Enjoy this excerpt!
The Nutritional Link: Real Food Changes Everything
ON OUR JOURNEY through Cancer World we were both fortunate enough to become acquainted with the power of real food. While we both would have said, pre-cancer, that our diets were pretty good—we rarely ate fast food, didn’t slurp sodas and tried to eat our vegetables—once we began studying the connection between food and disease, we learned that our assessment of what we were putting into our mouths and bodies was—umm—a bit off base. Delving into the nitty-gritty of nutrition, as well as training with whole-foods chefs and spending gobs of time in the kitchen, we both came to experience firsthand just how much real food can completely
We went from takeout pizza and meat and potatoes to leafy green veggies and whole grains in baby steps, and as we did, we felt the improvement. Our energy drastically increased, digestive issues subsided, our skin acquired a glow and our moods evened out. Oh right, and this was all while we were undergoing intense chemotherapy and recovering from major surgery. From our own experience we can assure you that eating real, plant-based food can help you feel better physically and be stronger psychologically—with or without cancer.
In a society in which time is money and food is merely fuel to keep your body up and running (or an emotional crutch to soothe and satisfy), we typically fail to make the connection between what we put into our body and how we feel. We also neglect to place any importance on taking the time and making the effort to learn about healthy eating and preparing and consuming nutrient-rich, disease-fighting meals.
The secret to health can be found in the saying we’ve heard so often that we fail to recognize its wisdom: “You are what you eat.” Food is a key factor in determining if we stay healthy or develop disease, feel energized or worn out, embrace hope or drown in depression. All of these areas in our life and more are fueled by our food – and we often thoughtlessly throw something down our throat to quiet the hunger.
Interestingly enough, cancer as well as almost any disease, is highly linked to the food we eat, our surroundings and stress, and can be simplified even more when we break it down into two components: deficiency and toxicity. When you eat poorly, your body is not getting the nutrients it needs, so deficiencies arise and the body is not able to effectively disarm toxins. This, in turn, creates an environment in which our bodies cannot function properly, fight off disease or heal as they should. By cleaning up our diets and creating a healthier lifestyle, we are able to alleviate deficiencies and remove toxins so the body can carry on its intrinsic healing process.
When we are suddenly faced with a cancer diagnosis, or want to do all we can to prevent the disease in the first place, realizing that what we put in our mouths impacts the quality and, very likely, quantity of our life is empowering. Suddenly there is something more we can do. You aren’t just cooking dinner anymore: You are caring for your body. Overnight the kitchen ceases to be a dreaded place but rather is transformed into a sacred space. And real food is not something we are scared of but becomes our best friend.
Taking the leap out of the familiar grocery-store aisles lined with cans and boxes and instead filling our shopping carts and our plates with fresh whole food is the way to create strength, health and well-being, whether you’re living with cancer or not.
Because of the amazing changes we have witnessed in ourselves and our clients, we are convinced of the power of real food to change everything and can’t wait to share our knowledge and experience with you throughout this book. Whether you are cooking for yourself, or having others do it for you, we’ll show you exactly what we did and how we did it. (You can jump ahead to Chapter 3 and beyond if you can’t wait.)
So, dear girlfriend, we are here to share a hug, to let you know you can make it, and to join you, step by step, as you transition to a healthier diet and a happier, more amazing life.