1338 changed my life! (veganism)

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1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby Xilmi » Sat Apr 05, 2014 7:55 am UTC

Just registered here to say that. Not sure if that's the right place, as there already is a discussion about it someplace else.

The thing is, that I wanted to come here and discuss how this simple diagram completely changed my life since I saw it.


When I first saw it, I couldn't believe it. I never would have even thought that our impact on what animals life would be even close to be that decisive.

I started to do research on that matter and watched countless documentaries about animal-husbandry.

What happened was: The more I saw, the more I got disgusted by the practices applied in there. My research then extended to why one would do this in the first place.


I soon found evidence that most of what I believed about the relationship of humans and animals was plain wrong!

My entire view of how humans are omnivores was torn apart by simple and logic comparison of the anatomy of carnivores, omnivores, herbivores, great-apes and humans.

On top of this I saw documentaries like "Forks over Knifes" and other lectures of Dr. John McDougall, Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn, Dr. Colin Campbell and Dr. John Barnard.

To make it short: I became vegan. And it all started with comic #1338.

Who would have thought a web-comic could have such a massive impact?

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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby Copper Bezel » Sun Apr 06, 2014 3:50 am UTC

Admittedly, although humans are naturally omnivorous, meat makes up a small portion of our original diet and far too much of the modern Western diet, to the point of absurdity. It's also extremely inefficient agriculture, given how much production cost goes into a k-cal of meat compared to a k-cal of plant matter. Do keep in mind, though, that we're still going to have an outsized impact on the biosphere through agriculture even without meat production.

Do you really mean vegan in the strong sense? Meat, eggs, and even milk are wasteful, but that doesn't apply to all animal products, and the idea of veganism has always struck me as sounding too much like a religious prohibition. = /
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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby Xilmi » Sun Apr 06, 2014 7:06 am UTC

Humans are traditionally omniovores. This does not neccessarily make it natural, though.
A comparison of their teeth, digestive system and even instincts with omnivores like bears shows quite significant differences and suggests otherwise.
I don't think I can post links here, because they will be flagged as spam. But for an article I'm referring too here, one can find it by googling: "The Comparative Anatomy Of Eating" by Milton R. Mills, M.D.

The impact on the biosphere was not the main deciding-factor for me. It was just what started myself informing.

One of, if not the greatest issues was the research of people I mentioned in the last post, have conducted regarding the impacts on health.
Caldwell Esselstyn is btw. the guy that Bill Clinton also would refer to, when asked why he went vegan.
They basically healed people from fatal disease by simply changing their diet. The #1 cause of death in the western world, heart-disease and other arteriosclerosis-disease, can not only be prevented but reversed by a dietary change. The #2 cause of death in the western world, cancer, can be drastically cut back aswell.
Also a lot of disease that won't necessarily kill you but will make your life miserable like Diabetes Type 2 or Dementia can be reversed or stopped that simple.

If by "strong sense" you mean "outside of diet", then probably not. I won't try to find out if everything I ever use has been made by using animals. So if my Grandma gifts me a pullover that is made from wool, I wouldn't neglect it. For me it's not a "religious prohibition" it's a change induced by the studying and becoming convinced by the results of other people's research on that issue.

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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby SU3SU2U1 » Mon Apr 07, 2014 5:22 am UTC

A comparison of their teeth, digestive system and even instincts with omnivores like bears shows quite significant differences and suggests otherwise.


This doesn't hold up. Human's don't have fermenting vats like many herbivores, our molars and premolars resemble closely those of pigs (classic omnivores),etc. Our close relative primate species are also omnivores.

But for an article I'm referring too here, one can find it by googling: "The Comparative Anatomy Of Eating" by Milton R. Mills, M.D.


I'd recommend a comparative anatomy text. MDs are experts in medicine, not non-human biology.

The #2 cause of death in the western world, cancer, can be drastically cut back aswell.


Its not at all clear that this is true. The studies regarding cancer and diet are sweeping, often contradictory, and usually fail larger replications.

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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby doogly » Mon Apr 07, 2014 3:15 pm UTC

SU3SU2U1 wrote:
But for an article I'm referring too here, one can find it by googling: "The Comparative Anatomy Of Eating" by Milton R. Mills, M.D.


I'd recommend a comparative anatomy text. MDs are experts in medicine, not non-human biology.

