Hello SOAR peeps. I apologize for not getting around to a blog post last Monday. I was super busy with the open house which was on Saturday, which was quite a success and lots of fun. I want to thank everyone who showed up to support me and the ladies of 1810 8th ave, as well as everyone sending us good vibes from elsewhere. Thank you. Thank you.
Last week a dear friend posted this image on Facebook and an interesting discussion ensued.
Now, I do not know the life circumstances of the two women pictured, nor do I know thier actual ages and how close they are are in age. I do know something though. I know that many disease we think are genetic are actually preventable. These diseases are considered diseases of affluence.
Diseases of affluence are health conditions which become more prevalent as poverty declines in a society.
Some examples of disease of affluence are type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, hypertension, gout, and many types of cancer.
We all know that quitting smoking and reducing alcohol greatly reduces your risk for all of the examples above. Better yet, don't begin smoking and drinking alcohol! But we have all known people who don't drink or smoke yet have one of these ailments.
Our society is missing something, and it is a BIG something. Movement.
You may think you are in the clear because you exercise. You may hit the gym an hour a day most days of the week. Guess what though. That hour a day does not counteract what you are doing the other 23 hours in the day. If you are sitting for 10 hours a day and exercising 1, sitting wins doesn't it? Think about that a minute...while you stand up and walk around the house before finishing reading what I have to say. I'll still be here when you get back.
I am definitely not saying you need to spend a billion hours a day at the gym taking classes and pumping iron. I'm just pointing out that people who exercise can still be considered sedentary.
I've already blogged about sitting, being sedentary, etc. before so I won't go over it again. You can read that post here if you like.
I would like discuss the fact that movement reduces your risk for all diseases of affluence, why, and why we resist it.
Before the industrial revolution most of the population moved a lot for survival. We were farming, tending our animals, cleaning, and cooking without our modern conveniences. (When you use the word "convenience" you are really saying "reduces movement")
At that time most of the diseases we are discussing were only prevelent among the wealthy. Those who had others doing the physical work for them.
The affluent had one set of disease and everyone else had another. The disease of poverty. The diseases of poverty are mostly infectious disease which result from poor living conditions. In most of the western world dying from things like dysentery is a thing of the past, unless you have a compromised immune system or enjoy playing Oregon Trail.
What most of us are dying from now is heart disease (the actual number 1 killer of both genders), cancer (number 2), and complications of diabetes and high blood pressure. AKA: diseases of affluence.
We are so programmed to believe in the powers of rest.
Yes, resting is nice, and sometimes necessary, but we are unintentionally misinterpreting data.
100 years ago we would have been very active to meet our needs while the aristocracy were the ones who got to recline. The rich obviously had it better. Therefore improved lifestyle and resting go hand in hand and must be a superior way to live, right? Yes and no. The diseases of affluence are no longer designated only to the wealthiest in society. Most of us now have other people moving for us, drive cars instead of walk, get milk from the store rather than milk our cows by hand, go to the farmer's market rather than garden. I'd encourage you to reduce your stress with movement rather than being stationary. I like to walk, hang from stuff, dance, try new forms of movement. I'm no good at gardening though, so I'll keep going to the farmers market. Just pick a few different things you like to do or would like to try and do them. You will change your chemistry by increasing your stress-reducing hormones!
Now lets look at disease.
Many cancers, such as types of breast and colon cancers, are reduced up to 40% with increased physical movement.
In 1997 The New England Journal of Medicine reported "Physical activity during leisure time and at work is associated with a reduced risk of breast cancer." The study showed that the more movement the lower the risk.
Why does movement reduce disease risk?
When we look at the lymphatic system we see there is no central pump. There is no "heart" of the lymphatic system.
We should also note that most of the lymph nodes are at points of rotation within the body.
We have to move our lymph by moving our bodies!
There really aren't any special movemements we need to do. If we are walking a lot and properly those lymph nodes in the groin and in the arm pit area are able to work. Look around rather than just at a screen all the time and the lymph nodes in the neck are able to work.
Now, lets discuss the circulatory system.
You probably learned that the heart is the way the blood moves around the body. This is only half of the story. The muscles also help move it along.
So when you aren't moving your body your heart has to work a lot harder to circulate your blood. Your blood pressure rises as a result.
When there is a part of your body you aren't moving your body will eventually cut it off to conseve energy. When you aren't getting oxygen from that blood that should be moving through that part of your body you get cell death. Cell death = disease.
Basically, I'm happy if you exercise. I really am. I'm happier, and you're be happier, if you are moving around more often than being still.
We are living longer, but I want you to live longer while still having quality of life. I want you to be able to pick stuff up without pain, live in your own home as long as possible, be mobile. I want you to have your original parts in working order for a long time. I want you to enjoy all of the time you have in this life. Netflix, Facebook, and Candy Crush aren't going to help you accomplish this. Being active can.
Immediate and long term gratification!
I have to go move around now. You also need to move around.
Till next time!