The Whole Foods and Plant Based diet is just that; real food. Nothing that comes from a carton, a super chain, or from the grocer’s freezer. It’s about foods that are alive. The idea is that real food into our bodies equals energy and life at it’s purest form into us so that we have the potential of being our best selves.
Now if that sounds a little hokey to you then I would suggest two reasons: 1) you are reading into things, and or 2) it sounds extreme to you.
My mother went last year to Africa. Before then she had spent some time with a neighbor of ours. The neighbor was surprised at the fact that neither of us, being “white,” had any problem with being nice to her. We enjoyed her company and mom especially liked learning new ways to cook foods. In the area of Africa, a HUGE continent full of many countries, that she had come from, people of different skin color did not mix. She expected people to see her differently simply because of this. More so, due to her time around people truly ignorant of what Africa is really like, she expected us to have many assumptions about her. We didn’t. Which was more than surprising to her and her family. Going to a small country in Africa, mom was afforded with the option to stay and get to know the locals or to go on safari with the other visitors. Mom chose to hang out with her new friends.
The choice of one day turned in to many that were filled with people who were ashamed to allow mom into their home. This is a country with holes in their toilet paper, if you were fortunate to have toilet paper. They do not have the things locally that my mother, being a westerner, has grown to take for granted. Yet, my mom seen in them the things her life was missing.
Appreciation was top on her list. The people who befriended her, for a lifetime, are people who know the value of what they have. We have stopped seeing real value and have taken to modern convenience over natures true gifts. If you just want a life full of the latest Mod-cons, that’s fine. But why live such a life, or any life, with less than the best foods going into your system?
Bugs- In many African countries it is common place to eat bugs. For a westerner it is a concept seen only in movies, documentaries, or on a dare. Yet we have come to look the same way at the idea of making our own meals. I’m not saying that no one knows how to cook. That’s far from true. But how many of you know what to do with fresh ingredients?
Jamie Oliver is one of my heroes because he realized this exact issue and has stepped up to the plate to do something about it. In a world where people no longer know how to grow their own food, kids can not recognize simple fruits and veggies, and the idea of ordering your meal is much more common place, we need heroes like Jamie Oliver.
Food & Lupus- The really bad thing that most of us deal with, Lupies or not, is budget. We live in a world in which food is cheaper the worst it is for you. That tells me that the “food” is likely not really food at all or at least barely finding place among such charts. It also says that this world has lost touch with the value of a healthy meal. I know far too many people who refuse to eat a salad. Who pull any veggie like objects off their fast foods. People who feel as if they have done a good deed for their bodies by having eaten one piece of fruit for the week. Really? Come on guys! Are we really this foolish with our health? But Wolff, I can’t afford to eat healthy. Okay, I get that. After all, I live on 1/3 of the income I was making when I could work part time. When it comes to budget issues, I understand.
So what’s the big deal? Simple; Food is medicine. If you want to feel better, beat lupus up instead of the other way around, you need to eat better. YOU. That does not mean buying Special K, eating less ice cream, or adding in a small side salad. No, that would be like trying on the first week, then realizing that you didn’t actually change anything other than your sugar intake.
A real solution looks like the WFPB diet. The trouble is that we can not afford it. This is the reason I am not currently on a Vegan WFPB diet. I am eating as Whole Food and as Plant Based as I can. Which means that the most boxed my food gets is me having some boxed penne noodles or some bagged rice. Rice, unless you live near a rice patty, is going to be bagged or boxed. Rice is something I can eat. Just because I chose to eat more plants does not mean that I have given up grains. Maybe I should, but I am just not able to afford enough fruits and veggies to cut out the grain.
How can you cut out grain? It’s actually easier than you may think, so long as you can afford it. I really love a youtube channel called FullyRawKristina. She is absolutely a raw vegan. No exceptions. She makes things that would win over the hardiest of carnivores. The life style she leads is exactly the kind I want to live up to. But I do not have the means. Not just monetarily, but physically. When your budget and your physical health get in the way, what can you do?
SNAP- There are government programs out there that are made to help people like us. People who do not have enough money to eat well and are not able to make more than what we have. Some of you may have less than I do, which puts you in my prayers. (For those who have more, You too are in my prayers, but for wholly different reasons.) Government programs such as SNAP can help you to get more foods, healthy foods.
