Disqus & Weston A. Price

Just a heads up here.  For some reason Disqus comments are not loading on my end.  Therefore I can read them in my dashboard but have been unable to respond today.  Hopefully this clears up as I have responses to many!

Meanwhile since I'm making a post ... I recently -- finally! -- got around to getting a copy of Weston A. Price's Nutrition and Physical Degeneration.  What I've read thus far has been rather underwhelming to be honest.  In addition I find parts to be quite difficult to read due to the overt racism (is it just me?) in many of his descriptions.  In any case, here's a question for you all.  Is this it for Price's writings or are there more in depth writings available somewhere from which various parts of this book were culled?  Thanks in advance!


Karin said…
Just throwing in my 2 cents about Weston A. Price. As far as I can find, that book is his magnum opus. If he's written anything else I have totally failed to locate it. I suppose in comparison with what is considered proper research today, it is rather underwhelming. However, when I discovered the book I, and my family, had been eating vegan for a while, and were thoroughly miserable. I kept trying harder to make it work, and it just wasn't. It was a shocking revelation to learn that there are elements in animal products that humans need to be healthy. I had been brainwashed into believing that animal products were the cause of heart disease, cancer, etc., or at best meat and dairy were luxuries that were absolutely unnecessary for a healthy diet. So, after reading the book I implemented some of his recommendations, and, holy cow, did we all feel a whole lot better! Of course, then I went and tipped the other way and became a low carb believer, but that's another story. I think I've finally found some kind of balance now. And I think I've learned my lesson about buying into diet fads. However, I still think Weston A. Price has some useful things to say, and his documentation of the diets of healthy cultures is interesting, even if his research processes are lacking in academic rigor. Really, though, it's the pictures of all those amazing people (healthy vs. not) that sell the book.
billy the k said…
The Summer 2000 (Vol.1, No. 2) issue of Sally Fallon's Wise Traditions contains the 1932 article by Weston Price:  Are the Activators Revealing the Nature of Life in Health and Disease Including Dental Disease?

The article includes 16 graphs showing heart disease mortality compared to vitamin content in local butter samples.  The References section lists eight other Price articles in various Dental journals, bulletins, etc., written from 1929—1932.
billy the k said…

"Holy cow..."

Precisely so!—"Humans are mammals, a word that means "creatures of the breast," and the first food that any mammal tastes is milk.  Milk is food for the beginning eater, a gulpable essence distilled by the mother from her own more variable and challenging diet.  When our ancestors took up dairying, they adopted the cow, the ewe, and the goat as surrogate mothers.  These creatures accomplish the miracle of turning meadow and straw into buckets of human nourishment..." [Harold McGee.  On Food and Cooking. (2004) Rev. ed., p.7]

"There is no effective substitute for milk..."
[E.V. McCollum. The Newer Knowledge of Nutrition.  (1922); p.403]
Glenn Dixon said…
One problem with Price is separating his original observations from the organizations named after him. Those guys are so full of woo and kookiness! But I thought his work was pretty interesting.
MacSmiley said…
Actually, Weston A.Price had absolutely nothing to do with the Weston A. Price Foundation, as it was founded 3 decades after his death. I am unclear in whether he had any personal connection to the previously named Weston A. Price Memorial Foundation, now known as the Price-Pottenger Nutritional Foundation, as Price was still alive during its 1st 15 years of existence. There are some key personnel in common with both organizations, however.

WAPF = We Are Misrepresentation Personified
MacSmiley said…
Some are allergic to cow's milk and goat's milk is $20/gallon.
Indeed there are and it isn't a small in certain cases, especially for infants, toddlers and children. I used to be quite dismissive of such intolerances but seeing the studies and the alarmingly odd first-hand anecdotes of toddlers losing their digestion and health the moment they move to cow milk after breast feeding--problems that utterly unnatural and processed stuff as coconut/almond juice ("milk") manage to resolve--served as an excellent reality check.

