nutrition

We are overfed and undernourished

I really can't say it enough

Your entire body runs on nutrients.

Each cell runs on nutrients. 

The cells are surrounded by a bilipid layer aka two layers made up of fat. Fat that you need to consume because it is an essential nutrient (high quality fat that is). 

Each of those cells make up tissues and the tissues make up organs. Which is all made possible by the nutrients you consume. 

Those organs they make up systems. Your digestive system, your skeletal system, endocrine system, immune system, and so on. All of this is made possible BECAUSE OF NUTRIENTS.

Now those systems, in combination, make up us - the organism. And guess what? We. Run. On. Nutrients.

Which we get through what we consume and MORE IMPORTANTLY what we absorb

Let that sit with you.

This is why I preach whole food, high quality, nutrient dense. It is the best fuel to run your body.

Vegetables, grass-fed/humanely sourced meat, eggs, good quality fat. I am even cool with grains, beans, and nuts that have been properly prepared aka soaked or sprouted or fermented.

It is worth noting when solving for nutrient density and what the body actually absorbs well - grains are not the best choice. Organ meats and herbs, however, they stack high up there!

You need decent nutrition to run your body. 

And water, you need that too.

4 Reasons Why I Don't Love A Salad

When people think "health food" they often think SALAD!

You see it all the time. It is what is popularized in sitcoms, commercials, movies, and more. I still remember seeing the Stephen King movie "IT" and one of the main protagonists was chubby as a child. The adult version of him is slim. Everyone was like "WHAT IS YOUR SECRET"??? and his answer "SALAD" (and working out, but mostly SALAD). That has stuck with me for, what, twenty years now? 

The idea that SALADS are health food is pretty deeply ingrained. 

 

 

And to be clear I am not saying that they aren't healthy, but what I am saying is that they are not always the most supportive food. 

So let's break it down into 4 reasons I don't love a salad:

REASON #1 - DIGESTION

We live in a world of compromised digestion. Most people have issues in their upper and lower GI. Issues like gas, bloating, acid reflux, diarrhea, constipation, distension, belching, and so on. When digestion isn't up to snuff eating raw vegetables can be super tough. It takes a lot of work to break down the outer barrier of a plant i.e. the cellulose. Which needs to happen to extract all the lovely nutrients (aka vitamins and minerals) inside. Raw veggies can irritate rather than support the gut.

A good alternative is cooked vegetables. You can do stews, roasted veggies, lightly steamed, pan fried, slow cooked roasts with vegetables, and even juicing (at times). There are a TON of other ways to get the nutrition in without aggravating your digestive tract.

REASON #2 - SATIETY

Now, this depends on the salad. If you have a salad with a ton of chicken or if it is a steak salad - you may not face this problem. However if your meal is JUST A SALAD and it is mostly leafy goodness reaching a point of satiation can be elusive. You might reach it in the moment, but how soon after are you craving something again? When a salad is just leaves and a few vegetables - you aren't getting a lot of fuel in and it is natural to crave something shortly after. 

REASON #3 - HIDDEN SUGAR & BAD OIL

This is really a question about dressing and the quality of the dressing. A lot, a lot, a lot, of dressings contain a crap ton of sugar. And a lot, a lot, a lot, of dressings - even good organic dressings - use highly processed canola or vegetable oil which is awful for the body. These fats are damaged which causes inflammation in the body and the creation of free radicals (which we do not love). Why are they damaged? The high heat process used to create these oils is the problem. Fats are unstable, exposing them to high heats and then putting them on a store shelf (in a clear plastic bottle) is a sure fire way to get crappy quality oil. And bad fat is just a bucket full of harm. 

REASON #4 - NUTRIENT DENSITY

This again depends on the type of salad. There are a lot of fantastic salads out there, but there are also a ton of really bare bone, not so awesome salads. Pay attention to what is in the salad. Is it iceberg lettuce or mixed greens? Are there organic, locally grown, in season vegetables or off-season, bulk bought, commercially grown vegetables? It matters. 

CONCLUSION 

Salads CAN be a great option, especially if your gut health is optimal, but really be mindful of what is in the salad. 

Just because it is a salad, doesn't make it health food. 

