Fruits & Vegetables
There are 100 different types of fruits listed above and this is by no means a complete list of all the fruits that are out there. (In fact, there are nearly 10,000 different types of apples in the world alone, so you can definitely have a lot of variety on the diet that I recommend, and I encourage you to try a fruit that you've never had before whenever the opportunity to do so presents itself.)
WHAT ARE FRUITS?
Fruits are the seed bearing (and often sweet tasting) foods produced by trees and plants. Most fruits begin their life as a flower and if they get pollinated they will then go through an incredible transformation and turn into fruits. (An apple tree for example will first produce flowers and the flowers that get pollinated by the birds and the bees will then go on to become apples.)
Like any other life form the goal of a fruit tree is to multiply and keep the species going, so a fruit tree will produce many fruits and each one of their fruits will contain one or even hundreds of seeds inside which all have the potential to grow into another fruit tree.
But because a fruit tree can't walk and is stationary if the fruits that it produces simply fall to the ground and stay there the seeds inside them will end up growing right underneath the mother tree, and the new generation of trees will likely die due to having to struggle and compete with each other for soil, water, and sunlight.
Humans and animals on the other hand are able to travel great distances, so in order to spread their seeds far and wide fruit trees will produce good looking, good smelling, and good tasting fruits to make us to want to eat them, and in return the humans and animals will plant the fruit seeds all across the land. (The seeds inside of fruits are designed so that when they get swallowed by a human or an animal they will travel through the digestive track unharmed and will come out of the body still intact and encased in the fertilizer that they need to grow!)
WHY I BELIEVE THAT FRUIT IS THE MOST NATURAL FOOD FOR HUMANS
1. HUMANS HAVE A "SWEET TOOTH"
The reason that people drink sugary sodas, eat sugary candy, and crave a sugary deserts after a meal is because they don't eat very enough fruit to satisfy their natural desire for sweets, and therefore their body is constantly seeking out some kind of sugary substitute to fill that void, and if they were to start increasing the amount of fruit in their diet their desire to consume other forms of sugar would naturally start to decrease.
2. HUMANS DIGEST FRUIT A LOT EASIER THAN OTHER FOODS
Most foods take hours to digest but fruits only take a matter of minutes to digest, and it is important to know that by weight fruit is mostly just water and fiber. (If you put an apple in a juice machine and removed the fiber you would be left with apple juice and if you then took that apple juice and put it in a dehydrator overnight to remove the water all that would be left over when you opened the dehydrator in the morning would be some
sugar crystals and a collection of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that are so small that you would need a microscope to see them.) So when you eat fruit you are mostly consuming water and fiber (which are the best natural remedies for dehydration and constipation) and your digestion will be a lot faster and smoother than if you were eating foods other than fruit.
3. HUMANS ARE ABLE TO GATHER AND EAT FRUIT EASIER THAN OTHER FOODS
Imagine for a moment that you were in nature and you had no man-made tools at your disposal. What foods would be the easiest to gather and eat in their raw and natural state?
FOOD GROUP # 1 "MEAT"
If you wanted to eat meat in nature you would have to kill an animal (Which might involve risking your life.) and then
you would have to eat it raw. (Which might involve risking your life.)
FOOD GROUP # 2 "DAIRY"
If you wanted to drink milk in nature you would have to find an animal who recently gave birth and then try to take her
milk which she intends to feed her baby with. (A protective mother in nature will not just let this happen.)
FOOD GROUP # 3 "GRAINS"
The human body can not break down and digest most grains unless they have already been partially broken down for us through the process of cooking.
FOOD GROUP # 4 "VEGETABLES"
Although there are many vegetables that can be eaten raw they are notoriously low in calories and the average man would have to eat about 50 heads of lettuce a day just to meet their daily calorie requirements. (And some vegetables actually contain less calories than it requires for us to digest and eliminate them, which means that not only would you not be able to get enough calories from eating them, but the more of them you ate the greater the caloric deficit that you would find yourself in.)
FOOD GROUP # 5 "FRUITS"
If you wanted to pick some fruit off of a fruit tree you are in luck because fruit trees won't fight back and they actually want us to eat their fruits.
