Propounded by Japanese educator George Ohsawa, Macrobiotic diet is based on Japanese philosophy. The objective of macrobiotic diet is to provide a healthy eating habit that besides maintaining good health is responsible for your overall spiritual development and well being of the entire planet.
Macrobiotic diet structure
The structure of the meal relying on macrobiotic diet will have 50 percent whole grains, which include brown rice, whole-wheat berries, millet, barley, corn, rye, buckwheat etc. Flour products, such as bread, pasta, baked products, and noodles could be consumed occasionally. 25 percent of the meal should comprise of raw or cooked seasonal vegetables. 10 percent of the diet is made of protein, including fish and legumes. Beans and bean products such as tofu, natto and tempeh are important part of the diet. The remaining part of the meal will contain 5 percent seas vegetables, 5 percent fruit nuts, seeds and 5 percent soups.
Method of cooking
Macrobiotic diet is based on organic foods. Instead of eating ready-to-eat foods or foods that has been cooked and refrigerated for a number of days, this diet believes that for good health you should consume freshly cooked vegetables and fresh fruits. Microwave cooking is completely prohibited. The best way of retaining the vitamins and minerals of your food is to cook the vegetables in a pressure cooker. Vegetables should be steamed, boiled, baked or sautéed. Nuts and seeds could be slightly roasted. Popular cooking oils recommended for macrobiotic diet are sesame oil, mustard oil and corn oil. The vegetable oils used for cooking should be unrefined.
Foods to be avoided
Alcohol, eggs, meat, spices, sugar and cheese are not permitted.
Benefits of Macrobiotic Diet
Macrobiotic diet is a predominantly vegetarian diet with low saturated fat content and high in fiber. Such a diet is beneficial for people suffering from cancer and a variety of other chronic diseases. The phytoestrogen content of the diet obtained from soy products could prevent and reduce the advancement of estrogen related cancers, like breast cancer. Further, the phytoestrogen content of the diet would be beneficial for women suffering from menopausal or pre-menopausal problems.
Disadvantages of Macrobiotic Diet
Owing to its strict dietary regime, adherence to macrobiotic diet might lead to certain nutritional deficiencies. There may be lack of calcium, iron, vitamin B15, magnesium and protein.