Basic biology from Khan Academy, an online free education resource:
“What cells need
To understand the critical importance of the heart requires taking a step back so we understand the needs of each cell in our body. Remember that our body is composed of over 10 trillion cells that work together in remarkable unity (a lesson in good governance!). Cells have basic needs, and at the top of the list would be these four things:
1) access to oxygen
2) a source of glucose
3) a balanced fluid environment with the right amount of water/electrolytes
4) removal of waste (such as carbon dioxide)
Consider how this compares to basic human needs: breathing air in and breathing out, eating food, drinking water, and getting rid of urine/stool. When you really stop and think about it, many of the things that we do can be traced back to our cellular needs.”
Looking into the circulatory system, it’s no wonder that chronic diseases are caused by what we ingest and by what we breathe in. Cells in the body get oxygen and nutrients from the flow of blood. Waste produced from the cells also needs to get carried away by blood flow to prevent back-up of waste products. Blood gets circulated through the lungs to release CO2, one waste product, and get O2. Blood also filters through other organs, like the liver, to detoxify (remove waste products).
If you smoke, every time blood enters the lungs, it is exposed to the toxins from cigarettes. When you inhale cooking fumes from oils, meat, chicken, and fish, you expose your blood to carcinogens.
When we consume foods containing toxic products like cholesterol, animal protein, saturated fat, chemical pollutants, and the toxic breakdown products like TMAO, these travel with the blood, and damage the arteries, creating plaques, blocking off the flow. Cells get exposed to toxic breakdown products, damaging their functions. Repeated damage can lead to serious chronic degenerative diseases.
How much O2 and nutrients is your blood getting? How much glucose is it getting when you restrict the amount of carbohydrates you ingest? How much are you exposing your blood to toxins by eating damaging foods and breathing in toxic air?
We only need to look at the cellular needs of the human body to see what we need for optimal health.