Unlearning the Reasons You Shouldn’t Be a Vegetarian
In addition to informing readers about the potential dangers of the SAD American Diet, another one of our intentions in writing this book is to show how wise – and easy – it is to switch to a mostly-raw vegetarian diet that avoids all the harmful processed foods and drugs cited in the previous chapter. There is considerable scientific evidence supporting the wisdom of eating fruits and vegetables for the purpose of preventing or healing disease. For example, the National Cancer Institute and most nutritional experts advise us to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables to prevent cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Much of the information that is coming from the scientific community today is reminiscent of what we were told several decades ago by our mother or grandmother, encouraging us to eat our green vegetables. And we all remember the old adage: “An apple a day keeps the doctor away.”
That sounds simple enough, but then there are all the other voices out there causing people to wonder: “If I become a complete vegetarian, where will I get my protein?” “If I don’t drink milk, how can I get enough calcium?” “How would I get vitamin B-12 if I don’t consume animal products?”
These are all legitimate questions. But unfortunately, the reason so many people are asking these questions is because of the misinformation and propaganda distributed by those who profit from the sale of meat, dairy products and processed foods. If you research proper diet and nutrition, one of the first things you will learn is that the average American must first “un-learn” most of what we have been taught about nutrition, including the four food groups, half of which are animal products. Once this propaganda is unlearned, we will realize that every element of nutrition needed by the human body can be provided by a diet of raw fruits and vegetables. For example:
Protein has been the most widely-publicized of all human nutritional needs, and this has led many people to be obsessed with making sure they get enough protein. The problem is that the average American consumes over 100 grams of protein a day, which is three to five times the amount experts now say is necessary. This excessive amount of protein is harmful, and more physical problems are being caused by people consuming too much protein than are caused by people not getting enough protein.
Several generations of school children and doctors were taught incorrectly that we need meat, dairy and eggs for protein. The meat, dairy and egg industries funded this “nutritional education” and it became official U.S. government policy. Much of the evidence used to support the claim that animal products are ideal for meeting human protein needs was based on a now-discredited experiment on rats conducted in 1914.
Nutritionists have drastically altered their thinking about human protein needs since that infamous rat study. But this updated knowledge has been very slow to reach the public. Most adults will remember being told repeatedly (and incorrectly) in school about how important it is to get lots of protein.
Official U.S. policy on human protein needs has changed so drastically that there is no longer even a minimum daily requirement for protein listed on the latest nutrition labels. Modern research has shown that most people have more reason to be concerned about medical problems caused by consuming too much protein, rather than not getting enough. Protein is an extremely important nutrient, but when we get too much protein, or protein that we cannot digest, it causes problems. In his book, Your Health, Your Choice, Dr. Ted Morter, Jr. warns, “In our society, one of the principle sources of physiological toxins is too much protein.”
It may come as quite a shock to people trying to consume as much protein as possible to read in major medical journals and scientific reports that excess protein has been found to promote the growth of cancer cells and can cause liver and kidney disorders, digestive problems, gout, arthritis, calcium deficiencies (including osteoporosis) and other harmful mineral imbalances.
It has been known for decades that populations consuming high-protein, meat-based diets have higher cancer rates and lower life-spans (averaging as low as 30 to 40 years), compared to cultures subsisting on low-protein vegetarian diets (some with average life-spans of more than 90 years).
Numerous studies have found that animals and humans subjected to high-protein diets have a consistently higher rate of cancer development. As for humans, T. Colin Campbell, a Professor of Nutritional Sciences at Cornell University and the senior science advisor to the American Institute for Cancer Research, says there is “a strong correlation between dietary protein intake and cancer of the breast, prostate, pancreas and colon.” Likewise, Myron Winick, director of Columbia University’s Institute of Human Nutrition, has found strong evidence of “a relationship between high-protein diets and cancer of the colon.”
In Your Health, Your Choice, Dr. Morter writes, “The paradox of protein is that it is not only essential but also potentially health-destroying. Adequate amounts are vital to keeping your cells hale and hearty and on the job; but unrelenting consumption of excess dietary protein congests your cells and forces the pH of your life-sustaining fluids down to cell-stifling, disease-producing levels. Cells overburdened with protein become toxic.”
