FOOD - and Spiritual Health ??

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In the work I do now – Reiki, Energy Field Healing, Shamanic Healing – there is an aspect of Spirit, an understanding that we are Spiritual or Energetic Beings living a physical life.  This has been my experience – I do not say ‘belief’ because I have experienced ‘Spirit’ and ‘energy’ in many ways in my work - and there is no doubt in my mind that we are both Matter and Soul. 

Therefore, we need to support and care for our physical bodies – after all, we have nothing else to carry our Soul through a physical lifetime of perhaps 80+ years – but we also need to nurture our Spirit, that level of us which exists beyond the physical.  Eating the best, most appropriate food we can for our body is part of looking after the physical – the Blood Type Diet can be a great guide here, if you choose that.

The issue I want to talk about today is a strange one – at least I think it is.  It’s the view some people have that only certain ways of eating – I’m talking about vegetarian or vegan - mean a person can be ‘spiritual.’  Plant-only eating can be risky if it doesn’t suit you, and it seems judgemental, as well as, frankly, slightly silly.  For a start we are ALL Spiritual Beings.  Plenty of people focusing on a more spiritual way of thinking and living eat meat, eggs and fish – including me, I hasten to add.  I want to be clear, I’ve no agenda here.  Its fine for a person to eat whatever they want to eat, but they need to allow everyone else to do the same.  

Years ago, influenced by others, I fell into the “If I’m going to be ‘spiritual’ I must be vegetarian,” error.   So, I tried it.  And felt ill.  Weak.  Exhausted.  It clearly didn’t suit me – though it may suit some.  I’ve read plenty of similar stories – people turning vegetarian or vegan because they think it is ‘the thing to do’ and having to return to their usual eating pattern to regain their health.  One example is Bear Grylls, the Chief Scout and ex-soldier.  Bear was once famously vegan and now claims it damaged his health,

I reversed my diet to include meat, fish and eggs again, and immediately felt better.  On finding the Blood Type Diet I understood why.  I’m Type ‘O’ and that very common Blood Type (about 45% of the population)  needs animal protein for proper health.  It has been a frustration for me on many spiritual or Energy-based residential courses that participants, including me, are forced into vegetarian eating, because nothing else is offered, as if that somehow makes us ‘better people.’  The problem with that, for those who are physically gluten and dairy-intolerant, as I am, is that vegetarian food often leans heavily on gluten- bread, cakes, biscuits - and dairy – cheese, milk, yoghurt, butter.  Or soya, which is a very processed food and makes me feel nauseous. And you might guess, soya is an ‘Avoid’ food on the Blood Type Diet for Type ‘O’.  Soya is also, incidentally, one of the most processed foods on the planet.  And nuts – I am mildly allergic to nuts and have to be careful how many I eat, so nut loaf is out.

The dangers of extremism in eating

Some people may not like what I write here, but if you don’t, I point you to The Small Print at the bottom of the page.

Extremism, in any form, is never a good thing.  I think most people might agree with that.  We can all see what happens in the world, in past and current times, when extremist religions try to control people with aggression and violence.  Or when extreme political views are forced on a population – the Communism of the old USSR, the Fascism of the Nazis and so on.  The horrors of the covid oppression and terrible mask and jab mandates.  

Choosing a plant-only diet is an extreme choice and is simply not necessary for good physical health – unlike giving up gluten for people who are coeliac or gluten-intolerant, or reducing sugar for diabetics or giving up dairy because you are lactose-intolerant (which incidentally most people are, but don’t realise it.)  These are necessities for health.  A vegetarian or vegan diet is, as far as I am aware, a lifestyle choice.  And that’s fine, if it’s what a person wants.  But I feel concern when these ways of eating are pushed onto people, using attitudes like ‘you have to be vegetarian in order to be spiritual’.  This is simply not true and not fair.   There are some good balancing arguments around plant-only eating which are hardly ever heard.  Here are some of them: 


Cutting out several whole food groups – all meat, all fish, possibly all dairy and eggs – seriously risks causing a lack of vital nutrients.  Real damage may only show after many years and then the connection may not be realised or will be ignored because a person is so convinced their way of eating is ‘healthy’ (See Oxalate in Foods, below, for an example).


Ferritin is a protein complex with metal–protein interactions. It is the primary intracellular iron-storage protein in the body.  Lack of ferritin comes about because of lack of iron in the body – and that almost always means lack of iron in the diet.  Symptoms include minor aches, fatigue, weakness, palpitations, loss of energy, increased irritability and confusion, as well as hair loss.  Good levels of iron are impossible to maintain on a plant-only diet.  The main foods for iron are meat, fish and eggs.  Yes, dark green leafy vegetables like spinach and chard, as well as lentils and beans do contain some iron, but it is non-heme iron, a form of iron less easily absorbed by the body.  And ….


Talking of dark green leafy vegetable brings me to another problem that can occur in a diet wholly dependent on plant food, and particularly plants like spinach, swiss chard, endive and kale.  These foods contain a high level of oxalate.  Oxalic acid (oxalate) is an organic compound found in many plants, including leafy greens, vegetables, some fruits, cocoa, nuts and seeds.   Oxalic acid can build up in the body and cause health issues. 

An article in the “What Doctors Don’t Tell You” magazine (February 2020) highlighted this.  A woman who had been vegan all her adult life had struggled for decades with painful joints and other symptoms.  Only when she came upon information about oxalic acid did she realise it was her diet – heavy in swiss chard and spinach - that had been causing the problems.  

