Macrobiotic Diet: The Yin and Yang of Eating

macrobiotic-diet.jpgThe macrobiotic diet was developed by George Ohsawa.  His concept of eating integrates theories from Buddhism with a conventional vegetarian lifestyle.  When you translate what "macrobiotic" from its Greeks roots it means "longlife," so it is hard to imagine that you would not want to follow its protocol.  Ohsawa, a Japanese educator designed his diet so that optimal health could be reached by balancing foods that represent the yin and yang.  Today with the explansion of anti-aging methods and medicine, and even yoga, many are familiar with this concept.  Most of us strive for balance on a daily basis.  Some followers of Ohsawa's eating philosophies would even argue that it isn't even correct to call it a diet, but rather a way of life.  
Macrobiotic eating does embrace Zen-like spirituality and applies it even to your food choices.  Odd you might think?  In order to achieve yin and yang in your consumption, you need to consider the characteristics of the foods.  Food pairing is essential.  Having quality taste buds is also helpful when determining these characteristics and how you pair foods together.  
• sour
• sharp
• salty
• sweet
• bitter
YIN FOODS:
• cold
• sweet
• passive
YANG FOODS:
• hot
• salty
• aggressive
The categories have foods grouped as follows.
50-60% of your Daily Intake
Whole berries, barely, millet, rye, corn, buckwheat, rolled oats, noodles. pasta, bread
1-2 Cups of Soup a Day
Miso or Shoyu (fermented soybeans)
30% of Daily Intake
Vegetables - can be raw, steamed, boiled, baked or sauteed.
Not Indicated but a few servings a day
Bean - cooked or bean like products: tofu, tempeh, natto
3 times  a week
Fish to be eaten with horseradish, wasabi, ginger or mustard which helps to detoxify 
NO meat, poultry, eggs, dairy
In Moderation
Seeds and nuts
3 times a week
fruits- apples, pears, peaches, apricots, grapes, melons.  Avoid tropical fruit like pineapple, mango and papaya

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