mind & body
Where cutting-edge wellness and ancient healing traditions come together for the best in holistic and integrative care.
Quick Guide: Food
Keep it simple, keep it pure, keep it yummy. The main idea is to keep food in its original form, whenever possible. Many health problems stem from chronic inflammation throughout the body, due in part to the abundance of processed foods in our diets. The simple switch to an anti-inflammatory diet can reduce inflammation and, over time, get you to feeling better.
Of equal importance: slow down your body, and therefore your brain, with three deep breaths before you take that first bite. Eating your food in a relaxed state will help your body absorb the nutrients you take in and will help you feel more sated when you’ve finished your meal.
Things to Include:
- Organic Berries and Apples: When choosing fruit, go for organic berries (strawberries, blackberries, blueberries and raspberries) as well as apples. These choices are high in antioxidants and don’t contain too much sugar when eaten in moderation.
- Spinach, Kale and Other Dark Greens: Work these deep greens into meals whenever possible. These greens are packed full of antioxidants and have a number of health benefits. The darker the green, the more benefit to you.
- Preparation: Most of the time eating healthy falls by the wayside because we fail to prepare and plan. If you know your week is going to be busy, prepare food over the weekend and have it ready when you need it. One trick is to make a big batch of vegetable and whole grain soup which can feed you all week long. Or if it’s always that 2-4pm afternoon slump that gets you, pack a Kind Bar (less than 5 grams of sugar and filled with ingredients you can pronounce) or a hard boiled egg (the perfect protein) sprinkled with sea salt so you have them when you need them. Bye-bye bowl of M&M’s! Bye-bye drive thru! Bye-bye office cupcakes!
- Coconut Oil/Olive Oil- When preparing food, it is important to cook with oil that has beneficial properties. We recommend that all cooking be done with Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Grapeseed Oil or Coconut Oil.
- Herbs and Supplements: Herbal remedies have been around for thousands of years and are a natural and beneficial way to bring balance to the body. See the herbal guide below for more tips and tricks.
Things to Avoid:
- Refined, Processed Foods: Foods which have been refined are inflammatory. Period and end of story. The occasional cracker or small bowl of al dente pasta is okay (remember we aren’t aiming for perfection or stress over what we can eat, we are just going to prepare and do our best).
- Excessive Dairy: When it comes to dairy, moderation is key. Recent studies have shown that the majority of adults in the US are unable to digest dairy properly. That being said, excessive diary can lead to increased inflammation and side effects such as bloating, gas, and even skin problems. For this reason, it is good to limit dairy consumption. Since most dairy is pumped with hormones and other negative additives, it is best to buy organic and locally sourced dairy whenever possible.
- High Fructose Corn Syrup: High fructose corn syrup is a sweetener that is made from corn starch. Because of its ability to increase the shelf life of products, it is a common ingredient in processed foods and candy. Many studies have shown that HFCS has many negative health benefits and may be the leading cause of heart disease, cancer, dementia, obesity and liver failure. Although it may be close to impossible to fully cut it out of your diet, it is good to stay away from it as often as possible. Look for products that use granulated sugar instead.
- Foods that don’t grow mold once they should have: I get nervous when I have a perishable item in the fridge which, after months, still smells and looks edible. Ideally, we go grocery shopping for fresh items on one day of the week, eat the food we purchased that week, then run out 7 days later or so. Repeat!