If you read my previous blog post, called “What kind of diet should you follow?”, you know that a few weeks ago I started to follow the Starch-based diet.
I’ve been plant-based for 5 years, and I tried so many different vegan diets. I was eating junk food for a long time, I was raw vegan then I was on a fruit-based diet, I got into Ayurveda and also I was following the principles of the Medical Medium books.
Then I gave a shot to the Starch-based diet and I feel like I found the answer to my questions. I was always ignoring this diet because I thought eating raw foods was much better for your health than eating cook foods all the time. Well, I still eat a lot of raw food (fruits, vegetables, leafy greens), because they are so beneficial for your body, but I also believe that food is energy and eating a cooked, warming stew or soup can be so good for your soul and your mind.
This diet is high in carbs, which consists of starches like potatoes, sweet potatoes, rice, couscous, quinoa, barley, corn. It is mainly based on potatoes and grains. Oats are a staple. We also eat lots of legumes, beans, chickpeas, lentils. Soups, stews, curries, and just plan baked vegetables are the staple of our diet. It’s a low-fat diet, so you eat 10-15% fat a day.
As for me, I eat mostly fruits, vegetables, and some grains. I rarely eat bread and pasta, but sometimes it happens. I also try to avoid corn and gluten.
I started this diet when I read Nina and Randa’s book, called The Clear skin diet. I always had issues with my skin, and it improved a lot, but still not perfect. It’s a 6 weeks program when you follow a starch-based diet but you don’t eat any extra fat. Well after two days I started to see major improvement on my skin. Since then it’s been healing, I still have a long way to go, but I couldn’t believe my eyes. They also recommend not to use any oils on your skin. I’m not 100% convinced by that, because I’d rather use a 100% pure oil on my skin than an oil free moisturizer which is full of chemicals. I couldn’t find oil free, 100% pure skin products which don’t have other comedogenic ingredients. Although my skin healing is kinda stopped and I’m still getting spots, so I’ll give it a shot. I’ll make my own beauty products, which I’m definitely going to share with you guys.
Back to the diet. I feel more satiated eating these comfort foods, plus I don’t eat extra fat, I digest the food super fast, so I always have to make sure that I eat a little bit bigger portions. It took me a few days to get used to this. But I just love that fact that my digestion works really good, and I also lost weight which is a plus.
If you are concerned that you will not get enough protein, well you don’t have too. Legumes have tons of protein, plus you don’t even need that much protein.
Although, my whole life I’ve been struggling to digest the legumes properly without feeling bloated and gassy, so I had to skip those. Sometimes I eat chickpeas and peas, they are not bad for me, but the beans are definitely a big no-no. It doesn’t matter if I soak them before the cooking, they still cause me problems. I heard that you need to eat them regularly and your body will adjust to them, I tried it, it didn’t work.
So you must be thinking if I’m skipping the legumes as well, I will probably be protein deficient. I get my protein from the leafy greens, vegetables, and fruits. I also take spirulina every day which has a lot of protein.
How much protein do we really need?
“The World Health Organization recommends that only about 5 percent of our daily calories be from protein. Incidentally, that is the same percentage of protein as in human breast milk.(…)
The prominent nutrition expert Dr. John Scharffenberg gave an extensive presentation at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, which was ultimately published in 1982. He was quoted as saying, “Let me emphasize, it is difficult to design a reasonable experimental diet that provides an active adult with adequate calories that are deficient in protein.” (…)
While there may be many different opinions on the exact amount of protein we need, one thing is clear: the average plant food supplies at least 10 percent of its calories in the form of protein, and green vegetables average about 50 percent.”
Eating fruits? What about the sugar?
People are so afraid of fruits because of their natural sugar content. Don’t compare fruits with high-fructose corn syrup, processed cane sugar, sucrose and other sweeteners and sugars. People are told that the sugar in fruit causes Candida, mold, weight, cancer, diabetes etc.
“Do not get a pound of fruit confused with a pound of sugar. A pound of sugar is a pound of sugar. A pound of fruit is a unique blend of life-creating, life-saving, life-sustaining phytonutrients and other phytochemicals that stop disease and promote long life.
Fruit does not have that much sugar in it. Fruits are made up of living water, minerals, vitamins, protein, fat, other nutrients, pulp, fiber, antioxidants, pectin-and just a fraction of sugar. If we wanted to compare 100 pounds of refined sugar to the equivalent amount of sugar you’d consume in fruit, we’d be looking at thousands of pounds of fruit.”
The problem comes when you eat a lot of sugar and fat.
Our whole life we hear that diabetes is caused by eating a lot of foods with sugar in them. But the problem is not the sugar, it’s sugar and fat combined. Most people consume processed foods and junk foods such as cookies, cakes, ice cream and so on, and they eat a lot of fat and a lot of sugar at the same time. Following a high-fat diet is the problem, because it doesn’t allow the sugar to get into our cells. It gets trapped in the bloodstream leading to insulin resistance and high blood sugar and turns into diabetes.
So that’s why it’s important to consume a low-fat diet.
The healthy fats are still fat, so make sure don’t eat a lot of them either. In the beginning, if you want to get rid of your skin and health issues, it’s good if you avoid the healthy fats as well until your symptoms are gone.
All I can say, try out new things, find what is working for you. I don’t completely follow the starch-based diet. I barely eat legumes, because I can’t digest them. The diet recommends starches and vegetables, but I also drink juices and smoothies, I eat a lot of raw foods, and I make sure to get enough leafy greens in my diet. Also according to the Medical Medium books you shouldn’t eat corn, gluten, I’m trying to do so. But I’m not perfect, there are days when I eat better and days when I don’t.
I hope I could give you some new information about this diet, and I can’t wait to share recipes with you guys.
Thank you for reading,