For those that need a few extra percentage levels of the fat sollubles (A, D, E, K2), better sources of cow milk, and preferably goat milk, can be a good option. But morphed into some cure-all/magic bullet for what isn't a miraculously large pay back? Pfft. Better to deal with reality than food cult merchants.
charles grashow said…
I pay $6.10 per gallon for raw goat milk in my neck of the woods - goat milk kefir is more expensive
charles grashow said…
Nutrition and Physical Degeneration
Screennamerequired said…
I've found people cull the parts they don't like and focus on the things they think fits their view. Much like religious people
Ie. Grains = Bad. Butter = good.

His work isn't particularly fascinating in this day and age. We all aware that replacing traditional foods with nutrient poor sugar and white flour can lead to ill health.
Wuchtamsel said…
Well, some cranks name theirselves after another crank. They chosed the right name in my opinion...
Greta Carbo said…
I don't like to complain as much as I used to but this looks like a good place comment on Disqus(t). The webpage notifications show the same information over and over. One notification for a post is enough. And the email notifications are spotty and can be up to a day late. Meh. Is it possible to ditch Disqus(t) and still participate in the discussions?
Screennamerequired said…
This is just comical.

"This important article by Dr. Weston Price includes 16 graphs, posted at
the end, showing heart disease mortality compared to vitamin content in
local butter samples. Working with poor photocopies, and lacking Price’s
raw data, we have been able to reproduce only rough copies of these
fascinating graphs. Nevertheless, the reader will appreciated how
precious is this research by Dr. Weston Price. His studies could not be
reproduced today, partly because we no longer consume local foods and
partly because most people no longer consume butter, but it indicates a
fruitful avenue of research; namely, that levels of fat soluble vitamins
in the diet correlate with rates of heart disease. We hope that the
reprinting of this article will spur further research."

These folks are really rigorous and cutting edge.
Greta Carbo said…
Diana Schwarzbein pretty much rips low carb diets, ketosis, and,while she's at it, low fat diets. It is refreshing to hear about the other hormones as well as insulin in examining weight loss and health. Each video is an hour but will go quickly if you think her style is amusing rather than irritating and don't mind the science. Endocrinology for health 101.

Part one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6qUSvzUj6jo

Part two: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rm0MG_zYIdQ
Greta Carbo said…
Does anyone remember the "Peter Paleo" Amazon review of Loren Cordain's The Paleo Diet? Sally Fallon really took him to task for his "lean meat", "trim the visible fat" stance and in a very amusing and cutting way. After a year or two the review was taken down, too bad for it was spot on if maybe too pointed. It is curious that it was she and not anyone from "the community" of Paleo People, for Sally is a neolithic kind of gal. But she is delightfully abrasive when she sees insanity.

She reiterated the same point in an Jimmy Moore podcast. Jimmy told her Cordain had eased up on his saturated fat stance and she said she'd believe it when she saw a book by him without all the lean meat, trimmed fat crap. The Revised Paleo Diet book has a paragraph or two of lip service to fat but still has the lean meat crap in the text and recipes. Cordain has traveled a long path on his nutritional journey but I think he will have this fear of fat for a long time to come.

His paper, Humanity’s Double-Edged Sword, 1999 is still valid and is a must read for grains worldwide impact, pro and con. It's freely available. http://www.direct-ms.org/pdf/EvolutionPaleolithic/Cereal%20Sword.pdf
MacSmiley said…
You mean this Sally Fallon?
MacSmiley said…
Nope. Not here. 1/2 gallon in healthfood store is $9.99. Maybe because here farmers grow mostly corn and soybeans for animal feed and ethanol. I remember having sticker shock in the produce aisle when I first moved here. :-(
carbsane said…
Unless and until I migrate to Wordpress, Disqus is pretty much here to stay. Blogger's on/off moderation options proved insufficient to deal with the Razwell virus breakouts that would flare in the middle of the night ;-) Disqus let's me keep the conversation rolling while keeping the bad apple or two out. The whitelist feature is especially helpful there, though I do have link moderation on and sometimes it lets them through and sometimes not. I haven't quite figured that out yet.

