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A Matter of Health The Connection Between Diet and Your Overall Health
Back in January, I mentioned the importance of recognizing our responsibilities. This month, I want to start a conversation about one of those responsibilities: Our health. Lately, my family has gotten into a bit of a health kick — especially the boys, Connor and Carter. They are consistently hitting the weights. Connor, who has been working out for a while now, works out five days a week. He stays in shape for baseball. For the last few months, Carter has been doing the same. In between swim practices, he works out practically every day. My wife, Kim, and I have been jogging, and I’ve been working with my trainer. We’re working on getting our daughter Codie into a routine, but she’s not as motivated. But we are all doing our part to keep ourselves healthy and in shape. As part of that, I’ve been doing a lot of personal research. This brought me to the book, “The Plant Paradox” by Dr. Steven Gundry. Dr. Gundry is a former cardiologist who has produced a number of books and videos focused on health and food.
The researchers wanted to know how the gut biome — that is, gut bacteria — influenced weight and health. In the experiment, researchers conducted a fecal transplant. They took feces from the fat mouse and transplanted into the skinny mouse, and vice versa. After a period of time, the lighter mouse gained weight. In the converse of the experiment, the fat mouse lost weight. woman who kept in excellent shape and ran every day — developed C. Diff. This is an infection in the digestive system that is very hard to get rid of. However, one of the treatments is a fecal transplant, which reintroduces beneficial bacteria into a person’s digestive system. Doctors found a donor. It was the woman’s niece. Another detail: the niece was about 30 pounds overweight. After the transplant, the infection cleared up. But something changed. Even though the woman continued to live her runner’s lifestyle, she gained weight. The biome in her gut had changed and was influencing her health on a wide scope. This effect has been seen in humans, too. In one case, a marathon runner — a
The moral of the story is that what you eat has a major impact on your health, as well as the health of the biome within your digestive system. Everything is connected. Gundry professes that many chronic issues can be solved by fixing your diet. This is something I strongly agree with, especially after all my experience with the matter. Dr. Gundry talks about a number of different things you can do to improve your health. One of biggest influences on everyone’s health is sugar. It’s our best interest to avoid sugar at all costs. This includes high fructose corn syrup, as well as artificial sweeteners. The body has similar reactions to the artificial and low-calorie stuff as it does real sugar. Going a step further, even fruit isn’t the best for you (and fruit juice, even more so). Another influence on our health is lectins. This is a type of protein found in a lot of different foods. It’s also part of the defense mechanism in plants that makes that plant unappetizing to animals and insects. In humans, it can trigger allergies. Sometimes those allergies are very minor, but they can also be significant, if not life-threatening. Dr. Gundry believes we should avoid foods high in lectins. This includes tomatoes, potatoes, eggplant, and corn. But something
In one study I had read about, researchers had a “fat” mouse and a “skinny” mouse.
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