But if you are going to eat salad, here is one I love and endorse: http://www.brainbodygut.com/blog/2014/11/28/rainbow-kale-salad-with-a-peppery-kick-recipe

 

It isn't all about food

What you eat DOES matter, but it isn't the whole picture.

The world of nutrition is jam packed full of different people preaching different approaches. You can find whatever you are looking for - articles to support your beliefs - to tear them down - whatever you need the internet has your back.

My standpoint is that you need to find what works for you. And what works for you today, may not work tomorrow - also what does "work" mean? Health? Weight? 

These clarifying questions are excellent to ask when you are trying to create change.

Now, back to my point.

It isn't all about food.

What do I mean by that? Well. I could tell you THE PERFECT DIET FOR YOU and if you are so stressed out following that diet, it isn't going to work.

If you follow that diet, but still only manage to get 5 hours of solid sleep that night. It isn't going to work.

If you follow that diet, but keep supporting bad relationships in your life. It isn't going to work.

If you follow that diet, and have a terrible internal monologue. It isn't going to work

If you follow that diet, but don't believe you can actually change. It isn't going to work.

Food plays an important role in healing.

But your mind.

It is more powerful.

Learning how to be kind to yourself. Kind to your path. Your progress. Developing patience. These things can be more impactful than the perfect meal plan.

Why I don't eat gluten

This is a story of my face

On the left is my 20th birthday, on the right is now (I am 35 but you can just call me 29).

On the left is my 20th birthday, on the right is now (I am 35 but you can just call me 29).

I have many, many, many stories of how I came to be interested in nutrition, health, and healing from within - but - the story of my face is pretty much the origin story.

When I was 14 I saw my first dermatologist. She told me that what I eat does not affect my skin. She gave me retin-a, an astringent, and put me on an antibiotic. I took her word as gospel and began the regimen. Through the next few years she never took me off the antibiotic, she just changed what type I was on. 

Thinking back on it, my skin was pretty ok. Before seeing her I had never had cystic acne I just got the occasional breakout. 

Fast forward to me being 19. I am still on antibiotics - so for those of you counting - that is pretty much 5 years of non-stop antibiotic'ing. Which. Is. Crazy. I mean nuts. For the minimal problems I had, being on something so consistently for so long with so little benefit... it is horrifying. 

So there I am 19 years old and I head off to the Netherlands for my sophomore year of college. In the Netherlands I cannot get my prescription filled, so it is the first time in forever that I have no antibiotics in my system.  And I CAN DRINK BEER LEGALLY!!! And it is the NETHERLANDS! CHEESE!! BREAD!! ALL THE THINGS!!! WHEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE !!!!!!! !!! ! !

My face went nuts.

I got cystic acne that just wouldn't go away. It was painful literally and emotionally. I remember going to bed and wanting to wake up and have it all be a nightmare. That I would wake up and have clear skin. 

I drank (we all drank) a ton in the Netherlands. I drank to forget about my face, my body, my insecurities. 

I bought all the products I could find. All the masks. All the creams. All the astringents. Nothing helped. The one thing that seemed to help was the sun, so I got super duper tan. 

When I got back from the Netherlands I was happy to be in a land of healthcare once more. A place where I could once again tackle my acne, because - it was all about the drugs - it never occurred to me to think that what I was eating had an impact.

This blows my mind now.

So my junior year of college I got myself on Accutane. The saying with Accutane is that it gets worse before it gets better - and that is certainly true. My face became peely and dry. With Accutane I had to be on two forms of birth control because the medication can cause birth defects, I had to get my blood drawn every month, because they needed to make sure my liver was a-ok. Pretty serious stuff. But I didn't care. I just wanted my skin to be normal. And it worked... for a bit. 

I had a few good years.

And then everything came back with a VENGEANCE. At this time I was living in Seattle... and it got bad. Really, really, bad. Worse than it had been in the Netherlands.

It crushed me. 

The first thing people see is your skin. I remember thinking, well I can't go camping because if I go camping I wouldn't have make-up and that is JUST NOT OK. 

There was the time that a street bum shouted at me... shouted... "NOXZEMA!!!!"

Which sucked. I would do a lot of mental gymnastics to convince myself that people weren't seeing what I was seeing. That it wasn't that bad. And then Mr. Streetbum chirps up. Or that random stranger on the bus who tapped me lightly on the shoulder and wanted to talk about Proactive - AS IF I HADN'T TRIED PROACTIVE!!

