How It Works
Followers of the macrobiotic diet believe that food and food quality impact
health, happiness, and well-being. Eating natural food that is closer to the
earth and less processed is healthier for the body and soul. One of the
objectives is to become more sensitive to the food you eat and how it affects
your life. Ultimately, this awareness will enhance your life and health.
What you can eat may be adjusted according to the following:
- Health and any other personal considerations
What the Experts Say
A well-managed macrobiotic diet can be nutritionally sound. The ADA approves
of carefully planned and monitored vegetarian diets for all stages of the life
cycle, including pregnancy, breastfeeding, childhood, and adolescence.
The macrobiotic diet is low in fat and high in fiber. Because of all the soy
products, it is also rich in phytoestrogens, which may reduce the risk of
estrogen-related cancers, such as breast cancer. There is no
scientific evidence that a macrobiotic diet will reduce breast cancer, however
eating a diet low in fat, high in fiber, and rich in plant foods containing
phytochemicals may offer disease protection.
Blatner says she likes the focus on healthy foods that are low in fat and
high in fiber, but she also recognizes the potential nutritional deficiencies.
"Nutrients of concern are vitamins D and B12, iron, protein, and calcium if you
are not careful," she says. Whenever you eliminate food groups, it can create
deficiencies and affect your health. Her advice: Good nutrition should be considered first before balancing for
yin and yang.
Food for Thought
The macrobiotic diet focuses on foods typically lacking in most American
diets. Eating more natural foods, whole grains, vegetables, and beans could be
beneficial to most people. Adopting it, however, may prove to be much more
difficult because it often requires major lifestyle changes.
If you're interested in trying a macrobiotic diet, start slowly. First,
incorporate just a few concepts, such as eating less unprocessed foods. Then
add more whole grains and so on.
"Aim for a gradual approach before jumping in with both feet," Blatner
Adopting the macrobiotic diet takes a great deal of dedication and
commitment to a lifestyle that is much bigger than your average diet plan.