Friday, February 26, 2016

so what should we DO about stress?

For a really outstanding book, "Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers" ends pretty weakly.  The author did a great job of everything except the very last chapter -- hell, the guy even managed to make the "notes" section interesting.  Too bad the big shorcoming was the chapter in which he promised to give us some good advice about how to deal with our stress.

Amusingly, it kinda reminded me of a facebook disagreement i got into with some bro in the (you guessed it) ZC group;  he had just discovered "Deep Nutrition" and thought it was the greatest thing since sliced bacon!  I commented that I was disappointed with it.  Not that Dr. Shanahan didn't have interesting stories to tell and points to make (which are actually in just about every other ancestral/paleo book i've ever read, and most blogs as well);  the big problem is that unless the start of your life was on the ideal side, there's only so much you can do about your future.  I pointed out that, if one has not reproduced yet, there's still time to give your kids what you might not have had, but that an old broad like me is more or less screwed.

And so it is for the stressed amongst us -- we wouldn't BE stressed if we didn't have the genetic and conditioned predisposition, after all!  The best chance to enjoy a life in which the troubles are viewed as challenges and the failures roll off our backs, IS TO HAVE BEEN BORN INTO A STABLE, HEALTHY, SOCIALLY-ACCEPTED, WELL-OFF FAMILY IN THE FIRST PLACE.  I don't know about you, but i haven't figured out that can be arranged -- even with a time-machine there would be a lot of difficulties to overcome.

In fact, the best advice i've found for managing stress came from "Why Isn't My Brain Working," "The Magnesium Miracle," and the inkling i got from a magazine, many years ago, that B-vitamins can be helpful.  Then, there are a few little tricks that i've learned on my own, which i'll return to later.

WZDGU doesn't really suggest anything that we haven't heard a million times before.  Exercise, meditation, social support, therapy....  The best thing about this chapter, though, is that the guy has a practical mind and a sense of proportion.  He says this stuff CAN help, but he cites the work of a couple of his favorite researchers about the shortcomings of each approach.

"When do these principles [...] work and when are they disastrous to apply?  There are some rules."  Exercise is good ...if you like the activity and want to do it; otherwise it's -- ahem -- even more stressful.  Meditation works for those who choose to do it, WHILE it's being done -- beyond that, nobody really knows.  This is one of those things that you can't really study in a randomized trial with a control group;  how would you tell people NOT to sit quietly and reflect, which is basically what meditation IS?

A sense of control and predictability are discussed at length and widely shown in human and animal studies to be helpful in minimizing stress reactions, but in real life their practicality is limited.  If you could predict and exert control, you wouldn't be unprepared for X, or stuck in a traffic jam because some idiot ahead got in a wreck, now would you?  ;-)  And as i wrote the other day, believing one has some control may be good for minor stressors -- if it isn't illusory -- but it's horrible in catastrophic ones.

"Having an illusory sense of control in a bad setting can be so pathogenic that one version of it gets a special name in the health psychology literature. ... As described by Sherman James of Duke University, it is called John Henryism. ... John Henryism involves the belief that any and all demands can be vanquished, so long as you work hard enough."  Trouble is, this only potentially works in a meritocratic system.  In modern America, for less-privileged classes or in other biased systems, it doesn't.  People have been known to literally work themselves to death -- hence the name.

"The realm of stress management is mostly about techniques to help deal with challenges that are less than disastrous."  Some people CAN cope magnificently in the face of catastrophe, but that's an n=1 situation -- "that’s never grounds for turning to the person next to them in the same boat and offering that as a feel-good incentive just to get with the program. Bad science, bad clinical practice, and, ultimately, bad ethics."

