We are lucky to live in a world where there are many options for health care and self care. Allopathic medicine or the conventional medical world of insurance companies. Homeopathic medicine, the opposite branch, that is holistically concerned. Herbalism that is the most traditional of medical concerns. And many other alternative medicine techniques that are becoming better recognized and appreciated. It is a good idea to choose the health care system that most suits you, and to pick and choose from all the systems for specific issues. Self-care is the way that we take on the responsibility for our own health. When we think of "medicine," our first thoughts might be about drugs and drug therapy, second we might think of herbs and herbal medicine preparations. But I also like to approach self-care by thinking of food as medicine.
We all know that nutrition is important, that eating right is essential to good health. High quality, organic foods, make a difference as well. "Food as medicine" considers what we eat and how specific foods can affect our health issues. Some foods are full of antioxidants and phytonutrients that are preventative for problems such as cancer. (10 Foods that Fight Cancer). Some specific foods, such as honey or garlic, have antibacterial properties and can be eaten or even used topically for health issues. (Honey as Medicine) Adding, or subtracting, particular foods from the diet is done in response to issues as they arrive. That is how to think of "Food as Medicine," and not just something to fill the belly and delight the taste buds.
Food is health. The foods we choose to eat make us what we are. We can choose health-based diets (nutrition), and we can choose particular foods for specific health issues (food as medicine). Whenever I think about healthy approaches to life, I always end up back at the big three: Eat right, Exercise, Rest. And I always consider Michael Pollan's statement: Eat food, not too much, mostly plants. A good idea.
For more information, see the SimpleTens articles at Food As Medicine.