Writing in the Sept. 3, 1982 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine, researchers Dr. Barry Branner and Timothy Meyer states, that “undigested protein must be eliminated by the kidneys. This unnecessary work stresses out the kidneys so much that gradually lesions are developed and tissues begin to harden.” In the colon, this excess protein waste putrefies into toxic substances, some of which are absorbed into the bloodstream Dr. Willard Visek Professor of Clinical Sciences at the University of Illinois Medical School, warns, “A high protein diet also breaks down the pancreas and lowers resistance to cancer as well as contributes to the development of diabetes.”
In his 1976 book, How to Get Well, Dr. Paavo Airola, Ph.D., N.D., notes we “have been brought to believe that a high protein diet is a must if you wish to attain a high level of and prevent disease. Health writers and ‘experts’ who advocated high protein diets were misled by slanted research, which was financed by dairy and meat industries, or by insufficient and outdated information. Most recent research, worldwide, both scientific and empirical, shows more and more convincingly that our past beliefs in regard to high requirements of protein are out-dated and incorrect, and that the actual daily need for protein in human nutrition is far below that which has long been considered necessary. Researchers, working independently in many parts of the world, arrived at the conclusion that our actual daily need of protein is only 25 to 35 grams (raw proteins being utilized twice as well as cooked) … But what is even more important, the worldwide research brings almost daily confirmation of the scientific premise … that proteins, essential and important as they are, can be extremely harmful when consumed in excess of your actual need.”
Dr. Airola continues: “The metabolism of proteins consumed in excess of the actual need leaves toxic residues of metabolic waste in tissues, causes autotoxemia, overacidity and nutritional deficiencies, accumulation of uric acid and purines in the tissues, intestinal putrefaction, and contributes to the development of many of our most common and serious diseases, such as arthritis, kidney damage, pyorrhea, schizophrenia, osteoporosis, arteriosclerosis, heart disease, and cancer. A high protein diet also causes premature aging and lowers life expectancy.”
The good news about protein, however, is that it is much easier to meet our minimum daily protein requirements than most people would imagine . . . with just fruits and vegetables. Because much of what experts once believed about protein has been proven incorrect, U.S. government recommendations on daily protein consumption have been reduced from 118 grams to 46 to 56 grams in the 1980’s to the present level of 25 to 35 grams. In fact, the most recent (1994) nutrition labels for food do not even include a minimum daily requirement for protein because nutritionists know it would be very unusual for a person to not meet his or her protein requirements. Many nutritionists now feel that 20 grams of protein a day is more than enough, and warn about the potential dangers of consistently consuming much more than this amount. The average American consumes a little over 100 grams of protein per day.
Drastically reduced recommendations for protein consumption are an obvious indication that official information about protein taught not so long ago to everyone from school children to doctors was incorrect, but there has been no major effort to inform the public that what we were taught has been proven wrong. So there are large numbers of people with medical problems caused by eating more than four or five times as much protein as necessary, yet their misguided obsession is still to ensure that they get enough protein.
A good way of determining which foods provide sufficient protein is to consider recommendations on the percentage of our total calorie intake that should be made up of protein, and then determine which foods meet these recommendations. These recommendations range from 2 1/2 to 8 percent. Reports in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition say we should receive 2 1/2 percent of our daily caloric intake from protein, and that many populations have lived in excellent health on that amount. The World Health Organization established a figure of 4 1/2 percent. The Food and Nutrition Board recommends 6 percent, while the National Research Council recommends 8 percent of our calories should come from protein.
The 6 and 8 percent figures are more than what most people need, and these higher percentages are intended as a margin of safety. But still, these recommendations are met by many fruits and greatly exceeded by most all vegetables. For example, the percentage of calories provided by protein in spinach is 49%; broccoli 45%; cauliflower 40%; lettuce 34%; peas 30%; green beans 26%; cucumbers 24%; celery 21%; potatoes 11%; sweet potatoes 6%; honeydew 10%; cantaloupe 9%; strawberry 8%; orange 8%; watermelon 8%; peach 6%; pear 5%; banana 5%; pineapple 3%; and apple 1%. Considering these figures, any nutritionist would have to agree it is very easy for a vegetarian to get sufficient protein.
