The 7 Foundations of Health

These foundations are timeless, they are universal. It does not matter what race, gender, age, or culture you are; these are the foundations of health. They are scientifically based. They are what your body is designed to need in order to sustain balance.
A body in balance is a healthy body; a body out of balance is disease.
We at Optimum Care would like to introduce you to the best the doctor you will ever have, your own body!
Give it what it needs and it will sustain health. Follow these 7 foundations and your body will thrive as it is meant to.
Back to 'Your Health'


OMEGA 3, 6 & 9 OILS    

The body's lubricating
energy source
The essence of life



The source of balance
Vitamins, minerals & antioxidants




Knowing your body
Dr Arnuld Engelbrecht explains in detail the 7 key foundations you need to follow to achieve your optimum health.
1. Water 
The essence of life
As we all know, your body consists of between 70-75% of water.
Do yourself a favour and think about this for a while. Draw an imaginary line across your chest and imagine that everything below that line is water. That is about 75% of you! Every system in your body depends on water. You have water in your eyes, skin, joints, glands, brain, and in your blood that flows through out your body.

One of the biggest causes of headaches worldwide is dehydration. One of the biggest causes of constipation worldwide is dehydration. One of the biggest causes of fatigue worldwide is dehydration. Dehydration prevention it is one of the most powerful anti-ageing tonics for the skin. By changing this simple aspect of your life you can have major affect on your health.
  • Your body needs between 2-2.5L of water for the average (70kg) adult on a daily basis. 2.5L on a cold winter’s day, 3L on a warm summer's day.
  • Endurance athletes can increase this by at least 10% for every hour of exercise a day.
  • Young infants: 150ml/kg of body weight daily. (Infants younger than 6 months should only drink breast milk or formula, not water.
  • Children under 13 years: we recommend an average of about 0.75L for a 5kg child and 1L for a 10kg child. For every 10kg of body weight above the 10kg point, add roughly 250mls of water to your daily consumption.
  • In warm countries like South Africa, India, and Australia: add at least an extra 300mls per day.
In the world of health there is a saying: “you are what you eat”, this certainly applies to water as well. The quality of water that you put into your body is essential. We recommend using a simple ceramic filter that removes heavy metals and toxins from the water, and keeps the water mineral-rich and thus optimally alkaline.

What to avoid?
  • Filtration systems that acidify your water.
  • Filtration systems the remove the mineral in the water without replacing them.
  • Drinking water from a plastic or aluminium water bottle.
  • Sparkling or carbonated water, as this acidifies your body.

Our recommendations: 
  • BPH free plastic containers
  • Glass water bottles 
  • We strongly recommend that you add 3-5 drops of concentrated mineral to your glass of water
  • Filtration Systems

Water quality
What counts as water and what doesn’t?
Does count: water; herbal tea; water infused with lemon, cinnamon, strawberries, mango and cucumber etc, for flavour.

Doesn’t count: coffee, Ceylon tea (i.e. regular English breakfast teas) - If you are a coffee or tea drinker, have no more than 1 cup daily. Although coffee and Ceylon tea in the right quality and quantity can have advantages like weight loss for example, they can also dehydrate your body. Drinks like coffee, normal tea, green tea contain caffeine which may dehydrate the body. Drinks like alcohol, fizzy drinks, carbonated water, coffee and Ceylon tea do not function like water, can create acidity in the body and should not be counted as water.
2: Omega 3, 6 & 9 Oils
The body's lubricating energy source
One of the first things that a gynaecologist will give to a pregnant female is an Omega 3, 6, 9 oil. The foetus needs it to grow. These oils are in the skin, eyes, joints, brain, nerves, glands, the membrane of every cell and they lubricate the body. It is essential not to stop after the baby is born. Their joints need to grow; the brain and eyes need to double in size. Adults need it to sustain the function of their moving joints, to lubricate their colon, and to keep their brain functioning optimally. These oils are potent anti-aging and moisturising agents.

