We know – we know Ebola and Fitness, are you WeFit(ers) daft?! While it is far more likely you will be struck by lighting than suffer Ebola we feel no shame in using it’s notoriety to address and anchor a serious issue. People…our immune systems are under attack and the statistics are growing grim. For the most part we like to keep things positive and focus on productive behaviour but time has come to cover an important aspect of modern health and fitness.
The rapid climb in cancer rates, serious allergies, hormonal disruptions, obesity, depression/anxiety, insomnia, major digestive tract disruptions and on down the list is alarming. Good news is a lot can be chalked up to awareness and better reporting and more thorough examination. This means the statistics may be high but much has to do with improved discovery and tracking.
The problem is this: the grouping of increases is related to immune function and immune insults and is not widely understood let alone studied. Furthermore, traditional ‘reactive’ medicine is not all that effective with such things. The reason is complex in design but simple in nature.
Your immune system is your watchdog, as well it carries out countless intricate functions essential to long term wellbeing. We feel it is a grossly under examined area of health, one that is at the very foundation of today’s growing concerns. Medicine is so specialized that concerns which have many interactive and interrelated parts are slipping through the cracks.
In a nutshell your real defence against the bulk of modern physical aliments is a balanced/properly functioning immune system. From surviving Ebola like diseases to warding off cancer your immune system saves your life plain and simple. Furthermore, an immune system burdened from nutrition mistakes and lack of fitness will see all number of nasty but not necessarily life threatening conditions arise.
Without going into too much detail let’s consider the basic functions to get a grasp on the picture. Your immune system is responsible for clearing metabolic waste/by-products especially inflammation related. Much of our common food choices cause inflammation as well as leaving behind unusable elements. Thus years of lacklustre nutrition heavily loads autoimmune function.
As well a lifestyle which promotes sedentary behaviour is also a serious problem in that basic physical movement is a chief requirement of proper immune function. Add to this a lack/loss of lean muscle (as most just don’t need much strength for basic living) and we see modern life is wrought with a whole new set of threats. We stress ‘modern’ because you have the added complication of evolution. Technological changes have come quick and our bodies are not at all adapted to present day living conditions. We just aren’t designed to be able to be so non physical while having unlimited access to food.
Now Ebola is scary because it has such a strong ability to kill it’s host. Sure people perish from just basic flu’s every year and in numbers that will likely always far surpass Ebola and similar viruses. The fact is though the majority of flu virus or bacterial infection suffers do not face death. We see a clear difference in that fighting off common intruders can actually fortify ones immune system while Ebola can easily destroy it. To survive Ebola as with many Cancers, is a whole lot different than dealing with most intruders. Consider conditions like Ebola (at least at the time of this writing) are NOT directly curable. That is like many diseases there is no way to knock off the actual attacker. What is needed is medicine to support the body in fighting the condition itself a fight greatly helped by a fit strong body.
On top of all this there is the increasing incidence of autoimmune disorders where something sets off immune function and it literally attacks your own body (often a specific aspect of it, it deems a foreign threat). Little is known about the exact workings of all this however it seems clear to us the dilemma is in the rise.
Again present day medicine is just not structured to deal with systemic catastrophes especially those which insidiously eat away at a person over years. When you consider that your immune system needs to be more than just strong but in equilibrium to work properly you start to see the concern. To put it in everyday language once things get ‘out of whack’ it is tricky…very tricky to rebalance.
Not surprisingly we think fitness is needed now more than ever. For reasonable quality of life and even survival, knowing how to eat, how to exercise, what is appropriate activity and rest…is a true priority.
The modern condition is one which does not backtrack well and damage done often goes unnoticed far too long. It is our position that present day medicine and surgery is no longer going to be our saving grace.
Everywhere we see the results of overworked immune systems failing to maintain quality living standards even in the wealthy. We are shocked…almost daily as Fitness Clinicians™ to see the ever decreasing level of liveliness in people – people with everything to live for who are over fatigued, sore, weak and way too often facing life threatening but almost completely preventable illness.
Fitness being taken seriously as an integral aspect of healthcare can turn things around in a big way. We really must teach children and change the view that fitness is just for athletics and looking good. Your immune system is incredible but relies completely on decent fuel and well maintained body strength. Everything from staving off cancer to avoiding mental problems and emotional collapse depends on autoimmune processes. It is in no way an exaggeration to state:
“Fitness IS the new medicine and without it no part of living from personal to societal will be left unharmed”
Your ability to be productive as well as enjoy life rests on your health. The inner workings of fitness protect your immune system which in turn saves you suffering and rescues your existence. While it isn’t much of a gamble to say you aren’t going to face Ebola it is a marked risk to think you can put off getting in better shape to another day.
Until next time…take care of yourselves.