Two reasons we have such a low protein requirement, as noted by Harvey and Marilyn Diamond in Fit for Life, are that, “the human body recycles 70 percent of its proteinaceous waste,” and our bodies lose only about 23 grams of protein a day.
Another important lesson to “unlearn” is that the need to consume foods or meals containing “complete protein” is based on an erroneous and out-dated myth. Due to lingering misinformation from that 1914 rat study, many people still believe they must eat animal products to obtain “complete protein.” And for other people, this fallacy was replaced by a second inaccurate theory that proper food combining is necessary to obtain “complete protein” from vegetables. Both of these theories have been unquestionably disproved, because we now know people can completely satisfy their protein needs and all other nutritional requirements from a good variety of raw fruits and vegetables without worrying about proper food combining or adding protein supplements or animal products to their diets.
In fact, the whole theory behind the need to consume “complete protein” – a belief once accepted as fact by medical and nutritional experts – is now disregarded. For example, Dr. Alfred Harper, Chairman of Nutritional Sciences at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and of the Food and Nutrition Board of the National Research Council, states, “One of the biggest fallacies ever perpetuated is that there is any need for so-called complete protein.”
Protein is composed of amino acids, and these amino acids are literally the building blocks of our body. There are eight essential amino acids we need from food for our body to build “complete protein,” and every one of these amino acids can be found in fruits and vegetables. (There are a total of 23 amino acids we need, but our body is able to produce 15 of these, leaving eight “essential” amino acids that must be obtained from food.) There are many vegetables and some fruits that contain all eight essential amino acids, including carrots, brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, corn, cucumbers, eggplant, kale, okra, peas, potatoes, summer squash, sweet potatoes, tomatoes and bananas.
But the reason we do not necessarily need all eight essential amino acids from one food or from one meal is that our body stores amino acids for future use. From the digestion of food and from recycling of proteinaceous wastes, our body maintains an amino acid pool, which is circulated to cells throughout the body by our blood and lymph systems. These cells and our liver are constantly making deposits and withdrawals from this pool, based on the supply and demand of specific amino acids.
The belief that animal protein is superior to vegetable protein dates back to 1914 when two researchers named Osborn and Mendel found that rats grew faster on animal protein than plant protein. From these findings, meat, dairy and eggs were termed as “Class A” proteins, and vegetable proteins were classified as an inferior “Class B.” In the mid-1940s, researchers found that ten essential amino acids are required for a rat’s diet, and that meat, dairy and eggs supplied all ten of these amino acids, whereas wheat, rice and corn did not. The meat, dairy and egg industries capitalized on both of these findings, with little regard for the fact that nutritional requirements for rats are very different than for humans.
It was discovered in 1952 that humans required only eight essential amino acids, and that fruits and vegetables are an excellent source of all of these. Later experiments also found that although animal protein does speed the growth of rats, animal protein also leads to a shorter life-span and higher rates of cancer and other diseases. There are also major differences in the protein needs of humans and rats. For example, human breast milk is composed of 5 percent protein, compared to 49 percent protein in rat milk. And a human infant requires an average of 180 days to double its birth weight, compared to only four days for rats.
To illustrate how ignorant “experts” can be, during the time that high-protein diets were thought to be healthy, many experts felt it was a “mistake of nature” that human females produced breast milk of only 5 percent protein. Instead of assuming that God made a mistake, perhaps it would be wiser to realize that the promoters of meat, dairy and eggs have made a mistake by encouraging us to consume dangerously high amounts of protein. If a human infant can be perfectly nourished during the most rapid period of growth with nothing but 5-percent protein from breast milk, there is no reason to believe that older humans need more protein.
