Overweight, Undernourished, Poorly Rested, and Inactive

Hold onto your nerves, people, I feel a rant against healthcare coming on!  🙂

If you’ve been reading my blog for long, you can see these rants coming from a mile away, right?

Tonight, it’s not so much the healthcare system.  I would have similar rants against the public education system (as you’ve recently read) or the banking system (if I understood it).  It’s not the institution itself.  It’s the attitude of our culture, which is therefore absorbed and perpetuated by our institutions!

We live in a culture that seems to be based on magic pill addiction, aka “I don’t want to take action, I just want it to be fixed, as soon as possible, with as little inconvenience to me as possible!”

I know people with type 2 diabetes, asthma, high cholesterol, heartburn, the list goes on.  It is a litany that seems to be the soundtrack to our world.  You hear these things, and you don’t really think anything.  “Oh, the poor dear, those medicines can be so expensive.”  That’s about all we think.  If we hear it about ourselves, we might think, “Oh, my bad luck.”  Or even, “Well, I’m (whatever age), this was bound to happen.”

Question #1: Do we know what we can do to improve or maintain good health?  I think most people do, but maybe not.  If someone asked me, what are the key points to good health, I would say there are four main areas, with a few subpoints.  Eating a good diet, mostly plants, almost entirely whole foods, with very little refined flour or sugar, very little artificial coloring or preservatives, and as many fruits and vegetables as possible!  Daily exercise, made up of cardiovascular activity, strength activity, and stretching.  Spiritual health, which consists of a relationship with your Creator, intellectual stimulation, and relationships with people.  And an often overlooked but important component, sleep, getting enough rest to allow your body to repair itself and build new cells.

Am I right or am I wrong?  I am definitely not an expert in any of those areas.  I just know that if a single one of those subpoints is not being attended to in my life, the rest of the subpoints suffer.  Case in point, sleeping.  You know that I get in bad habits of staying up too late.  So I don’t get enough sleep, so I don’t get up early and spend time on my relationship with my Creator, and I’m too tired to exercise willingly in the afternoon.  And because I don’t exercise, I don’t sleep well.  And because I feel tired, I’m more likely to eat something fast, easy, and bad for me.  And because I didn’t eat healthfully, I feel more tired.  And because I feel tired, I don’t exercise.  And because I don’t exercise, I don’t sleep well…   DO YOU SEE????

The thing I struggle the least with is fruits and vegetables.  I eat so much fruits and vegetables that, as a single person with no roommate, husband, or children, I buy things in 5 pound bags: grapefruit, oranges, frozen broccoli, potatoes, etc.  These are the same size (or larger) packages as my mom bought for a family of 6.  And I am a family of one!  🙂

Question #2:  If most people know what they can do to be healthy, why don’t we do it?  If you ask me, this is the tricky part.  You can lead a horse to water…  You can lead a smart person to information, but they’ll still go through the Burger King drive-through after they’ve read it.  🙂  And so will I.  I’m reminded of a verse by Saint Paul, that I’m not going to be able to quote or find…  Something about “Why do I do what I don’t want to do, but I don’t do what I want to do?”  Why do I know that I need to sleep, and yet I stay up late?  Why do I come home and go straight to the computer or t.v., when I know I need exercise? 

It’s like we think that our problems can be fixed by wishing them away.  I hold out hope that I will wake up tomorrow and be 20 pounds lighter and look great in my swimsuits and be in shape for a 5K.  But you can’t take the same action, expecting different results.  If I want to be in shape, then I have to do the things that will get me in shape.  Just knowing all about nutrition and exercise doesn’t cause anything to happen.

If it sounds like I’m angry and frustrated, I am.  I’m angry with myself, for not doing what I know I should do.  I’m angry at a culture that has people out there eating nothing but meat and cheese, because “carbs are bad for you.”  I’m angry with a culture where the vast majority of the carbs available are bad for you, in the form of white flour, sugar, corn syrup.  I’m angry with a culture that has me hesitate to go to the doctor, because they’re going to talk me into a prescription that fixes the symptom, but not tell me how to cure the disease.  I’m angry with a culture where to be healthy, you have to go against the grain.  This culture where the norm is to be overweight, undernourished, poorly rested, and inactive.  Where the norm is to collect prescription drugs along with candles on your birthday cake.  And in a situation of being bombarded with 90% of choices that would damage my health and 10% of choices that would improve my health, I am pissed as hell that I somehow can’t choose that 10%.


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Doris Jacobs
    Mar 20, 2009 @ 09:22:46

    Most of this seems to be solved from with in when you are ready. The “no doctor that will help me cure instead of mask the symptoms” feeling–I would suggest you look for words like “Life style Care” or “whole health care” in the liturature associated with a doctor or a licensed independent care provider(LIP). They my be more your style of health care than the traditional but yet not cut you off from the knowledge of either traditional medicine or life style medicine. an LIP in a practice that also houses alternative medicine like massage therapy, accupressure, or other modalities that seem promissing may be more whole health oriented than traditional old country doctors that come give a pill or shot and leave.


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