Natural healing, natural wellness

Archive for June, 2010

Fight Cancer – Go Native!

When you think about it, most communities which follow a native diet and lifestyle STRICTLY have very low cancer rates, if at all. It’s the people who adulterate this “formula” who start getting all kinds of sicknesses, including cancer. Let’s look at the elements which are common to relatively cancer-free societies, whether they are Asian, European or African:

1. They eat foods native to their territory, whether it be plant or animal in origin. Don’t forget that the Mongolians and Eskimos eat a predominantly meat and fat based diet, with hardly any plant food. The Mongolians, in addition, eat plenty of dairy foods. Many traditional European, Middle-Eastern and Indian diets also feature dairy products and meats.

2. Each native group obviously adapted to their respective diets, eating whatever was naturally available in order to stay alive. This is why a diet abundant in meat and fat was not harmful to the Eskimos or the Mongolians. In fact, it was protective for them, living in their harsh, wintry environments.

3. The foods they ate and beverages they drank were organic, unprocessed, unrefined and free from artificial additives like chemicals, hormones and antibiotics. Meat and dairy were completely natural and uncontaminated.

4. Foods were generally eaten fresh, freshly harvested or freshly killed. Any food preservation or storage was usually limited to salting, fermenting, drying or pickling. Modern societies tend to eat food which has been canned, packaged in some way or frozen for quite some time.

5. Cooking methods were completely natural. Nothing strange like microwaving or “nuking” in any way.

6. Kitchen utensils, cookware and materials used were also completely natural (clay, leaves, wood etc). Certainly no plastic.

7. Condiments, spices and flavorings were kept simple and natural. Nothing artificial.

8. In Asia, if oil was used for cooking, it was what was indigenous to the territory eg. peanut oil, coconut oil, soya bean oil, ghee (clarified butter), or lard (made from animal fat). “Healthy” fats like olive oil or grapeseed oil were unheard of.

9. If a sweetener was used, it was natural eg. cane sugar, palm sugar or honey.

10. Carbohydrates were fine and even essential, but they were usually natural, unrefined and free from artificial additives eg. tapioca, sweet potatoes, corn, beans, nuts, seeds, potatoes and other tubers.

11. No leftover food was kept. Everything was made fresh and finished in one sitting, so food did not have a chance to deteriorate further.

12. Usually, native people ate only what they needed, or even starved at times for a while. Excess was a luxury, and generally reserved for special occasions. Modern people are literally indulging themselves to death.

13. With the exception of people living in harsh environments like the Mongolians and Eskimos – where meat and fat was more readily available than plant foods – most native diets are dominated by plant foods. Meat was considered a luxury item to be eaten sparingly or reserved for special occasions. If seafood was available, that was eaten more often than meat. Modern societies consume far more meat than our forefathers did, and the meat we eat today is mostly adulterated and contaminated.

14. Almost all native societies have some fermented foods. These foods are rich in anti-cancer properties. Think sauerkraut, kimchi, miso, tempeh and yoghurt.

15. Almost all native societies have a rich tradition of using herbs for food, healing and beauty. The Chinese, for instance, have a vast variety of herbal teas, using herbs, flowers, roots, tree bark, fungi etc. I grew up drinking herbal teas and soups, but switched to Western concoctions and drugs and soda pop from my early teens. Now that I’m older and (hopefully) wiser, I’m beginning to rediscover Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and learning how to use traditional herbs at home.

16.The true native lifestyle is physically active, even rigorous, on a daily basis. Exercise was a way of life. People living in urban societies are very sedentary, and obesity has become an epidemic.

17 The environment and air was clean and pure. There was no exposure to modern contaminants like chemicals, radiation, electrical currents, vehicle and industrial emissions etc.

18. Furniture, building materials, fabrics etc was all organic.

19. There was no obsession with cleaning or enhancing body or home with products saturated with chemicals, unlike today.

20. People slept early and woke up early. Their sleeping environments were completely dark and quiet, except perhaps for the sounds of nature. No night lights, street lights, blinking lights, TV etc. Perfect for melatonin production.

These are just a few of my observations. As I said in my opening paragraph, the people who adulterate this “formula” are the ones who start getting all kinds of sicknesses, including cancer. Of course, observing a strict native diet and way of life is challenging in an urban society. But I believe we need to try our level best, in order to be cancer-free, even if it means re-locating. Major miracles often require major changes.

So, should we consume green tea, or soy, or turmeric, or flaxseed, or berries, or cruciferous vegetables, or iodine, or dark chocolate etc. or load up on more supplements? I think we know by now that each in itself CANNOT defeat cancer. Diet alone won’t cut it. Even vegetarians and exercise fanatics get cancer, right? A radical, holistic approach is required, and this may include some medical intervention. To keep cancer and other diseases at bay, it’s back to basics, back to our roots.

GO NATIVE, as far as it makes sense. In other words, if you’re a Mongolian working in a nice, cushy office in New York, the traditional Mongolian diet may not be healthy for you in this context. Adapt it to your present living environment, eliminating elements which are harmful (eg. unnatural foods, high-fat diet, chemicals, being sedentary) and adding those which are protective (eg. daily exercise, lots of plant foods, natural foods, fresh foods, safe personal care and household care products, conducive sleeping environment and times).

As long as your foods are natural and your way of life is as native as possible, a little dairy food or meat or dessert once in a while is not going to kill you. Just make sure it is pure, unrefined, unprocessed and fresh. Food which has travelled a long way to get to you is often “preserved” in some way to make it last the journey and storage. They also lose their nutritional value with each passing day.

Avoid anything artificial or unnatural, eat fresh, don’t over-indulge, lose weight, learn how to use herbs for everything, eat some fermented foods regularly, live in a pure and uncontaminated environment, sleep well and exercise everyday. GO NATIVE!