The Optimal Diet

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Back in 2007, I came across “The Optimal Diet” developed in Poland by Dr. Jan Kwasniewski in the 1970s.  I have always been interested in food, and nutrition, and eating…for as long as I can remember…and I found the premise of his diet, and his success in treating certain diseases considered “incurable”,  such as Asthma, Diabetes, Arthritis and Multiple Sclerosis, to be very intriguing.

In his book “Homo Optimus“, ( which you can download a .pdf version of for free, just click the link!)  —-

((or You can also visit his website, it’s in polish, but you can visit it through Google Translate at this link: http://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&ie=UTF-8&sl=pl&tl=en&u=http://dr-kwasniewski.pl/&prev=_t&rurl=translate.google.com — ))

He explains that the ratio of protein, fat, and carbohydrate in the diet should be the same as nature’s most perfect food…human breast milk!  Which he states in his book to be as follows: for every 1 gram of protein you consume between 2.5 and 3.5 grams of fat (protein and fat should preferably be from grass fed/pastured/free range animal sources..ie. eggs from free range hens, raw milk, grass fed beef…the quality of meat and fat is of UPMOST importance!) and .5 – .8 grams of carbohydrate (mostly from vegetables including potatoes, but NOT grains or seeds which I are high in enzyme inhibitors such as phytic acid and according to Dr. Jan Kwasniewski are ruminant animal food and NOT fit for human consumption…more about that later..) …which comes out to about 13% protein, 77-82% fat, and 7%-10% carbohydrate.

Dr. Jan Kwasniewski is a Christian and talks about God and Original Sin and the diet of the Israeli Priests, being made up of mostly fat, as being quite similar to his Optimal Diet:

Humankind needs knowledge, truth and wisdom. Most people, including those with the best education, do not suspect the existence of a blueprint for proper nourishment of the human body, nourishment which underlines the correct functioning of the brain, nourishment which causes one to stop following beliefs and opinions but instead enables one to gain and follow knowledge. Thus, one stops using the words “I think”, “I believe” and “I reckon”, but instead simply states,”I know”.

Original Sin, took away human wisdom, almost without exception. Consequently, human life was shortened, the human body underwent pathological changes, distortions in the functioning of the human brain developed, and in effect humans were unable to distinguish between good and bad. In order to make such a simple recognition – one has to appreciate that there is a blueprint for nourishment which guarantees healthy functioning of the brain – one has to follow this blueprint…

Original Sin lead to a departure from the blueprint for the nourishment (as passed onto humans from God), the best example being an apple – the symbol of food most unsuitable for human consumption, chosen precisely, based on the scientific knowledge unavailable to man at the time. Incredibly, we can readjust our nutrition in a single day.  With the help of today’s science we are able to recreate the type of nutrition developed by God for humans. At the same time, we can identify and eliminate from our food all the products forbidden by God.  My model of optimal nutrition closely resembles the type of nourishment designed by God for humankind. In this diet all the products which are responsible for the negative changes in the human biology are eliminated.

If one could ask a thousand people what they lack in their life, almost none of them would be prepared to admit that they lack wisdom.  They won’t admit it, because they do not realise that pain, diseases, fear and aggression result from the errant function of the brain which can only be changed by correct nourishment. A few thousand years ago human brains were incredibly effective, for instance the brains of the authors of the Bible…

The Bible can not be fully comprehended if the brain is not functioning properly and that is why one has to nourish the body like those who had originally written this most remarkable of works. Therefore, one has to follow the method of nutrition as used by the Israeli priests – the optimal diet. “When those first few of the humankind stopped following directives of God (Original Sin) they lost their perfection. As a result their descendants became similar to their parents – they became imperfect. Thus, everyone thereafter is born imperfect, becomes ill, and gets old. Disregard for the directives of God opened the gates for human insanity. Therefore, human history is characterised by suffering, sadness, fear, disease and death” – so says the Psalm.

All “sins” committed by humankind during its chronicled and unchronicled history, as well as those being presently committed, are the direct result of changes in the biology of the human body, but most importantly in the structure, the supply of energy to, and the functioning of the human brain. The Bible mentions seven times without hiding it behind any code – “the recipe for life” – as prescribed for the Israeli priests: “all fat, liver, kidneys and a little bit of meat from the shoulder”. No ham!  At that time, a good butcher was able to dissect out all of the lymphatic system which accumulates hormones, sex hormones, and other steroids. After all, priests would not allow themselves to be contaminated with hormones. The Prophet Isaiah described all the necessary conditions for the appearance of the one who would resolve all of the problems of humankind and erase the consequences of Original Sin. Isaiah said: “he will eat shepherd’s food”.