I tried everything.

I went to a fancy spa that had special acne facial treatments and I bellied up money that I really couldn't afford. My first consultation I cried... I remember that I was in a show where I had to be on stage that night. The woman consulting with me told me how "brave" I was to be going on stage with a face that looked like mine.

GAH. Kill me. 

So I shelled out the money.

Got poked and prodded.

And occasionally things got a teeny tiny bit better. 

And then, one day I went to a different esthetician and she said to me "Annette, have you ever considered you might have an allergy?"

What.

No.

Because I am made of hearty midwest stock. We don't have allergies to things like dairy and gluten. PAH! BAH! A gluten allergy is soooo Seattle. And plus that one dermatologist SAID that what I eat doesn't affect my face! SO NO I HADN'T. 

So for the first time I actually considered it. 

And that was my first step. 

My first step to truly understanding how connected EVERYTHING is.

It seriously blows my mind that I ever thought what I consume had no impact. This includes all the antibiotics I had blindly taken for so long. They killed my happy gut flora. Which made my gut a sad place that couldn't, and still has problems, properly digesting food.

Wheat exacerbates this problem. Keeping it out of my life has helped me heal. And the great thing about healing is that the more you do it, the more you can get away with - 

I will never go back to eating much bread, but if I really want a piece of bread I am okay to have it a few times a year. That is a choice I get to make, but now I know the consequences. 

My face was a big motivator for change and though it really sucked - like really, really - I am also grateful. It helped me grow and learn and understand what health and nutrition actually look like.

There are a lot of people that don't have super obvious symptoms and only figure it out when the whole machine is broken.

I am happy I had a catalyst for change. 

 

Tidbit Tuesday | Absorption & Digestion aka CHEW yo' food! [Video]

Digestion is SUPER important, but we so often overlook it. Here is yet another reminder to chew (your food).

You guys! Chew. Chew. Chew. Because - you are what you absorb. AND Absorption, it starts in your mouth :D

Marketing and Nutrition

Today's Tidbit Tuesday is about something I find fascinating.

It is incredible much we believe is shaped by other people.

We all know that marketing is a thing.

We know that it is used to persuade.

But I think that most of think that we are also pretty savvy. We like to think that we at least know when we fall victim to elaborate campaigns or a well designed label. (I am a sucker for a good wine label.)

So let's test this. 

In today's Tidbit Tuesday I pose the question: 

Which has the most Vitamin C?

  1. Oranges (100g)
  2. Brussel Sprouts (100g)
  3. Bell Peppers (100g)

Think you know the answer? Go ahead and guess - the video will be coming shortly!

Look for more on Marketing & Nutrition I plan to dig deep and find out more fun facts on how great marketing has influenced our food selection. 

Blueberries = Brainberries?

I have blueberries on my business cards.

The other day I was asked, "Why blueberries? They must means something to you."

And it is true, they do. 

#1: Blueberries are awesome for the brain. A moderate amount has been shown to help with memory, cognitive function, and motor-control. Pah-POW! 

#2: They are tasty. Great for a bit of sweetness, but without the crazy amounts of sugar. Add them to ANYTHING! I even put them in ground meat and spice it with cinnamon and allspice. YUM.

#3: They are packed with antioxidants and phytonutrients.  PHYTONUTRIENTS (!) they are helpers to vitamins and minerals needed to run your body, without these helpers your body is unable to make some very necessary conversions. 

#4: Fiber. Blueberries pack a nice amount of fiber for their punch. 

#5: Benefits for the whole body. There is a ton of research going on about all the benefits of blueberries and the impact they might have on cancer, heart health, and diabetes

As with all food this is about balance and isn't a call to eat a crap ton of blueberries every day. Adding a moderate amount daily/weekly especially when they are in season would be a smart move.

tl;dr 

Blueberries are rad and tasty, eat them. 

Is Bone Broth A Miracle Cure? No... And Yes.

Bone broth is really just stock.

People have been making stock for a LONG LONG time. It isn't some new crazy thing. It is actually a pretty old traditional thing. 

Stock is made from using the leftover bones (or buying bones) and creating a soup.

