Thursday, March 28, 2013

Why give fat people handicap placards!

Why would Doctors give obese people handicap placards and scooters, they are the ones that need to walk the most.  Maybe we should invent remote parking placards to give patients so they have to park near the street and walk a ¼ mile to go shopping.  I am not trying to be insensitive here but obesity is killing our healthcare system and we need to stand up and fight it and not give people a free pass on personal responsibility.  I know I have not walked in the shoes of an obese person but I have been overweight, and I also know that individuals should make dietary changes to improve their own health.  The problem today is we provide medication and scooters and ignore the source of the problem.  I will not accept that obesity is incurable or hereditary or whatever else you want to claim.  When people say obesity is hereditary, they are overlooking the fact that if the kids eat like the obese parents then they will be obese as well, it is not hereditary, and it is a taught behavior and a bad one at that!  Yes, there may be the occasional rare exception but it is not the problem for the majority.

If someone does not want to be called fat then they should change it.  I am tired of hearing that it is not their fault, well actually it is!  Accept it; acknowledge it and then you can change it.  I know this is a rant and I may offend a few people but I am sick and tired of our country excusing people’s bad behavior and then spending my money to pay for the obese person medication, or surgeries or whatever it is they need.
If we tell obese people to that they MUST make changes before they can get healthcare then we are starting to address the problem.  If someone were unwilling to make any personal changes then why on earth would we give them a handicap placard, medication to hide their symptoms and let them remain fat!  There is something sinister about giving people medication without addressing the issue, we need to help these people make changes if they do not want to change then we should call them lazy!

Obesity is growing at an astronomical rate and our healthcare system cannot sustain the care required to deal with the all the health issues around obesity.  Why should Americans who take responsibility for their own health have to pay for the healthcare of someone who is lazy or unwilling to make changes?
I hear people all the time say “I know what I need to do but I just do not want to.”  Well if the Doctor I will not help you until you change then they would be sued or lose their medical license.  Here in lies the problem, the healthcare profession is not equipped and may lack the knowledge to help many of their own patients.  It is consider cruel to tell a person they have to make changes before they can receive medication.  Do you give an alcoholic a drink because they want it?

Let’s look at it this way – if a person smokes, gets lung cancer and wants treatment BUT refuses to quit smoking then maybe we should just let them be sick and dying until they really want to change.
Here is my offer: if you want to change, if you do not know what you need to do then ask!  I have always been willing to help others change and make informed decisions.  I am willing to jump in and help, are you willing to listen and make changes?

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Top 12 Health Tips!

      1.       Sugar

Sugar is the largest contributing factor to obesity today.  Sugar and its 40 or so associated friends are hidden in everything these days.  It is estimated that almost 80% of the foods today contain some form of sugar.  Sugar is used to make food taste better, substituted for missing ingredients such as fat and also used as a preservative.  Sugar creates problems for the body because it raises insulin levels which drive increased fat stores.  This is also true for sugar substitutes, these can actually be worse for you because of their chemical composition and very little is known about the long term effects to our bodies.
2.       Fat
Dietary fat does not equate to body fat!  Fat in your diet is not a bad thing; our bodies actually need fat to stay healthy.  How long have we been told to eat low fat foods only to see a huge increase in obesity in America!  Eating fat should take place in its natural form; nuts, seeds, avocados, oils, butter, cream etc.  When you see products labels "low fat" or "fat free" then buyer beware, there is usually sugar or some other chemical hidden in the food to make up for the taste.

3.       Fast Food
If you eat fast food then you will most likely struggle with your weight!  Fast Food today is essentially a product devoid of most of its nutritional value, it is chemically processed and for the most part it does nothing but add empty calories to your diet.  Think about it this way, how can McDonald's serve a “Big Mac” for the same price it did 20 years ago?  They only way they can do this by using a food that is completely altered and is no longer a real food.

4.       Nutrition Labels
Nutrition labels have become a long list of unrecognizable chemicals and food derivatives.  If you read food labels, do not focus on calories or fat, but focus on ingredients.  Any product with more than six or seven ingredients should be avoided.  Any food label with ingredients you have never heard of then stay away from them!

