As you’re planning your New Year’s Resolutions, consider my list of suggestions for 2016:
- Exercise – Yes, you’ve heard it so many times before, but our understanding of what exercise does to enhance health is undergoing a revolution. While its been recognized for decades that aerobic exercise in particular is associated with risk reduction for various inflammatory and degenerative conditions, including type 2 diabetes, depression, high blood pressure, coronary heart disease, arthritis, osteoporosis, fibromyalgia, chronic back pain and even low libido, the breakthrough has been the discovery that aerobic exercise actually changes the expression of our DNA! These changes in gene expression turn on pathways that increase our body’s production of antioxidants while reducing inflammatory mediators and amping up detoxification pathways. Yes, it’s easier to take a pill or even a nutritional supplement, but the science supporting what and how exercise does its magic is really compelling. So moving forward, I’d like you to consider 20 minutes of aerobics, every day.
- Eat More Olive Oil – The health benefits of EVOO (extra virgin olive oil) are vast. Two recent studies that I’ve mentioned in my blog have shown dramatic risk reductions in individuals who added a full liter of EVOO to their diets. This simples dietary modification was shown in both men and women to be associated with more than a 40% reduction in risk for dementia, as well as a more than 60% risk reduction in the development of breast cancer in women. Olive oil consumption is associated with reduced risk for colon cancer and, in women, reduced risk for developing type 2 diabetes. Adding olive oil helps with your efforts to eat more fat, something we all need to pay attention to!
- Choose Organic Foods – Whenever possible, organic foods should be your choice. Food “experts” will often publish information that challenges the idea that organic foods are better from a nutritional perspective and I will not debate that erroneous contention right now. But I will say that organic foods are non-GMO foods and that makes a whole lot of difference. GMO foods threaten human health. GMO foods threaten human health (not a misprint – I did write it twice). Why? Because the overwhelming number of GMO foods that make up a substantial portion of the American diet are foods grown from genetically modified seeds that make the plant resistant to the weed killer glyphosate. That means when you choose to eat foods from GMO plants, you are likely eating foods laced with glyphosate, the active ingredient in the commercially available product RoundUp. Even wheat, not a GMO product, is doused with this herbicide to speed its maturation. So when the World Health Organization tells us that glyphosate is likely a human carcinogen, we have to take notice. Even more worrisome are newer studies showing that when glyphosate is combined with other ingredients to make commercial products, the toxicity may be increased as much as 1000 fold!
Wishing you all health and prosperity in the year ahead!