Sounds like magic ammiright?

Well no. 

And it isn't magic.

What it is, is nutritious. The benefit of creating stock from bones is that it contains a ton of minerals (and vitamins and amino acids, but lets focus on minerals). You see bones are where a lot of minerals are stored and in todays world many of us are not getting enough minerals into our diets. Bone broth is an excellent way to get in more in a way that is highly accessible. Meaning that because it is a liquid it has an easier time absorbing into our system. 

To sum it up the stock contains minerals we lack and in a liquid form they are easier to absorb. Win, win.

I stumbled upon this article the other day: http://www.today.com/food/i-tried-bone-broth-week-heres-what-happened-2D80450660

And though there are some good points raised, the mentality of "I tried it for a week" makes no sense, really isn't the point, and speaks to how our culture looks at things i.e. magic pill or quick fix. Sigh. Again, it just really isn't the point. 

Bone broth isn't a magic bullet.

It is a fantastic addition to a diet. 

If you're interested in trying your hand here are a few recipes to get you started. Everyone has their own spin so it is nice to scan a few different sources. Personally, I make mine in a crockpot - my crockpot is tiny so I tend to scale down portions.

Enjoy! And good luck!

Food is hard so I might as well just eat Twinkies

Nutrition is tricky.

But then again it isn't.

The problem shows up in looking for the quick fix, the perfect diet, or the holy grail of food. 

There is no perfect.

There is no diet that suits everyone.

And there is no magic food. 

When first delving into understanding food better there is A LOT of conflicting information.

It can be paralyzing.

Fat is good. Carbs are bad.

Fat is bad. Carbs are good.

Protein is great. 

Red meat will kill you.

Kale is a superfood.

Kale will kill you.

Lemon in water is excellent!

Lemon in water is terrible for your teeth.

AHHHG! It is maddening.

So. I might as well go eat Twinkies, and Skittles, and Fruit Loops, and Lunchables, and Fruitsnacks, and... EVERYTHING.

Makes sense.

Perfect logic.

:I

No.

Highly processed refined foods are not the answer. This is something - in the vast world of nutrition - pretty much everyone can agree on.

As for the rest of it the body craves balance. Going too left (aka a million green kale smoothies all day er'yday) or going too right (aka all meat no veg all the time) is generally not the best place to land.

You will eat differently at different times in your life.

What you eat should be dictated by your needs and goals.

There are times when more restriction makes sense.

There are time when a therapeutic approach makes sense.

There are times when you can get away with indulging yourself. 

And there are times when you cannot.

Figuring out what you need for specific weight loss goals, health concerns, and/or performance CAN be tricky and take time and experimentation to figure out (I can help you).

But, in broad strokes eating foods that are high quality, foods that are whole, avoiding refined grains and sugars MAKES A LOT OF SENSE and is something you can do if you'd like to push the pendulum toward health. 

I would like to eat all the cereal

I love cereal. Love it.

I remember watching cartoons and digging into bowl after bowl.

Eating it by the gallon in college. A versatile food serving as a snack, a breakfast, a lunch, or a dinner. 

I remember coming home a little (okay maybe a lot) tipsy from the bars back in my twenties and being so proud for grabbing the cereal versus a pizza. And. Just. Chowing. Down.

So many delightful cereal memories. 

My super big weakness is Fruity Pebbles a serving size is 3/4th cup which yields about 10 servings per box.

HA.

HA.

HA.

I have never experienced a reality in which I could get 10 servings out of my box o' pebbles.

And this is the big reason why I do not indulge in cereal. It is a trigger for me, I also don't think it is the best choice for getting quality nutrition into the body, but most important it is a trigger.

Do you know your triggers?

How do you choose to interact with them?

My No Refined Sugar Journey

I've been posting a lot about sugar. 

It's kind of a big deal.

We know that sugar isn't a great choice.

We know that donuts are not a super food.

We know that cookies are not the key to longevity. 

We know that candy isn't a vitamin. 

We know all these things, but if you pay attention to the marketing it is easy to forget.

It is January and there is already Easter Candy in the stores. Whoa capitalism! Take the reigns!

We normalize the overconsumption of sugar to the point where WHO knows what is normal. We measure ourselves by the people around us.

