As appeared in the North Grenville Times Nov. 13/2014
Food for Thought Carol Pillar, RHN
Welcome to 2014! Not to worry, I am not going to start on a spiel about the benefits of making a New Year’s resolution to lose weight, to give up caffeine, or to join a gym.
An essential part of my role as a Nutritionist is to encourage self-responsibility when it comes to your health. This requires knowledge, but I realize that facts and figures are not for everyone, so I would like to encourage you open the lines of thought. Think about your daily choices, what you do for exercise, what you eat and drink, how you respond emotionally, and think about how all of these things affect your body and spirit.
Often many of us do not place enough importance on our well being and take our bodies for granted, “it’s tough, it can handle it”, we say, or we accept the aches and pains, digestive troubles or mood swings as part of our daily lives. So consider this; what if these physical or emotional issues are because our bodies are tiring of “handling it”? What if, over time, our bodies run low on the resources required to keep it functioning optimally and feeling well? We are all familiar with getting that cold when we are feeling run down, this is exactly what I am referring to. Symptoms of the flu, fatigue, acid reflux, PMS, allergies, or more seriously, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, arthritis, irritable bowel disease, or cancer (to name a few) are signs that we need to get past just satisfying wants, and instead provide the body with what it needs to maintain good health. Yes, our bodies are amazing machines, IF provided with the right environment and fuel, and treated with care. Not all nutritious foods are suitable for certain health conditions. Not all ‘natural’ products are safe if you are on medication.
The first tip I posted on Facebook reads like this;
“Do not take your body for granted. Treat it with compassion and you will be on the road to good health. If change is required, even one small step is significant. That first step makes it easy to take the next. Repeat that small change and over time it becomes a habit that can make a profound difference to your overall health and vitality.”
So what does “living the good life” mean to you in relation to how you treat your body? I’ve come to realize there are many differing views on this. For some it is regular exercise and ‘watching’ what they eat, or eating steak and potatoes and enjoying ‘good’ food. For others it is regularly eating out, or going for a drink and hanging out with friends. Like with most things moderation is important. Over-indulgence over time can lead to one or more of the above mentioned conditions. Appropriately supporting the body at all times, including while exercising is as important as doing the exercise. Dieting or following a ‘fad’ diet can leave the body lacking balanced nutrition. So here is something to think about; the body will find ways to maintain homeostasis, balance, if it must take from one area to balance another it will – this (for example) is how osteoporosis can begin. An overly acid forming diet such as too much protein, is balanced with alkaline calcium – most readily available from your bones.
Knowledge. Knowledge is the key. It can support, it can prevent, it can motivate.
If you have done some thinking while reading this, then you have taken the first step. What is going to be your next step?
Carol is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist providing Nutritional counselling services at Synergy Physiotherapy, 115 Saunders St. in Kemptville, www.synergyphysiotherapy.com
She may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or 613-258-7133. See wholesumapproach.com for further information. Carol will be speaking to the Youngsters of Yore at the North Grenville Public Library on January 23rd, 1:30 pm.