But really, paying attention to what someone's doctorate is actually in is mere quibbling, right?
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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby PolakoVoador » Tue Apr 08, 2014 3:55 pm UTC

Xilmi wrote:Humans are traditionally omniovores. This does not neccessarily make it natural, though.
A comparison of their teeth, digestive system and even instincts with omnivores like bears shows quite significant differences and suggests otherwise.
I don't think I can post links here, because they will be flagged as spam. But for an article I'm referring too here, one can find it by googling: "The Comparative Anatomy Of Eating" by Milton R. Mills, M.D.


I'm not sure about this comparison.

The article claims that omnivores are basically carnivores which developed herbivores traits, and goes on to point which traits bears have, and how humans are so much closer to herbivores. I don't see how this say anything about humans not being omnivores. In fact, our closest relatives, the chimpanzees, share with us some of the mentioned traits and are omnivores.

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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby Diadem » Wed Apr 09, 2014 11:41 am UTC

Omnivore is a broad term. Just because humans are omnivores and today's diet is omnivorous, doesn't mean the ratio of meat to plants is the right one. Perhaps a human can best be described as a herbivore-leaning omnivore, while our current diet is generally more balanced, or even leaning towards carnivorous. For most humans, a diet with less meat would certainly be healthier.

I too was shocked by comic 1338. I always knew humans had a big impact, but I never realized how big. Our meat consumption is certainly one major factor. If we all stopped eating meat the problem of global warming would be solved. Heck, we wouldn't even have to go vegan, just reducing our meat consumption would do the trick.

I'm absolutely part of the problem here. I eat a lot of meat myself. It's an issue I'm really struggling with.
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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby gmalivuk » Wed Apr 09, 2014 6:05 pm UTC

Diadem wrote:Omnivore is a broad term. Just because humans are omnivores and today's diet is omnivorous, doesn't mean the ratio of meat to plants is the right one. Perhaps a human can best be described as a herbivore-leaning omnivore, while our current diet is generally more balanced, or even leaning towards carnivorous. For most humans, a diet with less meat would certainly be healthier.

I too was shocked by comic 1338. I always knew humans had a big impact, but I never realized how big. Our meat consumption is certainly one major factor. If we all stopped eating meat the problem of global warming would be solved. Heck, we wouldn't even have to go vegan, just reducing our meat consumption would do the trick.

I'm absolutely part of the problem here. I eat a lot of meat myself. It's an issue I'm really struggling with.
How would dropping meat solve global warming, exactly?
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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby speising » Wed Apr 09, 2014 6:33 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:
Diadem wrote:Omnivore is a broad term. Just because humans are omnivores and today's diet is omnivorous, doesn't mean the ratio of meat to plants is the right one. Perhaps a human can best be described as a herbivore-leaning omnivore, while our current diet is generally more balanced, or even leaning towards carnivorous. For most humans, a diet with less meat would certainly be healthier.

I too was shocked by comic 1338. I always knew humans had a big impact, but I never realized how big. Our meat consumption is certainly one major factor. If we all stopped eating meat the problem of global warming would be solved. Heck, we wouldn't even have to go vegan, just reducing our meat consumption would do the trick.

I'm absolutely part of the problem here. I eat a lot of meat myself. It's an issue I'm really struggling with.
How would dropping meat solve global warming, exactly?

cow farts.

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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby thoughtfully » Wed Apr 09, 2014 7:20 pm UTC

There's amazing inefficiencies in livestock production all over. There'd be a lot of fuel savings from simplified logistcs, too. We'd be pumping a lot less water, and maybe some trees could be planted with all the acreage we'd save by not feeding forty percent of argicultural output to middlebeasts, of the trees we cut down to make pasture.

Yee Olde Intarwebs wrote:FAO's report found the biggest source of emissions was in feed production and processing—around 45 percent of the total—while animal gases accounted for around 39 percent.
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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby gmalivuk » Wed Apr 09, 2014 7:25 pm UTC

Right, so livestock farming makes up 14.5% of all human-caused GHG emissions. How is that going to "solve" the problem of global warming?
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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby thoughtfully » Wed Apr 09, 2014 7:33 pm UTC

That's not my claim. There's no single magic bullet, as anyone who's been paying attention should know. But it does go a long way, and suggests that even cutting back can have an impact, without being so onerous as giving meat up completely.

