Disease Prevention

How to prevent Disease (and dis-ease)

None of us can prevent disease totally but our belief is that if they start young enough, most people can lead very healthy lives without suffering any of the most common, chronic diseases such diabetes, heart disease, dementia, cancer, arthritis, osteoporosis, etc, etc… at least until a very advanced age (ie: 80-90 years or more).

The fact that all of these diseases are closely associated with lifestyle habits and environmental influences shows that intelligent decisions taken early enough can be the decisive factor in determining a life of health or disease. This is life practice which has proved to be useful for us in the clinic so far. Here are our guidelines to preventing or postponing disease.

1) Being born with a head start

Superficially this sounds facetious but it is underpinned by a more serious reality: life is not a level playing field. Some of us are born with better starts than others. To have the best chance of remaining disease-free for life the first thing you need to do is to be born from healthy parents and better still healthy grandparents as well.

I am starting with parental health pre-conception and during pregnancy because some of you reading this will be parents some day and its important to understand that you play such an important role in the health of your children even long before they are conceived.

Ideally your parents should have eaten balanced, ancestral diets with food which was prepared at home from whole foods and was effectively organic. They did not have any unnecessary sources of toxins in their bodies such dental amalgams or breast implants or tattoos…. Their exposure to environmental chemicals was minimal and they were not suffering from the kind of emotional stress that is so characteristic of modern society and its attendant ailments (depression, anxiety, insomnia, etc..).

Sounds like a fairy tale? Yes, unfortunately it is a fairy tale. All of us now have generations of ancestors whose lives have been affected in some way by the factors mentioned above. And what relevance does that have to us? Actually it has a HUGE relevance. Our constitutional strength depends to a significant degree on how healthily our forbears lived their lives. We have traditionally thought in terms of genetics but now are beginning to realise the enormous power of environmental influence at the genetic level – epigenetics.

The reality at the moment is a bit sad: with each passing generation, babies are born with less and less health reserve. Most parents are more toxic and have less resilience than the previous generation. However if we make the decision to lead healthy lives before procreation, before pregnancy then we can begin to reverse this cycle not only for ourselves but for our children and our grandchildren.

If you are aware of this, it gives you the opportunity to forgive your ancestors their misdemeanours and not feel that “its all my fault” in some way that your just not as strong or fit or resilient as your neighbour. And don’t’ worry, there’s plenty you can do to reset the odds in your favour.

2) Avoid toxins

As if we didn’t already have enough challenges to face, our society seems determined to introduce more and more toxins into our daily life. It’s a fact that there are thousands of new chemicals being introduced every year into our lives. Most of these have never been properly tested for their effects on our health individually and especially not cumulatively. Avoid them as much as you can. The worst of these are heavy metals followed by pesticides & herbicides followed by xenobiotics.

Some of the more pertinent examples of life style choices you can make are:

  • Avoid foreign material implants in the body (above all amalgam fillings)
  • Filter your water (reverse osmosis)
  • Do not live in the city ( we know that’s not always something you can easily change)
  • Buy clothes, household items , and furniture from natural materials (avoiding flame retardants in furniture, VOCs from paint, etc..)
  • Resist the temptation to treat your lawn with herbicides or pesticides
  • Buy and store food in glass rather than plastic or cans

3) Minimize exposure to man-made EMFs

This is our most controversial guideline. It has long been assumed that nonionizing EMFs have no deleterious effect on us. Think again. Just because our cells and DNA are not being actively burnt up by ambient EMFs it does not mean that they are not harming us. Besides the obvious use of electric currents in our neurological tissue, we use electrical charge or EMF based signalling in every cell and organ and system in the body to effect necessary change and communication. Whenever a hormone docks at a receptor on a cell membrane the exchange is electro-magnetic. The DNA in our cells is constantly emitting photons to signal wellbeing or stress. Our connective tissue acts as a kind of superfast semiconductor distributing information. We are the body electric.

So what harm can exposure to ambient EMFs introduce? It can interfere with these signalling processes causing cells and tissues to mis-read environmental signals and act in unpredictable and unhealthy ways. Hence we see clusters of certain cancers within certain proximities of power lines, the fact that children become more hyperactive under fluorescent light, and the development of EMF allergies as our exposure to WIFI and mobile phone signalling becomes greater and greater.

