You've asked about Cindy's diet! Today, she tells you all about her experience with various diets and her thoughts about them. Watch the video to hear more.
Welcome to Saturday with Cindy. Welcome to all those who are new and welcome back all the regulars. So, going back to your questions, there were a lot of people that wanted to know what do I eat? What do I eat for breakfast, lunch, dinner? What kind of diet? Am I vegan? Am I not? La, la, la, la, la. So, this is the deal. I have experimented my entire life. My body has been my laboratory. I have read more books on health, nutrition, vitamins, minerals, what's natural, what we ate in caveman days. Huge library of books.
I was macrobiotic. I tried that. I stopped doing that, and I just kind of ate whole foods. You know, the whole array, meat, dairy, grain, everything, but made sure that it was hopefully organic and as unprocessed as possible. I used to go to one store to buy my raw milk products, and I would go to another store to buy my whole grains, and I baked my own bread every week. This was way back. This was when I was like in my early 20s.
So, ever since then, I have always been interested in health and nutrition. And I think the main reason is because I realized that the only guarantee I have in life is that I am going to be stuck in this body until the day I die. People come and go. Houses come and go. You never know what you may lose in the future. They say taxes, or taxes and death are a guarantee. I don't know about that, but I do know I am in this body until the day I die, so I thought I better treat it well, so it serves me well until I'm ready to leave.
So, that's my basic philosophy. But with all of these diets, the blood-type diet, and from A to Z, let's say, from Atkins to paleo. Do you know about paleo? That's eating apparently the way we did back in the day. I don't know why everybody thinks they know because they weren't there. And yes, the anthropologists and the archaeologists have discovered that different cultures around the world from way back, by what they had in their stomachs and what kind of kitchen tools, etc. they had, they could tell what we were eating as the human race back then.
And it looks like beyond the shadow of a doubt we are omnivore. That means we eat everything. We are capable of eating everything. We are capable of digesting everything. So, because of that, we have to make our own personal choices.
So, can you see my eyes twitching? And it's really bothering me, so I thought I would just say that so I can do that. And my nose itches. Okay. So, there was a point in my life where I went 100% raw vegan, whole, fresh, ripe, organic fruits and vegetables. Nothing else. Nothing cooked at all. No grains, no beans because those both have to be cooked and there's a whole philosophy behind it. Grains are meant for birds that we're not capable of digesting grains. We have to pound them into flour and then cook them before we can digest them. And then the other argument against that is, well, we were given these big brains to figure that out and do that. So, again, omnivore, because we do it. We are omnivore.
So, during that time, I did a lot of fasting. Fasting on juice and fasting on nothing but water. I mean, I really experimented. At one point in my life, I went to Costa Rica for six weeks with a group of people and went into the mountains, stayed at a very specific facility and did a water fast from January 1 to my birthday January 26, and I did not put one single bite of food or juice into my body. Nothing but water for 26 days. Again, I read a lot about fasting. I experimented with it a few times much shorter fasts before I did that, and I absolutely recommend that you do not do it unless you are in a facility with trusted people, doctors to oversee what you're doing. And when I do that now, I do it at True North Health Center in Santa Rosa, California.
The only people I trust where you can do that and be in very, very good hands. And fasting is a way for your body to cleanse itself. It's trying to clean itself all the time, but we give it so much to do. Thinking, running, stressing, worrying, eating, eating, eating, eating, and stressing some more, and eating some more, and eating... I mean, it just never stops. So, when you stop eating, and you stop working, and you're just at bed rest or maybe just taking a very gentle walk, your body says, "Thank you, now I can get busy cleaning out those organs and dumping out the toxins I've been setting aside and storing over here so I can give you energy and make things right so you can function and live your life." So, your body is always healing itself, and always cleaning itself, and always handling this stuff.
And every once in a while, it's nice to give it a rest. And what happens is it rolls up its sleeves, and it starts digging down and doing that spring cleaning, that deep cleaning that it never has a chance to do because you keep it so busy. So, I do believe in fasting. I've done it. I've had amazing results. I have seen other people fast and seen them heal right before my eyes. Really amazing. So, back to my diet. So, True North Health Center advocates an all-plant-based diet with no salt, no sugar, and no oil. I've done it. It's amazing. But I find that it's too strict and I just like flavor and I like cooking with little olive oil and putting a little on my salad, and I love salt too much. That's why I like to go there once a year to kind of get over my salt addiction, but then I start getting myself addiction back throughout the year.
“I have experimented my entire life. My body has been my laboratory.”
