If I’m ever flipping between channels and come across a nature show, I’m likely to stop. I’m fascinated by anything as it occurs in nature, whether it be the lifecycle of a mosquito, how a cloud is formed, or the mating rituals of grizzly bears. I am always reminded how, in nature, things happen the way they are designed to. It’s not always pretty or kind, like when the weakest, slowest gazelle gets ripped apart by the pack of lions, but it all happens for a reason. In this example, those weaker gazelle genes are not passed on through the herd, helping to ensure future strength and security for the gazelle population, and the lions get to eat. And every single part of the fallen gazelle is utilized by other species, right down to the worms in the soil.
As we try to understand every aspect of our world, I am reminded that, technically, whether we know how it all works, or we don’t, it still works. We need to remember this when we talk about human health and wellness. We spend a great deal of money, time, and energy on researching how the body functions, right down to the molecule. Common sense would lead you to believe that the more we know, the healthier we can be, right? Well, how are we doing so far? If we step back and take a broad look, we will see that we know more now than ever before in history about the human body and how it functions, yet, we are currently sicker than we have ever been.
There are two points I would like to make here: First, we know enough, and have for a long time, to live a much healthier life. Second, there will be no big breakthrough that will radically elevate the health of humans.
Now those are two big statements. And before moving on, I want to be clear that I believe research and advances in science are incredibly important, and I encourage it. I would be foolish to think otherwise. But read on and see if what I am saying makes sense.
Let’s look at modern hunter-gatherer tribes. These are essentially wild humans that have the same genes as we do. They have very little cancers, no diabetes, obesity, or heart disease. Their rates of chronic illness are almost non-existent compared to ours where 80% of all Americans suffer from at least one chronic illness, and 55% suffer with two or more.
What do they know about human physiology, cells, and pathology? NOTHING!!! They do not know what a carbohydrate is, how digestion occurs, or how the heart works. They do not know about cholesterol, blood sugar, or the difference between a white or red blood cell. They know none of this. How are they so free of chronic illness without knowing any of this stuff? The Tsimane tribe in Brazil has been found to have the healthiest hearts ever studied. Heart disease is our number one killer, yet this tribe, without any understanding of the heart or advanced medical equipment, has THE HEALTHIEST hearts ever studied?
The reason is that whether we know how something works or not, it still works. And in nature, it works the way it is supposed to. Whether or not you understand how alpha-amylase, an enzyme in your saliva, starts the breakdown of sugar in your mouth before it even reaches your stomach, it still does it. And whether or not you understand why this is so important to the proper digestion and absorption of critical nutrients doesn’t matter, because it all happens whether you understand it or not. Pretty cool, huh?
You do not have to know how a plant utilizes chlorophyll to make energy, or how it takes in carbon dioxide and gives off oxygen. All you need to know is that if you give a plant an appropriate amount of water and sunlight, and make sure it is in mineral-rich soil, and toxins are not getting to it, it does the rest. It grows, it blossoms, and it flourishes. And if we get what we need and avoid what is bad for us, we grow and flourish too.
The only big breakthrough that will catapult our current level of health is the realization that living a more natural lifestyle will allow the body to do what it has always done. Give it what it needs, and get rid of what it doesn’t, it’ll do the rest.