Posted On 04 Sep 2009
Let’s eliminate confusion about what to eat.
In theory, it’s simple: eat foods that are as similar as possible to what our successful ancestors ate. Why? Humans evolved eating a certain kind of diet. Evolution designed our bodies in a certain way. When we live in accordance with that design, we flourish physically; when we don’t, we don’t. Let’s begin by noting three important facts about what to eat.
(1) Little about our bodies has changed in recent millennia. Less than one-tenth of one percent of our genes have changed in the last 10,000 years. Since the advent of farming and the domestication of animals there has been very little cumulative genetic modification in us.
(2) To our detriment, though, there has been considerable cumulative genetic modifications in the foods we consume. This complicates the topic of what to eat.
There are big differences between eating wild plant foods and eating cultivated plant foods, and there are also big differences between eating wild flesh foods and eating domesticated flesh foods. In general, it’s better for us to eat wild plant foods than cultivated plant foods, and it’s also better for us to eat wild flesh foods than domesticated flesh foods.
That’s because, in general, wild plants have more protein, fiber, and calcium than cultivated plants while at the same time being lower in sugar and starch, and wild flesh foods contain much less fat than domesticated flesh foods and the variety of flesh foods we eat has dramatically declined.
(3) The minimum daily requirement for carbohydrates is zero. We don’t need any carbohydrates to flourish physically; they are not what to eat–especially processed or refined carbohydrates. This doesn’t mean that you should never eat them. For most of us it’s a very good idea to get about 50 or 60 grams of carbs daily from (preferably organic) vegetables and, perhaps, a fruit or two, in other words, from unprocessed sources. That is very different from basing one’s diet on them: the average American eats about ten times that amount daily! That’s a sign of widespread ignorance about what to eat.
I’ve just explained why obesity, heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, cancer, dental caries, hypoglycemia, and the other diseases of Western civilization are rampant. Our bodies evolved to eat a diet of mostly fat and protein from wild flesh foods and wild plants and, instead, we are eating a diet of mostly refined (processed) carbohydrates from domesticated plants.
Ignorance is eliminable. If there were less confusion about what to eat, there’s no doubt there would be a huge decrease in the lifestyle diseases of western civilization. This is the practical importance of understanding what to eat. It’s not just about becoming more attractive or even feeling better.
Therefore, if you want to flourish physically, I recommend following a more naturally balanced diet, which is one that derives about one-third of its calories from proteins and about two-thirds from fats and carbs. That’s what to eat. The foods should be as natural as possible. In my next post, I’ll list what to avoid eating (except, of course, for an occasional “cheat” meal).
What should you eat?
More of your calories should come from fats than from proteins or carbs. These fats and proteins should be natural fats from such sources as the muscle and organs (like marrow, brain, heart, pancreas, and liver) from game animals (such as deer, elk, and rabbit) as well as from grass-fed ungulates (such as bison, beefalo, and cattle) that have not been treated with antibiotics or hormones; skinless free range poultry that has not been treated with antibiotics or hormones; fish from the sea–especially deep sea fatty fish like sockeye salmon, mackerel, and herring; shellfish; eggs; occasional wild game birds (such as duck, geese, pheasant, and quail); goat; and nuts and seeds. Carbs should come from (preferably organic) vegetables, berries, and, in moderation, fruits.
Obviously, there’s a wide variety of foods that make good choices. It’s a matter of degree: the more you follow this natural diet, the less likely you are to suffer from the rampant illnesses of Western civilization. Occasional cheat meals are alright, but I encourage you really to think twice before putting into your mouth any food that isn’t on this list.
It’s also important to drink plenty of purified water. I usually drink 3 or 4 quarts daily.
Incidentally, if you are skeptical about a natural diet like this, I challenge you to follow it strictly for just 4 weeks. If you do, you may be amazed at how much better you feel! Don’t be surprised if you drop a few pounds without even trying. If your present diet is based on processed carbohydrates and you adhere closely to this natural diet for just 28 days, you are simply going to be healthier than you are now. “Listen” to your body: it will tell you the truth. Your skepticism will evaporate.