Food for thought (and health)!
We’ve all heard the recurring mantra that we are what we eat. However, there is a growing body of scientific evidence that shows the very real effects specific foods, eating patterns, and dietary plans have on our body, our health, and our ability to resist common disease. Indeed, this food-based approach to total wellness is the very basis of a new book (Eat to Beat Disease) by author, researcher, and physician William Li.
In the book, Dr. Li goes into detail about five specific bodily systems that keep us healthy and how the food we consume dramatically affects those biological processes. By balancing those systems, Dr. Li says, we can create a healthful synergy in our bodies that can not only improve the way we feel now but also “intercept” diseases before they ever have a chance to take root.
The Five Synergistic Systems that Help Our Body Fight Disease
To understand how the food we eat may actually help prevent diseases, we must first understand a little about each of these five systems essential for our health.
Angiogenesis is our ability to produce healthy blood vessels. The circulatory system in our bodies is truly astounding when you look at it in detail:
- 60,000 miles of tiny blood vessels are inside each human
- Pumps 2,000 gallons of blood over the course of just one day
- Provides essential life-giving oxygen to every one of the billions of cells in our body
- Extracts harmful toxins and waste products to keep us healthy
Certain foods stimulate angiogenesis and help maintain this extremely powerful, but delicate, biological system so it can prevent diseases from gaining access to our bloodstream.
Every day our bodies destroy and cannibalize an estimated 40 to 50 billion cells. Stem cells are an essential part of rebuilding and replacing those outdated cells. Certain types of food actually activate stem cells and cell regeneration.
We have a host of helpful bacteria living on and inside us. From the bacteria on our skin that protects us from harmful infection to the bacteria inside us that helps us digest and make use of the food we eat, these little symbiotic helpers are essential. Creating, protecting, and nurturing a healthy biome is essential for total wellness. Our microbiome plays a part in every single biological process in our body from immune response and wound healing to influencing our psychosocial hormones (serotonin and oxytocin). When we eat in a way that helps our biomes thrive, we feel better.
DNA is the building block of life. Many diseases (like cancer) start because of errors which occur during replication of this genetic code. Outside factors like ultraviolet light, secondhand smoke, and even exhaust fumes contain dangerous chemicals that can create these errors or inhibit the healthy reproduction processes coordinated by our DNA. Our diet plays a big part in mitigating the effect of these harmful chemicals.
Our immune system not only helps us fight disease but also helps prevent diseases (even cancer) from ever affecting us. Compounds found in certain foods have a tremendous “boosting” effect on our immune system and should be a part of our daily diets.
When You Eat is Nearly as Important as What You Eat
It’s not just the foods we eat that can have a significant impact on these biological systems. Indeed, abstaining from food—fasting—for specific time frames has been scientifically shown to invigorate certain parts of the immune system, kick start the cell regeneration process, and reduce the risk and severity of certain diseases (like heart disease and diabetes).
Scientists studying the benefits of fasting and other calorie-restrictive diets have found that limiting food intake positively affects:
- Cell regeneration
- Insulin resistance
- Weight loss
- Digestive (gut) health
The Hollywood 48-Hour Miracle Diet® was designed to help individuals tap into these healthy benefits by providing the body with essential micronutrients it needs during a fast without unnecessary carbohydrates and fat. Plus, the great taste helps you fast for two whole days.
What Foods Should You Eat to Impact the Five Synergistic Systems?
Dr. Li has pinpointed over 200 foods that people should eat in moderation that can have a positive effect on the five synergistic systems. These “Grand Slammers” include:
- Green tea—excellent for angiogenesis. Contains EGCG—a powerful antiangiogenic compound that actually cuts off blood flow to cancerous cells. Green tea may even play a part in reducing your risk of certain types of cancer by up to 44 percent.
- Dark chocolate—stimulates regeneration. Contains natural chemicals called flavonols that help generate and activate stem cells, which aids angiogenesis.
- Sourdough bread—helps create a healthy microbiome. The healthy bacteria sourdough bread contains, Lactobacillus reuteri, has been proven to rev up immune responses, suppress tumor growth, and shorten the healing process. Lactobacillus reuteri also helps in the release of the mood-boosting social hormone oxytocin.
- Kiwi—helps protect DNA during the replication process to minimize the occurrence of potentially harmful errors by up to 60 percent. One clinical study found that eating three kiwi a day promoted DNA repair activity by 66 percent.
- Mushrooms—to boost your immune and circulatory systems. Contains beta-glucan, an antiangiogenic and immune-boosting dietary fiber.
Balanced Diet and Lifestyle Leads to Improved Health and Wellbeing
Dr. Li’s statement that our total wellness is predicated on taking good care of our biological systems through a well-balanced diet and an active lifestyle is not revolutionary. Experts—including the food scientists behind the creation of The Hollywood Diet® line of fasting aids, meal replacement options, and healthy snacking products—have been advocating these changes for years. However, as more researchers entertain these ideas and set out to scientifically prove the benefits we’ve all suspected were present in these food compounds, it adds credence, importance, and a sense of purpose to mindful dieting.
The driving force behind the creation of every Hollywood Diet® product has been to make taking control of your diet as easy as possible in the face of everyday life. Work, social obligations, childcare, and self-care can all take time, energy, and willpower away from our ability to control what foods we put in our mouths and when. Use the Hollywood Diet® line of products to help you give your body the nutrition it needs to take care of itself.