Greetings and salutations! I’d like to continue with the nutrition theme, and expand on Paul Pitchford’s recommendation to add beneficial things to our diets and remove harmful things as the first step to achieving good nutrition. I included a couple of easy-to-implement recommendations below.
The Good: Lemon water in the morning and Kombucha during the day
The blog post below from The Bikini Gardener describes of the benefits of keeping our body’s pH alkaline, and how lemon water achieves that. This is particularly important as we enter flu season. Check out her great post and get squeezing those lemons in the morning: Five Reasons to Drink Lemon Water in the Morning.
Kombucha, a fermented tea drink loaded with probiotics, has been consumed for thousands of years in Asia and it is becoming very popular in the US now. The numerous health benefits are described here: http://www.foodrenegade.com/kombucha-health-benefits/ . I saw a posting this weekend on LinkedIn which was critical of Kombucha. I asked the physician who posted it about her concerns and she responded: “I believe that when patients are doing home brews on their countertops, it’s too risky to introduce pathogenic bacteria & yeast unknowingly. In addition, depending on fermentation time, the alcohol content may go higher (if fermented too long). I also advise against drinking anything with added sugar in it, as most of the commercially prepared varieties contain. Finally, I treat a lot of patients who have dysbiosis in the gut. For these patients – especially those with yeast overgrowth – I find the Kombucha contributes to the dysbiotic imbalance (as alcohol would as well). Perhaps in a perfectly healthy gut it would not. I’d much rather have them taking well-studies strains of probiotic bacteria than drinking Kombucha.” A caveat worth considering if you have such health issues. Otherwise, there are several brands of bottled Kombucha that can be purchased at health food stores, so no home brewing required.
The Bad: Foods highly contaminated with pesticides and other undesirables
Eating organic everything is the optimal way to go, but it is not always feasible for cost or availability reasons. In that case, the best thing to do is to avoid the most pesticide-laden conventional foods in exchange for their organic counterparts. The Environmental Working Group has compiled a list of The Dirty Dozen, which are highly contaminated, and The Clean Fifteen. You can lower your pesticide intake by avoiding the 12 most contaminated fruits and vegetables and choosing the least contaminated produce. Here is their website, which is full of good information: http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/summary.php#!
Regarding poultry, here’s some great news: A new USDA rule allows hidden feces, pus, bacteria and bleach in conventional poultry. If you want to be grossed out and never buy conventional chicken and turkey again, read this from Natural News: http://www.naturalnews.com/042274_conventional_poultry_food_contamination_USDA.html
Just in case you haven’t been grossed out enough by the junk in your local grocery store, here is another list of 9 nasty things to avoid: http://banoosh.com/blog/2013/05/26/the-9-nastiest-things-in-your-supermarket/
The Ugly: Monsanto (enough said)
Monsanto is pulling out all the stops to convince all of us that their GMO products are just great. Well they are not, as described in the video above. I don’t agree with all of the opinions expressed in this video, but they point out concerning things about the use of GMO soy and corn. Let’s vote with our $ on this issue and let Monsanto (and their buddies in Congress) know where we stand.
“I’m not afraid of death; I just don’t want to be there when it happens.”
― Woody Allen