I eluded to in my first post not one diet and lifestyle fits all, whilst it is a lovely thought to have that everyone on the planet can go Vegan / whole food plant based the reality of this is not realistic. Whilst ethical veganism is on the rise as well as health conscious WFPB diets – these still remain a minority compared to the omnivore populace, putting ethics aside for a moment – people can eat some meat and still be healthy despite the mantras of the vegan activists. So what else in your diet impacts your health?
I started a course this year to become a health coach with a fantastic organisation the Institute for Integrative Nutrition where I will be learning about 100 different diet regimes. Whilst nutrition is up there as one of the key subjects I shall also be studying what they call primary nutrition that is to say the nutrition on your plate is your secondary food and your primary food is your career, relationships, spirituality, physical activity, and other lifestyle factors – as they play an equal if not greater role in improving your overall health and wellness.
My father was / is an ordained Church of England priest who has had peoples spiritual and psychological welfare as a concern for many years and having come from the influence of this, the primary food approach struck a very distinct cord with me. Of course we can consume the most healthiest foods on the planet but if our daily life is stressful, depressing and unfulfilling then of course our health will suffer. I am always thoughtful of Steve Jobs the founder of Apple who clearly was a very wealthy and career successful man, reportedly pursued a raw vegan diet as well as embracing fasting, both of which have other people claim to be root cures of their chronic illness and yet sadly he died of pancreatic cancer. I watched one of the posthumous movies of his life which showed that his primary food wasn’t overly positive, especially in his relationships. I could never say for certainty that this was a root cause of his illness as I only anecdotally know the man but I am sure this kind of relationship dysfunction can eat away at your insides and cause a plethora of illnesses.
So how do we feed our primary food plate? well I could embark on what I currently think but I will wait for my course to unfold and teach me further before committing on this blog, so watch this space for further updates or alternatively check out this great book by Dr Jeffrey Bland The Disease Delusion which goes quite comprehensively into the subject with exercises for you to follow to analyse and address your own imbalances.