Making a Commitment to Your Health
The welcoming of a new year is often a time for people to commit to better health, but a resolution to eating better is always a good choice, no matter what time of the year. As a Registered Dietitian and Integrative Nutritionist, I can help you determine how proper nutrition can improve your chronic conditions and make you feel better.
While the quantity of food you eat can have you loosening your belt, discomfort can also come from what you’re eating. Some common culprits are cruciferous vegetables, like broccoli and brussels sprouts, beans, and drinks like sparkling wine and soda. To relieve the bloating, try consuming bananas, apples, avocados, yogurt, green tea, and ginger – foods proven to dispel that too-full feeling.
Rosy cheeks don’t only come from an increase in activity (or embarrassment.) Sometimes they can be a sign of an allergic reaction from histamines being released into our bloodstream, tricking our white blood cells into thinking we’re under attack. Most of us are aware of the seasonal allergies that make our eyes water and skin itch, but histamines can also be found in many foods. Aged cheeses, processed meats, and fermented foods, like kimchi, tempeh, miso, and cider, can also trigger an allergic reaction.
There are many known factors that bring on headaches and migraines, including stress, sleep deprivation, light sensitivity, dehydration, changes in hormones, and skipping meals. But there are also several foods and drinks, called “triggers,” that can be responsible for the excruciating head pain. Not all migraine sufferers have the same food triggers, so it’s important we find out what yours are so we can prevent them.
Many of the foods that trigger an allergic reaction are the same ones that can trigger a migraine. Aged cheeses, fermented foods, and processed meats are high on the list. But red wine, artificial sweeteners, foods containing monosodium glutamate (or MSG), some herbal supplements, and those with large amounts of caffeine and chocolate can also be contributing factors.
Sugar is in almost everything we eat, but the type of sugar we’re consuming makes all the difference in how our bodies respond to it. Some foods like fruit, vegetables, whole grains, and dairy contain naturally occurring sugars, like fructose and lactose. These sugars are actually good for the body, giving your cells much needed energy.
Excess sugar consumption is a key factor in obesity. This is especially true when your calories are coming from sugary beverages, because drinking your calories does not provide the same satisfaction that eating solid food does. This, oftentimes, leads to overeating.
All sugar is not the enemy of good health. Naturally occurring sugars in whole foods are actually important to your body’s nutrition. However, understanding and moderating the added sugar in your diet will give you the long-term benefits of reducing the risk of disease and controlling unwanted weight.
It may seem impossible to avoid getting a cold or the flu, especially when getting together in large groups to celebrate. But there are some food weapons that support your immune system’s ability to attack invading germs. Foods like garlic, honey, and oregano oil act as boosters to your immune system, helping to prevent sickness. So, go ahead and enjoy your parties and get-togethers with these secret weapons in your body’s arsenal.
I am Taft Draper, Registered Dietitian and Integrative Nutritionist, based in the Asheville, NC area and serving clients worldwide, who has made it my mission to help my clients understand that food is medicine and that it is your best ally for a healthy, happy life. Book a free discovery session to discuss your health and wellness goals and see if I’m the right wellness partner for you.
bloating, food allergies, gi issues, histamines, integrative nutrition, natural antibiotics, registered dietician