Category Archives: Health Tips

Taste the Differnece of Local Food

There are few things I enjoy more than wandering the weekly farmers markets and watching the farmers, with their weathered faces, proudly handing over food that came from the land that they’ve cultivated. In recent years it has become increasingly apparent to me the importance of buying from these local farmers, not only for the conversation, but for your health too.

Why buy local?

When buying local you can expect exceptional freshness and quality. Several studies have shown that the average distance that food travels from farm to plate is 1500 miles and that it can take a week or more for the food to reach your table. In that time the sugars turn to starches, plant cells shrink, nutrients are lost and the vitality of the produce is diminished. Produce picked within a 24-hour period is crisp, full of vital nutrients and loaded with flavor.

Local food taste better and are better for you.  There’s nothing like the taste of fresh food right off the vine, out of the ground or out of the oven and shopping at local markets will assure that you get the tastes that you’re looking for. And because there is a shorter time gap from farm to plate those precious nutrients are still abundant and can maximize your health.

Local foods support local family farms. Local, sustainable farms are a dying breed. When the farmer is able to sell directly to the customer and bypass the middleman they are able to take home the full retail price of their commodity. This means that they can then afford to continue farming and doing the work that they love.

Buying local also supports the local community. Keeping your dollars circulating within your community strengthens and encourages local growth. It also builds a relationship between you and your farmer based on an understanding and trust; as well as an insight into eating with the seasons, understanding the weather, and miracles and challenges that come with growing and raising food.

Supporting the Organs of Elimination

There are five major organs of elimination known as the emunctories: lungs, skin, kidneys, liver and colon.  The first step to a cleansing program is to “open” the emunctories.  When one or more of these organs are blocked the others pick up the slack.  Healing reactions, or side effects to natural therapies, do not occur if all the emunctories are open and a cleansing program is done as a comprehensive program.

Organ Supportive Foods Treatments Additional Support
LUNG Garlic, Onion, ginger, watercress, cantaloupe, pear, horseradish, pumpkin, fennel Deep breathing, aerobic exercise, postural drainage, percussion, mustard plaster, onion poultice Steam inhalation with Eucalyptus or Pine, sufficient water intake
SKIN Flax, pumpkin seed, sunflower seed, cayenne, cold water fish/ oils, avocado, cabbage, kelp Dry skin brushing, sweating, salt glow, Epsom salt baths Mud/ clay poultices, sufficient water intake
KIDNEY Cranberry, cilantro, parsley, celery, asparagus, watermelon, black beans, grapes, raspberry, walnuts Hydrotherapy, Kidney Flush avoid sugar, sufficient water intake
LIVER Dandelion greens, beets/ beet greens, lemon/ lime, artichoke, carrot, apple, plum, salt, seaweed/ kelp, vinegar, blue-green algae Castor Oil Pack, hydrotherapy, liver flush Avoid alcohol and processed foods, sufficient water intake
COLON Rhubarb, psyllium, flax, oats, root and leaf vegetables, figs, prunes, apples, cucumber, almond, banana, cabbage, pickled vegetables Eat ground seeds, colon hydrotherapy, abdominal massage, foot reflexology Cleansing drink, charcoal/ clay slurry, fiber sufficient water intake

Natural detox

Importance of Daily detox

Most people think of detoxification or “a cleanse” only as a prolonged fast, typically done for a certain period of time once a year.  Actually our bodies detoxify every minute of every day.  With a cleanse the assumption is if the body is not taking in food it has the opportunity to let go of toxic wastes.  Cleanses can be a useful tool and it is important to understand how the body eliminates to be sure it is the right choice for you.

How the body eliminates

The body eliminates wastes, or detoxifies, through five organ systems in the body; the lungs, liver, kidneys, skin and colon.  Each organ has special jobs to do to eliminate different types of toxins.  They all need daily support to do their jobs effectively and if they are not functioning optimally a short term cleanses may not be helpful.

To Cleanse or Not to Cleanse?

The absolute best way to help your body detox is to support these organs everyday all year long.  This can be done with certain food choices, drinking sufficient filtered water, regular exercise, deep breathing, and home remedies.

Cleanses, or detox programs, can be a wonderful way to rest the body and allow deep healing to occur.  Before trying a cleanse it is important to contact your Naturopathic Physician to talk about the best methods to use and if any supportive remedies are needed to be sure your health goals are reached.

Eggs: The Perfect Backyard Food

Growing up with hens roaming in the garden, I took this tasty backyard food for granted. Our chickens would lay eggs with glowing yolks, the whites were thick and the shells were sturdy. They tasted rich and I savored every bite.

Not only does this simple, whole food make for a great way to start your morning, they are packed with vitamins and other important nutrients. A healthy organic free-range egg contains choline, biotin, lutein, vitamin A, B vitamins, protein, fat and cholesterol, all of which are essential to maintain health and prevent disease.

Choline has been shown to support nerve and brain function.  It is one of the main components of our cell membranes and helps improve flexibility to allow nutrients in and out.  Choline and B-12 both support the body’s breakdown and removal of oxidized material from the body to prevent damage to blood vessels, which is supportive of cardiovascular health.