On my end I have had problems from time to time loading and refreshing the dashboard -- then all of a sudden I've got a half dozen posts pending! The comments not loading at all for me was a new one. I think it may have been internet connection related.
carbsane said…
I had not been aware of any Fallon review of Cordain. She got some flack for her thumbs down review of Robb Wolf's book last year (I blogged on that here: http://carbsanity.blogspot.com/2013/11/my-review-of-sally-fallon-morells.html ) but she made valid points. Gone are the days when folks apparently review what is actually written in a book, eh?
MacSmiley said…
Ummm. Stupid DISQUS. I tried to dismiss those mis-hit pics by x-ing them out. When that didn't work, I dismissed the page completely and summoned the page anew to start from comment from scratch. Not just a refresh. DISQUS posted the erroneous shots anyway. Grrrrrr. 😡
billy the k said…


The Carbsane forum has no shortage of Sally Fallon/WAPF detractors. I for one am not impressed by the fondness WAPF has occasionally shown for homeopathy [and other excursions into the 4th dimension].  Notwithstanding that, many WAPF detractors do appear to have some misunderstandings of the basic dietary principles that WAPF advocates.  This matter was briefly addressed in the Summer 2013 issue of Wise Traditions:

Myths and truths about the Weston A. Price Foundation:

Myth 1:  WAPF advocates a high-protein diet ["...traditional diets varied from 10 to 20% of calories as protein."]

Myth 2: WAPF Advocates a low-carb diet  [(while) "WAPF warns about the dangers of a diet high in refined carbohydrates...many of the cultures Dr Price studied consumed fairly high levels of carbohydrate-rich foods—from the Swiss with their sourdough rye bread, to the South Sea Islanders who always consumed tubers like cassava or yams, to the Amazonian Indians who always ate bananas with their meat..."]

Myth 3: the WAPF diet is like the Paleo Diet ["Predicated on the theory that we should eliminate cereal grains and milk products, two foods considered new to human evolution and therefore harmful...the [Paleo] diet excludes all cereal grains, legumes (including peanuts), dairy, refined sugar, potatoes, processed foods, salt, and refined vegetable oils...Cordain recommends up to 35% of calories as protein...the premise that we should avoid cereal grains and tubers like potatoes...does not  jibe with the science...the WAPF diet is not a diet based on exclusions—we do not say no to grains, beans (the most nutrient-dense plant food), starchy vegetables or dairy foods, nor to fats, salt or even sweet foods—all of which were consumed and enjoyed by healthy traditional peoples..."]

In addition to caloric energy, we also of course require nutrients.  And here it amazes me that the value of two of our most nutrient-dense foods remains debatable/questionable, viz., the dear little egg and the cold glass of milk—two foods which I am persuaded are if anything the paradigm of the expression good to eat.  Some commenters seem eager to reject these two animal foods precisely because WAPF champions them and/or they regard Sally Fallon as an un-credentialed goof.  Nevertheless,  I'm confident that a search of the USDA Database in an attempt to find foods that are more nutrient-dense than these two will prove unrewarding.

And if one has the misfortune to be unable to enjoy fluid milk, one can nevertheless receive [almost] all of its benefits by enjoying the equivalent of that quart of whole milk per day in the form of a mix of its various products—the marvellous cheeses, yogurts, and other fermented milk products,  plus the much-maligned butter, and even real ice-cream...
StellaBarbone said…
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Karin said…
Hmm, well, I have some issues with WAPF. I think there are a lot of "gaps" that they like to fill in with whatever the people in charge happen to believe at the moment. I always did feel like they had some secret writings of his that I never could find. That's always bothered me.
Lighthouse Keeper said…
No one has mentioned the Weston A Price "X factor" yet - that's what they actually call it. The mysterious super nutrient that turns out to be vitamin K2 or something akin to it, providing near miraculous benefits to all bodily functions. They are indeed the cult of the fat soluble vitamin.
Greta Carbo said…
Thank you for your considered reply, specially since the Sally Fallon/WAPF detractors are here I know. I know little about the organization (I will check out your info in detail sometime soon). Chris Masterjohn posts there as do a few others I like, like Krispin Sullivan for example. There was a thumbs down review of The Warrior Diet by Ori Hofmekler that I thought completely missed the point.