So, I am no angel. I am not perfect, but I figure, you know what? Longevity sounds really fun if I feel good up until I die. I don't think any of us like the idea of being miserable for any part of our lives. So, what I do is I do stay away from highly processed foods. I mean, maybe a few times a year I'll have, what is that? White cheddar cheese popcorn smartfood, dumb food. Every once in a while, I have dumb food. But if I'm going to eat any type of meat, if it's beef, lamb, chicken or fish, I make sure that it is wild, organic, la, la, la. And I do know that there's mercury in a lot of fish in the ocean, so all of you out there that are super, super strict, that do not pass anything between your lips that it's not 100% pure, I know all about it. I understand. I totally respect your choices and I don't do it all the time. And I may go back to being raw. I may go back to being 100% vegan. I really don't know. But right now, I would say I'm going for being more relaxed around my diet.
I have this theory that every single person in America has an eating disorder of some kind on some level. Because when I was raw, I was obsessed about it and I talked about it all the time, and I read all about it, and I just, you know, food, food, food was always on my mind. And when I started eating cooked foods, I got a little more relaxed. Wasn't so strict. And then I came up with my birthday cake theory, which is, we all have a piece of birthday cake a few times a year, but we don't eat it three times a day. So, what you're eating three times a day is really what you're functioning on. And having a slice of pizza a few times a year, you know, dairy or French fries, deep fried hot oil, or birthday cake, a lot of people feel that's a really, really big no-no.
And I think as long as you're not getting obsessive and bingeing and addictive with it, and you just have it every once in a while, I don't know, it just brings pleasure to life. And it's not being so stressed out about following this regiment exactly because following a regiment exactly and being intense like that, I don't consider that very healthy. So, I think it really, really is up to each individual. Now, there's also the political side of eating vegan or not eating processed food because we wanna do healthy good things for the planet as well as our bodies. So, what I would suggest is keep talking, keep discussing, keep reading, and read a huge cross-section of things. Don't latch on to one idea or one point of view and just stay with that. Get a broad, broad perspective. And asking me what I eat is part of adding to that perspective.
So, breakfast. Lately, and again, I change my diet probably every year and a half. So, over the past few months, I have been having one cup of coffee every morning with a little bit of raw brown sugar and organic, no hormone la, la, la grass-fed beef whole milk. I actually have this theory that it's better to eat the whole food rather than part of it. Like the whole egg instead of part of the egg because Mother Nature packaged it that way and it just seems like we should eat the whole thing because there's probably a lot of little balances in there that we don't know about in terms of science or scientifically. But it's like, what could be more perfect than a fruit? A banana comes perfectly wrapped. The ingredients and the recipe is designed by nature. It's easy to open up and tastes delicious, and it makes me feel really good. I'm crazy about fruits.
So, after that cup of coffee, I wait about an hour and a half and then I'll have maybe organic rolled oats cooked with raisins and sliced bananas or fresh berries. For lunch, I'll have a big old salad with all kinds of mixed greens and tomatoes and celery. I'll just take a bunch of different vegetables and cut them all up, and I use a little bit of olive oil, a little bit of balsamic vinegar, and a little splash of salt. And sometimes, I put in a little tahini, and that's really good. If I'm still hungry after a salad like that... Well, if I'm super hungry, I would probably put some walnuts in it. Makes it a little hardier and put some oil in there, some fat like that fat. That's really good. Avocado, yum, yum. And for dinner. Dinner might be brown rice, steamed broccoli, stockade mushrooms, and possibly organic chicken tossed in there or not. I quite often have a vegan dinner. I might do pasta. I cannot stand whole wheat pasta. If I'm gonna eat pasta, it's going to be Decheco white pasta which I know a lot of people out there think the white flour is a big no-no.
I think diversity is smart, and I also love the variety. But when you're taking from many, many different food groups and doing a whole cross-section of vegetables, a whole cross-section of fruit, a whole cross-section of grains and beans and possibly meats. I can't say I'm really big on dairy other than a small splash of milk in my coffee in the morning. Other than that, little Parmesan cheese. I like that once in a while, but it's not something I eat daily other than the milk and the coffee. And I just started drinking coffee for the very first time in my life a year and a half ago and that's because a friend came to visit me who is a complete coffee addict and I just kept taking little sips and taking little taste and go, "What's the big deal about coffee?" And I think I got addicted. That's wild. That's intense. So, I'm looking at that. I'm looking at that, and I'm looking about possibly ending my coffee cycle.
So, that's it. I have been rambling on about this, but I really wanted to tell you the truth. And let me tell you, I used to stop people in the grocery store and say, "Do you know what you have in your basket? Don't you know how bad that is for you?" I mean, I was a militant, obnoxious vegan, raw foodist, natural hygienist, etc. And I turned a lot of people off and ended up turning myself off. So, I think I just share what I'm doing at the time, and everybody can make their own decision about what works for them, and it's all good, and it's all right. And that's it. There you go. All right. That was fun. And I hope I see you next Saturday.