Why Are There SO Many Extreme Diets?
Every day there seems to be a new ‘miracle diet’ that will help make you healthier. Most are variations on an old theme, just refurbished/updated to make it seem new and fresh. Most are just retreads of old, and often failed dietary or nutritional trials that failed in the past.
The latest is the ‘KETO’ diet; hardly a nutritional approach at all but still sold as a healthy dietary to lose weight. It is high fat, high in animal ‘foods’ and derivatives and ultimately just a refurbished of the disastrous Adkin’s Diet of years past. Dr. Adkins diet of a heart attack; no doubt brought on (at least in part) by his own recommended diet. I often explain to people that the ‘Keto’ dietary approach may help you loose weight today, but will contribute to your death by heard disease, diabetes or other cancer tomorrow.
A high fat diet, not only promotes heart disease but also is a key contributor to diabetes 2 that is plaguing Americans. Fat you say? Yes, it is FAT that contributes to insulin resistance and diabetes 2, NOT excess amounts of sugar; although that doesn’t help and isn’t healthy!
Why is the Keto diet so popular? Because it makes bold promises, just like Adkins, to provide short term weight loss but Not health. Americans love ‘quick fixes’ but seldom consider the long-term impact of their choices for nutrition. Too many believe that there will be a ‘pill for that’ to save them from poor lifestyle choices; but those ‘magic pills’, more often than not, have side effects that may hasten death.
Lifestyle change is the only long-term solution that works for, well, anything. We promote a Whole Food Plant Based Nutritional Lifestyle; diet if you will, but it is way more than just eating (that is just the best part). This lifestyle consists of both nutritionally Delicious eating/meals but also moderate exercise and some form of meditation (combining yoga and meditation is great). This Lifestyle has been shown for centuries to promote health, wellness and longevity. It is Not one that is a ‘quick temporary fix’ for health issues or weight loss. It is a LIFESTYLE change and that means for life, not just next month or until the next fad diet hits the book stores.
Changing your Lifestyle takes time, not a lot, but more than the quick results promised by diet gurus that are hawking their latest book. There ARE great books on lifestyle and nutritional approaches that should be considered but if they promise ‘quick fixes’ or ‘fast weight loss’ run in the opposite direction.
We suggest a 30-day migration to a healthier lifestyle nutritional approach. Your body needs TIME to adjust to the changes in nutrition that will be coming its way. Your taste buds need about 14 days to regenerate (normal cycle) so you begin to actually taste your food and are able to truly appreciate flavor, texture and the delicious nature of Whole Food Plant Based Cuisine.
You may well lose some weight in those 30 days as well but don’t expect miracles. Fast weight loss often leads to a form of yo-yo dieting that is harmful and our approach is to help you migrate to a Lifestyle that will help keep you fit and sound for the rest of your life! The long-term effects of changing to a Whole Food Plant Based lifestyle are long and complex but can be summed up into this short list:
- Increased Energy
- Better Mental Acuity and Focus
- Healthier Skin, Decreased Body Order (save a bundle on deodorant!)
- Gradual Weight Loss (but only if your body needs it)
- Better Blood Test Results
- o Lower Total Cholesterol (increase in HDL, lower LDL)
- o Lower Triglyceride scores
- o Better overall results
The Oil Thing
This brings us to the controversial ‘Oil thing’, debate, discussion or argument.
There are a lot of 'EXTREME' dietary guidelines out there all over the place and we try to avoid those approaches. While they may be appropriate for an extreme lifestyle/disease situation for some, it doesn't necessarily work for others. The 'No OIL' mantra is just overkill in 90% of the cases.
The 'NO OIL' is the approach that Dr. Esselstyn (Cleveland Clinic) takes for serious heart disease patients and that is great for his treatment modality. But for most people eating a Whole Food Plant Based diet a dab of oil for selected use should be fine. After all, eating an avocado (23 grams of fat) will give you way more oil than a teaspoon (about 4.5 grams of fat) of olive or grape seed oil for browning (not all is consumed, most is left in the pan).
Chef Nancy does NOT promote the use of oil at all; as a matter of fact, we discourage use of it. But some recipes requiring browning/searing or other high heat cooking applications just don't work without just a dab of oil. Try browning a tofu steak or seitan steak in a dry pan; the results will not be tasty; just burnt. We encourage very limited use of oil and when oil is in a recipe, we recommend a 'healthier' organic grape seed, avocado or olive oil.
Not for Everyone
Whole Foods 4 Healthy Living has a wide-ranging audience and more than 50% are NOT Plant Based. These are the folks we try to help guide towards a healthier Whole Food Plant Based Diet and Lifestyle. Telling them 'no oil' or other extreme approach, will just turn them off and they run for the hills. Heck, it's hard enough getting them to dump the dairy!
This is why we take a ’30-day approach’ to gradually achieve as much of a Whole Food Plant Based diet as possible and work to achieve a total ‘clean’ nutritional approach eventually. Giving up ALL Meat, Fish, Dairy Eggs, GMO and derivatives is a bit of work. Processed food makers manage to sneak in crap wherever they can.
There are hundreds of millions of people on the Planet who may never be fully Whole Food Plant Based but if a lot get closer, we ALL benefit. Just look at the new companies popping up, new Plant Based products are everywhere (some better than others) and they are making money! This bodes extremely well for the Health of Humanity and we continue to try to do our part. Informing folks of new products (we try to sample and evaluate them as they pop up) and guiding our friends and followers towards our goal of a Whole Food Plant Based Lifestyle.
Skip Stein is a Polymath Health & Wellness Lifestyle Counselor focusing on the power of Whole Food Nutrition and the delicious nature of a Plant-Centric Lifestyle.