Eat Healthy

Are there certain foods that we need to avoid to become healthier?

   We can't label one or two foods as the source of our health problems,
but many believe that abstaining from this or that will solve the problem.
Nutritional reports claim that this food or that food is bad for you, this will
only make you fearful of enjoying a good meal. A report will say that a food
product is bad and then later will claim that it is not as bad as it was thought.
So we are confused, no one knows what healthy eating is.

   There isn't a single solution to this problem. We seem to react to new
information on food and health the same way we react to most things,
instant gratification. If we have a pain we take a pill, if we are bored,
well there's a pill for that too. We seem to think that health should
have quick solutions too.
Cut down on this and eat more of that, problem solved. It isn't quite
that simple.

   We are told to avoid nitrates, but do you know what nitrates are?
We run to the store to buy organically grown carrots, instead of
home-grown carrots, for example, in order to avoid nitrates.
Note this...A pound of organically grown carrots contain more nitrates
than a pound of commercially grown carrots, and more nitrates
than a pound of bologna.

   Fat is a product that is given a lot of bad press, you don't need
to use a gross of butter in a fry pan, but don't use margarine.
Hydrogenating vegetable oil in order to make a firm product
such as margarine, is harder to digest than butter.

So what is it about fat that causes concern?
Cholesterol, it builds up on the walls of our arteries and the blood
cannot flow freely causing high blood pressure. Our heart has to
work too hard to pump through the build up.

   All fats, whether animal or vegetable, contain the same calorie count
and all cause the liver to produce cholesterol, but animal fats cause
the liver to become much more active in this production than
vegetable fats.
   When reading a product label that says, "lower in cholesterol,"
check to see what kind of oil and how much of that oil the product
   There is no cholesterol in vegetable oils; only fat that comes from
animals that have livers contain cholesterol. BUT, all fats and oils
cause the human liver to produce cholesterol, so maybe the solution
is to cut down on all fats of any kind. But...
   A completely fat-free diet is dangerous since fat is necessary to our body
functions. The question is can you digest the fats that you take in?
Stick to olive oil, peanut oil and small amounts of butter.
Olive oil is unsaturated fatty acid and it helps break down cholesterol.
Peanut oil, is the same, so use these oils in cooking.
Don't use lighter oils like cottonseed, or soybean, they burn at
some cooking temperatures causing peroxides that are said to be
dangerous to our systems. Save these lighter oils for salads.

   Cut down on animal fat, but you can still enjoy meat.
Just chose lean cuts and trim away most of the fat, some will
need to stay for tenderness and flavor.

   Don't think that chicken fat is better for you than beef or pork, the
qualities are similar, though poultry fat is just easier to remove
since the fat is in the skin.

   No diet is right for everyone. After all, our body chemistries are
different and we have different needs.

So the key to healthy eating is Moderation.

Tip 1...
Don't binge.
Running from one diet to another won't help your system, and in the
long run you will probably gain back the weight you have lost.
Dieting seems to lead to bingeing, that back to dieting, then back
to bingeing, so it is a no win.

Tip 2...
Eat a variety of fresh foods and avoid processed and fast food.
Eat from all the food groups, dairy, grains, fruit, vegetables,
beans and meat. We need to cut down on meat and animal fat,
but we shouldn't cut it out entirely.

Tip 3...
You aren't going to eat healthy if your diet is boring.
A boring diet will just cause you to cheat.
Cut down on your animal fat intake, eat less meat, eat more
fresh vegetables and grains. Enjoy a good salad with lots
of fresh vegetables.

Tip 4...
Get plenty of natural calcium.
Milk isn't the only food that provides your body with calcium.
Low fat cheeses, clams, oysters, canned salmon, sardines,
herring, almonds, collard greens, turnips, mustard greens, and
cabbage are good sources of calcium. Oh, and don't forget, yogurt.

Tip 5...
Snack on healthy food.
Avoid sugar and fat, if you feel the need to snack, eat fruit or raw
vegetables. Most times when the urge to snack comes on, you're
just thirsty, so try drinking more water.

Tip 6...
Don't feel guilty if..
Every now and then you want to eat a big steak or those spare ribs,
just add some low-fat grains and lots of vegetables. No guilt, if you
do it just now and then. Again moderation.

Tip 7...
Maintain moderate weight.
Don't binge on sweet and fatty snack foods, because you will
gain weight, make a change to healthier eating for the sake of
your health and life.

There is no simple solution to healthy eating, everyone is different
and each of us need to develop the eating habits that work for us.
No diet is going to work if you don't figure in how you live.
Do you rest enough?
Do you drink too much alcohol?
Are you stressed?
Do you relaxed and have some fun?
Many things can influence our bodies, we need to take charge.
A change in diet probably won't do the whole job, but if you add the
understanding of how you live and those around you, a healthier
diet will surely help.