Throughout history, wise doctors have touted the benefits of a healthy diet. Hippocrates, the father of medicine, said, let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food. In the last 15 years, thousands of studies done in clinical research settings have shown the specific health benefits that individual foods provide, including identifying the various phytochemicals and flavonoids associated with those benefits.

The foods we eat have a profound effect on our health. Think about it-when you ingest something 3-5 times, each and every day, it’s going to have a huge impact on your health. Pain and inflammation are rampant in our society-I see it on  daily basis. There are foods that can help with the pain, and foods that contribute to the pain.

Foods that can help with pain and inflammation are: turmeric, ginger, bromelain, berries, tart cherries, fish oils, and green tea. Foods that contribute to pain and inflammation are sugar, starch, white flour, soft drinks, margarine, hydrogenated fats and oils, and processed foods. There are some foods that are considered healthy but can cause the opposite effect in others (food intolerance). Dairy, gluten, peanuts, and members of the nightshade family top the list. (Nightshade foods are potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, tobacco, paprika, cayenne, crushed red pepper).

There are other foods for specific ailments. For nervousness and anxiety; lettuce, chamomile, valerian, and rose petals. Itchiness; witch hazel, jewelweed, and aloe vera. Antibiotics; oregano and garlic work well.  Infections; honey works well as an antibacterial and antifungal. Berries, turmeric, fish oil, and dark green leafy vegetables are effective for cancer fighting.

Tea is an ancient beverage that has been enjoyed for years thanks to its healing benefits. These are: Decreased risk of heart disease. A study published in the journal Circulation showed that drinking at least two cups a day reduced the risk of death from a heart attack by 44%. Lowers blood pressure: researchers say that drinking a half cup of green or oolong tea may reduce blood pressure significantly. Antiseptic properties: drinking tea reduces cavities and periodontal disease. Drinking tea can also prevent bad breath and kill germs in the mouth that contribute to poor oral health. Many viruses, such as the flu and colds are airborne, drinking or gargling with tea may help. Lowers cancer risk: Polyphenols in tea may be responsible for inhibiting factors that promote cancer growth. Tea is especially beneficial in fighting gastrointestinal cancers. Neurological benefits: Recent research suggests that tea may help in the fight against Parkinson’s disease and dementia. I drink 12 ounces daily of a combination of green and peppermint tea. Teas are chock full of flavonoids, antioxidants that are found in many plant-derived foods. A big plus-drinking tea has no known side effects.

I placed a video showing my knee rehab stretches on Facebook and YouTube. I hope to have it on my site within a couple of days.

Stay well, John R Blilie, M.S.

Stay well,