Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The Kind Diet

With my life at such a grueling pace right now and two bouts of sickness in four weeks (the last week of October I was riddled with sinus headaches and migraines for five days), I really feel the need to get on track with taking care of myself and being good to me. My skin is stupid dry (I've fallen off the fish oil wagon-I just keep forgetting to take them), I have really dark circles under my eyes, and I'm achey. I need some TLC inside and out. Enter an interesting read that I have been anxious to get my hands on! The Kind Diet by Cher Horowitz herself Alicia TooAdorableForWords Silverstone.

I won't call this a vegan book, but rather a book about all of the benefits of a plant based diet and why animal products can be bad for you and the environment (there is a difference to me). The word kind refers to eating foods that are good to your system and friendly to the environment on the way to your mouth. I'm such a cheese and egg head that I don't know if I could ever adapt to losing all animal products, but I am really open to what the book has to say. It's written gently (aka the animal cruelty stuff isn't as graphic as some rougher literatue I have read-I get it, I don't need to read every gory detail) and Alicia, as a former meat eater, totally understands what it's like to change your diet. She speaks from experience about what it feels like and how wonderful a vegan life style has made her feel.

Veganism intrigues me (but can also seem a little rash and possibly unhealthy), and I wanted to read this book to see just how one is supposed to get essential nutrients when eating this way, and she does a great job of explaining it. She covers all the questions I had such as where you get calcium and protein, how eating so many carbs will not make you gain weight (you eat tons of beans and whole grains in this lifestyle), and even openly addresses "fartiness" and pooping (yes she actually uses the word fartiness-love it).

In addition to going animal product-free the kind way of eating also eliminates processed foods and white sugars. It's extreme (epecially in the land of fast foods and disgusting degrees of how we overwork ourselves), but Alicia claims it changed her life, gave her beautiful skin and hair, and has made her feel light and healthy. So far I really love that the book seems to focus on what you gain-awesome new foods and dishes to experience- instead of bombarding you with all of the things you have to kiss good bye. Because she knows that this is a serious life change, she presents three degrees of transitioning: flirting (maybe cutting out a meat meal or two each week or switching to whole grains and noting how you feel), vegan (no meat or dairy), and superhero (no meat, dairy, or processed foods). I've basically been a flirter for almost two years and have brought down my cheese consumption a lot since the spring to help ease my hot liver.

Bethenny Frankel mentions in Naturally Thin that if there are a lot of ingredients in a packaged food that you can't pronounce, then it's probably not a good investment. The Kind Diet follows a similar principle and sort of equates quality foods to gasoline. You can put regular ol' gas in your car, but it runs oh so much better on higher quality fuel. You can eat foods that are hard on your system, but you'll run so much better on nutrient rich, high quality, unprocessed foods. Makes sense. If we spend extra money to give our cars the good stuff-why not our bodies?

So I am making efforts to focus on fueling with kind foods and respecting my insides. Sunday afternoon I cooked up some kind lunches to enjoy during my upcoming busy week (I have some day trips for work for a huge project on top of rehearsals and an opening weekend of shows. Ooof. My two worlds have colided most unpleasantly this week.) My personal pre made meals include: Tofu and black beans marinated in soy sauce over whole wheat cous cous and quinoa. Accorn squash and parsnip steamed and mashed like potatoes (it's so good) with kidney beans, and tofu and veggie sautee with cous cous. All super flavorful and good for me on so many levels.

We'll see how incorporating some better quality foods aids in putting a spring back in my exhausted step!


  1. Hi, you don't know me but I just wanted to say thank you! for the inspiration. I happened upon your blog this last July and your reasonable goals and "real woman" approach to fitness and lifestyle change gave me that final push to get out and do something. 16 months after having a baby I was still wearing my maternity clothes and disgusted with myself. But I set some reasonable goals and made some attainable changes and by God's grace I have lost 35lb. in the last 4 months and quite a few inches. I'm not to my final goal yet, but enjoying the journey and little victories. Thank you for sharing your journey and helping so many others, myself included!!

  2. @Holly-I know you now, and you've simply made my day! We're all in this together!!! I'm inspired by your progress!!!

  3. Looks like a great read, I can't wait to test it out!

  4. YOu are amazing. PLease focus on your health. Yay! I also just finished Animal, Vegetable, Miracle and it is really really sticking with me. Lots of great tips in there, too. Can we talk about the dry skin, though? Yikes!