My health and the health of our planet

By: Monica Lafon

Lately I’ve been wrong. I’ve been thinking about the different crises we are facing because of our faults. And with that comes anger, disappointment and a need to blame something, someone out there.

Our planet is at stake and I can’t bear knowing I’m part of the problem. It wasn’t until I began experiencing the side effects of stress and anxiety that I had an “aha” moment. All along, I’ve focused my attention worrying about the health of our planet and forgot to take care of myself.

I’ve been eating more, sleeping without resting and noticed my energy during the day decrease. My yoga teacher told me I should look into Functional Medicine so I made an appointment. The Doctor said, “your body needs to come back to balance and that starts in the guts. Only then will your body give you the power to heal”.

So I’ve put myself on a detox diet to begin with. No carbs. No lactose whatsoever for a month. Then I will see how my body reacts, and reboot the energy I should be having, and enjoy life as it should be. The plan is to come up with my own personal nutrition plan, so that my habits lead me to vitality.

I started wondering: why do the number of people that suffer from diabetes and cancer keep growing over the years? Why are we so stressed all the time? Why do we keep popping pills to calm down as if it were normal?

I know being on a diet sucks. I don’t wanna lose weight. I want to gain muscle and energy. I want to feel healthy and be at my fullest. And this implies making some sacrifices but more importantly, transformation in the long term. Reshaping myself and redefining who I want to be.

As I keep growing old, I want to be strong, I want to lead by example.

You know why the whole planet is unhealthy too? Because we’ve also not left it enough time to detoxify. To process those greenhouse gases, to regulate the global temperature, to be in constant balance. The speed at which we are functioning is such that it can no longer sustain a healthy environment. And this too, is happening inside us.

We cannot possibly separate our own health from the health of our planet. They correlate. We seriously need to think about the importance of health when we think of the climate crisis, the economic crisis, and the COVID-19 pandemic.

The way we have been raising awareness on the environment has not resonated at the emotional level because once you hear “mitigation”, you think of how much you have to sacrifice in order to restore the levels back as they should be.

That’s similar to being on a diet. If your sole interest is to lose weight, do you really think long-term you are committed to your health? No, you just want to look good for a wedding or something and then go back to NOT being on a diet...

What I am saying is that, if we start thinking about the need to heal our planet in the same way we need to heal our bodies, it will probably lead us towards a more sustainable future.

For more information about the nexus between healthy lifestyles and a healthy planet, go here:

Monica Lafon is an environmental freelance journalist. She got her BA degree in Journalism and Political Science at Concordia University and her Master degree in Environmental Policy at Sciences Po Paris.