Inflammation is our body’s way of protecting itself and healing. But when inflammation is persistent and out of control it damages the body and causes illness. Chronic inflammation is the root of many chronic illnesses such as diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, obesity and cancer.
HERE WE GO 2017! If you’re like me, you might have over-indulged just a little during the holidays and want to reset and detoxify. The good news is that you don’t have to starve yourself with a fast or a juice cleanse. You can detox just by feeding your body the right foods to support your body’s detoxifying functions. Did you know that many of your organs already function has detoxifying agents, for example your skin, liver, kidneys and intestines? So if going on a specific detox cleanse isn’t your thing, there are many foods you can eat that support the function of these detox systems within your body and promote your general health, metabolism and immune system at the same time. Talk about bang for your buck!
Foods, beverages, herbs, and spices that are high in prebiotics, prebiotics, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial, alkalinizing, full of phytonutrients and antioxidants will be your best bets for naturally detoxing in a sustainable and ongoing way. Below is a long list of our favorites and why, but for the summary version check out the nifty infographic below!
It’s the sweet spot between Thanksgiving and Christmas where we’re in full holiday swing, with sugary sweets and drinks abounding, even while we’re probably still recovering from our Thanksgiving feast, am I right? If this sounds familiar to you, the idea of intermittent fasting may have crossed your mind once or twice. After all, why not give your digestive system a break and reduce your caloric intake in between two gigantic food holidays?
Fat is one of the three primary food groups. The other two are carbohydrate and protein. All foods contain one of these or a combination. All three have benefits for our health.
We need fat to stay healthy. Unlike carbohydrates, fat is used as a source of energy that does not stimulate insulin. It’s good for cell and tissue metabolism, absorption of fat-soluble vitamins like A, D, E, and K, hormone regulation and nerve function. And of course, fat adds flavor to food as well!
Inflammation is one of those words that automatically sounds bad for us, but what does it really mean? Most of us associate inflammation with an injury or irritation that usually heals after a period of time. But there is another kind of inflammation – chronic inflammation – that can cause long-term disease and damage to your internal systems. Cancer, heart disease, diabetes and depression are just a few conditions that chronic inflammation plays a role in.
Calcium is important for bone growth and healthy teeth but also improves health in other areas such as blood pressure, heart health and weight. The daily recommended intake is 1000 mg. for men and 1200 mg. for women. That equates to about four 8 oz. glasses of milk a day.
About 6 months ago, I made the decision to cut out as much sugar as possible from my diet, and it’s made a world of difference to my taste buds and to my digestive issues. I really didn’t realize how much sugar I had been consuming, between all the fruit, granola, and smoothies and snacks, not to mention outright sweets like ice cream (non-dairy of course) and gluten-free cookies. On the whole, I probably was still not eating as much sugar as the average American, but for someone with digestive issues like mine, I was eating way too much, as I soon discovered. I embarked on a 2-month journey to cut it all out as part of a strict anti-candidata diet. I even cut out Thai food and all fruits except grapefruit, raspberries and blueberries. As difficult as the first two weeks of withdrawal were, I discovered a really helpful fact – that sugar aggravates my digestive symptoms, namely the extreme bloating and lethargy – even when I’m being strict with avoiding my intolerances of gluten and dairy.
We’re excited to share with you this guest post Jill Cohen, our friend and certified herbalist. Jill lives in Boulder, CO where she teaches herbal and earth-based education to youth and adults.
If you’re reading this blog, chances are good you’re personally familiar with food intolerances and digestive discomfort. Chances are also good that you’re conscientious about choosing foods that nourish your body and avoiding ones that don’t – at least for the most part!
In addition to making informed food choices, another way to support digestive and overall health is to incorporate medicinal plants into your diet.
There are so many different types of oils and fats to cook with these days, and for every one there’s a different opinion on which is healthier. Many fats that were previously considered categorically bad for us have now been proven to be acceptable and even beneficial for us. Below are some of the factors to keep in mind when choosing a fat, and my favorites for cooking.
First let’s get clear about what we are talking about. The term plant-based diet is one that emphasizes vegetables, beans, peas, fruits, whole grains, nuts and seeds. There are different types of plant-based diets: vegan with no animal products such as meat, eggs or dairy; lacto-ovo vegetarian with no meat but including dairy products and eggs; and lacto-vegetarian with no meats or eggs but including dairy products. You can also eat a plant-based diet without going completely vegetarian. Some people call themselves “pescatarian” if their plant-based diet includes fish or “flexitarian” if they occasionally eat animal products. While vegetarian diets are usually defined by what they exclude, think of what they include—lots of vegetables, grains and fruit. The whole foods plant-based idea does not require complicated instructions – just start to eat more whole, unprocessed foods that come directly from plants.