Though most of us are not starving street urchins, the scenario got me thinking about how our whole relationship with food impacts the rest of our lives so significantly, whether we lack enough food to be healthy, or simply make wrong choices about the foods available to us. Most of us are taught, at an early age, to pacify ourselves with food, hence the whole concept of comfort food. We Americans are very focused on food and the many issues that surround it -- from childhood obesity with its staggering implications, now creating the first generation with a shorter life expectancy than previous ones, to the many diseases associated with poor diet choices (an astounding 2/3 of Americans are either overweight or obese!) -- diabetes, heart disease, cancer, organic vs. pesticides and genetically modified organisms (GMO). Throw in the advertising for weight loss products, the glossy magazine ads with super skinny, perfect supermodels, and it is a recipe for dysfunction. And yet, we have the science to understand how to change this whole dynamic.
Author & speaker John Robbins wrote in his book, Healthy at 100, about research done on four different groups of people who regularly live past 100 years with health and vitality, and virtually NO cancer or diabetes. It begs the question, why are we killing ourselves with the very substance (and lifestyle, of course) that is designed to nurture us and help us maintain health, happiness and longevity?
I have a theory. It is the same damaging, erroneous philosophy that is making a mess of our current "health care" system, which is in reality a "sick care" system: we are unwilling to take responsibility for our actions. We want someone else to "fix" things, from our health to our happiness to the very sustenance we consume -- we want a pill for every ill, we want a shrink to fix our emotional issues, we want fast food without health consequences and we want it all without putting forth much effort ourselves. We seem to have a national mentality of entitlement with no strings attached.
When anyone dares to tell us the truth about our power to change our misery, we either stick our head firmly in the sand or, worse, we shoot the messenger. We can change this by opening our ears, eyes, and hearts, and starting a true dialogue about these aspects of our lives, which affect us all, such as was recently done by the excellent online interviews with many leading experts, called the Food Revolution
You can check it our for yourself, get informed, start thinking about what it would mean to you and your family to create a joyful, healthy life based on your food and lifestyle choices. We do have power, but we have to take it, be responsible (or response-able, able to respond) for our lives. So do it! Take your power back and start your own food revolution today!
I leave you with these words of John Robbins, his summation at the closing of the Food Revolution Summit. The words strike me as truth, as a light on the path.
“I think you’ll know what to do. I think you do it a step at a time, a day at a time, a mouthful at a time, a food choice at a time, a purchase at a time, an order at a time, a meal at a time. And I think we will change the world one heart at a time.”
“The primary agent of social change, to my way of seeing, is the human heart. As it awakens, as it becomes engaged, as it becomes alive with its responsibility, with its capacity for wisdom, for caring and for action, then our prayers start to manifest as our lives. Then our caring starts to be expressed in the way we are with each other. Then we bring out the best in one another. Then we live in a way that’s worthy of the suffering we experience, and that transforms the suffering into strength.”
May all be fed May all be healed May all be loved