Positive Intentional Living
In the last blog about what causes illness, we put forward the proposition that many illnesses are in fact caused by unintentional self-inflicted disease promoting activities that may have occurred over a long period of time.
In order to avoid unintentional self-inflicted disease caused by operating on autopilot and doing repeatedly, without thinking the same things that everyone else does, it is necessary to adopt a mindset of positive intentional living. When living intentionally, one considers and examines all aspects and activities of our day-to-day routine, and tries to align these with optimal health as much as possible.
Think of it as doing an audit of your lifestyle where you are trying to maximise the health promoting benefits and minimise potential toxic effects of the things that you habitually do.
So long as you pay more into your “health benefits account” than your “toxic effects account,” your health should remain generally good and you should be able to avoid disease of an unintentional self-inflicted nature.
What is Positive Intentional Living?
What we mean by this is thinking about what:-
- Goes into your body;
- Goes onto your body;
- Comes into contact with your body;
- Activities you engage in;
- Affects your emotions; and
- Causes stress in your life;
Then taking steps to maximise the health and wellbeing benefits and minimise the negative and/or toxic effects of any of these. In this blog, we will touch on food and consumer goods.
Consumers are Too Trusting
Positive intentional living is being aware of the consumer choices that we are presented with and then making decisions in alignment with the goal of optimising health. The problem we face is that as a society, we have been lulled into believing that our governments have set in place sound regulatory systems that prevent anything ever being presented to us for sale that could possibly be damaging to our health.
We are led to believe that anything and everything on sale in supermarkets, and all clothing, furniture, cosmetics, fragrances, electronics, cleaning products, building materials etc have all been checked in some way to make sure that they are safe for us, the consumer, to use.
We then see slick advertising with celebrities and other people using these things and our herd mentality sets in and says to our subconscious mind,
It must be OK to buy and use this – everyone else is.
Please watch More Doctors Smoke Camels, a famous and influential cigarette commercial from 1949. With all the health evidence to the contrary, do you think many people would fall for that now? Hopefully not, but just think about the large numbers of pharmaceutical drugs that have been withdrawn from the market over the last few decades because of their devastating or deadly effects – for example Thalidomide and Vioxx.
All these drugs would have been declared “safe” by some regulatory body, and many medical professionals would have been extolling their benefits to their patients, only to make a complete U-turn in their thinking.
The issue here is the conflict of interests of drug companies trying to make big profits and that pesky little matter of patient safety. Just because we have access to higher tech communications than we did back in 1949 does not make us smarter, and more discerning today. In many respects it makes us more easily manipulated by advertising on so many different media fronts, and certainly does not reduce the desire of the large multinational conglomerates to strive for profits at all cost.
At CoolWellbeing, we are great believers in the medical precautionary principle, which basically runs along the lines of first do no harm and do not assume something is safe unless backed up with many years of experience that it is. It is interesting to note that this is the opposite of the legal presumption of “innocent until proven guilty”, and yet this is exactly what seems to happen with new drugs, and mobile phone, wifi and microwave radiation – assumed innocent until shown to be damaging us at a cellular level in several years time. Does this remind you what happened with cigarettes, asbestos and lead paint?
So what can we do to protect ourselves, and how does positive intentional living help? If we adopt the precautionary principle and apply it to all food & products we buy, all we are really saying is,
We want to buy food & products made from natural ingredients & materials with no or minimal unnatural man made ones in them.
If you apply this when shopping, you will automatically exclude potential sources of toxins that are best removed from your life.
Try to imagine the quality of food and consumer products before the post World War 2 explosion of plastics, chemical, food additives, food colourings, processed food, TV dinners etc. Sure the choice may not have been as great as today, but the quality was far superior. Try to imagine a shopping experience without plastic bags, wrappers, bottles, coverings, and Styrofoam trays with your meat nestling on top of mini sanitary pads to collect blood.
In a very short period of time in evolutionary terms of only 70 years, we have gone from real food, grown and raised locally in the traditional way, with a minimum of insecticides, pesticides and fertilisers, to an international agri business where animals do not graze on grass, crops are genetically modified, and most soils are so depleted of minerals by excessive fertilisation that the vegetables produced do not have the same mineral and vitamin content that they used to.
Cumulative Health Effect
As indicated earlier, by positive intentional living we are trying to maximise the health and wellbeing benefits and minimise the negative and/or toxic effects on us of any of the foods and consumer goods we buy. The negative effect of toxins in food and plastic products is most unlikely to be apparent immediately but it is the cumulative effect over decades that is the concern.
We are the first population in history to be faced with this physical test of our ability to deal with and incorporate these foreign man made substances into our lives and bodies, and it is obvious that we are not doing a great job of this.
Despite the billions of dollars spent on health care in the Western world, society is getting sicker and sicker, and from a much earlier age. It is now commonplace to encounter people in their twenties or younger with an autoimmune disease, diabetes or a gastro intestinal issue. This never happened when we were growing up.
The only thing that has changed is that Western society has been used as a giant clinical trial (unfortunately not a double blinded placebo controlled one) for the chemical, food and agri businesses, and society at large has embraced all foods and goods on offer on the basis that someone must have checked and approved them, and other people are using them. We say again – buyer beware. Use positive intentional living to avoid this trap.
We will give specific mention of certain foods and products to be aware of in an upcoming blog.
Living with positive intention, Edith and Tim at CoolWellbeing Foundation
Photo credit to Didi at Mind Body Potential
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