Atkins, Paleo, Zone, Mediterranean, and South Beach etc. There are literally thousands of different diets on the market, all of which purport to be the magical cure for your health or to achieve weight loss or make you young and beautiful again.
Eating well, however, is a lifestyle, not a diet!
The average North American diet consists of a high fat, high sugar diet containing too much red meat and a frightening amount of processed foods. Sugar used to be considered a condiment. Today, the average North American ingests approximately 140 pounds of sugar each year. Soft drinks have replaced water as the number one drink of choice! As a result, we are getting less of the other nutrients that play a role in maintaining our health. In addition, ingesting sugar may also deplete our bodies of calcium. Ingesting large amounts of sugar also causes a significant increase in the fasting serum cortisol level. Cortisol is the primary corticosteroid secreted by the adrenal gland. Although corticosteroids have important biological functions, an excess of these hormones can cause osteoporosis.
Earlier in this blog, I stated that you need to find a practitioner to help guide you through the confusion and mass of information out there. For me, the best starting point is the Canada Food Guide. It contains a wealth of well researched and balanced information. The link is listed below.
In summary what it provides is:
A food guide serving, which is a reference point to measure how much you eat.
Recommended Number of Food Guide Servings chart. It shows how much food you need from each of the four food groups every day. The recommendations are based on your age and gender.
In addition to the four food groups, it recommends a small amount of unsaturated oils and fats such as canola, olive, or soybean.
Until recently, it was unclear if our changing diet would influence the symptoms of chronic illness or chronic pain. More and more research is indicating that certain nutrients can boost an immune function and decrease inflammation. The reverse is also true, foods and additives can actually worsen these symptoms as well contribute to obesity, which increases the stress on muscles, joints, and ligaments thereby contributing to pain and inflammation.
You are what you eat!
Later on, I will review different diets, such as the anti-inflammatory diet, and their impact and use in different medical conditions.
Watch for other Core Essentials in future posts, so that you can truly live a healthful and active life.
To your pain-free health,
Bridge Physiotherapy and Massage