How your car works and how it relates to personal health.
The fuel injection on most later cars is controlled electronically through voltage changes from various sensors. The voltage signals from the sensors are fed back to the vehicle’s computer (electronic control unit, ECU). If the ECU is functioning properly and hasn’t been modified, it analyzes the sensory input and adjusts the fuel injection, timing and other engine parameters.
We are electro/chemical organisms. Our body sensors do primarily the same things as the sensors in our car, and our brain is the ECU. Signals are sent from our sensors to the brain which processes the information and sends it to parts that need to be adjusted. If we disconnect our car’s sensors, the signals can’t be processed. If we mask our body’s sensors with drugs, or overstimulation, our brain can’t receive and send the necessary information because garbled or no signals are received.
Quick acceleration to a specific velocity, mph in this instance, of an at rest object takes more energy, fuel, than slow acceleration. The same is true of the human body. Once that velocity is reached, it takes more energy to slow the object quickly than it does if the object is allowed to coast to a stop or have the speed reduced more slowly. Some people can get 100,000 miles from a set of brakes while others may get 20,000 miles or less. Some people live a healthy life to 100, others don’t make it to 20. If we’re able to track those same people, where fuel mileage is concerned, we’d find those who get fewer miles from their brakes are also those who get lower MPG, unless there’s a mechanical problem with the braking system. The same is true for health. When we run our lives in a jerky, stop start manner, we wear things out at a higher rate than we would if we coast a little. If we have a mechanical problem, we need to get it fixed.
When we accelerate quickly, charge up hills, feel we have to be the first to the next stoplight (where we sit and wait for it to turn green) and then have to apply the brakes, we add stress to our lives. By slowing down, and it only takes a little adjustment to make a big difference, we can feel good about ourselves, lower our stress, go farther on a tank of fuel (in our car and our bodies), which in turn helps control our budget, contributes to our health and the overall health of the planet.
Something as simple as leaving five minutes early, instead of five minutes late, can save a lot of wear and tear, fuel and stress. If we don’t cram more than we can accomplish into the time available, and we all have 24 hours a day, we save at the gas pump, pay less for brakes and associated parts and we lower stress levels contributing to a healthier, happier life.
If we’re feeling stressed from the current economic atmosphere, we may want to look at the software we’ve programmed into our lives. If we’re “driving mad”, because of price increases, we’re adding adrenaline, cortisone and other hormones to our bloodstream. Hormones are necessary for utilization of carbohydrates, protein and fats by the body, plus other life processes. If those compounds are deficient, our metabolism is slowed, our immune system is affected and our body can’t repair and replace worn out cells as efficiently. One of the indicators of a slow metabolism is gaining weight and not being able to lose it. The US has the highest percentage of overweight people in the world. Diet, lack of exercise, and other lifestyle choices are all contributing factors. Our driving style is part of our lifestyle choices. Adrenaline and cortisol are also known as the “death hormones.” If there are too many of these hormones in the blood, as is the case with “road rage,” they hyper-accelerate the metabolic processes and the body will begin to consume itself. If too much fuel is added to an engine, some of it will contaminate other parts and the engine won’t last as long.
The higher the quality of the items we use in our engines (not necessarily the price), the cleaner and longer the engine will run. The same is true for humans. A well worn computer saying is relevant here,” Garbage in, garbage out..” You can’t expect premium performance from low quality fuel, in either case. Engines are a lot simpler than the human body and much easier to keep clean inside and running at top performance, even if lower grade fuels are used.
Computers in later cars are very sophisticated, but nothing compared to the human brain. Humans have the ability to reason, cars simply respond to external input and make preprogrammed changes. If our lives aren’t working and we’re responding with preprogrammed changes, maybe we need to change our software program. Unless we’ve allowed ourselves to become too run down, we don’t need to change the mainframe (hardware) of our body system. The human body has the ability to repair and rebuild, if we haven’t destroyed those systems.
We can change our program; it’s not easy but it’s possible. If we believe “they’re doing it to me again,” first we need to define who “they” are. The only real changes are those made from the inside out. You can paint a car, but that doesn’t make it run better or longer. If we strip away all the layers of belief systems (BS) we’ve accumulated over the years, we find it’s our reactions to “their” actions that are really the problem.
The area I need to work on is time. I never seem to have enough time to accomplish all the things I’ve included in my life. Very often, I have to sit down and have a talk with myself about who’s been doing it to me again. The answer is almost always, “You’re doing it to yourself.” And, I’m working on changing my software before my hardware wears out.