You wouldn’t seek business or financial advice from someone living on the streets, and you certainly wouldn’t accept any advice they offered to you. After all why would someone who is unable to make a successful business for themselves be able to help you make one? It wouldn’t make any sense – they clearly are not business person, and if nothing else, don’t have any track record or experience in running a successful business.
You would ask business advice from someone who has proven themselves in the business world, someone who has built themselves from nothing. A person like +Richard Branson for example, who is extremely successful, but started with very little. It just makes sense to ask someone who lives life as a professional business man and has clearly proven themselves for advice, not someone who is unlikely to understand the workings of a business.
So, when a doctor, someone who is considered a health professional, smokes, it should raise a similar question – why should someone who is unable to keep themselves healthy be able to keep me healthy? It goes the same for the borderline obese doctors, why, when they should be more aware of the risk they are imposing on themselves more than anyone, will they be able to protect/ cure me from illness when they can’t protect/ cure themselves?
OK, so I know that a doctor will be qualified to give you medical information, they are not just some random smoker, but I hope you can see my point. Can you imagine a fat doctor telling a fat man that he needs to lose weight because he is at risk of diabetes? It is a very strange scenario, and although the doctor isn’t wrong, I still wouldn’t be comfortable with taking health advice from someone who isn’t healthy themselves.
The fact of the matter is, a doctor’s job isn’t to make you healthy, it is to make you ‘not ill’ or at an immediate risk of illness, which is a subtle but very real difference form being healthy.
Doctors are not true health professionals, they are medical professionals, and are educated in drugs and disease, not food and exercise. This was highlighted to me during my degree, where my course shared 50%ish of the modules with the Medic students. In these modules we learnt statistical analysis, types of drugs, types of diseases and how to read body biometrics – all very interesting and useful, but not once was it discussed or shown how to be healthy, it was all about how not to treat illness.
So think about where you are getting your health advice from, is it someone who has no clue, someone who isn’t really concerned about health and can’t even look after themselves, or it is someone who is actually educated in food and exercise?