March is a busy month for me this year as I have three trips planned, and my schooling officially starts on the 26th. With everything going on I haven’t found much time to cook and create recipes or write about my ingredients of the week. I have, however, found time to read while traveling and just completed a great book called, “Integrative Nutrition: Feed Your Hunger For Health and Happiness” by Joshua Rosenthal.
I wrote about this book in my post Health is Happiness a few weeks back, because you can download this book for FREE with any electronic device (see post for more information) and I highly recommend it to anyone looking to learn more about nutrition or the Institute for Integrative Nutrition
® It is an easy read, provides you with simple tips to adapt to your everyday life, and has a section in the back of healthy recipes.
Here are 5 topics/tips that I found most useful/interesting in the book:
1). Taking time to slow down and chew my food. I come from a line of fast eaters and I have always been a fast eater myself. Although I have heard multiple times to slow down the eating process so you can tell when your body is full, I had never heard, “slow down the eating process to help with your digestion.” About two months ago I had a sudden onset of severe stomach pains – pains so bad I spent a night in the hospital and the doctors conducted multiple tests on me. First they thought it was my gallbladder, then an ulcer, then an intestinal infection. Luckily all of them checked out, but it was never determined what I actually had, although my doctor is fairly certain it’s a digestive issue. I was put on a bland diet for a few weeks and have been increasingly aware of what I eat. I gave up coffee, dairy products (I have small amounts of cheese), and most seeds and nuts. But I never thought to myself, “Hmm maybe I should slow down, thoroughly chew my food, and see if that helps with my digestion .” I’ve been doing this for about two weeks now and I have already seen a difference in the way my body digests food! My stomach issues were one of the reasons I decided to enroll in IIN
™ and I’m looking forward to learning more in the program so I can help avoid any future stomach issues.
2). Bio-Individuality is a concept that means no two people are alike, which in turn means no two bodies are alike. The foods I eat and work well for my body may not work well for others and vise versa. I often hear people talking about no carb or low carb diets and I have never tried them, nor do I want to. I’m an active person and I enjoy good, high quality carbs and I believe that my body needs them – but that does not mean that everyone else needs them.
3). Tongue cleaning, body rubbing, and using a hot water bottle before bed. I have never heard of any of these concepts and I think I may try them…. Why not?! I like trying new things – I’ve got nothing to lose by trying something new!
4). How to avoid sugar. I have a serious sweet tooth and I am definitely a chocolateholic. Joshua gives some great tips in chapter 9 on how to avoid/substitute sugar. I have become increasingly aware of how much sugar is in processed food. It’s not just the soda and candy bars that contain large amounts of sugar – everything from breads to energy bars have loads of sugar, which is why I try to avoid processed foods as much as possible. I have replaced sugar in most of my cooking by substituting pure maple syrup, honey, and agave nectar. In his book, Joshua recommends a few other substitutes that I have not previously heard of and will look for in my next Whole Foods trip.
5). Cravings. A few quotes really made an impression on me while reading chapter 5 and they are: “Food can fill you, but not fulfill you.” and “(Your body) loves you unconditionally and does its best to allow you to live the life you came here to live. The real issue in this relationship is not whether your body loves you, but whether you love your body….Working to understand your cravings is one of the best places to begin to build a mutually loving relationship with your own body.” Those are some pretty powerful words that really make you think about how you treat your body. You only get one body in life – worship it. You ruin a shirt, you buy a new one. Your TV breaks, you buy a new one. Guess what folks, you can’t buy a new body!! You can try with things such as organ replacements, but it will never be the body you were born with. Treat it right and you won’t have a need for replacement parts!
There were quite a few topics in the book that I was already familiar with, but there were even more that I was not familiar with. This list of 5 topics just scratches the surface of useful information I learned while reading this book. Do your body a favor and get a copy of the book… What do you have to lose?! I guarantee you that you will learn more than you had anticipated!