Sunday, July 24, 2011

Animal vs. Plant Protein

Today's post comes from Jennie Zraick who has made healthy changes in her eating to conquer her depression. It's a perfect follow-up to my recent post A Diet Just Right For You where I address the myth about protein sources in your diet.

Myth: You need meat to get protein.
Fact: You can get the protein you need in a plant-based diet.

Jennie writes:
The Engine 2 Diet: The Texas Firefighter's 28-Day Save-Your-Life Plan that Lowers Cholesterol and Burns Away the PoundsAnimal vs. plant protein came up in conversation the other night. Specifically, how do you get protein from plants? This site has a really good FAQ section on this topic. Rip Esselstyn is a former triathlete, current firefighter and author of The Engine 2 Diet. His father is Caldwall Esselstyn, a well-known researcher and doctor focusing on the reversal of heart disease via a plant-based diet. Visit Dr. Esselstyn's website at Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease.
One of the things I'm learning, which the FAQ hits lightly, but is a biggie for me, is that our bodies use the calcium from our bones to counteract acidic pH in our bodies. Animal proteins (meat and dairy) along with many processed foods create an acidic pH.
I always wondered why, in a country where we get plenty of dairy, do we need so much calcium supplementation since dairy supposedly gives us a ton of calcium? Why are women getting osteoporosis at epidemic rates? Well, here you go! The standard American diet (nicknamed SAD) creates an acidic environment inside our bodies which causes our bodies to use more calcium than it provides, leaching it from our bones.
As a side note, cancer thrives when the body pH is acidic, but cannot survive in a body when the body pH is alkaline. Alkaline foods are generally plant-based whole foods. Another reason why (I believe) cancer is rampant and has gone from a primarily genetic connection to primarily environmental sources.
Thanks, Jennie for your points about animal-based foods. We are being duped by what we hear rather than being educated with the facts.

What are some facts you learned about health that may in fact be a myth? Scroll down and leave a comment.


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