Over the last 6 years, I have spent thousands of hours pondering my 20 year career in the diet and fitness industry, my own personal experience with diets, workouts and the what, why, when, where and who of is to blame for the epidemics of diet-related disease and sickness. This pondering has been no easy task because I had to confess my own ignorance and arrogance.
But in taking the time to look within, I was able to see what is happening in America and why the mass majority of Americans are suffering from diet-related sickness and disease. Here I discovered a handful of basic fundamental truths that cannot be denied any longer- no matter how hard we might try to deny their existence so we can do the same broken formula again and again and again.
Wasn’t it Albert Einstein who said “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.” Perhaps, it is time that we took a closer look at the results that we keep getting because they are telling us the truth that what we have done and what we are still doing does not work. Maybe, acknowledging this truth can help to set us free us from our insanity and stop the increasing rates of diet-related disease and sickness (rates that are projected to get significantly worse in the next 10 years).
We are at a point that the truth we need to seek, in order to save us from destroying ourselves, is not relative or subjective but is true for all human beings. But can we handle this Truth or can we (at least) be willing to allow this Truth to handle us to set us free to see that the system is broken, the formulas have failed, our vast amounts of information (even the right information) are powerless to produce change and that the way we think, talk and understand “health” must completely change.
Seriously, I am done. I am tired of wasting precious time. We cannot keep trying to make a system work that is not built on TRUTH. I understand why we are desperately trying to hold it together and make the system work. It is also clear why we keep doing the same thing over and over expecting different results. It is because we need the system to work- we have invested so much of ourselves, our time, our energy and our money in the system. Who are we and what do we do without the system?
These questions are scary but we have to stop doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result -we are well past the point of insanity- we must change- we must create the space for Truth and give ourselves a fighting chance to live free of sickness and disease.
The truth is that we don’t have dieting or workout problem. Even if we did have the right diet and the right workout, it doesn’t have a chance of working in a system built on gluttony, the myth of moderation and the wishful thinking that you can be different than the system that you live, breathe, listen to, see, think about and participate in.
If the system is corrupt then everything it produces will be corrupt. We cannot out diet, out run, out supplement, out hack or out superfood a corrupt system. If you are a consumer living in a system built for consumers, then you will be consumed by a system that needs you to be sick to function. You will believe you are free to choose but in reality, everything you choose will keep you doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.
The following are a handful of truths that I have arrived at as I have watched my own health, and the health of my family, friends and clients deteriorate over the last 30 years in a country that has more information, hacks, tips, technology, diets, workouts, doctors, nutritionist, superfoods, and access to food and education.
Truth: Every thing we have done in the past has failed. All diets, workouts, information, hacks, tips and technologies produced and followed by our universities, health clinics, doctor’s offices, government agencies and by the experts HAVE FAILED to stop the progression of diet-related disease and sickness. How do I know? Because I can look at the results and see that decade after decade rates of diet-related disease and sickness have continued to rise.
Currently, 88% of Americans have some form of diet-related disease and sickness. If the epidemic rates of heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, cancer, autoimmune disease and inflammation are not enough to convince you that what we have done doesn’t work, then look at shortening life expectancy, the epidemic of diet-related disease in our kids and at 74% of Americans being either overweight or obese. (About 74% of adults in the United States are overweight, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That includes nearly 43% who are obese, meaning they have a body mass index (BMI) — a measurement of body fatness based on weight and height — of 30 or higher. An additional 31 percent are considered overweight, with a BMI of 25 to 29.9.)
I am going to say it again and again- NOTHING we have done has stopped diet-related disease and sickness from reaching epidemic levels in America. Perhaps, just the acknowledgment of this truth might give us a chance to address diet-related disease and sickness differently.
Truth: Our economy is built on making us sick, keeping us sick and us being sick. From the trillion dollar health and wellness industry, the trillion dollar pharmaceutical industry, the trillion dollar fast food industry, the trillion dollar diet and fitness industry, the trillion dollar medical industry, the trillions made on alcohol, beer, wine, junk food and soft drinks, the trillions made by universities and the trillions spent in advertising and marketing of (d) all of the above, it is easy to see that if everything we were doing to make us sick and keep us sick were to stop- then our economy would crash.
Truth: The mass majority of Americans are consumers-that is who we are first and foremost. As consumers, we believe it is our right to consume and we have the right to consume how we want, when we want and what we want. We consume because we feel like it. We consume because we want to. We consume because it tells us who we are. And, we consume despite how it affects ourselves, our friends and family, our neighbors, our towns and communities, our country, our economy, our environment and our world.
As long as we are consumers and this is who we are, then we are going to be sick. Furthermore, until we remember who we are and how we are naturally designed to be healthy, whole, holy and human, we will continue to be consumers. As consumers, we will be controlled by our appetites, trends, technologies, feelings and options. If “health” or “sickness” are options for us consumers , then it is pretty apparent that we will choose sickness. Why? Perhaps, because it is easy, convenient, acceptable and needed for the economy of our towns, cities and country to survive.
Truthfully, it doesn’t even appear that health is an option for most people. Rather, the whole filthy system is set up to naturally make us sick. One monoculture economy full of consumers curating their “same” consumer lifestyle has produced epidemic rates of human beings dying and getting sick from the same consumer produced diseases and sickness. I am sorry but we cannot deny the results. We cannot deny that the system runs off sickness and we are participating in that system.
