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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I seem to be ignorant <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/sad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":("><br><br><br><br>
I see people post with "so that's why i decided to become macroboitic" or "i'm macrobiotic".....could someone explain to me what that means?<br><br><br><br>
thanks<br><br><br><br>
~Becca
 

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<a href="http://www.macrobiotics.org/whatmacro.html" target="_blank">http://www.macrobiotics.org/whatmacro.html</a><br><br><br><br>
There's the definition, according to that organization, the site in general seems to be a decent source of information but I didn't really look it over.<br><br><br><br>
Maybe we'll have someone here that's really into it.
 

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I knew someone who was a vegetarian for years that was in a macro-biotic cooking class and she told me that one day the teacher had them make lamb. Huh?!?!?! And she said she ate it and so did a lot of other people who had been vegitarians because they believed in what the teacher said. Isn't that bizarre? You'd never catch me eating meat because my macro teacher said to eat it! And it just doesn't seem like that could be correct that lamb is macro. Is there anyone who knows the answer to that?
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Some Koreans have a macrobiotic restaurant near my office and I eat there sometimes. They regularly serve fish and shellfish. I never thought to ask them what "macrobiotic" meant although I'm not sure I'd understand them if they told me. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/grin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":D">
 

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I remember some dumb vocabulary book we had in the 11th grade had macrobiotic as one of its words to learn. The definition we were given was just "vegetarian". Later when I learned about vegetarianism, I learned that was false.<br><br><br><br>
I think a lot of people who aren't familiar with any of the alternative diets just assume macro and vegetarian are somehow the same.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The diet described in Micheal's link seems to be quite sensible. I feel more fruit and raw vegetables would be better, though.<br><br><br><br>
I liked how they emphasised Local produce. My only experience of macrobiotic people is that they tend to eat a lot of Japanese foods like umeboshi plumbs etc, which are expensive and surely couldn't be that important in one's diet.
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block"><i>Originally posted by PoesÃ*a</i><br><br><b>I knew someone who was a vegetarian for years that was in a macro-biotic cooking class and she told me that one day the teacher had them make lamb. Huh?!?!?! And she said she ate it and so did a lot of other people who had been vegitarians because they believed in what the teacher said. Isn't that bizarre? You'd never catch me eating meat because my macro teacher said to eat it! And it just doesn't seem like that could be correct that lamb is macro. Is there anyone who knows the answer to that?</b></div>
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Yes, lamb is definitely <b>not</b> macrobiotic. I am sorry that these students were following this teacher so blindly, and sorry that they never opened a book on macrobiotics, or they would have known better.<br><br><br><br>
As it says on the Kushi Institute page that Michael referenced:<br><br><br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block"><b><br><br>
Foods to Eliminate for Better Health<br><br><br><br>
Meat, animal fat, eggs, poultry, dairy products (including butter, yogurt, ice cream, milk and cheese), refined sugars, chocolate, molasses, honey, other simple sugars and foods treated with them, and vanilla.</b></div>
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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block"><i>Originally posted by Michael</i><br><br><b><a href="http://www.macrobiotics.org/whatmacro.html" target="_blank">http://www.macrobiotics.org/whatmacro.html</a><br><br><br><br>
There's the definition, according to that organization, the site in general seems to be a decent source of information but I didn't really look it over.<br><br><br><br>
Maybe we'll have someone here that's really into it.</b></div>
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Quite a number of our EarthSave Nashville members are macrobiotic, and they hold a "wholly Macro" potluck dinner every two weeks, which I attend regularly. In practice, these dinners are purely vegetarian.<br><br><br><br>
Macrobiotics differs from vegetarianism in that a small quantity of fish is occasionally allowed, as is indicated on the Kushi Institute website. However, fish is not served at our "wholly Macro" dinners.<br><br><br><br>
Macrobiotics also differs from vegetarianism in that certain vegetarian foods are also avoided, for example, the nightshades. So, no tomatoes, no tomato sauce, no potatoes, no eggplant, etc.<br><br>
Also, many fruits are avoided, like oranges--especially if you live in a climate where such fruits do not grow naturally. Also, certain cooking techniques are shunned. For example, food is not to be cooked or heated by microwaves.<br><br><br><br>
In practice, the "wholly Macro" dinners are virtually vegan, with maybe a few exceptions, where someone will have used an egg to make an occasional dish.<br><br><br><br>
Finally, you need to realize that a large proportion of the people who seek out and practice macrobiotics do so for health reasons, i.e., they have serious health problems that Western medicine has "given up" on, or else the treatment offered by Western medicine is almost worse than the disease, so these people seek out macrobiotics to cope with those health problems.<br><br><br><br>
For example, one of the leading macrobiotic counsellors in our group studied at the Kushi Institute and used macrobiotics to bring her Crohn's disease into remission. She has just written a book about it, telling her story.<br><br><br><br><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/redirect.html?ie=UTF8&linkCode=ur2&camp=1789&creative=9325&tag=veggieboards.com-20&location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2Fexec%2Fobidos%2Ftg%2Fdetail%2F-%2F1575668319%2Fqid%3D1036045249%2Fsr%3D8-1%2Fref%3Dsr_8_1%2F104-0560218-2499920%3Fv%3Dglance%26n%3D507846" target="_blank">http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...lance&n=507846</a>
 

