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What is “Functional Nutrition?”

Ensure that everything you do in your day enhances everything you do in your day…Do this by asking yourself this question: Is the choice I am making right now, in some way,enhancing my day, my body and my life?

This is our first Power & Balance Fitness (PBF) blog of many more to come. Come to the PBF website and check in frequently for newly posted blogs. We will discuss and inform you with practical, sciencebased information regarding eating and exercising in sustainable ways that,when practiced, improves YOU in the short and longterm.“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” Hippocrates brought this concept to the attention of citizens in Greece sometime during his life between 460 and 371 BC. He lived a long 85100 years and perhaps his approach to health care using diet and exercise as means to optimal health, that contributed to his long life.

In essence, Hippocrates practiced thousands of years ago what we refer to now as functional nutrition.

So what is “functional nutrition?”

The short description is…eating foods that contain nutrients of which nourish your body’s systems and cells to enable their optimal lifesupport functions.

Your body wants to be well all the time. It’s designed to fight disease and heal injuries automatically. Think about this…The food you eat is information you put into your body to feed and nourish these systems and cells so they can best perform their innate functions to maintain your health.

However…

When you eat foods containing chemicals, GMOs, antibiotics and other pharmatype ingredients or foods that have been processed to the point of unrecognizable as anything derived from a plant, fish or animal—problems begin. The systems and cells that you rely on to heal a cut, help you sleep, give you energy and ward off diseases have difficulty understanding the information it is receiving—the chips, soda and drivethru meat patty on a bun—the food you just ate between leaving work and sitting down to watch TV. These foods will hurt you. You might notice small discomforts at first such as belly fat, obesity, gut and intestinal problems, bad skin, bad breath, fatigue, high blood pressure, aches and pains. Over time these small discomforts become serious health concerns such as diabetes, cancer, heart and circulatory dysfunctions, autoimmune diseases and the list goes on.

Why does this happen?

Sometimes this is due to genetic predisposition along with the added stresses such as eating a diet rich in harmful ingredients and those foods containing minimal nutrients. Sometimes it is just simply a result of eating these harmful and nutrientlacking foods for too long.

Let’s take the example of drinking soda. What happens after you swallow the bubbly, sweet drink?…

In the first 10 minutes: 10 teaspoons of sugar hit your system. (Sodas containing highfructose
corn syrup also contain high levels of free radicals linked to tissue damage, the development of diabetes, and diabetic complications.)You don’t immediately vomit from the overwhelming sweetness because phosphoric acid cuts the flavor, allowing you to keep it down. (Soda contains phosphoric acid that depletes calcium and magnesium. These two nutrients help keep your immunity operating at peak efficiency.)

20 minutes: Your blood sugar spikes, causing an insulin burst. Your liver responds to this by
turning any sugar it can get its hands on into fat. (And there’s plenty of sugar at this particular moment.)

60 minutes: The phosphoric acid binds calcium, magnesium and zinc in your lower intestine,
providing a further boost in metabolism. This is compounded by high doses of sugar and artificial sweeteners also increasing the urinary excretion of calcium (when the body excretes calcium in high levels it is depleting that which can be used for maintaining strong bones—can you say “hairline fractures?.” As the rave inside you dies down, you’ll start to have a sugar crash. You may become irritable and/or sluggish.

Good to note: Diet soda actually contributes to weight gain. A study of 1,550 people concluded
that people who drink diet soda have a 41 percent increased risk of being overweight or obesefor every can or bottle they drink per day! Turns out, any sweet taste signals body cells to store fat and carbohydrates, which makes you hungrier. Sweet tastes also promote insulin release, which blocks your body’s ability to burn fat. The hard truth: No published study has ever proven that drinking diet soda will help you lose weight.

That all is going on inside your body after drinking your soda. I am not going to describe what your body has to go through to digest and metabolize the chips and meat patty on a bun you are eating. But, I think you get the idea. And this is our first blog with more to follow. We will dive deeper into these and other topics.

Getting back to our topic of defining functional nutrition…it is simply nutrition that which, enables you to eat delicious food and, of which, gives your body all it needs to function as it is designed to do. It is a way of eating that is not only life sustaining but also sustainable for maintaining life and that which empowers your body to work and function. Functional nutrition gives your body the edge on fighting disease, injury and illness.

What does functional nutrition look like?

The main dish is, perhaps,organic roasted, nonstarchy,vegetables of your choice, tossed with cilantro, basil, parsley, salt and pepper and olive oil or coconut oil. On the side is broiled salmon steak. All served with a leafy green salad, tossed with cucumber, radish and avocado, if you like,then drizzled with avocado oil and apple cider vinegar.

This is absolutely delicious and satiating. You can eat a full plate of a meal like I just described and be completely satisfied for hours. You will have fed your body’s systems and cells information it can use to give you the zest and vitality you want. Do this as habit and your skin will look better, your moods will be better, your energy levels will be higher.

This is not a diet…don’t get me started on the word “diet.” The dictionary has a number of definitions none of which describe boxed meals or the latest bestselling diet book. It is defined as: food or feed habitually eaten or provided.

This is not counting calories.

This is not weighing yourself on a scale.

This is eating more and better than you may have ever eaten before.

This is how, perhaps, your grandparents or great grandparents ate everyday just because most of the foods available in their day was chemical, GMO, antibiotic and not factory processed. It was an anomaly to have such food choices—the food choices we have today.

Everyday I eat quality food to gain optimal physical health. It makes all the difference in the world and it is so simple! Trips to the store mean going to the produce, meat and dairy sections primarily. Steam, sauté, roast or broil these foods in short order and serve! Mix herbs together with the meals and make it taste like a gourmet meal everyday.

Benefits can range from slowing down your aging process to reversing disease and illness. From feeling like dragging through the day to engaging fully in each day. From feeling like snacking constantly to being completely satiated for hours.

Functional nutrition is a sustainable way to eat that improves you in the short and longterm by way of nourishing your body with delicious, quality food.

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