Sunday, August 19, 2012

adventures in questionable nutrition

It's a grey morning and my husband is still out of town, so i'm reveling in that wonderfully self-indulgent treasure so precious and rare to people like me....

NO, i didn't pull out some hoarded treat!  ;-)  I'm talking about QUIET, about opportunity for thought with no distractions.  At this time of day, even the dog is still and undemanding.

I'm looking back on the last few weeks and assessing progress, summing up the lessons that life has sent.  An' ya know what?  Well-being, for me, seems to be mostly about the gastrointestinal tract.  Aside from allergic annoyances (which definitely have an interaction with the microbiota), what discombobulates my body most is an upset of the system which is dependent upon what gets fed through the input valve.  The right animal flesh runs the biological mechanism very well indeed; the wrong plant matter presages a fuel-line or combustion problem.

I think back to the Salad of Doom, and to the difference between the Indulgent Anniversary Dinner and the Decadent Anniversary Snack, and things seem so simple....

Since that time, in the last half of the twentieth century, when it was pointed out that some of the favorite vegetables in the western diet in fact contained less vitaminsandminerals than people thought, first "fiber" and then "antioxidants" became the rallying cry for the "goodness" of healthyfruitsandvegetables.  What are we finding out now?  That fiber is unnecessary, and that antioxidants seem to work through a mild form of poisoning (aka hormesis).  Technically, we don't need this junk.

That beautiful big healthy salad (which DID taste good) made me feel crummy for a solid week.  The wicked and self-indulgent carbs (rice and sugar, a tiny bit of wheat), eaten in small quantities in the company of plenty of lovely raw (and cooked) meat, were minimally harmful.  Food and drink which are "innocent" under the right circumstances are problematic when consumed incorrectly.

Sorry it's not more original, but ... the dose DOES make the poison.  Get what nourishes you first (steak tartare in this case, but oysters work well too), and the asparagus and spinach, AND sugar (as a "garnish," not as a "full course") aren't going to hurt you as much.


  1. I have (well, had) mild IBS which used to alternate between constipation and the alternative (ahem) back when I was eating carbs. I inherited this problem down the maternal mitochondrial DNA line (mother has rather bad IBS-D). My digestion was always terrible, no matter what I did I couldn't get rid of the constipation, the loud gastric noises, the upset stomach. The worst I ever felt in my life was when I ate wheat bran cereal for breakfast for a couple of months (I only did this stupid thing because I was given medical advice to do so). At that stage I was doubled over in pain many mornings. Then finally I read GCBC and completely eliminated plant food with the exception of a bit of nuts and berries. I have no symptoms of IBS anymore. I only get them now if I cheat on my diet. It has been a lifesaver.

    I firmly believe starch and fibre are poison, only people with bowels of steel don't notice how bad the stuff is until they get older and bowel function starts to deteriorate.

  2. elimination/reintroduction have really taught me a lot about dietary tolerance!