It depends on defining the problem, too. Is ending all greenhouse gas emissions going to end the problem? We've got surplus CO2 in the air now that's hanging around for millenia, regardless of what we do, short of dramatic reacquisition. A fifteen percent reduction might be the right threshold for avoiding some tipping point, although I'm not aware of it.
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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby gmalivuk » Wed Apr 09, 2014 7:52 pm UTC

thoughtfully wrote:That's not my claim.
You posted it after my question about how dropping meat would solve global warming and speising's answer of "cow farts", so I thought it was in direct response to that.
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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby Diadem » Wed Apr 09, 2014 8:00 pm UTC

gmalivuk wrote:Right, so livestock farming makes up 14.5% of all human-caused GHG emissions. How is that going to "solve" the problem of global warming?

Ok 'solve' is perhaps an overstatement. Though 14.5% is a huge factor, and it's not like emissions have to go to 0 to solve the problem (though recent reports suggest they will have to be cut quite drastically, which is scary, because I don't see that happening anytime soon). Just removing meat consumption without any other changes won't quite cut it, if we use your figure, but combined with the already existing trend of moving towards greener energy, we'd go a very long way.

I've always understood the contribution of meat eating to be much higher than 14.5% by the way. Where did you get that figure from? Does it include indirection contributions from meat consumption, like transportation or food animals have to eat?

And let's not forget the many other benefits it would have. Deforestation would become much less of a problem, we'd save a lot of water, and a lot of the agricultural land we'd save can be perhaps be used to produce biofuels.
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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby gmalivuk » Wed Apr 09, 2014 8:02 pm UTC

I got that figure from the page thoughtfully just linked to.
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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby thoughtfully » Wed Apr 09, 2014 8:13 pm UTC

It's a quote from a report by the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, although the link is to commentary, not the actual report. It doesn't cite the report, but it seems to be this one.
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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby The Geoff » Fri Apr 11, 2014 2:42 pm UTC

As so often, people are making the mistake of linking a general lifestyle with the food we eat.

If all 7Bn people on the planet switch to a vegan diet, AND stop driving cars, AND make buying decisions which drive mass-transit trade out of business AND only buy local foods AND only have one child per family etc etc etc, then yes, maybe it will have a significant impact on anthropogenic climate change.

But it's not the veganism. It's the whole thing, and all the vegans/veggies I know love their imported legumes, talking about it on fossil-fueled computers and driving to the local organic farm.

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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby Xilmi » Sat Apr 12, 2014 12:19 am UTC

While the ecological concerns kinda triggered starting my research on that matter, it now actually only resides on the 4th position of my reasons to make that decision for me.

I will not claim that anything I found out is the one and only truth. Because my definition of truth is: "A believe that everyone shares.", which, when looking at the numbers of believers, in this case apparently is not even close.

So I, of course, can only give pointers to the stuff that was enough to convinced me.

I can name a few of the things I watched, read or listened to.
Of course, it will only come as convincing for people who already are biased to think in that direction.

Documentaries:
"Forks over Knifes"
"Earthlings"

Books:
"The china study"

Lectures from:
John McDougall
Caldwyn Esselstyn
Neal Barnard
Melanie Joy (super-interesting because it sheds light on the psychological aspects and I personally like psychological stuff)
(just put the names in youtube)

thoughtfully wrote:[...]without being so onerous as giving meat up completely.

Personally I didn't feel it to be onerous at all. It was more of a big relieve than anything else. I miss nothing. Not even the things I thought I would.

I know that changing myself won't change much about the overall situation but I still am kinda happy about having made that step. So thanks again xkcd for the initial spark! :)

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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby eSOANEM » Sat Apr 12, 2014 8:46 am UTC

Xilmi wrote:Because my definition of truth is: "A believe that everyone shares.",


This is a very bad definition of truth. Under it, it is true that women cannot throw, it's true that having more than about 15% women in a business situation is over-representation and it is not true that the earth goes around the sun.

This definition of truth endorses ancient oppressive and just-plain-wrong bullshit and helps perpetuate it. It's evil. Change it.
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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby Xilmi » Sat Apr 12, 2014 10:46 am UTC

eSOANEM wrote:It's evil. Change it.

