Food as Medicine: Protein Power

I am strongly against the consumption of any animal products including dairy but that does not exclude seafood.  I have found that a few ounces of raw or seared tuna for breakfast or lunch has a powerful effect on my fat burning ability through the day.  Raw, fresh, organic, leafy greens also contain an abundance of protein but I tend to mix them with a lot of fruit so I get a mix of natural sugar and protein which does allow the body to burn a massive amount of fat but can often be a taller mental leap than most of us want to traverse.
 
So, what is the problem with animal protein?  People have been eating it for centuries right?  How can there be anything wrong with it?  If you read one of many studies but one of my favorite by Dr. T. Colin Campbell knows as the China Study.  Under Dr. Campbell's instruction, a team performed a 40 year study on and around the consumption of animal proteins and the direct correlation with disease.  They completed this study in rural China where the diets of the people are both diverse by region but very steady by community.  In other words, people in a certain community ate the same finite things through their entire lives while others in the vast Chinese regions may have a completely different diet but also very consistently consuming the same things within their community throughout their lives.   Dr. Campbell and his team at Cornell University did not intend to put animal protein to the test when they began this journey.  The data revealed the results without coercion.  Eventually, Dr. Campbell was able to literally turn on and turn off cancer growth in laboratory animals with the consumption of animal proteins into the diets.
 
Another doctor with an incredible amount of wisdom and experience has also written a book about the triumphs of avoiding animal protein is Dr. Joel Fuhrman.  Dr. Fuhrman has treated more than 20,000 people using a "food as medicine" approach and has had remarkable results seeing people strengthen their immune system and their bodies begin to heal themselves and return to a naturally healthy state.
 
Not eating meat is really not the point here.  Understanding and accepting the fact that our culture may have it wrong is a bigger deal.  I choose not to eat meat because I have seen the affects of both consuming it and not consuming it and I have gotten to a place mentally where it is not a struggle or a challenge for me to avoid it.  Information combined with life experience is a powerful and motivating tool.
 
Many people ask me where I get my nutrients, how do I get enough protein, etc.  The truth is that there are more available and absorbable proteins as well as thousands of other phytonutrients in raw, fresh, organic produce than in any animal protein.  In fact, it is something like 12x in some of the most conservative cases where produce is wildly more nutrient dense than animal protein options.
 
I like to eat from the rainbow however and I think that is how we can ensure we get a good variety of the many micronutrients available.  Remember to specifically and intentionally include many forms of greens in your diet as they are known to be the most nutrient dense food on the planet.  

We love to make smoothies at home.  They are always different but we have a few tricks.  The first on is to save all your ripe fruit!  Pile, clean and chop it up in blendable sizes.  Place it in the freezer and run it through a gear drive juicer to make sorbet or in a quality blender (we enjoy using Vitamix machines) for a smoothie.  For bananas, wait until they are partially brown before pealing and placing in the freezer inside of a storage bag or container.  Frozen bananas are a wonderful treat as is or broken up in a smoothie or nut milk.  We use stevia and at times a little honey or agave for sweetener.  We sometimes use a vegan protein which can also add sweetness and texture.  One key is to make sure not to load your smoothies with too much fruit or too many different items.  Keep it simple with maybe just two major flavors.  For example, a wonderful smoothie could be banana and peanut butter.  We may add a little bit of apple or other frozen fruit but for sweetness more than flavor.  Add to that some vanilla, nut milk, spices, ice and you are good to go.  I like to start with some nut milk which is also very easy to make (e.g. almonds, water, dates, banana, vanilla).  Find a video on YouTube for instructions on how to make almond milk. https://youtu.be/rV28BFO6yXk
 
Jerrod Sessler
Founder of Hot Feet Fitness