Reprogram the Way You Eat


As a society, we have programmed ourselves to eat in a way that is unnatural and harmful. We mistakenly prefer the taste of harmful foods. The most natural and healthy way of eating now seems strange, and, as a result, it eludes us. The benefits of eating natural foods, as opposed to processed foods, seem obvious, yet they are lost to many. Here are a few of the common excuses that I hear from patients:

 

  • “It takes too much effort and time to prepare fresh food.”
  • “I don’t like the taste of fruits and vegetables, so why should I even try?”
  • “People will think I am strange if I eat this way.”

Others who may not have voiced these objections were still thinking these or other negative thoughts. It is the substance of their inner dialogue. This kind of talk is not useful. Its purpose is to prevent you from taking action. It is a type of learned helplessness: you didn’t believe you could succeed in the first place. This gives you the rationale for not trying. Right now, resolve to fight those thoughts when they enter your head. Excuses or reasons are not based on facts. They are an opinion formed before adequate knowledge is achieved, and, as you now know, knowledge is the cornerstone to success. Your internal programming and fixed beliefs can have you fail before you even start. A key concept is that our internal programming operates outside of our conscious awareness, yet it influences our thoughts and action.

Psychologists tell us that both these preconceived notions and the inner dialogue that resists change to a preexisting belief are a type of “automatic thought.” An automatic thought is an unconscious process that determines how we interpret the events of our lives. In many people, these thoughts are negative, pessimistic, and completely illogical. They persist because they operate beyond awareness and because they go completely unquestioned and unchallenged. Our automatic thoughts are the result of our core beliefs, and our core beliefs establish our perceived boundaries of what we can and cannot do.

The key to reprogramming yourself is to select an activity that elicits the desired objective, and then perform this activity habitually. As you continue to perform this activity, your skill will improve, your brain will reprogram to the preferred wiring, and your desired outcome will manifest itself. Your brain is not only flexible and adaptable, but it also will restructure itself to accommodate whatever lifestyle you wish to create. This book and the exercises it contains are designed to cultivate a skill and transform some aspect of your brain and your life. The cumulative result of all of these skills is superior health and your ideal weight. Your brain is ready and willing to make the changes

This is an excerpt from Dr. Fuhrman’s book Eat For Health.

Fruits and Vegetables May Be More Powerful Than We Think!

I’ve heard Dr. Fuhrman say that we still don’t know all the healthful properties of plant foods, and a new study seems to confirm that, claiming scientists underestimate the amount of nutrients in fruits and vegetables:

While the polyphenol content of fruits usually refers to extractable polyphenols, new research published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry reports that the non-extractable polyphenol content is up to five times higher than extractable compounds.

According to studies with apple, peach and nectarine, previous measures to quantify polyphenols may have been limited by the extraction technique.

"These [non-extractable] polyphenols need to be treated with acid to extract them from the cell walls of fruit in the lab," said lead author Sara Arranz from the Spanish Council for Scientific Research (CSIC) in Madrid. "If non-extractable polyphenols are not considered, the levels of beneficial polyphenols such as proanthocyanidins, ellagic acid and catechin are substantially underestimated."

I asked Dr. Fuhrman about this and his quick answer was, “Repeat after me, fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts and beans! When you eat whole foods, you get much more than science has been able to measure so far.” And here Dr. Fuhrman explains why foods like green vegetables are so healthy:

While fruits and vegetables are excellent sources of nutrients, the consumption of vegetables is more helpful in reducing cancer because they contain much higher amounts of cancer-protective compounds--especially green vegetables. Among these green vegetables, the cruciferous family has demonstrated the most dramatic protection against cancer. Cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, kale, bok choy, collards, arugala, watercress, and cabbage) contain a symphony of phytonutrients with potent anti-cancer effects.

Isothiocyanates (ITCs), which are perhaps the best studied, have been shown to provide protection against environmental carcinogen exposure by inducing detoxification pathways, thereby neutralizing potential carcinogens. These vegetables also contain indole-3-carbinol (I3C). Indole-3-carbinol has been shown to reduce the risk of breast cancer by decreasing estrogen activity.

In related news, researchers determined nutrients and antioxidants in fruits and vegetables, like apples, broccoli and berries, help improve oxygen intake and exercise endurance.

Image credit: leoncillo sabino

Dorothy Loses 70 Pounds and Her Medications...

 

No one wants to be overweight and no one likes taking a bunch of pills. Martha and Stanley didn’t. That’s why today they’re fit, trim and off their meds. Now check out Dorothy. She lost over 70 pounds, ditched her medications and loves her new diet:

I started at 254 pounds, which can be documented through my doctor’s charts. I had no idea what I was doing only that I could eat veggies, fruits, beans, nuts and seeds!

The early days were very hard for me. I had to find stores and health stores that could supply me with the foods I now needed to buy. Now it’s a snap. I know exactly where to go to get what I need and more stores including Wal-Mart are selling organic produce and organic frozen fruits and vegetables at reasonable prices.

I now weigh 179 pounds and I am 5 feet 5 ½ inches tall. I have just turned 62 years-old. I still have about 40 pounds to lose. I have had many slips along the way and regained some of my weight back but have gotten back on track and have lost it…continue reading.

More Fresh Vegetables Coming to New York City!

If you walk around New York City, you’ll see a Grey’s Papaya and a silver hotdog cart on every corner. There’s an occasional fruit stand, but they’re outnumbered. So now, to help curb New York’s obesity epidemic, city officials will soon unleash 1,000 brand new food carts—selling fresh fruits and vegetables to neighborhoods in all five boroughs. Currently, only 200 “Green Carts” are stationed throughout the city. Residents are very excited about it; The New York Times reports.

