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My daughter asks, “Why do we get sick?”

Robyn Openshaw - Oct 29, 2010 - This Post May Contain Affiliate Links

Dear Mom: “Why do we get colds? Why did I get this cold and you didn’t?”

Answer: (This question came from my 13 y.o. daughter, my most resistant healthy eater. I explained it to her and thought you might like the answer as well, highly simplified.)

“First of all, a mild cold with clear mucous is a helpful thing to get now and then (once or twice a year, even). It is your body flushing out toxins.

(When the mucous sticks around for a long time, settles in the lungs or elsewhere, and becomes thick, and yellow or green, THAT’S when you have a problem. That’s a highly acidic climate that is just begging for more viral or bacterial infections. That’s a perfect host for illness. How do you create that perfect climate for germs to take over? Take medications. Eat meat, dairy, refined flour and sugar, soda, coffee. Drink little water, get little sleep, fail to manage stress.)

Doctors believe that we die of things because germs are chasing us around, and finally they win and we die. The problem with this theory is that we have millions of harmful bacteria and viral and fungal “bugs” around us all the time. On the countertop, in our clothes, in the air, in our bodies. So why aren’t we always sick?

Because our immune system protects us. It fails us when we do not support it, or when we undermine it. Those with strong immune systems–and a healthy gastrointestinal tract where most of the bacteria populating it are good, supportive “germs”–do just fine. We might be exposed to swine flu, or strep, or meningitis, and the various systems in our immune support army just knock it out.

Those who make lifestyle choices to SUPPORT those complex, sensitive immune systems are more likely to avoid illness. Those who eat more colorful and especially GREEN raw, living plant foods are at least risk. Of course heredity, and inherent weaknesses, play a role. But the thing we can control in all of it is what we put in our mouth.

Now go drink a big glass of alkaline water please!”

Posted in: Detox, Health Concerns, Whole Food

8 thoughts on “My daughter asks, “Why do we get sick?””

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  1. I love that you’ve made it so clear that we get sick when we don’t support or we undermine our immune systems. Too many people, doctors especially, overlook this important fact. In addition to food (which is one of the most important aspects), the right amount of good sleep is really important too. Our bodies and our minds need that time to process and cleanse from the day. I rarely get sick, and when I do it’s usually because I haven’t been sleeping enough.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Thank you for putting it so clearly! That’s how I feel too but so many just don’t get it and it’s so frustrating. I just love you! Reading your blog validates me and all this effort so much! Thank you!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Great explanation. I have a similar daughter. My 13 year old is a picky eater. She is quite social and was spending her weekends with her friends–sleep overs followed by hours and hours together “hanging out”. Every Monday, she would start sneezing, and by Tuesday she was sick and had to miss school. Finally, I realized that during the weekend, I was not feeding her. She was eating what she wanted while with her friends–sugary cereal, soda and salty snacks–no greens, or fruit or plates of “food”. I insisted she come home for meals and sleep in her own bed—instant health—INSTANT. We think we can slack off for a few days, but I’m not so sure that is true. Thank you for the validation.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Robyn, I was looking for the the blog entry on your blog a while back where you talked about advising at least some cooked foods instead of 100% raw – and I can’t seem to find it…I am doing some homework on how much cooked food I want to integrate into my diet.

    Thanks !

  5. The realistic truth is that people need to recognize the truth about Alkaline Water and all the benefits it will give you. We need to get the word out about Alkaline Water. The AMA and the Big Drug Companies do not want you to know the water really does work. They would be out of business if we all were all healthy and did not need them any longer. The elementary facts are that it works. It cleanses the body of contaminants that we put it by everyday living, lets the body do its job of healing itself, and restores your natural wellness. In addition, irrespective what Machine you buy, the alkaline water is going to help you feel better. Check it out for yourself and you make the call. Do You Want To Feel Good for a Change?

  6. Anonymous says:

    My wife is diabetic, anemic, has congestive heart failure, and renal failure. She is 5 ft 2″ and weighs 214 lbs and is 80. Can you offer any suggestions or help? We do have a BlendTec blender but in the beginning, frankly, just about need to be led by the hand to get started properly.

    1. Robyn Openshaw says:

      Hi Charles, that’s why my whole 12 Steps to Whole Foods program endeavors to do–make it easy for anyone getting started, taking it a baby step at a time.

  7. Anonymous says:


    Thank you for sharing the information about keeping healthy from the inside out. I just started drinking green smoothies in August but am estatic about the physical changes in my body. I had such a horrible diet for the first 42 years of my life. And the added comments about making sure that we are feeding our older children. I have gotten laxed about their nutrition being complete. Have to improve my own health so that I am more through in my understanding of helping my Family to have better health. Thank you for the extra assistance in doing that.



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