So here’s my review of the Body Ecology Diet, as promised. I’m very, very impressed with this work. Like I said before, it’s the book I wish I’d had years ago – but I have it now! It’s basically a way of eating that is tailored to those with weak digestion, digestive health issues, or Candida over-growth, or as she calls it ‘Candida Related Complex’ (CRC), which she says that 1 in 3 North Americans probably have...
The Body Ecology Diet (the Diet) is an eating program based on 7 ‘Principles’, that can be adjusted whether you are vegetarian, vegan or if you eat meat…and she recommends adjusting it to your blood type, and gives a lengthy section on how to do that. She also addresses how several other nutrition theories fit with the Diet, including raw and vegetarian diets, macrobiotics, and high protein diets. This book reminds me a lot of a mini ‘Integrative Nutrition’ actually. Like the author of that book, the author here, Donna Gates, seems to me to be particularly open-minded and non-fanatical. Nothing is really bad on this diet, it’s all about integrating harder to digest foods or more acidic foods later.
So the main points of her book I would say are: each meal should be 80% alkaline or sea veggies, the other 20% can be one of either: flesh protein, starchy veggies, or ‘BED’ grains (which are actually grain-like seeds: quinoa, buckwheat, and amaranth). This keeps our meals alkaline, since she says CRC is an acidic state. Plus this is also good food combining, which she says results in better digestion. She also recommends eating more soup, and if you eat meat, then fish she says are the star of the Diet. And she recommends veggie smoothies over fruit smoothies of course. The usual Candida diet advice is clearly spelled out, too: no fruit, no sugar, and even no beans, mushrooms or vinegars (except apple cider vinegar), and so on.
But the stars of the Diet are definitely cultured veggies, especially young coconut kefir – which I haven’t tried yet but sounds great to me, and she gives addresses cultured veggies at length. She recommends eating those with many of our meals. Interestingly, she also recommends beginning with an alkaline breakfast – like soup for ex, unless you do heavy work and require a more substantial breakfast (like eggs and veggies, for ex) And she does recommend eating more flesh foods (meat, fish or eggs) at the beginning of the diet, as she feels that is strengthening for those with CRC – but it’s a personal choice.
In the rest of the book she goes into cleansing the colon (especially with enemas) and then healing the liver – a section I really appreciate since before this I had no idea what my liver even did! And it’s one of the biggest organs in the body! Turns out that cleansing the liver equals deep healing, and that many health and skin problems are the expression of a stagnant or toxic liver. I’m now looking forward to cleaning mine!
I really feel that this book establishes Donna Gates as one of the brilliant leaders in the nutrition scene today. No wonder she is now one of the teachers at IIN.
So for those with CRC, this is now the go-to book that I would recommend. I think it’s also
just a great, gentle diet for those who want to eat cleaner for a while, detoxify and feel better. The Diet could help a lot of people, and no wonder she’s found such a huge audience with this book. Personally, my next step is try out some new soup recipes (like broccoli-fennel soup) and some new grain recipes (like savory millet porridge) as well as making some cultured veggies to add in to my meals.