Misconceptions about Optimal Health

Thin = healthy

When I’ve explained my health issues to friends and doctors, some people have said that I look “healthy” or “really healthy” (though others have hinted at the opposite). There are, I believe, two reasons for this:

1. I wear makeup (and try to apply it fairly naturally, so my skin appears to be healthy and glowing).

2. I’m thin.

During a doctor’s visit earlier this year, one medical professional was appalled at the number and severity of symptoms I indicated in nearly every section of a questionnaire. He asked me how I completed the questionnaire (to verify that I had understood the key and the numbering system and had provided the accurate responses), because on the surface, I appeared “healthier” (according to our culture’s definition) than I claimed to be feeling.

Thin is not always good. Thinness is not automatically a sign of vitality. You can be anorexic, or you can be underweight due to allergies (my story). But I fit society’s (and the medical community’s) image of “healthy”, so some people find it perplexing that I’m not jumping off the walls.

If you’re overweight, you’re eating too much.

Just as thinness is not necessarily indicative of fitness, obesity isn’t necessarily indicative of overeating or poor health (you can be obese and fit). Often, obesity is the result of a micronutrient-deficient diet.

Micronutrients (minerals, vitamins) are crucial for the proper digestion of macronutrients (fats, carbs, protein). Without these micronutrients, a person will be ill-equipped to digest macros such as protein.

Because, in the Western diet, the body is rarely getting all of the nutrients it needs – despite moderate to high caloric intake – it forces the individual to keep eating, in search of more of these micronutrients. As long as the body is craving B6, zinc, etc., the individual will continue to feel hungry, triggering them to eat more food.

Since the American (or Western) diet is frequently ridden with potatoes, wheat, sugar, corn, and dairy – and often deficient in fruits, veggies, and healthy fats – that extra bit of food that is consumed (extra caloric and macronutrient intake) will likely provide little to no extra nutrition that the body is seeking, if it’s pasta, white bread, or donuts. Thus, the person may put on more weight, but not more of the nutrition which helps them to manage that weight.

Simply put, the problem is typically not so much in the quantity of food an obese person eats as it is the quality of that food. (However, when one eats quality food, the point of satiation may arrive faster, so a person will likely end up consuming fewer calories, and the calories they do consume will be processed more efficiently.)

Many individuals with large guts are also suffering from gluten sensitivity, which will lead to a loss of even more of those precious micronutrients.

Overtraining = improved health

While mild to moderate exercise may be beneficial, overexercising can be very harmful to your health, and can actually weaken your adrenal glands.

Some people are born with weak adrenals. The adrenal health of the mother at the time of pregnancy can determine the health of the baby’s glands. If your mother suffered from chronic fatigue or fibromyalgia, then she likely had weak adrenals.

If you get wiped out easily or always feel tired, you’ll want to stick to light exercise.

Do you have adrenal fatigue? Take this quiz to find out!

You have hypertension because you eat too much salt.

You’ve probably heard your whole life that too much sodium can lead to (or exacerbate) high blood pressure. While this may be true for some, studies have suggested that there is no negative correlation between sodium intake and high blood pressure, but quite possibly a positive one.

In point of fact, salt helps to support the adrenal glands, which are significantly involved in the regulation of blood pressure (keeping it from getting too high or too low).

Weakened adrenal glands fail to produce adequate levels of aldosterone. In turn, low aldosterone levels throw cellular sodium levels off balance. If you are suffering from high blood pressure but craving salt, that can be a hint that you need more, not less salt in your diet. (Note: some people are hypersensitive to salt, so proceed with caution. I also recommend using sea salt rather than table salt, as table salt is often bleached and contains aluminum.)

Sodium – along with other electrolytes (e.g. potassium and magnesium) – is necessary for maintaining alkalinity in the body. If the body is acidic from a poor diet or other factors, then it will start throwing its reserve electrolytes at the acidity to restore a pH balance in your blood. This can result in electrolyte deficiencies, so it’s important to get enough potassium from fruits and veggies, as well as adequate sodium (preferably from a source such as sea salt). Magnesium deficiency is also extremely common today, as soil and water levels have become depleted. A magnesium deficiency can lead to severe problems, as magnesium is involved in over 300 biochemical reactions in the body.

Thanks for reading! 🙂 ❤

Disclaimer: I am not a doctor, just someone who’s done a lot of reading and has had a lot of personal experience with health issues and natural remedies. Please do not treat this information as medical advice.


© 2017 Kate Richardson All Rights Reserved



2 thoughts on “Misconceptions about Optimal Health

  1. Pingback: Adrenal Fatigue – Reflection Cube

  2. Pingback: My Journey to Recovery: An Update – Reflection Cube

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