It’s an interesting thought and it forces one to consider the unique environmental conditions people have experienced over time. Today, we are assailed by lifestyle diseases, not lions, tigers, or bears. We must face up to the self-motivation to eat healthy rather than the self-motivation to eat at all. Finally, we must also worry about our mental health, as humans today now live into old age and face perhaps more mental stressors than physical ones.
Aiming at the Root: A Triage
There are a number of theories, clues, and ideas on what may be at the root of the disease today, but the three main factors I’d like to discuss find roots in lifestyle, eating habits, and stress. By and large, individuals are able to manipulate or influence these factors, meaning that with enough motivation and desire, some of the diseases of today may be avoidable to some degree.
Perhaps most importantly, the number one thing affecting American’s health is lifestyle. For example, obesity is, for the great majority of people, a lifestyle disease, not one from a specific product or event in life. Not getting outside, exercising, and physically challenging yourself results in a plethora of health related issues. A completely sedentary lifestyle just isn’t a healthy one.
Eating habits are, of course, another area of concern for many people, as they tie directly in with lifestyle. From the quality of the food to the quantity of the food, people today have many choices in front of them today. Unfortunately, many foods are laden with pesticides and were grown in the soil of artificial fertilizers. This makes both the planet and the people ill. Genetically engineered foods are also of great concern, as their safety has been called into question since their inception.
Finally, to top it all off, people are simply stressed out, namely when they’re in crowded big cities. From traffic, to rising gas prices, to the unhealthy lives they’re living due to lack of sleep or lack of healthy food consumed, it is easy to have your mental block chipped away at. No doubt there has always been stress in world and for humans. But this stress carries on for years and years, and as humans grow older and older, it can begin to be difficult to keep one’s head high.
A Plan for Health
On the journey to better health, the first step is awareness - you’ve already got that down. The next thing is action, which, of course, requires more effort, time, and energy. Here are three ways to better ensure better health in the 21st Century:
- Get yourself on an exercise regimen. Make time everyday to do a bit of exercise, whether it’s push ups every hour on the hour or a walk during your lunch break.
- Eat whole, unrefined and unprocessed foods. Avoid the unhealthy nature of foods covered in chemical and toxins that are potentially deadly to both people and the planet.
- Internally calm yourself. Take up a class or some type of outlet that channels your energy in the right direction. Maintain your mental balance!
With good physical and mental health, through exercising, eating right, and maintain the mind, the people of the 21st century have more opportunity than any other people ever before. Let’s each work on maintain this health and then let’s pass it on to another.
So, how are you being healthy in the 21st century?