Is it ok to eat a little bit of everything?
The Martial Art of Wellness
Volume 11 – August 2012
Welcome to this month’s BioNews. We must learn to free ourselves from the control that others exert over us. As we learn we become FREE, we become powerful. This pursuit of self defense in wellness, I call “The Martial Art of Wellness.” And as we practice we become Wellness Ninjas.
QUOTE OF THE MONTH
“If you take care of each cell in your body, disease cannot happen.”
-Harvey Diamond, as quoted in “Never be sick again”, 1992
The vets could not believe it!
Do you recall me ordering the Bio-algae concentrates from you last Sept/Oct for our dog Charlie Brown? Several years ago he was thrown out of a truck window on the highway and abandoned, and we were fortunate enough to have found him and adopted him after his trial. The vets estimate him to be about 5-6 years old now. Eight months ago he was diagnosed with a rare form of terminal bone marrow cancer. The doctors said there was no hope for him, he was only hours away from dying at the time. Well, we gave him one of these bio-algae concentrates pills as a last ditch effort (he could not drink or eat or even raise his head at this point), and over the next few days he started to improve little by little. We didn’t expect anything at all, but it is now 8 months later and he is 100% back to normal and full of life!! The vets could not believe it, and took a sample of the bio-algae concentrates for analyses to see what may be in them, but they couldn’t find anything specific. They simply see it as a miraculous recovery that can’t be explained.
– Lisa X, USA, July 2012
As most of you know by now, in the spirit of The Martial Art of Wellness, I am committed to sharing with you some knowledge for your Wellness Warrior arsenal. It is with knowledge that we are able to make the right choices for our longevity and wellness. This month I share with you techniques useful to survive your trip to the supermarket.
Is it okay to eat a little bit of everything?
The answer is NO – “Eating a little of everything” is a sure way to spoil your health. Many food stores today (including organic stores) are so skewed in favor of unhealthy products that if you eat “a little bit of everything,” you’re sure to find yourself sick, big, tired or upset.
Instead, the rule to follow is to eat a diet filled as much as possible with good foods and as little as possible with bad foods. I know that it is easier said than done, but I will try to convince you why this rule is important to follow.
Marketing professionals are paid to make you crack
Think for a moment. For each type of chip, candy and sweet drink, there are one or more “product managers” who work Monday to Friday, year round, to find ways to make you buy more. There are thousands of brains around the world who study “consumer behavior” full-time to find your weaknesses. They know exactly the color, texture, smell, taste, and packaging (shape, illustrations, material) that will make you crack. Each week, they watch sales trends and develop new strategies to help you yield to the temptation more and more often.
How almonds have become a garbage food
Take almonds, for example, originally the health food par excellence. Consuming 25 to 50 g of whole shelled almonds was/is recommended as part of a healthy diet. This provides you with some B vitamins (especially vitamin B1, B6 and B9), magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, iron, zinc, copper, protein (2-3 g per serving) and fiber. In addition, almonds are rich in mono-unsaturated fatty acids (68% of lipids) and polyunsaturated fats, which contribute to a healthy heart and arteries, among other benefits.
But our marketing kings have figured out that slightly toasted almonds crack better under the tooth. They then saw that when well-salted, people salivated and loved them even more. But it was not enough so they added a little irresistible liquid smoke taste.
The problem is that when roasted, salted and smoked, almonds do not at all hold the same nutritional qualities. To make the salt stick, peanut oil is added (almond oil is too expensive) and during cooking, valuable polyunsaturated fatty acids are destroyed and many vitamins are lost.
But it helps boost sales. Many people who never bought fresh almonds are now buying them weekly. It is difficult to find almonds that are not toasted, salted and smoked in most stores, even Wholefoods. And in France for example, if you want normal almonds you have to go to a pastry shop where they are still sold… but at a price that is twice as expensive.
Hundreds of products have now undergone this same de-evolution, to the point that you wonder if the slogan “eat a little bit of everything” was invented by precisely those people who are trying to trap you.
But fortunately for you, here are three Wellness Warrior techniques that you can use to survive your trip to the supermarket.
