It’s Time to Upgrade Your Biological Software

We are in the midst of the single biggest global epidemic of chronic disease in the history of human species.

We will spend 47 trillion dollars over the next 20 years dealing with it. 90 percent of people who have it are not diagnosed, and in America alone it affects one half of the population. This chronic disease is “diabesity,” and it is preventable.

So argues Dr. Mark Hyman in a provocative new book called The Blood Sugar Solution: The UltraHealthy Program for Losing Weight, Preventing Disease, and Feeling Great Now! Solution is a key word in the title, as Hyman lays out 10 clear, actionable steps that will allow people to “occupy health care” and take control of their own health. Hyman calls this approach functional medicine, as in the opposite of dysfunctional medicine. He tells Big Think functional medicine is “a new way of thinking about solving the problem of chronic illness.” Functional medicine looks at the body as “a system” rather than “a collection of different parts.”

Hyman says this approach will fundamentally impact our understanding of health or disease. How significant is this shift in medicine? Hyman tells Big Think:

We’re witnessing a paradigm shift that’s equal to that of Galileo saying that the Earth was not the center of the Universe or Columbus saying that the world was round not flat or Darwin saying that species evolved instead of being fixed entities.

In the coming weeks we will be featuring videos from Hyman’s recent interview with Big Think. By way of introduction, this post will focus on one of the most basic things Hyman says you can do to be more healthy: eat real food.

That seems like simple enough advice, but there is a huge sector of the U.S. economy — a loose conspiracy, as Hyman calls it — that is set up to thwart your efforts to be healthy because it is more profitable for this industry if you are fat and unhealthy.

Hyman points out that while the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation spends $100 million fighting childhood obesity in this country, the food industry spends that in four days to promote junk food and processed food. In fact, the worse the food is for you, the more the food industry spends to promote it.

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