I am down on manufactured food and heavy processing of food, much of which is unnecessary. So the WAPF stance on soy is good. Maybe I should check out their stance, but I did research on this long ago and so I minimize my own use of soy. On the other hand, I am big on natural farming, local dairy, etc.

If homeopathy is what I think it is($X or 30X dilutions giving miraculous cures?), it is a very big negative; you are too kind in your 4th dimiension comment.

Wapf paleo? LOLOL. And not Sally Fallon either. Nourishing Traditions is a prototypical neolithic food preparation book, and a damned good one too. And that's just it, why does Sally Fallon sound more paleo than its purported experts? At least on fats she does.
Greta Carbo said…
Yes, yes, gone, gone, gone... are the days..... Ha ha. You, and others here, would enjoy that review, and I think, quite a bit. Maybe not low fat people, though. For most, belly laughs all around. The review was over the top but that's not bad in of itself is it? Anyways, it is ridiculous for a paleo to be afeared of fat and absurd to avoid saturated fat. I am not sure of your food tribal affiliation (if any), but don't you have a recipe calling for 80% beef, 20% fat? I'm taking a WAG that you're not paleo and you do not seem afraid of the sat fat bugaboo.

Most of the paleo world seems yuppyish to me. And in the continued interest of all things PC, let me hasten to add, that's okay, that's okay. Blenders and counting fiber grams is cool, trimming visible fat is okay too, if you want to, really... really. Really.

I can't wait to read your take on the link you posted. Well, yes I can, since it will be tomorrow before I get to it.
carbsane said…
Sally's husband:

Geoffrey Morell , ND, JP, (Secretary), is a practicing naturopath, specializing in the past 20 years in the field commonly called magnetic, intuitive, spiritual or psychic healing. He has developed his own unique Clendinning Technique. He had a grass-based dairy farm in New Zealand for over 30 years. He is an expert in natural farming methods, including natural methods for animal care and pest and weed control. He served as an elected official in New Zealand for 6 terms and was a founder and candidate for the Social Credit Party in New Zealand. He is a popular lecturer at many health and New Age conferences throughout the world.
Greta Carbo said…
There's that Razwell name again.

Thanks for the insight on what you have to deal with. I figured that staying on top of a list like this might not be so easy.
charles grashow said…
Vegan vs. Paleo Diets For Athletes: My Experience
By Nell Stephenson

"...determine how much protein one needs in keeping with the balance of the Paleo diet, which is often erroneously referred to as being high-fat, high-protein and low or no carb. None of those statements are correct. The balance of the Paleo diet is forty percent carbohydrate, mostly coming from fresh vegetables and some fruit and thirty percent each from lean, wild proteins and natural fats."

SO - paleoista says 40% carb, 30% protein and 30% fat - OMG!!
carbsane said…
Nell is a Cordain disciple. He claims his diet is low carb but he doesn't really limit fruit. Most "real" paleos don't but most also limit starches severely. On Oz Nell was showing a little bit of fruit. You CANNOT get 40% of calories from carb without significant sugar or starch which means fruits like pineapples and bananas and at least squashes but also tubers.

Those are the macros of the general paleo diet put forth by Eaton & Konner.
MacSmiley said…
You mean this Sally Fallon?
charles grashow said…
Look at this picture of the paleoista

Bris Vegas said…
Wild game meats are so lean (1% fat) that you'd need a scalpel to trim the fat. A well nourished wild rabbit has about 1mm of subcutaneous fat.
Bris Vegas said…
Cordain only limits grains and refined carbohydrates. He recommends eating *massive* quantities of fruit (>1Kg) and vegetables (>2kg) each day.
Bris Vegas said…
A textbook case of 'Female Athlete Triad' (anorexia, amenorrhoea and osteoporosis.)
Bris Vegas said…
In fairness to WAP butter (cold liver oil and eggs) would have been about the only source of fat soluble vitamins available to most people in the 1920s. People forget that in the early 20th century that the US and Europe had extremely high levels of poverty and malnutrition..
Bris Vegas said…
The WAPF are basically shills for the beef and dairy industries.
Screennamerequired said…
There was a president of the WAPF in Sydney Australia who abandoned. She told people to actually read the book because what you read on the WAPF website is not at all what's portrayed in the book. She also said so many members were extremely overweight and seemed to be a bit deluded about their own health.

