2013: The Year People Finally Start to Get It?
One of my favorite expressions is “You are what you eat.” It’s simple and prosaic, but still powerful. What goes in your body becomes your body, for better or for worse. The fact is — you can dramatically improve your health, quality of life and longevity by being mindful about what you put in your body. It’s so simple, yet most people just don’t get it. If you’re reading this, you’re most likely one of the lucky ones who do!
Unfortunately, too many people consider processed foods, sugar-laden drinks and pharmaceutical drugs “normal,” and view people who embrace a more natural lifestyle as “alternative.” It’s this irony that fuels my passion for educating people about the dangers that lurk out there, while guiding them towards the simple, safe and natural solutions that are all around us.
Less than 100 years ago, living naturally was the only way of life. Food was always organic, local and rich in nutrients. Pesticides didn’t exist, and genetically modified foods were not yet conceived. And doctors treated the whole body without relying on pharmaceutical drugs.
Yet somehow, we lost our way as society became more “advanced.” This coincided with the advent of industrial agriculture, and really picked up speed in the second half of the 20th century as industries began to mature, conglomerate and generate big money. That money, in turn, was used to influence public policy and opinion, beginning a viscious cycle that continues into the present day.
Now, entire generations have been raised thinking that many unnatural things are normal, and that many natural things are in fact dangerous. Cases in point: Diet soda is considered “healthy,” but raw milk straight from the farm is illegal. Plant extracts that have been proven by science to successfully treat diseases are shunned by doctors in favor of prescription drugs that are marginally effective and laden with side effects. And, genetically modified foods are considered so “safe” that they don’t even need to be labeled as such. The list of examples could go on and on.
Yet, as 2012 comes to an end, I honestly think we have finally turned a corner. I have a growing sense that more and more people are becoming conscious of what they are putting in their bodies. Consumers are scrutinizing the labels of the product they buy — looking for all of the bad ingredients that manufacturers have been sneaking into them for decades.
Consumers are also starting to demand that more information be listed on labels, so they can make more informed decisions. For example, California (the 8th biggest economy in the world) almost passed a law requiring that any foods containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs) be labeled as such. And lastly, when it comes to pharmaceutical drugs, more and more people are starting to question their safety and effectiveness, rather than just blindly taking their doctor’s word for it.
This is not to say we don’t still have a good fight ahead of us. The government continues its relentless assault on everything natural. Despite the CDC attributing zero deaths to dietary supplements over the last few years, if the government has its say, access to such products will be extremely limited or outright banned. Public health policymakers are still pushing pharmaceutical drugs as the health solution that’s going to save us all. And the FDA seems hell-bent on introducing more and more GMOs into our food supply, despite their known dangers. In fact, over the holidays, the FDA quietly approved GMO salmon when they assumed few people would be paying attention. But we were!
I believe there are two major reasons we have turned a corner towards all of us living more natural, healthier lives. Firstly, it’s people like you, who care enough to keep an open mind, educate yourself and spread the good word. Secondly, we can thank the wondrous resource that is the Internet, which allows us all to freely exchange ideas and information so that we can safely navigate around the propaganda of Big Business and the government. Let’s make sure we keep the Internet free and unrestricted, because if we don’t, we’ll lose this incredible momentum.
I’ll leave you with this poignant words from Benjamin Franklin: “It is the first responsibility of every citizen to question authority.” Let’s continue the good fight in 2013!
Article updated on: January 3rd, 2013