A senior citizen sent me a video several weeks ago. The speaker, Dr. Chidi Ngwaba, a doctor who specializes in lifestyle medicine, did an amazing job.
I found everything he said so interesting that I started searching for his social media handles. During my search, he came across as a colleague of his introduced him while he was preparing people for a health talk a few years ago.
The colleague said “Why would a surgeon put down his scalpel to talk to his patients about diet and lifestyle? Listen to my live chat with Dr Chidi Ngwaba.”
The part, “Why would a surgeon put down his scalpel”, reminded me of what Thomas Edison, an American inventor, said in 1903, “The doctor of the future will not give any medicine but will instruct his patient about human care. frame in the diet and the cause and prevention of disease.”
There is a section of the Seventh Day Adventist Hospital, Ile-Ife, Osun State, where patients are treated with food and plants.
Indeed, the future predicted by Thomas Edison is here. Join me on this journey and let’s take an in-depth look at nutrition and how it can make or break our health.
By the time we’re done, be ready to say “I do” to a healthier person.
Nutrition is the process by which an organism receives nourishment – the supply of nutrients that its body and cells need to stay alive. It is a fundamental aspect of a healthy lifestyle.
By making conscious choices about what you eat and maintaining a balanced diet, you can boost your overall well-being, reduce your risk of chronic disease and enjoy a longer and more fulfilling life.
Remember that nutrition is not just about what you eat today, but an investment in your future health and vitality.
God seemed to be giving a message about the right kind of diet to mankind by placing man in a garden after creation. What you have in gardens are fruits, vegetables and foods in their raw forms and not processed foods such as cakes, pastries, puff puffs and bottles of carbonated drinks.
However, it is unfortunate that man was ever rebellious about eating the foods that God gave. No wonder American cultural anthropologist, Margaret Mead, said, “It is easier to change a man’s religion than to change his diet.”
When I was told to name this column, I threw it open to my sisters and they made various suggestions. One of them made a rib-cracking joke saying, “Eat right or you’ll die.”
It’s funny but that’s the truth! As well as food for our body, it can cause illnesses if we make wrong choices. Like one of the most famous figures in early American history, Benjamin Franklin said, “Few die of hunger, many die of eating.”
Bestselling author Dr. Mark Hyman also said, “Food is the cause and food is the cure for most diseases.
Our ancestors were healthier; they were mostly nomadic. Hunter-gatherer culture was the way of life. The hunter-gatherer lifestyle was based on hunting animals and hunting for food.
Foraging is the search, identification and gathering of food resources in the wild, including a wide variety of uncultivated plants, mushrooms, herbs and fruits that grow naturally in our environment.
I shared with you how we went to my village for holidays when I was young. The source of drinking water then was a river. The people drank the water and were healthy. They had the strength to do their farm work and no one suffered from water borne disease.
I also told you that there were uncovered water wells in Garkawa, Plateau state, where I observed my National Youth Service Corps, and after every rain, the water became muddy.
That’s how they used the water and they were still healthy. The only answer to all of this is that these people were eating right. The biggest benefit you can enjoy from eating natural diets is that your immune system will fight infections for you.
Unlike now, we are inactive and as if that is not enough, we also eat unhealthy diets which are risk factors for many non-communicable diseases.
Many references have been made to the benefits of eating natural diets.
Hippocrates, the father of modern medicine, favored the use of food to treat patients. He once said, “Leave your drugs in the chemist’s pot if you can cure the patient with food” and “Have food as your medicine and medicine as your food.”
Remind you of stories I’ve already shared.
There is a group I belong to on Facebook that advocates abstaining from carbohydrates as a way to lose weight and stay healthy.
One sees things like, “Admin, you have to look for my menses”, often because there are usually high cases of unplanned pregnancy.
In the same group, those who were hypertensive stopped their medication as their blood pressure normalized.
The truth is, good nutrition is linked to good health as well as the prevention and treatment of many health conditions.
In another group, they had a ‘no Soda challenge’ and it was a great success.
One of the members said, “These are the best menses I’ve had in my life.”
Do you still doubt what the right food can do for the body? Okay, this one will blow your mind. In 2003, at the age of 26, Bestselling author Chris Wark was diagnosed with stage 3 colon cancer.
He had surgery but refused chemotherapy. He used nutritional and natural therapies to heal himself. He is still alive today and is cancer free!
You can’t fix your health until you fix your diet. Maybe the health challenge you are facing is not a hereditary one but a dietary one.
The fact that someone in your family died of diabetes does not mean that you will be killed by the same disease. Even if it is hereditary, it does not mean that it is written in stone; you can be a jinx breaker with a good diet.
A study entitled ‘The Role of Nutrition in Maintaining Optimal Health’ by Martin Clarke concludes that nutrition is a cornerstone of optimal health, and that it affects physical, mental and emotional well-being.
By prioritizing nutrition and making informed food choices, individuals can optimize their well-being and enjoy a higher quality of life.
Here are some ways nutrition plays a vital role:
- Increases natural immunity
Optimal nutrition not only prevents chronic health conditions, but also strengthens your immune system. Eating plenty of fruit and vegetables, which are sources of nutrients such as selenium, iron, zinc, protein and vitamins C and D, supports the function and growth of immune cells.
- It reduces the risk of chronic conditions
Combining optimal nutrition with making healthy lifestyle choices such as regular exercise and not smoking or drinking too much alcohol is a winning combination. It plays an important role in reducing your risk of developing chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart disease and high blood pressure.