A shepherd’s diet guarantees correct brain function, but that is not enough: one has to gain knowledge. But what knowledge? Exactly! How to distinguish the good from the bad which in Hebrew is represented by the synonym “to know all”.  Now, those two pre-requisites negate each other since a shepherd’s son’s diet would have changed when he went to school. This clearly would jeopardise his ability to find the key to enlightenment.

I found this to be all very intriguing.  “Shepherd’s Food” would consist mostly of meat, the meat of old animals and the meat of young animals when there are too many and the herd must be culled, including the organ meats and broth made from the bones, also milk from the animals that the shepherd cared for…whether that be milk of sheep, goat or cattle. Along with meat and milk you would have wild foraged vegetables and fruits, and possibly eggs stolen from the nests of wild birds.

But on a farm you can do it even better!  You care for The Land in order to grow food mainly for the animals, which you then eat and tan their skins into leather to use as clothing.  Ideally, this would involve caring for The Land first and foremost, especially proper land management to increase and improve the quality of pasture for your animals.  Your animals would spend most of the Spring, Summer and Early Fall months eating a variety of pasture grasses and brush and supplying you with milk and cream and cheese, and meat and eggs (if we’re talking chickens or ducks), especially when they give birth in the Springtime and there is always inevitably too many young.  Through culling the young to your desired specifications for your own specific herd or flock, over time each farmer would develop his own breed, or multiple breeds even, this is how some of our best breeds of animals came into existence.

The Buff Orpington Chicken of Orpington, England is a great example of this.  A farmer named William Cook created the breed in 1886 by crossing Minorcas, Langshans, and Plymouth Rocks to create a new hybrid bird that is now one of the most beloved chicken breeds in the world!  I’m in the process of creating my own goat breed by crossing LaMancha, Saanen, and Swiss Alpine goats..with great success so far!  My Rosie’s daughter Lacey is the product of my experiment thus far, pure white like a Saanen with the LaMancha ears and the hardy sturdy stalwart body of a Swiss Alpine, but smaller than a Saanen.  Anyone can do this, for it is the right and proper “God Given” occupation of mankind to care for The Land and The Animals and through that be fed and clothed (And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. ~1 Timothy 6:8), then all one need do is build a shelter for their family and a barn for their livestock and they are set! 😀

During the growing season the farmer would also spend his time growing food, probably a variety or two of grain along with a variety of root crops to be put aside (along with hay cut from his fields as well) as food for the animals to eat during the cold winter months when there is no green growing thing  for them to eat.  The farmer may or may not eat of this grain himself during the cold winter months, it would not be ideal for him to do so, but instead he would cull the herd one last time in Fall to rid it of animals too old or sickly to make it through Winter along with those animals that he simply intended to fatten up for meat, that meat would then be ground and lacto-fermented into sausages or hung as whole pieces in a smokehouse to preserve it as the main food supply through winter.  Organ meats like livers and kidneys made into pates or scrapple and bones covered with salt and smoked and preserved to be made into healthful delicious broth in the wintertime.  Also, the family would have a variety of cheeses which they diligently made all summer long from the over-abundance of milk from their herd and they would preserve vegetables and herbs from the “kitchen garden” as opposed to the grains and fibrous root crops grown mainly for the animals to eat.

Dr. Jan Kwasniewski also had a a lot to say about humans “on the pastures”, as he put it, speaking of vegetarianism:

Every diet based on plant material is an artificial diet. Even the traditional Japanese diet, which 1 believe to be the only reasonable alternative to the optimal diet, is artificial, since in it the organism obtains most of its energy from carbohydrates, and its protein from fish. Nature proves that this type of nutrition is not natural. For instance, would the hippopotamus first eat a lot of grass, and then try to catch a few fish?

Unfortunately the Japanese diet, assuming the consumption for each gram of protein is 3.2 g of carbohydrates and 0.65 g of fat, does not protect against all diseases, for instance cancers. The Japanese diet is unable to cover the needs of issues in 100 percent of cases, especially those with poor circulation. Brain haemorrhages, so common in the Japanese, occur because of the hardening of brain arteries.  However, this hardening has nothing in common with atherosclerosis, since the carbohydrates contained in Japanese food are burned with the help of a large quantity of proteins, vitamins, and minerals, which are delivered from fish, especially fatless ones. In that case, the carbohydrates are not converted into fat and cholesterol. During the burning of animal fats there is no need for such large quantities of protein, vitamins and minerals.

