“Horses make a landscape look beautiful.”
― Alice Walker
Just across the road from my apartment building, there is a grassy field about the size of a rugby pitch that runs along an inlet going out to the Caribbean Sea. In this field, there is a horse that I often see hanging out there. I named him Taino in honour of the tribe that flourished here before the Spanish arrived. Taino the horse eats grass all day long. He doesn’t run a whole lot, he walks around sometimes, but mainly, he eats, and is more or less left alone to do so. The horses are left alone here in Puerto Rico. Sometimes you will see some of the kids riding them, although, technically, this is illegal. The kids are good to the horses, and when not riding them, will take care of them and lead them to grassy fields–such as the one by my apartment–to graze. It’s pretty cool! Similar to India, without the religious aspect regarding how the cows wander around. Here, it’s the horses. Now, this particular horse, Taino, eats a lot. For the last few months, whenever I have seen him, that’s all he seems to do: eat, and eat, and eat. You would think for the amount he eats, and as lackadaisical as his days seem to be, he should be one fat horse! But he’s not. He is a lean, mean, grass-eating machine. He may not be as muscular as a Clydesdale (Budweiser work horse), or a thoroughbred, but he is definitely not fat! This holds true for most herbivores, and more specifically, grass grazers. Cows can eat a lot of grass and they won’t get fat. They will be super healthy, strong, lean, and delicious! But that is a problem for the big meat producers. They need their cows big, fat (really fat), and able to feed a larger number of people–or earn more money per cow. So, instead of grass, they are fed corn and other sources designed to fatten them up. Factory farming, and therefore the majority of the meat you will find in the grocery store, is fed this way. Now, because they are eating food they are really not supposed to eat, they experience a whole host of problems. I won’t rehash previous blogs, but I will make it clear that the same corn-based products, which are designed to fatten up our animals and cause them to get sick, is what we see a plethora of on the shelves at all the big-name grocery stores. So, are we surprised that we get fat and sick too? We can’t eat grass, but there are a whole host of leafy greens and other vegetables we can eat. If you can make the transition, where up to 60% of your diet is in the form of leafy greens and the rest, you are going to find that getting fat is something that is really hard to do, or be. Even though you can download it from the site, I pasted this new and improved food pyramid to help you see the percentages/ratios of food we are looking to consume. Making the shift from a calorie-rich to a nutrient-rich diet will lead to some amazing changes in both how you feel and how you will look. Hang on! Nothing about this post dealt with something you can do once a week. You’re right! This is a daily thing I would love to see you start doing, but that being said, if you can make this transition to a nutrient-rich diet, you’ll find that if you happen to cheat, only once or twice a week, and spring for that fettucine alfredo, or dessert, your body will be in a much better place to handle the treat, rather than the “treat” being the bulk of your diet.