Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Up all night and the coming cure

It's 4 a.m. and I've been up for an hour or two. Insomnia. Feeling out of sorts. But I knew that was coming. In fact, I chose to bring it on. Silly me.

Typical Western buffet
Yup, I ate meat and dairy yesterday, after returning to vegan (plant-based) foods when the grey skies and rain arrived in Seattle last week. The worthy occasion last night was a 70th birthday party, after all. Congratulations, BJ! The food was abundant, very Western (heaps of meat and cheese), and tasted GREAT! Worth a cheat? Seemed so at the time though I got a hot flash within 10 minutes of eating the meat slider. (The flush is my first sign of oh-oh!-here-we-go-again.)

I consider my system's rebellion as a food intolerance rather than allergies. Call it what I will, my body signals its unhappiness within a few minutes of eating eggs, dairy, honey, meat, etc. Anything animal-based is out when the weather turns foul in fall. In summer when the sun is out, my system seems more tolerant (though I gain 5-10 lbs within a week or two of returning to a meat-based diet.) In the winter, my choice of food becomes a spiritual discipline, allowing me to function at capacity.

Vegan buffet (not an oxymoron)
Friends seem shocked when they hear what I DON'T eat. Their first concerns are: "Do you get enough calcium? Protein? What can you eat if you don't eat meat or drink milk?" It's incomprehensible that plant-based foods contain nutrients in abundance.

What do I eat? "Everything else!" including grains, vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, fruits. I sub potato flour, bananas, or tofu for eggs in baking and cooking. And there's nothing as tasty as muesli in the morning! (keeps me full until noon.)

The longest-term and most comprehensive research on the relationship of food and diseases was done by top Cornell (USA), Oxford (UK), and Chinese scientists and published as "The China Study. It's worth a download for reading. Here's part of a review:

"The New York Times has recognized the study (China-Oxford-Cornell Diet and Health Project) as the "Grand Prix of epidemiology" and the "most comprehensive large study ever undertaken of the relationship between diet and the risk of developing disease."

The China Study's researchers examined and reexamined their findings because the results were unexpected and counter-intuitive: evidence clearly showed that plant-based diets warded off cardio, diabetic, and cancerous diseases. Dairy and meat-based diets fostered them. (BTW: The highest ratio of osteoporosis is in countries with the highest protein and dairy consumption.)

"Growing evidence is showing that calcium in milk does not protect against osteoporosis. For example in a 12-year Harvard study of 78,000 women, those who drank milk three times a day actually broke more bones than women who rarely drank milk. Similarly, a 1994 study in Sydney, Australia, showed that higher dairy product consumption was associated with increased fracture risk: those with the highest dairy consumption had double the risk of hip fracture compared to those with the lowest consumption," News-medical.net

Every culture has its own dearly-held myths. Many of ours are deeply rooted in tradition but some of ours are fostered by modern advertising and commerce. We now admit smoking is unhealthy but remember that in the 1950s and 60s, some family doctors promoted it in tobacco ads. Perhaps our desire for extreme fat and protein-rich diets will go the same way, as scientists ponder why eating traditional Western foods makes us sicker rather than healthier as we age.

Warm and deeeelicious! a typical
vegan lunch for me. Recipe: click here.
That said, it's back to bed this morning for me. And back to vegan foods when I get up, occasionally blogged at the Impulsive Foodie (my food blog).

Let's eat with care - our bodies depend on the wise stewardship of this most precious personal resource. "You can have all the money in the world but without good health, you'll be miserable," says my mom.

Whether or not plant-based foods become your choice or you decide to limit rich food intakes, please choose your food wisely. Note what gives you abundant, positive, and sustainable energy. What drains you or makes you feel sluggish and bloated?

God lavished us with his abundance here in North America. Whether we garden, farm, or buy our foods at the grocer's, we have lots of options. Enjoy feasting on his goodness while taking good care of yourself and those you love.

And keep in mind that food is a tool to empower our service of the King, not our focus. It is fuel for our mission, not the mission itself. Peace to you and yours!

Read more:
*The LORD is like a father to his children, tender and compassionate to those who fear him. For he knows how weak we are; he remembers we are only dust" Psalm 103:13–14 NLT

*Do you like honey? Don't eat too much, or it will make you sick!" Proverbs 25:16 NLT

*Humans can reproduce only human life, but the Holy Spirit gives birth to spiritual life. John 3:6

*Jesus replied, 'Anyone who drinks this water will soon become thirsty again. But those who drink the water I give will never be thirsty again. It becomes a fresh, bubbling spring within them, giving them eternal life.'" John 4:13–14 NLT

*For the Kingdom of God is not a matter of what we eat or drink, but of living a life of goodness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. Romans 14:7 NLT

1 comment:

  1. I wonder....from generation to generation the " wisdom " seems to change. It's all sooooo confusing. Eat for your blood type, low carb, low calorie, low sugar...and we know that someone is happy to line their pockets with each new " discovery" . I must keep going back to " moderation in all things".

    Sometimes I think ..it's another attempt at me playing God. Thinking by my knowledge of Good or Evil I can add a moment to my life. And yet ....my body is His temple...I think I will read Corinthians again. ..I will not be ruled by either....

    Hope you feel better soon...." My body, my chemistry experiment". ( me early 1990- after major surgery)