The importance of Nutrition - Read the labels!
It can be easy to take the importance of a good diet for granted. Unfortunately, it has become very difficult to avoid 'bad foods' or additives. There are numerous additives that many people wouldn't think twice about, and many people who wouldn't even think to check the label of foods because of 'health washing' (making products look healthy with clever marketing), but if you're health isn't great, then perhaps it is time to start paying more attention.
Just because something is 'sugar free' doesn't make it good for you.
Just because something is 'fat free' doesn't mean it wont make you fat.
Just because something has 'no added sugar' doesn't mean it's free from natural sugars.
One example of something we should all avoid is aspartame. A sweetener that is very prevalent in diet and sugar free beverages, but is linked to a reduction of fertility, and depleting glutathione, as well as other amino acids, 'which a widespread effect on your overall health.' ~Naomi Judge
Keep a Food Diary
One of the best things you can do for your health is to keep a food diary - especially for those who may be struggling with energy levels, weight gain or chronic illness.
There are plenty of apps out there now, where you can simply scan the packaging to upload the data into your food diary. Even doing this for a short period of time can give you an idea of what vitamins and minerals you are getting enough of (and those of which you may be seriously lacking!).
Cronometer is recommended as it is easy to use and you can add food to the database if they are not already on there.
Sometimes, we can have food intolerances and not realise it, so keeping a food diary can also be a good way of tracking how certain foods make you feel. Tests may show no allergies are present, however some foods can still cause inflammation and worsen existing illnesses and cause fatigue.
For example, gluten - while only around 1% of people have coeliacs disease, a further 6% have a gluten intolerance which wouldn't necessarily show up on a test. This can cause 'headaches tingling in the extremities, brain fog, weight gain and symptoms similar to the irritable bowel syndrome' ~Livestrong
Only by keeping track, knowing your own body and trying to eliminate certain foods to see if this helps, will you really know whether avoiding something is beneficial to you.
Ditch the Dairy
We are told that milk is good for us, that it contains calcium which is good for our bones (calcium is good for bones, that isn't being thrown into question), however, what seems to be ignored are the negatives of consuming milk and dairy products. If milk is something you must have, we recommend organic or raw milk. The following should really be considered;
1) Milk can cause acne breakouts in some people (this writer and my sibling included), so if you are prone to acne, try ditching the dairy before spending out on new skincare products.
2) Ditching the dairy could be beneficial to those with autism; 'Casomorphins—breakdown products of casein, a milk protein, with opiate-like activity—may help explain why autism symptoms sometimes improve with a dairy-free diet.' ~Nutrition Facts
3) Hormones in milk is linked to endocrine disruption and fertility problems
There are many studies and articles listed on the below website, Nutritionfacts.org if you want to find out more.