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“When we really love ourselves, everything in our life works, including our health.”
Louise Hay
Dear Friend,

We have a lot of celebrating to do this week. It’s the one-year anniversary of our weekly Hay House Newsletter—Present Moments. I’d like to thank all of you for sticking with me, reading my column each week and for the thousands of emails you sent. I appreciate your feedback and want you to know that we will be making more improvements in the coming year based on your comments.

It’s also Louise’s birthday this week and she’s releasing a new book. At 88 (and feeling great!), Louise decided to get together with the two people who are in charge of her health—natural health and nutrition experts Ahlea Khadro and Heather Dane—and write a book together about their secrets to health, happiness and longevity. It’s called Loving Yourself to Great Health.

Louise Hay, Reid Tracy, Ahlea Khadro and Heather Dane.
Louise is celebrating her birthday this week! Her co-authors of Loving Yourself to Great Health, Heather Dane and Ahlea Khadro, also helped us celebrate.

I’m very excited about this book because it’s different from any other book that Louise has written and it’s by far the most comprehensive health-oriented book that she has ever done since You Can Heal Your Life.

People have been asking Louise for years now how she looks so vibrant and great at her age. Now in Loving Yourself to Great Health, she’ll share exactly what she does. Louise even told me that she keeps referring back to this book for healthy reminders and tips and recipes we can all use each day.

Thanks for giving us a reason to celebrate. I hope you’ll check out this amazing new book.

I’ve already earmarked a few of the recipes (including the Hassle-Free Whole Chicken for Busy People) for my family to try.

My best wishes,

Reid Tracy

10 Foods That Love Your Body
By Louise Hay, Ahlea Khadro and Heather Dane

Loving Yourself to Great Health and authors Heather Dane, Louise Hay and Ahlea Khadro
Instead of listening to what the researchers say, we invite you to listen to your own body. Tracking your food intake, moods/emotions, energy, and physical symptoms is the best way to understand how food affects you personally, so you can be empowered to eat in a way that supports your well-being. It can also be eye-opening to observe people around you as you go through your day. When you’re first learning to listen to your own body, it can sometimes seem easier to spot changes in others than in yourself. Have fun with this!

For example, Louise and Heather once went to a Weston A. Price conference where the whole focus was on healthy, traditional whole foods. There was another event taking place at the convention center, and they both allowed children. Louise suggested that Heather watch the kids at both events to see what she observed. As Heather observed the children at the Weston A. Price event, she noticed that the kids were relatively quiet, calm, and well behaved; when they were in the seminar rooms, they did not make noise or act out. On the other hand, the children at the other event were running in circles, screeching loudly, and seemed “wired.”

Louise had seen this before at another nutritional seminar, where the children who were eating whole foods and no sugar were quieter and seemed more content. They played, but their play was more focused and less hyper.

Most people have no idea how much food is contributing to their well-being or lack thereof. Here are 10 foods to eat to love your body to good health!

1. Whole Foods: Instead of processed foods, choose whole foods. Whole foods are fresh and mostly located in the outer aisles of the grocery store: the produce aisle, the fish and meat counters, and the refrigerated areas with eggs and butter. In the center aisles, you can look for products that have been minimally processed, like coconut flour; raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar (which we like better than white vinegar); and unrefined fats and oils.

2. More Vegetables: Just about every food expert would agree that we can all benefit from a diet rich in vegetables. Eating all the colors of the rainbow supports the body, and if you’re focusing on healing, eating more dark, leafy greens is a great place to start. Here are some examples for eating a variety of colors of vegetables:
  • Red—beets, red leaf lettuce, radishes, red Swiss chard, red onions, tomatoes, and red bell peppers. (Note that tomatoes and red bell peppers are in the family of nightshades, which are not well tolerated by everyone. If you experience digestive pain, reflux, tremors, or joint pain, you may want to avoid or eliminate these and reintroduce them after two weeks to see if you’re sensitive to them.)
  • Orange—carrots, pumpkin, sweet potatoes, and butternut squash.
  • Yellow—summer squash, yellow onions, and corn. (Many people have corn allergies or sensitivities, so make sure you can tolerate corn and that you choose organic to avoid GMO corn.)
  • Green—lettuce and leafy greens (romaine, green leaf lettuce, red leaf lettuce, cabbage, arugula, kale, collards, bok choy, Swiss chard, dandelion, watercress, and spinach), artichokes, broccoli, brussels sprouts, snow peas, snap peas, green beans, watercress, spinach, escarole, cucumbers, chayote squash, zucchini, sprouts, and microgreens; as well as fresh herbs such as parsley, cilantro, basil, and fennel.
  • Blue/purple—radicchio, shallots, turnips, and eggplant. (Eggplant is a nightshade, so please see the above note about tomatoes and red bell peppers.)
  • White—cauliflower, garlic, white onions, white asparagus, mushrooms, and ginger.
3. Develop a Love Affair with Herbs and Spices: Herbs and spices are concentrated sources of phytonutrients, which means they are concentrated sources of life-giving antioxidants. For example, 1 teaspoon of oregano and ½ teaspoon of dried cloves on their own have more antioxidants than ½ cup of blueberries.1

Herbs are the green, leafy parts of a plant used to season foods. They’re not the main ingredient of a dish (like kale or lettuce, for example); instead, they’re flavor enhancers. Herbs are used either fresh or dried, and examples include: basil, cilantro, dill, mint, tarragon.

