Sunday, September 19, 2010

What Could a Molecular Biologist and an Astrophysicist Possibly Tell Us About Nutrition and Health?


Great cooga-mooga, what an impressively well-researched and -written website and blog this husband and wife team of scientists has put together.

Having "successfully healed our own “middle-age” and chronic health problems through diet, and have learned much that we would like to share", this excerpt from their "About us" page serves as a good introduction:

"We believe that:
  • Disease, premature aging, and impaired health have 3 primary causes: food toxicity, malnutrition, and chronic infections by bacteria, viruses, fungi, and protozoa.
  • These 3 causes go together.  People who eat toxic, nutrient-poor diets are more likely to contract chronic infections and do not easily recover from them.
  • Yet the body has amazing powers of recovery.  On a healthy diet, the immune system can tackle and defeat most infections, especially with the aid of antimicrobial drugs.
  • A diet like the Perfect Health Diet should be the first treatment option in most diseases and an adjunct to therapy in all."

I'm avidly reading, of course, to catch up on all that has already been posted in various categories, and I've found several very interesting passages of information that I either did not know, had not thought about, or had not looked at perceptively enough.

A great post at which to begin exploring is "The Philosophy of this Blog, With a Parable". It is definitely an eye-opener on several levels in terms of illustrating what is fundamentally wrong with black box medicine and what to do differently for treatment of health issues.

I hope you enjoy and benefit from it as much as I am.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

You're Gonna Love This Book

One of the sources that has made a big difference in my life over the past year or so has been Robb Wolf's blog, and the audios he posts on it. I've been following the progress of Robb's labors in bringing his new book to publication for a few months now.  Each Tuesday, Robb and his buddy Andy Deas post an audio on the website in which Robb answers questions about how living in congruence with our pre-agriculture ancestors can... well, the caption at the top of the cover says it best, doesn't it. Andy's apparently self-appointed mission has been to good naturedly prod, push, cajole, and otherwise encourage Robb to get the book done before he begins reading the questions. They make a great audio team.

I had been listening to Robb's audios for many weeks before it occurred to me that he had ever been anything but fit and healthy. In fact, at first he sounded to me kind of like a surfer dude who knew a lot about how stuff works at the cellular level. I had to listen to a few weekly episodes before I caught on that he had been a research biochemist. I hesitate to think what he would think about me, with my Southern accent, but he's probably not as critical as I seem to be.

On another broadcast it was mentioned in passing that his health had at one time been a wreck as a result of eating what most of us have been erroneously led view as a "healthy" vegetarian diet. This week I heard him say that he had even developed ulcerative colitis, and had begun to grapple with the idea that he probably wasn't going to live to a ripe old age. I thought I could hear in his voice how genuinely appreciative he is that  what he has learned, and details in the book, has saved his life. Literally.

I haven't read the book yet, since it was just released this week, but Jimmy Moore has done his usual thorough job of reviewing it, so be sure to check that out.

What, you may ask, is Robb's motivation? He states in the book, that "“I’m trying to save your life.”

And, after listening to him for months now, I believe him. I can't wait to get that book.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Grain Fed

Haven't posted lately because of busy-ness, and distraction in the form of a couple of books by a writer who was new to me, namely Don Winslow. I'm not sure how to categorize his writing, but The Power of the Dog is excellent. Highly recommended.

I continue to run across studies and analysis that reinforce why it is important to eliminate or drastically reduce the intake of gluten grains, particularly wheat.  Now I've seen one that, even if gluten grains were innocuous, makes one wonder what the nutritional point of eating grains is anyway.

In "Evidence of decreasing mineral density in wheat grain over the last 160 years", Fan et al examined whether lower dietary micro nutrient density was the result of soils becoming poorer. I've heard as much many times, and it does seem kind of intuitive that extracting the same minerals from soil by continually farming it with the same kinds of crops would result in less of those minerals in the foods that result. To find out the answer, the researchers analyzed soil and wheat samples that had been archived since 1845. Their findings are quite surprising, at least to me.

The concentrations of iron, copper, and magnesium remained stable between 1845 and the mid 1960s. But since then those levels have declined significantly, while the soil levels have remained the same or risen. Why the drop in the wheat levels? Well gosh, that's when new high-yielding semi-dwarf varieties were introduced and becoming ubiquitous. Agra-business, don'tcha know.  So, we now get higher yields, which improves the bottom line, but at the expense of dehanced nutrition - I know, but 'dehanced' was what came to mind.

So, we're left with a bigger problem: even if our pre-agriculture ancestors had been adapted to eating gluten grains, the genetic makeup of what they would be eating was very different than what is in all those boxes and cellophane packages in the vast center of the supermarket. If grains are relatively new in terms of human adaptation, how well adapted could humans be to the stuff that is so different and really new? Like, forty or fifty years ago.

Now I'm really glad wheat's genetic code has been "cracked". Can't wait for all the enhancements that will be coming online once the folks in lab coats really get to work. We may get new, improved, "heart-healthy" stuff every few weeks. If our bodies could tell us what they think about all this new stuff, I wonder what they would say?

Oh, wait. Maybe they are telling us by way of all the DOCs that beset us. Diseases Of Civilization.