I just finished re-reading one of my favorite books on aging and had to share an ancient yet innovative way of eating a well-rounded, nutrient rich diet for life. Secrets Of Longevity: Hundreds of Ways To Live To Be 100, by Dr. Maoshing Ni, is a fun read full of amazing advice and wisdom. All of the tips outlined in the book are based on the most current research coupled with the learned secrets of a hundred centenarians (people who have lived to 100+). The Rule Of 5 is as follows:
For thousands of years Chinese medicine has observed that there are five elemental energies in our universe as well as within our bodies. These energies are represented by wood, fire, earth, metal, and water. Each of these symbols also corresponds to a color. Wood corresponds to green, fire to red, earth to yellow, and orange, metal to white, and water to black, blue, and purple.
According to the Yellow Emperor’s Classic of Medicine, health and longevity depend on a balance of all five elemental energies. It recommends a diet that includes the five elemental energies every day. For each category of food you must eat all the corresponding colors. So, for example, your daily vegetables should include something green, something red, and so on. Your daily fruit, nut, bean and grain intake should each contain all five colors as well.
Following this rule will have you easily eating your recommended daily amount of veggies, fruit and whole grains. As omnivores the more varied our diet the more nutrients we can gain. So pick up that weird looking fruit or veggie you have fearfully avoided in the grocery store and learn how to cook it.