Food Choices

Today I want to talk about food!

Yes, I know this is a site about minimalism, not nutrition. But I think eating well is a critical part of a simple life. Food is meant to nourish and heal our bodies. Since what we eat can effect us at our very core, I’ve decided to share my thoughts on diet.

Most of us struggle with diet and nutrition. Even those of us with lean bodies are bombarded with conflicting information on a daily basis. How can we know what to eat? There are hundreds of diets out there and each one has its own guidelines for what our bodies need. We’ve got Atkins, Zone, Paleo, Master Cleanse, Sugar Busters, Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig…the list goes on and on.

A couple of weeks I decided to try something new. Well, new to me. You see, I’ve been a vegetarian for at least 20 years…but not always the healthiest vegetarian. But on July 31st, a week after my 49th birthday, I began eating a whole foods, plant-based diet.

What does that mean? Well, for starters, it means no eggs or dairy and very little or no added sugar, oil, or salt. It also means real food, none of the packaged, processed junk that comes wrapped in colorful plastic with bright claims that say “95% fat free!”.

It may sound extreme, but before you dismiss it as crazy, just hang in there with me a bit and you’ll find that there is quite a bit of science to back up eating this way. And if you scan the internet, you’ll find many reasons to adopt a plant base diet. Everything from ethical and environmental to athletic performance and disease reversal. I’m not going to get into all the politics of eating clean. I’m just going to attack this subject strictly from a health perspective.

We all know at least one person who has failed on a conventional diet. I know several including myself.  But show me someone whose failed on a plant-based, whole foods diet. Someone who eats only whole foods without the junk or animal products and isn’t meeting their goals. It’s a way of eating that isn’t a quick fix or trend, it’s a lifestyle.

While I’m not here to tell you what to eat, I do intend to give you food for thought. (Pun intended.) My aim is to inspire you to find your own right way of eating because what most of us are doing now isn’t working. Our nation’s health on the whole is in decline. Heart disease and cancer is on the rise. More people than ever are on two or more prescription drugs. Something has to change.

This is the first in a series of posts and with each one I’ll share some information that I found valuable. Enjoy!

Rich Roll is an ultra athlete. He dealt with alcohol and drug addiction for years. Changing his diet changed his life. Here is his story.