I will cite the opinion of Friedrich Engels. He wrote: “Wheat, which in the beginning was cultivated exclusively for animal fodder, soon became food for the people. Thus, human animals were invented, the slaves.”  This invention proved to be the most permanent thus far, at the same time becoming the most damaging to humankind.  Every human eating wheat products has to be and always is a slave, his/hers brain has to be the brain of the slave, even if he/she holds the highest office in science, industry or politics.  All wars, diseases, all misfortunes affecting humankind for thousands of years are the result of this damned “invention”.

Of course, there is no doubt, that those closer to the pasture, for instance vegetarians, react in a way typical for herbivores. They suffer from fear states caused by the domination of the sympathetic system, they are always afraid of something, they feel threatened. The person on the optimal diet behaves in a totally different fashion. “Only wise is good, only stupid is evil” (Plato). If humans become wise, even uneducated, wise individuals, then I can guarantee that they will avoid aggression and conflicts. Why would they need them?

The Bible states: “And everything, that moves and lives will be food for you”. Then subsequently, animals transmitting diseases, e.g., trichinosis from pigs were excluded from consumption. Humans chose plant based food on their own: “Because you chose, weed of the land you will eat, damned will be the earth because of you.” Shepherd Abel could not act against his own kind, however, farmer Cain could do so and he did. We know that from the story in the Bible…

Let us consider vegetarian Adolf Hitler, who at age 50 suffered from such an advanced atherosclerotic Parkinsonism, that his left hand was totally paralyzed. People believe that others are vegetarians because they do not know the chemical composition of eaten products. If a person is eating mainly cheese, butter and cream, eggs and nuts as did Gandhi, then if they eat one or two kilograms of vegetables, which take much more space than do, for instance nuts or eggs, they only think that they are vegetarian, however, effectively they eat differently. 100 grams of goose lard is the same as 1.5 kg of potatoes. Regardless of the fact that a diet based exclusively on plant products is far more expensive, one has to consider that such a diet is unable to deliver all the necessary nutrients for the body, for instance some amino acids.

Humans, in order to fulfil their full daily needs of the body by the exclusive consumption of vegetables, would need to eat from 20 kg of mushrooms to 50 kg of cauliflower! Meanwhile the human stomach has a volume of approx. 1.5 litres (pigs have 6-7, sheep over 10, and cows 150), thus herbivores have much bigger stomachs. Omnivores, for instance pigs, have bigger stomachs as well, but humans have smaller stomachs than even carnivores, because we are supposed to eat fried meat.

Humans, being carnivores, have incisors. However, human teeth are exclusively human, they have not changed over the last 40 thousand years and they are not similar to the teeth of other carnivores or the teeth of herbivores. The better the nutrition, the shorter the small intestine, in humans it is from 4 to 4.5 m long, in large dogs 7 m, in pigs 16 to 20 m, and in sheep over 40 m! And that is the answer.  The organs are created to digest what is to be eaten!

I first came across the book back in 2007, read it and put it away, thinking that it was pretty interesting food for though but not ready to implement it just yet.  Then, the book was brought to my attention again in 2009, and I decided to try “The Optimal Diet” for one month and lost 10 pounds and cured my hypoglycemia, and my asthma greatly improved as well.  Then, the next month, October 2009, I became pregnant with Charity and, due to nausea from morning sickness, I had trouble eating so much fat, although I persisted as much as I could.  But, once I got out of the first trimester and my appetite returned to normal, I had, because of the diet, permanently developed a “taste” for fatty meats and creams and cheeses and continued to eat as close to “The Optimal Diet” as I could afford to…but not the 77-82% fat that the diet recommends but more like 60% fat on most days.  I continued with this all through Charity’s pregnancy and then Samuel’s pregnancy.  Both were normal, successful pregnancies and births, even Samuel who is my fifth child and whose birth was closer than desired to my previous birth, was born perfectly healthy and normal at home 1 week earlier than his EDD and weighed only 6lb. 7oz. because of that, but other than being small had absolutely no other problems to speak of.  He is a normal average one year old and extremely bright, most likely the most intelligent of all my children.  I attribute this to the increased amount of fats which I worked to maintain through my last two pregnancies and still continue to eat mostly that same way.

NOW, I am prepared to take it to the next level and fully go back to eating “The Optimal Way” and maintain it for an extended period of time to see what happens, will my body continue to improve??

The principles of the Optimal Diet

The main principle of this dietary model is a marked increase in the consumption of fat, and the reduction in the consumption carbohydrate, as the energy source for the body. There are, however, strict rules on the proportion between the three main food components, protein, fat and carbohydrates, which need to be followed (with few exceptions) in order to achieve claimed benefits of the Optimal Diet.

