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Friday, March 1, 2013

Pretty is as Pretty Eats

"Beauty is only skin deep, but ugly goes clean to the bone." ~Dorothy Parker

Skin, being the largest organ of the body, is perhaps the first indication of health. If you're skin doesn't look it's best, neither do you no matter how great your clothes and makeup are. Because of course, being attractive is really about health- not the color of your eyes or skin, the kind of hair or body you have, or how much money you spend on clothes. If you're healthy you'll look great no matter what- even in a cheap t shirt and jeans from a thrift shop- providing of course they're the right colors and design lines for you. 

Skin has always been an important issue for me- I was born with a genetic disorder that causes very dry skin. As an adult I've learned that I can pretty much eliminate my dry skin through diet, so I'm keenly aware that whatever you put in your mouth is pretty much responsible for your overall state of health. That and of course certain environmental things too- stress, chemical pollution, etc. 

About a year ago I saw this video, and was so impressed with this woman not only being able to halt the progression of her MS, but actually reverse many of the symptoms, that I felt she must be on to something.  So as a result I went sort of psudo-paleo. Over time I experienced significant improvement to my health.

Then one weekend morning last fall I was watching PBS and saw this special on The Virgin Diet. She recommends eliminating the 7 foods most commonly responsible for food intolerance- corn, soy, wheat, sugar/artificial sweeteners, peanuts, dairy and eggs- for 3 weeks- to test yourself for these intolerances. (Just google The Virgin Diet- your library may have the book.) Much to my surprise, I found I have an intolerance to eggs- once I quit them, and cut down drastically on the rest, things really started happening. One of the most pronounced being changes in my skin- all good ones.  The texture of my skin is improving and my coloring all over has become more even. And I've experienced a huge improvement in my digestion. And my energy level- let me put it this way: I recently started jogging again. I haven't had the energy to jog in over 15 yrs. Now I'm doing it regularly. Now when I wake up in the morning I'm awake right away, I accomplish more during the day, and my mental clarity has improved considerably. And- my face is changing. I look way, way, way better.….I could go on here, but you get the idea.

Ok, let's say I haven't made my argument solely on the basis of vanity. Having pretty skin just won't do it. You're just not sold on all the work, money and time you'd have to commit to to look your very best. So let's talk money.

Often people get so caught up in saving money that they completely ignore the quality of the food they buy. Warehouse club generic brand processed food in bulk, instant this, that and the other, all for pennies a serving. Well- I've got news for these folks. You ARE going to pay, one way or the other. Let's think through the options to the end results here, shall we? Let's see- I can put in the $, time and effort now, and feel good, have the energy to exercise on a regular basis, have more mental clarity, and generally age much more healthfully and attractively,or…I can save lots of $ now, which I'll wind up spending later on a hover-round, oxygen tank, diabetic supplies and astronomical medical bills, feel and look like crap, and probably die at a younger age. 

I dare you- the next time you see someone in a hover-round, hooked up to an oxygen tank, with bottles of prescription pills bulging out of their pockets, ask them what their diet has been like over the course of their life. I'd be willing to bet you good money it wasn't fresh, organic produce, grass fed, organic meat and poultry, whole grains and fresh vegetable juices.  They may boast about how little they spend on food. How much they've saved over the years, all the tricks they learned- clipping coupons for processed, boxed foods and the like. 

If you live on the warehouse club generic brand processed crap, take a good, long look at that person in the hover-round. Because I'd also bet good money that'll be your future, too.

I wish we could just buy a miracle cream to make our skin- ourselves- look fabulous, take a pill to make us healthy, but it just doesn't work that way. If you look in the mirror and don't like what you see, you need to first look in your refrigerator and pantry to see where the culprits are. In short, the quality of what you put in your body is exactly proportionate to the quality of what you look like and how you feel.  The good news is of course that it's systemic- even if the only reason you start all this is vanity, you're still going to have positive results in all areas of your health, and thus your life.

Sorry if I ruined it for that donut you were about to eat....

Happy Dressing!