Are you what you eat?
Nutritional Guru Patrick Holford and award-winning health writer Hazel Courteney speak about how food can work as medicine.
Thousands of people die every year from the side effects of medicine, with the number of deaths almost tripling between 1998 and 2005. Doctors are prescribing more and stronger drugs. The pharmaceutical industry sells £600 billion worth of medicine a year, says Patrick Holford, nutritionist and author of The Optimum Nutrition Bible and 35 other books. In America one in nine women take anti-depressants. But is this all necessary?
“All of today’s major health issues can be solved by simple, radical changes in the way we live and eat – not by more and more drugs,” says Patrick Holford. A lack of certain nutrients can contribute to feeling low so to ward off depression, he recommends getting omega 3 fats, zinc and magnesium into one’s system. A change in diet could cure an annoying chronic headache caused by dehydration, blood sugar problems, allergies to food and a lack of Vitamin B.
Hazel Courteney, an award-winning health writer, who has worked as a columnist for the Daily Mail and Sunday Times, says that cutting down on alcohol, coffee, high fat and sugary processed foods and drinks can often help cure acne in most young people. She explains that these foods overload the liver, which is the organ responsible for breaking down and eliminating toxins and excess hormones. If the liver becomes overloaded, then the toxins end up being “dumped” in the skin, triggering a host of conditions including acne.
People should not always rely on food as medicine, however, with most nutritionists pointing out that a health food shop should not replace a doctor’s office. Melanie Flower, a nutritional therapist based in London, says that nutritional medicine “is best used as a lifestyle choice to prevent future chronic health conditions. Orthodox medicine is fantastic at dealing with medical emergencies.”
Rather than swallowing hundreds of pills, a change of diet is often all that is needed to cure chronic degenerative diseases. Doctors keep prescribing drugs because they are unaware of the healing effects the right diet can have. Patrick Holford says: “A young GP’s training is hopelessly inadequate and covers virtually nothing on nutritional medicine. If your doctor is over the age of 35, then the chances are, in seven years training they will have had six to 12 hours education in nutrition, most of which is very basic.”
Suyogi Gessner, who practises Ayurveda, an alternative medicine native to India, gives another explanation. According to her, a patient expects a doctor to perform a miracle and cure them almost immediately. Food is a medicine that takes time to cure, whereas drugs work very quickly. For patients, it is easy to take a pill because they do not have to change their diet and can continue living their lives the way they did before. What they do not realize, is that their illness might have been the result of the wrong diet.
“Prevention is far better than cure,” says Hazel Courteney. “Your body is made of food molecules, your body is literally made of what you eat, plus light, air and water.” Apparently, as many as 75 per cent of all chronic degenerative diseases are triggered by a poor diet, lacking in sufficient nutrients. But even if you inherit a specific cancer gene, you can help load the generic “dice” in your favour by eating anti-cancerous foods such as fresh fruits and vegetables.
The number of supplements and suppliers is inestimable and many people are sceptical of the benefits. Melanie Flower says: “Some supplements are a rip off and some are extremely valuable. There is a lot of variation in what is available today. It is always best to see the advice of a qualified nutrition practitioner before taking supplements.” Hazel Courteney emphasizes the importance to eat enough vitamins, minerals and essential fats. “Supplements should never be used as a substitute for a healthy, balance diet,” she says. However, supplements are better than nothing and maybe necessary, since nowadays many fruits and vegetables contain lower levels of nutrients than they did 50 years ago.
We should not underestimate the curing effect of nutrition. “If medicine was meant to be used on a daily basis, nature would have let it grow on trees,” says Michael Gehler, a on-medical practitioner specialised in Traditional Chinese Medicine. A good place to start would be by reading “The Optimum Nutrition Bible” by Patrick Holford. He said: “This stuff should be taught in school.”
And here is a little extra for people who are interested in their spiritual development: Pascal Voggenhuber, the youngest professional and famous medium from Switzerland, writes in his book “Entdecke deine Sensitivität” (translation: Discover your sensitvity) that it is important to take care of our body if we want to unfold spiritually. “We must treat our bodies like a temple and take great care of him. Only then the spirit enjoys living with us*,” he writes in his book.
*that is my own translation. Hopefully there will be English translations of his books soon.
Source and find more: healthy-spirit.org