The 3 Vital Pillars of a Healing Diet
With so many different diets being promoted these days, it can be easy to lose sight of what makes sense when it comes to a healthy, sustainable healing diet.
The problem is that most medical doctors know only how to prescribe drugs to treat symptoms of discomfort or disease, which of course comes with a host of potential side-effects.
On the other hand, so-called "alternative" practitioners know that true healing is about addressing "the cause" in order to reduce toxicity and to correct deficiency that leads to dis-ease. And to achieve this effectively, there are three universally recognised pillars that help to support these very foundations of healing.
Read on to discover our 3 vital pillars of a healing diet and why they're so important for building robust health, vitality and longevity.
1. Add More Raw Plant Food
If you believe in the power of plant food as medicine, then this pillar will make perfect sense to you.
When it comes to healing your body, a plant-based, whole-food diet is what helps to detoxify and nourish like nothing else can.
Plants contain thousands of phytonutrients which are loaded with electric energy obtained from the earth and sunlight that speaks to human cells.
In fact, plants grown in the temperate zone in which you live are known to carry an oscillating frequency of nutrition that your cells can identify with. For this reason, we always recommend that you buy locally grown produce from your local markets whenever you can.
Key reasons why plant whole foods heal:
- Fibre: fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and gains, are filled with fibre, which not only help to fill you up, but also to perform a crucial function of pushing waste through your digestive system. Dietary fibre is what reduces the buildup of toxins in your digestive tract, which ultimately is the key to preventing illness and disease from growing, as well as supporting an optimal digestive function.
- Vitamins and minerals: fruits and vegetables are packed with a variety of vitamins and minerals in large quantities to nourish your cells. By eating a variety of these year-round, you can ensure you’re getting all the vitamins you need to support your immune system and good health.
- Blood sugar: fruits and vegetables do contain natural sugars, but it won’t cause your blood sugar to spike the way processed, 'man-made' sugars can. When you eat processed or refined carbohydrates, your blood sugar tends to spike and then quickly drop, leaving you tired, irritable, and hungrier than ever. It creates a vicious cycle that you try to solve with more refined carbohydrates, leading to weight gain, heart disease, obesity, and more. Fruits and vegetables contain 'slow sugars' which don't overwhelm the pancreas and allow your body to obtain a steady stream of energy.
- Whole foods: eating foods in their most natural state is incredibly healing to your body because they're "complete" foods that have all of the vitamins, minerals, natural sugars, fibre and protein in perfect balance the way mother nature created them. The problem is that once they have their nutrients stripped out or altered through processing, these foods can contribute to imbalances in the body. A perfect example is organic whole wheat which is processed and refined into white flour or bread to now become a nutritionally "empty" food. It's through this processing, that suddenly bread or flour is now blamed for conditions like celiacs or gluten-intolerance, when in fact the real cause was the chemicals used in the processing of it into a commercial food.
Ways to Add More Raw Plant-Based Foods that Heal:
- Smoothies - Start every day with a delicious fruit or green smoothie. By doing this, you can take in 5-6 servings of fruit and vegetables in one delicious, nutritious drink early in the day. For a smoothie, add frozen ripe banana chunks into a base of coconut water, coconut milk or almond milk in a blender. Then add two pitted organic medjool dates, followed by some frozen fresh berries. For a green smoothie, go with coconut water, dates and then a couple of handfuls of organic spinach and/or kale.
- Cold Pressed Juice - Unlike centrifugal juicing machines i.e. high speed, noisy juicers used by most juice bars and cafes, cold-pressed juicing is a much slower method that carefully grinds and presses the produce to extract the juice. This method ensures that the nutrients and enzymes remain intact to feed your cells. Gather a variety of fruits and vegetables from your local farmers' market, rinse and prepare your juice.
Example juice blends include:
Tip: Prepare several batches of juice to cover a few days and store in glass bottles or jars in the refrigerator. Cold Pressed juice will remain fresh if stored in this way for up to 72 hours.
- Pulse Sacred Meal - Pulse is a perfect any time wholefood snack prepared to an ancient sacred recipe from raw dried fruits, nuts, seeds and roots. It's a great way to add a variety of wholefood nutrients to your diet
- Green Salads - At either lunch or dinner time, start with a large green salad before your main meal. Use fresh lettuce or spinach as a base, then add whatever you like from there; red onions, cherry tomatoes, cucumber chunks, avocado slices and walnuts etc. Drizzle with fresh lemon juice and extra virgin olive oil. This habit once per day alone, will add vital plant fibres, vitamins and minerals to your diet and it will help to curb your appetite so that you don't over eat your main meal.
Always try to eat whole foods that are in season to ensure you get the freshest, local produce, while saving money and ensuring you’re getting a variety of nutrients year-round.
2. Avoid Inflammatory Foods
Many readily available and packaged foods cause the body to react adversely or to go into damage control, sometimes without you noticing it immediately.
Typically, these are foods that have been altered, cooked, processed or preserved with some form of chemicals that are toxic to the body. Foods that fall into this category are inflammatory foods and should be avoided.
