Here’s an ancient saying created by Hippocrates, a Greek physician, "Let your medicine be your food, and food is your medicine." This is where the Hippocratic Oath taken by doctors originates from.
Oddly, while modern doctors recognize Hippocrates' contribution to medicine in the form of the Oath, the idea that our food can be our medicine is generally not included in the practice of modern medicine.
However, more and more doctors are incorporating a holistic approach by recommending herbs, a more plant-based diet, and etc. to their patients.
The good news is, healthy foods are still "natural medicines," and you can affect your health positively with the foods you eat.
If you really think about it, Mother Nature provides us everything we need to stay healthy.
One of the biggest challenges is making the time to prepare healthy meals that can nourish our bodies.
The average person has a daily To-Do List that’s impossible to complete, which almost forces us to choose quick unhealthy foods from places such as fast-food restaurants, vending machines, and etc.
Regardless of the reasons, you’re not consuming natural foods that can keep you healthy; it’s still your responsibility because you’ll have to live with the consequences of a bad diet.
The cold hard truth is that no one is going to care more about your health than you.
Continue reading if you'd like to learn more about incorporating healing herbs and foods into your diet, which all begins with planning…
Planning Your Eating Habits
This is one of the things that nutritionists will tell you to do when you want to improve your eating habits.
For one thing, you will not be hungry if you are prepared with a meal schedule. Also, you will not be tempted by sugar and caffeine throughout the day when you have plenty of healthy alternatives on hand.
Let’s talk about a few of the most powerful herbs…
The healing power of various herbs is becoming more and more recognized and accepted.
Here are some of the more readily available herbs that you can add to your foods to boost their healing power.
Ginger Root is an effective anti-nausea remedy, aids in digestion, fights colds and the flu has significant antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. The fresh root, sliced, diced, dried, powdered, can be added to stir-fries, turned into oil, and can be candied and eaten out of hand.
Ginger is definitely a superfood!
Oregano is a tasty herb when added to pizza, spaghetti, and so forth, is considered an antioxidant.
Antioxidants help mop up "free radicals" in the body, which are by-products of the body's metabolic processes.
Free radicals are implicated in the development of arthritis and other inflammatory conditions. So sprinkle this herb on regular dishes that are Italian or Greek in flavor.
Rosemary is another antioxidant herb and may help enhance memory and prevent cataracts.
It may even help prevent the onset of Alzheimer's disease. Rosemary is very good when used in meat marinades and sprinkled on dishes like pizza, focaccia, or pasta.
More research is needed to confirm these potential benefits.
Turmeric is commonly found in Indian curries. It has a yellowish color and boasts an earthy flavor.
It is said to help reduce the pain and inflammation of arthritis. Turmeric can be added to soups and stews, curries, stir-fries, and other dishes.
The food you eat, not just the herbs you put on it, can help heal your body, too. Here are some basic, but powerful suggestions that you can begin implementing today…
Drink More Water
Most people cannot honestly say that they drink nearly enough water. In fact, many people do not realize how much water they need to drink throughout the course of a day.
You should focus on drinking half of your body weight in ounces each day and this does not include beverages other than water.
In order for your body to function at its optimal, you need to make sure that you are drinking enough.
Dehydration can occur when you are not getting enough water in your body and there are many dangerous and bothersome side effects to this.
Of course, you’ll have to adjust your daily intake up or down depending on factors such as your climate and activity level.
Eliminate Foods White in Color
It’s widely known that in general, foods that are white in color contain little in terms of health benefits and are in fact better eliminated completely or consumed in moderation if you’re not able to.
This includes white bread, white pasta, white potatoes, white rice, and crackers that are not made from whole wheat and or whole grains.
These white foodstuffs are usually high in starch, which can be a nightmare for diabetics.
Some experts claim that starchy carbs are linked to diabetes and pre-diabetes.
You can eliminate these items or replace them with foods that have a higher nutritional value like whole-wheat bread and pasta, sweet potatoes, yams, brown rice, and etc.
Include More Alkaline Foods in Your Diet
Many holistic experts believe that one of the keys to maintaining a healthy body is to include foods in your diet that are more alkaline than acidic.
Foods like meat are high in acid and fruits and vegetables tend to contain a high alkaline content.
One of the reasons that this will improve your health is that your body will contain far fewer bacteria when your PH-Balance is more alkaline than when it’s acidic.
