Blatantly Deceptive Tripe
Recently, an offer to subscribe to some lame nutritional advice newsletter rife with the mainstream malarkey and malfeasance of the nutritional orthodoxy arrived in my mailbox. Thanks to the Weston A. Price Foundation, I am now enlightened enough to detect such offensive disinformation when it comes my way, and naturally I felt great indignation at what was an attempt to dupe my family and me. And so, I let them have it. For your pleasure, I have pasted my response to the chairman of the organization. Enjoy.
Dear Sir: Allow me to put this business before you plainly: Please do not insult my intelligence by sending me such blatantly deceptive tripe. Your organization has absolutely nothing to do with disseminating honest, intelligent health-related information to the American public and everything to do with propagating and proliferating insidious junk science and dietary myths that serve to advance the agenda of the equally disingenuous and shameless food processing industry. Soy, a “health food”? Margarine over butter? Indeed. Go do some real research before you presume to ‘enlighten’ me about anything.
In the meantime may you prosper and thrive on your canola oil and soybeans.
P.S. In regard to your colorful, glossy, propagandistic fold-out poster entitled “Healthy Eating: How to tell the latest news from the old news,” I should add that your arrogance in presuming to clear up matters of dietary confusion for your lamentably cozened subscribers is paralleled only by the creation of that pseudoscientific abomination, the food pyramid, which I’m sure you follow.
Farmingdale, New York
A Prenatal Vitamin Tree?
The Weston A. Price Foundation Utah County chapter is small but doing well. We have been able to hook up three families with raw milk. The interest has surprised me. In just the first two weeks I responded to four emails. I am so happy to help get the word out.
The best news is my four-year-old just had a well-check with the pediatrician and came out with 60 percent height and 55 percent weight. Just two years ago he was less than 5 percent for weight and severely allergic to processed cows milk.
Also, I am newly pregnant and my hematocrit is 45! It’s never been that good. And as an RN who has worked in OB/GYN offices, I can say that is an almost unheard of number–especially for someone who has obtained all of her nutrition from food rather than pills over the last two years. Today when the OB/GYN office manager asked whether I needed a prescription for prenatal vitamins I declined and said if God wanted us to take prenatal vitamins he would have made a prenatal vitamin tree. Her jaw dropped and then she started to laugh and said, “You are absolutely right.” I have to add that she picked my brain over the next fifteen mintues about what I thought about raw foods, milk, etc. She has been looking for a nutritional way to avoid the cancer that is so prevalent in her family.
Cedar Hills, Utah
The Right Choice
I always knew I wanted to have a child but I never knew just how much I would love being a mommy until my little girl was placed in my arms. Many months before conception I began my crusade to get my own body in top shape. My pregnancy was amazing. The worst I endured was some pain in my lower back. We took a birthing class that would teach us to try to have this baby with out drugs or intervention by means of relaxation. I did it–with the help of my husband and our doula. Fifteen hours of labor with no drugs except the pitocin they injected at the end. We had no idea we would have a girl, but there she was with healthy lungs and a full head of hair.
I had never intended to feed my child by any other means than breast-feeding. I didn’t even know it was possible to not have the ability to do this. But it happened to me. My milk never came in. I tried everything I could from five lactation appointments, to pumping every 2-3 hours for nearly two weeks straight, to taking fenugreek and mothers-milk tea. I was told the network to produce milk was not present in my body. The tears just wouldn’t stop. I was devastated.
What choices did I have? Upon recommendation of a consultant I put my child on commercial formula for only a few days and she became so constipated that it killed me to watch her struggle to empty her bowels. I did a ton of research and found out how bad (in my opinion) commercial formula really is. Most are nearly half corn syrup. How could I put this into the body of my child when I worked so hard to start her off right? After telling a dear friend, who has four children of her own, she offered me nearly all of the frozen breast milk she had pumped and stored to give to my child. I had never thought of this possibility and what a gift to us!
For several weeks while giving her breast milk, I did more research and then my nutritionist turned me onto the formula recipes on the Weston A. Price Foundation website. I found a place to buy the raw milk, which is over an hour away, ordered all the ingredients and I was set to try to make homemade formula.