1) The Rainbow diet and its exception: “If it’s white, do not eat it.”
White flour, white bread, white pasta, milk, mashed potatoes without the peels, white sugar, table salt and most foods without a color should be avoided. Generally, their pallor betrays their lack of essential nutrients; these are “empty calorie” foods.
Instead, your goal should be to provide your cells with naturally occurring:
- Minerals (in proper proportions)
- Phytonutrients, antioxidants and polyphenols
And the only way to obtain these nutrients is by eating mostly fresh and colorful vegetables and fruits. Polyphenols or/and carotenoids are the pigments that give fruits and vegetables their color, and that also allow them to resist external aggression such as strong sunlight. You also need these nutrients to protect you from free radicals and prevent premature aging.
Just remember that the purple of eggplant and grapes, the red in peppers and tomatoes, the green in spinach, cabbage and chard, the orange of carrot and pumpkin, are excellent indicators.
The more your plate has colors of a rainbow, the better it will be for your health, but of course as long as these foods are unprocessed; the rainbow diet does not work if the colors that are in your plate are from colorful toy foods and rubber bands.
2) Choose Alkaline Forming Foods
Human blood pH should be slightly alkaline (7.35 – 7.45). Being chronically below or above this range leads to health problems. A pH of 7.0 is neutral. A pH below 7.0 is acidic. A pH above 7.0 is alkaline. An acidic pH can occur from diet, emotional stress, toxic overload, and/or immune reactions or any process that deprives the cells of oxygen and other nutrients. The body will try to compensate for acidic pH by using alkaline minerals. If the diet does not contain enough alkaline minerals to compensate, a buildup of acid will occur in the cells.
An acidic pH will: decrease the body’s ability to absorb minerals and other nutrients, decrease cellular energy production, decrease the body’s ability to repair damaged cells, detoxify heavy metals and combat tumor cells, and make the body more susceptible to fatigue and illness. A blood pH of 6.9, which is only slightly acidic, can induce coma and death. The reason acidosis is more common in our society is mostly due to the typical American diet, which is far too high in acid-producing animal products like meat, eggs and dairy, and far too low in alkaline producing foods like fresh vegetables. Additionally, we eat acid-producing processed foods like white flour and sugar and drink acid-producing beverages like coffee and soft drinks. We use too many drugs, which are acid forming and we use artificial chemical sweeteners like NutraSweet, Spoonful, Sweet ‘N Low, Equal, or Aspartame, which are extremely acid forming.
One of the best things we can do to correct an overly acidic body is to clean up the diet and lifestyle. To maintain health, the diet should consist of 60% alkaline forming foods and 40% acid forming foods. To restore health, the diet should consist of 80% alkaline forming foods and 20% acid forming foods. Generally, alkaline forming foods include most fruits, green vegetables, peas, beans, lentils, spices, herbs and seasonings, seeds and nuts. Generally, acid forming foods include: meat, fish, poultry, eggs, grains, and legumes.
This chart will help you target the more alkaline forming foods. 3) Take advantage of price reductions
The price of products falls sharply at the peak of their seasonal production: zucchini in July-August, tomatoes in August-September, grapes in September, etc.. Similarly, the price of fish can vary significantly according to season. Enjoy it: not only do you pay less, but the nutritional quality of your food will be better.
Avoid buying your fruits and vegetables out of season, not only will the price will be higher, but they will probably be grown in greenhouses and be of lesser quality. Or they will have been frozen and imported by air from far away, increasing their price and contributing to global pollution.
However, out of season, you may buy frozen vegetables: they have often been conditioned at peak production, which has allowed the producer to get them at a cheaper cost and you will find that they cost less than fresh vegetables. In addition, a frozen product often has the same nutritional value as its non-frozen counterpart. It is sometimes even better: frozen fruits and vegetables are often richer in vitamins than those purchased fresh because they are frozen immediately after picking, while the fresh vegetables often sit in cold rooms and in stalls, situations that are favorable for the destruction and loss of their nutrients.
But be careful: freezing does not prevent fats from going rancid. The more fat a product is composed of, the shorter its lifespan when frozen.