Thank you. This is quite the honor. Thank you for being here for this special moment. I want to remind you of something that I think is going to take your breath away, and I hope it does, and that is, today you will take 23,000 breaths. Your heart will beat 100,000 times. You will coordinate the function of 70 trillion cells simultaneously, performing one septillion functions at the exact same time every moment of your life. You are in a constant state of dying and being reborn every moment of your life. Today, billions of cells will die and quietly replace themselves, whether you like it or not, whether you have gratitude for that process or not.
You are amazing. There’s nothing more incredible than you. There’s nothing more capable than you. Your cells, all 60 to 70 to 100 trillion of them, are the highest faculty of the entire universe. You are the entire collection of all of the intelligence in the stars in this small space right now. You’re amazing. You are living Earth. There’s nothing inside of you that isn’t found on this planet. You are animated Earth. It’s important that we remember this when we’re thinking about longevity and we’re thinking about congruency and we’re thinking about living a life of purpose and passion. You are Earth. If we can remember that, then we can have an amazing and extraordinary life.
Most importantly, you are the doctor of the future. The doctor of the future isn’t us practitioners getting more degrees, advancing technology. You already possess the most advanced technology that’s ever existed. It’s our obligation now to teach you how to use it. The word doctor in Latin actually means teacher. It’s our namesake to educate our communities and to allow them to live a meaningful, long life.
My name is Sachin Patel, and I’m a proud Founder of The Living Proof Institute. I’m also, most proudly, a father. I’ve got a reason to live to 100. I’ve got a reason to promote longevity and promote happiness, because I have a son. I have a future generation to look after and take care of.
My journey started as a physician. A few years ago, I realized that the magnitude of the problem is not something that us practitioners can solve. It’s going to be solved by technology empowering patients to take action and take care of their health. We don’t need more doctors. There will never be enough of us to take care of people who don’t know how to take care of themselves. The real solution comes from putting power back into your hands, giving the public the power so they can take the best care of themselves possible.
Leonardo da Vinci said that simplicity is a sign of sophistication. I can’t think of anything more sophisticated than the human body, which means that there shouldn’t be anything more simple to take care of. One of the things that I noticed from Michelle’s talk is the simplicity of the centenarians. They had a very simple life. It doesn’t take much to live long. It takes simplicity to live long.
We’re going to talk about key concepts today when it comes to empowering patients. We’re going to talk about patient-empowered care. The three concepts I’m going to have time to discuss today are co-creation, cell function, and community. You’re going to see community come up in probably everyone’s talk because this is the thing that’s significantly important.
No matter how many degrees or training a practitioner has, ultimately you the patient determine the outcome. Everyone kind of agree with that? What happens in medicine and in health care, when patients undergo a trial of care with a practitioner and if the patient doesn’t get better, that practitioner will start questioning their education. What they’ll do is start going to more training, more seminars, more conferences, because they’re trying to fix the patient. I did that for the first half of my career. I tried to fix everybody that walked into my office. Then I realized that nothing can fix them better than they can fix themselves. Then I started teaching them how they can fix themselves.
The value of any doctor’s appointment is actually determined by what happens when the patient leaves the office. I trained practitioners all around the world to implement this model of care into their practices. I have to constantly remind them that the value of your appointment is zero dollars if your patient takes zero action. But the value of what you have to offer is infinite if your patient takes action for a lifetime and teaches family members and community members how to take action as well or inspires them to take action. The value of what we bring to the table is actually determined by you, the patient. So listen to your doctors.
When it comes to healing and repairing and regenerating, one of the things that we have to keep in mind is that we have to start with the cells. Cells are the smallest unit of life. Now, the beautiful thing about cells is they all function relatively the same. The cells in your brain, the cells in your heart might carry out different functions externally, but internally their function remains the same, which means if we focus on getting the cells healthy through the right signaling, through the right nutrition, through the right environments, we create global change. We’re going to talk more about this in a moment.