HELP!- Okay, so you have the food now…um those are pretty. Huh… What do I do with them, Wolff? Do you have a friend? Maybe you have a relative who can come over once a week to help. Perhaps you are already in the care of someone. Ask them for help. No really, you have to ask. You can do this. They can cut up your foods, place them in containers, and label them for you. If fruits and veggies are on hand and cut up, people are proved to be way more likely to eat them. TIP! Fruits and Veggies require a lot more to be eaten than other foods. Why? They are less calories. No small side salads. Think of eating out of the bowl the salad was placed on the table in. That is a real salad. Don’t worry. No one gets fat from fruits and veggies. EVER!
Easy way- This would be my favorite way to do it. My mom loves a hot meal. I love whatever is fast, simple, and takes a lot less clean up. Which is why I have a juicer. A friend, dear to me as life, bought it and sent it to me after she found out I was diagnosed with Lupus. She wanted to help. She felt there had to be something she could do. So she did the best thing she could do; she bought me a really nice juicer. You do not need a super nice juicer. I once had a $20 one from Wal-mart. It worked great. Before that I only had my blender. Now I can juice or use my mom’s vitamix.
Remember the part where someone loves you enough to cut things up? Tell them not to cut off anything, just cut them into pieces the right size for you to put into the top of the Juicer or toss safely into the blender. (Remember that your blender may need you to add ice, water, or some other liquid.) I juice stems and all. I bought the re-boot juice book by Joe, the guy from Fat, Sick, and Nearly dead. Then I realized I didn’t need that. I just needed to use my taste buds. I don’t like beats, but if I put in apple and carrot then I couldn’t taste it. I hate celery, yet it contains lots of water in it so it was good to toss in with strong tasting veggies.
Think more Veggie than you do fruit. That’s going to keep your sugar intake down. Why is that important? We are now very likely to get all sorts of issues, including diabetes. Remember that diabetes is a blood sugar issue, not a fat issue. If your family has a history of the problem or if you have already been warned, listen! If not, fruit on!
But why blend or juice? Your body uses much less energy to digest it when it is already turned to Juice. No pulp means hardly any energy needed to process your food. Energy is the thing most of us lack. How about we take some of that back??? Not to mention that you are now putting into your body a pure, alive form of energy. You just got two ways of getting more energy just by having someone cut up some stuff for you. Cool, huh?
If you crave hot food, eat a bake potato once in a while or some cooked collards. It wont hurt you. Just be aware of how differently your body reacts to it. As for me, I have a thing for grits. I buy gluten free, organic corn online on Amazon. It gets ground up at home. Then turned into grits, sometimes cornbread, or used in other ways. It was way cheaper than buying store bought corn in any form.
As for those of you who do have the means, please go take back your life one day at a time by giving it the food that has life in it. Don’t choose the easy fast food way. Choose the easy diced veggies in the fridge. Choose a mono meal of your favorite fruit. I gorge myself on cherries when they come in season. My stomach uses little energy because it is all the same consistency. When apple season comes, I can not get enough of them and their wide variety. Cut up peppers are far tastier than chips. After living this way for a few weeks you find you no longer crave the things you used to eat. You start liking things you never had.
It’s actually how chocolate and I finally found each other. No joke, until I went Vegan for a year, I did not like Chocolate. I tolerated it, usually because it was coated over the nut I really wanted. I just never liked the stuff. Vegan changed that. I found vegan chocolates and fell in like. I also now eat things i never would before.
Even now, not able to budget the Vegan life due to circumstances, I find that I rarely want meat. I am always the one happy to turn up a nose at it in favor of getting more green beans, squash, yams, etc. For me I do really like seafood. It is the only meat I ever do seem to want. Now if even after being vegan, or vegetarian, you seem to really crave meat then you need to consider that you may have an iron issue, like myself, or that you are an O. O blood type craves meat. Eating meat once a week will help you to not crave it all the time. For $10 you can find out your blood type with a at home kit.
Lots to think on. Talk to your doctor and find out more about the benefits of a more WFPB diet. Also, check out the links below: