A Natural Diet And Sunlight Could Save Your Life By Dr. Zane R. Kime, M.D.
A leading physician with a degree in nutrition offers some guidelines for the optimal diet—a diet which can actually reverse some of the ailments associated with aging.
Several research centers here in the United States have been developing a diet that can reverse hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis). Some authorities now believe that this same diet may dramatically aid in prevention and treatment of heart disease, appendicitis, diverticular disease, gallstones, hypertension, varicose veins, deep vein thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, hiatus hernia, hemorrhoids, certain types of cancer, colitis and obesity.
This diet is a very natural diet. It is a vegetarian diet. It is low in fat and protein and high in complex carbohydrates such as potatoes, beans, corn, fresh fruit and most other unprocessed foods. Refined foods should be eliminated.
A natural food is one that comes with all its bulk and all its fiber plus all the vitamins and minerals. The vitamins and minerals are there to help metabolize and digest the natural food. Nature intended that we take in the bulk and the fiber plus the vitamins and the minerals and other nutrients all together to have a harmonious nutritional balance.
Foods that are not natural and not included in the diet include those that have been processed or have passed through a chemical factory. Examples abound. A walk through any supermarket will reveal aisle upon aisle of highly refined, overprocessed foods which, unfortunately, are the mainstay of the American public’s diet. The most prevalent, of course, are white sugar and refined (white) flour.
Once part of a natural food, sugar cane or sugar beets, refined sugar is almost universally used in processed foods. The health consequences of sugar consumption are well known. But while less visible, its more subtle effects are equally insidious.
The Standard American Diet (SAD) also contains too much refined protein. Meat, as a “prime” example, contains lots of protein, but little else. It is a concentrated food, but not a particularly good one in terms of overall balance. Many other products advertised as “high in protein” would also fall into this category of overly refined foods. This includes all protein supplements.
Quite simply, a diet of complex carbohydrates—beans, rains, fruits and vegetables—will provide sufficient protein (and indeed superior nutrition) for an adult. The protein scare is a lot of hype. It is not necessary to supplement a natural foods, vegetarian diet, as it is virtually impossible to get a protein deficiency if one is eating enough calories. It is not necessary to complement amino acids in every meal if one is eating a variety of whole natural foods in a day’s time.
Oil is another example of food that is refined no matter what its process of extraction is, since it no longer is a whole food. The oil is an extract of a vegetable or animal product in which all the bulk and fiber are removed, plus many of the vitamins and minerals. All that is left is a pure chemical that is classified as a triglyceride. Numerous diseases now are being recognized as associated with too much oil in the diet, and this includes sesame, safflower, soy, olive and other commonly used oils. It takes many ears of corn to produce one tablespoon of corn oil.
Essential fatty acids are needed in the diet but can be adequately supplied by whole grains, nuts, seeds and legumes where they are in a water-soluble form. The oil in a nut, for example, is water-soluble; the extracted oil from a nut, no matter how it is processed, is no longer water-soluble. The body seems better able to utilize properly the oil in its water-soluble form, but seems to have serious complications with the non water-soluble, extracted, refined form. The association of a diet high in oil—whether saturated or polyunsaturated—and disease is actually well documented, though this is not well known to the public.
The average American has a cholestrol level somewhere between 150 and 300 mgm. percent. The average American also has a very high rate of heart attack, stroke and other chronic degenerative diseases. The World Health Organization, in studying many developing countries, has found that their cholestrol levels are much lower than this American average. Many developing countries have cholesterol in the area of 90 to 120 mgm. percent. It is the feeling of some authorities that cholesterol levels of about 140 can begin to produce hardening of the arteries.
To reverse or prevent hardening of the arteries, a low-fat diet is necessary. A diet low in fat means that it is low in all fats—saturated, unsaturated and polyunsaturated. This would eliminate from the diet many of the products that are highly advertised and can be bought in most any supermarket, such as margarine, mayonnaise, oils, most of the salad dressings, butter fat as found in most of the dairy products, and egg yolks.
Meat is very high in fat, at least 44%. Commercially processed nut butters should be minimized in the diet, as they have been so finely ground that the oil has separated from the original nut and therefore is no longer in its original water-soluble form. It would be acceptable to eat nut butters if one were able to grind them less finely in order that there be no separation of the oil from the nut being
used, whether almond, sesame, cashew or peanut (a legume).
