Long before Hippocrates (460 BC – 370 BC), the popular Greek known as the father of medicine came up with the quote: “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food” the Holy Bible had made references to the medicinal properties of foods and herbs. They represent health and longevity from Almighty God. Therefore, the importance of diet and of preparing and eating food was oftentimes seen as a spiritual act.
The focus in those days were on fresh, natural foods called the field plants or “plants of the field”. These consist of herbs, roots and green, leafy vegetables such as tomatoes, corn and beans. According to the book of Leviticus, clean meat is defined as the meat of every animal that has the hoof cloven in two and chews the cud. Examples of clean meat include the ox (cattle), buffalo, sheep, goat, deer, gazelle, antelope and mountain sheep.
As for seafood, everything with fins and scales are allowed, but whatever doesn’t have fins such as shellfish is prohibited. For birds, everything is allowed except eagles, vultures, kites, ravens, ostriches, seagulls and owls.
Unfortunately, modern lifestyle has veered towards processed foods much of which are fried, fatty, canned, with additives such as sweeteners, flaours and food preservatives some of which have serious side effects.
Efforts are on by nutritionists and food scientists to promote foods that are healing and healthy. Emphasis is therefore, shifting to healing foods such as apples, bananas, oranges, pineapple, tomatoes and lemon (all fruits). Others include beans, cashew nuts, carrots, cocoa, olive oil, coconut oil and cod liver oil. Plant materials such as herbal tea and green tea are also highly recommended. As for sources of healthy foods from animals, raw goat milk, turkey meat and one egg per day are all recommended.
In fact, so important are healing foods that one Dr. Axe Fans has come up with the Healing Foods diet. He boasts that it is not just a diet but a tool that will launch you into a total health transformation. This diet was designed to help anyone triumph over diseases like: diabetes, obesity, heart disease, autism, digestive disorders, fatigue, depression, hormone imbalance, and cancer prevention.
So, what are the scientific explanations for their efficacy and functions? The first is that they decrease Inflammation. According to Fans most diseases today are due to inflammation. Inflammation damages your cells and arterials walls and causes High Blood Pressure, High Cholesterol, Arthritis, and digestive disorders like Crohn’s disease to name a few. By reducing inflammation your body is better able to heal from any disease.
Secondly, they alkalize the body. Your body should have an average pH of 7.36. A can of soda literally has a pH of 2.5 and it would take approximately 30 glasses of water just to balance things out. Green vegetable juices like wheat grass and spinach help restore the body’s proper pH. All diseases including infections, osteoporosis and cancer thrive in an acidic environment. By alkalizing your body your cells can heal and regenerate at the highest level.
Thirdly, they lower blood glucose .One of the primary causes of diabetes and weight gain are burnt out and insulin receptors. By lowering blood glucose levels, insulin receptors can heal and your body can begin to produce normal amounts of insulin to heal diabetes and leptin for weight loss.
Another powerful reason is that they eliminate toxins. Toxicity has become epidemic in our society today and is a major cause of our increase in hormonal imbalance and autoimmune diseases. The diet helps problems like female disorders, infertility, hypothyroidism and headaches by balancing hormones and helps in reversal of autoimmune diseases like fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, alzheimer’s, and autism.
So good also that they optimize nutrients. Many of today’s illnesses are due to nutritional deficiencies. Most of the foods we eat today are processed and stripped of all vitamins, minerals, anti-oxidants and enzymes. This diet slows the aging process, improves mental capacity, and increases energy levels.
The Healing Foods Diet consists of eating equal amounts (33% each) of clean protein sources, healthy fats, and low glycemic carbohydrates in the forms of fruits and vegetables.
The steps to take include removing the bad fats and replace them with good fats. Bad fats such as hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated oils, trans fats, soybean oil, canola oil and vegetable oils cause heart disease, stroke, diabetes, cancer, chronic fatigue, and neurotoxic syndrome. Bad fats create chronic inflammation throughout the body inducing disease. Good fats are essential to hormone production, cancer prevention, brain development, weight loss, cellular healing, and anti-inflammation.
The next step is to change the meats that you eat. There are hundreds of studies that link commercial meats with cancer and heart disease. The grain fed to animals that were created to eat grass changes fatty acid ratios (too much omega-6, not enough omega-3) and denatures good fats, leading to modern day disease.
Dr. Fans insists that the bioaccumulation of commercial pesticides, herbicides, antibiotics, and hormones in meats are causing a toxic onslaught, which leads to many cancers, neurological disorders and chronic illness. Grass fed and free range meats offer many fatty acids missing in the Standard American Diet (SAD) such as: aracodonic acid, linoleic acid, and Omega- 3 fatty acids.
Also, consciously remove all refined sugars and grains from your diet. These include white rice, white pasta, and white bread. 1/3 sugar comes from soft drinks, 2/3 from hidden sources including: lunch meats, pizza, sauces, breads, soups, crackers, fruit drinks, canned foods, yogurt, ketchup, mayonnaise. High glycemic or refined sugars cause elevated glucose, which elevates insulin leading to premature aging and degenerative diseases such as type II diabetes, heart disease (inflammation of the arteries), and cancer.
Sugar is an anti-nutrient offering insignificant amounts of vitamins and minerals and robbing your body of precious nutrient stores. This inevitably leads to diseases of the new millennium such as chronic fatigue, heart disease, diabetes, and cancers.
Low glycemic carbohydrates in the forms of fruits and vegetables have high amounts of fibre, enzymes, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that help you age slower, improve energy levels, lose weight, and naturally detoxify your cells.
Note: This concludes the earlier topic of ‘foods that protect body’s vital organs’.