HI. THANKS FOR SHOWING INTEREST IN MY BLOG. I NEED TO BE CLEAR AND TRANSPARENT WITH YOU AS I'M NOT OUT TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF AN ALREADY FRAGILE SITUATION. I AM NOT A DOCTOR NOT DO I PRETEND TO BE. I HAVE NO CREDENTIALS OF ANY KIND RELATED TO THE TOPICS I TALK ABOUT. I'M JUST ANOTHER PERSON ON THE INTERNET. THIS IS NOT AN ADVICE BLOG IF YOU PERCEIVE I'M GIVING ANY ADVICE, THEN PERCEIVE THIS: THE ONLY ADVICE I CAN GIVE YOU IS TO NEVER TRUST A STRANGER ON THE INTERNET. TO REVEIW: THIS BLOG HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH DIAGNOSING OR PRESCRIBING ANY COURSE OF ACTION. DON'T ASSUME MY STORY IS YOUR STORY. IT ISN'T. SO DON'T FOR A MINUTE THINK THAT WHAT WORKED FOR ME WILL WORK FOR YOU. THIS IS JUST MY STORY ACCORDING TO ME, SO TAKE IT LIKE THAT. ALWAYS CONSULT WITH YOUR DOCTOR ABOUT ANY HEALTH CONCERNS YOU HAVE, USE UP THE ENTIRE PRESCRIPTION YOU'VE BEEN GIVEN, AND NEVER STOP YOUR TREATMENT WITHOUT CONSULTING WITH YOUR DOCTOR FIRST. ALRIGHTY THEN.
FREE RADICALS, OXIDATION, AND OXIDATIVE STRESS
Big words, but here's the visual I use: Internal Rust
This visual refers to possible long term effects associated with metabolic activity, that is, (eating, drinking, digesting, breathing, moving and exercising. Like the tin man frozen in place, I might be left the exact same way - compromised or paralyzed by dis-ease - if I didn't feel I understood their sources and how they might affect me. Taken on the surface, the tin man had some serious stiffness in his joints. Until he got some oil.
And then he wanted a heart, for goodness sakes. Sheesh. Some people want everytin (of course, pun intended).
OXIDATION AND OXIDATIVE STRESS
Here's a simple demonstration to show the process of oxidation and also the power of anti-oxidants. I believe that antioxidants are my soldiers in the fight against my cells' premature death due to a more intense oxidative stressors. For this demonstration, I'll need a paper towel, two fresh cut slices of an apple and a slice of lemon or a small amount of lemon juice.
I'm going to place one slice of apple on the paper towel, untreated, open to the air, skin side down, with both sides of the slice exposed to the air. The other slice of apple, I'm going to treat by first squeezing lemon juice on it, making sure to cover the entire slice. I'll set the treated slice right next to the untreated slice for easy comparison. Why Lemon juice? Lemon juice is just one of many natural antioxidants.
A little while later...
Lo and behold, the untreated slice of apple is turning brown. But the slice treated with the lemon juice, still looks freshly cut.
Hmmm, what's happening here?
Well, the untreated slice of apple is experiencing 'oxidation', which in this case occurs when the surface cells of the apple are exposed to the open air. The surface cells on the untreated apple begin to die and decompose, turning brown in the process.
The visual of a browning slice of apple is what I keep in mind regarding my gut cells. If I want them to be the healthiest they can be, I have to consciously act in their own best interests. I must be their advocate. They are demanding it of me and I can't let them down. I've learned they will scream at me if I don't treat them well. My cells want to do the right thing and I want to give them the best chance to succeed with the greatest army of collective soothants and anti-inflammatory supplements, foods and activities.
The treated slice, on the other hand, still looks like it was freshly cut, with hardly any brown at all. Why less brown in the treated slice? The power of the antioxidants in the lemon juice. In effect, the antioxidants in the lemon juice has extended the health and life of the surface cells.
I believe a similar thing occurs in my body. When cells in my body experience oxidation due to my body's natural metabolic processes, they exhaust their energy and die. My oxidated cells then become part of the waste material that my body is designed to eliminate. But when I add antioxidants to the environment of my cells' life cycle, my cells, I believe, live healthier, stronger, longer lives. And over the course of my lifetime, I'm thinking: Less oxidative stress on my internal environment means a healthier longer stronger life for the host of all those cells. Just my thinking, you understand.
