… or more accurately in the realm of personal advice: The story of what worked for me. I have done a few odd things when it comes to diets in my life. By odd I mean eating something else than meat and potatoes and industrially colored corn syrup. After having been on a fairly strict diet thanks to inherent allergies (thanks dad) until I was around 17, I started eating a lot of candy. By a lot I mean regular amounts of candy. It took almost a year to work through the buffer of my immune system but at some point a tipping point was reached at I developed some terrible rashes. I cut the candy and the sweets out completely, but the problem persisted. It was not until I got some prescription hydrocortisone, e.g. a heavy dose of steroids that it went away, but during that time, I was paying back past excess. Even an overdose of carrots could tip me over. You could say I have had a history of watching what I eat, but until that point it was more about restricting myself than changing my diet.
When I moved out, I was 20 or 21, I became (lacto-ovo-)vegetarian shortly after. Initially I was not comited. I figured I would still cheat when invited out to eat. That changed when after having eaten no meat for a few months I visited my parents who had made lasagna. Lasagna used to be my favorite meal, but not being used to the greasy texture of the meat made eating it somewhat disgusting. Like mixing blended gristle in a bowl of pam and mayo, ugh! Funny what a change of perspective does. After that I went 100% vegetarian.
That lasted about 4 years until I started getting worried about B12 deficiencies. I decided to add some meat. The first meat I added was organ meat which is generally more nutritious. I ate a piece of liver. After that I felt really funky for the rest of the evening. I presume my stomach lacked the enzymes to digest it but the transition was fairly smooth. I began eating meat regularly by which I mean a few times a week.
I have yet to develop any appreciation for the traditional red meat, steak, heavy diet though. Since I met DW our diet has been a combination of her “English” cooking (boil it!) and my vegetarian cooking and junk food (hot dogs). Read this as spaghetti sauce either with meat (her) or without meat (me). Stir fry with or without meat and so on. In fact I should retract the inclusion of English cooking. I simply can’t stomach most of it, so DW doesn’t make it anymore except around holidays.
One particular failing of mine, coming from a northern country, has been the relatively small amount of fruits and vegetables in my diet. Vegetables would usually be either boiled or more commonly stir fried. Here we’re talking cabbage, leeks, onions, broccoli, carrots. Fruits would simply be eaten piecewise. I have long realized that this had to change but never found a solution to it. Eating 5 apples a day was just a chore.
Two years ago I gave DW a raw food cook book and we tried a few of the recipes. That didn’t work too well and the project was shelved. Consequently and subsequently our vegetable and fruit consumption still waxed and waned. A few weeks ago, a reader (I think it was Steve) mentioned the vitamix blender in a comment, so I went to their website and googled for blogs, etc. which again led me back to raw foods but this time in a blended form. Ordering a couple of books from the library, this time getting the right ones, I realized that this was doable. Trying to cook without heat is fairly challenging but putting something in a blender and downing the results, now that’s easy. My first experiment involved blending a bag of green peas. Don’t do that. It took me several hours to down that green mess eliciting several amused comments from my better half. Okay, maybe not that easy 😛 .
Naturally the next step was to get better ingredients, so we went to the “cheap store” (a local grocery store much like Aldi) and picked up a few frozen bags of fruits along with bananas and some spinach. You probably saw the smoothie recipes posted about a week or so ago. This has now turned into a fairly regular part of the meal plan. I start dinner with a green smoothie totaling 4-5 quarts of vegetables and fruits which actually tastes so good that it could replace most desserts — perhaps I should renew my vow not too eat those?
Raw foodians (or whatever they call themselves) often talk about “the glow”. Indeed, my skin has changed to a slightly more golden hue (a combination of green and pink?). I imagine it’s the phytochemicals getting into all the cells of the body much like your skin start smelling like coffee or garlic if you drink/eat those two a lot. I presume this can only be a good thing. The next thing I will look into is the pH level of the things I eat to specifically lower my cancer risk.