• Lizzie Shutt

Forest Health = Human Health

Updated: Dec 10, 2019

Take a moment to let that sink in.

Reread it.

Can you see the correlations between the state of health in our society and our environment?

One could argue they are both ill.

Health versus illness can be interpreted differently depending on the person or situation. The World Health Organization defines health as a “state of complete physical, psychological and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”. I think the last part of the definition is critical because I see “health” being synonymous with growth, joy, and connection. Health is not treading just to keep your head above water, rather it’s floating, swimming, and soaking in the sunshine.

From my understanding of the world right now, the people and the forests are not living in good health. It is no coincidence that an unhealthy environment would also have unhealthy people. I learned in my Plant Pathology class there are three factors that must align in order for disease to occur on a plant: a conducive environment, a susceptible host, and a pathogen. We are not unlike our leafy green friends! In fact, we are connected and just as susceptible to disease when our environment is out of balance.

I felt this quote in my heart. I believe the world can feel it too. Globally we are seeing the forests dying. From the bleaching of coral reefs to the burning Amazon Rainforest, and most recently the forest fires in Australia creating a big concern for the koala population, the planet is calling for help and so are the people. Rates of chronic disease, pandemics, and healthcare are on the rise, yet you would think as society advances we would see a decrease in disease.

As disheartening as this all sounds, I still strongly believe localized passionate people can change the state of the planet’s health and 2020 is going to be a defining year towards this paradigm shift. Wise Tribe is a great example of believers and change-makers, I love to get involved when I can!

Forests, oceans, and the human body are truly resilient when you consider their ability to regrow and regain health even when all odds are against them! The number one cause of death globally is cardiovascular disease, which happens to be completely preventable with lifestyle changes! In addition to personal health, planet health can be improved through regenerative agriculture (more on this in another blog): grow food and combat climate change! #WinWin

My intention with this article is to get you to think about the health connection between our society and environment. You don’t have to go protest at the White House or grab a hose and help put out the forest fires (if you want to though that’s cool too)! Global change is going to happen when everyone decides to change the little things that really do make a difference. You don’t need to wait till the new year to incorporate new resolutions because majority of those never last.

I am encouraging you to choose one action step now towards living a life more aligned with yourself and surroundings. Don't be afraid to start or switch it up! Slow Progress is Still Progress.

Here are some ideas to start implementing. You can drag this image into a new Tab, download it, and print it out or make it your screensaver, acting as a daily reminder that you are part of the change!

When you take care of your life you will also be caring for the planet and inspiring others to do the same! #WeAreAllConnected

“Live Dirty, Eat Clean & Green,”

Lizzie Shutt