My farm's not dangerous.
Sorry I have been bad about blogging this week, which is ironic because this week I saw my 2013 stats, over 35k people visited my blog! Thank you if you are a reader and follower. I have been seeing a campaign on social media lately that shows families in front of their farms, with a title like my "farm's not dangerous" or "my family's farm isn't hazardous". Pulls on the heart strings a little bit, to see an actually family and farmer in his field pleading that his farm is safe.
I'm actually not originally from Dallas, I was born and raised in the Central Valley of California, the agricultural capital of the world. Most of my friend's families were farmers. I had a close friend who's family owned an organic dairy even, but the majority were "conventional" farmers. I could imagine that if you aren't an organic farmer, that the organic movement would be threatening. That the facts coming out about companies like Monsanto who's spray and GMO seed is so toxic that it can cause cancer, would put some worry about the future of your farm in your head. Which I really don't know why, since Monsanto owns the FDA. But companies that are taking a stand, and refusing inferior products are creating awareness. A good example of that is Chipotle. Who has been named on some of these ads urging people to boycott them. Why would you boycott a company that won't pass on toxic food to their customers?
So what would I say to a farmer in this situation? Of course I don't want to see someone go out of business. But sometimes getting hit in the face with the truth is tough. Reading something that says that the product you have been putting out your entire life is dangerous could be too much for some people. Sometimes it's too hard to come to grasp with. But the bottom line is if your are spraying your crops with pesticides, injecting your animals with antibiotics and hormones, or using genetically modified seed, your product is dangerous. So what should the farmer do now, well life is all about the ability to adapt, so my recommendation is to adapt, stop using what your using. Take an initiative to be better. Or you can just fight it, and live in denial. But it still doesn't change the facts. My message to the reader, always chose organic.
No Nutritional Value.
I had a professor in undergrad that said something, with quite a bit of passion I might add, once during a lecture that I will never forget. It was in my sophomore year of college in an agriculture course. He said "There is no nutritional value to organic." Now this is coming from a professor of an ag dept that relied heavily on donations from big seed, pesticide, and food companies. He went on to explain that being organic doesn't change what's in the product, it doesn't add more vitamins to a fruit or more minerals to vegetables. And at the time, that lecture had me really thinking, obviously I have remembered that quote this long. And coming from a family who drove every Sunday after church and hour and a half to the closest Whole Foods to stock up for the week, this was kind of earth shattering. I hung on to the quote for all these years, and I can tell you with absolute certainty that this professor couldn't be more wrong.
It is true that when you avoid spraying a crop with toxic pesticides that it doesn't "add" any vitamins to it. But he's missing the bigger picture. This is the same problem I run in to with a lot of dietitians and nutritionists who promote calorie restriction and burning as the key to weight loss. And never focusing on the quality of the food itself. I usual joke "So the 100 calorie packs of Oreo's are healthy right?" Far from it. What the professor is missing is the state of the person who is digesting and processing the food. What kind of state is the human in? When you build a toxic environment with garbage and ingredients you will not process food the same way. Ever met someone with weight loss intolerance? You know, the person who eats less than a 1000 calories a day and burns twice that amount on a treadmill yet can't seem to lose a pound. There's obviously more to it than the food that is going in to their mouth. Whether it is a hormonal imbalance, thyroid issue, or adrenal gland problem. How did this person get like this? Toxins play a huge role in the state of the human. And conventional farming is loaded with them!
That's another reason why I hate so many diets. You can eat whatever you want as long as you stay under your weight watcher points. Let's build disease while we stay under our allotted points. Or we can eat freeze dried cardboard from Nutrisystem, lasagna that doesn't need frozen or refrigerated. That's healthy right? Just like there has been studies that prove drinking diet soda over regular actually puts on the pounds long term by causing weigh loss resistance. This is because of the toxic crap they put in it! Same with the fruits and veggies, you can actually be doing more harm than good by eating toxic sprayed or genetically modified conventional farmed products. Always chose organic.
Can you fulfill your purpose?
Most of use spend a majority of our life trying to figure out our purpose. Why we are here, what our calling is, and what kind of impact are we going to make. Studies have shown time after time that the happiest people are those who are in the business of serving others. I think that is largely to do with the feeling of fulfilling a purpose. My question to you is can you fulfill your purpose, whatever it may be, not being in good health? Can you reach as many people, touch as many lives, if you are sick or in a diseased state? No you can't. Now that's not to say that there aren't sick people who are an inspirational to us all, but the point is with the majority of diseases being completely preventable by lifestyle choices, you can make a much larger impact if you are around for a few more years. Let's take an example, and sometimes i know my blogs come off a little harsh but my purpose isn't to make friends it's to save lives. Let's say we have a missionary who dies in his 50's from a massive heart attack, he was overweight, ate a cheeseburger everyday, not only did he leave his family but maybe he would have went on 5 more missions if he lived another 20 years. How many more lives could have been touched? Our choices affect others. Are you making choices on track with fulfilling your purpose?
doc.tor (n): a learned or authoritative teacher.
