Is it really possible to lose weight by following the Bible’s teachings on food and eating?
Founder of the Bible Diet, author of The Maker’s Diet, and motivational speaker Jordan S. Rubin believes so! According to him, the Bible Diet is heavily influenced based on the teachings from the books of Leviticus and Deuteronomy. In these two particular books, it states that certain kinds of food are forbidden because they’re said to be unclean. Food considered acceptable or clean is the only kind that should be eaten. Naturally, there are a lot of questions about the Bible diet, as well as Biblical foods. Some of the popular ones are what we can or can’t eat, and how does it compare to Paleo or Vegan? If you’ve ever wandered about the Bible diet, then you may be interested in what I’ve found! What are Clean and Unclean foods? For starters, when you go on the Bible diet, there are only certain kinds of food that you can eat.
Below is a breakdown of acceptable Biblical foods:
1. Trees whose edible yield is bearing seeds or is seed- to make it simple, this kind of food is mostly fruits. All fruits are acceptable in the Biblical diet, just as long as they come from seeds. Fruits from fruit trees are okay to eat, as well as anything that grows on a vine, a shrub or anything with a woody bark tissue. 2. Plants whose edible yield is bearing seeds or is seeds- This classification refers to anything that may grow on plants that are not necessarily trees. Examples of this are squash, tomatoes, corn, rye, beans and lentils. 3. Field Plants- are the next thing on the list, which can consist of herbs, roots and green, leafy vegetables. 4. Clean meat- Now this one’s a little detailed because the definition of clean meat is pretty complex. It goes back to the time of Noah, who was tasked to take a pair of every clean and unclean animal. Noah offered every seventh clean animal for sacrifice. Clean meat is defined as the meat of every animal that has the hoof cloven in two, and chews the cud. Some examples of clean meat are the ox (cattle), buffalo, sheep, goat, deer, gazelle, antelope and mountain sheep, just to name a few. Unclean meat examples are the pig, the camel, the hare and the rock badger.
As for seafood, everything with fins and scales are allowed, but whatever doesn’t have fins like alligator, shrimp etc. is prohibited. For birds, everything is allowed except the eagle, the vulture, the kite, the raven, the ostrich, the seagull, and the owls. It is also noted that all winged insects are considered unclean. Also, meat cannot have been sacrificed to idols. Kosher Kosher literally means “fit” or “approved” and is followed primarily by Jews and some Christians. The guidelines are the same as above and stated in Leviticus 11:1-47. In orthodox Jewish cultured the only time you don’t need to follow kosher guidelines are if it’s necessary to eat something un-kosher to “save a life”.
Other guidelines in eating Kosher are to not eat the blood of the animal.
One principle I find very important is how animals are to be slaughtered. According to the Old Testament you are not to eat an animal that was diseased, died of it’s own natural causes or something that is alive. Also, here are kosher slaughtering guidelines: “These strict guidelines require the animal be killed by a single cut across the throat to a precise depth, severing both carotid arteries, both jugular veins, both vagus nerves, the trachea and the esophagus. Orthodox Jews argue that this ensures the animal dies instantly without unnecessary suffering.” A product that is “certified kosher” means a rabbi has supervised or ensured the food production follows kosher methods. Horrifying truths about
Conventional animal slaughter According to research at the University of Purdue Animal Sciences Department, emotional stress has an effect on meat quality. Some of these stressors can include extreme weather, pain, hunger, thirst or most commonly inhumane slaughter methods. Conventional slaughtering methods are done in 1 of 4 ways: • Chemical (carbon dioxide): uses carbon dioxide gas chamber before being bled • Captive Bolt Stunner: a forced blow to the head leaving the animal unconscious before they are bled • Gunshot: animal shot in head and presumed dead before being bled • Electrical current: provides surgical anesthesia throughout the bleeding of the animal It’s no wonder so many people are turning to Vegan diets or searching for grass-fed animals that undergo kosher or biblically based slaughter methods. Inhumane Slaughter Methods Effect Meat and You Research by Dr. Temple Grandin from Colorado State University has found that inhumane treatment and conventional slaughter harm meat quality. (She also has a fascinating story, check out her presentation at TED) Several stress hormones can be released if the animal is “stressed” during or right before slaughter. Here’s the technical breakdown of what that “stress” does: Epinephrine (adrenaline, norepinephrine, and cortisol can flood into the blood stream and break down glycogen which increases lactic acid which will create a more acidic pH. The evidence of this meat quality is referred to as Pale, Soft, Exudative (PSE). Another form of poor animal treatment can be found when meat is Dry, Firm, Dark (DFD) and can often be caused by malnourishment or sickness of the animal being slaughtered. Epinephrine (adrenaline) and norepinephrine are “stress hormones” that when released into the blood stream will stay in the body and the effect the quality of the meat. When you eat this excited animal meat, you are ingesting those hormones and hormone-induced byproducts in your body. Consuming this type of meat can cause unwanted health problems in your system.
Recommendations from The Makers Diet
The 4 classifications of food (trees that yield seed, plants that yield seed, field plants, clean meat) is the foundation of a Biblical diet. There are also other important things you should consider when starting or following a Biblical diet. • Water, sunshine and exercise are also very important for health. You should always remember to drink lots of water, get lots of exercise, and go outside. I recommend 1 quart water daily for every 50 pounds of weight. Also, it’s important to drink high quality and water. • Ensure the meat you eat is safe and clean. This means abstaining from certain kinds of meat and seafood such as pork, lobster, clams and mussels, shrimp and catfish. • Eat food that are in season- the Bible states that everything has a season. This should also be our attitude when it comes to picking out the things we eat. Lean towards eating fruits, vegetables and herbs that are in season, as they’re fresher and better for your health. • Eating raw is very much encouraged. Some vegetables may need to be cooked, but a majority of them can be enjoyed raw. • Foods should be consumed in the way they were found in nature. This means that we should stay away from preservatives, processed foods, or those produced with lots of contact with hormones, fertilizers and pesticides.
Benefits of following a Biblical Diet All these food restrictions may seem like a whole lot of sacrifice, but what about the rewards. Those who go on the Biblical diets can look forward to the following benefits: • Weight loss- a diet high in unprocessed food, fruit and vegetables is ideal for weight loss. Natural and raw fruits and vegetables carry fewer calories and are easier to digest then other processed foods. • A longer lifespan- Rubin claims that our ancestors that went on the Biblical diet went on to live for 120+ years. Although we may not reach that age, studies show that a diet high in fruits and vegetables lead to little or no health complications, thus indicating a longer lifespan. • Energy and improved mood- when our bodies are in a state of imbalance due to poor dietary habits, we immediately feel it. We can feel sickly, sluggish and depressed.
Eating right can increase energy, balance hormones and improve our mood. Where to Find Biblically based organic meat If you’re looking to go both Biblical and Organic in your eating methods the only meat and dairy company that I know of that follows both of these principles is Beyond Organic. Jordan Rubin the companies founder is Jewish and has incorporated these biblically principles as a foundational part of his company.
Read more about Dr. Axe on his website.