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Author Topic: Why Weston talks a lot of sense and why it is good for our Sexual Health.  (Read 47700 times)

MrChickenkiev

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I didn't particularly want to write this post, but since I think Weston talks a lot of sense, and flies in the face of what constitutes received wisdom about what constitutes a healthy diet, I think it is necessary. There is no Weston diet as such, there is not a menu, it just talks about what our bodies were designed to eat, and why those foods are healthy. Much of the basic building blocks can be scientifically proved to be correct, and the more I read the more I realise he will be proved right by further modern scientific investigation. And because the site talks about health, that means male health and sexual health too.

The tagline on the Weston A Price website is "Wise Traditions in Food, Farming and the Healing Arts". Basically a dentist Weston A Price at the beginning of the 20th Century visited a number of Pacific South Sea Islands and discovered that those islanders who had not been exposed to western diets, were much healthier than their counterparts who had been. This manifested itself in healthier teeth, wider faces, and resistance to disease, absence of things like cancer and heart disease. So Weston set about finding out what was the distinguishing features of these healthier islanders. In retrospect this was an unrivalled window of opportunity because, it would not be long before western culture totally invaded all the islands and one island therefore became indistinguishable from the others, and their health rates deteriorated. In his island hopping activities, he was a bit similar to Charles Darwin who basically formulated his theory of evolution from a comparison of Galapagos island finches, and we know how iconoclastic that idea has been :)

As I said Weston essentially put down the difference between the two sets of healthy and unhealthy island peoples to diet. What he discovered was that:

 "Well-muscled hunter-gatherers in Canada, the Everglades, the Amazon, Australia and Africa consumed game animals, particularly the parts that civilized folk tend to avoid--organ meats, glands, blood, marrow and particularly the adrenal glands--and a variety of grains, tubers, vegetables and fruits that were available. African cattle-keeping tribes like the Masai consumed no plant foods at all--just meat, blood and milk"

(PS, we've seen those pictures of the Amazonian hunters. yes we know they get more exercise, but they have the kind of bodies we would die for, and many of them are fathering children in their eighties- so they must be eating right too- right?)

and

"South Seas islanders and the Maori of New Zealand ate seafood of every sort--fish, shark, octopus, shellfish, sea worms--along with pork meat and fat, and a variety of plant foods including coconut, manioc and fruit. Whenever these isolated peoples could obtain sea foods they did so--even Indian tribes living high in the Andes. These groups put a high value on fish roe which was available in dried form in the most remote Andean villages. Insects were another common food, in all regions except the Arctic. The foods that allow people of every race and every climate to be healthy are whole natural foods--meat with its fat, organ meats, whole milk products, fish, insects, whole grains, tubers, vegetables and fruit--not newfangled concoctions made with white sugar, refined flour and rancid and chemically altered vegetable oils."

http://www.westonaprice.org/traditional-diets/ancient-dietary-wisdom


Now you and I with our modern diets could not be farther from our ancestors in what we eat. I for one will not be picking up locusts tomorrow and having tried organ meats such as liver, and unpasteurised raw cheese, I found them relatively unpalatable. But then that is because we are too accustomed to sugar, salt and highly processed foods. The most obvious thing though about Weston is that it is common sense. Ancient cultures living in relative harmony with their surroundings for millennia each discovered what were the best foods to give them the biggest health benefits. Bear in mind that they would not have survived in the absence of modern healthcare to propagate the species without careful analysis of what foods worked. In fact most cultures actually had a whole trial and error system for evaluating those foods, mainly based on giving them to healthy young adults first, before accepting them into their lifestyles.

But Weston makes some extraordinary statements that you can read for yourself on the website, many of which are contrary to our popular understanding of health maintenance through nutrition.

1. Organ meats contain more vitamins than vegetables.
2. Fats, including LARD are good for you!
3. Fat doesn't make you fat.
4. Cholesterol is not the enemy, particularly from animal products.
5. Red meat does not cause inflammation.
6. Fat and meat do not cause heart disease.

Of course what I am saying here is tantamount to heresy. Everyone knows that fat is bad for you, or if you want to split hairs that there are good and bad fats. But again bear in mind that if what I am saying is false then how come Masai peoples can live off nothing but their own cattle? Eskimos living in the Arctic circle survive on a diet of reindeer meat, reindeer milk, bone marrow and fish? And those peoples are healthier than we are- or at least continue to be so if they eschew western influences on their diet. Yes they do eat veg when they can get it- they're not stupid- but it is in short supply.

And I know these guys exercise more, but they also eat more calories. Isn't there a happy medium of eating nutrient dense foods that fit our lifestyles and avoiding nutrition-less foods and empty calories from sugary snacks? In this regard less is more, eating nutrition dense foods, means we need to eat less, because we feel fuller and at least if we are not exercising, we are also not eating foods that make us fatter faster- like sugar; more of this later.....

