Diet Categories Information

0 Comments | October 15, 2015

About the Diet Categories

The Heart levels

The Diet Category articles

Which diet is right for you?

  • Gluten Free and Dairy Free (GF/DF)
  • The Biggest Mistake
  • Diet Progression
  • The Vitality Calculator
  • Rewards and Celebrations
  • A guide to getting the best results from diet
  • The Ultimate Diet?

About the Diet Categories

An extraordinary feature of this website is 150 specialised diet categories for a host of different health conditions, allergies, food intolerances, foods rich in specific nutrients, foods low in various substances and different diet types…all brought together in one place.

Our aim is to make it easier for you to eat healthily to heal and regain, maintain or increase your vitality. With so many dietary choices, there’s bound to be the right one for you.

You’ll find the Diet Categories tab in the Menu of the mobile version; while in the desktop version the Diet Categories button is at the top of the green panel on the right-hand side of most pages (above the Menu Planner). When you tick the diet of your choice and then click the Search button, a range of recipes will appear for breakfasts, meals, snacks, desserts and extras. Its so easy.

The eating program and recipes are produced by Sue Kira, a leading Australian naturopath and nutritionist with a scientific background. From working with more than 14,000 clients in-clinic over 25 years, Sue has seen first-hand the amazing transformative powers of good nutrition. She’s also a damn good cook!

For more information about the functionality of the Diet categories, please go to the FAQ’s page and click onto the ‘About the Diet Categories’ heading.

If considering making changes to your diet, we recommend you first seek the guidance of your health practitioner.

The Heart levels

The Heart levels, which are included in the Diet Categories, are designed to make the transition to healthy eating simple. With three progressive recipe tiers (and no rules) it’s fun, yum and great for your tum!

Heart levels provide a practical approach to healthy eating for those who want more energy and vitality. If you feel lethargic or run down, heart level recipes may be ideal for you.

 Level 1: The Transition

Here you can transition quite effortlessly to a healthy gluten and dairy free lifestyle – and enjoy the benefits. Level 1 provides lots of delicious meals and also plenty of appealing cakes, cookies, ice creams (all that decadent stuff). There’s no ‘missing out’ – we simply substitute ingredients in many recipes to provide healthier options. In other words, making conventional ‘bad’ foods better!  You may be pleasantly surprised with the yumminess and variety of gluten and dairy free living.

 Level 2: Refining

This level refines your diet further by reducing some of the sugars and starches in the recipe options, yet there’s still lots of variety, including plenty of sweet treats that are more loving for your digestive and immune systems.

The starches and sugars in this group are mainly derived from fruits, vegetables (including starchy vegies like corn, potato and sweet potato) as well as nuts, seeds and whole grains like quinoa and buckwheat, as opposed to more processed grains found in breads, cakes, pastas and the like.

Most people will feel very comfortable in this section of food choices, which is a great level to maintain good health and vitality.

 Level 3: Cleansing

Many people can reach their optimum vitality from the preceding Level 2 heart foods and recipes. Level 3 recipes further reduce the sugar and starch content of foods and cuts out all processed foods, charred foods and red meat (except broths) leaving you with cleansing, healing foods.

It’s an excellent way to support your body to regain and maintain health and vitality, especially when there are health conditions to support.

Please note that this level may not suit everyone, so please seek the advice of your health practitioner before changing your diet.

We developed this 3-tiered heart system to simplify your transition to vitality. 

Experience has taught us that it can be difficult to attempt to ‘give it all up at once’ and hard to sustain, and indeed, your body may not be ready for a drastic dietary change.

For example, you might initially select Level 1 recipes for a few months, then later (or sooner) move into a combination of Level 1 and 2 (in which case you click onto both buttons, then click the Search button).

Later you might move to a Level 2/Level 3 combo or alternatively, select whatever recipe you fancy from all levels. It’s an approach where you determine your ‘dietary destiny’.

About the Diet Category articles

Naturopath/Nutritionist, Sue Kira, has written comprehensive articles about each of the Diet Categories. The articles are rich in information and provide understanding about the relationship of diet, health and vitality.

Apart from thorough research, much of the information was derived from Sue’s experience working with more than 14,000 clients over 24 years. The information you gain from this rich resource may well empower you to take control of your health and vitality.

When you click onto the Diet Categories you’ll see the blue links which take you to the articles. Sue also includes about 100 case studies which provide practical insights into real life situations. You’ll find the case studies in the articles under the ‘Health Conditions’ and ‘Diet Type’ headings.

