From the time I left school until my late 30’s, I did very little exercise other than sailing. I ate anything available or put in front of me, in reasonable quantities, and in early adulthood, enjoyed quite a lot of beer! I was very fortunate to have experienced good health generally and only a suggestion of midriff unnecessary! However, by my mid thirties I felt a change in me. I needed more exercise!
Although at school I participated in all the available ball games, my skill level was such that golf didn’t attract me and anyway I believed it ‘ruined a good walk’! So, I started walking regularly. On one of my outings, in 1989, I met a friend who had been out hill walking and the rest is a history of the most wonderful experience of what I consider to be the best exercise activity anyone and everyone can do for the good health of body and mind! Since I started back then, I have walked the hills at least once per week, bar exception, and am so fortunate to be still enjoying good health without the assistance of prescription drugs! Or any other types for that matter!!!
Much more recently, after I had retired from my first (main) career, I became interested in the importance of good diet in the quest to minimize the risk of ill health – ‘the greatest risk we all face in life’! I was introduced to three books each of which made a huge impression on me and caused me to modify my eating habits and make some other lifestyle changes. I now consider each of them to be my lifestyle reference guides, or ‘bibles’! I highly recommend them to all who have an interest in following a healthy lifestyle.
My first lifestyle ‘bible’:
The Primal Blueprint by Mark Sisson details the compelling premise that you can reprogram your genes in the direction of weight loss, health and longevity by adapting the simple lifestyle practices of our hunter-gatherer ancestors into modern life.
In the Introduction, the Primal Blueprint re-frames major elements of Conventional Wisdom and puts forward for consideration, alternative thinking which is discussed in detail throughout the book.
For example – Grains – wheat, rice, corn, cereal, bread, pasta etc.
Conventional Wisdom: ‘Staff of Life’ – foundation of healthy diet. 6 – 11 servings recommended by US Government and numerous other experts. The main energy source for brain and working muscles. Whole grains provide extra nutrition and fibre.
Primal Blueprint: ‘Worst mistake in the history of the human race.’ (UCLA evolutionary biologist Jared Diamond). Drives excess insulin production, fat storage and heart disease. Allergenic, immune-suppressing and nutritional value inferior to plants and animals. Whole grains possibly worse due to ‘anti-nutrients’ that compromise immune and digestive function and promote systemic inflation.