Doctors spend years in medical school learning how to treat a sick and diseased body through the use of modern medical procedures and drugs, but are woefully lacking in knowledge pertaining to the maintenance of health through consuming a proper diet. This is not entirely their fault. In school we are taught what we should know, and medical school is no exception to these teachings. Dr. T. Colin Campbell has researched this issue and shared his knowledge and discoveries in his book The China Study. Here are some excerpts of what he has had to say:
In conjunction with the 1985 government report, the president of the American Medical Students Association, William Kassler, writes:
- T. Colin Campbell, The China Study, pg. 327, 327-328, 328.
Weight Watchers brand foods contain 24 percent of calories from fat. Lean cuisine contains 25 percent of calories from fat. The Jenny Craig program requires the purchase of packaged meals with entrees such as cheese souffle and Salisbury steak, meals that are almost as bad as what most Americans eat at home. These commercial diet plans, since they are not very low in fat, must restrict portion sizes to offer "low calorie" meals. These "skimpy" portions represent an obsolete approach with a dismal track record. [...]
You can't eat out of boxes and consume powdered drinks forever, either. If you do lose some weight, you will always gain it back. Instead, permanent changes in your eating habits must be made. Learning new recipes and adopting different ways of eating that you can live with will maintain your weight loss and protect your health for the rest of your life.[...]
The result of denying yourself food is that when you go back to eating normally, fat accumulates even more easily than before because of a low metabolic rate. This leads to the familiar yo-yo phenomenon in which dieters lose weight, only to rebound to a heavier weight than when they started.[...]
So, instead of searching for weight-loss gimmicks and tricks, try to adopt a resolution to be healthy first. Focusing on your health, and not your weight, will eventually result in achieving successful long-term weight loss. Eating a healthy diet, one that is rich in an assortment of natural plant fibers, will help you crave less and feel satisfied without overeating. All diet plans fail because they cater to modern American tasters, which include too much processed foods or animal products to be healthy.
Stop measuring portions and trying to follow complicated formulas. Instead, eat as many vegetables, beans, and fresh fruits as possible, and less of everything else. Any other program is an insult to your intelligence.
- Joel Fuhrman, M.D., Eat To Live, pg. 114-115.
Our dietary habits should be those that keep our bodies at a healthy weight without extreme intervention, consisting of food that we can consume our entire lives without detrimental effects to our bodies and instead help them to thrive and function. If we are treating our bodies right they will adjust and maintain their weight within healthy parameters. This not only holds true for those who are overweight, but for those who are very thin as well. Every person's body is different and each person's body has its optimal weight. People should be realistic about what their optimal weight is, but not justify an unhealthy body as being their norm.
We only get one body in this lifetime. Why do we treat it so badly? Our bodies are one of a kind, they are irreplaceable. Once a person's body has worn out there is no going back for another. Our bodies give us what we give them. We truly are what we eat. If all we eat is unhealthy food then all we will get out of our bodies will be disease and illness. It is up to us individually to care for ourselves through proper dietary habits. Our bodies were made to consume natural foods, not packages ones. It also makes sense to me that the foods that are easily replaced through the seasons should be the ones we consume the most of. An animal takes months or years to reach the maturity necessary in order to consume it or its by-products; plants continuously grow and produce food throughout the warm months and some plant foods can store well for the duration of the cold months. Perhaps those are the portions in which we were meant to consume such foods in our diets.
Eating right doesn't have to be expensive, confusing, difficult, and filled with time consuming methods to determine if we have reached our maximum levels of fat, calories, sugars, etc. Following a dietary lifestyle that is based largely on fresh plant foods can help us avoid excess weight, disease ,and illness and grant us a long, high-quality life.