The “complete protein” myth was given another boost in 1971 when Frances Moore Lappe wrote Diet for a Small Planet. Lappe discouraged meat eating, but promoted food combining with vegetable proteins, such as beans and rice, to obtain all eight essential amino acids in one meal. But by 1981, Lappe conducted additional research and realized that combining vegetarian foods was not necessary to get proper protein. In her tenth-anniversary edition of Diet for a Small Planet, Lappe admitted her blunder and acknowledged that food combining is not necessary to obtain sufficient protein from a vegetarian diet. In fact, Dr. John McDougall warns that efforts to combine foods for complete protein are not only unnecessary, but dangerous, because “one who follows the advice for protein combining can unintentionally design a diet containing an excessive and therefore harmful amount of protein.”
Another myth that needs to be dispelled about protein is its relationship to strength, energy and athletes.
As pointed out by John Robbins in Diet for a New America, many studies have shown that protein consumption is no higher during hard work and exercise than during rest. Robbins writes, “True, we need protein to replace enzymes, rebuild blood cells, grow hair, produce antibodies, and to fulfill certain other specific tasks … (But) study after study has found that protein combustion is no higher during exercise than under resting conditions.”
A 1978 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association warns athletes against taking protein supplements, noting, “Athletes need the same amount of protein foods as non athletes. Protein does not increase strength. Indeed, it often takes greater energy to digest and metabolize the excess of protein.”
Most athletes are not aware of this information on protein, but there have been attempts to make this warning known. For example, George Beinhorn wrote in the April 1975 issue of Bike World, “Excess protein saps energy from working muscles … It has also been discovered that too much protein is actually toxic. In layman’s terms, it is poisonous … Protein has enjoyed a wonderful reputation among athletes. Phrases like ‘protein power,’ ‘protein for energy,’ ‘protein pills for the training athlete’ . . . are all false and misleading.”
Robbins gives additional evidence for this claim in Realities for the 90’s by naming some of the world’s greatest athletes, all holders of world records in their field, who all happen to be vegetarians: Dave Scott, six-time winner of the Ironman Triathlon (and the only man to win it more than twice); Sixto Linares, world record holder in the 24-hour biathlon; Paavo Nurmi, 20 world records and nine Olympic medals in distance running; Robert Sweetgall, world’s premier ultra-distance walker; Murray Rose, world records in the 400 and 1500-meter freestyle; Estelle Gray and Cheryl Marek, world record in cross-country tandem cycling; Henry Aaron, all-time major league home run champion; Stan Price, world record holder in the bench press; Andreas Cahling, Mr. International body building champion; Roy Hilligan, Mr. America body building champion; Ridgely Abele, eight national championships in karate; and Dan Millman, world champion gymnast … all vegetarians.
That’s a list that would surprise the average American, based on what we have been taught to believe about protein and meat.
Calcium intake is another subject many vegetarians are concerned about. We are told we must consume milk and other dairy products to get calcium, but, actually, the best source of calcium is from green leafy vegetables. The trace mineral boron is essential for calcium to be properly absorbed, and the best source of boron is leafy vegetables and fruits.
Neal Barnard, M. D., states “that green leafy vegetables provide generous amounts of calcium without the animal protein of meat diets. In fact, green vegetables such as broccoli, collard greens, and kale are loaded with calcium.” The reason Dr. Barnard emphasizes the importance of obtaining calcium without animal protein is that the acidity of animal protein robs calcium from the bones. Calcium is one of the most alkaline minerals in the body, and when our blood stream becomes too acidic because of meat, dairy and other acidic foods, the only way for the body to balance this acidity is to rob calcium from the bones.
The incredible lesson to learn here is that calcium deficiencies are not caused by insufficient intake of dietary calcium. Calcium deficiencies are actually caused by excessive acidity, primarily animal protein. Dr. Barnard notes that when volunteers eat a high-protein meal, they lose calcium in their urine.
John McDougall, M.D., also writes: “An important fact to remember is that all natural diets, including purely vegetarian diets without a hint of dairy products, contain amounts of calcium that are above the threshold for meeting your nutritional needs. In fact, calcium deficiency caused by an insufficient amount of calcium in the diet is not known to occur in humans.”
