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What Is Macrobiotics?

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The macrobiotic approach is based on the view that we are the result of and are continually influenced by our total environment, which ranges from the foods we eat and our daily social interactions to the climate and geography in which we live.

In considering all factors that influence our lives, the macrobiotic approach to health and healing views sickness as the natural attempt of the body to return to a more harmonious and dynamic state with the natural environment. As what we choose to eat and drink and how we live our lives are primary environmental factors that influence our health and create who we are, the macrobiotic approach emphasizes the importance of proper dietary and lifestyle habits.

The macrobiotic approach is based on principles, theories and practices that have been known to philosophers, scholars, and physicians throughout history. The term “macrobiotics” comes from Greek (“macro” meaning “large” or “long”, and “bios” meaning “life”) and was first coined by Hippocrates, the father of western medicine. Its most recent development stems from Michio Kushi who was inspired by philosopher-writer George Ohsawa. George Ohsawa published numerous works in Japanese, English and French, which combined the western traditions of macrobiotics with 5,000 years of traditional oriental medicine.

By using macrobiotic principles to address and adjust environmental, dietary and lifestyle influences, thousands of individuals have been able to prolong their lives by recovering from a wide range of illnesses including heart disease, cancer, diabetes and many others. Some traditional and basic macrobiotic practices include eating more whole grains, beans and fresh vegetables, increasing variety in food selections and traditional cooking methods, eating regularly and less in quantity, chewing more and maintaining an active and positive life and mental outlook.

General dietary and lifestyle guidelines for persons living in a temperate, four seasons climate have been established by Michio Kushi. These guidelines outline basic dietary proportions along with healthier lifestyle habits and are not intended to define a specific regimen that one must follow, as additional adjustments are required for individual application which will vary according to personal situations.  Following are Michio Kushi’s standard macrobiotic dietary and lifestyle suggestions.

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(This definition also appears on the Kushi Institute website)

For further reading:

1.  “The Book Of Macrobiotics” by Michio Kushi

2. “Macrobiotics: The Art Of Prolonging Life” by Christoph Wilhelm Hufeland

3. “Ancient Medicine” by Ludwig Edelstien

4. “The Yellow Emperor’s Classic Of Internal Medicine” translated by Ilza Veith

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8 Comments leave one →
  1. May 1, 2009 9:30 pm

    Macrobiotics is a way of food to prolong
    life, but how long? because it is in final
    death that awaits us, here in Morocco there are people who
    live more than 100 years with a simple meal
    I think that macrobiotics can prolong life
    but thanks to God the almighty great one:)

    • carmen vila barberá permalink
      August 3, 2011 5:29 am

      As Jesus said, no solo de pan vive el hombre,
      not just from bread man lives.

    • Jaume permalink
      April 20, 2012 9:59 am

      Living with a simple meal, it means practicing a macrobiotic lifestyle

  2. February 28, 2013 9:29 am

    I just changed my diet to macrobiotic and I must say your website is an inspiration for me! Here is all the info I collected so far about macrobiotics and look forward to learning even more! http://gourmandelle.com/macrobiotic-diet-101-everything-you-need-to-know-about-macrobiotics/

  3. December 25, 2013 10:20 am

    There is certainly a lot to know about this subject.
    I really like all the points you have made.

Trackbacks

  1. What Is Macrobiotics? | Macro Mom
  2. Interview with Blogger Phiya Kushi | The Pakistani Spectator
  3. Introducing Macrobiotics: Avoiding The “Diet” Trap « Phiya Kushi

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