Monday, January 21, 2013

Dietary Torah: Biblical Foods That Prevent Disease and Boost Health

My wife really likes a book called "The Makers Diet" by Jordan Rubin.  So I went ahead and read it and loved it.  

I liked it so much that I've excerpted all the highlights for you, taking care to keep all the references to Scripture (which is what makes this diet appealing).  So, without further ado, here are the excerpts:




THE PROBLEM OUR CULTURE FACES:

pg. 50, quoting Dr. C. Everett Koop, former U.S. Surgeon General:  "What we eat may affect our risk for several of the leading causes of death for Americans, notably, coronary heart disease, stroke, atherosclerosis, diabetes, and some types of cancer.  These disorders together now account for more than two-thirds of all death in the United States."

AN OUTLINE OF THE SOLUTION:

pg. 59  "Guidelines for optimal health and nutrition can be reduced to two vital keys:  [1] optimize the nutrition entering your body; [2] Reduce the toxins in your body."

GETTING BACK TO ANCIENT WISDOM:


pg. 24 "...the longest-lived cultures in the world had a few things in common--they consumed 'living' foods that abounded with nutrients, enzymes, and beneficial micro-organisms.  And they consumed healthy animal foods that were rich in nutrients.  They avoided processed foods filled with 'empty' calories that robbed nutrients from the body."

A SCIENTIFIC RATIONALE FOR BASIC KASHRUT LAW:

pg. 37, quoting Elmer Josephson from God's Key to Health and Happiness:  "Some ask, why did the Lord make the unclean animals?  They were created as scavengers.  As a rule they are meat-eating animals that clean up anything that is left dead in the fields, etc.  But scavengers were never created for human consumption.  The flesh of the swine is said by many authorities to be the prime cause of much of our American ill health, causing blood diseases, weakness of the stomach, liver troubles, eczema, consumption, tumors, cancer, etc.
The scaleless fish and all shell fish including the oyster, clam, lobster, shrimp, etc., modern science discovers to be but lumps of devitalized and disease-producing filth, because of inadequate excretion.  These are the scavengers, the garbage containers of the waters of the seas."

WHY DID THE EGYPTIANS GET SICK?

paraphrase from pg. 62.  The Egyptians succumbed to diseases resulting from poor hygiene, sexually transmitted diseases, and unhealthful foods.  The Israelites, on the other hand, were told:  

"If you diligently heed the voice of the Lord your God...I will put none of these diseases on you which I have brought on the Egyptians.  I am the Lord who heals you," (Exodus 15:26).

HOW DID THE ISRAELITES STAY HEALTHY?

pg. 63 "In contrast, the Israelites followed advanced hygienic practices...strict separation of the corpses of the dead from the living...Those individuals were to wash their hands, clothing, and utensils with running water...the water was treated with ashes--a key component of soap for millennia--and administered with hyssop, which contained the antiseptic thymol...In addition, this biblical hygienic system required that hands be washed before meals and at other key times to ensure cleanliness.
The Bible also prescribes specific techniques for purifying clothing and key instruments or utensils, along with the safe disposal of human waste, proper burial methods, childbirth procedures, sexual hygiene, feminine hygienic guidelines (for the menses), and more.
Leviticus 13 provides detailed instructions for the diagnosis of the disease called leprosy, with strict guidelines for the purification of fabrics contaminated by the disease.  It also called for the quarantine of people with any highly infectious disease."

STARTING AT THE BEGINNING:

pg. 68  "Countless numbers of microorganisms live in the soil, in and on plants, and in the human gut.  Inside and out we are at one with the earth (or we should be).  What depth of incomprehensible wisdom lies in the biblical statement in Genesis 2:7: 'And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the earth, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living being.'"

pg. 24 "...the longest-lived cultures in the world had a few things in common--they consumed 'living' foods that abounded with nutrients, enzymes, and beneficial micro-organisms.  And they consumed healthy animal foods that were rich in nutrients.  They avoided processed foods filled with 'empty' calories that robbed nutrients from the body."

pg. 74 "Regular ingestion of SBOs [soil-based organisms] produces a significant reservoir of extra antibodies ready for targeted response, greatly increasing the effectiveness of an individual's immune system...It seems that soil-based organisms help to restore the lost link between the human body and the earth."

