Excerpt: The Kind Diet by Alicia Silverstone
Read Chapter 1: What's So Kind About Dieting?
diet: (noun) a way of living, or thinking, a day's journeyThis was the definition of diet when it entered the English language in the mid-1600s. So simple! So sane! How did this cute little word become synonymous with deprivation, suffering, and—let's be honest—total hell?
With the Kind Diet, we are returning the word to its original definitions, for this journey is about changing how you think and live, one day at a time. And by allowing your mind and your choices to change, you will see amazing—even magical—results. It won't happen overnight, but it will happen, I promise, because it happened to me: By eating satisfying, delicious, plant-based foods, I was released from the prison of dieting.
Oh, the freedom of that! How amazing it is never to have to start another diet! To be able to think about my life, and the world, instead of spazzing out about calories and constantly asking myself, "Can I eat that?" It's like I got my brain back! These days, I get to eat as much as I want of foods that I love, and I never have to fear them. I feel truly and deeply nourished by food. I'm so grateful for that.
But what do I mean by "kind"? Well, let's start with you. This is about being really, really good to yourself. The Kind Diet will give you tons of energy, mental clarity, gorgeous skin, and a zest for life you won't want to miss. Plus, it's powerful; doctors like Dean Ornish and John MacDougall have discovered that plant-based diets have the power to reverse heart disease, diabetes, even cancer. So this is about treating yourself like a total goddess and putting yourself first.
And you deserve that kindness, my friend. I used to equate having self-worth with being selfish, but now I understand that taking care of myself is the most beautiful thing I can do. And quite frankly, I can't be a good actor, I can't be a good wife, friend, or mother (to my dogs) . . . I can't be a good anything until I've taken care of myself first. So this kindness to yourself is paramount.
And it doesn't stop there. This kindness extends to the earth itself; because it requires less fuel, water, and other precious resources, a plant based diet is much lighter on the planet. And because it is clean, this diet helps our soil, water, and atmosphere get healthy as well. You will see that the Kind Diet reduces planetary suffering on all levels; following a plant-based diet is just about the greenest thing you can do.
The Kind Diet by Alicia Silverstone. Published by Rodale Books. © 2009