Our little one is truly thriving on this recipe. She is healthy, strong and happy. Even though my pediatrician cannot legally tell me it’s OK to give her raw milk due to liability, my husband and I feel very comfortable and confident we have made the right choice for our child. The benefit of giving her a concoction that is full of wonderful oils and other ingredients far outweighs the time and effort. I want to extend a personal thank you to the Weston A. Price Foundation for this wonderful recipe. We will continue to follow the advice and excellent guidance for feeding that has made such a difference in the health of our child. I pass along my knowledge to others in hopes it will also help another mother who might find herself in my situation. I found my hope and now my only tears are from loving this child so very, very much that I want to burst inside.
Overdosing on Water
On “Overdosing on Water” (Caustic Commentary, Summer 2004), I experienced a posterior vitreous separation in my right eye after drinking roughly ten cups of delicious cold water in a short period–maybe ten minutes. Less than one-half hour later I experienced the vitreous separation with blood and pigment inside the eye, blocking vision. After eight years my body has removed most of this material from my eye. Vision is good, although there is still a slight fogginess, like being under water.
Now I usually drink very little water but mostly coffee or tea with milk. Ten cups of water for me is way overdoing it, a ridiculous amount.
Liver for Pregnant Women
When I was pregnant with my first child 17 years ago in Japan, my Japanese husband consulted with his traditional family and was told to make sure I ate plenty of liver.
When it was learned I hated the stuff, many discussions were held about what kind of recipes might disguise the taste and appeal to this Westerner (though I loved Japanese food). So two or three times a week my husband would do the shopping and insist on cooking the evening meal. I thought the Japanese must know what they were doing food-wise so I did my best and ate the almost acceptably tasty meals.
My resulting daughter is 16 years old now and has naturally perfectly straight teeth and has never had a filling, unlike many of her classmates. She’s very happy I endured the liver for her as she would have hated having braces. She has a lovely broad face. I really cannot understand how liver is now discouraged for pregnant women. Japan has the lowest infant mortality rate in the world and we should respect their wisdom, or at least ask how the results of a western study can contradict it.
Skull and Crossbones
I have been enjoying raw milk shipped from Organic Pastures. However, three weeks ago I committed the monumental error of drinking ultra-pasteurized milk for the first time. I have had regular pasteurized milk before and have been able to digest it with the aid of a lactaid supplement, without which I get mild to moderate stomach cramps. Although I took a lactaid tablet when I drank the ultra-pasteurized milk, I slept fitfully that night and woke up the next morning with a terrible stomach ache. By mid-morning I fell violently ill. I was quite literally writhing on the floor. It was absolute agony and it lasted for hours. That stuff should be labeled with a skull and crossbones.
After drinking raw milk I have noted no ill effects. In fact, I feel perfectly fine. Amazing. And raw cream and cheese are absolutely divine.
Abyss of Bad Health
Just a note here to thank you for all that you’ve done. Everything you say is logical and makes common sense: why should animal fats and meat-based diets suddenly be so bad for humans after thousands of years? Long before I found your information I somehow suspected that politically correct nutrition was not in keeping with our precedents. I have never felt better, ever, than I do now. I no longer wake up stiff in the morning (I’m 41), digestion is absolutely consistent, my night vision has improved (all that vitamin A from butter, organ meats), and I feel stronger, healthier, more vital than ever. I soak all my grains, nuts and legumes, do not eat ANY, but NO supermarket cereals or boxed foods any more, cook stock twice a month, marinate meats, eat organ meats.
My father had a heart attack in 1975, died at 50 in 1982. After that first heart attack, those misinformed doctors had him eating margarine, melba toast, safflower oil and promoting all of these as the healthy way to serve his heart! He ate a classic bad-businessman’s diet. After he died, all of his friends began dropping like flies. Politically correct nutrition (and NO nutrition), I’m sure, is what did them all in.
