What Are The Benefits Of Eating Organic?
When it comes to fruits and vegetables especially, eating organic is highly beneficial. The main difference between eating conventionally farmed produce and organic is that organic growers do not spray their farms with herbicides and pesticides. The chemicals used have been positively linked to numerous health problems such as cancer, unhealthy hormone changes and toxicity in the nervous system and brain. These toxic chemicals were designed to kill small pests instantly, so how can it be healthy for people to ingest? Washing the produce before eating it helps, but definitely does not remove all of it. A toxic chemical residue remains.
Some great reasons to eat organic:
- You avoid all pesticides and herbicides.
- The produce is typically 25% more nutritious with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, so it’s worth it to pay a little more! You’re still getting your value from it.
- It supports responsible and sustainable farming techniques, eliminating these toxic chemicals from getting into our environment (air, soil and water supply). In turn, the farmers are also protected from their toxicity.
- It actually tastes better!
The Environmental Working Group, or EWG, keeps a great list of absolute foods that you should ONLY eat organic, called The Dirty Dozen, and also a list of the Clean Fifteen that are the conventionally grown foods that are safe to eat. Here is a link to their website http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/summary.php
Based on their recommendation, here are the foods you should always eat organic:
- Cherry tomatoes
- Summer squash
- Sweet Bell Peppers
- Hot Peppers
- Dark leafy greens
A few of my favorites from the Clean Fifteen list:
- Sweet potatoes
You should always wash your fruits and veggies with a veggie wash before eating them, but at least buying all of these foods as organic, assures you that you’re not consuming ANY bad chemicals!
Support a responsible organic farmer and buy organic today!
The Highest Foods In Fiber
We all need our roughage and here is a great list of high fiber foods to incorporate into your diet. But first, why do we need fiber in the first place? It is an essential nutrient that we all need for the proper digestion of our foods. We also need it for the general function of our intestinal and digestive tract and it also helps us feel full (aiding in weight loss)! Without it we will ultimately end up constipated, develop hemorrhoids, possibly elevated cholesterol levels and even elevated sugar levels in the blood. None of these are good or fun to deal with. Too much fiber is not a good thing either, causing diarrhea, possible dehydration and even a bowel obstruction.
When you are adding more fiber to your diet, you need to be mindful of adding more fluids as well….so be sure and drink lots of water! This is good for you anyway, but essential in a high fiber diet.
Here is a short list of some great high fiber foods to think of adding each day:
- Raw Cabbage
- Nuts and seeds
- All kinds of berries
- Leafy greens
- Beans and legumes
- Different types of squash
- Brussel sprouts
- Broccoli and cauliflower
- Bran Flakes
These are all everyday easy high fiber foods and by adding in enough to your diet will create a happier you ( :
It’s Fascinating How Not Everything Works The Same For Everyone
I love the idea of bio-individuality. This is a concept that means basically we are all unique and different and there is no one-size-fits-all, even in our diet. We each can thrive on different lifestyle choices. There are many great books out there to determine your metabolic type as well. Basically, we each have a unique and different need in our diet.
Whatever our individual food choices are, definitely no one should miss out on any major type of nutrient, especially healthy portions of protein.
Which one are you?
You like hot meals – Left over barbecued meats, delicious soups, sausage spaghetti sauce are some easy things you can heat up later for a great meal. Some people actually have a hard time digesting raw, cold foods and have no problem digesting whole and complete sources of healthy proteins (beef, chicken, fish, eggs, etc.). When you eat these types of protein, it’s easy to know you’re getting all of the essential amino acids your body needs every day.
You like cold meals – It’s funny, but it seems like for every person that prefers warm food, there is another person that prefers it cold. They would rather eat a big salad or a sandwich for lunch. You can easily get your healthy protein by adding in extra cold cuts, hard boiled eggs or chopped cold chicken and bacon to your to your salad. Also blending a great whey protein smoothie is a favorite among this crowd.
You’re a vegetarian – You can follow the vegan diet more or less, except, but you get to add in dairy and eggs. Greek yogurt, quinoa, legumes and lots of eggs are a great way to get your protein.
You’re a vegan – In order to get your protein, you will need to fill your diet with plant-based proteins. Nuts, seeds, and legumes are all great sources, plus add in things like quinoa, lentils, almonds, walnuts, peanuts, and chia seeds.
You’re a raw foodist – It gets a bit more challenging to get your adequate amounts of protein every day, but if you are diligent you can certainly do it. Raw nuts and nut butters are an easy choice, plus there are many raw seeds that you can eat such as chia.
You can search all over the internet for websites dedicated to each of these categories. It will help you to learn great choices and to mix it up so you are never bored with the same foods.
Enjoy the foods you love while getting the healthy protein your body needs!
Feeling not quite yourself?
You may want to learn about candida. Often thought to be generally a problem for women, candida (yeast overgrowth) plagues both men and women and even children at times. If you’ve ever taken antibiotics, drank excessive alcohol, had a ton of unwanted stress or taken oral contraceptives then that alone makes you a candidate for too much candida.
What are the symptoms?
- Stomach aches and digestive related issues (diarrhea, bloating, constipation)
- Fatigue and feeling run down regardless of getting lots of sleep
- Trouble sleeping
- Seasonal allergies that are much worse than usual
- Poor memory and difficulty focusing
- Fungal infections (skin and nail)
- Mood swings and irritability (anxiety/depression)
- Large amounts of sugar and starch cravings
- Autoimmune diseases present
- Urinary tract infections, sinus and vaginal infections
Candida is from a yeast overgrowth that starts is in your stomach. Yeast occurs naturally in your intestines and is part of the natural flora and becomes unhealthy when it over grows and multiplies to unhealthy levels overtaking the good bacteria. It feeds off of sugar and simple carbohydrates, so eating a diet loaded with these creates the perfect environment for candida to thrive. Chances are if you eat this way all the time, then you will likely have moderate to severe candida ….making you feel less than optimal.
You can get a simple blood test for candida. If the levels are very high then that indicates likely candida. However, the most accurate test is a stool test.
Most doctors don’t test for or treat candida. The most effective way to treat or rule out candida as the cause of your symptoms is to change your diet and lifestyle. Many people do a 21 day diet elimination cleanse, eliminating ALL sugar, fruit and simple carbohydrates from their diet. By doing this, you are removing the food source for the candida which will kill it off and let your good bacteria do it’s job.
Foods to avoid:
Adding healthy amounts of probiotics and prebiotics to your daily diet regimen will also help immensely to create healthy levels of your good flora, especially after taking any courses of antibiotics.
Lower any unnecessary stress in your life and drink lots of water!
You will notice improvements in your symptoms within 3 weeks and get back to being your happy, healthy and energized self!