This section is from the "Health and Survival in the 21st Century" book, by Ross Horne.
Greater challenges in a less benevolent environment led to continued brain development, and so it was in the temperate climatic zones of the world that technology commenced, leading to the advent of farming and the development of cereal crops from wild grasses. Continued competition for territory made warfare inevitable and this led again to greater technological development and so on. From all these changes a new breed of man emerged--one who had become "civilized" and had left his natural environment forever.
Next to the discovery of fire, the development of grain crops was the greatest factor leading to the human population explosion of today. Grain could be produced easily and, being storable, provided food for all seasons. More and more forest land was destroyed to grow crops and to make pasture to raise cattle, and according to their circumstances some populations came to base their diets on meat and dairy products and others based theirs on rice or wheat or other sorts of grain.
None of these diets provide ideal nutrition, and as civilization "progresses" and food becomes more and more preserved, processed, cooked and generally less and less natural, so humans everywhere display more signs of disease earlier and earlier in life. Even primitive races have always had their medicine men to protect their people from evil spirits and disease, but in civilization the superstition of medicine has got out of hand; "scientific medicine" has become a powerful industry consuming a vast amount of the national economy. But while the wild animals remain sleek and healthy without medicine, humans spend more and more money on "health care" and all the while just get sicker and sicker.
So illness can be seen to be a human phenomenon for which there are two main causes:
The unsuitability of our traditional Western diet has been explained in Chapter 2, but it may be asked why do people on other diets fare no better than us? Well, a few isolated populations such as the Hunzas do, but by and large the majority of other races are too heavily dependent on grains of some kind as the staple of their diets and grains are even less suitable to the human system than flesh foods.
Grain products (cereals) have been hailed as a health food by "victims" of the Western diet because they are low in fat, contain no cholesterol, are high in complex carbohydrate (starch) and high in fiber, the constipation fixer. Thus, switching to grains from the Western diet produces immediate benefits, but other problems soon arise. Grain products, supplying mainly starch, place' a great burden on the digestive system. When mature, grains contain enzyme inhibitors which prevent digestion, but they are digestible when green (like sweet corn) or when cooked or after they have germinated. Grain-eating birds are equipped with crops in which grains, swallowed whole, germinate, whereupon the grains become digestible. Grains are indigestible raw, but even cooked, the complex carbohydrate requires great digestive effort to break down, and this is demonstrated by the fact that people of Eastern races, dependent on rice, develop a pancreas double its normal size and other signs of strain such as stunted intestinal villi. And unless rice (and other grains) are accompanied by liberal amounts of fresh vegetables and fruit in the diet, nutritional deficiencies occur and, at the same time, toxemia and acidosis capable of producing skin problems, arthritis, hardened arteries and cancer. That is why Orientals are generally smaller in stature and live no longer than Westerners.