Vital foods provide optimal nutrition and assist in our ability to thrive.
Be mindful when sitting down to eat a meal and give gratitude to the food itself and those who took care to provide the nourishment.
Eat with awareness.
Eat real food.
Real food is vital. Stay away from processed & factory food.
The highest quality foods come from farmers who rotate crops and use organic bug control & fertilizers.
Increase your intake of organic, locally grown vegetables, organic eggs, organic butter, extra virgin olive oil, raw almonds, pumpkin seeds, freshly ground flax or chia seeds, brown rice, old fashioned steel cut oats, local/seasonal fruits and organic pastured meats.
Limit wild caught ocean fish to 2 times per week.
100 years ago the term “organic” did not bring about thoughts of expense or luxury. Organic food was simply food. It is only in our current time that food needs to be labeled as “organic” because much of what is stocked on the grocery store shelves has been corrupted from its natural, organic state.
Eat foods that are available and grown locally. Doing so helps to keep us attuned to the Earth, to the cycles of nature and its elements. When possible, it is economical & gratifying to tend to your own garden. There you may bear witness to the miracles of nature and grow your own organic foods.
cleansing, a time of purification, healing & fertility (Ester/Easter/Estrogen)
Summer: a time of expansion & warmth, growth & activity
Autumn: Harvest time, a shift in energy, climate & diet from expansion and growth to introspection & contraction.
Winter: Hibernation time, Stillness, Rest & Replenishment
Avoid Processed Foods
Any food that has been denatured from its original state or has had chemicals added to it is considered processed. The food processing industry is not motivated by health, it is motivated by profit. Factory food, no matter what the label claims, is not healthy. Pre-packaged, ready to eat foods containing additives, preservatives, food colouring, aspartame/nutrasweet/Aminosweet need to be avoided.
If you do not know what an ingredient is on a label, your body does not either, do not eat it!
Pure, clean water is the only beverage necessary for good health.
We recommend filtered water for optimal benefit.
City tap water no longer delivers a safe alternative. Residue from pharmaceuticals, including chemotherapy, can be found in residential water.
Berkey water filters are reliable and economical.
Reverse osmosis & distilled water are clean but be aware that they are also free of minerals and will acidify the blood.
If you have the option, drink Berkey water and cook with reverse osmosis or distilled water because the minerals will be drawn out of the vegetables or tea leaves. The one drawback from drinking only reverse osmosis or distilled water is that it can exacerbate osteoporosis.
Brita water filters lack the ability to remove as many toxins as the Berkey filters and the Brita water is stored in plastic.
You can purchase bottled water in glass and bottled water in plastic. NEVER drink out of plastic. Even if the bottle is listed as BPA-free (Bisphenol-A-free) there are numerous other plastic chemicals that are potential endocrine disruptors.
To flavour your water, add a twist of lemon or lime or drink herbal tea such as nettle, mint, rooibos, hibiscus, etc…
Drink fruit juice diluted ½ and ½ with water to reduce the excess sugar content of each glass.
All fruit juices have been pasteurized so they are less nutritious than fresh juice. Fresh pressed fruit & vegetable juices are the superior way of getting the concentrated nutrition of fruits and vegetables as the fibre, which uses up digestive enzymes, is removed.
AVOID all processed vegetable oils including canola oil, margarine and shortening. These oils are heat damaged and too high in omega 6 fatty acids.
Choose extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, grass fed ghee and grass fed butter to use as everyday kitchen oils.
When cooking at high heats USE ONLY coconut oil and/or grass fed ghee. For those who are following an omnivore traditional diet, chicken, goose or duck fat along with tallow & suet from beef & lamb may also be used. These fats are composed primarily of both saturated & monosaturated fats which maintain their integrity when heated.
Include healthy fats in every meal. They are necessary elements for health. Dietary fats provide a concentrated source of energy and are central to the development of healthy cell membranes and hormones. Fats serve as carriers for vitamin A, D, E and K and are essential for mineral absorption.
Fats for Cooking at HIGH temperatures
Fats for cooking at MODERATE temperature OR to eat raw
Fats to consume RAW (no heat)
AVOID Genetically Modified Foods (GMO’S)
Genetically modified foods have been allowed onto our plates without passing any safety studies, nor regulation. Food containing genetically modified ingredients have no labeling requirements. Foods are being genetically engineered to facilitate industrial harvesting, to allow for planting before the frost-free period, to resist insects, or to resist pesticide sprays but almost never to improve nutrition or nutritional contents. Moreover, companies are seeking to control the licensing of seeds which provides these few companies with more money & power but less freedom for farmers & growers. For millennia, a delicate dance between plants & insects, between plants & soil bacteria, between plants & the position of the sun has been continually evolving with concordance & collaboration. These intricate relationships are rejected when plants are genetically modified.
Research shows concerning effects from GM foods on humans and other animals.
