Premium Fuel for your Body

by Lauren on February 20, 2012

Yummy chopped raw veggie salad my dad made us the other night: avocado, red pepper, tomato, carrots, basil and green olives with balsamic & extra virgin olive oil

It’s common knowledge that eating raw fruits & vegetables are good for you, but do you really know why?

Yes, they’re full of vitamins & minerals, but why are vitamins & minerals important?

It all comes down to one thing: enzymes.

Enzymes are biological catalysts, which very simply means: they make things happen in our body.

One of the very important functions of enzymes is digestion. They are responsible for breaking down carbs, proteins & fats, and turning them into energy that our body can use. In other words, they play a key role in our metabolism (the rate at which we turn our food into energy that we can burn).

To ensure proper digestion, and a speedy metabolism you need to give your body food that is rich in enzymes.

Some enzymes are made only from protein, which can be produced as long as you give your body the 8 essential amino acids. However, there are many others that can only be produced with the help of co-enzymes, which come from eating raw whole foods rich in vitamins & minerals. B vitamins are co-enzymes, and phosphorus, magnesium, iron, zinc, manganese & molybdenum are examples of co-enzyme minerals that help you properly digest food & speed up your metabolism (see list below for foods that are high in these vitamins & minerals).

Foods that are highly processed (ex. pastries, cookies & white breads that are high in white sugar & flour) are enzyme inhibitors, which means they slow down your digestion & metabolism. The undigested sugar ends up getting stored as fat deposits – aka: junk in the trunk. You’ll also experience symptoms such as gas, constipation, bloating & heartburn.

Think about how you feel after you eat a high sugar, high carb meal vs. a high vegetable, high lean protein meal. The latter is high in enzymes & co-enzymes, and the food is burned away cleanly with less unpleasant side effects. Now think about how you feel after a big meal of white pasta & dessert. Think of your body as a car; eating raw whole foods is like filling it with premium fuel, and giving it an oil change – it runs smoothly & efficiently with no stinky exhaust coming out the tail pipe.

If you’ve been experiencing some unpleasant symptoms after meals (gas, bloating, constipation, heart burn) perhaps you’re not eating enough high-enzyme foods, and too many processed foods. Give yourself premium fuel; incorporate some of these foods into your diet:

Raw fruits & vegetables:
Spinach
Broccoli
Green pepper
Celery
Avocado
Cucumber (Notice the trend here? Green veggies are high in enzymes!)
Pineapple
Papaya
Oranges

Eggs with yolk (the yolk is the most nutritious part!) 

Legumes:
Peas
Beans
Lentils
Peanuts

Nuts & Seeds:
Walnuts
Brazil nuts
Almonds
Hemp seeds
Chia seeds
Flax seeds
Sunflower seeds
Pumpkin seeds

Whole grains:
Quinoa
Wheatberries
Brown rice
Oatmeal (rolled oats, not instant)
Sprouted bread (Ezekiel 4:9 is a popular brand that you can find in the freezer section of your grocery store) 

Dairy:
Yogurt (make sure it’s plain, & from a Canadien company to avoid Bovine Growth Hormone – 2% plain Liberte yogurt is a good choice)
Cheese (sprinkle a bit of feta, goat cheese or parmesan on your next salad) 

Organic or Wild Animal protein:
Fish
Poultry
Pork & beef (eat red meat in moderation)

 

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Chelsea February 21, 2012 at 10:42 am

Oh you make me laugh 🙂 haha ‘no stinky exhaust coming out the tail pipe’- love it! Thanks for the laugh xo

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Lauren February 22, 2012 at 7:27 am

Thanks for comment Chels 🙂 At least my family laughs at my jokes! ox

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mom February 23, 2012 at 4:49 am

Reading these facts inspires us to eat healthy! xoxox

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Lauren February 23, 2012 at 10:19 am

Yea!! That’s great to hear! xoxo

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