While the title “The All-Food Diet” sounds somewhat tongue in cheek, it’s about a serious topics that millions of people are concerned about, namely diet and health. The All-Food Diet is about eating healthy food. The catch is simple: buy foods with one ingredient and keep moving. Foods with one ingredient are good: rice, apples, milk. Food with many ingredients are bad: Doritos, canned soup, frozen dinners. The latter tend to contain chemicals, salt, fat, grease, calories, and preservatives. The first part of the book discusses good and bad food, portion control, restaurants, and a healthy attitude towards food. Next comes being active in your every day routine, and being green.
This is an easy diet to follow. Every suggestion in it is optional.
Five tips from the All Food Diet
1. One Ingredient
This is the heart and soul of the All-Food Diet. Buy foods with one ingredient, like rice, bananas, and onions. Avoid foods with many ingredients, like canned soup, frozen dinners, and Doritos. This is how we avoid processed foods. This step alone will improve you diet, and it sure is easy to remember. What do you do with these basic foods? Make soup, bread, stir fry, salad, whatever you like. Make a pile on Sunday and eat it all week.
Suppose you are in love with a junk food called "White Sugar Mountain" ? Then go ahead and have it upon occasion. If I asked you to survive on healthy mush, you wouldn't last a day. To every rule belongs an exception. Just try to improve your habits. Going out to eat? Try an ethnic restaurant instead of one serving mounds of calories. Share one dish, restaurants over-portion. Once a week skip the restaurant and cook. Avoid fast food whenever you can. It's OK to eat anything anywhere, but try and work the percentages, leaning toward increasing the amount of real food you put into our body.
2. Two Wheels Good
Biking is a win-win-win. You get exercise and fresh air. You burn less fuel. You save money. Where should you bike to? The farmers market, your friend's place, the post office, the dentist, to work.
The key here is incorporating activity into your daily lifestyle. You don't need to make time in your busy day to drive to the gym. Just walk. Once a week, leave the car at home and do errands on foot. Find some walkable destinations. There are some, even in Los Angeles.
3. Three Generations Back
Our fore-mothers ate real food. There were no GMOs, no organic labels, no processed food superstores. They cooked. They brought food with them on the train. They made tasty meals without a cuisinart, microwave, or dishwasher. Their ancestors cooked up a hearty fare with just a wood stove and a bucket of well-water.
The pillar of the All-Food Diet is that the foods you buy should have only one ingredient. Should you have further restrictions? It's up to you. While organic sounds great as a label, it's hard to say what it means. The politicians are arguing and redefining it. Should you eat GMO food? I'd say not if you can help it. Should you eat meat? If you do, look for free-range non-chemical non-factory farm meat. In short, the animal in question should be following the All-Food Diet. If you become a vegetarian or pescatarian, you are likely to lose weight. If you become a vegan you may disappear.
4. Four Food Groups
These were invented by the meat and dairy industry. Just ignore them. What should you eat?
Try and eat lots of vegetables. Eat what's local and in season. During the off season, there are always potatoes, onions, carrots, etc.
Try and eat more fruit. I blend it, because most of the year Minnesota fruit is shipped from far away and tends to soften and fade.
On your shelf, you will have jars of dried foods, beans and grains, so you will never go hungry. These are staples.
5. Five Fingers.
These are useful for picking basil from your garden. Use them to pick up vegetables. And real foods. What will happen if you do all this? Common sense dictates that the lowered intake of fat, calories, and chemicals will not hurt you at all.
How much should you eat? As much as you like, although showing some moderation won't hurt. When should you eat? Three times a day isn't a bad place to start. How much should you weigh? Your body will find a balance. The purpose of a diet is not to lose x number of pounds. It's OK to be a little heavy if that's how you are built. The idea is to turn more of your body into muscle. Note that our fore-mothers who ate unprocessed foods were much smaller than we are today.
So, off to the market we go, happily buying one-ingredient foods.