It is a already established truth that our health lies in digestive tract but to say this is to say almost nothing. As we all know that a balanced diet makes us strong and healthy so why it is not an easy task to find the right diet.
Short history of diet research
In the first part of the twentieth century the prominent scientist, the dentist Dr.Weston Price was the first researcher to gather a systematic set of evidence on the health of isolated societies in a different parts of the world. While the diets of those people were different as were the geographic conditions they lived, nevertheless one thing was in common – superb heath. Those people were free of chronic disease, dental decay or mental illness and they gave birth to healthy children generation after generation. In his book he uncovered that almost without exception those people ate liberally of seafood or other animal proteins and fats in the form of organ meats and dairy products. They considered animal fats as absolutely necessary to good health; they ate meats, fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds and whole grains in their whole, unrefined state. In their diets they used some raw foods both from animal and vegetable origin. We will not find any refined or unrefined oils mentioned in his work.
At the same time the other scientist Dr.Francis M. Pottenger has conducted a clinical study with cats to determine the long-term effects of eating cooked foods. The study involved pairing two sets of cats (one male and one female in each pair) and tracking their health over the course of ten years. One group was fed with raw milk and raw meat and another group he fed with pasteurized milk and cooked meat. The result you could probably guess – over 30 percent of the third generation of cooked-food cats could not produce offspring and were suffering from allergies, infections and other problems such as kidney, heart, thyroid, gum diseases.
It’s interesting to compare ourselves to the cats in Dr.Pottenger’s study – obviously we reached the third generation of humans who eat predominantly cooked and processed foods. Our grandparents began eating this way after World War I, when canned foods became a financial necessity for mass production and distribution of food. Most of our foods went through pasteurization, sterilization, radiation, preservation, freezing or through microwave.
Common Western diet
The Industrial Revolution enabled to change the ways our food was made as well as quantities we consume. Typical dairy products, cereals, refined sugars, refined vegetable oils and alcohol make up 72.1 of the total daily energy consumed by all people in United States. Mixtures of above mentioned foods such as cookies, cakes, bakery foods, breakfast cereals, bagels, rolls, muffins, crackers, chips, snack foods, pizza, soft drinks, candy, ice cream, condiments dominate the typical Western Country diet (85.3% of the cereals are highly processed refined grains). In 2000 an average person consumed 69,1 kg of sugars a year compare to 55.5 kg in 1970. In England consumption of refined sucrose steadily rose from 6.8 kg in 1815 to 54.5 in 1970. The use of vegetable oils from 1909 to 1999 increased 130% while margarine consumption increased 410%. The content of fatty acids in beef meat shifted from omega 3 fatty acids to omega 6 as pasture feeding was replaced with grain feeding. 90% of the salt (which is actually 97.5% is sodium chloride) in the typical diet comes from manufactured salt that is added to the food supply. At the same time we mustnt forget that typical western food contains a collection of chemicals that act as preservatives, colourings, flavourings and artificial sweeteners.
If we want to have radiant health we should follow a 60/40 ratio of raw to cooked food in order to get sufficient supply of necessary enzymes and coenzymes required by our bodies to function properly. Unfortunately with a rare exceptions nobody is really capable to commit to such a degree. Fast pace modern lifestyle usually requires to concentrate on career, money and family commitments. We rely on foods we are offered in food stores without paying attention to chemicals used to prolong the shelve life. Many food manufacturers add synthetic vitamins and minerals and lots of food additives to make us believe that we are getting the whole product. But the truth is simple – as a factory our body continually needs quality raw materials to produce its finished product. In order for us to enjoy an energetic, long and healthy life we must add enzymes we are not getting with food.
Research has shown that people especially elderly can maintain high blood enzyme levels simply by consuming a diet high in enzyme-rich foods, such as fermented foods, raw foods and first of all enzyme supplements.
- Weston A.Price, Nutrition and Physical Degeneration. La Mesa, CA: The Price-Pottenger nutrition foundation, INC, 2008
- Sally Fallon with M.G.Enig.Ph.D, Nourishing Traditions. Washington: NewTrends Publishing, INC, 2001
- Tracy K.Gibbs, PhD, Enzyme Power. Salt Lake City, UT: Woodland Publishing, INC, 2008
- The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition