500 Words – Day 009 – Moving Away From a Raw Vegan Diet -1375 Words-

-1375 Words- -Reading Time: 6 Minutes-

I was asked this question on Facebook.

What has your experience been since moving away from a raw vegan “fruitarian” lifestyle/diet?

Two BIG changes that I feel are a move in the right direction are…

1. Better bowel movements
2. No more trips mid-night trips to the bathroom

I really had no expectations that these two things would take place. But frankly, both are tremendously beneficial results in my book. My bowels appear to be much happier and I’m getting a better quality of sleep. There are a couple of reasons for this that I will explain below. My gut just feels more at peace. It’s kind of hard to explain.

What foods I have changed.

1. Sweet Potatoes
2. Vegetable Soup
3. Daily Green Boost

What else I have changed.

I start my day with my largest caloric intake so that by the end of the day my body is better able to find rest before I go to sleep at night. I start heavier at breakfast(break fast) and then I go lighter as the day goes on. I am currently on a rotation where I have a large salad one day, a big bowl of vegetable soup the next day, and a big bowl of sweet potatoes on the third day. This makes the most amount of sense to me. It’s also easier.

On the days I eat my salads and soups, I supplement Daily Green Boost with bananas mashed up along with shelled hemp seeds and chia seeds. It’s like a deep dark green banana-flavored tapioca pudding. I know some will decry foul with my combining fruits with fats, but I would disagree on a physiological level. Our body in its infinite wisdom combines both lingual lipase and alpha-amylase in our salivary glands together precisely for the digestion of both starches and fats. And nature wouldn’t create a perfect fruit like an avocado which contains both fats and carbohydrates if they weren’t supposed to be consumed at the same time. But alas there will be some that suggest we shouldn’t be eating avocados. I disagree with them on this point as well. Just don’t eat too much avocado in one sitting. Go easy on this wonderful fruit.

On the days I eat sweet potatoes, I will have a large and hydrating banana and berry smoothie for lunch with coconut water and coconut milk combined with Daily Green Boost.

I still eat fruit throughout the day, but just not as much. I also have changed my eating window to something called Time-Restricted Feeding. Some of you may call it Intermittent Fasting, but I believe the former is a better way of understanding what it is that is happening physiologically. Because until someone stops putting calories into their body, they are not fasting. And I believe that even the use of the word fasting implies some greater benefit or inflated sense of reality that in the long run will hinder its adherents down a path that is of limited success and possibly other systemic failures including gallstone formation, which I will address later.

Therefore, I suggest that we would best be served to use the most accurate terminology, not only in this endeavor but in all things we do, because it is our own internal dialogue that ultimately matters the most.
Intermittent Fasting as most are calling it has gained much popularity as a mode of beneficial lifestyle change, but I believe that there is still much confusion out there about how to properly execute it as a program.

Once again, I want to stress the importance of calling it what it really is. Time-Restricted feeding.
One teacher, Dr. David Sinclair of Harvard University, whom I highly respect for his hard work in helping people not only overcome disease but also live longer lives practices an extreme version of this by limiting their eating to one meal per day. Most, however, limit their eating window to somewhere between 6 and 8 hours. And it is reported that this method produces favorable results. I on the other hand tend to agree with Dr. Valter Longo of the University of Southern California(USC), that the optimal feeding window is something more along the lines of 12 hours per day, and that it be held to consistently for the greatest outcome.
Though I don’t remember the exact reasoning from his fabulous book, The Longevity Diet, I do remember that he had one especially good reason for 12 hours per day being the optimal feeding window. Preventing gallstone formation.

How does gallstone formation happen?

Our bodies are very conservative and seem to be rather fond of the fruits of their labor. Bile(gall) is one of them. Bile is a yellowish-brown to a dark-green solution that is continually produced in the liver that serves to digest fats in the small intestine. And it’s as if our body refuses to waste this product, bile, that is created by storing and concentrating it in our gallbladder until the next time we partake in a meal. While being stored in the gallbladder, the bile is further concentrated by the removal of water. Hence, the formation of gallstones if it is stored for too long before being used again.

The solution is simple and should be quite obvious. Eating even a small amount of food that contains fat sends a message to the gallbladder to release bile so that it can do the work it was created for. If you are not eating for 18 hours a day or eating a diet that consists of little or no fat, you are just asking for gallstones and a strong possibility of surgical intervention to have your gallbladder removed according to Dr. Longo. A course of action that further hinders our body’s ability to attain its fullest potential of 120 healthy years.

As well, though researchers haven’t figured out exactly why studies do indicate that there is a correlation between those that forego breakfast having a much greater incidence of disease and overall mortality.

So to wrap this up, there are clear problems related to shortened feeding windows of 6 to 8 hours that can lead to gallstone formation and a possible need for surgical intervention. And on the other end of the spectrum for those eating 15 hours a day or more, other metabolic problems begin to arise along with sleeping disorders related to the practice.

My advice is similar to Dr. Valter Longo’s. Simply follow the rhythm of the equatorial sun as the sweet spot is found in the middle. If it cannot be kissed by the sun before entering your mouth, don’t let it kiss your lips. Just remember 12 and 12.

As I promised above my thoughts on why my urinary and bowel movements have improved as I have implemented these changes.

As I mentioned in my prior two short essays, “Why Am I No Longer a Raw Vegan?” & “Fruit, Soups and Salads”, there is a proper balance of electrolytes that ultimately keep our body in a state of euhydration(sufficient hydration).

If you have ENOUGH of ALL of the electrolytes that the body requires, it will remain in a greater state of ease and homeostasis. Our bowels will move like they are supposed to and when they are supposed to because our hydration levels will be optimized. Our urinary frequency will be reduced because our kidneys will not be having to work overtime to constantly be reducing the amounts of some electrolytes to balance out ALL of them. No more insignificant visits to the bathroom and especially the ones in the middle of the night. Why? Because our body will be in a state of homeostasis where it can find rest and work on its healing and restorative processes.

Finally, Time-Restricted Feeding isn’t a quick fix as much as it is a long-term lifestyle that is part of why the Blue Zones even exist and why those in these demographics are living longer more robust lives. Not only are they eating more of the right things, but their eating patterns are inherently more aligned with what nature intended for a body with a potential to live an active 120 years.

And if you need to lose weight, don’t change the foods you eat or restrict the window by which you feed; simply eat less over the same 12-hour span.

500 Words – Day 008 – Do You Know Squat?

I’ve been practicing it daily now for 3.5 years. I drop down and hold for a 30 count first thing in the morning upon greeting the morning sun.

This after peddling my legs while laying on my back 50 times. 50 leg extensions while holding my legs with my hands behind my knees and then 100 leg curls while on my belly. It’s my way to start the day and get the engines running full steam ahead.

I also do 15 squats at a time, sometimes multiple times per day, while holding on to the kitchen sink. I may do that many times a day, but at least once so that I can do a tremendous amount of squats a year. How can that not do something positive for the body?

At this point in my morning routine, I do a full-body lymphatic where I massage all of my limbs and torso towards the jugular veins in my neck. The purpose of this is to keep all of the intracellular and lymphatic fluids moving in a positive direction, back into general vascular circulation for better overall health. I’ve seen the benefits in my own life. Here is what I’ve noticed.

Overall improved skin/tissue quality which in turn improves color and appearance.

It reduces fluid retention and swelling by moving excess water and metabolic waste from the tissues back into the lymphatic channels where our immune system can do its best work.

I’ve also noticed a better texture across my skin overall along with a reduction in scar tissues. My suspicion is that this makes our body more efficient at healing its injuries and illness related to direct trauma and surgeries.

And of course, possibly the greatest benefit of all, it is incredibly relaxing.

I have a very lofty goal of making it to 120 years of age with a body that looks and feels no more than a healthy, robust 34. But wouldn’t that be fascinating if I got to see my birthday in the year 2116? I would love nothing more than to celebrate my birthday at 144 with a body that looked and felt no more than 24.

I’m simply growing a fully refurbished body. And it is gonna last. This time I’m doing it the right way.

Death was once my master. Now it has become my greatest teacher. A wicked man that I once was, obeying the dictates bearing the fruits of ignorance in my daily life. I had no idea the path I was traveling and where it was going to lead me. But I have repented and now I will not relent. I have found joy in knowing that I am no longer a victim of circumstance or just bad luck because of genetics. That life is not a roll of some celestial dice. That it is not something that is in every way out of my control. But something more comforting, knowing that there is a will in this thing called life that wants us to not only be healthy and wise but also bear much good fruit unto life itself.

We are here for a reason. Life does not waste its force where there is no return on investment. We are here for a purpose and it is my pleasure to serve that greater good even if I don’t yet fully understand the goal. And that is why I am here to serve.

