Sunday, August 10, 2014

Yay, Meat?

Yesterday, a friend of mine posted this article with the comment, "Yay, meat!"

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-2105132/Damn-low-fat-diet-How-reformed-vegan-John-Nicholson-gorges-foods-granny-enjoyed--felt-better.html?utm_content=buffere3a6d&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer#ixzz34kcKvCSc

Now, I know my friend was poking fun at me, since I'm vegan, but I did skim and comment about this article.  I wanted to share my comments with you, because I honestly think this is an extremely important subject.  Articles like the one above abound right now, and I think they are doing the general public a great disservice.

How's that working for you, Paula?


Anyhoo, here's what I wrote:

Now that I've had time to skim this article (forgive me if I misunderstood anything; it's late and I only skimmed the article-- I'll read it in more depth later):

Yep. Of course his health sucked. His health sucked for the reason a lot of vegans' he
alth sucks-- they have a horrible diet full of processed foods, lots of starch/sugar, and extremely imbalanced nutrition. Meat or no meat, if your diet looks like that, you're going to be sick. Meat is neither necessarily the problem nor the solution. A bad diet is a bad diet, whatever camp it's in.

What bothers me about articles like this is that they are HIGHLY unscientific (quoting the Weston A. Price society is pretty much a dead giveaway of an uninformed individual) and that they basically come to a conclusion that has nothing to do with the problem with what they were doing before. Eating meat did not make him better. Getting more nutrition did. Fried food and lard is not a secret to good health, as it appears he's implying. I believe this sort of article is very misleading to the general public, and is how really dumb ideas about nutrition get started.

Bottom line: Just because you're vegan, or not vegan, or low-fat, or high-fat, or however it is you eat, does not mean you're healthy. Your diet needs to have the right balance of nutrition and energy. It should come as much from nature as possible. It should have a LOT of vegetables. Beyond that, it's up to you how you approach it. If your system works for you, it works for you. 

OK, that's all. Getting off my soapbox now. G'night.

I hope this clarifies some things for you guys about this subject.  People are so eager to jump on a bandwagon-- ANY bandwagon-- thinking it's the solution to all that ails them.  Downing "lots of lard, beef dripping, butter, cream and full-fat milk" is not going to save anyone.  

On a side note, I am a moral vegan, which means that the reason I don't eat meat has nothing to do with nutrition.  This lifestyle is extremely important to me, but I do realize that it can be difficult to balance if you don't understand nutrition.  I have made it work extremely well for me, as have many others.  Does that mean it's for everyone?  No, not necessarily.  But it did make me a little sad to see that these people turned vegan for moral reasons and then went against their morality to "fix" their diet-- and, of course, to sell a £12.99 book about it.  Coincidence?  I think not.

You can try using an online nutrition calculator to get an idea about your nutritional intake (like this one:  http://nutritiondata.self.com/ ).  Blood tests can be helpful, too.  If your diet is making you sick, clearly something needs to change.  But it doesn't necessarily mean you need to start munching on sticks of butter.

Questions?  Comments?  Post 'em here!

1 comment:

  1. I agree so much with everything you said here. People tend to jump to the conclusion that eating vegan, no matter how you do it, is automatically really healthy - that's not necessarily true. If you eat lots of processed stuff, or you lean too heavy on the carbs and have a very low fat diet with no good fats either, you aren't going to be healthy, even if you're vegan. There is so much misunderstanding around veganism, nutrition, and what a healthy diet looks like, and that's how people get all of these messed up ideas in the first place, and how they can see huge results when they change it, and then how they start proclaiming their new diet to be healthy and never look at WHY their old one was so bad. You said all of this better than I could have, but this post is just too perfect not to comment on!

    ReplyDelete