TODAY'S TOPIC: Vitality!
So a few weeks ago I talked about human longevity. Since I started my business I’ve been writing about foods and lifestyle practices that slow down the aging process. In my opinion, age is just a number. Someone told me last week they thought I was 10 years younger than I am. I'll take that! I’ve been following my own advice. I nourish my body, I make sleep a priority, I manage my stress and I avoid the following foods that accelerate the aging process:
I could go on and on for days about the harmful effects of sugar. It’s inflammatory. It affects your gut microbiome. And an excess can increase your risk of many diseases that diminish your quality of life as well as your lifespan. I think this one everyone has heard a LOT about already. Remember they were called "treats" for a reason. It's not an every day or twice a day type of thing. Avoid white sugar and stay with real and organic and get rid of ALL artificial sweeteners.
#2 on the get rid of list for your pantry clean out! Hydrogenated oils. Every cell in your body has a membrane made up of mainly fat. It's important to eat a mix (saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated) of healthy, natural fats so that your cell membranes function optimally. The problem with trans fats found in processed and fried foods is that the chemical structure isn’t natural. Because it’s chemically made by taking a natural liquid oil and hydrogenating it (adding hydrogen) to turn it into a solid fat.
Some common foods with trans fats include margarine, spreads, salad dressings, cookies, ice cream, chips, and donuts. But like I always say…don’t sacrifice...swap for "real" instead! Use real grass-fed butter instead of margarine. If a label has 5 or less real (of the earth), organic, and whole ingredients you are in good shape!
Factory Farmed Meats
I believe eating an abundance of colorful vegetables and fruits is essential to radiant skin as well as a long and healthy life. However, I do eat meat and recommend my clients do as well. But quality matters! I don’t eat factory farmed meat, which comes from animals raised in poor living conditions, administered hormones and antibiotics and fed an unnatural junk diet. Because unhealthy animals produce unhealthy meat. And this is the type of meat associated with health risks, including inflammation.
Stick to pasture-raised animals that are humanely treated, free to roam and fed a natural diet. Now this doesn't mean a 16 oz. porter house or meat every day. I'm talking about a good burger (about the size of a deck of cards) or a nice ribeye every once in a while. I then fill the rest of my plate with vegetables.
Unfiltered Tap Water
Sadly, our water supply is contaminated with pesticides, medications, heavy metals, you name it! These are all toxins that can burden your system, slow things down, and cause cellular damage. I recommend investing in a good water filter (check out the Berkey!) and if not stick to spring water (buy in glass too). Filters can actually save you money in the long run. And getting a stainless steel or glass water bottle for when you’re on the go is highly recommended. Because your cells need a steady stream of clean water to function at top speed as well as stay plump and juicy.
Now, there are different classes of pesticides and their effects range from hormone disruption to DNA damage to oxidative stress to cancer and beyond. All risks that can significantly impact how well your body functions and for how long. And while some pesticides may be safer than others, you never really know which pesticides have been used. At minimum, I always recommend my clients buy organic when it comes to the Environmental Working Group’s Dirty Dozen. This is a list of fruits and veggies grown with the highest concentrations of pesticides. On the other hand, the Environmental Working Group also publishes a list of the Clean Fifteen every year. These are crops that are generally grown with very low amounts of pesticides. Which means it’s safer to buy conventional if you can’t find or afford organic.
To Sum it Up
Sometimes it might seem daunting when someone suggests you shouldn’t eat this or that. But what it really comes down to is eating more foods from nature and less from a package. When you do this, you will automatically be consuming less trans fats, refined sugars, and generally processed food. Don't let expense get you down... some of what you purchase as you begin this new way of living may seem expensive now, but think of it as an investment in your future. Preventive now is way better than doctor bills later!
Keep Glowing! Lisa