EcoTrain QOTW: What should we be eating to be healthy and vibrant? And is there a choice?
To be honest, this must be one of the easiest to answer questions of the week I've seen so far. This will be a complete freehand post because I don't even have to think about it that much.
There are a few things I want to make clear first though, just so you know what my views are about this subject.
Photo by Mikhail Nilov from Pexels made in LunaPic.
Nutrition: is there a One-size-fits-all?
We've heard it all the way through our childhood years: The Food Pyramid.
Now, this food pyramid has changed throughout the years.
Quite a few times, but have you been paying attention?
The way we heard and learned about certain foods has changed as well.
I remember when they would say: (real) butter is bad, choose (plant-based) margarine. Well, as it turned out: margarine is pure poison.
And then there was this thing where they told us not to eat more than one or two eggs a week...
Later, there was this thing where people would think (and many still do) that eating fats, any fats, would make you gain weight, and eating lots of greens won't. This isn't true AT ALL, and I will give you an example that shows this, without a doubt:
My friend of many years in Ireland (and before that in the Netherlands) was sick.
There was something quite serious but the doctors couldn't exactly figure out what it was. One of the effects of her illness was that she lost a lot of weight.
And she was never really overly big or anything so she really shouldn't have lost weight because it made her more ill.
She tried everything from eating fat cheese, fat meats, more carbohydrates like pasta and potatoes etc. NOTHING worked. In fact, she just kept losing more weight.
By that time, they'd figured out what it was that was making her so ill but there wasn't much they could do at the time (Covid crap so they would move everyone down the list). But they did tell her she needed to try and gain some weight.
Well, kinda hard to do, right, when you've tried it all...
Wrong. She felt sicker than before and because of that, her body couldn't handle any food really. So the ONLY thing she ate was lettuce. For weeks.
And guess what?
She gained weight!!
All in all, she'd lost around 10 kg in weight while she was eating all those fatty things, and now, in 2 weeks time, she'd gained 4 kg back by eating just lettuce! AMAZING!
A little bit of my back story
I grew up in a family of people working in the hotel/tourism business.
So it was a logical choice to follow in their footsteps, at least for a while.
Art and journalism wasn't a 'job', since either of those was what I wanted to do.
So hotel & tourism is what it would be first.
I've learned quite a bit about nutrition there (Belgium) and later I picked up a lot of things from self-study.
And I can tell you this: Most of what we've been taught about 'food' are lies.
It's a similar trap like other mainstream things they've entrapped us in, like the monetary system, the educational system, the medical system, and the tax system...
It never ceases to amaze me how some people don't trust the (federal) banking system, or don't think the tax system is fair but then trust the school system and/or the medical establishment completely. In my opinion, all of those are intertwined. And that includes information we get about our nutrition...
So what about One-size-fits-all nutrition?
Well let me begin to say that I don't think we should be eating animals.
I'd be a hypocrite if I'd say that you shouldn't eat any animal products because I eat mayonnaise sometimes, and eggs, and even cheese at times.
I'd be what you could call a 95% plant based eater haha.
The reason however, why I believe animals shouldn't be eaten, is because of the way their lives are when they are raised, and the way they come to the end of their lives.
I have lots of respect for people who hunt their own food, or raise their own cow.
Back in the day, the farmer that lived next to us, would have only 2-3 cows and only take a tiny amount of milk for his family. The rest was for the calves who would never leave their mothers. When a cow would come to the end of her life, he'd
go into the shed with her, spent time with her, and then calmly put her down.
There'd be no stress or fear in that cow.
Nowadays with mass production for consumers, this is not happening anymore, and even impossible. When these animals die, it's with fear and stress, and the hormones that are produced will end up in their meat. Without a doubt.
Of course, I am not a scientist, but you can maybe imagine what this will do if you eat this. Again: not a scientist. However, I believe that much of what we eat can have an impact on how we feel.
Imagine beef that has come from mass-production farms, and has had a miserable life before they were slaughtered while being scared and stressed, producing a lot of stress-hormones like cortisol, and fight-and-flight hormones like adrenaline. Would it really be that far-fetched to think that the humans that eat such an animal would actually consume those hormones as well? And would it be very far-fetched to believe that these people could become more susceptible to illnesses, but also maybe be more stressed and fearful than those who eat wholesome foods?
I really don't think it's far-fetched at all.
If I can feel negative energy coming from others, or fear, then I can probably feel it in my body if I were to consume meat that went through such ordeals.
That being said: I don't think there is a one-size-fits-all when it comes to nutrition.
When my eldest daughter became full on vegan, I slowly transitioned with her.
This is very hard to do in Ireland, where everything is meat based.
Mexico is maybe even harder but at least here there are fruits that wouldn't grow in Ireland.
However, I don't like to call myself a vegan, or fruitarian, or vegetarian...
What I am working towards is eating fully plant-based. Raw plant based.
I've seen people do really well on an almost carnivore diet. But that's not me.
I see animals as our friends and I can't stand it that they have to suffer for us.
Who made us more than them?
This line from the book 'Animal Farm' comes to mind:
"All animals are equal, but some are more equal than others."
Although it is true that humans feel they are superior to other animals (which we are) but who decided this?
This is my personal view though. If you feel otherwise, that's OK with me.
When the way we eat is not our choice
When I grew up, I was made to eat meat. I wasn't forced but sometimes it was forceful the way they made me eat it. I remember the nights where my mom had me sit at the dinner table until I finished my trout...I was lucky we've always had dogs...Although later in life, they wouldn't make such a big deal about it anymore.
When I think about that now, I think that I was always at least a vegetarian by nature.
But not all people have a choice in what they eat. The Inuit Indians, for instance will have a very hard time growing vegetables and fruit, so their diets consist of lots of fish and meat, and not much more than that. However, they use everything of the animal they eat.
In Mongolia, the diet consists mainly meat and dairy. Growing vegetables is nearly impossible because of the nomadic nature of the people.
An (online) friend is 90% breatharian. Meaning, he only eats fruit maybe once or twice a week. He's even gone through long periods without drinking water, and he looks better now at 52 than he did when he was 35!
I believe the body is very much capable to adapt to whatever situation the person might find themselves in.
Personally, I thrive on a diet of fruit, raw vegetables, nuts, seeds, and coconut (water).
I once spent more than two weeks just eating bananas (not by choice) and drinking (coconut) water, and I've never felt better in my life!
I don't do very well when I eat any kind of animal products. I used to feel sick after drinking milk as a child. But when I eat any type of grains, it's the worst.
Sourdough bread yes, regular breads no. My issue is that I love bread SO much!
I think with all the pesticides and toxins our modern food supply has to deal with, it's hard to even find clean, fresh food. So growing our own is probably our best bet. Unfortunately, not everyone has that option. And others simply don't want to.
And even for toxins our bodies are equipped to get rid of it.
In modern medicine they'd call it an illness, which, in my opinion, couldn't be further from the truth.
But in all reality, in order to be healthy and live a vibrant life, living self-sustainably, growing your own food, raising your own farm animals if you so choose, is the way to go. People thrive on different things.
When it comes to nutrition, I really don't think that there is a one-size-fits-all manner of approach. We are all different, so why would there be a reason to believe that we should all eat the same?