In spite of the confusing and contradictory information that floods the world of nutrition, the basics are simple. Most people would benefit from consuming less meat, dairy, sugar, junk food, alcohol, caffeine and tobacco and increasing their intake of water, whole grains and vegetables, especially dark leafy greens.
Having a burger, a chocolate chip cookie or an ice cream is okay within the overall context of a healthy diet. It’s not what you eat sometimes, but what you eat most of the time that makes a difference.
Here are some common foods to give you a better understanding of their effects in our bodies.
- SUGAR: The American Heart Association recommends women limit sugar consumption to 6 teaspoons (25 grams) per day and men to 9 teaspoons (36 grams) per day.
Unprocessed sugar contains a variety of vitamins, minerals, enzymes and proteins. But refined table sugar causes deficiency and wreaks havoc on blood sugar levels.
Sugar qualifies as an addictive substance because even a small amount creates a desire for more. Besides, suddenly quitting causes withdrawal symptoms such as headaches, mood swings, cravings and fatigue.
- DAIRY: Humans are the only mammals who continue to consume milk into adulthood. But, we don’t need dairy. We need a good nutrition plan.
Healthy bones need calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, boron, copper, manganese, zinc and many vitamins. And excess of calcium without these other vitamins and minerals actually increases the likelihood of fracture. Eating a good amount of green vegetables, whole grains and sea vegetables can provide all the essential calcium needed for the human body without added negative side effects of dairy. If you are concerned about your calcium intake try our Coral Calcium, which is sourced from all-natural ingredients.
- MEAT: Excessive meat eating has been linked to many types of chronic diseases.
Through our experience we’ve seen people become healthier by adding small amounts of organic meat into their diets. But also, many heavy meat eaters become healthier when increasing their vegetable intake.
We recommend consuming meat a few times a week and supplementing your diet with other protein sources such as eggs, beans, and whole grains. If you are a regular meat eater, choose organic meat whenever possible.
- COFFEE: Millions of people jump-start their days with a cup of coffee, and then drink another cup or three throughout the day. Coffee represents 75% of all caffeine consumed each year, making coffee the most popular beverage around the world.
Caffeine as the essential ingredient, is said to enhance alertness, concentration and mental and physical performance. But coffee also inhibits the absorption of essential minerals, such as iron, magnesium and zinc, as well as vitamin B. Many studies have also linked coffee consumption with higher risks of miscarriages, osteoporosis and heart disease.
Caffeine should be given up slowly. People have reported headaches and mood swings during caffeine withdrawal.
- UNHEALTHY FATS: Your body needs fat to nourish your heart, your brain, your hormones and every cell. Fat is good for the health of your skin, your hair and your nails as well.
But when you eat the wrong kinds of fat, your body lacks the ability to create healthy cells, leading to nutritional deprivation. You could be overweight and still undernourished, especially if you are eating chemical, artificial junk foods.
Choosing a healthy portion of fats can actually help you lose weight, increase your energy, boost your immunity and optimize digestion. Some natural sources of good fats include avocados, olive oil, raw nuts, sesame and hemp seeds and cold water fish such as salmon, mackerel and tuna.
- SALT: Throughout history, people have used salt to season and preserve their food. Sodium acts as an electrolyte and assists in regulating cell function, while chloride supports potassium absorption and helps regulate body fluids. The health problems associated with over consumption of salt are from the refined, processed, white sparkly salt found in prepared foods and at home.
Most medical experts agree that diets high in sodium are a major cause of high blood pressure as well as pre-hypertension, both of which significantly increase the risk of having a heart attack or stroke.
- CHOCOLATE: Chocolate comprises a number of raw and processed food that originate from the cacao seed. Cacao is high in iron, calcium, potassium, vitamins A, B, C, D and E. It can also provide protection against cancer, heart disease and high blood pressure.
Research shows medicinal use for chocolate, using primarily as a means to deliver medicine. But, commercially produced chocolate does not have many of these natural nutrients.
Most chocolate sold in the supermarkets, however, have high amounts of added sugar, trans fat and preservatives.
Finding organic chocolate is recommended, with a higher percentage of cacao. Chocolate gives people a sense of lightness, expansiveness, comfort and relaxation.
Adopting a nutrition plan that meets your needs and that you feel comfortable with. We always encourage you to speak to your primary doctor to learn how good nutrition can help you get a healthier life. We hope these tips will help you boost your nutrition.
You can call us at 1-800-299-7917 to make a virtual appointment with Doctor Rigoberto Perez Diaz, or visit our website www.salud.bz, we will gladly assist you. Remember to follow us on Facebook and Instagram and do not forget to tune into our daily program SALUD TV.