- White bread, flour, pasta, rice;
- Homogenised and Pasteurised Dairy;
- Fried, fatty foods cooked in hydrogenated vegetable oils
- Processed sugar and artificial sweeteners
- Processed meats e.g. salami, bacon, sausages, corned beef
- Packaged cereals, cookies, cakes and biscuits
Toxins come in many forms. It’s not just the chemicals that you’re exposed to in certain home and self-care products (thought they’re plenty), but also the toxins that you willingly and even unknowingly ingest.
Every time you eat these types of foods, you set yourself to suffer from allergens like gluten or dairy intolerance and/or you're promoting the build up of toxins in your gut, which can ultimately lead to illness and disease.
By limiting your intake of these foods, you can naturally help heal your body.
At the same time, by increasing your intake of pure, clean water and whole foods, you'll be supporting your body to flush out the toxins already in your body. This is a key to healing and building up strong defences, as well as feeling more energised and vibrant than ever before.
Certain types of temporary inflammation isn’t necessarily bad for you (after all, your body uses it as a way to heal or protect from injuries like cuts, bruises and sprained joints), however chronic inflammation that forms in the gut is quite dangerous for your health and can lead to a host of diseases if left unchecked.
It’s important to know exactly what you’re putting in your body—and on it as well. Remember that your skin is cytophylactic, meaning it acts like a sponge, absorbing everything you put on it. This is why it's also important to make sure you understand each of the ingredients in your self care and household products, from deodorant to makeup and even laundry detergent. You can find natural products at our store with ingredients you can trust.
Learn more in Natural DIY Alternatives to Chemical Laundry Soaps.
3. Incorporate Fasting
One of the hottest health topics going around these days is Fasting, but the reality is that Fasting is not knew. Fasting has been around for thousands of years as a tool for healing and longevity, but the problem is that most mainstream doctors don't believe in its benefits at all, instead only recommending what they've been trained in, which is invasive medicine and surgeries.
It seems ironic that one of the vital pillars healing has nothing to do with food, but it’s true. Your body works hard every single day to break down the food you eat (especially when you eat hard to digest inflammatory foods ), and it deserves a break every once in a while.
A fast is exactly that; it gives your digestive system a rest and a chance to divert it's available energy to healing and repair.
It also creates the space or clearing for your body to go to work on flushing out any toxins and hard-to-digest foods.
If you've never fasted before, we recommend starting with a juice fast for a few days to give your body a chance to adjust to the process. Based on your body's response to the fast and how you feel, you may choose to continue for a number of days further. Usually the first 2 days are the most difficult as your body begins to gather up and dump metabolic waste. Things that can help include hot baths in epsom salts, getting out into the sunshine, light walking, keeping up your water intake and getting plenty of rest.
Water fasting is an extreme method of fasting that can be very effective, though it is only recommended if you're experienced with fasting or can perform your fast in a supervised environment with someone who is experienced and understands the process.
When fasting, always listen to your body and stop if you're unable to continue. Simply, switch over to raw smoothies, soups and salads which will still be very beneficial for helping you to detox, and you can always resume your juice fast when you feel ready.
Intermittent Fasting is very popular these days because it can be incorporated more easily and regularly without much disruption to your lifestyle, whilst still offering some of the benefits of extended fasting.
Intermittent Fasting involves separating each 24 hour period into a fasting and feeding window. It is widely recognised that 16 hours of fasting and an 8 hour window for meals is the most optimum for burning fat, healthy digestion, high levels of energy and reducing inflammation in the body.
An example 24 hour cycle would be to have your first meal at 10am and your last at 6pm, before commencing a 16 hour period of fasting. Always break-your-fast (breakfast) with easy to digest foods like fresh fruit, juices, smoothies and oatmeal etc.
Unlike extended juice or water fasting which you would practice periodically for longevity, or to specifically help heal a certain ailment or condition, intermittent fasting is more of a lifestyle method of fasting that you can experiment with and practice more regularly.
Some of the short terms benefits of fasting include, enhanced focus, more energy, less digestive issues, better sleep, and so much more.
Learn more in Fasting: What You Should Know.
More ways to help your body heal naturally:
- Reduce stress. Stress can lead to elevated blood pressure, illness, weight gain, heart disease, and premature ageing. Find a healthy stress release, like exercise, reading, meditation, detox baths, and more to give your body a chance to relax and reset.
- Fresh air, sunlight, and sleep are key to a healthy, happy long life. Find as much time as possible to get outside and breathe fresh air, while exposing your skin to sunlight for at least 20 minutes a day. Follow good sleep hygiene to get 8 hours of restful sleep a night in order for your body to recover and heal.
- Exercise every day. Just 30 minutes of light to moderate exercise a day can transform your health. It improves circulation, energy, digestion, sleep and so much work. Work up a sweat each day doing your favourite type of exercise.
Your body is built to heal itself, but it needs a little help from you in the form of nutrition and fasting from time to time.
You also need to protect it from outside aggressors (toxins), so that it’s able to do its job without interference. By following these three pillars of a healthy diet that heals your body naturally, you can begin to avoid illness, unnecessary doctors visits, pills and surgeries, whilst living your healthiest life yet.
Tolman Self Care.