Caring for Your DNA

The core of our creation

dna1We have an old saying "if you don't use it, you lose it." This phrase is most usually applied to our level of fitness and strength which is declining due to all our modern conveniences and modern lifestyle but it also applies to our genetic makeup.

There is growing evidence that our genetics and our DNA is influenced and can even be changed by our lifestyle, our way of thinking, our way of eating and our activities. We know that if we overeat and don't exercise, typically would become fat and weak. We know that if we eat all the wrong foods, these can also contribute to weight gain and can weaken us at a biological level.

But when we as individuals become weak, we pass on that weakness to our children. Similarly as a social group, if one or more people become weak, that weakness can spread to affect the entirety of the group.

If we contrast to different individuals, let's say one lives in the Himalayas and the other in London. The person living in the Himalayas doesn't have any modern conveniences, they wake up before dawn then do several hours of physical work in a natural environment before breakfast. Then they will spend part of the day working and part of the day socialising. They may eat only one or two simple meals per day, but should the situation call, they would be capable of seemingly miraculous physical feats.

The Londoner by contrast wakes in the morning rather reluctantly. They drink coffee and have a high sugar breakfast before commuting to the workplace. The work itself requires little physical energy because all they do is push buttons. During the day they will consume numerous cups of tea or coffee with snacks along with a substantial midday and evening meal. They may also consume some alcohol although if they are a little more conscious, they might go to a fitness class once or twice a week. There is little exposure to nature beyond a stroll in the park or somewhere in the country on a Sunday afternoon.

The person in the Himalayas has a very hard physical life with fairly basic levels of nutrition but none of the toxins that are found in most western food. The Londoner is eating a diet that can be barely called food because it is so processed and laden with chemicals.

"There is substantial scientific evidence to show that within a single generation, the genetic structure of a particular family can deteriorate. It is not because our genes have become weak — we have become weak. Because we have become weak, the next generation will be weaker, unless they really strive. Of course, it can always be revived, but whether revival will happen is the question." ~ Sadhguru


The process of creation and maintenance

We humans along with all other life are adaptive. In other words our physicality, mentality and our genetics are continuously evolving and that evolution is shaped by our environment, diet, attitude and our activities.

If we live a rugged outdoor life with a respect and appreciation of life, our bodies and our genetics, our DNA adapts to support the life we have created. But if we live the soft city lifestyle, our genetics may evolve a little more in the psychological sphere, but will degenerate in terms of physical robustness.

If we look at our health statistics, increasing numbers of men and women are becoming infertile at a rate where one day humanity will go extinct for this very reason.

Some years ago when I was trekking in the Himalayas, I was woken early in the morning by the noises of a party of people arriving into our campsite. It was a party of Tibetan villagers who'd left their village the previous morning, walked all day and by night travelled over a high alpine pass. The distance they'd travelled would have taken very fit Western hikers at least two full days to travel. But these villagers only stopped for a cup of tea and then continued their journey. The next day I walked part of that route and two European hikers died from altitude sickness.

The people who live in the remote mountain regions are very hardy. Their lifestyle makes them tough and resilient, and they draw an energy from nature to do what most Westerners would find impossible. This hardiness makes them great survivors whereas most city dwellers would quickly become exhausted should they have to do any prolonged and arduous exercise.

What can you do to maintain your DNA?

Like most people you are probably trapped in an urban lifestyle and suffer some tedious occupation. The world is overcrowded yet there is still some rural space should you wish to move to the country. But if that is impossible then you still need to take responsibility yourself.

This means getting as much physical exercise as possible and adapting your diet and lifestyle so as to avoid as many environmental toxins as possible. This means eliminating all processed foods from your diet.

Even though you may live in a completely man-made environment, there are two directions in life. One direction is looking outwards and our involvement in the world around us. The other direction is inwards. This is where meditation is key because it creates an inner harmony that can counteract the external chaos and confusion of life.

The most primary drive that we all experience is that of reproduction. But if we are to seriously consider that we want to pass on our DNA and perpetuate our species, shouldn't we all be working to harmonise with nature and make ourselves as tough and resilient as possible?


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