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TF questions (science, Sally Fallon, time and $ constraints...) - Page 2

post #21 of 58
I'm a scientist by training and I had a hard time with NT...never made it all the way through it becuase some of the stuff seemed so off scientifically. But I do think traditional foods are really the best way to eat, though "TF" is still very broad. I trust Mary Enig much more than Sally Fallon. She's a scientist and her voice seemed to be much more prevalent in Eat Fat, Lose Fat, which I liked a lot more than NT. She has another book about fats as well that I haven't read.

Another good paleo/primal book, besides The Primal Blueprint, is Primal Body, Primal Mind. The author does reference Sally Fallon and WAPF a lot, though, so that may turn you off, but she has other sources as well.

A newer voice on the scene is Dr. Terry Wahls. She is a medical doctor who has seemingly cured her multiple sclerosis by using traditional foods (though she doesn't really call it that) and electrical stimulation of her muscles. She does reference Weston Price's original work. She has a website and gives talks in her local area but I would expect to see a book or something from her in the future.
post #22 of 58
Most of the recipes in NT are awful!
post #23 of 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by Astrea View Post
Wow, that's interesting. What sorts of health problems responded to high-sat-fat diets?
There seem to be a lot of different paths to poor health though the common themes seem to be slow downhill slides over the course of many years, often acutely exacerbated by pregnancy and nursing leaving a very fatigued, nutritionally-depleted mom. I don't know everyone else's backstories, mine's related to my family's poor ability to deal with the mercury in our amalgam fillings. Definitely not an issue for everyone though.

I haven't specifically tried a high monounsaturated or high polyunsaturated fat diet--it's possible they would've helped in a similar way. And that's partly because, especially a couple years ago, I also felt best eating beef every day; chicken and pork, let alone other protein sources, just weren't the same. And I have no idea why beef was helpful when other meats weren't as much--I've always been omni, always eaten at least occasional beef, but my ups and downs repeated enough times that I started to pay attention. So it made sense to eat more saturated fat along with that. Though as a practical matter, I did find that lots of olive oil helped fill some of my high fat need at least occasionally.

So sometimes, when people are sharing ideas, the slant may be towards people who have more specific needs due to their health problems. I've run across enough other people who really do well on very high fat diets as they try to recover from various chronic health issues to recognize a common pattern, but the specifics are much less applicable to people who are fundamentally healthy.
post #24 of 58
Oh, and the other group that comes to mind as often (but not always) doing well on a high fat diet is people following the GAPS diet, it's a variation on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet. Both are meant to help with digestive problems, so a variety of adults and quite a few autistic/spectrum kids have had good results with it. Some people have problems with it, nothing's good for everyone, but it's quite often helpful and although you could try to make either moderate or low fat, it's easier and more common for them to be fairly high fat diets.
post #25 of 58
Thread Starter 
Wow, I'm so thrilled with all the great info and the resources you've all pointed me towards. Thanks! Now I'm afraid I'm going to spend the next year of my life reading

Quote:
Originally Posted by Magelet View Post

We also make big use of protein sparing things: making sure to serve a little animal protein (dairy or meat or fish) with all veggie meals to better digest the plant protein, making use of stock whose geletin is protein sparing, using meals with meat and veggies combined rather than a hunk of meat.
What does "protein sparing" mean? Also, would you mind walking me through exactly how you do your oatmeal? What type of oats do you use?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Smokering View Post
So you don't consider epidemiological studies good science? That's odd, because... well, mainstream scientists do. And depending on the study, placebo isn't always possible (if exercise is involved, for instance, or consuming a food). Nevertheless, I believe many of the studies SF cites in NT adhere to your criteria.

The other issue I have with this statement is that, from what I know, the mainstream diet view hasn't adhered to these restrictions. Fallon points out flaws with studies all through NT - for instance, studies which condemn high-fat diets when the evidence showed that hydrogenated fats were the cause of the ills. Isn't that bad science? Assuming Fallon isn't outright lying, there are a disturbing number of studies in which the data were ignored in favour of a conclusion that "seemed" healthier. That's bad science. Plus, a lot of the studies were epidemiological, just like many TF-supporting studies.

Eating things like raw milk, cream cheese, butter, cheese and eggs is definitely yummy. Liver... eh, depends who you are. I hate it. My sauerkraut is certainly edible with sausage and cheese on homemade sourdough bread, but I wouldn't rave about it. Kefir, if you leave it for one day instead of two and mix it with maple syrup, is really quite yummy. I'm a foodie too, and there are certain things I can't bring myself to make (soaked-flour baked goods, for instance, other than sourdough); but TF has, on the whole, improved the quality of food we eat. Using homemade chicken stock to cook rice, beans, lentils etc - SO good!
I actually don't know much about epidemiological studies :embarrassed but yeah, I'm sure those are totally valid as well. In the end, it always depends on how stringently and ethically the study was conducted and interpreted.

