For some of you older folks (including me), you might remember the comedian Jack Benny who was very popular on radio and television during the 40s and 50s. Jack was a tightwad, famous for his extreme stinginess. He tells a story, in one of his skits, that he was walking down an alley and was approached by a robber. Pointing a gun at his head the robber blurted, “Your money or your life!” Jack stood there, stone faced, and silent. Once again, “your money or your life”. Again no response. “This is your last chance, your money or your life”. Jack, expressionless, stared at the robber and yelled “I´m thinking…I´m thinking!” This joke got a big laugh from the audience. Why? Well because it was obvious that life is more important than money and there´s really nothing to think about. It´s a “no brainer”.
Faced with that same situation, unless you have a black belt in martial arts, I assume that, like me, you would fork over all the money you had. Although health is, obviously, not as vital as the threat of, instantaneously, losing one´s life, “can you really enjoy your wealth if you´re suffering from a severe illness or a chronic disease?” If your response is no, and I assume it is, then my follow-up question is: “How much time and effort are you actually investing in your health”? As far as I´m concerned, when something is important to me, I invest in it. We know how much time and energy we spend on accumulating wealth…during most of our lives. How much do we dedicate to our health? For so many of us, not much…until of course something happens (i.e., severe illness or chronic disease). Then we decide that it´s time to focus on our health, although, by then, it could be too late.
SO, WHAT´S MORE IMPORTANT, YOUR HEALTH OR YOUR WEALTH?
BESIDES WEALTH, DURING OUR LIFETIME WE ALSO INVEST MANY YEARS ON OUR EDUCATION AND OUR CAREERS!
If we wait until later on in life to think about our health, because we´re feeling OK, while we´re young, one day we may find ourselves in a precarious health situation where we end up saying to ourselves “I should have taken better care of myself”.
The solution, in my opinion, is not to wait until the last moment before we focus on our health. What better time to start than right now? And how to start? Begin by increasing the amount of Whole Plant Based Foods in your diet and consuming less animal products and processed and refined foods. Over the span of many decades, it´s the only way of eating that has a proven track record to prevent and even reverse chronic diseases and to help us avoid premature death. There´s no denying that most “fad” diets make powerful claims, especially about losing weight quickly. However, because they are not “time tested”, I would be hesitant before jumping on the “bandwagon”. Combining plant based foods with moderate exercise and the avoidance of too much stress is the best option…if your goal is optimal health and well being. And, as an extra perk, you can reach your ideal weight…naturally.
If we can agree that our health is at least as important as our wealth, education and career, shouldn´t we at least make enough effort to insure that we´re healthy enough to fully enjoy our wealth, education and career…and our lives? Makes sense to me.