La macrobiotic diet it's the first diet I've experienced as a kid.
At 14 years I had totally immersed myself in the style of macrobiotic cuisine, starting from the study of his philosophy.
Not only. I also launched into the practical experimentation of the preparation of food and drink according to the macrobiotic style.
I grew up with my grandparents. Therefore, my macrobiotic experimentation took place in contrast to the rules of the Romagna cuisine, made of piadina, tagliatelle, meat, cheese and so on.
MACROBIOTIC DIET VS. ROMANIAN CUISINE
Imagine the scene...
While my grandmother cooked the rabbit for my grandfather, I invaded her kitchen (already reduced in size) with brown rice, millet and seaweed.
I was the one who in the first years of the Art School during the mid-morning break was presented with a bag of chips ("chips") of kombu algae fried in sesame oil.
While my high school classmates went off to buy the esplanade with salami I fed with brown rice balls seasoned with tamari sauce and sesame seeds.
Priceless Scene 🙂
Then, in a couple of years, I abandoned the rigidity of the macrobiotic diet and switched to a freer style within one Vegetarian diet.
Until the University meets the macrobiotic diet in the historic center of Urbino.
In fact, there were both there macrobiotic canteen is a "Un Punto Macrobiotico" food store.
Although I no longer shared the strict rules of the macrobiotic diet, the canteen was excellent for my purposes, very simply because with 2 euro and a half I could eat healthy.
Therefore, I can say that I have experienced this diet proposal for years, so that in the end I can decide better what to keep and what to leave of the macrobiotic diet.
Now, there are a couple of anecdotes that I have to say about the macrobiotic diet, but I don't want to macrobiotic that I respect and appreciate.
FRANCO BATTIATO AND MACROBIOTICA
There is an anecdote told by Franco Battiato enough funny in which I find correspondences with my personal experience on the subject of macrobiotics (followers of macrobiotics). Battiato being a great researcher on the subject of mysticism and practices of spiritual elevation, at some point in his journey he also encountered macrobiotic philosophy.
This meeting, which lasted little, tells it more or less like this...
"... the first more concrete approach to the macrobiotic diet I had in a macrobiotic shop. Every macrobiotic shop has a salesman absolutely dedicated to the macrobiotic cause and this too had its own. So I asked the salesman, but sorry how old are you? and he: thirty. And I thought: Coooosa !!! then I immediately ran away and ended my relationship with the macrobiotic diet."🙂 🙂
This funny story by Battiato makes me think of those real and rigid macrobiotics that I met on my journey.
The impression I got is that from the real macrobiotics (among those I met) it gave off a particular kind of energy ...
A calm (almost phlegmatic) and minimal energy.
I mean, I certainly can't say that from the macrobiotics I met emitted sparkling energy in abundance. So much so that sometimes you could even find one White face sometimes tending to gray.
Of course, this is not enough to make an accurate statistics of the effects of macrobiotics on health, it is only a personal impression that I carry.
But this should not happen. After all, apart from fanaticism, the macrobiotic diet is basically one Healthy diet (with the due corrections that I propose you soon ...).
UNJUSTIFIED MENTAL AND EXTERNAL CLOSURES
Is it not rather the mental closure typical of a certain unilateral interpretation of the macrobiotic diet to "hurt"?
Yes, closing almost always hurts.
Not that all macrobiotics live this philosophy closed and sectarian, for heaven's sake! It seems however that human beings in general are more likely to fall into unilateral ideas rather than remaining independent in their thinking.
It's just a hypothesis, I'm not sure, but maybe that's the underlying aspect that generates one lack of energy which I often found in the fervent macrobiotic.
Or another hypothesis could be relative to ours individual uniqueness.
In fact, if you consider the evidence that each of us is also a unique organism, inserted in a particular environment and dedicated to specific physical and mental activities, it does not seem right to refer to a model drive e immutable.
The macrobiotic diet is not completely rigid, because the proportions, quantities and qualities of the various ingredients can be adjusted according to specific needs. But…
What is modulated concerns only the use of certain condiments, the cooking method used, seasonality, etc. Perhaps not enough to maintain a broad and healthy elasticity.
"If you stretch the rope beyond measure it will break but if you leave it too slow it won't sound". Thus Siddhartha discovered the middle way: the path of enlightenment is the line that lies between all extreme opposites. "
(Section dat the film The Little Buddha by Franco Zeffirelli)
MACROBIOTIC DIET: BASIC MODEL
Il basic model of macrobiotics is always the same. The proposal of the macrobiotic diet is this ...
The macrobiotic diet developed on the philosophical basis of the Taoism.
Taoism sees the universe manifested as an expression of the opposite qualities of Yin and Yang.
Yin = Darkness, moon, night, dark, passive, cold and so on.
