Saturday, December 4, 2010

Sustainability starts with a healthy body

What can we do to sustain health without breaking the bank?  We could reduce the amount of money spent on doctors, treatments, and medication if only we could attain health. 

Every doctor agrees, most health issues in the US could be prevented by better diet and exercise.   When asked to elaborate, most list the obvious:  less fat, less salt, less carbs, blah, blah, blah...  Really?  How about we start with this - eat better food.  period.

How can we go about finding better food?  Here are some tips.

  • Avoid processed food. 
    • Cook all of your food from scratch.  Yes, I do realize what this means.  Learning to cook with fresh meat and produce can be daunting, but don’t let it stop you from controlling your health.  Start with simple recipes; there are millions on the internet. 
    • Do not buy premade sauces or soups.  Do not buy frozen meals. They are packed with preservatives and often made from over ripe produce.  
    • Do not eat fast food; they are packed with flavor enhancers and trans fats. 
    • Do not buy food in boxes that just add water and microwave; these foods have been over-processed and have lost many of its nutrients.
  • Choose fresh fruit and vegetables. 
    • Grow the fruit and vegetables your family consumes the most using natural methods.
    • Buy from local small farms near you.  Find them in phone books and internet searches. Contact them and ask if they allow you to purchase directly from the farm.  For best prices, find out if/when they allow self picking.  Harvesting it yourself is fun with the added benefit of fresh air and exercise.
    • Use the internet to search for farmer's market in your area. When you go, talk to the vendors to ensure they meet your standards.  Be aware, some vendors buy produce from mass produced farms that have been transported from far away.  Ask where the food was grown and how it was grown.  If you do not get the answers you want, walk away.  
    • Don’t buy vegetables and fruits grown out of season.
  • Choose quality meats.
    • Choose free range meats because that means the animals get fresh air, sun, and exercise - all needed for healthy meat. 
    • Choose meats free of antibiotics and growth hormones because those medications could affect your hormones and metabolism. 
    • Choose organic meats; they are fed food that meets certain standards.

 A body that is nourished with good food will have a better chance of fighting disease and illness.  Here's your health!

Below are several books in my library that I reference for really good advice on good healthy food.  These books can help you understand how to make good choices and how to rollback the effects of eating poorly.

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