As the obesity rate in America is on the incline and for the first time in history, our children’s expected lifespan will be less than ours, more and more people are becoming aware of the importance of our diet. The Surgeon General’s report on health states, “What we eat may affect our risk for several of the leading causes of death for Americans, notably, degenerative diseases such as atherosclerosis, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and some types of cancer. These disorders, together, now account for more than two-thirds of all deaths in the United States.” That may sound discouraging, but know that YOU can make a difference and change that statistic for you and your family!
About a century ago, Americans ate food that was much more “clean”. There were not as many preservatives and pesticides applied to our fruit and veggie crops. We ate less processed food and much less refined flour. Now we start the day off with chemically laden coffee and sugary doughnuts for breakfast. We also eat out at fast food restaurants more than most did 30 years ago, filling our bellies with nutrient starved “food” lacking natural rich foods such as fruits and veggies, beans and lentils, and of course we find ourselves attempting to quench our thirst with our supersized sodas (the #1 culprit of our sugar obsession).
So, where do we start if we want to change the statistics? Here are my top 10 diet tips to help you find your way to optimum health this summer!
- Eat a tbs. per day of ground seeds (like flax) or 1 tbs. of cold pressed seed oil.
- Eat 2 servings of beans, lentils, quinoa, soy or “seed” vegetables a day.
- Eat 2-3 pieces of fresh fruit a day such as apples, pears, bananas, berries, melon, or citrus fruit.
- Eat 1-2 servings a day of whole grains such as basmati rice, millet, rye, oats, corn, quinoa or whole grain breads, or pasta.
- Eat 3-4 servings per day of dark green, leafy, and root veggies such as watercress, carrots, sweet potatoes, broccoli, spinach, green beans, peas, and peppers.
- Drink 6-8 glasses of filtered water, diluted juices or herbal or fruit teas a day.
- Eat whole, organic, raw food as often as you can.
- Avoid fried, burnt, or browned food, hydrogenated fat, and excess animal fat.
- Avoid sugar and refined or processed food with chemical additives, and minimize your intake of alcohol, coffee, and tea. Limiting yourself to one a day of any of these.
- Supplement a high-strength multivitamin and mineral, 1,000 mg of vitamin C, and essential omega-3 and omega-6 fats every day.
It’s easy to get overwhelmed and just want to forget it all. So, don’t be hard on yourself. Start slow … take one thing a week or month or however long you need to make it a habit and watch the changes take place! Hoping you choose health and wellness, Tonya Baise.