diagnosing and treating us. However, it’s a system that is limited.

Simply said, there’s more to health than “sick” or “not sick.”

In light of what we said above, High Yield Health will make use of what science has to offer in helping you live the life you want to live. This includes a wide range of approaches such as annual physicals, routine lab work, vaccine and medicine evaluations, and advance testing. We will guide you on how to get the most of modern medicine and your doctor’s office.

We also will focus on heart health, brain health, hormonal balance, and the musculoskeletal system. By undertaking all of these, we will learn about topics such as inflammation, oxidative stress, toxins, cholesterol, blood sugar, and insulin.

  • Nutrition

Growing up, I struggled with my weight. Because of that, I have and will always be enamored with nutrition. As famously attributed to Hippocrates, “let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” The science behind nutrition is rooted in biochemistry, physiology, and other related fields. Yet, it is only recently that nutrition has entered into medical school curriculums.

Nearly 25 years ago, I thought I was going to change medicine as I became an American Medical Association (AMA) delegate and asked them to require medical schools to teach nutrition. I thought this was a no-brainer. Nutrition is directly connected to biochemistry and physiology – the basic sciences required to apply for medical school. I spent 3 years leading this charge.

Rather than being appreciated, I was met with leaders rolling their eyes and shaking their heads at me. I was scolded in private by a great many. Years later at Johns Hopkins, an intervention was staged as my bosses asked my mentors to sit and talk sense into me. In regards to my work in nutrition and obesity, they asked me to “divorce myself from my crazy thinking. As a doctor working on the medical ward, this was not important. I was tanking in my career. I needed to get focused.”

As I can appreciate my alma mater, it became clear. Modern medicine was about “sick” and “not sick,” and I wanted to work with people so they could be among the healthiest people in the world.

Through High Yield Health, we will learn about nutrition, nutrients, and the super foods for you to consider. The goal will be to help you personalize what and when you eat. We will review different diets and highlight the principles that they are based on. We will go further than food. In future articles, we will review digestive wellness and the best ways to break down and absorb nutrients. We will demystify food allergies. We will learn about the world of probiotics.

So let’s follow Hippocrates and let food be our medicine.

  • Exercise

In most recent years, you have heard it and it is true – sitting is the new smoking. More clearly stated movement is medicine. Whether you love going to the gym or get a rash by just walking in there, we will guide you on the best exercise and how to put it in your life. We prescribe the core four of exercise: (1) muscle, (2) aerobic, (3) balance, and (4) range of motion. We will go through these in detail in upcoming articles.

If we are ever to find the fountain of youth, it will be weighted toward exercise. From my experience in working in executive health programs and integrative medicine teams, exercise is essential. It connects us in a positive way to nutrition, sleep and stress. In recent years, we are seeing the medical literature finally stating the obvious. Exercise is key for heart health, brain health, blood sugar balance, digestion, detoxification, and mental health.

But wait… it is not enough to learn about exercise and nutrition. Let me ask: How many of us know what to do, but do not do it? Please, do not be bashful if you were nodding your head and saying yes while you read this. As doctors and health care practitioners, we have heard or read about lifestyle as medicine. Are doctors the healthiest people that you know? At the risk of insulting my fellow colleagues, I will say NO. You would be horrified to see what is in doctor’s lounges and the food that pharmaceutical reps bring to medical offices.

In my years of working one-on-one with men, women, titans of industry, matriarchs, and others, I have come to understand that giving information – and even very good information – was not enough. Teaching nutrition and exercise did not move the needle – it did not give results. We need to go further. This is where the next two principles have been the game changers: SLEEP and JOY.

Until I make sure that someone is getting optimal sleep and living a life of joy, I have not helped them. Again, I get up every morning to help people live their best life. So, I love working on sleep and joy.

  • Sleep

Sleep is a must, not a luxury. It is the key to health, healing, and performance. Sleep has been the secret to many successful high level executives and top professional athletes. When we talk about sleep, we are talking about getting to sleep, staying asleep, and having the energy to live your next best day.

We will unveil the secrets to sleep. Optimal sleep needs to be of quality, quantity, and rhythm. Please know that you will need all three – and we will help you bring these into your best life and best health.

Beyond coaching and guiding your sleep, we will review things that may go bump in the night in regards to sleep disorders. You will learn about insomnia, sleep apnea, restless legs, bruxism, nightmares, and much more. More importantly, we will guide you on the diagnosis and treatment options.

As I have shared in a TEDx talk from a few years ago, it is vital to understand that sleep is not only about when we get in and out of bed. Optimal sleep requires us to know that what we do during our daytime has a major impact on the night sleep that we wish to have night in and night out.

So please repeat after me: “Daytime sets up night time, and night time sets up daytime.” In an upcoming article, we will learn that there are two-way relationships between sleep and nutrition, sleep and exercise, and sleep and stress. Briefly, allow me to share the following high yield facts about sleep:

  • Sleep influences food cravings.

  • Night time is when we release a significant amount of growth hormones, testosterone, and proteins that repair the body.

  • Sleep helps the brain to purge and clear negative thoughts.

I am amazed how sleep heals and connects us deeper to our health on all levels. We hope that our future articles on sleep put you to sleep.

  • Joy

We must honor joy. If we are not here to talk about joy, we ought not to be here. During my time at Johns Hopkins, I did not openly talk about joy. I would wait until I was behind closed doors with a patient. I understood that traditional academia would roll their eyes and take me less seriously. I was already suspect given that I talked about nutrition and exercise to my patients in the hospital and moonlighted at the weight loss program.

Please know that joy is essential to living the lives we want. Joy is essential to better and best nutrition, exercise, and sleep.

NUTRITION: If you do not enjoy your food, what is food? It is a diet and diets do not last.

EXERCISE: If you do not enjoy your exercise, what is exercise? It is work, drudgery, or boot camp.

SLEEP: If you are stressed and do not have joy, how easy is it to put your head on the pillow to get to sleep, stay asleep, and wake up ready to live your best life? It is not.

Again, joy is absolutely vital to connect us to our best health.

In upcoming articles, we will go deeper into joy. Over the years, I have seen the path to joy include three key areas of our lives: (1) Stress vs Distress, (2) Sensuality, and (3) Spirit, Connection, and Meaning of Life. I am excited to extend my thoughts on these in future articles. Of all the work that I do, I know that this can be the most transformative.


At High Yield Health, we believe in moving ideas to action. We believe in a few things done well. We believe in results.

We hope that you’ll take the health principles we shared to heart. By harnessing these insights and applying them into your life, you’ll be able to become a better version of yourself. More importantly, you’ll put yourself in the position of living the life that you want.

Please know that High Yield Health is written with you in mind, so feel free to share which of the health principles we shared resonated with you the most. Doing so will inspire us to write articles for your best health and the life that you want to live.

Click here to answer the short survey.


Dr. Param

Param Dedhia, MD



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