The live food movement is the new paradigm, the next order of how health and disease are beginning to be perceived. It is a total approach to health that stresses water, live nutrition, exercise and high energy motivation. The Arnold Fitness EXPO is the largest EXPO of its kind where people come from all over the world to learn the latest about fitness and bodybuilding, but there is much more to being fit than simply exercising and endlessly pouring down powered health drinks. We are missing a huge health component when we concentrate exclusively on looks and building mass and not enough on diet and what truly leads to great health. And the good news is that we can have both, a great look and great health. We now recognize that medicine and health are two entirely different approaches that don’t conflict with one another other than to force people to make a choice as to which path they will choose to achieve health.
There are three pillars of Great Health. Most bodybuilders and other athletes work hard to obtain two of those health pillars, exercise and a positive mental attitude or motivation . By neglecting the first pillar, nutrition and water, we only destroy the very foundation of what we are trying to achieve: a healthy, sculpted, athletic body. We don’t obtain the perfect body we desire when we don’t eat a truly healthy diet. We cheat ourselves out of health and appearance.
Health and Bodybuilding
Until now, the worlds of bodybuilding and true health have not coincided. Bodybuilding today still revolves around various supplements such as creatine and whey protein. The body creates some of these substances through its natural processes. For instance, creatine is created by the body from amino acids. However, when we consume synthetic forms of these substances, the body may still use them to build muscle, but not without a cost to the body’s overall health. Some of these substances do not belong in the body whatsoever because they cause great detriment to our health. Whey protein, whether derived from a cow or goat, contains a protein structure that may appear on paper to be exactly what the body needs, but how the body handles it is an entirely different matter that causes severe imbalances in the body that can eventually lead to disease.
We can stay healthy and carve our bodies into the shape we want. To do this, we are use to pain and sacrifice, but to be truly healthy it takes a kind of sacrifice that most of us are not use to. Moving to the healthiest diet known will take more discipline than you can imagine because you will be required to change one of the most fundamental parts of your life, the diet you grew up with and are conditioned to believe is healthy. The diet we all live on is the cooked food diet, which leads to all disease.
Bodybuilders do two dangerously unhealthy things to themselves. They acidify and dehydrate their bodies. They acidify it through their diet and with exercise and then deliberately dehydrate it, especially before a competition, to make themselves look better. There is nothing worse for the body than acidifying and dehydrating it. It is why bodybuilders suffer from kidney, liver, heart disease, as well as a host of other health problems at such relatively young ages. None of these processes are natural nor are the diseases that result from them. We prematurely age ourselves with the cooked food diet, unnecessarily expose ourselves to disease and bodybuilders are more guilty of this than any other group of athletes. A hard working bodybuilder appears to be a picture of perfect health as his or her muscles ripple and flex. It is the human body sculpted into a work of art, but often that body is deteriorating within, rife with disease. It does not have to be this way.
My health protocol seeks to reverse the unhealthy things bodybuilders and other athletes do to themselves by opening their minds to the incredible world of natural foods, powerful nutraceuticals such as Spirulina and Chlorella and Ionized Water, the most important substance for our bodies.
We can reverse the aging process without hormone replacement or other artificial means. We can have the body that we had when we were in our twenties regardless of chronological age. We prematurely age ourselves, both internally and externally. Our faces show age more profoundly and at an earlier age when we acidify and dehydrate it. Bodybuilding is all about look and strength. When we move to the raw food diet, coupled with proper hydration of the body, we can have both the look we want and the health we deserve. When we talk about reversing the aging process, we are talking about reversing it biologically, not chronologically.
Building Bodies – The Problem of Protein
One of the nutrients the bodybuilding world currently revolves around is whey protein because its builds body mass. On paper, whey protein looks like a sensible, healthy choice. Unfortunately dairy products are one of the worst things we can possibly put in the body for a number of reasons. They create huge amounts of mucus in the body and the amino acid structure of whey protein throws the body completely out of homeostasis or balance. Specifically, the amino acid ratio is unbalanced, meaning that there is a large amount of one amino acid and not enough of others. This kind of imbalanced protein encourages disease more than anything else, which is why doctors often tell cancer patients to avoid meat and dairy because they know it will exacerbate the problem.
The Protein Solution
If we examine plant based amino acids, we find that they are naturally in the correct amino acid ratio to one another. Dairy products of any kind are wrong for the human body because are putting the milk and hormones of another species in our bodies. We are the only species to consume milk past infancy and the only species that consumes the milk of another species.
The Most Powerful Foods Known
Spirulina and Chlorella, two types of algae, are a superior source of protein for many reasons, including the fact that they alkalize the body instead of acidifying it the way animal protein does. These two foods are 60% protein, far higher than any other natural food. They have a full compliment of amino acids in the correct ratio to one another along with the broadest array of nutrients of any foods. They are both considered perfect foods. Although it would not be ideal, a person could live on either of them exclusively and be quite healthy. Bodybuilders must learn to use this type of plant protein as many have begun to do with great success. I work out everyday, running 3-7 miles along with upper body work. Since including these two superfoods in my diet, my stamina, recovery times and overall performance have improved dramatically.
