By Elizabeth Szlek, Wellness Counselor
For thousands of years, the main job in everyone’s life was to find enough food to survive. Hunting and gathering takes a long time and depending on location or climate or season, it could get easier or more difficult.
This is hunting season and lots of my clients are or are married to hunters. I ask them, “How’s the hunting going?” One of the many has bagged his deer so far, but he is the exception. Now suppose that everyone in the family is depending on your skill in hunting, and you haven’t scored yet. Could be a dangerous situation.
There are no convenience stores or supermarkets around. Just you and the animals. The other non-hunters are busy drying berries and collecting nuts and other food that can survive the winter, but the meat is the real centerpiece.
When agriculture developed, it was somewhat easier to make sure you and your family would not starve to death over the winter. But this was no easy life, either. Collecting seeds, keeping them safe, then rudimentary plowing and planting and watching the crops until harvest time. Storing what you could.
Flash forward to our time. I recently read that 20% of ALL PEOPLE ON EARTH will die because of their poor diet. Let me clarify that: In Africa and other parts of the world, there is true hunger and probably starvation as well. I’m not talking about that. I mean that because of poor dietary choices, not because of starvation, 20% of us will die for reasons connected to our calorie-sufficient diet.
It seems we are killing ourselves with our food. Our food supply is increasingly adulterated with various chemicals that we have let loose in the environment, and we are eating more and more genetically modified foods every day. The nutrient-dense foods of past ages are continually being supplanted by cheap fake and noxious foods that do not nourish us, but rather cause more nutritional deficiencies.
Do you think that canola oil is a good choice for cooking or baking? It is noxious.
Do you never eat beef or other meats because you believe they are bad for you? You are probably quite nutritionally deficient, as meats contain nutrients your body needs.
Do you eat a lot of processed foods? Processed foods are created so that they can stay on grocery shelves for a long time without deteriorating? You are eating dead foods, which can give you no food enzymes. Enzymes prolong life.
Do you make a regular habit of eating fast food? Fast foods are generally made with the cheapest ingredients possible. There is very little good nutrition there.
Are you addicted to sugar? Sugar can be considered a toxin, in that human bodies cannot process it very well. Too much sugar leads to depression and diabetes.
Do you forbid yourself to eat eggs? Eggs are a wonder of nutrition and contain some of the most beneficial nourishment possible.
Do you take antacid medication? You are setting yourself up for poor digestion, mineral and vitamin deficiencies, and all that follows from that.
Heart disease, autoimmune disease, diabetes and just about every other condition that plagues us as a result of poor diet. And, as stated above, 20% of the world population, while eating abundant calories, will die because of their dietary choices. Don’t be one of those to suffer this fate. Learn what your body needs to function optimally.
Elizabeth Szlek is the Director of the Door Counseling Center of Yorkville. She is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor, a certified Nutritional Therapy Practitioner and a certified GAPS Practitioner, as well as a trained chef. She can be reached at (315) 768-8900.