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Macrobiotic Diet - Health Risks - Drawbacks of Macrobiotic Diets

Macrobiotic Diet - Health Risks

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Macrobiotic Diet - Health Risks

The modern macrobiotic diet can be a very healthy regime, even though macrobiotics itself is based on an ancient Far-Eastern philosophy of holistic living.

Supporters of macrobiotic diets claim that macrobiotic eating has many positive health effects, and some health studies indicate that people on the diet have a decreased risk of heart disease and some forms of cancer.

Dietitians Sceptical of Macrobiotic Diet

Despite these benefits, most orthodox dietitians and nutritionists are sceptical of macrobiotic diets - especially the stricter macrobiotic diet-plans. This is because the selection of foods is limited and may cause nutritional deficiencies.

Macrobiotic Diets Are Not Cancer-Cures

Assertions that a macrobiotic diet reverses cancer or AIDS (or strengthens the immune system) are based on non-clinical studies that have yet to be confirmed by clinical tests. The National Institute of Health's Office of Alternative Medicine is studying the macrobiotic approach to cancer - but no hard evidence of success is yet available.

Macrobiotic Diets - Health Risks

Given the lack of meat, cheese and eggs (all being convenient sources of diet nutrition), an obvious health risk is vitamin and mineral deficiency. This lack of nutrition is almost certain to occur when following an extreme macrobiotic diet. Nutritional studies of children consuming a macrobiotic diet revealed growth retardation in 6- to 18-month-olds, lack of energy, and deficiencies of protein, vitamin B12, vitamin D, calcium, and riboflavin. Diet researchers also found that the breast milk of mothers on a macrobiotic diet contained abnormally low levels of vitamin B12, calcium, and magnesium. Another diet health study associated macrobiotic diets with an increase in iron-deficiency anemia. Macrobiotic diets have also been linked with weakened bones and skeletal deformities associated with vitamin D and calcium deficiencies.

The absence of animal protein in the macrobiotic diet may cause a deficiency of vitamin B12 unless you include unfermented soy products fortified with B12.

Macrobiotic Diets - Caution

If you develop any symptoms of general nutritional deficiency, such as fatigue, muscle and joint pain, poor concentration, irritability, or susceptibility to infections, please see your doctor.

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