The natural diet

By Dr. Pier Albrecht

The natural diet comes from a long natural health tradition of the twentieth century. A large number of natural health gurus have promoted this way of eating. The Diamonds wrote a best-seller entitled “Young Again” explaining the key concepts of such “dietary philosophy”. I find it interesting for people who seek to find “their” own diet. It is one of the most serious diets and it enables you to keep fit through a long term weight control program.

Respecting Natural Cycles

This diet is based on respecting the natural physiological cycles of the body. I have not been able yet to find out how these cycles were discovered. There is no clear explanation of this hypothesis in the book by Diamond. I admit that it does make sense and going on this diet is not bad for your health. You can try going on this diet and observe its effects on your health and vitality.

From noon to 8 pm it is the appropriation stage (eating and digesting). It is supposed to be the only time of the day in which we should eat. Our body can take new food. The machine is ready.

The assimilation stage (absorption and use of nutrients) goes from 20 pm to 4 am. Throughout this stage, food goes through the stomach and every segment of the intestine. Food is reduced to essential elements called nutrients. This is the stage in which the digestive machine is in operation. The fibers are broken, proteins are dissolved by digestive enzymes and acid in the stomach. What we have eaten moves along the intestine, and is transformed, allowing for the use or assimilation of nutrients: amino acids, fatty acids, glucose, vitamins and minerals. The products of digestion enter the blood stream and move where needed.

The elimination stage (of food waste, toxins and organic waste) goes from 4 am to noon. At this stage we should not eat to allow our bodies to focus all efforts on eliminating waste. One of the interesting ideas of this diet is that if we do not let our body eliminate waste, it will accumulate it. If we start a new cycle before the previous one comes to an end, we prevent our bodies from performing at its best. In that sense, this diet is in line with every tradition. You should eat at fixed timetables to improve your health. I do not know whether the exact time spans of the three stages of this natural diet are true, however, I think it makes sense to at least respect a regular schedule when having our meals.

Respecting the Metabolic Balance:

Anabolism, catabolism and toxemia.

Anabolism is the building up of some elements of our body such as cells and muscles. Anabolism is the process that begins with essential elements found in the Catabolic process.

Catabolism is the breaking down of elements such as cells, fat and sugars leading to the so called toxemia, i.e., the overall human waste.

There are two types of toxemia:

• Metabolic toxemia: from 3 to 8 billion cells are eliminated and replaced everyday. These dead cells are toxic and must be eliminated.

• Food toxemia: this is wrongly assimilated and digested waste that must be eliminated as well.

Knowing this, we should remember that our body has its own pace and we should try to respect it to allow all processes to be completed.

High Water Content Food:

The natural diet recommends the intake of fruits and vegetables for their water content is similar to that of the body. The intake of this food should represent 70% of our meals. Water provides for the transport of nutrients and is vital to cleanse the body. In addition, it is organic and would be easier for our body to use and absorb because it has already been in a live organism, say, fruit or vegetables. When you eat a lot of fruit and vegetables, the intake of water is not necessary. Supposedly we should not drink a lot of mineral water since our bodies cannot assimilate it that easily. Another advantage of the natural diet is that it is similar to the raw diet in that high water content food is live food. When we eat high water content food, we are drinking water indirectly. Moreover, we are assimilating organic minerals instead of accumulating inorganic minerals as we do when we drink mineral or tap water. Those inorganic minerals favor the development of atheromatous plaques, which are linked to cholesterol.

In addition to this, the findings of studies on food energy show that raw or slightly cooked food has higher energy levels than cooked food.

As regards the vegetarian vs. carnivorous diet dilemma, the natural diet claims that animals eat raw food (save for pets). Most animals have vegetarian diets and do not have overweight problems. Most carnivorous animals usually eat herbivorous animals exclusively. When they attack their prey, they begin by eating their digestive organs, such as the intestines, which are filled with predigested vegetables. After that, they eat the vital organs, drink the blood which is full of water, and finally, they eat the muscles.

There are many other sound arguments, for instance, the fact that the length of the intestines of carnivores is only three times the length of their torso. Whereas the length of the digestive system of vegetarians and herbivores is twelve times that of their torso. Such is the case of humans.

Another point to bear in mind is food cooking. In order not to destroy the nutrients of food, it is advisable to cook food at a temperature not higher than 55 degrees Celsius. The raw diet theory recommends raising the temperature to 112 degrees Celsius and dehydrating food instead of cooking it.

The last argument in favor of the natural diet is Longevity. Apparently, those cultures that have a diet similar to the natural diet, enjoy a much greater longevity than others.

For example, the Abkhazians of Russia, the Vilacabambans of Ecuador, and the Hunzukuts of Pakistan live to be 100 years old without any serious illnesses. As with any other diet, we should try it for a while to see if this diet suits our bodies and lifestyles.

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Dr. P. Frank Albrecht, Dr. Pierjean Frank Albrecht, Marbella Clinic