||The 80/10/10 Diet: A
By Justin Lelia
Dr. Graham occasionally mentioned that he was working on a book that would
define his lifes work in the field of nutrition. I was always excited to hear
this because I have been studying his diet and lifestyle for over six years.
Recently, I asked Dr. D what was new and exciting in his life. He acted
surprised, Are you kidding? he questioned. The printing of The 80/10/10
Diet is the most important event in the raw food movement since Kulvinskas Survival
in the Twenty First Century was published, he declared. I had never heard Dr. Graham
speak so boldly. What would he include in his latest book that wasnt in his
other products? How would he impress us with this long awaited project?
My first impression of
the actual book itself was that it was thick compared to his other books. The
80/10/10 Diet is 348 pages and the font is considerably smaller than that of Nutrition and
Athletic Performance and Grain Damage.
The Preface finds Dr. D
filled with excitement. I feel ecstatic, he proclaims, that I
finally have succeeded in writing about the program I have taught for years in the raw and
Now, with sample calculations in hand, I stand before the
raw-food community with clear evidence of the dangerously high fat consumption common in
our ranksand with a clear articulated plan for those who wish to raise the bar a
notch and reach for the ultimate low-fat plan for raw health. Yet, dont
get the doctor wrong, The 80/10/10 Diet is not just for raw fooders and vegetarians.
It is not an all or nothing proposition. This program allows you
to continue eating the way you have while introducing you to a unique perspective on
nutrition, using real health foods, fruits and vegetables, as your source of energy.
Direction, not speed, is the most important aspect of learning to succeed
with 80/10/10. Dr. D encourages.
After a touching Tribute
to T.C. Fry, and the doctors warm Acknowledgments, we reach the Introduction.
Here, Dr. D points out how Americans are fatter and sicker than ever, they do not
recognize nutritional science, and they are busy treating symptoms of illness instead of
creating health. The fact is that Americans get 25% of their calories from junk
food: soft drinks, alcohol, sweets and desserts. Furthermore, in a head to test of
basic nutrition knowledge between patients and doctors, the patients won. But whats
most sad, in Dr. Grahams opinion, is seeing people who are so obsessed with healing
their diseases, losing or gaining weight, and feeling excited about life, that they are
willing to sacrifice their own well-being and vitality over it. He wants you to know
that image is not everything; that what you will become attracted to with 80/10/10 is your
own personal growth. And this book, in his words, was created as a definitive
resource for those who want to reach for the sky.
How catchy the trademark
80/10/10 looks on the colorful cover. These numbers represent an important benchmark
that takes some understanding to grasp. 80/10/10 represents a fuel mixture, a ratio
between the three nutrients in which we derive calories from. The three nutrients
represented by 80/10/10 are carbohydrates, proteins and fat, respectively. When
people eat, they primarily do so to fuel themselves, if you will. After doing twenty
years of dietary analysis for his clients, Dr. Graham found that typical Americans eat 42
% of their diets calories from carbs, 16% from protein, and 42% from fat. The
target 80/10/10 represents a high carbohydrate, low protein, low fat diet where one eats,
at minimum, 80% of his or her calories from sugar (predominantly found in sweet fruits),
and a maximum of 10% of their calories each from protein and fat. According to Dr.
Grahams research this is the macronutrient ratio that nature has designed humans to
thrive on. By teaching us how to use the percentage of calories model, Dr.
Graham helps us to discuss and compare appropriate carbohydrate, protein, and fat
consumption, despite our personal differences like gender, activity levels and weight, for
The first chapter of the
book determines our true dietary nature leading us to the conclusion that we
are frugivorous animals, most similar in our anatomy, physiology, biochemistry and
psychology to the anthropoid primates. It may sound weird, since we are used to
eating whatever we would like, and we are proud of being civilized, but chapter one does a
thorough job of showing us how we are not designed by nature to eat meat, grains, grass,
weeds, leaves, tubers, legumes, milk, fermented foods and other common foods we eat.
Furthermore, Dr. D says that we are not fat eaters either. Sure, we may enjoy
an occasional avocado or handful of nuts and seeds, but we are designed to thrive on the
carbohydrates in delicious fruits like the species most closely and genetically related to
Concerns Head-On is one of the more important chapters of this book. Anybodys
whose fruit eating has ever been questioned, will appreciate this chapter immensely.
There is interesting information here for the fruit lover to use on those occasions
where someone accuses fruit sugar for the cause of disease, or when someone blames fruit
eating for his or her feeling spacey or out of sorts. Dr. D
writes that, feeling spacey after eating fruit doesnt happen on a
long term low-fat diet. With amazing clarity, Doug proves how fat, not fruit, is the
cause of sugar metabolic problems. He provides a solid education in biology,
pathology, and physiology that has yet to been seen in any other raw food or commercial
health book I have read. Dr. D did some serious homework in order to combat those
who are condemning fruit.
self-help books are not known for paradox, in Chapter 8, Dr. Graham uses his wit to
illustrate the ironic fate that awaits the new raw food enthusiast. This is the most
entertaining and fascinating chapter of the book. Dr. D explains how the majority of
raw vendors, chefs, speakers, trainers, restaurateurs etc. sell fatty products because
people tend to gravitate towards high fat diets. He writes, With delight and
abandon, they eat their fill of luscious raw concoctions that are tremendously rich and
difficult to digest, certain that they have reached nutritional nirvana.
