Taking A Fresh Look At Nutrition: The First Step In Preventing & Reversing Disease

Dr. Varsha Rathod, M.D.

by Dr. Varsha Rathod, M.D.

Symptoms of most chronic diseases, and often the disease itself, can be ameliorated with a few basic lifestyle changes. These are: sound nutrition, exercise, air and sunlight, stress management techniques and fostering love and relationships in your life. The purpose of this article is to discuss the contribution that good nutrition plays and to offer a simple approach to daily eating.

Americans spend over 50 billion in diet fads, which help them loose weight while they remain on them. It has not however substantially decreased nor eliminated our propensity to chronic illness. Many studies have shown that a low calorie diet rich in green leafy cruciferous vegetables (Kale, Collards, Bok Choy, watercress, arugula, mustard greens, turnip greens and chard) have immense healing properties that fight chronic inflammation, cancer and autoimmunity.

So here’s the scoop: The best nutrition for human health is a whole food, plant based diet that minimizes oil consumption. A whole food is any food that is close to its original form as opposed to man modified (processed). All vegetables, fruits, legumes, grains, nuts and seeds, etc. are whole foods.

Foodstuffs that have been: chemically altered, genetically modified, or have preservatives with un-recognizable and un-pronounceable names are examples of foods that have been processed. Plant based foods do not come from animal sources. For those whose genetic individuality supports a little animal protein- wild fish, and free range non-confined animal products are recommended when eaten with a spectrum of vegetable colors, especially a variety of greens.

There are many references on this subject including recipe books. I recommend reading: “The China Study” by Colin Campbell, PhD; “Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease” by Caldwell Esselstyn, MD; “Eat More Weigh Less” or “Program for reversing Heart disease “by Dean Ornish, MD.

The best way to start this program is to gradually wean animal products and immediately start filling your plate with the spectrum of colors provided by vegetables and fruits in their fresh or frozen forms. You could start one day of the week with no animal products or just pick one meal every day which is totally balanced with vegetables and fruits, even if it is breakfast!

Remember to introduce at least 3 plant – based colors at every meal. This does not have to be an ordeal if you learn how to do this with guidance. I have discovered that I often eat to satisfy an emotion or craving rather than to nourish the body.

Dr. Varsha Rathod is a board certified Rheumatologist and Internist at Preventive Medicine in the Westport Plaza Area of St. Louis, MO. The practice has focused on a combination of traditional and holistic medicine since 1967.

For more articles and information about integrative solutions please visit www.preventivemedicinestl.com or call Preventive Medicine at 314-997-5403.