Diet Plans We Should Fear
Traditional diet plans play around with the carbohydrate, fat and protein ratio of foods we consume. High fat, high protein diets allow the body to lose weight quickly, however they cause the body great harm and have even killed people. This happens because these diets meddle with the natural balance of protein, fats and carbohydrates that the body has evolved on over millions of years. When we tinker with it, the body falls out of homeostasis and opens itself up to all disease. One of the central components of the raw food diet is detoxification. Some people have complained that going on the raw food diet made them sick, but really it only detoxified the person, which gave them symptoms of disease such as headaches, rashes, diarrhea and fatigue. They were healing, but unfortunately mistook it for illness. Simply stated, toxins are substances that don’t belong in the body. There are very mild toxins and very dangerous toxins such as heavy metals. Disease lives on toxins and we create a toxic environment in the body by living on a cooked food diet. Raw foods detoxify the body in every way, just the opposite of what cooked foods do, which is deposit their toxins. As these toxins are removed, the diseases of the body leave with it because they have nothing to live on.
Which Water to Drink
It is difficult for the body to get water from any source other than water itself. Water is the centerpiece of health, yet most people ignore it completely. The single biggest health mistake most people make, including bodybuilders, is not drinking enough water everyday. We need to drink half our body weight in ounces every day just to replace the amount of water we lose. Unfortunately, most of us reach for something other than water when we are thirsty. Or we eat something to quench our thirst, which is even worse. We have conditioned ourselves not to drink water and this is the most dangerous thing we do to our health.
There is nothing more important for the body than water, however, most health and medical professionals know very little about water, nor do they promote it. I have been in the bottled water business since 1993. Most of the water sold in health food stores is purified, either through distillation or reverse osmosis, meaning that all the minerals have been removed from the water. Unfortunately there is nothing healthy about purified water. It acidifies the body, does not hydrate it well and leaches vital minerals from the body. Spring or mineral bottled water is usually good quality and is fine to drink. But the best water by far is Ionized Water. It is a powerful antioxidant that provides the body with lots of oxygen and therefore lots of energy. It is very alkaline, which helps to balance the body’s pH and bring it into homeostasis. This is critical because all disease lives in an acid environment in the body, but will not live in an alkaline environment. The size and shape of ionized water molecule clusters are very small, about half the size of conventional water molecule clusters, therefore it is extremely hydrating. And as it hydrates the body tissue better than it ever has before it pushes out all the things that don’t belong there, which are commonly known as toxins. Ionized Water is extremely detoxifying, which is why there are various levels of ionization strength on a water ionizer so we can begin drinking Ionized Water slowly and don’t detoxify too quickly.
Cooked Foods vs. Raw Foods
Cooked foods are poison. The first time I read that statement I thought it was ridiculous that anyone would believe that cooked foods are actually harmful to the human body. It took a few years of eating raw foods to actually understand how true that statement is. Cooked foods are an addiction that acidify the body and provides it with little, if any, nutrition. If you don’t believe they are an addiction, try going a single day without them. Only raw foods rejuvenate the body because they have enzymes and organic chemical substances that are not denatured, or destroyed, by cooking. Heat is a chemical reagent thus we are chemically scrambling and destroying the nutrients when we cook food. We find no evidence of chronic disease in the wild because animals don’t cook their food. In fact, we find of disease at all amongst animals until we domesticate and put them on a processed food diet at which point we begin to find every disease in them that we find in ourselves.
The Source of All Disease
Raw foods alkalize, detoxify and rejuvenate the body in every way. Cooked foods acidify and deposit toxins in the body, creating an environment that is conducive to disease. Disease only lives in a toxic environment. All disease stems from the cooked food diet and worst of all are processed and junks foods such as soft drinks and even breakfast cereals that many of us consider so healthy. Many people believe that disease is inherited, but what we really inherit is unhealthy dietary habits, eating certain foods, living a dietary lifestyle like that of our parents and it is these habits that give us the same diseases that our parents and siblings have.
How to Begin
The human body is capable of healing itself of any disease. The raw food diet is 100% successful in curing disease each and every time it’s tried. Moving to the raw food diet is a profound change in lifestyle and the move must be slow and deliberate. We must stop putting the wrong things in our bodies and start putting in the right things, which are the powerful raw foods that nature provides us with. One place to start is with a salad before each meal that grows in size each day and week and month while our cooked food meal that follows shrinks in size proportionally. There is a whole world of raw foods and amazing ways they can be prepared to taste wonderful that the vast majority of us are completely unaware of.
The New Health Paradigm
The same bland message is repeated to us year after year about health and bodybuilding by the same voices. The words of that message are juggled to sound different each time they are delivered, but it is the same message that serves more to confuse rather than educate us on what true health really is. The message of raw foods and the New Health Paradigm has never truly been given a proper forum to be heard. As athletes, I believe it is time we heard this message so we can get on with the important business of being healthy. No matter how great we may look, it is worthless if our bodies are not healthy.
The body is an incredible machine that can prevent and cure itself of any disease. It is a temple that we must honor by nourishing and building it to its greatest potential. Considering the escalating cost of health care that is spiraling out of control, the need to have this message heard in the mainstream is more critical now than ever. I personally don’t have health insurance and it is by choice. While I do have accident insurance in case something happens, I will never spend another dime on something I will never need, and that is a doctor.
The world of bodybuilding and fitness has two components of what we must do to Achieve Great Health, that of regular, strenuous exercise and having a positive mental attitude. We must discover the missing piece of the health puzzle, that of Ionized Water and raw nutrition. It is the new paradigm of true health where disease no longer exists. It is time this message is brought out of the fringes and into the mainstream.