Why you should ask, is it good for you?
Forget about the Selena Gomez song. This post is about knowing the difference between “good” and “good for you.” Just because something is lawful (legal), doesn’t mean it’s good for you. Even something that is itself good, you should consider, is it good for you?
Let’s take coffee as an example. Some studies have shown that coffee has a number of health benefits. The caffeine in coffee is a stimulant. It works by blocking the effects of Adenosine, which is an inhibitory neurotransmitter. By blocking the effects of Adenosine, “caffeine actually increases neuronal firing in the brain and the release of other neurotransmitters like dopamine and norepinephrine.” In short, coffee helps to keep us alert and feeling good.
But caffeine is also addictive. Consuming large amounts on a regular basis and suddenly stopping that consumption can cause withdrawal symptoms. The most common symptom is headaches and irritability. According to at least one doctor, caffeine increases catecholamines, your stress hormones. This, in turn, spurs the addition of cortisol and increases insulin in our bodies. What’s more, there are claims that drinking a lot of caffeine leads to decreased insulin sensitivity (making it harder for your cells to effectively respond to and use blood sugar).
Coffee is “lawful.” That is, it’s legal to purchase, possess and consume. On the whole, coffee can even be considered “good.” The question, however, is: Is it good for you? There may be times when the beneficial effects of coffee are beneficial to you. There may be other times that drinking coffee is not in your best interest.
Your attitude needs to be, what good is coming from my consuming this substance or engaging in this behavior. In many states, medicinal marijuana is legal to consume. Let’s face it, a lot of people smoke – and a smaller percentage ingest – marijuana. (It’s probably safe to say that most of them don’t actually use it medicinally but I digress.)
The issue isn’t “What’s wrong with it?” The question is, “What’s right with it?”
Someone in one of my classes I taught in the jail once asked me, “What’s the big deal with smoking a little pot? It’s legal.” I told him the same thing I’m telling you. The issue isn’t “What’s wrong with it?” The question is, “What’s right with it?” It may make you feel good but is it making your mind or your body work more efficiently? How is it benefiting you? Is it enriching your life? Is it doing anything to help you reach your goals? If the answer is “No” then you need to drop it. Period.
Watch this video for more of my thoughts on “Is it good for you?”
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