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Impressive!! The healthy deviant really blew me away! So I had to write a book review and share it with you here. If you think "deviant" is less desirable, think again. The definition of deviant: "A person or thing that deviates significantly from or deviates from the accepted norm." Hum … if you put it that way, I've always been a deviator. If you know me you will know that I am kind of "outside the lines", "thinking outside the box". I mean, I live on a sailboat, currently in Mexico, who does this ?! And who determines what actually counts as an “accepted norm”?
The accepted norm
As a rule breaker, The Healthy Deviant: A Rule Breaking Guide to Be Healthy in an Unhealthy World by Pilar Gerasimo was just the thing for me. And I hope you are as shocked as I was when you learned that the "accepted norm" in the US right now includes the following statistics:
- 50% of adults in the United States are diagnosed with a chronic disease
- 70% of American adults are overweight or clinically obese
- 70% of adults in the United States are currently taking at least one prescription drug
- 80% of Americans are mentally or emotionally ill
- Only 2.7% of Americans have healthy habits
These statistics are amazing! How did we get here? The human body has not evolved in the last 2.5 million years to be sick and tired and to fail us, otherwise humans would have long since died out. So what's up? Why did we become such an unhealthy society?
100 years ago, the world's biggest health problem was the infectious disease. However, thanks to advances in hygiene and antibiotics, this is no longer the case. Today, 70% of deaths in the US (60% worldwide) are caused by chronic inflammatory diseases that were virtually unknown 100 years ago, not infectious diseases. (Aside from COVID, 94% of COVID deaths worldwide are due to pre-existing chronic metabolic disorders that suppress the immune system.) While these statistics are not good news, there is something you can do about it.
“For most of our 2.5 million years, we humans lived as nomadic hunters and gatherers, living together in small tribes, building our own shelters, making our own tools, and feeding on the seasonally available plants and animals we find were able to, and expanded large amounts of physical energy in the process. Then, within just a few thousand years (a super sudden change by evolutionary standards), most of the people were pushed into an agrarian world, causing rapid and dramatic changes in our diet, culture, habits and way of life. “- The healthy deviant
The unhealthy standard reality
As Pilar Gerasimo teaches us in The Healthy Deviant, the UDR or “Unhealthy Default Reality” has become our norm in America today. This includes not only Big Agra, Big Pharma, environmental toxins and the "Disease Care" system, which is known as "Health Care" in the US, but also the fast-paced, busy, busy, tasks done. A stressful world that we live in.
On the way to work, we skip breakfast and drink three cups of coffee, eat a donut in the break room, sit in front of a computer all day, eat a fast food lunch and eat it late on the way to a stressful in-car business meeting work, come home and put a prepackaged meal in the microwave, swallow it with plenty of glasses of __________ (put your favorite alcoholic drink here) in front of the TV, waaaay get up late and walk down the rabbit hole of _________ (favorite social media Insert platform here). Take a pill to help you sleep, set your alarm to get up early, and repeat everything. And this doesn't even cover your day if you also have children, pets, and / or aging parents to look after you. If this sounds a little too familiar to you, or if it feels too "Ground Hog Day" to you, you will love The Healthy Deviant.
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Pilar Gerasimo has worked as a wellness journalist for 20 years and is founding editor of Experience Life magazine. "At a time when consumers are bombarded with hype, quick fixes, and conflicting messages, Gerasimo and his team have put an unwavering focus on empowering readers to become their best, healthiest, most authentic selves."
The healthy deviant
When you're tired of feeling sick and tired of going to the doctor just to get a pill for any illness that masks your symptoms but never gets to the root of why you're so out of whack, meh , exhausted … as you feel worse and worse over the years, The Healthy Deviant is for you!
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Pilar & # 39; s book The Healthy Deviant is written in the same style as her magazine. The Healthy Deviant was actually recommended to read for my functional medicine coursework at SAFM, but don't worry, it's not a textbook at all. In fact, it is really written for laypeople like you who have been trying – perhaps for years – to get well and so far have had no success. And I feel incredibly lucky to have had a live zoom call with Pilar and my classmates to discuss this book with her in person.
