For Vegans: Some thoughts on Veganism

For Vegans

For Vegans.

Healthy body healthy mind = healthy soul

One of the most important generators of health in the human body is the food we eat.  A philosophy of “healthy body healthy mind = healthy soul”, starts with a nutritious diet.

dawnherbal vegan activismIn this blog post, I will discuss some of the reasons why vegans suffer from malnutrition and other health issues after being vegan for a while.
Most vegans work from the point of being ideologically or spiritually fed up with the killing and consumption of animals. They are very much like a pendulum going from being meat eaters to being non-meat eaters.

For a time, they feel better but soon they are malnourished and contract diseases and become mentally unstable as a result of being malnourished. The irony is that most people who eat a normal western meat-based diet are as malnourished and mentally unstable as vegans.

As a young herbalist, I had many wonderful mentors who were all living lifestyles according to their convictions which meant that they did not consume meat or if they did they would eat fish. One of my mentors (Dr Lawrence) even had healthy vegetarian dogs. How did he manage it? Well, the secret of practising a meatless diet lay not in the meatless diet but in the combinations of food you decide to eat. He used to say ” Eat it, enjoy it, suffer for it later.” He has since passed after living a robust and long life but he still inspires me to this day.

I will list some tried and tested combinations of food so that you can be a healthy nourished and mentally stable vegan.
The following rules of eating I recommend to all my clients who come to me with malignant diseases.

Rules for food consumption

Cut meat sugar and milk from your diet immediately.
Do not eat fruits and vegetables together.
Do not drink liquids while eating your meal (drink 1 hr before or 2hr after mealtimes).
Treat meal times as part of your healing process.
Allow 5 hours before you eat your next meal.
Above all do not eat between meals.

Eating the wrong combination of food, especially mixing fruits and vegetables causes acid when ultimately we want an alkaline system to overcome and prevent disease. You should eat a diet of roughly 80% alkaline foods to sustain a healthy system. Eating meat (especially red meat or pig meat) causes extreme acid in the system. Many of the food combinations our modern diets combine to generate poisons inside our bodies. Once your digestive system works well, the battle of healing illnesses is half won.

Boil, Broil and Bake For Vegans

dawnherbal vegan potatoesDo not overcook vegetables to the point that you strip all the life-giving properties from the food. Many people boil vegetables and throw away the water it was boiled in. Effectively throwing away all the life-giving nutrients down the drain.

Never peel potatoes. Always cook potatoes in its skin and eat the skin. The best way to prepare vegetables is to Invest in a sturdy vegetable scrubbing brush to thoroughly scrub the dirt off your vegetable and soak it in salt water for 5 mins before baking. When parboiling vegetables, save the liquid to cook your legumes, rice or other starches. Make sure that you eat whole grain starches.
Do not constantly fry foods either. Once in a while, it is okay but we tend to use this method of cooking too much. Saturating foods in cooking oil and salt is asking for cholesterol imbalance. Eating a vegan diet with foods prepared mostly by frying in large quantities will still cause obesity and related illnesses. Practice moderation in everything to achieve effortless balance.

Food and Liquids, just don’t do it!

The reason we should never drink (especially sugary drinks) while eating is because our stomachs produce healthy acid to break down proteins. When we fill our stomach with liquid it dilutes the acid and when the proteins need to digest it does not because the acid that would have effectively broken down the proteins have been diluted. This causes the proteins to remain in the stomach longer and it becomes not only putrid but the sugars (in many of the drinks we prefer while eating) cause fermentation. Do you suffer from acid reflux? Drinking liquids while eating a meal is the main cause. The other is overeating.

When your food ferments in your stomach it causes an accessive amount of air which pushes back up into your oesophagus to be released. Unfortunately, when the sphincter between your oesophagus and stomach (lower oesophagal sphincter) opens, for this reason, stomach acid gets pushed out with the air into your oesophagus… repeat this for 10 years and you have cancer of the oesophagus. All because you were eating and drinking in combination during mealtimes your whole life.

