Cell To Soul: A Saratoga Nutrition Blog

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The Marylebone farmers' market in London, Unit...

              Happy belated National Food Day - which was October 24, 2011.  (more info @ foodday.org) The purpose of this day was to promote the use of "healthy, affordable whole food produced in a sustainable, humane way."  This is also the foundation of my work as a dietitian working in integrative and functional medicine, before I discuss with a client individual diet and potential supplementation advise.  In general, it should be the daily food guide for everyone, everyday.  

     "Eat whole sustainable local foods as much as possible."  This can be an easy mental guide for people to follow when they are trying to make a healthy food decision. 


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It's a great time of year to "develop a better relationship with Food".  To seek fresh, local and sustainable foods such as produce and meats at the farmers markets, your local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) Farm or local natural foods store.  If you have not made the change to local or regional foods, make a goal to shop at one of these venues in the next 7 days and change your life forever.  You will feel better, have more energy and start to create the foundation to vital health.

This is part one of a two part article. Both were blogged on the same day.

The Function of Farming Determines the Function of You

The Farm -to-Fork ("Farm-to") movement is one of many programs, which is evidence of a paradigm shift in how we think, grow, purchase and use food.
Sprouted from the desire to support community-based food systems, strengthen family farms, and improve the health of our land and ourselve's, the sustainable farm movement is amongst the fastest growing business in the world.

Healthy Food access, by all accounts, by now should be viewed as a foundational birthright. So why are so many of us still without access to it ? Because there isn't enough local, sustainable farms to serve us. If you purchase organic foods from your local supermarket, you purchase foods with little nutritional value. These foods are picked way before the ripened state; the state of highest nutritional value. SO they are pretty "dead" in terms of nutritional life. You are also supporting the area where it came from - thousands of miles away, not your local area. In essence, you're really not getting anything for the purchase of it.

Certified_Naturally_Grown_logo.jpgFood is THE most important element to health, and therefore to virtually every aspect of our lives. Eating REAL WHOLE FOODS in it's original form, eating CLEAN FOODS without added chemicals, pesticides, etc, and eating foods from SUSTAINABLE AND NUTRITIOUS SOIL is becoming more and more known has the standard components for building the foundation of any persons diet - despite the state if their health and health goals. Without these elements, other forms of therapy, such as supplementation, will be compromised and positive impact on health will be limited.

Certified Naturally Grown (CNG) The Grassroots Alternative to Certified Organics, is A NEW MOVEMENT we all need to learn about . See website www.naturallygrown.org

On January 27, the US Department of Agriculture reached a decision on the utilization of genetically engineered (GM or GMOs) Roundup Ready® alfalfa in the U.S. Out of the three possible options--regulation, partial deregulation, and complete deregulation--the USDA chose the worst possible option: full non-regulated status.

What does this mean ? Deregulation is dangerous. Without regulation, GM alfalfa will spread to non-GM alfalfa crops, irretrievably contaminating it. GM alfalfa cannot be contained in the immediate crop area where it is grown. There are records of over 200 episodes of transgenic contamination, costing farmers hundreds of millions of dollars in lost sales. The wind or birds can carry seeds and plant parts to other crops. If genetically engineered crops spread, the word "organic" will be virtually be meaningless, affecting crops, the cattle who eat the alfalfa, and consumers who eat both.

Contamination of chemicals will eventually be wide-spread. Roundup Ready® alfalfa will substantially increase herbicide use. The USDA's own data shows that just 7% of alfalfa acres are currently treated with herbicides. USDA's projections show that substantial adoption of Roundup Ready® will increase herbicide use up to 23 million pounds per year. This herbicide will negatively impact the environment, animals, bodies of water, water supply (that we drink) in general, land and DIRT used to grow our food, and all of US.

How does this relate to our Health ?
There is an overwhelming amount of evidence that most, if not all chronic health conditions (including -the high rates of- obesity and depression) are related to 2 factors, stress and /or toxicity. This is part of the foundational work in Functional Medicine and Nutrition. Processed foods, foods grown in soil contaminated with chemicals, overuse of medications, impure water and air sources (to name a few), all add up to overwhelming amounts of toxins for our bodies to eliminate. Over a decade ago, this statement would have sounded like it came from an extremist. But now we know when we eat "cleaner foods", when we assist the body to detox, when we resolve health conditions and eliminate medication use - we shift the body back to health.

Action Steps

1) The Center for Food Safety has announced it will file a lawsuit against the USDA over the decision, and The Alliance for Natural Health (ANH-USA) will try to become a co-plaintiff in that suit.

2) We need to blanket Congress with protests, asking senators, representatives and committees to review the deregulation decision. A massive grassroots campaign will show Congress that there is a steep political price here for supporting genetically engineered organisms. Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR) have issued a statement condemning the USDA decision. For more: http://www.prnewswire.com/ and open news release link on the home page.

3) Put pressure on the USDA and the Obama administration. They need to understand how concerned American citizens are, and why we feel betrayed. Please go to the link below to SEND YOUR MESSAGE TO THE PRESIDENT,

http://www.anh-usa.org, and click on this story which is under "Take Action" on the left side of the home page. Once there, fill out the form with your name and address, etc., and customize your letter. A suggested letter is already there, but feel free to add your own comments .

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Mary Beth McCue Saratoga Nutrition ConsultantMary Beth McCue RD, LDN, CDN - Integrative Nutrition Consultant

Rebalance your mind, body and soul with tools and advice from nutritionist Mary Beth McCue. For more than 20 years, Mary Beth has helped many optimize their health and resolve unique chronic health conditions relating to weight, digestion, food intolerances, energy & metabolism, depression, inflammation, aging and more. She has initiated a variety of first time programming in corporate, community, collegiate, National Spa & Retreat Centers, Rehabilitation Farms and Organic Farms, and more. Mary Beth was appointed by the CEO of a large Health Care Organization to initiate an Integrative Health Model. This programming successfully continues today.

Nominated as "Dietitian of the Year" while working for the largest employer of Dietitians in the world, Mary Beth McCue is a Licensed and Certified Nutritionist who specializes in Integrative and Functional Medicine Concepts. She is amongst a very small percentage of nutritionists in this field whom have dedicated their professional education and training with organizations such as Harvard Medical School, The Duke Center for Integrative Medicine, The Institute for Functional Medicine (IFM) and the American College of Sports Medicine. Mary Beth is an avid hiker, biker, and skier. Strength training, yoga and her black lab help keep a check on the daily balances. Learn more at www.SaratogaNutrition.com.