Modern medicine has eradicated many of the diseases which used to be commonplace,
Anti-biotics and other miracle drugs will usually see off infections and illnesses which would have killed large numbers of people before the discovery of these medicines.
The availability and storage of food has made an enormous difference not only to our life expectancy but also to our height and size. Have you noticed when looking at portraits of the nobility through the centuries how much taller they are than the working classes. The abundance of food, its quality and the ability to store it so that it retains its nutrients and does not deteriorate makes a real difference to your ability to grow.
Clean water and sanitation also play their part.
The graphs show that 6000 deaths per 1 million children from scarlet fever, diphtheria, whooping cough and measles around 1850 had declined to 800 by 1940 – a 90% decline.
It was not until 1950 that the introduction of anti biotics and the compulsory immunisation against diphtheria was introduced. This was followed by immunisations against other diseases and by 1965 deaths from these diseases were reduced to just a handful.
But the achievement of reducing deaths by 90% for these potentially deadly diseases mostly rests with the clean water and sanitation programs which were established before mass immunisation.
So – the question I ask myself is – why with the benefit of all these medicines, with a better diet, with clean water and excellent sanitation – why do we have a population with so many chronic illnesses and who are so dependent on taking large quantities of medicine on a daily basis?
What are we doing to ourselves to cause this level of unwellness?
Maybe I’m wrong – but I believe that the number of people with asthma and eczema – the children going to school with a puffer in their pocket – has risen dramatically.
We’re used to hearing people say they’re allergic to this and that.
Why are there so many people with Hay Fever? And why – given that we have central heating and can keep warm – do we have so many children running around with constant colds and perpetually dripping noses?
40 years ago my cousin, who was taken to specialist after specialist to find out what was wrong with her was finally diagnosed with autism. She had to be taken to the USA to receive this diagnosis because no one in the UK had ever heard of it. Nowadays, autism and its lesser brother Asperger’s Syndrome is common place.
In the old days, the diseases either killed you or you survived.
Sometimes you survived with the consequences of the disease – perhaps a shortened limb – if you’d had polio or a pockmarked skin from smallpox.
But though we may live longer than our grandfathers and great grandfathers, and though we may survive the illnesses which used to kill or maim us, we seem to have lost the robustness and the strength and stamina of previous generations.
The system which has deteriorated is the Immune System.
Our immune systems are subjected to a constant barrage of stressors.
The air that we breathe carries pollutants from road traffic. If we live under a flight path there will be pollutants from the airplanes and a higher incidence of asthma.
The water we drink is cleaned but carries the hormones excreted by women on HRT and the pill.
Water also has chlorine and fluoride added to it – and despite their positive effects there is a large downside to constantly taking in these chemicals. So if we wish to avoid chlorine and fluoride we purify our water. But most of the water filters extract the minerals from the water so you end up with a deficiency in minerals. This in itself is responsible for a decline in the immune system resulting eventually in disease.
Our food, which is plentiful in this country, is grown in soil depleted of its mineral content. The 5 fruit or veg a day regime which is meant to keep us healthy is sadly outdated – again resulting in vitamin and mineral deficiency. Our crops are heavily sprayed with pesticides which our bodies are not designed to deal with – another big stressor to the immune system. Organically grown food is a better alternative – especially for the root vegetables as the roots store the pesticides.
This is a very big subject and this is not the place to do an in depth article.
But here are some of the things you can do to strengthen your immune system.
- Take a good quality supplement. I take a brand which has all the vitamins and minerals including the trace minerals. The body uses what it needs and excretes the surplus. Find a good brand which is easily absorbed by the body. Some brands are not as good as others, so go to an independent health food store where they stock the better brands and they will be able to advise you. Make sure this supplement contains enough Zinc. You should be getting 15mgs a day including what is in your food – 20mgs per day if you are pregnant or nursing.
- Ensure you are having enough Essential Fatty Acids. These are the Omega 3’s and 6’s. You need both together to metabolise properly. The 6’s can become depleted if just taking the 3’s. You can buy the EFA’s in oil and capsule form. If taking capsules – ensure you are getting enough.
- Drink good quality water. Make sure you get enough of it – around 2 litres per day. If you are thirsty it means that you are already de-hydrated. Some of your water may come in the form of watery vegetables – e.g. cucumbers. But even if you are not thirsty – just get into the habit of drinking water. It is the carrier for getting the nutrients and oxygen around the body. Without enough water – you become physically and mentally sluggish
- Don’t eat too much. See how much more energy you have if you haven’t overloaded.
- Try to keep junk food to a minimum. You will be surprised how much better you’ll feel.
- Exercise. We as a nation have become physically lazy. We don’t even have to get up to change the channel on the TV. It’s no wonder we do not have the strength and stamina of previous generations. Exercise is needed to massage the organs so they can function well and helps the flow of blood through the system. It is needed to keep the metabolism working well. It also helps the body to produce its own anti depressants.
If you give your body what it needs to maintain itself it will reward you with a stronger immune system and with better health.