What do we need?
We at Optimum Care recommend:
  • 2 tablespoons of cold-pressed seed oils daily for persons older than 15 yours, 2 teaspoons daily for persons younger than 15 years.
  • Omega 3, 6, 9 Oil in a dark glass bottle, not a plastic bottle.
  • Cold chain intact: where the product is transported from the factory to the health shop to your home staying cold.

The body gets enough Omega 6 and 9 oils from the diet, so we recommend a high omega 3, low omega 6 and 9 oil, like Udo’s Choice, which we consider one of the world leaders in good omega oils. 

How to use it?
Anything that works for you!
Drink it neat
Have it in smoothies
Put it in your baby's formula
Mix it into or over your meals
It makes a great salad dressing

mixed with lemon, salt and pepper

Take it twice a day
What not to do?
Cook with it
3: The pH of the Body
The source of balance
The pH of the body should be between 6.8 and 7.2 roughly, and this will assist your body to sustain chemical balance.
It is very easy to understand using a swimming pool as an example: The swimming pool is clear all year round if it is at the right pH balance. If the pH moves out of this delicate balance it will turn green over night. This is because the pH of the swimming pool now supports the growth of bacteria, viruses, parasites and fungus. Your body reacts the same; too much acid in your mucus membranes and you will wake up with green or yellow mucus in your nose and a head cold. Too much acid in your big toe will give you gout; in your fingers, arthritis and in your stomach, heart burn or a stomach ulcer. Cancer grows in an acidic body and not in an alkaline body.

It is more important to understand how to sustain the right pH than to know what your pH is at any given moment, so before spending lots of money on testing the pH of your blood, urine, saliva and other body fluids, rather learn how to maintain the right pH balance.
Referring to the diagram:
See how the dinner plate is divided into a 20/80 balance: 20% or the red zone represents the foods that are acid forming; the 80% or blue zone represented the portion of foods that must be alkaline forming foods.
To simplify this process, think of all acid forming foods as dead foods e.g.: coffee, chocolate, meats, eggs, milks, yoghurt, tomato sauces, fish, fizzy drinks, processed foods and alcohol. Think of all alkaline forming foods as foods that are alive or foods that grow from the earth e.g.: vegetables, fruit and salad.

It is very important to understand the follow sentence: If the enzymes in the alkaline forming foods e.g. fruit, are still alive, the food is alkaline, if you kill the enzymes in the alkaline forming food e.g. fruit, it will then be acid forming. To clarify, a fresh raw mango is alive and alkaline forming, the enzymes of a dried mango are dead, and thus acid forming.

How to prepare your food?
Acid forming ways: microwave, fry, boil, roasting, processing, centrifugal juicing (heating up the veggies in the juice by using the wrong machine.)

Alkaline ways: raw foods and salads, steaming for 5-15 minutes (in a vegetable steamer not in a microwave), stir-frying for 5-15 minutes, cold pressed juicing (using the right machine) (link to cold-pressed juicers)

The exciting advantage of juicing with the right machine is that it boosts your body into an alkaline state. Let’s do one example to clarify. Let’s assess a standard breakfast of scrambled eggs on rye toast, which seems healthy.

Would you classify the eggs as alive / alkaline-forming, or dead / acid-forming? Would you classify the toast as alive / alkaline-forming or dead / acid-forming?

As we can see in the table above both of these are acid-forming foods, thus a 100% acidic breakfast. A purely acid-forming breakfast like this can promote acidic conditions in the body, like heartburn or inflammation for example.

This is where juicing comes in as the easiest and fastest way to balance out the breakfast above. Question? Is the carrot acid or alkaline-forming, is the beetroot and other juice ingredients acid- or alkaline-forming.

​​Summary: by drinking one fresh cold pressed vegetable juice with your toast and egg, you will create a whole new balance. We now have 2 points on the acid side of the column and eight points on the alkaline side of the column, thus placing us in the perfect pH balance to sustain healthy body.