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Thanks for confirming the whole lamb thing, Joe. I knew that couldn't be right.<br><br><br><br>
I don't know what I would do without nightshades. I know the potential effects so I don't overdo it but I love to cook with them.<br><br><br><br>
Isn't it an amazing concept that long ago people HAD to eat what was indigenous to their area and it was an absolute rarity to have something imported. That was the norm. And now, the norm is to be spoiled and gluttonous and it's a rarity to be macrobiotic and NOT eat things other than indigenous food.<br><br>
 

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what's the problem with nightshades?
 

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They contain sotanine that some people can be highly sensitive to. Sometimes nightshades aren't so great for people with arthritis. Sotanine interferes with enzymes in the muscles and may cause pain and discomfort. Not saying nightshades are bad, just everything in moderation. Just like any food!
 

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Some info about the historical background of macrobiotics.<br><br><br><br>
Here's what John Denver has written:<br><br><br><br>
Translated from the Greek, "macro" means "large" or "great," and "bios" signifies "life." Herodotus, Aristotle, Galen and other classical writers used the term macrobiotics to describe a lifestyle, including a simple balanced diet, that promoted health and longevity.<br><br><br><br>
In the late eighteenth century, the German physician and philosopher Christophe W. Hufeland renewed interest in the term. His influential book on diet and health was entitled _Macrobiotics, or The Art of Prolonging Life._<br><br><br><br>
Nearly a century later, the term macrobiotics experienced a revival, this time originating in Japan. Two educators, Sagen I****suka, M.D., and Yukikazu Sakurazawa, cured themselves of serious illnesses by adopting a simple diet of brown rice, miso soup, sea vegetables, and other traditional foods. These educators spent many years studying and integrating traditional Oriental medicine and Eastern philosophy with Judeo-Christian teachings and wholistic perspectives in modern science and medicine. Sakurazawa ... adopted the name George Ohsawa, and applied the term macrobiotics to his teachings.<br><br><br><br>
... Ohsawa devoted himself to defining macrobiotics as it applies to modern living ... visiting more than thirty countries, giving more<br><br>
than seven thousand lectures, and publishing over three hundred books.<br><br><br><br>
Ohsawa had many students, among them Michio Kushi ... [who came to the United States in 1949].<br><br><br><br>
\t[Michio and his wife Aveline Kushi have published numerous books, founded the East West Foundation and the Kushi Institute, and the _East West Journal_. The Kushis also advocate strongly for world peace.]<br><br><br><br>
\t--John Denver, "Preface" to Michio Kushi, _The Macrobiotic Way_ (1985), pp. xi-xii.
 

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I had dinner last weekend at our Wholly Macro potluck with a couple, Sheldon and Guinat (Janet) Rice, who are travelling the country and doing a study of macrobiotics and macrobiotic support groups in the US. They is a website summarizing their research here:<br><br><br><br><a href="http://macrobiotics.sph.sc.edu/project.htm" target="_blank">http://macrobiotics.sph.sc.edu/project.htm</a><br><br><br><br>
Sheldon argued for a very loose definition of macrobiotics--almost saying that if a person calls what he is doing "macrobiotics," then that is macrobiotics.<br><br><br><br>
It seems that there are "wide" vs. "narrow" practices of macrobiotics. It also seems that I have been exposed to the "narrow" or "strict" versions.<br><br><br><br>
Here's how they put it in academic language:<br><br><br><br><div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block"><b>The study of macrobiotic practice is complicated by the fact that macrobiotics is not just a set of dietary<br><br>
guidelines. Rather, food is seen as medicine and medicine as food within the oriental concept of balance.<br><br>
Macrobiotic counselors are reluctant to give hard and fast rules because in their understanding no foods are<br><br>
necessarily bad for a healthy person, except when eaten in excess. Thus macrobiotic practice is highly<br><br>
individualized. The adoption of macrobiotics is also usually associated with a wide diversity of alternative healing<br><br>
practices and other lifestyle changes. The qualitative approach is thus essential for the study of the holistic<br><br>
context of health, healing and diet in peoples actual lives.</b></div>
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I am not saying that I necessarily agree with the Rice's, but I have been obliged to reconsider my views on the subject.
 

