Macrobiotic Dietary Guidelines


Macrobiotic Dietary Guidelines

Showing are general macrobiotic dietary guidelines for a temperate climate. We recommend you attend cooking classes and meet with a macrobiotic practitioner if you have health problems.

Here is a list of the foods in category

› Whole Cereal Grains
› Vegetables
› Beans- Fish
› Special foods
› Foods for occasional use
› Styles of Cooking
› Foods to use sparingly or avoid

Whole Cereal Grains and Flour Products

Whole grains
Use often: short- grain brown rice, medium- grain brown rice, barley, millet, Spelt, Whole wheat berries, corn-on-the-cob, whole oats, rye, buckwheat, long-grain brown rice, sweet brown rice pearl barley

Cracked and flaked grains Use occasionally
Mochi (Pounded sweet rice), Barley grits, bulgur (cracked wheat), couscous, rolled oats,
corn grits, cornmeal (polenta), rye flakes, barley flakes, amaranth, quinoa.

Flour products Use occasionally
Whole wheat noodles (udon), Thin wheat noodles (somen), buckwheat noodles (soba), bread( unyeasted sourdough), puffed wheat gluten (fu), seitan (boiled wheat gluten), pancakes (home-made)


Use a variety with every meal
Use often

Green leafy:
Bok choy, carrot tops, Chinese cabbage, collard greens, daikon greens, dandelion greens, kale, leeks, mustard greens, parsley, spring onions, turnip greens, watercress

Acorn squash, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, buttercup squash, butternut squash, cabbage,
cauliflower, hokkaido pumpkin, onion, pumpkin, red cabbage, turnips, shiitake mushroom

Burdock, carrots, daikon, dandelion roots, lotus root, parsnip, radish. Use occasionally Celery, chives, cucumber, endive, green beans, green peas, iceberg lettuce, jerusalem artichoke, kohlrabi, mushrooms, romaine lettuce, salsify, snap beans snow peas, sprouts.


Use no more then once a day
Use often:
Azuki beans, black soybeans, chickpea, green or brown lentils

Use occasionally
Black- eyed peas,
black turtle beans, kidney beans, lima beans, mung beans.

Use occasionally:
Navy beans, pinto beans, soybeans, split peas, whole dried peas.

Special foods

Use as a regular part of your diet Soybeans products
Use occasionally.
Dried tofu, fresh tofu, natto, tempeh.

Seasonings for cooking

Use often
Barley miso ( mugi), brown rice miso, shoyu, unrefined white sea salt

Use occasionally
Brown rice vinegar, ginger garlic, mirin, tamari, umeboshi plum, umeboshi paste,
umeboshi vinegar, wasabi (horseradish) white miso.

Sea vegetables
Nori sheets, wakame kombu, agar-ager, Dulse, arame.

Drink a comfortable amount for thirst Bancha twig tea (kukicha), bancha leaf tea (green tea), roasted barley tea, roasted rice tea, yannoh (mixed grain coffee) spring water.


Foods for occasional use

2 to 3 times a week Choose from non-fatty
white Carp, cod, flounder, haddock, halibut, sole, trout red snapper.

Seeds and Nuts
1 to 2 cups a week each Seeds Pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, tahini (sesame butter) Nuts chestnuts, almonds, peanuts walnuts, pecans, coconut, nut butters.

Sweet and Sweeteners
Use as snacks or in cooking Barley malt, brown rice syrup, rice and barley malt candies, apple juice or grape juice, pure maple syrup( use sparingly)

Fruits Cooked, dried or fresh, seasonal climate fruits 2 to 3 times a week.

Ground fruits
Blueberries, blackberries, honey dew melon, raspberries, strawberries, watermelon

Tree fruit
Apples, apricots, cherries, grape, peaches, pears, plums, raisins, tangerines.

Other foods and oils Mild herbs and spices,
natural sauerkraut, cucumber -brine pickles, horseradish, lemons, toasted sesame oil, light sesame oil, olive oil, corn oil, safflower oil, coconut oil.

Amaske drink, apple juices, grape juice, organic beer, wine, and sake, soy milk carrot
or other vegetable juices herbal teas.


