Here in the United States we've long been taught that our health care is somehow best left to professionals. Doctors and nurses have special knowledge, to be sure, but they are not always in the best position to affect your health. You are. That's right, you have the power to control many aspects of your health. Duke University (among other respected institutions) has created an entire school of 'integrative medicine' (http://www.dukeintegrativemedicine.org) in support of this approach. Check out the chart they created to illustrate this. In particular, notice how YOU are at the center, and the the majority of health care activity is 'self care' not professional care.
This may seem revolutionary for those of us raised to believe that doctors know best and we laypeople have no active role to play. But it's just a return to the approach humans have been taking for thousands of years. Know your body, be mindful of its needs, and take responsibility for its care.