But many people, especially elderly women have a very serious problem with calcium deficiencies, which cause brittle bones. One of the most serious problems caused by loss of calcium is osteoporosis, which is characterized by the loss of 50 to 75 percent of a person’s original bone material. The orthodox approach of medical doctors and nutritionists in dealing with osteoporosis and other calcium deficiencies is to tell the person to consume more dairy products or even calcium supplements. This approach has not been successful, because in the United States, 25 percent of women over the age of 65 suffer from osteoporosis. Their bones become brittle and are easily broken. Something as minor as a sneeze can lead to a cracked rib.
For people wanting to prevent or heal osteoporosis, their primary goal should be to minimize calcium loss by avoiding animal products and other acidic foods. A diet of raw green vegetables will supply plenty of dietary calcium, without any need for harmful products such as dairy or calcium supplements. There is an incredible amount of evidence from all around the world to substantiate this claim.
Anyone successfully indoctrinated by the meat and dairy industry’s nutritional education would be baffled by the numerous studies finding osteoporosis, a calcium deficiency that makes the bones porous and brittle, is very prominent among people with high consumption of both protein and calcium. For example, the March 1983 Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that by age 65, the measurable bone loss of meat-eaters was five to six times worse than of vegetarians. The August 22, 1984 issue of the Medical Tribune also found that vegetarians have “significantly stronger bones.”
African Bantu women average only 350 mg. of calcium per day (far below the National Dairy Council recommendation of 1,200 mg.), but seldom break a bone, and osteoporosis is practically nonexistent, because they have a low-protein diet. At the other extreme, Eskimos have the highest calcium intake in the world (more than 2,000 mg. a day), but they suffer from one of the highest rates of osteoporosis because their diet is also the highest in protein.
The explanation for these findings is that meat consumption leaves an acidic residue, and a diet of acid-forming foods requires the body to balance its pH by withdrawing calcium (an alkaline mineral) from the bones and teeth. So even if we consume sufficient calcium, a high-protein, meat-based diet will cause calcium to be leached from our bones. Dr. John McDougall reports on one long-term study finding that even with calcium intake as high as 1,400 mgs. a day, if the subjects consumed 75 grams of protein daily, there was more calcium lost in their urine than absorbed into their body. These results show that to avoid a calcium deficiency, it is more important to reduce protein intake than to increase calcium consumption.
Vitamin B-12 is another concern of many vegetarians because B-12 does not come from the plant kingdom. But likewise, animals do not make Vitamin B-12 either. B-12 is made by bacteria that grow in the soil, and can be found in bacteria in fermented foods and bacteria within the human body.
Our daily requirement of Vitamin B-12 is extremely small, only about 3 millionths of a gram for adults, including pregnant women, and the requirement for children is proportionately smaller. The liver stores a three to five-year supply of B-12, acting as a “B-12 buffer” for the body, as explained by Michael Klapper, M.D.
With the trace mineral cobalt found in sea vegetables, a vegetarian can manufacture his own B-12. Dr. Klapper writes, “Most of the concerns over vitamin B-12 adequacy in the vegan diet (those eating no animal products) seem to be more theoretical than real, and most vegan people seem to grow and function very well without ever taking a vitamin B-12 supplement…. There are bacteria within the human body that make vitamin B-12, in the mouth’s saliva, in the liver’s bile, and within the intestinal contents.”
Cereal grasses (such as barley) and nutritional yeast, which is grown on a B-12 enriched medium, are also considered good vegetarian sources for B-12. In his book, Cereal Grass, What’s in it for you!, Ronald L. Seibold, M.S., writes, “Surprisingly, laboratory analyses from the past forty years consistently show that dehydrated cereal grass does contain appreciable amounts of vitamin B-12…. The B-12 found in wheat and barley grasses may be there in connection with microbes found in the soils in which the grasses are grown or the positive flora (lactobacilli) which are known to thrive on cereal grasses.”
Vitamin B-12 has many important functions, several of which are related to the functions of other B-complex vitamins. B-12 is required for the conversion of folic acid to an active form, it is essential for proper formation of red blood cells, for the synthesis of DNA and RNA, for normal cell growth and nerve function. B-12 is also required for proper digestion and absorption of foods, specifically the metabolism of protein, carbohydrates and fat.
