Posted by on August 24, 2016

The new norm with regards to nutrition seems to be the ages-old wisdom of Hippocrates: “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.”

The Harvard Medical school newsletter, in “Nutrition 101: Good Eating for Good Health”, makes the clear connection between diet and health. Within all the specifics they discussed, the one point they made is that “…good eating should not be considered a punishment, but an opportunity.” I couldn’t agree more.

By saying no to foods with green peppers, eggplant, white potatoes, pumpkin and tomatoes (so, pretty much good-bye Italian food L) my indigestion rarely raises its fiery head any more. And when it does, I can always trace it to something I’ve eaten. Given that OTC brands like Prevacid and Xantac inhibit the body’s ability to absorb nutrients, taking them only contributes to a lack of well-being.

So what do you do if you have indigestion? My sure-fire recipe is to chew three or four papaya enzyme pills (widely available at nutrition stores and on-line) with a chaser of 2 ounces of aloe vera juice. (I like OKC brand available at Wal-Mart and some Asian markets.) This combo’s like swallowing a fire extinguisher – without any negative side-effects. An added bonus with Aloe Vera is that it can work wonders for IBS sufferers.

Eating well yields huge rewards in the form of more energy, better sleep, nicer skin and an overall feeling of well-being. The people in the world who live the longest eat 75-80% vegetables, fruits, beans, nuts, legumes, some grains and just 0-20% animal protein. And they drink lots of green tea. How does your eating stand up to that?

When you pay attention to your body, during and after eating, you’ll become aware of signals it sends about the food you eat. Heartburn suggests intolerance to something you’ve eaten. Rather than medicating yourself, try and determine which food caused it and then eliminate this food from your repertoire and see if that makes a difference. Some foods cause inflammation and you may suddenly notice that one or more joints begin to ache. Some foods can cause a headache, or bloating, belching and other digestive issues. Sometimes you might wake up and your eyes and extremities are swollen. What did you eat the night before?

When you start to notice any tightening, bloating, swelling with 24 hours of eating something, you begin the process of understanding and mastering food’s powerful effects on how you feel. Then you become in control… and that is the opportunity.

Be a Savvy Senior. Start to notice a connection between certain foods and discomfort anywhere in your body and make decisions about what to eat based on foods that make you feel good.


  1. Carolyn Bell
    August 24, 2016

    Leave a Reply

    I’m unclear about why Harvard has recommended against tomatoes and pumpkin. And if pumpkin, then why single it out from other similar veg’s, like yams and sweet potatoes which are considered by many nutritionists as the top of the line of nutritious vegetables. Also, cooked tomatoes consistently show up when nutritionists mention the best sources of lycopene.
    I googled
    “Harvard health newsletter on pumpkins and tomatoes” and found no result. Can you please give the citation (volume, edition, date, and page?). Thanks so much for focus on critical issues!

    • SavvySenior
      September 21, 2016

      Leave a Reply

      Hi Carolyn,
      Sorry for the delayed reply. I’m just now seeing these posts. Tomatoes are part of the night shade family, as are eggplant, pumpkin, peppers and white potatoes. Many people have sensitivities to these foods. I am one of them. Each person is different and there is no ‘cure-all’ that applies to everyone. Food that nourishes and supports us is as individual as clothes that fit and look well. It is, as they say, a journey.
      I hope that helps.

  2. review
    February 10, 2017

    Leave a Reply

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