Our society is very fixated on the concept of being healthy means: not being overweight or some would even say underweight. Many people think that because they are not carrying extra weight this somehow equates to them being healthy, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Cellular health plays a much larger role! I’ve talked a bit about this in other blogs, so some of it may be repeat information if you are a regular reader, but I will share some new stuff, as well. I’m also going to talk about the problems with being overweight or underweight, problems with many temporary diets to lose weight, and weight loss resistance. This is a HUGE flaw in our healthcare! It creates many unhealthy behaviors.
As I mentioned in my previous blog Illness is RARELY just PHYSICAL, there is A LOT more to health than just the physical aspects. Your mental/emotional health (stress, anger, sadness, negativity) plays a role in your health, spiritual well-being (meaning in life, life after death), environment (toxin exposure), and so on… Take a look at that blog for how those things can cause illness in the body because I’m going to focus this blog more on the physical aspects of health.
The Perfect Body DOESN’T Equal Healthy
Don’t get me wrong being a healthy weight is a good thing, I certainly feel good about it. But too much emphasis is placed on that meaning you’re healthy. We see people who are thin, tone, and not overweight getting cancer, diabetes, autoimmune disorders, and other health issues. So we shouldn’t think that being a healthy weight is equivalent to being healthier overall. I’ve heard this just recently, “that person was fit, toned, muscular. They looked healthy, so I don’t understand how they got so sick from that virus.” Guess what? People can be fit and toned and still shove their faces with sugar donuts and sodas every day. If they work out enough or have a high metabolism they may keep that toned body. Their future doesn’t look bright though.
There are some people who are overweight who genuinely eat healthily and work out and can therefore run circles around someone with a poor diet and a more sedentary lifestyle.
Everyone has to be careful about what they put in their bodies, whether they have a high metabolism, are bodybuilders, or Olympic athletes. All these people are going to have different diets. However, sugar, processed carbohydrates, chemicals in foods, greasy foods are still just as bad no matter what your body type is, how much you work out, and manage to keep the fat off.
Cellular Health Plays a HUGE Role in Our Health
As I mentioned in my previous blogs, your cellular health is SUPER important!
Your body’s 75 trillion cells (nerve cells, blood cells, muscle cells, bone cells, etc.) are all working together, day and night (Garner, 2014). Over 200 cells are responsible for the function of the liver, heart, blood, brain, and more. All the cells communicate with each other to keep the body alive. It is normal everyday functioning for cells to malfunction, die, and be replaced. If too many healthy cells malfunction the body can’t as easily repair itself and this is when sickness or disease happens. To avoid being too scientific, read more on how that works here: HEALTHY CELLS ARE KEY TO A HEALTHY BODY.
Mitochondria, known as the powerhouse of cells, play a huge role in cellular health. Find out more about their importance here: Mitochondria: 10 Ways to Boost the Powerhouse of Your Cells
How What You Eat Affects Your Cellular Health
What you eat is preventative medicine. What you eat is what your cells are made up of which is literally the building blocks of your body.
How well your cells function, the quality, and the integrity of the new cells your body creates, depending on the nutrients they are provided on a daily basis (Essien, 2017). The body needs all of these nutrients: vitamins, minerals, water, fats, proteins, and carbohydrates. Calories consumed without the accompanying nutrients that aid in their assimilation and metabolism leads to a buildup of toxic substances in the cells that promote cellular aging and disease (Fuhrman).
Cellular Health Testing
You can actually do cellular health testing and see how your body is aging with considerations to lifestyle, environment, emotions, and diet. Cellular health screening comprises four major tests, namely, telomere tests, oxidative stress tests, inflammation tests, and heavy metals tests (Cellular Health Screening, 2017). These are risk assessment tests that help detect biological age, cellular toxicity, and the risk of diseases. (Cellular Health Screening, 2017). This test should be done through a health practitioner. Some naturopath doctors provide cellular testing or a general functional medicine doctor. It is unlikely you will find a test through a western medicine practitioner unless they have an integrative medicine approach.
Figuring out a Healthy Weight
What does it mean to be a healthy weight? There is a lot that goes into calculating the perfect weight, height and age play a role, but also fat to muscle ratio. For example, some people have a lot of muscle, so they may weigh more than the standard weight for their height. But that doesn’t make them overweight. However, Ayurveda medicine shows us there is a lot more to it than that…
Understanding a Healthy Weight Based on Ayurveda Medicine
With Ayurveda Medicine, there are three different body types: Vata (thin), Pitta (medium build), and Kapha (stocky build). These are the three energies your body is made up of referred to as “doshas.” Everyone has all three doshas, but people typically have a primary dosha that is the same throughout their life.
