It’s never become more apparent than in the 21st century that the earth is saturated with poisons. It’s nearly impossible to avoid them, despite our best attempts. The media, coupled with the “all-knowing experts,” advise us to steer clear of pesticides, household cleaners, processed foods, food additives, preservatives, and gas-guzzling sport utility vehicles. If it were up to them, we would all be living in the mountains of Montana, growing our own food, drinking aquifer-supplied water, and driving a hybrid car (or riding a horse). While this might be an ideal way to live, unfortunately for you and me, it’s likely not possible. That’s why it’s even more important to build up and support our immune systems and make healthy choices when it comes to what we eat, what types of foods we choose to have in our homes, and which foods we provide for our children. I don’t want to sound paranoid. And my desire is not to make you eliminate all of the things that are a part of our everyday lives. I will, however, offer you the following scientific evidence and guidelines for avoiding what I believe to be the most toxic substances to our bodies, which drain our energy!
Sugar and hydrogenated fats. These two toxins, which are consumed by the billions of tons each year, literally drain our mental and physical energy and infect us like a poison.
Here’s a brief explanation of each and how they negatively affect us:
“Sugar makes you irritable, hyperactive, and causes premature aging…”Sugar is the most consumed substance on the planet. Whether it’s in the form of fructose, sucrose, dextrose, corn syrup, maltodextrin, or confectionary sugar-this poison negatively affects our mood and behavior. It makes us want more and leaves us cranky when we don’t have it.
Scientific evidence has shown that sugar, in any form, depletes essential B vitamins and lowers your body’s resistance to bacteria, viruses, and yeasts. Sugar makes you irritable, hyperactive, and causes premature aging through a process called glycosylation (pronounced gly ko si lay shun). And to no surprise, sugar is the number one culprit to adult-onset (Type II) diabetes, which is typically self-induced as a result of a life laden with sugar. At this point, the body is no longer capable of disposing of insulin properly, which becomes a serious risk factor for heart disease.
The Insulin “Roller Coaster” Ride
When you eat sugar, it enters your bloodstream all at once, instead of slowly as it would as part of a whole-food, naturally occurring meal. Insulin is then immediately secreted and shuttles the sugar away into cells within muscle or adipose tissue (fat). Now that there is not enough sugar in your bloodstream, your brain senses that you are in a time of famine and sends a message to the adrenal glands to release adrenaline and cortisol.
Adrenaline releases energy from sugar stored in your liver and muscles, and cortisol begins to break down your own muscle mass into sugar like I shared earlier. This sequence of events is called the insulin -> adrenaline -> cortisol cycle. It’s a vicious “roller coaster” ride for your body, and the worst part is that afterwards, it leaves you feeling lethargic, cranky, and surprisingly, craving even more refined, sugary foods.
Thus, the cycle starts over again. As you can see, it’s a downward spiral to poor health and even poorer energy levels.
We have heard it said that we eat too much fat and that fat consumption has risen in the last 20 years, and we are becoming an increasingly obese nation. While the later of these statements is true, statistics have since proven the former is false. See, fat consumption has not changed: what has changed is the type of fats people eat.
Today, more and more people are getting the majority of their fats from “manmade” hydrogenated fats and other harmful polyunsaturated oils such as palm and corn oil. As long as 20, 30, or 50 years ago, people ate a diet which consisted of more naturally occurring fats and oils, such as butter, coconut oil, lard, olive oil, and tallow (fats from red meat and lamb).
“…fat consumption has not changed: what has changed is the type of fats people eat.” Now, our diets are polluted with hydrogenated fats. These types of fats have been clearly linked to slowing our bodies’ metabolic processes and have also been shown to cause heart disease and cancer.
The reason these fats are particularly harmful to us is because polyunsaturated and hydrogenated oils have been subjected to damaging industrial processes (literally restructuring them), which has rendered them toxic. Their new “trans molecular structure” has not, until recently, been incorporated into human physiology and is therefore unrecognizable to the human body. Since their introduction to our diets, just in the last century, these unhealthy oils have been linked to heart disease, cancer, and other degenerative diseases.
The best examples of a polyunsaturated oil is corn, cottonseed, canola, vegetable… and any derivative of hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils.
Make no mistake, these toxic fats should be avoided at all costs. By avoiding sugar and hydrogenated fats, you will:
Improve concentration and mental clarity (along with short-term memory);
Enhance your immune system;
Slow the aging process;
Reduce fat on the abdomen area;
Eliminate future “junk-food” cravings.
The way I see it, the real problem is the food industry-which thrives on the sales of sugar and “fake” fat-containing foods.
They have succeeded in brainwashing the public and suppressing the scientific findings that eating whole foods, which contain little to no sugar, and meats and oils, which contain naturally occurring saturated fats do not contribute to heart disease (like they claim) and are, in fact, a healthy way to boost your metabolism, stabilize your cholesterol levels, improve your immune system, and provide energy and structural integrity to literally every living cell in your body.
Therefore, to avoid these toxins, here’s all you do tomorrow:
Daily Energy Exercise: Rid Toxins from Your Life
Take about 10 minutes to check the food labels and ingredients panels on the foods in your cupboards, refrigerator, and on the counters in your kitchen.
WHAT TO LOOK FOR?
Any foods that list sugar, dextrose, sucrose, fructose, corn syrup, or maltodextrin as the first, second, or third ingredient. These are typically things like soda, breakfast cereals, and white-flour products like bread. Any foods that list hydrogenated, partially hydrogenated, or corn, palm, or cottonseed oils. These are typically things like processed, frozen, and nearly all deep-fried foods and even some nutrition bars and most meal replacements/protein drinks. (Not Eat-Smart, however!) Make a special trip to the grocery store to pick up items to replace these harmful toxic foods.
Instead of soda, use water (preferably), sugar-free Crystal Light, iced tea, or on occasion even diet soda.
Instead of breakfast cereals, use whole oats or grits.
Instead of white-flour products, use whole-wheat or soy-flour type products.
Simply instruct yourself that you WILL NOT eat deep fried foods any longer (like French fries, chips, etc.). Deep-fried foods and the oils they’re cooked in have no nutritional health benefits whatsoever.
Replace your salad dressings and cooking oils with healthy oils like flaxseed oil, olive oil, sesame oil, and walnut oil.
Read your labels carefully… manufacturers are tricky about trying to hide these harmful ingredients. (Now you know why!)