Macrobiotics

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"Macrobiotics"
#1
My diet has evolved oiver the course of the past three years into one that is grain-based, fish-heavy, and nearly macrobiotic, so I started reading about the benefits of such a diet.

Anyone have experience or knowledge about this?

I've been concentrating on yoga rather than weight training, and I feel light and in control of my body in a way I never have. I've never been so lean. It's great, but I want to hear from others who may have some pointers or possible tips on avoiding any problems.
 

penguinsfan

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"Macrobiotics"
#2
Elaborate on the term "macrobiotic". I've read much on diet and nothing on this, to this point.
 
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"Macrobiotics"
#3
Here's a little info from the first site I found at Google. Don't be put off by the "yin and yang" of it all: although I do believe that the balances are important, for myself, I'm attempting to see the basic nutrition involved that precludes a belief in Buddhism and such.


"The modern practice of macrobiotics was started in the 1920s by a Japanese educator named George Ohsawa. Ohsawa is said to have cured himself of a serious illness by changing to a simple diet of brown rice, miso soup, and sea vegetables. At the core of Ohsawa’s writings on macrobiotics is the concept of yin and yang. In Chinese philosophy, the opposing forces of yin and yang govern all aspects of life. Yin—representative of an outward centrifugal movement—results in expansion. On the other hand, yang—representative of an inward centripetal movement—produces contraction. In addition, yin is said to be cold while yang is hot; yin is sweet, yang is salty; yin is passive, yang is aggressive. In the macrobiotic view, the forces of yin and yang must be kept in balance to achieve good health.

The macrobiotic diet, therefore, attempts to achieve harmony between yin and yang. To this end, foods are classified into yin and yang categories, according to their tastes, properties, and effects on the body. The two food groups—grains and vegetables—that have the least pronounced yin and yang qualities, are emphasized in the macrobiotic diet. Eating these foods is thought to make it easier to achieve a more balanced condition within the natural order of life. Foods considered either extremely yin or extremely yang are avoided. The standard macrobiotic diet recommendations are as follows:

* Whole grains—including brown rice, barley, millet, oats, corn, rye, whole wheat, and buckwheat—are believed to be the most balanced foods on the yin/yang continuum, and should comprise 50–60% of a person’s daily food intake. Although whole grains are preferred, small portions of pasta and bread from refined flour may be eaten.
* Fresh vegetables should comprise 25–30% of food intake. Daily consumption of any of the following vegetables is highly recommended: cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, bok choy, collards, mustard greens, turnips, turnip greens, onion, daikon radish, acorn squash, butternut squash, and pumpkin. Vegetables to be eaten occasionally (two to three times per week) include celery, iceberg lettuce, mushrooms, snow peas, and string beans. Vegetables should be lightly steamed or sautéed with a small amount of unrefined cooking oil (preferably sesame or corn oil).
* Beans and sea vegetables should comprise 5–10% of daily food intake. Especially recommended are adzuki beans, chickpeas (garbanzo beans), lentils, and tofu. Sea vegetables, including wakame, hijiki, kombu, and nori, are rich in many vitamins and minerals, and are easily added at each meal.
* Soups and broths comprise 5–10% of food intake. Soups containing miso (soy bean paste), vegetables, and beans are acceptable.
* A few servings each week of nuts, seeds, and fresh fish (halibut, flounder, cod, or sole) are permissible. Brown rice syrup, barley malt, and amasake (a sweet rice drink) may be used as sweeteners. Brown rice vinegar and umeboshi plum vinegar may be used occasionally. Naturally processed sea salt and tamari soy sauce may be used to flavor grains and soups.
* Fluid intake should be governed by thirst. Only teas made from roasted grains, dandelion greens, or the cooking water of soba noodles are generally considered acceptable. All teas with aromatic fragrances or caffeine are avoided. Drinking and cooking water must be purified.
* To maintain proper yin/yang balance, all extremely yang foods and all extremely yin foods are avoided. All animal foods, including eggs and dairy products, are believed to have a strong yang quality. Extremely yin foods and beverages include refined sugars, chocolate, tropical fruits, soda, fruit juice, coffee, and hot spices. In addition, all foods processed with artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives must be avoided.
* All foods should be organically grown. Produce should be fresh and locally grown."
 
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"Macrobiotics"
#4
More info from another source:

***
What is a Macrobiotic Diet?

The basic macrobiotic diet consists of:

* 50 percent whole grains, (e.g. brown rice, barley, millet, oats, corn, rye, wheat, and buckwheat );
* 25 percent seasonal vegetables (cooked or raw);
Eat Regularly: cruciferous vegetables, including bok choy, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, collards, kale, kohlrabi, mustard greens, radishes, turnips, turnip greens, and watercress; Chinese cabbage, dandelion, onion, daikon, orange squashes, pumpkin.
Eat occasionally: celery, iceberg lettuce, mushrooms, snow peas, string beans.
Vegetables to avoid: potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, asparagus, spinach, beets, zucchini, avocado.
* 10 percent protein foods (e.g. legumes, soy products or fish).
* 5 percent sea vegetables (e.g. seaweeds like wakame, hiziki, dombu, noris, arame, agar-agar, and Irish moss).
* 5 percent soups (e.g. miso soup, a broth made with soy bean paste, soups from vegetables, grains, seaweed, or beans.
* 5 percent fruits, seeds, nuts and drinks.

What Foods Are Excluded From a Macriobiotic Diet

Meats, eggs, cheese, sweets, spices, sugars, coffee and alcohol are banned. The first three are banned because they are too Yang (hot); the rest because they are too Yin (cool).

Is a Macrobiotic Diet Good For Weight Loss?

Yes. A macrobiotic diet plan is low in calories, high in fiber and high in complex carbohydrates for energy and regular appetite. It would be difficult to gain weight or become obese by following a macrobiotic diet program.

Is a Macrobiotic Diet Healthy?

A macrobiotic eating plan has several obvious nutritional benefits. It is high in natural unrefined foods. It is low in saturated fats but rich in essential fats. However, it may be too low in calcium. As a low-fat high-fiber plan, a macrobiotic diet may play a role in preventing some types of cancer. And the macrobiotic emphasis on fresh, non-processed foods may help reduce or eliminate certain food allergies and chemical sensitivities.
 

penguinsfan

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"Macrobiotics"
#5
Thanks for the info. Very interesting stuff. Looks to be a pretty healthy way of eating, though I prefer to have more protein due to my strength/mass weight workouts. I'll have to try to keep those good quality carbohydrates in mind when making my dietary choices.
 

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