Saturday 24 December 2011

Current Diet

Fatty meat, fish, eggs
Raw/fermented A2 dairy
Grains, legumes, nuts/seeds
Bone broth, fermented veg
Dairy fats, root veg
Processed foods
Herbs & spices
Tubers, rice, coconut
Fruit, other veg

My primary focus is on avoidance of toxic foods (listed in 'no' column), and working on improving my digestion. I'm still experimenting with my diet in regards to digestion (highlight to see possible TMI: constipation)

I generally eat 8-16oz of meat/fish a day (meat is mostly beef, some lamb; fish is pollock and mackerel), three eggs a day six days a week (18/week), I make broth from bones and a source of gelatine (skin or feet usually) and add 1/4 cup to my meat daily. I eat ~1/2 cup of sauerkraut before my meat. Herbs and spices include garlic, oregano if meat, or parsley if fish, and turmeric. I'll also eat a small amount of onion roughly every other day, carrots once a week, and peeled potatoes or white rice once or twice a week. I will usually cook my pollock in cream and creamed coconut.

I do not eat grains, legumes, nuts or seeds for the following reasons: gluten, lectins, phytic acid, and excessive fibre. I avoid processed food because it's nutritionally poor, has trans-fats, etc. I don't eat fruit because I only like very-ripe bananas; I may only crave them infrequently but it takes forever to ripen store-bought bananas until I like them and by then the craving is gone. I'm not eating other vegetables (other than root vegetables) because of low nutritional density, fibre, and possible phytotoxins; root vegetables do not need to protect themselves from predators the same way and thorough cooking destroys all their defences against being eaten.

Added to water/food
Multivit (ABCplus)
Magnesium 300mg+
K2 1mg
Vit D3 5,000IU
Iodine 10mg
B6 50mg
Retinol 8,000IU
Losalt 1.5 tsp
When ill
Selenium 100ug
Salt, to taste
Zinc 25mg
Chromium 200ug
Every 4 days
Vit D3 x20
DHA fish oil 1 gram
Copper 2mg
Vit C, til you poop

I also take a probiotic on waking, 20 billion active cultures of 10 species which includes some inulin for them to eat. [But it didn't fit neatly into my table :(  ]

This may seem like a lot of supplements, but it's insurance of optimum nutrition, and will most certainly continue to take them while my digestion is poor.

You may notice I don't eat any organs although I recommend their consumption The reason? I don't like them... So instead, I supplement retinol (vitamin A) and copper to replace mammal liver, selenium instead of kidney, and folate is included in my multivitamin rather than chicken liver. The multivitamin also includes lots trace minerals that organs would supply.

Other supplements I take that I've not recommended before are:
·        Chromium: recommended by Paul Jaminet of PerfectHealthDiet.
·        DHA fish oil: because I only actually eat <100g of mackerel a week, and being of Viking decent most likely can't convert ALA to EPA and DHA very well (and those who do it well only manage <1% ALA to DHA anyway).
·        Vitamin K2: probably not needed as it's in sauerkraut though.
·        B6: because I find it really helps with menstrual cramps and moodiness; I was also on the pill (which depletes B6) for my entire teenage years so trying to restock.

The supplements I take when ill*, I recommend for everyone. Vitamin C should be taken at 1 gram of pure ascorbic acid powder once per hour until 'bowel tolerance' (which means until it flushes your bowel; ie 'til you poop'), then taken at just under that amount until all better. Zinc should be taken as soon as possible, as it only helps within the first day or so. The huge amount of vitamin D3 really boosts the natural immune system temporarily; don't worry about toxicity, as your body needs it.

* Though since changing my diet, I gotten ill a lot less. Right now my mum has had a cold for nearly a month (and she won't take what I recommend!), and everyone else around me is coughing and sneezing away; I've had only the tiniest sniffles (not even blocked nose) but only when out and I let my nose get cold for too long. In addition, I've not had to take my 'when ill' regime since starting the other supplements properly.

Friday 23 December 2011

Mostly Meat: A Manifesto

One thing that really annoys me in the diet world (diet, not nutrition) is all the false dilemmas: there’s a lot of black and white thinking. Vegans are particularly good at this, to them a ‘plant-based’ diet can only mean vegan and they group all diets including animal products in the same group whether it’s the standard American diet ‘SAD’, Atkins or someone who only eats fish once a month. The other end of the spectrum, the ‘zero-carb’ers group all others, even very-low-carb diets, under one banner of ‘those carbs will kill you sooner or later’ .

In this day and age this is more unacceptable than ever. The world is not black and white, those who aren’t with you are not going to stab you in the back. If someone has a different opinion, that’s fine! Even if you can’t even start to get your head around their point of view: if you deny others the right to have an opinion then you are selfish, as the only opinion allowed is yours.

We should be focusing on the similarities, not the differences. We all want to better ourselves and the world and we will get nowhere if we all keep fighting over the pettiest things. Yes caging animals in tiny cages and feeding them farming by-products is bad, but that doesn’t mean we need to all stop eating them, instead letting them graze freely on their natural diet before quietly being let off and gently put to sleep in a calm and peaceful atmosphere.

Yes, it may be better if people didn’t kill animals, but you will NEVER get the whole world to change, and even then lions in Africa are going to still hunt and eat the antelope. Do they need a moral lesson too?! The simple fact is that humans have been killing and eating other animals for a minimum of two million years. We’ve now found that chimpanzees, those noble peaceful leaf-eaters vegans try to emulate, kill and eat other animals. They even eat monkeys and other chimpanzees!

If you define yourself on an absolute then anything you do, no matter how small, outside that ‘purity’ is ‘evil’ or ‘wrong’, you have FAILED AS A HUMAN BEING! If you declare yourself vegan or zero-carb to the world, one bite of the wrong food and everyone around jeers, suddenly you’re on the other side of the fence, an outcast from your former comrades. This isn’t how it should be: a ‘planet-based’ diet should be allowed to include animal products in small amounts. Similarly just because you eat meat doesn’t mean you’re a complete carnivore.

That is why I named this blog ‘Most meat...’, because I’m not a carnivore, I’m an omnivore and I will never give up eating plants completely. This doesn’t make me a failure for living up to some absolutist standard. I am what I am and mostly meat is what I eat.

How to do a zero-carb (carnivorous) diet correctly

1.     Eat enough protein for making glucose (gluconeogenesis).
·         At least 0.7g/lb ideal weight (105g+ for 150lb).
2.    Glutathione is the body’s natural anti-oxidant, and is made from protein, especially gelatine.
·         So consuming plenty of gelatine-rich broth is very important, made with skin, feet, cartilage and powdered gelatine.
·         Raw whey (from raw milk, not the powdered stuff), also boosts glutathione production.
·         N-acetyl-cysteine, melatonin and milk thistle are supplements that can help too.
3.    Without fibre, you need to ensure the gut has everything it needs to make mucin naturally. Several amino acids do this better than others: serine (can be made from glycine), threonine, proline and cysteine.
·         Threonine is an essential amino acid; good sources include eggs, fish, cottage cheese and animal foods in general. Adults need a minimum of 15mg threonine per kg (~1g per 70kg).
·         Glycine (to make serine) and proline are most concentrated in gelatine (see previous point).
·         Cysteine is plentiful in animal proteins; it’s difficult not to get enough.
4.    Folate is named for its abundance in leaves, which are not eaten on a zero-carb or carnivorous diet.
·         The best animal source is chicken liver; 50g gives ~300mg of folate. Livers from pastured chickens are even better than caged chicken livers.
5.    Your vitamin A (retinol) requirements increase as you eat more protein.
·         Beef and lamb liver are the best sources and also contain a lot of other vitamins and minerals you need.
·         Pork liver is very poor in nutrients compared to beef/lamb.
6.    Iodine is needed to make thyroid hormones and keep your metabolism strong.
·           Sea vegetables and animal thyroid glands are the best natural sources of iodine; though thyroid glands are hard to get a hold of and sea vegetables are not an animal food. For this reason, supplementation with Lugol’s solution is recommended.
7.    Selenium is needed to activate the thyroid hormones.
·           Pork kidneys are the best source of selenium, followed by beef and liver kidneys.
·           Brazil nuts are a very concentrated source of selenium, only one or two a day gives you all the selenium you need, if you are not opposed to consuming some plant matter. [Do not eat more than two a day or you may get toxicity]
·           Other sources include lamb and duck livers, oysters and egg yolks.
8.    Always ensure you get enough electrolytes in the proper ratios.
·           Calcium and magnesium should be equal. Calcium is found in bones (like in small fish and from broth) and eggshells (added to broth). Magnesium is difficult to get from animal foods so supplementing with citrate or chloride helps, 400-600mg is best.
·           Sodium is easy to get from salt, but you need twice as much potassium, which is hard to get in animal foods. ‘Losalt’ or potassium chloride salts are a good source (double-check the ingredients as some brands add cyanide to their salt).
9.    Choline is needed to get fat out of the liver and so is very important.
·         Egg yolks are the richest source, two yolks a day provides plenty.
10.  Vitamin D3 is made from the sun, but during the winter, your reserves can run low.
·         Oily fish, such as sardines, salmon and mackerel are rich in vitamin D3.
·         Supplementing in addition to your diet is usually needed to maintain year-round healthy levels. A good start is 1,000IU per 25kg (6,000IU/150lbs).
·         Check your blood ‘25(OH)D3’ levels at least twice a year (in summer and winter) to make sure you’re not deficient or over-supplementing.
11.  Although technically plants, you can really benefit from the addition of anti-oxidant rich herbs and spices, and the amounts needed are tiny.
·         Oregano, cloves, rosemary, thyme, cinnamon, turmeric, vanilla, parsley and nutmeg are at the top of the ORAC list (i.e. the richest in anti-oxidants).
·         Garlic is a great addition, as it’s anti-viral, kills parasites and many other nasty things that are better off dead.

In summary:
1.     Ensure you eat enough protein from fatty meat.
2.    Drink plenty of broth made from gelatine (skin/feet/cartilage/powdered gelatine) and rich in minerals (bones/eggshells).
3.    Eat chicken liver for folate, kidneys for selenium, and beef/lamb liver for retinol & other nutrients. [1.5oz, 1.5oz, and 1/2oz a day respectively are a good amount]
4.    Eat two eggs a day, or just the yolks.
5.    Add potassium, magnesium and iodine to your drinking and cooking water.
6.    Use sodium salt to taste along with herbs & spices.
7.    Sunbathe regularly and supplement D3 in winter.