If there is one take away message from Weston it is that these primitive societies and modern indigenous cultures go out of their way to secure foods that are rich in Vitamin's A and D. It just so happens that we get quite a proportion of vitamin D from sunlight, triggering it's production in our skin. Vitamin D cannot therefore be absorbed sufficiently in higher latitudes in the Arctic circle where there is no sunlight for 6 months of the year. If it were not for the fact that Eskimos could get it from fish livers, those cultures would not be able to even exist. And it happens to be the case that the best source of these vitamins are stored in animal livers, just as we also store vitamin A in our livers. Vitamin A can be taken from vegetable sources but only in barely adequate doses. Weston effectively says that there are virtually no upper limits on the amount of vitamin A that we can ingest, which is also fiercely contested by the medical profession. An example used in the site is that of sailors eating whale blubber which contains 1,000 of times the government RDA. In fact modern doctors deliberately tell pregnant women to reduce their intake when primitive peoples deliberately set aside vitamin A foods for expectant mothers.

http://www.westonaprice.org/fat-soluble-activators/vitamin-a-saga

But this also has relevance to our sexual health because we can get the following from animal products- cholesterol, zinc, vitamin A and vitamin D, all of which we need to produce testosterone. So if we are not getting enough of these nutrients we won't perform. Not to mention that animal products provide us with a full range of amino acids- eggs are in fact the gold index for measuring comparative foods amino acid profile. And since Arginine which is the precursor of nitric oxide, is an amino acid, the best sources are animal products.

http://www.westonaprice.org/mens-health/vitamin-a-forgotten-bodybuilding-nutrient

Zinc: http://www.westonaprice.org/mens-health/man-in-the-iron-mask

Vitamin D: http://www.westonaprice.org/caustic-commentary/caustic-commentary-summer-2005

Cholesterol and Testosterone: http://www.westonaprice.org/know-your-fats/cholesterol-friend-or-foe

I think this passage is particularly important:

"Without cholesterol we would not be able to have children because every sex hormone in our bodies is made from cholesterol. A fair percentage of our infertility epidemic can be laid at the doorstep of the diet-heart hypothesis. The more eager we became to fight animal fats and cholesterol, the more problems with normal sexual development, fertility and reproduction we started to face. About a third of western men and women are infertile, and increasing numbers of our youngsters are growing up with abnormalities in their sex hormones".



Now I am not a cheerleader for Weston per se- because I found the main foods barely palatable, but I do take a daily cod liver oil capsule, and I'm now reducing my refined sugar intake. It makes sense because the diets are tested historically and across cultures. And some of Weston's findings are now becoming mainstream. It is only 10 years ago that my doctor told me that cod liver oil is only good for aching joints, but now there is solid evidence that cod liver oil contain essential fatty acids, Omega acids, that we can't do without. http://www.westonaprice.org/cod-liver-oil/cod-liver-oil-basics

Much of our brains are made up of phospholids which are made up from these essential fatty acids, which is why cod liver oil is great for children with developing brains and can help them perform better at school.

Now there are specific criticisms of the Weston diet built around misunderstandings about what causes heart disease. Some would even say that Weston is all very well for those people who are still out hunter gathering, but not for modern sedentary males.

Well first off, things like Beef don't cause heart disease

http://www.westonaprice.org/food-features/its-the-beef

The point is that fat from beef doesn't make up arterial plaques, and death rates do not go up for people on fatty diets. All from the article above, but Weston explains these subjects in greater detail elsewhere- particularly the lipid hypothesis. The lipid hypothesis is what all of western medical science with regard to heart disease is based on, and it is a bust. It isn't actually true. It turns out all this comes out of the fact that cholesterol levels are being rammed down our throats because modern medical science has discovered how to measure them, and therefore they must be measured. That the actual scientific theory all boils down to one study is hardly enough evidence to build a whole panic around.

http://www.westonaprice.org/traditional-diets/mediterranean-diet

http://www.westonaprice.org/search/search?q=lipid+hypothesis+heart&w1=before&d1=&w2=before&d2=

http://www.westonaprice.org/cardiovascular-disease/what-causes-heart-disease

That is not to say that fat people are not at risk of a variety of diseases, being obese is terrible for your health-it is just that fat doesn't make you fat, refined sugars and carbohydrates do. And that evidence is everywhere not just on Weston.

http://www.google.co.uk/#sclient=psy-ab&fhp=1&hl=en&safe=off&fhp=1&biw=1193&bih=626&source=hp&q=fat%20doesn't%20make%20you%20fat&pbx=1&oq=&aq=&aqi=&aql=&gs_sm=&gs_upl=&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.,cf.osb&fp=dadf24f08248c534&pf=p

Basically we can't metabolize fat quickly enough to lay it down as fat in our bodies- sugar however is the opposite. Sugar is almost pure fuel for energy and too much of it and our bodies have to shuttle it away into fat storage, unless we are being really active- mostly around our guts.

