Bacon vs. Veggies: A Surprising New View?

lettuce in garden

Yesterday I had an appointment with my doctor. We talked about how I’m doing and checked some vitals and some tests to see how I’m really doing. It turns out that the tests agree with me – I’m doing just fine, thank you.

We had a short chat about cholesterol that stunned me. I asked whether it needed to be checked, since it’s been a couple of years. (At last check, it was nice and normal.) He said he was not too concerned about my cholesterol. Apparently it’s all about inflammation these days. He mentioned that my chart says I eat gluten-free. This is true, I do – because when I don’t, my sinuses go haywire and I catch every bug within 100 miles. Well, he said, it turns out that grains can create inflammation in the body for those of us who are sensitive to them, so avoiding them is key for me. Inflammation triggers my sinus issues, and makes my immune system less effective.

So, I made some smart-ass remark about eating bacon. He did not miss a beat. He said that many doctors don’t even scold people about eating bacon any more because what they really want to stress is that we all need to eat more fruits and vegetables. A little bacon apparently won’t hurt you as long as you are eating lots of veggies too. Fruits and vegetables help to control inflammation.

This boggled my mind. I have long thought of bacon as the poster-child of bad food choices. Even though I like it, I very rarely eat it any more. The perspective that he shared was that what we need to eat MORE of may be even more important for good health than the things we need to eat LESS of. Very interesting idea. I’m not planning to run right out and buy a pound of bacon, but it makes me even more aware of how important it is to eat plenty of produce every day.

I should add that my GP happens to be a DO (Doctor of Osteopathy) – because I run and work out, and DO’s have more training in sports-medicine and nutrition than most MD’s. They also are trained to think more holistically, and to focus on prevention rather than just cures, which I appreciate. (Click here for a short article that describes the difference between a DO and an MD.)

Here are links to a couple of articles about inflammation for anyone inclined to read more:


1 Response so far »

  1. 1

    This is actually a really interested perspective! I think I like the way that doctor is thinking, ha.

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