Supercharge Your Health!
Lifestyle vs. Band-Aids
Health is a funny thing. You can eat spoiled food and get sick pretty much instantly, but there's no food that can make you instantly healthy. It's true that some foods have instant effects for the good—for instance, if you're suffering from acidosis, drinking some bicarbonate of soda will counteract the effects of the acid, but that's really only relief of disease, not better health than you had before the acidosis.
Because health is more a balancing act than a high dive, it's easy to think taking supplements doesn't do anything. Good food doesn't always make you feel great right away. You're not even sure that you're taking exactly what you need in the right amounts. This can be discouraging, I know. But no one can take your health as seriously as you.
You start by simply starting, and that's not hard. There are certain food principles that apply no matter what your current state, and one of them is: good food is great medicine. So, until you can sit down with a nutritionist or naturopath and work out the details, here are some tips that can set you on the road to super-charging your health.
And You're Off!
Fresh fruits and vegetables are a good place to start. If you haven't given your diet much thought before, chances are you don't eat enough of these (note the word "fresh"). Frozen can be better than fresh depending on how far the fresh has to travel (buy local when you can).
Simply buy more, preferably organic so they're free of pesticides, herbicides, and chemical fertilizers. Then eat them first so they don't go bad. That way you'll have less room for prepackaged, over-processed imitations, which will keep in your pantry until you decide they're not worth the health risks and throw them out. And well-prepared fresh vegetables are the best-tasting medicine you'll ever have to take!
The best way to prepare your vegetables? In descending order: raw, steamed, boiled, stir-fried. The lower the heat, the better. If you boil or steam, freeze the water to use as soup stock.
And don't forget the herbs and spices! There are tons of raw and quick-cooked recipes online, and some will be posted here as well. Just make sure the colorful powerhouses of nutrition known as vegetables that you eat and serve are fantastically delicious! It's far from impossible.
On the Avoidance Side
How about things to avoid or cut back on? Sugar (as in soda, candy), fried foods (like burgers, fries), processed starches (such as white bread, pastry).
If you like to read and have good eyesight or glasses, it's time to start reading food labels. Ingredients too long to pronounce? Then they're probably not any better for your liver than your lips! Some particularly undesirable culprits:
- Unnatural sweeteners: aspartame, saccharin, Nutra-Sweet, Splenda, crystalline fructose, etc.
- Nitrates, sulfites
- Frankenfoods: high fructose syrup, maltodextrin, high oleic oils, partially or fully hydrogenated oils, anything genetically modified (GM or GMO)
- MSG (monosodium glutamate), sometimes masquerading under the general heading of "enzymes" or "artificial flavors" or "modified food starch"
- Artificial flavors and colors
To Put It Simply...
On the other hand, if you don't like to read or you need new glasses, simply stop buying prepackaged foods with long confusing lists of ingredients. Stick with fresh and organic and you don't even need to worry about the difference between autolyzed yeast extract and hydrolyzed corn protein!
Which makes it pretty simple. I haven't gone into the reasons for these recommendations, but if you do a little more research you'll find a ton of information on lab tests on these substances, including some that food producers have tried to cover up but concerned consumers have exposed. Here are a couple of links to get you going:
- MSG, aspartame, and other excitotoxins
- Misleading ingredient labeling
- Ingredient names that hide glutamates (MSG)
- More on MSG
Man is the only animal with the brain power to choose the quality of his overall diet, and the means to get more than what's within easy reach. I hope you'll reach a little farther and not let all that brain power go to waste! :)