Introduction to Macrobiotics

Macrobiotics is there for such a long time that it has developed in different forms in different parts of the world and hence has different meaning for different people. For some, macrobiotics is simply a method of recovering from illnesses; while some people take it as a compilation of ways to lose weight and look good. However, the true essence of macrobiotics can be summed up in these words: “Macrobiotics is the way of living a healthy life and keeping one’s spirit lively all the time.”

History

The term macrobiotics is derived from the two Latin words “macro” (i.e. large) and “bios” (i.e. life), which was coined by Hippocrates, the father of western medicine. According to its etymology, one can conclude that the macrobiotics simply means a large view of the life. But the modern macrobiotics has probably developed from the shiku-yo therapy in 19th century Japan. This food therapy (shiku-yo) was developed by a Japanese doctor Sagen Ishizuka, who was trained in western medicine. He developed this therapy after getting fed up with the ineffectiveness of western medicines that failed to cure his chronic illness.

Macrobiotic Meal

Although there are no definite ways or ingredients for cooking the macrobiotics meals, most practitioners of macrobiotics diet innovate with some basic ingredients like, soy sauce, tofu, seaweed, brown rice and various seasonal vegetables. For example: you can try to cook the deep-fried tofu and the vegetables with brown rice or the brown rice kofta curry. The only thing you need to take care of is the cleanliness and purity of the meal that is the very essence of a macrobiotics meal.

Health Benefits

Though, the proponents of macrobiotics claim that it is capable of preventing and curing several diseases including cancer, it is yet to be confirmed by scientific experiments. Since the macrobiotics diet consists of cereals, whole grains and seasonal vegetables, it is quite obvious to predict that the macrobiotic diet is a nutritious and healthy diet. People exercising the diet regimens of macrobiotics use to include enough amounts of high fibers in their meals and have low fat diet.

Difference from Veg. Diet

Most practitioners avoid including any non-veg item in their macrobiotics diet. But this doesn’t imply that a macrobiotics diet should always be devoid of non-veg items. Earlier the consumption of non-veg items were discouraged in macrobiotics, but in the modern macrobiotics a limited serving of fresh white-meat fish is recommended.

Warning

Before planning for the cooking of a macrobiotic meal, one should be sure that one knows the nutritional facts of the different ingredients going to be used for cooking. A poorly planned diet can lead to the nutritional deficiency. Sometimes, people use to cook very healthy macrobiotic diet but they forget to include all the nutritional components in such diets. Even the long term use of a healthy macrobiotic meal, deficient in one or two nutrients, can lead to severe complications. Pregnant women and children are not recommended to have the macrobiotics diet.