Eating bread liberally slathered in butter and cheese thinking you are "nourishing" yourself seems a bit foolhardy to me. (unless it's grassfed of course, then it's all fine and dandy, apparently)
Wuchtamsel said…
If the picture is an indicator on what she eats she is a raw food vegan? *taking cover*
Trae Palmer said…
In addition, they also appear to be somewhat anti-vaccination: http://www.westonaprice.org/health-topics/vaccinations-parents-informed-choice/

The woo is very heavy over at WAPF.
Trae Palmer said…
I used to get very bad facial eczema and sensitive skin until I switched to a vegan diet. Both conditions resolved almost immediately, and I'm pretty sure it's due to the elimination of dairy products: both the National Eczema Association[1] and the NHS[2] in the UK seem to suggest them as a possible trigger.

[1] http://nationaleczema.org/eczema/causes-and-triggers-of-eczema/
[2] http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Eczema-%28atopic%29/Pages/Causes.aspx
Yes, 'activator x'. In other words, a whole new spin on the tritely ancient dietary cultural fascination of the central and south Asians when it came to the benefits of dairy. It's not like all the milk and honey references in monotheistic texts was enough, we needed to establish the sacred order of fat soluble vitamins.

Really, it's just nagging on about the trivial and something that science has demystified: fat soluble vitamins are good and tend to come with whole faith, along with the K2 form of vitamin K that has some added benefits.

But is it magic, br0?!

Nothing bad about K2. It's got benefits, as does dairy in the context of being properly sourced and not troubling to the individual concerned (problems can range from the proteins all the way to just lactose, whatever). However, if one's been sipping the ancestral koolaid, then the narrative of vitamin K2 suddenly takes a massive leap from a decent fat soluble vitamin to the magnificent, awe-inspiring, all-magical activator x. A sheer x factor that can fix everything else, and we already know that this particular positive claim hardly has any evidence to stand upon other than the cultish fervour of the WAPF tribalists.

It's always interesting how something that is known to be of nutritional density and value--but nothing more or less, with its own share of problems for some--is suddenly turned into the one true sine qua non of human healing thanks to marketing. A kind of approach that involves the propagation of serenading passages of the sacred nutrient, wrapped up in rhetorical devices reeking of a special brand of religious proselytism.

Now in the name of the Weston A. Price (O Ye The Exalted) let us consume a whole stick of butter so that we may get that minuscule serving of K2 that will reverse all manner of maladies underlying human vascular disease and strife.
charles grashow said…
billy the k said…
Some good finds there, Charles.

"Eat what you want after you have eaten what you should"

[note that this specifically does NOT advise the avoidance of ANY foods that aren't nutrient dense—just that you enjoy them after you've first taken care to get your daily requirements.]

Which is pretty much what your mother told you. [!]

McCollum repeated this advice [slogan, he called it] in several places; the one I reached for was on p.121 of his Food, Nutrition and Health. 2d ed. (©1925).

The Newer Knowledge of Nutrition
[your link]  is his major work and remains one of the very best in my little library on Diet, Nutrition & Health.
Originally published in 1923, but in its main points it is hardlyout of date.
 My copy is an optical reprint of the 1922 MacMillan edition. [available from Amazon.com].  McCollum was a great scientist. Weston Price, and Sir Robert McCarrison are just two of the researchers who built upon McCollum's pioneering work.  Reminds me a bit of what Alfred North Whitehead said about another early pioneer:

"The safest general characterization of the European philosophical tradition is that it consists of a series of footnotes to Plato."