One thing for you to also remember is that your cells don’t make mistakes. We like to think that, and when we think our cells make mistakes, we change the internal dialogue that we have. When we blame our genetics, when we blame our body, we change that internal messaging. But when we realize that our cells are [inaudible 00:06:12] we put them in an intelligent way, we start changing that internal voice and we feel empowered to take action. I can change the function of your cells instantly. If I asked you to come up onto this stage right now unprepared, the function of every cell in your body would change instantly. You’d go into fight or flight immediately.
Disease never occurs in isolation. But, more importantly, neither does healing, which means that if somebody has an illness in one organ, the same blood goes everywhere, doesn’t it? It’s impossible to develop a disease in isolation. It might manifest and be measured in one system because that’s where the symptoms might start, but the same blood that’s destroying somebody’s liver is probably destroying every organ and system in their body at varying rates. Every organ has a different capacity to tolerate inefficiencies. The cool thing about this is that when we put somebody into a healing state, the same blood goes everywhere as well, which means that everything starts healing.
In our current medical model, what we’ll do is we’ll hyper-focus on one organ or one system, ignore everything else. We might put somebody on a statin medication to lower their cholesterol at the expense of their kidneys or at the expense of their liver or at the expense of their neurological system and brain because we’re so myopically focused. We have to remember, the same blood goes everywhere. If we get the blood to be a healing elixir, it heals and regenerates every part of the body. Make sense?
Now, we have this idea that disease happens by mistake or happens by accident. Disease is actually what I refer to as intelligent adaptation. Your body adapts to whatever circumstance you put it under. It’s a well-coordinated, intelligent system that’s functioning in a very highly intellectual manner.
I’m going to talk quickly about a concept called autonomic pairing. I ask this in every room because I think I coined the room: Has anyone heard this term before? Okay, I’m going to take credit for it then. Autonomic pairing is simply this. Imagine you’re sitting at your dinner table. The function that you’re trying to carry out is digestion. Correct? But imagine you had the chemistry and physiology and the heart rate and the blood flow of somebody who’s running a marathon. Your physiology’s not paired with the task. Does that make sense? This is called autonomic pairing. If we’re going to digest our meal, we want the internal systems to be sending blood and sending function to optimize the digestion of that meal. When we have a mismatch between what we want our body to do and what we’re telling our body to do, then we have a problem.
One of the most important systems in our body — quick physiology lesson for all of you — is the autonomic nervous system. The autonomic nervous system is currently regulating virtually every function in your body: your heart rate, your blood flow, where that blood is going, how many breaths you’re taking per minute, how much digestion is taking place. Where function is going in the body is being determined automatically for you right now. This is happening passively for you. It happens for you, your entire life. A baby doesn’t have to think about breathing. Breathing takes care of itself. About 95% of the function of our nervous system is to take care of this ongoing process.
When we’re in a state of fight or flight, which is what happens when we’re under acute stress, our body sends blood to different parts of the system. When we’re under stress, we don’t send blood to the digestive system. We send it to the arms and legs in preparation to run away. This is why many people who eat under stress will develop chronic digestive distress because they’re not sending blood flow where they want to send function. Many people will live on this high-stress sympathetic side of the fence, which creates destruction in the body in order for survival.
What we need to do is we need to get on the opposite side of this fence, into the parasympathetic side of the fence. The parasympathetic side of our body is what lowers our blood pressure, lowers our heart rate, sends blood flow to the digestive system. If we’re going to digest a meal, we need to be in a parasympathetic state. A simple way to get into a parasympathetic state is to do some deep breathing. This is why deep breathing is part of every ancient form of medicine. Tai chi, qigong, yoga is all about your breath. Another thing that helps stimulate the parasympathetic system is chanting and humming because it creates a mechanical vibration of your vagus nerve. Your vagus nerve controls this entire system. Deep breathing, chanting, humming are things that you can do instantly that will get you into a parasympathetic state.
Deep breathing especially before you eat a meal is very important. Sometimes you don’t even have to change what you’re eating if you change how you’re eating. Even a healthy meal will remain improperly digested if we don’t send blood to the digestive system when we’re trying to have that meal. Before you change, I’m not even telling you to change your diet, just take a few deep breaths. Relax. Pair your nervous system with the task that you’re trying to perform. This will change your life. I wish I had more time to talk about it, but I’ll have to move on.
