There is an important distinction between living and not dying. It is a distinction that is overlooked far too often these days. The older you get, the greater the distinction, and proper nutrition is the cornerstone of an active, healthy, medication-free life â€“ the kind of life where you donâ€™t have to endure dwindling health, memory and vitality â€“ the kind of life you live fully, right up until the day you die.
To live this kind of life, consider striving to work toward integrating better nutrition into your life with the following tips:
The closer a food item is to the natural, wild state in which it lived, the greater its nutritional content is likely to be. Fresh fruits and vegetables are more nutritious than their frozen, canned or processed versions. A cherry tomato picked in your garden the minute before you pop it into your mouth almost certainly contains more nutritional value than the cherry tomato you buy in the grocery store.
We need variety. No single food contains everything we need to nourish our bodies. Even if you pick 10 of your favorite foods, they will not contain all the nourishment you need. So eat a wide variety of foods. You donâ€™t need one of each every day, but keep varying the menu. Be adventurous.
The most nutritious foods do not come in packages. Rather, you find these items in the produce department and the butcher department of your grocery store. But these days, you have to be alert. Indeed, youâ€™re likely to find pre-packaged snacks and other no-nos in the produce department, which is often unfortunately close to the bakery. Stay focused and dedicated to finding and purchasing only the foods that are sure to nourish you.
Additionally, all food packages are required to contain a Nutrition Facts label. Donâ€™t put too much weight on the table portion of the label as it is often misleading. Instead, look at the ingredients list, which is listed from most to least. Try to stick with products that have no more than five ingredients. If you cannot pronounce any of the ingredients, donâ€™t eat the product. If it contains partially hydrogenated anything, leave it in the store. There are over 11,000 man-made chemicals that can be added to our food, which are usually only listed collectively as colors or flavors (natural and artificial) and are leading suspects in Americaâ€™s battle against obesity, fatigue, degenerative illness and chronic pain.
Nutritious food comes from a farm, not from a factory. Whereas factory-generated food products can fill your belly, real food from a farm nourishes your body. When your meals are prepared at home, you are in complete control of what you eat. Bring the leftovers to work the next day for lunch. If you eat restaurant food regularly, do some homework and find out the nutritional value and ingredients in what youâ€™re eating.
There is a big difference between filling your belly and nourishing your body. Filling your belly may get you through today; you will satisfy your hunger by filling your belly. But nourishing your body today and every day will make a difference for the rest of your life. That is your choice every time you eat.
Remember, there is a difference between living and not dying. Everyone will get to experience the difference. Nourish your body so you can experience the difference from the perspective of living â€“ living a pain-free, medicine-free and doctor-free life. VT
By DR. MICHAEL CASSARO, Special Contributor