Mastication

Chewing or mastication is the process by which food is crushed and ground by teeth. It is the first step of digestion, and it increases the surface area of foods to allow a more efficient break down by enzymes.[wkipedia]

Digestion starts in your mouth proper chewing of food mixes with your saliva is the best way to help break down our food into components that nourish our bodies. Many oils are digested in our mouths while chewing and not our stomachs. Therefore chewing is very important. chew your food until it is thoroughly mashed before swallowing. it is important to chew well when we are following a vegan diet. breaking down the vegan diet for the proper absorption of nutrients is extremely important to prevent malnutrition.

Mistakes people make when going vegan

The most common mistakes made while changing to a vegan diet is to try and trick your mind into accepting the new status quo by eating food that tastes like meat or foods that is specifically designed to taste like a meat-based diet’s food. often in an attempt to get the flavour right, people who develop these recipes combine foods that should never be eaten at the same time. it results in not only striped nutrition but it produces toxic acid in our systems that are the foundation of all disease.

What’s the point of becoming a vegan if you don’t like how a carrot (or vegetables or fruit) tastes by itself and you move heaven and earth to make that carrot taste like a 100gr meat burger with all the trimmings? You may as well eat the meat. Store-bought processed foods for vegans seldom have the required combination of ingredients for a healthful diet. I used to fume when people say it’s a vegan “burger”! Now when I hear those terms I have to make a mental note not to roll my eyes to prevent eye strain. I try never to fume anymore. Age helps one find perspective.

Not all vegan foods are made equal

People think that all non-meat food will agree with their systems. Not so. If you have certain health challenges you may not be able to digest certain vegan foods. The key is to research what you can eat and what your body needs. It is not one size fits all and it is very difficult to have a whole family on a vegan diet when they may all have different nutrition needs.

dawn herbal heathy shoppingVery often you find a family of vegans who all eat similar meals but one or more of the members are malnourished while the rest thrive.
It is also very difficult to be a vegan if you suffer from nut or legume allergies. You will not be able to get all your nutrients from a purely plant-based diet.

Know what each person you feed needs nutritionally. In addition, knowing the healthiest combinations of food is an absolute necessity when you decide to be a vegan. Therefore, being a vegan and forcing your whole family to be vegan with you (vegan parents) is a humbling responsibility, not a trend.

 

Grazing

This is a common issue when following a vegan diet. You know you are a grazer when you spend the whole day snacking. You are never satiated (full) after eating a meal. The reason why this happens is that your body did not get the nourishment it needed from the food you ate. Your clever body then makes you think that you are still hungry. The problem with grazing all day is that you never give your stomach time to rest.

Our digestive systems have a cycle.

It takes roughly 5 hours for food to digest to the point where the contents will be emptied into your small intestine. However, once you eat again before this happens, the digestion process starts again. As a result, you have digested food getting old in the stomach while new food digests. Many people who eat all day, snacking and grazing, only manage to empty their stomachs after they have gone to bed. This causes sleep disruption. It also causes morning fatigue since your body worked all night to digest your food.

To combat feeling like a zombie in the morning try to eat your last meal of the day 5 hours before bed. This is also a good way of practising intermittent fasting. To have a healthy gut, do not eat between meals and wait 5 hours before your next meal. 2 hours after you have had a meal drink water and healthy teas to combat the feeling of hunger. Many times we are not hungry but thirsty between mealtimes.

It takes discipline, but once you have practised this for 2 months it will become part of your routine. You will have formed a good habit. Help give your body a chance to heal itself by forming healthy life habits.

To Conclude

I would like to conclude this blog post by imploring young people not to become vegan if they are just following a trend. Your health is too important to play with for shallow reasons. Being a well-nourished vegan is hard work that takes conviction and integrity. I applaud all conscious vegans who already knew and put into practice most of what I wrote in the blog post ( perhaps some know a few more details concerning this topic than me). You guys are awesome. Keep doing what you are doing because the vegan diet was the original diet. Stay healthy positive and strong.