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Nutrition & Natural Health - health street

Simply Healthy Eating and Reduce Stress

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How to Simplify Healthy Eating

What are your priorities for 2019? We are already a couple months in! There’s always a lot going on - between taking the kids to their sports and activities, working, keeping the house clean, a few hobbies, the odd reno project, meal planning, finances, family time, exercise, the internet, social media…holy smokes! There’s a lot of stuff to think about, but is “HEALTH” on your list of priorities? What if you are dealing with a health issue such as an injury or a chronic illness, pain, poor sleep, blood pressure imbalances, hormone problems, seasonal illness, diabetes or heart disease? Your list of priorities can sure change in a hurry if you fall ill or if you are dealing with a chronic imbalance such as blood sugar or blood pressure. Even a cold or the Flu can seem devastating when there’s already so much to do. Do you sometimes feel like you are spread too thin and can’t seem to do a good job at any ONE THING? That feeling of being overwhelmed is called LIFESTYLE STRESS.

The experts always tell us to SIMPLIFY and SLOW DOWN, and besides it being annoying to hear – it’s actually good advice and it works. So the weekly and daily to-do lists actually do help because they help us cut out unnecessary activities and focus on what’s important.

The concept of SIMPLIFYING helps us with reducing stress when it comes to our lifestyle, BUT most people are NOT applying the same concept to their diet (what goes down the hatch) and their health!

Eating Healthy is usually on most people’s New Years Resolutions Lists, but what does that really mean? In my view the same rules that apply to lifestyle stress can be applied to healthy eating: SIMPLIFY!

Don’t stress out your digestive system!

We all have many types of stressors in our lives, and it can be categorized by breaking it down into TWO main types: Lifestyle and Diet.

The sum of stress from lifestyle and diet equals your total stress. If your total stress is greater than your personal threshold then your body will begin to show signs and symptoms of poor health. Our body starts to respond in particular ways as to protect us from the overwhelming burden of stress through things such as storing fat, increasing cortisol levels, increasing blood pressure, skin problems, mental health problems and disrupting hormone balance among other things.

This is what it looks like:

1.Lifestyle Stress + Dietary Stress = Total Stress

Total stress causes illness when it is above your personal threshold.

I think we all agree that when it comes to lifestyle stress - we really need to simplify, cut back and cut out unnecessary activities in order to reduce the stress. Turns out the same concept can be applied to our diet. The more activities you force your digestive system to perform on a daily basis outside it’s natural designed functions – the more difficult it is on your body.

Dietary stress is adding extra stress to your stomach, intestines, liver and kidneys without you even knowing it! Have you considered the number of different ingredients you consume on a daily basis? Since every plant or animal product we put in our body has it’s very own identity and frequency it is like another ACTIVITY for your body to complete each day when you eat it regardless of how much of it you eat. This is true for anything that goes in your mouth – be it a real whole food OR a synthetic ingredient. So each and every ingredient is like an added task or activity for the digestive system. The argument against synthetic ingredients is that the human body may not be able to recognize and process them efficiently thus delivering even more stress than a “natural” ingredient.

Most consumers have become pretty savvy with ingredient label reading in recent years. And for good reason. Synthetic NOT-SO-REAL ingredients make us sick, especially if we consume too many of them. You’ve probably picked up a box of cereal before and seen the lengthy paragraphs of chemical-looking ingredients before. Many contain 25 or more ingredients. The worst is that they are usually the ones marketed to children!

Have you ever counted how many ingredients are you putting in your body every day?

Based on the primary solution being to SIMPLIFY – let’s take a closer look at the diet part.

Think of every ingredient you consume from food as an activity; It needs to be processed by your digestive system and metabolized by your liver. So the fewer ingredients you consume – the less work your digestive system needs to do.

Fact: Most North American’s consume well over 100 ingredients per day

Fact: Processed foods contain more ingredients and less nutrition than whole foods

Did you know most store bought salad dressings or sauces contain 15 or more ingredients?!

Did you know that most chocolate bars contain 10 or more ingredients?

Did you know that most store bought condiments contain up to 15 ingredients?

Did you know McDonalds French Fries contain over 15 ingredients?

Did you know that most breakfast cereals contain 15 or more ingredients?

How to eat healthier and live healthier?

  • Cut out processed foods and condiments.
  • Cut out refined sugar.
  • Eat natural, unprocessed fats.
  • Keep the number of ingredients you consume under 40 per day.
  • For good health it’s always good to break it down like this to keep it simple:

    1.It starts with good food

    2.A sustainable fitness program

    3.Get the proper sleep

    4.Learn to minimize stress; and

    5.Develop and maintain a positive attitude, which includes lots of Love!

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