The American diet has long designated meat – whether beef, poultry, pork or otherwise – as a major player on a well-balanced plate. But time and science have steadily chipped away at this supposed nutrition icon, with the venerated World Health Organization (WHO) declaring in 2015 that processed meat causes cancer.
A juicy hamburger . . . lip-smacking barbecued ribs . . . saucy chicken cutlets . . . savory pork chops. Sound tasty? But meats like these are off-limits for a growing number of people – purely by choice. Interest in plant-based diets, which center on vegetables, fruits, whole grains, nuts and beans, has virtually exploded in recent years.
What’s one of the first things we all learned about sugar when we were kids? That it would rot our teeth… especially if we didn’t whip out our toothbrushes just after we ate it. But the medical evidence on sugar consumption has advanced far beyond its impact on our teeth. We now know, for instance, that some sugars are natural and necessary, while others—particularly processed or added sugars—can spell trouble for our overall health.
Smack in the center of worthwhile nutrition knowledge is one overarching point: eating a healthy diet not only increases energy levels but also reduces our risks of developing conditions such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, diabetes and other dreaded maladies.
But what does that elusive “healthy diet” actually entail? According to Viver Health, if we conceptualize our daily food intake as one figurative plate (the Viver Plate), half would be covered by fruits and vegetables; one-quarter would be covered by protein such as turkey, chicken, or fish; and one-quarter would be covered by whole grains such as whole wheat pasta, brown rice or quinoa and beans. In addition, we’d also consume one-third cup of nuts, seeds, fats, or plant oils per day.
Nearly every day we’re bombarded with news aiming to shape our thoughts and decisions about nutrition and wellness . . . telling us to eat this, avoid that, or move our bodies in a certain way. Rarely, however, is this information delivered in absolutes, revelations so undeniable they demand our attention, happily confirming what we’re doing right . . . or compelling us to change our habits if we’ve been missing the mark.
This past year we’ve followed Cory Booker, the New Jersey Senator, and his non-sugar diet. We’ve read reviews about That Sugar Film. A Gallup poll came out saying 61% of adults now actively try to avoid sodas because of the sugar. With so many people talking about sugar without really discussing the consequences, we thought we would explain exactly why sugar is so harmful.
We asked our guest health expert, Jodie Hutchinson, PA to chime in on the importance of omega 3s for good health. Omega 3 Fatty acids are called “essential” fatty acids because the body needs them but can’t produce them, so we have to add them to our diet. A diet rich in omega-3s stops inflammation and reduces the body’s overall burden of chronic inflammation. The importance of a healthy diet has gained relevance as scientists research the growing role of chronic inflammation in causing disease.