The components of traditional foods consist of good fats, protein, unrefined carbohydrates, and lots of fermented foods and beverages. Herbs also play a role in maintaining health and supporting healing.
Forget the food pyramid and everything you’ve been told about what constitutes a healthy diet. Look to the foods that contributed to health and vitality at the turn of the 20th century when heart disease was a medical rarity. Surprisingly, these are the very foods that we are discouraged from eating today.
Examples of good protein sources are fish, poultry, red meat, and dairy—all of which are NOT produced in a factory. Eat fish from oceans—not fish farms. Meat, poultry, and dairy must come from organic farms that leave their animals out to pasture rather than enclose them in tight quarters. For plant protein, nuts and beans must be soaked overnight to release the phytates to aid in digestion and assimilation. Soy is not a healthy source of protein. Ninety percent of all soy grown in the U.S. is genetically modified. It is extremely difficult to digest and it mimics estrogen in the body. Feeding soy milk to babies, particularly baby boys, is potentially disastrous for that reason. Read The Whole Soy Story by Dr. Kaayla T. Daniel.
For good fats, look to what we've consumed for thousands of years: butter, lard, fish oils, whole milk dairy products, (preferably raw), chicken, goose and duck fat, beef and lamb tallow, coconut oil, nuts, avocados, and cold pressed oils like olive oil, grape seed, borage, and evening primrose oil. You will not gain weight eating good fats. You will gain weight eating refined carbohydrates and processed food. Good fat enhances the immune system, aids the hormones in running properly, and assists every cell in the body by giving it the necessary stiffness and integrity. Good fats help the body utilize essential fatty acids and aid in the assimilation of the fat-soluble vitamins, A, D, E, and K, which are only found in animal fats. Good fats also feed the brain. Low-fat diets lead to poor immunity, depression, spaciness, irritability, and impaired hormonal function.
Eat healthy carbohydrates such as whole grains, prepared by soaking overnight to release the phytates. Include in your diet organically grown vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds. Throw away anything made with white flour and sugar, which are unhealthy carbohydrates and are deleterious to our health and mid-section.
Cultured foods have been a part of a healthy diet for thousands of years. Don't forget that refrigerators have only been around for less than one hundred years. Before that, foods had to be fermented in order to keep well. Examples are yoghurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchee, beet kvaas, and a host of other delights. Cultured foods maintain colon health, which keeps a healthy balance of good bacteria and bad bacteria. Eighty percent of the immune system is in the stomach and colon. Cultured/fermented foods are vital for proper maintenance and health of the body.
Broth from fish, poultry, and meat should be a daily part of everyone's diet. Broth contains minerals in a form everyone can absorb easily. When cooled, it turns to gelatin, which we don’t get in our diets anymore. Gelatin facilitates digestion, tonifies the blood, and assists the body in healing a variety of illness such as irritable bowel, leaky gut, ulcers, diabetes, and cancer.
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Earth wisdom includes the knowledge of nutrient-dense, life-sustaining foods. Women have carried this knowledge throughout time, showering their families with the kinds of foods they knew would keep their children strong, vital, and resistant to disease.
A growing number of people are reclaiming knowledge of traditional foods and their preparation. These foods come from farms where animals are raised on pasture, and vegetables are grown in rich soil without the use of chemical additives. These foods are minimally processed and prepared with care. Traditional recipes have been passed down for countless generations.