Baby Steps to a Healthier Lifestyle: Eat For Your Health Pt. 1

We’ve all heard the phrase, “we are what we eat”.  But sometimes, I think we don’t realize how true that actually is.  Most of today’s illnesses and epidemics can actually be diminished or even completely healed through diet changes.  I’ve heard of Fibromyalgia being healed, Diabetes thwarted and even Cancer being eliminated.  Here are a list of some great foods, herbs and spices and what the healing properties are.  Of course, none of these are a guarantee, just like prescription medicines.  But by adding in some of the more nutrient rich foods, our bodies become healthier and have a better ability to fight off disease and sickness.

Oils

  1. Olive – Heart-healthy fat that has great antioxidants, and even has shown to have anti-cancer benefits.
  2. Coconut – Anti-viral and anti-microbial properties that support immune function.
  3. Canola – Has omega-3 and omega-6, which have been shown to help prevent heart disease.
  4. Flax- Anti-inflammatory oil which helps prevent arthritis, heart disease and eases constipation.  Look for it in the refrigerated, natural section.
  5. Avocado – Helps reduce risk of hearth disease, cancer and diabetes. It also lowers LDL cholesterol and raises HDL cholesterol.

Herbs and Spices

  • Garlic – Garlic is one of the best immune-boosting foods out there.  I’ve personally used liquid garlic extract to ward off viruses, colds and infections. It’s basically  a natural anti-biotic.  If you’re worried about bad breath, find a good odorless garlic oil or liquid extract to take on a regular basis, or when you start to feel something coming on.
  • Tumeric – This spice contains Curcumin, and is anti-inflammatory. There have actually been clinical trials showing evidence that Curcumin is effective in treating and preventing cancer.
  • Ginger – Also an anti-inflamatory, Ginger Root has been used as a treatment for things like arthritis, cancer, migraines, menstrual cramps,upset stomach, diabetes, heartburn and more.  Rosemary is also another good anti-inflammatory food to add into your diet.
  • Stinging Nettle – Known for its ability to help fight allergies.  Local honey is also good with this as well.
  • Cinnamon – Great spice for colds, high cholesterol, diabetes, upset stomach and even diarrhea.

To be continued…

Baby Step Week 7: Find a natural or health food store in your area, and pick up a few of these items to add into your diet.  Use good oils and herbs liberally in your cooking.

Baby Steps to a Healthier Lifestyle is not meant to diagnose or treat illnesses of any kind.  It is merely a series of personal opinions and facts based upon the author’s research, and is for entertainment and educational purposes only.  Please consult your physician for health related problems and before starting on any kind of fitness plan, nutritional supplement or diet change.

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6 Comments:
  1. You are so right! Eating whole foods, particularly ground spices, natural fats, fruits and vegetables, can help the body heal itself. However, I’m not sure about the canola oil. It is manmade and a lot has been written about how it is not as healthy as we have been led to believe. Just notice how much cheaper it is than all the other healthy oils.

    • Nicole, I’ve also read a lot about canola oil not being healthy. It is highly processed, and we already get way too much omega 6 in our diets (typical american, anyway). So it is probably healthier to stick to the oils that are less processed and have more omega 3 instead of 6.

        • I am not referring to an email or anything on the internet. I am referring to books such as In Defense of Food, which are backed by research. I don’t know a lot about it myself, but I do know that all oils have different properties and in general food that is whole and naturally occuring, not manmade, is healthiest for you.

          We can’t rely on the FDA for accurate assessments of what is best for the body.

  2. I love it! Forward thinking doctors are now saying that what we eat can literally turn on or turn off various gene expression. How cool is that? Food is fuel. Food is medicine.
    Like Nicole said, canola has a great deal of controversy surrounding its healthfulness. It comes from rapeseed. Feel free to read up on it. Coconut oil is controversial, too, because it is saturated. We use both oils, in moderation. Our family eats with the philosophy- homemade, wholesome, local, organic, and seasonal. But we aren’t militant. We think 80% healthy homemade & 20% not, is a balanced way to live. When I met them, they ate poptarts. Just goes to show you, it all starts with one determined step!

  3. This is a really timely post for me. I’ve been struggling with asthma flare-ups lately, and I’m starting to wonder how much of it is food-related. I’m going to do some research on foods that can help reduce asthma symptoms. So, if you happen across anything, I would love for you to share!

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