* Humans have the natural ability to easily reach up and pick an apple off a tree, but it would be very difficult for us to catch, kill, and eat a wild animal.
* Lions have the natural ability to easily catch, kill, and eat a wild animal, but it would be very difficult for them to reach up and pick an apple off a tree.
WHAT ARE VEGETABLES
Unlike fruits (which grow on plants) vegetables are the edible parts of the plant it's self and some examples include...
- The Leafs (Lettuce, Spinach, and Kale)
- The Roots (Carrots, Beets, and Potatoes)
- The Flowers (Broccoli and Cauliflower)
- The Stems (Asparagus and Celery)
- The Bulbs (Garlic and Onions)
- The Bark (Cinnamon)
- The Grass (Wheatgrass, Bamboo, and Sugarcane)
WHICH VEGETABLES ARE THE BEST TO EAT
The best vegetables to eat are the ones that you enjoy! Critics of healthy eating will often try to make it sound like if you become a vegetarian or a vegan your diet will be limited to nothing but vegetables (and more specifically the vegetables that most people don't enjoy eating) by saying things like "I could never be a vegan because I don't want to have to live on noting but broccoli and kale for the rest of my life!"
The truth is that vegetables are only part of a healthy diet, but they are a very important part, so if you say that you don't like vegetables my first question to you would be whether or not you have ever had really good quality vegetables before? Because if you have never had home-grown vegetables or if the only vegetables that you are used to eating are ones that are canned or frozen then I encourage you to seek out higher quality vegetables.
My next question would be how many vegetables have you tried? Because no matter who you are the odds are very good that there are quite a few vegetables out there that you've never tried before, so please really explore the vegetable world before deciding that it has nothing good to offer.
RAW VEGETABLES VS. COOKED VEGETABLES
VEGETABLES THAT YOU SHOULD EAT RAW
Vegetables such as Lettuce, Celery, Sprouts, and young tender greens such as Baby Spinach and Baby Kale are easy to digest in their raw and natural state, and there is no need to cook them before eating them. (Other vegetables worth mentioning in this category are the vegetables that are technically non-sweet fruits such as Tomatoes, Cucumbers, Bell Peppers, Okra, and Zucchini, which all goes great in raw vegetable salads!)
VEGETABLES THAT YOU SHOULDN'T EAT RAW
Cruciferous vegetables (Broccoli, Cauliflower, and Cabbage) starchy vegetables (Potatoes and Sweet Potatoes) and tough and bitter greens (Collard Greens, Mustard Greens, Turnip Greens, Mature Spinach, and Mature Kale) can all be difficult to digest raw and should therefore be cooked or lightly steamed if you decide to eat them. (Although it would be best to eat the vegetables that can be eaten raw, I would recommend eating cooked vegetables over eating no vegetables at all, so if the only vegetables that you currently enjoy eating are cooked ones then just stick with them for now until you eventually start to develop a desire to eat the vegetables that can be eaten raw.)
For anyone who is really finding it difficult to get enough "green stuff" in your diet, I recommend that you try one of the following strategies...
1. GREEN JUICES
There are so many people out there who claim that drinking green vegetable juice did amazing things for their health, and making yourself a fresh glass of green juice once a day would be a great way to start getting more greens in your diet.
If you're new to juicing and you feel that green juice tastes too bitter you can sweeten it up by simply juicing some apples or carrots with it until you eventually start to enjoy the taste of green juice without the added sweetness.)
If you decide to get a juice machine you need to know that most juice machines are not able to juice green leafy vegetables like Spinach and Kale because of how thin their leaves are. (The average juicer is only capable of juicing things that are big and juicy like Apples and Oranges, so you would need to purchase a special juice machine if you are wanting to juice leaves.) However, you can still make "Cucumber Juice" and "Celery Juice" (which are actually my 2 favorite green juices) in a regular juice machine because of how big and juicy cucumbers and celery are.
2. GREEN SALADS
Most people actually enjoy eating salads, but the problem is that the salad dressings that they pour on top of them have dairy and a lot of other unhealthy ingredients in them which causes the salads to no longer really be "healthy".