"Social support," too, may be counterproductive, as when one's networks are not truly supportive.  I'm sure we've all gone to someone for comfort -- a pat on the back, an encouraging word, a shoulder to cry on -- and experienced the emotional equivalent of a bucket of icewater in the face.  Some poor devils really learn who their true friends are the hard way.  Religion and spirituality, though of use to some people is completely out of the question for others.  It can't even be studied properly -- any retrospective is questionable and far from objective.  Prospectively ... well, how do you assign your randomized groups and get them to believe in something on demand?

According to the author, learning to respond flexibly seems to be the only solid foundation when it comes to coping:  if what you try first isn't doing it for you, doing the same thing MORE is unlikely to improve the situation;  the patient must shift gears and try something different if s/he wants different results.

"Physical stressor, you want to activate a stress-response; psychological stressor, you don’t."  It seems to me that glucocorticoids for physical stressors is kinda like an insulin-response -- you want a low baseline, and when the need arises you want ENOUGH but not too much, and you want a quick recovery.

He doesn't tell how to do that.

I've found a few tweaks, though.  If your start in life wasn't ideal -- and i'm willing to bet that the vast majority of us did NOT have that privilege -- the very first thing to do is become nutrient-replete.  Being short of any nutritional requirement will cause undue physical stress.  Magnesium, particularly, gets chewed up at a faster rate when we're stressed, as well as B-vitamins.  I think the carb-craving that comes upon people when life is crazy is actually a hunger for B-something.

When during the last year, i was suffering some pretty nasty stress, i consulted "Why Isn't My Brain Working?" -- a book which DOES offer some very sound suggestions from the point of view of a DHSc and DC who has clinical experience.  Working from his suggestions, i found a supplement which supplied a little GABA as well as its precursors, and got a lot of relief.  The book has LOTS of supplement suggestions along with a discussion on various nutrients and neurotransmitters they support.

As described before, magnesium helped me significantly this winter too, at about twice the RDA's suggested dosage.  It's VERY easy to get into a vicious stress-circle, wherein an infection starts using up our "immunity stores," driving a deficiency, which makes the illness/stress worse, which makes the deficiency worse, ad infinitum.  Just ONE bad day's eating encourages my h.pylori to act up, which lowers my stomach-acid, which screws my digestion, which lowers my thyroid-function, which impairs my digestion more, which makes me more nutrient-deficient, which lowers GABA, which adds to stress, which lowers dopamine ....  You get it.

Ya wanna know the cheapest, easiest trick to raise dopamine which is the motivation-neurotransmitter for DOING THINGS to make you feel better?  Sit down and play a video game you love.  In the rush to demonize the activity that is blamed widely for obesity, why is it ME who has to point out that VIDEO GAMES RAISE DOPAMINE?

Yep, you heard it here first, folks.  When you're sitting in the evening, so drained that the very thought of taking a walk makes you feel even more exhausted, pick up your laptop or ipad.  Whatever you do, do NOT read the news or that "social medium" which tends to make everyone angry and frustrated!  No, start up a solitaire game, or Flow, or JewelQuest (one of my favorites), or Bookworm, or whatever floats your boat.  For every game you win or board you clear, your prize is a feel-good hit of dopamine!

Armed with the neurotransmitter of pleasant anticipation, who knows -- maybe you'll be motivated to take that walk and enjoy it, or devote a little time to meditation, or even to call your mother.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

"it's all MY FAULT!"

I've been reading a very interesting piece of non-fiction, alternated with a few other things -- this is a long-standing habit with me;  whether it's a good or bad habit has to depend on the point of view!  :-) I need a soothing and pleasant book to fall asleep with, something more technical to satisfy intellectual urges, and sometimes an atmosphere-setting book which can help me in my living-history impersonations.  For example, when i portray Louise, the late-Victorian mixologist (bar-tender), all sorts of skills and background knowledge are valuable to make me a believable character, not just some modern person in an old-fashioned dress, mixing modern cocktails with anachronistic equipment.

So it's taking me quite a long time to digest this book, but going slow is sometimes preferable.  Quickly-read books are often quickly forgotten as well!  "Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers" is worth spending plenty of time to absorb.

