Dr. Mandy Enshiwat on food & nutrition

Dr. Mandy Enshiwat on Food & Nutrition

11-06-2018

You can never go wrong with things like fresh fruits and vegetables. Make sure you wash your fruits and vegetables very thoroughly, especially now with the number of pesticides that are being used and how hazardous they are to our health. Dr. Enshiwat recommends that you soak and wash your fruits and vegetables before eating them, not just running them under water.

Everything in moderation is acceptable. Nobody will tell you that you can never eat french fries or other junk food in your life. If you can avoid it, great, but most people have difficulty doing so. If you have to have unhealthy food once in a while, it is okay, but for the most part, you should stick to what is called a clean diet. A clean diet includes non-processed foods, such as deli meats, bacon, hot dogs, etc. Try to avoid these types of foods because there are many ingredients included that has absolutely no nutritional value and is more harmful than helpful. Stick to things that have minimal ingredients. For instance, if you look at the package and it says it has milk, butter, and peppers but for example, if everything in the ingredients is something that's healthy and is something that you can actually pronounce is probably your best bet.

Physical activity. Activity is also very important. Aside from nutrition, leading a slightly active lifestyle and is very important. That is not to say you have to run a marathon, but maybe incorporating a walk each day before or after dinner could be helpful.

Vitamins. As far as vitamins, or nutritional supplements, are concerned, for instance in elderly patients who are not eating well, it is recommended that things like Ensure or Boost, or protein supplements that are high in calories and protein especially in elderly people who can't get the adequate calorie intake that they need. There are not many studies that prove or disprove the benefits of taking a multivitamin. There's really no harm in taking it, but studies haven't actually shown that taking a multivitamin really improves your quality of life. It is completely your decision.

Avoiding sugar. Try to avoid things that are high in sugar content. Unfortunately, many things do contain sugar but mainly try to avoid things where sugar is the main ingredient. For instance, sugary drinks and even some fruit juices are very high in sugar, so you want to be very careful. More obviously, things like pop, cookies, cakes, etc. and other snacks that have added sugar. Your body doesn't like it, doesn't need it and it makes you feel very sluggish when you eat these things. In terms of improving your own quality of life and your health, especially if you have diabetes, you are going to want to avoid anything with high sugar.

Read more from Dr. Enshiwat: Top reasons to see an Internal Medicine physician, What to bring with you to your first visit with your family doctor

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