By James Lemire, M.D., Advanced Natural Wellness
To kick off the New Year, Dr. Lemire is sharing his “5 R’s for optimal health.” The 5 R’s are the foundation of the program he uses at his clinic. And they offer a unique approach to helping you live a happier, healthier and longer life.
January 13, 2014
- How eating your “favorite” foods has not served you up until now
- Meats and sweets… pies and fries and the consequences
- No more gas, bloating, constipation and indigestion
Today we’re going to talk about your diet.
But don’t go all weak-kneed on me now! We’ve made it this far together and you are almost half-way toward accomplishing your “pie in the sky” New Year’s resolution.
You remember what it is, don’t you? I WILL LIVE A HEALTHIER, HAPPIER AND LONGER LIFE.
I’ll be honest… I might share a few things today that you won’t be entirely happy about.
But I promise I won’t knock your world upside-down. The idea is to replace your toxic foods with healthier ones.
You know the drill, right?
No more quick meals from Burger King, MacDonald’s or KFC. And yes… that Hamburger Helper and Kraft Macaroni and Cheese has to go, too.
That’s the part that you might not be so happy with.
But guess what?
You can pretty much enjoy all of your favorite naturally-occurring foods with hardly any restrictions at all! You can even indulge in a few of your secret delights on occasion.
Now, I don’t want to keep you in suspense, so let’s get started!
You might be surprised when you hear what I have to share with you today…
It’s OKAY to eat meat. But make sure it’s clean, hormone free and grass fed. And combine your meat with vegetables and or salads. (You’ll discover why I don’t recommend carbohydrates like potatoes, rice or pasta.)
But I disagree with eating dairy products. Dairy is perfect food… for a calf. You see, the molecules in dairy are too large for the human body to breakdown. And they stress the body by causing inflammation and acid which transfers into many common diseases… Rheumatoid arthritis, MS, Sinus Congestion, Allergies, Alzheimer, cancer, etc.
I do recommend pasta made from non-grains: quinoa or rice. Again, you’ll want to combine them with other starches like squash, sweet potatoes, vegetables and or salads but not with animal proteins.
Here’s my recommendation to my patients: 20% of your diet should come from animal sources: (clean wild caught fish, hormone free chicken or turkey, and grass-fed, hormone-free beef.)
The other 80% of your foods should come from natural plant sources. That’s what your body really wants, even if you aren’t aware of it.
Until about 150 yrs ago, we ate roots and fruits, greens and beans, seeds and weeds plus some fish or wild game. But all of this changed when modern food processing was introduced.
Now we’re more likely to eat meats and sweets, pies and fries, chips and dips, cakes and shakes.
When you fill up on meats, fries, sweets and processed foods, it puts your body in an acidic state. This is a problem, because when your body becomes too acidic it causes inflammation, overloads the lymphatic system, hinders your body’s ability to detoxify,
and brings your body into a disease state.
So what you really want to do is reduce the foods that cause this imbalance and replace them with foods that increase your body’s alkalinity.
So, which foods are acid forming?
Bread, cereal, rice, pasta, potatoes, sugar, corn syrup, artificial sweeteners, coffee, soda and dairy are some of the acid forming foods I caution my patients to stay away from. Even beef, pork, poultry can cause acidity – which is why I recommend only 20% of your diet come from animal sources.
Most of your diet should come from alkaline forming foods, which include most fresh vegetables, fruits, herbs and spices. (Just make sure you buy organic, or else you’ll end up polluting your body even further.)
One caveat: I don’t recommend corn syrup or artificial sweeteners for any of my patients.
How you combine your foods is also important. That’s because different types of food use different stomach acids and enzymes to digest them. When you mix the wrong foods, these digestive juices neutralize each other. So nothing gets digested and it all ends up putrifying in your intestines.
I’ll go into a lot more detail about food combining in upcoming issues.
For today, I want to focus on one of the most common combining mistakes I see in my practice. It’s a mistake almost everyone makes.
What is this big mistake? It’s the idea of combining starches and proteins. For breakfast we have toast (starch) and eggs (protein.) Lunch is a burger (protein) on a bun (starch) with French fries (starch.)
Dinner rolls around and many people sit down to a steak (protein) and baked potato (starch) dinner or spaghetti (starch) and meatballs (protein.)
When you eat these foods together, the digestive acids and enzymes produced by your body cancel each other out. That’s because proteins cause your stomach to produce hydrochloric acid and pepsin. These digestive compounds don’t play well with the enzyme your body secretes to digest starches.
That’s why so many people end up with heartburn, gas, bloating, constipation and other digestive disorders after meals.
It also goes much deeper than that.
When your foods don’t digest properly, your body can’t absorb the nutrients. As these undigested foods rot away in your digestive tract, they become toxic. And that’s bad because your body will start absorbing the toxic waste before it can be eliminated.
Remember now, toxins are the root of most of today’s major health concerns. And if you are influencing toxic build up in your own body by creating a digestive environment that leads to putrification… well, let’s just say it might explain your weight gain and other health problems.
If you want to fix all of that, it’s important to improve your digestive function, absorb all of your nutrients, eliminate the “trash,” and get as much energy from your meals as you can.
The first thing you can do is remember not to combine your proteins and starches. It’s also a good idea to eat a combination of raw and cooked veggies (note: vegetables turn acidic when they are overcooked.)
For the best results, give this a try:
Breakfast is a good time of day to eat raw fruits. That’s because the sugars in fruits are quickly (and easily!) turned into a form of energy your body can use. This will give you a head start on the day. To prevent sugar drops from the fruit, you’ll want to combine the fruits with some healthy nuts like: almonds, walnuts, pecans, cashews or seeds like pumpkins, sunflower, chia, flax, hemp etc.
But stay away from peanuts as they can often contain fungus and molds.
Another great way to begin the day is making a green smoothie. That way you cut the sugar in the fruit with healthy organic greens.
Having the right foods available is key. In my office, we keep a very clean protein meal replacement (made from rice and peas.) It doesn’t have fructose in it and has 21 gr of protein, along with vitamins and a complete panel of amino acids. It provides a very healthy breakfast – or any other meal throughout the day.
Lunch should continue to be on the light side with green leafy salads, vegetable wraps, vegetarian chili and other healthy choices. This is also the best time of the day to take in any starchy foods. (That’s not a license to have white or wheat bread sandwich.) Look for unprocessed starches like whole grain rice, beans and starchy vegetables.
Dinner is the best time to introduce your proteins. Coupling your protein with a variety of non-starchy vegetables and greens like kale, Swiss chard, bok choi, spinach, and celery makes for an energizing evening meal that won’t leave you feeling overly full and tired all night long.
It can also be helpful to take a probiotic each morning when you wake up, and a digestive enzyme formula about a half hour before meals. This will help keep your gastrointestinal system prepped for whatever you deliver to it.
Replacing your eating habits this healthier type of diet will take a little work on your part. In the beginning, I suggest using a portion of the 20% of your diet that includes the foods you’re used to eating as a reward system.
Have the foods that you feel you need no more than once per week at the beginning of making these changes. Over time, it will become easier and you will crave them less often. Especially once you start dropping pounds and feeling better. That’s when true motivation will kick in.
And speaking of kicking things in… In my next issue we’ll kick your health into overdrive with some techniques to start regenerating every cell in your body, from head to toe.