Food can be medicine. The food you eat has profound influence on your health, wellness and energy. I can go into great detail explaining how this happens and why it is undeniable but there are like a thousand books which have already done. I don’t need to anyway(s), you’re already on board with the idea that your diet has a very high degree of influence on your health and wellness.
Are you aware that there are thousands of integrative physicians and health practitioners in this country alone (many more around the world) who instruct their patients-clients to make specific dietary changes for treatment of issues ranging from IBS to heart disease? We know that diets consisting largely of real have the ability to keep the body on penalty state and encourage it to return to a healthier state. In this article HERE I discuss therapeutic diets and present a multitude of ways to eat in a manner that encourages the body to restore and regulate itself.
Why is food such a powerful medicine?
Food can disturb your body. I am not be the first person to contend that incompatible eating habits are at the root of health issues and chronic disease. Eating patterns comprised mostly of highly processed foods like those with wheat, added sugar and vegetable oil constantly put the body in a compromised state. Simply avoiding those highly processed foods and those specific ingredients will help nearly anyone eat better and feel better; this explains why seemingly oppositional diets like vegan and paleo-type of diets both “work” in relation to the standard American diet.
Food can help you become the best version of yourself.
If you are serious about becoming the strongest, most resilient version of yourself it is in your best interest to eat a certain way. If you are serious about living your life to the fullest and want to have the energy to do what matters most to you then it is in your best interest to eat a certain way. If you are serious about flourishing both psychologically and socially as so many happy do then it is in your best interest to eat a certain way.
If you are serious about living your dreams and being the most vital version of yourself it is in your best interest to eat a certain way. This is what my upcoming book is about; helping you become the best version of yourself. Eating for vitality is essential. Here, I present the “Principles of Sound Nutrition” to get you started eating for vitality and eating to become the best version of yourself.
The first “hands-on” step toward establishing an eating pattern for vitality is to become familiar with the basic framework of what’s optimal and what is detrimental. Undoubtedly, a gray area will form, but it is important that you focus on eating the ‘optimal food’. This can be facilitated by appropriately planning your schedule for nutritious meals and preparing them ahead of time, as needed. This will put you in position to readily avoid the most popular processed foods, as they have no place in a vitality-promoting life.
Here are some of the obvious foods to avoid in a healthy diet:
- pure junk food (pastries, ice cream, potato chips, breakfast bars, bread, etc.)
- added sugar and artificial sweeteners (high fructose corn syrup, beet sugar, dextrose, sucrose, splenda, aspartame, natural flavor etc.)
- soda (especially the “diet” version)
- fruit juices (serious dose of sugar)
Now you are ready for an overview of the food groups and many specific foods from which you will construct a vitality-creating eating pattern. You do not have to eat all of these foods, or even foods from every one of my food groups in order to begin ‘eating for vitality’. In many cases an individual can greatly improve their health by simply replacing all of the ‘foods to avoid’ with real food. Vegans and vegetarians can experience better health as well, but I wouldn’t recommend it because it would mean eliminating some of the most nutrient dense foods. In short, these are the ‘foods for vitality’:
fat/protein source: grass-fed beef, lamb, bison-buffalo, salmon, tuna, free-range eggs, chicken, turkey, pork, sardines and clams among others.
fats: coconut oil, grass-fed butter, ghee, avocado, almonds, pumpkin seeds, pistachios, walnuts, goat yogurt, select unsweetened yogurt, grass-fed cream, olive oil and a few more.
carbohydrate source: potato, sweet potato, yams, squash, pumpkin, plantain, quinoa, banana, berries, apple and some more
vegetables: asparagus, bok choy, broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, cucumber, eggplant, green beans, kale, lettuce, onions, peas, red peppers, yellow peppers, orange peppers, spinach, tomato, and more.
Finally, here is a list of of the high quality processed foods that I eat as part of my personal ‘eating pattern for vitality’. These foods are available mostly from Amazon, they are all organic and quite affordable when purchased in larger quantities:
- Coconut Oil is very affordable here
- Sweet Potato Puree is found here
- Butternut Squash Puree is here
- Green Beans cut can be found here
- Baby Clams smoked here
- Salmon here
- Maca Powder here
- Dark Chocolate here
- Grass-fed Ghee is here
- Wild Tuna here
- Sprouted Quinoa here
- Sprouted Pumpkin Seeds here
- Grass-fed non denatured Whey Protein here
Here is some valuable resources for recipes that tend to fall within this framework:
- Nom Nom Paleo recipes found here
- Balanced Bites easy recipes found here
- Primal Plate has plenty of recipes here
- Perfect Health Diet recipes are found here
- The Ancestral Chef has a multitude of recipes here
- Primal Blueprint also has a variety of recipes
There are likely more than hundred other sites with recipes that fall within the basic framework of ‘eating for vitality’; have fun with them. As of now you have the very basic information, you know the foods to eat and the foods to avoid in order to optimize your health. In a future post I will present the many different, brilliant ideas on how to actually turn this into a practical, vitality-promoting eating pattern by eating specific types of foods at specific times in relation to specific activities in order to quickly optimize health and put a ‘vitality’ stamp on your eating regimen. One more thing, forget about the ‘gray area’ questions and focus on the foods for vitality.