I have a friend who is Malyasian: she tells me her family and countrymen have been using coconut oil for centuries…and she’s also noticed that Americans complain more about allergies, ailments, headaches, fatigue and so forth than she ever heard back home. I am a caretaker, and when I see what seniors are eating these days: squishy Holsum bread, bologna, cheap spreads, processed foods, puffy baked goods made with shortening…it’s no wonder they are so listless and low in energy, ill in health, reliant upon scads of meds. This country is falling into an abyss of catastrophic bad health. I shudder to contemplate what the health of our children already is and will be.
Ann Arbor, Michigan
Five months ago, my niece and I discovered our respective husbands (one 60 years of age, the other 57 years of age) were exhibiting very similar neurological symptoms. Both had developed a hand tremor at rest, a strange posture and walk (realize now they were not swinging their right arms), exhibited flat affects and loss of their senses of humor, experienced severe fatigue as well as restless legs at night. In addition, my husband experienced a tingling sensation over different parts of the body, especially upon awakening. Both men had one major commonality: they had been taking Lipitor for over four years.
After a little investigation, we learned statins profoundly deplete the body of coenzyme Q10. In a simplistic and wishful thinking approach, my husband stopped the Lipitor and began taking CoQ10 at a dose of 100mg/day. (At the time we were unaware one must take vitamin E for proper absorption and metabolism of CoQ10.) Four months later, my niece’s husband consulted a neurologist who diagnosed Parkinson’s disease and started him on L-Dopa and Carbidopa. My husband consulted a neurologist four and one-half months later and received the diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease. His neurologist recommended only one drug at this time, stating that it was neuroprotective and was shown to be effective in decreasing progression of Parkinson’s in early onset phase. This drug was coenzymeQ10, this time in a megadose of 1200 mg/day. We no longer feel it simplistic to associate the Parkinson’s symptoms with Lipitor and its profound depleting effects upon coenzyme Q10. My husband’s neurologist based his recommendation upon the study by Shults and others reported in the Archives of Neurology, February 2002, showing beneficial effects for Parkinson’s patients using 1200 mg of CoQ10 per day, but had not heard of any association with any of the statins and was patently disinterested. We consulted a second neurologist, one who is renowned in the field of “movement disorders” and though he possessed a somewhat avuncular demeanor during most of the consultation, he became quite annoyed when asked if he had any knowledge about the depletion of CoQ10 via statin use and Parkinson’s disease.
Additionally, my niece’s husband was recently (within the last year) diagnosed with diabetes. We did note in some of the literature by Dr. B. Golomb that an increase in blood sugar up to 100 above baseline has been reported in patients taking statins.
We now feel that there must be a subset of patients who have or will develop Parkinson’s or Parkinsonism due to statin use. I found of great interest a web site for the Muscular Dystrophy Association, in the “ask the expert” feature for ALS that of the 16 questions and answers that have been printed since February 2004, three of them specifically ask whether one of the statins caused the disease, and one other question notes the patient has severe heart disease–I wonder whether he also is taking a statin. Nonetheless, three out of 16 questions printed seems an incredible number dealing with statins and symptoms of ALS. The answers assured the questioners that there was no relationship between statins and ALS. Since the new theory is that ALS, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s are possibly due to “oxidative stress,” how much more oxidative stress could one devise than completely stopping the production of CoQ10 within the body?
We are searching for someone knowledgeable in neurology and/or biochemistry who would think of these “oxidative stress” diseases in terms of targeting the damage wrought by statins. We sincerely feel there are many more people out there with diagnoses of Alzheimer’s, ALS and Parkinson’s who would benefit from therapy aimed at treating the underlying damage caused by statins–and just stopping the statins would be a start. Our physician friends are sweetly condescending and then dismissive; I can only imagine the ridicule a lay person would receive questioning a relationship between statin toxicity and neurodegenerative disease.
Madelyn M. Levy
Huge Job Ahead
Just got back from attending the International Congress on Clinical Nutrition in Brisbane. Fascinating and exhausting and really reinforced the huge job ahead of us to penetrate mainstream nutritional science. Lots of interesting papers and many predicated on the given that saturated fat is a problem–Ancel Key’s fradulent Seven Countries Study quoted and shown often! We need credible scientists presenting credible science to their peers. The sponsors were big food companies including Kelloggs and Sanitarium and all snacks and food were made with white flour and tubs of margarine! No animal fat here!
