Friday, October 31, 2014

three reasons NOT to eat your veggies

I'm really on a roll with the "refuting paleo authorities" rants, aren't i?  ;-)

Chris Kresser, whom i respected until he got that ol' delusions-of-grandeur disease, has one of his podcasts freshly out -- you know, those ego-massaging audio shows, which begin with WHAT HE ATE FOR BREAKFAST, as if the world hangs breathless, waiting for that august pronouncement....

He, along with Mark, is distinctly pro-veggie because they're so HEAAALTHY (tra-la-la).  He offered three reasons we should all be stuffing our faces with them, so i of course need to offer you three more, proposing that his opinion is a total CROCK [evil grin].

Vegetables (we'll leave fruits in the cellar waiting for their turn at castigation) are full of ANTIOXIDANTS, and OMG, those things are just fabulously spectacularly HEALTHY ... for the plant.  Oh wait -- you mean they don't work AS antioxidants when we eat them???

No, that doesn't seem to be their function.  It SEEMS that they act like OXIDATING agents and that in THIS case that's a good thing!  Because (tongue in cheek here) our own bodies don't make enough oxidants we NEED vegetables to perform this sometimes-toxic operation, so that it prompts our systems to churn out more antioxidants of their own!


Suppose we already have trouble generating enough endogenous (the actually effective kind) antioxidants for our basic needs?  So we eat vegetables that require we produce more than before ... kinda sounds stress-causing to me.  As a matter of fact, this sounds very much like the argument that claims low-carbing makes you hypothyroid, because in a healthy person adding carbs requires that the body produce more hormone to metabolize it.  And the enemy of my enemy is my friend....

Well, if you discount the antioxidants-which-don't-reduce, how 'bout them PHYTONUTRIENTS!!!

Name me one essential phytonutrient.  Lycopene?  A carotenoid which has been found of use in certain illnesses -- I SEE!  This is an argument for Manifest Destiny as well as Intelligent Design because Sky Daddy gave us a disease which we couldn't cure till we learned how to make pizza sauce!!!  He wanted us to discover America, and learn that tomatoes aren't toxic, and make sure they found their way to Italy, and set the chefs to work revolutionizing a peasant bread dish, and ....

OH, you mean a MEDICINAL plant -- we ain't talkin' about HERBS today!  Do you have foxglove with your dinner?  I have absolutely no problem with plants-as-medicine.  I'm talking about "eat real food, mostly plants."

How about RESVERATROL!  What, did you say you can't get significant quantities from "eat real food" -- that you have to concentrate it significantly to show benefit?  AND you say that the benefit from drinking red wine actually comes from the ALCOHOL?  (hehehe)  Well, who'd  'a' thunk it....

Sorry, Chrissy, when you have concentrate plant "nutrients" to get benefits from them, then we're talking about drugs again.

Don't skip that paleo-requirement, of canonizing KAAAAALE -- "it's all about the kale"!  Just THINK about how filling and how full of wonderful minerals kale is!  ...FILLING....  Back in the '80s I tried a super-low-fat diet, filling up on vegetables and lean meat -- big problem there was that my stomach may have been "full" but my appetite certainly wasn't satisfied.  That may be the problem with LFers grazing -- you're full but still hungry on a nutrient level, so as soon as there's room in your stomach you go searching for something to eat that might actually make you feel FED.  Rinse and repeat.

And just think of the fact that kale is also not only full of ANTInutrients (so doesn't do a damned bit of good to eat it raw in a salad or ground up in a smoothie), it's also one of a huge family of GOITROGENS.

So are sweet potatoes and brussels sprouts and sauerkraut and broccoli and cauliflower and ....

Do i have to also list the high-FODMAP vegetables which the Veg Squad so love?


Don't get me wrong -- if YOU like vegetables and they agree with your system, by all means chow down!  I and many other people like me have problems with them, and they are by no stretch of the imagination something we should TRY to consume more of!

It's just another damn case of "it suits me so you have to do it too" that has become so rife in the nutritional world.


  1. Not to mention those phyto "nutrients" are mineral blockers.

  2. Hi Tess

    I see your point, I don't give a toss if someone says they can thrive on a diet of shredded balsa wood and monkey droppings, just don't try to sell it to me. The 'gurus' have to have an edge and an angle, it they are going to earn money from their blog or website, cut them some slack eh. OK I'm in a rare mellow mood, a couple of glasses of good wine and the weekend coming up.

    You and yours have a good weekend.

    Stay cool, regards Eddie

    1. hope you and Jan have a great weekend, too! :-) as i say, if they'd only declare that THEY like healthyfruitsandvegetables, and feel as though they get a lot out of them, i wouldn't care, but these yoyos insist that we ALL ought to eat them, and that we're "obligate omnivores" ... that gets my dander up!!!

  3. I hate the fashion on super-foods. About resveratrol - alcohol increases odds for a female to get a breast cancer, I wonder how many ladies upped their red whine consumption after being brainwashed about antioxidants being "good for you". Normally people haw different sequence of events - they ate a lot of industrial junk, washed it down with soda while sitting on their butts.Then they see the light, start eating more veggies and fruits, run every other day, start cooking "real food" - ta-da! - 20 lb are lost, and the happy life-style changer goes around telling everybody -"eat the real food, fruits and veggies are the key". I cut the amount of fiber, fresh and cooked produce and the amount of exercise. Basically everything could be overdone.

    Vegetables are my pleasure and comfort foods, no more.Like safer thing to eat when you are mindlessly munching while sitting with guests around a table or are having an extra helping of, while I know I am sensitive to the general volume of food, and avoid doing it often. I am hungrier the next day for some reason. I used to eat way more produce before I changed my diet on LC (because I was hungry all the time), I can't report any resulted worsening in health. I also eat less fiber now and can't complain on the result.
    I used to read CK's blog, but canceled my subscription and don't go there anymore. He is very mediocre .

    1. :-) vegetables are great for adding extra flavors and textures to meals -- i personally LIKE them very much. but i have to make sure i don't eat too much of some of them. but they're NOT very satisfying to the appetite. ...adding butter or olive oil to them helps a lot. and the more non-meat foods i eat, the more digestive issues i have!