…but can be harmful in the absence of proper eating habits. 

Good nutrition and what you put into your body is the foundation for good health. “Food is Medicine” is a term which originated from Hippocrates, the father of Western medicine; it was his belief that eating wholesome food is the basis for good health. Hippocrates said almost 2500 years ago “Leave your drugs in the chemist’s pot if you can heal the patient with food.”

Whole foods act as medicine to heal and protect your body and give the immune system a break from dealing with toxins, preservatives, additives and chemicals that are included in so many of today’s processed foods. If you are eating junk food everyday with little or no nutrition, your body will not be receiving all of the nutrients it needs to function properly and health issues can arise. All that your body can operate on are the foods that you choose to put into it. Healthy nutrient-rich and alive foods help to heal the body at cellular level and build strong defenses enabling you to combat illness and environmental toxins.

A poor diet may cause health problems, causing deficiency diseases such as blindness, anemia, scurvy, preterm birth, stillbirth and cretinism; health-threatening conditions like obesity and metabolic syndrome; and such common chronic systemic diseases as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and osteoporosis. A poor diet can cause the wasting of kwashiorkor in acute cases, and the stunting of marasmus in chronic cases of malnutrition.

Centuries ago the earliest known doctors and health practitioners across the world imparted the benefits of using food as medicine to heal the body and now based on research it is clearly evident that food plays a major role in health and how you feel on a day to day basis.

Hippocrates believed that illness stemmed from inadequate nutrition and bad eating habits and that if people were to learn good eating habits then optimum health would be restored. Long before doctors and medicine was commonly used, wise tribal elders would seek out healing herbs and plants for their community and food would be applied prescriptively to bring about healing. Slowly through the years man has moved away from the healing power of nature and towards prescribing packaged synthetic drugs and artificial remedies to deal with illness.

The reality is that because we have shifted away from natural remedies and many of us rely on a diet of processed, fatty and sugar-laden food the consequences are that rates of obesity and disease have increased significantly.

Health practitioners and scientists are now uncovering the benefits of Nutrigenomics and the whole notion that food is information that speaks to our genes and triggers messages that create health or disease. There are many factors that culminate to bring about disease such as stress, nutrition, hormone balance, the health of our gut, and the importance of detoxification and food.

Thinking about what is at the end of your fork can help you to avoid specific illnesses that arise due to years of unhealthy eating. The good news is that these can be reversed with the help of a good diet. Even if you live on takeaway you can make healthier choices. More and more food services, restaurants, and other institutions are recognizing the healing power of food and are including healing foods as part of their menus so nutritious food is not as hard to find as it once was.

Most foods contain a mix of some or all of the nutrient types, together with other substances, such as toxins of various sorts. Some nutrients can be stored internally (e.g., the fat-soluble vitamins), while others are required more or less continuously. Poor health can be caused by a lack of required nutrients or, in extreme cases, too much of a required nutrient. For example, both salt and water (both absolutely required) will cause illness or even death in excessive amounts.When it comes to buying healthily the best way to shop is to think about where the food you are buying actually came from, is it traceable, fresh and at its best? Or is it housed beneath layers of packaging? Even though it takes a little longer when shopping get used to reading labels and finding out exactly what is in the food. If it has more than six ingredients it’s probably not going to be that good for you.


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