Common Illnesses Trace Back to Essential Nutrients. Are You Getting Yours?Quayd Tait
Tell me, how are you feeling today? As vital as you’d like, or run down and fatigued? Do you feel like you need more sleep? Do you have unexplained but ongoing aches and pains? Do you feel bloated and tired?
Perhaps essential nutrients were not top of your mind when you set your new resolutions and goals at the beginning of the year, or, if they were, you have now already abandoned your healthy eating plans.
How you eat should, however, be one of your top priorities.
The effect of essential nutrients on our health and well-being is under constant research and their role in many modern illnesses is becoming ever clearer. Illnesses such as chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, Crohn’s disease, obesity, heart and kidney disease, and even mental and emotional disorders, can be assisted by paying attention to the effect of food on our bodies.
A growing understanding of how human body systems function, and how we absorb and utilise essential nutrients to support physical health, is shining a light on why so many feel unwell.
Britannica notes that ‘the most significant nutrition-related disease is chronic undernutrition, which plagues more than 925 million people worldwide… at the start of the 21st century, approximately 20,000 people, the majority of them children, die each day from undernutrition and related diseases that could have been prevented’.
‘Diminished mental function’ and ‘increased susceptibility to disease’ were noted as some of the preventable results of inadequate essential nutrients to sustain physical health.
In the UK, we are not talking about the malnutrition suffered by the starving poor of sub-Saharan Africa. No, we’re talking about the malnutrition brought on by poor diet choices, which can often lead directly, or contribute towards very preventable illnesses.
It is the course of wisdom to educate ourselves with the abundant information now at our fingertips as to how our bodies function so that we obtain essential nutrients, which are so vital to our health.
What Role Does The Correct Food Play in our Journey With Essential Nutrients?
The quality of life’s journey has more to do with our health and well-being that we may realise. Many of our modern illnesses are linked to ill-informed choices in relation to how we fuel our systems. This is not something evident in the animal kingdom and it seems we can take a lesson from nature here. With respect to our food options, it seems we can grossly abuse our freedom to choose.
Unlike animals, we are able to understand how our bodies function so that we can sustain ourselves intelligently. Anytime we are deficient in essential nutrients, our physical health will suffer.
The obvious changes to make are to focus on maintaining good vitamin and mineral levels in the body by consuming more fresh fruits and vegetables. It is also important to keep hydrated. Water can sometimes seem unexciting, but drinking it filtered purifies it. Water, flavoured naturally with slices of apple, or lemon is refreshing and tasty. Plus, it is also easier for the body to absorb.
Do You Have the Guts For Essential Nutrients?
It appears that the state of our gut reveals more about the state of our health than many realise. Our complex digestive systems have the job of processing whatever we put in our mouth.
Let’s take a tour of how it all goes down.
- Digestive Tract – intestinal bacteria break down our foods in search of essential nutrients for our physical, mental and emotional health. When they run out of food, the bacteria stop growing. In this way, we only have what we need, when we need it. Overloading ourselves with food devoid of nutrition taxes the process from the very start.
- Gut Bacteria – ‘good’ and ‘bad’ bacteria exist in our gut. Good bacteria multiply more often to reduce space for ‘bad’ bacteria, which is the correct balance. Imbalance can open the way for IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. Essential nutrients live in harmony with healthy gut bacteria and are destroyed when ‘bad’ bacteria dominate.
- The Heart – over-consumption of foods such as red meat and eggs, causes gut bacteria to produce a chemical called trimethylamine-N-oxide (TMAO), which is thought to build up cholesterol, putting strain on the heart.
- The Kidneys – too much gut produced TMAO, can also affect the kidneys adversely, leading to disease.
- The Brain – research shows that imbalance in the gut can affect our emotions and the way in which our brain processes information. Anxiety, depression, and chronic pain can sometimes result.
- Obesity – essential nutrients are not absorbed as easily in the over-taxed system of obese people. The imbalance created in the gut is thought to affect signals for hunger and being full, which never seem to ‘switch on’ to indicate when enough is enough.
Can we Change our Gut Bacteria to Absorb Essential Nutrients?
We receive our gut microbiome from our mothers at birth. Our environment and what we eat affects it thereafter. Once more, we see that we have the ability to tilt the balance. How?
Probiotics – are ‘good’ bacteria and can help the balance – consult with your practitioner though because there are many types that work differently to facilitate essential nutrients for physical health. Prebiotics are a food source for probiotics and are found in artichokes, asparagus, bananas, garlic, leeks, onions, and soybeans.
Human microbial colonization begins at birth, maybe even in the womb, and our microbial populations continue to change throughout our lives. Our mothers pass on much of these organisms, for example through contact or when we pass through the birth canal. Although we know these microbes can influence certain traits, it was assumed that these particular bacteria were acquired during our lives. Now, scientists have identified a specific trait, caused by bacteria, which can be passed from mother to offspring. https://www.iflscience.com/health-and-medicine/certain-traits-could-come-our-mothers-bacteria-rather-our-genes/
Are You Acid or Are You Alkaline?
The acid-alkaline balance a.k.a. the ‘pH’ of the body actually varies in different parts of our bodies. Certain areas of our bodies require more acid and other areas require more alkaline. Overall though, what is present in the blood should be a balanced reading of 7.5. Excess acidity sets the scene for ‘bad’ bacteria and viruses that wreak havoc on our health and sabotage the role of essential nutrients.
The traditional Western diet sees us eating acid-producing foods daily, which in no way supplies the essential nutrients we need. Apart from the obvious culprits such as junk foods, processed foods, and fast foods, also, removing refined sugar and dairy from our diet will help to maintain the balance our body needs to use essential nutrients as intended to support great health.
The toll that poor dietary choices take on our digestive system is of broad-spectrum proportions. Chronic disease and problems with the liver and kidneys, constipation and bowel issues to inflammation, allergies, arthritis, skin problems, and physical, emotional and mental stress, are all attributed to poor nutrition.
To access nutrients for physical health, it is important to eat more leafy greens, vegetables, avocados, sprouts, and green smoothies.
Healthy foods create healthy cells and healthy bacterial balance, all of which counter body malfunction, imbalance, and disease. The classic Mediterranean ‘food pyramid’ has sweets and red meat at the top in minimal proportions and fresh vegetables and fruits as the dominant source of essential nutrients. Making sure our plate weighs heavy with salad and palm-size portions of protein is a health investment, which we and our families will never regret.
Do You Remember to Recharge?
Our goal should be to invest in ourselves and make more good energy ‘deposits’, as it were. We need to ‘recharge’ our systems at least three times a day with essential nutrients or our energy levels will drop. We will also experience energy drops if we rely on highly processed foods or false sugar-highs to get through the day.
We’re not saying you can’t have cake, for example, now and then or on special occasions. It is all about balance. But the state of our health is more dependent on our everyday choices than we may realise. Health is, in fact, our wealth.
How much are we investing in our health is the million-dollar question!
Interestingly the Mediterranean food plan includes enjoying meals with others, which has been shown to promote better digestion and well-being of the soul. Drinking good quality red wine moderately can help relax the liver during mealtimes.
Essential nutrients support active bodies in wonderful ways that we are only just beginning to understand and appreciate. This must take precedence over ‘styles of cuisine’ in the interests of our health. The less we eat battered fish and chips, or baguettes and croissants, or pasta, pizza and red meat, the better we will feel.
If, however, you’re feeling you’re a tad under par, fear not! Help is on the way!
Why not commit to just 30 days and take up the 30-days to healthy living challenge?
It’s not necessarily easy, especially if you’re breaking bad habits, and it’s up to you to fulfil the challenge, but I am sure that you will feel so wonderful afterwards you’ll choose to apply the principles of healthy nutrition, essential nutrients and a feeling of well-being as you move forward in your life.
Book your free consultation now – we know it will change you from the inside out.