Learning how to make your own salad dressings at home with healthy ingredients is so easy these days thanks to all of the wonderful people who are sharing healthy salad dressing recipes on YouTube
(And by the way, if you have never had "Zucchini Pasta" before it might just change your life!)
3. GREEN SMOOTHIES
Greens actually combine very well with sweet fruits, so if you have a blender you can take green vegetables such as Spinach, Celery, and Kale and blend them together with sweet fruits such as Bananas, Mangoes, or Pineapples, and the sweetness of the fruit will overpower the taste of the vegetables, so you won't really taste the vegetables but you will still be getting them in your diet. (This is especially helpful if you have children who refuse to eat their vegetables because It is so easy to "hide" healthy ingredients in smoothies.)
6 TIPS FOR GETTING BETTER QUALITY FRUITS AND VEGETABLES
Ideally only buy fruits and vegetables that are "organic", because fruits and vegetables that aren't grown organically are often sprayed with Pesticides, Herbicides, Fungicides, Larvicides, and Insecticides which are poisons that are designed to KILL living organisms that try to eat the fruits and vegetables that they are sprayed on. Although you aren't likely to die from eating an apple that has been sprayed with pesticides the same way that an insect will it is important to know that these poisons have been linked to many health problems in humans ranging from cancer to birth defects, and in America alone over 1 BILLION POUNDS of pesticides are sprayed on our food supply every year!
The diet that I recommend is based on eating living foods, so eating foods that have been sprayed with a death agent is definitely not something that I would recommend!
If you think that it is a waste of time and money to seek out "organic" produce then I would agree with you if the only fruits and vegetables that you ever eat are the 2 slices of pickles that you get in a McDonald's cheeseburger, but if you are following the diet that I recommend and almost everything that you eat is a fruit or a vegetable then the quality of the produce that you are eating is going to be far more important.
- The fruits and vegetables in the produce section are usually weeks old.
- The fruits and vegetables in the frozen sections are usually months old.
- The fruits and vegetables in the canned food aisle are usually years old.
But the fruits and vegetables that you grow yourself can be as fresh as you want them to be. (You can even eat an apple while it's still on the apple tree if you want to!)
Even if you have a really small yard (or no yard at all) there are still a lot of foods that you can grow at home. (I've even seen where people living in apartments have lettuce growing on their living room walls sideways using hydroponics, so anything is possible if you have a strong enough desire to grow your own food!)
"Sprouts" are one of the easiest (and most nutritious) foods to grow so I recommend getting into Sprouting if you are wanting to start growing something yourself but you have no room and no experience with growing things.
To learn how to grow sprouts click HERE
One time I was at a grocery store and I noticed that the Cucumbers were from Mexico, the Avocados were from California, the Celery was from Texas, the Apples were from Washington DC, and the Kiwis were from New Zealand!
If you look at the longest living cultures on Earth and you try to figure out what their secret to longevity is you will find that not all of them eat the exact same diets (although they do tend to eat mostly plants) but what they all have in common is that they eat the foods that grow in their local area.
If you don't grow your own food, the next best thing would be to buy your food from a local "Farmer's Market", which is a place where local farmers come together and sell their fruits and vegetables directly to the public. (There are no bar codes on the produce sold at "Farmer's Markets" because you are buying everything directly from the people who grew it and there is no need for all the "middle men".)
The produce at a "Farmer's Market" will usually have been picked within a few days and will usually have traveled less than 100 miles. Shopping this way supports local farming, is better for the environment, and can save you money. (Plus you can actually meet the farmers, ask them how they grow their produce, and "shake the hand that feeds you".)
To find out if there is a "Farmer's Market" in your area click To learn the various seasons for fruits and vegetables click HERE
(For those of you who are living in a cold climate you will unfortunately have no real choice but to eat produce that isn't locally grown during the winter time when it is too cold for fruits and vegetables to grow in your area, but mark my words when I say that if you follow the diet and lifestyle that I recommend long term you will eventually develop an almost uncontrollable urge to re-locate to a warmer climate.)
