Most of us human beings see ourselves at the top of the evolutionary ladder endowed with enormous intelligence with the capacity to reflect on our own patterns of behaviour. At the same time we are extremely rigid in our ways, unable to change a lifestyle that we know is doing us great harm.
If you ask people what is important for their happiness, most will reply that it is their loved ones, good health, friends or a good job. If you add another question: “What are you actually doing to stay healthy?” there is a long pause or an excuse like: “I don’t have any time to fit a physical exercise programme into my busy schedule.”
Ask any seriously ill person what her/his greatest wish is, it certainly won’t be a win in the national lottery. When the body no longer functions as it should be, a lot of it has to do with what kind of lifestyle you have led for the past years or decades. Most of our modern diseases like diabetes, heart circulatory ailments, cancer, skeletal and bone problems and many mental illnesses can be directly attributed to the kind of lifestyle we lead. Only a small percentage is actually hereditary and some health experts are even questioning the “cancer gene” theory, arguing that there might be some risk of dying from a heart attack like your grandfather and brother but that this need not be inevitable . There is much you can do to compensate for an inherited body weakness.
In 2011, five major causes of death (heart disease, cancer, chronic lower respiratory diseases, stroke, and accidents) accounted for 62 per cent of all deaths in the United States. http://goo.gl/a5rdR
The figures would be much the same in other western countries. Life expectancy is increasing but how many people over the age of even 55 or 60 can really still say of themselves that they are fit and healthy.
Until the late 1950s most people in the western world had jobs demanding some kind of physical activity. Mortality rates were mostly as a result of respiratory diseases. Diabetes and obesity were rare by today’s standards. To put it bluntly: We are poisoning our bodies with the wrong foods and not getting enough exercise to stimulate our body metabolism. The amount of sugars, fats and salts we eat daily actually requires a good 20 kilometre run a day to get rid of all those excess toxins. The sad truth is that in Germany for instance the average person has less than 20 minutes of active exercise per week! Television, computer and other electronic consumption is more than four hours per day.
There are many ways you can motivate yourself to do more for your health. The reward comes in a much improved feeling of well being both physically and mentally. Watch this blog for more details. Maybe you would also like to have a look at my book.