At CSO every day for 30 years, we have seen the saddening consequences of an inadequate diet. There's little that needs to be said about poor diet - we all know that crisps, coke and hamburgers and tv dinners are not a healthy choice. Most often, this diet lacks animal protein. The person who makes this choice invariably has a sincere and honest commitment to health and to the environment as well as animal welfare. Unfortunately, after several years, their own health starts to fade.

Of course there are exceptions to every rule, but predictably, we feel soft, toneless and boggy musculature, and this very good, committed person - usually a woman, who is of course at greater risk of depletion - complains of constant fatigue, aches, inflammation and pains all over, a diminished sex drive or capability, a desperate need for extra sleep which is never refreshing, irritable bowel, exhaustingly depleting heavy periods followed eventually by scant flow, weight gain and most tellingly, anxiety and depression. Everything hurts.

Of particular relevance to us, injuries easier to sustain and are slow or fail to heal.

How to get around this? Apart from eating red meat, we don't know. There are no supplements or vegetarian foods that can replace the vast number and combination of nutrients that are in red meat.

The only options are to remain depleted, or to choose to eat red meat once or twice a week. Choose organic, grass fed meat from an animal which has been treated well and had only one bad day in its life. If the idea of flesh is anathema, consider instead using organic beef stock in your soups, pasta or risotto. If you are really sick, perhaps with the flu or any other illness, or have sustained a bad injury, cut to the chase and have plenty of vietnamese beef pho soup. At less than $10 you will get far more benefit from that one bowl than you will from hundreds of dollars of supplements. As the Dalai Lama said in Sydney - you eat meat when you are sick.

None of us at CSO own a butchery or a pho kitchen. We do not sell supplements, although we do recommend some. Zinc, Magnesium, cod liver oil and CoQ10, mainly. Our only benefit from this advice is to see a vast and extraordinary improvement in your own well being.

Your diet is key to your health, well being and resiliance. A complete diet is one with sufficient first grade protein (red meat), fish, butter and olive oil (and not margarine, canola or trans-fats), a minimum of processed foods, only a little sugar and refined grains, loads of vegetables and some fruit, and plenty to drink. Of course you can waver every now and again - you are only human!

Essentially if it would rot if you leave it out, its food you can include in your diet. A tub of margarine and MacDonalds hamburger do not rot, because even bacteria cannot eat them.