Last Friday I had the honor of speaking to Fresno’s chapter of the American Heart Association ‘Go Red’ for Women luncheon. They asked me to speak about how a healthy lifestyle starts in the kitchen, a topic which I am very passionate about, and today – and over the next few days - I want to recap some of the points in that speech because of how important I feel this message is.
The kitchen is a truly special place in the home and has been throughout time. Some houses have dining rooms, some don’t; some have large living rooms, some don’t; some have multiple bedrooms, some don’t; but every home has a kitchen. The kitchen is the heart of the home and it is truly a sacred place. It’s where we gather as family, it is where we nourish our bodies and it is where true health begins.
My husband happens to be a Physical Therapist, and when we start talking about health and lifestyle, we fall into an age-old argument. His motto is that MOVEMENT is the best medicine, while I maintain that while movement is medicine, FOOD IS THE BEST MEDICINE. Since I have Hippocrates on my side, I’m right, but let’s be honest, when are women not right?
Of course it is important to get in your exercise. I think 30 minutes every day is a great start.
But the start of a healthy lifestyle truly begins in the kitchen because the kitchen is where we store the food we buy, prepare the food our families eat, and because the kitchen is the center of our interaction with food. The kitchen is our symbol of all of our choices and interaction with food – one of the most necessary ingredients to life itself.
This week I want to start talking about the decisions we can make in the kitchen that will directly affect our health. Because EVERY TIME YOU EAT IS A CHANCE TO PREVENT OR PROMOTE DISEASE. Over ¾ of our healthcare dollars are spent on diseases that can be prevented with the help of a healthy diet. Heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers are all directly attributed to dietary choices. Our traditional western diet, IS killing us slowly. Obesity and type 2 diabetes have become an epidemic. The statistic that was repeated multiple times during the event is that 1 in 3 women will die of heart disease. That is 3 women at the table of 10 people that will be affected by heart disease.
In the coming days, I will post a series of points made in the speech starting with why an organized kitchen is so important and how to create one, but then follow that up with some easy decisions that can be made within your kitchen that will go a long way to creating a healthier life for you and your family. Stay tuned!