In a balanced, mixed, omnivorous diet these otherwise healthy foods won’t cause a problem, because a person will eat them in moderation.  But in a diet that relies heavily on green leafy vegetables they can cause problems like kidney stones and interference with mineral absorption, including iron.


The UK is a relatively dark, damp country and almost everyone is short of Vitamin D because of this.  There are very few decent food sources for this vital Vitamin.  Eggs and oily fish are the best, followed by cheese and yoghurt (if a person can tolerate dairy foods), as well as beef liver, tuna and sardines.  There are NO vegetables or fruits which can provide enough Vitamin D.  Some fortified (added Vitamin D) orange juice or breakfast cereals can help a little, but these foods contain a lot of sugar. 

Sunshine is the best source for Vitamin D, but with modern life we cannot get enough of it in this country.  Most people either cover up, because of skin cancer fears, or don’t get out enough because they work indoors.  Two weeks holiday each year in sunshine is nowhere near enough.  Lack of Vitamin D is felt to contribute to a whole range of conditions including rickets, heart disease, multiple sclerosis, colon and breast cancers, rheumatoid arthritis and diabetes.


Many people now choosing vegan or vegetarian diets almost certainly grew up being fed all food groups, giving their body, including their bones, muscles and nervous systems a chance to develop properly.  But today many children are being introduced to plant-only eating almost from birth, and this is not always healthy.  In January 2020 there was a news story from America about a child dying of malnutrition because her vegan parents fed her only on fruits and fruit juices.  At three years old she was the size of a 7-month-old baby.  Two older siblings were also malnourished and small for their age. 

Children need fats, protein and high calorie food because of the rate of growth of their bodies and brains.  They need animal protein for fats, minerals and vitamins.  Their bodies are growing and developing.  Older people need more protein because their bodies need more repair.  Fruits, salads and vegetables are ‘carbohydrates’ by definition.  Nothing in the body is made of carbohydrates.  Carbohydrates are ‘energy foods’, not ‘building’ or ‘repair’ foods.   The body is formed of proteins, minerals and fats.  The brain is largely fat, muscle fibre is made from protein, bones from minerals.  Every cell in the body has what is called a bi-lipid outer layer (2 layers of fat).  Adults might more easily tolerate the severe restrictions of veganism, but for growing children veganism is unlikely to provide enough vital nutrients.

Adults actually need more protein as they grow older, not less, because our bodies don’t digest quite as efficiently and we need more ‘repair’.


One of the arguments put forward by the vegan/vegetarian view revolves around producing food from animals and how it contributes to ‘climate change.’  I always felt sceptical about this.  After all the Earth has gone through Ice Ages and warming all on its own over millions of years – with a good mix of animals and plants around.  Man has eaten animal products since we walked the Earth and ancient people would not have survived the Ice Ages without eating animal protein.

A BBC Countryfile programme in March 2020 offered some very interesting information.  They were looking at how farmers can be carbon neutral by 2040, and what exactly on a farm produces the dreaded CO2 emissions. 

What do you think produces the most CO2 emissions on a farm?  Animals?  I would guess this would be most people’s guess.  But NO.  Not the animals, not by a long chalk.  According to the programme the greatest source of CO2 on a farm by far was the fertilisers used on the land to grow CROPS.  The scientists involved were trying to persuade farmers to use more ANIMAL MANURE on the land because it is a rich, complex form of fertiliser, much better than the Nitrogen-based chemical fertilisers which are the problem – and the source of a lot of the lack of nutrients in our fruits and vegetables now.  Using animal manure is the way farms always used to fertilise land until the petroleum companies started using their by-products to make chemical fertilisers. 


One of my favourite books is “Hands of Light” by Barbara Brennan, an American energy healer who mapped the Human Energy Field in detail and experimented to prove that what she was ‘seeing’ with her Higher Sense Perception was correct.  One thing she saw early on was a plant ‘cringe’ when a portion of a leaf was cut off and she saw how the energy field around the plant was damaged.  She describes recoiling in horror at this and apologising to the plant!  I wonder what an entire field of crops feels as it is harvested?

This illustrates the difficult nature of living in the duality of the Earth Plane.  Nothing is perfect, there are two (or more) sides to everything.  We are here to decide for ourselves, to choose for ourselves - and allow others to do the same - as we try to balance the various aspects of being Spirit in a physical body.

No-one has to be vegetarian or vegan in order to be ‘spiritual’.  We are ALL Spiritual by our very existence.  Just because you decide to focus more on the Spiritual part of your nature doesn’t mean you have to change your way of eating, if it has always suited you.  Human bodies need good protein and good fats and we are biologically built to be omnivores – to eat both animal and plant food.  If we respect the animals who give their lives so that we might eat, and only eat what we need, there is a balance that can be found.

I started this blog by saying that extremism in any form isn’t good for us, and I stand by that.  Whether it’s about our food or the medicine model we choose there’s a balance to be found in life, if we are to support the physical, while also finding our spirituality. 

DISCLAIMER (The Small Print)       

These are just my current thoughts. 

Thoughts can change as we learn and grow.

I can be wrong, but am nevertheless entitled to my thoughts.

You don’t have to read my blog or take any notice of anything I say.

It is important you always make up your own mind - about everything.

I am not you, and don’t know you or the details of your life. 

Therefore, you are responsible for any decisions or changes you make as a result of reading

my thoughts. 

Finally, nothing in any of my blogs is intended nor should be taken as medical or health advice.  Always research for yourself and talk to doctors or therapists you trust (conventional or complementary).