She is skinny and had two cookies... so I am practicing restraint by having my one - OR - well my signf. other eats a bowl of ice cream EVERY NIGHT and I only have a half a scoop every other night, so that's good - OR - you're right commercial on tv I SHOULD treat myself. 

We have awkward measuring sticks. 

This year was the first year I stayed off all refined sugar for the holidays. No sugar, no flour, no chips, no corn tortillas, no candy, no baked goods. I did still have wine... and I also wrapped some dates in bacon (my specialty). 

This is a big deal for me usually going home to Michigan AND holiday season means the ULTIMATE CHEAT MEAL STREAK! Pockets full of Peanut M&Ms, Peanut Butter M&Ms, AND! Reese's pieces (seriously, I put them in my pockets for easy snacking access, great combo). SO GOOD. SOO BAD. I wrote more about that in my first post "SUGAR, SUGAR, SUUUUGARRRRRRRR | PART 1".

So the question = how'd it go? 

The answer = really well.

I did have moments of gazing longingly at things I could not have, but then the moment passed something else happened and I forgot. 

The hardest time I have is when someone ELSE thinks I should be eating a treat and THEY feel put out by me NOT doing it.

This doesn't happen too often, but it does happen.

I was at my Uncle's house and he ALWAYS has candy out and about. My sisters and I were doing a quick visit and my Aunt and Uncle always like to have something out for you to nibble on (very hospitable). Unfortunately, all of the things out were not things I could eat - now this was okay - because after his house the plan was to make dinner BUT my Uncle really felt like I should be eating something.

He gestured.

And then he gestured again.

And again.

These types of situations are the tough. You want to do the socially normal thing. You want the person to know you appreciate their efforts, but this time my health was the priority.

Eventually he stopped gesturing, but as we were leaving he said "well I hope you are eating", I reassured him I eat plenty, and then he told me he was proud of me (which was nice). 

Social situations are no joke.

The one thing that I think has been THE MOST beneficial during this time is the mindset of SUGAR IS NOT A CHOICE. 

I am currently one week away from four months of eating this way and I am toying with the idea of keeping with it for all of 2015.

That seems huge.

I might keep that goal to myself... we shall see. 

Sugar, SUGAR, SUUUUGARRRR | Part 3

Blood sugar regulation is no joke.

it looks sooo tasty!

it looks sooo tasty!

The other night I was staying strong on my NO SUGAR promise and I found  myself gazing at delicious looking popcorn. My sister and her husband gifted it to my Dad for Christmas. It was a Chicago Mix - cheese and caramel - I was staring at two pieces and picturing the delight of eating them.  

I was making an internal deal. TWO PEICES! NO ONE WOULD KNOW. I just wanted to experience caramel and cheese popcorn... just two... 

But then I thought about the fact that I haven't had ANY refined sugar in about 3.5 months. The popcorn WOULD have an impact. 

ONE - I'd be going against rules that I set for myself. There is something super satisfying about accomplishing what you commit yourself (to yourself) to.

TWO - It WOULD spike my blood sugar and that is what I have been looking to avoid. SPIKE.

So let's talk about this. What is a blood sugar spike? What happens in the body? Why is it a bad thing?

The body. 

It likes things to exist within certain perimeters. 

Like your thermostat. You set the temp to 70 degrees. It heats up to get there - stops - heat drops - it heats up again. It just keeps on keeping on trying to maintain that 70 degrees.

So let's talk about this in relation to blood sugar. 

Blood sugar is the amount of sugar in the blood.

We are always meant to have some sugar in the blood, but we are not meant to continually spike that amount. If you think about it... like really think about it... we humans haven't had sugar in our diet for a very long period of time. 

Source: Stephan Guyenet

Source: Stephan Guyenet

In 1821 the average amount of sugar was 10 pounds per person per year.

In 1970 it was 120 pounds per person per year. 

In 2004 it was 141 pounds per person per year.

And now it is estimated to be 170 pounds of sugar per year.

Let that sink in that is an additional 160 pounds per person in about in what is really a short amount of time.

WOW.

The thing that makes me the saddest is that this type of overconsumption is normalized in our society. Treat yourself! You deserve it! Etc. Etc. It makes me angry and it takes a lot to make me angry.

