This past Wednesday, I attended a wonderfully informative lecture put on by Nourishing Ways West MI. The founders of NourishMD.com, Dr. Sue McCreadie, MD and Holistic Health Counselor Angelle Batten, spoke about a number of health issues that affect children and how REAL foods (not processed, fake foods) help make kids healthy.
Being a medical doctor, Sue has a traditional background in medicine, but has since expanded her practice to holistic medicine. She described traditional medicine as looking at all of the parts of the body (including organs) separately and holistic medicine as looking at everything at once since it is all connected.
Angelle and Sue spent a good amount of time talking about the digestive system, which is extremely important to the entire body, as 70% of the body’s immune system is the gut. In fact, they stated that almost any issue (including allergies) in the body goes back to the gut and second to the spine only, the gut contains most nerve endings in the body. If you think about it even in simple terms, the digestive system is how we convert outside food into usable nutrition and energy for the body, so if the body can’t do this well, we’ve got a big problem on our hands.
Eating REAL food is a good first step to helping out the digestive system. Foods that are unprocessed and close to their natural state are best, and ensuring they are good quality is also important. This means eating organic, pastured meat and organic fruits, vegetables, and grains when possible.
Sue and Angelle noted that it is not possible to go from eating processed foods to real foods overnight so they suggested “bridge” foods. The example they used was apple flavored snacks as processed, fake food and a local, organic apple as the REAL food. Storebought applesauce would be the bridge food in this scenario. It’s not perfect, but it’s certainly less processed than the apple flavored snacks.
Also, to help make the transition easier, Sue and Angelle suggested thinking about what foods can be added to your (or your child’s) diet rather than thinking about what must be taken away. That way, the good foods can begin to replace the bad ones. They also noted that meal planning is important and I’m working on this myself, but can’t say that it is necessarily easy!
Luckily, Nourishmd.com offers a great selection of healthy recipes using REAL food. I’ve tried a couple of them already (including the homemade baked oatmeal-yum!). They also have a great deal of information available and an interesting health blog. I definitely recommend checking out their site!