As for fats causing inflammation. If you Google this you will get a mixed message, because plenty of people still  believe that this is the case. But again even this is a misconception. What inflammation is caused is generally protective:

http://www.westonaprice.org/food-features/its-the-beef

" This hypothesis is predicated on the fact that meat contains arachidonic acid, a fatty acid from which the supposedly pro-inflammatory Series Two prostaglandins—local tissue hormones—are formed. This is one of the nuttiest notions to take hold in the scientific community for a long time. It was promulgated by Barry Sears, author of The Zone, and taken up with a vengeance by the anti-meat forces. These people know nothing about prostaglandins. Some of the prostaglandins that the body makes from arachidonic acid do indeed promote inflammation—which is a very important protective response when you have injured yourself. But the same arachidonic acid also forms the basis of anti-inflammatory prostaglandins that the body uses, when appropriate, to reduce inflammation.19 And besides, the amount of arachidonic acid in beef is very low—less than half a percent of total fat content. It is much lower than the amount of omega-3 fatty acids, the current darlings of the nutritional community, yet none of the voices promoting omega-3 fatty acids ever tell us that we can get them from beef."

I don't buy that being sedentary makes any difference. If you are fat, you've been overindulging in the wrong foods and not getting enough exercise. So the remedy is to eat right and exercise. Fats from animal products won't kill you before sugar does. Yes hydrogenated fats are bad for you,  in fact they are some of the worst things you can put in your body- but they are artificial creations not found in nature.

I challenge anyone to read all the articles that Weston has amassed on this page, and still tell me that Weston is wrong! :)

http://www.westonaprice.org/know-your-fats

You'll notice a link too, on MSG, which is the other food additive I now avoid like the plague.

Now of course why am I still suffering from ED if I have adopted these dietary hints? Well of course, I haven't and I won't. I'm still fat around the middle and I don't exercise. I only stopped taking refined sugar in the last month, and my only real addition is cod liver oil. I don't like the taste of cow's liver. But I am trying to eat better and less crap- so we shall see.

 







PeakT

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Quick questions for you:

What do you think does cause heart disease then?  In other words, what is the true root cause of cardiovascular issues?

1.  Inflammation?
2.  Too many carbs?
3.  High glycemic carbs?
4.  Something else?
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Jonathan

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Am very interested in this post, and look forward to discussion.

MrChickenkiev

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Glad you like it Jonathan, I think it is going to get nasty :) We accept so much information second hand and we rarely are in receipt of the original source information so we have to take things on trust. I am taking Weston on trust to a degree, but they do seem to know what they are talking about- they seem to rebut the arguments with scientific papers.

As for Peak T's question, surely he needs to respond to the arguments that Weston make, and whether they disprove the statement he makes on the following page http://www.peaktestosterone.com/Weston_Price_Diet

"These men need to clean out their arteries and the only way we know how to do that right now is through an Ornish/Low Fat Diet"

But aren't fats what keep the arteries in shape?

"I just can't in good conscience tell someone like this that they can eat saturated fat and be okay and I think Weston Price and other similar organizations are making a big mistake by giving this advice without caveats."

I don't think he actually refers to any of the statements Weston makes and rebuts them.

As far as I am concerned the links I have provided knock each of the points he makes in turn- fat from the diet does not make up arterial plaques, cholesterol is a marker for- but not a cause of heart disease, and fats don't inflame the arteries. Asking me to name the real culprit is like saying to the accused in a court case, "We have found you innocent, but since we couldn't find anyone else to prosecute, we sentence you to death anyway"- or least I suspect that was the import.

I am not suggesting go away and eat meat and nothing but meat and animal products. I don't think Weston is either. Veg contains so many phytonutrients, lycopene, lutein cyancobalamin, anthocynanins and so on, that you must eat your veggies. I repeat you must eat your veggies. And bear in mind I am no professed scientist or hold myself up as any expert- I am just giving links that make the case for me.

As for what causes heart disease? Well I believe I am correct in saying it is a 20th Century and beyond phenomenon, so take your pick - something we eat unique to the 20th century?

Weston actually does give a list of alternative culprits http://www.westonaprice.org/cardiovascular-disease/what-causes-heart-disease

"Other Theories Proposed to Explain the CHD Epidemic

Price
Deficiency of fat soluble vitamins
Yudkin   Refined carbohydrates
Kummerow   Trans fatty acids from hydrogenated fats
Hodgson   Excess omega-6 from refined vegetable oils
Addis   Oxidized cholesterol and oxidized fats
Shute   Vitamin E deficiency
Pauling
Vitamin C deficiency
McCully
Deficiency of folic acid, B6 and B12
Annand
Heated milk protein
Webb
Protein deficiency
Anderson
Magnesium deficiency
Huttunen
Selenium deficiency
Ellis
Microbial agents (viruses, bacteria)
Benditt
Monoclonal tumor theory
de Bruin
Thyroid deficiency
LaCroix
Coffee consumption
Morris
Lack of exercise
Stern   Exposure to carbon monoxide
Smith   Changes & fashions in reporting cause of death

I simply don't know the answer, but isn't it linked to obesity? Smoking is linked? Stress and hypertension? I suspect it is something relatively simple because it is so common- a bit like our old enemy ED. You'll notice though that a lot of the candidates for heart disease are in fact the kind of things that Weston criticizes - Hydrogenated fats, refined carbohydrates, excess omega 6 from vegetable oils etc etc- and these are proposed by other scientists. Anyway there are alternative schools of thought to the lipid hypothesis, but it still seems to be the whole focus of the medical profession. You can see why I am dubious about a lot of their work.

