What’s the Deal with Food?
We don’t eat what our ancestors ate, everything is now “genetically modified” because it’s easier to grow and looks better, and let’s be honest, who doesn’t pick the most beautiful looking apple on the pile? It might be interesting to know that apples aren’t all the same size and color, we do that so they look more appealing but we’re not really sure what the health implications will be long term. Our society has a tendency to adopt a “try it and see” attitude which means we try something for a while and see how it works out and then change it later if it’s not going well.
As a example, let’s look at the “low fat” phenomenon. In the 80’s we decided fat was the enemy so everything became low fat instantly and interestingly we became fatter in the pursuit of the low fat concept. In the 90’s we decided carbs were the enemy and fat was our savior and that didn’t go as well as we wanted either and today we are still on the quest for the best diet option possible. There’s a good chance we’d probably be fine if we let go of the all or nothing mentality and ate moderately but that doesn’t seem to be in our future for the moment. To add to what we do to ourselves, science is an amazing thing however, it provides us the opportunity to change our environment very quickly. Historically our bodies have had hundreds of years to adapt to the changing food environment and now that we are are changing things so quickly, our bodies sometimes doesn’t recognize the food we eat, panics and we end up with symptoms that are uncomfortable and probematic. Add that to the fact that your food may be lacking in the vitamins, minerals and antioxidants needed so your body can work effectively and all of a sudden you just don’t seem to feel as good as you could.
Without seeming like a fatalist let’s take a quick look at the problems with your food.
- Animals are given hormones and antibiotics so they get grow faster and get less infections, if they’re exposed to hormones and antibiotics, of course so are you.
- We want to maximize the return of our crop investment so we either genetically modify food or we spray them full of herbicides and pesticides so the bugs won’t eat them. Here’s a question, if bugs won’t eat your food and they’ll eat anything, should you be eating it?
- Because of the fear of a variety of different organisms, obviously for good reason, we cook our food as much as we can to protect ourselves. In the cooking process, a large amount of the nutrition is lost on already nutrition deficient food. Can we afford to not cook our foods given the state of our planet? No, but we have to fill in the gaps for what is lost in the process.
- Additives and preservatives are added to food to make it taste better and allow it to last longer on the shelves both at the supermarket and in your pantry.
- Food should contain enzymes that are used to help your body break down the foods, but they don’t only work in your body. The enzymes are the structures in the food that cause the food to break down or “rot”, if your food doesn’t go bad on a shelf…. ever, we don’t know if it has any nutritional value for your body. A good example of this is the twinkie. Rumor has it that a twinkie can be left on a window sill for up to a year in it’s package without going bad because of all the additives and preservatives. Food should go bad at some point in time, probably sooner than later. If it doesn’t, we don’t know if your digestive system can actually break the food down to its nutritional components as adequately as we would want.…. and that’s probably not what you want.
- You need the vitamins and minerals to allow your cells to produce energy and clean up the waste once that energy is produced. Minerals and vitamins come from the soil the crops are grown in. If the soil is depleted of nutrients the chain continues and our food is depleted as well. If cells can’t get rid of the garbage they produce at some point they’ll shut down energy production because they can’t afford to produce more. Think about if your septic tank broke down and you had waste all over your floor. If you couldn’t clean it up you’d have to shut everything down, pack up and move. Your cells feel the same way so vitamins and minerals are needed in the cleaning and energy production processes. At some point the waste can cause problems in the cells leading to disease. We want to prevent that from happening.
- Take a multivitamin or a greens product from a naturopathic doctor’s clinic or a health food store. Think about supplements as an insurance policy much like when you drive your car. When you’re driving in your car you assume that your going to get to your destination safely regardless of road conditions or cell phone addicts but you have insurance just in case something unfortuate happens. Most of us aren’t fixated on whether we’re going to get into an accident that day but our insurance protects us just in case it does. Multivitamins work much the same way your car insurance does. Are all multi’s created equally? Unfortuately not, book an appointment to find out why.
- Eat foods as close to what they originally started out as as possible. For example, an apple is a better choice than apple juice. Steak is a better choice than hot dogs. Who really knows what hot dogs are anyways, all beef or not?
- Eat foods that have naturally occurring bright colors as these are the foods with anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals. Vitamins, minerals and anti-oxidants keep you young and vibrant and everyone wants to stay vibrant throughout their lifetime.
- Have a sense of humour regardless of environmental conditions. Things aren’t changing anytime soon so all we can do is hope for the best help your body to pick up the slack. There are simple things that you can incorporate into your diet to help your body stay healthy long term. Book an appointment to make sure your diet is maximized to the best of your ability.