Indigenous foods are those which originally come from similar latitude and climatic regions to a given regain. Macrobiotic foods include indigenous, local, seasonal foods that have been organically or naturally grown, processed, and stored. This is the first step to qualifying macrobiotic foods appropriate to your region.
George Ohsawa, who introduced macrobiotics, included many foods and preparations from Japanese Temple cooking. The Japanese monks had a history of health, vitality, and longevity due to their adherence to a basic macrobiotic diet food list. Since then, certain foods have become associated with or known as “macrobiotic foods”.
In reality, the foods and preparations of virtually all of the world’s longest-standing civilizations would qualify as macrobiotic foods. These healthy foods and lifestyle practices have adapted and evolved according to different geographical and climatic conditions, but have certainly stood the test of time.
Although these unique, more classic foods are a part of the macrobiotic way of eating, they have now become integrated with the foods and traditions of many cultures. And, it is okay to incorporate a variety of macrobiotic foods and preparation techniques into a healthy diet.
Partial List of Foods Strongly Associated with Macrobiotic Practice
Each of the following foods has unique abilities to enhance both taste and health benefits. These macrobiotic foods can be eaten alone or can be incorporated well into many types of cuisine and styles of cooking.
- Grains, especially brown rice, millet, barley, sweet brown rice, un-yeasted sourdough bread, udon, and soba noodles.
- Traditionally prepared, non-GMO soy products including: miso, shoyu, tofu, tempeh, natto, and soy milk.
- Beans, especially Azuki Beans, lentils, chickpeas, and black soy beans.
- The full variety of temperate vegetables including daikon (fresh and dried), burdock, and lotus root, napa cabbage, watercress, onions, carrots, winter squash, dried shiitake and maitake.
- Seaweeds, especially nori, wakame, kombu, arame, and hijiki.
- Sea Salt
- Umeboshi Plum and Vinegar
- Brown Rice Vinegar
- Sesame Seeds and Tahini
- Naturally fermented Sauerkraut
- Bancha twig a.k.a. Kukicha tea
These are all foods that will help you to jump start your macrobiotic practice. If you are looking for macrobiotic foods that will help with a specific illness, we encourage you to reach out and schedule a consultation with Denny directly. Also, if you want macrobiotic recipe ideas, you can take courses at the Strengthening Health Institute, which is a non-profit macrobiotics school that Denny founded.
For more interesting articles about nutrition, macrobiotics, and living a healthy lifestyle, please visit Denny’s macrobiotic blog.