Food medicine

“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”    ~Hippocrates

I am a strong believer in the statement, “you are what you eat.” That is not to say that I am perfect at practising this. At times my diet has been as bad as anyone else in the Western world. Highly processed, too much refined sugar, nowhere near enough whole foods.

The more I learn about the power of food, the more I am convinced that eating a proper mix of whole foods is not only pleasurable and satisfying, but incredibly healthy.

So how did so many of us in the West become so disconnected with such an elemental part of our health?

I hear people saying that only exercise matters. Along as you are expending significant calories and working all your major muscles, you will have good health. That idea only holds water if the food going in is high quality. What does it matter that you have managed to sweat out a bunch of horrible calories?

People also tell me that, food is only fuel. Well that is an interesting way to look at a part of our lives that uses up so much time and resources. But even if that were true, then only the best quality “fuel” should be acceptable? Unfortunately, there are people who care more about what goes into their cars than their bodies.

What about all the other aspects of good health? It is a well-known fact that too much stress leads to bad health and sickness, so it would seem that to have good health a program for stress management is required. But who has that in their day timer? Drinks after work doesn’t count. Although it sure seems like it at the moment of the first few sips.

Our thoughts can work for us or against us. How much time do we devote in a week to enhancing that part of our health?

But it all comes back to food. If a person starts there, draws a line in the sand and says, “enough”, so many other good things follow. Because once we take control of our food intake, the quality and the quantity, so many other benefits come our way. You become the kind of person who also starts to care more about reducing stress. You think in a more constructive way.

What kind of world could this be if we starting treating our diet as if it were preventing the need for any kind of future conventional medicine? In other words food is medicine, or that is the way I am thinking these days.

And on a Friday night after work, and a 1 1/2 hour drive home, I raise my glass to the weekend and the medicine of a glass of wine. Dinner reservations in an hour, yipee!

6 thoughts on “Food medicine

  1. I find a lot of what you say fits in with *my* philosophy but we have to start equating pleasure with ‘medicine’ so as to avoid the idea that food is merely something we have to attend to every day…

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