This article was originally posted by Ruth Quick on ruthquicknutrition.com
Hunter Gatherer..? Or Raw Vegan..? Both seem so logical and persuasive don’t they?
When you hear about a hunter gather, or Paleo diet, it all makes perfect sense, protein, fats, balanced blood sugar, gut healing, yep, sounds wonderful!!
And then you hear about raw vegan ism and that makes total sense too, All those nutrients still intact, cleansing and more healing, more glowing people…. Now what the heck to do???
Clearly both diets produce some very healthy people, and many people have healed from every disease imaginable by religiously sticking to one or the other of these diets. The testimonials are at your finger tips, seek and ye shall find!
So how do you know which way you are supposed to eat?
Here’s what I know to be true:
Your body is always doing its absolute best to keep you well. Illness is often the bodies attempt to maintain its critical homeostasis, and it will go to great lengths for your survival. When you find a way of eating and living that suits you, this astonishingly wise and beautiful body of yours will re-balance, and wellness will come.
But here’s the thing; how each of us digest, metabolize and utilize food can be very different from one person to the next. We call it bio-individuality.
We are as individual in body as we are in mind!
What makes one person glow with health and vitality could contribute to another person developing or perpetuating a chronic illness. Yes, really!
Some people tolerate carbohydrates very well, while others will develop insulin resistance from the same diet. Some people need more omega 3’s, some may need more magnesium, the list is inexhaustible.
Blood type, genetics, health conditions, the environment, the weather, our stress levels.. there are so many factors that effect the way our bodies use nutrients and what makes one person’s body need more or less of a particular nutrient than anothers.. even in members of the same family.
A few examples:
- Type A’s tend to have lower stomach acid that type O’s. Heavy meaty meals will probably sit heavily in a type A’s stomach. Also, as we age, stomach acid and the bodies pool of enzymes become depleted. There is a reason granny usually chooses fish.. If granny eats a steak, she’s going nowhere fast!
- If you live in a cold environment or suffer from cold conditions, its unlikely to work for you to be a raw vegan. It requires an awful lot of energy from the body to digest a ton or raw food and that energy is sometimes better saved and used else where.
- For one person wholegrains and pulses can be very nourishing.. but if you have gut issues or an autoimmune condition, these foods can be a big problem, however, a healing bone broth would do you the world of good!
You don’t have to choose EITHER paleo or raw vegan.. or for that matter, Macrobiotic, Mediterranean or anything else! You don’t have to conform to any particular way of eating at all!
All have their wisdom, but nothing compared to the wisdom of your own body. Mix and match and adjust to find a way that feels right for YOU…
Don’t allow anyone to judge you for the choices you make around food, and then equally, remember that what works for you may be totally wrong for your friend.. let it be an open journey of discovery for each of us.
Listen to your body!
After what meals do you feel good, energized and comfortably full?
After what meals do you feel like you need a nap? How is your skin and hair? Your digestion? Your mood?
Ask yourself, “am I getting what I need?” Make a habit of really listening.
I live in England, and there are days in the summer when I swear I could live on berries! In the winter I want to eat chicken soup. For my brother, chili’s are fantastic, for me? A total disaster!
Start with the basics:
Unprocessed, mostly plants, rich in phyto-nutrients, quality fats and proteins, as close to nature as possible and with a thought for the planet. The rest is all down to the individual.
If you have health issues and are feeling overwhelmed, or totally out of tune with your body, seek guidance from someone who is not rigid one way or the other and wants to help you find what suits your own individual make up.
With love always,
P.S This is absolutely THE BEST video I have ever seen on this topic, discussed by three much respected functional medicine Doctors. A very well spent 29 minutes and 30 seconds.. watch now via this link and then I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below this post.