Just now i read something that really resonated with me.  In discussing some variables which modify perceived stress, the author notes a rat study in which a lever is supplied, pushing which the rat has been taught to associate with reduced shocks.  A subject who believes that he has some control over his "fate" does not feel stress as strongly as a subject who believes he has no control at all.  HOWEVER, when the subject believes he has some control, but that belief proves to be delusive, the whole thing backfires.

And this is why bad dietary and medical advice makes me fuming furious.  The individual gets advice from a quarter which s/he believes to have true expertise -- eat lots of fruits and vegetables, and everything else in moderation;  exercise strenuously on a regular basis;  avoid red meat and concentrate on low-fat choices, making sure to keep animal-protein on the low side;  cut sat-fats and get the fats you are allowed in PUFA form;  eat 5-11 servings of whole grains daily, and reduce but don't cut out sugar entirely, or you'll feel deprived and end up head-first in the Girl Scout cookies....  When this advice fails, AND IT WILL, obviously the patient did something wrong!

For decades they've been telling us that the food of our ancestors was carcinogenic;  remember when everyone was so shocked that Linda McCartney, a healthy organic vegetarian, died of breast cancer?  That was NOT supposed to happen!  Her whole lifestyle was what was supposed to save us from just that fate!

A low-fat diet was SUPPOSED to keep us from getting fat, but it didn't -- what was with THAT?  Lowering cholesterol was supposed to reduce heart-disease -- how could it POSSIBLY have happened that the use of corn oil resulted in MORE death from heart attacks?

And don't get me started on Alzheimers....

We've been set up to fail, and to blame ourselves for the failure.  It makes me want to go on a spree, Kill Bill style, against all of the "scientists" and "health-columnists" who persist in perpetrating this fraud against people who look to them for authoritative, evidence-based advice.  There's enough data out there to demonstrate that what they espouse is one hundred percent WRONG, but they have reputations to protect, not to mention law-suits to deflect.  They continue to do harm, because at this point it's not enough for new voices to contradict what has become Conventional Wisdom -- the old voices who originally gave the bad advice must step up and say WE WERE WRONG ... and they won't.

It's very difficult to override the ideas we once accepted as truth.  I still find myself thinking that reducing the amount i eat will help me lose fat faster, although i have experience that this is not the case!  I still find myself thinking that fruits and vegetables are "healthy," though the studies which Peter at Hyperlipid reported on MANY years ago proved to me INTELLECTUALLY that they don't actually do what is claimed for them, and my gut has confirmed are NOT my friends.

Convincing us that we have complete control over our weight, and a great deal of control over our health (except for that genetic crap-shoot, you know) has been an insidious tool of our own destruction.  And the "truth" is out there -- it's just a 24/7 job of reading lots of different fields-of-study, and putting puzzle pieces together.

May the gods bless those who make it easier for us -- the Peters, and the Wooos, and the Eades, etc.  Heaps of praise for people who bave brilliant and curious minds, who start with a narrow expertise, but who aren't content to remain in their own isolated fields.  Curses on the professionals who think that everything they learned in school was the very last word on the subject, and DAMN TO HELL the ones who KNOW they're doing the wrong thing, but do it anyway.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

my pillows seem to have turned against me

As Rosanne Rosannadanna's daddy used to say, "it's always something!"

Good sleep is something the paleo world accentuates, and for good reason.  Most importantly for many of us, it is central in what we experience as stress, and stress cascades into swamps of malaise -- fat-gain, pain, depression, disease....  Those of us using paleo principles to improve our health and well-being consider sleep one of our highest priorities.

