HJ: Even the healthiest eaters among us have days when they slip or indulge or simply don’t have access to whole foods — so what is one to do? Well, you can rest easier knowing that there are ways to counter unhealthy foods and indulgences that can throw your body out of whack — especially if it is a finely tuned, pure and clean machine. If you have been eating well, cleansing and nurturing your body for any substantial period of time, it is likely that it is quite pure and in a relatively good state of health and balance. You generally feel quite great when eating up to your high standards. However, inevitably there comes a time when you are forced to eat something that is it typically not up to your standards, or you decide to indulge with certain unhealthy foods or vices. While it may feel good in the moment, ultimately you are left feeling off — perhaps nauseous, bloated, headache-y, drained, depressed… the list goes on. What these symptoms arise from is your body being thrown out of balance and/or dealing with an input of toxins. Therefore, if you know what types of effects various ‘detrimental’ foods and vices have in and on your body, you can remedy them by supplying the needed nutrients or substances that will help you get back into balance and rid your system of toxins.
For example, alcohol is very dehydrating and imbalances gut flora. So, if you make it a special point to remineralize your system with electrolytes and trace minerals and boost your gut flora with probiotics, you can largely avoid many of the nasty symptoms that follow when indulging in alcohol. In this way, by understanding even in the most basic terms how various foods affect the body, you will always know how to keep it in balance, which is a priceless skill indeed.
Antidotes for Poor Eating
By Deborah Barr | Whole Health Resources
If you’re like most people, you’ve realized that it’s not possible to eat healthfully all the time. In fact, there is no such thing as a perfect diet. What you body needs is dependent on many factors including the kind of work you do; the type and amount of physical activity you engage in; lifestyle; all health conditions you’re experiencing; environment, including the weather; your mental and emotional state, age and more.
Have you found that you life takes you in many directions–parties, weddings, social eating? Even with the best of intentions you end up consuming too much sugar, alcohol or high fat food. Or perhaps you just plain overeat. You may feel sluggish, bloated, puffy, irritable, depleted, exhausted, and heavy–physically, mentally and emotionally.
Don’t despair! There are many quick remedies for over-indulging.
Too much refined sugar?
I believe it’s important to understand your body and the impact of your choices. Doing so will motivate you to make better ones. Here’s what happens when you indulge in a lot of sugar and other simple sweeteners. Sugar is weakening and passes quickly into the bloodstream shocking the stomach and pancreas. This causes an acid condition which quickly consumes the body’s minerals. Food cannot be digested or assimilated efficiently because sugar weakens the digestive system. This leads to blood sugar imbalances and many diseases. Mental and emotional disharmonies result as well, including loss of memory and concentration, nervousness, irritability and other imbalances.
Don’t despair. There are solutions that counteract the negative effects of all these unhealthy choices. Some of them may seem odd or unfamiliar to you. Think about all the odd things you already eat. If you want to create better health, a clear, focused mind, and emotional harmony, it’s essential to make new choices.
Here are a few things can you do to revitalize your energy, focus your mind, balance your emotions, lose the excess pounds, and reverse the negative effects of overdoing sweets:
- A cup of ginger tea with 1/4 tsp. good quality soy sauce; grate or chop 1/2 tsp. fresh ginger. Simmer in a cup of water 4-6 minutes. Add soy sauce and drink.
- Eat a few salty, cured olives;
- Umeboshi plum – a pickled plum with a salty, tart flavor. These are highly alkalizing and very high in minerals that are easy to assimilate. Often used to treat digestive upset. Use small amounts only– 1/2 to 1 plum chopped and mixed with food or simmered in tea. Click here to order
- Ume/Kuzu Drink (kuzu is high in minerals and alkalizing) Put one cup of cold water in a saucepan with a heaping tsp. of kuzu. Stir to dissolve the kuzu. Add 1/2 chopped Umeboshi plum or 1/4 tsp. Umesho. Turn on heat, bring to a boil and simmer 3-4 minutes stirring constantly. Turn off heat and stir in 1/4 tsp. good quality soy sauce.
- Eat some naturally cured pickles like natural sauerkraut or takaun daikon pickle (available at health food stores);
- Simple miso soup with root vegetables and wakame. Takes less than 10 minutes to prepare. Preparing it with miso paste will be more effective than the dehydrated miso soup, but, in a pinch, use the dehydrated soups. Click here for recipe.