The ideal proportion between the main food components of protein, fat and carbohydrates should be in the range of:

1 : 2.5 – 3.5 : 0.8

In order to work out the correct daily food intake using this proportion, one has to know how many grams of protein needs to be ingested in a day to satisfy body’s requirements. This amount varies from person to person and depends on a “due body weight”. Due body weight, in kilograms, is equal to person’s height in centimetres less 100 (± 10%). Thus, for a person 160 cm tall, a due body weight is 60 kg ± 6 kg.

A correct amount of protein to be consumed in a day is approx. 1 g of protein per 1 kilogram of a due body weight.

Thus, a 60 kg person needs to consume 60 ± 6 g of protein to satisfy body’s daily needs. Any excess of protein, above the daily requirement, is converted by the body to fat, provided energy requirements are met by other components.  Having worked out the amount of protein, one can then calculate the amount of other components in a daily menu. Thus, for our typical 60 kg person, the consumption of 60 g of protein has to be accompanied by between 150 to 210 g of fat, and 30 to 50 g of carbohydrate in order to follow the principles of the Optimal Diet.

For your protein requirement you should choose the weight that you wish to weigh, not the weight that you are. For me, my goal weight has always been 150 pounds which is 68 kg (I currently weight 177 lb.  ..I’m pretty muscular for a girl  so, for me, that’s a size 12), to convert pounds to kilograms take lbs. and divide by 2.2 to get what you weigh in kg.  So, my daily nutritional requirements would be as follows:

Protein: 68g

Fat: 170-238g

Carbohydrate: 54g

I will be utilizing FitDay.com to help me stay within my desired ranges.  Even though I do not eat nearly as much sugar or carbohydrate as the average person does (mainly because I do not like soda pop, cold sugary sweetened breakfast cereals, or bread) I fully expect there to be side effects and withdrawal symptoms, which I am prepared to deal with as they come.

Effects of the diet on the average person could manifest in these such ways:

— The first few weeks it’s not only difficult to make the change from high to low protein, and from moderate to high fat, you experience an enormous hunger that comes from cutting down on protein. And that’s despite eating a lot more calories.

— For many, the first few weeks bring either very small weight losses, or none, or even weight gain.

— After the initial first few weeks, hunger lessens and protein cravings, the body screaming at you to eat ‘more protein!’ lessens as well.

— After the initial weeks, many begin feeling less fatigued and more energized. Some have reported that the ‘lump’ their felt in their abdomens after eating a protein-laden main meal pre-Optimal Diet had disappeared. A sense of well-being grows, and many say that this way of eating somehow feels very ‘right’ to them, very natural.

— After the initial weeks, the need for even the allotted amount of protein begins to fade. Some have problems even eating as much as they are allowed without working at it.

— Real weight loss begins even if previously stalled on average Low Carb diets, sometimes a lot — even though calorie intake has climbed well over the amounts eaten pre-Optimal Diet, and well over so-called BMR requirements.

Know what this sounds like when I write it all out like that? Kicking an addiction, whether that it’s been to drugs, tobacco, Candida, or high carb foods like sugar and flour. ((taken from an Optimal Diet message board))

In the weeks and months to come, I will be sharing more about my experiences with “The Optimal Diet” along with some yummy recipes and eating strategies so stay tuned for that! 😀

13 thoughts on “The Optimal Diet

  1. Interesting. Are you able to give a sample daily menu? I have a hard time reading about a way of eating without seeing how it would look on an average day (actually I think I wouldn’t mind one bit if someone would plan a weekly menu for me every week). Between my many food allergies and no longer having a gallbladder I wonder if this would be more painful (literally) for me.

    • Here’s what I ate yesterday, as a sample menu for you:

      Breakfast:
      about 18 oz of coffee with 6 tbsp. half and half, no sugar
      1.5 oz full fat pork sausage made without nitrates/nitrites or other nasties
      A Chocolate Smoothie consisting of 1c. RAW goat milk from our goats, 3 egg yolks from our hens, 2 oz. softened cream cheese, 2 Tbsp. unsweetened cocoa, 2 tbsp. Stevia in the raw, vanilla extract

      Snack:
      1/2 cup stonyfield organic plain whole milk yogurt

      Another snack (I’m not a huge lunch eater)
      Homemade chai tea w/ 2 tbsp. half and half and 1 tbsp. extra virgin coconut oil sweetened with 1 tsp. stevia in the raw