And it all begins with some squats at the beginning of each and every day with the first kiss of the merciful morning sun that brings me life and the motivation to rise to the occasion.

{EDIT}500 Words – Day 004 -A Facebook Answer. What I would do. What I did

There is nothing…noooothing that can replace what chewing does physiologically.

Let me address this then I can share a few other things with you.

I personally believe that it is the biggest single factor under our control that can change the course of our body health overall.

I am a survivor of cancer and even before I was diagnosed my body started me headed in a healing direction for which I am very grateful. One of the first things I started doing was chewing my food 100X. I literally started liquefying everything like a juicer and then swallowing the worn out flavorless pulp. I wouldn’t try that overnight but you might want to work up to that as quickly as you can comfortably. This practice alone will began a long term change that improved many things in my life. Not only did my oral health improve but my jaw corrected to a better alignment and my sinuses are much healthier too.

It literally fixes a whole load of problems.

I don’t count anymore because I eventually learned to just chew everything until there is no liquid left. However long that took. It has been so revolutionary to me that I dedicated a whole site to it…LoL https://chewdigest.com

NO mouth breathing. It was little rough at first but over time my sinuses improved greatly because of these two physical practices that focused on my mouth and nose. My inputs.

My body has a natural cycle; a rhythm. Very much like clockwork. I found that my body performs its best when I do the following religiously.

This is one practice that has worked very well for me. You might try it on for size. My body likes this one as it follows a very simple schedule that has nothing to do with me but the day/night cycles.

  1. 12 Noon to 8 PM: Feed
  2. 8 PM to 4 AM: Assimilate what you ate from 12-8.
  3. 4 AM to 12 Noon: Eliminate and cleanse.

I eat no solid foods outside the feeding window. I’m ready to fall asleep before 9 and laying down with something good to read or write ready to fall asleep. My body takes off during this 8-hour shift. So I go to bed. I usually wake up around midnight and have a glass of water or two then back to bed. But sometimes I’m inspired to write and will for a couple of hours. Then I sleep in till 6’ish.
I almost always wake up religiously at 4 AM. Strangely when our body’s assimilation shift is over. It’s like it hands me back the keys…LoL
When I first get up I juice 2 limes, 1 lemon, and 1 orange and top off in a pint glass with water. I will have a big cup of decaffeinated green tea usually after 9 am with some honey and lemon in it.

If I can’t make it till Noon I will have an orange. That usually gets me there.
I eat only fruit from Noon till 6 PM. I eat only one thing at a time but enough to fill me up. 2-3 times till dinner which is a huge leafy green salad with all the other good tomato, cucumber, carrot, etc., and then done by 8.

A few other factors I removed from my diet that made HUGE improvements in circulation and hydration levels were coffee, dark chocolate, and SALT. It’s all the same no matter the color, price, or origin…LoL. I know we love these things, but we don’t need them and they are not much of a help in wanting to achieve my fullest potential of 120 years with a body that looks and feels no more than 34.

This is basically a high-performance lifestyle/diet that optimally observes what my body needs to heal, recover and rebuild at the fastest rate. I intuited most of this on my own by trial and error over a 3.5 year period. I’ve written about that too…LoL.

It was more than just a dietary change but a tuning if you will of my will with the will of my body.

And it just keeps getting better for me every day. I’m almost 50 and people think I’m in around 30 when they meet me. And that is after cancer too.
I can’t tell you what your body wants, but I know what worked for me. And I don’t think I am anyone special. My body was wrecked and I was scared straight.

500 Words – Day 003 – Welcome to the World of Addiction -622 Words-

Why Instant Gratification is Killing Us All. Welcome to the World of Addiction. Now go home.

WE WANT THE DOPAMINE, AND WE WANT IT NOW DAMMIT!!!

Is it easy to eat a whole-food/plant-based diet?

YES and NO.

It’s even harder to eat one that is completely uncooked. It takes a lot of discipline, although it can be done. I speak from experience.

I have more than 5 years of sobriety and am very thankful for A.A. as a support program that helped me attain that goal. After much reflection on what it means to be an addict driven by compulsive behaviors and less-than-stellar decisions, it has become very clear to me that alcohol was not the only thing I was addicted to. And I have a feeling we, as humans, are all addicts to one degree or another.

I discovered this as I moved away from eating foods made with animals. Not during the transition, but once they were gone. Cooked foods followed shortly thereafter. And with those things off the table added salt pretty much disappeared. There was nothing to put it on…LoL! Everything now was already full of flavor and didn’t need any help.