Many different kinds of people suffer from poor sleep, and i belong to several of those groups:  older than dirt, female, etc.  I've done a lot of things that i've found helpful, and my husband too seems to appreciate the black-out window shades i put in the bedroom, as well as other improvements.  We both benefit from separate blankets, for example, because we don't pull the covers off each other anymore.  He even reminds me sometimes to put on my amber goggles, which is also a prompt to stop reading stimulating material in the evening and go for something a little more restful.  :-)  I don't know about you, but when you're dying to know what happens next, either in a mystery OR a well-written book of nonfiction, 2am comes around VERY quickly.

Be those hacks as effective as they are, it IS frequently easier to get a good night's rest when i have the bed to myself.  J tries to move quietly when he needs to get up to pee in the night, but our bed creaks horribly.  He also tosses a bit from time to time, for which he can't be blamed.  But when he was working out of town and i was using the same bedding i am now, THAT never interfered with my rest.  Maybe.

When my stress was really bad last year, i started waking up about a half-hour after dozing off, feeling a peculiar and very unpleasant sense of dread.  Of all the sleep-hacks i tried AND KEPT, valerian as a stress-hormone inhibitor helped me not wake in the early mornings with an over-wired feeling, but didn't seem to do anything about these early-NIGHT awakenings.  And sometimes the weird feelings didn't wait till i was asleep -- sometimes they started just as soon as i turned off the Kindle and snuggled down into the bedclothes.  It was a version of racing-brain with worry ... but it wasn't REAL worry.

For the record, i'm a side-sleeper, so my face is often against both pillow and blankets.  I began to suspect my pillows.  They were getting pretty limp --  not FLAT, but inclining me to believe that the blobs of filling were breaking down.  They still fluffed up, but compressed way too easily.  At midnight a couple of days ago i padded through the darkness into the guest-room and grabbed what are some of the newest pillows in the house, swapped the cases, and tried it again.  I slept much better.  I even woke up better.

I slept better last night, too, and woke up less sniffly.  I'll be keeping an eye on the situation, but i'm already disposed to believe  some of my sleep woes had to do with the breakdown products of run-of-the-mill pillow fillers.  Since i customarily remove the fiber-content tags on my linens i don't know what to actively avoid in future, but i'll definitely aim for hypoallergenic materials.  (I LOVE feather pillows, but they definitely deteriorate too quicly for me.)

Life is full of those "always something" situations -- we have to remain observant, figure out what actually CAUSES our discomforts, and make changes as time goes by.  Who says you don't have as many challenges in life as a retiree?!  ;-)

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

THAT'S why

A friend i've never met, on the opposite side of the world, pointed out the idiocy of what's going on in American politics right now.  Yep, and it gives nobody a bigger headache than it does us, but there is a reason.

You see, American children are brainwashed with certain notions from earliest childhood, but the ultimate irony is the "freedom" part.  It's largely bullshit, but it is feverishly embraced.  Hell, i'll bet half the conservatives out there would die in an apoplectic fit if you tied them in a chair with their mouths duck-taped shut, and made them listen to an international panel discussing the subject.

[evil grin] ...i'd pay good money to watch that happen!  [rubbing hands together, fiendishly....]

"They hate us for our freedom!"  Fervently believed nonsense ... by some.  They hate us because we arrogantly bomb other countries, and there's not a goddamn thing we-the-people can do about it, because our country is completely controlled by the Military-Industrial Complex.  COMPLETELY.  All of our media are controlled by their buddies down at the Rich Guys' Club, and some of their servants are clever people.  They manipulate us into believing in goofy ideas like American Exceptionalism, Creative Design, and the importance of giving to health charities.

We have our moments in the sun every two to four years, when we have the glory of choosing between two pre-chosen leaders.  The "primary" season, which we're in now, is like qualifying rounds at sporting events, evaluating which final contestants have the best chance of winning the gold.

Oh, there's also a side-show game at the carnival, in which we can dally with self-promoted "third party" candidates, but it's just a show that distracts attention enough so that representatives of the major parties can slip in and pick the audience's pockets.

