We All Must Start Somewhere
If you grew up like me, most of my childhood was spent at war with the food on my plate.
My parents tried their best to get me to eat my vegetables, and other healthy options, but I put up a good fight. Once I even stubbornly sat at the dinner table until bed time, with my plate in front of me with one single pea on it. I refused to eat that one green pea. Looking back, I believe the incident was more about power and control than food. I won, but now understand that I only hurt myself. Like that old saying, won the battle, but lost the war.
The simple fact is my mom, God Bless her, offered me mostly canned veggies. I just thought they were mushy and had not acquired the pallet yet for them. Then of course like most people, I had children of my own and the struggle for power flipped.
I truly believe most of us have encountered a food story like mine and have probably drawn some very emotional and personal meaning to their own unique food journey.
As a health & wellness coach, my primary goal is to help save the client a lot of time and energy fighting with food. And most of that fight centers around the fact that, we all know we should eat more healthy food than unhealthy food every day, as part of a healthy lifestyle, but don’t. Unfortunately, for most people this creates a gap in their diet. And creates an opening for disease to strike. And by disease I mean one of the autoimmune diseases such as Crohn’s, Lupus, Diabetes, MS or Arthritis. On the bright side, or fortunate benefit for health educators, this creates a great opportunity to help others.
Filling the Gap
Now the answer to filling this gap may seem simple to solve, but we humans love to complicate things. Don’t we! We create food pyramids and plates, recommended daily minimums, and lots of marketing words to make you think you are eating healthy food, even when you are not. And finally, consider the fact that the American Medical industry seems more interested on getting you on a symptom reducing prescription drug than avoiding the condition in the first place.
Here is my short answer on food. Build your diet around whole foods (preferably organic). Keep it pH balanced, slightly alkaline and supplement to fill gaps on top of what you can eat, but, it is more than your gut can handle, or your body cannot produce from what you have eaten. There are great solutions to bridge the gap today. I would be happy to share them with you.
Supporting my belief is a quote I read recently concerning the renowned nutritional medical expert, Dr. David Katz, M.D., suggesting we reaffirm our commitment to the “basics of healthy eating.” Most of us already know that healthy eating, exercise, hydration, and improving sleep or reducing stress are key to the Core4-PLUS Wellcare Plan. To this, Dr. Katz adds, “And love more.“
Learning the Basics of Healthy Eating
Studying the basics of healthy eating again, as an adult, can help you, and your family, clear out the noise around “trendy diets”, fitness frenzy lifestyles and other food marketing hype. Like my own teaching, Dr. Katz shares that we learn to trust our food as affirmed by the author Michael Pollan (whose books include Food Rules: An Eater’s Manual): “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.”
In other words: Keep it simple whenever possible. To do that we must refocus on the scientifically recognized and potential benefits of whole-food based nutrition, good supplements and other holistic lifestyle activities.
“Lifestyle is the medicine,” says Katz. “Culture is the spoon.”
He also points to the True Health Initiative, a worldwide coalition of health experts dedicated to providing education about lifestyle as medicine. The True Health Initiative, with in-depth research behind it, talks about the importance of looking at our individual diets’ big picture. I highly recommend you find a way to learn, or re-learn, how to eat healthier, not just following various diet trends. With more knowledge you can once again trust your food.
Dr. Katz is the founding director of the Yale-Griffin Prevention Research Center at Yale University. His research interests and expertise include nutrition, weight management, and preventing chronic disease. You will hear him support the Idea behind filling the gap between whole foods and supplements during one of my FREE “Intro to Core4-PLUS” webinar events by registering for upcoming online event.