Well, how would you go about it, if I said the very same thing about eating animals?
People usually are quite reluctant to adopting an idea if it is presented in a way that challenges their believes.
A spark of awarness to make people think about something and let them come to their own conclusion is a way better approach than telling them what they believe is wrong and trying to force your own conclusions upon them.

Of course I think that my believe is the truth since otherwise it would not be my believe.

But guess what: So does everyone else! Whether you like it or not.

Maybe I didn't word my idea right. There are two kinds of truths. You personal truth, which essentially is what you believe, and the absolute truth, of which I spoke earlier.
In the majority of cases your personal truth will be the same as the personal truth of many others. A shared believe. And of course, to generalize one can say that if a majority shares the same believes, it is extremely likely that this believe actually is the absolute truth.

But how am I supposed to act if I think that my minority-believe is the good and thus the truth? Should I just discard this believe because everyone else thinks otherwise? I really don't want to do that! What I can do is telling why I came to that believe and hope that maybe some people can relate. Of course they can tell me how they came to their believe aswell. I will accept that and not try to force mine upon them.

Also your examples of what my definition implies is not what I meant.

It meant: If there's people who do not believe in something, it cannot be concluded to be the absolute truth. This, of course does not mean that the opposite to the common believe is the truth either.
That would actually be ridiculous! It means that neither believe can be said to be the truth and kinda puts "what the truth is" in a pending situation. I do not see how this would endorse ancient oppresive behaviour at all.
All it means is: If there is no concensus, noone can claim the truth.

It is absolutely impossible that following my definition of truth something like "Woman can't throw." could ever be claimed to be the truth!

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Re: 1338 changed my life!

Postby eSOANEM » Sat Apr 12, 2014 11:07 am UTC

Xilmi wrote:Also your examples of what my definition implies is not what I meant.

It meant: If there's people who do not believe in something, it cannot be concluded to be the absolute truth. This, of course does not mean that the opposite to the common believe is the truth either.
That would actually be ridiculous! It means that neither believe can be said to be the truth and kinda puts "what the truth is" in a pending situation. I do not see how this would endorse ancient oppresive behaviour at all.
All it means is: If there is no concensus, noone can claim the truth.

It is absolutely impossible that following my definition of truth something like "Woman can't throw." could ever be claimed to be the truth!


In that case, the definition you posted was very different from what you meant because everything I said it entailed is logically entailed from the definition as posted.
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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby gmalivuk » Sat Apr 12, 2014 1:10 pm UTC

No, strictly speaking Xilmi's definition would imply that we can't conclude it's an absolute truth that women can throw (because some people believe they cannot), but we likewise can't conclude it's an absolute truth that women cannot throw (because some people believe they can).

Still a pretty silly definition, though, because by that definition it is impossible for everyone to be wrong about something, and it's possible for supposedly "absolute" truth to change based on what people believe. So at some time in the past, it indeed was "true" that the sun went around the earth, because everyone believed that. Now of course that is no longer "true", because most people believe differently, but neither is it true that the Earth goes around the sun, because some people believe differently.
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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby Ormurinn » Sat Apr 12, 2014 5:09 pm UTC

Most people eating a western diet won't get healthier eating less meat.

In the ancestral environment (hunter-gathering) meat made up the majority of calories consumed. We can see that in still extant hunter-gatherers like the san. Europeans have approx. 9% Neanderthal DNA, and Neanderthals were even more carnivorous.

The increase in calorie density caused by switching to a meat-based diet is what enabled the Homo genus to develop larger brains - the metabolic load of a larger brain was counteracted by the gut shrinking, as food was easier to digest. Comparing the gut lengths of humans to other primates demonstrates this.

There is a convincing argument to be made that of the meat consumed in a western diet, too much is muscle meat and too little is offal - however, your body is optimized to get >50% of it's calories from meat, assuming it adapted to the ancestral environment.

Amongst those adaptions are the human gut containing receptors for haem-iron, which is only present in animal flesh, extension of the scapulae and collarbone for throwing, psychological adaptions for hunting, loss of the ability to produce vitamin B12 (because it was so abundant in consumed prey), and a locomotive system adapted for persistence hunting. That's hardly an exhaustive list.

