How to Develop an Individualized Diet

I’ve tried a number of approaches to eating: vegan, vegetarian, flexitarian, paleo, intermittent fasting, cleanses, and of course, standard American. Aside from vegan and standard American, I found some health benefits associated with each of those that I tried. I’ve had the best experience with paleo, which increased strength, reduced fat, increased energy, and mental clarity. On the other hand, my wife didn’t have the same experience with paleo. Couple that with diet hopping often because of conflicting information, I’ve

Metabolism

metabolism

Metabolic typing is not without its detractors. The Wikipedia article is harsh enough and links to a number of related Quack Watch articles. That said, it can’t to take an online test like this one and then see if the recommendations ring true for you. It made sense to me! Depending upon how I take the test, being more or less particular or shifting definition of occasion and frequent for example, I show up as a balanced oxidizer or better with fats than carbs.

For example, a bullet proof coffee can get me through most of the morning.

Allergies or Food Sensitives

allergies

I’m playing Russian roulette when I consume dairy aside from cultured dairy. I’m better with high fat than low but enough pizza or ice cream can really anger my GI system especially on high coffee intake days when my stomach is already sensitive because of the acid. My wife, on the other hand, craves dairy and breads aggravate inflammation and cause energy level swings.

I’d also lump in concerns with food toxicity here whether it’s heavy metals or mycotoxins.

Local Climate and Environmental Consideration

climate

I’ve got little scientific evidence here except to say local food is likely fresher food. Also, a lot of paleo detractors and even proponents note that there was no one paleo diet. The Inuit ate fatty, read meat while other indigenous peoples were more or less vegetarian. If you were to switch the diets of a people group in the tropics with another in an extreme cold climate, but not change their environmental conditions, it just makes sense that health challenges would result. This is less of a dietary factor for modern society primarily existing in climate controlled environments, but I’m inclined to trust the innate relationship between local water and food with climate and the human nutritional needs.

Medical Conditions

Stress and anxiety caused myoclonus, twitching, day and night for several months in 2014 and into 2015. It took several more months for my body to become completely non-reactive. I’m conscious to eat magnesium rich foods and have changed my tea of choice to holy basil among other food and lifestyle changes to address my psychogenically caused nervous system disturbance and to stave it off in the future as well.

Being aware of your body’s strengths and weaknesses and addressing them as best as possible nutritionally, is going to affect your overall diet.

Life Stage

family

If you’re an adolescent male, there’s reason to believe that you don’t need to consume pine pollen especially as a tincture. Conversely, a middle aged man or older would have a better experience. Pregnant women shouldn’t consume all sorts of foods that would otherwise be healthy for them. My diet has changed as I have.

Other Dietary Restrictions

This could take the form of the ‘other’ climate or animal rights reason not to, say, eat meat. You may have religious objections to certain foods. There’s a host of reasons that people abstain from eating certain foods.

Conclusion

My diet plan has evolved, but following these principles has helped develop my individualized diet in a way that has improved my overall health. Here’s how:

  • I consume far more fat than the US dietary guidelines would recommend
  • I eat very little dairy except yogurt and when I’m willpower, I take my chances with ice cream
  • I guard against eating too much if any sugar especially added sugar
  • I juice green vegetables and consume yogurt and dark chocolate for magnesium regularly
  • I cleanse or fast to slow and reset my metabolism, which reduces my overall food volume intake for some time
  • I take supplements that address specific deficiencies
  • I buy organic and local produce as well as free range meat

I’m not always steadfast on the last one, because it gets expensive, but generally speaking, these practical changes have improved my overall level of wellness. Speaking of practical, individualized diets can be challenging for families everyone has individual needs that may conflict with one another. It has been for me, but hey, there’s a lot of opportunity to improve how you eat within the context of your lifestyle.

Jansport Backpack Shout Out

I’ve owned a Jansport backpack since, I think, 10th grade. After about 15 years, the poor thing was in need of repair. Jansport has a lifetime guarantee, but I was hesitant to send the old guy in because I had become oddly attached to it. I sent it in crossing my fingers they would repair it instead of replacing. They did!

I’ve got some stiff nylon to contend with now, but I understand putting it in the wash with fabric softener and in the dryer with a tennis ball should help. We’ll see! Here it is; back in tip top shape:

jansport

From a durability and customer service standpoint, I’m really happy with Jansport. Here’s the interesting part… I had a brand new, cheap backpack to hold me over while Jansport was repairing my back. By the way, they turned it around pretty quick. I was without a backpack for less than three weeks including shipping back and forth across the country.

This is what happened to my temporary replacement backpack over that time:

tear in backpack

Basically, this thing is junk:

crappy backpack

I couldn’t believe that I’d had a Jansport for 15 or so years without damage like that and in just a few weeks a brand new backpack was basically unusable. Kudos to Jansport for a great product andĀ guaranteeĀ to back it up!

PS. I didn’t get paid to write this. I don’t get a commission if you click on the link to Jansport’s backpack shop. I’m just a really happy customer.