So here’s a hit list for living EMF smart:

  • Don’t carry mobile phones on your person, use loud speaker to talk whenever you can, and when not in use keep them at least two feet away from you
  • Avoid exposure to lights that use mercury (CFLs, fluorescent lights etc..) – the signature of a toxin is also stressful ; the toxin itself does not necessarily have to be present to cause harm, the mere presence of a signal which emanates from the material is stressful
  • Don’t use WIFI, the better option is devices that bring the broadband signals around the house suing the household power line wiring
  • Try not to live or work near mobile phone masts or power lines
  • Use LED lit computer screens and LED or incandescent lights

Another aspect of EMF pollution is light pollution. Basically you need to be exposed to as much natural light as possible during the day ; and in the evening and at night as little as possible. These are the conditions our bodies have evolved under and they give us the optimum signaling cues to drive our circadian neurological and hormonal rhythms. So keep the office bright preferably from windows and find time to go for a walk outside and then at night keep everything as dark as possible.

A final note on ionizing EMFs – avoid them unless absolutely necessary. The more X-rays and radiation scans you exposure yourself to the greater the chances of cancer and heart disease depending on where and how much you are exposed to. By the way, frequent airplane travel is a significant exposure to low level ionizing radiation.

4) Lifestyle – food and diet

It has been said that humans can and do (more and more) dig their early graves with their teeth. Regarding nutrition, arguably there is perhaps no subject about which more mis-information has been published. The biggest changes you can makes are:

  • Avoid processed foods because they contain denatured and damaged macronutrients, are nutrient-poor food, and include probably toxic additives
  • Avoid sugar in all its forms. Sugar is addictive, it’s a metabolic poison, and a short cut to insulin resistance and type II diabetes.
  • Be careful not to eat excess starchy carbohydrates. These are really sugar in a slightly extended form. It takes a bit more time for your digestive system to break them down but the end result is the same: elevated blood sugar which is not healthy.
  • Make your food choices conscious ones. Try to buy mostly unprocessed foods from local growers and farmers. Think about what your great,great grandfathers and mothers were eating. These are the types of foods you are best designed to eat.

This is a vast subject so it’s impossible to fit any kind of comprehensive guide to food, eating habits, and nutrition in the space here. However Iet’s begin by giving the list of guidelines issued by the Weston A Price Foundation (WAPF). Having looked at a number of diets and the organisations or the experts that promote them and we at the Healthworks clinic have decided that overall the best advice can be found from this foundation. There is much to learn and read on the WAPF web site. If you are interested in nutrition and eating well, we urge to visit
www.westonaprice.org, and better still become a member. The WAPF list is:

  1. Eat whole, natural foods.
  2. Eat only foods that will spoil, but eat them before they do.
  3. Eat naturally-raised meat such as fish, seafood, poultry, beef, lamb, game, organ meats & eggs.
  4. Eat whole, naturally-produced milk products from pasture-fed cows, preferably raw and/or fermented, such as whole yogurt, cultured butter, whole cheeses and fresh and sour cream.
  5. Use only traditional fats and oils including butter and other animal fats, extra virgin olive oil, expeller expressed sesame and flax oil and the tropical oils— coconut and palm.
  6. Eat fresh fruits and vegetables, preferably organic, in salads and soups, or lightly steamed.
  7. Use whole grains and nuts that have been prepared by soaking, sprouting or sour leavening to neutralize phytic acid and other anti-nutrients.
  8. Include enzyme-enhanced lacto-fermented vegetables, fruits, beverages and condiments in your diet on a regular basis.
  9. Prepare homemade meat stocks from the bones of chicken, beef, lamb or fish and use liberally in soups and sauces.
  10. Use herbal teas and coffee substitutes in moderation.
  11. Use filtered water for cooking and drinking.
  12. Use unrefined Celtic sea salt and a variety of herbs and spices for food interest and appetite stimulation.
  13. Make your own salad dressing using raw vinegar, extra virgin olive oil and expeller expressed flax oil.
  14. Use natural sweeteners in moderation, such as raw honey, maple syrup, dehydrated cane sugar juice and stevia powder.
  15. Use only unpasteurized wine or beer in strict moderation with meals.
  16. Cook only in stainless steel, cast iron, glass or good quality enamel.
  17. Use only natural supplements.
  18. Get plenty of sleep, exercise and natural light.
  19. Think positive thoughts and minimize stress.
  20. Practice forgiveness.

