If we do nothing and let life happen to us, we’re going to deplete our vital reserves as we age; our “functional” tank is going to get low. We will run out of energy, get tired more easily, gain weight, lose memory and adversely affect all our other conditions.
It is possible to live with gusto our entire life by changing this sequence of events. Making this change starts with an understanding of how the body’s systems function.
Several systems in our bodies are going to swing violently from highs to lows. Our catabolic and anabolic systems do a marvelous job of trying to keep up with our stresses. The catabolic phase of metabolism is energy-producing and causes breakdown in our system. This peaks around 6 a.m. and diminishes throughout the day. The anabolic phase of metabolism is energy restorative, healing and repair. It peaks about 8 p.m. at night and continues throughout the night.
On the one hand the cardiac system may give us high blood pressure while at the same time a low heart rate. While this may not be ideal, it is the best response the body has to deal with whatever is going on at the time. It may be all our adaptive capacity can handle. The body is low on the resources it needs to function. So what we get instead is a sign or symptom as the body tries to cope with stresses: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, low triglycerides, severe fatigue, chronic pain and depression… all because the body is depleted in its adaptive capacity and the vital reserves it needs to function well.
In these cases we need to find out what’s causing these swings in our systems; what’s creating imbalances in our bodies. We may need a blood test to find them or a physical examination that looks at and compares it with our metabolic systems or we may simply need to look at our physical symptoms. We rarely need a drug to stimulate or suppress our symptoms, which creates other metabolic imbalances.
More importantly, we need to look at our lifestyles to see what we are doing that is aggravating our health and continuing to make it worse. Is it the food we are eating? Is it the lack of or too much exercise? Is it stress? Is it a faulty brain function? What are we doing now that if we changed, could improve our health?
Our health goal is to maximize our adaptive capacity and increase our vital reserves. We do not want to do things that will tear these down.
image: aging women via Shutterstock