How to remedy the effects of fatty, greasy, oily foods
Too much oil and fat generates heavy, slow, sluggish feelings–physically, mentally and emotionally. Fats cause cravings for excess sweets, coffee or alcohol, promote mental fogginess, contribute to problems involving pain, spasms and cramps; candida yeast overgrowth; and dampness which causes bloating, edema and puffiness. There are many others health problems caused by over consumption of fats which will be the topic of another issue.
If you’ve had too many high-fat meals, lighten up and do a few days of vegetables and broths only and include one or more of the following remedies to get back to balance and reverse the detrimental effects, including weight gain:
- Eat red radishes and/or celery. Even more effective is daikon, a white radish. Grate and eat it raw, or slice and steam 1-2 minutes keeping it on the crunchy side.
- Eat a tart green apple;
- Drink 3 cups peppermint tea or chamomile tea daily;
- Eat watercress and other hard dark leafy greens like kale or mustard greens, or turnip greens, lightly steamed;
- Eat 1/2 to 1 sheet of Nori seaweed. This is the seaweed used to make sushi. It does not need to be cooked. It aids in the digestion of fats and fried foods.
- Stir 3-4 TB. Vitamineral Greens into a glass of water and drink; click here for ordering information.
- Astra Diet Tea (resolves stomach phlegm and regulates stomach – pleasant tasting) or take Astra Diet Herbs (clears mucus and phlegm, facilitates digestion) – click here for information and ordering.
- Drink a cup warm water with juice of ½ lemon;
- Drink a glass of unsweetened cranberry juice (can dilute with water).
Solutions for reducing alcohol’s effects
Alcohol causes many of the same physical, mental and emotional imbalances as sugar. Anger, depression, pain and inflammatory problems as well as depletion of minerals, dampness, puffiness, bloating, poor digestion and assimilation, and cravings for meat and salty food are a few of the consequences of overdoing alcohol.
If you occasionally overdo alcohol, here are a few remedies to counteract the ill effects:
- Eat a few anchovies or sardines;
- Umeboshi plum or Ume/Kuzu Drink;
- Drink a cup of heated water with ½ to 1 tsp. good quality soy sauce;
- Eat a few salty, cured olives;
- Eat naturally cured pickles like takaun daikon pickle or natural sauerkraut;
- Eat a bowl of simple miso soup with root vegetables and wakame.
- Eat a grapefruit.
- Have a few TB. raw honey in warm water.
If you’ve overeaten in general
- Take digestive enzymes. I like Quiet Digestion and Chzyme because they undergo stringent quality control testing, are high quality and contain no dairy, corn, or other allergens. Take Enteromendenzymes for food allergies. Click here for information on these effective supplements.
- Take a walk.
- Drink warm water with juice of ½ lemon, or room temperature water with unsweetened cranberry juice.
- Drink peppermint tea, ginger tea, or Astra Diet Tea.
- Fast on broth, teas, and simple vegetables for a day or two.
- Make a kuzu drink as directed under sugar remedies.
The above antidotes are intended for those who occasionally overindulge and want healthy ways to reduce the harmful effects. Some of them may be unusual for you, but if you want to change your condition, then it’s a good idea to make some new choices.
If your diet consists of too much fat, sugar and alcohol on a regular basis, these antidotes may help, but in the long term it’s not the best way to try to achieve balance. You won’t be without health consequences at some point if you continue to consume excessive amounts of extreme food regularly. Please consider working a plan to include health supportive foods on a daily basis.
Deborah Barr, 26-year Holistic Health and Nutrition Counselor/Coach, speaker, and author, helps clients reverse health and weight issues; achieve emotional harmony, radiant health, passion, peaceful living, work-life balance, and a life they love. In 1985 she founded Whole Health Resources, the premier Holistic Health Center in Pittsburgh. WHR’s mission is to promote the healing and development of body, mind and spirit, and to teach an understanding of the relationship between diet, attitudes, lifestyle and wellness. She offers free help through her 2 e-newsletters, Natural Weight Loss, and Whole Health Matters, and free articles.Subscribe to newsletters. Call 412.361.8600 to schedule a 30-minute consultation/evaluation. Wouldn’t you like to create a plan for reversing physical, mental and emotional health conditions in safe, effective ways? Sessions can be done by phone or in my Pittsburgh office.