In addition to this we have prepared the following food table which illustrates the relative merits of choices within specific food groups:


Every meal & snack has to consist of 80% total of protein-rich and fat-rich foods and non-starchy vegetables. No more than 20% to be allowed for starchy carbohydrates – assume that less is better unless otherwise instructed.

Fresh FoodsOnly unprocessed homemade foods freshly preparedOnly unprocessed homemade foods freshly preparedOnly unprocessed homemade foods freshly prepared
MeatAll fresh meatOrganic, fresh meatOrganic, grass fed meat & especially organ meat
FishAll fresh fish except tuna
& swordfish
Organic fishWild fish
VegetablesMinimum 80% of veg non
starchy vegetables
Minimum 90% of veg non
starchy vegetables
Only 100% non starchy
EggsOrganic onlyOrganic, free rangeOrganic, free range
DairyLimit amount of organic,
raw dairy ; homemade
fermented is better
Only homemade fermented
dairy (yogurt, kefir,
Only homemade
fermented dairy (yogurt,
kefir, buttermilk,..)
FruitAll ripe fruitRipe, organic fruitRipe, organic fruit
NutsFresh nuts only (ie: no
roasted or salted)
remove skin of almonds
Fresh nuts only (ie: no
roasted or salted)
remove skin of almonds
Fresh nuts only (ie: no
roasted or salted)
remove skin of almonds
SeedsGround seedsGround seedsFreshly ground seeds
As much as possible: (eg:
sauerkraut, kvass,
homemade yogurt & kefir,
As much as possible: (eg:
sauerkraut, kvass,
homemade yogurt & kefir,
As much as possible: (eg:
sauerkraut, kvass,
homemade yogurt & kefir,
FatsNatural animal fats,
butter, ghee, coconut or
palm oil, cold pressed,
organic, virgin olive oil
Natural animal fats,
butter, ghee, coconut or
palm oil, cold pressed,
organic, virgin olive oil
Natural animal fats,
butter, ghee, coconut or
palm oil, cold pressed,
organic, virgin olive oil
OtherSea salt, natural herbs.Sea salt, natural herbs.Sea salt, natural herbs.
Processed FoodsAll processed foodsAll processed foodsAll processed foods
AdditivesAll additivesAll additivesAll additives
GrainsAll grains (bread etc)All grains (bread etc)All grains (bread etc)
Starchy VegLess than 20% of a mealLess than 10% of a mealNone at all
Sugars & SweetenersAll sugar and commercial
All sugar and commercial
All sugar and commercial

We understand that no diet is “perfect” so as the 20th WAPF guideline states practise forgiveness and if you so feel, enjoy the occasional treat which doesn’t fit into the table or list above.

5) Lifestyle – other

Again this subject is so vast that only the most important points can be touched upon. Let’s reflect for a moment about our distant ancestors: they dwelt in the midst of nature, walked bare foot on mother earth and looked up at a sky and sun that was not separated from them in any by windows, buildings or sun screens. Here’s my suggestions for life style interventions that count:

