been studying and practicing Macrobiotics for many years now. It
has been a marvelous learning experience! I plan to continue to
learn and share with others what I've experienced through Macrobiotics.
My goal is to incorporate traditional Macrobiotic principles with
what I call "Eating Green" principles. Every choice that
we make with our diets affects the world around us.
I believe with these tips below you can nourish your mind, body,
and spirit while helping to save the planet.
Close to Home: Local Foods
Eating green means buying local foods and foods that are produced
within a 300 mile radius of your home. Not only is this the natural
way to eat to be in balance with your surrounding environment, eating
locally lessens our dependence on fossil fuels. Your food isn't
traveling far distances to get on your plate making it the freshest
it can be. Try to shop at local Farmer's Markets whenever possible
and make relationships with local farmers.
The Only Way to Go
Pesticides and chemicals used on food products today are not meant
to be in our body. Not only do these unnatural chemicals strip nutrients
from our food and harm the environment, they have been linked to
cancer, Parkinson's, autism, and many other degenerative diseases.
Be sure that the foods you buy have not been genetically modified.
Seasonally: The Natural Way to Be in Balance
As the seasons change, the produce that is available locally changes
as well. We can take a queue from nature on what foods we should
be eating during each season. In order to create balance we want
to have a varied diet that includes elements from all the seasons
(5 Element Theory). Eating foods that have been imported come from
countries that may not have stringent regulations like we have in
Macro No-No's: Items to Be Reduced or Avoided
We want to eat foods that nourish our mind, body, and spirit. The
macrobiotic diet tends to exclude/limit foods that are harsh on
our organ systems and damaging to our mental state. These include
meat, dairy, eggs, alcohol and caffeine.
Animal agriculture contributes more to global warming than all the
trucks and cars combined. Not only are animal products produced
with antibiotics and chemicals, it also consumes land, energy, and
water that would best be served growing fruits, vegetables, and
grains for human consumption.
There are a few things that should be removed from your diet completely
if you want to reach optimum health. These are hydrogenated oils,
refined sugar, and foods with artificial additives and chemicals.
I have a rule that if there is an ingredient that I cannot pronounce
in the ingredient list, I don't buy it or put it in my body.
Good, Better, Best Policy
Moderation is key when transitioning to a Macrobiotic diet. My Macrobiotic
teacher taught me to use the Good, Better, Best policy when it comes
to choosing foods. Think to yourself, "Is this the best choice
I have at the moment?" If the best choice is not available
then try to find the better item.
When it comes to choosing foods, try to choose minimally processed
and less packaged foods. These foods are most likely to contain
little nutritional value and be high in fat, poor quality salt and
sugar. More energy goes into producing these foods and the waste
from the packaging is producing more trash to haul to the landfills.
Instead of buying bottled water, invest in a good filtration system
that can attach to your sink. Bottle water is costly, the plastic
leaches into the water, and creates more waste to recycle. Bring
your own stainless steel canister for water and tea mugs with you.
I never leave home without mine!
Your goal is to have a varied diet rich in natural, whole foods.
Macrobiotics is a personal thing based on your condition at the
moment. What you eat will be different than what the next person
eats. Try to focus on the bountiful foods that you DO eat rather
than what you don't eat.
Eating and Cook at Home
Try to have meals at regular or scheduled times each day. Sit down
with no distractions and chew your food well. Enjoy the process
of nourishing your body! Do not overstuff yourself. It's uncomfortable
and taxing on your digestive organs.
Cook more meals from home for you and your family. It cost less
than going out to eat, creates less waste products and you'll know
where your food is coming from and how it has been treated.
Most importantly is to show gratitude for the meal you are about to
eat. Show gratitude for the many people that took part in getting
that food to your plate, from the person who planted the seeds, drove
the produce to the store, and the person who stocked the shelf. We
even need to give thanks to the person who crafted the chopsticks,
the plate you are eating on, and so many more! Just take a moment
to relax and express gratitude before you enjoy your delicious meal.
Christy Morgan trained at The Natural Epicurean Academy
of Culinary Arts, specializing in macrobiotic cuisine. Her business,
Viva la Greens, includes services like vegan macrobiotic meal delivery,
consulting, cooking classes, and private cooking instruction on
The Art of Eating Consciously. Visit Viva la Greens
for more information. Christy contributes wellness tips and healthy
recipes for various websites. You can find out more about her and
her services at http://vivalagreens.com