This…THIS is when I found out just how much of an addict I had been all of my life and what the true source of my many addictions was. Anything processed by the hands of man.

I have yet to look for scientific data to back me up, but I am pretty certain it has everything to do with the bacterial colonies that our body has to build up in our gut to deal with, ‘ALL THINGS PROCESSED.’ And the reason it must employ this additional digestive process is that OUR body is not meant to consume processed foods by nature, design, or evolution, whichever creative paradigm you believe in.

According to our best understanding, the human microbiome may weigh as much as five pounds. The microbiome is what some would refer to as our ‘gut buddies.’ And some people have more than others.

It is my suggestion that the combination of this biological process along with the introduction to processed foods in the last 200 years that we have all become creatures of habit or addicts. Not addicted to any specific foods really, but the reward one gets from eating processed foods. The instant gratification we get from putting anything processed in our body is the problem because we are taking a shortcut directly to the reward. We are skipping past all of the hard work of growing and harvesting our foods. We are skipping past all of the hard work chewing every last bite to a dehydrated, flavorless pulp before swallowing. And this is the problem.

Instant gratification by removing the risk and hard work that was part and parcel of human development over many thousands of years. And this is where an uncooked whole-food/plant-based diet is hard. At least at first because we have to get used to not being rewarded instantly, and that is a hard thing to walk away from.

WE WANT THE DOPAMINE, AND WE WANT IT NOW DAMMIT!!!

And this is where 5+ years of sobriety and understanding addiction to alcohol really helped me out. It made it very clear that consuming anything processed results in addiction and compulsive behaviors. We literally CRAVE the stuff. And I have a feeling processed food manufacturers know this.

All that to say…If you choose this lifestyle, it won’t be an easy transition. No easier than quitting smoking, alcohol, drugs, you name it. It is all addiction, plain and simple and it is not you craving those foods but the gut buddies(bacteria) inside of you that our processed/cooked food diets planted deep inside of our gut.

500 Words – Day 002 – Fruitarian vs. Centenarian -553 Words-

“Blessed are the flexible, for they shall not be broken.”

I’ve been studying human physiology and disease pathology for the last 4.5 years. A part of that study has been dedicated to observing the practices of the longest living people on Earth. Our centenarians. Groups of people that live in these specific five places called Blue Zones.

1. Okinawa, Japan
2. Sardinia, Italy
3. Nicoya, Costa Rica
4. Ikaria, Greece
5. Loma Linda, California.

There are a number of things that they have in common. One of them is a whole-food/plant-based diet. To be a little more specific, people in these so-called Blue Zones typically eat a 95% plant-based diet that’s rich in legumes, whole grains, vegetables, and nuts, all of which can help reduce the risk of death.

Strangely…None of these groups are fruitarians.

In late 2020, I was introduced to a practice called Natural Hygiene. The natural hygiene diet is a system of healthy living whereby moral, physical, and environmental pollution is strictly avoided, and natural, healthy food is chosen in preference over processed foods. The principle is to provide everything the body needs to be healthy and to avoid anything that may hinder health and well-being.

One of the hallmarks of this system, as it is practiced today, is a diet that primarily consists of juicy sweet fruit and gentle leafy greens. Small amounts of nuts and seeds are also on the approved list. This system also tends to focus on a practice called food combining and also the opposite which is mono-meals where only one kind of fruit is eaten until the consumer is full and then rotating through a variety of fruits and gentle leafy greens.

I have been practicing this way of eating for the past year myself and have found it to be very VERY beneficial in its ability to help the body heal and cleanse itself from the inside out. This will always be a part of my dietary practice.

But is eating this way what the human body needs to find its way to its fullest potential of living to 120 years and possibly well beyond to a place above 144 with a body that looks no more than today’s middle age?

I cannot say for sure, because there are no models that exist outside of religious texts that demonstrate this much less suggest this. And those practitioners that have been promoting this way of eating over the last 100-150 years have never themselves accomplished our fullest human longevity potential, much less in large communities. Or even small groups for that matter. Most haven’t even lived any longer than any average Joe that didn’t have any particular practice, but those in the Blue Zones have.

For me, I will continue on looking for better answers, and practicing what I preach. I will be continually pressing into the practices of what I can observe is working in the each and everyday practices of those that also practice what they preach. But I will not be so stubborn as to ignore the proofs that exist in our day in favor of rigid structures of beliefs in contrast to actual evidence of that which actually brings forth fruit.