UNDERSTANDING OUR PHYSIOLOGY:

pg. 131 "Human physiology and biochemistry are geared for the foods the Creator intended for us to eat, not for the high-speed output of modern food 'processing' plants or fast-food windows...Our ancestors consumed 30 to 65 percent of their daily calories (and up to 100 grams of fiber a day) from a wide variety of fresh fruits and vegetables.  That is why, long before the discovery of vitamins, people who had access to healthy foods lived extremely long lives without vitamin deficiencies or major illnesses.  Their protein needs were met by consuming pasture-fed animals, wild game, and fish that were rich in highly beneficial omega-3 fatty acids and CLA (conjugated linoleic acid).  These fats protected our ancestors against diseases such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease."

WHAT'S SO IMPORTANT ABOUT PROTEIN?


pg. 131 "Animal protein is our only [integrated source of] complete protein...providing all eight essential amino acids...Properly prepared (germinated or fermented) seeds, legumes, and cereal grains represent the best sources of protein in the vegetable kingdom, but they--along with all other plant foods--are low in tryptophan, cystine, and threonine.  Other sources are low in additional protein components, which is why many vegetarians emphasize eating from a variety of vegetable sources.
....For these and other reasons, we only recommend animal proteins from beef, lamb, goat, buffalo, venison, elk, and other clean red meats; fish with fins and scales form oceans and rivers; chicken, turkey, and other poultry raised in a free-range setting or organically and grass-fed."

IS IT OKAY TO EAT FAT?

p.g 134 "The Maker's fats are essential for good health and maximum protection from disease.  You find them in natural vegetable and animal sources.  Many people do not realize that animal proteins and fats appear together for a reason--we need fat to properly assimilate protein and minerals.  Perhaps our most important fats (and those we lack the most) are the omega-3 fatty acids, found in cod liver oil, high omega-3 eggs, and ocean-caught fish such as salmon, mackerel, and sardines...."

NOTE:  the author says to avoid farm-raised salmon.  

NOTE:  the author says to avoid hydrogenated fats, which he says are "indigestible" trans-fatty acids.  On pg. 135, he says "Hydrogenated fats have been associated with cancer, atherosclerosis, diabetes, obesity, immune system dysfunction, low-birth-weight babies, birth defects, decreased visual acuity, sterility, difficulty in lactation, and problems with bones and tendons."

WHICH CARBOHYDRATES ARE HEALTHFUL?

pg. 138 "These natural carbohydrates include wholesome whole-grain sourdough and sprouted-grain breads and cereal grains, soaked and fermented lentils, beans, and other legumes.  They also include soaked seeds and nuts, fresh fruits and vegetables, and fermented vegetables.
Before the advent of mass-manufacturing processes, it was common for long-lived peoples to soak their grains overnight and then allow them to dry in the open air until they were partially germinated or sprouted, or to go through an ancient leavening process.  From these grains they made breads and other foods.
We now know these processes effectively remove the phytates from the outer covering of the natural grains.  Phytates are substances that contain phosporus in acidic form as well as powerful enzyme inhibitors that combine with (or 'grab') minerals in the intestinal tract and block their absorption.  Without this scientific understanding, our ancestors were preparing their food in a way that enhanced digestion and health."

THE PROBLEM WITH MODERN DAIRY PRODUCTS:

NOTE:  the author says that some dairy farmers, rather than allow their cattle to graze naturally on grass, opt to feed other things to them which, while yielding more milk, leads to infections in the animal which then require the farmer to dose the animal with antibiotics.  Also, some farmers inject hormones in the animal to produce a greater yield of milk.  Both of these practices are unhealthful.