Spices are dried and come from a plant’s root, stem, flower, fruit, seed, leaf, or bud. They are concentrated, flavorful, and aromatic. Examples include: cardamom, organic Ceylon cinnamon, coriander, fennel, ginger and turmeric.

4. Natural Sweeteners: Nature has provided us with the sweet taste for a very good reason! In Chinese medicine and Ayurvedic medicine, two systems of health and healing that are thousands of years old, practitioners know that a balance of tastes is important. Chinese medicine talks about the importance of five tastes (spicy, salty, sour, bitter, and sweet), while Ayurveda talks about six tastes (astringent, salty, sour, pungent, bitter, and sweet). In both honored systems, the idea is that balancing all of these tastes is important for feeling satisfied during and after eating. In other words, balancing the tastes can ward off cravings!

5. Water: In work with their clients, Heather and Ahlea have found that a focus on water consumption has improved health across the board. This is not unusual—in fact, studies on water and food consumption in U.S. adults from 1999 to 2001 found that water consumers drink fewer soft drinks and fruit drinks and have healthier eating patterns, including more consumption of vegetables and fruits.2

Ahlea recommends her clients drink half their body weight in ounces. For example, a 150-pound person would drink 75 ounces of water, which is about 9.5 cups. She also asks them to drink 20 ounces (2.5 cups) of water first thing in the morning. While 2.5 cups of water in the morning may seem like a lot, the body is better able to absorb a large amount of water first thing in the morning before any food is taken. If you choose to experiment with this, make sure to wait 30 minutes before eating breakfast.

It’s very important to listen to your body when it comes to thirst because everyone’s body is different. Depending on your size, level of activity, climate, and other factors, your body may need more water.

6. Unrefined Fats and Oils: While fats and oils were once vilified altogether, new studies have found that healthy, unrefined fats and oils have important properties for good moods, satiety (and therefore losing or maintaining healthy weight), and brain health.3 Fats also help carry important vitamins like A, D, E, and K into the body.

7. Grains, Nuts, and Seeds: Currently, grains are on the firing line due to books like Wheat Belly and Grain Brain. Paleo and Primal diets, which essentially eliminate grains, are also receiving a great deal of attention. There is good reason for this: digestive diseases are on the rise, now affecting up to 70 million people in the United States alone.4

Grains are challenging for the small intestine to digest, so people working on gut health or insulin issues may want to remove them while they allow their digestive system to heal. Once healed, these folks can often reintroduce grains into their diet.

Whole grains (no part of the grain is removed in milling), as opposed to lower-quality processed grains, have many healing properties. Whole grains are a source of carbohydrates and protein; are rich in fiber, B vitamins, and minerals; can combat constipation; and boost serotonin, the body’s happiness hormone.

8. Healing Elixirs: Homemade Bone Broths and Vegetable Broths: Making your own broth is much easier than you think, and the taste and health benefits are definitely worth it! These are some of the most affordable healing tools possible.

We highly recommend bone stock or broth as part of your regular health routine. Louise drinks bone broth two times per day to keep her nourished and energized. When she returns home from traveling, she always has bone broth and soups for several days to nurture her body back into balance after being away. It is one of her biggest health secrets!

  1. Marley, Karen. “The Fantastic 5: Antioxidant Spice Heroes or how to Keep That Pesky ‘Eat Healthy’ Resolution!” Spice Sherpa. 26 Jan 2011. Web. 23 Feb 2014.
  2. Popkin, Barry M., Denis V. Barclay, and Samara J. Nielsen. “Water and Food Consumption Patterns of U.S. Adults from 1999 to 2001.” Obesity Research Journal: vol. 13, issue 12 (2146–2152). Dec 2005. Web. 27 Feb 2014.
  3. Gómez-Pinilla, Fernando. “Brain foods: the effects of nutrients on brain function.” PubMed.gov. July 2008. Web. 15 Feb 2014.
  4. National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse (NDDIC) “Digestive Diseases Statistics for the United States.” National Institutes of Health Publication No. 13-3873. Sept 2013. Web. 12 Feb 2014.
Hay House World Summit Podcast on iTunes

Learn simple ways to improve your health by shifting how you start your day and how you perceive food with Ahlea Khadro, holistic and nutritive healer.

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Neha Sangwan, M.D. (author of the upcoming 2015 release Talk Your Way to Health and Happiness and featured speaker at this year’s I Can Do It Pasadena Conference) talks about her healing conversations with hospital patients and how this insightful wisdom taught her about the importance of listening to your body.
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