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The core-concept also made good nutritional and economic sense. Human diets all over the world are based on a set of staple foods. The core of a new, healthy, modern diet should be a small number of staple foods. But which staple foods?
The ability of the Alpha Nutrition Program to solve food allergy problems could be considered one of its most important advantages over any other system of diet revision. The Alpha Nutrition Program is based on assumptions about food reactivity, safety, and overall desirability. These assumptions have been confirmed by 20 years of testing different food choices in a large number of patients who suffered from a variety of disorders.
The core-concept developed as we kept score of adverse food reactions reported by patients. The program includes foods that we have found to be highly desirable nutritionally and, at the same time, caused the lowest incidence of adverse food reactions in a large group of people. The program excludes food choices - even popular choices - if we found that these food choices commonly created health problems. We found that rice, vegetables, and some fruits were among the best tolerated and most acceptable of all food choices.
Whatever the complex of reasons behind the food problems we have observed, the health-seeking goal of Alpha Nutrition is based on a return to a diet of simple, carefully selected, natural foods. Fresh or frozen vegetables, fruit, and rice products are the primary food choices. Poultry, fish, and small quantities of red meat are also suggested unless you have a vegetarian preference. Legumes, tofu and soya products are meat alternatives. Flavoring herbs, spices, and a small number of prepared or manufactured foods are suggested. These foods allow you to reconstruct daily menus, with confidence of good nutrition, and stable life-long eating habits.
Alpha Nutrition is a natural-food-eating plan
Under ideal circumstances, we would all be eating organically grown vegetables and fruits from our own gardens or neighborhood market gardens. For many of us, the garden is a distant retirement dream and we must do our best with store-bought food. Our intention is to simulate eating from the garden by buying and preparing fresh or frozen vegetables, fruit, poultry and fish, according to our own preferences and tolerances. Most of the desired food is purchased in the regular supermarket or produce store.
We would prefer organically grown produce and naturally raised and fed animal foods. Whenever organic foods are available and affordable - these are our first choice. Unfortunately, pure, uncontaminated food is not always available or is too expensive, and we make due with the foods at hand. We occasionally look for unusual rice products, wheat flour substitutes, and dairy substitutes.
The success of Alpha Nutrition involves regulating body intake of food with minimal opportunities for biochemical confusion. To simplify the task of food selection, the plan suggests avoiding most foods in bottles, cans, and boxes. If the food has a label on it, we seldom buy it or eat it. There are, of course, exceptions; recipes may include canned fruit, tuna, flavoring herbs, jams, jellies, and sauces. Frozen vegetables, fruits, frozen juices, fish, and poultry are recommended.
Meat and Fish Poultry, fish, and meat options are included in the Alpha Nutrition Program but are not essential. A complete vegetarian version of the Alpha Nutrition Program is readily achieved by selecting only the rice, vegetable, and fruit options and many recipes included in the program are suitable. Meat portions are, in any case, reduced from North American averages. Poultry and fish - carefully selected - are preferred foods.
Rice: Desirable Staple Food Rice is the staple food chosen for the Alpha Nutrition Program because it has low allergenicity, is versatile, and is widely available. Rice provides a carbohydrate, caloric base to the diet. Rice comes in many varieties, originating in many parts of the world. Texas, Arkansas and California rice are readily available; Thai rice has been an inexpensive import with an interesting taste and texture variety. Parboiled (converted) white rice is preferred at the start of Alpha Nutrition. Brown rice may have slightly more nutrients, and some prefer it by taste and texture; however, the husk also contains more potential problems. The 10% of people who do not tolerate rice may eat higher caloric vegetables that supply more energy as complex carbohydrate - squash, yams, sweet potatoes, turnips, beets, or carrots are examples.
Exotic Foods We often see patients treated for food problems with odd, exotic food choices and new food products of doubtful safety. Nut milks, for example, made of cashews or almonds should not be eaten on a regular basis. Soya milks with many additives, including gums, flavors, and preservatives may not be well-tolerated. Exotic legume products, enzymes, herbs, herbal teas, new flours, nut mixtures, dried fruits, and a host of new snack foods are all put on our questionable food list. We are not sure what these products will do to you, so eat them with caution. By studying food-related illness we are constantly reminded that even the most wholesome-appearing food may be harmful to those with allergies, and digestive, or metabolic abnormalities.