The Kids’ Corner: If It’s Not Food, Don’t Eat It!

No-Nonsense Guidelines for Creating an Eating-for-Health Lifestyle the Whole Family Can Enjoy

When Brenda first started nutrition and health coaching she was depressed, overweight, extremely fatigued, had hypothyroidism, and severe PMS— among other things. In addition, her 11-year-old son had daily headaches that brought him to tears and frequently prevented him from playing; her 14-year-old daughter had dramatic mood swings and an attitude that was “unbearable” to live with; and her husband had debilitating digestive and eliminative disorders.

Brenda knew that making dietary changes could be beneficial to your health. She was skeptical, however, as to whether doing so would work for her and her family and the many problems they were facing or not. She reluctantly sought nutritional consulting only because she was concerned about the increasing number of medications they were all taking, and the fact that matters were getting worse, not better.

Although skeptical at first, Brenda was delighted when, in just a few short weeks, she began to see significant improvements in her and her family members’ health. She had been able to stop taking all but one of her medications, had lost excess weight, had abundant energy, and was generally beginning to feel much better.

In addition, the excruciating headaches Brenda’s son had experienced his entire life completely stopped. Her blossoming teen daughter’s emotions had balanced out and she was “almost pleasant” to be around. And, her normally resistant husband was developing an enthusiastic curiosity about the changes taking place in the household cuisine, as his digestive problems had begun to subside as well.

What did Brenda do to achieve such dramatic results so quickly? She simply began to switch from the low-quality, chemicalladen, processed food she had been feeding her family for years, to higher quality, additive-free, natural food she bought at the local health food store. She also began to include a couple servings of fresh produce into their diet each day.

How can this be so? This is because the most popular brands of processed, packaged chemical-laden foods (pseudofoods) so widely consumed today, are injurious to the body. Aside from the obvious diet-related conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, or obesity, few people realize that poor nutrition in general, is the primary cause of all chronic dis-ease, including depression, fatigue, headaches, arthritis, sinus problems, digestive disorders, and more.

Food Matters

Like Brenda and her family, an increasing number of people are becoming aware of this relationship between diet and dis-ease and revamping their diets. Following is a brief overview of five Eating-for-Health Guidelines that can help you and your loved ones stay, or get back on the road to health—no matter what’s ailing you!

1) If it’s not food, don’t eat it! The very definition of “food” is that it is nourishing to the body. Consequently, anything that is not nourishing to the body (pseudofoods containing refined sugars, hydrogenated oils, and chemical additives such as MSG, artificial colorings and sweeteners, etc.) is not food—don’t eat it! And if you do, wait a long time before you do it again so your body can recover.

2) Eliminate or relegate stimulants to rare occasions. Stimulants or extreme foods send the body’s chemistry soaring out of balance causing a variety of symptoms including fatigue, brain fog, attention deficit, irritability, and weight gain. Stimulants include: sugars and other refined carbohydrates (high fructose corn syrup, white refined flour, etc.), refined salt, caffeine, and alcohol. Less stimulants equal more health, more energy, better attitudes, and fewer colds and flu.

3) Eat an abundance of whole, fresh, natural foods. Anything that comes in a box, can, or package is a processed food (with the exception of some unprocessed brown rice or legumes, for example). Whole, fresh, natural foods (preferably organic) such as produce, meats, fish, poultry, whole grains, legumes, and seeds are always the best choice for your family. When you do consume processed foods, natural brand foods are best, as they do not contain toxic, chemical additives.

4) Account for food allergies and sensitivities when making wise food choices. The most common food allergens (wheat, dairy, soy, corn, etc.) are notorious for causing a host of conditions, especially in youngsters, including digestive problems, diarrhea and constipation, sinusitus, recurrent ear infections, learning disabilities, and more. Most people today are allergic or sensitive to one or more of these foods—and most don’t know it! Follow a basic elimination diet to learn which foods may be affecting you or your family.

5) Account for ailments when making wise food choices. There isn’t any condition in the body that can’t be improved by improving your diet. As you start improving the quality of your family’s diet, you’ll all start feeling better and improve the overall quality of your health. Also, learn which foods exacerbate or improve any specific conditions in order to give each individual every opportunity to heal.

When applied consistently over time, these five Eating-for-Health Guidelines produce “amazing” results as Brenda can attest. It’s miraculous what the body can do when fueled properly—energy is restored, excess weight is shed, body systems are regenerated, moods and emotions become balanced, disease is reversed, and headaches, and nagging symptoms in general, disappear.

To help your family regain equilibrium, start with the basics: if it’s not food, don’t eat it!