4: Supplements
Vitamins, mineral and antioxidants    
Your body uses vitamins, minerals and antioxidants as fuel for energy. Your body also uses them as ammunition to fight off viruses, and bacterial and fungal infections. It forms the base line of your immune system. Vitamin supplementation should be done daily. Every day that you supplement, you anti-age, every day that you don’t supplement your body gets weaker.

There are two main ways of supplementing the body:

1. Using tablets:
One of the biggest dilemmas patients are faced with is walking into a health shop with rows of supplements and not knowing what will and won’t work.

We at Optimum Care recommend whole food vitamins.  It is what your body was designed for. It is in a format that your body knows, understands and absorbs optimally.

In the Optimum Care MultiCare vitamin that we recommend, you will find: concentrated forms of natural beetroot powder, carrot powder, barley powders, grape seed extract and resveratrol to name a few. These form the building blocks of your body.

MultiCare is conveniently packaged in sachets which make it easy to travel with; to put in a lunch box or to put in your pocket on the way to work. 

Which vitamin supplements to avoid?
Many vitamins are purely chemical, containing colourants, flavourants, fillers, sweeteners; some even contain aspartame, which has been linked to the development of certain cancers. We recommend that you avoid these. We do not recommend any effervescent vitamins as these have a negative effect on acid alkaline balance.
2. Vegetable Juicing:
In our opinion, one of the most beneficial investments you can make in your health is a good quality cold pressed juicer. (Link to cold pressed juicers). These machines keep your juiced vegetables alkaline. In our opinion, it is absolutely the most optimal way to supplement your body. Everything is raw and live, while being easy to absorb. The juices should be drunk straight after making them while they are “living” and alkaline forming. Although there are many juicing recipes, our most used recipe for optimal health and immune support is:
Carrot: excellent for your eyes
Beet: acts as a laxative
Spinach: high in iron and folate
Celery: joint and kidney detox
Wheat grass: Super food, one wheat grass tot has the nutritional content of a kg of spinach
Radish: natural antibiotic
Ginger: natural antiviral
And Apple: electrolytes and taste
​​You will see that this is a vegetable juice predominantly, and there is only one fruit in this recipe, this helps to keep blood sugar levels stable.

What to do?
Use a cold pressed juicer machine. Available for purchase at our Online Store.
Drink straight after making
Drink one to two glasses daily
Visit our Juicing page for more information and juicing recipes
5. Sunlight 
The essence of life
15 minutes a day is required for your skin to produce vitamin D, one of your body’s main anti-inflammatory and immune-regulating vitamins.

6: Exercise and Rest
30 minutes of exercise at least 4 times a week, enhances proper blood circulation, lymphatic flow, releases endorphins and assists with weight loss, to name a few benefits. We especially recommend Pilates, Yoga, Spinning and other exercises that put minimal pressure on the lower back and other joints. (Dr Katy’s Pilates Exercise Videos coming soon!)

Rest and repair time is vitally important to the long term health of your musculoskeletal system, nervous system, hormonal system, digestive system and your skin. We recommend 7-8 hours of sleep per night for adults, and 10-12 hours sleep per night for children under 12.

7. Food Sensitivity 
Knowing your body
The following might seem an obvious fact, but when you stop at the fuel station you do not put diesel in your petrol engine, you fill it up with the right fuel!​ Our bodies work the same.

In our last 14 years of joint practice experience between the Optimum Care doctors we have helped hundreds of children suffering from asthma, eczema and other allergy-related diseases purely by identifying which food to avoid in their diet. Similarly, with adults, we have assisted many patients to cure irritable bowel syndrome, fibromyalgia, and chronic fatigue to name a few, by identifying the right and wrong foods for their bodies. Fuelling the body with the wrong foods will cause inflammation, irritation and pain. These foods are not recognised by the body, neither are they digested, absorbed or eliminated optimally. They can remain in our body for 6-8 weeks after consumption, causing discomfort and disease.

Our Optimum Care doctors use the BEST system to test for various food allergies and we recommend patients young and old to have themselves tested to understand how to fuel their bodies correctly. (Click here for the contact information of our practices to book your BEST Test appointment in either Pretoria or Rivonia )