At least read the links before you persecute me :)

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PeakT

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Actually, I agree with much of what you wrote and give coverage on my site to some of the supercultures that do eat saturated fat very successfully.

And, by the way, this is a very involved (and sometimes emotional) subject and so I'll do my best not to get religious. 

But I asked the million dollar question above for a reason.  You mentioned a number of thing(s) that might be the true root of heart disease. 

So, for the sake of discussion, let's go to just one:  inflammation.  Let's say that if you strongly limit inflammation, you can still eat saturated fat and have healthy arteries.  And, by the way, I think this is very likely the case.

Now let's get practical:  how are you going to limit inflammation?  You can try to eat a bunch of beef and avoid chicken and turkey and wild salmon and exercise like crazy and so on.  Or maybe you can find a supplement or two that will do the trick.  But the fact is that in my opinion that's pretty tricky.

The contrast is this:  you can eat a low fat diet and - voila! - you're instantly protected.  Or as a compromise position, you can eat a Mediterranean Diet, which is low in meat.

To me it's a matter of safety and practicality. 

Yes, theoretically, one can eat a bunch of meat and be okay.  But what if - and most guys will - start to cheat a little.  Then pretty soon you get into the nasty territory that I document starts occurring with the Atkins and Low Fat Diets.  In other words, it's very, very easy to hurt yourself with a meat-based diet and we have a poor understanding of how to make it work.

And that leads to my question:  "Why risk it?"

That's my two cents...
« Last Edit: January 26, 2012, 11:05:17 pm by PeakT »
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MrChickenkiev

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Please read the links!!!!!! Meat actually has anti inflammatory properties.

MrChickenkiev

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btw we won't fall out over this- may the most logical argument win :)

I don't mention inflammation as a cause in the alternatives, which are only parroted from Weston anyway. In the most part Weston would provide the nutrients that the competing theories of heart disease would claim are missing. But of course that doesn't mean they have even hit upon the correct theory. Just because I include them doesn't mean I agree or even understand them :)

You haven't understood that meat isn't inflammatory it is anti inflammatory! The exact opposite of what it's critics say it is. Why would you eat a low fat diet- fat from food isn't the problem? Neither in terms of cholesterol or inflammation. Read the links about the role of meat and prostaglandins!!!! At best low fat will not inflame, but it won't be anti inflammatory. In other words it won't have a healing effect against what is causing the inflammation, whereas meat can.

Like the previous links suggested meat and animal products are a much more accessible source of vitamins, amino acids, cholesterol for sex hormones and anti inflammatory prostaglandins. Low fat is actually dangerous, it just happens to be the prevailing junk diet of our times. Among vegetables only mushrooms contain vitamin D for example and if you read the vitamin A link you will see that veg with vitamin A is poorly absorbed in the gut. We need animal products, and should't worry about the consequences. Really! So why no caveats? Well because we have always eaten these products, and they are good for you. Basically if you starve yourself of animal products you most probably also starve yourself of vitamin A, D, amino acids and cholesterol, if you do this in part or across the spectrum you will have adverse health consequences. Yes there are amino acids in some veg etc, but eggs have all the aminos in one shell.

I don't think you are reading the links. You are just repeating what you have already decided are the facts. I'm pretty sure PeakT you haven't made the conceptual leap in your head, that much of what we understand to be the prevailing facts about heart disease are bogus. It came to me as a revelation too. We all have to break the mould at some point, and move on, in the interests of everyone's understanding.

This might sound a bit simplistic and patronising, but I think it is something most of us don't really think about. Bear in mind, that when you eat an animal you are scavenging the basic building blocks of their bodies, which you then reassemble into your own corporeal being! Protein gets broken down into amino acids which you appropriate into protein in your own body. As your physical membranes are also fat- by and large- particularly your brain, you take the animal fats into your own membranes. Therefore you make use of the animal to strengthen your muscles, arteries and nerve fibres. Sure animals convert plant products into their own bodies to create those tissues in the first place but they often have special stomachs and physical properties that allow them to do that. And they often have to spend all day eating to amass those protein and fat stores. Yes, we are omnivores and should continue to have varied diets, but the truth is you would struggle to put fats and proteins to replenish your body with veg or typical low fat diets. Protein is also often more filling from animals and therefore you eat less- which is good.

PeakT

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Meat anti-inflammatory??  Okay, that's a stretch imo.  But let's go with that.  I think you are still missing my point:

The Mediterranean and Ornish Diets have a very solid clinical and research track record.  All that one has for meat-based diets is a few supercultures and a lot of theory. 

