Woo hoo! It’s Green Start Health’s 5th anniversary this year!
And because this puts me in a reflective mood, I want to share an overview of what I believe even more now than I did five years ago. And not just what, but also why I do this work. (We’re all motivated by our WHY more than our WHAT, don’t you think?)
Here’s my why:
Food is the best chance we have to keep ourselves healthy. Of course, we’ll never have 100% control or a guarantee, and we all know outliers. But I sure don’t want to test my resilience to find out where my tipping point is.
We can seriously stack the odds in favor of our good health, with some pretty good side effects: we get lean and more energized too.
The evidence is clear about just what it takes to do this, even though the message gets very twisted. Remember that food is big (big!) business, and there’s a lot of spinning, partial truths and downright b.s. coming at us. But aside from all that noise, there really is a simple truth.
We know that:
1. We want our blood pH to be neutral to alkaline, because disease thrives in an acidic environment.
2. We want our immune system (which lives in our intestines) uninflamed, strong and able to kick disease to the curb, thank you very much.
3. We want a body that’s unwelcoming to the most common killers: cancer, heart disease, diabetes, plus immune diseases and, while we’re at it, the pain in the neck realities of the common cold, flu and allergies.
4. Because they die off and get replaced our whole lives, we want to build strong, healthy cells, not ones that are damaged and vulnerable.
And we know that food either gives us this body… or it doesn’t. It totally depends on what we eat. Here’s the food that gets us closer:
Veggies - all of them, especially leafy greens or anything else green.
Fruits - all of them, especially berries.
Nuts and seeds - almonds, walnuts, cashews, pumpkin, sunflower, chia, flax.
Beans, lentils, herbs, spices, and whole grains (not just wheat, even if it’s whole).
Fats - mostly from all of the above foods, plus extra virgin olive oil and coconut oil for cooking.
Now we’re left with the things that, like it or not, make our body a comfier place for sickness to settle in. But please don’t panic: I’m not talking about once in a while servings - you can be absolutely healthy and eat a little of all this stuff! But months, years, decades of meals high in these foods is when real trouble sneaks way too close for comfort.
Junk food - all the packaged, processed stuff, including soda/bottled drinks - diet or not.
Dairy - milk, cheese, ice cream, yes, even yogurt.
Meat - chicken, beef, pork (sorry, bacon), also fish of the feedlot type, but even the most local, grass fed stuff needs to be dialed down to smaller servings than we’ve gotten used to.
Sugar - including corn syrup, table sugar, and white flour.
Fats - fried and charred food, plus all the highly processed yellow oils (canola, soy, corn, etc).
Still with me? How does that land for you? Feeling energized and clear? (That’s my hope!) Irritated and overwhelmed? That makes sense, too, it really does. As I said, simple doesn’t mean welcome or easy. There are a lot of reasons we eat what we do, and it takes courage and energy to make changes from a place of freedom rather than judgement.
Try to swap the narrative of “this is what I can’t have” or “this is what I have to do” to “this is what I can do” or “this is what I’m choosing for myself.” See if that softens any resistance
And if you’d like, I’ve made a new draft of my Leaves+Twigs book all about how to eat. This edition is short and to the point, in a way that I hope makes it easier to not only decide what to eat, but also how the heck to turn vegetables into meals. Want a copy? It’s $10 to cover shipping and printing… please let me know by replying to this email and I’ll send you one
Phew. This was longer than usual. No matter where you are on your path with your body and health, you’re doing great, you’re enough, and I thank you for letting me share my thoughts. xo