The Macrobiotic Diet Essay

1299 words - 5 pages

Every year, the number of Americans going on a diet increases. Surveys performed by the federal government demonstrate how prevalent the desire for weight loss is in American society. One federal survey’s findings showed that 44 percent of women and 29 percent of men in America were trying to lose weight on a daily basis (The Science of Slimming ( Cover Story)). Recent figures revealed that 31 percent of Americans fall under the category of being obese, and 64 percent of Americans are overweight (The Science of Slimming ( Cover Story)). This is a problem because factors such as obesity and being overweight are precursors to chronic and often terminal conditions ranging from diabetes to cancer. While the number of Americans on diets increases so does the amount of diet options available. As the issues of obesity and weight loss plague American society, both health care professionals and consumers have begun to consider new methods to achieve their health care needs. The macrobiotic diet, an alternative form of medicine is an option worth considering when attempting change your diet to benefit your health and fit your lifestyle.
In a lengthy synopsis of The Gale Encyclopedia of Alternative Medicine, Wells points out some very crucial points and important facts that state what the macrobiotic diet entails. Firstly, in Greek the term macrobiotics translates to mean the great life. Unlike most diets the macrobiotic diet involves more than just what you take in it involves lifestyle changes, environmental factors and much more.
The macrobiotic diet is often referred to as a holistic approach to nutrition, meaning that all aspects of the person’s life are taken into consideration as part of the nutritional plan. Constructed around Chinese’s beliefs about yin and yang the macrobiotic diet stresses the importance of balancing the kind’s foods you consume and practicing moderation in both your diet and day to day life (Ken). Yin energy is defined as feminine energy, negative, dark, passive, and cold; its opposite yang is defined as male energy, sun, light (Ken). The foods allowed in the macrobiotic diet are selected with an objective, to balance the amount of yin and yang foods you eat. The typical American diet consists of an abundance of meat and carbohydrates, such as breads and pasta posing many health risk and opportunities for disease. The macrobiotic diet, prohibiting the consumption of meats has been proved to reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke. (Macrobiotic diets can be healthful, but not a cancer cure. (Ask EN))Furthermore, the diet limits the intake of foods high in calories and sugars, reducing the risk of diabetes (Macrobiotic diets can be healthful, but not a cancer cure. (Ask EN)).
Proponents of the macrobiotic diet view the problem of obesity in America as a consequence of our societies’ eating and living lifestyles minimally based on natural substances (Ashton). By applying the concepts of the macrobiotic diet the...

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