Western medicine does a fantastic job of treating crisis medical situations and illnesses. However, it has never seemed to focus it’s attention so much on prevention of illnesses and overall health quality because it treats the body as sections as opposed the whole that it is.
Sports medicine is beginning to change this, and some athletes are beginning to make lifestyle changes in order to improve their overall health and performance. Key in this effort, athletes are focusing on their intake of natural nutrients and real (unprocessed, sometimes referred to as “whole”) foods.
One example in the sports world is Chicago Blackhawks player Duncan Keith who has focused on controlling what he takes into his body, knowing that what he takes in becomes what the body can use to both build and repair itself.
But, beyond professional athletes, the average man or woman can get a boost to their overall health and vitality. Understand, the healthiness of the food commonly found in people’s kitchens doesn’t begin to supply what your body needs. Too often it barely qualifies as food because of it’s chemical content and low nutrient value. For example, studies show that organic fruits and vegetables have antioxidant levels 18-69% higher than standard factory farm foods, which are what most Americans have in their pantries. Imagine what this kind of difference in nutrient value can do for the average person. This is exactly why professional athletes are changing the way that they eat: to gain an edge in their job performance.
Additionally, beyond organic, whole plant-based foods, average people will also benefit from organic, grass-fed, pasture-raised meats and wild-caught fish for the same reasons that organic, whole plant-based foods are of higher quality and nutrition: avoidance of chemicals.
Higher nutrients is only part of the picture, though. Avoidance of toxins may be as, or more, important than the inherent quality of the food itself. Remember, when a toxin enters a body, the body must divert resources towards countering and eliminating that toxin, as well as repairing the damaged caused by the toxin. Avoidance of harm is the smarter option, whenever possible, over healing of the damage.
In short, the simple, but not always easy, answer, is to simply focus on eating a diet of organic, whole foods from a source that recreates an optimum natural growth environment. Your body will thank you, and, if you are an athlete, your fans will admire your performance.