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When I was doing my early research into vegetarianism three years ago, I found completely contradictory definitions for macrobiotics. One book said it was an eating style that emphasized raw, raw, raw and locally grown foods. Another book said it was an eating style that shunned raw and cooked everything.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I always wondered what Macrobiotics were. Glad to be informed more on it. I had it confused with raw veggie eaters.
 

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"In the late eighteenth century, the German physician and philosopher Christophe W. Hufeland renewed interest in the term. His influential book on diet and health was entitled _Macrobiotics, or The Art of Prolonging Life._"<br><br>
One of the best books ever written on the subject. But it has nothing to do with Ohsawa. And I doubt that Ohsawa read this book.<br><br>
Poesia: you´re right. I once had a solanine intoxication and I could hardly move for a day and felt burning inside, but after a day everything was back to normal again. I never had any adverse effects afterwards and so I think nightshades only cause a problem when you get an intoxication.
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block"><i>Originally posted by skylark</i><br><br><b>When I was doing my early research into vegetarianism three years ago, I found completely contradictory definitions for macrobiotics. One book said it was an eating style that emphasized raw, raw, raw and locally grown foods. Another book said it was an eating style that shunned raw and cooked everything.</b></div>
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When I first became vegetarian, I purchased a few macrobiotic books. I was just curious, and was wondering if it was for me. My understanding, is that you have to cook foods based on what your body tells you you need. If you are yin (expansive...i.e., mood is: dreamy, confused, forgrtful, worried, sensitive, sad, scared, hyperactive, drunk, hysterical) you should eat more raw foods...HOwever, if you are more yang (contracted....i.e, mood is: impatient, frustrated, stubborn, heavy, stuck, insensitive, compulsive, controlling, angry, violent) you should eat more cooked food.<br><br><br><br>
The whole yin and yang thing is much more complex than that, it gets into what types of food you should stay from. But, the contradictory definitions you received, might have had something to do with that. Macrobiotics is all about listening and knowing what your body needs. FYI a great book is The Self Healing Cookbook by Kristinia Turner...on Kushi Institue website. It gives recipes, but also explains all about the diet. The author has a very peaceful way of writing. Very good read..even if i'm not macro.
 

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the whole yin/yang spiel seems to be completely arbitrary. frankly, i don't buy it.<br><br><br><br>
my dad used to follow macrobiotics. every meal was pretty much brown rice with gomashio and some overcooked mushy vegetables. tomatoes and eggplants were strictly forbidden, and everything was way too salty. bleh.
 

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Macrobiotic is all about eating foods from your region. I had a couple friends who were macrobiotic, and it seemed so extreme to me. And, yeah, it's all about balancing out your foods--Yin/Yang.<br><br><br><br>
They told me they couldn't eat tomatoes and I almost screamed. No spaghetti sauce, no salsa, no ketchup. Couldn't do it. No peppers either--no jalapeños! (Sad. So sad.)<br><br><br><br>
They got so skinny, too. Like unhealthy skinny. They quit sugar (which I did recently and think it's one of the best things I've ever done with my diet), they quit meat (except they could eat Shrimp--go figure) and dairy. They had other strict diet guidlines. No citrus fruits, no nightshades.<br><br><br><br>
And after eliminating the things you can't eat in a macrobiotic diet, there ARE a lot of things left, but it seems like they'd only eat a bowl of brown rice and that's it.<br><br><br><br>
They've since gone vegan, and seem much healthier now. I guess they eat a wider variety of foods. If you go macro, you REALLY need to know what you're doing with it, or it can really backfire.
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block"><i>Originally posted by jwnyc</i><br><br><b>If you go macro, you REALLY need to know what you're doing with it, or it can really backfire.</b></div>
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Yeah......you have to be careful, and it is much more difficult than being vegan. When I first went veg. I tried the macro thing...Only for a few days <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/grin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":D"> ...But, no tomatoes???<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/shocked.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":eek:"> I don't think I could live. But, I did learn a lot, and it helps you become more in tune w/ your body. I think macro can be very good for some people...especially people with a terminal illness, such as cancer. The one thing that I do like about macro is that it really stresses to eat within your means....meaning in your region. Not just organically grown, but organically grown in your locale. It's something I never really thought about, but do you know how much fossil fuels we waste to fly a package of strawberries from the west coast to the east coast? Eat local, think global is a motto I do agree with. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)">
 
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