A diet without meat, dairy, sugar or alcohol may seem restrictive, but the benefits to your health — and the planet — are numerous
A macrobiotic diet is not just about food choices. It’s a complete way of life with the potential to help you take care of yourself in concert with nature to be healthier, stronger and less prone to all kinds of illnesses.
What does a macrobiotic diet include?
- Organically grown food
- Fresh fruits and vegetables
- Soy products
- Wholegrain cereals
- Nuts and seeds
- Plant drinks
What does a macrobiotic diet not include:
- Diary products
- Plain sugars and sugary foods
In our modern world of increased stress and inescapable exposure to toxins in the environment, the benefits of a macrobiotic diet are numerous. But a macrobiotic diet may not be a fit for everyone, which is why there are many debates about a diet without meat or dairy. But there are plant-based alternatives to provide protein, as well as vitamin B supplements.
Wondering if a macrobiotic diet is right for you? Here are some important health benefits and guidelines:
1. Increase energy
Whole grains and vegetables are full of complex carbohydrates, which are absorbed slowly into the bloodstream so there is no immediate demand for insulin. Subsequently, the body gets constant energy, which allows people to be more effective and less tired with fewer energy swings.
2. Prevent obesity
Simple carbohydrates found in white sugar, honey, and corn syrup are not part of macrobiotic diet. Although these simple sugars give a short-term burst of energy, they also create an energy crash. The consumption of sugar, which demands the release of insulin, has been linked to obesity because insulin is also known as fat storage hormone.
3. Anti-aging effects
Wholegrain cereals are rich with fiber and vitamin B, both of which are known to have rich anti-aging components. Healthy nuts and seeds are great anti-aging foods. Plant drinks made with fresh baby barley and wheat are rich with chlorophyll and antioxidants, which keep us looking young and healthy.
4. Eat organic foods
Organically grown food decreases pesticide exposure which is associated with cancer, infertility, and even some chronic illnesses.
5. Eat fresh (not frozen) fruits and vegetables
Frozen vegetables and fruits lack ‘vital energy’, an important element of macrobiotics. Fresh food contains a wide range of nutrients, such as vitamins, minerals and enzymes, which generally improve health and immune systems.
6. Eat low-fat and high-fiber foods
These foods help lower the risk for cancers such as colorectal, ovarian, and prostate cancer, as well as diabetes.
7. Eat wholegrain cereals and flour rich with vitamin B
A diet rich in whole grains decreases the risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and some forms of cancer. A wholegrain diet also helps maintain a healthy bowel and healthy bacteria growth.
8. Avoid saturated fats and hydrogenated oils
Saturated fats, found mostly in animal products, tend to deposit within the cells, organs, and arteries. If eaten in excess, saturated fats can cause numerous health problems. Unsaturated fats, on the other hand, are very healthy if eaten in moderate quantities. They can be found in nuts, seeds avocados and some vegetables. They are fluid in the body and fulfill important chemical and transport functions.
9. Replace red meat with quality plant protein and legumes
Red and processed meat — such as bacon and sausage — increase inflammation and the risk of some diseases. Beans and legumes, on the other hand, are rich with iron, potassium, calcium, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
10. Consume algae
Algae contain myriad nutrients, minerals, vitamins, proteins, amino acids, chlorophyll and fiber. Algae are rich with iron, calcium and magnesium, which helps maintain strong bones and healthy blood system. They also help to reduce anxiety and mitigate sleep disorders.
11. Eat nuts
Nuts are rich with fiber, omega 3, vitamin E and selenium. They also contain many antioxidants and phytonutrients which fortify the immune system. Omega 3, known as one of the ‘good fats’, also lowers LDL cholesterol, essential to lower the risk of heart disease.
12. Eat seeds
Seeds are full of omega 3 fatty acids, iron, calcium and magnesium. They act as antioxidants, aid in weight loss, and contribute to overall health.
13. Eat organically grown (not genetically modified) soy
Organic soy has many health benefits thanks to its phytoestrogens. It helps to maintain estrogen levels in women who entered in menopause, and it also protects against Alzheimer’s disease, heart disease and osteoporosis.
14. Eat fermented foods
Fermented soy products are more easily digested and have more nutritional value.
Fermented foods contain enzymes which help to reduce high cholesterol levels in the blood while supporting the digestive and immune systems, which can help prevent certain diseases, including cancer.
15. Use only natural cooking utensils, not plastic
Plastic utensils are to be avoided because they often contain harmful BPA. Instead, use glass, wood, enamel and stainless steel utensils and serving pieces.
[Disclaimer: Health-based content published by Best Self Media is not intended to be interpreted as medical advice, nor to replace the recommendations or counsel of a medical professional. Rather it is our intent to present valuable perspectives from the experiences or research of our contributors.]
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