You miss me? I’ve certainly missed writing.
But no time for catch-up. Let’s talk serious.
Why care? Why care at all about nutrition, about feeding your body, or keeping fit?
Apathy is cheaper, and easier, and a whole lot less challenging than eating right.
The question we need to ask is… What are the consequences of not caring?
With everything there’s pros and cons, even something like saving for retirement. There’s pros that follow that decision and cons. Nothing you decide to do is 100% beneficial.
So just like that we can say that “investing” in nutrition isn’t 100% guaranteed.
Just like retirement, you could save every penny, live within your means, and BAM! A truck hits you and you’re dead at 35.
I mean nothing is guaranteed in life and I think that is really the pretense to what I’m trying to say.
In many respects, nutrition is just another form of retirement.
Many of you put money away every pay check, for what purpose?
You do that in the hope that when you do retire you’ll be well off and you’ll have plenty of money to spend. It’s called delayed gratification.
Make no mistake, nutrition is the same. You spend a little more on food, but you’re investing in your health.
As far as investments go this pays out exponentially, as the cost of a single medical bill far exceeds that of the extra $1.50 an average day of healthy eating will cost you. Not only that, assuming you do make it to old age you’re far more likely to retain quality of life. I mean really that’s the main motivator of nutrition.
Otherwise, if none of it mattered then there is no reason to care.
With that being said a lot of people have this perception of the body being an improperly fed machine. So, they think, if you’re not feeding it well, it’s not running optimally. So of course you eat junk and your body will be a reflection of that. However, with a machine you can almost always go into it, clean it out, replace a few parts and Voila! It’ll run almost good as new.
People tend to see the body as this organism that if you could just give it the right things, it can heal itself. However, that’s not really the case.
There’s quite a few examples I could choose to demonstrate this, but I’ll pick one I’ve seen over and over again.
It’s an issue of Salt.
If you’ve been living under a rock for the past two decades, maybe you haven’t heard of the links between salt intake and high blood pressure – otherwise known as hypertension.
One of my senior reports was to truly evaluate whether salt causes hypertension, this led me to some remarkable studies.
The first looked at actual indigenous tribes, noted actual intakes of sodium, and observed how likely they were to have high blood pressure later in life.
What they found, will shock you. Societies who consumed the lowest amount of salt throughout life, were the least likely to have high blood pressure related to salt intake later in life. (Meneton, et al.)
It almost makes you wonder, is Sodium Sensitive Hypertension caused by the repeated stress of a high salt diet?
The other thing with hypertension, is that some people are just genetically predisposed.
For those that say genes have no race, you might want to look away.
In African American populations, repeated studies have shown that even in healthy individuals, African Americans have higher rates of SSH even at a young age.
What this tells us is that maybe there are genetic and biological mechanisms that predispose people to salt induced hypertension.
So the amazing conclusion of all this; not everyone who eats salt will see a rise in blood pressure, and not everyone who abstains will see a benefit.
However, individuals who routinely eat high salt diets when they’re young are much more predisposed to having salt affect their blood pressure later.
So really, it’s not just what you do when you’re older, it’s what you’ve been doing for the past 20-30-40 years that once you get down to that time, is mostly irreversible. You can’t go back and expect your body to rid a lifetime of damage, you have to invest early and often, you have to be the Warren Buffet of food and nutrition.
Be good to each other.
– Joshua Iufer, RD