WHY IS PASTEURIZATION HARMFUL?

pg. 139 "Early and primitive societies understood the incredible value of mild products.  Butter and cream in particular provide a treasure trove of vitamins, enzymes, and fats that promote healthy bodies and long life.  In the days before refrigeration, virtually every society practiced time-honored methods of fermentation to preserve and prepare dairy products for consumption over time.
Modern mild producers routinely pasteurize milk by heating it at high temperatures to destroy undesirable bacteria.  This process destroys all of the beneficial organisms in milk, along with all of the enzymes (considered the 'final test' for successful pasteurization).  It also alters vital amino acids, reducing our ability to access the protein, fats, vitamins, and minerals in milk.  (In reality, modern sanitation standards, sterile, stainless steel holding tanks, and milking technology have made pasteurization largely unnecessary today.)
Milk producers also 'add' powdered milk and synthetic vitamin D2 or toxic D3 to 'low-fat' milk to make it thicker.  Then they 'homogenize' the mixture so fat particles remain in suspension--making them indigestible in the intestine but highly likely to pass through the intestinal wall, directly into the bloodstream."

WHICH SOURCES OF FIBER ARE BEST FOR YOU?

pg. 141 "These foods include broccoli, cauliflower, celery, and lettuce, as well as soaked or sprouted seeds, nuts, grains, and legumes.  Berries and other small fruits along with fruits and vegetables with edible skins are also good sources of low-carbohydrate fiber.  Besides proving the right kind of fiber, these foods are rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants."  

IS THERE EVIDENCE THAT THE PATRIARCHS PRACTICED FERMENTATION?

pg. 142 "Thousands of years ago, Abraham served his best meat, dairy, and fermented cream curds to entertain his angelic visitors:

'So Abraham hurried into the tent of Sarah.  'Quick,' he said, 'get three seahs of fine flour and knead it and bake some bread.'  Then he ran to the herd and selected a choice, tender calf and gave it to a servant, who hurried to prepare it.  He then brought some curds and milk and the calf that had been prepared, and set these before them,' (Genesis 18:6-8, NIV).

....This natural biological activity produces enzymes that break down foods into usable compounds and inhibits putrefying bacterial growth.
....Easy do-it-yourself lacto-fermented dairy products such as yogurt, kefir, cheeses, cottage cheese, and cultured cream (also called creme fraish) are exceptionally healthy and nutritious."

TOP HEALING FOODS OF THE BIBLE:

-Fish and fish oil

-Grains:  Barley and weat.  [Deut. 8:8; John 6:9-13]

-Cultured dairy from goats, cows and sheep.  [Prov. 27:27]

-Olive oil

-Small fruits:  figs, grapes, and berries [Gen. 3:7; 9:20]

-Honey.  [Exod. 13:5]

pg. 151 "The Bible implies a strong influence of butter and honey on brain function.  'Curds [butter] and honey He shall eat, that He may know to refuse the evil and choose the good' (Isa. 7:15).  The brain is made of mostly fat (which butter provides), and it runs on glucose (of which honey is an excellent source)."

-Pomegranate.  pg. 152 "Pomegranate is called the fruit of royalty in the Bible and is one of the richest sources of antioxidants.  Pomegranates contain high amounts of ellagic acid, an antioxidant with proven anticancer properties and excellent benefits for female health."

-Grass-fed animal meat:  pg. 152 "They contain cysteine, glutathione, coenzyme Q10, carnitine, MSM, CLA, several B vitamins, zinc, magnesium, and vitamins A and D as well as omega-3 fatty acids.  

-Seeds (soaked and sprouted)

-Omega-3 eggs

-Cultured/fermented vegetables

-Organ meats (from organically-raised, grass-fed animals)

-Fermented beverages

-Green vegetables





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