Which diet is right for you?

by Sue Kira, Naturopath & Nutritionist

Recommending specific diets was a major feature of my busy practice as a naturopath and nutritionist. During 25 years in practice, the diets, in combination with nutritionals and/or pharmaceuticals, achieved far better results than solely using prescriptions.

For most of my clients, the appropriate diet, when followed, was transformational.

There is unprecedented interest in the consequences of diet as a preventative measure against disease, and as a healing agent for numerous health conditions. But there’s confusion, particularly with so much unqualified ‘advice’ in magazines and online.

We’ve made it easier for you to eat healthily so you can have more vitality, however, with 150 dietary categories in the Eating4Vitality program, there are some areas to be wary of. Let’s consider some of these aspects…

Gluten Free and Dairy Free (GF/DF)

Every recipe on this website is Gluten Free and Dairy Free and there are very sound reasons why (click onto the links to find out). If you are not familiar with a GF/DF diet, then you might be pleasantly surprised when you see the variety of recipes on this site.

It’s not a big deal, because it’s quite easy to substitute yummy alternatives. The big deal is that a GF/DF diet can help you to regain, increase and maintain your vitality. Not a bad reason?

Even though every recipe on this site is gluten and dairy free, we still include gluten free and dairy free as diet categories in case someone does not realise that all recipes are GF/DF and wish to click onto one of these categories.

But the bottom line is, there is no need to click onto a gluten free or dairy free diet.

The Biggest Mistake

Eating4Vitality program provides 150 specialised diet categories for health conditions, nutrient deficiencies, allergies and various diet types.

However, a fundamental error some members make is to click onto too many diet category buttons. Too many diet screenings (i.e. the more buttons clicked) makes life complicated and you could end up with just a handful of recipes, which is counterproductive.

I recommend selecting one main category that best suits your needs, although more refinement may be required. For example, if you want a Paleo diet, but you are allergic to eggs (or can’t stand the taste of them) then by all means click onto the Paleo and the Egg free buttons.

Some recipe options can cancel each other out. For example, a sensitive person might click onto Low Salycilates, Low Starch, Low Fructose, Nightshade Free and Low Histamine.

In this example, a Low Salycilate diet is very strict and limited (but fortunately, short term) which immediately cuts down the recipe options available in the other categories. Also, by clicking low nightshades, histamine, low starch and low fructose diets, three of the main foods in a low salycilate diet (potatoes, cashews, pears) are eliminated leaving not much more than…lettuce! Hence the screenings rule out vital ingredients and the variety of recipes available.

Instead it would have been better to only select the Low Salycilate diet, or whichever diet has the highest relevance, and later move onto other diets…if needed.

But really, when considering dietary changes, you should talk to a qualified heath practitioner.

The message: limit your choices and keep it simple

Diet Progression

In the Heart levels section (above) we looked at how you might start at Level 1 and then progress to Level 2 or a combination of both. This is about dietary progression, where you gradually refine your diet to suit what your body truly needs.

If you are generally quite well and want to improve from a gluggy western style diet, then all you may need to do is select from the hundreds of gluten free, dairy free recipes on this site – and no clicks needed.

However, some health conditions are complex with an array of symptoms that need careful consideration. Your practitioner will determine the best course of treatment and may select a dietary progression from the various layers of dietary protocols that the Eating4Vitality program provides.

For example, if there are multiple gut issues that also affect other areas or systems in the body, then a practitioner may start you on a SIBO 1 diet for a few weeks, with a follow up consultation, then may recommend the SIBO 2 diet for another few weeks, followed by a review, then onto the Leaky Gut 1 diet, followed later by the Leaky Gut 2 diet. Then, all being well, a Low FODMAPs diet – if needed – followed with a Mediterranean or Paleo diet, depending on what suits you best.

Now while this protocol may appear extreme, in this case the practitioner is using diet to provide the best possible conditions to help your gut to heal, which could have a huge impact on your health and vitality. Fortunately, the range of specialised diets in the Eating4Vitality program, along with the functions to make it easier for you to follow the diet, provides the variety within one program for a pathway to recovery and vitality.

Another advantage of an Eating4Vitality membership is that you have access to all the diet categories, with no additional payment required.

The Vitality Calculator

The Vitality Calculator is a simple, yet very effective tool for you to keep track of your progress, and also have a record for your health practitioner.

