T'em plates are for display only
This post is inspired by a comment (several actually) left by Libby on Define Paleo first!. Libby writes:
I simply don't understand the need for so many to vehemently attempt to ridicule or discredit the "Paleo" lifestyle. Whole foods, organic and grassfed when possible. How shocking! And really? Attempting to discredit it because cavemen didn't eat ice cream or something? That's silly. Anyone who understands Paleo realizes its an idea or template, even just a starting point to regain control over one's health, it's not about wearing loincloths and hunting mastodons after a good night's sleep in a cave. All this contention is a waste of time. The USDA, FDA, AHA, ADA....THAT is where contempt belongs, not towards anyone following a whole foods diet and spreading the good word about it. Why be hatin'?
Firstly, can we stop the hate talk please? It's ridiculous, especially when you think I should somehow be directing contempt at the alphabet soup you've got there. Secondly, I am not trying to discredit paleo because cavemen didn't eat ice cream ... it's not me you have to convince on that count.
We've been hearing this term "paleo template" for a while now. Around a year or so paleo was going through some growing pains and infighting, and the worry was over relaxing the rules. On the one hand doing so might make the diet more palatable to a wider range of people. Dairy, especially, is a difficult class of foods for many to eliminate entirely. On the other hand, relaxing things too much risks diluting the message. This was mostly going on in the context of the safe starch debacles and whether paleo = LC or VLC or not. There have been some notable turnarounds of opinion such as Cordain's retraction of canola oil recommendations and relaxing his views on saturated fats. Kudos to him for actually writing this on his website in clear fashion so nobody need accuse anyone of lacking reading comprehension when they don't make their points clear. Others are far less forthcoming or willing to do so. Mark Sisson comes to mind because despite knowing it is pretty ridiculous, his carbohydrate curve lives on.
Some don't identify as paleo, but they acknowledge the marketing side of that label. So all of these diet book authors are trying to unite for some "common cause" ... spread the good word as Libby put it. And thus the "paleo template" was born. I think templates are wonderful for individuals to formulate a dietary lifestyle that best suits them. But they don't work for diets espoused by gurus and wannabes with very specific sets of dos and don'ts. If you put forth a rationale for some dietary prescription, it either *is* or it *isn't*. Robb Wolf has described gluten as Satan's excrement, Mark Sisson has said that there is no reason to ever eat grains ... and yet here they are ceremonially joining WAPF at AHS12. So you align with an organization that stands for much of what you claim humans are not evolved to consume. That doesn't make much sense. I've highlighted here many times how Mark passes judgment against many real whole foods because they contain too much starch, and yet he sells Primal Fuel and supplements.
Speaking of Mark and starch, another stark example of this hypocrisy for profit (look it is what it is) was Mark writing an introduction for the Jaminet's new Perfect Health Diet. Under template notions this seems a pretty reasonable fit. Paul doesn't advise a very high carb intake and he allows dairy like Mark. Readers of the two websites would find much in agreement. Yet if you read the books it is quite clear their beliefs are at odds. Mark believes it is all about the insulin (or 80% of it) while Paul's premise is based on the composition of breast milk, the composition of the human body, and what he refers to as the "cannibal diet" of what the body "eats" when you are not eating. And yet rice is prominently featured in PHD, and highly processed white rice at that. That is a deal breaker because there's no way our "primal genes" were programmed in the paleolithic to consume white rice. Nowadays Mark has relaxed a bit and starchy foods will get the primal seal of approval for the "if you eat rice" and/or "if you eat potatoes" crowd.