It's possible, assuming you are willing to eat all offal and a wide variety of meats, to be in peak physical condition on a diet solely of meat - the inuit do so, and theres a study floating around somewhere with a guy eating their traditional diet whilst undergoing repeated bloodwork. On the other hand, it's impossible to have good health on a completely vegan diet without supplementation - your body will lack iron and B12 at a minimum, and you'll likely be deficient in many other vitamins due to antinutrients.

Longditudinal studies showing health gains from vegetarianism make more sense if they're interpreted as vegetarianism causing people to pay more attention to their diet in general than they otherwise would. Vegetarians also tend to be wealthier and of higher social class.

If you really want to improve your health, cut out refined carbohydrates - not only were they not present in the ancestral environment, they're also a real killer when it comes to diabetes.
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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby eSOANEM » Sat Apr 12, 2014 5:13 pm UTC

Ah, I'd assumed "everyone" was used figuratively. I apologise.
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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby Xilmi » Sat Apr 12, 2014 10:18 pm UTC

@Ormurinn: I actually did cut out refined carbohydrates aswell and same goes for oil. Basically anything that has a higher calory-density than starchy plants.

Other than the B12-issue I really find very little that after studying the material of the aformentioned Doctors-quartett of McDougall, Esselstyn, Barnard and Campbell, where I could agree with you.

So we now have a typical case of differing truths, I guess. :D

Incase diabetes is something that interests you, you might want to look for Dr. Barnards lecture about it's cause and treatment. Very inspiring stuff.

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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby Ormurinn » Sun Apr 13, 2014 3:20 pm UTC

Xilmi wrote:@Ormurinn: I actually did cut out refined carbohydrates aswell and same goes for oil. Basically anything that has a higher calory-density than starchy plants.

Other than the B12-issue I really find very little that after studying the material of the aformentioned Doctors-quartett of McDougall, Esselstyn, Barnard and Campbell, where I could agree with you.

So we now have a typical case of differing truths, I guess. :D

Incase diabetes is something that interests you, you might want to look for Dr. Barnards lecture about it's cause and treatment. Very inspiring stuff.


Okedoke, whatever works for you.

I have to admit to being alarmed that you've cut out oil - your body does need fat - at a bare minimum you need saturated fat for hormone synthesis, and many vitamins are fat soluble.

But then my ideal diet is primarily meat and fish, with a generous helping of fats, fresh veg and minimal carbohydrates. Alas, I rarely live up to it.

Type 2 diabetes is caused by insulin sensitivity, which is caused by insulin spikes from sugars and carbohydrates. There's been quite a bit of success treating it with ketogenic diets, which are typically very meat rich. I was actually going to mention it in my initial post. Were just not built for grains and potatoes (but they're so damn cheap!)
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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby gmalivuk » Sun Apr 13, 2014 3:22 pm UTC

Yeah, cutting out oil is probably a bad move unless you're continuing to eat fatty plant products directly.
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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby Izawwlgood » Sun Apr 13, 2014 3:41 pm UTC

Ormurinn wrote:If you really want to improve your health, cut out refined carbohydrates - not only were they not present in the ancestral environment, they're also a real killer when it comes to diabetes.
In addition to everything else you wrote in that post, I want to really underline this point. Ormurinn is spot on here.

If you're going vegan for ETHICAL reasons, there are other things to discuss. If you're doing anything at all to your diet for health reasons, you need to read Ormurinn's post and make educated decisions based on that information.

OP; you've twice now referenced the same set of studies and ignored valid criticism against at least one of them. You don't sound interested in pursuing information as much as supporting your position.
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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby SU3SU2U1 » Sun Apr 13, 2014 7:29 pm UTC

Ormurinn wrote:In the ancestral environment (hunter-gathering) meat made up the majority of calories consumed. We can see that in still extant hunter-gatherers like the san.


Hunter-gatherer diets today have a huge variation. The inuit get > 90% of their calories from meat and fish, the !kung get < 15% of their calories from meat and fish. The joys of being omnivorous- a wide variety of diets can provide what we need.

The increase in calorie density caused by switching to a meat-based diet is what enabled the Homo genus to develop larger brains - the metabolic load of a larger brain was counteracted by the gut shrinking, as food was easier to digest. Comparing the gut lengths of humans to other primates demonstrates this.


