What about protein?
I just received a Certificate in Plant-Based Nutrition from the T. Colin Campbell Foundation and eCornell. Dr. Campbell wrote "The China Study". He spent 30 years researching the effects of animal protein in cancer and other diseases. He concluded that diets with greater than 5% calories from animal protein have the most diseases of all kinds including cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and autoimmune diseases. Dr. Campbell, Dr. Joel Furhman, Dr. Russell Blaylock, Dr. John McDougall, Dr. Neal Barnard, and others have written books about the benefits of a whole food, plant-based diet. That means a diet that is made up of vegetables and grains, with minimal or no processed foods including flours and oils.
A well balanced whole food, plant-based diet contains all the nutrients, including protein, the body needs. The key is well balanced. I would add that a well balanced diet does not include soy, sugar, wheat, or caffeine.
Soy needs to be avoided because of it's prevalence in our diet. Soy is a significant source of phytoestrogen. Estrogen feeds cancer. Menopausal women especially need to avoid soy. Even if you do not eat tofu, edamame, or tempeh you will still get soy in pre-packaged food. Start reading the labels. You will be surprised how many things contain soy.
The Absolute Worst
Sugar is the worst poison of all. Sugar causes inflammation. Inflammation is the underlying cause of every chronic disease including Parkinson's, Alzheimer's and dementia. Sugar causes obesity, diabetes, tooth decay, headache, acne, allergies, and on and on. There are plenty of things that are sweet and provide fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Raisins, dates, bananas, honey, molasses, maple syrup, and all fruits will satisfy a sweet tooth with added benefits. Just remember that they raise blood sugar levels too and should be used judiciously.
Wheat as Bad as Sugar
Wheat has been hybridized to produce more grain with less waste. The dwarf wheat that was developed in the 1930's is more glutenous than it's ancestors. So much more so that the number of people with Celiac disease (allergy to wheat) is growing exponentially. My functional medicine doctor advised me to eliminate wheat from my diet three years ago. She said that it is too inflammatory to the GI tract whether you are allergic to it or not. Dr. William Davis who wrote "Wheat Belly" says that wheat is the cause of man-boobs, love handles, pot bellies, and muffin tops. He is a cardiologist that has helped his patients heal their coronary artery disease and obesity by taking them off wheat. If you are interested in the history of wheat production and it's role in modern diseases, I highly recommend his book. Also, the book "Healthier without Wheat" by Stephen Wengen. Wheat is a huge burden for the immune system and if you suffer with any allergies, acne, or other chronic diseases I strongly recommend eliminating it from your diet completely.
Good Gluten-Free Choices
There are a few gluten-free items that make adequate substitutes. Brown rice tortillas can be found in the freezer section of the grocery store and can be used for wraps and quesadillas. Brown rice crackers and pasta can also be useful substitutes for wheat. Cornmeal is an acceptable substitute as well. Avoid gluten-free items in the store. They are filled with sugar and other poisons. Adapt your own recipes or look for some on the web. You will find my favorite gluten-free pancake recipe at the end.
Caffeine is a stressor for the immune system too. It is a cardiovascular stimulant, and you do not need it. If you are properly nourished and have adequate B vitamin levels you will have plenty of energy without using drugs to get it. Yes, caffeine is a drug. Avoid it. Green tea and chocolate (85% cacao) are the only acceptable sources of caffeine in a healthy diet.
GREENS, GREENS, GREENS
The best way to boost vegetable intake is to eat a salad everyday and buy more fresh vegetables. You may not even know what to do with them but just buy what looks good and come home and cook it! The more fresh vegetables you have on hand the more you will eat. You can roast almost any vegetable. Toss them with some olive oil, season them and put them in a single layer on a cookie sheet and bake at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes. If you have less time you can even broil them right up under the heating element of the oven. Just keep an eye on them. A great veggie meal would look something like this: black-eyed peas or lima beans, sauteed spinach with garlic and lemon or steamed cabbage or broccoli, sauteed yellow squash with onion, baked potato with mashed avocado, and apple sauce. Yum! I like to think of a baked potato or sweet potato as my "meat" and build a meal around it.
Read more about the danger of drinking sodas here:
Read more about inflammation here:
Read more about animal protein intake here:
Put these ingredients in a large blender in this order:
3 1/2 C water
1/2 C dates
2 C rolled oats
2 C corn meal
2 T baking powder
1 t cinnamon
1 t vanilla
Blend well. Then pour onto a hot griddle pan or skillet using a ¼ cup measuring cup or an ice cream scooper.
Optional: stir in two cups of frozen or fresh blueberries after blending, or add an extra banana before blending and some chopped walnuts after blending for banana-nut pancakes
These freeze well. Just put between layers of wax or parchment paper and seal in a freezer bag or container.
Listen to advice and accept discipline, and at the end you will be counted among the wise. Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the LORD’s purpose that prevails.
So how do you extend your life expectancy, avoid having to use the poor U.S. medical system while working toward optimal health? It's easy, reduce your animal protein intake to 5% or less of your total calories.