Ayurveda teaches us that when you get sick there is an imbalance of the doshas. This is true when you lose too much weight or gain too much weight, your doshas may become imbalanced. This can lead to health issues. Make sure to consult with a trained Ayurveda practitioner to figure out your dosha.
We often see celebrities that thanks to society and internet trolls become too thin to the point where it’s unhealthy. Also thanks to society, many people actually believe they are not the right weight if they are not model thin. This is really unhealthy for each dosha to try and achieve a weight that isn’t intended by nature. Each person has the body frame that they are supposed to have based on their dosha.
Learn more about Ayurveda here.
There is NO Perfect Body
Many people also tend to think that because they don’t have noticeable abs, perfectly slim legs, or a super flat belly like the people they see on TV that they are overweight or not healthy. This is super inaccurate, you don’t have to have the perfect body to be healthy or to be happy with it. In fact, there is no perfect body.
It is difficult through an internet search to truly know what healthy body weight is for you, so it is best to consider all these things and speak to a health expert if you are unsure.
Additionally, if you find out what your dosha is you can actually eat foods that work better for your specific body type. Ayurveda also teaches you certain health habits that work better for your body type. It is extremely fascinating! More information here.
Exercise’s Role in Health Beyond Weight Loss
Exercise is needed, but most people have to control what they put in their mouths to actually lose weight. There is also such a thing as too much exercise like if you do intense cardio every day, it is too much because your body needs time to rest. Even if you have a high metabolism and are a healthy weight, you need exercise. Because exercise is not only for weight loss! It helps with brain health, heart health, circulation, reducing the chances of developing a disease, improves insulin, boosts mood, strengthens bones and muscles, and so much more.
Problems with Diets
If you are going on a diet just to lose weight and you don’t already eat healthily and are not looking for long-term changes to your eating habits, it is not going to lead you down a healthier path. Because the perfect weight doesn’t equate to being healthier. Also, most diets out there don’t teach people how to eat healthier.
Some diets you can eat whatever you want as long as you meet your calorie count. There are two major problems with this. One, there are horrible foods with low-calorie counts (processed foods with bad chemicals), which affect your cells – what you are made of! Two, sometimes the calorie counts are so low you are starving yourself. Which just isn’t ideal, and it’s harder to maintain over time. Then, of course, it is easier to go back to bad eating habits and the pounds come right back. You then get stuck on this cycle of dieting, eating bad, dieting, eating bad, dieting.
Other Diet Problems
Diets usually are not focused on cellular health!
Many diets can eliminate a lot of nutrients that are good for the body. Then you have the diets that want you to just buy their special foods, which might not be as healthy as you think, and also doesn’t help with long-term success in eating healthier. I’ve seen healthy meal bars with high-fructose corn syrup which is worse than sugar! Additionally, many diets seem to only work for certain people. Ever hear about this great diet someone did, how they lost a crazy amount of weight, but you try it and don’t see the same results? Or maybe you were just miserable doing it and stopped after a week or two?
What is a Good Diet?
I’m not a nutritionist so I obviously can’t say what diets are bad or tell anyone what type of diet to be on. I can say that eating more whole foods vs processed is going to be healthier for your overall health, reducing sugar intake and processed carbohydrates are going to be healthier. In addition, it is super beneficial to eat more vegetables. You can read about all my tips on eating healthier in my “Clean Eating” section of my blog, which has researched content with resources. It includes blogs on recommended amounts of sugar, carbohydrates to cut back on, eating more organic, avoiding pesticides, why you don’t need milk, how to eat healthier dairy, dangers of GMOs, etc. If that doesn’t help, it is best to work with a clinical nutritionist.
What If… You Can’t Seem to Lose Weight? Weight Loss Resistance
If you struggle to lose weight after trying multiple diets and exercising regularly, there could be other things going on.
An inability to lose weight could be tied to cellular inflammation, a hormone issue, or even an autoimmune problem. We already know eating the right foods improves cellular health, which means toxins are removed from the cells, this helps with weight loss. We are also exposed to a lot of toxins in household cleaners, personal care items, garden chemicals, plastics, and so on. These toxins can cause dysfunction in many areas of the body, which makes weight loss harder. By improving cellular health your hormones are healthier, which also helps with weight loss.