I need to try making kefir again. How exactly do you make yours? I love store-bought kefir but I haven't had great success with homemade yet, except using store-bought kefir powder starter, not grains.

I have some Oregon Trail (Friends of Carl) dry sourdough start. It failed on me the first time I tried it but I want to give it another go because I love, love, love sourdough bread.

Quote:
Originally Posted by velcromom View Post
Honestly I think NT is a terrible way to start TF for a lot of people. If they aren't put off by the tone, they are completely grossed out by the recipes. SF doesn't make it easy. There are more efficient ways, sometimes, to get a TF result and she doesn't tell you that. Like, for "soaked" baked goods, you can use sprouted flour and forget all that overnight soaking stuff.

The above blogs are great resources. I like to pass on this very thorough article about the benefits of bone broth: Traditional Bone Broth in Modern Health and Disease
What is sprouted flour and where do you get it? Do store-bought sprouted grain and sprouted corn tortillas count? Sprouted bread?

I confess was totally grossed out by most of the recipes in NT!

Quote:
Originally Posted by tanyalynn View Post
There seem to be a lot of different paths to poor health though the common themes seem to be slow downhill slides over the course of many years, often acutely exacerbated by pregnancy and nursing leaving a very fatigued, nutritionally-depleted mom. I don't know everyone else's backstories, mine's related to my family's poor ability to deal with the mercury in our amalgam fillings. Definitely not an issue for everyone though.

I haven't specifically tried a high monounsaturated or high polyunsaturated fat diet--it's possible they would've helped in a similar way. And that's partly because, especially a couple years ago, I also felt best eating beef every day; chicken and pork, let alone other protein sources, just weren't the same. And I have no idea why beef was helpful when other meats weren't as much--I've always been omni, always eaten at least occasional beef, but my ups and downs repeated enough times that I started to pay attention. So it made sense to eat more saturated fat along with that. Though as a practical matter, I did find that lots of olive oil helped fill some of my high fat need at least occasionally.

So sometimes, when people are sharing ideas, the slant may be towards people who have more specific needs due to their health problems. I've run across enough other people who really do well on very high fat diets as they try to recover from various chronic health issues to recognize a common pattern, but the specifics are much less applicable to people who are fundamentally healthy.
I wonder if/how TF would help my health issues. DH and I both need to lose 20-30 lbs, and I have fairly serious depression and anxiety (currently managed by meds) and low energy.
post #26 of 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by Astrea View Post
Also, would you mind walking me through exactly how you do your oatmeal? What type of oats do you use?
...

I need to try making kefir again. How exactly do you make yours? I love store-bought kefir but I haven't had great success with homemade yet, except using store-bought kefir powder starter, not grains.

...

What is sprouted flour and where do you get it? Do store-bought sprouted grain and sprouted corn tortillas count? Sprouted bread?

I confess was totally grossed out by most of the recipes in NT!
i can answer a couple of these.

OATS: i use steel cut oats, but i have used rolled as well. i put my oats, plus water (4:1 water to steelcut oats or 2:1 water to rolled oats) in a mini crockpot w/a good tbsp of kefir. you could also use yogurt, buttermilk, or probably ACV. you could leave it to soak just like that - oats have some of the highest phytate levels, so the closer to 24 hours you can soak your oats, the better. but even 8-10 hours is better than nothing. anyway, i add everything else i want in my oatmeal at that time - a pinch of salt, some cinnamon, some raisins, a tbsp of coconut oil or butter. then, in the morning mine turns on via an electric light timer about 4 hours before i will want to eat it. that way it's TOTALLY DONE in the morning. i don't like to work for breakfast.

KEFIR: homemade kefir from grains has a lot more probiotic content than storebought kefir or powdered kefir grains. there's not a lot of how-to - i dump the grains in milk and leave it out, covered with a cloth (though some people cover it w/an airtight lid - that's personal preference). depending on the time of year (temperature), it's ready w/in 24-48 hours. i usually put it in a smoothie w/a bunch of other things. i would never be able to drink kefir straight. i also use it for soaking grains.

SPROUTED FLOUR: i have only found sprouted flour online. it is grains that have been sprouted, then deyhdrated and ground into flour. yes, sprouted tortillas and breads "count" - as in, are TF friendly. we like the Ezequiel brand.