“About sixty years ago … we were walled in by the technological revolution. It delivered all kinds of life-saving, labor-saving automation, as well as television, radio, mass advertising and computers. We also have artificial flavors, colors and laboratory-made preservatives, mass-produced plastics, nuclear power, nuclear weapons, and many more toxic pollutants. “- The healthy deviant
It is not your fault that you are sick and tired
It's not your fault that you're sick and tired … you've tried every diet known to man, every other exercise program, every new wonder supplement that hits the market, but you haven't lost any weight or worse, added more pounds you try your best. You're not alone. Based on the statistics above, you are in good company with at least 97% of the US population! This is how the "system" is built, manure, stress and toxins are abundant in our daily life and unfortunately have become the "accepted norm".
If you try to eat healthy, go gluten-free, dairy-free, meditate, sleep eight hours a night, you become a "healthy deviant" because these things are not considered "normal" in our American society. And while they're sure to get a little more normal – thanks in part to sprouts and whole foods, many Americans have healthier food options – there are still plenty of unhealthy choices to be made even in these stores. However, the majority of Americans still live in food deserts with no healthy options. And there is peer pressure in ads and social media encouraging you to keep up with the Joneses, eat this, and buy this even if the Joneses are sick!
"We are the first generation of people to have ever been exposed to something in the distance that corresponds to our present circumstances." – The healthy deviant
The big experiment
The wellness industry and big pharma take billions of our hard-earned dollars every year and sell us a bill of materials. And unfortunately it was all a BIG experiment with us as guinea pigs. In The Healthy Deviant, learn how all of this came about, how our bodies evolved over 2.5 million years ago, how exactly our wellness goals have failed recently, and how none of this is your fault (spoiler alert: it works not about & # 39; willpower & # 39; and you & # 39; don't try hard enough!) and how we can finally take back our own health.
"When we are completely immersed in the unhealthy standard reality and our daily lives, decisions and perspectives are largely determined by it, we cannot easily see or record this in our consciousness." We have paid too much attention to issues that seem more pressing. And so, my friends, the unhealthy standard reality keeps us under control. "- The Healthy Deviant
Become a healthy deviant
The last half of the book is devoted to restoring your health with practical tips and exercises (not “working out” exercises, but lifestyle exercises that can help you broaden your horizons to become a healthy deviant). These are step-by-step solutions that you can implement on a daily basis. And creating your own journey back to wellbeing is just the beginning. Pilar's tips will also help you stay healthy as you regain your healthy self.
"The big problems we have cannot be solved at the same level of thought that we used to create them." – Albert Einstein
As Einstein so aptly pointed out, we often cannot see the forest for the trees. To make changes for the better, we need to think outside the box and become healthy deviants. As the saying goes, "If you always do what you've always done, you will always get what you always have." And if you are really interested in improving your health once and for all, it means embracing your inner deviation.
Are you in?
In particular, I think it's great that Pilar actually has her own wellness journey behind her and understands exactly where you're from. As a wellness journalist, she has covered all health topics for decades and has experienced firsthand how and where big industry has failed, if not lied to us about wellness. I also love that a lot of big publishers wanted her to change her book to make it the norm, but she turned it down because she's a healthy deviator!
“The real problem isn't just that it's difficult to make healthy change in our culture. It is difficult to identify reasons that are not openly recognized and much less effectively addressed. "- The healthy deviator
So I recommend this book to all of my clients and I recommend it to you too. When you are feeling sick and tired and not getting answers to your health problems, you are not alone. Get The Healthy Deviant ASAP and start your wellness journey today. Your body will thank you. And if you need someone to hold you accountable for changes in your new lifestyle, schedule a free call.
If you've read The Healthy Deviant, would we like to meet your biggest takeout? What was your ah-ha moment? Please leave a comment and share this article with your friends and family so that they too can get healthier.