As a trainer, with my humble sports nutrition knowledge and experience I have designed a good number of Nutrition Plans for my clients, all of them with different food intolerances, allergies, preferences and tastes. In most cases, for fat loss/body toning, the rules are to increase protein and green vegetables’ intake and reduce fat amounts and unnecessary calories from ‘nutritionally empty foods’ (which may be rich in micronutrients and water but not macros, such as celery, lettuce, mushrooms, bone broth, etc). Now, is this optimal and adequate for every individual? the answer is no. And since I can’t say “no” without a justified reason, I am going to enumerate 3 factors that determine this statement, see what you make of it.
- Culture and Ancestry (genetic predisposition)
- Personal Growth (changes in the hormonal, nervous and digestive systems)
- Energetic footprint (varies with life)
This is why mighty broccoli, as good as it is, may bloat you or even diminish your thyroid function, depending on who you are. And this is why some things work for some people and others don’t. This is also why allergies and preferences change with time, depending on whether we heal or accumulate energetic blockages.
Our genetic predisposition also influences how we experience taste. So depending on where we were born we experience the tastes of sweet, sour, salty and bitter more or less intensely and with different ‘flavour’. According to research, in some parts of the world, 85% of native populations are highly sensitive tasters. Europeans sit at the lower end of the scale (we’ve lost it). As traditional regional customs gradually disappear thanks to globalization, our perception for variety of taste also gets more and more reduced. Isn’t this fascinating? we are so easily programmable. Basically our senses become number the more ‘advanced’ our civilisations become. Advanced, of course, is a politically correct word to mask the reality of societies built around control and fear.
So while we may agree on the fact that chickpeas produce flatulence, and that gluten bloats you, it will all depend on the bacteria you’ll have in your gut (determined by the factors above). So if you are a person who eats gluten-free but you still get constipation or you’re even a celiac, it may not be because of your present food choices or not even because of your parents’ or grandparents’ genetics, but because of your ancestors’ culture and circumstances, that is carried on your DNA from times immemorial. It doesn’t mean you cannot override your condition but you will have to be mindful about it.
Our gut has evolved as societies evolved and changed, since the times when we ate grains and herbs to the times when we started cultivating and producing flours and having domestic animals (milk, eggs, etc), passing through times of war when bread was scarce or rationed, or when we ate mostly preserved or tinned foods due to cold or scarcity. Or because there were no fridges, many foods were preserved in salt. Our body adapts so easily that it looks like magic to me. Even when we throw at it the most poisonous agents such as fluoride and aluminum, it adapts! when it doesn’t, that’s when we have diseases, reactions, and singularities that make each one of us inherently unique. So perhaps in times of a war there was no bread but it happens that one family was wealthier and they could produce wheat, so their genes were passed on to their descendants, and since there was no gap in the intolerance towards gluten, those people are okay with digesting bread. See what I mean? Also, have in mind the humoral doctrine that was going around in times past (I wrote about it here). Now go and tell this to your doctor, see what he says lol!
What interests me the most here is the hidden knowledge that tends to undergo unnoticed in these cases, putting everybody in the same box of “figs make you fart”. Or if you eat gluten-free it is okay to eat oats. This doesn’t apply to everyone. Oats also have gluten, gluten is a large family of proteins (a study has shown 400 types!) and each grain contains different forms of gluten. Same applies to rice and corn, just because they weren’t studied in Europe centuries ago (rice came from Asia and corn from America) it doesn’t mean they didn’t have gluten, and still today you can find corn products in the “gluten free” section and even labelled as such. Gluten is not only found in grains, by the way, but let’s leave that matter for another occasion.
Know thyself. Find out the whys and the hows of your background, your overall state (physical, emotional, mental) and how you change when your food changes. Research into healing food or foods for energy healing. Something important to have in mind for a healthy living.