One of the reasons we developed the Vitality Calculator is because clients would often present multiple symptoms on their forms at their first visit. On return visits, clients often focused on their main symptom, yet forgot that some of the other symptoms had disappeared. When made aware of this, they were encouraged by their progress.

Another benefit of the Vitality Calculator is that, with regular use, you will become more aware of and sensitive to your body, how it is functioning, and what’s affecting it – both positively and negatively.

We suggest completing the Vitality Calculator as soon as possible and continue to do so on (say) the 1st of every month.

For more details, go to the FAQs page under the heading ‘How the VITALITY CALCULATOR works’.

Rewards and Celebrations

Often we use food as a reward or to show appreciation. It follows us throughout our lives: lollies for kid’s good behaviour; cakes for birthdays and office parties; chocolates for Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day and to celebrate milestones…such as losing weight!

What we put into our bodies is either healing or harming.There’s no other option.

Celebrations can be vulnerable for those who want a healthy lifestyle. Temptations abound. It’s worth reflecting, in advance, on the reward or celebration to enjoy when you reach various milestones. Perhaps a bubble bath, a walk on the beach or in nature, getting together with family or friends to enjoy their company with healthy snacks. Be creative and make it fun!

Once you commit to vitality, are you really going to let anyone (including yourself) talk you out of it, or coerce you with foods or drinks that you know are harmful for your body?

A guide to getting the best results from diet

Whether it’s giving up smoking, drinking, chocolates, cakes, drugs, procrastination or changing your diet, it can be tough. Let’s face it, most of us have experienced difficulties when we try to change unhealthy habits.

And just when we’re about to change, something stands in the way: invites to parties, Christmas, New Year, your birthday, a special on your favourite ice cream…the list of obstacles is endless.

Then there are the triggers – the things that bring us down and ‘make’ us revert to previous behaviours. Stress, or feeling down, can be major influencers, along with pressure from friends and family (“oh don’t be silly, one more slice won’t hurt you” or “moderation is fine” and the classic “there’s nothing wrong with a balanced diet”).

By understanding your triggers, you can then anticipate the obstacles that may crop up and determine how you will deal with them – before they occur. As the boy scouts say, “be prepared”. Perhaps a walk, some gentle breaths, a glass of water or a cuppa herbal tea, uplifting music, stretching etc

Here are some questions to reflect on (and revisit if the going gets tough):

  1. What do you want to achieve from changing your diet? How do you want to feel?
  2. If you don’t make changes to your diet, what could you miss out on? (Hint: vitality, more energy, looking and feeling better)
  3. What are the obstacles and triggers that have the potential to sabotage your lifestyle change?
  4. What can you do to overcome obstacles and triggers?
  5. From 1 to 10, how committed are you to make beneficial lifestyle changes?
  6. If your score is less than 10, what is holding you back and what can you do about it?

Here are some practical approaches to your diet:

  1. We suggest you read the relevant article and case study about your diet; the link to the article is next to the diet’s tick box.
  2. Tell those close to you why you are making changes and ask for their support
  3. Determine your starting date
  4. Complete the Vitality calculator
  5. The Menu Planner is a great way to launch your new dietary program – go for it!
  6. Consistent dedication can transform your life
  7. On the 1st of each month, complete the Vitality Calculator questions again

Celebrate your successes and embrace vitality

The Ultimate Diet?

Is there such a thing as an ultimate diet?

Certainly, there’s not one diet for all. As we age, our dietary needs change. Diet also relates to our work and activities – for example a bricklayer’s diet would normally be different to an office worker’s. Then there are health considerations, such as a diet to heal or a diet to rebuild.

There are cultural differences: we see sugar in Vietnamese recipes, yet the foods are light and delicate; in Sri Lanka, hot curries are popular; traditional English and North American diets differ as do Nordic foods when compared to Mexican or Fijian.

Irrespective of traditions, old habits, cultural or personal situations, we can certainly override foods that do not serve us. If sugar, starches or additives affect you (which they probably do) then eliminate them and look for alternatives.

Diet can harm or heal, so every day, it simply comes down to your choices. Perhaps your ultimate diet is to simply observe and feel what is right for you…and to follow that path.

The right diet (for you) is the foundation to healing and vitality

Note:
With any change in diet, please seek the guidance of your health care practitioner, particularly if any foods are new to you. If something does not feel true for you, then disregard it and follow what feels right, in consultation with your medical or health care professional.

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