The TYTN Diet Plan is based on the traditional foods consumed by humans for thousands of years, prior to the Agricultural and Industrial Revolutions. It is an outline for a healthy diet, but can be modified according to one's personal needs and health goals during a TYTN Health Coaching session.
The TYTN Diet Plan includes animal foods in appropriate amounts, and according to each individual's needs, ancestry, and location.
Generally speaking, we do not recommend a vegan diet for most people long-term. Instead, we would advise those interested to consider a pesco-vegetarian diet that includes eggs, fish, and possibly small amounts of raw and/or whole-fat dairy products, rather than a vegan diet for long-term.
The TYTN Diet Plan includes animal foods as part of the foundational food choices as animal foods provide important nutrients, like iron, zinc, selenium, choline, and many B vitamins that can easily become deficient for long term vegans. They are in a more bio-available form, and easier to assimilate. (I list a few common symptoms of deficiency here.)
For many years, I believed the many advocates of vegan and vegetarian diets claiming that other than having Vitamin B12 levels checked, and getting adequate sun exposure, you can easily meet your needs from a well planned vegan diet.
However, whole grains, whole or refined grain products, and beans and legumes which contain phytic acids can block absorption of many of these nutrients, causing subtle, low-level deficiencies which can show up as significant symptoms over time.
Animal foods which can be included in the TYTN Diet Plan include:
*Fish - wild caught is usually best. There are new integrated aquaponic systems that raise Tilapia which are much better than some of the farm-raised fish which are not great quality. The higher up the food chain, and the more fatty the fish, the more potential contaminants will be stored in the adipose tissue. Do your best to avoid fish imported from other countries, like Viet Nam. It's not good quality.
*Sardines and smaller fish are among the best choices. Sardines are a great source of calcium because they contain the bones. Otherwise choose what you have most readily available regionally, including trout, cod, mild white fish, salmon, etc.. Some wild caught, sustainably harvested seafood can be enjoyed as well, especially if they are local regional staple foods. Avoid fish from other countries, and bottom-feeder fish, like catfish as much as possible.
*Personally hunted game meat, including venison, deer, and moose are among the leanest red meats.
*Regional meats like Buffalo if part of your native, cultural diet.
*Grass-fed and organic beef and pork. Choose cheaper cuts if needing to stretch your budget. For example, you can purchase beef shank which has the bone and some meat on it, and let it cook for long periods with a little acid in the broth to pull out the minerals, like making a bone broth. The long cooking time will help tenderize the meat. This is good for soups and stews.
*Beef and pork, or other meats (ostrich~tastes like beef!; lamb, mutton, etc.). When buying conventional meats, choose the freshest looking, best quality you can, and pick leaner cuts. (Fattier cuts of meat can be consumed on ketogenic diets, depending on your weight goals. Many recommend getting leaner cuts if buying conventional.)
*Poultry or fowl including turkey, chicken, and duck. - Choose organic, pastured poultry when possible. Be careful to look at the packaging, and when handling raw chicken meat. Be sure to clean all counters, cutting boards, and knives when handling raw chicken, or any raw meats.
*Locally raised eggs from pastured chickens, or high-omega eggs. The more orange the yolk, the more Vitamin A.
*Raw dairy products ~ goat, sheep, or cow. Whole fat is best.
*Small amounts of conventional goat milk, or goat or sheep milk cheese or yogurt.
*Cow dairy should be kept to a minimum. Some yogurts or small amounts can be enjoyed if tolerated. Whole milk will be more nutritious than skim. Some people who have a sensitivity to one of the proteins in dairy, usually casein, may tolerate whole fat sources of dairy, including ghee, butter, and heavy whipping cream. Half and half can also be enjoyed in your morning coffee, or alternative coffee beverage, like our favorite Chicory Coffee.
Other foods included on the TYTN Diet Plan include:
*Fresh and dried fruits - preferably from your local or similar bioregion. Consumption of tropical fruits imported from other countries is minimized. We generally recommend eating fruits seasonally, and choosing those that are lower in fructose, or at least equal ratio of fructose to glucose. Strawberries are great. Stone fruits, other berries, prunes, and cantaloupe are good choices. Those with fructose malabsorption issues may need to minimize consumption of fruits like apples, pears, and other sweet fruits.
*A variety of greens and vegetables (see more below)
*Nuts, seeds, and good quality, cold-pressed, unrefined and/or organic plant oils:
*Whole grains are always chosen over a refined grain (if using)- Naturally fermented, traditional breads like sourdough are the best choice when made with good quality local or regional grain. Rye breads are lower-glycemic than wheat. Manna sprouted breads are good.
*Beans & lentils - care should be taken to soak and cook beans (if using) until very tender, preferably cooking with kelp or kombu seaweed, and in a pressure cooker.
