I’ve asked a few of my favorite people what their take is on “junk food” and what we should eat… here are a few more answers.
“Populations should consume nutritionally adequate and varied diets, based primarily on foods of plant origin with small amounts of added flesh foods. Households should select predominantly plant-based diets rich in a variety of vegetables and fruits, pulses or legumes, and minimally processed starchy staple foods. The evidence that such diets will prevent or delay a significant proportion of non-communicable chronic diseases is consistent. A predominantly plant-based diet has a low energy density, which may protect against obesity.Although two-thirds of the world’s population depends on cereal or tuber-based diets, the other one-third consumes significant amounts of animal food products. The latter group places an undue demand on land, water, and other resources required for intensive food production, which makes the typical Western diet not only undesirable from the standpoint of health but also environmentally unsustainable. If we balance energy intake with the expenditure required for basal metabolism, physical activity, growth, and repair, we will find that the dietary quality required for health is essentially the same across population groups.”
“Here are some guidelines that might help your readers in adopting a healthy plant-based diet:
- Eliminate the oil. There is a great video clip of your chef demonstrating oil-free stir fry on our website, and he has a salad dressing booklet with no-oil dressings that are delicious!
- Eat nuts, seeds, avocados, olives and other high-fat plant foods only when they are ingredients in a dish. Don’t go out of your way to include them in your diet; best to keep them out of your house
- Choose foods from the four major food groups – fruit, vegetables, legumes and whole grains
- Buy a couple of good cookbooks that don’t use oil – lots of vegetarian cookbooks use oil and even dairy products as staple ingredients
- Read labels carefully – the more ingredients the more likely the food is not “food”
- Differentiate between food and a treat. Fruit juice-sweetened cookies are still cookies, and to be eaten on holidays. Soy hot dogs are for the fourth of July cook-out, not be eaten on a daily basis. And vegan cheeses are transitional foods, to be used while the family is adopting a program of dietary excellence™, not on an ong0ing basis. Including these foods in the daily diet will lead to some of the same health problems as eating meat and dairy regularly will.
- Last, but not least, get some assistance. Most people who try to do this diet on their own do not do it well. We offer a great course that can be done at home through distance learning; take our course, or take someone else’s, but get some education so you can succeed at making the right changes.”
From Lindsey (Raw Nutritionist):
“Strictly speaking, if it doesn’t look exactly like it does in nature, it’s a processed food. However, not all processed foods are created equal. Whole wheat flour is inherently a processed food, but it’s not as processed as, say, an Oreo. Strive to eat as many unprocessed foods as possible, and when you opt for processed foods — utilize the more wholesome choices, such as using whole wheat flour and whole-wheat bread instead of white all purpose flour or white bread. Remember: the healthiest foods don’t come in pretty packages or boxes and except for legumes, nuts and seeds — they can all be found in the produce section. The majority of food on isles in the middle of the store is junk.”
I’ll be posting from more experts soon!