Here’s the deal. I am obviously on a ridiculous health kick. I have become a knowledge junkie on anything green and mean. I will not bore you with a lecture on what should be sitting on your shelves and what should be lining your garbage (but Twinkies are on the second list, so toss those nasty little nuggets out!). I will give a very brief overview of what I have learned and hope that a bit of it hits home for you.
* I had read about super foods in a magazine article a few years ago. It listed things like salmon and almonds and omega-3s. Those are all very well and fine, but did you know there are super super foods out there?? Goji berries have 500 times more vitamin C per ounce than any other fruit. That’s a pretty good reason to down a handful of these cheery red berries, but that’s not where it ends. They are also a superb source of vitamins A, B1, B2, B6 and E and contain a full complement of protein with 18 amino acids and 21 trace minerals. Enough said, but the icing on the cake is that they are an excellent antioxidant. For those who are unaware of the role that antioxidants play in our diet, I’ll enlighten you. Simply put, they can reverse aging and protect against disease. I have started popping these bad boys like candy! I decided to mix it up a bit and throw in a little variation, which is why this next item became a humdinger in healthy eating. Raw cacao is so ridiculously pumped up on antioxidants, it should be a mandatory dietary supplement. It is quite possibly the world’s most concentrated source of antioxidants found in any food. As if that wasn’t enough, it is extremely high in magnesium, a mineral that most people are very deficient in. The best part is that a small 28 ounce serving of cacao beans is 314% of your daily needed iron intake. Steak is out, cacao is in! Throw in a few almonds, which contain phytochemicals and call it a party mix. Phytochemicals help protect against cardiovascular disease and even cancer. That is a pretty tasty powerhouse trio to nibble on!
* “Let thy Food be thy Medicine and thy Medicine be thy Food” – Hippocrates. What does that mean to you? Does that statement from the founding father of modern medicine make you rethink the way you view your dinner? Take a day and follow a guide for wholesome and balanced eating. There is a slew of knowledgeable and credible people offering a one-day, three-day or seven-day fasts or cleanses. Or just keep it simple and try to include two fruits or vegetables in every meal. Attempt to drink at least eight glasses of water (and no, coffee doesn’t count). Sleep for eight hours. Turn off the TV a bit before hitting the hay so your mind can wind down naturally. Take a few minutes in the day to clear your head and concentrate solely on your breathing. These are the little pieces that can add to the big puzzle of internal peace, health and happiness.
* I will pick one more interesting food fact. Try to incorporate 51% of raw food into your diet. Take a look at your plate and do the math. Do you have cooked meat, a cooked vegetable and a cooked starch? How about putting a big ol’ salad on a half of that plate and the other side can be whatever floats your boat. Why raw? Maximizing the intake of phytonutrients is an important factor contributing to the success of raw diets. These vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients in raw plants are necessary for humans and other animals to thrive. Eating raw food generally means you are getting a higher concentration of phytonutrients and other heat-sensitive nutrients in your diet. The resume of phytonutrients includes the following: Serves as an antioxidant, enhances immune response and cell-to-cell communication, alters estrogen metabolism, causes cancer cells to die (apoptosis) and repairs DNA damage caused by smoking and other toxic exposures. Not too shabby for chomping on a carrot stick.
I care about you. I care about what you are putting into your body. Everyone is able to tweak their diet and lifestyle before the wake up call of cancer or disease comes knocking. It’s like a heads up that there is heavy gridlock on the freeway that you’re traveling on. You’re able to re-route your path without having to be one of those cars in nasty gridlock. Consider this a possible alternate map. Take it from a gal who has done her research on different ways to get to the destination of a happy, healthy body. There are more ways than I can count to achieve health. Do your research. Listen to your body. What feels like a fit and what feels like torture will be a pretty good indicator as to what will work. You know yourself better than anyone. Start trusting you!
Healthy tip of the day: If you want a big dose of food knowledge, watch “Food Matters”. Fascinating science behind our food and the role it plays in health. If you don’t want a big dose of food knowledge, tune in tomorrow. I promise it will be foodless 🙂
A nice thought to end this post: