Have you noticed that we seem to be getting “healthier” food full of superfoods like whey powder and kale, yet as a society, we’re getting fatter and sicker? You’re not alone. America is sicker than ever, and in many cases, it has to do with what we’re putting in our bodies—and what we’re leaving out. We’re a country of convenience, and it’s easy to reach for a ready-made product that promises incredible health benefits. However, look at the label, and you’ll find a variety of chemicals and preservatives you’re unfamiliar with. (And those are just the listed ingredients).
When it comes to preventing illnesses and obesity, as well as treating conditions, it’s often a good idea to start from the inside out. For example, MSG has been linked to obesity in both rats and people. However, MSG has over 50 names that might be hiding on your nutritional labels. This isn’t an additive that’s “linked to” obesity, but rather proven. It’s simple: MSG makes living things fat. It doesn’t matter how many immunity boosters and protein is also included in the product.
Here are five diseases that may be curable with nutritional therapy, either as a standalone treatment or in conjunction with other therapies:
It seems obvious, but if it were easy to get to a healthy weight, we wouldn’t be a country of mostly overweight people. Obesity is a disease, and food addiction is very real. It’s frustrating because, simply put, marketers lie to us. Even if a person has phenomenal willpower, they can’t trust what’s on food labels. It’s difficult and inconvenient to consume food like our ancestors did, but well worth the effort. Take a look in your fridge and pantry and consider what you can swap out with a more natural product. Milk? Try finding a local farm where you can source it and avoid the risk of growth hormones. Sweets? Switch to local, seasonal fruits and sweeteners such as honey.
2. Alcohol and drug addiction
In recent years, nutritional therapy for addiction has helped recovering addicts greatly. Addiction to anything, from alcohol to food, requires replacing the addiction with a healthier and more moderate habit. Fueling the body with the right foods can help increase clarity, focus, and help with cognitive reconditioning. Many people struggle with some form of addiction, and it’s easy to switch our alcohol or drugs for a food addiction. Prioritizing nutrition can help prevent this.
3. Type-2 diabetes
Technically, sugar doesn’t “cause” Type-2 diabetes, but it can certainly exacerbate it. However, most people don’t think of sugar as anything beyond that white, added, grainy sweetness. The reality is that starchy carbs almost immediately convert into sugar once it’s consumed. Understanding what sugar is and decreasing our addiction to it is a major step in preventing and managing Type-2 diabetes. Another major obstacle is those with diabetes having to deal with the idea of “I can’t.” Instead of thinking that you want something but can’t have it, try saying to yourself that you can have something (like sugar) but you don’t want it. This will take regular re-conditioning as well as re-training your palate to understand what “sweet” really means.
Depression is connected to a number of chemicals and preservatives in foods. Going natural and consuming more veggies, fruits, and natural proteins from local sources can work wonders on depression. However, it’s important to remember that diagnosed depression is a chemical imbalance in the brain. It’s not just “feeling sad.” Nutritional therapy can be a great part of treating depression, but may need to be used in conjunction with other methods.
5. Eating disorders
Eating disorders are the deadliest of all mental illnesses and include various types from anorexia to binge eating disorder. It makes sense that nutrition should be at the heart of treating eating disorders. Re-learning what nutrition is, our relationship with food, and what happens to the body when food is restricted can be a vital part of managing this deadly disease. However, much like alcoholism and drug addiction, eating disorders are often managed and not cured. Still, nutritional therapy should be at the heart of eating disorder treatment.
Everyone can benefit from learning more about nutrition and their body’s relationship with food. Controlling what we put into our bodies in an informed way is the single best thing we can do to improve health, happiness, and longevity.