I'm not sure the expensive tissue hypothesis can be the whole story to brain development. After all- neurons require glucose, not protein or fat, for proper functioning.

however, your body is optimized to get >50% of it's calories from meat, assuming it adapted to the ancestral environment.


That assumption is a pretty big one, and seems pretty unlikely to hold. Ten thousand+ years of agriculture have probably caused some changes.

If you really want to improve your health, cut out refined carbohydrates - not only were they not present in the ancestral environment, they're also a real killer when it comes to diabetes.


Really, any heavily processed foods can probably be cut. Processed meats are also pretty terrible for you.

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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby Izawwlgood » Sun Apr 13, 2014 8:06 pm UTC

SU3SU2U1 wrote: After all- neurons require glucose, not protein or fat, for proper functioning.
Neurons are extremely reliant, perhaps more so than any other tissue, on proper lipid metabolism. They are of course also the most metabolically active cells in the body.

SU3SU2U1 wrote:That assumption is a pretty big one, and seems pretty unlikely to hold. Ten thousand+ years of agriculture have probably caused some changes.
Such as? Aside from holding onto lactase longer?
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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby Xilmi » Mon Apr 14, 2014 11:29 pm UTC

Ormurinn wrote:I have to admit to being alarmed that you've cut out oil - your body does need fat - at a bare minimum you need saturated fat for hormone synthesis, and many vitamins are fat soluble.

There's fat is in almost everything. For the stuff I like to eat now, I heared fat contributes to about 6-15% of its calories. Going lower than that would be pretty hard as you'd run out of food options.
Also 6-15% is totally sufficient for my hormone-synthesis- and vitamins-soluing-needs.

Ormurinn wrote:Type 2 diabetes is caused by insulin sensitivity, which is caused by insulin spikes from sugars and carbohydrates. There's been quite a bit of success treating it with ketogenic diets, which are typically very meat rich. I was actually going to mention it in my initial post. Were just not built for grains and potatoes (but they're so damn cheap!)

I think you mean Insulin insensitivity, which means that the cells won't accept the sugar from the blood despite a high level of insulin.
According to Dr. Barnard high blood sugar is the result but not the reason of this insensitivity.

I personally don't think that putting the body to a permanent state of ketosis is such a good idea. But if you can thrive on it, I can't argue with it.

I just can say that I feel really good on my starchy (grains and potatoes :O ) and fruity new diet aswell.

@gmalivuk: Why are you all so obsessed about fat? Have you ever known someone who suffered from a fat-deficiency? oO
Today I ordered Croquettes with rice for lunch and they somehow managed to drown the rice in oil. I ate it but found it to be really disgusting. Won't order this again from them for sure.

@Izawwlgood: Ethical and Health-reasons are about equally important for me in that matter.

Also I think my decisions already are quite educated as I've watched, listened to and read material days worth of study in the past month. It's not like a single forum-post contradicting it, adds anything I haven't heared of before.

I think you must be speaking about the critics that were raised against the china-study.
I read both the critics and the counter-agruments to the critics.

An important role as to why I see little reason to doubt much about the information I got is because of the people who promote it.
That's also the reason why I dared to bring them up several times.

We are talking about men in their 70s and 80s who speak on stages about what they think is a healthy diet while actually looking quite healthy themselves without taking any kind of medication.
When I compare those to my grandparents who all take heavy medication, two of which suffer from noticeable dementia, one of them already passed away, I know who's advice on health I'd rather listen to.

If there's other ways to age well and healthy, that's fine too, of course. But as I initially said, there's yet another point speaking for that diet besides health-concerns. I learned to avoid it in debate because people tend to get really emotional about it. But that doesn't mean my decision was not heavily affected by it.

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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby The Geoff » Tue Apr 15, 2014 7:58 pm UTC

SU3SU2U1 wrote:Hunter-gatherer diets today have a huge variation. The inuit get > 90% of their calories from meat and fish, the !kung get < 15% of their calories from meat and fish. The joys of being omnivorous- a wide variety of diets can provide what we need.


This is, to me at least, one of the most important points raised. Many fad diets these days take an indiginous (ie "natural", "sustainable" and therefore "better") diet and assume it's suitable for people with completely different lifestyles in countries with vastly different climates.

