Friday, 15 April 2016

the year of getting fit...again

                 Image result for the blood type diet

I made a big decision at the end of last year: I decided to get fit again. After many years of severe anaemia, I had been left quite exhausted & had very little muscle tone. (This actually is an understatement). And I have just realised that ¼ of 2016 has passed. Panic!! I have wasted 3 months. All because I forgot what it was I had in mind! (ggggrrr).

I have been vegetarian, vegan & mostly vegetarian, over more than 40 years. But it seems to be true, for me at least, that the blood typing diet, does work. I am an O negative blood type. We are the blood donors of the world, as many people are O types, & when I had to have emergency blood transfusions, I was so grateful that there are so many generous O types around.

We are the meat eaters of the blood types. Perhaps because “we” have been around longer. Perhaps we might be less evolved, having to chew meat? It is clear that my vegetarianism & O- blood type are a bit at odds (another understatement.) It seems to me, too, that we O types need less starchy foods, & I do know a few of us Oers who pile on the pounds when we emphasise starch over protein.

(I am a yoga teacher, & I can tell you that in “the yoga world”, it is politically incorrect…or should we say, ethically incorrect, for a yoga teacher to eat flesh. Which, of course, is a very judgemental attitude & it’s also very unyogic to have judgements)

So the first step in fitness for me, is to eat more protein & minimise starches such as bread, rice, etc. Which, of course, is totally at odds, with the dhal, rice, rotis, porridges & legumes, of my (mainly) vegetarian diet. So, I am using a protein powder to up the daily protein grams & so, hopefully, I won’t have to have much meat. And I am emphasising the hunter-gatherer foods. You know….the foods that we would hunt for & also the food that we would find as we foraged. So that means more bits & bobs of seasonal vegetables, eggs, fruits, seeds, a few nuts (I don’t do so well with nuts, so it will only be a few).

Plus I cannot see how a hunter-gatherer of aeons ago, would have been chowing down avocados with eggs for breakfast, wild salmon with an artful exotic salad for lunch, & organic meat with more exotic vegetables & somewhere there would be food baked with coconut, nut or seed, flour, some cacao, ……this just doesn’t make sense to me. I suspect that often there would not have been so much ready nor exotic food, & that proteins such as fish or meat, were eaten only when they were available. So to my mind, the food would have been simple. Which suits me.

And I also feel that our DNA matters too. For example, if you have Polynesian DNA, it is highly likely that you would thrive on kaimoana (seafood including shellfish), if you are from the hotter Pacific Islands, you would also suit coconut. If you are from strong Irish stock, you could do well with adding potatoes & seaweeds. If Jewish, you would avoid shellfish & pork. From the Mediterranean: the Mediterranean diet. And so on.

So, it might be an interesting idea to look at one’s own DNA mixture regarding diet. As we Kiwis are a hodge podge of nationalities, you could have several DNA types to try for yourself!

So, my first step in fitness is change of diet. Knowing me, I shall regress from time to time, but I’m ok with that. And I am quite sure that I shall be “feeding” my muscles with this change of diet, & that in itself will go a long way towards fitness.

There is a very old book (I love old books) called “Diet Does It”, which advocated eating a healthy diet to be healthy, slender & youthful, & I do feel that if we are eating the diet that suits us, that our health & fitness levels will just bump up quite easily.

So, if you would like to join me: let’s look at creating our own personal Diet Does It. Maybe look at your blood type….all the info about it is on the web, & ask around about your family lineage. I know what most of mine is, so I am working with that.

Keep it simple. And do-able. Make small adjustments (5%) until you find what suits you. Your health will grow in leaps & bounds. Have a small group of foods that suit you & that you can always keep on hand, maybe 5 or 6. And make a wee list of the recommended foods, maybe 5 or 6, that don’t appeal, & just don’t keep them at home. Make it easy. I’m going to add berries, salads & allow root vegetables to my list as I rather fancy that an original O type would have been eating berries & raw vege as they hunter-gathered, & would possibly have been tossing roots onto the fire as they cooked their fish or meat. 

And because New Zealand has the most amazing dairy, I shall continue using a bit of Lewis’s Full Cream organic milk (I’m quite sure that my blood type ancestors were not homogenising milk), to fit in with my english/scottish DNA. And, to suit my bit of Maori DNA, I shall be emphasising a bit of fish rather than meat, as the “meat” in this country was originally seafood, a wee bat, & birds, so maybe a wee bit of organic chicken too.

I’m not sure what extra to eat for my Scottish roots. (porridge?…which I’m cutting out) But I shall find out. And I know what to avoid for my Jewish DNA.

This is actually turning out to be quite fun.

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