When it comes to food trends, fat, was one of the first to go.
As people started to become more health conscious, fat was introduced as a ‘bad’ food. There came a slew of fat free treats, fat free cookies, fat free dairy products. All of these products were loaded up with sugar, which is a carbohydrate and which, by the way, is also the substitute found in gluten free products these days.
There is still much confusion about fats. Many American’s learn that EFA’s or Essential Fatty acids are ‘good’ to take to manage inflammation but they don’t realize they are taking fats.
Here’s the source of confusion. There is a difference between polyunsaturated fats and saturated fats.
Polyunsaturated fats are found in: nuts, seeds, fish and leafy greens
Saturated fats are found in: cheese, eggs, meat, nuts and avocados.
Substituting polyunsaturated fats for saturated fats is beneficial.
Saturated fats were called the ‘bad’ guys because hey can raise LDL, which is the ‘lousy’ cholesterol.
These fats are often replaced with carbs, which increases the chance of heart disease.
But, the bottom line is, they are still relatively neutral in effect next to carbs and sugars.
So, fats found in nuts and olive oil and fatty fish are beneficial.
Saturated fats are not deemed as terrible as they once were, of course in moderation. This is in light of the fact that fat free products tend to be high in sugars which definitely have a negative effect on cholesterol and blood sugar.
This is why the Mediterranean diet is so good. It includes, fish, fruit, nuts, olive oil, legumes, vegy’s and little meat and cheese.
Moderation. That’s the key.
And make it fun!
A Rose by any other name…
Would smell as sweet.
In the case of sugar, we have the same issue
Here are other names for sugar, which you may find on food labels:
Fructose – not as good as you thing
High Fructose corn syrup – definitely not as good as you think
Inositol – though not technically a sugar, is a carb and has a sweetening effect.
The bottom line with eating processed foods, that is food that comes in a box and does not resemble anything that grows in the ground, is to check the label for the amount, in grams, of sugars.
While you are at it, it’s also a good idea to have a look at the amount of sodium. Processed foods, especially frozen foods, tend to have a high amount of sodium in them, which can, also damage your health.
Remember, the idea is balance. Going off in any direction for too long creates change in your cells, in your health, in your body.
Diet and nutrition are at the cornerstone of wellness. Not only do they add to the overall well being but they help the patient to center and focus their energy on their own empowerment. This is the first step in taking responsibility for ones health.
The food you eat, the air you breathe, your thoughts and your emotional environment, add to your health and care of your body. These are the tools that help your body to heal, help the nervous system relax fuel our energy and improve our immunity. With Chinese Medicine and Chinese Medical diagnosis, you are guided about the foods and nutritional habits, which benefit you and enhance your longevity and the nutrition, which is weakening your health.
Sun Si Miao, a famous Chinese practitioner, stated that if a person created a healthy lifestyle, including diet, 80% of their health problems would be remedied.
The best nourishment comes from a relaxed, calm mind.
In Chinese medicine, there is recognized, the dual aspects of yin and yang. Yin is the substance, the nourishing, grounding quality. Yang is movement, change, transformation, transportation.
Think of it in the analogy of a car. A car has an engine and there is oil in the engine to help the car move so there is not so much friction with the movement. In this example, the engine is yang and the oil in the engine is yin.
Many people in today’s modern world run the engine without much oil in it. This is especially true, as we age.
Eating is a process where we bring external energies into our body’s center. We do this, relying on our ability to transform these raw materials into usable nutrition, supplementing our blood, bones, organs and bodily functions. When we eat, we open ourselves to take in yin nourishing substances and yang functional qualities. Subtle qualities like our state of mind during meal times can greatly affect our ability to digest. A healthy mind and emotional state leads to a proper mental attitude to eating which leads to energy infusing the Stomach and Spleen, allowing proper digestion and absorption.
There are many ways the body balances itself with nutrition, Being aware of one's metabolic type helps a patient to know what best ways to nourish themselves. Acupuncture then enhances the body's capacity to absorb nutrients, detoxify and tonify the metabolism.
Chinese Medicine offers many suggestions for strengthening the digestion and metabolism. Did you know that:
-- on average, the Chinese diet consists of 3 times more fiber than the average American diet. *
This means that the Chinese naturally incorporate detoxification with their foods. A healthy and clear stomach and intestinal area are the basis to good health. The blood is cleansed by processes of the intestines. The immune system begins here. A healthy gut is a key to longevity. Acupuncture works to tonify the digestive processes which are sluggish and to balance areas that are over working.
--Chinese eat more calories daily than Americans per pound of body weight but suffer little obesity and lower cholesterol.*
How is that possible? The Chinese eat a much lower percentage of fats in their daily diet. Included in their diet are Chinese herbs, the wisdom of stimulating the digestion with Acupuncture and Qi gong and an understanding of nutrition on the effects different types of food have on us so we can taylor our diet to meet our nutritional needs.
