Hello. My name is Kathy. I recently saw the movie “knives over forks”, and “Reboot”, and decided to change my diet. As of yesterday I was high fast food, burgers, fried foods, junk food. It was awful! I am going to be 42 in August and I hope I can repair my body. I don’t have any noticeable diseases, but I have had a high junk diet for 40 years and I know I need to change. I do have PCOS, and people with this disease have a high percentage of heart disease. My mother passes when she was 56 (about 9 years ago). I was devastated. But it didn’t click in my head at that time. She was 400 pounds and was struggling to maintain her weight with pills and anything on the internet she could find. But I think the answer she was looking for was to cure herself with food. I don’t think it can get any simpler than that. I am not giving up meat, AKA anything that has a parent, walks or crawls or slithers. I am going to work on giving up refined foods, but I will cut back and switch to whole foods. No fried foods. No dairy either. Etc, etc, etc… Any good websites I need to book mark?
Giving up meat is probably the most important thing you can do, due to a large number of reasons:
1. Meat is high in saturated fat and cholesterol, and these are very bad things (in plants, only palm, coconut, and cocoa butter have high saturated fat- generally avoid those too, but it's easy to do); we're only equipped to handle a small amount of these products, and they wear down the body and damage the heart. Conspiracy theorists say otherwise, but ever major health organization recognizes this proven link.
2. Cooked meat is high in potent carcinogens, due to the chemical reactions that go on in them during grilling/baking and other high temperature cooking methods. This includes fish. (to be fair, steaming and boiling are safe- but they do not negate point #1)
3. With the exception of fish and 100% pasture fed animals, meat has a very poor ratio of essential fatty acids (again, most are also saturated, which makes them bad).
4. Due to bioaccumulation, particularly in fish, meat contains a disproportionate amount of environmental toxins and heavy metals- when you eat an animal, you eat the accumulated sum of all of the heavy metals and lipid soluble poisons that animal has ever eaten- and in the case of larger fish, that includes all of the things the smaller fish that larger fish ever ate too- it adds up fast. (to be fair, this can potentially be avoided by eating very very small fish that are low on the food chain- though I still don't recommend it-
(Note: the image is a good explanation, but I don't personally recommend consuming any fish, as you don't get anything from fish you can't get elsewhere)
5. Meat is also rich in hormones, antibiotics, and numerous parasites and pathogens- the latter particularly active if the meat is eaten undercooked or raw (either you get cancer, or you get dangerous parasites). There is antibiotic free meat, but there's no such thing as hormone and parasite free meat (on parasites in raw meat, it's a matter of rolling the dice).
Those are only health reasons.
Every single "good" thing that you can get from meat, you can get from vegetable material and supplementation instead without all of those negatives. The only supplement people need to take is B-12 (which all people should take, not just vegetarians).
There's no health reason to choose meat over a plant based diet.
Beyond that, the evironmental and moral reasons are extreme and far-reaching (even affecting other human beings through global warming, agricultural runoff, and poverty due to the amount of resources devoted to animal agriculture).
From a health perspective, beyond avoiding animal products such as meats (including big fish) and dairy, it's just important to eat a lot of vegetables, and choose whole foods (like whole grains, and legumes) instead of highly refined ones.
Brown rice is the only whole grain I do not recommend, because it has been cultivated to the point it contains too many starches. All other whole grains are lower in starch and higher in proteins and other vitamins and minerals. Black and wild rice are both excellent.
For people with gluten sensitivity, it's also a good idea to avoid wheat and spelt, but many people don't have a problem with it.
Eating long fermented, natural sourdough bread can also help with this, as fermentation makes grains more nutritious.
Sprouted and fermented whole grain bread is the holy grail of healthy staples. That plus lots of vegetables and legumes will get you to a healthy diet fast.