These days there are very few fruits and vegetables that you can't find at the grocery store all year long. (Watermelon for example used to be a fruit that you could only buy in the summer time, but nowadays if you want to buy a Watermelon in the winter you can do it. However, these "Winter Watermelons" were grown in hot houses and they simply won't be as delicious or as nutritious as the Watermelons that were naturally grown outdoors during "Watermelon Season", and they will also cost about twice as much as Watermelons do in the summer time since it is more difficult to grow them when they are not in season.)
It is always best to eat fruits and vegetables during their natural growing season, and although it's true that if you only eat fruits and vegetables when they are in season you might have to wait a long time for your favorite fruit or vegetable to come back in season, (Cherries for example are only in season during the month of June) but the wait will make it all the more enjoyable once that season finally returns, and it will help you to learn to appreciate things more when they are here.
To learn the various seasons for fruits and vegetables click HERE
Why is it best to buy fruits and vegetables that are in their whole and natural state? Let's look at "Apples" vs "Apple Juice" as an example...
When Apple growers sell their apples to grocery stores they sell them the best quality Apples that they have, and the lesser quality Apples (the ones that are sour, bruised, or over-ripe) often get sold to factories that will turn them into Apple Juice.
Because processed food factories use the lesser quality produce all factory made juices have to be pasteurized by law to kill off any harmful bacteria that could be in the juice, and the pasteurization process also destroys a lot of the nutritional value of the juice, and in the end the look and the taste of the juice has been altered so much that it doesn't even look or taste like Apple Juice anymore, so before they can sell it to the public they have to add sugar, food coloring, and artificial apple flavoring to it just to make it look and taste like Apple Juice.
If you take an Apple that is in it's whole and natural state you will know if it is going bad simply by looking at it, and even if you are blind you will still know that it is going bad as soon as you bite into it and your natural instinct is to immediately spit it back out. But if an Apple is going bad and it gets used to make Apple Juice, Apple Sauce, or Applebutter and it contains artificial colors and flavors to disguise it's true look and taste then how will you know?
One of the biggest problems with buying fruit at a grocery store is that most large scale fruit growers will pick their fruits when they are still unripe. (They do this because if they waited until their fruits were fully ripe to pick them most of their fruit would be "over ripe" by the time it reached the grocery stores which are often thousands of miles away.) So a lot of the fruit that is sold in grocery stores is going to be unripe.
So unfortunately a lot of people out there will try a new fruit for the first time without realizing that it is still unripe,
which results in them having a really bad first impression of that fruit and whenever someone offers them that fruit in the future they will immediately turn it down and say things like, "I tried Papaya once and I think it tastes like dirty socks!" and they don't realize that a Papaya that is actually ripe tastes like the frosting on a birthday cake!
It is important to understand that certain fruits will continue to ripen after they have been picked, while other fruits can only ripen while they are still on the tree or vine that they grow on. (For example: Fruits like Bananas and Avocados will continue to ripen after they have been picked, but fruits like Berries and Citrus Fruits will stop ripening as soon as they have been picked. So a green Banana can turn yellow and ripen on your kitchen counter, but a pale Strawberry will never turn red and ripen after being picked.)
As I mentioned before, fruit trees want us to eat their fruits, but they want us to eat their fruits when they are ripe
because that is when the seeds that are inside the fruit are fully developed and ready to be planted, so a fruit tree offers it's fruits to us only when the fruit is ripe...
- When fruits are unripe they are green like the leaves of the tree that they grow on, making them camouflaged and not easily found and eaten, and as the fruits ripen they becomes a lot more colorful so it will be easy for us to find and eat them.
- When fruits are unripe they are small and high up in the tree where it is hard for us to reach them, and as they mature and ripen they become bigger and heavier which causes the branches of the tree to hang lower, making it easy for us to reach them.
Learning how to tell if a fruit is ripe or not simply by looking at it, smelling it, or squeezing it is somewhat of an art form and will take time to master, but learning this skill will make a HUGE difference in your health, and it has never been easier now that you have "GOOGLE" at your fingertips.
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