Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Weight Loss & Diet Plans

Font Size

Macrobiotic Diet

The Promise

Call it the pursuit of hippieness. Macrobiotics, with its brown rice, beans, sea vegetables, and Asian yin-yang philosophy of finding balance in life for health and vitality, was the original counterculture diet back in the '60s. It's actually been around much longer than that.

A macrobiotic diet isn't just about your weight -- it's about achieving balance in your life. It promises a healthier, more holistic long-term lifestyle for men, women, and children that encompasses mental outlook as well as food choices. Macrobiotic dieters are encouraged to eat regularly, chew their food extremely well, listen to their bodies, stay active, and maintain a perky, positive mental outlook.

Whole grains, vegetables, and beans are the mainstays of the diet, which some people believe can prevent or treat cancer. While the American Cancer Society stops short of recommending macrobiotic diets to prevent cancer because there's no scientific evidence, it does say that researchers believe eating a plant-based, low-fat, high-fiber diet lowers the risk of heart disease and some kinds of cancer.

What You Can Eat and What You Can't

If you like grains, veggies, and soup, you're in luck.

About 40% to 60% percent of your daily diet should be organically grown whole grains, like brown rice, barley, millet, oats, and corn. Locally grown vegetables make up 20%-30% of your daily total. Five percent to 10% is reserved for beans and bean products like tofu, miso, and tempeh, and sea vegetables like seaweed, nori, and agar.

You can also have fresh fish and seafood, locally grown fruit, pickles, and nuts several times a week.  Rice syrup is one of the sweeteners you can have occasionally.

You're discouraged from eating dairy, eggs, poultry, processed foods, refined sugars, and meats, along with tropical fruits, fruit juice, and certain vegetables like asparagus, eggplant, spinach, tomatoes, and zucchini.

You’re only supposed to drink when you feel thirsty. And spicy stuff is frowned on (no habaneros here!) along with strong alcoholic beverages, soda, coffee, and anything highly refined, processed, or chemically preserved.

WebMD Medical Reference

Today on WebMD

vegetables
Video
feet on scale
Blog
 
Woman looking at reflection in mirror
Article
Hot cup of coffee
Quiz
 
woman shopping fresh produce
Video
butter curl on knife
Quiz
 
eating out healthy
Article
Smiling woman, red hair
Article
 
6-Week Challenges
Want to know more?
Chill Out and Charge Up Challenge – How to help your tribe de-stress and energize.
Spark Change Challenge - Ready for a healthy change? Get some major motivation.
I have read and agreed to WebMD's Privacy Policy.
Enter cell phone number
- -
Entering your cell phone number and pressing submit indicates you agree to receive text messages from WebMD related to this challenge. WebMD is utilizing a 3rd party vendor, CellTrust, to provide the messages. You can opt out at any time.
Standard text rates apply
thumbnail_woman_tossing_spinach
Video
lunchbox
Article
 
What Girls Need To Know About Eating Disorders
Article
teen squeezing into jeans
fitfor Teens