Diet for a healthy planet

One of the most glaring defects of our health system is doctors’ tendency to treat physical symptoms by prescribing drugs rather than recognizing that our symptoms reflect our unhealthy lifestyles. A good physician will give patients regular check-ups, measuring blood pressure, glucose, insulin, cholesterol and triglyceride levels, as well as weight and waistline. Any significant increase in either is a clear indication of deterioration of a patient’s general health. If any one of these tests shows an abnormal result, the doctor will, as a rule, prescribe the appropriate medicines: something to lower blood pressure, tablets to control hyperglycemia, reduce cholesterol or combat inflammation. As a result of the logic that decrees a pill for every symptom, most of the elderly take a handful of pills every day.

The Mediterranean diet—full of fish, vegetables and whole grains—has been proven to lower blood pressure, cholesterol, triglycerides and blood sugar levels. This has proven to provide a powerful alternative to popping antacids.

One experiment was done with 180 patients with typical Western lifestyle disorders: weight problems, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, joint pain, excessive insulin and blood sugar levels. Half the patients followed a so-called healthy diet, low in cholesterol; the other half ate a typical Mediterranean diet: olive and rapeseed oils; chicken or fish five times a week (without much red meat); lentils, chick peas, rice and whole grain cereals several times a week; vegetables or salad with every lunch and supper; at least one piece of fruit a day; and herbs (garlic, onions, chives, rosemary, thyme, basil, mint) as a regular element of dishes.

Two years later, the results were spectacular: Patients following the Mediterranean diet showed improvement in every aspect of their health—without taking any medicine: lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol and triglycerides, blood sugar levels close to normal, inflammation under control—even an average weight loss of eight pounds per person, compared with two pounds in the other group. No known drug could have delivered such a dramatic improvement in all these areas at once. But this unpatented miracle diet is the subject of little research and is rarely taught in medical school.

This is a description of an article that appeared in the April 2009 issue of  The Intelligent Optimist. Members can read the full article here. Non-members can become a member here.

Solution News Source

Diet for a healthy planet

One of the most glaring defects of our health system is doctors’ tendency to treat physical symptoms by prescribing drugs rather than recognizing that our symptoms reflect our unhealthy lifestyles. A good physician will give patients regular check-ups, measuring blood pressure, glucose, insulin, cholesterol and triglyceride levels, as well as weight and waistline. Any significant increase in either is a clear indication of deterioration of a patient’s general health. If any one of these tests shows an abnormal result, the doctor will, as a rule, prescribe the appropriate medicines: something to lower blood pressure, tablets to control hyperglycemia, reduce cholesterol or combat inflammation. As a result of the logic that decrees a pill for every symptom, most of the elderly take a handful of pills every day.

The Mediterranean diet—full of fish, vegetables and whole grains—has been proven to lower blood pressure, cholesterol, triglycerides and blood sugar levels. This has proven to provide a powerful alternative to popping antacids.

One experiment was done with 180 patients with typical Western lifestyle disorders: weight problems, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, joint pain, excessive insulin and blood sugar levels. Half the patients followed a so-called healthy diet, low in cholesterol; the other half ate a typical Mediterranean diet: olive and rapeseed oils; chicken or fish five times a week (without much red meat); lentils, chick peas, rice and whole grain cereals several times a week; vegetables or salad with every lunch and supper; at least one piece of fruit a day; and herbs (garlic, onions, chives, rosemary, thyme, basil, mint) as a regular element of dishes.

Two years later, the results were spectacular: Patients following the Mediterranean diet showed improvement in every aspect of their health—without taking any medicine: lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol and triglycerides, blood sugar levels close to normal, inflammation under control—even an average weight loss of eight pounds per person, compared with two pounds in the other group. No known drug could have delivered such a dramatic improvement in all these areas at once. But this unpatented miracle diet is the subject of little research and is rarely taught in medical school.

This is a description of an article that appeared in the April 2009 issue of  The Intelligent Optimist. Members can read the full article here. Non-members can become a member here.

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