Yang = Light, sun, day, clear, active, warm, and so on.
According to macrobiotics, health comes from eating foods and drinks that are already at the maximum balance of these opposites.
I Whole grains and whole (in beans) are considered by the macrobiotic diet one of the most balanced foods. This is why they become a part of this diet in a preponderant way.
Life is life, you can't harness it pre-established schemes.
Rather you have to follow the flow of life, so you can readjust this or other feeding styles based on your specific current needs. These are not necessarily the same as those you will have in a year or two.
So let's see what we can keep valid about the macrobiotic diet.
The purpose of this filtering is the attempt to save only the beneficial effects, without necessarily needing to become followers of macrobiotics.
THE THREE AUREE RULES
If you want to try a new nutritional or health approach (macrobiotics or other), follow the 3 golden rules to avoid problems and keep only the good.
The 3 golden rules represent your direction indicator.
I'm kind of compass that within your sacrosanct and free experimentation you avoid running into unpleasant errors.
RULE AURE N ° 1: What does the body tell you?
Listen to your body messages. Pay attention to how you feel after eating a certain food or after drinking a certain drink.
Above all, try to understand if a certain one change of habits after a certain period (a few weeks should already be enough) it helped your body or not.
Your body is infinitely more intelligent than a human theory (whatever) and will respond positively to the right foods, on the contrary it will react badly to the wrong foods.
However, using only this guiding criterion could be deceptive because of the effect placebo or nocebo it can make you believe you are better or worse, respectively, because you believe that what you have eaten is healthy or harmful.
In fact the rule is listen to the body, not the mind, that is, not your current beliefs about this or that.
RULE AUREA N ° 2: What do the analyzes say?
Don't dismiss the idea of doing the tests, use the doctor for your benefit. One analytical screening every 6-12 months can routinely give you valuable hints.
How is good cholesterol going after taking a certain diet for 3 months? and liver function? thyroid or pituitary hormones?
Obviously the interpretation of the analysis must be left to the doctor and discussed with him.
RULE AUREA N ° 2: Based on the most solid knowledge you have accumulated so far
It is all very well to look for and explore even fascinating alternative philosophies (cheers up creativity!). But this research must be done without forgetting all the most solid knowledge you've accumulated so far.
But here arises a problem not just.
In fact, it seems that anything can be said about nutrition. Which diet is the healthiest and which approach has the greatest therapeutic value?
In this research I try to give you my small contribution.
What I write on the blog manuelcasadei.com is the fruit of one assiduous research made with passion and corroborated by personal experimentation, which has already lasted for 25 years.
I will always try to give you the more solid knowledge which we have available to bring you as close as possible to perfect health that does not require a unilateral vision.
MACROBIOTIC DIET: THE CLASSIFICATION OF WHAT TO LEAVE AND WHAT TO KEEP (ACCORDING TO THE MOST SOLID KNOWLEDGE)
I renew all the possible respect for the spiritual approach that macrobiotics has towards nutrition and life. However, starting from this I try to develop a brief ranking of what to keep and what to leave of the macrobiotic diet.
This ranking is made on the basis of more solid knowledge which have been matured on nutrition and healthy. To this I add also my personal experience both theoretical and practical.
MACROBIOTIC DIET: WHAT TO LEAVE ON THE MACROBIOTIC STORE SHELF
1 °) SEITAN
Seitan is a meat substitute used in the macrobiotic diet and beyond. A major problem of the seitan is that it consists of gluten: one of the major food allergens in circulation (together with lactose and egg proteins).
2 °) VEGETABLES
Some vegetables that are difficult to find like the daikon (a giant radish) are available in vacuum-sealed plastic bags in macrobiotic shops or in natural food stores.
There are no major problems in trying these foods too. On the contrary, it makes little sense that these become frequently used ingredients because more or less similar properties can also be obtained from other local plants.
However, it is precisely the concept of vacuum-packed vegetables that is ugly. With all the fantastic vegetables we have available fresh! apart from the fact that in some shops you also start to see fresh daikon. But this is a concept that applies to any vegetable, except daikon.
3) TOO CEREALS?
We agree that whole grains are valuable, but they could also become too many, especially in a sedentary individual. In fact, if one then starts eating 60% cereal with every meal including dinner, they could turn into grasso in excess.
Furthermore, not all whole grains have the same health value. Perhaps in macrobiotics wheat is still too predominant compared to other cereals with less gluten.
MACROBIOTIC DIET: WHAT TO KEEP
Especially organic vegetables, seasonal and zero km (or almost).
WHOLE GRAINS AND LEGUMES
Yes, but choosing above all those with less gluten. In any case not excessive in relation to the individual energy request (are you in the armchair all day or do you ride 20 km a day by bike?).
