Blood sugar and meditation

Hi, I have a lot to say about some of things that you’ve mentioned but this is a meditation site concerned with bhante’s interpretation and approach to the suttas and not social services (I hope that wasn’t too mean but more to the point) but I would like to offer what I think my be a solution for depression and overall improvement with practice. Buddhist monks eat once a day, that is supposed to be the rule, the middle path to ascetic practice. This sort of diet in today’s society is seen as extreme. I think diet is very important, and that food intake plays a vital role in practice and general overall well being. Many people in this group are no doubt familiar with the importance of diet within the new age movement, and I wonder how many are vegetarians versus meat eaters. In Burma and Thailand monks may eat fried meat (I know there is a fried restriction in Thailand not sure about Burma). I don’t know about Sri Lanka, I imagine they are strict vegetarians because of their proximity to India. In the last ten years Gary Taubes a science writer has authored a number of books which on their face appear to on diet and nutrition but are in fact books about the state of nutritional science and how bad that science is for the world of humans. Like Bhante, he went back and checked into the historical record looking for the source which in this case is about the development of nutrition. What he found has infuriated vegetarians and the advocates of high carbohydrate diets. His contention is that most of the ills that currently beset humanity in terms of physical and mental illness have to do with carbohydrate consumption. The alternative diet is one that is based on high fat and moderate protein with very little carbohydrates. Carbohydrate consumption causes the production of serotonin which has a narcotic like affect to the brain. This along with changing blood sugar levels creates mood swings, the severity of which could depend on many factors. One way to lower that severity would be to remove serotonin and stabilize blood sugar levels. This is done through a high fat moderate protein diet. For those readers who are aghast at such a suggestion I suggest you read taube’s books or listen to one of his many lectures that are online, all you need do is google his name. Then follow up with research of your own on his claims which are backed up by an extensive bibliography in his books. There is no doubt that this is a contentious subject and Taubes has seemingly done his best to present the science which has been largely ignored or suppressed. Now moving on. One if not the main key to stable moods would be blood sugar control. The best way to do that would be to get the body to consume fatty acids for energy and not glucose (glucose is produced with the consumption of carbohydrates). To do that you have to replace carbohydrates with fat, and when someone says that it brings to mind eating huge amounts of meat. That of course is wrong. Its true that in most meat you’ll find saturated fat but the best sources come from fruit and vegetables. Fruit in particular. Extra Virgin Olive Oil is an excellent source of fat (EVOO) avocado another, safflower oil too, and if you are a vegetarian you no doubt have a number of non animal sources of protein. When you eat a high fat moderate protein diet your pancreas will release the hormone glucagon which will stabilize blood sugar levels and the production of serotonin is minimized if produced at all. On this diet the brain functions very well without glucose contrary to current medical belief. This also works in favor of weight control and fat accumulation or rather the removal of fat from the body. With a high fat moderate protein diet fat doesn’t accumulate because without alpha glycerol phosphate (AGP) the fatty acids don’t bind in fat cells plus hormones that are needed for burning fat are present rather than suppressed as they would be in the face of carbohydrate driven insulin production which produces AGP. One step further. Ascetics starve themselves to produce altered states of consciousness which is basically putting the body into the same state as one on the high fat moderate protein diet. The difference of course is that on this diet you are not starving and in the case of the ascetic the brain is being fed for by keytones produced in the liver. For those that would like to supplement keytones, I also recommend coconut oil which is a great supply of keytones. You mentioned that you are having a hard time gaining an erection, not really a topic for a non tantric meditation group but one that makes me suspect that diet is playing a big role in your situation, especially at the age of 26. The EVOO will take care of that problem. In my worthless opinion this is the optimal diet for practice, long life and good health. The Buddhist monk eats once a day and is finished by 11:30am. The next day he will wake before 4am and practice meditation, at that time his blood sugar levels will be at their lowest and declining….I know it’s just a coincidence. As you read the suttas you’ll note that the Buddha is the one that does not cling, that is key. Certainly don’t believe what I’ve written here, investigate for yourself and good luck. dan

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