Diet and Disease: How are They Relatedted?
Modern scientists and doctors are starting to get a bit of an inkling as to how integrally related diet and disease really are, and it's about time they caught up with the program. Now, more and more doctors are recommending that their patients eat healthier diets, even while treating them with conventional medicines and surgeries.
What if, though, the right diet could totally eliminate the need for those conventional medications and surgeries, which have so many side effects of their own? What if by making the right choices about what you and your children eat, you could avoid modern diseases - everything from dental cavities to cancer to arthritis - completely? The truth is that with a truly healthy, natural, wholesome diet, you actually can avoid these things. Here's evidence that shows it's true:
Dr. Weston Andrew Price and Dental Research
Dr. Weston Andrew Price, a dentist, lost his son Donald to the side effects of an infected root canal, which set him on a journey to find out why people in modernized areas suffer so often from dental cavities. During his search, Dr. Price visited people groups like northern Canadian Indians, Australian aborigines, Peruvian Indians, and several African tribes, among others. In his searches, he found something amazing: most indigenous people groups had almost no examples of tooth decay among them!
Interestingly enough, though, in many of these tribes, Dr. Price found examples of intermingling cultures. Older generations still alive in the community lived in the old ways of the community, which particularly involved eating the foods that had always sustained the natives of that particular area. Younger generations, on the other hand, lived more often on modernized foods, and it was in these generations that Dr. Price found examples of dental deformity and decay.
As documented in Dr. Priced book, Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, "[people] who don't follow our modern and 'civilized' ways of living to not have our modern diseases. On the other hand, when groups of indigenous people changed their diets they developed modern diseases, regardless of their genetic heritage (14)." Another of Dr. Price's interesting finds was that when Eskimo people turned away from their native diet, they often ended up with modern diseases like arthritis, tooth decay, and even cancer, but when they went back to their native diets, they were often able to cure these problems with no medical intervention.
While Dr. Price set out mainly to look at dental cavities in different civilizations, his findings were much broader than that. He found that other modern diseases like arthritis, cancer, and general frailty that comes with age in the modern societies were absent in indigenous communities that still relied on their native ways and ate their native diets!
What's Similar in These Diets?
Clearly, diet has a huge effect on our entire systems - beyond just making us thin or obese, as our modern culture would have us believe. What type of food is the best medicine, though?
The interesting thing about Dr. Price's research is that he studied such widely differing communities of native people. Some were seafaring people whose diets would have included plenty of fish, while others, like the Scots of the Outer Hebrides, included lots of oats into their diets. Still other communities were landlocked and would have subsisted more on meats and vegetables they could grow or gather.
The main common link between these societies, though, was what their diets did not include - modernized, processed foods like processed sugars, flours, canned foods, and foods that were full of preservatives and artificial ingredients. These foods were missing from all the indigenous diets, but as soon as they were introduced, the people started to suffer.
Here's an example to show you just how quickly the physical changes related to diet could take place. In the photo below, you see a pair of Scottish brothers. The brother on the right eats what his culture has always eaten - some dairy products, fish, and oat products. The brother on the left, who obviously is in much worse physical condition, eats white bread, sweetened coffee, chocolate, and jam. Image: Copyright © Price-Pottenger Nutrition Foundation®. All rights reserved worldwide. www.ppnf.org
These brothers are only a few years apart, but the foods they've insisted on eating throughout their lives have obviously made a huge difference in their overall health! You can see it in their teeth!
Giving rats and dogs a scurvy-producing diet did not lead to scurvy, it led to another disease, rickets. Rickets is a disease that is known for producing severely bowed legs in children. Other rickets symptoms include muscle weakness, bone pain or tenderness, skeletal problems and tooth decay. To produce rickets in the laboratory, dogs were fed oatmeal. Professor Edward Mellanby describes his findings of decades of research:
The Bottom Line
The main thing to be gained from the research of Dr. Price is that our modern, processed foods can clearly make a huge difference in health over even a short period of time. Returning to a more wholesome, indigenous style diet is of huge benefit not only to native cultures but to modern cultures as well. If you're ready to start improving your health and the health of your children, check out Healing Our Children for concrete information that will help you make the right dietary choices from here on out. You won't regret the changes you'll see in your health and the health of your little ones.
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