The brave new world of proper nutrition

Healthy eating has gone way past your mother’s basic food groups. My mother, for example, just said try to make the plate look pretty: a little green, a little yellow, a little white and a piece of meat if you’re lucky, and all will be well.

Hmmm. I recently took in a lecture by nutritionist Sharon Meyer (Optimum Nutrition Therapy: “Food as medicine, food as pleasure”) at the invitation of San Francisco’s Heritage life care retirement community. And I now have more information than I will ever use, although that is not Sharon Meyer’s fault. The reality is, I’m just not good at grasping a lot of new data on phytonutrients, chia seedepigallocatechin gallate and the balancing of Omega 6 and Omega 3 oils in order to ingest the good and reject the bad.

Here are a few tips I did collect and seriously plan to use: 1) To keep your sugar balance, eat five times a day. (8 or 10 times a day has worked for me in the past, but what the heck.) 2) Black pepper is the king of spices; cardamom is the queen; turmeric is super good. 3) Green tea is also super good; use it in place of stock in soups, etc. 4) There’s value in red meat (hooray) – but it ought to be grass fed. 5) Your body needs water, seriously, six to eight glasses a day; start with 3/daily, maybe you’ll get there. 6) Snacks? Go for the berries in coconut milk with a dash of cinnamon.

Ms. Meyer knows this stuff. A graduate of London’s Institute for Optimum Nutrition and a practicing consultant on a long list of nutritional and health issues, she is also a Cordon Bleu chef. Whether all Cordon Bleu chefs know as much about regulating blood sugar and keeping body fat down is questionable. They probably don’t even worry about how the food we eat speaks to us, or about fun facts like most of us eat 24 tons of food in a lifetime — the equivalent of three elephants; if they did, it might be the end of foie gras.