Here it is Vegan Feast Thursday and I actually have the whole day off. That means that I have some time at the computer this morning, which could mean I might ramble…There’s your warning.
Some really good news this morning, as the special strain of marijuana called Charlotte’s Web (as seen on the Sanjay Gupta special, WEEDS) has been approved for medical use here in Florida! This is super exciting news to wake up to. This non-euphoric strain, has been a medical miracle for children whose brains are ravaged by painful and eventually lethal seizures. This is the first time Florida Legislature has approved any type of medical marijuana legalization, and I am so happy for children like 11 year old Ray Ann Moseley, of Gulf Breeze, who suffers from daily, crippling seizures. Prior to this, doctors claim the only traditional treatment was to cut her brain in half! Imagine a little oil making that much difference in a child’s life. I am proud that this had bipartisan backing, and makes me think that we can all work together to make the world a healthier place to live…..
Also in the news this week, a health study that links excess animal protein during middle age to cancer. Hmmm. Was this breaking news? According to a study published just this week, Italian and U.S. researchers tracked thousands of adults for almost two decades and found that those that ate high amounts of animal products during middle age were four times more likely to die of cancer than those with low-protein diets. This risk factor is comparable to one of a cigarette smoker.
Needless to say, I was not at all surprised by this study and think it extends to all ages, but I am not a researcher, so we will stick with what the pros found in this study. Part of what I found rather interesting is in this study’s researchers defined a “high-protein” diet as one where 20% (or more) of calories comes from protein, and a “low-protein” diet was defined as less that 10%. If you do the math and eat 1,500 calories a day, 300 calories of protein would put you in the high risk category. That means if you have one chicken breast, roasted, without the skin, you have already had a little more than 1/2 your protein for the day and when you eat the other half you will have put yourself in a high-protein diet catagory. If you had 2 of those breasts your diet would be high in protein without a single other protein calorie from anything else for the rest of the day.
Additionally, the study found that even moderate amounts of protein in middle-aged individuals “had detrimental effects over time, a result that held true across ethnic, educational and health backgrounds.”
There is no doubt that the amount of protein in a diet has been a topic of controversy and has been complicated by the Atkins and the Paleo diet as well as others that promote high-protein. There is rarely a day that goes by that I am not justifying my own diet, or asked where I get my protein from. Valder Longo, a professor at the University of Southern California and director of the university’s Longevity Institute, suggests that people all around the world are eating way more protein than needed “with too much coming from animals rather than plant-based foods such as nuts, seeds and beans.”
So as you move through your day, I hope you will put some awareness on just how much protein you are really consuming and give some thought to this study, published just this week. The science continues to prove that moving towards a plant-based diet is a great way to ward off the diseases of affluence, and once again, what’s good for us is good for the world at large.
If you are interesting in leaning in to a more plant-based diet, please feel free to ask me anything! If I don’t know the answer, I will try to find it for you. If you read my blog via Facebook, and would like more info, feel free to visit my site directly at peaceandfitness.com where you can access recipes, articles and years worth of information. Thanks for stopping in.