That's really my only point here:  if you keep eating meat, there's nothing clinically to base it on.   You're going to have to try to experiment on your own and figure out how to make it work because no one has been able to do it right.

And  if you go too high on the fats, you're going to induce insulin resistance.  If you go too high on the saturated fat, you're going to slow down blood flow.  And if you do anything wrong, you're going to potentially hurt yourself per all the research here:

http://www.peaktestosterone.com/Atkins_Low_Carb_Diet

Look - if you can make it work, that's great.  Tell us how you did it.  I had one man write in and he was doing a modified Paleo Diet and he said he never felt better. 
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PeakT

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I forgot to address one other point you made - that I didn't read the Weston Price link.  My reluctance to read Weston Price links is simply that I have read a lot of their stuff in the past and it's all fairly similar.

Their articles are also very long usually and so that's why I shy away from reading them.  I already know fairly well what they are going to say.  It would be preferable if you'd just send me a few studies with your main points.  Don't get my wrong:  the articles are usually well-written and they have many valid points.

But my summary of their articles is this:

1) We don't know for sure what causes heart disease.
2) Meat and saturated fat are probably not the problem.

But here is what they don't write:

3) We know that eating meat in a typical Western Diet will kill you.
4) We don't know how to make eating meat work on a practical level for the average male in his 40's and beyond with endothelial dysfunction.

Weston Price as an organization makes good money I am sure.  So why not take some of that money and put it in a few studies to prove their point?  If someone can come up with a way to make a meat-based diet practical for all of us, then let us all know.

In the meantime, though, you've got the mostly plant-based Mediterranean and Low Fat with stellar research results, both of which have been show to work on a practical level for the average male in his 40's and beyond.

 
« Last Edit: January 27, 2012, 03:53:55 pm by PeakT »
THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE BOOK ON TRT/TESTOSTERONE:
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And check out my New Peak Testosterone Program: http://www.peaktestosterone.com/peak_testosterone_program
If you are on medications or have a medical condition, always check with your doctor first before making any lifestyle changes or taking new supplements.  And low testosterone is a medical condition.

MrChickenkiev

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Let's not skip too far forward before we have dealt with the specifics. I'll come back with a response to your reference to the Ornish and Mediterranean diets, and your general points. It was your post that brought up lack of inflammation as something that would be advantageous from a low fat diet. You then just pooh pooh, the point about meat being anti inflammatory, you say:

"Meat anti-inflammatory??  Okay, that's a stretch imo."

well the science part would appear to be the following that red meat contains arachidonic acid and that

"arachidonic acid also forms the basis of anti-inflammatory prostaglandins that the body uses, when appropriate, to reduce inflammation"

It doesn't suggest that it contains much arachidonic acid but clearly some. Are they correct in their analysis, meat is anti inflammatory?

You already know my position on the Mediterranean diet. The true Mediterranean diet is full of cheese and meat dishes and yes it is healthy. The bastardized version which is held up as being Mediterranean is not what the healthy peasants eat.

You suggest that there is an economic component to the Weston Price org. You don't go as far as suggesting they are in it for the money, charitable status and all that, but the import is there. Ironically if that is the yardstick you assess the veracity of an author's claims then Dr. Dean Ornish is surely tarred by a blacker brush.

http://www.westonaprice.org/caustic-commentary/caustic-commentary-fall-2005

"For nearly 30 years, Dr. Dean Ornish has made a living by advocating a very lowfat diet as a way to reverse chronic illness, particularly heart disease. Now it emerges that Ornish is a paid consultant for McDonald’s. His responsibilities include meeting top executives, giving talks to employees and providing copy about diet and breast cancer for McDonald’s patrons on Mother’s Day. Hypocrisy? Maybe not. A McDonald’s meal is surprisingly high in soy and low in saturated fat, the kind he demonizes. That’s because there’s soy protein in the burger and bun plus plenty of partially hydrogenated soy oil in the fries. Ornish is also a paid "consultant"--or should we say "executive conscience assuager"--of PepsiCo and ConAgra Foods."

OK, re reading what you say,you suggest Weston should invest in a few studies to prove their point. Their work is littered, absolutely littered with studies- the fact that they haven't sponsored them makes them more likely to be unbiased. Picking one at random http://www.westonaprice.org/vegetarianism-and-plant-foods/science-of-vegetarianism, quotes 7 studies and the author who is writing that page- Mary Enig has a PHD in Nutrition.


