Food as Medicine- Time to Unlock Its Nutritive Value

Cold cereal, eggs, bagel, toast, muffins or pastry.

This is the idea of a healthy breakfast of more than 30% of Americans. 

While the other 50% only prefer processed food. 

But, all of this usually leads to certain kinds of chronic disorders. 

When diet is wrong, medicine is of no use. When diet is correct, medicine is of no need.”—Ayurvedic proverb

It’s hard to believe but food can actually reverse a certain percentage of chronic illness or disorders. 

Medication holds no importance when you are not paying any attention to what is going on inside you. 

Of course, there are like hundreds of other factors such as sleep, stress tolerance and exercise that build a foundation of good health. Understanding the importance of food as a preventive medicine or as a part of medicare therapy is of utmost importance. 

So, once the idea of “food being medicine” gets into your minds, your healing process will begin right there. 

Do you still think otherwise?

Well, then maybe the next few lines might change your perspective towards food altogether. 

Unhealthy Food Options Can Put Your Health At Risk

Sugary diets, fast foods, or refined grains. 

Such food choices can harm your healthy gut bacteria. That often results in insulin resistance, chronic inflammation.

In short, putting you at risk of any type of chronic disorders. 

In fact a study published in BMJ found that every 10% increase in intake of processed food increases the risk of cancer by more than 12%. 

Another study confirmed that more than 11 million deaths and approximately 250 million DALYs were likely due to poor diet management. 

On the other hand, 

Healthy Diet Is A Preventive Measure 

Research confirms that plant-based food choices strengthen your health. 

For example, if you choose the Mediterranean diet, you are less likely to get 

  • Any type of heart diseases, 
  • Neurodegenerative conditions, 
  • Metabolic disorders, and 
  • A certain class of cancers. 

And, that’s not all. Some diets can actually help to reverse some medical conditions. 

For instance, plant-based diets are able to reverse coronary artery disease. And going for low-carb food preferences can help reduce diabetes (Type 2) in some patients.

Isn’t that amazing?

A simple change in your everyday diet can actually help you form a protective layer against a number of chronic disorders. 

Here are some pointers to start a journey filled with nutrition.

Don’t Skip Meals

A possible start for a healthy day is –

Start eating. 

That’s how you can actually make it work. If you are not eating anything, then good or bad just does not count at all. 

Choose fresh and add more colors to your diet. Preferably whole foods will do the trick for you.

Mix and Match

Focus on eating a combination of raw and cooked. Prepare food the way you can enjoy.

That’s how you can actually eat them. Otherwise you will not be able to relish your meals. And again you will start avoiding them.

Take Cues From Your Ancestors

It does not mean you have to actually ask your ancestors. It’s more of searching for some traditional cuisines that have incredible nutritive value. 

You can opt for the famous Mediterranean diet that includes the healing powers of fresh herbs or nutrient-rich food choices such as vegetables, fruits, nuts, and dairy products. 

It’s like you have the power of phyto-nutrients fighting for you. 

Another example includes using the healing powers of turmeric, ginger, and hot peppers whenever any food is prepared. This is mostly available in South Asian or Caribbean diets. 

How Can You Level Up With Nutrition Choices?

Ready for the change?

But, don’t have any idea what to do next?

Don’t worry.

We have enlisted some of the choices that will help increase your nutrition intake. 

Prefer Eating Locally Grown Produce

Eating anything straight from the mother earth boosts the levels of vitamins and minerals.

Make sure you eat within 72 hours of harvest to reduce the chances of losing nutritional value of your food.

Because whenever you pluck the produce from its original place, it starts losing its nutritional capacity. The more time you take, the less will be your nutrition intake. 

Work On Your Basics

Food preparations is not limited to the ways of cooking. It also depends on how you start your preparations.

Here’s how you can increase the bio-availability of nutrients in your preferred food items. 

  • Make sure you cut down fruits and vegetables before consuming them. As cutting frees the nutrients and makes them available for you. 
  • If you use onion or garlic in your food preparations, make sure you use them only after crushing or chopping them. 

As this will release an enzyme called alliinase which helps in the formation of a compound called allicin. When eaten, it triggers the formation of compounds that protect us against a variety of diseases. 

  • Soaking grains or beans will help to reduce the formation of a compound called phytic acid. This interferes or blocks the absorption or iron, zinc, calcium, and magnesium. 

Practice Storing Your Fruits and Vegetables in A Right Manner

Whenever you try storing fruits and vegetables, 

  • Make sure to keep them where they are easily accessible. 
  • Look for a method that can slow down their nutritional losses.

Here’s how you can improve your chances of eating a nutritious diet. 

  • Store vegetables, except the ones with roots in the refrigerator.
  • Store fruits at room temperature away from any direct light. This does not include berries. 
  • Store the cut fruits and vegetables in an airtight container only after squeezing lemon juice on them. 
  • Chop down herbs and place them in an ice cube tray with water. 

To summarize, food will only work as a medicine when you start with the concept of mindful eating. 

Your body is not a trash bin, so don’t make it look like one with bad food choices. 

Remember to keep it simple. 

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