Healthy choices are what we are about so welcome to health-choices-for-life.com, the “Healthy by Nature” website.
We are here to provide answers and guide our readers to a life of health the natural way; no prescriptions, staying out the hospital, and no dependence on the national healthcare system.
If you have more questions and want to do your own research, here is a Google search box to help in your quest.
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Healthy choices seem to be pretty rare these days but mostly because too many of us just don’t know what we don’t know. We think we are doing something good for ourselves but in reality, we are doing more damage. We just keep getting sicker and sicker.
This site is dedicated to correcting that situation.
Healthy choices in all aspects of our daily life don’t come naturally. It’s just not in our nature. Most of us would choose the couch over the treadmill or the triple-decker cheese burger and fries over the Mediterranean salad.
Knowing if we are really fit can be pretty perplexing and is hard, if not impossible to quantify. The whole subject of staying “Healthy by Nature” is as deep as it is broad and too many people take it for granted until something goes wrong.
We humans were originally designed to receive all we needed from nature, literally. The first garden, that is, the Garden of Eden, reportedly provided everything needed for maintaining
life to its fullest. We didn't need to worry about healthy choices; there were no other choices.
So put another way, our "wellness" was in mother nature's hands and she did a great job. Naturally! No pesticides; no herbicides; no chemical fertilizers! The Garden of Eden was the original organic garden.
But we don't live in the Garden of Eden anymore and we now must take responsibility for ourselves.
Back to the original question, how do we know if we are really healthy and in top shape? If we feel good and don't exhibit any symptoms, are we fit? Probably not. Dr. Stephen Boyd, a well known medical doctor, Ph.D and Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine, speaking at a health conference, said, "the only way to tell if you are well is to get an autopsy".
Remember the old Salem witch hunting days? Well, probably not, but most have read about them.
The acid test was to tie stones to an accused witch and throw her into the village pond. If she floated, she was a witch and would be burned at the stake. If she sank and drowned, she was innocent.
At times, it seems that some of our medical interventions work the same way. With many of our catastrophic diseases, the treatment is worse than the disease with no guarantee of success. For example, consider a cancer patient where the intervention got all the cancer but the patient didn't survive the treatment".
The problem is that many of our catastrophic, health challenges, such as some cancers and cardiovascular diseases are developing years before they exhibit symptoms.
Very often, the first indication of a heart problem is dropping dead from a massive myocardial infarction, that's "heart attack" to those of us who are medical degree challenged.
Speaking of medical degrees, healthcare providers use the word "homeostasis" to describe optimal health and wellness. Actually homeostasis refers to a state of balance or equilibrium in the body.
If everything works according to plan, when something in the body starts going awry, a system of feedback mechanisms will work to bring the errant function back into line, that is, back in balance. The <em>healthy choices</em> we make throughout our lives give our body a fighting chance.
We are, in a sense, educators who have a deep interest in the natural sciences, particularly in the bio-sciences with the emphasis on the immune system and how the body works.
The objective for us and our readers is never to have to depend on the U.S. healthcare system and enjoy the highest quality of life possible by keeping fit and making smart lifestyle adjustments and “healthy choices for life”.
The purpose of this site is to share the accumulated knowledge of nutritionists, medical professionals, fitness and health gurus and any other disciplines dedicated to optimal health through healthy choices.
The audience is not the medical community but everyday people looking for a better quality of life without depending on prescription drugs or being tied to the U.S. healthcare system.
On the other hand, maybe the audience should be the medical community. After all, when it comes to being "healthy by nature", it is often the patients who educate the doctors on the natural approach.
Many healthy choices for life are presented that lead to a healthy, active, vibrant and joyous lifestyle. What is presented are proven, healthy choices that are simple and easy to implement and that can result in an optimal degree of wellness and freedom if adopted.
Our modern, commercial, corporate-farmed food supply no longer delivers all we need for optimum nutrition, much less optimum health.
The environment is killing us and our over-regulated healthcare system dominated by pharmaceutical companies is geared to control symptoms, not cure. The only way to beat the system is to become knowledgeable in how to make those healthy choices.
For every prescribed drug, there is a natural alternative that should be explored. Obviously there are exceptions. For an immediate, acute life-threatening health situation, prescription drugs can and do save lives.
It is rarely all one way or the other, integrative medicine is the combined use of traditional and alternative treatments. There is a lot to be said for it. The problem is that medical schools teach a lot of medicine and how to use a prescription pad but they seldom get around to the integrative or alternative part.
Personal lifestyle changes can include a daily regimen of various dietary supplements, scheduled daily exercise, filtered air and water in the home, stress management, weight management, good sleeping habits and healthy changes in diet.
If successful, the outcome of all this should be a life independent of prescription or over-the-counter meds, a weight where it should be, quality sleep, mental sharpness and a good, long life. Making healthy choices a habit pays off bigtime.
Regarding dietary supplements, many of them can and do interact with each other, certain medications and some foods. Some supplements also deliver unexpected side effects. When using dietary supplements, it is important to know what we are doing and this is covered in detail in the supplement pages.
The site content is designed to follow a natural flow of healthy choices.
