Besides being a photographer one of my other hobbies is being an avid cyclist. Not the kind that races but one who loves to ride a bike to work or just for fun on the weekends. I have been doing this for many years now and will hopefully continue for many more to come. Cycling is one way for me to get the exercise that I need throughout the week and face it, it is way better for the environment overall. Now that I am older coupled with my other profession, my health has move up to be a top priority. For most of my adult life I have struggled with my glucose and more so, my cholesterol and cycling along with diet is the way I try to control it.
At its highest point a few years back, I had made some dietary changes and in a few months I had dropped it some 40 points. At that point I figured I was on the road to recovery but that couldn’t have been farther from the truth. A few weeks ago, I had to complete some fasting labs for a life insurance policy and there it was again, staring right at me in the results, my high cholesterol. I wasn’t expecting great numbers but some improvement but that did not happen. Instead I managed to keep the number at the same level as before. My glucose was way down as well as my weight, but the cholesterol stayed the same leaving me frustrated. See I do not want to go on any type of statin to reduce my levels because of the damage they can do to your liver, not to mention most people on the report feeling odd while on them. That can’t be good. So, my solution is to drop all dairy, egg and anything that has a hint of cholesterol to try to get my numbers down by the end of next months physical.
What I think that is happening is that my body just can’t process cholesterol as the rest of you do. So instead of getting rid of what I don’t need, it gets painted on the walls of my arteries and veins leaving it there as art. If not taken care of will eventually cause high blood pressure, heart attacks and strokes which isn’t all that fun. And I should know I have seen them play out in the emergency room time and time again.
I thought I would write about this because I know I am not the only one who struggles with this particular plight, there are many others who are in the same boat. Some know it and others will know it with their first heart attack or stroke. I want to blog about it here and in my cycling blog because I wish to bring to light two things. First; there is life outside of our western diet that is killing all of us slowly in one way or another. Second; your health both mentally and physically shouldn’t be a forethought only coming to light after some major health incident or a death of someone close to you of very preventable disease. It takes work that will not only payoff for you but the people who count on you being there in their lives
Because I love photography I thought I would combined some of these blogs with photos of the activities and food I have. Tonight, we had Salmon with asparagus and red wine. The Salmon is one of the few things I can cook without poisoning my wife. Really, I am a bad cook and if it wasn’t for salad, raw vegetables, and fruits I would starve. I am not going to get into how I prepared it but instead I thought I would photograph it for you to admire it. If you want the recipe I can send you a link to it.
Health care shouldn’t be expensive, but it is and because we love the convenience of our processed foods. Millions of us are dying of preventable disease while the rest of us are ticking time bombs waiting to have our turn in the Emergency Room. While you read this ask yourself if you could be next, then if you haven’t had a physical, make an appointment and get checked out. Maybe you will be one of the lucky few that everything is ok for now, but I am betting you won’t. My guess there will be something that with a little change in diet and exercise could change your path from the ER to a very healthy life.
So, get up and get it done and once you have been checked out and even if everything is A-Okay, make some life changes anyway. Get away from processed foods and eat way more vegetables and fruits. Next, look into getting a Fitbit or something akin to it. I found it to be a great tool in keeping track of my activity, sleep and quality of food intake. Look into them they are simple to use. And finally think about cycling to work. I have a blog that I put out information about cycling and commuting to work that I think would help. Spring is coming, tune up the bike or buy one at a Local Bike Shop and get your exercise while working out some of your stress in life while commuting to work. What have you got to lose but a few pounds and some stress in your life. Remember if you don’t want to pay high prices of health care then you must start with yourself by taking care of yourself. If you don’t do it for yourself then do it for the ones you love.