All diets are right, but only in part. The three harvest seasons translate easily into three major diets: low-fat/low-calorie in spring, high-carb in summer, and high-protein in winter. Each diet works – but for just about 4 months of the year. In nature, both animals and humans have always consumed most of their protein and fat for the year in the winter months and have eliminated of the excess protein and fat in the spring with a naturally occurring low-fat diet of spring greens and sprouts. During the summer when the days are longer and the body needs more energy, nature provides us with an abundance of high-carbohydrate fruits and vegetables.
Whenever you restrict certain foods from your diet for long periods, your body will naturally begin to crave what it is not getting, and that begins the cycle of binge eating, weight gain, guilt, and depression.
Protein, fat and carbs always have to be in the diet to some extent, but the proportions fluctuate as the seasons change. Spring calls for roughly 10 percent of your diet to come from fats, about 60 percent from carbs, and 30 percent from protein. In summer, carbs make up nearly 80 percent of the total harvest and should provide at least 60 to 70 percent, with the rest split about equally between protein and fat. And in winter, 40 percent of your food should be protein, 30 percent fat, and 30 percent carbs.
Spring Sample Menu – Lower-Fat, Lower-Calorie Diet (March-June)
- Breakfast – grapefruit with honey; rye toast with apple butter; fresh carrot, beet, and apple juice
- Lunch – Barley Vegetable (made with barley, carrots, green beans, celery, dandelions, mushrooms, and onions mixed blender) with rye toast; steamed kale (with balsamic vinegar, canola oil, black pepper, and garlic); veg – baked beans (with basmati rice and asparagus); nonveg – grilled chicken breast (skinless and boneless, marinated in ginger-tamari sauce and grilled)
- Supper – Split Pea Soup (made with barley and carrots, celery, onions, and garlic); toasted rye bread
Summer Sample Menu – High-Carb Diet (July-October)
- Breakfast – Fresh fruit salad (grapes, mangoes, blueberries, apples, papaya, topped with shredded coconut and chopped macadamia nuts); whole-grain toast (with butter or apple butter); fresh-pressed apple juice
- Lunch – Cucumber-Mint Gazapacho, Basmati Rice (with toasted pumpkin seeds and shredded coconut), Roasted Asparagus (coated with olive oil, lemon, and hing); garbanzo beans (made with tomatoes, turmeric, raw sugar, ghee, and cilantro); sautéed broccoli (with ghee, salt, hing); veg: pan-roasted tofu (cubed and browned with olive oil, raw sugar, and Bragg Liquid Aminos); nonveg: Broiled Freshwater Salmon (with orange mint marmalade)
- Supper – steamed artichoke (cooked with coriander and fennel seeds, with lemon butter dip); Pea Soup (made with fresh peas, rice dream, paprika, and butter)
Winter Sample Menu – Higher-Protein, Higher-Fat Diet (November – February)
- Breakfast – Tofu Burrito (a big flour or corn tortilla with mashed hard tofu, tomato, turmeric, salt, ginger, cumin, cayenne, and hing – or buy a ready-mix tofu scrambler); herb tea (with natural sweetener); fresh beet and carrot juice
- Lunch – Sweet-Potato and Coconut-Milk Soup; veg – barbecued or grilled tofu with barbecued sauce (made with pineapple juice, tomato sauce, Tabasco, and raw sugar); nonveg – barbecued or pan-seared tuna (with ground coriander, fennel seed, and white pepper crust); Mashed Potatoes, and Gingered carrots
- Supper – Carrot Soup (made with onion, potato, tomatoes, and curry); flat bread