Many factors determine which diet is best for you

Did you know that our ancestors did not eat every two hours?

Did you know that they did not eat low-carb, low fat, low this and low that diets?

No, they didn’t. And you can look back at pictures from the old days and see how most of them do not have much extra weight on them. In fact, this was not really a problem at all. They worked hard, and they ate when they were hungry. They practiced intermittent fasting before it became this nationwide trend.

Here is the thing: Eating Paleo, Keto, Atkins, low fat, Whole 30, that’s all fine and great. But that does not work for everyone. We are all different. We have different genes, metabolism and lifestyles. We have to customize our eating to what works for us.

That is why I have, in the past year, became 90% plant-based — my family about 75%.

There is a family history that we deal with on my husband, Kevin’s, side of the family, in high blood pressure. It always has scared me but even more so now that we are approaching our 40s.

I am super aware of sodium and ingredients and food labels — sometimes to a fault. I was stressing so much about what was in what and how much to eat of what that I was making myself and Kevin crazy. So, we decided on a simple plan. Just eat form the earth, most of the time. That is how are bodies operate best.

We are organic beings, so why are we not feeding ourselves organic foods. And I mean eating real, unprocessed foods. It is quite simple when you think about it.

When you start to be selective on what you put in your body, your body will, in turn, reward you. Ask yourself, “Is this real food from the earth? Is this food healing me or harming me? Is this food in a box? Is it in its most natural form?” These are questions you can start to ponder to get started on a whole foods diet. No more having to count calories when eating from the earth.

My adventures in the first few months of eating plant-based: I ate beans, rice and quinoa. Potatoes and oats were a staple, as well. Sometimes, I would experiment with a good dessert recipe that the whole family would love. I love cooking and learning new ways to eat, so this was great fun in the first weeks. Kevin was on board, too.

I learned how to make dairy free cheese and amazing sauces. I learned how to use almond milk for cooking and learned what flax eggs were. I learned cashews can become just about anything you need them to be. And a veggie burger can be made thousands of different ways.

I also learned that my kids love edamame and chickpeas. I learned avocados can become a household staple for all meals. I learned how to make black bean brownies and learned to love dairy-free creamer.

Those first weeks were great because I was in carb overload heaven and didn’t gain a pound. In fact, I am eating more carbs than ever and am at my target weight. I feel energetic and good about my insides. I eat until I am full and always feel satisfied.

We can get a lot of protein from plants. When we want to eat meat, we should buy locally and organically farmed products.

It is amazing how our bodies respond when we feed them and treat them the way they were intended.

Addie Graffin is a columnist and blogger from Platteville, Wis. Read more at

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