Food allergies and intolerance are on the rise and according to research published in the journal EBioMedicine, environmental factors play a significant role in the increase. With the rise of social media and increased coverage of health issues in mainstream press, our understanding of the relationship between diet and health is a hot topic.
The hard part is working out who we should listen to.
Self-professed food gurus and Insta-stars may see effective results in the short-term, but their methods may do more long-term harm than good.
Taking a more scientific look is necessary to ensure lasting wellbeing. We need a dietary approach that involves listening to the body and taking note of the local environment in order to promote and maintain a healthy lifestyle.
Our body has a unique power to communicate with us in the form of disease, abnormalities, weight gain and so on, to show that it’s rejecting what we are doing.
Many of us are lucky enough to have a range of foods to choose from, but often turn to more convenient options that are easily consumed but lacking in the nutrients required for a healthy diet. So, how can we tap in to the environment and listen to what our bodies want? Well, as a Naturopath at The Retreat Palm Dubai MGallery by Sofitel, I suggest that we start with rejecting artificial foods and turning to our ancestors for inspiration.
We rely on the latest research papers, media campaigns, studies, but we fail to realize that these reports are highly variable and are done in controlled environments. And the results are anticipatory. The best study to believe is ancestral knowledge, the way our forefathers survived on instincts and rich traditions.
In today’s modern globalized world, food is flown thousands of miles to destinations with very different climates to its origins.
Here are my four key principles to deal with this issue:
Never eat foods that are grown more than 500kms away.
Never eat foods that do not relate to your ethnicity.
Never eat foods based on fads.
Never eat food that’s not seasonal.
There is another simple motto to remember: 50/50
Finding what your body requires, needs and desires may not be the easiest task, but necessary for a life of lasting wellbeing.
Fifty percent of the food you eat should be what you have grown up eating as a child, and fifty percent of food should be traditional, locally cultivated produce that is natural to the area you live in.
Taking the strongest elements of research and naturopathic guidance, eating local produce and remembering our heritage appear to be the most effective methods to attaining the healthiest body.