I was asked that question today, and it was not the first time. Sadly, I don't have the credentials to call myself a nutritionist, but I am passionate about reading about health and nutrition. Somehow I occasionally find myself in conversations with complete strangers about nutrition and often find myself sharing little known information with them.
Such as today... I was picking up a carton of Silk Nog at the same time a lady was picking up a carton of Almond Milk. I asked if she'd ever tried the nog and she hadn't, but I also mentioned that mine was better. My homemade eggless, dairy-free nog uses pumpkin to get that nice thick mouthfeel without the icky raw eggs. Here's the recipe:
Chile’s Pumpkin Nog
Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Chilling Time: at least 2 hours ahead
Servings: makes about 3 cups
1 cup pureed pumpkin, chilled (canned is fine, but not pumpkin pie mix)
2 cups non-dairy milk, chilled
3 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon vanilla
Place all ingredients in blender and process until smooth. Pour into glasses and serve with a bit of grated fresh nutmeg on top for a special presentation.
We got to talking about nutrition and disease, and I mentioned a couple of tips she might be interested in. I also gave her the last "business card" for my blog that was in my wallet. On the off-chance she actually makes it here, I'm going to provide links to the items I mentioned. Who knows, maybe you, the reader, will also happen to find these of interest.
First is Dr. Neal Barnard's book, Program for Reversing Diabetes. Contrary to what is generally believed, fat is the real dietary culprit, not sugar. Fat, especially animal fat, seems to gum up the cell's "lock" for which insulin is the key. The insulin key is unable to open up the cell because the lock is gummed up and thus unable to usher the glucose into the cell for use. (Your body's cells burn glucose - sugar - for fuel.) Because it can't get the glucose into the cells, the glucose continues to circulate in the bloodstream, keeping blood sugar elevated. This makes it look like sugar is the culprit when it really isn't.
Dr. McDougall has information on diabetes and dietary treatment here, as well.
I also mentioned that protein is blown way out of proportion in this country. Human protein needs are met easily. So easily I'll bet you've never, ever heard of anyone in this country with a disease of protein deficiency. Nope. In the US, we specialize in diseases of dietary excess, as witnessed by the rapidly growing obesity rates!
Just 5% of your calories need to come from protein, an amount very easily met by eating even a strict plant-based diet. Did you know that raw broccoli is 36% protein?! Even iceberg lettuce is 26% protein. Brown rice is almost 10% protein. I could eat brown rice and broccoli every day, and get enough protein even if I was doing intensive daily body building routines. But, don't believe me. Remember, I am NOT a nutritionist. I just read what smart write. For more interesting health and diet-related links, check out the sidebar of my other blog.