NT RECIPES: yeah ... they're not awesome. but if you're a good cook, you can take a lot from NT and add to it what you know about making food delicious.
post #27 of 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by Astrea View Post
I wonder if/how TF would help my health issues. DH and I both need to lose 20-30 lbs, and I have fairly serious depression and anxiety (currently managed by meds) and low energy.
You may want to take a look at "The Mood Cure," by Julia Ross.
http://www.amazon.com/Mood-Cure-Reba.../dp/0670030694

I had been doing TF for over a year, had done a GAP style gut healing, but still had some "mood" issues and couldn't quit caffeine. I was healthy, but kind of cranky I took the quiz, read parts of the book that applied to me, purchased the necessary aminos, and I quit my beloved morning coffee *in one day* with no withdrawal symptoms - not even a headache. And the best part is that you only need to take the aminos until your body catches up. It's not a life long commitment to a Rx med. Ross advocates a TF style diet, though it's not coined as such - healthy fats, fish oil, plenty of protein, lots of fresh veggies, eliminating processed foods and sugar, etc., and supplementing with the right amino acids. You aren't going to find anything about soaking grains or fermentation in her book or anything about probiotics. It is, however, a very helpful book IMO to understand the role of nutrition and mental health.

If you go to this site, you can take a "mood quiz" --
http://www.moodcure.com/Questionnaire.html

I also have to say that NT really didn't do it for me and thankfully I didn't start with it. I preferred "Eat Fat, Loose Fat" for recipes as well as recipes from the many TF & Real Food/Slow Food blogs that I subscribe to. "Real Food" by Planck was a much better read as well as Pollan's books.
post #28 of 58
I definitely ditto the recommendations about Gary Taubes - Good Calories, Bad Calories, and also Mark Sisson's website - marksdailyapple.com. His book is the Primal Blueprint but a ton of info is on his blog - just click on Primal 101.

I swing more in the primal camp than the TF camp but that's because I don't do well on grains and dairy.
post #29 of 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by Astrea View Post
What does "protein sparing" mean?
"Protein sparing" means that the gelatin aids with the body's digestion of the protein, and makes the protein in meals more available to the body, even in cases where it might not have been normally. So eating broth with a beans-and-rice meal is a good way to get a lot more nutrition from the meal. And stews, even if they have little meat, are a highly absorbable form of protein if they're made with homemade broth.
post #30 of 58
I say to take it slow and easy as I tend to go crazy when getting into something new. I followed NT like gospel and we suffered many health issues from it. We ate all things that ended up being huge allergens for us. I sometime wish I could turn back time and not eat TF and perhaps we would be better off?

Now we are semi TF and allergy free and alot healthier. Still I feel that the furure hold many new discoveries in health and it is not bad to embrace new health ideas (some, not all). For example, TF people didn't juice, but I am a big fan of juicing. I used to say that I would do whatever is traditional, but now I say that we are able to do better.
post #31 of 58
I use some of the NT recipes as kicking-off points rather than recipes proper. Like "OK, braised chicken breast in cream and stock", and then I do my own thing (or think "Huh, this sounds like a very highly-acclaimed recipe from [foodie site]"). And I ignore all the raw meat appetisers.
post #32 of 58
Mmmmm raw meat. I love it.

That said, I actually gave away my copy of NT because I disliked it so much. After copying the oatmeal cookie recipe out, which actually was good. Once I'd "improved" it. Heh.

I would definitely second (third?) the suggestions for Whole Health Source blog and Gary Taubes. Whole Health Source is particularly good for the way he analyzes study methodologies EVEN in the studies whose results he thinks are probably valid.

As far as your weight, energy levels and mood issues - before you dive into TF full-bore, try just cutting out wheat, eat other grains no more than 1 serving a day, cut out sugar completely (including honey and other natural sweeteners) and don't eat any processed food like chips. Add an hour-long walk to your day, preferably in the evening, don't eat after dinner, and I bet within a week you'll feel better and have lost a pound or two.

As for epidemiological studies - they're most of what we have to rely on when it comes to nutritional science, and they are HIGHLY unreliable, in my view - far too many confounding factors, and the bigger the study, the worse the confounds. See the recent debate on the China Study (linked from Whole Health Source, from a few weeks ago) to see how tweaks and corrections to data and outliers can mess up interpretations, and some of the commentary on the discussion illuminates how poor the data actually is.
post #33 of 58
I agree about taking it one step at a time. Try to learn one new TF skill at a time and see how well you can incorporate it into your routines/modify your routines to make it work. Take what you like and do your best with the rest.

