Monthly Archives: February 2008

Healthy Living Real Food

Fat Free, Low-Fat, And Non-Fat Do Not Equal Health

Consumers, read your labels! I just heard yet another story about people in an office telling each other a package of Red Vines was fine to eat because the label read, “fat-free”. Just read the nutritional information on any package that says “low-fat”, “fat free”, or “non-fat” and you will likely find that the amount of carbohydrates in the product is sky high.

For instance, Red Vines contains 35 grams of carbohydrates per 4 pieces.  Just imagine what your body would be subjected to if you ate more than that.

Different people have different caloric intake needs – depending on how active you are. According to WikiAnswers, “if you are eating 2,500 calories a day, the recommended daily intake is at least 313 grams of carbohydrate. If your daily calorie intake is 2,000 calories eat at least 250 grams of carbohydrate per day. 1,500 calories a day equals to 188 grams of carbohydrates per day.” But don’t be fooled. Where health is concerned, carbohydrates means the natural kind, like those found in fruits, vegetables, and whole, sprouted grains – not the processed, package garbage sold in most grocery stores (and many natural food stores). If all the carbs you eat come from junk, you will soon be on your way to a myriad of lifelong health issues like heart disease, Diabetes, high blood pressure, and stroke.

Fats and carbohydrates are both important sources of calories. One reason why you might feel like you can eat a whole box of crackers, for example, is the fact that crackers do not truly satisfy your hunger. This is because all the fat calories have been replaced with carbohydrates. So you eat and eat and eat more carbs, until your body has no choice but to gain massive amounts of weight. Your body is still starving and your hunger levels are not abated.

When you are dealing with excesses, you can encounter tremendous problems. This is true with overloading your body with carbs. Too many of the wrong types of carbs will cause a failure in your digestive processes on many levels, which leads to other problems in the body including the heart, nervous system, and elimination systems (kidneys and other detoxification systems).

The opposite can occur as a deficiency in the elements and nutrients your body needs to be healthy, such as fats. Fats are critical in so many parts of health – skin, eyes, hair, cardiovascular, nervous system, digestion, and feeling full. The bottom line here is that anything which isn’t a whole food is going to be unhealthy for consumption.

Ask yourself, when you are purchasing fat free, low-fat, and non-fat products…are these foods a whole food? If the answer is no, putting the product back on the shelf should be all that much easier to do.

A good example of an unhealthy, fat-free or low-fat food is low-fat milk or non-fat yogurt. These products are not healthier because the fat has been lowered. In fact, the dairy product is unhealthier because it has been changed from the natural, whole-fat food it originally was. The body cannot properly absorb calcium, protein, or fats from a dairy product that has been made low or non-fat because all the proper digestive enzymes and other important substances in a whole-fat food are no longer present to aid the digestive system in absorbing the nutrients. Low-fat and non-fat dairy products, when consumed, will effectively leech calcium from the bone. Disrupting the natural molecular content of calcium, fat, and protein in meat and dairy products by artificially making these foods low-fat will consistently cause health problems to occur such as weight gain, osteoporosis, and heart disease.

One problem in our society lies with the fact that if people have to take time to prepare something, they are less likely to “have enough time” or become motivated to restructure their day to enable the needed time for cooking and preparing foods. The more convenience foods we eat, the more our health declines. If we take time to grow and purchase healthy organic foods and make meals from scratch, we are going to see an amazing difference for the good in the way we feel, look, and live.

So stop counting calories! If you are purchasing processed food, it doesn’t matter how few calories it contains. It will create adverse health conditions for anyone who regularly consumes it. Everyone needs the right amount (depending on your health, level of activity, etc. ) of healthy, unadulterated calories from natural, whole, organic foods. Until the public realizes this fact, we will continue to see monumental amounts of chronic disease and obesity amongst the population.

For more information on eating healthy fats and avoiding bad carbohydrates, visit Food and Healing.

The New York Times has a good article supported by a medical doctor and a nutritionist about the dangers of low-fat diets.

