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"A Healthier You" - Written By Sarah Outlaw (Co-Owner of 90210 Organics) For Natural Life 101.com

A Healthier You

By Sarah Outlaw

 Now that it is 2008, you are probably wondering what you can do to obtain better health. Last week we focused on ways to “green” your life. This week, the focus is on simple ways to implement good health-promoting habits pertaining to your diet.
 One of the resolutions most often made and broken is diet. The average person has a very busy lifestyle and spending hours at the gym and counting calories is not appealing. The key is to fit exercise and proper eating habits into an already busy schedule so that they become second nature.
What you eat and the nutrition you glean from your food is crucial to your health. You want to learn how to eat to live, not live to eat. Eating a whole foods diet rich in organic vegetables; fermented foods (like kefir, raw sauerkraut, and kombucha); free-range organic meats; raw, organic milks and cheeses (from pasture-fed goats, sheep or cows); and whole sprouted grains is how we were designed to eat. One of the best ways to find
out what you should be eating for your body type is to find out what your nutritional type is. There are three categories of nutritional (or metabolic) types: Protein types, carb types and mixed types. Once you distinguish what type you are you will be able to tailor your diet accordingly. Natural Life 101 recommends digging into Dr. Joseph Mercola’s website to learn more about finding your ideal type.
  Sacrifices will have to be made on this quest for better health. You will have to give up some foods and beverages that contain certain ingredients that are harmful to your health.  Fortunately, your local health food store probably has a healthy alternative. Here are the top four common ingredients in processed foods and beverages that you should avoid due to their negative effects on the body.
 
High-fructose corn syrup is popular in the food industry because it is cheap. It is used to sweeten sodas, some juices and much of the processed foods commonly found on grocery store shelves. There is a link between HFCS and obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol and even heart and bowel disease. Consumption of fructose can also lead to mineral loss of calcium, magnesium, zinc and iron. There is also evidence that intake
of fructose can lead to premature aging. Choose foods and beverages with natural sweeteners such as raw honey, or Stevia rather than high-fructose corn syrup.
  
White sugar is a subject that we could write about forever. It is treated by the body as a toxic foreign agent which leads to literally hundreds of health problems. Like white flour, which we will cover next, white sugar has been stripped of all its water, protein, vitamins, minerals and fiber leaving a substance unfit for human consumption. Sugar depresses the immune system long after it is metabolized and affects the pituitary gland. It also leaches vitamin and minerals from the body, which is very taxing to the organs and can lead to obesity.
    
White flour can lead to the same problems as processed sugar even though it is not a sugar. It breaks down into glucose and affects the blood sugar. White flour is what is left after all the nutrients are stripped from a whole grain of wheat. Normally, whole grains contain B and E vitamins, calcium, potassium, manganese, fiber, zinc and copper. White flour has none of these essential vitamins and minerals and in order to sell white flour
products as nutritious, food companies add synthetic nutrients into their food. These synthetic nutrients can cause a slew of health problems and imbalances. Opt for whole grains and spouted grains which are much healthier for you.
Hydrogenated oils have been in the news recently because they are being banned in some states due to their negative effect on health. We have been brainwashed into thinking that saturated fats are bad for us and that vegetable and canola oils are healthy. Margarine and shortening flies off store shelves while butter sits and does not sell. The truth is that it is the butter, as long as it is organic, that we should be buying because it has many health benefits that we will be discussing in another article. It is the trans-fats and hydrogenated oils that
we need to be concerned about. These highly processed oils are directly linked to heart disease and obesity and are toxic to the body. Never cook with these oils as they become rancid and carcinogenic when heated. Choose organic coconut oil, organic palm oil or organic butter to cook with and extra virgin olive oil for salad dressings and unheated dishes.
 Each one of the aforementioned foods to avoid could fill an entire article so further research is necessary for you to understand how truly detrimental they are. Natural Life 101 provides you with links and resources to investigate foods so that you can make wiser choices.
 Next week we will cover the next group of ingredients that a health-conscious individual should avoid. Please remember that you are not giving up anything but poor health by changing over to a whole foods diet. That is one resolution that you can stick with and be proud of.

 
 
 
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