So I spent yesterday gathering together all the information I’d need to set myself up for the Alkaline Diet, and remembered – although I haven’t done it before, but I have read it before – that a big problem with it is the lack of consensus over which foods are alkali and which are acid. For instance, mushrooms are rated by some ‘highly acidic’ and by others ‘mildly alkaline’. I eat alot of mushrooms, so being human and so self-interested I’ve decided to label them ‘neutral’ so I can keep on eating lots of them.
Elle Macpherson’s passionate advocacy for the Alkaline Diet is what inspired me to try it, and yet even her writings on it are contradictory – she blogs (on Get The Gloss) that the nutritionist who put her onto the Alkaline Diet (Dr Simone Laubscher) tells her enthusiastically to eat walnuts. Walnuts are acidic. She says she always has organic butter and eggs in her fridge – but both are highly acidic. She eats fish every day. Acidic. Of course, you’re only supposed to eat 80% acidic, but it does make it all rather confusing.
Incidentally, I’m not doing it because I adore Elle’s body – for the record, I prefer my women to have more womanly proportions. I’m never quite clear why an example of perfect womanhood has a man’s shoulders, no hips and strangely elongated limbs. Of course, Elle is perfectly entitled to, and should, love the body she’s in – but I do resent her example being held up to other women for us to aspire and compare ourselves to, always unfavourably. We don’t look like that because that isn’t actually what women are supposed to look like. And if that sounds a bit mean to Elle, well I wouldn’t say it about somebody who hadn’t chosen to put their body out there to be admired; and hadn’t chosen to be fabulously well paid to work in an industry that is all about making women feel crap about being normal.
So the Alkaline Diet is clearly going to be a largely vegetarian diet but I’m good with that. I’ve always preferred plant foods, which does make me wonder how I managed to Low Carb for a decade or so. Mind you, I did say I always found it difficult.
I’ve always had a passion for vegetables, and one of the things I love about French food is that they take vegetables seriously and create culinary wonders with them, rather than just seeing them as a slightly damp chore on the side of your plate. As the wonderful and much-missed Phil McCarthy once memorably said,
in Britain we boil our ‘veg’ to death, and then give it another 20 minutes to be on the safe side.
Curious that the British call it the very unglamorous ‘veg’, as if it was something dull and faintly unpleasant, like cutting your toenails. Mind you, I have to admit to feeling a certain disdain for the current use of the word ‘veggies’ – as if vegetables couldn’t be called vegetables anymore but had to be rebranded, to make them attractive to the gullible public who might then actually think they aren’t vegetables at all, but something new and cheerily appealing. They don’t need rebranding, they just need cooking properly!
And what, with the rising cost of food and particularly meat, I’m not sure who will be able to afford to eat meat soon, but I won’t be among them. Could be we may all have to make much better friends with vegetables soon.
Anyway, from the many conflicting Acid/Alkali charts, I’ve compiled one that makes sense to me; I’ve had a Tesco shop delivered this morning busting at the seams with nut butters, kale and almond milk; and I am SO BORED WITH BEING FAT that I guess I’m good to go.
Wish me luck!