Should You Go Macrobiotic?

Regardless of how you take your initial steps into the macrobiotic lifestyle—whether it’s through a wellness retreat or learning on your own—making a gradual transition is key. If you choose a wellness retreat, like the SHA Wellness Clinic, Kenneth Prange, SHA Wellness Clinic’s macrobiotic expert, suggests keeping a diary of the meals and medicinal teas consumed during your stay. He adds, “Note 
the effects they have on your body. Use this 
information and try to adopt 30 percent of that into your lifestyle over a period of time. This approach is more effective than trying to convert immediately where mistakes are inevitable.”

The Pros:

More Energy
Most proponents of the macrobiotic diet notice an increase in energy throughout the day.

Weight Loss
“Organ systems progressively create a healthy symbiosis of metabolic functions. Over time, a person’s body returns to its ideal weight. Average weight loss for men could be about 6.6 pounds per week and for women, approximately 5.5 pounds per week,” SHA Wellness Clinic’s macrobiotic expert Kenneth Prange explains.

Manages Health Conditions
Celebrity nutritionist Paula Simpson says that since the macrobiotic diet is low in fat, cholesterol, sugar and sodium and high in fiber, antioxidants and complex carbohydrates it keeps conditions like high blood pressure, inflammation, obesity and poor digestion under control.

Prevents Disease
Eating a nonacidic diet helps sustain a neutral pH, which can result in less disease-causing inflammation in the body.

Eliminates Toxins
Brown rice, whole grains and millet are natural detoxifiers and release impurities from the body.

 

The Cons:

Potential Vitamin B12 Issues
Macrobiotic expert Gabriele Kushi says that there can be some concern for a vitamin B12 deficiency if you choose to avoid animal foods. “You can have it every now and then, but if you do eat meat, balance it out with an abundance of vegetables.”

Not Always Easy
Shopping for macrobiotic foods can be difficult since they can be hard to find. “Grocery stores are starting to stock them. They aren’t lining every shelf everywhere just yet,” says macrobiotic expert Denny Waxman.

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