I have to disagree about all the NT recipes being gross. I've liked tha majority of the recipes that I've made out of there. (Not that I have made all the recipes in the book, but I've done a few dozen.) Especially the recipes that are basic meals that you are familiar with, just done in a TF way (basically made from scratch.) I've thought all the soup recipes I've made are great. The carrot soup is my fave. I think a lot of the main meals like pot roast, moroccan chicken, pepper steak, etc (all familiar to me prior to TF days) have been great. I've also used a lot of the fermented condiment recipes, sauces, etc. Some of them I might make slight modifications to, but I think they are a great foundation. Now if you are grossed out by raw meat and organs, I don't think that is because of NT and it's not fair to say everything is gross b/c it includes recipes that are strange to us.
I've had less success with the baked goods recipes (like muffins, sunflower seed brownies), so I tend to search TF type blogs for those. But I've also made things I like, like cobbler, apricot bars and pumpkin pie. I haven't tried the majority of the dessert recipes though b/c they usually call for sprouted flour and I've never had any. I love the spice and seasoning combinations called for throughout the various sections of the book. They have basic ingredients but create complex and delicious flavors. (like some orange peel in the pot roast adds a wonderful dimension!) that has been my experience.

I would like to recommend the kitchenstewardship.com blog. She is not a scientist, but she does tons of research and is definitely trying to find the truth and not just rely all on NT/SF (and duly notes that the majority of TF blogs ultimately all go back to Sally without really questioning that). She's started a series about soaking grains and whether or not it's traditional, seeking out other people who would be considered experts and presenting a variety of points of view.

ETA: I don't think one can generalize about the taste of ferments. They taste as different as the foods you make them with. Some I have loved, and some I have hated. And then sometimes a batch of the same thing might not turn out the same way as the batch before.

I do not like the taste of kefir, so I don't drink it plain. I do drink it everyday for the amazing health benefits, but I mix an ounce or two (even a tsp or two would be enough to get benefits - start slow and do what you can tolerate) in smoothies or whatever so that I don't taste the kefir.
post #34 of 58
I now buy my sprouted flour at Wegman's food stores here in the east. My health food store also carries it! It is sold by Shiloh Farms Essential Eating. You can check it out at either shilohfarm.com or essentialeating.com. I used to make my own, but after researching these guys and gals I'm hooked and now have a lot more time. It tasted delicious and bakes beautifully. I loved the history of sprouted flour on the Essential Eating web site.
post #35 of 58
Quote:
As for epidemiological studies - they're most of what we have to rely on when it comes to nutritional science, and they are HIGHLY unreliable, in my view - far too many confounding factors, and the bigger the study, the worse the confounds. See the recent debate on the China Study (linked from Whole Health Source, from a few weeks ago) to see how tweaks and corrections to data and outliers can mess up interpretations, and some of the commentary on the discussion illuminates how poor the data actually is.
Yeah, the China study is notoriously dodgy - to the point where one wonders whether its creators were deliberately, maliciously skewing the data - but that doesn't mean epidemiological studies are worthless. You just have to look very carefully at confounding factors. It proves something, for instance, that the traditional societies WAP studies ate high-fat diets without succumbing to high rates of heart disease etc. Obviously, ideally, the next step should be a double-blind placebo-controlled study, but how would you do that? You can't give people placebo meat. There have been plenty of animal studies in more controlled conditions, though, which Fallon cites in NT - proving the ills of GM foods on hamsters, for instance, or proving that suppression of Vitamin A in pigs leads to birth defects. They're probably the best you can get in terms of studies, given that experimenting with birth defects on people isn't exactly ethical. And there have even been some human studies, measuring death rates among people with high-fat vs low-fat diets, etc.
post #36 of 58
Thread Starter 
LOL spughy, I'm sure you're right re: weight loss--I just have to convince my willpower to get on board! :

The Mood Cure sounds interesting. It's on its way from the library.

I think we need a "What's Cookin' TF mamas" thread like the one on the veg sub-forum!

I'm thinking I need to take another look at WAP's studies (and maybe at NT too). I remember thinking to myself "but even dinosaurs got cancer" (fossil records show this). Also, people used to have much shorter life spans and mortality rates via childbirth and so on were much higher. Degenerative illnesses like heart disease and cancer quite often might not have gotten a chance to develop because people died off so young, so often. Are those factors taken into account at all in any of these discussions? (Same questions apply to anyone touting any kind of diet as "the best", be it raw food, veganism, Atkins, whatever). One point in TF's favour, to me, is that I remember hearing a lot of press a few years back about how Inuit society saw an exponential increase in heart disease once contemporary Western foods (especially fast and convenience foods and white bread) entered their diet very recently and they stopped living on mostly blubber, fish and red sea mammal meats. But on the flip side, there's the Okinawans--are they addressed at all in the TF movement?