The reason that THIS year is special is that "somebody up there" slipped in a plot-twist.  We actually think we have an opportunity to burst out of our clockwork-orange country and into a wider world.  You know -- that world in which Europeans have lived for quite awhile, with education instead of indoctrination, and the idea that society and civilization are GOOD things, not the silly, sissy, bleating of "sheeple."  Where a man with clean fingernails is not sneered at as a "metrosexual."

The United States of America desperately needs to enter the 21st century.  Some people don't want that to happen.  Some want to go back to the 1950s, or actually the 1850s would be better.

GRRRR.  I read the voices of the past -- i DO history.  Not the idealized history of the appalling books that are used in schools, not the Old West of Hollywood, and certainly not the cultural myths that way too many people here embrace.  All that is BULLSHIT.  It never happened, so it cannot happen again.

THAT is why THIS election is important.

Monday, February 8, 2016

a picture is worth a thousand words -- a digression

In the morning while i'm getting my all-important coffee intake, i read on my ipad from the internet ... or if there's nothing appealing, i revert to whatever Kindle book with which i read myself to sleep the night before.  This is why i often get inspired to write a piece after the caffeine kicks in -- something gives me a good idea or pisses me off to the point that i MUST express myself in a longer exposition than twitter allows.

And where am i coming from, today?  Memes.  People decry them for being facile -- well, that's my interpretation of their more colloquial expressions.  ;-)  Yes, i AM a snob about how ideas are expressed....

The richness of the American version of the English language, drawing on so many others as it does, gives us NO excuse for saying things imprecisely.  ...Except when we try to express ourselves in 140 characters or less.  Using a tiny little keyboard, inappropriate for our chubby little digits.  Makes sense, that we should augment the written word with pictures which add not only a basic visual, but potentially-unlimited connotative content.

I saw it coming decades ago, when bumper-stickers took off.  I ❤️ U -- here we go, i thought, regressing from LANGUAGE to elementary hieroglyphics....

Facebook memes take that much further, what with favorite characters in video stills being the basis for short screeds, passed around endlessly by people with whom they resonate.  I've fallen into the habit of using them, but i like to think that in my case the cause is less "intellectual laziness" but that one cannot capture another person's attention in that medium without visual-aids ... and often audio-augmented ones as well.

A couple of years ago, i was searching for an epitomical cookbook from some area of the world previously unexplored by me;  i always do this by googling "best _____ cookbook" and then visiting Amazon to read the reviews of the recommended works.  One highly-recommended choice was criticized for "no pictures."

Funny, i've always thought that offering a photograph of EVERY recipe was a space-wasting technique, covering up the paucity of content....  But right and left in the recipe world, books and websites are lauded for the "beautiful photographs."  :-P  Even a favorite blogger on my list has the APPALLINGLY bad habit of including not just one but MULTIPLE almost-identical pictures of her finished product.  Why?  Multiple in-process photos make a certain degree of sense, but some of hers are obviously the SAME PHOTO cropped differently;  the picture which cuts out the tabletop, napkin and fork isn't even a proper close-up, so WHY?

I might as well confess, i never grew out of the "WHY?" phase of intellectual development.  I want to know "why?" about EVERYTHING.  I search my own conscious mind first for reasonable hypotheses, and then i dig deeper.  WHY do people sometimes have no interest in word-pictures, and tend to skip over them until a visual arrests their attention?  Naturally, i have to assume that some of the issue is lack of imagination, but that's not the whole situation.  Why is visual illustration so indispensible?

Damn good question, and i can't answer it definitively.  But it's undeniable that we have become a video-centric society.  We've also become a short-attention-span society, and i think the two phenomena are closely related.  I think it's a pity.

We're disinclined to ponder ideas -- our national characters are less based upon what we THINK than on how we FEEL.  A knee-jerk reaction to a picture defines our beliefs, and that is not a good thing.  We prefer pretty, "likable" people to deliver the evening news rather than the journalists of yesteryear who had thought-(and worry-)wrinkles on their foreheads.  Distracting characteristics take away from the substance of the messages offered us.