SOUPS AND VEGETABLE BROTHS
A good hot soup with vegetables, spices, seaweed, and some seasoning is an excellent opening for any meal. Above all it is pleasant in the cold months.
They are perfect dishes for a healthy diet. They hydrate and have an action toning without weighing it down, they are also a mine of micronutrients.
MISO AND FERMENTED CONDIMENTS
Fermented condiments like the miso of rice, they are rich in enzymes that help digestion. All that natural lightens the digestive and assimilative process is welcome!
The fruit has everything two faces opposing to consider.
The beneficial face: rich in antioxidants, fiber, vitamins, minerals, healthy phytochemical compounds.
The counterproductive face (I don't mean harmful): presence of fructose and other sugars.
The synthesis of the two faces just considered tells you that the fruit should be consumed in a controlled way, not excessive.
In fact, fructose creates such numerous problems that you would not expect from a fruit sugar. fructose hurts.
The very ripe, sweet, tropical (apart from the avocado), dried fruit (figs, dates, etc.) should be reduced to a minimum.
The fruit that is healthy and healthy is instead the richest in antioxidants and less sweet. Learn more here to see a table of the fructose and antioxidant content in the most common fruit.
By now it is clear that meat is a food to keep under strict control, always better to avoid it.
And if you want to do the Paleolithic (never heard the term paleolithic diet?) then you should also follow the advice of Professor Franco Berrino (luminary of cancer epidemiology) who says more or less like this ...
"... if one wants to follow a diet based on meat and fish as assumed to be done in the Paleolithic era, then he should also undergo the caloric reduction and the fasts of days that in that same period were very frequent ..."1
An interesting thing about the theory of the paleodieta according to which the man would have always fed mainly on meat and fish clashes with the observations made on the natives, who have a diet 80% vegetarian and only 20% carnivora-pescivora.
This should be the true paleodieta based on what we can see today of the feeding of the human being inserted in his own natural environment: 80% vegetarian and 20% carnivora-pescivora.
All this seasoned with days of fasting and caloric reduction.
In general, in addition to the reduced consumption of meat, what you should NEVER eat are sausages (not even those from organic production).
In addition, red meat is associated with tumors of the digestive system and cooking meat also increases its dangerousness. Roasted meats are the most harmful ones.
For an evolutionary perspective on nutrition, you can also consult the article "sugar hurts"(We also speak of the theory of the gatherer-hunter man).
A LITTLE FISH
Fish is rich in good fats, with anti-inflammatory action. Furthermore, it is made up of proteins of high biological value.
From organic or wild fish farming.
Avoid the excess of tuna, mackerel and swordfish. They are the fish most likely to accumulate toxic metals such as lead and mercury.
Toxic metals accumulate in the sea and from there they pass mainly through these fish through the food chain.
In my recent foray into Rimini's macrobiotic point I found these excellent products:
- Organic vegetables at low prices
- Preserves of plums without sweeteners
- Oat pasta (macaroni) (almost zero gluten)
- Gomasio (sesame seeds and integral salt)
- Cabbage cream
- Olive cream
- Cream of capers
- EVO olive oil
- Fantastic Italian spices
- Whole grains of all kinds
- Horsetail powder
The healing pride of the macrobiotic diet seems to come from the cornerstones of the healthy eating, which largely characterize this diet, rather than from its other peculiar characteristics2.
Get closer to the macrobiotic diet without becoming macrobiotic seems like the best choice, because it leaves you the chance to keep what is good about macrobiotics and leave what is less good.
The first thing to abandon the macrobiotic diet is certainly the seitan and the excess of wheat.
The first thing to keep on the macrobiotic diet is plenty of fresh organic vegetables. Furthermore, i whole grains whole with less gluten or zero gluten (rice, better black venus, buckwheat, millet).
Le vegetable soups with miso of rice are fantastic, especially for the winter (at the beginning of the meal as an aperitif or as a snack).
This from my experience and from the most solid knowledge on healthy eating is what I would keep and what I would abandon about macrobiotics.
If you want to try some dish of the macrobiotic tradition - and if you want to check for yourself if macrobiotics are really a little gray 🙂 look for the macrobiotic restaurant closer to your city. Bòn appetit!
Have you already had any experience with macrobiotics? write a comment in the appropriate area at the bottom of the article and let me know your point of view!
See you soon,
PS If you found the article useful, share it using the buttons at the bottom of the article. For you it's a small action but for me it means a lot!
MEDICAL AND LEGAL DISCLAIMER:
The information provided by the manuelcasadei.com website is not intended to diagnose, treat and prevent any discomfort or disease. The user of this website is always responsible for his health and Manuel Casadei encourages you to follow these advice with the approval and supervision of a trusted doctor and disclaims any responsibility for actions taken following what is written in these pages.
Images: Google Images.