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Have you ever heard the term bioavailability? It’s a heck of a hard work to type without making a mistake, let me tell you! Basically what it means is how available to your body is a certain substance, in this case we’re talking specifically about digestion and how easy it is for your body to get nutrients out of what you consume.
I’ve talked about all the fantastic nutrients and enzymes that are in juices, but another reason to actually juice your veggies and fruits is because of bioavailability. Most of the foods we eat take a long time to work their way through our digestive tracts. This is largely due to the fact that we eat lots of processed foods. Fruits and vegetables have the ability to work through our digestive system and have all their nutrients absorbed in as little as forty five minutes! By comparison, other foods can take eight hours or more to work through from start to finish. If you are often eating a diet with little plant matter and lots of other foods, including processed foods, your body is spending a lot of energy to digest the things that are supposed to be giving you MORE energy. Seems a little bit silly, doesn’t it? By eating a diet with lots of fruits and veggies, including some juices, you give your body a well deserved break.
Digestive problems are running rampant through the population. With our poor diets and overuse of antibiotics, our gut flora is low and our bodies have trouble even breaking down food to get the nutrients out. Juicing helps a lot by being nearly ‘self-digesting’, they help to solve this problem. They supply our bodies with readily available nutrients we don’t need to work hard to get. If you suffer from poor digestion, why don’t you take some time and try juicing. Combined with downing your processed food intake, you may see a big shift in your body.
Worth a try?
In my life coaching practice, I always encourage people to make lifestyle changes from a holistic perspective.
Mindful eating is a great example of this.
If you recall my previous posts on mindfulness, the practice of mindfulness is bringing your awareness and attention to the here and now. It helps you feel calm, grounded, and present for all the moments in your life.
Everything these days is "green" or should I say, labeled green for marketing purposes ("green-washing"). We all enjoy living in a clean home and environment, but are you cleaning your house at the cost of your health? I always cringe when I walk into a house or room and the strong smell of Clorox greets me. Within seconds my eyes are burning, my throat gets tight and I quickly leave.
Although I don’t feel all that sweet right now, it has nothing to do with the lack of sugar for the month and more to do with the snow-like pollen floating around outside. I made it! Yay! Anyone who has gone for a period of time without sugar, or anything they love to eat for that matter, can attest to how difficult it can be. Especially with something as addictive as sugar. I mean if a coke-head rat chooses sugar over cocaine, you know there’s got to be something to it! (I read about these little guys…choosing sugar over cocaine in over 90% of the trials!) Now that the hardest part is over, I’m glad that I did it. I will continue to keep sugars at a minimum in my diet and be more aware of them in random things like table salt, but I’m not going to turn up my nose to a little bit of ketchup. You’ve got to live too, right?
Overall, I’d say that the biggest change I’ve noticed is an increase in the flavour of foods I previously thought quite bland. Not having so much sugar has given my taste buds a chance to reset themselves. I also lost a few pounds. Nothing extraordinary, but every little bit counts, right? I sincerely hope that my pancreas had a nice break. It still had to do many other functions and since I didn’t cut out fruits, white breads and rice, it did still have to work a bit with sugars, but cutting down on a potential minimum of 10 teaspoons of added sugar a day, I’d say it had a little breathing room.
Have you ever or are you currently avoiding added sugars? What did you notice? Any body changes, weight loss or something else?
I made it! A whole month of raw at every meal. Fewf! I know I didn’t post any more raw meals. I did eat several more completely raw meals but I literally didn’t have the time to get new recipes to try. I can only applaud people who commit to a fully raw diet. It is a lot of work. I am in a play and so is my husband, so I couldn’t shlock the recipes off to him either. Where does he get off having a life at the same time as me !?! :p
What I’ve learned about adding raw to your diet:
1. If you don’t have a lot of raw in your diet already, add it in slowly. I found the first completely raw meal that I had left me with some indigestion. It is not the case for everyone, but it’s always best to take it slow.
2. Chewing is essential. If you find that you are having trouble digesting raw foods, make sure to chew it…a lot. It will make the foods much easier to digest and the nutrients easier to absorb.
3. Eating raw can be very easy or very hard, depending on the route you take. Having a salad and buying some raw dressing is super easy to do. Making a meal involving the soaking of nuts and/or needing a dehydrator…not so easy. If you are going to go on a raw diet, it takes a lot of planning and can be costly. I’m of course including the dehydrator you will have to buy in that budget.
4. Once you start adding more raw into your diet, your body will crave it. I no longer crave fried foods, but if I go a meal without a raw component, I start to feel it.
5. I could never go fully raw. Firstly, I’m way too lazy and secondly, I love meat. I have definitely cut down on the amount of servings and serving sizes when it comes to meat, but I like meat too much to give it up forever. This last one was something I learned about myself, which I think is very important to note!
So there you have it. I fully intend to continue adding raw foods to my diet on a regular basis, especially now that I have a crave on for them.
I’ve already started Month 4: Supply myself with supplements, more on that soon.
Below are the symptoms and problems associated with a long-term strict raw food or vegan diet:
* a general lack of vitality
* low body temperature (always cold)
* a weak digestive system with a loss of digestive strength
* food cravings
* rapid growth of grey hair
* stalled weight loss due to low metabolism
* amenorrhea (menstrual cycles cease), even in young women…
Welcome to Nutrition Bites, an occasional feature from Post columnist Jennifer Sygo, in which the dietitian addresses topical nutritional quandaries. Have a question for Jennifer? Email her here.
Q: What’s the deal with hemp seeds? Are they some kind of superfood? And will I get high if I eat them?
A: Like the chia seed that we looked at a few weeks ago…
As you can see, the widgets on both sides of the homepage (not necessarily this one) have disappeared and some have been moved all the way to the bottom of the screen…
WordPress users, any suggestions ? I didn’t change any settings and it’s only affected the homepage. I’ve written wordpress and they haven’t gotten back to me yet. I don’t want to change my theme, I like it. Any ideas? Has this happened to anyone before?
— March 10th
FIXED! I’m not 100% sure how I managed to do this…as I had given up and was looking at other themes, I noticed that my post about enzymes before this one kept messing all the themes up. So, I reformatted and then voila! Fixed. I should be a techno-explorer, I just keep hitting buttons ’til it works! :p
Just a quick post to tell Ottawa residents that I will be on Roger’s Daytime Ottawa talking about Month 2 of my Year of the Detox. So if you can turn on your tv between 11 and noon tomorrow, you will see moi! Cheers!
Vegetables & physical activity, the ultimate way to fitness. We all know that a combination of a good diet and physical exercise is the way to lose weight and keep fit. This infograhic sums it up nicely.