[Somewhat extravagant praise perhaps, but maybe not]
billy the k said…

"The WAPF are basically shills for the beef and dairy industries."

SEZ YOU. Other readers may not find this to be self-evidently true and would therefore appreciate a bit more evidence to confirm this claim.
Lighthouse Keeper said…
I would like to think of it as part of a nutritional orchestra (Walter Willet's term). Some of these food movements would have someone striking away incessantly at the the triangle whilst locking the woodwind section out of the concert hall.
Lighthouse Keeper said…
They do seem to engage in nutritional holy grailism. It's the homeopathy section under the Health Topics heading on their website that makes for a strange bedfellow to their science pages, the articles here include "Remedies for Mercury Toxicity", " Own a Homeopathic First Aid Kit " and "Homeopathy for Cancer Anxiety"
That's like a military aircraft website having a section about magic flying carpets
carbsane said…
Ummm ...

I don't think what one needs a PhD in physiology, but I would dare say that there is a vast knowledge gap between my background and education vs. someone like Sally Fallon. I have a Bachelor of Science degree in biology and have formally studied physiology and biochemistry. Further this study continued on a graduate level as part of a biomedical engineering program before transferring into my full time masters program. Further still, I applied my knowledge doing research, mostly in animal models, in the field.

Fallon has a bachelor of arts in English. Night and day. Which is not to say that she's not capable of being self taught, but what I've read of her work is often parroting and expanding on the ideas of others and this is often with a fair degree of embellishment.
David Pete said…
I would be so happy if I never heard the word shill in a conversation again
carbsane said…
Can't take away one of my favorite words!!
billy the k said…
I wasn't as clear as I should have been.  Evelyn, I've visited your website enough to know of your own excellent background in the sciences, both in and out of Academia.  But by "credentialed" I meant the possession 
of the PhD, the hundreds of published papers, the many Professional Associations/Affiliations, the Honorary Awards, the name recognition in the Academic circles, etc., etc.

My point was that you—or Nigel the k, or Sally— could have had a background in Medieval Poetry—which would not per se in any way diminish the value that your current various analyses and critiques have for the interested reader because unlike the heavily-credentialed 
Señor Grundy—a Johnny-One-Note on cholesterol if ever there was one—you all do not have ossified brains but rather the opposite—a lively and apparently tireless interest that motivates you all to keep on digging and mining for those nuggets of truth about these dietary & health matters in question.

Your own past series of posts on NEFA's for examples—really first rate, or Nige's series on the way that Negative Feedback Loops operate in our bodies—these analyses are of more value to the citizen interested in Diet, Nutrition & Health than anything I've read from Señor Grundy.

And it's what keeps readers tuning in for more.
Paleo Nouveau said…
Not sure about WAPF but Weston Price's book has many valuable insights which ring true today.
Soil is key to both plants and animals.
Macro nutrient content is not as important as is consuming fresh whole foods prepared & cooked properly.
Butter & milk are very nutritious PROVIDED the animals they came from are true grazers & are eating from a nutritious fertile soil, otherwise it's high energy food.
It's not high fat but PROPER fats.
I would also like your & everyone else's input on the following observation from the last paragraph on Page 276 to Page 278. He mentions the experiment on mice fed 3 different diets. Short summary the rats fed fresh ground whole wheat fared very differently than the others. His take on this was the oxidation of the oils from packaged ground wheat negated somehow the absorption of the vitamins & minerals.

MacSmiley said…
Exactly. The more ppl want grass-fed the higher the price goes. I should take pictures of the prices on grass-fed meats, goat's milk, etc. here. And you'd think that bison would be less expensive here in South Dakota. But nooooooo.
MacSmiley said…
I'd more likely suspect protein, namely, the lower levels of complementary amino acids needed to balance out the wheat. Need peanut butter. ;-)
Greta Carbo said…
Oh, that's one of the Before pics. You should see her Afters!
MacSmiley said…
Before what and After what?