Genetics only account for 10% of chronic disease, your exposome determines 90% of your health.

by Jennifer Balducci, PT, MSPT, Cert MDT

How many times have you heard someone say to you "I have bad genes, there is nothing I can do"? We have learned that genetics has been found to account for only about 10% of diseases, and the remaining causes appear to be from environmental causes.

So what does this mean? It means that we can no longer accept that our health is out of our control and in fact, the choices we make directly affects the quality of our lives.

Every aspect of our lives make up our Exposome, including nutrition, stress, activity, medications, occupational hazards and our environment including the chemicals in our water and those that we spray on our bodies, plants, and in the air we breathe.

While there are some things that may be out of our direct control, there are many things that you can do personally to limit your exposure. Here are my top 10 that you can start implementing today.

  1. Eat Organic whole foods, limit anything with more than 5 ingredients on the label
  2. Movement is Medicine
  3. Use all natural personal care products
  4. Clean with vinegar
  5. Breathe deeply every day to combat stress and get outdoors
  6. Get 7-8 hours of sleep a night
  7. Drink Filtered water
  8. Use organic lawncare and weed products
  9. Avoid using plastics and when you do recycle
  10. Use glass or CorningWare to store leftovers and food

Eating Organic
Throw that dirty dozen list out the window, try to limit your chemical load by only eating organic whole foods.

Movement is Medicine
There is no better way to improve your health than to move. It has been found that those who sat for more than eight hours a day with no physical activity had a risk of dying similar to that posed by obesity and smoking.Blood sugar is shown to be better controlled when you move with moderate intensity throughout the day versus one 30 minute workout a day. research article here

Personal Care Products
Read Dying To Look Good The Disturbing Truth About What's Really in Your Cosmetics, Toiletries and Personal Care Products. Many of the products we use from shampoo, to soap, to cosmetics and bug spray have high chemical loads and are linked to many forms of cancer. Try to use all natural products whenever possible shop natural products here

Avoid the chemicals found in most home cleaners, use vinegar instead 15 things you can clean vinegar with

Deep breathing has been found to activate your parasympathetic nervous system which has been shown to calm your nervous system while reducing stress and anxiety. It can also help you improve your attention span and lower pain levels see all the benefits to your health here watch how to perform a breathing exercise here. Many studies have examined the health benefits of greenspace for the elderly. A large research study recently published demonstrated the association of natural environments with hospital admissions for Alzheimer disease and related dementias (ADRD), and Parkinson disease (PD). Researchers analyzed first hospitalizations with one of these diagnoses against zip code with regards to greenness, park cover and blue space cover. In evaluating over 61 million medicare beneficiaries they found that greater zip code greenness was associated with fewer hospitalizations for ADRD. All of the outdoor conditions, however, were associated with a decrease in PD.

Researchers have found getting less than six hours of sleep a night doubled risk of death in participants with high blood pressure or diabetes. Less than six hours of sleep more than tripled risk of death in patients with heart disease .

Try Zero water products we tested our water in Annapolis with the free tester that they provided and were happy to find that our water was within safe limits, Ocean City Water did not fare so well. to purchase

Try using organic fertilizer at K&B True Value and weed killer, Burnout is our favorite to avoid putting chemicals into our water supply.

We have found plastics have made there way into everything, including microplastic pollution in marine plants. This means that the fish we eat probably have a healthy diet of plastic in the marine plants they eat. Avoid further increased exposure that can lead to Endocrine-disrupting chemicals in plastic that alter the homeostasis of the endocrine system and can lead to hormonal cancers (breast, prostate, testes), reproductive problems (infertility), metabolic disorders (diabetes, obesity), asthma, and neurodevelopmental conditions (learning disorders, autism spectrum disorders)

For that plastic that you can't recycle at the curb (amazon pouches, newspaper bags, air pillows used for shipping, dry cleaner bags) you can recycle these at your local grocery find locations here

Use glass jars (yup, the ones you usually toss out) to store your leftovers or CorningWare

What you expose your body to every day matters, stop blaming your genes and empower yourself and others to make smarter choices for their health.

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