Use sparingly or avoid

Baked flour products and refined grains
Muffins, cookies, commercial-pancakes, rice cakes, chips, bake pastries, puffed whole cereals, popcorn, white rice, commercial pasta and bread,

Artichoke, asparagus, avocado bamboo shots, beets, eggplant, fennel, ginseng green or red pepper, spinach, okra, potato, rhubarb, sweet potato, Swiss chard, tomato, taro potato,
yams courgette

tropical nuts
including: brazil nut, cashews, hazelnuts, macadamia nuts, pistachio nuts.

All tropical fruits, including:
banana, coconut, dates, fig, mango, papaya pineapple, citrus fruit.

Avoid as much as possible.
Red meat: beef, lamb, pork.

chicken, duck, turkey.

Dairy foods:
milk, butter, cheese yoghurt, ice cream.

Sweeteners Artificial
sweeteners, brown sugar, molasses, carob, chocolate, fructose, fruit sweeteners, honey, white sugar.

Artificial beverages, carbonated water, cold drinks, iced drinks, coffee, distilled water, hard liquor, regular tea, stimulant beverages, tap water,


Styles of Cooking

Use often
Pressure cooking, boiling, blanching, steaming, nishimi-style (steaming with kombu) soup-making, stewing, quick water sautéing, quick oil sautéing, kimpiria-style (sautéing and simmering), pressing, pickling.

Use occasionally
Baking, broiling, dry-roasting, pan-frying, deep-frying, tempura (batter-dipped), raw foods, juicing.


Shopping List

Use Organically grown foods where possible.

Whole grains
instead of refined grains and brown rice instead of white rice. Whole wheat flour, bread, and spaghetti, when buying whole wheat bread, make sure that it is make sure that it is made from 100% whole wheat flour.

Fresh vegetables for every meal.
Unrefined white sea salt.
Unrefined oil, such as sesame , olive, sunflower, or safflower oil.
Jams without sugar.

Fruit juices without sugar.
Rice syrup and barley malt syrup as natural sweeteners instead of sugar
White-meat fish over meat and chicken.
Protein such as beans, tofu, seitan, and tempeh instead instead of meat and cheese.

Non- stimulating tea and grain coffees
.Sea vegetables for your cooking. These vegetables are sources of valuable nutrients, including calcium, beta carotene, and vitamin B-12 that help reduce cholesterol, rid the body of toxins and strengthen immunity.

When applying these guidelines on a daily basis, consider these additional factors:

Our diet should reflect human tradition.
Until modern times, unrefined, naturally produced whole cereal grains and their products comprised humanity’s primary food world-wide, while locally grown seasonal vegetables and their products comprised the most important secondary foods.

In order to maintain our human evolutionary status, our diets should continue to reflect this traditional pattern. We need to return to the “staff of life” – whole grains.

Our diet should be ecologically based.
As much as possible, the foods which comprise the mainstay of our diet should be grown in the same area in which we live. When we begin to consume food imported from different climate regions, we begin to lose adaptability to the immediate surroundings. This imbalance often leads to the development of sickness, manifesting either physically, mentally, or both.

This is especially true in cases where tropical or semitropical products (including sugar, pineapples, citrus fruit, bananas, spices, coffee and other yin products) are consumed in the temperate climates of North America. Also, serious sickness can result from the over-consumption of heavy animal food by those in a warmer or temperate climate, since this quality of food is more suited to the polar regions.

Ideally, foods should be chosen from within a 300 to 500 mile radius of our home area; however, if this is not possible, the next best choice of foods are those produced in areas with climates similar to our own (US climate) such as Europe or Japan.

Our diet should reflect seasonal changes
As naturally as the seasons change, our diets should reflect those differences in climate through the selection and preparation of our daily meals. For example, in colder seasons we would apply longer cooking times and more salt; in warmer weather, we would use lighter cooking methods and less salt.

As much as possible, we should always try to base our diet on those products such as cereal grains, beans, sea vegetables and other staples which are naturally available and storable without refrigeration throughout the year.

Our diet should reflect individual differences When selecting and preparing our foods, individual differences also need to be considered, with variations made according to age, sex, amount and type of activity, occupation, original constitution, previous eating patterns, personal desire, and social environment.

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