In the back of their minds, they may recall someone having mentioned that these are
transitional or celebration foods, but today they are still
celebrating their transition
and what a party it is. Dr. D sounds as
sharp and witty as the great health writer Dr. Herbert Shelton. Dr. D explains how
many people cant escape the high-fat current of our culture. He reports what
he has seen at the vendors booth next to his at the festivals he attended, whats
being served at the raw restaurants, potlucks, retreats, trainings and festivals.
Like the detective Colombo, he proves to us how raw fooders eat more fat than
their cooked counterparts. Dr. Graham gets credit for his courage here, ringing the
alarm on the unhealthy raw food market.
Chapter 8 puts the 80/10/10
challenge into perspective. Some of the biggest pitfalls of achieving health
are being dug by well-meaning raw fooders them-selves. Dr. Graham doesnt
want you to be misled, so he includes five incredible reasons why cooked or raw, too
much fat is still too much fat. Insights about cancer, diabetes, heart
disease, adrenal related diseases, and The China and Framingham Heart Studies are
Also, Doug analyzes Why Raw Fooders Eat So
Much Fat and what they are actually eating that allow them to eat 60%+fat.
Doug takes us on journey of an actual raw fooders daily fare and recalling
this lady who swore she ate a low fat diet only to find after he crunched the numbers,
that she ate almost half her calories from fat. He provides interesting comparisons
between staple raw meals and standard American ones. In Nuts and Seeds Take the
Place of Meat and Dairy, he compares the amount of fat in a nut loaf and a veg-nut loaf to
the fat in an 8oz hamburger. Both loafs easily topped the fat content of the burger.
He shows us how the
common method of replacing grains with seeds, when making raw crackers, leads to a much
fatter cracker than Nabisco, Triscuit and Ritz produce because seeds are high
in fat. The flaxseed, which contains the least fat of all the nuts and seeds, packs
58% of its calories from fat. Making crackers out of seeds may help someone to
stay raw, but Dr. Graham shows us that theres more to good nutrition than simply
staying raw. Its important to eat a low fat diet. And what do raw fooders
like to eat with their flax crackers? Dr. D answers, Why, a nice fatty nut and
veggie spread, a seed cheese, or guacamole, of course. The sarcasm continues
as Dr. D explains a sidebar called Fat in Raw vs. Traditional Pie.
He writes, The fat in a raw pie crust makes the Pillsbury Doughboy look
What I loved most about
Chapter 8 is the section on Fatty Fruitsand Lots of Them. I cant
help but refer to my own challenge of eating 80/10/10.
One afternoon in 2001,
Dr. Graham treated me to a meal of durian in Chinatown, Manhattan. I had only just
recently developed a liking for the rich Asian delicacy, and I was no sooner convinced
that I would like to live on it, maybe even visit Thailand to eat fresh ones. Durian
contains between 20-30% of its calories from fat and is one of the worlds most
unique fruits because of its smell, look and texture. It is shipped to the
U.S. frozen from Southeast Asia.
Years have passed since I
heard Dr. Graham tell me that durian isnt a food to eat often, but I havent
listened. I really enjoy this fatty/sweet treat. Ive eaten durian meals every
week since Dr. D helped introduce them to me. Dr. Graham keeps saying that durian
isnt ideal, but I keep eating durian after durian anyway. As I write this,
there are two durians in my fridge. Now, with the publishing of Dougs
attractive book and his catchy trademark 80/10/10, hes carved an indelible standard
in the area of nutrition and health. Such a mark of excellence was what drew me to
the raw food diet in the first place. It makes more sense to keep the fat under 10%
of your total calories. Time to eat less durian and more fresh low fat fruit.
Dr. D hits us from many
angles in order to teach us why we ought to eat more simple carbohydrates and less fat.
Theres something for everyone in The 80/10/10 Diet. There is
humor, easy to follow calculations, fascinating facts and sidebars, wild testimonials,
recipes, recipes, recipes, irony, and motivation. What I love the most from the book
is the philosophy of Natural Hygiene, the science of health that Dr. D so artfully
represents. T.C. Fry and Dr. Shelton, two of the greatest hygienists, would be proud
of this work. No matter if youre a veteran health enthusiast or rookie health
seeker, it will be hard to deny that The 80/10/10 Diet is an incredibly well done project
that only an extremely healthy person could succeed in completing. Im glad I
own a copy, and I plan to refer to certain chapters in order to refine my low fat diet.
This book will be read for many generations to come, and I will be surprised if
anyone, including Dr. Graham himself, can produce a more important work in the field of
health and nutrition.
Click here to link to amazon.com where you can purchase the book.