Dr Libby Weaver: The Pace of Modern Life Versus Our Cavewoman Biochemistry (Transcript)

Here is the full transcript of nutritional biochemist Dr Libby Weaver’s TEDx Talk: The Pace of Modern Life Versus Our Cavewoman Biochemistry at TEDxQueenstown conference. To learn more about the speaker, read the bio here.



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Dr Libby Weaver – Nutritional biochemist

Thank you so much.

There is a crisis facing women’s health and it affects everyone around us: our partners, our fathers, our brothers, our children and it is critical that we get to the heart of the matter and resolve the why behind it.

Not that long ago, in the evolution of humanity, women were given the opportunity to do what has traditionally been their father’s jobs but they’ve maintained what were traditionally their mothers’ responsibilities. And so what has unfolded for far too many women is a frantic double shift of work day and night, and this never ends. They so desperately need rest but when we live in this frantic pace, living on adrenaline, trying to be all things to all people, it can have dire physical, mental and emotional consequences.

And it breaks my heart, because these women walk through the doors of my office and they say to me that they scream at their children and they hate themselves afterwards. But they feel like they have no control over it. They tell me that if they don’t do it, it won’t get done. They tell me that they’re exhausted that they’re tired but wired that they can’t cope that they wish there were more hours in the day, that they can’t remember anything, and that they have absolutely no bandwidth left. But we won’t let you see any of that, because we keep our smiles firmly in place.

So why do we do it? We do it, because we care so much for the people in our lives. It comes from such a beautiful place. It comes, because we have beautiful hearts. But even deeper than that, it comes because we made up a story a really long time ago that we aren’t enough the way we are, that we aren’t good enough, tall enough, slim enough, pretty enough, brainy enough, on-time enough, that we’re just not enough the way that we are. And so we spend our lives trying to please everyone in our realm, trying to make sure that they love us and appreciate us so that we never ever have to feel rejected or ostracized.

But it’s not just the physical health consequences that concern me for women. It’s that they live their life so out of touch with those beautiful hearts, and in the cloud of false belief that they aren’t enough. Too many women have lost their sense of place in this world but a return to that sense of place is right at hand, a return to true presence, to true connection, to one another, to our land, a sense of real gratitude, a place where there’s calm, a place where there’s no anxiety, a place where there are no migraines and where there’s no PMT, so that we scream at the people we love the most in the world and regret it afterwards. That time is at hand. It is time for the dawning of a new era for women it has to be and that new era is going to begin right now.

Cavewoman up there on the left: she represents historical woman. And juggling woman on the right: she represents modern woman. Now these two girls, they’re made of the same stuff. They’re both made up of about 50 trillion cells. Now 50 trillion is a number that can go over our head with its enormity. So I’ll use time to paint the picture of just how big that is.

One trillion seconds ago was 32,000 years ago. But we have 50 trillion cells inside our body. And the only way they work: they all want to talk to each other and they need nutrients to be able to communicate. And the only place we get our nutrients from is from our food. And I’m deeply concerned that when we live life at such a frantic pace, we can compromise the way we nourish ourselves and not get enough nutrients for these basic biochemical processes inside of us.

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