Low ... diets are now the craze in the U.S.A. Fastfood stores even offer ... in lettuce rather than inbuns (still with the fats of meat and sauces). Breads ... modified for low
Low carbohydrate diets are now the craze in the U.S.A. Fast food stores even offer hamburgers in lettuce rather than in buns (still with the fats of meat and sauces). Breads and pastries modified for lower carbohydrates are now making fortunes for suppliers. "Low carb salads", still drenched with high fat dressings, are offered for "dieting."
This is a costly, stupid, perhaps health threatening fad.
When I was growing up, I did not understand that biblical quotation of "Man does not live by bread alone", attributed to Moses (old testament, torah) and Jesus (new testament). Well, I understood that the message was meant to be "People have spiritual as well as physical needs." But I had no idea how people could live very long on bread. At that time, I was used to spongy white bread with no character.
Somewhere along the way, I learned about whole grain breads, and how peasants through the centuries had lived mostly on dark breads that Marie Antoinnette would have rejected, with occasional fortifications of cheese, eggs, sometimes meat. Peasants tended to eat vegetables, but knights and nobles often dismissed such as "farmers' fare", preferring lots of meat, alcoholic beverages, pastries. Few people lived long in those days, so statistical studies of life span versus diet were not performed. (Statistics were not well known.)
So I read up on bread recipes, found a few health gurus who argued for blends of whole grain wheat, cornmeal, rye, and soy flour. A fairly recent development is triticale, a long sought hybrid of wheat and rye. Why these blends? It turns out that grains and legumes can provide all the balanced protein that we need, without meat. Verrrry interesting! Also, such blends contain valuable dietary fiber.
The prayer, "Give us this day our daily bread", is now explained. Properly made, bread really can be "the staff of life."
I have learned to love Asian foods that make heavy use of soy beans, such as tempeh and tofu with noodles and stir fry vegetables. I usually am turned off by soy based foods that pretend to be something else, such as soy burgers, soy cutlets, soy cheeses. In fact, the fake foods not only can taste far from real, but those which contain Hydrolyzed Plant Protein (HP) inflame my tongue and cause me anxiety, just as foods with a lot of Monosodium Glutamate (MSG).
Side observation: a chunk of land producing balanced protein from grains and legumes can support about 20 times as many people as the same land producing four legged meats. Oh, and the people getting most of their proteins and calories from plant sources are far less likely to have heart attacks, strokes, cancers, et cetera, than the big meat eaters.
I have written elsewhere that selecting sensible foods means one never has to count calories. I'll go further and say that most carbohydrate restrictions are dumb.
Here are the only carbohydrate restrictions I recommend. • all refined sugars (cane, beet, high fructose corn syrup, sorghum molasses, maple syrup, etc.) • beer in large quantities • anything made from white flour, even if "enriched"
If you have a craving for sweets that you just can't break (which I don't belive), learn how fruits and nuts together can taste very sweet. Also, the unsaturated fat in the nuts (or edible seeds, such as sunflower) will satisfy hunger with no risk to the arteries. My favorite is raisins and almonds, perhaps with some fresh red delicious apple slices.
Pasta, preferably made from whole grains, is healthful, if not served with lots of cheese, oil, sauces which contain oil, sugar, cheese. Noodles with little meat is a main menu item in the Orient.
Oh, about carbohydrates in potatoes: they are harmless if you don't add butter, margarine, fat from frying, sour cream for topping, and other insults to a great food. People in parts of Central and South America eat little more than potatoes of traditional breeds.
Dr. Donald A. Miller is author of "Easy Health Diet" http://easyhealthdiet.com/diet.htm, "Easy Exercise All Ages" http://easyhealthdiet.com/eeaa.htm, and numerous free articles on health http://easyhealthdiet.com/articles/. Seven of ten deaths are caused by preventable diseases.