Fat is essential for the human body to function properly. The two essential fatty acids (and the most important) are linoleic and linolenic acids. Over the years our diets have become deficient in these two very important nutrients. The highly processed fats we consume compete with and replace these essential fatty acids within our bodies. As a result, there has been an increase of immune-related diseases in our society. Some of these are multiple sclerosis, diabetes, lupus, and arthritis, just to name a few.
Raw flaxseed oil contains both of these essential fatty acids, along with vitamin A, E, and D, and the water-soluble vitamins B1, B2 and C, as well as many minerals, including iron, zinc and potassium.
Flaxseed oil should be purchased in dark containers since exposure to the light destroys some of the nutrients. It should be “cold pressed,” stored in the refrigerator and consumed within three months of the date of purchase. In the beginning, a person may notice some loosening of the stool; however, this usually stops within one or two weeks. After approximately three to four weeks a person should notice healthier skin and hair, increased vitality, and some have reported a lessening of arthritic pain.
Fats cannot be broken down in the mouth, and only a minute amount can be broken down in the stomach. It is not until it reaches the bile and pancreatic juices that fats can be broken down.
Saturated fat is any fat that is solid at room temperature, like margarine, lard and creamed cooking oils. Since saturated fat becomes rancid when exposed to air for even a short period of time, various chemical techniques are used to alter their chemical makeup so that the fat-containing products will have an extended shelf life. When these unnatural oils are heated, they become very dangerous for the body, causing the blood platelets to become sticky, increasing the possibility of heart attack, stroke, cancer or high blood pressure. Look for the words “hydrogenated” or “partially hydrogenated” on the label and avoid them like the plague! Saturated fat is linked to over 50 percent of all deaths in America. If a person eliminates saturated fat and meat from their diet, they will reduce their chances of having a heart attack by 96 percent. Most Americans consume 42 to 45 percent of their calories from fat, while people in the Orient consume only 10 percent of their calories from fat! As a result, the rate of heart disease is 17 times higher in the United States than in China, and breast cancer is five times more prevalent.
Several well-documented studies have shown that in cultures and countries where fat is consumed in higher quantities, especially animal fats, there is a higher incidence of heart disease, certain types of cancer, and other diseases. Even within Japan, affluent women who eat meat daily have 8.5 times higher risk of breast cancer compared to poorer women who rarely or never eat meat.
Unsaturated fats are those that remain liquid at room temperature. There are two types of unsaturated fat: monounsaturated which is found in olive oil, almonds and almond oil and polyunsaturated fat found in corn, safflower and cotton seed oils. The monounsaturated fats found in natural foods do not cause increased levels of cholesterol. However, unsaturated fats should be eaten very sparingly!
As God designed, our body can only digest 2 teaspoons of fat per hour. Due to the slow digestion of fat, a high-fat meal can stay in the digestive system for up to 19 hours! During this time the food ferments, which produces toxic waste that travels through the bloodstream causing headaches, bursitis, irritation of the stomach and intestines, along with other body pain and physical problems.
The National Academy of Sciences has reported that bowel, breast and prostate cancer incidence are highest among those Americans who consume a high-fat diet. The Academy has recommended that the American people decrease their intake of meat, fried foods and high-fat dairy products. In addition, they have determined that an increase in the consumption of foods high in carotene decreases the incidence of cancer of the bladder and larynx. To improve circulation and to reduce triglyceride and cholesterol levels, one should avoid fats found in meat, dairy products, oils, margarine, shortenings and most store-bought salad dressings. Heart attacks, strokes, diabetes, many types of cancer and other diseases are the end result of a high-fat intake.
Heat Destroys Nutrition
When food is heated above 107 degrees, the enzymes start to die. By 122 degrees, they are completely destroyed. Heating not only destroys enzymes, but alters the chemical make-up, rendering the food nutritionally-deficient for the human body. The body then has to work overtime to move this dead, unnatural substance through the digestive system, causing great stress for the colon and robbing the bones and other organs of their enzymes to complete the process. (Enzymes are required for all bodily functions. Vitamins, minerals, hormones and protein all require enzymes to perform their functions.) Processed foods are not only cooked, but are also full of chemicals and other toxins our bodies were never designed to have to deal with.
