Health problems fixed by food

September 21, 2013

Can't sleep? Moody? Bloated? Battling acne? Before you head for the medicine cabinet, step into the kitchen.

From fast food to processed food to just plain bad for your food -- it's the standard American diet.

"Or sad diet. Honestly, most of the ailments that we deal with is because we're eating the wrong foods," said Dr. Tanya Edwards, director, Center for Integrative Medicine, Wellness Institute Cleveland Clinic

What you eat can impact how you feel.

First off --bloating! It's caused by too much sodium. Choose foods high in water and loaded with digestive enzymes like papaya and pineapple.

"Eating foods that are high in magnesium. Things like, um, pumpkin seeds and sunflower seeds…." said Dr. Edwards.

Battling acne? Target toxins in your body by increasing glutathione.

"It is the master detoxifying thing in our body. Those are things like cruciferous vegetables, like broccoli and cabbage, as well as, onions and leeks," Dr. Edwards said.

Trouble sleeping? Try some tart cherry juice a half-hour before you go to bed.

"It's a high source of melatonin," said the doctor.

PMS is a sign women are low in iron and magnesium.

"Eighty-five percent of Americans don't get even 50 percent of the recommended daily allowance," said Dr. Edwards.

Low magnesium levels can cause insomnia, mood swings, headaches, constipation, and charlie horses. Try eating more spinach and vitamin B6 found in eggs, dark green veggies, and whole grains.

Want to protect your skin? Add more beta carotene to your diet. Carrots and endive are packed full of it.


''Real, whole, fresh food is the most powerful drug on the planet. It regulates every biological function of your body,'' Mark Hyman, MD, author of The Blood Sugar Solution said.

Recent research suggests that what to eat and when to eat it maximize benefits. (Source:

EMOTIONAL ROLLER COASTER: If you are an emotional roller coaster, always say yes to breakfast. People who eat within an hour or two of waking up have a more even mood throughout the day and perform better. British researchers found that study participants who skipped their morning meal did worse on memory tests and were more tired by midday than those who had eaten. The optimal breakfast consists of a whole grain to supply glucose to the brain, protein to satisfy hunger and keep blood sugar levels steady, and one or two antioxidant-rich fruits or vegetables. Also, load up on selenium. Selenium is found in Brazil nuts, tuna, eggs, and turkey and helps moderate moods. (Source:

CRAZY-BAD JET LAG: Jet lag can cause headaches, irritability, and upset stomach. One surprising secret to avoid these unnecessary side effects is too fast for several hours before arriving at your destination. That is because when a person eats it influences the circadian rhythms, like the way that exposure to light and dark does. For example, say a person is headed to Paris from America. On the plane, they should steer clear of most food (while drinking plenty of water). Also, they should have a high-protein breakfast at 7 a.m. (Paris time). The fast depletes the body's energy stores, so when a person eats protein the next morning they will get an extra kick to help the body produce waking-up chemicals. (Source:

SLEEP TROUBLE: We have all been told to avoid eating too close to bedtime, but applying this rule too strictly could actually contribute to sleep woes. Anyone who has tried a fast knows that hunger can make a person edgy. So, the trick is to tame the late night cravings to 30 minutes to an hour before bed with a small snack that includes complex carbohydrate, like whole wheat. Since the body's metabolism is slower at night, a complex carb like whole wheat is a better choice. It keeps blood sugar levels even. (Source:

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