I have already detailed our defence systems and foods in my previous posts, which help boost those systems in detail. Today, I will discuss Li’s framework with his patients to help them prevent and fight diseases. He explained everything in his book “Eat to Beat Disease”.
This framework is a nutritional plan named the 5*5*5 framework. It’s a program that guides us to make good food choices, not a weight loss diet plan. Most diet plans establish restricting or eliminating food choices due to which we feel deprived and not able to continue them for a more extended period or make it a habit. But the 5*5*5 framework is based on our personal preferences, says Li. It means it gives us the liberty of eating whatever we want. The only condition is that it should benefit at least one defence system. It is the main reason it’s easier to include it in our daily routine. Even if someone is following any diet plan, it is adaptable for that person too, be it Paleo, Low carb, Plant-based, Gluten-free or Ketogenic.
“The 5*5*5 framework doesn’t exclude anyone because it is a larger concept into which you can easily integrate other protocols. Anyone can do it.”, says Li.
We need to understand what the 5*5*5 framework is and what does 5*5*5 stand for.
The first five of 5*5*5 represents five defence systems of our body. While the second five means five foods we should eat daily to support each of our defence systems, and the last five represents the five times when we consume food in a day, I.e. breakfast, brunch, lunch, supper and dinner. In short, we should include one defence boosting food for each defence system in our daily diet and divide five foods related to each defence system in our five meals. Like, allocate your angiogenesis food to breakfast, regeneration food to brunch and likewise. This way, our overall body ability to resist disease will increase.
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There are a few things that we should always keep in mind while using this framework;
- We might not always make healthy food choices. Sometimes our body may influence to opt for not so healthy options. But our healthy food choices in our meals will balance the effect of our not so healthy ones.
- Choose the healthy foods which you enjoy. It will help you conform to the framework forever, and you won’t feel dissatisfied and get tired or bored this way.
- Always keep your diet plan diversified, which means being adaptable and sticking to the framework rules, no matter where you are. This way, if you don’t find one food item you usually take for your defence system, you will be able to switch to the other option without compromising your diet routine or rules.
Steps to follow the 5*5*5 framework
As the 5*5*5 framework is supple, personalised, pragmatic and uplifting for developing good eating habits, it’s easier to stick to this framework. If we follow Li’s steps, we can quickly implement them.
- Personalisedpreferred food list
We must prepare a healthy defensive foods and drinks list that we like and enjoy first. Make a list of beneficial foods for each defence system separately. Try to explore some new healthy defensive foods also. There might be some foods you have never tried; try them and see if you like them or not. In case of liking, you’ll get a few more options on your list, and you might like them so much that they may become your new favourites. This way, you will have diversified possibilities, and you won’t get bored.
- Always carry a list with you.
After completing the first step, take a photo of your prepared list on your mobile. This way, it will always be handy whenever you need it, like grocery shopping or ordering a meal outside or while travelling.
- Choose five each day.
Every day choose five foods from your list, one for each defence system. What you eat other than that is entirely your choice. It’s good if they are also healthy choices; you know, the more, the merrier, but it’s okay if it’s not still. Some foods support more than one system; if this is the case, still you have to choose five foods for each defence system means no matter how many systems one food is supporting, you have to stick to the rule, I.e. to keep all five defence systems with five different foods. You can add more than five healthy defensive foods to your daily diet. If not, you can keep it to five but not less than five.
- Eat the food from your list whenever you want
It’s unnecessary to divide five foods into five meals – one food for each bite. If you want, you can eat all five healthy defensive foods in one meal and the rest of the day; you eat whatever you want.
- Incorporate the 5*5*5 framework into your diet
The 5*5*5 framework outline is to be adaptable in any diet. So if you follow a particular diet, you can still easily include these health defensive foods of your choice in your diet plan.
Lastly, I would like to add a note from my side for all. “Never start clean eating or workout to lose weight, do it for your fitness and health and don’t deprive yourself of anything. This way, you will be able to build up a healthy routine for yourself and stay motivated, and ultimately, as a result, you will lose extra pounds also. But Losing weight shouldn’t be your priority; instead, staying healthy should.”