Diet Crazes Making You "Crazy?"
Diet Crazes Making You "Crazy?"
Keto, vegan, carnivore—each are touted as the latest, greatest, healthiest way to eat!
Why are specialized diets so prevalent today? What diet is THE ONE to optimize your health?
Have We Lost Our Resilience?
Animal-based diet? Or plant-based diet?—if you feel better and your health improves, who’s to say which diet is optimal for us as humans to eat? In many cases, people on a restrictive diet are on it because they were sick to begin with, and the diet is something they find helps them control it. I can attest to this in my own life when my health took a nosedive in my mid thirties. Daily, I experienced a host of severe chronic symptoms that manifested through an acquired incurable thyroid disease.
Unknowingly to me and my doctors at the time, poor gut health triggered my thyroid disease. I began a gluten- grain-free style of eating which gave my body a break from the bombardment of the anti-nutrients commonly found today in our genetically-modified crops. I replaced the offending foods with healthy real whole food options that enabled my body to receive and process the crucial nutrients it desperately needed for healing and restoration.
Today, I enjoy an occasional well-sourced organically-grown non-GMO grain-based treat with no adverse effects, and predominately remain gluten- grain-free because of my own personal convictions.
But, what does it tell you about us as a species when we’re becoming incredibly sensitive to foods, plant-based and animal-based, that we know are foods our ancestors thrived on for centuries?
Due to modern conveniences, we typically live very comfortably and are rarely exposed to brief hormetic stressors that make us tough (hormesis is the what doesn't kill you makes you stronger type of stress; it triggers your body to adapt and become even stronger). For example, fasting is a dietary hormetic stressor. For more than 99% of our specie’s history, we lived as hunter-gatherers and adapted to restrictions in our food supply. On the other hand, an oversufficiency of food for many today has resulted in the current global epidemic of obesity and lifestyle diseases.
Which Way To Turn?
It would be arrogant of me to project a gluten- grain-free diet on everyone because it worked for me. We hear the stories of seemingly amazing health benefits in a wide range of diseases and/or weight loss from people who are on a restrictive diet, and then we hear about others who have experienced little or no health benefits. Assuming they are doing it exactly right, how does this make sense? How can, let’s say, JT lose 22 pounds of body fat, while JC gains 3 pounds of body fat and they’re both on the exact same keto diet, for example? Or, how can fiber be beneficial to one person but cause digestive problems in another? Why does meat or dairy make some people feel sick?
Numerous factors that affect our metabolic health underlie why there’s not a one fix for all—in other words, we aren’t the same because we each have our own unique genetic makeup of predispositions that are affected by our unique lifestyle choices (i.e. food choices, relationships/socialization, sleep patterns, activity/movement levels, exposure to toxins), so what works for one person, will most likely not work exactly the same way for you.
I believe a practical and effective way to reclaim your health is not to go crazy trying to determine which of the so-called greatest diets will work for you; instead, start by eating real whole food (nutrient-dense) that actually looks like the food that it came from, the thing in the ground or the animal before it.
Real whole foods regulate appetite and provide crucial nutrients that convert to the energy your body needs to run optimally. From there, you’re in a better position to tweak your nutritional/metabolic needs based on the way you feel, or get blood tests to determine if you have particular nutrient deficiencies should you feel something is not quite right.
Considering that the nutritional starting point for most people centers around the common standard American diet (empty calories/calorie-dense, refined, processed food), going to a restrictive diet like carnivore, vegetarian/vegan, keto, will show tremendous improvement in one’s health because they’re not eating junk or, all too often, toxic food.
Sadly, much of our food has been artificially engineered and far removed from how nature intended. Seek fresh real whole food that is quality sourced and as close to its natural state as possible. Our Reset-21 Program is a practical, convenient, and affordable health coaching service that sets into motion a transformative experience and puts you in the driver’s seat on your journey to optimal health-—your body will love you for it!
I’d love to hear from you! Feel free to contact me with questions or feedback and you can respond to this blog with your comments. Be well and live awesome!
All of the information in this writing is for educational and informational purposes only. We are passionate about leading a healthy lifestyle and aim to share that passion with you through coaching, blogs, readings, chats, social media, etc. Primary sources to ensure accurate and current content, including studies, scientific references, and statistics, are found below:
Osaka-Sayama (2010) Beneficial effects of mild stress (hormetic effects): dietary restriction and health, PubMed 2010;29(4):127-32