Vitamin D to the Rescue . . .
Orthodox nutritionists concede that the body needs vitamin D to assimilate calcium but they tend to downplay other roles for this fat-soluble nutrient. One newly discovered function of vitamin D seems to be protection against accumulation of toxic metals like lead. Researchers at Harvard University’s School of Public Health found that low intakes of vitamin D were linked with the highest levels of lead accumulation in bones. Participants with low intakes of vitamin C or iron showed even greater accumulations. (American Journal of Epidemiology, 1998 147:1162-1174) Every cell in the body contains vitamin D receptors so it’s safe to assume that vitamin D plays an extensive role in nutrient regulation. If vitamin D protects against lead accumulation, perhaps it protects against accumulation of other toxic materials as well, including aluminum and too much iron (as in hemochromatosis.) Vitamin D2, added to soy milk, is thought to be toxic. The answer is to eat foods rich in natural vitamin-D complex, like shellfish, lard from pigs exposed to natural light and butterfat, eggs and organ meats from grass-fed animals. Dr. Price discovered that diets of healthy traditional peoples contain high levels of vitamin D from animal fats, but industrial farming greatly reduces levels of vitamin D in butterfat, eggs and lard; and orthodox nutritionists warn consumers to avoid foods that could provide this important nutrient.
. . . and for a Long Life
At age 101, Dr. J. L Head is still going strong. He lives alone, cares for himself and has a girlfriend. “The secret to my long life is simple,” he says. “It was the hog lard I ate in my biscuits. I never ate much light bread. We had biscuits made out of hog lard. . . I also ate chili with a lot of grease. Most people don’t make chilli right ‘cause they don’t like the grease. Chili has to have grease.” (Star-Telegram, June 1999) Lard or pig fat also figures large in the cuisines of two population groups noted for longevity—Soviet Georgia and Vilcabamba in Ecuador. A survey of the Chinese diet conducted in 1977 found that 65 percent of calories in the average Chinese diet came from pork—which means that foods were cooked in lard. (Food in Chinese Culture, 1977) It’s time to put our pigs back on the farm and lard back into American kitchens.
Wrong Premises, Wrong Diet
The traditional view of human brain development is that babies are born with all the brain cells they will ever have, and that neurological development occurs through the connection of these cells in the early years. But new research indicates that from birth through late adolescence, the brain adds billions of new cells, constructing its circuits out of freshly made neurons as children and teenagers interact with their environments. In adulthood, the process of adding new cells slows down but does not stop. Mature brain circuits appear to be maintained by new cell growth well into old age. (New York Times, 1/4/00) Unfortunately, current dietary recommendations are predicated on the belief that the brain does not grow or develop after the age of two. The new discoveries reveal why growing children need foods rich in animal fats and cholesterol throughout their growing years. These foods are essential for development of the brain and nervous system. Parents who want their children to grow into adults that can reason and think creatively must ignore the dietary advice of the “experts” and provide their growing children with rich traditional foods.
Wrong Premises, Wrong Drugs
The organization most responsible for promulgating the phony diet-heart theory, and the idea of mass medication for cholesterol-lowering, is the American Heart Association. But at a recent AHA meeting, participants learned that cholesterol-lowering drugs may impair cognitive processes. In a study group of 194 adults, the group receiving cholesterol-lowering drugs experienced lowered abilities in attention and dexterity tests at the end of the study. The participants who experienced the biggest declines in these abilities were those whose cholesterol levels were reduced the most. Other cognitive abilities, such as recall, weren’t affected. The moral: Grown-ups need cholesterol for cognitive function too.. In order to enjoy the fruits of old age to the fullest, they must ignore the medical advice of the “experts” and avoid all measures to lower cholesterol levels in the blood. (American Heart Association Meeting, Medical Tribune News Service, 11/11/97)
More on Brain Food
Brain function in baby rats was enhanced by feeding extra choline during the equivalent of the third trimester of pregnancy, according to a study at Duke University Medical Center. The offspring performed significantly better on memory tests than those of mothers with the normal intake of choline. Researchers found that choline enhanced a brain function responsible for paving the path between nerve cells, allowing electrical messages to travel more easily. The improved brain wiring persisted in the rats through early adulthood. (Neurophysiology, April 1998) Choline is an animo acid found in egg yolks, milk, nuts, liver and other meats—that is, in all those high-fat items the Diet Dictocrats want us to avoid.
