The 3-Season Diet by John Douillard

Ayurveda* is a 5,000-year old Indian (as in India) healing system. According to author Douillard, Vedic texts noted that: “perfect health was a reflection of a life attuned to the changing cycles of nature with all plant and animal life.” Thus, Ayurveda is drawn from natural rhythms. (To read more on Ayurveda, click on Nobody Eats Like Me, https://www.menupause.info/archives/8666.)

In The 3-Season Diet, Dr. Douillard draws heavily on Ayurveda, but with a Western slant, or as he says, “…translating Ayurvedic concepts into the American way of life.” This means, for example, creating a diet within a stress-free environment, with emphasis on proper breathing.

For me, the main point of the book is to explain how all the popular diets*, which he explains, only work for a few months because we need to eat according to the three growing seasons: summer, spring and fall. The author matches these with the three body types in Ayurveda: vata, pitta and kapha. Each of these body types, or combinations of two of them, is determined by a questionnaire (included in the book.) There is an excellent chart on page 46 called DietGo-Round that lists the different diets. (See below)

 

According to his concept, the low-fat/low-calorie diets are perfect for spring when you are ridding yourself of the heaviness of winter; the high-carb diets are perfect for summer, when the longer days require more energy; and the high-protein type diets are good for winter when cold weather seems to require more protein. The corollary to this concept to maintain or lose weight is to eat your largest meal at lunch (European-style) as many days as you can. Daylight hours are when we need our energy. Night-time meals need to be lighter.

Perhaps the most important new fact that I learned from this book is that how you breathe is a big factor in managing your weight. I know this sounds far-fetched, but Dr. Douillard explains this in easy-to-understand lay terms. How you exercise with breath is tackled with drawing showing the reader the exercise with the inhale/exhale breaths. Actually, yoga and Ayurveda are connected, so the exercises are yoga poses.

This book is packed with valuable information on divided into three major sections: You Can Eat it All (diets emphasis); The Complete Weight-Balancing Program; and Appendices. These are actually excellent references that include a glossary of foods, information and sources for organic/natural foods, and valuable seasonal grocery shopping lists for each season.

What I would like to see is another volume on recipes according to the seasons and each person’s body type. Then you would have the “scientific” information and the “practical” information for preparing meals to suit you.

The 300 plus page 3-Season Diet is published by Harmony Books, a division of Random House, and is available at bookstores and online. The hard cover costs $23.00. It has become my favorite book on eating for health and for staying trim Dr. Douillard has a health spa in Boulder, Colorado where he teaches these concepts. His website is: www.lifespa.com.

*Ayurveda – (Sanskrit) an ancient medical treatise summarizing the Hindu art of healing and prolonging life; sometimes regarded as a 5th Veda. (Source: thefreedictionary.com/Ayurveda)

Heart-to-Heart: February 2013

This is the iconic Love Statue/Sculpture in Center City,Philadelphia, only minutes from where we live.
Here is what www.visitphilly.com says:
The City of Brotherly Love’s best-known landmark is LOVE itself — the Robert Indiana sculpture in John F. Kennedy Plaza, northwest of City Hall. Installed in 1976, LOVE was briefly snatched away in 1978, but popular demand brought it back where it belongs.

February is the busy month focused on hearts: heart disease, Valentine’s Day, V-Day (to be explained). Also on the calendar are The Super Bowl, Mardi Gras, Ash Wednesday, International Condom Day (That’s a new one for me, on the same day as Valentine’s Day), Presidents’ Day, and the Jewish holiday of Purim, which is akin to Halloween. I won’t be featuring all of these, but might give a little background on most  of them.

Since I met my (second) husband right around Valentine’s Day in 2003, I will be posting some article or rhymes about our romance at ages 65 (me) & 69 (him). It is our 10th anniversary of meeting each other, so it is a big enough anniversary to make a bit of a fuss about.  I will post in Relationships and Poetry.

Here is the Heart Garden at Boldt Castle, on the St Lawrence River on the Us/Canadian border, which we visited in the Fall of 2012

Recipes in February are often hot, such as chiles, but my focus will be on soups, because February is definitely a soup month where we live. (I may squeeze in one chile recipe.) I came across a book called 100 Best Fresh Soups and will feature a couple of its recipes.  Lots of good recipes are bubbling inside!!


 

Purim comes early this year. It is the holiday associated with Hamentaschen, a delectable dessert made with fruit & sometimes nuts. I will re-print the recipe when that holiday comes near.  There are several ways to make it, but my favorite is the one I learned when I worked in a Jewish family restaurant back in the late 1960s.

February is also Black History Mont h in the U.S. I hope to Profile Maya Angelou, whom I actually saw in person many years ago when I lived in Williamsport, PA. What a presence! She read  one of her poems that I
still have & plan to post.

 


There is another book I want to review in Nobody Eats Like Me category, because it is the most common sense book on healthy eating and weight loss I have yet to review. It was recommended tome by my Ayurvedic practitioner and it is worthy of your consideration.





Of course, February is also American Heart Association Month, coupled with their 10-year old movement Go Red for Women, to emphasize heart disease among women as being the leading cost of death in women. Actually, the campaign starts on February first, so put on something red tomorrow. And if you have a red dress pin, please wear it. They are available at Macy’s.

In culling my files, a constant chore, I found lots of info on heart disease and women, so I may post several short pieces at least once each week to keep us focused on the importance of being “heart smart.”

However, my husband & I will be taking a short vacation to warmer climes from Jan. 29th to Feb. 6th, so if I don’t respond to your comments, please be patient and I will respond when I return. Til then….

♥Have a happy, healthy February♥

P.S. During early February I learned that Women’s Voices for Change would publish one of my Valentine essays about how I met my second husband right before Valentine’s Day 10 years ago. Here is the link to that article: http://womensvoicesforchange.org/take-a-chance-on-silver-romance.htm.

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