By Daniel Kendal
As we move from generation to generation we continue to move forwards with new technology, medicines, and understanding of how our bodies work. You might expect with this that we should be happier, more efficient and healthier however this is not always the case. Let’s go a little further into the details below:
How many hours do you work a week? If you’re the average Brit, it’s likely to be somewhere over 40. If you’re American, it’s likely to be more. Even the most laid-back European cultures have working weeks in excess of 30 hours. Now compare this to the ‘work’ of hunter gatherers. Modern primitive societies spend anywhere between 12-19 hours a week finding food: the rest is spent as leisure time. Our ancient transition from this freer lifestyle to one based around crop rotation, seasons and hard toil created an expectation in us that all our free time should be spent in work – and we’ve yet to shake that habit.
Centuries ago our sleeping patterns were largely dictated by the sun. As the sun rose we woke up and as it sets it was time to switch off and sleep. Today many people feel deprived of sleep, struggle to fall asleep and resort to medication to assist them in falling asleep and waking up. Thanks to electricity we have artificial lights that keep us up at any hour we please whilst being overstimulated watching television, playing on our tablets/smartphones and working until late on our computers. With all this in mind it is no wonder we struggle to fall into a natural sleep pattern.
There is increasing evidence that our bodies are not designed to eat the sort and the amounts of food that large-scale agriculture produces. We’re natural carnivores, designed to eat decent quantities of meat, sleep it off and then go hunting again. Is it any wonder more and more of us in this bloated, overfed world of ours are suffering from allergies, Irritable Bowel Syndrome and a rash of other sensitivities? In moving away from who we naturally are, it appears we could be causing some problems for ourselves: from trans-fats to processed foods and gluten-heavy diets.
– Daniel Kendal is a sports scientist and uses Vouchercloud. He has a passion for health and fitness specialising in peak performance.