health practitioners used food to treat many conditions. Hippocrates is one of
the most influential figures in health and nutrition. Around 400 B.C, he
advised people to prevent and manage illnesses by consuming diets that were
rich in nutrients. He is recognized for
his quote, “let food be your medicine and medicine your food.” The food that a
person consumes plays an important role in promoting his or her health by
regulating mechanisms such as digestive processes, blood glucose control, and
determining the risk for cardiovascular diseases.
Hippocrates believed that diseases
were brought about by unhealthy eating practices. Consumption of carbohydrates,
proteins, and lipids in the right amounts sustains the body’s energy
requirements. However, the consumption of too much of these foods contributes
to diseases such as diabetes mellitus and hypertension. Fiber, commonly found in carbohydrates, promotes
gastrointestinal health. Micronutrients. Vitamins and minerals are also
essential for health promotion. For instance, an adequate intake of iron-rich foods reduces the risks of anemia. It
can also be used to treat anemia which may result from hemorrhage or other
chronic diseases (Smolin and Grosvenor 3-4).
Garlic, ginger, and peppermint are some of the food items used for their medicinal purposes. Aside from
promoting cardiovascular health, the substances are rich in antioxidants that
are used for detoxification (Hefferon 44-45).
Phytochemicals such as sulforaphane,
which is found broccoli, helps in
reducing the risks of cancers (Smolin and
Grosvenor 3). Hippocrates’ quote is relevant to my health and nutrition
status because it reminds me that consuming the right amounts of each nutrient
promotes my metabolism and immunity. It also helps in reducing my
susceptibility to nutrition deficiencies. Using food as medicine can also
reduce medical costs associated with
cardiovascular diseases, obesity-related
diseases among other illnesses.