You can read what Weston has to say about Ornish, though you can also type in Ornish diet or Mediterranean diet into Weston's search engine.

http://www.westonaprice.org/cardiovascular-disease/dr-ornish-and-the-lifestyle-heart-trial

Personally I don't think Weston do a good job of dismantling Ornish's arguments, apart from the following. Apparently Ornish uses the highlanders of Papua New Guinea as an example of a culture that thrives on plant based foods, without incidence of heart disease, but as Weston points out- fails to
"mention the cannibalism or the swollen bellies of children that accompanies the protein-starved diet of the New Guinea Highlanders.35"
That was referenced form Jared Diamond's book Guns, Germs and Steel- a great book by an ethnobiologist, if you can get your hands on it.

http://www.westonaprice.org/thumbs-down-reviews/china-study


But PeakT this point you make dishonours the vast amount of admirable research you have done on your site:

"All that one has for meat-based diets is a few supercultures and a lot of theory"

Only a few supercultures!! By this you mean that first of all there is evidence, and secondly that more than one civilisation has flourished on meat based diets! A superculture strikes me as a lot of people over a long period of time- which is pretty persuasive? It strikes me too that Ornish's research is flawed; according to Weston:

http://www.westonaprice.org/cardiovascular-disease/dr-ornish-and-the-lifestyle-heart-trial

"only 22 patients in the experimental group and nineteen in the control group were available for analysis". and the trial was not blind. Hardly a significant percentage of the population. Perhaps to coin your own phrase he could use all that money he is getting from PepsiCo and McDonalds to fund some research:) And that's not a sarcastic smiley face either.

In conclusion Weston states:

"But let us assume that the improvement of the treated individuals was true and a result of the intervention—and this may well be possible—which of the intervention measures had a beneficial effect? Was it a weight reduction of more than 25 pounds? Was it a difference in smoking habits? (One in the experimental group smoked and stopped; nothing was mentioned about the number of smokers in the control group.) Was it the exercise? Was it the inner sense of peace and well-being produced by the stress-management education? Or was it a combination of these factors?"

But back to the real point, Ornish appears to be a vegetarian diet and

"That the diet had any importance is unlikely because there is no evidence that vegetarians have a lower risk of coronary disease than other people."

A sample of a few studies that Weston looked into to prove their point http://www.westonaprice.org/vegetarianism-and-plant-foods/science-of-vegetarianism


As for your point that you have read all the Weston stuff before, and effectively found it wanting, ("tediously"?) long and similar, that strikes me as being casually dismissive, (unscientific)- particularly when the Ornish and what is popularly described as the Mediterranean diet as you describe them have obvious flaws. That is admittedly from the same casual basis as you dismiss Weston, but I will follow my statement up, in a future posting. Like you, I don't publish all the studies I reference, but you always know where I got my information from- so you and other people can judge for themselves.

I will have to look further into claims that Ornish reverses heart disease. Who knows despite my overall scepticism, there may be some elements in a plant based regime that are beneficial. Plant based foods are good for you, no question. On the other hand, that meat in a Western diet will kill you, is such a powerful statement that you should back it up with evidence. We know meat and blood doesn't kill Masai and fat doesn't kill Eskimos, so at best there is an element in combination with meat that does the damage. More likely these other elements are the real cause of the problem. Possibly stress, lack of exercise, smoking, alcohol consumption, refined sugar, refined carbohydrates, hydrogenated fats, processed foods, pollution-are candidates- with no doubt the proviso that it is not practical to remove the offending articles from our lifestyles. Besides we are living longer, admittedly with medical intervention, in spite of meat, but like I said previously sugar and hydrogenated fat will kill you before meat does. Or is it only susceptible meat eaters with other complications who are not living longer or living healthily?

So it all boils down to men with poor endothelial function. Who says meat and endothelial function don't go together? You are now in an area that Weston doesn't visit other than to say that fats make up those membranes, so we can assume fat and therefore meat is good for endothelial function, over 40 or otherwise. I presume you are maintaining that fats are clogging up penile arteries like they supposedly clog up hearts- which I've rebutted in some detail. As for the subject we all hold dear erectile function, that is a much wider theme, with a whole host of potential heroes and villains, and we can't pin that squarely on meat alone- that I am sure is something you would agree with? And once again if science knew all there is to know about ED, we wouldn't need your worthy site.





 






MrChickenkiev

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Re: Why Weston talks a lot of sense and why it is good for our Sexual Health.
« Reply #10 on: January 27, 2012, 09:55:42 pm »
Right now I am getting somewhere. Ornish isn't just a diet, it is a whole suite of lifestyle choices, from stress reduction to exercise and community support- all of which would be heart friendly without a specific nutritional component. Before I went any further I was reminded of the Roseto Effect, a study of an Italian American community in Pennsylvania, with low mortality rates from myocardial infarction http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1695733/. Basically if you live in a tight knit community you will suffer less from heart disease because people care about you and you don't live in isolation. No doubt that might have been the case in a variety of primitive cultures too.

This is a point Ornish agrees with:

"I believe that stress ultimately comes from a perception of isolation—isolation from one's own feelings, isolation from other people, and isolation from something spiritual."

As Ornish suggests himself http://www.people.com/people/archive/article/0,,20113741,00.html

"Emotional stress, and nicotine again, can also cause the arteries to constrict and the blood to clot faster" So stress reduction would clearly help.

