I often hear the complaint that fruits and vegetables are too expensive and therefore it is unrealistic to recommend them to people. The question is can we afford not to eat them?
Basic human needs include air, water, food, rest, and shelter. In terms of food, you want to eat nutrient-dense foods to boost your energy and feel well.
An organic apples ranges from $2 to 3.50 a pound. That’s a real sticker shock to me, especially when compared to a candy bar that’s half the price. However, that apple is far more valuable nutritionally than a candy bar. The prices make the apple a difficult choice. But the candy bar may result in a sugar crash whereas an apple provides many nutrients that boost your energy.
Fruits and vegetables are an investment in yourself. Healthy food behaves like fuel for your cells and gives you energy to engage in activities and perform at our best. When your healthy lifestyle is optimized, you will probably spend far less on medical care.
Eleven years ago, when I switched to a low fat whole food plant-based diet, I reversed my fatigue, chronic pain and prediabetes. I feel refreshed in the morning with more energy than in the past. When I work out at the gym or ride my bike, my muscles don’t get sore, so I recover faster and I perform better.
Yesterday, I was on the phone talking to a friend and I mentioned how my athletic performance is better than before. She sent me an interesting article about Harlem Globetrotter Kris “Hi-Lite” Bruton who describes a similar experience.
My health coaching clients commonly notice that they have significantly more energy, less fatigue, and less pain. Often, they feel better at work and feel more productive. A healthy lifestyle is the reason why they heal.
It’s no wonder that junk food doesn’t cut it. The tissues and organs in the human body require an abundance of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and other nutrients. When we eat junk food, we deprive our bodies of nutrients that we need and increase the likelihood of experiencing a chronic illness.
Imagine fueling your car with gas that’s totally incompatible and makes the car perform worse. Even if the fuel is cheaper, it’s senseless and potential damaging. You’re obviously more important than a car, so you definitely deserve to be well.
Instead of giving up on healthy eating, let’s find ways to make it more affordable. Not all of your produce needs to be organic. A great resource is the Dirty Dozen list on the Environmental Working Group site.
I encourage you to eat more healthy fruit and vegetables so that you can boost your energy and enjoy peak performance. Remember the power of healthy plant-based food so you boost your health and be well.
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Carla Hightower, MD, MBA is a physician, health coach, workplace wellness consultant, and speaker. She helps people heal themselves with food. Through wellness workshops and courses, she helps companies create healthy, energetic teams.
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