An historical case: Rabbit starvation - when the Brits started colonising the Hudson Bay region they carried on eating as they had at home, trimming the fat from meat and discarding the offal and brains. They did this without having a supplemental diet of fish, veg etc and because they weren't getting the fat calories and fat soluble nutrients some died of malnutrition with full stomachs while surrounded by butchered meat.

And on lifestyle alone, an innuit diet (high fat/nutrient ratio) works if you're burning through 6k calories a day, but if you're sitting around in a London office then you're never going to be able to burn all the calories you'd need to get adequate nutrient intake.

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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Apr 15, 2014 8:29 pm UTC

Xilmi wrote:Also I think my decisions already are quite educated as I've watched, listened to and read material days worth of study in the past month. It's not like a single forum-post contradicting it, adds anything I haven't heared of before.
No, again, your responses seem to be based on supporting something you believe in, instead of critically evaluating what's being said.

Xilmi wrote:Ethical and Health-reasons are about equally important for me in that matter.
Meh, then buy local farm raised cage free hormone free products. I don't eat a ton of meat, but I buy from mostly local vendors, happily paying extra to do so. That's why i said ethical and health reasons are separate issues; there's an easy solution to the mistreatment of animals, just buy from butchers that treat their animals well.

Xilmi wrote:An important role as to why I see little reason to doubt much about the information I got is because of the people who promote it.
That's also the reason why I dared to bring them up several times.
I don't know why you think this is true; the people promoting the information you linked are invested in supporting a belief/position, and naturally, are pushing it. That's why people have linked other information for you, with the hopes that you critically evaluate it, and come to a conclusion based on all the facts, not just the one's presented to you to support their hypothesis.

Xilmi wrote:We are talking about men in their 70s and 80s who speak on stages about what they think is a healthy diet while actually looking quite healthy themselves without taking any kind of medication.
When I compare those to my grandparents who all take heavy medication, two of which suffer from noticeable dementia, one of them already passed away, I know who's advice on health I'd rather listen to.
This is anecdotal. A decade ago, people assured you that caloric restriction would increase your lifespan, and we saw a bunch of gaunt, lethargic, 90 pound dudes claiming they were going to live forever.

Take in all the data. Reach logical conclusions.
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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby Schrollini » Tue Apr 15, 2014 9:18 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:there's an easy solution to the mistreatment of animals, just buy from butchers that treat their animals well.

It's not so crazy to consider the killing of an healthy animal "mistreatment". And if this is your position, I don't see any logical conclusion other than vegetarianism. (Well, I guess you could eat only diseased animals....)

I don't mean to suggest that drawing an ethical distinction between humanely raised and slaughtered animals and those factory-farmed is wrong. That's an equally fine premise, and the conclusion you reach is perfectly logical as well.

But Xilmi has not (I think) told us which ethical premises they're starting with, so it's a bit premature to state the conclusions they should reach.
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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby gmalivuk » Tue Apr 15, 2014 9:39 pm UTC

Schrollini wrote:It's not so crazy to consider the killing of an healthy animal "mistreatment". And if this is your position, I don't see any logical conclusion other than vegetarianism.
Yeah, and I think this point is missed too often in these discussions, frequently because the most powerful imagery used by the animal-rights crowd is usually about how animals are treated in industrial farming. But most vegetarians I know don't merely object to cruel farm conditions, they object to unnecessarily killing animals for food in itself. Vegans go farther and object to using anything taken from an animal, even if it didn't require any killing. Those objections can remain even if the animals live wonderful healthy lives the rest of the time.
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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby Izawwlgood » Tue Apr 15, 2014 10:00 pm UTC

Granted, but I always felt that if your position was 'eating animals or animal products, period, is morally wrong', then there's not much point to discussing the healthful aspects of a meatless diet. I'm not disputing that line of reasoning, as anyone who holds that killing animals for food is wrong isn't going to be swayed by arguments about how healthful eating some animals in some ways can be, which is why I separated the two arguments from the get go.

To be open about it, I think there are generally three arguments people make for vegetarianism/veganism, the ethics of killing animals, the ethics of a wasteful industry, and the diet. I think the first two are extremely valid discussion paths, that pose strong arguments in favor of vegetarianism/veganism, while I think diet is not.
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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby SU3SU2U1 » Tue Apr 15, 2014 11:07 pm UTC

Regarding evolutionary changes since the dawn of agriculture:

Izawwlgood wrote:Such as? Aside from holding onto lactase longer?


