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Health Through Diet: Back To The Basics

Nov 9, 2007
The western world is one filled with technology and wonderful incites into medicine. Much relief of ailments can be found at local stores as 'over-the-counter' medicine. Greater ailments can be healed through wondrous medical procedures and prescription drugs. If I have a headache I would be able to grab some sort of aspirin or other headache medicine at almost any household in the US. Have you ever wondered why you got a headache? Did you just assume it was stress related or caused by someone at work? This may help us find a weak link in the western health field.

The pill you took to relieve your headache contained chemicals that close pain gates in your nervous system. The body was not taken into consideration in any form and the underlying problem was not addressed, therefore the symptoms were repressed and nothing more. Our bodies are not designed to have any functions replaced with synthetic chemicals; instead our powerful adaptive bodies are designed to only 'welcome' the help of synthetic chemicals. Therefore, we see we cannot put our health entirely into the hands of synthesized chemicals, if we could, pills would exist to replace our eating. If we come to realize our bodies must carry the weight of healing and health, then we must be proactive in the health of our bodies. The Chinese say "to treat someone who is already sick, is to start making weapons after the war has already begun." This is the true incite into preventative maintenance into our bodies. The US didn't seem to start promoting healthy living till obesity turned epidemic. The main concern to correct said epidemic was diet, I think they are on the right path.

Diet, did you freak out when you saw that word? Did you gasp just thinking about depriving yourself of food, or starving your self to lose some weight? All of the definitions of diet that is food related are basically defined as: what and how much food you eat. So when I say diet, most people think about a period of time that they are constricting their intake of food or certain food, and not what they eat in general. Everybody everyday should be dieting to be certain they are getting what their body needs, not what their mind wants.

For Americans a simple daily diet seems too easy since $33 billion is what Americans spend trying to lose weight each year. In an age of synthetic drugs and a 'want it now' mind set, no one can lose weight without some diet pills and a Fad diet plan, can they? Well, of course they can, and as a matter of fact chances are they will not be successful on the fad diet. Hillel Schwartz writes "Dieting makes everything worse" and goes on "for the chances are high that fat people will fail". I don't think Hillel was told 'If first you don't succeed try, try again'. Try a different diet; go on the diet plan that reflects you. The body needs balance to be healthy and lose weight and cannot do this on overly restrictive diets, as they often cut out too many foods or even whole food groups. Many studies suggest that the weight someone is at has a large basis on genetics. This is true and that is why "there is no one specific diet best for all people". From this we must be able to assume that we will not find the best diet from a book, the internet, and certainly not celebrities.

Celebrities seem to be thin all the time and endorse products that supposedly helped them to lose weight. Whether this is the reason the US spent so much money on weight loss products or not I am unsure, but you don't need much money for a healthy diet. A balanced diet will also be a low-cost diet! You need to buy food anyway and grains, beans and local vegetables in season are the cheapest food items. Our biggest investment we need in diet is one of persistency, an answer common in Chinese to most 'how' questions.

Don't worry if now diet confusion is setting in. Diet is not as complicated as you may have been led to believe. To support this statement one could find a good basis of diet in places of ethnic background that has been around for over 5000 years. If you would put your health in the hands of one surgeon over the others based on experience like I would, then you can see a good reason to look for a diet from a place with 5000 years experience. After all a culture doesn't survive for thousands of years without in-depth incite on health with diet being the staple.

People everywhere are having trouble finding the best diet because of the "absurd situation" of trying to break food down to components and place them in a good-bad category. Just as in my example earlier with the headache, our approach in the western world isn't taken into consideration the 'whole.' Components don't exist alone in nature; they are part of a whole. And whole is exactly what our diets should contain, whole grains and whole pure foods. Maoshing Ni points out that most treatments are rendered useless unless we have incorporated the correct diet and lifestyle changes to partner with the treatment. Foods have properties, and they can help or hinder you current state of being.

We don't need pills, books, treatments, and medication. We need to get back to the basics- diet and exercise; every diet related item lists those two words hand in hand. Then we need to look at instilling good values in our youth. As children grow they urn for wholesome and pure simple substances, don't replace those with sugar and processed foods. Even the surgeon General is taking the approach to have adults lead the example to children in health and fitness, maybe to kill two birds with one stone. Step back from technology and look around the world for guidance. We need not try to rewrite how to maintain everyday health, when it's already been successfully done for the last 5000 years. Diet is the cornerstone of our issue in America and also happens to be the cornerstone of preventative health. The USDA turned to the Chinese culture when they saw they needed to replace the '4 food groups', the same culture that tells us to have preventative measures, and if we look harder we may find how get back to the basics in order to contain our new disease - Health and Obesity.

Doctors in China in history used to be ranked highest based on their patients not getting sick, not how many they have healed. Preventative care is something that countries need to foster. Healthcare cost that are killing families could drop if preventative measures were taken. You don't need a big bank account to be healthy, and you don't need to follow a bunch of directions because eating healthy is the cheapest way to shop! The US puts almost 90% of its grain into feeding livestock, this is the inexpensive food that is healthy for us and is the food staple in other countries. Currently there is no ethnic backgrounds that:

Eat only raw

Are Vegan

Don't eat carbs

Intentionally eat under 1500 kcals

Etc......

This is no ploy for a diet plan, as I've stated before everyone is different. Instead I am urging wholesome foods. Oriental Medical Practitioners are schooled in wholesome diets. Check out an acupuncturist finder to find an OMD or Licensed Acupuncturist in your area.
About the Author
Sean Russell is herbalist in Chinese and Western Herbs, and formulates Herbal Supplements and Remedies for Dimmakherbs. Dimmak Herbs Herbal Supplements.
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