“Regeneration” The Process of Renewal and Replacement”
We have often heard the term “ The Body can heal itself”. Daily we are building a new body. Our bodies break down constantly and we see this every day as our skins sloughs off dead cells or we lose a few hairs as we brush or comb our hair. These are just a few of the many examples of renewal and replacement.
Each day the body, which consists of 80 to 100 trillion cells, breaks down at a rate of 24 billion cells a day. These cells need to be replaced at the same rate and supplied with the right nutrients in order to rebuild and have constant renewal. If not we have a process called Degeneration. We need to provide the body with the right building blocks to renew and replace and regenerate. To carry on the life process, each of the 80 to 100 trillion cells must digest and construct food, excrete waste, repair themselves and carry on a number of other essentials. Every cell needs whole foods, clean water, and clean air. Therefore I would like to re-state the above term “ Given the right environment and the right nutrients the body has the power to heal itself.”
In 1932 Dr Francis M. Pottenger conducted a famous study in nutrition using cats. Dr Pottenger used the cats to study an adrenal hormone extract he was making. The cats underwent adrenalectomies, and in his efforts to maximize the preoperative health of his cats he fed them cooked meat and scraps along with cod liver oil. His friends kept donating cats to his experiments and so he had to look for additional food supplies. He began to give some of cats raw meat scraps and other foods that closely resembled their natural diet and he noticed that the cats on the diet of raw food were far healthier than the ones who ate the cooked food. This startling contrast in the health of the cats prompted Pottenger to find the answers to a variety of questions that could be important to the impact of diet and optimal human health.
The Cat Study included several generations of cats. Healthy cats were given a natural diet of raw food and cod liver oil, making them the control group. The cats he called the deficient group were placed on a diet of unnatural foods for cats which including cooked foods. The cats on the diet of cooked food soon became unhealthy, weaker and less vigorous. Cats born to the deficient cats became weaker and less healthy each generation thereafter. As a result there were never more than three generations of deficient cats because they could not produce viable off spring. There is a light at the end of this tunnel. Some of the first generation of deficient cats were placed back on an optimal diet and soon became more healthy and thrived. Pottenger went on to conduct many more experiments and wrote this definition regarding the optimal diet. “ The optimal diet is one that provides man with the nutrients essential to regenerate his body cells; to enable him to mature regularly as determined by normal osseous, physical and mental characteristics; to resist disease; to reproduce his kind”
Our diets have undergone a marked change since the 1950’s with the invention of the TV dinner, the original fast food and unfortunately the beginning of the well intended school lunch programs for our children full of cheap highly processed grains with very few fruits and vegetables. Scientists also began to find ways to add chemicals and preservatives to our food to prolong the shelf life and farmers began the process of fattening their livestock with altered grains instead of natural grasses etc. With these and other changes our consumption of simple carbs and sugar increased dramatically.
Today 95% of Americans drink soda. This is quote from The Department of Nutrition and Food Studies “ In 1970 the average soda consumption per year per person was 22.2 gallons. In 1999 that number more than doubled to 56 gallons per year.” Today the average American drinks 557 -12oz cans of soda per year. Soda provides most people with 7% of their caloric input a day. It is the highest percentage of any given food source.
This is just one example and there are many more of how our population is slowly degenerating and not surprisingly we see the increase of lifestyle diseases such as obesity, diabetes, metabolic syndrome, allergies, asthma, autoimmune dysfunction etc.
Here’s the good news “ The body can regenerate and repair if given genuine replacement parts and the time to heal. It is possible to reverse the process of degeneration. Each cell, tissue, and organ in your body is in the process of replacing itself every day, month, and year. The health of each organ is determined by making the correct nutrients available to repair and regenerate at the cellular level.
Good nutrition begins with food from a good source. Eat whole foods particularly fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts and grains. Ensure that your source of animal protein is free range or in the case of fish, wild. Choose good fats, like olive oil, flax seed, avocados, and butters, and drink plenty of filtered water each day. Shop at local farmers markets, whole food centers, ethnic stores or plant your own garden. Read labels and buy food that has not been altered from its original state.
Let’s take the steps we need to today to improve our health and the health of those around us so that we can ensure we live a healthy and long life and that our children and grand children also enjoy that legacy.