Springtime is the perfect season to kick off a healthy lifestyle. With this new lifestyle must come new changes. The best way to make a true change is to get rid of the items that will cause you to lose focus of your goals. I can’t think of a better place to start making changes than your kitchen. So here are some tips to help you clean out your pantry and refrigerator during this year’s “spring cleaning” season.
Food to toss
1. High Fructose Foods: High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) causes very many metabolic problems including blood sugar imbalances, inflammation, and hormonal imbalances. These HFCS imbalances have been linked to diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, gout, and heart disease according to Dr. Dana Flavin author of the article “Metabolic Danger of High Fructose Corn Syrup”.
2. Trans Fats Foods: Any food that has the word “hydrogenated” or “partially hydrogenated” in them contains trans fats. Trans fats can cause build up in our blood vessels, which can lead to circulation problems. Chips, doughnuts, snack cakes, and many other junk foods contain trans fats. Toss those “trans fatty cakes” in the trash today.
3. Artificial Sweeteners: We have been told that artificial sweeteners are low in calories and are good to use on a diet. What has not been told is artificial sweeteners such as aspartame has been linked to brain abnormalities. In his article, Aspartame: What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You, Dr. Jeffrey Mercola notes “Aspartame is, by far, the most dangerous substance on the market added to food” that aspartate destroys neurons in the brain by allowing the influx of too much calcium into the cells. As the cells die they trigger other toxins called excitotoxins that excite many of the other brain cells to death.
4. Condiments High in Sugar and Fat: Ranch, blue cheese, honey mustard, many marinades and salad dressings are packed with calories and substances that will cause inflammation. It would be wise to get rid of these items and stick to herbs and spices.
Food to stock
There is only one type of food that I recommend stocking in your kitchen and that is fresh food. The fresher your food, the more vitamins, minerals, and enzymes (micronutrients) will be present. Fresh food will also have richer levels of protein, carbohydrates and fats (macronutrients) as well. If you can not buy fresh, buy frozen.
Fresh meats follow the same rules. Try to consume your meats in the first 3 days that you buy them or freeze your meat. This brings us to the question, “How long does food last in the freezer?” I would suggest consuming your food stored in the freezer within 2 months so that you know you are eating the best quality food possible.
Nuts will go rancid after 4-6 weeks of being left out. This is because the fat content in the nut will breakdown changing the molecular content of the fat.
It’s always best to shop for high quality food such as organic produce and free-range meats. Organic produce is grown in healthy topsoil, which helps it to receive more nutrients than conventional produce, and free-range animals graze on their natural organic vegetation, which helps the animals live a healthy life.
Remember, healthy produce, nuts and meats produce healthy bodies.
Flavin, D. Metabolic Danger of High Fructose Corn Syrup. Life Extension Magazine. Dec 2008.
Mercola, J. Aspartame: What You Don’t Know Can Hurt You. The Omni Intelligencer.