I just spent the last hour or so reading the articles off The Primalist’s regular round up of links, aptly named Primalisms. I was a particular fan of the last article in the list about a group of long living people in Greece. The article gave me a lot to think about.
For one thing, in this country (and I mean the U.S. for all the international readers out there) we chase after “cures.” Have a problem? Fix that problem. We often forget to look at the underlying reasons for that symptom. Sometimes we go looking for the reason why and find it. When we don’t, medicine likes to dump it into the broad category of unknowns called “idiopathic.”
There is still so much we can’t explain and I’m not saying that calling things idiopathic is wrong. I’m saying that if something is idiopathic, then we need to look at more than just that one symptom. What else is going on with that person? What else can we improve about the way that person is going about life?
This is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg. A small piece of the puzzle that needs fixing. I could go on and on about what need to change in medicine, but today’s discussion is a bit more broad.
So, there is that issue of when you have a problem, we only fix that problem and not anything else. Medicine often neglects to address things like lifestyle, nutrition, exercise, and the like. Those are the exact things that rise to the surface when various researchers and studies look at populations of long-living people.
Could I live like those long living people here in the U.S.? Maybe. Would my life be better if I could? Definitely. It would be a huge mental shift. The thing is that all the things that give these populations longevity are things that feel good. Think about it. Hanging with your friends and doing social things feels good. Being out in the great outdoors feels good. Waking up when you want to and not to an alarm feels good.
We’ve forgotten what really feels good. In the U.S., rugged individualism is the name of the game. We like our separate houses and our privacy. We schedule social time and limit the time we do it. We take pride is how much more stressful and hectic our life is compared to the next person. On and on. And while we’re doing all this, we’re having uncontrolled high blood pressure, diabetes, and a whole host of other maladies.
This is what I know. In the last couple of weeks, I’ve noticed that on days when I can get up closer to when the sun is rising, I feel a lot happier in the morning and it’s easier to get out of bed. The days when I have to get up hours before the sun is a lot harder even if I’ve had just as much or even more sleep. Doesn’t feel as nice. During my down time I crave socialization. I never really had that sort of craving before, but maybe now that I’m more in tune with myself I feel it more. Of course, the problem with my craving socialization is that everyone else is busy being “too busy.”
And therein lies the problem.
I just wanted to throw some thoughts out there and get everyone thinking. Go read the article and let me know what you think.