Types of Nutritional Counseling
We offer Nutrition Counseling in these categories:
Blood Sugar Balancing
Chinese herbs and Acupuncture can be used in addition to nutritional counseling, as well as specific plant based food supplements and a metabolic profile.
Every wellness program starts with observing the digestion, the foods we readily assimilate and the foods that interrupt our digestion process.
For more information on nutritional counseling specifically for you, call us at: 720-201-4101. We are happy to help!
Here is more information to begin your nutrition awareness:
Foods to Avoid
Coffee Alcohol Chocolate Ice cold foods, including salad
Spicy hot foods including garlic and chili
Coffee, alcohol and chocolate all create toxins and irritate the liver. The stomach lining is more like a delicate plant than an iron combustion chamber. Think of it like a flower. Too much cold or hot water will kill a flower. The stomach creates the delicate process of absorbing and breaking down nutrients. Excess of spicy or cold foods can de-sensitize it making it harder to function in a balanced way.
(For more information on the effect of COLD FOODS on the digestion, go to:
The body is made of 93% or 98% water. Water is transportation in and out of the cells with electrolytes. Electrolytes are chemicals with in the body, which have an electrical charge. This charge creates movement. Movement increases transportation of nutrients and waste into and out of cells through the membrane of the cell. Electrolytes enhance this activity and so provide more effective flushing of waste particles and better absorption of nutrients. Drinking water that is enhanced with electrolytes enhance this activity.
Provided by the food you eat, the air you breathe, your thoughts and your emotional environment, add to your health and care of your body. These are the tools that help your body to heal, help the nervous system relax fuel our energy and improve our immunity. With Chinese Medicine and Chinese Medical diagnosis, you are guided about the foods and nutritional habits which benefit you and enhance your longevity and the nutrition which is weakening your health.
Electrolytes are an important aspect of our body’s chemistry and energy system. Here are a few examples:
Calcium is the most abundant and important mineral in the body. It is an integral element for cellular function throughout the body. Most calcium is stored in the bones and teeth and it is also found in the blood, muscle and interstitial fluid, which is the fluid between cells. Calcium is necessary for blood vessel dilation and contraction, muscle contraction, secretion of hormones and enzymes and relaying messages through the nervous system.
The balance between bone re-absorption and deposition changes as people age. When we experience a shortage of calcium, as women do with menopause, the body will leach calcium from the bones and teeth. This creates osteoporosis.
It is vital to our health to maintain calcium in our body.
Sources of Calcium include: Leafy green vegetables – kale, cabbage, spinach, etc. Broccoli Salmon Tofu (best when cooked with ginger)
You can supplement your calcium intake by taking a powdered or liquid calcium supplement. Calcium supplements in the form of a pill, aren’t as easily absorbed.
To discern whether your calcium supplement is working for you, put a tablet in a cup of water and observer whether it dissolves or not. If it doesn’t dissolve in the water, chances are it won’t dissolve in your digestive track either.
Weight bearing exercise is the best way to increase bone strength. Enjoyable weight bearing exercises are: Weight training Walking Running Dancing
Calcium is excreted from the body in sweat, urine and feces. This excretion can be affected by many factors and by the intake of other electrolytes such as sodium and potassium.
Sodium is found, plentifully, in the American diet, particularly with people who eat out often.
Potassium is found in avocado’s and honey. Increasing dietary potassium intake (such as from 7-8 servings of fruits and vegetables per day) may help to balance high sodium intake and decrease calcium excretion particularly in postmenopausal women.
Ph - Alkalinity and Foods
There can be alot of confusion around the subject of acidic and alkaline foods.
The body maintains a slightly alkaline environment, around 7.4 constantly.
Acids are all around us, in the water, air and food(alcohol, meat, dairy, eggs, medications, etc.) We need a certain amount of acidic food in order for the digestion to work well, however, an excess of acidic food leads to more toxicity in the body and imbalances of blood sugar, leading to diabetes, obesity and inflammation of many types. What is important, is the type of acid foods eaten.
The adrenals are stimulated by acids in the blood, to send out aldosterone to retain more sodium from the kidney to keep the blood alkaline. If the adrenals are fatigued, then hypoglycemia results for cortisol is low in the blood and glucose level falls below normal. Adrenal stress also causes digestive impairment when fight/flight sympathetic system is stimulated, digestion shuts down or is at least, slowed.
Acids in the blood also stress the liver, for the liver can only clear so many acids, then they back up in cells, resulting in lipofuschin, which is a yellow sldge that is a breakdown product of food. This substance can be trapped in cells and impair cell function.
By eating alkaline foods(whole grains, fruits and vegetables) the permeability of cell is increased, thus passive transport is increased, and thus the cell can rid itself of waste. Exercise (aerobic) also helps this process.
Alkaline diet: 25% vegetable 50% grain 15-20% complete protein 5-10% fruit 5% seeds, sprouts
Acid: 45% vegetables 25% grain 10-15% complete protein 10% fruit 5-10% seeds, sprouts