I’m three days into the Food Revolution Summit (3 hours of talks per day now through Saturday; free if you listen to them live or within 24 hours of when they are presented).
I’ve listened to the Summit for the past two years and it’s pretty much changed how and what I eat. I deeply believe that to be organized, productive, and to get your best work done, you have to be healthy. And food is clearly at the core of staying healthy.
My takeaways so far from this year’s Summit:
I don’t eat fruit because of the acid in it, but am thinking about testing berries in my diet. The doc I heard on this said the richer the color, the more healthful impact. Think dark blue blueberries. Red, ripe strawberries. Deep red raspberries. And mango. The sessions I heard on this last weekend were talking about how eating berries helps with cancer – to prevent it, and to tame it once you get it. And about how they help improve your night vision. I’ll read more on this before reintroducing berries to my diet, but the argument “for” seems strong.
Add a cup of cooked beans to your diet every day
One speaker talked about beans as a great source of protein as well as fiber. He said the big issue in the US is that we don’t know how to flavor beans to make them tasty. At a dinner party Saturday night, a friend said she uses all sorts of beans to make humus with all the regular humus flavorings. Another friend made a wonderful white bean dish with carrots, fennel, and onions. If any of you have meatless bean recipes you love, please share!
Eat raw cruciferous foods every day
The doc who presented this talk said if he could make one suggestion to help improve your health it would be to have a salad every day. And to add cruciferous foods to your salad. This includes cauliflower, kale, arugula, red cabbage, brussel sprouts, broccoli, radish, turnip, mustard and collard greens, watercress, and bok choy. All are good for you when cooked, but they are much more powerful when they’re raw – partly because of the enzymes that get released as you chew. Interesting. Oh, and in another talk, we heard that mushrooms and tomatoes are better for you cooked than raw. Who knew?
Calcium supplements can be hard on your system
When you eat foods with calcium in them, you get small amounts of calcium which your body can process. Calcium-rich foods include milk, yogurt, and cheese, as well as many of the cruciferous foods. Bonus! Foods that have bones in them, like sardines, are also a good source of calcium. The problem with supplements is that when you take them, you get a large amount of calcium all at once and your body has to figure out what to do with the extra. The extra can be a problem for your heart and can be a risk factor for stroke. The impact varies depending on your age, sex, and health, but the bottom line is that getting calcium is important – and getting it from food and not pills is the best way to include it in your diet.
Cooking in any oil isn’t great for you
This is the first time I’ve heard anything negative about cooking with olive oil. This doc said heating any fat releases nasty toxins that you don’t want to breathe or eat. He suggested cooking in water or in tomato sauce.
To truly reform health care, we’d do better to pay doctors and insurance companies a flat rate
Here’s the idea. If your doctor and health insurance company were paid a flat rate to take care of you, their focus would be on keeping you as healthy as possible so they could treat you as little as possible. In other words, they make more money if you’re healthy than if you’re sick. I don’t know how we get more of this thinking into the US healthcare system, but the logic here is undeniable.
You still have time to catch the rest of the Food Revolution Summit. Again, it’s free, it’s interesting, and it’s helpful. And so much of it is news to me! I take what I learn at the FRS, do more research, and then test out changes in my diet. We’re all built differently and we all react differently to food so take in what makes the most sense to you.
Sending you healthful thoughts on a rainy Tuesday afternoon.
Bundling up to keep warm 🙂