The Ecology of Humans – Health


Our bodies are our gardens, to which our wills are gardeners. ~ English poet and playwright William Shakespeare

The human body is both resilient and fragile. Wounds heal as damaged cells are replaced, though one almost never heals from damage completely. As part of environmental adaptation through memory, cells commonly replicate defects from wounds; hence scars on scars.

Alas, most people take for granted the body’s resilience and pay insufficient heed to its fragility. Living a healthy lifestyle requires discipline. Biology works against it.

People are preset to expire before they could. The body peaks in performance at optimal breeding time in the early 20s, and, to put it gently, tends to settle a bit in the 30s and 40s, the natural years of child-rearing.

To live longer, you have to work against programming tending to accelerate decrepitude. The body wants to relax, not exercise. The mind doesn’t crave constant learning. The tummy wants yummy.

The body particularly relishes fat and protein. Eating to satiation is satisfying. This is an evolutionary hangover of the days when foraging was not always successful. It now presents a challenge of self-discipline.

Maintaining health is a test of will: whether one has the self-control to stay on the path of well-being. Staying healthy is an active pursuit of a quality life.

The only way to keep your health is to eat what you don’t want, drink what you don’t like, and do what you’d rather not. ~ Mark Twain