Consequently, over 65 percent of our adult population and over 20 percent of our youth (those under 17) already have chronic diseases and are on medication. If that doesn’t make you angry, it should! We need to wake up and take back the control of our bodies before the foods of this world destroy us! I know it is not easy, but thousands are doing it each day and so can you.
By God’s design, we were meant to eat our food raw, just like all of the rest of the animal kingdom that God created. Raw food is digested very quickly, usually within 30 to 60 – rather than the hours or even days required by many of the cooked food or cooked flesh products. Raw fruits and vegetables also are a wonderful source of fiber.
Raw foods are certainly more economical than flesh and processed foods, and require much less time to prepare. In fact, if a person has an area where they can garden, they can produce their own food for pennies while enjoying healthy exercise. When it comes to cleanup, it is much easier to simply rinse off a plate that has contained a raw meal than to clean up grease on dishes, pots and pans after a meal based on the SAD American Diet.
Raw foods help the body’s weight to normalize and keep the body’s appetite in check. It is almost impossible to overeat on a raw, whole-foods diet. Amazingly, when we eat foods the way God designed them to be eaten, degenerative diseases do not occur; in fact, if we are already experiencing these diseases, they will usually reverse and disappear quite quickly. People often report having more energy, being better rested at night and do not require as much sleep. Mood swings usually disappear and even the need for a deodorant or breath deodorizers often vanishes. Problems with PMS and menopause usually become nonexistent and often the mind becomes clearer while memory and concentration improve.
Dr. James B. Sumner, a 1946 Nobel Prize winner, states: “Raw foods contain health-giving rejuvenating enzymes. Cooking, pasteurization, smoking, pickling, air pollution, pesticides, drugs, antibiotics, chlorination and fluoridation of water and many other interferences in nature’s processing will denature enzymes, thus making the nutrients in food not readily available.”
Cooking food has a devastating effect on nutrition. All enzymes and most vitamins are destroyed by heat, while minerals and protein are converted by heat to a form that is not usable by the body. According to John Michael Douglas, M.D., Ph.D., Dr. P.H., F.A.C.P.: “When we treat food with thermal fire, we lose up to 97 percent of the water soluble vitamins (Vitamins B and C) and up to 40 percent of the lipid soluble vitamins (Vitamins A, D, E,
The composition of protein is drastically changed by heat. If you have ever fried an egg, this is obvious. Once the egg hits the hot frying pan, the clear, runny “albumen” (protein) of the egg instantly changes to a white, rubbery texture. Protein is obviously not the same substance before and after it hits the heat. And the form of protein that mankind was created to be sustained by is raw protein from living plants.
Enzymes are the very first nutrient to be lost to heat, as they begin to die at 107 degrees. This is bad news because enzymes are necessary for the functioning of every other nutrient, so nothing works the same without the benefit of the enzymes from the food you consume.
So this means that by cooking food, you have killed all its enzymes, destroyed most vitamins, and transformed protein and minerals into a form the body can no longer use to build new, vital, living cells. This is not good. Considering the dead-food diets of most Americans, it is no wonder that we are a sick nation in the middle of a health care crisis that no vitamin supplements, medical drugs, surgeries, radiation or chemotherapy will ever solve.
We must acknowledge that there is a difference between food that is alive and food that is dead, and we must ensure that the majority of what we put into our body is material which we can use to build healthy new living cells. This is why the Hallelujah Diet is at least 75 to 85 percent raw fruits and vegetables. And if and when we do eat cooked foods, we must ensure that this 15 to 25 percent portion of our diet does not contain toxic chemicals, animal products, white flour, white sugar and other processed foods that are very hazardous and difficult for the body to eliminate. Foods such as steamed vegetables, baked potatoes, brown rice and other cooked food recipes found in this book are not health-producing and cell-building in the way that raw foods are, but these cooked foods do not have the same negative impact as consuming hamburgers, hot dogs, colas, sugar desserts and other processed foods.
