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Seven Ways Life Is Better Now Than It Was 40 Years Ago

The future, next exit

In my last article about how life was so much better 40 years ago, I promised I would even things out and talk about how things have actually improved in the past few decades since I was a kid. (I don't want anyone thinking I'm a crotchety old guy.)

So here goes — seven things that make life better now than "back in the good old days":

1. Healthier choices in food.

Health food has become mainstream. You don't have to go to some out of the way "health food shop" run by "hippies" to get what you need. All the main grocery chains now have entire sections dedicated just to non-GMO, organic food. "Free-range" is now part of our vocabulary. There are entire grocery chains that are dedicated only to offering food that is not loaded up with pesticides and hormones.

Even some restaurant chains (like Panera and Chipotle) make the effort to serve food that is entirely free of preservatives and other harmful additives. Businesses are doing this to respond to popular demand. More and more Americans desire natural foods that are a major part of the answer to the diseases they are constantly fighting.

Sadly, not enough Americans are ditching toxic fast food, but at least there is a good trend toward healthier options.

2. Online shopping.

This can cut either way, I know. I  feel very sorry for businesses like Sears, J.C. Penney, and Kmart. I grew up with those brands. "Sears has everything!" went the commercial. My father was a Sears manager for almost 20 years. And who can forget the ubiquitous K-Mart "blue light specials" and "thank for shopping at Kmart"?

However, these companies have not kept up with the new phenomenon of online shopping. I did not think I would like it at first, but this old buzzard now knows how to navigate the Internet and get some great deals as well as any teenager with a credit card (well, almost). I don't have to fight through traffic, I don't have to fight for a spot in the parking lot, I don't have to stand in line. I just click and buy and wait a few days and my package of goodies is at my door.

Magic. I still go shopping in malls, but not as much.

3. Advances in medical science.

I had quintuple bypass heart surgery almost six years ago. Medical science has continued to progress ... to the point that my surgery was pretty much routine. Thank God! When they announced I would have to have it, we were all stunned, of course. No one thought for a second, however, that I would die. Such surgery has become commonplace, and in most cases about as close to "guaranteed success" as you can get.