Critical Concept: Toxicity and Deficiency
Life is an extreme sport. Between the long hours, stressful jobs, barbecues, teenagers, traffic jams, ozone depletion, and 700 calorie sugar-laced Frappuchinos – it’s a wonder anybody lives to see fifty. The fact that some people are still upright and walking under their own power is akin to Keith Richard’s ability to still be on tour with the Rolling Stones. The toxic insult that we withstand over a lifetime from the external environment in the industrialized world is an absolute testament to the tenacity of the human body. Compounding that burden is the lifestyle choices that people make today.
Toxic behaviors will compound and create stress and sickness as readily as healthy habits combine to create health and wellness.
As discussed in previous Insights, some foods are inherently toxic to the body. Truth be told, most people can readily identify which foods they should choose to avoid. These toxic food choices are especially harmful because they are consumed instead of the nutritious foods that our cells require. This “double whammy” sets the stage for accelerated aging and promotes both acute and chronic disease.
The modern marketplace is filled with selections that exploit your weaknesses. Advertisers know that you are instinctively driven to sugar-filled, fat-laden, salty foods. They aggressively taunt you with images, flavors and economics to get you to pull into their drive-thru lanes or toss their products into your buggy at the grocery store. Every time that you watch TV or walk into a store, there is an overt assault on your senses and sensibilities.
Modern foods have been laced with substances that super-stimulate your taste buds. These chemicals will actually change your future taste threshhold for flavors by altering your neurology. This class of additives is known as exicitotoxins. They are heavily addictive and act as accelerants in the trend towards over-eating.
We bio-accumulate toxins over time.
The choices that we make regarding our food intake every day are as important as the ideas and beliefs with which we choose to fill our hearts and minds. Our bodies will collect many of the impurities that are found in industrialized foods and store them in our cells over time. This bio-accumulation of toxins has been found to result in neurological disorders like autism, Parkinson’s and Alzheimers Disease, not to mention liver damage, arterial plaquing and cancer. At a minimum, toxins are an added stress on the body and promote inflammation; at their worst, toxins cause cellular dysfunction, leading to disease.
Healthy people choose to maintain as pure of a diet as possible. A Bonfire vital behavior is to make a commitment to consuming organic foods whenever feasible. Establishing a reliable source for locally grown, organic fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds makes life easier than trying to find it “on the run.” Seek out a local source for organic, range-fed poultry, grass-fed beef and buffalo, as well as a way to get wild caught fish and/or game.
It’s critical to identify common de-railers to your efforts at a pure diet-style. Rule #1: Never leave your house hungry. Rule #2: Never shop hungry. Rule #3: Always bring your own healthy foods or snacks with you (or at least know where you’re going to get some). A Bonfire best practice is to pack your own lunch. It’s key to always make enough food so that you’ll have leftovers for at least one or two additional meals. Having healthy foods readily available makes it easier to make healthy choices, while snuffing out the stress of food prep at every meal.
Fill your home with the foods that you wish to eat. If you were building a house you would only buy the supplies with which you wished to create your home. The same is true of your body. The war against toxic, deficient choices is won or lost at the register. If you don’t buy it, you won’t eat it. We have significant influence on our toxic burden by the way that we choose to eat, move and think. You either build health, or build sickness with every choice, every day.
Summary Checklist: At this point you should be….
- Drinking adequate water
- Eating plants first
- Consuming lean cuts of high quality protein
- Consuming high-fiber, whole food carbohydrates
- Increasing your healthy fat intake
- Taking your Bonfire Essential Supplements
- Taking 3 Deep Breaths before you eat to reset your state
- Maintaining a net zero or net negative calorie / energy balance
- Mindful of “why” you’re eating, not just “what” you’re eating
- Choosing to consume an abundance of Nutrient Dense Foods
- Choosing to avoid Toxic and Deficient Foods (see Dr. K’s “Ten Never Eat Foods”)