"Just eat healthy".... ?
What makes a food healthy?
Navigating the food aisles at your local shopping centre is a land mine of targeted marketing. Millions of dollars have gone into the packaging, the colours, the words, the fonts and the branding to establish their brand as the one you know and trust. To have a truly successful shop you need to bypass the smokes and mirrors of the front of the packaging and look to the label on the back. Better yet buy foods that don't need labels (ie. fruits, vegetables and meat). Sometimes we need to venture into the aisles and when you do you want to be armed and prepared with the education to make healthy choices and not coerced into buying the pretty packaging. We've all been there, I've been there. For years I was buying spinach wraps thinking they were healthy because they were full of spinach. One day I decided to flip it over and check just how healthy they were only to find they had .02% spinach powder and their green colouring was food dye.
What's the difference between a food that is healthy, a food that is neither healthy nor unhealthy, and a food that is unhealthy and a food that is unhealthy for me?
- A food that is HEALthy has HEALing properties.
- A food that is healthy has nutrient density.
- A food that is healthy has a higher ratio of nutritional and healing properties to calories.
- A food that is unhealthy, has negative affects on the body, creates stress without a lot of nutrition, has a high calorie intake to negligible nutrient content and creates an increased risk of disease and inflammation.
- A food that is neither healthy nor unhealthy is a food that doesn’t offer any significant health benefits but also doesn't increase risk of disease, they don't have nutrient density but in most cases don't have many harmful effects either. They may be nutritionally empty. There is also a lot to be said about moderation. For example, a glass of red wine or a square of chocolate could have health benefits but a bottle of wine and a block of chocolate would not.
"One mans food is another mans poison"
Naturopaths see you as an individual. We want to identify what makes you unique and work with that. That is our strength. We don't have a one shoe fits all approach. We don't look at the common ground, we look for the little tip offs that show us what makes your health specific to you. In some circumstances a food that is generally considered healthy may not be healthy or well tolerated by you. There are plenty of ways to determine if the foods you are eating one of them being a food sensitivity test or an elimination/rotation diet.