What is Health?

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What is health?  Most people describe it as feeling energetic and having a lack of health problems.  While this is true, it’s not the whole story and it’s not particularly useful for actually restoring your health.  Health is allusive, in large part, because people rarely understand what it truly is, at its core.

I started to view health differently after not only working with people, but also after considerable observation of healthy wild animals on my farm, as well and healthy and unhealthy domesticated ones.


Let’s back up for a second and look at Life before diving into health.  Life is energy in an organic form.  Biologically, the difference between living things and non-living things is that living things use energy to maintain themselves (in a process called homeostasis).  Non-living things just erode, corrode, or otherwise breakdown.

Living things have a particular way in which they are designed to function and they use energy to maintain that status.  When there is a disruption of this energy cycle, poor health results.


Energy is neither created nor destroyed.  We extract it from our food, utilize it, and get rid of anything that’s extra or not quite right for us.  This means that:

Health is your ability to extract, utilize, and release energy without any “stuckness” in the cycle.

The ability to extract and utilize energy is called metabolism.

Release is your body’s ability to let go of any energy it doesn’t need or can’t utilize for physical maintenance.  It’s all the positive energy you put out into the world, like warmth, love, passion, and productive work.  It’s also the elimination of toxins.  Metabolism and release work together to form the energy cycle in your body.

Metabolism and Release Are a Pair

Because metabolism and release are a pair, they completely affect each other.  Health and weight problems result from “stuckness” in the metabolism-release energy cycle.  It’s what happens when something about your life interferes with your body’s ability to maintain itself.

This notion is important because it means you can’t fix your health problems with just diet or exercise or living more passionately.  You have to fix them by removing the “stuckness” from the metabolism-release cycle and expanding your overall metabolism-release capacity.

Removing the “stuckness” may, of coarse, require periods of focus on certain things like diet or living more passionately.  But if the focus is not within the context of the metabolism-release cycle, it will eventually fail because anything outside that context puts your body into an adrenaline (stressed) state.

In an adrenaline state, energy is diverted away from maintaining life and put toward escaping what is perceived to be a life-threatening situation.  An example would be that if you try to lose weight by eating fewer calories than what your body believes it needs, you will put your body into an adrenaline state and you will eventually gain weight because of it.

Instead, you need to lose weight by understanding what about your life makes your body feel the need to hold onto extra energy.  You need to look at it within the metabolism-release context.  It could be the food you eat, your circadian rhythm, how much water you drink, how well you handle stress, how much joy you allow in your life or any number of other possibilities.

Health requires that energy move freely through you in the metabolism-release energy cycle.  Weight and health problems are fixed by finding the “stuckness” in the cycle.