So, like our thermostat being set at 70 our blood sugar has a particular place it is comfortable. If it goes HIGHER the body regulates, if it goes LOWER the body regulates.

Most people are aware of the hormone that lowers blood sugar aka insulin, but do you know that insulin's primary job is actually to get energy into the cell?

So insulin is now used more frequently to mitigate the damage of too much sugar in the blood which is tiring for the body.

There are 3 primary organs that are involved in this process - the Liver, the Pancreas, and the Adrenal glands. 

Here is a basic (basic) explanation of what happens when blood sugar is spiked.

KT0C3268.jpg

So let's say I was seduced by the caramel/cheese popcorn.

I grab a handful and crunch in delight. My brain is happy as quick energy surges into my body, dopamine pathways light up and I am all heck yea!

Now. 

It does not take long for the popcorn to break down and make it into the blood stream. My blood sugar soars and the body takes action. It is like OH NO YOU DIDN'T! TROOPS LET'S GET THIS REGULATED!

And the pancreas springs into action.

It releases the hormone insulin (hormones are messengers) insulin is now telling the cells HEY WE HAVE A LOT OF SUGAR HERE I NEED YOU TO LET IT INTO YOUR CELL WALL. This message needs to be received by insulin receptor sites for the sugar (aka glucose) to go into the cell and be converted into glycogen (stored energy) in the liver. The muscles can also take in some glucose and convert it to glycogen to be stored (which is great for intense workouts or sprinting). 

But, there is only so much room. Eventually everyone is full up on their need for stored energy and the rest of the glucose gets converted into triglycerides and cholesterol for storage. So that weight you carry around that is stored energy. Fun.

So this is the basic process.

Blood sugar goes up, insulin is released, it tells the liver and muscles to let the glucose in by connecting with the receptor sites, glucose gets in and gets converted into glycogen aka stored energy.

And remember carbs are also sugar because they get broken down INTO glucose so you might think... huh... I don't eat much sugar... but do you drink OJ? Do you eat bread? Enjoy pasta? All these things become glucose and RAISE the blood sugar.

Over time the system goes out of whack. 

Insulin is being pumped out like crazy to normalize blood sugar and the receptor sites begin to need more to respond correctly. Also too much sugar in the blood leads to AGEs (advance glycation end products) which are basically proteins or lipids (fats) that become glycated. Which means they are STICKY.

You now have sticky proteins floating around. These sticky proteins can STICK TO RECEPTOR SITES! 

And from all of this you start to become insulin resistant

Which means the receptor sites are not getting the message. 

Yikes.

That means your pancreas is doing it's part, but the message is not being heard so it keeps on pushing out insulin (yes this is tiring for the pancreas).

So now, finally, after a boatload of inuslin, blood sugar drops - but - in this non normal world it drops WAY low. 

And the body is like CRAP! WE NEED TO GET THIS REGULATED (once again).

The pancreas leaps into action and releases glucagon which is the opposite of insulin. Glucagon is a hormone (messenger) and it tells the liver to release the stored energy (glycogen) and convert it back into glucose (raising blood sugar). 

But it isn't enough.

And that is where the adrenals come into play. Now cortisol AND epinephrine are released as well to try to spike the blood sugar back up. Cortisol and epinephrine are both hormones that they are part of the flight or fight response. You might notice your heart-rate go up because you are in a stress response.

So now we have your pancreas, liver, and adrenal glands working OVERTIME trying to regulate blood sugar - and those organs have a whole host of other things they need to be doing as well - but here we are working them to bone.

Riding a sugar roller coaster. Eventually something is going to give.

The pancreas wears out.

The adrenals become exhausted.

The liver goes caput (potentially leading to fatty liver disease). 

And it is bad news bears for everyone.

Which is why blood sugar regulation disrupts ALL aspects of human physiology. It hits your energy, the integrity of your tissues, the balance of your hormones, AND your brain health. 

It is one of THE most important systems to get back in line to begin to tackle other pieces of health.

If you want to drop weight you need to get this under control, it is THE sustainable way to get weight off and keep it off. 

If blood sugar regulation is not working properly then health CANNOT be achieved.

Which is why in the end I did not eat the popcorn.

Getting this system in line is a huge undertaking and a huge priority. 