Another category of food that should be eaten raw rather than cooked is spinach and other green leafy vegetables, such as Swiss chard, beet greens, turnip and mustard greens, kale and collards. The reason is that these green, leafy foods contain oxalic acid, which is a very healthy substance in its raw form, but causes several problems when it is cooked. In his book, Fresh Vegetable and Fruit Juices, Dr. Norman W. Walker writes: “Spinach should never be eaten when cooked unless we are particularly anxious to accumulate oxalic acid crystals in our kidneys with the consequent pain and kidney trouble. When spinach is cooked or canned, the oxalic acid atoms become inorganic as a result of excessive heat and may form oxalic acid crystals in the kidneys.”
Dr. Walker explains that oxalic acid – in its raw, organic form – is one of the elements that contribute to the wave-like movement, known as peristaltic motion, that moves food and its waste products through our digestive and eliminative systems. Dr. Walker writes: “Organic oxalic acid is one of the important elements needed to maintain the tone of, and to stimulate peristalsis. It is perfectly obvious, of course, that any motion of the body which takes place by the ‘involuntary’ action of its organs is predicated on there being life in the cells and tissues of such organs. Life is active, magnetic; whereas there is no action in death nor in dead matter, and this applies definitely to cells and tissues of our anatomy. If the important organs comprising the alimentary and eliminative departments of our system, or any parts of them, are moribund or dead, the efficiency of their function is impaired, to say the least. This condition can result only from a lack or deficiency of live atoms in the food nourishing the cells and tissues concerned. Live food means that food which contains live organic atoms and enzymes found only in our raw foods.”
Dr. Walker further explains that oxalic acid readily combines with calcium, and if both of these elements are in their raw, organic state, “the result is a beneficial constructive combination.” But he warns: “When the oxalic acid has become inorganic by cooking or processing the foods that contain it, then this acid forms an interlocking compound with the calcium, even combining with the calcium in other foods eaten during the same meal, destroying the nourishing value of both. This results in such a serious deficiency of calcium that it has been known to cause decomposition of the bones. This is the reason I never eat cooked or canned spinach.”
My goal in writing this book is to set before you a simpler, healthier lifestyle. A lifestyle that will enable you to so eat that you might live! At Hallelujah Acres we do not teach an all-raw diet (although that is the ideal). Many find an all-raw diet too difficult and thus will not stick with it. We strive to maintain a diet of at least 75 to 85 percent raw foods, with the cooked food portion making up no more than 15 to 25 percent of our diet. In this book you will find some transitional recipes for those just beginning the Hallelujah diet, some recipes for that 15 to 25-percent of cooked food intake, and some recipes for special occasions, as well as many all-raw recipes.
A trip through the supermarket should make one realize that the American people are in trouble physically. How much space is given to live, fresh foods in comparison to manufactured, dead, devitalized, chemically altered foods? This manufactured food keeps for a long time on the supermarket shelf and makes the food manufacturer a lot of money, but at the expense of the health of the people who eat these devitalized foods.
The SAD American Diet of today is lacking in nutrition! The nutrients our body needs cannot be found in the dead, unnatural, manufactured products we buy in cans, bottles, jars, and packages found on the supermarket shelves. As Dr. Malkmus so often says, “Once you leave the fresh produce department in your supermarket, you are literally in the non-food section of the store and there is practically zero nutrition in any product found outside of the fresh produce department.”
In America, we live in a fast-paced world where we don’t take time to prepare healthy meals. It is so much “easier” to stop by the fast-food restaurant on the way home. Have you ever stopped to realize that fast-food restaurants are slowly destroying the health of those who patronize them? The “foods” found in these establishments are full of fat, salt, sugar, white flour and harmful additives that cause most of the physical problems being experienced by our people and contribute to the heart attacks, strokes and cancers suffered by a large percentage of the American population.
May our Lord guide you, bless you, strengthen you and help you to do that which you know in your heart is right for your own body and those you love. My prayers are with you!