Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The eyes window to the soul

I have always found it intriguing that in looking into peoples eyes shows if they are healthy or not. You can get a feel for a persons overall health by the eyes, if they are "cloudy" you know that all is not well. This is a completely unscientific gut thing, but I have faith that this gut feel is right, because there is an emotional and spiritual part of us humans that no machine could ever measure.

It is now commonly accepted that that retina (back of the eye) is one of the earliest places that diabetes shows up. This is because diabetes causes blood supply issues due to improper sugar levels. The very thin blood vessels that supply the "sensing" part of the eye are one of the first blood vessels to be effected. The back of the eye can be very easily observed through a photography machine that takes pictures of your retina. This is a very simple process and if you have not had it done in the last few years you should do it this year.

What is new is the next step in technology, this article talks about using the eye as a window to brain health. Researchers in little old NZ have figured out that by using light to penetrate into the retina a 3D model of the retina can be built up. This model can them detect and track brain tumors, neurodegenerative diseases such as multiple sclerosis (MS), Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. This is a wonderful non invasive way of measuring brain health.

My last observation is that this is typical "wellness" for the medical system - it is not true wellness, but earlier detection of sickness.

Image stolen from :

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Raping and pillaging - do we do it daily ?

While watching a sci fi movie last night that like any good guy movie involved lots of guns, shooting testosterone and of course the obligatory beautiful women. It didn't need all my grey matter to follow and I got thinking.

Soldiers throughout time have, probably quite rightly, got the reputation for being hedonistic with drink, drugs and womanizing. I thought if I was going to die tomorrow in battle I would hardly be interested in "clean" living. Thinking that if tomorrow it is all over why note live the high life now? In some regards it is only because I want to happily married long term that I don't check out other women, it is because I want to be a good example to my kids growing up that I don't get drunk, it is the desire to have long term mental health that I don't purchase dak from my neighbors...

I would like to think that if I new tomorrow was my last day, that I would still live a clean life, but knowing that humans have a huge pull in them to undertake debased behavior I know that there is not much, if any difference between me and a hedonistic solider.

How does this related to optimal health ?

Well I got thinking as I chewed through two candy bars on the couch..... that long term these bars are killing me. That in the long term excess sugar is well connected to western degenerative disease. Yet I am choosing to eat it in quantity. I realized that I was wanting the short term sugar hit instead of the long term enjoying my grand kids.

I came to the conclusion that I eat bad because I take a short term view. I put the short term benefit of feeling good from the sugar over the long term benefit of good health. Just like soldiers do. Thus in my heart I am no different to a hedonistic solider.

Hopefully however in the future when I am tempted by sugar, processed foods and fatty foods I will think about playing with my grand children and have the courage to stand up and go for a healthier option.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Blank canvas

This year I am committed to bloging about optimal health, commenting on health issues / supplement issues in the media and reviewing research that might make a difference in people's lives.

The funny thing is that all through the day, and at night, I think about stuff and think - that would be a great blog post. Now it comes to writing one, I have a blank mind!

I guess I will be jotting these ideas down so that I don't forget them. Well I hope that this helps