"We know there are direct connections between your brain and your heart and that chronic stress contributes to heart disease. In addition we know that during times of stress the arteries in your heart can constrict within seconds and that blood clots faster. Both conditions tend to reduce blood flow to your heart. In some cases this can lead to a heart attack. Also, stress causes steroid hormones to circulate, causing blockages potentially damaging to your heart to build up over a period of years."

From the nutrition point of view he states: "For years it has been known that cholesterol and other deposits can build up in the lining of the arteries like rust in a pipe. This process begins in childhood and progresses slowly over decades. Cholesterol and fat are not bad in themselves"

He does suggest that is because we eat too many foods with cholesterol in them- but of course his solution is to completely disavow yourself of all fats, even the ones that have been equally proved to be heart friendly- the omega 3's.

So it boils down to whether the cholesterol has collected around the arteries in a protective sense to repair damage or whether it is there like "rust in the pipe". In both cases the build up of cholesterol is indicative of a problem. Since cholesterol does not cause the micro tears around which the cholesterol aggregates, the real underlying reason for the damage to the heart is also not tackled by Ornish.

There is plenty of evidence that cholesterol plays a protective role http://www.google.co.uk/#sclient=psy-ab&fhp=1&hl=en&safe=off&source=hp&q=cholesterol%20protective%20role&pbx=1&oq=cholesterol%20protective&aq=1v&aqi=g-v4&aql=&gs_sm=sc&gs_upl=274432l289213l2l291631l31l15l5l11l11l0l460l2382l0.13.1.0.1l27l0&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.,cf.osb&fp=a8cc

Specific studies:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8020668

McGrowder, D. Riley, C. [and] Morrison, EY. [et al] (2011). The role of high-density lipoproteins in reducing the risk of vascular diseases, neurodegenerative disorders, and cancer. Cholesterol, 2011. [Epub ahead of print, December 23rd 2010].


So according to Ornish one of the culprits may be stress, and certainly cigarettes, the latter of which no one is going to disagree with. So what dietary component actually clears this malfeasant cholesterol, scouring it from the walls of the arteries? I don't think that is actually mentioned- which is pretty critical I would have thought.

So yes I agree, with you, exercise, stess reduction and community are good for the heart, and as a Social Sciences graduate I always think the social aspect of community is always underplayed in health considerations. I don't think the nutritional part of the Ornish prescription, actually works as such, and Weston is not going to disagree with exercise, limiting stress and community.

At least Ornish is honest in the sense that he doesn't know himself what component of his lifestyle manifesto is salient:

http://www.nytimes.com/1990/07/21/us/arteries-are-unblocked-without-drugs-in-study.html?pagewanted=all&src=pm

"Increasing evidence implicates diet, exercise, stress and smoking as factors in coronary artery disease, Dr. Ornish said in a telephone interview. But the relative contribution of each to the disease is not well understood."

"Dr. Ornish said he was surprised to find no firm correlation between lowered cholesterol and the unblocking of arteries. ''I assumed we would need to get blood cholesterol below 150 or 180 to see regression,'' he said, referring to milligrams of cholesterol per deciliter of blood. But one man whose cholesterol fell from 360 to 260 showed major unblocking of arteries." So cholesterol wasn't the problem then?????

"''While reducing blood cholesterol is very important, it's not the whole story,'' Dr. Ornish said. Emotional stress is a critical element in coronary artery disease. ''We know stress can cause arteries to constrict, the blood to clot faster and the blockages in the arteries to form more readily,'' he said."

No doubt our Mediterranean friends are similar to the Roseto Italians?

PeakT

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Re: Why Weston talks a lot of sense and why it is good for our Sexual Health.
« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2012, 04:19:29 am »
I agree that the social interactions and stress undoubtedly play a bigger role than we understand and the Roseto study is quite interesting. 

One indication, though, that diet can succeed by itself is Esselstyn's work.  He reversed arteriosclerosis, just like Ornish, simply with diet alone. 

This is an important point, because Western men tend to live alone with little social support.  In addition, one could argue that stress is an unavoidable part of modern life. 

So let's assume for a minute that stress and social support are more important that total cholesterol levels.  Well, you can try to "get social" and "destress" of course.  But I would argue that a low fat, plant-based diet (or perhaps Mediterranean) gives you that needed extra level of protection.

THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE BOOK ON TRT/TESTOSTERONE:
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And check out my New Peak Testosterone Program: http://www.peaktestosterone.com/peak_testosterone_program
If you are on medications or have a medical condition, always check with your doctor first before making any lifestyle changes or taking new supplements.  And low testosterone is a medical condition.

MrChickenkiev

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Re: Why Weston talks a lot of sense and why it is good for our Sexual Health.
« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2012, 11:53:18 am »
OK, so I knock Ornish down, and you just say, someone else has done a low fat diet and it works. And if I knock down that study you will present others- with the same data, but with the same flaws. Bear in mind a large portion of your site is devoted to "PepsiCo's" Ornish so that seemed a good place to start. At least defend Ornish or inflammation without moving the goal posts each time, or don't dismiss whole super cultures that don't fit your perception of the facts. I am not going to go round knocking down every study you present, showing what the true dynamics are that make those approaches work. The truth is that the theory for all these diets and your perception of Weston as being merely a meat and fat diet like Atkins is wrong.

