Any time we speak about obesity, it’s important to realize that the primary dietary culprit is sugar – plain and simple.  In addition, many of us consume too little healthy fats (avocados, raw nuts and seeds, nut butters, olive and coconut oils).  This deadly duo of too much sugar and too little fat causes excess body weight and opens up the door to a myriad of other chronic degenerative diseases, including Type 2 diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, elevated triglycerides and other lipid problems, cancer, and Alzheimer’s disease.

Nowadays, most of the foods we consume are highly processed, loaded with sugars, hydrogenated fats, and additives.  According to recent statistics, one in five deaths in the United States is associated with obesity.  And here’s something to consider…the younger you are, the greater obesity’s influence on your mortality.  One-third of American children are now considered overweight or obese.  Many children in the United States and other “westernized” countries are raised mainly on processed foods – fries, fast-food hamburgers, chicken nuggets, pizza, etc.  Perhaps the biggest offender is soda and other sweetened beverages.  Again, this is not only a problem in our country, but world-wide, including developing countries.

If we want to be healthy and achieve longevity, we need to make the right food choices, as well as other healthy lifestyle choices, such as regular exercise and practicing some form of stress management daily.  Regarding dietary aspects, we should focus on consuming whole, and ideally organic, unprocessed foods.  And for optimal health, a good portion of foods should be consumed raw.  So, there you have it.  A diet high in healthy fats, very low in sugar and non-vegetable carbohydrates, and a moderate amount of high-quality protein is best.