I saw Alicia Silverstone on Oprah last week talking about her book, The Kind Diet, which spurred a few thoughts I’d like to share.
Eating meat is not unkind. Humans were genetically programmed to eat meat. What is unkind, is the unethical treatment of animals, however the act of eating meat is not unkind – it is the way nature intended it to be.
I, too, get outraged by the inhumane, abusive treatment of animals in our food supply. I’m in total support of the ethical treatment of animals and I choose organic meat products that have been raised free range. Yes, we should treat our food supply with respect and honor. It is a violation of nature to do otherwise. However, eating meat is the natural order of things in the food chain and can be done in an ethical manner.
Meat protein stabilizes blood sugar, provides us with complete amino acids and nourishes a healthy immune system and central nervous system. The diet that human beings are supposed to eat is meat, vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds, not grains and beans. It is how we were designed genetically. A lot of us just don’t process grains and beans properly because they were brought into the path of evolution much later and our digestive systems are not equipped to deal with them.
Alicia Silverstone said that everyone should eat brown rice every day, because it will make you feel great. That is terrible advice. If I ate brown rice every day I’d be obese and would probably want to jump off a cliff. Grains make me gain weight, depressed, anxious, irritable, crave carbohydrates, triggers migraines and hypoglycemia and make me feel terrible all around. I wouldn’t be able to get out of bed because my blood sugar would be extremely unstable. My body doesn’t tolerate grains. This is true for many people. To tell everyone that they should eat a vegetarian diet is irresponsible and destructive. A healthy diet plan is individualized for each person’s unique biochemical need and should contain meat.
Additionally, eating the same food over and over every day is not healthy either. There should be variety in the diet. Food sensitivities develop to foods that we are overexposed to on a daily basis.
There is a small minority of people who do okay on a vegetarian diet, and apparently Alicia Silverstone is one of them, however most of the population does not do well on a vegetarian diet. Genetically, human beings eat meat and most of us still have metabolism that requires eating meat. Perhaps some people have a metabolism that has evolved to include some grains and beans in the diet, but that is not the majority of the population. I encourage you to read *The Vegetarian Myth and *The Paleo Diet to get the facts about beans and grains.
A diet high in grains, beans and other starchy food is directly linked to addiction, obesity, heart disease, Candida overgrowth, insulin resistance, hypoglycemia, type 2 diabetes, overeating, food cravings, depression, binging, anxiety disorders, hyperactivity etc., because these foods break down into sugar in the body. I believe the Paleolithic diet is the diet we are supposed to eat, which consists of meat, non-starchy vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds.
Also on Oprah’s show, Alicia Silverstone went shopping and showed us all the “healthy” foods she eats. They highlighted a processed chicken substitute which was probably made of soy and rice dream ice cream bars. Then they talked about recipes with molasses and maple syrup. I’m sorry, but there is nothing about those foods that is healthy. There is certainly nothing wrong with an occasional rice dream bar for a special treat, but it should not be a regular staple in the diet.
Soy has naturally occurring toxins that damage the thyroid, pancreas and the gastrointestinal tract, interferes in digestion and absorption of crucial minerals and amino acids, and is high in phytoestrogens which is completely destructive to women who are estrogen dominant, which is much of the population or can result in causing estrogen dominance.
Molasses and maple syrup are certainly better choices than white sugar, but they are still simple sugars and again not something that should be part of the diet on a regular basis. The diet should consist of whole foods, including meat, not processed foods.
I haven’t read the book, The Kind Diet, so I’m sure it includes some healthy foods, however the foods they focused on in the Oprah show did not fit that category and neither did the message that eating meat is unkind and we should all eat lots of grains.
The one thing Alicia Silverstone did say that was true was this “first of all we should be kind to ourselves.” For most of us, the most kind thing we can do for ourselves is to eat a diet that is high in meat.