Eating Healthy is the best Preventative Medicine
Author: Carla Golden
For years we have been told that food is fuel. Like a car needs gasoline, our bodies need food for mobility. While this is true, it reveals only the partial purpose of food. If a car were more like a human body, it would not need a mechanic in the event of a fender-bender. Over time, the car would repair the damage itself and return to like-new condition. Similarly, a broken headlight would fuse back together and washer fluid would not have to be manually replenished. Human bodies, unlike cars, are organic and are constantly changing, developing and renewing on a cellular level, whether we are working or resting. A bruise heals itself, skin grows back together after being cut, and blood is regenerated after being donated…all without our instruction, force or doubt.
The importance of food lies not only in the energy that makes us go, but in providing the building blocks which help our bodies to repair and regenerate themselves, day after day, according to our unique DNA blueprint. Do you know that eye cells are new every 48 hours, that cells of the stomach lining are new every three days, and that liver cells regenerate every six weeks? Our bodies are not only moving, but they are also recreating themselves constantly. The rate and success of this renewal depends a great deal on the basic nutritional material we supply to our bodies.
The key to vibrant longevity, abundant levels of energy and the avoidance of disease is high quality, wholesome food in moderation, appropriate doses of sunlight, sleep and exercise, clean air, pure water and manageable stress levels. Focusing on food as fuel and regenerative material for the avoidance of illness, one must learn to distinguish between real food and artificial foodstuffs. Industrialized food, which is produced at large scale and intended for extended shelf life, is full of synthetic chemicals such as hydrogenated oils, artificial sweeteners, preservatives, coloring, high fructose corn syrup, flavors, pharmaceuticals and hormones which contribute to the build-up of toxemia in the body. These foods are designed for short-term appeal and slow perish-ability, but not for sustainable health gain or maintenance.
Never before has it been so important to read the packaging ingredient labels and to know what is in the food we are consuming. It is our right and responsibility. Remember, the most healthful foods, like fruits and vegetables, don’t have complex labels! One trip to the grocery store and one round of label reading is enough to frustrate and confuse the most intelligent shopper. The industrialized food system has turned shopping into a buyer-beware situation. Those who wish to eat well must become distrustful of the foodstuffs which are made readily available and affordable. Remember, mainstream food companies don’t care about our health. They only care that we buy their product again.
Today’s leading lifestyle diseases—obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and most cancers—are preventable and are caused by repeated poor dietary choices compounded with toxic habits such as smoking, drinking or drug use. The high rates of these diseases were unknown before the onslaught of processed and pre-packaged foods. Developing countries who adopt the Standard American Diet are seeing the occurrence of these diseases for the first time. Today’s children, the most innocent of consumers, are expected to have shorter life spans than their parents because of the dietary related diseases plaguing their young lives. How can the world’s population possibly be getting sicker when medical advances are at an all time high? It is because more effort and money is put into symptom management and elusive cures of lifestyle diseases rather than prevention.
Why would a person want to be healthy and practice preventive care when it requires so much effort and could potentially take away all the fun? Isn’t eating and drinking without a care one of life’s most treasured enjoyments and rewards?
Transitioning away from sub-optimal food and poor habits which lead us to feel sluggish, overweight or in need of medication is actually quite liberating. It is not easy at first, but the effort is exponentially compensated. Healthful foods tend to be more economical and also kinder to the environment. Eating wisely to avoid illness can save money on insurance fees, doctor’s visits and medications. There is no way to partake of the artificial and toxic foodstuffs and avoid disease. It will catch up with us eventually in the name of arthritis, heartburn, osteoporosis, ulcers, migraines, constipation or infertility in addition to the big four leading lifestyle diseases.
We eat several times a day. Each and every meal contributes to the health or toxicity of our bodies. Use these daily opportunities to slowly build health rather than destroy it by choosing wholesome, chemical and additive-free foods. Our bodies are natural self-healers and, when supported with optimal food and habits, reaching greater levels of health is completely possible.
Carla Golden, LMT writes regularly on her OneHealthyGirl.com wellness blog and is in hot pursuit of her Ph.D. in holistic health and healing. She also offers Food School classes on her Golden Spectrum to Eating Well. For information, call (843)342-3361.