This is the definition of a doctor. A doctor's job is to teach you how to reach maximal health. Any learned or gained knowledge is taught by a teacher. Not just what comes in to your mind when you hear the word teacher, which is probably your 2nd or 3rd grade teacher, at least it is for me. But teachers can come in a variety of shapes and forms. Your preacher at your church teaches you how to get closer to God (hopefully), your mechanic teaches you what's wrong with your car, your personal trainer teaches you how to become fit or lose weight. Even if you gain knowledge through self discovery, there was something or someone to spark the thought or pave the way. Even a walk through nature can teach you a lesson or two. My question is your doctor teaching you how to become healthy? When he put you on the statin for your cholesterol did he teach you how to exercise or what diet changes you should make so that you could get off of that drug? Does he teach you how your body works? Or what it means when you are sick and fighting off disease? Does he say, gee you are in my office quite a bit, why are you sick all the time? We need to see what we can do to strengthen your immune system, because it's weak... Or does his visit primarily consist of him scribbling a name of a drug on a pad and handing it to you? Would that fly in other aspects of your life? If your child came home from school and the teacher gave them a recommendation from the teacher of a good math book, and she would see him next the day of the test? Or if your mechanic handed you a bill without explaining what was wrong and what needed to be done in order to fix it? If your doctor isn't teaching you, I recommend getting a different one.
The attack on Alternative.
There has always been one, I use to like to think it stemmed from an allopathic community who just didn't understand, didn't know any better, and sometimes had the arrogance to think they knew more than the body itself. But in the last few months there has been a deliberate agenda being pushed. I have noticed it being taken to the next level. It use to be that they were superior, or that our science was quackery, but now it is that there is no place for us at all.
Where I have noticed this ramp up is in the attack on nutrition and vitamins. It the past few months there have been articles that have made major headline news and carried by numerous outlets. 1) The case against Multivitamins 2) That Vitamin D's benefits are exaggerated 3) That over consumption of dark leafy vegetables specifically kale can be harmful to your health and 4) The downplaying of the benefits of fish oil. Instead of taking each of these points and explaining why each of them are invalid or showing you how their studies are skewed or in poor form. Or evening showing you thousands of studies showing you the exact opposite... I want to just point out a trend to you. If you didn't already know, the pharmaceutical industry or "Big Pharma" is a multi billion dollar a year industry. In recent years, there has been a steady incline of people who are sick of the only answer being drugs and noticing that disease rates are only getting worse leaving this model and seeking alternative answers and therapies. Would it be fair to say that this a threat to Big Pharma? I would say it is more than fair. Would it also be fair to say that it would be in the best interest of shareholders and profits to do whatever possible to squash this alternative care? Corporate greed never takes priority over people's best interest right? If fish oil is better and safer at lowering the risk of heart disease without any side effects, that can hurt the sale of statin drugs right? Of course! Maybe you are thinking but there are no doctors or scientists out there that would put there name on these false studies. The hell there's not! Just like there's no doctors that will get on a late night TV commercial endorsing a product that supposedly makes your penis bigger. There is always someone out there that will do something for a check. Or at least skew parameters of a study to guarantee the "correct" or desired outcome. Do corporations profit from you being sicker or healthier?
That last paragraph was really long...sorry for the rant... But ask yourself... Who is behind this? Who has something to gain from this? What makes sense? Your body is self healing and self regulating, whatever you believe in there are things on this earth that can promote healing naturally. Sure there has been advances in medicine, that saves lives everyday. But why stop there? It makes a lot more money to put everyone on drugs. Why was 120/80 normal blood pressure for decades than all of a sudden lowered to 110/70? Because it added millions of customers. There is a deliberate attack out there on alternative medicine, organic foods, and vitamins. And behind everyone of them there is someone who sits to profit from that attack.
What do you expect?
I often ask patients who are considering a second opinion from an orthopedic surgeon in regards to their condition, what do you think he'll say? And they usually look at me with a look that says "I don't know, I'm not psychic.." but politely respond with a "Well I don't know". Well I do. He or she is most likely going to recommend surgery, that's what they do. They're surgeons. Never be surprised when you walk in to a surgeon's office and he recommends surgery...
