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Why Am I Doing This?

A few years ago, my thirty-five year old neighbor died of a stroke. One day everything was normal. The next day he was in the hospital - and he never left. But he did leave behind a wife and four kids.

A young redheaded kid, Tyler, told me about his thirty-seven year old father, a teacher and bus driver, who had quadruple bypass surgery. Tyler wanted to know if his dad was going to be well enough to drive the school bus again.

One of my friends, Juan, a high school math teacher and baseball coach, was just thirty-two years old when he died of leukemia. He left behind a wife who was eight months pregnant at the time.

Another friend, Roney, had an older brother who died before reaching his thirtieth birthday. He came to visit for Christmas, contracted pneumonia, and his lungs filled with fluid. He literally suffocated to death.

Yet another friend, Ed, died from pancreatic cancer at the age of forty, leaving behind a wife and two teenage daughters.

My grandmother died of colon cancer. My grandfather died of lung cancer. My uncle Don died of a blood clot. My younger brother almost died of a diabetic induced heart attack.

And my father recently died of cancer - after being hooked up to an oxygen machine for eight years. He was disabled and miserable, not able to play much with his grandchildren.

Today health-care costs continue to skyrocket, while the health of the American people continues to decline. The average person is lost in a glut of complex and confusing health information. People believe in the fundamental law of cause and effect - except when it comes to their lifestyle habits.

Yes, there is a direct connection between the foods you eat, the liquids you drink, the exercise you get, and your quality of life.