Nature or nurture? Which one is it? You be the judge.
For years we have been taught that our genes determine our level of health. In other words, if our parents are short, we will be short. If our parents are smart, we will be smart. If our parents develop heart disease, we will develop heart disease. These assumptions hold some truth, but are generally a disempowering, life-threatening belief.
It is true that genes play a role in pretty much every disease. However, the environment we are exposed to both outside our bodies and at a cellular level is much more important.
There is an emerging field called “epigenetics” which focuses on how genes are expressed rather than the genes themselves. Studies have now shown that diet and lifestyle are highly influential to our gene expression. How empowering is that?
A great example of this effect is the Pima Indians of Arizona and Mexico. They are two genetically identical tribes. The Pimas living in Mexico have maintained the same diet and lifestyle for hundreds of years. Diabetes and obesity are almost non-existent. The Pimas living in Arizona tell a different story. In the past 50 years they have adopted the “western” diet, and they now have the highest incidence of diabetes among any tribe in the whole world.
The greatest “eureka” about all of this, is that we have great control of the state of our health. Everything we think, eat, and do, makes us who we are, literally.
Happy Family Day!