I have a kitchen design company and I see so many people spend a fortune on their kitchens and then look for bargains in food! They buy expensive fridges and fill them with low-fat junk, build big pantries and fill them with packets of fake food and install expensive stoves and ovens but won’t buy organic because it costs too much! Then they spend money on shoes, cars, restaurants–and lots of medications and orthodontics!!
No Longer Crabby
I enjoyed the Caustic Comment, especially the part about stars on low carb diets being crabby. Due to a metabolic problem (hypoglycaemic/pre-diabetic) I am using a protein-sparing, low-carb eating program (which includes butter, untreated milk products and hormone-free meat and eggs). It has been an awakening for me, literally. I have so much more energy and clarity. Consequently I now have the energy to stand up for myself if necessary instead of letting the world walk over me. I have no depressive days now (not bad for someone who was supposed to have inherited endogenous depression). And if I’m not sure about all this I can always wipe myself out again by eating “normally” (pasta, white bread, cake). High-glycemic index carbs sedate me by depleting my energy every time. Maybe this extra energy could be described as making me “crabby.” Another nice side effect of healthy eating: I’m less of a people pleaser!
Please keep up your good work–I love reading your site. Your dietary guidelines are about truth and sanity–what a breath of fresh air.
In Keeping with Nature
As a former dairyman and a longtime practitioner of organic farming, I applaud your article, “The Politics and Economics of Food” (Fall, 2003). I agree that it’s time to kick vulture capitalists out of agriculture and return to the simple yet fruitful days of the family farm. The 30-cow farm is truly the wave of the future. Imagine a nation of small communities, each supplying its own needs! Your plan is totally in keeping with nature and would create tremendous prosperity in the community.
For years I’ve had a design in mind for an operation which even expands upon your concept. The dairy portion involves 300-500 cows and is totally natural, all pasture operated. This would be a cash-and-carry facility where local residents would come and pick up all kinds of dairy products–raw milk, butter, cheese, cottage cheese, sour cream, etc. My farm plan also has plenty of room for homegrown organic vegetables and a sales outlet for them. In addition, there would be an organic bakery and an organic meat outlet. The people of the surrounding community would be able to take care of 60-70 percent of their shopping in one place, buying directly from the dairyman, the butcher and the greengrocer.
So, you see, the ideas you are so effectively voicing today are very similar to those which I’ve been kicking around since I came to Southern California from the Netherlands in the 1950s. Let me tell you about my old dairy and how I confounded my colleagues through the simplicity of nature. I had a semi-pasture operation. I pastured my cows once a day and I milked 150 cows. I had two neighbors, each milking 180 cows, and they were dry-lot operators. I shipped 1,000 pounds more milk every day than either of those guys. One didn’t want to believe me and I said, “Well, I’m getting paid for it just the same.” The other fellow called me up and said he’d like to talk to me. So he came over to my dairy, looked around for a while, then came over to me and said incredulously, “You don’t have any flies!”
I said, “I know.” He asked me what kind of insecticides I used and I said, “I never use insecticides.” He said, “How do you get rid of the flies?” I said, “Well, every once in a while I see one on the wall. I’ll pat him on the back and tell him to go to you!” I cleaned my cattle pens every week so the flies wouldn’t have a chance to propagate. On top of that I fed my cows low-protein grain, about ten percent protein. High energy but low protein. The cow herself is a protein machine. She takes fiber, and with the help of the intestinal flora she’ll convert it into protein–with the help of the bugs. When you put high-grade protein into the cow, she can’t properly digest that because it’s trying to undo her natural system. An overabundance of high-grade grain protein is too hot for the cow to handle; it passes through her, and when it hits the ground it’s only partly digested. The cumulative effect is an odor which is music to the fly. So, when Mama Fly finds that place, she gets on the phone and calls all her neighbors, and they get to work.