First is nutrition because it is the single most important factor behind many of the epidemics we are dealing with today. Nutrition is so important, it can affect gene expression and many studies are showing that our genes are not our destiny.
The nutritional content of food is severely compromised today for many reasons which are discussed in detail but there are ways to compensate.
The embedded video below was produced by Dr. Joseph Mercola at Joel Salatin's Polyface Farm in central Virginia. It discusses sustainable farming and many of their comments get to the very heart of nutrition and why it has become so degraded. It is worth the 27 minutes to watch it.
From the nutrition overview page, there are links to the Essential Nutrients, fatty acids, amino acids, phytosterols, diets, food pyramids and more.
The flow then takes us to the lifestyle choices that affect our "state of health and wellness" and thus our quality of life. The healthy choices affecting our quality of life that are covered it the site include stress management, quality sleep, regular exercise and laughter.
Unhealthy choices made in nutrition and life style are directly attributable to the overweight and obesity epidemic in
the U.S. So next we turn to thoughts on Weight Management and all its implications for optimal living.
As we will see, the obesity epidemic is not entirely the fault of the individual. Food companies and conventional thinking in the medical community about low-fat, no-fat and low-carb diets share a huge part of the blame. Education on genetic metabolism and eating accordingly is vital.
It's impossible to cover wellness issues without considering trends in the environment that are impacting our quality of life and that of every living thing on the planet.
The fact is that we now live in a toxic world and it is killing us. Especially troubling is the contamination in our drinking water that the treatment plants can't handle. The same goes for the air we breathe. There are healthy solutions however which are covered in detail.
If we are expected to take care of an operating system, it helps to know how it works. Here's a short teaser video on the subject put together by Dejan Kober for a human anatomy project; good background music too.
After looking at the external issues of nutrition, lifestyle, weight management and the environment, we turn inward to look at the systems that comprise our body, this incredible collection of cells that we inhabit.
Here we examine the operating manual of each major system of human anatomy and consider what healthy choices we can make to keep things humming along as designed. Nothing in this area is ever static; it is a rapidly changing field of study with new discoveries and information coming out constantly.
The journey is wrapped up with three macro wellness and economic issues.
First is an examination of disease trends in the U.S. focusing on our major current health issues of population centers; an area known as epidemiology. As will be seen, most chronic diseases are trending up year to year.
We look at the top ten health conditions that kill people in the U.S. and explore how making good lifestyle adjustments and healthy choices can keep us from becoming a top ten statistic.
Of necessity, there may be words that are unfamiliar to some people. Rather than set up a separate glossary, these will be explained or defined as they are used in the text.
The second macro issue involves an examination of the U.S. Healthcare System. The "System" has come under a tremendous amount of criticism and reform seems to have been a plank in every politician's platform in recent memory. We try to present a balanced look, both pros and cons, of the U.S. healthcare system including the role of big pharma.
The sad fact is that hospitals and medical caregivers kill a lot of people; by some researchers estimates it's over 700,000 patients killed every year by the system that is supposed to cure them. Could there be a better reason for making healthy choices?
Right now, healthcare reform is the hottest of hot potatoes in Washington, highly politicized, incredibly expensive and extremely important in that the outcome will be with us for a long, long time.
Again the focus is on how we can take responsibility for our own health and stay out of the U.S. healthcare system.
After looking at the U.S. Healthcare System, we move to the world of the "natural", encompassing complementary (integrative)
and alternative medicine (CAM).
Here we examine the role of dietary supplements, super foods, herbs and some of the more esoteric healing approaches. This is one area where knowledge and discipline in healthy choices can really make a difference.
If you are the type that likes to jump around and explore, feel free to click on any of the navigational links below or on any of the navigation buttons on the left and surf where the tide takes you.
Before starting out, please read the <b>DISCLAIMER</b> below which, hopefully, will keep the "Healthy by Nature" site in good graces with the FDA, FTC, USDA, and any other government alphabet-soup agencies involved in protecting us.
It is always smart to take anything found on the web with a grain of salt until you can verify it for yourself or know it to be true. Please do the same with this website. As Ronald Regan said, "Trust but Verify"; that's especially true of those healthy choices presented herein.
NOTHING CONTAINED IN THIS SITE IS INTENDED TO REPLACE OR SUPERCEDE TRADITIONAL MEDICAL CARE, NOR SHOULD ANYTHING IN THIS SITE BE CONSTRUED AS MEDICAL ADVICE. NOTHING HEREIN, INCLUDING DISCUSSIONS OF NATURAL, ALTERNATIVE OR COMPLEMENTARY HEALTH CARE, IS PRESENTED FOR THE PURPOSE OF CURING, TREATING, MITIGATING OR DIAGNOSING ANY DISEASE CONDITION. NO STATEMENTS OR MATERIAL PRESENTED HEREIN HAVE BEEN EVALUATED OR APPROVED BY THE FDA. SELF-TREATMENT OF HEALTH CHALLENGES IS STRONGLY DISCOURAGED UNLESS UNDERTAKEN WITH THE SUPERVISION OF A PROPERLY LICENSED MEDICAL PRACTITIONER.
So there you have it. Good healthy choices and a long life to us all.
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