Lutein is a naturally occurring carotenoid that plays a key role in the health of your eyes. It is concentrated a small area in the retina responsible for central vision.  Biotin assists with energy production in the body and is essential for cell growth and repair.   Unlike many other proteins, the amino acid pattern found in is very similar to the useable form in our bodies, making it highly bioavailable.

To fully reap the benefits of this nutrient packed food, it’s important to choose the organic free-range eggs in the grocery store, or support your local farmer who has chickens roaming around the lawn.

What’s in Your 2010?

The New Year brings many of us deeply in touch with where we are, what we want from our lives, and what we feel is missing.  As the minute hand swept into position at 12:00 midnight more than just time had passed. The click of the clock at that particular moment wiped our slates clean.  Father Time himself hit the reset button to our “woulda-coulda-shoulda’s” and now offers us a clearing into which we can create new possibilities for ourselves.

What new possibilities do you have for yourself in 2010?

What could you accomplish with an energized, healthier, lighter, stronger, and, happier you?

Not sure where to begin? Let Clearwater Healthcare help you find your bliss in 2010.  Call us for a free, 15 minute consultation to discover how our unique health programs will be the key to unlock your potential in this new year.

Remember, from last month’s newsletter, that living healthfully doesn’t mean giving up everything you love. You’ll never eat better, look better, or feel better than when working with the physicians at Clearwater Healthcare.

Change That Works

Have you ever started at a new gym with a commitment to yourself of going on a set schedule, only to find that eventually you are paying $80 for one Pilates’ class a month?

Why is it that we know what we need to do to create the results in our life we want, but we can never seem to follow through?

Clearwater‘s physicians are experts in assisting you in making those changes.

There are three aspects to address in order to create change that works — doing, thinking, and being.  Before you can ACT differently you must THINK differently, and before you can THINK differently, you have to BE different.  We sabotage ourselves trying to stick a square peg into a round hole by forcing ourselves to act differently before we have ever considered asking ourselves, Why do I do that in the first place?

Why do I eat a pint of ice cream before bed?  Why do I drive past the gym and tell myself I’ll go tomorrow?

At Clearwater we understand true change comes from getting to the root cause of why we choose what we do.  By addressing change from the inspired state of BEING and not from the somber perspective of action or DOING, we can address fundamental aspects of how we defeat ourselves before we ever get started.  And, here’s the good news…. once we have addressed the root cause, the deeper why, we no longer have to force our actions to change.  They will change themselves naturally, with minimal thought or effort.

Now, that’s change that works!

Eat to Live

One of the most common New Year’s resolutions is to eat more healthfully.  This month we bring you our top 3 recommendations for healthier, tastier eating.

Michael Pollan, author of Omnivore’s Dilemma and In Defense of Food put it best when he wrote, “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.”   Our recommendations come from understanding what these simple statements mean, and experiencing the results we see in our own and in our patients’ lives.

1.) Eat Food

My desktop dictionary defines “food” as:

|foōd| noun - any nutritious substance that people eat or drink in order to maintain life and growth.

The key to understanding this one is in the word “nutritious”. The most nutritious foods are the ones that look the same in the grocery store as they do in nature, or are commonly known as “whole foods”. Pollan adds, “Don’t eat anything that lists more than 5 ingredients, contains ingredients you can’t pronounce, or contains high fructose corn syrup.” My favorite guideline is “don’t eat anything that your great-grandmother wouldn’t recognize as food.”  The less amount of processing that a food must undergo the more nutrition it maintains.

A great rule of thumb to keep in mind the next time you go grocery shopping is to shop the edges of your store. Whole foods tend to hang out around the periphery of the grocery store; fresh veggies and fruits, meats, fish, eggs and dairy, etc. Shop the middle for oils, spices, occasional canned goods, paper products, household items, and pet food.

2.) Not Too Much

Eating in moderation just can’t be beaten as a great standard to live by. As a matter of fact, we over-EAT our way into ill-health. Numerous studies have been done showing that regardless of nutrient content eating fewer calories can be the single best diet intervention to improving health in the United States. One way to make it easier to have smaller portions is to use smaller dishes! Oh, and don’t go back for seconds!

Cutting back on quantities doesn’t mean minimizing the flavor and enjoyment of food. It’s actually more important to eat the foods packed with nutrition and bursting with flavor so you’re getting all the nutrients you need. Eating less will significantly contribute to your energy and sense of well-being, and to your overall, healthier lifestyle As stated previously, these super-foods come in the form that nature intended…whole foods. Enjoy!
3.) Mostly Plants

Have you noticed every “new”, cutting edge, anti-cancer, anti-oxidant, anti-heart disease, super-food has one thing in common?  They are all plants.  If you could do one thing to help prevent disease and support a healthier life it would be to eat more plants. Clearwater’s principle is that two-thirds to three-quarters of your plate, three meals a day, should consist of fruits, veggies of all colors, and whole anti-inflammatory grains (such as brown rice, or quinoa).

Clearwater’s featured recipe this month is a Hearty Veggie Soup, which is a great way to incorporate more of these healing plants into your diet. Make some homemade, gluten-free bread, soak up the broth, and enjoy!