We’ve all heard it before: You are what you eat. However, the healthy, natural food that our grandparents ate is not the same today. Now we consume foods with added sugars, harmful fats, unnatural antibiotics, and toxic pesticides. Sure, it’s easy to ignore if it tastes good, but these foods can cause some serious damage to our bodies if we continue to eat this way.
Food is one of the main connections between diabetes and other chronic illness, and it is directly related to inflammation.
There are foods that can increase bodily stress, which forces the body to employ the immune system to fight against invaders and repair the damage. Your body’s defense mechanism is inflammation, but if you’re constantly inflamed with every bite you take, you’ll end up chronically ill.
Your diet can either be an aggressor, or it can be an ally; that is, you can use nutrition to cool down inflammation and reverse disease, or you can continue eating foods that will cause inflammation. Regaining control over what you eat and be difficult and expensive; however, whenever my patients are determined to rid themselves of diabetes, their diets are the first thing they change. And what better way to gain more control than to grow your own food? Even those who live in apartments can find ways to add home gardens to their window sills and their walls. Whoever is committed to reversing their diabetes through food choices tend to understand that growing nutrient-rich food that is also chemical free will help give their bodies the boost it needs to halt disease progression and repair the damage that has already been done. I believe everyone should have a home garden for these three reasons:
1. Go Organic
Mainstream pesticides are linked to almost every chronic disease in the book.
They’ve also been known to lead to insulin resistance and can cause interruptions in the production of other related hormones. Pesticides are used to kill all sorts of pests–even the ones that are good for you. That may sound strange, but keep in mind there are tons of microbes living in your gut that are healthy and keep you from falling ill. If you consume pesticides, you’re killing these microbes, which will ultimately leave you feeling pretty sick. If you plant your own garden, you’ll be reducing your chemical exposure and amping up your body’s power to heal.
2. Nutrients Galore
Sure, an apple a day may keep the doctor away, but maybe that only applied to the apples of yesteryear. The apples you pay for today have half the vitamins and nutrients that you need. Modern farming practices typically deplete the nutrients in the soil that should pass their way into your food. Additionally, a lot of the produce you see at your local store has been held for weeks or even months before it has been stocked, which means you’re not getting the fresh nutrients. With that in mind, you can understand how planting a garden in your own home will allow you to give your soil the minerals it needs by way of compost, and you’ll be growing nutrient-rich produce (which you can eat fresh) in no time!
3. Save Some Money
One of the reasons you’ve probably hesitated in changing your diet is the cost.
Buying organic products will usually mean you’re paying double the cost of the pesticide-sprayed produce.
Organic eating can take a toll on your wallet, and some stores in the country don’t even sell organic produce. When you have your own garden to grow, you’ll be getting the freshest fruits and veggies at a much lower cost.
It may be challenging to get started, so I always recommend looking for beginner tips online. Also, involving your friends, family, and neighbors in the process can do a lot for motivation!