      Dinner:
      6 oz. 70% lean/30% fat grass fed beef patty
      2 oz. cheddar cheese
      2 ears corn on the cob w/ butter (from the garden)
      1 cup homemade french onion soup (using homegrown onions, garlic, and chicken broth)
      2 4oz. glasses Merlot

      Which breaks down as follows:
      Protein: 101g/17% (WAY OVER..should have stuck with a 4oz. burger and not ate the sausage at breakfast..)
      Fat: 152g/60% (NOT ENOUGH)
      Carbohydrate: 102g/16% (TOO MANY!..it’s the corn’s fault, but I LOVE fresh corn from the garden! It’s a seasonal treat that I cannot refuse!)
      Alcohol: 7% of calories..”The Optimal Diet” says that alcohol should be limited to 4% of calories, but I don’t know that I agree with that 😆
      TOTAL Calories: 2,345 (that’s fine, I’m PLENTY active and still breastfeeding the baby which requires an extra 500 calories a day!)
      ~As you can see it’s a process of fine tuning, it’ll take a few days before I get the hang of it, but I feel like it isn’t too bad for a first day considering that I have been eating high protein for quite sometime…I LOVE MY MEAT! and it can be hard to cut down lol..

      Also, the book “Homo Optimus”, that you can download from the link at the beginning of the article, has many recipes and 2 weeks worth of menus which can be very helpful for ideas…

      The gallbladder doesn’t create bile, it simply stores excess bile, the liver creates bile…so you do still have the ability to eat fat just on a very limited basis. Having a tbsp. or two of RAW apple cider vinegar before each meal would increase the acidity of your stomach and help in the digestion of fat…eating small meals often would be your best bet, and sticking with foods, such as plain whole milk yogurt, which are already “pre-digested” would be a good idea too. I think, with not having a gallbladder, you’re main issue would be large meals…don’t do it, eat smaller meals and fats such as coconut oil tend to be easier to digest. DEFINITELY stay away from trans fats and polyunsaturated fats (vegetable oil, canola oil, soybean oil etc.) since these fats are extremely difficult to digest even for people that have a gallbladder, and some traditional food advocates speculate that these types of fats (or the lack of ANY fat in the diet) is what is responsible for gallbladder issues, such as stones and spasms.

      • See this is one reason I so enjoy reading your blog! You are full of nutrional information. I read and study and it all seams greek to me at times. I did follow the above link but I had to keep refreshing as the more I scrolled the more Polish I was getting and the English translation was often confusing to me.
        I think I’d learn vastly more spending an evening around a campfire talking with you (and enjoying a drink 😉 )

  2. I downloaded the .pdf of Homo Optimus but it came out garbled, perhaps because I’m on a Mac. Would it be possible to email it to me? And thanks for the very informative article.

    • What did you use to open it?? I use Adobe Reader for .pdf and have found that if I use something other than that most .pdf files appear all garbled. Send me an e-mail to evenavapor@yahoo.com and I’ll send it to you, hopefully that will work!

  3. Happy to see another follower of Dr. Kwasniewski’s diet. I introduced my parents to it about a year ago. My dad lost close to 50 pounds, feels better than ever, and my mom finds it very interesting to experiment with traditional polish cuisine in an optimal way. Overall, the life style change that could have happened to them.
    You have a great blog with many interesting subjects. All the best.

  4. Thank you for sharing all this great information. I have bought Dr. Jay’s books and played around with this diet off and on for some time, but it is difficult when the whole family doesn’t buy into it!!

  5. Hi, I am eating something close to Dr. Kwasiewski diet, I love most of it but I like fruit and veggies so I “cheat” by simply eating them when I feel like to.
    I am healthy and I do have plenty energy for life. If I do not have enough fat in my day, I crave butter so I eat it on a thin slice of bread and it’s tastes lovely.
    I really advise to look and feel what your body tells you and do not believe the media and the low fat c…
    Ela

  6. I have tried eating somewhat close to this diet to combat depression but I cannot give up Ezekiel sprouted grain bread, which is biblical anyway. I feel great cutting carbs and eating more fat but I cannot seem to get as low carb as Dr. K advocates without getting twitches and dizzy spells.

  7. Hi, I’m from Poland and there we have some forums about dr Kwasniewski’s Optimal Diet where we can share our doubts or ask questions because some people don’t understand the diet well or don’t read the book enough thoroughly. I know that this article is from 2012 but for those who want to lose weight on this diet they should know that the proportion between Protein:Fat:Carbs for them is 1:1,5-2:0,5-0,8 (the proportion 1:2,5-3,5:0,5-0,8 is for those who don’t have weight problems). Anyway, I’m really glad that I came across an English article about this wonderful diet 🙂

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