I look forward to Summer not because of the warmer weather, but mainly for the abundancy of sweet and delicious fruits that will be available. Watermelon, peaches, nectarines, corn, strawberries, and so forth. Sure, I can probably buy those fruits that have been shipped from other countries, but really, do I want to eat a piece of fruit that was sitting on a tree 10,000 miles away? No, I think I prefer fresher fruits and vegetables that were locally grown.
I was raised at an early age to eat lots of fruits and vegetables. My husband was not. So I try to teach my son to eat lots of fruits and vegetables so that when he gets older, hopefully he’ll continue with this good habit. Thankfully, he loves his fruits and vegetables. Now I’m not saying that we don’t indulge in the occassional “junk food” in our household, we just don’t eat them every day and I don’t buy them often so they’re not tempting us. And whenever possible, I try to buy healthier junk foods. Are there healthier junk foods you may ask? Well, they’re just not loaded with a lot of unnecssary ingredients like refined sugar, hydrogenated oils, trans fat, high fructose corn syrup, and other health-depleting ingredients.
Have you ever heard of the saying, ” You are what you eat”? Well, I find that mostly true, especially in the U.S. where food is so abundant and accessible. But, are we all in danger of eating too much processed food and food ladened with hydrogenated fat and toxic chemicals? I believe we still are since obesity is still on the rise, and more so in children nowadays. After all, if you teach your children to eat and live a healthy lifestyle at a young age, most likely they’ll carry that trait into their adult years. Fresh fruits and vegetables are not only a staple in our household, but it’s a necessity. Besides being a vegetarian, I find that fresh fruits are really delicious and sweet! Some of them more so than a piece of candy or cake. We always have at least one or two varieties of fruit in our house, and when the warmer season comes, I’ll be buying a lot more yummy fruits at the local farmers market or natural grocery store.
Since I was raised to eat healthy and to be more conscious of what I eat, I try to teach my son that same lesson. And being raised in a family of doctors and health experts, I’ve also done my own research as well as learned from my family members. But it’s no mystery to know that eating foods rich in important vitamins and minerals is the key to living a healthier lifestyle and in most cases, prevent certain diseases and disorders. And to add icing on the cake, so to speak, eating foods that are organically grown enhances your chances of living a healthier life. Organically-grown foods are grown without the use of toxic pesticides, they’re not genetically modified, and they’re also grown in organic soil. Thus, they are providing a healthier product for the consumer and for the planet. However, not everyone has the means to eat organic food all of the time. Yes, it’s important to do so, but if it’s not possible, then eat as much locally and fresh or “raw” foods as possible. Below, I’ve listed the important reasons to eat food that are rich in vitamins and minerals and how they can help you live a healthier lifestyle.
* Green food such as kale, broccoli, bok choy, spinach, collards, watercress, and arugula contain chlorophyll which helps eliminate environmental toxins in the body and protects the liver.
* Fruits and vegetables rich in Vitamin C such as lemon, oranges, tangerines, cantaloupe, strawberries, tomatoes, kiwi, and red bell peppers help protect the cells from free radicals and is a natural detox vitamin.
*Garlic is excellent in antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal purposes and has been provent to prevent certain type of cancers. It’s also excellent in helping to reduce high cholesterol and high blood pressure as well as fight certain infections.
*Ginger is best known for its assistance with stomach and intestinal problems. It also helps in flushing out toxins in the liver and kidneys. It’s also been known to shorten the length of the common cold and flu.
*Whole Grains such as brown rice, barley, and quinoa are full of soluble fiber which soaks up toxins in the body so that they’re more easily flushed out. Fiber also promotes easier digestion further down the road.
Below is a list of 12 common foods that contain the most pesticide residue even after careful washing or peeling. These are crucial in buying and eating organic:
1- CELERY (THE WORST)
2- PEACHES (THE WORST)
3- STRAWBERRIES (THE WORST)
7- BELL PEPPERS
9 – CHERRIES
10 – KALE/COLLARD GREENS
12 – GRAPES (IMPORTED)
These are just guidelines on what is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle. The math is pretty simple – you eat well, then you’ll feel well. Of course as an individual, you should always do your own research before trying anything new or different.
Wishing you good health!