Starving for Ideas
While Americans are starving for nutrients, the giant food companies are starving for new ideas. Teams from the food conglomerates regularly visit the New Products Showcase and Learning Center in Ithaca, NY, a morgue of sorts storing 60,000 extinct grocery products. As they rummage through jars of mustards, packages of cookies and such flops as Richard Simmons Salad-Dressing Spray, scouts from companies like Procter & Gamble and Kellogg’s hope to spot a forgotten grocery item ripe for revival. (Wall Street Journal, 5/6/97) The truth is that the food industry has gone as stale as the packaged foods they have sold for so long. After providing fast foods, microwavable foods and foods low in salt, sugar, caffeine and fat, “innovations” have dried up. Instead they are tweaking old ones, such as frozen TV dinners for diabetics and soy-based foods (originally sold as money-saving substitutes for animal foods) as miracle substances that will spare us from hot flashes and heart disease. The real innovators are farmers who have figured how to make sustainable mixed farming yield abundant natural foods for the consumer increasingly willing to purchase directly from the producer. The corporate dinosaurs may linger while their customers die off, but their ultimate fate is extinction.
Diseases of Affluence?
We’ve been told repeatedly that heart disease is a disease of affluence, prevalent in the western world where people indulge themselves in foods high in cholesterol and animal fat. But a study commissioned by the World Bank found that heart disease (mainly heart attacks) and stroke kill more people everywhere than anything else. The leading causes of death in 1990 were heart disease (6.3 million deaths) and stroke (4.4 million deaths) followed by lower respiratory infection (4.3 million), diarrhoeal disease (2.9 million) and perinatal disorders (2.4 million). There were also 50 percent more cancer deaths in less-developed countries than in developed countries. When nutritious native foods are pushed out by “displacing foods of modern commerce” in countries where sanitation is poor and food budgets are meager, the results can be disastrous, with high rates of both infectious and chronic disease. (Washington Post, 5/2/1997)
Teachers and administrators at Amherst Elementary School in Jackson Township, Ohio are looking for ways to cope with a rash of parent deaths. In 1996, two parents in their late 30s died of cancer; each leaving behind a third-grader in the school of 500. In 1998, a mother with a second- and fourth-grader at Amherst suffered a fatal heart attack; the parent of a third-grader died suddenly from a brain aneurysm; and a 47-year-old parent died of lung cancer, leaving a daughter in the fourth grade and a son in the second grade. “As a classroom teacher for 13 years, I had hundreds of students—and in all that time, I lost one parent to an accident,” says Susan Steward, Amherst Elementary’s principal. (Wall Street Journal, 2/18/1999) According to researchers, these tragic circumstances are due to the fact that parents are having children at older ages. Parents may have started younger past, but they were also likely to have had more children, so children with parents in their 30s and 40s is not a new phenomenon. The real reason that grade school children must now cope with death in increasing numbers is that mortality rates from cancer and heart disease have risen dramatically, especially for adults in their 40s and 50s.
What does Elian Gonzales have to do with food and nutrition? Quite a bit. The lawyer who represents both the boy and his father is Greg Craig who was recruited by Dwayne Andreas, former chairman of Archer Daniels Midland (ADM) one of the world’s largest agribusiness companies. Mr. Craig’s law firm, Williams and Connally, does legal work for ADM. Five years ago, Mr. Andreas met with Fidel Castro in New York to discuss strategies for ending trade sanctions against Cuba. (Washington Times, 5/7/2000) ADM just might stand to benefit if Castro succeeds in getting Elian back. One of the few good things that can be said for Castro’s Communist regime is that it has kept the country so backward that its inhabitants still eat real food—chickens and eggs from the farm, whole milk, vegetables grown without pesticides and pork and lard from pigs raised in the open air. If ADM and the other corporate giants get their way, their system of corporate capitalism with its soul-destroying industrial food will be imposed on the system of peasant communism already in place. Cubans will get unrestrained capitalism along with strict political control; whereas the goal for men and women of good will is a maximum of individual liberty along with strict oversight of the corporate sector.
ADA Blitzes the College Campus
The American Dietetic Association trains its dieticians to dispense fabricated food and they are doing it with gusto on college campuses. ADA flyers found on the bulletin boards at Syracuse University advise college students to avoid high-protein, low-carbohydrate “fad” diets; or diets that recommend supplementation with vitamins and minerals. Supplements should “not be used as a replacement for nutrient-rich foods,” warns the ADA. And just which “nutrient-dense” foods does the ADA recommend? Lowfat or nonfat yogurt, lowfat cheeses, cheerios, grapenuts, pasta, rice, bagels, energy bars and vegetarian pizza! Not a word about preparing for parenthood with the nutrient-dense, high-fat foods valued by traditional societies, such as eggs, butter, seafood and organ meats. Avoid diets that give lists of “good” and “bad” foods, says the ADA. But their message is plain: Healthy foods are very, very bad and fabricated foods are very, very good.
“How Corporations Manipulate Children” is the lead article in the November/December issue of Mothering magazine. The article rightly rails against advertising for junk foods aimed at children. But the issue contains three ads for Silk brand soymilk. Just a month before, Mothering rejected an article by a prominent writer on the dangers if soy infant formula after initially showing interest in the piece. What really happens is that corporations manipulate magazines so that magazines won’t spread any alarming news about their products. Everyone gets manipulated–editors, mothers and, of course, growing children.