5.       God’s Food Plan
God does not make junk!  We have been taught this in Sunday school, by our religious leaders and our parents from an early age and they are all right!  This also applies to our food.  If you eat the foods that God gave us in nature then you really cannot go wrong.  Our challenge is the “Big Food” companies, they have altered the food so much that it lacks any resemblance to what came out of the ground.  Go back to eating all natural foods as close to a natural state as possible.

6.       Exercise
Exercise is very important today because of our lifestyle and conveniences.  Our bodies are designed to move.  Because we sit at desk, drive cars, go through drive thru’s and use elevators our bodies are not moving like they used to.  To make up for this just get out the door and exercise.  Whether it is running, walking, hiking, cycling or going to the gym, get out and move every single day!

7.       Calorie In / Calorie Out
We are taught that a calorie is a calorie.  This is not true, if it were, then we could eat 2000 calories of sugar and be done for the day right?  Not so fast!  If you use calories restriction to lose weight then you will quickly find that it is not sustainable.  Your challenge is to eat high quality foods and the calories will take care of themselves.  The problem is when we eat foods devoid of nutrition, i.e. processed, then the body is still hungry and we eat more.  When you eat natural, high quality foods, you will actually eat less food but be healthier in the process.

8.       Diets
Diets do not work, lifestyle changes do!  If you continuously chase the latest fad, diet, new report about supper foods etc. then you will continue to get frustrated.  Diets are temporary and usually create stress on the body because your body thinks that it is starving.  When you starve your body, your body will do everything it can to retain the fat stores for survival.  We cannot change the basic instinct to survive.  The only way to lose weight and not starve your body is to change what you eat.

9.       Alcohol
There are only a few real befits to alcohol to our bodies.  Alcohol is a poison and will work against your efforts to lose weight and maintain a healthy lifestyle.  Wine turns to sugar then fat, beer turns to fat as empty calories and distilled liquors require mixing with sugar to drink them which then turns to fat!  Alcohol will also derail your workouts because they reduce your metabolism which is usually raised by exercising.  Lowing metabolism lowers the fat burning mechanism in our bodies.

10.   Sodas & Juices
Our bodies are not designed to drink calories.  Sodas, juices, sport drinks etc. are all filled with sugar or even worse, fake sugar.  When you drink these products you are still thirsty and you have not given your body any real food to sustain itself.  The best and easiest way to lose weight?  Drink water, water and then more water.  We do not need to drown ourselves in it, but if only drink water, then you cannot go wrong.

11.   Drug Problem
We have a huge drug problem in America.  We get sick, we take a pill, we have a chronic illness, we take a pill, we cannot sleep, take a pill.  How about this approach: if you are sick then take a look at what is causing it.  Chronic illness such as diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, arthritis, impotence, sleep disorder, headaches etc. can almost all be alleviated or at least reduced to manage levels by changing our diet.  Not only can we cure these diseases we can also have a huge impact on long-term illness such as cancer and obesity.

12.   Healthcare
Doctors and hospitals today are not about healthcare, they are about sick care.  We must be responsible for our own health because our Doctors and hospitals are too overwhelmed and ill equipment to really get in to preventative care.   We have seen such a dramatic increase in illnesses that we are overloading the system and it will become even worse as we continue to become a nation of fat and sick people.  Healthcare professionals get very little training on nutrition and prevention; they are trained to fix people.  That is great if you are sick, but if you want to stay healthy then you are own your own.


Thursday, March 7, 2013

Chronic disease, why are you still sick AND still taking the medicine!

Chronic illness is on the rise in the US and so are the medications we are given, however the medical cures are nowhere in sight!  High blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, arthritis, heart disease, and headaches are all preventable and even curable without medication!  These chronic illnesses are caused by eating unhealthy processed food and they can almost all be treated by changing your eating habits!  When we go to the Doctor and get medication for these illnesses, we are only treating the symptom and now adding to our problems because these medications can make us even sicker in other ways, i.e. the side effects.  Don’t you like to hear about all the potential sides effect of these medications touted on TV!  It makes you wonder if you even want to take those medicines.

I am simply shocked that anyone would want to take a drug to reduce cholesterol in the blood and then continue to eat the same way, do we not realize that the medication does not ever, ever, ever cure us!!!!!!  Now go back and re-read the last sentence, let that point sink in, the medicine is not a cure, but just a ban-aid!  Mediation for all the issues listed above and many others will only mask the symptoms to make us feel better but they will not cure the problem.
If you had a fancy high-end sports car and then started using bad gasoline what would happen?  The car would spit and sputter, maybe it would stall, and only go half as fast.  You get the point right?  We would not blame the car?  Would we call the car manufacture and ask for a refund?  No we would not; we would look at the gasoline and change it to a higher quality fuel.

