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Healthy Food and Habits

Colors of the Market, Hanoi, Vietnam, by Stéphan Valentin
Colors of the Market, Hanoi, Vietnam, by Stéphan Valentin

Sharing my experience

I write this post, because I think most of us are misinformed about how we should feed ourselves. I’ve been learning while stumbling, habits that I’ve been doing wrong all my life, and that I’d learned in the family. I grew up with Mediterranean food culture, but as I entered the labor market, my eating habits worsened, especially at lunch. I admit that I have also not been consistent making daily exercises.

We need time to buy fresh chemical-free food, and we need training to know how to combine and cook them properly. After many years, the responsibility of acquiring knowledge about how to bring a good diet arose before our child was born, and the result was devastating (insecticides, pesticides, fungicides, pesticides, chemical additives, GMOs, tiny labels of ingredients or in another language, organic products mixed with others that are not, etc.). All legal, but with studies showing signs of not being healthy.

Now what?

Only drink water then?, yes, but in a glass bottle. And where do I buy vegetables, fruits, cereals and legumes without all the aforementioned suspicious components?, and how do I know that what they tell me is true?, and where do I buy the dairy for the child?. There is no choice but to look, keep searching, asking, keep asking, and when you find it, then trust on them, unless you find the official organic seal in the product. Here I leave a link to the official European information regarding this seal;


I found a farmer years ago who has his own small grocery shop, and who tells me which products he grows organically (which are not all the products he sells). So I end up buying his seasonal and organic products.

I buy dairy products on a 90% organic farm (because there is a grain that animals eat and that they cannot guarantee to be organic). I bought raw goat’s milk (need to boil it), and I currently buy yogurts and cheeses.

They are both transparent small firms, and both of them have offered me to go to see their fields or their farm (also to see how the animals live, how they milk them, how they clean the facilities, etc.). And you don’t have to warn them when you’re going. These are indicators that you can look for to build that trust.

We no longer eat as much fresh fish, since we learn about the micro-plastics that enter our organism through fish, which in turn ingest it in the plastic-infested oceans. Besides, where I live, we don’t have access to fish farms that give organic feed to fish.

And we stopped eating meat before that, because we read about legal antibiotics that are given to sick animals, hormones, GMOs cereals, the way some animals live and are treated, etc. Now we only eat white meat sporadically, even though we eat organic eggs (did you know that an egg has to be fertilized for a chicken to be born?).

And what else can we do?

We all know what healthy habits are broadly; do not smoke, do not drink alcoholic beverages, eat a healthy diet, exercise, relate to others, etc.. But the training that we have received in this regard most of us, except those who study these disciplines, has been through the transmission of traditions and customs from generation to generation.

Almost everybody has heard sayings such as; “take hot milk with honey” for the cold, or “have a coffee to wake you up,” or “you can use the same oil for salad and frying.” Well, it turns out that the hot liquid overrides the properties of honey. Similarly, coffee must be taken at a certain time, because the human body already generates cortisol in the morning to wake us up (in some cases it can decalcify as well). And the extra virgin and virgin oil retain its cold properties, and to heat is better the high oleic oil (which some brands call “soft”).

Reducing the consumption of saturated fats is brought out even in the jokes (on Monday I´ll start the diet, but I will not say which Monday I refer to). Below you can read the World Health Organization’s recommendations on the intake of saturated fats;

We must be alert to the various studies of the possible effects of legal additives such as carrageenans, also called E-477 (I learned about them because a brand of whipped cream did not put the amount included of E-477 in its products). Now I only buy whipping cream with a single ingredient; milk cream. Especially to make homemade ice creams in summer;



COMMISSION Regulation No 1129/2011 of 11 November 2011. Official Journal of the European Union L 295/1

Also look at the possible effects of GMOs, and when the label says “non-EU originating” (they are not governed by European standards). Here’s the link to a Greenpeace guide to know which brands and products carry or not GMOs, which while not up-to-date, has helped me to make right decisions many times;


We should not assume that legislators have all the necessary information when it comes to voting on laws. Nor should we assume that manufacturers and producers are not trying to influence legislators. For example, on 5 March 2016 a total of 21 European countries voted to ban, in their respective countries, the cultivation of the MON 810 maize GMO, and European parliamentarians representing Spain did not;


To find out how much proportion we should eat from each food on a plate, I recommend watching the infographic of the following link (study conducted by Harvard University);

I also leave you another link on how to eat healthy, and more on physical activity, from the World Health Organization;


Y no olvidemos como afecta a nuestra salud la manera en la que afrontamos los retos y dificultades en la vida, y no olvidemos que debemos desarrollar hábitos mentales saludables. Particularmente, te recomiendo leer sobre el estrés y el cortisol. Puedes leer un resumen haciendo clic en el enlace al final de esta publicación.

And just in case you don’t know, measure what you eat out of the 5 white poisons

Los 5 alimentos que se pueden convertir en “venenos blancos”, si los tomamos en una proporción mayor a la establecida diariamente son; sal refinada, azúcar refinada, harina blanca refinada, arroz blanco, y leche de vaca en adultos. Pero ¿cómo se puede calcular correctamente la ingesta diraria de estos alimentos?. Si ya es complicado calcularlo haciendo comida casera, más aún si comemos fuera de casa, o si comemos alimentos procesados.

We have to reduce salt intake, but do we quantify how much salt we eat every day?. I try not to eat anything processed, and I put only a pinch of salt on the food. Below you can read the World Health Organization’s recommendations on salt intake;

We need to reduce the consumption of sugar, and sugary drinks, but do we quantify how much sugar we drink every day?. I was surprised to discover on an ingredient chart that the whole grains my son ate contained 17 grams of sugar per 100 grams of product. Or that the cereals which I eat, whole and organic, contain 6% of sugar which come from an 8% of raisins. Below you can read the World Health Organization’s recommendations on sugar intake, sugary drinks in adults and children;

Reducing the consumption of cow’s milk in adults is not as popular, but we should also take it into account. Below you can read an article in the British Medical Journal on milk intake in adults;

We must reduce the consumption of refined flour, because it does not contain all the nutrients of the cereal, as is the case of whole 100% wholemeal flour. In addition, overheat some foods, such as those that contain starch (such as too-roasted white bread), can lead to acrylamide that would be toxic to health.

We must reduce the consumption of white rice, for the same reason as refined flour, and replace it with whole rice.

Here’s an article on the benefits of eating whole cereal grain by the British Medical Journal


But the best advice to know how to balance food to nourish us well, adapted to our health and our needs, is to look for a collegiate specialist at the following link;


Thank you very much for the visit, and see you soon!

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