I won't stop using memes myself, because they ARE a quick-and-dirty means of attracting the attention i think an important idea deserves.  However, i WILL try to be a lot more cognizant of the quality of the image....

Friday, February 5, 2016


Well, DUH.  Any diet can, if it's effective enough to make you, ya know, like, LOSE WEIGHT.

The accusation which one has heard a lot through the years by people who hate LC is that it "destroys" the thyroid.  One particularly virulent hater, who actually had good luck with it before the mating-call of the wild truffle lured her back to orthodoxy, not only claimed her thyroid was fried but accused LC of bringing on premature menopause.  GOK what she must have been doing, to upset her hormones that much!  But she wasn't alone -- the gym-rats also chimed in agreement:  "the thyroid NEEEEEDS carbs," they scream.  "Just look at my lab test!"  Those guys must spend half their disposable income getting blood drawn and analyzed.

The ironic thing is that in replacement of the classic Atkins regimen, the people under discussion advocate the very thing GUARANTEED to wreck your metabolism:  that tired old ELMM routine, which Dr. Fung excoriates HERE.

Repeat after me:  anything that makes the body fear starvation is going to lower metabolism to preserve body-resources including fat.  The means of doing so are via the thyroid;  increasing rT3 is a mechanism the body uses to MAKE you feel tired so you won't waste fuel or dilute your healing-energy.  We heal while we rest and sleep, and surgery-patients need to concentrate their bodies' resources on reknitting tissues and fighting infections -- that's why their thyroid levels dip.  If your body thinks that starvation is imminent, it's going to let your hands and feet get cold, rather than squander precious resources just so you'll be comfortable.

Of course, this does NOT mean your thyroid is "destroyed" -- not even close.

The bro's point to their lab-test numbers, but don't experience classic hypothyroidism SYMPTOMS.  The LC dieters -- AND ELMM dieters -- wave their chilly fingers in your face, but feed them ONE sufficient-energy meal and they're all-of-a-sudden warm and cozy again.  You can believe me on this:  i know my hypo symptoms, and they're not only exceptionally diverse, but also brought on by lots of different causes.

I know i've said it a myriad of times, but it won't hurt to point out just once more:  lower T3 in a low-carber is not hypothyroidism -- it doesn't coexist with higher TSH, and if that's "normal" the body doesn't perceive a requirement for more T.  The body requires active thyroid-hormone to process carbohydrates in the diet;  if they're not there, the body produces less of T3 and TSH, because it doesn't NEED as much.

Hell, I can tell a difference in my body's performance, depending on whether I've had enough sat-fat in my diet, or too much PUFA on a particular day.  The body reacts to some really "minor" stuff -- in the case of fats, it's not conversion but cell receptors.

As Dr. Rosedale is fond of pointing out, a higher baseline thyroid reading is NOT a good thing in a euthyroid individual -- it means the body is "running hot" and in danger of "burning out" sooner.  His schtick is longevity, and has made it a point to learn that centenarians tend to run on the low end of the normal range.

Dr. Donaldson, in "Strong Medicine," makes a point of discussing thyroid hormone in weight loss, debunking a popular myth:
At times thyroid extract can increase the cooking flame in the body, just as new sparkplugs may increase the efficiency of an automobile engine. It used to be thought that feeding it in small quantities might help to burn off excess body weight. With the exception of about four per cent, that happened regularly to people with the disease called exophthalmic goiter. They would usually melt away under the load of too much thyroid hormone in the blood. But it didn't work in simple obesity. Because so many thousands of fat people still uselessly take thyroid extract to lose weight, the subject needs to be more generally under stood."
Prescribing unnecessary thyroid supplements used to be a tweak for weight-loss, but it fell out of favor because it's HARMFUL.  I remember Muhammed Ali using the stuff in the course of his career.  The practice was replaced by prescribing "diet pills" -- uppers -- instead....

