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This particular section of Health Ride takes a closer look specifically at human physical health in general and the many ways in which we can maintain it in its fullest glory just as nature intended us to be.

Healthy Eating

What a person consumes on a daily basis has an all-encompassing effect on the health of their physical body as well as their mind. That may sound like a wide-sweeping statement, but when you really look at it, you'll see it is very true.

Our bodies are designed to operate at their optimum capability when fully nourished by the food and liquid we eat and drink. That food and drink needs to contain all the nutrients essential to our body's needs while not containing toxins and contaminates that could do us harm at the very worst or limit our ability to function at a normal level at the very least.

What Are the Right Things to Eat?

The right things we should be eating include a healthy balance of proteins, carbohydrates and fats along with dietary fiber, hydrating liquid and all the vitamins and minerals that we require.

Some popular modern dieting methods exclude carbohydrates from the menu, in the belief that it is the sugars that the body turns to energy obtained from carbs that is what is making people gain weight. While in some respects this is technically right, in practice it can be misleading.

There are good carbs and bad carbs.

Diets need to distinguish between the two and then omit the bad carbs while allowing the good. Good carbs are obtained from fresh vegetables and fruit, which also contain much of the important vitamins and minerals that our bodies need.

What to Avoid

Bad carbs are generally derived from processed wheat products, primarily those made from "white" flour. They include white bread, pasta, pastry, cookies, biscuits, cakes etc.

They are "bad" because they are processed by the body in such a way that the sugars are too easily accessed and absorbed to excess. That excess gets stored by the body as fat for later use.

To keep it short and not go into too much medical detail while trying to explain it, those bad carbs cause a big blood-sugar spike. The body deals with it by releasing a big insulin response to remove the excess sugars from the bloodstream and take them to be processed into fat.

Also to be avoided are all foods that contain "added sugar" or sugar substitutes or sweeteners. That includes most processed foods and just about all the tempting, delicious-looking things we find on the grocery store shelves in bright packaging designed to make us buy them!

As far as drinks are concerned, it is important to avoid all sweetened drinks, including most importantly soda. A regular can of soda can contain the equivalent of around 400 calories of sweet stuff that will get deposited on your waistline as fat.

What to Buy?

This is becoming a real problem for people who are trying to eat healthily and avoid all the high risk factor foods that seem to be making greater numbers of people get overweight, obese and sick. Here is why.

Most food growers around the world now spray their crops with a lethal cocktail of chemicals designed to kill pests, diseases and weeds to allow the wanted crops to grow and flourish. At first glance, this would seem to be a good thing, because it allows higher yields per acre (hectare) enabling food to be more widely available and cheaper for more people.

However, first appearances can be deceptive.

Those chemicals do not simply wash away or magically disappear before the produce finds its way into your shopping basket. They remain in the food in large enough quantities to have an adverse affect on the human physiology.

Many recent rises in debilitating and even fatal medical conditions can be attributed directly to the ingestion of high levels of these agricultural chemicals over a long period of time.

Don't believe it?

Sure, go stick you head back in the sand like most people. It's not something that people like to think about, let alone talk about with their friends. Just in case they are thought of as being a nutcase or a conspiracy theorist.

Don't worry. You're not alone in that way of thinking.

Governments and major industrial bodies do not want people rocking the boat and talking or writing about anything that might stir up trouble for them and their greedily grabbed billions of dollars!

Just be aware, keep your eyes peeled and your ears open. Research and learn all you can about agricultural chemicals and their effects on living tissue. Don't be a sheep, allowing yourself to be guided and schooled by other sheep. Get really educated in the things they don't teach you at school if you really want to lead a healthy and long life!

In short, your best way forward is to buy organic produce where possible and grow your own vegetables if you can. That way at least, you can be sure of what has not been sprayed on them!

What Not to Buy

For a healthy life, you need to stop buying all processed food and sweetened drinks. Really!

Just don't even walk down those aisles with all the packets, cans and jars in the grocery store. Instead, get your vegetables in the fresh produce section and if they have an organic sub-section, buy those. Same goes for fruits.

You don't have to become vegetarian or vegan if you don't want to, but there is growing evidence to suggest this might be a good course of action if you really want a healthy body. You can still get all the protein you need from plant-based products when you know what to get.

If you want to keep eating meat, make sure it is sourced from organic farms and is grass-fed. That way you greatly lower your risk of ingesting the cocktail of hormones and medications that vets inject into regular farm animals that spend their short lives locked up in pens and fed propriety "feed" that is not all natural.

What, cows don't graze happily in grassy fields?

No they don't! That's just a PR trick for the ads to fool you into believing what is not true any more. There just isn't enough free grazing land to support the sheer number of cattle we need to consume each year.

Plus it costs too much for farmers to let cows wander all over what is instead used as arable farming land for their chemical-laced crops.

Organic farmers operate differently, of course. They do allow their animals to graze in fields and avoid having them pumped full of steroids, growth hormones and antibiotics that typifies intensive farming practices.

The only major limitation for organic farmers is they just don't have enough space for large numbers of animals to graze, making prices much higher and yields lower. Crop yields are also lower as they are prone to attack from pests and soil-borne diseases.

However, don't let this put you off organic. Intelligent use of the land, companion planting practices and natural fertilization using compost actually reduces the incidence of soil-borne diseases and deters many pests!

Yes. Much of the poisons and chemicals that are sprayed on crops are not even necessary in many cases! But that's a topic for a whole other article!

Related Articles

Take a closer look at the pages below that focus more specifically on key areas of healthfulness: