Food

“The most violent weapon on earth is the table fork…. The greatness of a nation and its moral progress is determined by the treatment of its animals.”

– Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

I like to nurture my body by eating healthy food. Hence, an interest in gardening, farming, and a plant-based diet.

The food many people eat is unhealthy and addictive, and industrial farming is putting our health at risk because of the overuse of antibiotics. Climate change is another major issue, as Dr. George Wang pointed out in his excellent op-ed, Go Vegan, Save the Planet.

How can we enjoy a meal with this knowledge? Even if you don’t have time to dig in a garden on the weekend, you can make better choices at the supermarket or farmer’s market.

There is growing evidence to support a plant-based (i.e. primarily vegan) diet. In general, the healthiest diet focuses on vegetables, legumes, and grains. Healthy diet is essential not just for the prevention of diabetes and cardiovascular disease but also healthy aging. Regarding the prevention of type 2 diabetes the main issue is preventing our children from becoming overweight/obese in the first place.

A plant-based diet is good in the prevention of atherosclerosis and may be able to reverse established atherosclerosis. Vegans tend to have lower LDLs, and often pay close attention to what they consume (mindful eating).

We need to increase intake of potassium-rich foods while reducing the intake of salt. Low sat diet would help hypertensives who are salt-sensitive, and many hypertensive patients have elevated blood sugars.

The most important skill is to learn how to purchase and cook healthier foods.

A few resources that may be of help

Papers

Nutrient-dense, Plant-rich Dietary Intervention Effective at Reducing Cardiovascular Disease Risk Factors for Worksites: A Pilot Study

C-reactive protein response to a vegan lifestyle intervention

Vegetarian diet improves insulin resistance and oxidative stress markers more than conventional diet in subjects with Type 2 diabetes.

Vegetarian diets and incidence of diabetes in the Adventist Health Study

Effect of a Brown Rice Based Vegan Diet and Conventional Diabetic Diet on Glycemic Control of Patientswith Type 2 Diabetes: A 12-Week Randomized Clinical Trial

Intestinal microbiota metabolism of L-carnitine, a nutrient in red meat, promotes atherosclerosis. Unlike omnivores, vegans are incapable of producing TMAO (a pro-atherogenic molecule derived from joint microbial/human metabolism of choline and carnitine), even after consuming a steak.

Books

“Eat to Live Cookbook,” by Joel Fuhrman

“Disease-Proof Your Child” by Joel Fuhrman

“Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker” by Robin Robertson

“Teff Love” by Kittee Berns

Vegan Richa’s Indian Kitchen” by Richa Hingle

“The End of Overeating,” by David Kessler

“The Unsettling of America,” by Wendell Berry

“Cooked” by Michael Pollan

Immunity to Change,” by Bob Kegan and Lisa Lahey

Find a Way,” By Diana Nyad

The Mucusless Diet Healing System,” by Arnold Ehret

Spark Joy,” by Marie Kondo

Nutrition and Physical Degeneration,” Weston Price

Also, check out the work of my friend Traci Brown.

Questions for discussion

How to feel grateful for healthy food?

How to get your kitchen organized?

How to find time to prioritize cooking on the weekends?

How to find time to garden?

How to keep fresh fruits/vegetables in stock at home?