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stress and nutrition

Food Energy: Is Your Food Really Dead?

By | stress and nutrition | No Comments

I was over at a friend’s house one evening for dinner and the topic of food preparation came up. It was noted how much of our food is “processed” these days. Someone made a comment regarding the energy of food, and we all took notice. Fresh fruits and vegetables are considered to have vital energy; there is vitality to the taste, more importantly, the nutrients. The same cannot be said for processed food, which not only strips the vitamins and minerals, but often the “vital energy” of the food itself. Take instant potatoes as an example. While these certainly contain calories, the vital energy is gone. Dead food! The same can be said for nearly all processed and packaged foods. The term often used is “empty calories.” Fresh foods are nutrient dense and energy rich. It is for this reason why nutrition experts suggest to only shop around the perimeter of the grocery store. The shelf life of fresh foods and veggies isn’t very long, because the vital energy doesn’t linger. Conversely, processed foods can have a very long shelf life; weeks, months, even years in some cases. Dead food! These days we place more attention on the convenience of food, and taste (fat, salt and sugar) rather than on the energetic qualities of food—to our own detriment. Perhaps it’s no coincidence that as the quality of food decreases in our country, the incidence of chronic diseases increases. At what point does convenience undermine one’s health? In the words of Ben Franklin, don’t be “penny wise and pound foolish.”

• Stress Tip For The Day:
When you shop for food, do you shop primarily for convenience? How much of the food that you buy is processed foods, junk foods, comfort foods? How many meals do you “prepare” rather than nuke in a microwave? Perhaps the real question is: How dead is your food? How empty are the calories you are eating? These are important questions to ask yourself when you consider your own health habits. Tonight (and perhaps as often as you can) make a meal from scratch! Join the slow food movemen— from preparation to eating. Invest in your health!

• Links/Books Worth Noting:
For more information please check out these links:

http://www.whfoods.com/foodstoc.php

http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=george&dbid=81

http://www.goodhealthinfo.net/food_and_energy.htm

• Quote for the Day:
“You don’t have to cook fancy or complicated masterpieces – just good food from fresh ingredients.”— Julia Child

Photo of the Day:
A photo of fresh potatoes. I learned years ago that potatoes are the number one veggie eaten in America… as French fries in fast food joints. There are so many other ways to enjoy potatoes. Give it a try!

Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D. is an internationally renowned expert in the fields of stress management, mind-body-spirit healing and stress and human spirituality. He is the author of over 10 books including the bestsellers, Stand Like Mountain, Flow Like Water, Stressed Is Desserts Spelled Backward, The Art of Calm, Quiet Mind, Fearless Heart and Managing Stress (6E). He can be reached through his website:www.brianlukeseaward.net

© Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D.

The Acid-Base Balance

By | healthy foods life coaching skills, stress and nutrition | No Comments

A guest speaker who frequented my nutrition course at the University of Colorado often spoke of the importance of maintaining a diet that did not consist of foods with a high acid content. Her reasoning was that these types of foods throw off the body’s ph, setting the stage for cancer and a host of other chronic diseases. Foods that she mentioned seem to constitute the Standard American (SAD), foods that are processed, rather than natural (e.g., plucked off a tree or pulled out of the ground). I once heard Andy Weil, M.D. speak on the topic of nutrition where he was asked the question regarding acid-based foods and their effects on one’s health. He said that the body’s requirement for a “perfectly balanced” ph is so vital to one’s health that if it were the slightest bit off, all hell would break loose in the body (e.g., immanent death). He dismissed the idea of foods that are acidic in nature because the body will rectify this in the digestion process. Fair enough, but what if the preponderance of cancer and all the other chronic diseases are the result of the body’s ph being just a hair off every now and then… enough to set the stage for illness? It is a well known fact that stress greatly compromised the digestive process. In the bigger picture, might not a poor diet and a compromised digestive tract be a bad combination for health? Medical experts tend to be specialists in one area, such as cancer, without looking at the big picture. It is a travesty that most physicians have little or no background in nutrition whatsoever. The bottom line is that balance is crucial to one’s health; so is a healthy diet.

Stress Tip for the Day:
Is there a fair amount of processed foods in your diet? If so, your diet may be high in acidic foods rather than a balance between acidic and alkaline foods. All things being equal, your digestion process should neutralize the foods you eat. Yet with acid reflux being such a problem to day, and Americans drinking ungodly amounts of coffee, (not to mention a host of other processed foods consumed) perhaps eating a diet that is high in fresh fruits and vegetables is a good idea. So today, snack on a fresh apple, reach for some carrot sticks and drink water or iced tea rather than soda or coffee today, perhaps the whole week. Consider putting a slice of lemon in your drinking water too. Balance is the key to life!

Links, Books & Movies Worth Noting:
For more information please consider reading the content of the following links:
http://www.cancer-healing.com/acid_alkaline_balance.php

http://www.dietobio.com/dossiers/en/pH/acid_base.html

http://www.wellness.com/reference/diet/ph-diet/

http://www.psychologicalharassment.com/diet_stress_acid_base_disorders.htm

Quote for the Day:
“Don’t eat anything your great-great grandmother wouldn’t recognize as food. There are a great many food-like items in the supermarket your ancestors wouldn’t recognize as food (Go-Gurt? Breakfast-cereal bars? Nondairy creamer?); stay away from these.” -Michael Pollan, author of The Omnivore’s Dilemma

Photo for the Day:
Apples are definitely in season right now (my favorite are McIntosh Apples, which has nothing to do with my favorite laptop computer). Here is a photo from the Seaward nutrition collection. Enjoy!

Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D. is an internationally renowned expert in the fields of stress management, mind-body-spirit healing and stress and human spirituality. He is the author of over 10 books including the bestsellers, Stand Like Mountain, Flow Like Water, Stressed Is Desserts Spelled Backward, The Art of Calm, Quiet Mind, Fearless Heart and Managing Stress (6E). He can be reached through his website:www.brianlukeseaward.net
© Brian Luke Seaward, Ph.D.