The most common GM foods are corn, soy, canola & cottonseed
AVOID these Genetically Modified Products
Corn: corn syrup, high-fructose corn syrup (HFCS), glucose-fructose, soda pop, fruit drinks, juices sweetened with glucose-fructose, Gatorade, dextrose, corn starch.
Soy: soy flour, soy protein, vegetable protein, protein isolate, non-organic tofu, tamari, tempeh, textured vegetable protein (TVP), protein supplements, “natural” flavours, lecithin.
Canola and Cottonseed Oil
Food Additives, flavourings and processing agents
REDUCE Glycemic Index
Over the last century, there has been a tremendous increase in rates of diabetes, heart disease and obesity. These conditions correlate to our intake of the Standard American Diet and processed foods – most notably processed vegetable oils and refined carbohydrates. Refined carbohydrates have a high glycemic index. The Glycemic index refers to the rate at which a food turns to sugar once it has been eaten. Refining food increases its glycemic index.
For example: turning corn into corn syrup, refining wheat into wheat flour, puffing a grain into a ready-to-eat cereal increases the rate at which the carbohydrates in food turn into sugar.
AVOID foods with a HIGH Glycemic Index
STABILIZE Glycemic Index by including the following in each meal:
High water content vegetables: eat 3-6 cups daily, include them as a least half of each meal
Healthy fats: extra virgin olive oil/coconut oil, organic butter, raw nuts/seeds, avocado
Healthy proteins: include eggs, ocean fish, meat or legumes in your meals
STARCHES with the Best Glycemic Index include:
Low glycemic vegetables:
Legumes especially those that you have prepared by soaking/sprouting before cooking, versus those from a can
Grains in their “whole” kernal state (not milled into flour) soaked, or sprouted
Breads made from sprouted or sourdough
Soak Grains before use
Grains contain phytic acid. Phytic acid blocks proper digestion of grains and inhibits the absorption of minerals such as iron, calcium, magnesium, copper & zinc. Sprout, sour leaven or soak grains overnight before cooking to help neutralize phytic acid.
Cook Your foods at low temperatures
Low temperature cooking preserves nutrients in the food. Steam or poach your foods. Use a crock pot or cook your foods in a covered glass dish in a low temperature oven (225F for 12-15 min. per 4oz of food).
Make food preparation a priority
It takes time to prepare nutritious, healthy food. Food preparation is one of the most important tasks in your household. Do not leave a task of such importance up to the whimsy of the food industry. Health cannot be obtained by eating processed, packaged, ready-to-eat foods. Prepare foods with love and awareness.
Include Raw food in your diet
Raw foods have important nutrients and enzymes essential for optimal health. Cooking destroys these nutrients or makes them less bio-available. Some people with lowered vitality may not tolerate raw vegetables and will need to steam them lightly. Grains and legumes should NOT be
eaten raw. Do not overcook meat or egg yolks.
AVOID microwave ovens, teflon and plastics
Avoid microwaves: go stove top! Purchase a hot plate for work or use a toaster oven.
Avoid teflon, invest in a high quality cast iron pan and season it well.
Reduce purchases of foods and drinks stored in plastic. Store food in glass containers.
Steps to IMPROVE digestion
Take the time to eat.
Do not eat when anxious, upset or rushed.
Do not eat on the run.
Sit down when you eat. Do some deep breathing before meals to relax the body.
Be grateful for your food. Be mindful of what you are eating.
Chew your food well.
Limit beverages with meals – drink 30 minutes before meals or 1 hour after.
Eat 3 balanced meals a day, limit/avoid snacking if possible.
Give your digestive system a rest at least 12 hours nightly and 3 hours between meals.
Include raw foods, fermented foods, and bone broths.
Keep food combinations simple.
For a sensitive gut, eat fruits separately: 45 minutes before meals or 3 hours after.
EMR (Electromagnetic Radiation), Electricity & Electropollution
Electromagnetic Radiation (EMR) in our environment is a growing concern.
The advent and increased use of cellphones, computer wifi, radios and microwaves has propelled our society into a situation in which we are bombarded by electromagnetic fields that have consequences for our health.
Ionizing Radiation includes x-rays, gamma rays & nuclear radiation
exposing the body to these highly reactive ions at certain levels can dramatically affect the atomic structure
Electromagnetic radiation is a controversial issue worldwide.
Various studies globally have identified that extremely
low frequency (ELF), radio frequency (RF) and microwave
radiation (collectively called electrosmog or electromagnetic
radiation – EMR) can negatively affect us over prolonged
periods of time (acute exposures are not commonly seen
except perhaps occupationally).
Healing with Whole Foods, Paul Pitchford
Staying Healthy with Nutrition, Elson M. Hass & Buck Levin
Nourishing Traditions, Sally Fallon & Mary Enig
The Healing Power of Nature information from Jacinta Willems ND