Some Thoughts On Protein

I am always asking my husband to cut down on the amount of animal protein that he eats.  When he asked me again why at the weekend, I came out with some comment about acidity, a need for sodium in vegetables to neutralise it sort of reply.  But I realise that this needs more explanation and I have found out some really good points about why protein is brilliant and completely necessary, but only in very small amounts.

I took the following information from Correlative Urinalysis:  The Body Knows Best by M.T. Morter.

  • Yes when animal product protein is assimilated it has an acidic ‘ash’ residue; that is once it has been digested what remains has a low pH. Our blood must be maintained at a pH of 7.4.
  • The acids produced from protein include sulphuric, nitric and phosphoric.  These must be neutralised using food or body reserves from vegetables.
  • If the sodium used to neutralise these acids is depleted through continuous over consumption of protein, then the body will resort to using the next most alkalising mineral – calcium.  We can now understand from this how we can develop such poor teeth and osteoporosis.
  • As the alkalising reserves are used, the level of acids and protein rises and this causes congestion at a cellular level.
  • Protein depletes energy rather than provides it. Protein can be converted into glucose for energy through the process of glyconeogenesis but is not a direct source.
  • Protein is a stimulant.  In large quantities it can keep you stimulated for hours.  The stimulation may keep you feeling good, but it consumes your energy and will leave you depleted.
  • Do we really need all of the protein that we take in?  A baby will double its birth weight in the first two years of it’s life.  If we assume that we do as nature intended and give a baby only mother’s milk for the first year or so we can see that mothers milk is only 1.5% protein.  The milk is of course perfectly designed to provide all that is needed for a baby to grow and thrive.  Yet only 1.5% protein.  Certainly something to consider when we look at our diets of around maybe 10% or more for many people in the West.
  • In his book The China Study, T. Campbell makes the observation that rats, when fed a carcinogen will only develop cancer if, in addition protein consumption is also increased, to over 10%.  A diet with less than 10% protein and the cancer does not form, despite there being a carcinogen present.
  • He observes that the diseases of excess in China are prevalent in clearly defined geographical areas.  These locations are the developed cities that have adopted he Western diet and diets reveal that protein has been greatly increased.  In Western diets we see a significant increase in the following:
  1. cancers of the colon, lung, breast, leukemia, childhood brain, stomach, liver,
  2. autoimmune diseases such as diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis
  3.  coronary heart disease

The message is always always, more vegetables, more vegetables, more vegetables.  Raw, juiced and vibrant or steamed, stir fried or made into soup.  Get them down you.

Interestingly, how much protein do these vegetables provide?  There is a scale but 1.5% or thereabouts!  It seems that maybe after all (if we look back to breast milk) mother knows best.

Making raw saltless sauerkraut

In an attempt to increase my veggies still more (get a few more raw ones in and green leafy ones at that);  I have taken the advice of Paul Pitchford author of Healing with Wholefoods.  He gives in this book a recipe for Raw Saltless Sauerkraut.  My sister in law is Romanian and queen of all things pickled.  She suggested that you needed both salt and water to properly preserve cabbage.  She tasted it and said that it had indeed worked – indeed without either.  Now do not get me wrong I would not stretch to ‘delicious’ but from a person who doesn’t even do pickled onions very well this ain’t half bad.

Why Sauerkraut?  Well, by slowly upping your daily intake of this cabbage concoction you are:

…regenerating the intestines.  It harmonises the digestion by balancing the secretions of the stomach, helps in the formation of enzymes and vitamins, strengthens the action of the pancreas, and improves the digestion of fats.  Raw saltless sauerkraut also helps maintain the acid-alkaline balance of the body, strengthens the nerves and the immune system, and stimulates blood formation.  Its numerous benefits help to rejuvenate the whole body.

As so many people are coming to realise now, the gut is where it all starts.  If we can get the balance right here, if our digestion is strong, our immunity is strong, our food is broken down efficiently then we have less allergic response, less bowel issues and constipation and our energy, instead of being spent on all these things, is left for us to enjoy, heal, smile or whatever else we might want to do with it.

Now Paul recommends 25 pounds of vegetables; mainly cabbage but with optional added carrots, beets, celery, garlic, herbs or seaweed.  He suggests that this large quantity generates the best fermentation.  However I did the scaled down version and am still really pleased with my two white cabbage head version.

My friend Mel has had a go at this too and she rates herself as a ‘shredder’.  I drew a line at this despite all that possibility for putting good vibes into my leaves.  No, I put mine through my juicer, without the metal gauze screen.  It came out a bit more pulp than shreds but saved a whole heap of work and tasted just fine.  I juiced a bit too to start with because Paul reckons that the wetter the better.

Then I put it all into a large ceramic bowl (the kind of size that I would use for making pastry).  I had reserved about six of the outer leaves from the cabbages and placed these over the pulp to cover them.

I then placed a small plate over these and stuck my fruit bowl over the top.  Now the fruit bowl serves a few purposes here.   It weighs the leaves down to keep the cabbage compressed and submerged in the liquid and this helps with the all important fermentation process.  It also gives me somewhere to put the fruit bowl on my rather sparse work surface now I have a rather large bowl sat on it (I’d be in danger of forgetting it if I stuck it in a cupboard) and the aromas of my citrus fruit may do something to mask the smell of rotting cabbage…who am I kidding?

Anyway, seven days later and you can tuck in (take off the rotting leaves first and discard anything that you decide might be a bit unsavoury).  Don’t do what I did and eat a small bowl full…my belly blew up like a balloon and I spent the evening trumping like a good’un.  Just a teaspoon at a time.

Lordy am I feeling good a few days in.  Although that could also be the kefir, the raw juicing or the kelp powder that have all become part of my regime in the last couple of weeks.  But those are for another day.  So too are the photographs of my sauerkraut…One day I’ll get the camera out.

Gemma x