In order to build a strong future for our Folk, we need to BE a strong Folk now. Building a healthy Folk won’t happen when our Folk continually smoke, drink, and eat poorly and then take many medications to try and skate past illness. It means we employ a whole health outlook on life. In the following, I will cover the meaning of whole health, practical whole health, and finally how whole health can really build a strong Folk for the future.

What does whole health mean?

It means living a healthy lifestyle! Living healthy means avoiding destructive behaviors that will make you ill then trying to ‘band aid’ your illness with chemically derived, synthetically made medicine, only to return to the destructive behavior that originally made you ill. Whole health is eating healthy food, free from genetic engineering, hormones, and antibiotics; it means refraining from excessive drinking, smoking, caffeine, sugar, preservatives, etc… It means exercising mind, body, and soul. Finally, if one does get ill, then take only natural herbal remedies or homeopathic medicine (a form of herbal medicine). Each whole health technique affects the other, for instance, if you eat badly and don’t exercise, your body is not in a healthy state to heal itself. It must fight the foreign chemicals and substances in the poor food or it is wanting for vitamins that poorly chosen food lacks. Also, if you don’t exercise not only is your body sluggish, also so, is your immune system. The idea is to have a balanced lifestyle with health always being a priority. How can we claim readiness for anything without a strong healthy body?

How can one practically achieve this lifestyle?

First, stop all destructive behaviors! Sounds easy enough, but many people have real issues they must face. Many times people in our Folkway cannot get along with out social contact that involves heavy drinking, smoking, and even sometimes drug use! Stopping this alone will change a life forever – for the better. Start having social contact that doesn’t involve these things. You will find it more fulfilling.

Drinking water is the best way to detoxify your body. A great rule of thumb is to drink ½ to ¾ of an ounce per pound of body weight. When one is very active (exercising everyday) or fighting off illness, drink as much a full ounce per pound of body weight. Water is the main ingredient of our body; nearly 90% of our body is made up of water! When we let our body dehydrate, we start to feel sluggish, tired, get headaches and generally feel bad. What happens is our body goes into survival mode when we start to skimp on water. The body slows down to conserve liquids. Then when we decide to drink water, the body starts to retain it (swollen ankles, etc…) because it fears that the body will go through another drought. This cycle reaps havoc on the body, since it constantly strives to maintain a balance. Plus, the money you save on beverages you can put toward fitness, books, or whatever other healthy activity you choose!

Healthy eating is increasingly getting tougher in today’s world. With fast food places venting the smell of French fries; commercials, ads, and billboards blaring fatty hamburgers, tacos, and general JUNK, it is no wonder that America is getting fatter by the minute? There are so many bad things that go into our mouths, that one could not possible list them all, but think about how those things are made and the fact that most can’t even pronounce the ingredients on the label let alone know what they are! The solution is to cook at home. There is nothing like a home-prepared meal. This doesn’t mean popping a TV dinner in the oven or ordering pizza (although rarely isn’t the end of the world); it also doesn’t mean a five-course gourmet meal. It does mean buying healthy breads, fruits, vegetables, meats, grains, pastas, and even desserts and eating them at home! When in a rush make a nice sandwich, or taking some fruit, nuts, and cheese. This action will even help you maintain a healthy weight. Choose a practical healthy approach that fits your situation. If you need quick meals, buy a blender and make fresh shakes, or if you can, purchase health food bars for quick meals. Look for substitutes all over your kitchen. Also, look at your eating habits; do you eat while you drive, watch TV, or while reading or studying? Try changing the situation when you crave the unhealthy snacks, such as, ceasing TV or reading in bed instead of on the couch, etc… Finally, if you feel a craving for chips or cookies for example, try drinking a large glass of water or eating some crunchy fruit or veggi like carrots or apples. Nuts are a great snack, they are high fat, but they are GREAT for the heart and health in general. If you are concerned about fat content, eat them in moderation (a hand full a day).

Another concern that, depending on your situation, can be practical or impractical is to buy organic and 100% natural foods. These can get quite expensive, but weigh it against how much you spend on junk! In America, the food supply is just plain dangerous. The non-organic vegetables are almost completely devoid of any vitamin whatsoever. There are numerous studies out there to look into, but they basically say that single crop farming, pesticide use, and chemical fertilizers only used for bigger fruit and not better vitamin content, are creating foods that only fill the belly and not create a healthy populace. The meat in this country is atrocious; first ranchers stuff their cows in crowded stalls, then when they get ill from being over populated, they stuff them full of antibiotics. Then to make the meat ‘look good’ and make bigger cows, they stuff them full of hormones and steroids. Finally, we get the meat to eat that only looks good and is probably is very dangerous to eat! Some alternatives are to buy organic or at least 100% natural. This is rather convenient with chicken. Zacky Farms, Tyson, and Foster Farms chicken companies boast 100% Natural, which is no hormones, steroids, and no preservatives and additives. They can be reasonably priced and very often are on ‘special’ at grocery stores. For beef, that is more difficult. There are no brand names that boast the same characteristics as brand name chicken. There are two options: to eat less and to buy your own cow. For eating less you can substitute Beef for fish or chicken, both healthy alternatives. Also, if you are a hunter, substitute deer, elk, or bear for beef. The alternatives can be for ground beef also! For a cow, you have to have someplace to keep it. Sometimes you can buy cows that stay right where you bought them from and you pay for feed etc… Also, you can defer the cost by sharing it with friends.

Stop buying junk food! Try your hand at baking your goodies. There are so many delicious, healthy baked goods out there that you can make at home inexpensively. This is great for your kids also. They love baking and will be excited to help out. It is great one on one parent-child time! You will also save much money that can be used on more productive activities.

Try your hand at gardening! Growing a garden need not mean an acre or even a backyard. It could be a 4ft x 8ft area where you grow a few things you eat often. You could garden in half barrels or in just pots around the apartment. It could be herb gardens, potato gardens, etc…whatever gardening scheme you choose, make it organic. You have total control over what you use in your garden. Again gardening is a valuable lesson for children, too many to list! Also consider community gardening. “Many hands make for light work” is true of the community garden. Someone who has a big yard shares his or her yard and you share the work of growing your own food.

What does this have to do with Folk Building?

The idea with folk building is to separate from society. This means self-reliance for health, food, and general life resources. Through whole health one can be independent. Reliance on the crooked medical community for health or family health is no longer necessary. Also, by following whole health practices one will not need the medical community (except for emergencies). One can regain control of his or her life. For family, the standard of independence and self-reliance for the next generation is being set. The importance of being a strong healthy person is shown. The family is shown the care exhibited for the world through Organic practices. Self-control is exhibited through action. Finally, a strong, healthy family is a true testament to our people.

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