For those of you that know me well, you know that I do not really use curse words. My mother taught me well.
Speaking of mothers, do you recall that old commercial for Chiffon Margarine back in the 70’s (OK, I just aged myself). I think the line was “it’s not nice to FOOL Mother Nature”? Well, I think that is really good advice!
Don’t get me wrong. I love technology and innovation! But it seems to me whenever we F with Mother Nature, it never seems to work out so well for our health. Our body is a perfectly-designed organism with the sole purpose of continually healing itself. All it asks for in return is the proper fuel to do so. The cool thing is, Mother Nature also provides the perfect fuel for our bodies and an internal mechanism that tells us what the best fuel is and how much and when to consume that fuel.
Sometimes I think we are a bit too smart for our own good. We think we can improve on things and make them better, faster and cheaper. But what happens is we end up making them worse, faster and cheaper. Particularly, our food.
In a lot of ways, we have really messed up our food. Sure, we can produce a heck of a lot of food (and we have a lot of people to feed, so for the most part it is a noble cause), but we should also be asking – Is the food we produce good for our bodies? Is it what our bodies require to be healthy? Looking around these days, I would say, not so much!
Whenever we take something from its natural state and alter it (to make it better, faster, cheaper), we think we are smarter than Mother Nature and we can do it better. We take that whole food, whether it be a plant or animal, as it is found in nature. We strip things out, add things back in, alter its genetics, feed it steroids, antibiotics, spray it with chemicals, add chemicals, add color, wrap it up with lots of healthy pictures on the package and viola, we have a brand new food that we can store, ship, market and sell. Wow, that is like magic!
Well, after all that food voodoo it does look kinda like food, but when it goes into our bodies, it’s not what our bodies are expecting. When we alter our food from its original format, by processing it, we are not necessarily making it better for our health. In fact, most of the time we are making it worse for our health. We are removing things that our bodies need to process that food properly and adding foreign things that our body has to now somehow deal with.
What we are doing when we process food is we are making it more profitable (not healthier).
Now, I am not going to go get all political up in your grill, but sometimes following the money is interesting. I mean did you ever wonder why the healthy food does not have all the fancy packaging and commercials? Why is all the healthy stuff just laying there for you to pick out and put into a plastic bag. How come large food companies are not marketing healthy foods to our kids on Saturday morning cartoons? Could it be that there is more profit in bad processed food vs. good healthy foods? Plus, who is regulating what is healthy for us and what is not, the government? What companies contribute the most money to the government?
Just for fun, let’s add some insult to injury. Now that we have F’d with our food and made it unhealthy and we have gotten really good at marketing it and making a handsome profit, we start gaining a few extra pounds. Through some possibly bad information we are told to eat a low fat diet, watch our calorie intake and exercise more – hence the boom of the fitness industry (if you have not done so, check out why exercise won’t make you skinny) and the low fat diet craze. But our health is still spiraling downward out of control even faster now. We then start getting all these diseases — obesity, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, cancer, and so on.
Well, the obvious solution is easy right? Just stop eating the bad food and bada bing bada boom, problem solved! Nope, that is way too easy. What we do instead is use our ‘smarts’ to address the symptoms rather than fixing the original problem. How do we do this? Drugs, of course! We have a drug for everything. (While drug companies do play an important role at times, sometimes addressing the root cause may be a better approach vs. covering up the symptoms – although it’s much less profitable).
So here we are, we have food companies making a boat load of money selling us food that is making us sick and we have pharmaceutical companies making a boat load of money selling us drugs to hide the symptoms caused by the food that is making us sick. That just seems to me like running on a treadmilll and getting no where (oh yeah, we are doing that, too)!
There is a lot of information out there on what is healthy for us and what is not healthy for us. People are confused. Heck, sometimes I am confused and I spend all my time researching this topic! There is so much information and mis-information out there that I am very sympathetic for people trying to do the right thing for their health. For years I thought I was doing all the right things, but it turns out I wasn’t.
No one wants to be overweight. No one wants to be sick. So, what do you do?
Unfortunately, the one thing we cannot do is wait for it to fix it self. We are all going to have to fix this problem individually. We have to take the responsibility ourselves to get educated on what is right for our bodies and what is healthy for our bodies.
If I had to make it as simple as possible, I would say just remember this one line, “don’t F with Mother Nature”! As much as you can, make sure the food you eat is whole (not processed or at least minimally processed), buy organic (locally, if possible) and eat a good portion of your produce raw so you get the benefits Mother Nature intended.
Feed your body the fuel it was designed to run on and you will have that perfect body Mother Nature intended for you to have.