On a day when the violation of the Biblical entreaty to do all things in moderation and to, by all means, avoid gluttony is in, well, Biblical proportion, a voice of sanity cries in the wilderness. Dr. Joel Fuhrman, in this piece on the Huffington Post today, tells us we are killing ourselves with food and that there is a simple remedy to our length and quality of life: eat better foods that are not processed. I'll throw in locally grown and organic, but I'm not sure that is nearly as important as the simple basics of staying away from the middle aisles at the grocery store, white food or almost any restaurant.
Here are Dr. Fuhrman's simple guidelines to being healthier, thinner and more vibrant:
- Green vegetables contain potent anti-cancer compounds called isothiocyanates, and are the most nutrient-dense of all foods. (Eat your green beans, your salad and your broccoli, children, whether you like it or not.)
- The onion family contains cancer-protective organosulfur compounds and consuming mushrooms regularly decreases the risk of breast cancer.(Don't give me that bad breath crap, either. Better to smell bad alive than to stink dead.)
- Fruits, especially berries and pomegranate. Berries are full of antioxidants and are linked to reduced risk of diabetes, cancers and cognitive decline. Pomegranate has multiple cardiovascular health benefits, for example reducing LDL cholesterol and blood pressure, and accelerating atherosclerotic plaque regression.(OK, I don't know how the hell to eat a pomegranet, either, but maybe we can learn together.)
- Beans are a nutrient-dense weight-loss food--they stabilize blood sugar, promoting satiety and preventing food cravings. Regular bean consumption helps to reduce cholesterol and is associated with decreased cancer risk. (Beans, beans good for the heart; the more you eat, the more you ... uh ... want.)
- Nuts contain a spectrum of beneficial nutrients including healthy fats, LDL-lowering phytosterols, circulation-promoting arginine, minerals and antioxidants; they have significant cardiovascular benefits and promote weight control. Seeds are abundant in trace minerals, and each kind is nutritionally unique. Flaxseeds provide abundant omega-3s, pumpkin seeds are rich in zinc and iron, and sesame seeds are high in calcium and multiple vitamin E fractions. (Ah, the land of fruits and nuts and very healthy people. From what I understand, conservatives stay away from California food. And they die young.)