Stacy, a health-coaching client of mine, texted me yesterday, to share her excitement. The pain in her fingers from arthritis was gone, and her energy was much better. When she started seeing me just two months ago, she could barely peel a carrot, or write without severe pain; and she felt fatigued much of the time.
Even though I’ve been helping people get healthier through nutrition for 20+ years, it always comes as sort of a surprise that the body can heal significantly from anything if it is just given what it needs . . . like water, rest and whole foods. There are constant new discoveries in the science of nutrition that are helping people to understand more easily how food can be as powerful, or more powerful, than drugs when it comes to preventing disease and reversing chronic disease, and I’m excited to share some of these new discoveries with you in this blog.
Research at UC Davis shows that food is information that communicates with the body on a cellular level. What scientists now know is that the molecules in the foods you eat actually tell your cells how to behave as well or better than medicine can. This new science is called Nutrigenomics (Nutri = nutrition + Genomics (genetics), and means that food affects how your genes express themselves. We used to think that our health was mostly determined by our genes, and if you inherited bad genes, you were out of luck and at a high risk to develop the same diseases as your parents and grandparents. While this research is not new, and was actually a cover story on TIME magazine fifteen years ago, most people still don’t understand why that is no longer true. So, I’m giving you a very brief description of what epigenetics means to your health below.
Epigenetics literally means “above” or “on top of” genetics. It means that outside influences have the ability to modify DNA, or to turn genes “on” or “off”. These modifications do not change the sequence of the DNA, but they do affect how the cells “read” genes, and therefore alter the way the gene expresses itself, i.e. health or disease. Our DNA is the blueprint we are given via our chromosomes. What they have discovered is that our DNA is not “fixed” as previously believed, but environmental factors that we are exposed to influence the activation of some DNA. They also influence the regulation of the protein that can read or trigger the expression of our DNA.
Like single cells in a petri dish, the human body, which is made up of trillions of cells is influenced by outside factors, such as the “choices” we make in life: what we think, how we feel, foods we eat, relationships we make – all influence the activation and expression of our DNA, causing health or disease.
3. Your Nutritional Choices
What this basically means is that every bite you take instructs your cells to create health or disease, energy or fatigue. Food is Medicine, and as such acts just like a drug, only better (if it is a whole, natural food). What most people don’t know is that drugs only work about 55% of the time. Healthy food works at least this well, without the toxic nature of drugs, and without side effects, to instruct the cells to behave in a way that nourishes, cleanses, balances and repairs your cells – resulting in health. This is wonderful news – to know that your food choices influence your health is a powerful tool now available to us to manage our own health. Make sure you are making wise choices when you grocery shop and eat. Read books on nutrition; become an expert on your body and how it works. After all, you only get one body this lifetime – treat it well.
I hope you will make the best possible choices this week to choose foods that nourish, cleanse, balance and repair your body’s cells; and that your week is filled with love, peace and joy.
In Health and Wellness and Love to you,