Where we send flow is where we send function. If I’m going to help you digest your meal better, I need to send blood to the digestive system. If I’m going to help you run faster, I need to send blood to the arms and legs. If I’m going to help you think more clearly, I need to send blood to the prefrontal cortex. Where we send blood is where we send function.
Now, another big contributor to longevity, and really, happiness … I think the primary thing that we all want isn’t to live to 100 and be miserable. That would be torture, wouldn’t it? We want to be happy. So the primary aim should not be longevity, in my opinion. The primary aim should be happiness, which results in waking up to a life worth living.
Community is very powerful. We use community in our practice quite extensively, in a variety of ways. This is actually a mala making workshop that we held in a community center close to our office. It was meditative. We had a meditation session. Everyone built their own malas and set intentions into them. We do cooking workshops where we have a group of people come and we do batch cooking. We do nature walks. We have groups of patients come and we do grounding exercises outside and we take them on a nature walk. We have essential oil workshops where we teach people how to make their own personal care products so that they don’t have to go and buy them at the store.
This creates community bonding and it creates a culture and it creates a platform for people to become their own best doctors. I’m almost running this medical school if you will, because I’m training my patients how not to need me. But here’s the thing. There’s so many sick people that we’ll never run out of people to help. We’ll never in my lifetime run out of people that need help in terms of getting healthy. The power of community is quite, quite important.
Other ways that we can use technology — and my community’s watching this right now, we’re streaming it live to them — is through technology like Facebook. Most of you probably have a Facebook account. If you don’t, you should, because you can join my community for free. We’ve got about 1,500 members that contribute almost on a daily basis. [inaudible 00:14:07] content to the group. I do a weekly live Facebook Q&A so people can tune in and they can ask me whatever question they want. It allows me to leverage my time very effectively, and patients feel that connection. Because they can’t always come in and see you, but if you have open office hours online, then they can always jump in if they have a quick question for you. There’s lots of ways that we can leverage technology and keep people out of our practices. We can answer their questions very, very nicely using social media as well.In my opinion, an effective healthcare system is one that actually liberates you from it. We live in Canada where people think healthcare is free, where we have super exorbitant taxes, and that’s where the majority of that funding comes from, is from our taxes. But I think a good healthcare system is one that you actually don’t need. It’s one that your children don’t need. My son is seven. He’s never been to the doctor. There’s a formula for that, and that’s exactly what we teach people, because that helps all of us. I want to keep everyone’s kids out of the doctor’s office if possible. I want to keep your parents out of the doctor’s office if possible. I want to keep you out of the doctor’s office if possible. That’s the aim of this whole movement.
In my opinion, an effective healthcare system is one that actually liberates you from it. We live in Canada where people think healthcare is free, where we have super exorbitant taxes, and that’s where the majority of that funding comes from, is from our taxes. But I think a good healthcare system is one that you actually don’t need. It’s one that your children don’t need. My son is seven. He’s never been to the doctor. There’s a formula for that, and that’s exactly what we teach people, because that helps all of us. I want to keep everyone’s kids out of the doctor’s office if possible. I want to keep your parents out of the doctor’s office if possible. I want to keep you out of the doctor’s office if possible. That’s the aim of this whole movement. It’s actually not more healthcare, it’s more self-care, because the more healthcare interventions we provide somebody, the shorter their lifespan becomes.
We need doctors to act as coaches versus interventionists. Here’s the thing with coaching. Think about somebody like Michael Jordan or a famous athlete. That person had to want to win to be coached to win. He had to love the game that he participated in. You have to love your life to want to live a life to be 100 and to be coached to be 100. It starts there. It starts with happiness. We could have all these tools and all the resources that everyone talks about today, but you have to dig deep down inside and figure out what makes you happy, because that’s what’s going to help you live a long, productive life.
The future of healthcare is partnered, community-driven self-care. Until we can get to that point, I think that there’s a lot of work ahead of us. But I just took a picture of a group of people that’s going to live to 100+, so I’m excited what you guys do with this information. I think it’s going to be transformative. This is really an amazing venue, and I’m really honored and happy to be here. I wish you all a long and happy life.