Meat, especially red meat from battery farms, is high in saturated fats and is strongly linked with colon cancer. Hot Spot folk eat it only rarely – perhaps once a month or less – and their meat is lean and organic. Characteristics of the S.A.D.
Sugar is an anti-nutrient -- it disturbs blood sugar levels, depresses immunity, depletes magnesium, creates disease-promoting acid conditions, stresses the adrenal glands, promotes candida, is addictive, and feeds cancer cells. High-fructose corn syrup is harmful to health because concentrated fructose feeds cancer cells, causes insulin resistance, and can cause diarrhea in children; HFCS has also been linked with autism since it raises levels of neurotoxins in the brain. Sugar is so toxic that scientists are now advising the US government to have health warnings on products containing it. Look out for sugar and HFCS in candy, pastries, desserts, sugary drinks, and even ‘health products’ such as flapjacks and nut bars. Characteristics of the S.A.D.
If you wish to eat something sweet, try eating fruit or some 70% cocoa dark chocolate, which contains minerals and antioxidants. For baking try more healthful alternatives such as stevia, xylitol, molasses, maple syrup, good brands of agave syrup or honey as sweeteners instead of table sugar. Rapadura sugar and Demerara sugar are also preferable to refined table sugar as they are less processed. Characteristics of the S.A.D.
Coffee, colas, and other sugary carbonated drinks are high in anti- nutrients which leach vitamins and minerals from the body. In addition, they create acidic conditions in the body, they may contribute to diabetes, and they are linked to cancer of the esophagus and osteoporosis. They are also linked with heart disease, with just one sugary soft drink a day thought to raise the risk of having a heart attack by as much as 20 per cent, according to a recent study from Harvard. Characteristics of the S.A.D.
Refined grains are ‘white’ grains such as white rice and white wheat flour. White flour is found in white bread, cakes, biscuits, pastry, and pasta. Refined grains are ‘nutrient-robbers’, meaning they deplete the body of nutrients since they require more vitamins and minerals to process than they provide. They lack fiber and so can cause constipation and toxicity. They tend to be high on the glycemic index (although pasta is made from durum wheat which is not so high as other types of white flour) and so cause blood sugar imbalances leading to obesity, hyperglycaemia, and eventually diabetes. Refined grains are also starchy and therefore acid-forming. Characteristics of the S.A.D.
Dairy is high in saturated fat, contains no fiber, and is acid- forming. It may also contain growth factors suitable for a rapidly growing calf which can cause cell proliferation. Dairy has been linked by some to breast cancer. In the Hot Spots, dairy is always organic, usually from sheep or goats, and is used sparingly. Characteristics of the S.A.D.
Processed foods include most ready meals, cured meats such as hot dogs and salamis, processed cheese, canned foods, and any foods which have been much altered from their natural state. They often contain additives, large amounts of salt and/or sugar, trans fats, preservatives and GM foods and are usually low in fiber and nutrients. Cured meats usually contain nitrites which form cancer-causing compounds in the stomach. Characteristics of the S.A.D.
Deep-fried foods such as French fries, chips, battered chicken and deep-fried donuts are fried in cooking oils which are high in free radicals which damage cells. Deep-fried foods may also be cooked in shortening which contains trans fats. These sabotage cell membrane structure and are linked with heart disease and cancer. Characteristics of the S.A.D.
Excess sodium, found in high levels of salt, disturbs the sodium/potassium balance in cells which can cause fluid retention and Tissue Damage Syndrome (TDS). It is also linked with high blood pressure, kidney disease, osteoporosis, blood sugar imbalance and stomach cancer. Characteristics of the S.A.D.
Alcohol is toxic to the liver and linked conclusively with cancer in many studies, with new studies suggesting that even low levels may cause certain cancers. Most alcoholic drinks are also high in sugar. Alcohol can damage the gut lining and destroys the probiotics we need to have good digestive health. It also suppresses immunity. If you want to drink alcohol, keep limits low and avoid drinking on an empty stomach as it can damage the stomach lining. Red wine is probably the least unhealthy type of alcohol and may even be beneficial in small amounts since it contains antioxidants. Choose organic wine if possible so as to avoid sulfites and pesticide residues. Characteristics of the S.A.D.
Not much needs to be said here, except that smokers have a one in two chance of dying an unpleasant, premature death! Eating and living the Hot Spot way may help smokers to lose their addiction. Characteristics of the S.A.D.
The S.A.D. food is calorie-dense and nutrient-poor. It is the opposite of the Hot Spot Diet. It also leaves you craving more because it is so low in nutrients, which leads to more weight gain. People are both overfed and starved. The S.A.D. is the very opposite of a healthy diet. It is a disease- causing diet and it is causing an epidemic of chronic disease. It is linked with obesity, cardiovascular disease, cancer (especially colon cancer), and diabetes. If you were to list the factors in food which cause disease, you’ll find them all in the SAD. Characteristics of the S.A.D.
Lack of exercise Stress Disconnectedness Lack of purpose in life Lack of quality sleep Lifestyle Factors
The foods most people find it hardest to give up tend to be the ones which are most harmful to health – the S.A.D. foods. These foods tend to be addictive. Once you wean yourself off them, you are less likely to want them. You may even find that you develop a dislike for them. If you do indulge in unhealthy foods from time to time, don’t worry about it or feel guilty – just pick up from where you left off. The main thing is to try to eat and drink the right things most of the time. Over the coming weeks we will learn about pleasurable alternatives to the S.A.D. in some detail to make it workable for you. The pleasures of the S.A.D.
Instead of meat: try fish or beans Instead of sugar: try fruit or a fruit smoothie Instead of refined grains: try whole grains Eat lots of vegetables Instead of carbonated drinks: try water, herb teas, smoothies, Essentials Instead of fried, fatty foods: try salads with delicious dressings Turning around the S.A.D.
Instead of salty foods: use garlic, mustard, herbs, lemon for seasoning Instead of yo-yo dieting: try eating three nutrient-rich, substantial meals daily Instead of taking the car: try walking Instead of sitting on the couch watching TV: try a dance or exercise class. Or hula hoop at home. Or go for a walk. Instead of disconnectedness – find ways to connect Instead of staying up late on the TV or computer – read and sleep well. Turning around the S.A.D.
ACTIVITY: See how often you can avoid the SAD and incorporate some of the suggestions in this week’s lesson in the coming week.