In the past, many people took a fatalistic approach to their health and physical weaknesses. Now we try self help though diet changes, strenuous sports and other methods. Understand-ing what is best for ourselves is not easy. Our columnist Alfredo Bataller Pineda says all the answers are within ourselves.

At the age of fifty-five my father became seriously ill and cancer was diagnosed. He took the possible prognoses with the equilibrium his spiritual and peaceful character determined as a part of life. His family, my brothers and our mother were quite the opposite, for us it was a drama and we were ready to do anything possible for him. For a start we did as advised and consulted Dr. Rubio. His waiting list was six months but our father's condition could not wait that long. I called repeatedly, sent flowers to his secretary until the Dr. Rubio told me
"OK Alfredo, bring your father, I loose so much time with you it would be easier to meet with you and finish this story".

The diagnosis methodology was Oriental and Holistic and we learnt that clues to a person's health and immune state could come from eyes, tongue, face and other points of the body.
My father was said by the Doctor to have many digestive problems that had for ten years been signalled with pain but ignored. It was time for a life style change. Sugar, milk and red meat consumption reduced. Continues stress stopped and his time management improved. He had to make these changes and take control of his emotions.
My father accepted the diagnoses and began to follow Dr. Rubio's instructions. Digestive problems passed in three months and after eight months his colon was clean.

My father said "This gift from Destiny of a second chance of life moves me to want to create a place where my experience can be shared with others".
Thus, our project appeared ten years ago when we opened the doors of SHA Wellness Clinic to all. Now I am overwhelmed with surprise when I remember that our clinics were inspired by muses, emotions and even passion. We didn't even have a business plan. My father is an economist and I'm a lawyer who also studied economics and both of us are businessmen. Looking back our core business could have supported SHA but the 2008 financial collapse led to no one wanting to buy houses and nor did they have any money and possibly this would have led to the project failing. As it was, our dream became a child that had to learn to walk by itself.

We made a project that had no analogue in the world. Michio Kushi helped us and Dr. Rubio had for some time drawn scientific principles from this famous Japanese scientist and author of over one hundred books on heath and healthy eating.
Each part of our concept has its own methodical base. Principles of healthy meals, fitness, the fusion of Eastern and Western medical and natural therapeutic practice. I must tell you that without a precedent it hasn't been an easy task but what's important is to have a student's mindset who has made an invention and feels great. Mistakes become opportunities to learn and you go on. This is what they call your own concept.

One of the reasons we have succeeded is that we were able to find people who shared our enthusiasm and loved the work. None of them came only because they needed a job. They join us in wanting to change the world for the better and Dr. Rubio, who turned my father's health around, is with us.
In SHA Clinics we teach people to be healthy. In my understanding, health is not just a mechanistic process about, for example, high or low blood pressure but the balancing of the five elements of body, soul, those with whom we are close, environment and faith. If any one of these five suffer, so in turn do the others.
I neither like nor believe in diets and see them as short term easy solutions often with unimportant goals. What I believe in is a healthy lifestyle. Don't suffer!
Life is also pleasure and happiness — we can't live always under pressure. Many people follow wrong directions for decades, they choose diets which don't suit them. One should live a healthy lifestyle constantly but not obsessively. Make it 80% healthy and 20% happy. Let yourself drink some red wine, eat some cheese. Just remember the balance of 80/20. The healthy 80% will help your body cope with the less healthy 20%.

The key moment of choice is to listen and understand the body messages. Our eyes, skin, hair, nails tell a lot, give us information. They tell that we need more vitamins, warn us that it's time to stop and take a break, that there's a risk of emotional burnout.
Our world has become frenetic. We do many things simultaneously but at the same time we lose our ability to concentrate. We can't focus 100% on some single job — reading or talking or thinking. The life rhythm often prevents us from feeling happy. We want to make everything we want and processing our wishes means non-stop efforts. Sometimes we need to stop and listen to ourselves.
Man can be happy a couple of times in an eternal hurry during his life. I see it in every guest of our clinic, I see how they change in SHA. Sometimes they are rich and important and can afford anything. Presidents and Celeb-rities among them. But they come to learn how to be happy just like others. And we are glad to help them.

I am very lucky — I have got dreams and plans but I am happy. I want to wish to all people of the world: accept yourselves as you are, love yourselves, let yourselves be happy here and now. The best thing a man can learn is to be happy and with no needless control over everything. Look at yourself in the mirror and tell: "This is me, I got things to do and though this world is not perfect I must be happy and contribute to making other people's lives better".