January 16, 2018

Eat Plant-Based Food, And Less Of It

It looks like eating as entertainment, and competitive calorie consumption, may be off the menu some day soon. Gluttony is not only unhealthy, but also increasingly socially unacceptable. This will usher in healthier alternatives, like caloric restricted ways of eating, or "eating for need, not for greed".

Shortly after restaurant average portion-size increases were reported, along came news that mindful eating may help one avoid an early death.

As reported in Science in July 2009:
"In a population of rhesus macaques maintained at the Wisconsin National Primate Research Center, moderate calorie restriction (CR) lowered the incidence of aging-related deaths. At the time point reported, 50% of control fed animals survived as compared with 80% of the CR animals. 
Furthermore, CR delayed the onset of age-associated pathologies. Specifically, CR reduced the incidence of diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular disease, and brain atrophy. These data demonstrate that CR slows aging in a primate species." source

Such research results have been consistent since the 1930's, and with a variety of species. The Calorie Restriction Society International thinks that people who follow a careful diet of fewer calories, while maintaining adequate nutrition will experience similar benefits.

The following list from their website gives a small serving of the type of food consumption they are advocating:
  • Avoid simple sugars and flours.
  • Eat both green leafy (salad) and other vegetables.
  • Carefully select your protein and fat sources.
  • Make sure your protein intake is sufficient, but not overly abundant.
  • Make sure your proteins are complete and balanced.
  • Non-animal proteins can be balanced by combining different food families
  • Select monounsaturated fats, avoid saturated fats, and consume some Omega-3 fats
Do caloric restricted diets improve longevity in humans? Maybe, maybe not. But would it matter if such a diet saved you money, cut your ecological footprint, and made you feel better? Longevity, when seen this way, would be an added bonus to what looks like a good thing anyway.

As in any diet, it is important to make sure one gets enough nutrients to promote good health. Such diets need to be planned carefully, and assessed on an ongoing basis.

While we don't strictly follow any particular kind of diet, Linda and I are intrigued by the idea of eating differently than the standard western diet, which has been shown to be detrimental to health via metabolic syndrome. For us it boils down to, "eat yummy, nutritious, plant-based food, and less of it".

Goodbye gluttony, hello eating just enough for good health and a long life.

January 14, 2018

Mother Earth - #MeToo

“Changing sexist, misogynist attitudes is not a simple endeavor. Replacing a violent, extractivist mindset with one of respect and stewardship is a non-trivial undertaking, particularly in view of fact that the forces that profit from continued strife, exploitation, greed and conflict are very wealthy, very powerful and highly motivated to preserve the enormous riches they have accumulated.  
As long as this paradigm of violence, destruction, and exploitation continue on the global scale, it will continue to reverberate into vulnerable individuals, creating pain, suffering, exploitation, and degradation on the human scale.”

- Christopher Majka

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