Processed Foods: the Real Story

Headlines are declaring that our country is full of people who are overweight yet malnourished.  How is this possible?  In a nutshell, an increasing majority of the food found in our stores and restaurants is not true, whole food, but rather “food product” created in laboratories and injected with preservatives, fillers, dyes, and other synthetic materials.  This is one instance in which technology is not doing us any favors.  There are little to no nutrients in these food products!

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It’s easy for us to forget the biological reason for eating:  to fuel our bodies with nutrients needed to survive and thrive.  Your stomach feeling full is only one means of appetite regulation.  In addition, if your body has not received sufficient nutrients from what you’re feeding it, your brain will continue to tell you to eat more.  We’ve all had the experience of enjoying the greasy, heavy McDonald’s meal — only to be starving an hour later, right?  This is why.

Many nutritionists refer to processed foods as empty calories.  Your body will never get enough of these, and it will continue craving food until it receives the nutrients it needs.  One of the most important things you can do — not only for weight loss, but also for your overall health, longevity, and wellbeing — is to make as much of your diet as possible consist of nutrient-dense foods.  What is a nutrient-dense food?  The closer it is to its original form, the better.  As soon as food has been processed and packaged and preserved in some way, it is moving away from its ideal nutrient density.

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Drink More Water

It’s impossible to overstate how important water is, not only for fat loss, but also for healthy joints, immune function, hormone regulation, cell rejuvenation, and overall health and vitality.

What you think is hunger could really just be thirst!

Research has shown that confusing thirst for hunger is a contributing factor to obesity.  If you think you’re hungry, grab some water!  And if you let your body get to the point of feeling thirsty, you are already dehydrated.  Your body cannot absorb water as quickly as you ingest it.  So, if you wait to drink until your mouth is dry when you’re 5 minutes into your workout, your body is still going to stay dehydrated for awhile.

Think dehydration is no big deal?  Dehydration results in your body burning muscle while hoarding fat, it contributes to metabolic problems and increased moodiness, and it can cause your body to suffer from slow digestion, waste build-up, slow brain function, muscle cramps . . . the list goes on.  Few things are as important to your overall health as drinking enough water — and it’s easy!

You should always start your day by drinking at least 2 glasses upon waking.  If you suffer from slow digestion, I highly recommend drinking a full 32 ounces of warm water within ten minutes of waking up.  This trick alone can alleviate certain kinds of constipation.

Lemon Water:

One great and easy thing you can do for your body every morning is to add some lemon to your water.  Lemon is a natural energizer for your body, and it also assists in detoxification.  Here are just a few demonstrated benefits of drinking lemon water:

  • Boosts your immune system
  • Balances pH levels (important for minimizing inflammation in the body)
  • Purifies the blood
  • Assists in weight loss
  • Flushes toxins
  • Decreases wrinkles and blemishes
  • Reduces fever