Where do we start with this massive topic with such controversy, especially from the purists’ point of view?
Over the last 30 odd years I have been a purist and swung the pendulum the opposite way and then back again trying to find what for my body suited me the most. I got confused when research contradicted what I originally thought was true. This was when I started going with how I felt and at the same time still referred to what I had learnt along the way.
Food definition: any substance consumed to provide nutritional support for the body. It is usually plant or animal origin and contains essential nutrients such as carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins and minerals.
Food for me is always individually tailored, the hardest part is getting to know your body well enough so that you get optimal nutrition (and so important for me is nutritional uptake as it is necessary for the body to feel and be nourished). We could go on the lists written on food as to what individual foods give us nutritionally, the important question I feel is what is your body absorbing and are there big holes of minerals missing in your food chain?
A good start would be to know if the food is grown organically so the soil would be mineral rich and the plants are healthy. Included in that would also be, is the meat organic or looked after in a way that creates the least stress on the animal as possible? A great view of this is seen in Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s documentary Chickens, Hugh and Tesco Too.
Being more responsible for our food is a great step to insuring that we become healthier. It is very empowering to get to the end product of eating a meal that you had everything to do with in getting it onto your plate, the taste is delicious and full of love. If the organic start is not in your budget then get as much fresh food as possible that has been grown locally that is not in the supermarkets as they tend to dictate to farmers to spray so shelf life is increased. That is why much of the fresh organically grown produce goes off quickly, so best to use if you can within two to three days of purchase.
To say what is the best way food should be prepared is another huge topic and it is not my intention to give opinions either way other than to say all food preparations have some merit. The question I would ask is where do you live, in a hot or cold climate? What, if any, conditions do you suffer from? These are some of the questions that would determine what foods and what preparation methods are best. A long time ago in my practice in the UK an Asian lady was visiting me with several physical problems which I treated with acupuncture, massage and herbs. After several visits her situation improved slightly though not as well as we would have liked. I then asked more about her food and she was now eating a European style diet (trying to fit into the culture) I asked her to introduce more of her food from back home. In a period of 6 weeks the transformation was unbelievable and all pains disappeared, this prompted me to research further and focus more on the individual rather than just following a style or ideology.
The basic message for food is to make it simple and not to cook with too many food category combinations, also staying away from processed food wherever possible.
Whilst this article is not giving any food answers for the person out there who wants to know what to eat to help a specific condition, my belief is that with a certain amount of help from a professional who is not set in you being a vegetarian or a raw food junkie, a balance can be found and your body can reach optimum health.
If you would like further help I am offering consultations for anyone wishing to do so over Skype or FaceTime, Happy eating!
As always, your comments/thoughts on this topic are welcome.