It’s so much of a passion of mine that I designed my own major in “Social Issues and Health” while at Juniata College.
So along the way, I tend to keep up with economic trends, and I hope you’ll see why after reading further.
Does the Economy Affect Our Health?
One financial blog that I have found valuable over the years is GetMoneyEnergy.com who recently published an article entitled “Top 10 Trends Predict Profits for the Next 5 Years”
Now my goal is not to give you hot stock tips, nor is it to predict the future – it’s to help you learn to live a healthy lifestyle.
Here’s my take on a few of the trends…
Cargill, Monsanto and Tyson have been vigorously working over the last decade to advance their bioengineering technologies to help “feed the developing world”.
But if the trends continue, these companies are poised to make many more billions on genetically modified consumer staples like rice, corn, wheat, dairy, soy, alfalfa and their commercial byproducts.
Unfortunately, most of us do not know that we are consuming engineered food in the first place.
Why? Because labeling is not required and some 70% of processed foods contain genetically modified ingredients.
So if you eat processed food, you support genetic engineering.
Big movements start with small steps, and I see the GMO food labeling initiative really picking up steam again in the coming years.
Learn more at the Non-GMO Project.
How do energy politics affect your health?
It comes back to the same genetically modified ingredients above and their use in things like biofuels and animal feed.
Spikes in the use or price of one, and it affects everything down the line. Prices of food staples may rise considerably as demand from multiple commercial uses grows.
Good news is that “foodies” like you and I tend to eat very little GMO wheat, dairy, corn, and soy, but the bad news is that the rising middle classes in places like China will have an insatiable demand.
Do you want cheap energy or cheap food?
The big companies will aggressively argue that you can’t have one without the other, and in doing so, I think we will get neither cheap food nor energy.
I think the appropriate question is do we want sustainable or non-sustainable energy and food? And, how expensive will energy and food have to get for us to make the shift?
Rising Healthcare Costs
Healthcare costs for the average American are roughly $10,000 a year.
Medical expenses account for two thirds of bankruptcies in our country, and contribute to over half of mortgage foreclosures.
In the next 5-10 years up to 20% of the entire American GDP will be attributed to health costs. This means companies will have to move out of the US, charge higher prices, offer less employee benefits, or hire less employees in the first place in order to survive.
Adding insult to injury, we rank pathetically low among other developed countries when it comes to measures such as life expectancy, infant mortality & maternal mortality.
The moral of the story is that we’re bankrupting ourselves paying for a healthcare system that doesn’t work.
The solution comes back to lifestyle and integrative medicine.
I call it Chronic Wellness.
The Silver Lining
People will tend not act until the pain of doing what’s needed is less than the pain of doing nothing.
It’s a painful Truth to swallow.
I think there is a movement toward social responsibility, toward new hybrid “for-profit” and “non-profit” business structures that earn tax benefits only when they preach sustainability and give back to the community.
In an age of social media, consumer opinion can spread like rapid fire.
Big companies are having difficulty throwing millions of dollars at just a few media outlets to control the conversation, instead they’re paying teams of lawyers and lobbyists to do it instead.
It is your responsibility to vote with every purchase, and with every tweet or status update.
Do you have a deeper meaning as to why you choose Chronic Wellness?
You don’t have to…but the beauty is that you can.
For me, it’s supporting http://www.GrowingPower.org and making sustainable urban farming possible in the areas it’s needed most.
You have no idea how powerful even small choices can really be.
Consistent, small actions create new trends.
It’s the consistency that matters every time.