The 5 Biggest Modern Environmental Health Challenges Facing Women and Children (and 5 Tips to Overcome Them)

Many modern conveniences, luxuries, and lifestyle habits seem great. And many of them are great when it comes to saving 5 Big Environmental Challenges1time and convenience. But they are not necessarily healthy for us.

In fact, most of the common chronic illnesses and conditions that we see skyrocketing today are directly related to our modern lifestyle, or what experts call, “environmental factors.”

Chronic illnesses like obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, autoimmune disorders, allergies, asthma, reproductive issues, Alzheimer’s, cancer, mood disorders, etc., are all triggered by lifestyle and environmental factors.

Right now we are living in what I call, “The Age of Modern Chronic Illness” which is characterized by a general state of “un-wellness” and soaring rates of diseases that were fairly rare in the western world just 50 to 100 years ago but are frighteningly common today. Unfortunately, women and children are disproportionately paying the price and bearing the brunt of our modern lifestyle challenges.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), chronic diseases and conditions are among the most common, costly, and preventable of all health problems.

Here are just a few statistics you should know:

• As of 2012, about 50% of all adults had at least one chronic health condition (CDC).
• 65.8% of US women are overweight or obese (source: NHANES, 2011-2012).
• 78% of people affected by autoimmune disorders are women (source: AARDA). As a group autoimmune disorders make up the 4th largest cause of disability in the US and they are increasing.
• The #1 cause of death for women (and men) is heart disease (source: CDC, 2013).
• The #2 cause of death for women (and men) in the US is cancer (source: CDC, 2013).

The good news is …

As I mentioned above, chronic illness is preventable. Research shows that only 5-10% of all cancer cases can be attributed to genetic defects, whereas the remaining 90-95% have their roots in environment and lifestyle. In fact, lifestyle and environment account for 90-95% of MOST chronic illnesses, not our genes.¹ This is good news because we can’t change our genes but we can change our lifestyle and environment.

Here are the 5 Biggest Modern Environmental Health Challenges:

#1 Threat:  Exposure to Toxic Substances

This is one of the biggest health challenges we face in the modern world. There are thousands of chemicals in use today and only a small portion of them have undergone toxicologic evaluation to determine whether or not they are safe.
In fact, research shows that many of them are not safe and have a significant impact on our health and the environment.
According to the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, environmental toxins may contribute to heart disease, diabetes, cancer, reproductive issues, cognitive impairment and many other chronic health conditions. Children are particularly susceptible to chemical exposures and exposures during child development may contribute to health problems that arise later in life.

In a recent report issued by the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics, it states that the widespread exposure we experience in daily life to toxic environmental chemicals, such as pesticides, plastics, and metals (like lead), can lead to fertility problems, stillbirths, miscarriages, cancer, and neurological problems.²

What can you do today? Begin reducing your exposure to toxic substances in your home. Choose paper, cloth, glass, wood, or stainless steel containers over plastic whenever you can. If you live in a home that was built before 1970, consider lead testing. One way to reduce your exposure to pesticides is to buy organic foods as much as possible.

For more ways to reduce your family’s exposure to harmful pesticides download my FREE guide, “Pitch the Pesticides: 5 Strategies to Reduce Your Family’s Exposure to Pesticides.”

Click Here to Get the FREE Guide: Pitch the Pesticides

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Wellness Begins with Your Mindset

Wellness begins in your mind. In fact, wellness begins with your mindset. Your mindset is the ideas and attitudes with which you view and feel good conceptapproach the world. In order to truly be healthy, you must begin with a healthy mindset.

Here at BrightFire Living, the focus is on living well despite the challenges we face living in our modern world. Day in and day out, we are constantly bombarded with all sorts of unhealthy situations that have practically become the fabric of our society; whether it be stressful jobs, lack of physical activity, the Standard American Diet, toxic chemicals, etc .

Living well in this day in age requires you to have what I call a “BrightFire Mindset.” You must be bold and fiery. In other words, you have to be willing to do something different than the masses. It takes courage and passion to go against the grain, take responsibility for your health, and reclaim your wellness.

Here are 10 BrightFire mindset principles for igniting your wellness:

1) You are in control of your health and wellness.

Generally speaking, most people have given up control of their health and wellness. Our society tends to rely on pills to make problems better when they occur rather than look for and address the underlying cause. Most people also take a passive role in their wellness only thinking about their health when something goes wrong. Many folks feel helpless, like their fate is beyond their control.

In contrast, the BrightFire approach is a proactive approach. Even if you are struggling with a chronic illness, your fate is not predetermined by your genetics. Chronic illnesses result from a misalignment between our genes, our environment, and our lifestyle. While you may not be able to cure your chronic illness or get new genes, you can alter your environment and your lifestyle so that you can better manage your condition, and in some cases, even turn off those genes that are expressing themselves in a negative way.

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