Lose Weight and Turn Your Health Around
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The current economic and political problems are unfortunately not the only global issues we face. The western world, led by the United States, has evolved in a way few could have imagined one hundred years ago.
My Scandinavian grandmother was a study in health. She never went on a diet, never went to the gym, she always ate what she wanted, she drank wine and liquor and she was as healthy as you could ever want to be. Up until her death at the age of 97, she routinely walked two miles to the shops she frequented and two miles back. Four miles per day. She’d probably be alive today had she not tragically fallen and broken her femur.
What has happened to our society? In the US around 60% of the citizens are now overweight – an alarming trend. A combination of increasingly sedentary lifestyles and crappy diets are to blame. But so what if you are overweight? Is that so bad? Life expectancy is increasing so there you go! Things are indeed better even if we are getting chubbier.
Well, maybe but I don’t think so. Medical advances have somewhat offset the alarming growth of unhealthy life styles, but at a tremendous cost to society. Today we have the luxury and option to live much longer and enjoy a high quality of life way into the 80s, 90s and beyond. Accidents and illnesses unfortunately claim the lives of many people, and a healthy life style will improve your odds but will not make you immune to such a fate.
Today there is a wide spectrum of people from the very healthy, who ride their bikes hundreds of miles, play daily rounds of golf and ski down black diamond runs well into their 80s, and those at the other end of the spectrum who chronically ignore their basic health, are plagued by medical issues and saddled with a poor quality of life until they eventually die much sooner that they could have. While their miserable lives are only prolonged by medicine, they also become an emotional and financial drain on loved ones and the entire society. Study health statistics and cry.
Why don’t we all choose to be healthy so we can extend our lives and to enjoy ourselves for another 40-50 years after we turn 50? It seems irrational that we don’t, doesn’t it? Wouldn’t we all want to be fit, healthy and enjoy a better life? I certainly think we all do and am 100% sure that it is not a question of intent or desire. I do not entirely understand why we have ended up where we are, but it is probably because the path to poor health has been an unintended and unavoidable byproduct of our modern society. It has become easier to simply go with the flow than to take the other less traveled path. Perhaps the human race is simply not equipped to defend itself from what is now being thrown at them. How do you find a healthy fast food meal? How do you find time to exercise? How do you resist all the treacherous daily temptations? Not easy.
Genetically humans were designed to exercise daily and definitely not ingest the kind of food we are eating today. A majority of us are now sadly leading lives that are at odds with our basic DNA! This can only lead to eventual disaster. Physical labor is no longer the norm in the western world; there is no food shortage anymore; people are inundated with easily available junk food that contain much more crap and calories than anyone needs; TV, the Internet and videogames are further promoting sedentary lifestyles. So voila, 60% of the population is suddenly overweight and health issues abound. This sad accomplishment took us less than one hundred years, a fraction of the millions of years humans have been walking this planet! The cost to society is of course tremendous, but there is no change on the horizon – it is in fact getting worse year by year. Hundreds of billions of dollars have been spent by hopeful individuals on an amazing assortment of diets that don’t work – only those that own and profit from those futile and predatory ventures ultimately benefit.
I fear this global issue as much as I worry about the world economy, terrorism, hunger and disease and global climate issues. There is no easy solution despite the fact that all of us can do something about it if we want to. It is not a question of money – except maybe having too much is contributing to the problem. But we need to know what to do and how to do it. I believe – I know – we all want to do the right thing but it just isn’t that easy. Our society is making it extremely hard for us to do what we really want and need. This is no excuse – it is a fact. But I have hope that we can slowly start a process of sustainable change. Maybe the worldwide economic crisis will be an improbably catalyst for change.
Recently I re-focused my own life after concluding that it was utterly irrational not to modify my lifestyle. I have always been reasonably healthy and in decent shape but it just wasn’t good enough. My simple objective is to increase my odds of longevity and to be able to enjoy my time on this planet as I progress through life. The first week was hard, the second week a little easier but the challenge is behind me and I now embrace and enjoy this new lifestyle.
I encourage all of you to commit yourself to this new path so you can enjoy the rest of your lives to the fullest. There is lots of information on the subject and you would be well advised to read three books: The Okinawa Program, Younger Next Year and The Primal Blueprint .
Remember: Diet is essential for weight loss, but exercise is critical for quality of life. I hope this will ignite your inner strength and help you for the rest of your life!