What we eat affects how we feel. How food moves through our digestive tract and the secretions it produces are affected by the protein, carbohydrate and fat composition of our foods. Because 70 percent of the cells that make up the body's immune system are found in the wall of the gut, what we eat also may affect the body's immune response. Moreover, the normal bacteria in our large intestine contribute to bloating and gas production when carbohydrates, such as lactose and fructose, are not completely absorbed in the small intestine.
Eating whole foods instead of refined or processed foods is good for everyone. Processed foods are convenient, but to make them taste better, manufacturers use chemical additives and high fructose corn syrup, a sweetener that is often not absorbed well, resulting in bloating and abdominal discomfort. You may find these resources interesting or helpful:
We are often asked about the utility of dietary supplements. Our Center's bias is that if you can eat normally, it is always best to get your daily dose of antioxidants and other nutrients from eating a healthy diet. Unfortunately, it is hard to know what that is, because most of our food information comes from advertisements and literature about foods or a diet that may not really be in our best health interests. If you have questions about what a healthy diet is, or if you need help integrating a healthy diet in your life, make an appointment with one of our nutritionists for an individual consultation or join a group class. Weight management services are also available.
The Nutritionist’s Guide to Your Local Food Market—Overwhelmed by all the choices available at your supermarket? Unfamiliar with many of the items at your local health food store? Take the agony and angst out of food shopping with a guided tour of your local supermarket or natural foods grocery. Learn how to make healthier choices from among the staggering array of available options. All tours take into account each client’s budget, food preferences and tastes, cooking ability, and food allergies or sensitivities. Tours available for Whole Foods Market, Trader Joe’s, Giant, Wegman’s, or other stores by request. Led by nutritionist Lauren Mirkin, CNS, LDN, LGPC. Cost: $40 per person in a group of 4 to 10 people. Individual tours customized to your needs for $155.