Learn more about the important role real fats play in health:

The Importance of Dietary Fats

Alternative Medicine Healthy Living

Detoxify Your Body From The Outside

The practice of detoxifying is becoming more and more common, and doing it for the sake of improvement in overall health is something that has reached new heights of visibility in many respects – especially to those who may previously have known very little to nothing at all about the subject. In health food stores and in the offices of alternative practitioners, you will hear people talk about performing one type of detox program or another, in varying degrees. There are many ways to go about detoxification, whether it be a complete change of diet to different types of baths (clay or various types of bathing or epsom salts), to taking an herbal or plant supplement, to a complete elimination of foods and fasting for several days to several weeks

Depending on your body and health condition, you may choose any variety of detoxification activities and methods. Whatever you choose, keep in mind that any detoxification event should not be viewed as a cure-all or one-time practice, but an ongoing maintenance to continue in keeping health in check. Detoxification should be something people do continuously and regularly, as toxins and pollutants enter our environments and bodies each and every day. Bear in mind too that everything you are exposed to and put into your body, whether it be something you eat, drink, breathe, or put on your skin, nails, or hair contributes to your overall toxic load. The more you expose yourself to, the more deeply you will have to detox.

One important method of detoxification that is becoming more prevalent is through services performed via a licensed esthetician. Detoxification of your skin and outer extremities is a useful tool for achieving health just as other detox performed from the inside of your body. Finding a practitioner who uses pure and natural ingredients in detoxification is of great importance. Be certain the one you see uses the highest of standards in his or her practice, as there are some who use little care in product selection and method. Neglect in choosing a competent practitioner can actually pose serious health risks, so be certain to conduct adequate research and choose wisely. Some practitioners use and sell products containing dangerous chemicals or perform procedures which claim to bring about miracle or extreme results. If you are someone in this situation, you may find the outcomes are not at all what you anticipated.

The following is some information on the practitioner I use. I trust her implicitly as she has educated herself in the ways of natural products and is very particular about her products and methods, which makes me feel confident that I am affording my body the best available (and prices are reasonable as well):

“At Wicked Esthetics I strive for product excellence without the hefty price tag that can come with it. All products I use for services or for sale have been carefully researched ingredient by ingredient for quality as well as safety. This means that some products will never be used/ sold in my shop. It is my further promise that no product in my shop will ever have mineral oil (which is a petroleum product very common in cosmetics) fillers, or high amounts of beeswax.

Here is the list of products we currently carry with some information on their ingredients & practices:

Moor Spa

Moor Spa products use 100% Natural Source ingredients. No artificial colors, fragrances or preservatives are used, nor any petroleum-derived ingredients such as propylene glycol, PEG, or mineral oil. Moor Spa is a green & vegan product line. Moor mud is a synthesis of hundreds of herbs, plants, & flowers which have combined naturally making it a highly revitalizing & detoxifying substance. Moor Spa has a very high Bio Energy of its own which is absorbed on a cellular level stimulating the body’s natural self-repair mechanisms.

Excluded Ingredients: Mineral Oil, Petrolatum, Propylene Glycol, Polyethylene Glycol, Parabens (methyl, propyl, thyl, butyl), DMDM Hydantoin, Diazolidinyl Urea, Imidazolidinyl Urea, Synthetic Fragrance, Synthetic Colours, Sodium Lauryl (or Laureth) Sulfate.

More information on this product line can be viewed at Moorspa.

California Concept

Using the primary ingredient, Aloe Vera gel, California Concept is a very effective, natural product line. California Concept is a vegan & green product made in California for those who are concerned about purchasing products made in the US. It uses high performance natural ingredients such as jojoba oil, green tea, & aloe vera gel. California Concept also uses no artificial colors, fragrances, or preservatives & contains no mineral oil.

More information on this product line can be viewed at California Concept.”

Services likely to be offered by estheticians include but are not limited to the following: bodywraps (specifically for detoxification), massage (such as hot wax and hot stone), facials, permanent and semi-permanent make-up, and hair removal. It is important to note that any body wrap or detox of this type should also be performed in conjunction with a dietary detox. Before visiting an esthetician, make certain that your eating habits are as healthy as possible to ensure greater success of a body wrap detox.

To learn more about the practice of esthetics in health, visit Talismae College for Holistic Medical Arts.

For an in-depth article about general detoxification of your body from the inside, read Agriculture Society’s article about cleansing.