By Alane Stieglitz, ND, CNC
When I was was pretty young, I had no idea what antioxidants were in food, nor did I care what food I ate. As long as it tasted good, I was happy. When I thought of food having colors, I would not think of vegetables; I would think of frosting on a cake.
I remember that one of our family friends had a form of breast cancer. Then, it was a bleak, devastating situation that many found themselves in, and it’s still so today. I remember that several months later, my mother told me that our friend was in remission. How did the lady do it? Well, she ate only raw, natural foods that were full of antioxidants. As an eight-year-old, I didn’t comprehend what that meant, only that she must have eaten a whole lot of celery, and I didn’t like celery.
Flash forward, and the world seems to have caught on with what our family friend had done. Super-foods that are loaded with antioxidants are here! Blueberries, kale, hemp seeds, chia seeds, maca, green powders, wheatgrass, etc. You know, those supposed miracle foods. Many people are still skeptical. I, myself, was one of those people. In my mind, no amount of antioxidants in the form of spinach stuffed down my throat was going to rid me of my acne, constant sore throats, or stomach aches.
However, I failed to understand that eating antioxidants from super-foods is not some mystical solution to the world’s health problems. But, that doesn’t mean that there isn’t some truth to the theory. To understand, you have to first look at our typical American diets. It’s filled with chemicals and laboratory-created ingredients.
As much as I love chocolate bars or my french vanilla creamer with a dash of actual coffee, neither of those are antioxidants and are not found in a garden. And let’s not forget to mention sweeteners! Why are we so willing to put high fructose corn syrup in our bodies? Why do we continue to eat things that are not found in nature? Why do we do that to ourselves? We’re effectively setting ourselves up for health failure.
What do we eat then and how do we enjoy eating antioxidants?
Our bodies need natural nutrients, including kale, blueberries, coconuts, Brussels sprouts, and the like. Our bodies crave these nutrients, and it needs them. The health benefits of antioxidants and super-foods are staring us in the face. Eating foods with ingredients that have been modified or created in a laboratory can’t say the same. A healthy, balanced diet is the solution. It might even seem “magical.” Healing from the inside out is the answer.
Are you concerned about your nutrient levels? Even health-minded people can have specific nutrient deficiencies, including antioxidants. Even this holistic nutritionist was deficient in antioxidants in my first vitamin test. I did not grow up eating healthy, and it showed in my test. After one year of focusing on antioxidants in food and a few supplements, I felt great, and my lab improved.
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Medical disclaimer: Our tests cannot be used to diagnose, treat or cure any disease. All test results are to be used as educational materials and as a guide to help support your overall health and wellness. Always discuss health concerns with your medical doctor.