Actually, New York is pretty veggie-friendly already. In Albany, the Veggie Mobile cruises the streets selling fruits and vegetables to low-income neighborhoods and senior communities. And for years, a charming old salesmen sold his amazing vegetable peeler all over New York City.

Listen up! Now matter where you live. Great, cheap produce is easy to find. You just have to look for it. I’m a big dope, but I still manage to dig up plenty of cheap fruits and vegetables all the time.

Image credit: The New York Times – Richard Perry

Ignoring Cholesterol Leads to Heart Attacks

A new study in the Journal of the American Medical Association reiterates people with high cholesterol—specifically those who ignore high lipoprotein levels—are 2 to 3 times more likely to have a heart attack. For the study, experts analyzed blood samples of 45,000 men and women, finding people with the highest levels of cholesterol had the most heart attacks; Reuters explains.

Keeping cholesterol in check is very important. Saturated fat raises cholesterol and ups risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer. Luckily, healthy foods, like fruits and vegetables, have the opposite effect. A diet rich in plant foods slashes heart risks.

Now, if you think heart surgery, like angioplasty and stent placement, will save you. You’re wrong. Dr. Fuhrman says they’re scams and do not address the cause of heart disease.

Image credit: tassiesim

Vegetables Boost Cancer Risk in Smokers?

Time for a crazy report! New findings in the American Journal for Clinical Nutrition, claim smokers my increase their chances of developing colon cancer by eating fruits and vegetables. For the study, 500,000 people in 10 European countries were surveyed on their eating and smoking habits over 8.5 years and data suggests normally healthful substances in fruit and vegetables may enhance carcinogenic potential of tobacco smoke. However, in nonsmokers high intake of fruits and vegetables reduced risk; the AFP reports.

Listen, smoking is a bad idea. Here are a few reasons why. Reports have shown parents who smoke risk harming their kids’ hearts, secondhand smoke leads to allergies and can also increase risk of head and neck cancer. As for veggies, they are potent cancer-fighters.

In related news, after Pueblo, Colorado passed a municipal law banning smoking from work environments and public places the rate of heart attacks dropped 40%.

Image credit: lanier67

Times are Tough, So Eat Pasta?

We all know the economy is bad right now. People are pinching pennies. And that’s why, despite the obvious recession, pasta-makers are experiencing growth. Apparently, total pasta consumption in the United States rose by 0.4% per volume and this doesn’t even include sales by mega-retailer Wal-Mart. Shoppers are buying more pasta because it’s cheap; the Associated Press explains.

No doubt, junk food producers love to hear this! Some companies have already started pushing unhealthy cheap food. Because previous reports indicate during a time of recession people are more likely to ditch healthy foods, such as fruits and vegetables, in favor of inexpensive stuff, like cereal and candy.

Okay, it’s not impossible to eat healthfully in these tough times. Just keep your eyes open. For example, every week I find all sorts of reduced price fruits and veggies. Hey, every little bit helps!

Via Fit Sugar.

Image credit: urtica

Preschool Lunches, Parents Skimp on Healthy Stuff

This fall, a study revealed the food supplied to 94,000 public and private schools by the United States Department of Agriculture is of poor nutritional quality, too many high-fat foods, like pizza and chicken nuggets. In California, fruits and veggies only make up 13% of the total money spent on school food.

And now, new research in Journal of the American Dietetic Association claims most bagged lunches, packed by parents, did not have enough of fruits and vegetables. Researchers studied the lunches of 74 children from 5 different childcare centers, observing their packed lunch for 3 days. They found only 29% of the packed lunches had adequate fruits and vegetables. And many parents were more likely to pack foods kids liked, rather than healthy, nutritious foods; HealthDay News reports.

Not surprising. Some parents feed their kids pizza and French because they don’t like vegetables and fruit hurts their mouth. Kooky! That why Dr. Fuhrman says it’s the parents’ job to set the example, if you want your kids to eat healthfully, start eating YOUR fruits and veggies! Monkey see, monkey do.

Image credit: freshelectrons

Chicago's Health Chief Says No Meat!

The windy city is well known for big beefy “Da Bears” fans, but Chicago Health Commissioner, Dr. Terry Mason, wants all Chicagoans to kick the deep dish pizza and go vegetarian. This January, Dr. Mason, a practicing urologist, won’t eat any meat. Dr. Mason, who has high cholesterol and had a coronary stent implanted in 2005, hopes his example will encourage others, especially African-Americans, who have a high rate of hypertension and high cholesterol, to cut harmful fatty foods; The Chicago Tribune reports.

Kudos to Dr. Mason! Lots of cool people have gone veggie. And who’s cooler than Batman! That’s right, the dark knight himself, Christian Bale, is a vegetarian. Even Batman knows fruits and vegetables offer excellent protection against cancer and heart disease reversal.

And switching to a vegetable-based diet is good for the planet too. Meat and other animal products strain the environment and require vast amounts of natural resources to produce, unlike fruits and vegetables which are far less taxing. So eat your veggies, lots of them!

Image credit: like, totally

Slumping Economy, Slumping Diets

Okay, no matter what side of the political fence you fall on, we can all agree, the economy is in toilet. For most of us, money is tight. And according to experts, this spells trouble for the already horrible American diet. People might become more inclined to ditch healthier foods, like fruits, vegetables, whole grains and fish, for cheaper, horrible foods, such as fast food and cereal; Reuters explains.

And previous reports have claimed up-ticks in candy sales are directly related to recession. But, you can survive hard times healthfully, if you keep your eyes open! You can find plenty of great, reduced priced produce at most supermarkets and farmers markets are a haven of affordable fruits and veggies.