Nutrition Hints and Tips

Nutritional Information

Food is very powerful, it can act to heal the body or as a poison that slowly kills you over time!

Considering that we eat approximately a thousand times a year it is extremely important to have a basic understanding about what food is and what it does to your body.

Would you pull up to the petrol station and put just any fuel in your car?

Of course you wouldn’t, you take much better care of your car than that!

So it makes sense to think about what fuel you put in your body.

Remember you only have one body and the better you take care of it the longer it will last without breaking down!

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Foods from Nature

When you are interested in health you must view food according to what it will do to the body, not by how convenient it is or how good it tastes.

That is not to say that healthy food doesn’t taste good!

Good nutrition means that you feed the body what it needs to heal itself, grow and have energy & vitality.

This means choosing foods that are close to how they are found in nature.

That is, foods that have not been manufactured or processed by man.

Foods like wild game & fish, fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and whole grains.

Whole foods contain all of the things needed for the optimal running of the human body.

Things in foods include vitamins, minerals and other important micro nutrients.

These micronutrients are substances sometimes referred to as secondary nutrients or food actives they include enzymes, co-enzymes, chlorophyll, antioxidants and phytochemicals.

If you are eating processed foods that only contain the macro nutrients such as protein, fat and carbohydrates then you are missing out on some of the vital parts of nutrition.

These important micro nutrients found in whole foods are needed for many reasons, such as; all cellular functions, to protect the cell & the DNA and also for the human immune system to be strong.

Take for example white bread, it has had most of the nutritious part of the grain removed so that the white bread is fluffy and tastes nice but most of the nutrition is gone.

It can be seen when manufacturers have to add back (man made isolated) vitamins to the foods in order to give them an adequate level of nutrition.

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Manufactured Foods

When we look at nutrition it is important to make the distinction between processed foods and raw foods.

Processed foods are those foods that man has altered in some way.

They have been changed from their natural state for one reason or another.

Most of the food consumed in modern society these days is in the form of processed foods.

If it is in a can, packet, box, bucket, carton or bottle it has been tampered with by man!

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So why is food processed? It is processed in an attempt to make it taste better, last longer or be quicker to prepare.

To achieve these goals manufacturers have added chemicals and flavorings to the original raw foods.

All of these chemicals added to foods effect your health in some way, most of the time in a negative way.

Why are these chemicals added?

The driving force behind adding these chemicals to the original raw foods was not to increase the nutrient content of the original food to make it healthier for the human body but the reason is to make food last longer on the shelf or taste better, so ultimately you will buy more and make someone more money!

Manufacturing of foods is not done with your health outcomes in mind, so that is why the downward spiraling of health in modern society is the way it is!

That’s right it comes back to money.

Food processing has nothing to do with increasing the quality of foods and there is not much concern about how these additives will affect your health long-term.

As we know the reasons why a human is supposed to eat food is to provide the body with nutrients for building blocks of tissues, cells and hormones, enzymes for metabolic reactions, and protective nutrients to prevent diseases occurring at the cellular level.

When the majority of food in a persons’ diet is processed then they are missing the vital functions of real food from mother nature thus suffer from disease more frequently.

Disease protection

Nutrition is a big part of the health equation.

In fact many of the diseases of modern society like obesity, diabetes, cancer and heart disease are directly linked to poor nutritional choices.

There is a big area of study in nutrition these days on “phytochemicals”, or phyto-plant chemicals.

These are the chemicals in plants that give them their great colours and smells.

Recently there has been more studying on phytochemicals and there disease combating abilities.

Some of the categories are: Alkaloids, Anthocyanine, Carotenoids, Flavonoids, Isoflavones, Lignans, Monoterpenes, Organosulfides, Phenolic Acids and Phytosterols.

All of these are found naturally in foods when you consume a variety of fresh raw fruits and vegetables.

The way in which all these plant chemicals act intimately with our physiology is not fully understood yet but more and more evidence is pointing to the fact that the healthiest diet on earth is one where the majority of the calories consumed, come from fresh raw fruits and vegetables.

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Healthy choices

With a little bit of education it is easy to turn a dish or plate of food around!

Here are some tips to help you get started:

  • Try to eat a range of fresh, raw fruits and vegetables to give you a wide variety of nutrients and anti-oxidants
  • Try to eat cold water fish 2 – 3 times a week to increase your intake of good fats
  • Choose fish and chicken over red meat for leanness. For snacks have fruit salad
  • When drinking caffeinated tea first dip the bag in warm water so the caffeine can dissolve and then put it in your cup
  • Drink warm water with the juice of half a lemon each morning to clean your system
  • Eat your last meal of the day at least a couple of hours before bedtime, so it is easier to sleep and better for your digestion

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Tips for eating out

With our busy lifestyles you don’t always get the opportunity to prepare your own food, so making the right choices when eating out can make a difference to keeping your health on track.

Here are some tips:

  • Fill up on salads and vegetables as an entrée to avoid eating too much of the bad things
  • Choose tomato based sauces, instead of creamy pasta varieties
  • Remember it’s OK to ask how food is cooked or ask for sauce on the side
  • If you are traveling and have limited access to wholesome food choices, then even major take-away food chains have low fat and healthier alternatives on the menu
  • Try and avoid being too hungry when you head out for a meal, as you may over-eat

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