By Dr. Scott Colasanti
The ancient Greek physician Hippocrates, who was known as the ‘father of western medicine’ was quoted as saying, “Let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food.”
He obviously had great insight for it is true now more than ever it seems that what we eat can have a very negative or positive impact on or health. Consider that in today’s fast paced, society, our bodies are subjected to a myriad of stressors. We live in toxic environments. We are either too sedentary or we put too many physical demands on ourselves. Our food sources have changed dramatically in order to feed our growing population. Whether it be the meat or the vegetables that you buy in the grocery store, farming has become about non-sustainable mass produced monoculture. In order to produce these foods to meet our demands, we have to genetically modify and chemically infiltrate our food. It is not longer produced in a nutrient rich environment.
It sounds pretty bleak.
What kind of price do we pay for the convenience of ‘perfect’ and cheap food? The good news is that there is a new level of awareness out there that acknowledges that we need to make changes, not only because of the negative impact our food supply imposes on our health, but also the negative impact that it imposes on the environment.
There is a recent trend towards more sustainable farming. We should all do our part and try to support local farmers and have a better awareness of where our food comes from. I tell my patients to read labels and avoid processed foods. If it is feasible, try to add more organic food to their diet, and generally, the more colour, the better. These foods are likely to have more anti-oxidants like flavinoids in them. Anti-oxidants help fight off the free radicals in our bodies that are produced as a result of the aforementioned stressors. These free radicals cause damage and lead to various illnesses and diseases. Generally speaking, the more wholesome and the less processed, the better.
Remember, good health starts with good lifestyle choices. Good nutrition starts with what we choose to eat (or not).