Smaller heads/brains, more gracile skeletons, shorter teeth,etc.

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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby Xilmi » Tue Apr 15, 2014 11:13 pm UTC

Izawwlgood wrote:No, again, your responses seem to be based on supporting something you believe in, instead of critically evaluating what's being said.

Of course my response is based on supporting something I believe in.
You suggest that when I was evaluating different opinions I was biased towards the arguments I wanted to believe in? I cannot deny that. I am guitly of being biased.

So I might totally have fallen to a big fraud initiated by the wheat, rice, potato, lentils, radishes, carrots, strawberry, apple and banana industry, trying to find clever ways to promote their malnutritious products. :(

Izawwlgood wrote:butchers that treat their animals well.

I don't know, but to me something does not seem quite right about that combination of words.

Also to me the savest solution to avoid mistreating animals, even if it is only by mistake or lack of knowledge, seems not trying to treat them in the first place.
I mean, sure, if they come to you and seem like asking to be petted or scratched and you are up to that aswell, then it probably is okay.

Izawwlgood wrote:I don't know why you think this is true; the people promoting the information you linked are invested in supporting a belief/position, and naturally, are pushing it.

I believe that it is true because their position appealed to me in the first place, they did not seem to have any financial interest, what they said made sense to me, they look very healthy for their age, they do what they tell others to do since a couple of decades and, of course, because they tell nice catchy success-stories of patients they have treated.
If they are fraud, then I'm in the same boat as Bill Clinton, who also foolishly believed that listening to Dr. Esselstyn would be a good idea.

Izawwlgood wrote:That's why people have linked other information for you, with the hopes that you critically evaluate it, and come to a conclusion based on all the facts, not just the one's presented to you to support their hypothesis.

Well, if information from different sources not only disagrees but actually contradicts, then you are kinda forced to root for one or the other. That's what I did. I picked the one that seemed to suite my belief-system better. My choice might seem to be the wrong one from your perspective. I understand that. But I am willing to believe that it is the right one for me. If I'm right it will have saved many lives and even if I'm wrong this will still be the case with the exclusion of only my own.

@Schrollini: My ethical premise is really, really simple. It's called "golden rule".

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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby gmalivuk » Tue Apr 15, 2014 11:23 pm UTC

Xilmi wrote:@Schrollini: My ethical premise is really, really simple. It's called "golden rule".
Except that it's not so simple, because I guarantee you don't apply it to animals the same way you apply it to humans.
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Re: 1338 changed my life! (veganism)

Postby Izawwlgood » Wed Apr 16, 2014 2:51 am UTC

Xilmi wrote:So I might totally have fallen to a big fraud initiated by the wheat, rice, potato, lentils, radishes, carrots, strawberry, apple and banana industry, trying to find clever ways to promote their malnutritious products. :(
I'm not suggesting it's a conspiracy, just that you're not paying attention to the full picture. As I mentioned, I'm fine with you claiming you don't want to result in the harm of animal life, and feel that being vegan is the way to do that, but I have a hard time then swallowing incomplete nutritional data as a means for supporting your ethical position. Do you understand what I'm contesting? Again, I'm not calling your sources wrong, or frauds.

Xilmi wrote:I don't know, but to me something does not seem quite right about that combination of words.

Also to me the savest solution to avoid mistreating animals, even if it is only by mistake or lack of knowledge, seems not trying to treat them in the first place.
I mean, sure, if they come to you and seem like asking to be petted or scratched and you are up to that aswell, then it probably is okay.
At the risk of sounding like I'm being rude to you, I find this position fairly naive. You must understand that the animals listed in that comic are in fact the product of thousands of years of breeding by man. They are not 'natural' animals, and most of them will fare extremely poorly in the wild. I agree that we should treat them ethically and humanely, but I don't for a second hold that that precludes eating them. If you want to argue against using animals at all for anything, I think that is a very difficult argument to make, and is suggesting a fairly 'unnatural', to use the parlance fallen back on by your line of argumentation, state of affairs.

Xilmi wrote:My ethical premise is really, really simple. It's called "golden rule".
Yeah, as gmal pointed out, this is hardly valid here. Animals are not people, they do not have the same range of emotions or thoughts that we do, and they are not subject to the same moral or ethical axioms we are.
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