Healthy Options for a Small Cube Refrigerator
Rachad Atat, June 2014 ©
In the industrialized world we live in, pollution dominates our air, water and soil. All this contributes to increased inflammation and oxidative stress, where contaminants and pollutants act as free radicals (highly reactive oxygen molecules), causing damage to our cell membranes and impairing cellular function. Having this mentioned, the last thing we want to do is giving our body even more toxic synthetic ingredients, like the ones found in processed foods.
Although modern lifestyle has imposed on us a fast pace living, we want to make sure we give our body the essential nutrients from vitamins, minerals and omega-3 fatty acids, to allow it to fight infections and prevent diseases. Therefore, what we eat everyday has a huge impact on our health. In the end, prevention of diseases is key, and not intervention.
Now imagine you have a small cube refrigerator that you would like to fill it out with food, what kinds of foods are you going to buy, knowing that you have fridge space limitations? The answer is obvious: you would want to shop for foods that can boost your immune system, that help scavenge free radical damage, and that lower inflammation levels. Only natural whole foods can fulfill these objectives, because your body can use the nutrients they provide to strengthen the body’s physiological functions.
If you are one of many people who cannot focus well in their jobs after lunch meals, and who feel fatigued and want to take a nap, you should know that the meal you had might be making you energy deficit. To elaborate more, imagine you have a bank account, and every day you withdraw some money without depositing anything back. Eventually, you will run out of money and you will face financial problems. Similarly, processed foods withdraw micronutrients from your body in order to metabolize them, without giving you nutrients in return. The result is that you become energy deficit and you will feel tired, and diseases eventually form. Whole foods, on the other hand, allow you to feel energetic and improve your overall wellbeing.
So what kinds of whole foods to buy? According to Michael Ozner, the Medical Director of the Cardiovascular Prevention Institute of South Florida, a Mediterranean diet, comprising of grains, legumes, fruits, vegetables, lean protein, fish, and olive oil, is associated with longevity, heart protection, reduced blood pressure, sugar level regulation, lower levels of inflammation, and cancer protection1. There exist several scientific studies that show the amazing health benefits of the Mediterranean diet. Since I started following this diet, I felt a huge relief from my stomach problems, and I started feeling energetic all the time.
When you go to the market, shop for fruits and vegetables of all colors and varieties. These should constitute the base of every meal, and should be consumed on a daily basis. Select whole grains products like quinoa, oats, and brown rice. Shop for wild caught salmon, sardines, and tuna as they have higher omega-3 fatty acids content than farm-raised fish; that, in addition to not having any hormones or antibiotics residues. Consume 2-3 servings of fish weekly. As for poultry and eggs, choose organic and pasture-raised, which means the animals roam in their natural environment and are not given antibiotics or growth hormones. Concerning red meat, limit the consumption to twice a month2, and always opt for organic, grass-fed beef. Finally, you may want to buy some unsalted whole nuts like almonds, pecans, cashews, etc. as a snack or to be used with meals.
- Ozner, M. “Enhancing longevity through the Miami Mediterranean diet”. Life Extension Magazine, June 2008. http://www.lef.org/magazine/mag2008/may2008_Enhancing-Longevity-Through-The-Miami-Mediterranean-Diet_01.htm
- American Institute for Cancer Research, “Recommendations for cancer prevention”. http://preventcancer.aicr.org/site/PageServer?pagename=recommendations_05_red_meat
About the Author:
Rachad Atat is a certified Herbalist from Heart of Herbs Herbal School. He is in the editorial committee of the SuperBrand Award winning magazine “Mother Baby & Child” based in Dubai, UAE. He is an anti-aging passionate and healthy food advocate. His main interests are in herbalism, aromatherapy, flower essences, and healing diet.