I spent over three years as a vegetarian and one year as a vegan. I then developed Hasimotos Disease which is an autoimmune condition that causes hypothyroidism. During that time I decided I wanted to to work towards a PhD in Nutrition and study Ayurveda (which is the Indian system of medicine that is the sister to yoga). As I started interviewing different doctors (both conventional and alternative) to decide who I was going to work with on treatment for the Hashimotos, I talked to a Traditional Chinese Medicine doctor, who happened to study at Harvard, but knew that cures and healing have been occurring for centuries with Chinese Medicine. He told me that even though I was a healthy vegetarian, the vegetarian diet was not right for me personally and it depleted my body of much needed nutrients. He explained that the nine amino acids we get from good quality meat are very hard to obtain through a plant based diet. This has been highly debated by advocates of plant based nutrition. It led me to read a book by Dr. Peter D’Adamo called “Eat Right for Your Blood Type.” I am a type O, and Dr. D’Adamo states that type O’s need more protein than most and should never be vegetarians. But he did say that other blood types can benefit from a plant based diet. After studying plant based nutrition (the China Study) through Cornell University, I still strongly believe that a plant based diet is healthy way to eat. However, I also believe in Dr. D’ Adamo’s theory, veganism, macrobiotics, as well as incorporating grass-fed beef into your diet depending on your needs. I am currently a New Jersey chapter leader for the Weston Price Foundation whose core mission is to educate people on the benefits of grass-fed beef and raw dairy products, eating locally, seasonal and organic, while respecting the environment and farmers. This may sound confusing but I believe that a Nutritionist’s job is to help people find out what is the best dietary lifestyle for them. We are all complex and have different needs. Some people need more protein and for others eating a plant based diet can save their life. The common denominator of a healthy lifestyle that everyone should be aware of is this: sugar and refined carbohydrates are extremely unhealthy as are processed foods, snack food or anything deep fried. Garbage in equal’s garbage out. We also know that by eating fresh, local, organic (whenever possible) fruits and vegetables daily will keep us healthier longer. The right balance of carbohydrates, proteins and good fats is essential, and if you are going to eat meat make sure it’s grass-fed and organic, without any pesticides, herbicides or antibiotics. Exercise, good healthy relationships and stress reduction should also be part of your daily life plan.
If you live in New Jersey and are interested in obtaining a copy of a resource list that I created for the Weston Price Foundation of local farmers markets, places to buy grass-fed beef and raw diary, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Yours in health,