A Nutrition Plan for Beginners
March 30, 2015
Having a nutrition plan is imperative to achieving optimal health. These steps will help you recognize what is helpful and what is harmful to your body and what you can do to make it better. Remember to listen to your body! If any food or supplement makes you sick, stop it immediately! Establish a plan that fits your body and keep up with it. This is the key to longevity.
Step 1: Eliminate all wheat, gluten, and highly allergenic foods from your diet.
Gluten is the primary protein found in wheat. Harmful gluten contains gliadin, which provokes the inflammatory reaction. If you are sensitive, your body will make antibodies to gliadin and attack the cells gliadin has attached itself to, treating those cells as an infection. This immune response damages surrounding tissue and has the potential to set off, or exacerbate, MANY other health problems throughout your body, which is why gluten can have such a devastating effect on your overall health. Rice, corn, buckwheat and millet have glutens, but do not contain gliadin. If you are looking for gluten-free products, be aware. Some companies list their products as gluten-free, without understanding the scientific basis of the problem with gliadin.
Avoid the following foods. They are all highly allergenic and will frequently keep your immune system in overdrive by continually triggering the inflammatory response:
- White flour products (baked goods, cookies, pastries)
- Pasteurized cow’s milk products
Step 2: At least one-third of your food should be uncooked.
Valuable and sensitive micronutrients are damaged when you heat foods. In fact, malnutrition – nutrient deficiencies – from consuming a highly processed diet is one reason why many people cannot lose weight, because it leads to overeating. If you're consistently feeling hungry, you're likely not getting sufficient amounts of the nutrients your body needs to thrive. Cooking foods at high heat will also produce unhealthy byproducts, such as acrylamide, and thermolyzed casein. Regular vegetable juicing will easily help you reach this goal of 1/3 raw food in your diet.
Step 3: Eat more vegetables.
One of the easiest ways to fulfill your vegetable intake is through regularly consuming fresh vegetable juice. Alternatively, you can take the free online Nutritional Typing test. Remember to let your body report back to you how accurate your appetite/taste buds are at gauging what is right for you. Once you're eating the right types and amounts of vegetables (and other foods), your body and mind will respond favorably, and many common health issues will begin to resolve.
Step 4: Keep your vegetables fresh.
If you are unable to obtain organic vegetables, you can rinse non-organic vegetables in a sink full of water with 4-8 ounces of distilled vinegar for 30 minutes. When storing, remove as much air as possible out of the bag. Fruits and vegetables release ethylene gas while ripening after harvesting or picking. This ethylene gas accelerates ripening, aging and rotting. Removing the air can help decelerate this process. This will double or triple the normal storage life of your vegetables.
Step 5: Limiting sugar and fructose is crucial.
Excessive sugar consumption leads to insulin and leptin resistance, which appears to be the root of many if not most chronic disease. Insulin resistance has even been found to be an underlying factor of cancer. As a standard recommendation, it is strongly advised keeping your TOTAL fructose consumption below 25 grams per day. For most people it would also be wise to limit your fructose from fruit to 15 grams or less, as you're virtually guaranteed to consume "hidden" sources of fructose if you drink beverages other than water and eat processed food.
Step 6: Avoid Artificial Sweeteners.
While all the sugars listed above are best avoided, NONE of them are as bad or toxic as artificial sweeteners. So if you must have soda, regular is superior to diet. Many people ask about Splenda, Equal or Nutrasweet (Aspartame). These artificial sweeteners need to be eliminated. There are more adverse reactions to Nutrasweet reported to the FDA than all other foods and additives combined. In certain individuals, it can have devastating consequences. You should also avoid artificial chemicals like MSG. Better alternatives are a few teaspoons of succanat, or better yet, dextrose (pure glucose with no fructose) intermittently and Natural Stevia.
Step 7: Avoid hypoglycemia.
Hypoglycemia is a deficiency of glucose in the bloodstream. Symptoms of this include dizziness, confusion, headaches, and generally feeling miserable. Eat every two hours for the first few days of your transition. You will need to eat some protein, such as an egg, piece of free range pastured chicken, turkey, fish, or some organic seeds, along with a vegetable such as a piece of celery, cucumber, or red pepper. This will help to prevent hypoglycemia and stabilize your blood sugar.
To your Health and Wellness,
Susan Merenstein, RPh/Owner