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08
Aug

The Downside to Being Human - Part Two

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FAT, SICK, AND READY TO BELIEVE IT’S INEVITABLE.

I only use the word ‘fat’ because it’s easy to understand. Many of us are fat, in fact I was fat for 35 of my 45 years. …before I got my act together.

Yes, we understand ‘fat’ because we see it every day, whether it’s in our family, friends, or in the mirror, but what we tend to overlook is the fraternal twin brother of being fat, which is being sick.

Most of us know someone with one or more of the following diseases or conditions:

•  Diabetes (Type 2)

•  Metabolic Syndrome

•  Arthritis

•  Thyroid Disease

•  Depression

•  Celiac Disease

•  Chronic Constipation

•  Heartburn or GERD

•  Heart Disease

•  High Cholesterol

•  High Blood Pressure

While we all know people with one or more of these diseases, we seem to take them in stride, almost as if they are inevitable. It’s sad that most people consider these things to be normal these days, but is it normal or simply typical?

NORMAL VS TYPICAL VS NATURAL

Many people call today’s human conditions ‘normal,’ but that doesn’t tell the whole story.

•  My friend Katy Bowman, MS, and the brain behind the Restorative Exercise™ Institute says that what’s normal today certainly isn’t natural, but over time, things have changed. These changes happened slowly, and for the most part, went unnoticed. …until now.

•  Paul Chek, a popular, if controversial, Holistic Health Coach, says that we’ve become accustomed to the feeling of being ‘sick,’ and no longer feel it’s a problem; it’s all we know.

What’s normal today wasn’t normal just a few years ago, much less for our ancient ancestors. Today, we pay the price, often without knowing it.

THE NEW NORMAL

I like to call our modern condition (which is often sick and/or overweight) the ‘new normal,’ even though they aren’t really all that new anymore, and they certainly aren’t normal, much less natural.

The Centers for Disease Control reported in 2012 that over 69% of Americans are overweight, over 38% are obese, and over 8% have type 2 diabetes. While these numbers are the highest they’ve ever been, make no mistake, they’ve been high for a long time, and have gotten higher every year.

With these numbers, the odds are good that one or more of these conditions personally affects you or someone close to you. It’s no wonder we hardly raise an eyebrow. We see it, on a personal level, almost every day!

LIKE FATHER LIKE SON

Doctors and insurance companies like to get your family history, and news reports often talk about how your odds increase or decrease based on whether someone in your immediate family has the condition.

Yes, you can argue that many of these conditions have a genetic component to them, and it’s true; certain people are more likely to contract these conditions, based on their genes. But, we can’t discount the cultural element of the family history principle, either.  If your parents’ lifestyle helped to bring on the condition, odds are you are living a similar lifestyle, since you tend to learn from your parents.

In most cases, genetics only make you more susceptible to a condition, and don’t guarantee you’ll develop it; just like a family history that’s free and clear doesn’t mean you’re risk free. To a large degree, what you do to your body can trigger disease as much, or more so, than pure genetics. If one has a family history of Type 2 Diabetes or carries the ‘Celiac gene,’ they are much more likely to exhibit symptoms and suffer the effects of the disease if they live (and eat) the lifestyle that’s going to set it off. In Celiac, it’s primarily wheat and other gluten containing grains that trigger the detrimental effects, although a high stress lifestyle, a lack of sleep, and an otherwise poor diet can push things over the edge. In Type 2 Diabetes, it’s a diet too high in carbohydrate and a lack of activity – over many years – that are the most obvious triggers. Today, we’re seeing that people with lifestyles high in stress and highly inflammatory foods can make things worse OR trigger Type 2 years before a sedentary or high carb diet, alone, might.

OVERRIDING YOUR INSTINCTS

We love to use the term ‘animal instincts’ to talk about those times when we just let things take over. When we let our emotions take over, and we seem out of control: sexual urges, running in fear, or turning to fight are some of the animal instincts that we feel on a regular basis. Those urges seem pretty positive, as long as they are acted on appropriately.

There’s also a flip side to our animal nature, and that’s when that side takes over, we can give into that urge to eat things that just aren’t good for us, or to overeat foods that might otherwise be good, if only eaten in smaller, more appropriate quantities. These are animal urges, too.

But we’re not animals, are we? We’re smart enough to push those out of place instincts aside, and rely on our brains and experience. We are smart enough to see that our instincts are failing us, and educated enough to see what it’s leading to. We are ready to turn this ship around.

PART THREE, COMING SOON…

This is an excerpt from our forthcoming recently released book, The Real Food ResetWe hope you enjoyed part two of the chapter we’ve named “The downside of being human.” Check back in a few days for part three!

If you missed part one, it’s here.

If you’d like to read the program that started it all, check out The 30 Days of Real Food, available free here on TheFitInk.com.

 

Thank you for reading, and we’ll see you back here in a few days for part three!

Roland & Galya Denzel

 

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Comments

  • Jean-Paul
    Jean-Paul Saturday, 10 August 2013

    It is truly amazing how much our society has changed over the last 20 years. People who I would have considered obese in my childhood would considered completely normal now. They get affectionate labels, like "a little husky," as if that is their natural genetic appearance.

    I eagerly await your third installment to this as I hope you propose solutions. I worked in community health for over 14 years as a member of the Arkansas Gov's Council on Fitness, even chairing it for 8 years. While we did much to bring awareness to the problem the most I thought we were able to achieve was to slow the train down a bit, but not nearly enough to prevent the inevitable wreck.

    I'm afraid that things will not change until this either breaks the US economy or millions of people start dying from it. Paradigm shifts usually require something cataclysmic to get them rolling.

  • Roland Denzel
    Roland Denzel Saturday, 10 August 2013

    In this case, I think it will take more of a groundswell. The problem is that even if the economy tanks and million die, no one believes that it's the food that's causing the diseases and deaths.

    I'm not saying it's ONLY the food, but with the government saying it's NOT the food, billions of people have a virtual sheet of paper to wave that absolves them of blame.

  • Jean-Paul
    Jean-Paul Wednesday, 14 August 2013

    Roland, have you read The Omnivore's Dilemma?

  • Roland Denzel
    Roland Denzel Wednesday, 14 August 2013

    I have. I also have The Omnivore's Dilemma for Kids, which is probably a better read for most people. It's shorter, and a quick read.

  • Jean-Paul
    Jean-Paul Monday, 19 August 2013

    LOL... That would probably have been better for me too! What with my house-fly attention span.

    There have been such cultural and agricultural shifts that have helped bring this about. They all rely on the lowest common denominator that we all know all too well... Human Nature.

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