Last week, the World Health Organization celebrated World Health Day. Today, I’m giving you one more post on my thoughts about this crazy world we live in and how it affects our health.
I want to start with something that happened many years ago. I was reading Psalm 23 from the New Century Version of the bible, a version that I hadn’t read before, and the second line took me completely by surprise:
The Lord is my shepherd,I have everything I need.
Wait a minute. That’s not what it typically says. It’s usually “I shall not want.” Now that actually pretty much means the same thing but still. I have everything I need? This puts a whole new take on everything.
This got me to thinking. And thinking. And thinking. And now I fully agree with that statement. We have absolutely everything we need to live healthy lives here on earth.
Think about it.
Our genome grew up here. Regardless if you are a creationist or someone who believes in evolution, we did not pop out of thin air, a fully formed sentient being. We either developed from building blocks of protein that floated in some kind of liquid or we were formed out of dirt by God. Take your pick. Whichever it is, the bottom line is that we are a product of this place.
Because we are a product of this place, our genome is so inextricably intertwined with it that it learned what’s good and what’s not so good. And sometimes things that are not so good for us in one form is actually beneficial to us in another.
For example, the botulism toxin is found in spoiled food and is one of the most acutely toxic substances to man. Yet if the toxin is tweaked into the form of Botox, it has been found to be extremely therapeutic in the treatment of spasms and dystonias, including excessive blinking and bruxism, by weakening involved muscles for about 60–70 days at a time.
The most well known is the discovery of penicillin. Mold is not a good thing for the human body. But who’da thunk one our first antibiotics came from this nasty substance. It’s one of those mistakes, er discoveries, that literally changed the face of humanity.
The most controversial is stem cell research. We knew that stem cells are vitally important and that many health conditions could be treated if we could just use them but because embryonic stem cell research is morally reprehensible, it was stopped. That forced us to look elsewhere for stem cells and by jove we found them in healthy adult tissues! There’s still a lot of research that must be conducted but now the possibilities are endless.
In the non-medical world, we looked to the world of birds in our pursuit of flight.
In war, our ancestors combined the soft metals of copper and tin to make bronze, a substance that’s hard and tough but, at that time, much easier to work with than iron, another naturally occurring element.
There’s much more that’s been discovered but I think we’ve only scratched the proverbial surface of what this world offers. We just haven’t found it yet.
We certainly have everything we need.