My Oregon Trail sourdough starter doesn't seem to be reviving. 24 hours into the first stage of revival (1/2 t dried starter grains soaked in 1T lukewarm water, 1 T flour stirred in) and I'm not seeing any bubbles or smelling anything other than wet flour. And the floury stuff keeps sinking and leaving a layer of watery liquid on top. Is there hope?

For those of you who make kefir, does it get all nicely carbonated and bubbly? I love carbonated things. Neither my water nor my dairy kefir ever really got bubbly.

Wish I had a crock pot to try oats!
post #37 of 58
Yes, pre-industrial societies had higher incidences of death from acute factors, and lower incidences of death from chronic factors like heart disease and cancer. However, in those individuals who survived the rigors of childbirth, hunting, and youthful stupidity, the diseases of western civilization were still largely absent. The aged tended to die from natural disasters, parasites, infections, infirmity, and simple metabolic shutdown due to age. Also, they worked their bodies a LOT harder than we do. Many women especially actually wore out their teeth before their bodies were done and subsequently died from malnutrition. (My dad was a dentist and worked on some First Nations folk who were first-gen contact or limited contact - he said they had perfect teeth except they were worn down to little nubs from leather making etc. and once the root was exposed, they went downhill pretty fast.) Men were injured hunting and had recurrent joint problems or festering wounds that never quite healed, and yes, occasionally cancers would get people too. Cancer is pretty prevalent in nature, but not to the extent that currently afflicts western societies.

Generally, the idea with TF is to meld traditional foodways, which DO emphasize animal fats and protein, with modern medical advances and to SOME extent the easier lifestyle. My personal belief though, is that if we make our lives too easy our bodies don't work very well when a challenge (like, say, childbirth) hits. My more recent reading has been on body alignment and how we're doing ourselves no favours with that "chair" thing we invented a few thousand years ago. Anyway, everyone has to make their own call on all of it, and I do NOT think there's a one-size-fits-all dietary approach. You look at your lifestyle, your ethics, your geographic location, what your personal ancestors ate (my DD is going to have fun with this one, with all 4 grandparents originating on different continents) and you sort out for yourself what you want to eat. Because no matter how much you might intellectually believe that certain foods are good for you, in the end, if you don't WANT to eat them, you won't. (Oh, hello, freezer - what's that? There's still 10 lbs of liver in you? Well, how about that.)

And about the carbonated kefir - you have to let it ferment in a *sealed* jar to make it fizzy. Make sure it's a sturdy one.
post #38 of 58
I found this discussion of the China study and The China Study interesting and pertinent to the discussion of studying nutrition and disease and our ability to draw conclusions from it...I love Dr. Eades and he is a great science-based, mainstream-ish source. He isn't crunchy or traditional at all, but his science keeps me on track when I start feeling like, well, eating bread is traditional for my culture and stuff like that I do find that I can tolerate some bread and sugar, and I don't always want to eschew mainstream foods so his approach really works for me. I also love his book recs and his links to other interesting nutrition folks from a less crunchy corner of the web...

http://www.proteinpower.com/drmike/c...des%2C+M.D.%29

http://rawfoodsos.com/2010/07/07/the...act-or-fallac/
post #39 of 58
Quote:
Originally Posted by FairyRae View Post
Good Calories, Bad Calories by Gary Taubes, while not totally TF, does dismantle a lot of the 'mainstream' diet info (esp low fat/high carb being best) utilizing actual scientific research. Definitely for the science minded, and definitely pro GOOD fats.

I agree w/ pp's that you'll find Nina Planck's Real Food a welcome, scientifically backed read. Very down to earth and fun as well. I prefer her tone to SF's/WAPF's personally.

Another resource I like, again not exactly TF, but more on a paleo/primal slant (which is honestly, IMO, the *first* 'traditional diet' ) is The Primal Blueprint. Tons of science in there and VERY reader friendly, discussing the benefits of good quality meat, fats, etc... His site http://marksdailyapple.com is a fabulous resource as well, and worth looking at.

And here is Price's Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, full text, online!

Good luck in your search for info!
All of these are what I was going to say!!
post #40 of 58
Astrea, you can try adding a tsp of sugar if you're having trouble reviving your starter, yeast loves sugar
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