Sometimes I'll have a new patient who has had some steroid shots and came to me, because surprise surprise they wore off, stopped working, and didn't get to the root cause of the problem. SHOCKER. So the next option is surgery. Irreversible, life altering, no such thing as minimally invasive, non invasive doesn't even make sense, I hope they get it right the first time, pray I don't get an infection SURGERY. So let me ask you again, Why do you want a second opinion again? You are trying to avoid surgery right? I just told you I will keep you from surgery. Now you are going to go back to the guy who does surgery to see what he thinks about someone who is trying to prevent him from doing his job. What do you think he'll say? Hmmm. On the same note, don't be surprised when I recommend getting adjusted, but adjustments don't come with those somewhat possible, don't worry it wont happen to you complications that surgery does.
If you fuse C5 and C6 together, which are the most commonly fused segments in the cervical spine, you have just eliminated all motion in that segment. Almost your entire lateral flexion of the neck comes from those segments, that joint. That joint also happens to have more joint mechanoreceptors than any other joint in your entire body. Your brain requires information from that joint, specifically your frontal lobe of your brain, to operate and stay healthy. So if we fuse that joint, you may not have as much pain for a little bit, because you cant move it.... But did you know that you have just dramatically increased your chances of developing frontal lobe disorders like Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, and dementia? That's not something the surgeon goes over in the consultation is it?
Holding on to anger.
When I walk in to an adjusting room to see a patients usually I can feel or read the mood someone is in. I dont know what it is, the longer i have been in practice i can sense tension or stress almost immediately. And today I had a patient that I knew something was wrong, I asked her how she was, she told me a bit of what was going on. We also had some re exam xrays to go over after her adjustment and rehab, and that's when she opened up more. Her problem was with a person who is making her very angry and upset. I told her it's really funny or ironic because I had just read a story earlier today that I think relates to her situation. Im paraphrasing but it went something like this....
Say you went and bought a gift for someone, but when you went to give it to them they refused to receive it. Who is the owner of the gift now? You are, of course, because you are the one who bought it. It is very similar to anger. If someone who is hateful, angry, or upset is trying to give that to you... But you refuse to receive it.... Who is the proud owner of all that anger now?
Deep breath in, let it go. You and only you control your mood and attitude.
Flexors vs Extensors
A common question I get when a patient begins care at our practice Adjust Dallas is "So what can I not do at the gym?" I secretly think they are just wanting an excuse not to workout. :) Well if they are, than they are disappointed in my answers... I tell patients to basically just listen to their body, if something feels too strenuous on your neck or back than back off or change it up. Just be cautious, and never lose form. Form should NEVER be compromised for higher weight or more reps. ( This happens a lot when there is competition involved, cough, under my breath, CROSSFIT) Did I say that out loud?
But one thing I do tell patients is to think about their daily routine. 90 percent of us are behind a desk and in a chair for 8 hours or more a day, and in a forward flexed posture. So would it make sense for us to go to the gym (if you are to begin with) and do exercises that promote a flexion dominate posture? IE bicep curls, hamstring curls, bench press, sit ups, etc... We should be trying to counteract what we are doing to our body through out the day. Exercises that promote extension. So if flexion muscles are on the front of our upper body, guess where the extensors are? Ding Ding the back. If the flexors are on the back of our lower body, guess where the extensors are? You are good at this game, the front! Incorporate more exercises that promote extension, and fewer that promote flexion.
I was on a plane over the weekend and this airline had ad's on their overhead storage doors. Like decals, most of them advertising their own airline or credit card. But one of the ad's was a picture of the beach, the airline's logo and said the quote "Do everything possible to do everything possible. This quote really resonated with me. I actually think it is now my life motto. It resonated with me in different ways.... But one of them, of course, was with health.
Sometimes I hear from patients, "well isn't that just old age?", "Isn't this what 50 is just suppose to feel like?", or "Isn't this normal?". First, there is a major difference between common and normal, which I wrote a whole blog on a while ago that you can find through archives. And second, why the heck would you want to be normal? Why wouldn't you do anything and everything possible to get better or be your absolute best? Not only for yourself but for your family, and the people around you.
My wife and i laugh when we see fast food ad's and joke that we would be rich if we ate off a dollar menu. We pay a fortune in organic food, health products, supplements, vitamins, etc. But why? It's a priority, I am going to make sure that I do everything I possibly can. To live life to the fullest. You can not reach your maximum potential in a diseased state. I love this quoe and wanted to share it with you :
An open minded place for alternative thought and discussion.