The same is true of our bodies.  God gave us the perfect living machine and it is very capable of providing a long and healthy life IF we give it the right fuel.  Our healthcare industry gets very little training on nutrition, diet and disease prevention.  Modern medicine is about post illness care and we have become great at that, however we have failed miserably at teaching people how to care for themselves and prevent many of the illness that plague us today.
We need to take personal responsibility for our health.  We should not run to the Doctor to cure our preventable chronic diseases, we should stock our refrigerators and cupboards with healthy all natural foods that will sustain us for life!

I am not saying it is easy, but what is the alternative, a sick and miserable life?
Now for the disclaimer, I am not a trained medical professional and I am not suggesting you not get help if you are sick, but I am saying you should look at making changes to your lifestyle so that you can get off your medications with the support of your doctor.  If you want more evidence and background then I recommend you see the movie “Forks over Knives.”  It is a great documentary that can literally change your life and show you how you can become healthy again.

If you prefer you can stay on the medication, complain abut your illness and wonder why you are sick but I challenge you to stand up and fight for your health!

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

“Fat Tax”…sure, why not!

Now that I got your attention let me please explain.  We are seeing more and more government officials implementing, or at least discussing, taxing the so-called “bad” foods.  In New York, they have banned oversized fountain drinks and other states have either started taxing sodas or eventually will.  Still more officials want to go after candy, McDonalds, or whatever they think the public will support!  Remember the big “Theater Popcorn” controversy!  For the government, it is all about the money and when we tax so-called bad stuff everyone jumps on board thinking they are doing the right thing.  Well you would be very wrong to think this way!  Any idea what Coca Cola does when you ban soft drinks from High School?  They simply replace them with their own juice products which are just as bad as the sodas and they contain just about the same amount of sugar in them!

I am going to go a little bit political here to make a point.  If the government were truly concerned about our health, they would actually promote better food labeling, accurate food nutritional guidelines and provide incentives (not taxes) to promote better health.  However the government wants to call school lunch pizza’s a vegetable, incentivize the farmers to grow more corn to make high fructose corn syrup cheaper and allow food stamp programs to buy fast food.  The biggest drain on our healthcare system is caused by improper nutrition.  Cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and most chronic illnesses can mostly be traced back to diet.  Yes, there are some genetics in play here but it is usually less than 5%.
In addition, how about those TV commercials?  How many sugary cereal commercials do our kids see every day?  How about those Big Mac commercials!  How about our government funded school food programs.  Let us not forget that the poorest of Americans typically have to choose to eat cheaper food and it is usually the worst nutritious food to eat.  Where is the concern for the obesity here?  For me this is all “feel good” legislation that just adds to the problem.

Follow the money my friends!  Big food, the Beef and Dairy industry and many of the large farming groups have the attention of the politicians with their donations and political appointments.  This is true for many of the issues that plague our country today, but the challenge with the food industry are leading us down a path of obesity, illness and ultimately early death!
If you cannot go after the people who fund Washington then maybe we should institute a Fat Tax!  Every American would have to weigh in at their local health clinic and report it on their income tax return.  We can pay by the pound for obesity, this would be a great way for the government to raise revenues and curb obesity just like we stopped people from smoking from all the extra taxes added to cigarettes!  Oh wait, that did not happen either.  My obesity statement is to make a point, let’s not all jump on the bandwagon to go after the evil products because there are a LOT of so called evil products in the market place.  I do not trust government to make those decisions for us and they really cannot collectively agree on anything.

If you have read my previous blogs then you will understand that our problem is not food, it is our ignorance of what make us fat, our addiction to sugar and other foods that are low in nutritional value and our government perpetuating the problem by misinforming the public.
If we truly want to change the obesity path that America is headed down then we must start by educating the public on what real food is, providing incentives for the real food and quit allowing the industry to influence public policy on food.

I know right now this is only a dream, but as more and more Americans truly understand how to look at food, we will see change in the marketplace.  Using our dollars to make good choices in our food will be the best option for now to defend our own health!