Dietary And Lifestyle Causes Of Disease
You are what you eat - what you eat can affect your health. Consumption of highly processed and nutrient-poor foods has led to an epidemic of obesity and disease in America today. US healthcare does not invest sufficiently in primary intervention i.e. the reduction of risk factors by introducing healthy lifestyle habits such as drinking green drinks, exercise and giving up risky behaviors such as excessive alcohol consumption and smoking.
Increasing fiber intake, eating whole grain foods, cutting down on butter and other saturated fats, eating lean chicken and fish instead of beef, exercising and giving up smoking has been shown to reverse coronary artery atherosclerosis within a single year. For instance, a 1996 study reported in the British Medical Journal monitored the diet of over 10,000 vegetarians for 17 years. Amazingly, their overall death rate was half that of the general population and their daily consumption of fresh fruit significantly reduced death from coronary artery disease.
Whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables, beans and legumes, fatty fish, nuts and teas are all known to promote heart and overall health. These food items are rich in macro- and micronutrients that wipe out free radicals in the bloodstream. There really is an abundance of fruits and vegetables in many colors, shapes and sizes that are good for your health. It is best to consume such foods regularly in their natural form, as they come from the ground - the less processed the better. No matter what your age, education, smoking status and general health and fitness levels, consuming fruits and vegetables will lower your levels of LDL cholesterol. This was the finding of a study on over 4,000 subjects reported in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2004. Everyone is looking for that one magic food, but the key is to look for ways to get all the different nutrients in your diet regularly. A great way to do this is by using a green supplement daily, such as All Day Energy Greens. This green powder has more than 37 superfoods included in the ingredients.
Conversely the root cause of disease is now believed to be disrupted cellular biochemistry that happens as a result of daily dietary and lifestyle choices. The truth is that there is no one thing that influences whether people develop an illness or some other chronic disease, since various aspects of the environment are constantly interacting with human genetics to create a state of health or disease.
Overall, these are the top 7 factors that are known to influence disease development:
- Nutritional deficiencies - optimal health requires regular intake of micronutrients, the vitamins, minerals, essential fats and antioxidants via the diet. Diets that do not have enough fruits and vegetables and other healthy foods will lack the vitamins and minerals the body needs to thrive. Such nutrition-deficient diets have been associated with higher rates of cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and multiple sclerosis in population studies. Drinking a green drink every day is a fantastic way to get enough fruits and veggies into your diet.
- Unrecognized food sensitivities - sensitivity to gluten is a fairly common food sensitivity in western society, and yet 90% of people do not report or simply ignore problems with digestion or other gastrointestinal issues. Food sensitivities are often an unseen part of many disorders, including psychological problems, neurological problems, autoimmune problems, skin rashes, asthma, allergies and more. For instance, health experts recommend that if you have a chronic health issue, trying a gluten-free diet for a month may help you feel better than you have in years.
- Toxin overload - our environment today in the modern world is full of pollution and toxins excreted by vehicles, factories, plastics in our homes, mercury dental fillings and chemical farm sprays. These chemicals interact with our hormones, neurotransmitters, cells, the signals that are sent between cells as well as our mitochondria, disrupting their normal function and increasing levels of chronic inflammation. These toxins increase both the probability of getting a chronic disease and the severity of symptoms of such diseases. Reducing your exposure to plastics, solvents, and heavy metals will help you attain and maintain good health - as will increasing probiotic, healthy tea, vegetable and berry consumption, which improves processing and elimination of these toxins.
- Too much stress - some amount of stress is necessary for life. Chronic uncontrolled stress, however, disrupts hormone balance and increases overall levels of inflammation in the body. Practicing yoga, meditation or other stress-reduction activity on a daily basis can help reduce stress levels and protect your cells and entire body from inflammation.
- Inadequate exercise - our hunter-gatherer and nomadic ancestors walked 3 to 9 miles or more on average each day, and our brains and body expect us to move daily. Insufficient physical activity over the course of a lifetime greatly impacts the chances of developing dementia before the age of 60. Regular exercise can also improve mood and lower inflammation levels in the body.
- Inadequate sleep - there are many studies that tie sleep quality and duration to health. Getting adequate sleep is important in stress management, reducing fatigue, hormone balance and promoting overall cellular health. Sleep is the body's opportunity to heal and grow - while not getting 7 to 9 hours of sleep a night interrupts normal biology. Even if you believe you can survive or even thrive on fewer than 7 hours sleep every night, your body pays a price - becoming more susceptible to heart attacks, obesity, diabetes, early memory decline and autoimmune issues, among others.
- Inefficient or insufficient enzymes - all of us have a unique mix of efficient and inefficient enzymes, courtesy of the DNA we inherited from our parents. It is the interaction between these enzyme efficiencies and inefficiencies and our diet and lifestyle choices that determines which chronic diseases we acquire.
In conclusion, consuming a nutrient-dense diet, reducing the risk of food allergies, eating and living organic, engaging in regular stress reduction and getting 7 or more hours of sleep each night dramatically reduces the risk that inefficient enzymes will lead to a chronic disease. Ultimately, it is our diet and lifestyle choices that either create health, abundant energy, joy, and a clear mind or problems with fatigue, brain fog, pain, disease conditions and other physical complaints. Disease begins with broken chemistry in our cells, which arises from our diet and lifestyle choices.
Read More on This Topic:
Four Lifestyle Factors Contribute to One-Third of All Deaths
Regulate Digestion with Enzymes and a Healthy Lifestyle
Three Handy Tips to Keep your Kitchen Free of Disease
Top Five Ways to Lower Your Risk of Heart Disease