The Standard American Diet

In America between 1980 and 1997, the average per capita consumption of major food commodities per person, per year included:

  • red meat
  • dairy products
  • ice cream
  • 53gallons soft drinks
  • fats and oils
  • 39gallons alcohol
  • wheat
  • 24 gallons coffee
  • sugar

US Census Bureau, Statistical Abstract 1999

AUTHOR // Kelly Hayford, CNC

Information provided by Dr. Dan Yachter, D.C., D.A.C.C.P., Elevation Health Lake Mary, FL

This article appeared in Pathways to Family Wellness magazine, Issue #11.


His decision to attend Chiropractic School was based on watching his father receive Chiropractic Care and then heal and completely recover from lifelong crippling migraine headaches and an assortment of disabling conditions. Dr. Dan was fascinated with the fact that a person could heal naturally without the use of drugs, surgery and harmful side-effects. Dr. Yachter’s passion to serve a sick and suffering humanity has caused his practice to become one of the largest health centers in the world.He is one of the 5 chiropractic thought leaders to co-found Elevation Health. The vision of this company is to “Ignite the healthcare revolution, one family at a time.” This company is building principled chiropractic offices internationally as well as helping chiropractors lead and teach the families of their communities wellness lifestyle strategies. The founding 5 chiropractors all share a passion to spread God’s laws of life, health, and healing throughout the planet, thereby freeing families to live life without fear; empowering and equipping them to live high potential lives.Dr. Dan Yachter is the founder of the Elevation Health, Lake Mary office, one of the most successful practices in the world, and has been in practice for over 12 years. Today, Dr. Dan cares for thousands of patients each year at his state-of-the-art wellness center as well as conducting numerous educational workshops on the Elevation Health Core 4 wellness principles each month.Dr. Yachter also has extensive training in pediatrics and maternity care and is certified in the Webster Technique through the International Pediatric Chiropractic Association. He is currently enrolled in and completing their 360 hour pediatric diplomate program. Dr. Yachter cares for one of the largest patient bases in the profession: over 1,500 active individuals. Most importantly, he cares for the largest (single office) practice base of children and infants in the profession. This significant clinical experience has allowed Dr. Dan to achieve a high level of clinical proficiency in a short amount of time as well as deliver a high level of competency and certainty when caring for patients, specifically the tiny ones!In the chiropractic community, Dr. Yachter is known by his peers as the ‘chiropractor’s chiropractor’ having mentored, lead or consulted over 1,500 chiropractors over the last decade. Dr. Yachter is a frequent college lecturer and has spoken at Life Chiropractic College West (San Francisco), Parker Chiropractic (Dallas), and The New Zealand School of Chiropractic.Several of Dr. Yachter’s current or past community affiliations are as follows: Seminole County Chamber of Commerce, Lake Mary Chamber of Commerce, Public Speaker and Corporate Health Educator for the Employee Awareness Association, AAA ergonomic consultant (Lake Mary), Community outreach and spinal screening consulting at local Sam’s, Wal-marts, Costco, Target, L.A. Fitness, YMCA, & Florida PTA. For the past 8 years, Dr. Yachter can also be heard daily on his program Health Living on the 950 am WTLN radio.Dr. Dan is also the author of the book, “Doctor of The Future” and a world renowned Chiropractic wellness expert and speaker. Patients describe Dr. Dan as a wellness expert/enthusiast with enormous vision, unbridled passion and a contagious obsession for spreading chiropractic principles and the message of healthy living locally and globally.He grew up in South Florida, earned his bachelor’s degree in nutritional sciences at the University of Florida in 1993 and his doctor of chiropractic at Life University in 1997.Away from caring for the wonderful families of Seminole County, Dr. Dan likes to spend time with his wife Mindy and their new baby girl, Juliet. Leif MartenssonDr. Leif Martensson is a native of Eskilstuna, Sweden. He left a semi-professional soccer career to come to the United States in 1991 after receiving a full soccer scholarship to Radford University in Virginia. While at Radford, Dr. Leif became exposed to chiropractic through a fellow teammate. His love of natural healing without the use of drugs or surgery was right in sync with the principles of chiropractic. When he realized that chiropractic was the “missing link” to the health principles he already embraced, Dr. Leif decided to pursue a Chiropractic degree at Life University in Marietta, Georgia. While at Life University, he was also able to continue playing soccer on the collegiate level and then graduated in 1999.Following graduation, Dr. Leif returned to Europe and settled in Galway, Ireland, where he served as the Clinic Director of a busy practice until 2002. In 2002, Dr. Leif returned to the United States to marry and practice with his wife, Annette, in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. In 2005 Dr. Leif relocated his family to central Florida and joined Dr. Yachter at Elevation Health.Dr. Leif and his wife are the proud parents of two healthy, drug- and vaccine-free “chirokids.”Dr. Leif’s passion is to create a paradigm shift in the way people view health and wellness. He strongly believes that health comes from within, and the power that made the body, heals the body. He feels privileged to help people heal and recover from sickness and disease, without the use of drugs and surgery through chiropractic care. He is especially in tune with the mental and physical needs of the athlete through his experience as both a professional and collegiate athlete.

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