The Microbiotic Diet

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Tess Thompson

The microbiotic diet has its roots in Japan. It emerged from the macrobiotic movement that was initiated by Sagen Ishizuka, and was made popular by Michio Kushi in the sixties. The diet has its roots in the belief that all foods have a certain type of energy, and that by consuming these foods, we partake of this energy. There is also a saying in the Oriental cultures to the effect of ‘you are what you eat’, and the diet draws inspiration from this saying.

Though the microbiotic diet is not a weight loss plan, it is a natural plan that allows you to balance the positive and negative energies of the various foods that are consumed. The balance in the body that results from following this diet results in natural weight loss over time. The diet also helps in higher levels of immunity, and provides a defense against various autoimmune diseases, cancer, psoriasis, asthma and other lifestyle diseases.

The propagators of the diet profess that the manner in which food are cut and prepared also makes a significant difference to the quantity and quality of energy that is left in them. Foods that are not balanced in the type of energy that they contain are considered harmful. Therefore, desserts and dairy products (considered to have excessive yin energy), or salty and processed foods (considered to have large amounts of yang energy), are not advised.

The diet is completely vegetarian and does not allow any kind of meat or poultry. Fish is allowed in small portions. It includes beans, grains and some dairy products.

Specifically, the microbiotic diet suggests that 50 to 60 percent of calories in a meal should come from whole grains, 25 to 30 percent from vegetables and 10 percent from cooked beans. Eating vegetables is encouraged if they are steamed, boiled, or baked, if required. The plan recommends consuming a bowl or two of soup each day. Allowed cooking mediums include benne oil, corn oil or mustard seed oil, and the flavorings allowed are natural sea salt, rice based vinegar, pickles and ginger root.

The reasons for adopting the microbiotic diet plan are great. Not only does the body return to its detoxified state, but there is a distinct reduction in diseases and ailments. There is also no doubt that going back to the basics also helps if you want to lose weight.


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