I will continue to learn, grow and adapt. A wise man I knew once said, “Blessed are the flexible, for they shall not be broken.” Thanks for the wisdom Chuck(Smith).

500 Words – Day 001 – Are We Getting Enough of the Right Stuff? -961 Words-

In late 2020, I was introduced to a concept of health and wellness that is referred to as the Terrain Model of Natural Hygiene. It is a way of understanding human physiology and disease pathology that is a more hands-off approach coupled with a whole-food/plant-based diet. A diet where adherents also take a hands-off approach to the foods they eat. Consuming foods the way they come out of the ground or fall from the tree. Consuming foods in a raw state without any prior processing or heating.

This made a lot of sense to me considering I had been moving in this direction slowly over the two to three years leading up to my introduction of this way of thinking and living. In 2019, after a prolonged fast, I decided to remove all dairy from my diet. No more milk, cheese, or butter of any kind. A bummer at first, but I got over it pretty quickly and my physical and emotional state started making a turn for the better that I didn’t expect or plan on. Shortly after that and as a result of my studies I concluded that it would be best to also step away from all things related to beef and pork. And then over the following year leading up to the summer of 2020, I removed eating any kind of meat whatsoever. No more fish or fowl as well. I did keep eggs in my diet though until the end of November 2020. That was when I was introduced to a group on Facebook that promoted Natural Hygiene and the consumption of a fully unprocessed whole-food/plant-based diet.

This group in particular even goes so far as to suggest that much of what we call vegetables are not appropriate for human consumption and that the healthiest of diets consist of only fruit and leafy greens. Some might consider this a little extreme, but I had already done most of the hard work already in removing all of the animal-based food sources over the prior eighteen months.

Was it hard at first? Absolutely, I was eating as much as I wanted to, but never quite felt like I was fully satisfied until I started consuming a rather large salad every morning to set me off in the right direction for the day. From there it was all fruit and some occasional nuts until the evening. And what I can say for sure is that this way of eating is just what the doctor ordered. It really helped my body move to the next level of health and overall hygiene. But then there came a point where my body felt like something was missing. I began to suspect that this diet is/was not the full answer. That it is/was good for healing or cleansing, but that it alone was not what the body needs for ongoing health and wellness if one is trying to reach their fullest human potential.

I was really hoping I would be able to say that eating fresh fruit and leafy greens was all that was necessary for complete nutrition. I was standing at a crossroads and it was time to turn a corner.

Can we live on juicy fruits and leafy greens alone in our modern world? I cannot say that in good conscience. I cannot say that has been my experience because I am well convinced that the WAY our modern produce is grown for those of us that need to buy it is squarely where the blame is to be found. Not in the diet itself. Yes, plant-based/whole foods are still the answer, but alone they are just not quite enough on their own. Not until a more sustainable way of soil management is implemented on a larger scale. Fortunately, there are people that are currently working on that.

Not only do we need to be getting the right KIND of foods, but we also need to be getting a sufficient amount of the nutrients that are supposed to be in those foods.

Some might want to suggest that you can supplement vitamins and minerals in a daily capsule, but I would wholeheartedly say they likely make no difference. Especially considering, long-term studies of those in their 90’s demonstrate that there are no health benefits conferred to those that took a supplement daily versus those that did not. We are likely just making expensive urine for someone else’s benefit.

Simply put, our body needs the things that we call vitamins and minerals, but only in the form that nature creates them, bound up in their natural plant-based/whole food forms.

Two good options that can fill in some of the missing dietary components, even though not technically raw, in their cooked form, sweet potato, and legumes(beans) do seem to provide some of the things that would be missing in a fully uncooked whole-food/plant-based. Because of this, I would recommend limiting the intake of these two treating them like you would any supplement, consumed in smaller amounts. Sweet potatoes once or twice a week. Legumes could be consumed daily but should be limited in quantity to less than one cup, like in hummus as an example.

Another one which I’ve had the pleasure of trying out for the last month is called Daily Green Boost. Found at www.dailygreenboost.com. Currently, I am on their monthly auto-ship subscription program where they send out 4 bottles per month. They even cover the cost of shipping for a grand total of $91.76/mo.

It really seems to be filling in on anything else that might be lacking in my diet. I’ve even gone so far as to commit myself to this supplementation protocol for 6-9 months to see what difference it makes.


Are We Getting Enough of the Right Stuff?

by Michael J. Loomis