‘Let food be your medicine and medicine be your food’
All very well for Hippocrates, you may say. He lived in Ancient Greece and didn’t have to contend with an abundance of cheap and available processed food; a sophisticated food industry with vested interest, power and plenty of money to distort the science; and an baffling array of experts all taking conflicting and contradictory positions as to which food is even healthy.
This is true, but the advice remains, none the less.
Herbal medicine treatments at this practice, will always include some serious consideration of diet. Strategies will vary, and always will be tailored to the individual, but generally will reflect insights from practitioners and nutritionists such as Yudkin, Atkins, Dukan, Seignalet, Harcombe, Whals, Briffa, Mercola etc. You may recognise themes associated with low GI, low carb and Paleo diets. With extra vegetables.
The links to resources below aim to inform, educate and inspire to healthy eating choices. They do not reflect a balanced range of all the dietary advice that exists. They reflect the preferences, and support the clinical experience of this practitioner – who acknowledges there will be contradictions, tensions between, and inconsistencies even within the information presented below!
Terry Wahls MD, clinical professor of medicine and research academic, developed multiple sclerosis and was eventually confined to a wheel chair in 2006. The video describes her journey back to health through eating the right food. It starts slowly, and as yet her work on this has still to be published, but this is a great, clear presentations of what is good to eat and why. I often suggest my patients watch this video when we are talking about diet mainly because I want to try and communicate the sheer volume of vegetables that it might be ideal to eat in a day. There are other interesting videos, and websites on my food page on the website.
Paleo in a nutshell
Nice and clear u tube video summarising the rationale behind the Paleo diet.
What’s wrong with what we eat
New York Times journalist, Mark Bitman argues that over consumption of junk food and over consumption of industrially raised meat is bad for the individual and disastrous for the planet. Interesting figures and potted history of changes in U.S food consumption over the last 100 years.
Fish I have loved
Chef Dan Barber introduces a farming project in Spain that perhaps begins to square the circle of eating wild food, and sustainability. An inspiring example for the future.
Anne cooper talks school lunches
Articulate and impassioned call to put more resources into feeding American school children and teaching them about food.
Fasting, Dieting and Detox
This is my short article is from my food page on my website and is an introduction to the idea of fasting of eliminating certain foods from one’s diet. It gives a brief explanation as to why three foods in particular – wheat, dairy and sugar might be problematic, and offers a shortlist of herbs that may help with detox.
Sayer Ji - The Dark Side of Wheat
In this mediumly technical article Ji Sayer re-frames - our understanding of celiac disease towards the concept of appropriate response as opposed to gene linked idio-pathology. I think this is a very important perspective. I find the Greenmed website a really useful resource, though it can be frustrating to negotiate and the constant invitations to sign up to various things can be irritating. Some might find their stand on particular issues a little ideological, but articles are often a source of interesting references from peer reviewed journals.
Opening Pandora’s Bread Box
Ji Sayer continues to explore how wheat may be problematic in our diets.
How Deadly are Nightshades
This article from Georgia Ede’s blog – explores some of the science behind the possible effects of the nightshade family (ie tomatoes, potatoes, peppers etc).
Max Drake - Seriously Stone age
Excellent website of friend and fellow herbalist, Max Drake who practices in Bristol. Accessible advice and information about the stoneage diet, recipes, further website links etc. If you are trying to
understand what the paleo thing is all about, start here.
Good resource for health related blogs/articles delivering sensible
and accessible dietary advice; debunking of vested interest related nutrition myths; and flagging up of sloppy or misleading research. Dr John Briffta is a London based private doctor and author of many health self-help and nutrition books. The website is helpful for finding the peer reviewed evidence base for many ‘natural’ (ie food , herbs, vitamins, minerals) health strategies.
Not so easy to navigate – perhaps the diet and the website – but I respect the content.
Some good articles. If you are really lost for recipe ideas, you can join the newsletter and receive regular recipes without purchasing the actual paleo meal plan generator.