Alkalinity helps to protect your body from free radicals and possibly some diseases from developing.
There’s a lot of research that supports the benefits of putting your body into an alkaline state.
You should spend some time doing your own research to find out more about this topic.
Cut Down on Grains and Carbohydrates
Consider reducing the number of grains and other carbohydrates (especially the starchy types e.g. white bread, white pasta, white potatoes, etc.) that you are eating on a daily basis.
While complex carbs such as whole grains and yams are healthy and provide a stable flow of energy, they also can contribute to weight gain if over-consumed.
The typical food pyramid emphasizes eating a large number of starches, however, nutritionists believe that focusing more on fruits and vegetables will keep you healthier overall.
The Raw Food Diet
This is where you eat only unprocessed and uncooked foods. Often, the damage done to the body by food occurs because of the additives and preservatives that are used in the preparation, not to mention the destruction of nutrients caused by the heat.
While most people find that they cannot sustain this type of diet for an extended time period, some have transformed their life and health through raw food consumption.
I completely understand if you’re unable to completely cut out animal products and cooked foods from your diet.
However, you could incorporate as many raw veggies and fruits as you can, as this is better than eating a 100% cooked food diet.
The big takeaway is to go as plant-based as you can, period!
Don’t Completely Rely On Supplements
Believe it or not, nutritionists do not recommend supplements for the sake of adding more nutrients.
You should try to obtain the nutrients you need through the foods that naturally contain them.
For example; one nutrient that seems to be added to everything these days is calcium. The amount of calcium is added to products like orange juice is so minimal that it really will not help you to overcome a deficiency.
No supplement is more superior to the food it’s extracted from, because natural is always absorbed more easily by the body.
Don’t get me wrong, because there are some high-quality supplement manufactures out on the market, which makes them a great alternative for those who struggle with eating a balanced diet.
Keep in mind that the best supplements in the world will not make up for a bad diet, which is why they’re called food supplements and not food replacements.
Honey is known for its amazing healing properties, especially when it comes to fighting colds, and because it contains 100% natural sugars it is a safe and effective way to give yourself an energy boost.
Honey is good for your skin, your circulation, and for the cells of your body due to its high content of antioxidants.
Honey is still a form of processed sugar.
You may be wondering how.
Remember that honey is created by bees with the floral nectar they collect from flowers.
To make a long story short, the bees do the processing just as humans process sugarcane to make sugar.
Do you see how that works?
While honey has several nutritional benefits, you must not go overboard with its consumption, because it’s still a form of processed sugar.
Nourishing Your Body
Holistic healers believe that malnutrition is often responsible for many commonly occurring health problems, meaning that if the body does not get what it needs; illness will be the result of these deficiencies.
Imagine if you completely avoided calcium. The result would be brittle and broken bones and teeth. Well, the same applies to many other important nutrients.
So, be sure to keep giving your body what it needs to stay healthy.
Here are some powerful natural foods you most likely have in your home right now…
Garlic is a powerful preventer of colds and flu, and it has anti-fungal and antimicrobial properties. You can make garlic sauce for pasta, add it to soups, and base many meals around this simple food.
Onions are like garlic in their healthful properties. They are perhaps even more versatile; they can be made into a dish on their own or added to other foods to enhance flavor.
Berries are known for their antioxidant power. Add berries to salads or eat them out of hand. You can also freeze them and blend them into smoothies. You can combine a variety of berries to make delicious ice cream.
You just learned The Power Of Using Food As Medicine at the most basic level, because I didn’t even scratch the surface with the laundry list of benefits you can achieve when you consistently consume a healthy diet.
Modern medicine has its place, but why not do your best to prevent health problems by being proactive in taking care of yourself, instead of being reactive?
Sadly, most of us wait until our illnesses get undeniably worst before we decide to do something about them.
The reason people avoid or ignore their symptoms is due to fear of getting horrible diagnoses from their doctor.
If you want your body to perform at peak levels, fight off illnesses, you must provide it with high-efficiency foods and this means more whole, raw foods, and as few preservatives, starchy carbs, bad fats, and starchy carbs as possible.
Like I mentioned earlier, Mother Nature gives us everything that we need to remain healthy.
All that you have to do is make the effort to incorporate as many healthy foods into your diet as possible in order to experience the effects of using food as medicine!