Search: Articles:


Dr. Richard Isaacson

On Your Grocery List : How to Choose Healing and Living Foods

Did you know that the artificial ingredients and preservatives in processed foods that you eat every day could be making you sick? Not only can the ingredients in some foods cause allergies, but some have been linked to cancer and diseases like Celiac disease. Checking food labels is one way to protect yourself against harmful ingredients, but even better is choosing a diet based on healthy, living foods. Eating to heal your body is the best way to shield yourself from food-related toxins.

Food Labels

To protect you against potentially harmful food and food processes, the USDA has created certain rules and regulations regarding labeling procedures. Soon, however, the rules regarding what a food manufacturer can and can’t claim about their product will loosen, making the market even more confusing for those genuinely interested in eating for health.

Even now, labels can be misleading. For example, there are no legal requirements for claiming that a food is ‘pure’ or ‘natural.’ In the same way, if a product claims to be ‘enriched’ it only means that it was over processed originally and that in order to have any redeeming nutritional features, it was necessary to re-introduce vitamins and nutrients. The only label term that a consumer can truly trust to mean that a product is healthy is ‘certified organically grown.’ Even the terms ‘organically grown’ and ‘pesticide free’ are not regulated by the USDA and could mean anything - or nothing at all. Here’s how the USDA defines organic label definitions:

100% Organic - This term gets the USDA seal and means that every ingredient is 100% organic.

Organic - This term, too, qualifies the product for a USDA seal and means that at least 95% of the ingredients are organic.

Made with Organic Ingredients - This means that between 70 and 95 percent of the ingredients are organic.

Healing Foods

After a lifetime of eating processed foods, chemically treated fruits and vegetables, and meat from animals raised on antibiotics and hormones, we’ve already done quite a bit of damage to our bodies. To start combating that damage, it’s essential to start eating healthily.

It has been suggested that eating organic produce and foods that are as unprocessed as possible is the best way to eat healthy. Just as important is the number of servings as well as the focus on certain types of foods. For example, the single most important aspect of healthy, healing diet is water. Water flushes the system of toxins and in general helps your organs to work better. The next most important focus in your diet should be organically grown fresh fruits and vegetables. A wide variety will help you get the nutrients your body needs without having to depend upon vitamins and supplements. Whole grains as well as a few vegetables that breakdown and are used much like grains in the body (like potatoes) are next in line, followed by non-animal protein sources like beans. Good fats found in monounsaturated oils and nuts are next and low fat, calcium rich dairy products follow. Lean meats and secondary, but fish and seafood, both rich in omega-3 fatty acids, should be the focus of two to three meals per week. Certain seasonings like onions, parsley, garlic, and peppers add taste as well as healing benefits. In small amounts, dark chocolate provides anti oxidants and alcohol aids in digestion. By using the foods in your diet to heal your body, your need for conventional medicine will decrease.

Living Foods

Living foods refers to raw, uncooked foods and is one way to make sure that you get the most benefit from each of the foods that you eat. Cooking eliminates the beneficially structured water in fruits and vegetables and converts proteins that it doesn’t destroy, making them more difficult for our bodies to digest and use. Minerals are lost as well in the cooking process, as is oxygen and the enzymes necessary to create the chain reaction of cellular division, energy production, and immune system maintenance. At the same time, pesticides are converted into even more toxic substances and free radicals are created.

By paying attention to food labels and definitions, choosing foods that are healing and organically grown, and eating as many as possible in their original, uncooked form, you will create a diet that will heal your body instead of destroying its natural processes and making it work harder instead of smarter.

Commenting is not available in this section entry.