Functional food, the secrets of the star nutritionist to be fit and healthy

There are many influencers and stars who follow the diet of Dr. Sara Farnetti, a specialist in internal medicine and metabolism and theoretician of functional nutrition, whose primary focus is health and prevention. Benedetta de Mattei interviewed her to understand what functional dietdiscover the secrets of a good diet and know how to remedy the cravings of the Easter holidays.

What is Functional Nutrition?
By functional, we generally mean an approach that puts our organs at the center. When it comes to nutrition, what comes inside of us does or does not nourish the health of our body and oreach meal is considered a hormonal pattern because it is the hormones that act on our organs so that they are supported, stimulated and never aggravated. Functional nutrition is one regenerative nutrition, aimed at solving the causes of a disorder or improving the state of well-being to regain health, reversing the aging processes in a personalized way. We have an idea of ‚Äč‚Äčrestorative medicine: I am sick and I have to treat the symptom; while internal medicine today should above all be functional, be predictive, preventive And personalized, so that aging well and in good health becomes more and more an achievable goal. People eat three times a day and this means that nutrition inevitably interferes with our health, the right diet is in fact the main ally to heal, preserve cellular youth, as well as regain ideal physical shape, thanks to its undisputed action. inflammatory.

How does health start with the liver?
We always talk about the importance of the intestine and its microbiome as a second brain, on which systemic inflammation and the proper functioning of the immune system depend. But health begins with liver: is the organ most directly linked to our well-beingperforms two fundamental activities: elimination and of transformation. The liver is therefore the central organ to be cared for, it supports the production of glucose and its dysfunction, causes gastritis problems, cycle disorders, constipation, reflux, etc. This is why it is important to use foods and preparations to promote the production and flow of bile. Those who suffer from intestinal dysbiosis with an imbalance of the microbiota, do not solve the problem by taking probiotics or enzymes. But I solve it upstream, that is to say by the bile, which selects the good bacteria that colonize the intestine. The same goes for systemic inflammation, caused by a bad hormonal project. By changing your diet, you can alter the production of hormones that inflame the liver, such as insulin, which in turn inflames the intestines.

Why should diet be personalized?
Following a personalized diet means calibrating it taking into account the individual genetic variables which can be detected with specific tests, as each patient inevitably has different symptoms/problems which are established on different genetics. Customizing Therapy Means Doing First diagnosis of the cause of the disorder or in any case identify the risk factors for the disease. The patient’s anamnesis is very important in this regard, but also the family history and, from the perspective of preventive medicine, blood tests and genetic analyzes help because predictive medical genetics certainly help to better interpret the symptoms. and the patient’s signs.

Why are cooking and combinations essential?
The easiest way to cooperate with our liver is to cook. The destiny of a food changes according to its preparation: these are the famous functional effects of food. Every food is an opportunity to do good or bad. cooking with extra virgin olive oil in the pan, it stimulates the release of bile, promotes digestive processes and solves bloating disorders. Let’s take for example broccoli, which is a meteoric food in general and not very digestible, or the artichoke which is in season, obviously if it is boiled it will be difficult to digest and will swell the stomach, while the same fried food will keep intact health properties and will not cause meteorism. Instead, the how to cook pasta influences the glycemic index and the effects of hormones that regulate metabolism. The pasta must be cooked first al dentebecause I reduce the release rate of carbohydrates, later the goodbye in a frying pan with oil hot at 40 -50 degrees to make carbohydrates less absorbable and reduce glycemic load. Then there are functional combinations of foods, that is combinations which improve the metabolism of certain foods, making them less harmful or healthier because a synergy of nutrients is created. If I combine raw artichoke with cheese, I help the liver, if I combine pasta with cream and vegetables rich in vegetable fibres, it becomes a more functional dish, with a reduced insulin index. To improve the absorption of the iron contained in meat, it is good to combine it with sources of vitamin C, such as pepper which contains 5 times the vitamin C of orange, or lemon.

Why pasta in the evening?
In reality it depends on the person, nutrition is a tool that allows me to build food for the purpose I want, but in general starting from human physiology the night must be recovered and so at dinner a protein prevalence represents a stress for the organism and carbohydrates are therefore preferable, which does not mean “excess”. What needs to be kept under control isinsulin indexthe night is the ideal time for detoxification and pasta, in the right quantities and with the right preparation, facilitates it.

In view of the Easter holidays, how to remedy the big bouts of bulimia?
For Easter we will surely exceed with proteins, sweets and carbohydrates and to remedy this the easiest thing to do is to remedy the next day skip breakfast. If I stressed the liver the next day I can let it rest, prolong overnight fasting, maybe come for lunch. This leads to faster recovery, it’s a simple accompaniment to what we’re already doing at night. It’s not a stretch, we overdid it, it’s easy to reduce food intake the next day, as if it were a physiological calorie restriction that we often don’t follow.

Benedetta by Mattei

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