My personal hypothesis, then, is this: When my cells are exposed to a steady, consistent environment of antioxidants, my cells live healthier, stronger, AND longer. My filtration system feels supported, and I think my cells metabolize energy more efficiently.
And my bowel movements are perfect. Did I say my bowel movements are perfect? I did? Well, they are. Perfect. Imagine, perfect. Healthy.
And that could be a reason all by itself not to believe a word of this story...it's so atypical, so seemingly unattainable, and really unconvincing, that this story just can't be true. I don't blame you. Really, I don't. And here's another disclaimer so there's no misunderstanding.
I have no credentials and no training. You can trust me on that. Just a man, alone with his thoughts.
PLEASE NOTE: IF YOU'RE TAKING ANY MEDICINE FOR ANY REASON AND ARE UNDER A DOCTOR'S CARE, SOME OF THE FOLLOWING FRUITS OR VEGETABLES COULD INTERFERE WITH THE EFFICACY OF YOUR MEDICAL TREATMENT. CONSULT BOTH YOUR DOCTOR AND YOUR PHARMACIST TO SEE IF ANY OF THESE FOODS INTERFERE WITH OR AFFECT YOUR TREATMENT IN ANY WAY. ALWAYS BE INFORMED ABOUT HOW FOOD INTERACTS WITH YOUR MEDICINE AND ABOUT ANY POTENTIAL SIDE EFFECTS. ALWAYS GO OVER THE DETAILS OF YOUR TREATMENT WITH YOUR DOCTOR AND ALWAYS CONSULT YOUR DOCTOR ABOUT ANY AND ALL OF YOUR HEALTH CONCERNS. AMEN.
ANTIOXIDANT POWERHOUSES, NATURAL DETOXIFIERS: PART OF ALL PLANTS, WHOLE FRUITS, ROOTS AND VEGETABLES
Interestingly, Vitamin C, much like EFA's (Essential Fatty Acids), cannot be synthesized or produced by the human body and MUST be acquired through food or supplementation. Funny how nature creates a situation demanding that you eat these items or be sick. Point: Consuming Vitamin C prevents the disease known as scurvy, a challenging and often fatal ailment common among sailors and passengers long ago during their long voyages across the sea. In short, a body must have a consistent and sufficient source of Vitamin C or that body will get ill and maybe die. Turns out that Vitamin C, similar to vitamins in general, is a vital nutrient, a nutrient only available from a food source, and a powerful antioxidant.
Know that there are many antioxidants, fully discoverable, each one doing something different to support human energy metabolism and filtration. Vitamins being only one category, antioxidants are contained in all plants, roots, fruits, and vegetables. By eating primarily a variety of these food items, I feel I'm getting a good dose of the antioxidants I need to keep my living processes running smoothly.
Vitamin C, one of nature's powerful antioxidants and probably best known from orange juice fame, is available through plant tissues. High concentrations can be found in all citrus fruits including lemons, limes, grapefruit, oranges, mandarins; also, tomatoes, potatoes, cabbages and green, yellow, orange, and red peppers.
Ever wonder how the idea of taking Vitamin C to fight a common cold came about? Well, it's similar to what I'm talking about here. The idea is that by me adding antioxidants to my cold treatment arsenal, I can somehow speed up the healing process. More good guys to fight the bad guys add up to eventual victory. It kind of makes sense to me.
Daily sources of antioxidants are included in my food choices in the forms of fruits, veggies, roots, and leafy plants. I believe these food choices keep my cells happier and healthier and living stronger and longer.
I highlight Vitamin C, but it's just one example in a whole universe of antioxidants that can be found is all edible plants, fruits, roots and veggies. I choose a bunch of all those food choices feeling I'm doing my body good. My body certainly doesn't scream at me anymore.
There are many other antioxidants and other great stuff contained within the goodness of all plants, roots, fruits and vegetables. This part is really a no brainer for me. By eating more plants, roots, fruits and vegetables, I feel I've brought down and eliminated my internal inflammation.
Or maybe this is all just a coincidence and I was never really sick at all. Can this really be someone's truth, even for one writer, Graham Becker? If you did your own research about you, that certainly wouldn't be wrong. Because none of this is about you. It's all about me. Or so I claim. Always check with your doctor and check your sources. Don't believe a word I'm laying down. I'm serious.