"Excess weight" is just another subject on which Nature and Society don't mesh.  Nature seems to favor a little bit, as being a kind of life-insurance policy, whereas our modern world looks on it as nothing but bad, ugly, and indicative of an inferior character.  Too bad:  as we age -- which is when Nature schemes to make us gain weight -- a little extra adiposity can mean the difference between surviving an illness or injury, and succumbing to it.  If we look at it in the traditionally-sentimental way, Nature wants us to put on fat in the autumn of our lives, so that in winter we can hang on just a little longer.

Many different causes are responsible for thyroid-hormone fluctuations in a perfectly-healthy individual.  We should look on them as feedback for what we're doing to ourselves, not panic and scream "this diet DESTROYED my thyroid!"

Monday, February 1, 2016

vegetables of doom

It's not just lettuce -- other things make my gut throw a tantrum, too.  THIS is why i get so mad at the vegetation-pushers.

Bloating, obviously-proliferating bad-bugs, urgency, unusual sound-effects, need to waste time in "recovery mode"....  And i had been feeling SO good on ZC!  My husband grilled a chicken the other night, and chose to accompany it with steamed cauliflower and hollandaise sauce -- how could i refuse after he went to all that trouble?  I took a small portion, and it was very tasty ... until some hours later.  Then yesterday, i had a few macadamias because dinner was running late.  I had a few green beans with mushrooms which usually go down just fine.  This morning my gut is screaming at me.

It'll pass -- no pun intended.  In a day or two of ZC the bloat will go away and all the other unpleasant details will fade.  I'll feel great until some future time when i'll accidentally eat too much of a plant, and have to start over again from where i am right now.

Between clever marketing by produce-growers, ideological ignorance, epidemiological misfeasance, and fanaticism, we have a population which worships a destructive dietary paradigm.  Plant foods are NOT what does a body good.  Veg*nism will not only NOT save the world and the human race, it will hasten our decline.

Has everyone here watched "Dr. Strangelove"?  It's that "purity of essence" thing.  Plant-based "nutrition" is a pipe-dream, straight from the lurid imaginations of the psychologically-challenged.  It's closely tied in with the fear of "calories" and obsession with the microbiome.  It's PERVERSE.

Objective source after objective source SHOWS us what happens when people follow this kind of rationale.  Observation of population X suggests that Z is a beneficial substance;  a study isolating substance Z is made;  substance Z is actually shown to be non-beneficial, if not actively harmful;  rationalization is constructed which defends Z anyway ... often including the word "hormesis."  Z retains its halo, and people are sicker than before.

In our attempts to improve the modern diet we HAVE to get market forces out of the discussion;  their input muddies the waters -- hell, it POLLUTES them irreversibly.

We have to keep the mentally-damaged from spreading their infection into the "well" population;  calling nutritious foods "unclean" and promoting anti-nutritious ones as "healthy" and "the only RIGHT way" CONTRIBUTES TO MORE MENTAL DAMAGE.  You heard that right.  Obsession with CICO, "moderation," and heavy exercise is not good science, it's BAD RELIGION.

The nutritional deficiency as well as the overload of deleterious compounds in the brain make its sufferers even more fanatical and sick.  It promotes the kinds of neurotransmitter damage/imbalance which make healing nearly impossible.  Insistence upon RITUALS like fermenting and sprouting and raw-processing is on a par with saying certain prayers when the clock chimes -- it's not rational.

People who want you to eat less meat (or less fat, or more vegetables, or whatever) than what YOU find makes you feel good, do not have your best interests at heart -- they're trying to make you a convert to their religion.  Don't let them try to convince you that they have Truth and that you won't understand until you try their way;  that is a form of brainwashing.  Do not let their wild-eyed Faith deflect you from YOUR Truth.