I spent a bit of time reading about your low fat diet, and you almost had me convinced. All that sludgy blood moving round my arteries, dementia and so on. How can Weston be right and all your studies also be valid? Someone has to square the circle here.

Like I say Ornish is a bit more honest he doesn't attribute all the success to the diet. The social element is one of the things that makes Ornish work. I've just been watching a show called the Vitality Hour on Channel 282 on Sky TV in the UK presented by Dr. David Hamilton. In fact I should be watching the second half of the show. According to Hamilton the Scripps Institute in the US, a heart clinic has found that they can reduce the level of second heart attacks post surgery by 400% by giving their patients a dog. Apparently you get a surge of oxytocin when you stroke a pet, and oxytocin is heart protective, very heart protective. In fact you would get the same effect in a close relationship or were you have exhibited compassion or had compassion shown to you. And of course there is plenty of exercise in Ornish, up to an hours exercise at a time, albeit low impact.

But that doesn't do anything to support Weston. You make the point that meat doesn't work in a modern western diet/culture. Like I said Weston is not about meat and fat per se. It's not a Paleo diet either. It is about vitamins, mainly A and D, but also E and to a lesser degree C. The fact is the organ meats that Weston advocates are full of vitamins A and D. Not only that but they advocate Cod Liver oil as a super food, which is full of  A an D as well as heart protective EFA's the type that I get the impression Ornish would have you avoid. I would suggest that first of all your studies don't make the distinction between muscle meat and organ meats. So that's a lot of research to show you that a McDonald's burger isn't good for you. So yes muscle meats, will not have anywhere near the amount of heart protecting minerals and vitamins in them. I suspect if you wanted to isolate the benefits of the organ meats you would find that A an D are the main heart protective agents, but it could be trace mineral elements, anti inflammatory arachidonic acid, conjugated linoleic acid and so on. So if nothing else you have forced me to re read Weston and I realise I probably need to take 3 time the dosage of Cod Liver oil that I currently consume- only 2 capsules more.

Also somewhere you go on about egg whites. That is throwing away the good part of the egg- and leaving the empty nutrition less part- but we'll move on.


But the real point is that the diets you mention even if they do work, don't work for the reasons stated. Ornish has cholesterol down as the crook, because it is present at the scene of the crime, rather than identify it as the emergency services there to tend to the sick and cordon off the damaged area. But you still are just scanning the material I present, and sticking to your guns- just like you scan Weston, so I think at this point I realise that you are too entrenched to change.

So Ornish has been around for 30 to 40 years, not long enough to indicate whether it has long term negative repercussions. So that's why he tries to seek historical justification from super cultures for his plan and went for New Guinea where in fact the tribes people were anything but healthy.

Anyway that's all I have to say about the subject.

PeakT

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Re: Why Weston talks a lot of sense and why it is good for our Sexual Health.
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2012, 02:51:24 pm »
The dog study is interesting and I appreciate the link and the ideas.  You're the "Idea Man" around here.  You are very good at challenging the status quo and that's great.

Maybe organ meat is the answer and vitamins A and D.  Jack LaLanne ate liver tabs.

So keep up the good work. 

But you still keep ignoring my point.  Let's skip Ornish for a second, because I think his diet really bothers you for some reason. 

Consider this:  the only two diets that I know of in modern history with a good epidemiological and research track record to date is vegetarianism and the Mediterranean Diet.  Both of these have good mortality studies and good cardiovascular outcomes.  Furthermore, a vegetarian/vegan diet has been shown to be solid in testosterone and a Mediterranean Diet solid with erectile function. 

You can guess where I'm headed:  the Mediterranean Diet is low meat and the vegetarian diet is no meat.  Furthermore, these two diets will likely give most of thier participants a much more productive and sex-filled life than almost any other counterpart that you can put up their to them.

So we can speculate about meat and organ meat and that's great.  I like the ideas and I find it interesting.  But I urge you to try it out and see if you can make it work and let us know. 

THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE BOOK ON TRT/TESTOSTERONE:
https://www.amazon.com/Natural-Versus-Testosterone-Therapy-Myer/dp/1523210532/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1499116128&sr=8-1&keywords=natural+versus+testosterone+therapy
And check out my New Peak Testosterone Program: http://www.peaktestosterone.com/peak_testosterone_program
If you are on medications or have a medical condition, always check with your doctor first before making any lifestyle changes or taking new supplements.  And low testosterone is a medical condition.

MrChickenkiev

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Re: Why Weston talks a lot of sense and why it is good for our Sexual Health.
« Reply #14 on: January 28, 2012, 07:14:00 pm »
We're omnivores- not squirrels :)

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Re: Why Weston talks a lot of sense and why it is good for our Sexual Health.
« Reply #14 on: January 28, 2012, 07:14:00 pm »