Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Thriving or Surviving

An interesting article written by Ned Kock caught my eye recently. The article brought up the idea that the possibility of our longer lifespans has increased the chances of us becoming obese with age. The article can be found here.

This a great article that had enough bar graphs and points that I could understand which I appreciate very much. I hate reading articles with great points but with studies so complicated that I can't even tell what he's even trying to prove or disprove anymore. But I digress. Modern medicine has made it so we don't die of diseases that would have killed us 100 years ago. It's great that people are living longer lives. I enjoy having my grandparents around to see how I've grown up. I have the same wish when I become a grandpa - to see my child grow and have a successful life. But when do we stop thriving and start just surviving? I think that's what the article was really trying to get at. It's not even so much about how we're just getting fatter as we age, obviously this doesn't apply to people who actually make it a point to take care of themselves. But whenever these studies come out, they're most likely based on the sedentary, non-active population which makes up a huge majority and we all know majority rules.

According to these studies of hunter-gatherer societies (people who aren't sedentary) they actually lose weight as they age. Unlike urban-dwellers who gain. I agree 100% with the idea that modern medicine has led to the downfall in modern health. Of course there are things that we can be thankful for with the advancements in surgical procedures and stuff. If I have a broken bone I'll definitely seek medical attention to get it fixed. But it's another thing to irresponsibly destroy your body over time with a bad diet or improper exercise and expect yourself to be fixed overnight with a pill. Luckily the human body is resilient and will respond accordingly with time and care if addressed quickly enough. People diagnosed with diabetes, heart disease, and other chronic diseases have reversed their condition with proper diet and exercise. Don't believe me? Google it.
"The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but instead will interest his patients in the care of the human frame, in diet, and in the cause and prevention of disease."
- Thomas Edison

So now people live technically longer than they should. To the point where quality of life degrades but the quantity of life increases. Cancer patients who undergo chemotherapy. People suffer through this procedure hoping that there will be a light at the end of the tunnel. Unfortunately not everyone benefits from it. In fact according to this study chemotherapy contributes just over 2 percent to improved survival in cancer patients. Oh and you'll also suffer from these side effects. Of course there are many factors that can contribute to one's decision to accept or refuse chemotherapy or medicine in general. But again you need to ask yourself what his more important to you, thriving or surviving?


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