Truth: Diet-related sickness and disease are not rights. We are not entitled to bad health. This is not an Us vs Them problem. This is also not a body shaming and diet culture determined issue. Diet-related disease and sickness affects everyone. It crosses party, religious, gender, race, ethnic, age and socioeconomic lines. It doesn’t matter who you are, where you live, what you believe or how much money you have- 88% of Americans have diet-related disease and sickness.
Perhaps, we could say that there is no moral high ground in America when it comes to how we treat our bodies, how we use food as a means to our own ends, and how our lack of personal responsibility is destroying the oceans, the rainforests, the creeks, rivers and streams, the farmland, our communities, our towns, cities, country and ourselves. Our individual health is not an individual matter nor should it forevermore be considered an individual matter because everything we do, including our individual health, is interconnected, interrelated and interdependent on all things.
Truth: We are already very much knee deep in socialism when it comes to the cost sharing of sickness and disease. That’s right. Diet-related disease and sickness costs over 2 trillion a year and those costs are spread to all of us. Well, that is all of us except the industries that line every street in America making trillions off the foods that make us sick. You know the ones that pay minimum wage, offer no insurance and serve billions.
Think about what if we didn’t have diet-related disease and sickness? Perhaps, we could use 2 trillion on our education system and change the way we feed our kids and teach our kids. Perhaps, then we could prevent another generation from being sicker than the one before.
Truth: The whole theory of moderation does not work. Even the people I know who are using the same formula that has helped to produce the epidemics of diet-related disease and sickness to regulate their weight-do very extreme things to regulate their weight. From extreme workouts, extreme dieting, food journals, to extreme drugs and procedures, the “moderation” teachers are not moderate at all. Again, the “all things in moderation” does not work. Most Americans are completely deficient int vitamins, minerals, fiber, and the intake of fruit and vegetables but they are excessively consuming salt, fat and sugar.
Truth: Eating is not just a physical act, it is a spiritual, mental, emotional, relational, agricultural, communal and environmental act. Food is a gift. It is not a means to our own individual ends. We have a responsibility to receive and give food that nourishes our human being design, that reminds us who we are (We Are Gifts) and how we are naturally designed to be healthy, whole, holy and human and that encourages and inspires us to live whole, holy and healthy lives.
We cannot continue to “live” as consumers and continue participating in this monoculture mentality curating a consumer lifestyle (that is really no different than anyone else) believing that consuming the right diet, the right information, the right piece of advice, the right superfood, the right supplement, the right workout or the right technology will save us from a system that uses us as a means to its own end- to make money.
Truth: Health is not a result. Health does not begin with food or exercise. We have been tinkering with what we eat, how we eat, when we eat, why we eat and how much we eat for decades.
What are the results?
88% of Americans suffer from some form of diet-related sickness and disease from inflammation, cancer, heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, autoimmune diseases and diabetes.
We have sabotaged our body’s natural abilities to prevent, fight and treat diet-related disease and sickness.
Diet-related disease and sickness are the top killers in our country and they have made us most susceptible to serious, if not fatal complications from the Coronavirus. “CDC study finds about 78% of people hospitalized for Covid were overweight or obese.”
Diets are calorie deficient formulas that we use for weight loss and to manipulate our bodies, believing that manipulating calories in already nutrient deficient bodies (aka sick bodies) will result in “health.”
Calorie manipulation is about the dumbest thing we can do right now to strengthen the body’s natural ability to prevent, fight and treat diet-related disease and sickness- and give ourselves a fighting chance to prevent, treat and recover from the Coronavirus.
The smartest thing that you can do right now to strengthen your health is fill your spirits, hearts, minds and bodies with as much love and truth as humanly possible. By focusing all our attention to nourish our whole person the way we are designed, we can stop our insanity with food, we can stop feeding a lie and we can receive and give the gift of food, the gift of truth and the gift of love.
After working with hundreds of clients over the last 20 years and trying as best as I could to be “healthy,” I have come to realize that health does not start with food but with TRUTH, and with knowing who we are and how we are naturally designed to be healthy, whole, holy and human. I believe these are foundational truths that are applicable to all human beings.
Health Truths from DeeAnn Dean
1. Humans are designed to be healthy.
2. Health is not a result, it is who we are.
3. To be healthy is to be whole, holy and human.
4. We are all naturally designed to Practice The Basics to strengthen our health.
5. To Practice The Basics is to Breathe, Listen, Ask, Look and Move to Remember, Encourage, Inspire, Nourish and Help.
6. We are designed to practice the basics in relationships because relationships are the way we receive and give all of life’s gifts.
7. Food and exercise are gifts that help us to remember that we are gifts.
8. Our health is made up of our spirits, hearts, minds, bodies and relationships.
9. Our health requires presence, posture, position, purpose, participation and practice.
10. Our health is interrelated, interconnected and interdependent on all creatures and on all creation.
11. Health starts with the truth “I am healthy.”
12. The reason why we Practice The Basics is because we love ourselves.
To Practice the Basics, we create the space to rest and restore healthy relationships with ourselves, our neighbors and our world. We do this with a daily practice of:
-Breathing to remember who we are and how we are naturally designed to be healthy and whole human beings
-Listening to discover how to care for and encourage ourselves and others.
-Asking questions to learn truth and inspire imagination.
-Looking to nourish our spirits, hearts, minds, bodies and relationships with things that are good, beautiful and excellent.
-Moving to give our time, talents and truths to help others.
Join me in stopping the insanity by remembering who are and how you are naturally designed to give and receive love and truth to your whole person.