The mega-dairies will never learn these lessons because they are vulture capitalists for whom the bottom line has nothing to do with nature. Theirs is an operation whose only solutions are chemical, artificial. I predict that in 20-30 years, the mega-dairies will be completely finished because Mother Nature will catch up with them. The margins for error will get smaller as the numbers of cows increase. They’ll keep heaping problem upon problem, and the eventual result will be collapse.
It’s encouraging to me that there are now so many in this country who are not only thinking about organics, but getting the word out through books, the media and conferences.
Ed De Boer
Raw Milk During Pregnancy
First of all, I want to thank you for the wealth of information that you have made available. It has completely changed the way we eat. I have children that are very allergic to dairy. Pasteurized dairy, that is. I’m just now getting ready to introduce raw milk to my three-year-old son, and the other two (twins) are only 6 months old and exclusively breastfed. I have had to eliminate dairy from my diet completely because they react when I consume commercial dairy foods. They are just so sensitive! Last week, we purchased our very first gallon of raw milk from local farmers and I’m just now starting to use it. I made butter and ate some the other night, and my babies didn’t have any reaction! I just wanted to share that. They have so many severe food allergies, and I have to avoid so many foods, so being able to have dairy will be such a help nutritionally. I have been physically falling apart trying to eat enough of anything nutritious in order to nurse my twins.
My main question here concerns the safety of raw milk for a pregnant woman (not pregnant again yet, just want to be prepared for next time!). I have read that raw milk can be contaminated with Listeria, a teratogenic bacterium which can be carried by a healthy herd of cows, and no one would know it. First, is this even true? And if so, would culturing the milk allow for the lactic acid-producing bacteria to deactivate the dangerous bacteria?
Editor’s Response: Raw milk, even uncultured raw milk, contains beneficial bacteria that destroy harmful ones like Listeria. Of course you must be careful in your handling of your food–all food–not only while you are pregnant but at all times. Read on.
I’m writing in appreciation of the letter on the safety of raw milk (posted on RealMilk.com at http://www.realmilk.com/safety-raw-milk.html), by Mark McAfee in the Spring 2004 Wise Traditions. Living on a small farm, our two children grew up on this milk. At age 4 & 5, the dentist was curious as to why they had such good teeth, “Did they get sweets?” In abundance, actually, thanks to doting friends of the family. Twenty some years later the mystery is solved, when I read that raw milk protects teeth, even in the presence of a diet high in refined carbohydrates.
Now as the grandchildren are coming, our expectant daughter, (and, in turn, three of her expectant friends) is counselled to eliminate raw milk from her diet, the implication being that “it is a constant carrier of listeriosis.” We still offer our milk for sale, and suddenly it seems to be a polluted product. We wonder ourselves what the facts are.
Then I look through a recent issue of Wise Traditions and I find Mark’s letter on how beneficial bacteria in raw milk keep pathogens at bay, which imparts empowering, strengthening information to address implanted anxieties and make educated decisions, renewing loyalty to the product, at least in two households. A “thank you” is small in comparison to the magnitude of what he has undertaken, but it is heartfelt all the same. And to the Foundation, without which there would be no medium to disperse such information widely and give voice to truth.
I hope you will respond to an article in Reader’s Digest August, 2004 pages 114-115 where they specifically claim that “cheeses made from raw milk are the main carriers of the Listeria monocytogenes bacterium.” And in the chart on page 115 they again advise, “Avoid unpasteurized milk and juice and soft cheeses like Brie, feta, and blue.”
But in the body of the article no examples of persons getting sick from raw milk or raw milk products are given, while several examples of sickness and even death from this bacterium from sliced turkey, turkey franks and deli meats were given. They recommend chemical rinses, pasteurization and steam baths at certain steps along the production line where contamination may occur. I was raised on raw milk and I’m still here, age 63, as is the rest of my family from those days.
Editor’s Response: The Reader’s Digest article is a good example of how the media scapegoats raw milk when other foods are actually to blame.