  • Exercise regularly as a natural part of your daily schedule. Walking is good as running and probably better for most over the age of 40. The fitter you are the more intensely you can push yourself. Much has been spoken about intermittent high intensity exercising (ie: allowing periods of rest between relatively short bursts of high intensity work) and for anyone already fit this is a better option that simply continuing at a fixed level of intensity for as long as possible. However for most middle aged people walking, yoga, dancing, and relatively gentle, non-contact sports would be our suggestions. Avoid long distance running/jogging unless you are strong enough to do it (and most of us aren’t).
  • Substance abuse is a ubiquitous problem in our society and its relentless spread all over the world is a sad testament to our modern society’s lack of values, lack of cohesion, and intolerance to weakness or perceived failure. If more of us felt valued simply for who we are there would be less demand for substances that help us cope (or “whatever gets you through the night” as John Lennon famously sang). This is as true for legal (such as sugar, nicotine, alcohol, psychiatric drugs) as it is for illegal substances (ecstasy, cocaine, heroin, etc..). If you have a substance abuse problem you need to seek help now.
  • How unbalanced our world is that it sees people who are employed having to work longer and longer hours while so many others suffer the depression and the self-value doubts that no work at all brings. Excess work sets us up for all the other poor lifestyle choices: food, alcohol, cigarettes, etc.. You need to make the changes here. No matter how impossible the situation seems to be, you can be the master of your own destiny. Be brave. Make the changes to bring work and personal life back into balance.
  • Less and less time asleep is also creeping into the lives of most people. This has serious long term consequences that include but are not limited to becoming overweight and diabetic. Go to bed earlier. Seek assistance if you have trouble getting to sleep or staying asleep. Avoid bright lights from the early evening onwards. Slow yourself down and go to bed in as relaxed a mood as possible. Write down anything you have that might be worrying you and leave the problem on the page until the next day. Again seek help if you need it.
  • More and more people are separated from nature as they migrate to cities where there is air pollution and increased risk of chronic lung and heart disease. Live as much as possible in a clean air environment.
  • Give more attention to the cycles of the days and months. Spend time in nature. Try to get into self-sustaining habits that support your physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health.
  • Identify with positive, life-affirming thoughts and behaviour. A good piece of advice from Dr. John Briffa comes to mind: find opportunities to do unexpected, spontaneous acts of good will. Helping others is the best way to help yourself.

6) Iatrogenic or medically induced problems

Forgive the pun, but few of us our are immune to dealing with medical intervention. Even for those not actually sick there is the unending pressure to vaccinate regularly. Each of us has to decide what medical treatment choices we make for ourselves. Our advice is educate yourself beforehand. Never take anyone’s opinion as fact without researching it even if they are a doctor or even a consultant. We know that most of us simply don’t have the time to do this and that many (especially emergency) situations force us into places where we might have to just accept what’s presented or actually being done. Nevertheless remember it is your body, your health, your choice. Here are our list of interventions that we would seek to avoid as much as possible:

  • Treating colds and flu’s, headaches, and pain with suppressive painkillers or anti-inflammatory drugs. They do your long-term, overall health no favours at all.
  • Vaccinations – we understand that this is a contentious issue but since it appears the conventional medical view seems more akin to religious belief than evidence based conclusions, we would be very wary of these for you and your children. There is no proper open debate about this subject and vaccines are highly profitable for big pharma. These two facts are not unrelated.
  • Think twice before having that surgery especially if its about chronic joint problems. There are always alternatives and seek second opinions.
  • Avoid X-rays, CT scans and all radiation treatment unless absolutely necessary. They are linked with increased incidence of cancer in a dose related manner.

7) Organ Capacity – dealing with deficits

This is a case of knowing your own weaknesses and limitations. Never push yourself or your body for a long time beyond what its capable of. For example, if you lack stamina or feel a little weak or irritable after prolonged periods of work without eating then it’s quite likely that your adrenals are under pressure and perhaps losing their ability to cope. The remedy may be any one or all of the following: eat more often, do less, get your sleep/ waking cycle back into rhythm.

8) Integrity of Consciousness – dealing with life’s challenges

We all have a right to a life without being tortured by mental and emotional problems. Everyone has to face challenges in life but if you have good ancestral heritage, a loving, life enhancing upbringing, and live with encouraging, compassionate, positive people then you most likely have the psychic tools to deal with them. The trouble is that many are not blessed with these nurturing situations past or present. Again seek help. Make changes where you can and forgive yourself and others where you can’t. There is more you can do to make changes than you realise so find people who can help you. Invest in yourself and you’ll see the future dividends. This may seem like a long list but life is about making many small changes and maybe a few big ones. Have courage. You can make it.