You Are What You Eat
“The difference between an adventure and an ordeal is attitude.” ~ Bob Bitchin
Ever heard of the phrase, ‘You are what you eat’? It is very true. What you eat – protein, fiber, carbs, sugar, all impact how your body looks, feels and behaves. Eating a balanced diet can help you achieve optimal health now and throughout your life. Overall, it helps with promoting good health and wellbeing.
Eat Better, Feel Better, Look Better
Eating well helps you feel and look better. It can lead to better body composition, healthier bones, stronger muscles and immunity against diseases. Food also provides our bodies with the energy, protein, essential fats, vitamins and minerals to live, grow and function properly. To mix it up, our body also needs a wide variety of different foods, since one single food can’t be everything for everybody; the right amount of nutrients for good health.
Some tasty foods that are surprisingly nutritious:
- Avocados are full of healthy fats, and are heart-healthy. They can help lower both total cholesterol and “bad” cholesterol.
- Fatty fish, such as salmon, trout, herring, tuna, sardines, and mackerel, are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, a type of unsaturated fat that can help lower blood cholesterol, prevent blood clots and heart attacks.
- Dark chocolate is not only yummy, it can also be healthy. Out of all of the chocolates, dark chocolate is the best. Studies have shown that small portions of dark chocolate can improve blood vessel flow, especially in older adults, and may improve blood sugar and insulin sensitivity to help reduce the risk of diabetes. One study, published in the journal “Hypertension”, reported that the antioxidants found in dark chocolate could help reduce high blood pressure.
- Tea and coffee are great drinks that also provide health benefits. In small amounts, the caffeine in coffee stimulates the brain and nervous system, and may lower the risk of diabetes, Parkinson’s disease, mood problems, headaches, and even cavities. Tea, on the other hand, can help reduce the risk of heart disease.
Transforming Your Health & Nutrition
It is estimated that by 2025, 35% of Canadians will be obese. But there is hope. With just a few small changes, you can really transform your health and nutrition:
- Enjoyment of a healthy diet can be one of the great cultural pleasures of life – find and explore new and different foods.
- Reduce salt intake – taste your food first, before you add salt. You likely think you need more salt than you actually need.
- Take an hour every Sunday to meal prep – make a list of some food you want to eat and go shopping. Plan, plan, plan and make food you will actually eat, not just food that is healthy. Remember, what good is food if you won’t enjoy it.
- Choose seasonal produce and pick the brightest colours that you can. Fruits and veggies provide lots of vitamins and minerals at a very modest calorie cost. In general, the darker the colour, the higher the nutrients. Think bright red peppers or dark green broccoli.
- Reduce or eliminate high fat ingredients from your favourite recipes – use a non-stick pan so you don’t need oil.
Try using tofu, bulgur or brown rice in casseroles so that you can cut down on the high fat meats. If a recipe calls for cheese, that’s okay, but reduce the amount you’re using. For soups, we bet you didn’t know that by chilling the soup in the refrigerator before serving, allows the fat to rise to the top so that you can easily remove it, and then heat and serve.
In today’s society, a lot of Canadians are overfed and undernourished. Paying attention to what you’re eating can keep you healthy by avoiding inflammation and damage to tissues. It will also make you more mobile, happy and give you more energy; being healthy and well nourished leads to a more well rounded life.
Yours in Health,
Bkin, DC, Acupuncture Provider