Health Standards

An excerpt from the fictional tales of Alien on Earth.

From generation to generation, culture to culture, what constitutes a healthy diet varies — yet all these groups lived normal relatively healthy lives. The common factor is not what they ate, not the actual ingredients, but only the belief in the nutritiousness of what they consumed. Therefore, healthfulness is a state maintained in the mind.

Even within my own lifetime, dietary fashion changed drastically. What I consumed as a child, I’d consider straight-up poisonous today. But who’s to say what I eat today won’t be considered unhealthy by the time I’m elderly. Exercise is another activity that follows trends, as types and vigorousness change with the times.

The point being, that we should not seek to mold ourselves to the latest “healthy” fashions, feeling inadequate when we can’t keep up — we should instead set the bar at a standard we can meet and believe ourself healthy when we do. There are cigarette smokers for instance, that believed it a curative substance, and you know what? They did just fine.

Persuade one of these smokers that what they’re doing is harmful? Boom, some will quit and die soon after, convinced they poisoned themselves. We do no service to anyone by convincing them they’re engaged in self-harm. We’re not helping by forcing a lifestyle that doesn’t fit. And we’re ignoring history to believe ourselves knowers of absolute truth.

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