WHAT'S IN THIS ISSUE
Is low carb eating sustainable?
I received this question in the past week:
"What I am perplexed at is why you promote a meat diet for a population that clearly can't afford the energy inefficiency inherent in meat production — taking between 10 and 100 times the calories to produce 1 calorie of food."
That's an excellent question that I'm going to start to answer here. There is more to come.
- The diet I think evolution designed us to eat, the Paleolithic Diet, has only 20% of its calories from meat protein so that qualifies it as a low-protein diet. Using the nomenclature more prevalent in Europe, it is technically a LCHF (low carb high fat) diet. It's true that much of the fat comes from animals but at least we are eating the trillions of calories of energy that are currently being thrown away every time someone trims healthful fat from their steak or the skin from their chicken. In my case, I'm also eating a lot of coconut milk and butter. Because fat and protein have high satiety indexes, a little goes a long way to filling me up. If I have a protein coconut milk shake or eggs and bacon for breakfast I often go until 2pm before getting hungry.
- The science is coming fast and furious indicating that the carbs we are eating that cause chronic inflammation are the source of many more ailments than we had previously thought (more on this in the future). Many people now understand how it's causing obesity and heart disease (but not yet the establishment, though that's slowly changing, see the Paleo Physicians Network) but the list of other problems caused by eating a neolithic diet, particularly grains, is mounting daily.
This carbohydrate research chemist is just one person pulling together the pieces and his work is excellent:
Here is a description of the book Wheat Belly, which discusses the consequences of eating the current genetically altered wheat:
In other words, we are a very unhealthy species right now and I believe that an incredible part of that unhealthiness is coming from our neolithic diet.
- The correct way to go about this is to find the healthiest diet for humans first. Once that was established, THEN we can figure out how to make it work on the planet. It doesn't make sense to me to accept a way of eating that isn't healthy because it is supposedly more sustainable. That's backwards to me. We will eventually find a way to make healthy eating sustainable, but first we have to know what healthy eating is.
- Pastured or grass-fed meat (not grain-fed meat) uses very little energy because the animals graze on field grass. It's only when they are fed corn and other grains that their energy consumption skyrockets. The grain has to be grown using fertilizer, oil and lots of water...very unsustainable. I'm currently eating about 50% of my meat as pastured-raised and am looking into making it 100% at a reasonable cost (sharing a grass-fed cow). Grass-fed meat is also healthier for humans because it doesn't require the hormones and antibiotics grain-fed animals require to keep them alive while they eat food they aren't designed to (i.e. corn).
- Last, our species is in gross overshoot. Numbers I trust to be correct indicate that we are over populated by something like 5 to 6 billion out of 7.1 billion. There is no mechanism for making 7.1 billion people live sustainably — none whatsoever — since it is temporarily propped up by massive amounts of energy from fossil fuels. Trying to make these numbers work is, in my view, a fantasy — so don't even bother trying. We have to get our numbers down and there is just no way around that.
Many people still think sustainability is possible on the planet with our numbers. I believed that, too. Very reluctantly I gave up on that view after lots of research about four years ago. It only looks like sustainability is possible until you start really digging into the numbers and realize that we are at the peak of production of not just fossil fuels but also metals, water and other important minerals that an industrial society requires. In other words, the industrial society is going away no matter what we do.
Why shouldn't we replace it with the system we used before we started this whole industrialization fad?
The Rumbling of Distant Thunder | The Archdruid Report, May 30, 2012
America In Decline: The Soul Crushing Despair Of Lowered Expectations | The Economic Collapse, June 5, 2012
Fragility and Collapse: Slowly at first, then all at once | Club Orlov, June 5, 2012
The Truth About Europe: There is no Solution - Parts 1 and 2 | The Automatic Earth
21 Signs That This Could Be A Long, Hot, Crazy Summer For The Global Financial System | The Economic Collapse, June 4, 2012
"Monetary Easing" Fixes Nothing | Of Two Minds, June 5, 2012
Financial Collapse At Hand: When is "Sooner or Later"? | Global Research, June 5, 2012
The Pernicious Dynamics of Debt, Deleveraging, and Deflation | Chris Martenson, June 5, 2012
Treasury Bond Yield Rates Hit Historic Low | AllGov, June 5, 2012
How to Keep a Heat Rash from Turning Dangerous | The Survival Doctor, May 31, 2012
What I Wish I Had Done Differently | The Survival Mom, June 2, 2012
This is a very level-headed, retrospective point-of-view, especially for those who may be beginning to prepare for economic descent.
More on the Food Saver | Preparedness Advice Blog, June 4, 2012
Soft-Shell Lobsters arrive early in Maine | Environmental News Network, May 27, 2012
Carbon dioxide hits 400 parts per million in Northern Hemisphere | Environmental News Network, June 1, 2012
Greenhouse Gas Levels Pass Symbolic 400ppm CO2 Milestone | Climate Desk, June 1, 2012
North Carolina Developers Promote Law to Limit Planning for Rise in Sea Level | AllGov, June 3, 2012
Cool paving materials helps lower city temperatures, study finds | Environmental News Network, June 4, 2012
Electricity Supply Vulnerable to Climate Change | Climate Desk, June 5, 2012
No Whey!! 'Powder-Free', Convenient Post Workout Fuel Options | Robb Wolf, May 31, 2012
A Primal Primer: Brown Adipose Tissue | Mark's Daily Apple, May 31, 2012
Roasted Cactus Salad with Shrimp | Mark's Daily Apple, June 2, 2012
Sugar Stacks How Much Sugar Is in That? | Sugar Stacks
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