Recently, I was asked what was the biggest challenge I faced in my industry today? I replied: Misinformation and brainwashing. Let me explain. We live in a culture where we have been brain washed for decades into believing that: a) specific foods (fats, red meat, gluten, etc…) are the enemies; and b) calories are the solution to permanent weight loss.
If these “theories” were true, why have obesity’s rates tripled in the last 40 years? Why have so many people been experiencing the yo-yo effect for years and are still feeling frustrated, sick and tired? Clearly, the message, the laws regulating the food industry and the behaviors have to change!
Food is Not the Enemy
You may have heard me say it before, but just in case you have not, let me set the records straight for you: Food is NOT the enemy. Chemicals added to the food as well as nutrients stripped from the food are the enemies.
In May 2015, we addressed the definition of food in our article “Good Health is a Choice” in our Conscious Shift Community rubric. In all the diet books that have ever been written, only 3 authors have ever addressed the QUALITY of food as part of their dietary plan. These are: Weston Price, William Wolcott and Paul Chek (the latter two are actually disciples of the first one!). In my opinion, these 3 guys are pioneers and heroes, and I have based my nutrition and wellness practice and recommendations on their teachings.
So, here are my top 3 recommendations for you to become a healthier eater: (note: there is no diet, no calorie restrictions. Just REAL, wholesome, nutritious and delicious foods.
1- Drink Enough Water
I would estimate that 95% of my clients are chronically dehydrated, even my athletes, when they first come and see me. The main function of water is to maintain a stable environment in cells throughout the body. It also aids in the removal of waste products in cells. Drinking enough water is important to hydrate but also to carry the nutrients from your food into the digestive tract for proper assimilation and distribution into the body. The accurate formula for enough consumption is: ½ of your body weight in ounces of water each day. So, if you weight 200 lbs, drink 100 ounces of H2O per day.
2 – Eat a Rainbow – Chew Your Food
When I work with children, I teach them how to eat the colors of the rainbow (red, orange, yellow, green, blue & purple) and to “choo-choo” their food. The same goes for adults. Clarification: colors must come from either vegetables or fruits (M&Ms and artificial colors don’t count!). Also, digestion starts in the mouth because of the digestive enzymes in our saliva. If you don’t coat your food with enough saliva, and break it down enough with your teeth, you are impairing your ability to digest and absorb your food before you even swallow it.
3- Stop Eating Nutritionally Empty Foods
It is not uncommon to look at food labels today and not be able to pronounce even half of the ingredients! The majority of these words listed on the label are the various substances used to color, flavor, stabilize, bleach, texture, preserve, or sweeten the food.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) lists about 2,800 international food additives and 3,000 chemicals that are added to your food supply every year! Many of these food additives and chemicals are known to be mucous membrane irritants, central nervous system depressants, and cause major stress in your gut. This can all lead to inflammation in the body and create pain and dysfunction, a.k.a., diseases!
Avoid packaged foods that have words you don’t understand. If you can’t recognize them, your body won’t either!
There, you have it! If you avoid these 3 common nutritional mistakes, you will find yourself with less pain, more energy and feel significantly better. Less stress to your body in general will allow it to heal any areas that may be causing you discomfort. If you give your body the right environment to thrive in, it can and will heal itself!
Chek, Paul. How To Eat, Move And Be Healthy! Vista: C.H.E.K. Institute, 2004. Print.
Price, Weston A. Nutrition and Physical Degeneration. La Mesa: Price-Pottenger Nutrition Foundation, 2000. Print.
Wolcott, William L. and Trish Fahey. The Metabolic Typing Diet. New York: Doubleday, 2000. Print.