Cheers to Good Food Choices

Bernice Butler

Here’s one of the many benefits of reading (and publishing) Natural Awakenings: With all its expert-informed articles about nutrition, we know what a healthy diet looks like. We know we should eat plenty of fruits and vegetables every day. We know we should avoid processed foods at all costs. We also know that the traditional table sugar that many of us grew up with raises our blood pressure, increases our risk of certain cancers and often ends up as body fat.

But here’s something that you may not know, and that I’m still learning about: Our diet has a big impact on our immune system, and thus our overall health. I've been watching documentaries and reading up on the subject to learn more about how certain foods can help ward off or even heal major diseases like cancer, diabetes and autoimmune conditions, as well as viruses like colds and flu. The evidence is so compelling that I’ve given up processed foods, fast foods, sodas and most meat. (I’m hoping to wean myself from turkey bacon and seafood, too.)

Change requires discipline. It’s still oh-so-tempting just to satisfy my learned appetite. But I’ve also discovered that if I’m eating tasty, nutritious foods, I’m not hungry for junk food. It also helps to refer frequently to my owner’s manual, the Bible, which reminds me that the world was created to provide everything we need to thrive—and that involves a mostly plant-based diet and natural healing modalities. It’s the manmade stuff that society inflicts on our bodies and environment that throws things off kilter.

In our November feature article “Supercharge Our Immune System,” on page 20, Kathleen Barnes warns us that immune challenges and dysfunction are on the rise, and she offers tips for identifying the culprits and suggestions for food and supplements that can help us stay healthy naturally. Our drinking water can help or hinder our immune system too, so be sure to read Jim Motavalli’s article on page 24 about the best ways to keep water safe from harmful impurities.

With the Thanksgiving eat-a-thon coming up this month, remember that it’s possible to make good choices and feel satisfied, too. Starting on page 30, we offer some tasty plant-based desserts and other recipes your friends and family will love. We won’t tell them how healthy they are if you don’t.

Blessings until next month,




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