Industrial progress does not always augur well for our health. Indeed, many inventions of science and medicine aim at curing maladies rather than preventing them. Take the ordinary, now taken-for-granted transport system. No doubt, it saves time and effort, but it also tempts many among us never to walk. If one has money, one takes a vehicle in the belief that time is money.
Similarly, the boom in the food industry reduces everyone who has resources to eat tasty junk food, which over a period of time creates acidity, stress and finally malaise and illness. Having seen the results of the up-market family’s lifestyle of luxury, hard work, jet set travel, human conflicts, ambitions and greed, health and fitness experts all over the world in 1995, have decided to support the “Back to Basics” propaganda.
They say that the human frame or body has not evolved to become very different from our cave man appearance. But conversely, our environment, our industries, our urban complexes and our community, or family behavior have changed dramatically. In the hazy days of man’s evolution his habits were formed by the needs of his life style, which was as close to nature as could be. His daily diet, exercise and way of working naturally combated modern ailments like allergies, stress, ulcers, acidity hormonal imbalances, obesity and constant tiredness.
Early man’s life style was the base of what nature intended him to do- walk long distances, eat proteins with little fat, munch on berries and fruits to keep energy levels even through the day and live close to other beings to get immunity to many diseases.

To go back to basics, the rules which health and diet experts have designed are as follows:

1. Wake up with nature, with comfort and ease. Early man was conditioned to accept the light of dawn or early sunlight as a signal to wake up. We have invented curtains, alarms, telephone rings and other gadgets to change to unnatural habits. In nature when light seeps through human skull, it stimulates the pituitary gland and adrenaline is created. As its level rises, we feel fresh and awake. It is thus good to leave curtains open and as many windows open as possible with no air conditioning as far as possible.
2. The first intake of food should be light and soft. Sudden onslaughts of tea or coffee affect adrenaline levels to go into overdrive. A better way to freshen up is to have a cool or hot shower followed by a glass of herb tea.
3. Food should be eaten only when the body demands it. Early man ate only when hunger pangs affected him. But today we eat or munch out of habit or because of set schedules. We eat if we suffer deprivation of emotion. We eat to relieve stress or depression. We make a vice of eating. The ideal is to eat sparse meals with little fat and snack on vegetables and fruit three or four times a day to keep carbohydrates levels even and create energy.
4. Our bodies work on carbohydrates- but of the natural variety. Our diet should, therefore be rich with fruit and vegetables. Dried fruits should be soaked in water and eaten with wheat germ. Oats, rice dosas or idlis or dals (pulses/lentils).
5. Sea food should be eaten more often than fatty food if one is non-vegetarian. Fish and various seeds help brain cells to develop.
6. Raw food is a must. Only meats, eggs and cereals and pulses need thorough cooking. Vegetables should be just cooked and plenty of salads, sprouts and roots should be eaten.
7. Avoid heavily processed foods because of chemical feeds to plants. Many modern pesticides kill the nutrients of food and are no good to use.
8. The Indian diet, because of the closeness to nature of the majority of Indians, still offers the best variety of food anywhere on earth. It is easy to go back to basics in India than anywhere else. India’s health problems do not come from an overkill of food except for the affluent. They come from ignorance and deprivation due to poverty.
9. Walk wherever you can and as much as you can, depending on your physique and age. Use your voice, your limbs to express your thoughts. Be really joyful in success whether one’s own or others. Learn the techniques of engaging your body, mind and intelligence in happy and creative pursuits.

Hopefully, stress and other maladies will stay away from you.

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