. . . the last blog to read on diets!
For over 25 years, I have been in the search for a best diet for works for my well being, both physically and emotionally. I want to share my thoughts on what I conclude now after having tried several diets for prolong periods. My intention is by the end of this blog, you will be left with some thoughts too on what could work for YOU. But to get the main essence though you need to get till the end of my talk here though. That’s where I put my main conclusion. So stick on!
There is a school of thought which believes if we don’t eat meat, then we may get protein deficiency. I come from a community where from birth we grow up as vegetarians. We do not have any protein deficiencies in our community. Protein is actually produced by plants only. Apparently animals are not capable of producing protein by themselves. We get our plant protein from lentils and nuts/dry fruits.
When my kids were especially when my second son was physically a tiny little small, my wife was advised by other mothers to give him at least eggs, so he gets adequate protein and grows well. Despite not following the advise, he has now grown up into a healthy, strong, intelligent adult now.
During my late thirties when I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and slightly over weight I followed a diet to ensure light dinners that comprised of soups, fruits etc. Me being on medication the light dinners led to low sugars and resultant concussions during sleep, which made it quite tense during such diet phase.
After few years, I was into a diet which insisted on zero salt for people to be healthy and rid of diseases. I was strict, that I would even avoid normal bread and glucose biscuits as they too had minute quantities of salt as preservative. There was an advise that brain requires Sodium and Potassium for its functioning and hence it is very essential to have salt to get the sodium. But here is the point. What brain needs is sodium, not sodium chloride that is table salt. And sodium is available in many foods we routinely consume. I checked my electrolytes many times during this period, and confirmed my sodium and potassium levels were always normal. That having said, this diet did not give me great results despite trying for a prolonged period.
And now I am into Raw Food diet. This requires me to not eat anything that is heated beyond 45 degrees Celsius (about 110 degrees Fahrenheit). In essence, no induced heating at all. This has given me great great benefits. If you want to know more of what I was benefited, you can follow this link. A 100 Day Transformation Experience – Physically (lost 11 kgs), Healthy & Emotionally Happy
While I am on this diet, to take it to the next level, I have tried to scale into being a vegan too. Other than human being, no animal consumes milk of another kind of animal. And surely not after becoming an adult. So has becoming a vegan helped me anymore fit. To be honest, nope!
Another angle to being vegan is to be non-cruel. So I was advised to stop using honey since its results in several bees dying from fire, or at the very least robbing away their hard earned treasure. Okay. I give up honey which was essential to me as the best liquid sweetener (I already tried few other liquid sweeteners). I used to love honey. And per Ayurveda, it is an ingredient with several nutritional benefits. But, I gave up. Yes, I do not like bees being harmed for my benefit.
But what about eating plant products? Aren’t we killing and hurting them by taking their body parts or taking away the plant? It has already been proved scientifically that plants also have life, and they also feel pain, and have emotions. In fact, we have a several decades old song in our native language that narrates how a flower complains of injustice carried by humans to them. Aren’t we killing several micro organisms when we breath and drink water? Every time I pluck a mango from our tree at home, the I would feel very guilty. Cruelty is part of how nature is. Nature cannot sustain itself without cruelty to other lives. I am not supportive of using animal products, but ‘am aware of cruelty I am inflicting even being a mostly vegan.
And few more as peanut butter is not to be consumed since it needs peanuts to be roasted. So is Almond butter. Cashews undergo some heating during their extraction process. And as I studied more products, I realised that many products to undergo some heating directly during the manufacturing process. Today, we get most products from grocery store shelf and not from farm. The more I study, the more I realise that it is very very difficult to be on 100% raw in practice. For example raisins are processed using some chemicals, and also a micro wave heating for drying in some cases.
We do not get our produce from farm. We buy them store shelves. We don’t pluck produce from farm and move it into our mouth directly. We often leave them in refrigerators for some time. When we process ingredients in a high speed blender, the friction AT the blade cause heat build up. The other day, me and family noticed a difference in sugarcane taste based on whether it is pressed between iron rollers or wooden rollers manually. Seriously. There was!
And so on and so forth. There is NO END to this. So long as we don’t live in wild nature naturally, I feel it is impossible to stick one diet, any diet . . . . . strictly by its principle and theory.
I have now come to the conclusion that there ain’t such a thing as strictly following one diet. Several diets provide a theory, a concept on how they work and how they benefit. We need to pick the principles and apply to what works best for us. We need to LISTEN to our body on what it is saying, and how it is reacting. They ACTUALLY tell a lot, if only pay some sincere attention. So develop skills to listen to your body, and follow what works for you. Don’t listen to others. Neither the Nay-Sayers nor the Perfectionists can guide into what is right for you. Good-luck!