WHAT SHOULD I EAT?
The most common question I get in the office is what can I eat or what should I eat? This question usually comes after I tell the person what they should not be eating. Making a change in your diet is a HUGE deal and should come in small increments so that you can be successful. I follow a set plan for diet modification and the first step is to eliminate any food to which you are having an immune system reaction. You could have a true food allergy like a peanut allergy or a food sensitivity that causes symptoms similar to an allergy but the reactions are slower and more mild or a food intolerance like lactose intolerance. The majority of reactions are to grain, sugar or dairy product. There are several tests to determine if you are having an immune reaction but I usually start by using a kinesiology screen in the office that is a simple and inexpensive way to determine food sensitivity.
The second phase of dietary modification is glycemic management or sugar elimination and the restoration of normal carbohydrate consumption. Most of us only need about 75 grams of carbohydrate per day to function optimally. The typical American breakfast is usually double that amount of carbohydrate.
Sugar makes you fat. Fat does not have to make you fat. Low fat diets are nonsense. The proper fat in the right ratios is what is needed for normal cell function and overall health and vitality. In general we consume too many omega-6 fatty acids in the form of vegetable oils that have replaced the use of butter and lard. We do not consume enough omega-3 fatty acids to maintain cell function and hormone production. The addition of trans- fat from hydrogenated oils into our cell membrane has made our cells stupid and unable to regulate cell function. Just taking fish oil is not the answer because each person has unique needs determined by genetics and lifestyle (epigenetics). Get the right fats in the proper ratios and you set the stage for healing to occur and health to be restored. Eliminate trans-fat, restore the correct omega-3/6 ratio and be sure to include some saturated fat in your diet like animal fat or coconut oil.
Structurally we are composed of protein and minerals. Quality sources of animal protein are the best choice for protein. Nuts, seeds and vegetables will provide your minerals. During each phase of dietary change we discuss viable options to your current diet based upon your specific needs and lifestyle.
Consistency and time are the key determinant issues when it comes to success or failure when initiating diet and lifestyle modifications. A minimum of twelve weeks is required for immune system down regulation to occur during the first phase of change. When the immune system is being challenged by food, toxins or chronic infection it can become under or over reactive and contribute or cause many chronic health problems. Not all phases are required for each person. Some people have a normal immune response to food but they need to get the sugar out of their diet and fix the fat ratios. We all need to eat more nuts, seeds and vegetables.
So the diet question is not a simple one to answer but at the same time the answer does not have to be complex. Each person is unique and a diet should be tailored that persons unique physiology, genetic makeup and lifestyle.