Wow, I thought today would be a boring day, but I was so wrong! Unfortunately for you all, there aren’t any exciting pictures or anything. But for me, nutrition is really interesting, so I was excited. Especially after the entire week of cooking (well, preparing) raw food, questions about protein and vitamin B12 kept coming up, and those topics plus so much more were covered today. It was pretty basic stuff, but 8 hours of information really does build up after a while. We learned about caloric density, blood sugar regulation, the biochemistry of heating, raw food sources of nutrients, where we get our protein, the acid-alkaline balance in the body, and current research on the vitamin B12.
I definitely learned something new today about blood sugar. In a lot of the smoothies that they serve, I have noticed that there have been a large number of fruits.
So many things today were new for me, but here are three things that really stuck out to me:
- Fats have a large impact on insulin levels, not just blood glucose levels. I am somewhat of a low-carb person, and you might be able to say that I am afraid of carbs because I always seem to gain weight whenever I eat more than the amounts I have been told are good for me. I always look at carbs because I don’t want to get insulin resistance, which is why I try not to eat so many of them. After today, I am not so afraid of carbs, because I really realized that NOT ALL CARBS ARE EQUAL. As long as you get your source of carbohydrates from whole foods like fruits, then there is no reason to go crazy trying to restrict yourself.
- There are a ton of super successful athletes who are vegan–and it is completely possible to get more than enough protein on a raw, vegan. I always am afraid that I am not getting enough protein when I don’t eat meat, but apparently, the safe minimum percentage of calories from protein is 5%–and a leaf of kale is 16% protein on its own. Just a few examples of these athletes are Scott Jurek (a super long distance runner), Dave Scott (and Ironman Triathlon Champion), and Carl Lewis (incredible Olympic track and field champion!).
- There is a sizable vitamin B12 deficiency in vegans as well as omnivores! B12 is created primarily by bacteria found on plants and in the soil, but can also be found in some live sea plants before they are dried. However, as a result of the overuse of pesticides, much of this bacteria has been killed off. This way, B12 isn’t getting into the plants and eaten by animals. The bacteria in the animals that produce B12 have largely been killed off by the antibiotics given to them to keep from getting sick when they are living in extremely close confinement.
Anyways, I am super satisfied with the class today. I learned so much, and I am also really motivated to eat as raw as possible and the most vegan as possible. This also makes me excited to go to school for dietetics and learn more about food and wellness!
I hope everyone has a wonderful day! For some reason, I am more tired after today than any day where I’ve been on my feet and cooking the whole time. On that happy note, I will leave you all to your awesomeness!