If health means avoiding disease, we need to find the best evidence on prevention: how to keep the sickness we dread from creeping up on us.

If health means a broader well-being, we need to find the best way to live. We can live poorly while being free of disease, but we can be fully realized human beings even while terminally ill. 

As a doctor I am rarely asked how to achieve a state of broader well-being. This is probably as it should be. I have not been trained for such all-encompassing life counseling, nor am I comfortable in such a role.

But maybe tomorrow’s doctors should be expected to counsel in this way. There is so much we cannot control. We will all die; but we will not all die in the same way.