What Are Problems, Really?

Why do we have problems, obstacles and set backs in life?

A problem is an opportunity. It’s an opportunity to be creative. It’s a chance to move forward right when you feel you are being pulled backwards.

It was really a problem to get your laundry done especially if you didn’t live close to a river or a water source. So someone invented indoor plumbing and the washer. Last week, I drove my mother through DC. We were coming home from the Kennedy Center. She reminded me that when I was born she and my dad who was still in the army, lived on Galen Street. She said their first washer had a wringer that you cranked by hand. She remembered my dad had hooked up a pulley operated clothes line from their second floor apartment so she could hang the laundry out to dry without having to carry it done to the backyard. Nice solution to an age old problem. 

Their next washer had a electric wringer, which engendered memories of me getting my hand caught in it, real or imagined! Problem, solution, and yet another problem, kids getting their hands caught in the wringer. Someone then built a guard that would help prevent kids from getting their hands caught, and eventually, clothes didn’t need to be wrung because better motors were used and the tub would spin fast enough to express the water and drain.

Problem, solution, and yet more problems.  This is life. We are constantly in search of ways to do things better, faster and more efficiently.  I am rather amazed and bemused by my son who is in his thirties. He’s is a software engineer, working full-time for an international company and pursuing an executive MBA. When he and some of his friends are bantering about, it’s always about technology and advances that I have never heard about. The technologists are solving problems I haven’t even yet thought about.

In the world of health, I use a metaphor that could save the nation billions. Build a fence atop the cliff and then you won’t need the hospital at the bottom. It’s a quaint concept called ‘prevention’. A stitch in time saves nine. An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. You wouldn’t need a cure if you never got the disease. Easily said, yet the implementation is difficult.

Some things are global in nature and individuals have very little control: The water we drink, the air we breathe, the food available to us through our commercial supply. In solving the problem of world hunger, processed foods were born. Spoilage became a thing of the past. Packaged foods can survive for years on a shelf. Problem solved. New problem created. Processed foods can be harmful to your health. In 1850, the average consumption of sugar was 4 lbs annually. Then processed sugar was born in New York. Folks started sprinkling sugar on their porridge in the morning instead of salt. In the year 2000, the average consumption of refined sugars is over 150 lbs. Now obesity is linked to staggering rates of  diabetes and heart disease.

Most problems can be mitigated and solved by simplfying. ‘Do few things but do them well’ was the adage of St. Francis of Assissi. Eat raw vegetables if you can, if not steam. If not then cooked, if not then eat canned.  There is one thing that 100% of nutritionaists agree on. And it’s the only thing they agree on, eat more vegetables.

One lecture I heard recently Ray Crayon proposed that if Americans would cut out sunflower, safflower and corn oil from cooking and aim to get some omega-3 oils in their diet, then the nation’s health care costs would be cut in half. Don’t deep fry your foods and use olive oil to cook. (Not the extra virgin, that’s for salads.) Don’t use high heat. Coconut oil for cooking is great! It’s a much longer story than we have time for here, but take a few Omega-3 capsules daily is the best prevention for arrythmias which is the cause of at least half of all heart attacks. Prevention is better than cure.

Here is a list of Omega-3s we offer:

True Omega-3
All American Omega-3
High DHA Omega-3
Calamarine
Antarctic Krill Oil
Omega-3 Protocol combines 3 of these to form a virtuous balance.

There is an art and a science to this thing called life.

Here are 10 bad cooking habits you should get away from: Click here.

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