Hi, it’s Garey Simmons, health coach at Optimal Health Bridge.
I’m gonna share some notes with you from Dr Mark Hyman in answer to the question,
“What am I supposed to eat?”
It can be very confusing.
The old health coach joke is that if you got 40,000 health coaches together in a stadium and you asked, what’s the best diet, you would get 40,000 different answers.
But here’s a few simple principles that Doctor Hyman calls the Pegan diet, poking fun at the extremes of paleo and vegan.
The Pegan rules, which are not rules but guidelines, attempt to create flexibility within certain parameters.
You cannot go wrong following these principles, and any unbiased scientist who has read the scientific literature on nutrition would have a hard time arguing with these guidelines.
So number one eat mostly whole plants.
No argument from anyone here.
Think plant rich, not necessarily plant based.
Remember french fries, Coca Cola, Twinkies and Lucky Charms are all plant based foods.
2. More than half your plate should be covered with veggies.
The deeper the color, the better.
The World Health Organization recommends five servings of vegetables a day, and that is the minimum it should be 15 servings or seven or eight cups of veggies and fruit a day.
Now when it comes to fruit, if you’re fit and healthy, more fruit is fine.
But if you’re overweight like 70% of Americans, then go easy on the fruit .
I find that most my patients feel better when they stick to low glycemic
fruits like Berries and enjoy other sweeter ones like treats.
So we’re talking about blueberries, Cherries, strawberries, the hard, dense berries that are not that sweet but added a lot of fiber to your diet.
3. Eat more foods with healthy fats.
Start with fats in whole foods.
Good fats include nuts, seeds, avocados, pasture raised eggs, extra virgin olive oil.
Don’t heat extra virgin olive oil.
Avocado oil, which is good for cooking, even at high heat.
And organic virgin coconut oil, omega three fats from fish and even animal and saturated fat and 100% grass fed and grass finished or sustainably raised meat, grass fed butter or ghee. When we say grass finished, we mean, that they continue to graze in the pasture until the time of harvest. What most what most farmers do… they’ll finish (feed) the last six weeks before harvest on whole grains like wheat, which is not so good for us.
4. Eat more nuts and seeds.
They have been universally shown to prevent and reverse disease.
Choose regeneratively raised animal products wherever possible.
They’re better for you and better for the animals and helped draw down carbon and reverse climate change.
The data on meat is conflicting, mostly because of the challenges and nutritional science.
Vegetables should take center stage and meat should be a side dish.
5. Eat pasture raised eggs.
They are rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants. They’re also a cheap source of high quality and bio available nutrients, including B 12 which you cannot get from a vegan diet.
The 2015 dietary guidelines determined that dietary cholesterol does NOT cause heart disease.
Let me repeat dietary guidelines from 2015
“Determined the dietary cholesterol does not cause heart disease and eliminated recommendations to cut it out of our diets.”
Dietary cholesterol, the type found in foods like eggs do not significantly impact your blood cholesterol levels.
In fact, your blood cholesterol is actually worsened more by sugar than by fat, and some fats like olive oil, avocado and omega 3 and nuts actually improve your cholesterol.
Eat sustainably raised or harvested low mercury fish and high omega 3 fish.
Choose low mercury and low toxin varieties such a sardines, herrings, anchovies, mackerel and wild caught salmon, all of which have high omega 3 and low mercury levels.
Avoid the big mercury laden fish such as tuna, swordfish, Chilean sea bass and halibut.
There’s a website WWW.EWG.ORG for a guide on safe fish consumption.
The other ideal thing to do is to supplement with purified Omega 3 capsules like True Omega 3 EAT only unprocessed or minimally processed whole grains, not whole grain flours. All grains can increase your blood sugar.
All grains can increase your blood sugar.
Stick with small portions.
1/2 to 1 cup per meal of low glycemic grains like black rice, Quinoa, buck wheat, amaranth, they could be a source of protein, but it takes three cups of Quinoa to provide the same amount of protein found in four ounces of chicken
Beware of modern wheat.
It is mostly consumed as refined flour.
We can also call it sugar, which is worse for your blood sugar than table sugar.
It’s hybridized version has higher starch, content and more inflammatory type of gluten.
It’s also sprayed with the toxic herbicide glyphosate right before harvest and then preserved with calcium propinate, which has been linked behavioral issues, headaches and stomach inflammation, not to mention cancer.
6. Eat beans.
Beans can be a great source of fiber protein and minerals, but they can cause digestive problems for some people, and lecithin they contain can impair absorption.
Pressure cooking is the best way to get the most out of your beans with the least risk.
Stay away from sugar and anything that causes a spike in insulin production or blood sugar, flour refined starches, carbohydrates, which sadly make up more than half of most people’s diets.
Think of sugar in all of its various forms as an occasional treat.
Do not drink your sugar calories.
Maybe the most important diet advice you will ever get.
In other words, stay away from canned soda, bottle soda. Stay away from refined vegetable beans and seed, or such as canola, sunflower, corn and grape seed, especially soybean oil, which now accounts for about 10% or more of the calories from processed foods.
They’re unstable, easily oxidized and processed with heat and toxic solvents.
Stick with the fats mentioned previously. The natural fats that come in whole foods
7. Choose the right dairy.
Dairy today, again is not what it used to be.
It’s bad for the environment, cows that are raised in feedlots and not well tolerated by most people except northern Europeans and the masai people
Because 75% of the world’s population is lactose intolerant, the way we raise cattle is bad for the cows the environment and humans.
Dairy has been linked to cancer, osteoporosis, allergic disorders and digestive problems.
Stay away from pesticides, herbicides, antibiotics, food additives, hormones and GMO foods.
Genetically modified foods
8. Choose foods raised or grown in as regenerative ways as possible.
Also no hormones.
Pesticides, herbicides, antibiotics, chemicals, additives, preservatives, dyes, artificial sweeteners or other junk ingredients.
You’ve got to read the fine print even on your protein bars.
Eat for you and the planet.
Remarkably, food that is good for you…
Is also good for the environment,
our depleted soil, our scarce water resources… and the biodiversity of plants, animals and pollinators.
and it helps reverse climate change. When choosing any food in any category
explore where and how it was grown. Was it grown organically, regeneratively and sustainably, with no or minimal use of agricultural products.
While it may seem healthy to eat a plant based, a plant based burger, ask how the raw materials were grown, Were the soybeans doused in glyphosate and pesticides and farmed in ways destructive to the soil?
It’s hard to figure out all this stuff.
I understand that.
But the more we become aware and we take action to let the food producers know that we want to be healthy.
We want our planet to be healthy, the better off we’ll be.
Food is medicine, and this comes from Hippocrates.
3000 years ago, let thy food be thy medicine.
And if doctors were willing to prescribe food and diet changes and lifestyle changes rather than medications, we could save thousands and thousands of dollars per patient per year.
Looking forward to a healthier and happier you. It’s just the beginning!