‘Despite advances in modern medicine and technology, today more than ever people are suffering from chronic illnesses through all stages of the human life cycle. In our search for health, have we missed something?’ . . . writes Dr Joseph Pizzorno in his book The Toxin Solution. The sub-heading reads as follows:
How hidden poisons in the air, water, food and products we use are destroying our health . . .
On the one hand, science and technology are advancing in giant leaps but on the other hand the more technologically advanced we become, the sicker we seem to become. We have not improved the health of human beings on the planet or our planet’s health in the last 60 years. In fact, things have got worse, much worse.
Disease affects younger and younger patients all the time. Obesity, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and other chronic diseases primarily affected the elderly in years gone by. Nowadays it’s not uncommon for children as young as 4 years old to be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, which used to be known as late-onset diabetes in adults over 50!
The planet is suffering right now. It’s burning, erupting and flooding. Similarly our health is doing the same. Our young people’s brains are ‘on fire’ due to inflammation, our digestive systems are erupting with gastric ulcers or diarrhoea and our bodies are flooded with antibiotics. The delicate balance of the earth’s eco system is being damaged by man’s lack of care and our bodies eco system, our gut microbiome, is also being damaged by the high levels of stress and processed food.
As far back as 2012 the Guardian newspaper published an article about the £30 billion bill which Britain was facing to clean up the water supply after the toxic effect of the contraceptive pill. ‘Ethinyl estradiol (EE2), the main active ingredient of contraceptive pills, can trigger a condition known as intersex in freshwater fish’. Male fish also suffer from reduced sperm production! In 2014 the Drinking Water Inspectorate investigated whether 5 drugs, detected in some UK water areas 2 years earlier, were harmful to health. These were the 5 drugs detected: Naproxen, Cocaine, Ibuprofen, Carbamazepine and Carbamazepine Epoxide. The report concluded ‘that ‘the levels of these pharmaceuticals measured in drinking water are not anticipated to pose an appreciable risk to public health.’ But what is the accumulative effect of these on our children and young people’s health long term?
As a naturopath I recommend filtering your water. Find out whether a particular brand of filter removes trace hormones, drugs and heavy metals before you pay for an expensive one. Heavy metals like arsenic, copper, cadmium, chromium, nickel, zinc, lead and mercury are major freshwater pollutants due to their toxic, non-biodegradable and persistent nature. They were introduced to the environment due to the industrial growth over the past 100 years. They are easily absorbed by fish and vegetables and get into the human body due to the food chain. The pollution of surface and groundwater by heavy metals is a major issue worldwide even though processes are in place to remove them. Heavy metals are classified as toxic and carcinogenic in the human body and cause disease and disorders by accumulating in the body’s tissues. It is possible to do a heavy metal detox but should NOT be done without the supervision and direction of a practitioner.
We cannot afford to carry on with our heads in the sand.
We are all affected by the damage caused by pollution, pesticides and toxins and our earth depends on us to fix the problems. Most people say ‘I can’t do much, what difference would it make?’ Start by growing your own organic vegetables. Stop using pesticides in your garden. There are more natural alternatives! In 2014 we grew a variety of lettuce from the 1800s and whilst our neighbours all had a slug problem, slugs didn’t touch ours! Why? Vegetables have phytochemicals, substances which are produced as a defence system to ward off pests, disease and viruses! Get your seeds from The Real Seed Company as they are heirloom seeds (non GMO) and they have a fabulous selection! Other small changes could include swapping out your plastic bottles and containers for glass ones, supporting brands that are eco-friendly and looking out for foods that have some of the following key words: organic, hormone free, free-range or grass-fed. Tip: if it has more than 5 key ingredients, you might want to reconsider buying it!
If we all do something then we can make a difference, one small action at a time. We may not see the full benefits in our lifetime but we are making a difference for our children’s children’s children.
Look after your health and pay attention to your internal environment as well so that your life on earth is one of wellness and strength, joy and wellbeing.