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Health advice from someone who's not a doctor Health advice from someone who's not a doctor
by Joseph Gatt
2021-12-07 07:50:31
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I have no other qualifications than having read a few books on health and healthy living. So here are my observations (in no particular order).

-Watch out for health gurus. To me, health is kind of like religion. Those good Christians tend to discuss faith very little. They let God watch over them. Those Christians leading double lives full of sin, well, they're the ones who discuss religion at length. Same goes for Jews and Muslims and name any religion.

So health kind of works the same. You have those who practice healthy living habits but rarely discuss them. Then you have those who secretly snort cocaine or binge on joints or have some filthy habit, yet all they ever talk about is how nasty eating meat is or how bad hormones are for your health. That's because cocaine wrecks your appetite, so lots of vegans use veganism as a front for their bad habits. Not all of them, but a lot of them do.

healif0001_400-The general idea is you want to buy fresh organic food, every morning if you can. What is fresh organic food? Is it some fancy kind of word? No. A tomato is fresh and organic. So is a potato. So is a chicken leg or a chicken wing or a chicken breast. Or a whole chicken.

Fresh organic food is the opposite of processed food. What is processed food? Tomato sauce is processed food. Mashed potato powder is processed food. Chicken in a can is processed food.

Why is organic food good and processed food bad? Processed food has lots of salt in it. Organic food has no salt in it.

That is processed food tends to use lots of sodium-based ingredients, because sodium-based ingredients (salt and citric acids) tend to make the food last longer and be edible for a longer period of time.

And salt makes you fat. You see, your body needs sugar and salt as energy. That's what makes your blood flow and your muscles twitch. But if you have too much salt or sugar in your body, your body keeps the fat inside your body so pockets of water can be maintained to dilute the salt and sugar which would otherwise clog your arteries.

So, organic food tends to have no salt in it. If you buy fresh fruit, vegetables and meat, and that 90 percent of your food intake is organic, you should be pretty healthy.

Now some fathers and mothers buy almost exclusively processed food because those take less time to cook and have easier recipes, and tend to be advertised more on TV. But those make kids gain a ton of weight.

-Alcohol. France of all countries defines “alcoholism” as anything over 10 drinks a week. Not quite alcoholism, but the French government says anything over 10 drinks a week is a danger zone for your physical and mental health.

Let's put it this way. The way I like to put it is try to drink between 4 nights and 8 nights a month. That's easier to picture. If you drink 4 nights a month, doesn't matter how much intake you've had (try not to pass out, 3 to 5 drinks is just fine) you'll be good and the alcohol intake won't put your health at risk.

If you drink 8 nights a month, you're still fine. Over 8 nights a month, careful, because over time you might become addicted to alcohol.

Alcoholism is the most misunderstood addiction in the world because no two alcoholics work the same. Some alcoholics eat lots and lots of food, others become basically anorexic. Some alcoholics become very extroverted and hypersensitive, others very introverted and with flat emotions. Some alcoholics become hypersexual, others can't get erections. Some become very violent, others very kind. Some live like pigs, others clean their house with toothpicks. Go figure.

Point is, 4 to 8 nights a month is safe territory. Over 8 nights a month, you might consider counting the number of days you're having drinks.


If you eat fresh organic food (non-processed food that you buy in the morning) you could use an hour or two a day of exercising that will do you a lot of good.

Anything's fine. Walking to work for one hour a day each way instead of driving. Good. Going to the gym. Good. Practice some individual or team sport. Good. Join a sports league. Good. Jogging every morning across the river bank. Good.

Now if you balance fresh-cooked, fresh organic food with a couple of hours of walking or running every day, you should be fit and healthy.

Exercising also helps you sleep better (usually) and helps you sleep longer (usually) so you'll wake up fit and in the mood to cook a fresh organic meal, and you control the salt that the food contains.

-Just a quick note. Fat was never a problem. Your body rejects fat. It's always been the fat-salt combination that makes people gain weight. If you eat chicken (but get rid of the skin) that is fresh chicken from the butcher, you probably won't gain weight. Same goes for beef that you buy at the butcher's. It's always been that processed meat (baloney, pastrami, all kinds of sausages) that contain a ton of salt and a ton of fat, and that's what makes you gain weight.

Hey did I mention that cheese is 50 percent fat and 50 percent salt. Uh oh.

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