Searching for better health

In the Western world we live ­longer  and are healthier than any of our ancestors.
True or false?
Aboriginal people living in ­indigenous cultures still hidden from the Western world are the healthiest people on the planet.
True or false?
Interestingly, both statements are true. We do live longer than ever before. However, at the same time, we are struggling with diseases that debilitate many lives as we get older. That brings me to the second statement. People in the ­Amazon rain forest don’t have cancer, heart disease or ­Alzheimer’s. They die from old age, infections or from the dangers of living in the wild.
This is the important message: Apart from the achievements of antibiotics and the operating theaters of modern hospitals, where broken bones and ­immediate dangers can be fixed, we haven’t been able to improve our health much. On the contrary, our modern lifestyle has created many new diseases. Alberto ­Villoldo spent years researching the health and lifestyles of indigenous cultures in the ­Amazon. He discovered that these cultures have been able to preserve their ­experience of oneness with creation. People in the rain forest are still connected with the spirit of our living planet a  nd with the spirits of their brothers and ­sisters. That’s the main source of their health and, arguably, our disconnection from each other and from the spirit of the planet pose the biggest threat to our health.
But there’s more. Indigenous people tend to eat healthier diets. They eat protein they are able to kill or catch, and they eat the fruits of their forests. They don’t eat many grains, the staple of the modern Western diet.
Villoldo writes (see page 26) that there was a noticeable shift in the health of our ancestors when they moved from hunting and gathering to farming. When people began to feed themselves mostly with grains, their lives shortened. Their bodies were not used to this kind of food in such big quantities. A few thousand years later, we are still dealing with this problem. Apparently it takes about 40,000 years for our DNA to adapt to a change in our diet and grains have been around for less than 10,000 years, as Villoldo writes.
The argument that follows is that we can become much healthier if we ­substantially change our diet to reflect the hunter/gatherer age. Too many grains impedes digestion and causes inflammation. That’s the beginning of any disease. This doesn’t mean that we need to go back to our prehistoric caves. But we do need to change our regular tour through the supermarket.
Jurriaan Kamp

Solution News Source

Searching for better health

In the Western world we live ­longer  and are healthier than any of our ancestors.
True or false?
Aboriginal people living in ­indigenous cultures still hidden from the Western world are the healthiest people on the planet.
True or false?
Interestingly, both statements are true. We do live longer than ever before. However, at the same time, we are struggling with diseases that debilitate many lives as we get older. That brings me to the second statement. People in the ­Amazon rain forest don’t have cancer, heart disease or ­Alzheimer’s. They die from old age, infections or from the dangers of living in the wild.
This is the important message: Apart from the achievements of antibiotics and the operating theaters of modern hospitals, where broken bones and ­immediate dangers can be fixed, we haven’t been able to improve our health much. On the contrary, our modern lifestyle has created many new diseases. Alberto ­Villoldo spent years researching the health and lifestyles of indigenous cultures in the ­Amazon. He discovered that these cultures have been able to preserve their ­experience of oneness with creation. People in the rain forest are still connected with the spirit of our living planet a  nd with the spirits of their brothers and ­sisters. That’s the main source of their health and, arguably, our disconnection from each other and from the spirit of the planet pose the biggest threat to our health.
But there’s more. Indigenous people tend to eat healthier diets. They eat protein they are able to kill or catch, and they eat the fruits of their forests. They don’t eat many grains, the staple of the modern Western diet.
Villoldo writes (see page 26) that there was a noticeable shift in the health of our ancestors when they moved from hunting and gathering to farming. When people began to feed themselves mostly with grains, their lives shortened. Their bodies were not used to this kind of food in such big quantities. A few thousand years later, we are still dealing with this problem. Apparently it takes about 40,000 years for our DNA to adapt to a change in our diet and grains have been around for less than 10,000 years, as Villoldo writes.
The argument that follows is that we can become much healthier if we ­substantially change our diet to reflect the hunter/gatherer age. Too many grains impedes digestion and causes inflammation. That’s the beginning of any disease. This doesn’t mean that we need to go back to our prehistoric caves. But we do need to change our regular tour through the supermarket.
Jurriaan Kamp

Solution News Source

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