Many of the harmful effects of saturated fats also appear when polyunsaturated fats are used. In addition, the polyunsaturated fats have many of their own harmful effects. Some people still believe that polyunsaturated oil is good because it lowers the cholesterol level in the blood. Indeed, many doctors even prescribe tablespoons of corn oil or other types of oil every day to help lower blood cholesterol. Polyunsaturated fats will indeed lower the serum cholesterol. According to research done by Dr. Scoll Grundy, it moves the cholesterol from the bloodstream into the tissues, where it’s more harmful.
Dr. R.A. Swank from the University of Oregon has published a number of studies showing the effects of fat in causing the red blood cells to stick together. After feeding some hamsters a meal of cream, he noticed that the little red blood cells started sticking together.
They would not pass through the capillaries, but would block them off. Since the red blood cells carry oxygen to the tissues, he also found there to be a great decrease in oxygen in the tissues. Following a high-fat meal, the oxygen content of the tissues of the brain was measured and found to be markedly decreased.
Dr. Meyer Freedman found that both saturated and unsaturated fats caused this sledging or sticking together of red blood cells. His article in the JAMA stated that substitution of the unsaturated for the relatively saturated fats did not lessen the interference in capillary blood flow. If such interference in the flow also occurs in the critically important collateral vessels of the coronary circulation in cardiac patients, then the ingestion of unsaturated fats could lead to disaster as readily as ingestion of saturated fats.
In another article in JAMA, Dr. Peter Kuo described a study he had conducted on patients who had angina pectoris. This is a pain in the chest that is caused by a lack of blood supply to the heart. He took fourteen patients and fed them a high-fat meal. All of his patients had angina, but it was an intermittent thing and was easily controlled by their heart medications. However, after the high-fat meal, these patients all experienced a tremendous increase in chest pain, and they actually had changes in the electrocardiograms and their ballistocardiograms.
Some have recommended unsaturated oil as a treatment for heart disease. Dr. G.A. Rose of England studied a large group of people in which he added corn oil to their diets to see if this would protect them from developing heart disease. His study concluded that corn oil cannot be recommended as a treatment of ischemic heart disease and that it is possibly harmful.
Supporting this theory was an article in the American Heart Journal stating that polyunsaturates have increased in the average American diet almost threefold over the past three decades without the slightest decrease in heart disease mortality.
The National Heart and Lung Institute admits that any difference in the effects of saturated versus polyunsaturated fats in heart disease is strictly intuitive, and based only on personal impressions and fragmentary conclusions with unscientific proof.
The Food and Drug Administration has gone on record saying, “It is a violation of the law to make any claim that polyunsaturates could prevent or treat heart disease.” Several researchers have shown that polyunsaturated fat will inhibit the white blood cells.
Other researchers have observed native people who drank lots of milk which contained its own butterfat in the form of cream (although it rises to the top, it still is water-soluble); they nevertheless had low cholesterol counts. Another group of people were subsequently studied substituting a cube of butter each day for its equivalent in milk ‘ (one cube of butter for two quarts of milk). The result was a rise in cholesterol. The solid form of the butter was no longer water-soluble.
In November 1977 Dr. Howard of the University of Cambridge published his studies on cholesterol and dairy products in Lancet. He concluded that of all the dairy products only butter raised the cholesterol levels when ingested.
The theory then might be formulated, based on Dr. Howard’s study, that cholesterol in its water-soluble form does not raise cholesterol levels. In order to check this, a series of experiments was performed at a small college. Following are the tests and results:
Eighteen young men on a natural vegetarian diet of vegetables, fruits, legumes, nuts, seeds, avocadoes and whole grain were checked for their cholesterol level which was 120 to 300.
They were then divided into three groups.
- Group I continued their natural vegetarian diet.
- Group II continued their natural vegetarian diet and added two eggs (hard or poached).
- Group III continued their natural vegetarian diet and added two eggs (hard or poached) and margarine.
Five weeks later, the results were:
- Group I cholesterol same.
- Group II lower, but no difference statistically.
- Group III cholesterol rose to 170, with some over 200.
As mentioned before, some authorities feel that cholesterol above 140 can begin to produce hardening of the arteries. The above study may therefore be significant in explaining why lacto-ovo vegetarians may develop hardening of the arteries.
Although lacto-ovo vegetarians have lessened their risks of heart diseases and hardening of the arteries due to omitting meat in their diet, they nevertheless would improve their risks by eliminating or at least minimizing some of the dairy products such as butter, as the fat is no longer in its soluble form.
On the other hand, neither is milk desirable, especially regular commercial milk, because it has been pasteurized and homogenized at high heat and enriched with vitamin D (which is really a hormone, like a steroid). Protein-fortified milk is especially undesirable, as it has been fortified with dry milk, and even nonfat milk contains cholesterol.