The instant gratification of crunch, crunch, is not worth sacrificing the long term benefits of having a system that works properly. 

The more I feel good.

The more I want to feel good.

Nutrition thoughts to chew on

Get it chew?

I have known about nutrition for a long time. What is surprising is how much there is still left to learn. So much!

You know how sometimes you hear something in a different way and it just LANDS?

You now GET what you have known in a way that actually affects you?

Creates change?

With that in mind I want to share with you a two points.

I just want you to THINK about them.

Let them sink in and understand what they mean.

I am curious to know how you might be impacted.

Point 1: It takes A LOT to mess up a digestive system

Point 2: All of the structures and function of the human body are built from or run on nutrients - ALL OF THEM

I was just at an onsite workshop for nutrition there were around 50 people in the room and the question was asked "how many of you have digestive problems?" - almost all the hands went up.

Which really has me reflecting on point one. 

Chew your food. No really chew it.

One of my LEAST favorite words is masticate, even writing it gives me chills of ewwww. 

That said. It is really important.

Digestion begins in the brain. You see the food. You smell the food. You want the food and your body is like YEA FOOD!

And it begins to produce saliva (another gross word). This is GREAT! Salvia is a special cocktail of electrolytes, hormones, and enzymes (with names like salivary amylase). 

We like the salvia because next up you put the food in your mouth. Which brings me to my earlier point.

CHEW.

This breaks down the food and it mixes with the salvia and the aforementioned salivary amylase which is fantastic at breaking down carbohydrates.

If you do not chew. You get big food chunks.

Big food chunks are bad because the rest of your system is not really meant to handle them.

And as your food chunks go down your system (next stop STOMACH) they are not fully being broken down. More enzymes are thrown at the chunks by the pancreas TO NO AVAIL!

Your chunks soldier on to your small intestine where the carbs (aka starch) are now UNDIGESTED and continue on to the colon that way (gross)

Why is this bad?

Well this bad because this type of starch FEEDS unwanted colon passengers like Candida (Yeast Overgrowth) and other kinds of dysbiosis.

The moral of the story. Pause, slow down, chew, and enjoy your food. For me. Because I wrote this post with words I hate. Because I love you. Because this is important.

MORE TO COME ON DIGESTION and ACID REFLUX... get excited. 

The Downward Cell Spiral

Why does nutrition matter?

Sure. I know chips aren't the best. Yeah, yeah, yeah I know that processed food isn't ideal. But c'mon I am living a life. I work out most days. I don't drink soda. So that's good right? 

I am all for people enjoying their lives, but do you know why nutrition is so important?

It is how you feed your body. 

And, your body is made up of cells.

You are feeding the cells, which make up the tissues, which make up the organs, which make up systems, which make up you.

Your cells NEED certain nutrients to FUNCTION

This is why what you eat IS so important, let me take you on a journey...

First up we have up we have:

  • Nutrient Deficiency - which means you are not getting enough vitamins, minerals, aka nutrients for your body

Next we have:

  • Cellular Inefficiency - so without these nutrients our cell energy is diminished

And you know, this doesn't sound SO bad, but then: 

  • Organ Inefficiency - begins to occur. This looks like mal-digestion, malabsorption, decreased circulation, lack of detoxification, lack of vitality

Okay so the wheels are beginning to go, but WAIT, there's more!

  • Detoxification Impairment - cells go from lacking energy to full on fatigue which means repair and rebuilding capacity is reduced

And then:

  • Further Organ Distress - the full system of the organ (aka heart, liver, pancreas, intestines, etc.) loses it's innate understanding of how to function (That sounds bad)

Yikes, sounds like buckets of no fun, next:

  • Inability to repair and rebuild - overall degeneration from the inside out :(

Which leads to:

  • Organ & System Dysfunction - just taking it up a notch, the internal systems are having a lot of trouble performing

And now you the human begin to notice:

  • Subclinical Systems - you begin to notice symptoms, but they are subclinical meaning they are not something that would get you a diagnosis, you might just consider them an annoyance. But, man, some serious ish is happening

And finally we take you to:

  • Disease - cellular, organ, system, and organism (which is you) breakdown and now we perk up and now we notice

This ALL starts from nutrition, which is why I find nutrition fascinating and which is why it is TRULY the foundation of what creates you.