A Change in Diet
I really wanted to write a letter to thank the Weston A. Price Foundation. I had been a vegetarian and then vegan from the time I was 16 years old, and was very careful to eat plenty of plant-based fats, plant-proteins and whole grains. I had developed a small hole in my heart after receiving a meningitis vaccination when I was almost 12 years old; since then I have been unable to go for a walk or compete in track and field sports without a lot of pain and difficulty. During my first pregnancy, the hole in my heart bothered me terribly and I had anemia. My midwife suggested I eat a little red meat to increase my hemoglobin levels or else I could not have a homebirth. I was so focused on having a homebirth that I sacrificed myself by eating a small amount of beef once or twice a week, but it was not organic or grass-fed. Nonetheless I was able to have a homebirth and then I returned to being vegan.
Everything went downhill from then on. Pregnancy and full-time nursing depleted me so badly that within several months the hole in my heart bothered me so much I couldn’t even walk upstairs without great chest pain; my muscles (particularly my leg muscles) were in so much pain and became weak that I could not walk much and they hurt when I moved them; and my legs were covered with spontaneous bruises. I was constipated with blood in my bowels, constantly tired and my eyes felt bruised to the touch and strained. I thought I was developing cancer. My exclusively nursed daughter was becoming tired and pale and was late in learning to crawl.
I had seen several doctors who could only offer medication and little hope of recovery. I felt I should be able to recover, that my body was doing this because something was wrong and I did not believe medications should be used routinely and regularly or that they would actually help my body get better. So I spent hours searching the internet for answers. I was a very, very strong vegan. I had found an article called “The Ploy of Soy” from your website. I depended largely on soy products and was surprised to think that soy could be part of my problem. I searched more on the subject and decided to cut out soy and see what happened. My bowel problems improved greatly. That softened me to take a more thorough look at the Weston A. Price Foundation website and I began changing the way we eat, taking cod liver oil, taking a colloidal vitamin/mineral supplement to restore my depleted body and using raw milk from pasture-fed Jersey cows, raw butter and cream, raw cheese and yogurt very liberally. I also began soaking my grains, and using organic, grass-fed meats (beef, lamb and pork), stocks, pasture-fed eggs, some lacto-fermented drinks and at times condiments, wild salmon and cod when we can afford it, green vegetables daily, healthy desserts from time to time and other fruit and vegetables for variety and taste.
I recovered well and then some! My daughter is now three years old and I have a six-month-old boy. My daughter is healthy, strong and energetic with rosy cheeks and good teeth. My son was born with a wide face, perfect facial and physical development and strong. He could lift his head at a day old, began creeping and sitting up at three and one-half months and is crawling at five and one-half months and beginning to walk at six months. My labor was fast and easy. I should say that the hole in my heart is completely healed (which was surprising, since it is not common in adults). I have more strength and stamina and have never ever felt so well. My daughter is also healthier than before, so is my husband. I never went through colic or late night crying spells with my son as I did with my daughter. I also no longer have problems with acne and very dry and cracked skin.
I now love food and eating, when before it often made me feel worn out and tired. Thanks so much! I believe God is working miracles because of your organization.
London, Ontario, Canada
Jack Spratt – Revisited
Jack Spratt could eat no fat,
His wife could eat no lean,
And so betwixt the two of them
They licked the platter clean.
Now that was when they both were young
And filled with youthful zest.
But soon the health of one went wrong.
Was it hers you’ve guessed?
“Imagine,” prattled Mrs. Spratt,
“Jack’s shed this mortal scene.
“And though he’d never chewed the fat
“His girth was most obscene.”
So down she sat to a plate of fat.
No bread, no meat, no bean.
Upon her lap her purring cat,
Both sated and serene.
Said Mrs. Spratt who felt just fine,
“My folks loved fat like me,
“My mother died at ninety-nine
“And dad at a hundred and three.”
So listen misinformèd folks,
Eat bacon, butter, lard.
Toss the whites and eat the yolks
And watch your abs get hard.
See the pallid veggie boy
And veggie girl who languish:
Their fats replaced by chips of soy
And a soy baloney sandwich.
Sat. . . fat. . . is where it’s at
To revitalize our nation.
Go on-line, come on, let’s chat
@ Weston A. Price Foundation.
Harvey J. Gardner
October 9, 2004