So, I eat plants, roots, or vegetables with every meal. For me, veggies with my meat or fish protein make for groovy and smooth bowel movements.
I eat all fruit separate from any kind of meat protein. Protein powder in smoothies is the exception for me. I add fruit and protein powder and blend together. The protein fruit combination in a smoothie doesn't disagree with me or cause me any digestive discomfort or distress and digests nicely. The protein works to slow down the digestion of the sugar in the liquid smoothie, helping to moderate blood sugar spikes and excessive stress to the pancreas.
If my body can't keep up with the amount of internal oxidation occurring, if my body can't filter the toxins efficiently, I believe they build up in my system. Like bad guys, they're cell delinquents with nothing to do but loiter amd then hang around like carcasses in the surrounding, accumulating, cell sludge. That, I believe, is a piece of the mosaic that helps describe my personal internal inflammation. For me, intense oxidative stress occurs when I indulge in exacerbators, especially processed food and soda.
There is always a certain amount of internal stress that I feel. I'm exposed to air,food and water toxins as well as to the toxic effects from stress and worries and concern about life's daily challenges and problems. When oxidants, also known as free radicals, accumulate en masse in my body, the result is oxidative stress. There's too much for my body to filter. I believe they make up part of the mozaic of internal inflammation. Oxidative stress may cause my body to try to work overtime to filter out the toxins. A steady accumulation of oxidants might be a contributor to my body's oxidative stress.
My body is made up of trillions of cells. Each cell has a life-cycle. As long as I'm alive, every minute of every day, cells are born, they live, and they die. When cells OXIDATE, that's pretyy much their final stage of life. When cells die, and they are dying all the time, our body is designed as a giant filter to recognize and flush these dead cells out through our pores - through our breath, our perspiration, our skin, nails, eyes and ears and nose, as well as through our solid and liquid waste elimination. I view my body is a huge energy factory designed to nourish my cells, energize my entire body and mind, and then, finally, to filter and remove toxins, dead cells and metabolic wastes.
All of this, I believe, has enabled me to continue to live because my body is designed to metabolize energy from the air, the sun, plants and animals, as well as other humans. Plus I believe my body is a natural detoxifier with internal defenses designed to attack and eliminate intruders, toxins and infections.
As the miracle organism that it is, the body is asked to filter everything it ingests and to eliminate waste along with toxins. When the body takes in more toxins than it can adequately filter, an accumulation can occur.
This is where a potential increase of FREE RADICALS, primarly dead cells due to the processess of a body's metabolism, may become problematic for some. For some, this inability of their body to efficiently remove waste and toxins can lead to chronic inflammation. The body is simply asked to do too much for too long and can't keep up. After a while, decades maybe, parts start to go bad and break down. Sometimes, earlier on, a complete systemic breakdown.
Here's another way I look at it. The human body is an amazing processor of energy - sunshine, food, air and water. Our body's main purpose is to make sure every cell is nourished and then filtered out upon reaching the end of its lifespan. Its an ongoing process that is occuring in all of us, even as you read this. We don't feel the process so much as experience the results of that process.
A body hungers for attention every day of its life. As the body's owner and guide through this thing called 'Life', if you don't provide these energy sources to your body efficiently - if you're not able to get enough sunshine, your food sources are inadequate in terms of fresh, whole food, you don't drink enough water, or the air you breath isn't clean - your body is going to tell you by having a part break down or you can have a complete system malfunction, like I experienced.
Weight gain and stress can exacerbate internal inflammation. We also consume toxins such as alcohol, caffeine, prescription and recreational drugs, as well as antibiotics and chemicals in our food, water and soft drinks, not to mention cigarette smoke and air and highway driving pollution.
So, how do we maintain this filter known as the human body?
Well, we know that good health is tied to a healthy immune system. A compromised immune system is more vulnerable to dis-ease. So, how do we grow the good bacteria in our gut so that they can crowd out the bad bacteria and more ably lower inflammation and fight infection? Is it even possible after months or years or decades of medication and toxin ingestion?
The wonderful thing about the human body is that it strives to live healthy and with a balanced PH. The immune system wants its host to live long and prosper. That's why, when it shuts down, you need to listen to your body. Because you're the only one it's talking to and you're the only one who can figure out what it's saying. It all starts with LISTENING. Once we listen, we can act.