My husband’s probably not going to like this, but I’ve decided not to buy any more white bread. He’ll complain that the wheat and rye breads that I plan to purchase don’t taste right or that they’re not soft enough. It doesn’t matter; I’m sticking to my guns this time. For the past several years, I’ve often spouted off the platitude, “The whiter the bread, the sooner you’re dead,” and then I’d go right to Wal-Mart and buy it…for him, not me.
What’s brought about this renewed resolve? Listening to Dr. Ann on NPR. Because my job requires so much traveling between campuses, I pretty much always have a book on CD to listen to. Today, however, I decided to listen to the radio for a change, and I’m sure glad I did. This doctor was “singing my song.” When I tuned in, Dr. Ann was talking about the value of exercise. She didn’t have to say too much to sell me on that because I am well aware of the value of exercise. 30 little minutes of moderate exercise per day can do marvelous things for a person’s cardiovascular system. Heck, it even helps with prevention of osteoporosis.
Here’s what Dr. Ann said today that both shocked and motivated me. She told of a research study in which young men in their 20’s spent three weeks lying in bed. They didn’t get up and move around at all. They did nothing, nada. At the end of three weeks, doctors determined that their cardiovascular systems had “advanced” 30 years! Amazing! They were able to regain their former level of heart health but not right away. Looks like anyone with half a brain could see that exercise is vital.
Back to the food, Dr. Ann said more than I can remember so I’ll just stick to the few things that I can recall. Stay away from (or consume in moderation) pretty much all white foods like white rice, white bread, and potatoes. Cheese is a culprit in contributing to heart problems too. Eat 2% fat cheese products and acquire a taste for Feta. Eat more yogurt too. Do I even need to talk about red meat? Didn’t think so. She says eggs are good for everyone; however, people with diabetes or high cholesterol shouldn’t eat over five per week. They’re high in protein and are one of the best and least expensive foods around.
Other suggestions include monitoring salt and sugar intake, consuming fats like Canola oil and virgin olive oil, and eating more walnuts. Wheat germ and fish are good too. About the salt, Dr. Ann said that interestingly enough, our own salt shakers aren’t the problem so much as the salt in processed foods…and in fast foods too. Seasonings at the top of the “okay” list are turmeric, ginger, and rosemary. About the sugars, she advised staying away from sugary drinks; herbal tea is good. At the top of her list of healthy foods are fruits and vegetables. We can eat all of those we want.
Tonight I’m going to a birthday celebration, and I’ve heard that the cake is a 16 layer confection with sweet chocolate drizzled between each layer and on the top. It’s going to take disipline, but I’ll be passing on the cake.