Why is Nutrition Important?
When most people think of nutrition, they think of food. Some people eat to live, others live to eat and most are somewhere in between. But nutrition is about much more than food. Nutrition is about nourishment.
Nourishment comes in many forms, and each is vital.
- Nourishment of Body + food = providing your 70 trillion cells and 700 trillion probiotic organisms with the minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, proteins, fats, carbohydrates and water they need to function optimally.
- Nourishment of Self + food = valuing your immense importance and value by providing your physical self with one the basic needs for survival.
- Nourishment of Spirit + food = experiencing the deep enjoyment that comes from sharing meals with people we care about, whether it’s a quick lunch to catch up or a celebratory event. Or, a gift of food meant to ease pain, show love or help someone regain health.
- Nourishment of Mind + food = fueling your capacity for immersion in whatever intellectual topics that spark your interest and curiosity. Topics range from whatever is between the covers of a book, shared via a podcast or any STEAM endeavor (science, technology, engineering, arts (fine arts & crafting) & math).
- *Neither of these aspects can stand alone. If any are lacking or neglected, both physical and mental health are guaranteed to falter. (More on this concept in my post about Functional Nutrition)
- *None of these aspects can be accomplished by a lone individual. We all need farmers, neighbors, community, physicians, nurses, therapists, families, kind strangers… you get what I’m saying. We’re in this together and need to act like a team.
You can’t build a house without bricks and boards.
- Your body is constantly working, moving, repairing, detoxifying and rejuvenating.
- It needs a constant stream of energy from carbohydrates and fats, raw materials from proteins, spark plugs for its enzymatic reactions from minerals, components of metabolism from vitamins and protection from antioxidants. Without these things, it will make due… but before long, it will start to falter.
When you Nourish yourself….
- …your body benefits.
- Your body is able to hum along like a smoothly running machine.
- Your liver is able to diffuse toxins and hormones, metabolize fats and make appropriate amounts of sugar.
- Your heart is able to assist in the distribution of nutrients and oxygen to the rest of the body.
- Your brain is able to respond instead of react and chill out with those nagging food cravings.
- Your pancreas is able to produce digestive enzymes and insulin that is used to remove inflammatory, yet live-giving, sugars from your blood.
- Your cells are able to send and receive communication, repair themselves by transcribing instructions in your DNA, absorb water and expel waste.
- Your fat cells are able to release their contents, without fearing some stressful emergency will cause you to starve. (For the body, every stressful event translates directly into risk of famine.)
- …your body heals.
- The body’s nervous system is what handles all the communication. It operates in two mutually exclusive modes, meaning when one is activated, the other is completely turned off. When your “fight or flight” stress response is activated, your “rest and digest” response is absolutely impossible.
- This makes sense because if you’re being chased by a saber tooth tiger, your body is hardly interested in digesting or healing. It’s focused on running, hiding and fighting because who cares if you digest if you’re being digested.
- When you’re nourished and calm, your body can take care of first aid, detoxification, housekeeping and upgrades.
- …your perspective shifts.
- When your cells sense an emergency, they are programmed to make you crave refined flours and sugars, salty foods and sweets to keep you alive. When your cells are nourished, they don’t drive you to raid the 7-11.
- When you understand how your body works, you can be more compassionate towards yourself. You can shift from feeling that you’re weak or flawed, to feeling gratitude towards your body for sending a signal to you about what it needs. Then, when you eat some protein instead of a doughnut, you can feel pride and satisfaction that you are empowered. (Gratitude is a muscle!)
- When your cells sense lack, perhaps you do as well? When you have enough, perhaps you feel compelled to give more, whether it’s a smile, your time or your empathy and compassion.
- …your mind benefits.
- When your body has taken care of the basics (like detoxification and repair), your mind is free to expand into its problem-solving capacities, creativity and higher awareness.
- Upgrading your brain with Neurofeedback reduces stress, which may shrink barriers between you and lifestyle and dietary change.
- Consultations focus on all forms of Nourishment, starting with the needs of the cells.
- Human bodies all have one thing in common: they prefer real, unprocessed food and need protein, fats and carbs. There are many general food-related strategies that we can talk about.
- Each individual body requires different foods and different combinations of proteins, fats and carbs. Various things point to your biochemically individual needs: A history of what you’ve already tried, your gut feeling about that might be going wrong and lab tests, which provide a picture of what’s going on inside.
- Your role is as a Food Detective. Tools at your disposal are food experiments, food journals, supplement experiments and your nutrigenomic profile.
- It’s also important to find ways to adjust your needs to your lifestyle and lifestyle to your needs.
- Neurofeedback can be paired with Nutrition Counseling to optimize results.
- It’s ideal to have more than one session together. We need to work out kinks in our plan, adjust it as it brings you success or change it completely if it’s not working. If a plan is not working, it’s the plan’s fault not yours.
Anne approaches your concerns from a Functional Nutrition standpoint, which puts a priority on identifying the “root cause”. Read more about Functional Nutrition here.