We all have a lifetime of toxins in our bodies! All of us are storing metals, pesticides, and other chemicals, and too much can not only make it hard to lose weight but also cause numerous health issues. SO WHAT YOU EAT AND EXPOSE YOURSELF TO MATTERS!
If you have an underlying health issue, eating the right foods might not be enough, especially if you have a buildup of toxins. Some people may benefit from a detox, as it will clear out toxins quicker. But ALWAYS speak to a health care practitioner before trying any detox. However, if you have an underlying health condition such as a thyroid issue, you may need to work with a health care practitioner on a plan to improve the thyroid along with the weight loss.
Additionally, stress can have an effect on weight loss. With high levels of cortisol more blood sugar is released into the body causing more fat to be stored in the abdominals and around organs. Stress makes you fat! To manage your stress levels do relaxing activities, hobbies, and make time for self-care in general.
Being Healthier Overall Feels WAY Better Than Being the Perfect Weight
I’m not saying weight doesn’t matter, it does! Obesity can cause numerous health issues, being quite a bit overweight can cause health issues. But, the focus on weight as the key to being healthy is a HUGE issue! But if I had to choose between having the perfect looking body, or being super healthy, I would pick super healthy every time!
I went on a calorie-counting diet years ago, and I did lose a significant amount of weight from it, which I didn’t gain back. But, I wish I would have worked with a nutritionist instead. I would have had more energy and healthier cells for both my short-term and long-term health. When I met with a nutritionist after becoming sick and she started telling me how to cut back on my sugar (including processed carbs), I felt so much healthier even though I didn’t see much weight loss. It made a much larger impact on my health than losing the extra pounds. Which I did eventually lose.
I started to care more about what I was putting into my body for not only my short-term health but my long-term health. This resulted in more energy, less lethargic feelings, more clear thinking, and so on. I mess up sometimes and consume too much sugar, but it is a rare thing. A while back, I went for a hike in the woods and was dragging my feet because of the breakfast I ate (it was too high in sugar). It took almost an hour before I could walk at my normal pace.
Many people may think, “I can’t walk that far, or I get tired too quickly after this or that,” and they think they are out of shape, and maybe they are, but it has a lot to do with what fuel you put in your body.
Many people are also told by their primary doctor when things don’t feel right, “oh that’s because you are getting old.” Most of the time that isn’t why.
View ALL my Flaws in Healthcare Blogs:
Total Health Team, Total Health Nutrition Center/3 Secrets of Weight Loss. Retrieved from: https://www.totalhealthinc.com/Resources/Articles/ThreeWeightLossSecrets
Essien, Mfon. (2017, May 8). Murrieta Valley Surgery/ #3 Nurture Your Cells to Stay Healthy. Retrieved from: https://www.murrietavalleysurgery.com/bariatric-surgery/the-bariatric-surgery-blog/2017/5/8/3-nurture-your-cells-to-stay-healthy/
MedlinePlus/Benefits of Exercise. Retrieved from: https://medlineplus.gov/benefitsofexercise.html
Fuhrman, Joel H. ShareCare/How does eating unhealthy food affect cells. Retrieved from: https://www.sharecare.com/health/health-value-of-foods/how-eating-unhealthy-food-cells
Lad, Vasant. (2006). The Ayurveda Institute/Ayurveda: A Brief Introduction and Guide. Retrieved from: https://www.ayurveda.com/resources/articles/ayurveda-a-brief-introduction-and-guide
Markets and Markets/Cellular Health Screening/Health Testing Market. (2017, July) Retrieved from: https://www.marketsandmarkets.com/Market-Reports/cellular-health-screening-test-market-227041930.html
Garner, Julie. (2014, April 7). Healthy Cells Magazine/Healthy Cells are Key to a Healthy Body. Retrieved from: http://www.healthycellsmagazine.com/articles/healthy-cells-are-key-to-a-healthy-body
I am a business owner, marketer, innovator, writer, and artist. I have a passion for wellness with a wealth of knowledge surrounding: wellness, flaws in healthcare, root causes for chronic illnesses, and alternative treatments. My expertise includes over 5 years of marketing, research, and developing content for holistic health businesses. Plus, my own personal journey of becoming chronically sick: understanding what went wrong, and finding a way to heal and live a healthier life.