*Both grains and grain products, and beans and lentils can either be minimized or avoided if eating animal foods as foundational foods, or if you have known allergies, Chron's disease, or other digestive issues.
*Cooking methods on the TYTN Diet include grilling and broiling on a ridged broiler pan, poaching, steaming, or pan-frying in healthy oil are recommended to reduce the amount of saturated fat from consumed.
*Cooking techniques can be adjusted seasonally, using quicker cooking methods in the summer, longer, more warming methods during the cooler months. For example, grill, broil, and stir-fry during the summer, make more slow-roasted, stewed, and baked meats and foods during the fall and winter.
Fresh and dried fruits are included on the TYTN Diet Plan as per one's condition, and tolerance for sugars and carbohydrates. Fruits contribute a balance of the sweet and sour flavors, and are a great complement to animal-centered diets. The nutrients lacking in fruit are found abundantly in animal foods, and vice versa. For example, fruits are high in potassium, while animal foods are higher in sodium. Too much sodium or too little potassium can lead to health imbalances. Check out these deliciously sweet, simple, and satisfying Fruit Salads here.
The TYTN Diet Plan also includes plenty of fresh leafy salad greens, dark leafy greens, and a variety of starchy and non-starchy vegetables, including sweet and regular potatoes, other tubers, and winter squashes. Red skin potatoes have the lowest glycemic index, and may be better tolerated by those with blood sugar imbalances, or arthritic pain conditions.
Some people may need to restrict consumption of starchy tubers, at least temporarily, until better health is obtained. It will vary according to one's condition and needs.
If you have a known or suspected thyroid issue (millions of Americans may have an undiagnosed hypothyroid condition), you may want to experiment with eliminating, or greatly reducing goitergen-containing foods. These include many vegetables, and whole grains.
Some vegetables to experiment with avoiding to see if your symptoms improve include the cabbage family of vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, kale, rutabagas, and all cabbages including napa cabbage and bok choy.
Focus on softer greens like lettuces, beet greens, dandelion greens, Swiss chard, escarole, spinach, parsley and other herbs, cucumbers, and other vegetables including zucchini, green beans, carrots, and parsnips.
Nuts can provide some nutrients including manganese, and vitamin E in greater quantities than animal foods. Consuming too many nuts can cause digestive issues. You may need to experiment to find your tolerance. Since nuts can be pretty warming, you may consider enjoying them in greater quantities in cooler months.
If desiring a plant-based, vegan diet, foods would be chosen from among whole cooked grains, beans, legumes, protein-rich products made grains and legumes including seitan, tofu, and tempeh, along with lots of dark leafy greens, vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, oils, and sea veggies for iodine, calcium, and other minerals. Ideally, fish and eggs would also be included in the diet to ensure getting important nutrients like choline, and the Omega 3 fatty acids of DHA and EPA, among others, like zinc and some B vitamins.
Supplementing with B-12 may not be adequate enough, so pay attention to your health. If at any time you are not feeling energized and supported by your diet, consider adding small amounts of animal foods back.
Other recommended supplements for vegans include a vegan DHA/EPA, zinc, and possibly Vitamin A, especially if there are skin issues, or poor vision. Best sources are Cod Liver Oil, and liver powder or tablets, both shown here.
The key to the TYTN Diet Plan is to eat consciously and judiciously. While animal foods are included in the diet, it needs to be in appropriate amounts for each individual.
For example, as a petite female in my 50's, I consume 100-125g, and sometimes more of animal flesh food at three separate meals per day. Don has about 150-175g at two separate meals, and two additional high-protein and fat drinks made from raw eggs and cream. My goal is to lose fat, and lose a few pounds. Don's goal is to increase protein and weight, but not fat.
100g of protein is about 3.5 ounces. 1 egg = ~ 7g of protein.
The diet can be as produce-rich as you tolerate. Some people love to eat lots of greens and vegetables, others do not. Eat enough for you. Trust your true nature!
Above are two meals we consumed before reducing our total carbohydrate consumption even further. Each plate is at least 2/3 produce. These days, we may enjoy a very simple meal adding in just the quantity and types of seasonal plant foods that are appealing. It changes from day to day. There need not be any hard and fast rules, other than going by how you feel!
Enjoy fruit before, as an appetizer, or after as a dessert. Fruit and meats are a nice pair, and are consumed in tandem in many cultural cuisines. Sauces and chutneys are made from fruit, and often served with the meal, or as part of the marinade.
The best foundational and complementary foods for each individual on the TYTN Diet Plan will always depend on their condition, constitution, region, energetic expenditure, and health goals.
The principles of balance from Chinese medicine and macrobiotics are applied when assisting others to craft the best personal diet, while also inspiring a Trust Your True Nature mindset.
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