Although food certainly relates to these various terms, we are learning that food actually provides our body with very TECHNICAL INFORMATION. Without going into the details about genetic expression, mitochondria health, ATP formation, hormones, cell membranes, intestinal microbiome it is sufficient to say that food is our first line of defense against disease. Rarely (if ever) do we think about the journey of each mouthful of food we ingest and how the process of digestion affects our health. Well, here is what the journey looks like (briefly in 1 paragraph).
The mouth starts the digestive process. Chewing is VERY IMPORTANT. It helps break the food down and creates greater surface exposure to saliva necessary for maximal (eventual) absorption. As the food passes the throat it makes its way to the esophagus where muscles contract in a rhythmic fashion to get this food to the stomach. The stomach holds the food for a period of time where it acts to mix and grind the contents. The stomach acids and enzymes further break down the food where it becomes liquified. This liquid moves into the 20+ feet of small intestines which receive additional enzymes from the pancreas and bile from the liver for continued digestion. Absorption starts in the middle and distal third of the small intestine (jejunum and ileum) where these nutrients pass through the intestinal lining and travel into the bloodstream. In the small intestine there are little “projections” called villi. They contain muscle and therefore sway in a rhythmic fashion to increase the surface area for nutritional absorption. These villi are NUTRIENT SPECIFIC. Some absorb protein (amino acids), some sugar, etc… A network of capillaries (smallest blood vessels) in these villi help transport the nutrients to the arteries and veins. The circulatory system carries these nutrients to all the organs of the body for utilization.
One paragraph does not do the digestive system justice, but to prevent my readers from falling asleep, I have tried to provide the essentials.
As food passes through this network, it provides INFORMATION to the body. The body takes this information and uses it to repair damaged areas, restore areas of depleted nutrients to act as reserves, balances hormonal functions as needed, helps detoxify the system of accumulated waste products, etc… The end product of all this work is health. The question we need to ask is, “does the end product result in GOOD HEALTH OR BAD HEALTH?“
As we continue to eat greater amounts of processed foods, foods exposed to chemical agents such as pesticides, fungicides and herbicides, genetically altered food sources, foods contaminated with heavy metals and foods high in sugar and preservatives the technical INFORMATION provided to our bodies becomes altered. This type of food damages structures along the pathway leading to improper processing (communication of the food information) and malabsorption. This damage literally results in starving the body of necessary nutrients to maintain good health. These poor food choices also have the ability to alter the expression of our DNA. The latest research shows that “Turning On” and “Turning Off” genes at the wrong time or in the wrong sequences can lead to various diseases including cancer, diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease.
We must begin re-evaluating our food choices to reverse this current pattern. Our bodies can tolerate (in many cases) a great deal of abuse before it loses its capability to function. Why must we wait for the inevitable symptoms resulting from these poor food choices before we alter our course in life. I believe the DESTRUCTIVE INFORMATION obtained from these poor food sources is resulting in compromised communication between the brain and the stomach/intestines. Some call it cravings; some call it addictions. This mis-information is a key component in discovering the ROOT CAUSE of DISEASE.
Instead of looking at foods in the traditional manner, I hope this article convinces you to re-evaluate your relationship with it. Food can provide the ESSENTIAL INFORMATION necessary for our bodies to perform at the highest level or DESTRUCTIVE INFORMATION damaging our DNA resulting in disease and death. As of 2012 health care in the United States ranked LAST out of the top 11 wealthiest countries in the world, yet we spent the MOST (over 2.8 TRILLION dollars annually.) Poorer quality at a higher cost is simply a loosing formula. Obviously this means we can’t rely on our health care system for our daily health needs.
We must take control of our lives and begin to create a new course of action. If the task seems overwhelming seek help from professional nutritionists or other qualified professionals for guidance. As your body is provided with healthy nutritional INFORMATION, the “brain fog”, low energy, painful joints, heart burn, cholesterol problems, metabolic disorders, etc… will all change.
I’ve given you the INFORMATION you need.
It’s up to you to give your body the INFORMATION it needs through better food choices.
Wish I’ve had this information as a teen. Oh, the places I could have gone and the things I could have done, had I known better and done better. Making up for lost time these days. So grateful for a chance to CHANGE!
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You’ll notice, it’s never too late!!
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Very neatly put – a good summary of the complex relationship between what we eat and how it affects us! Reblogged!
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Reblogged this on Singh of the Mountains and commented:
Neat summary of how what we eat affects us. Please read.
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