I got to thinking about the Biblical character, Daniel, and wondering about why he and his 3 buddies chose not to eat the King's food.
I found a pretty good short essay on the passage: readingacts.com/2020/01/23/daniel-18-16-what-was-wrong-with-the-kings-food/?unapproved=89263&moderation-hash=4dd1bce81ea9d05dc07c1b6d47a9e9e0#comment-89263
The main verse is Daniel 1:8: "But Daniel resolved not to defile himself with the king’s delicacies or with the wine he was drinking, so he entreated the chief official for permission not to defile himself."
The keyword in verse 8 is "delicacies". The root word is "bə·p̄aṯ·baḡ", which KJV translates as "meat".
In verse 12 he asks the official, "“Please test your servants for ten days, giving us just vegetables ("haz·zê·rō·‘îm") to eat and water to drink." The word there could be translated as pulse (legumes) or seeds. So seed-bearing foods, ie vegetables, fruits, grains and lentils?
Ancient Babylon was known to eat many various kinds of meats and stews, some of which would be forbidden in Jewish customs. Not knowing what was in the stew, he opted out to avoid unclean foods.
"Ancient Babylonian cuisine was rich and varied, including meat from cows, sheep, goats, pig, deer and fowl, as well as eggs, fish, shellfish and even turtles. Stews were common, with Akkadian records providing 21 different meat stew recipes and four different vegetable stew recipes." (What Kind of Food Did the Ancient Babylonians Eat?)
They also ate a variety of vegetables, grains, pulses, and fruits. These were likely all included in Daniel's diet, which were a lot of tasty foods and he and his buddies could make their own stews. It says they stuck with this diet for his 3 years while being trained in Babylonian customs. It doesn't say whether he ate other forms of meat somehow, because many kinds of meat and fish are definitely allowed in Jewish diet. So we don't know, but it sounds like maybe they didn't. Legumes would provide protein. Insects in the grains and legumes would help provide fat soluble vitamins as long as you didn't rinse them off.
Another aspect to the story is Daniel is a humble guy with faith in YHWH and probably didn't feel right eating rich-man food or drinking his wine, which was probably associated with their idolatrous sexual acts. He identified more with peasantry class and ate like a commoner. “Don’t incline my heart to any evil thing, to practice deeds of wickedness with men who work iniquity. Don’t let me eat of their delicacies.” Psalms 141:4
It turns out, the "peasant food" is actually much healthier. This is like the recipes in Nourishing Traditions.
I like the idea of getting back to cooking our own food and getting away from sugary junk food, fast food and processed foods with preservatives and processed vegetable oils. People are eating the King's delicacies but not getting the raw nutrients they need to stay healthy.
The book of Revelations in the Bible also admonishes God's people to "come out of Babylon so that you do not partake in her sins and in her plagues." We are experiencing plagues of every kind besides a corona virus pandemic, a cancer pandemic, diabetes pandemic, heart disease pandemic, obesity pandemic and on and on. It's all connected.
Following Weston A. Price