PLATE RULE: 1/2 Fruits and Vegetables

The Plate Below is the USDA’s revision of the old food pyramid.  It illustrates the need for more fruits and vegetables. Half of your plate should be filled with them.  But if you want more specifics and which fruits and vegetables: Green leafy vegetables (spinach, kale, broccoli, asparagus) are best and Berries (raspberries, blackberries, blue berries and strawberries) are the healthiest fruits.

Grains are not entirely necessary, but if you are going to eat them, it should be WHOLE GRAINS, like quinoa, legumes, and oats.

As far as proteins go, you should LIMIT red meat to once a week (or eliminate it entirely) and any animal meat you eat should be grass-fed, hormone free, organic (unless you like cancer).  Healthier sources of proteins include: eggs, nuts, beans, dairy (if from hormone-free, grass fed animals), fish (wild, not farm raised).

Dairy is not entirely necessary either, though we’ve been trained to think so, perhaps because we as mammals nurse initially? Millions of people around the world do not drink milk and lead perfectly healthy lives.  Many think the glass of milk should be replaced with a glass of water and more emphasis should be placed on what NOT to eat, like sugar, potatoes, red meat (which is directly linked to colon cancer)

There is also no mention of healthy oils, like omega threes, olive oil, fish oil, etc which are essential (in small amounts) in our diet.

So while the image below is a great starting point, the above specifics are crucial for truly healthy eating.


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Madeleine Vanstory attended Duke University and began her post-graduate journey at The Elaine Clark Center working with special needs children. She went on to work as a Clinical Research Scientist running clinical trials for the CDC and developing medical devices for Welsh Allen, Abbot Labs, Roche and Johnson & Jonhson Her work included non-invansive cervical cancer detection, continuous diabetic glucose monitoring, non-harmful infant bilirubin level detection and studying Vitamin C's anti-aging effects on the skin. Madeleine attended Medical school at The Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University and completed a residency in Family Medicine at Moses Cone Hospital in Greensboro NC. Dr. Madeleine Vanstory is a board certified Family Physician who has practiced all over the world. She has lead medical missions in Kenya and Honduras. She has participated with Operation Smile in Russia, she has patients in North Carolina, Maine, Oregon and New Zealand. Dr. Vanstory has worked the medical tents in the Marine Corps marathon in Washington DC and at the Kona Ironman World Championships. And Dr. Vanstory has marched with the Surgeon General promoting "Exercise is Medicine" at the World Congress Sports Medicine Conference. Disillusioned by the current health care system and armed with the realization that culture, nutrition and emotional well-being have a profound impact on health, Dr. Vanstory now motivates clients and patients to discover the healthiest versions of themselves through humor, counseling in her "Upgrade Your Health" Wellness Program.

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