You don’t have high cholesterol because you lack the drugs to fix it. If your cholesterol is “normal”, you’ve likely been to see the doctor about a problem specifically related to your cholesterol levels. If your cholesterol levels were high before or off the charts in a life-threatening way, and now they’re normal—you were given a prescription of some sort. In a ideal scenario, your doctor told you to change your diet. S/he told you to ignore your wife or husband when he or she asks why you didn’t clean your plate…and to firmly state, when they ask “what is it, honey…doesn’t it taste good? I thought it was your favorite…I made it special for you. Did I not do a good job?” or something of a similar rendition.
In reality, most doctors prescribe Rx medication.
I don’t despise modern medicine. If I were in a serious accident, I would certainly be thankful for it. Clearly, in a crisis situation—modern medicine is key. However, when it comes to the prevention of disease, or the treatment of the chronic conditions that plague modern societies, conventional medicine can often do more harm than good. This is why some turn to nutrition, herbalism, and other holistic methods of health care to prevent or treat things like high cholesterol before the threat of fatality kicks in.
Culturally, in the industrialized parts of the world, namely the United States, the UK, and Canada—we have for decades increased our collective body mass index. As a child growing up in the US my body mass index (height to weight) was always in the “99th percentile” and therefore considered “healthy” according to my doctors. My parents were a bit skeptical, since I seemed to grow faster than other children in my class despite the fact that I was the youngest (I barely made the cutoff age for kindergarten in California in 1994). I wasn’t in danger of obesity, ever, but being in “the 99th percentile” translates to “on the verge of overweight”. After my parents got a divorce, I started to take a hard look at the ways in which food had a handle on my life…my decisions, emotions, etc…and it suddenly dawned on me that I really didn’t like hamburgers. They were this thing, this unattainable thing, like when you’re a teenager and sneak alcohol at Christmas. My parents never cooked red meat, and the few times I ever went to eat fast food the obvious choice was chicken nuggets or a fish sandwich. I didn’t eat a McDonald’s hamburger until 8th grade, on a trip to D.C., and it tasted so off-putting that I became a vegetarian the day after. The point is, I ate beef perhaps once a year until then and it was almost always by accident. I never liked ham, having tried it Christmas once. My grandparents used to lovingly tease me about how I would eat barbeque ribs like there was no tomorrow—but let me get something straight. Babies and toddlers eat whatever is handed to them, and parents (or grandparents) often cook things that babies and toddlers typically don’t like i.e. meat. Babies and toddlers devour things like pork ribs in BBQ sauce because the sauce is sweet. Give a baby or a toddler a pork rib minus the BBQ sauce, and 9 times out of 10 they will look at it with confusion or revulsion.
Babies and toddlers, like the children, teenagers, 20-somethings, adults, and elders they grow up to be, are prone to like certain foods when coated in sauces that deceive them into envisioning certain foods as their “favorites” when in reality, it’s all in the sauce. This isn’t an accident; it’s the result of industry and advertising. Ever since the advent of industry we have been force-fed ideas about what we should eat and how we should prepare certain foods to make them taste better. Food has become this 24-7 carnival, and God is laughing at us. If the Bible is real, then the most significant of the 7 deadly sins would be gluttony.
That’s why people have high cholesterol. That’s why doctors never listened to my parents when they thought I might have weighed too much. That’s why vanity sizing exits, a phenomenon which explains how a size 7 from 1985 is now a size 0 in 2015.
People hate on the media every day, but what most people don’t do is examine the root of it. There wasn’t some magical moment in which the media started to perpetuate our self-hatred about our bodies. TV commercials about yummy sauces to make otherwise-unappealing meat products taste good did not apparate out of thin air.
It’s not news, the information presented in this rant of mine. I am however, tired of the 1950s values regarding cleaning one’s plate to appeal to the emotions of the parents or the wives or husbands who prepare and serve it. We are a sick society, spoon-fed lies and hopes and dreams that are wrapped up in the egotist agendas of those that feed us, and often it’s as simple as a spare rib on a plate covered in “special” BBQ sauce. If you have high cholesterol, take a hard look as to why it happened in the first place. It isn’t your fault; it’s bigger than that. You are a product of a generation that taught you that food = love, and often love came in the form of artery-clogging foodstuffs such as meat.