Cholesterol oxidizes when dried, and it may actually produce cholesterol. Dried milk or any dried animal product should be omitted from the diet.
Prairie dogs have been used to study the effects of different types of fats and cholesterol in producing gallstones. On a high-fat diet, the prairie dogs seemed to develop gallstones easily. When they were placed on a diet that was low in fat and cholesterol, the gallstones dissolved.
Gallstones in humans do not seem to be limited to high saturated fat content in the diet. Dr. R. A. L. Sturdement reported a significant increase in gallstones in men fed a diet that was rich in safflower oil. Dr. T. Osuga wrote that corn oil alone, without cholesterol in the diet, produced gallstones.
According to Dr. R. K. Bout well, the stimulating effect of fat on the rate of formation of certain types of tumors is well established. Dr. Pickney, previously mentioned in regard to polyunsaturates in the diet and its relation to heart disease, also wrote about the epidemiologic association between a diet high in polyunsaturates and the increased incidence of cancer, especially gastric, in humans.
He discussed his research in the American Health Journalshowing that 78% of the people who used more polyunsaturated fat also showed marked clinical signs of premature aging. In addition, they looked much older than their chronological age. In the same group, 60% reported that they had had at least one or more skin lesions removed because of suspected malignancy after having altered their dietary fat.
Dr. Ernest Winder of the American Health Foundation states that both epidemiologic and animal data suggests that colon cancer is due largely to high fat consumption. (Refined foods lacking in bulk and fiber also have been linked to bowel cancer, and studies made in Japan have correlated high fat diets with cancer of the breast in women—Veg. Times Ed.)
Dr. Bauman, in the American Journal of Cancer, showed that an increase in the fat content of the d :t accelerated the appearance of tumors caused by ultraviolet radiation. Dr. Bausch repeated the study using corn oil and got the same results. Ultraviolet light is found in sunlight. The current understanding is that excessive exposure to ultraviolet light is responsible for skin cancer, when in fact, as these studies show, the true culprit may be a high-fat diet in combination with ultraviolet light.
Fats turn rancid in the tissue. Fats that are oxidizing damage the tissues, thus stimulating cancer (and aging of the skin). Oxidation is prevented in nature with vitamin E in its natural state: in nuts, whole wheat, seeds, legumes, etc. Vitamin C, carotene and selenium also help.
Unsaturated fats eventually turn rancid due to air, heat and sun. All the elements are present when refined polyunsaturated oils are in the tissues: the heat and oxygen are provided by the body and the sun’s ultraviolet rays accelerate the oxidation of the fat in the body. Without the oxidation of rancid fat in the tissues, the sun is beneficial for a healthy body.
Exposure of the body to the sun is vital for optimum health. It is a natural source of vitamin D (which is different form that artificially ingested as an additive in milk). Most times of the year as little as about fifteen minutes exposure on the face will give more than the recommended daily amount. Contrary to popular belief, vitamin D can be stored in the body. Even on cloudy or foggy days, 80% of the ultraviolet rays come through; however, the rays are locked entirely by glass windows. Nevertheless, special glass can be ordered called UV-Passing Plexiglass that is very good.
In a natural diet where no sugar or fat of any kind is added, obese people will lose weight even though they are eating all they want. They are allowed to have potatoes, ice, bread, fresh fruit and any other natural food in any quantity that they want. However, they should restrict the amount of avocadoes, olives and nuts that they eat on this diet. There are built-in safety factors in the natural food provided for us that prevent us from becoming obese.
Our bodies are designed to eat a low-fat diet. When we add extra fat to the natural diet, we start to gum up the beautiful machinery we were given. There is an abundance of natural fat in the unrefined grains, legumes and other vegetables that more than meets our need for fat in the diet.
It is impossible to get a fatty acid deficiency if whole grains, legumes and other vegetables are included in the diet; it is not necessary to add any extracted oil to provide the fat that is needed in the diet. Because our bodies were designed to eat a low-fat diet, a high-fat diet will cause nothing but trouble, whether the fat is of animal or vegetable origin.
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Probably the biggest proof we have that a low-fat diet is essential is the miracle that happens in patients lives when they are placed on a diet free from margarine, mayonnaise, grease and oil of all kinds.
Diseases that are caused by artherosclerosis are markedly proved. The world of medical research is only now discovering the tremendous power in a natural vegetarian diet.
Editorial Note: Grains and legumes are not needed in the diet to assure enough fat and essential fatty acids.
Fruits, nuts, seeds and avocadoes all contain plenty.