Tuesday, June 14, 2011

This Should TERRIFY You... And Change Your Life Forever

If this doesn't scare the @$#% out of you and make you want to change your life habits for good, I don't know what will.

Educating myself on the benefits of healthy eating and the dangers of chemicals/poisons (as poison is defined as a substance that, when absorbed by the body, causes death or injury...injuries like migraines, thyroid problems, etc) in processed foods has really helped me stay on track with so many lifestyle changes that I've been making in the past 9 months. However, I still crave processed snacks and sodas, and sometimes - mainly when when I'm lazy/tired, I give in.

We're only human, so it's about finding a balance and doing what's best for yourself and your family. If you're going to eat something - at least be aware of what is in it. Usually if I look up ingredients in a product I want to purchase, I end up putting it back on the shelf (and that craving goes away real quick!) For example, I used to snack on Applesauce and Gluten & Dairy Free pudding... until I researched the ingredients and discovered that most of the ingredients were chemically processed, and linked to cancer and weight gain in humans.

Recently, autism and environmental health experts have called for for greater scrutiny of chemicalsfound in the environment, which could potentially lead to autism, ADHD and other neurodevelopmental disorders. Their studies have found that autism spectrum disorders are being diagnosed at unprecedented rates, partly because of improved diagnostic tools and criteria, but also a host of other factors including what mothers-to-be are exposed and consequently their unborn children too.

Basically everything that is processed has chemicals in it that makes it hard for your body to process and get out of your system. This is especially true for the fetus and growing children (for the love of God please don't feed your kids fast food.). Moreover, many children with autism spectrum disorders have abnormal immune responses. The chemical messengers in the immune system interact with the receptors in the brain, so chemicals that affect immunity could also be implicated in autism. This is also true of thyroid disorders. I had a cyst on my thyroid and had to have surgery to remove the right lobe of my thyroid in 2009 - I would credit the cyst to my years of eating processed foods, as it's difficult for the thyroid to process it.

Be aware that mood swings, kid's temper tantrums, fatigue, headaches, hair loss, depression, etc can all be traced back to additives in processed foods. But instead of telling us to eat healthy and organic - doctors just throw more chemicals/"medicine" at us to counterbalance the other chemicals in our body that are making us sick. For years I felt fatigued and depressed, along with a plethora of other symptoms... doctors offered me ADD medicine and antidepressants. But I didn't want to become a prescription zombie. Instead, I gave up processed foods and just a couple months after I did - those mood swings and symptoms ALL WENT AWAY. I encourage you to give up processed foods in placement of medicine and see what good things happen to your body.

Of course not everything can be blamed on processed foods. There are genetic disorders, air pollution and pesticides in the ground that are hard to avoid. But do the best you can, that is all we can do. Stay educated and be aware of what you put into your body and your family's body. Make gradual changes so you can be healthy for a lifetime. Be aware of the products your family uses, and take the time to cook your own food and snick snacks at home.  By doing this, you can, quite literally, stop poisoning yourself. 

- Stephanie

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