The underlying premise of the paleolithic diet is not a "template", it is the absolute belief that humans have not evolved since the paleolithic and that neolithic agriculture is "mismatched" to our primal genes. Forget re-enactments and all of that and focus on just the diet. This is what it is based on. There is no wiggle room there ... or is there? Because the first concession made by Sisson is to dairy if you tolerate it. There is clear evidence of regional adaptations to dairy --it's even in my favorite mainstream nutrition text. So how can you acknowledge that and claim we've made no adaptations to grains? And so in the end we arrive at the only unifying premise of eating real, whole foods. Or do we? No. We hat tip to convenience and market Primal Fuel. Despite promoting the uber nourishing diet, we need Paleologix to transition to the healthy side. Don't get me started on the coconut oil again, but my grandma didn't fry beef in coconut oil let alone Grok. Chocolate? Are you serious?? A stick of butter in your coffee? But non-God forbid a legume, buckwheat or some whole rolled oats? That's not paleo.
See, templates and 80/20 rules don't cut it for the purveyors of diets especially if you are giving "scientific" reasons to support your contentions. You can't say A and promote B who doesn't believe in A. The so-called template is nothing more than one version of what grandma ate. The paleo diet cannot evolve so-to-speak unless science uncovers new information on what we ate back then ...which happens every so often, yet that doesn't change things.
Speaking of science, however, if you are going to cite a study and say it supports your diet, then the diet in the study needs to be that diet. Not some version of that diet based on a template. The most recent study (Ryberg) was low sat fat and high PUFA and still only 40% fat. Whose version of the paleo-style diet does this support? Frasetto's results were astounding, especially given the short time in which benefits were seen. But that isn't the paleo diet Robb or Mark or Paul or Nora or any of the other big name paleo "experts" are promoting. Same Lindeberg.
So in the end, if it is real whole foods, as I've stated innumerable times before, I can get enthusiastically on board. But here's where I see the problem -- Paleo is trying to bring others into the fold where it should be the other way around. The real foodies need to coalesce about this general idea and Paleo TM needs to comport itself in such a way as to be considered a worthy member of that greater community. Junk science and the lack of a coherent consistent message do not help this cause. Look at the reactions to Marlene Zuk who is being accused of being jealous and bitter (sounds familiar) rather than address her real issues. If paleo is misunderstood and misrepresented then correct that. Problem is there's no consensus on what that is. Having people who nobody would take seriously in the real world as messengers doesn't help either.
OK... What I'm getting from this is a 'Why can't we all just get along?' message preceded by a 'THAT is where contempt belongs...' statement. Is this person curious about why so much venom appears in diet forums?
So many of these shepherds are themselves lost. They're "paleo" for years and they still don't know what the hell to eat. Resorting to bizarre gimmicks like all potatoes or all milk. If you eat the number of calories that would maintain your desired goal weight, your body fat will trend downward until it settles there. Pretty fucking obvious LOL. If you're a grown-ass man eating the diet of a baby, maybe it's time to just pack your diapers back into the wagon and take your sideshow to the next town.
Or an argument at all, for that matter.
I hope you continue to succeed in your quest to conquer flatulence.
Something so metabolically weird happened yesterday - wonder if you could 'splain it. In the morning I ate home-baked white bread. Went out for a walk that turned out to be longer than expected. Came home famished and "overdid" it as sometimes happens when you leave off eating for too long. Ate pasta with sauce, cheese and meat. Then chocolate mousse. (The latter was a disaster waiting to happen, as I am a really good cook & had all ingreds. on hand.)
This morning stepped on scale. Went from 137.0 to 136.4. My metabolism must really be broken, I lost weight eating many carbs, high glycemic foods.
What would you replace the USDA and the FDA with?
Jimmy Moore · 5,358 like this
6 hours ago ·
Today is Day 1 of a one-week, water-only total fast to see how well my keto-adapted body will do putting it to the ultimate challenge. I'll be testing blood ketones, blood sugar and weight every waking hour all week long to track my progress. I had a big meal last night, so my weight reflected that this morning. We will see what happens. I did a total fast like this with bullion cubes and diet soda a couple of years ago:
Are bullion cubes Paleo? LOLLLLL
Janet, it's only for one week and I think my keto-adapted body will do just fine. Think about how our ancestors may have gone a week between meals at times. I'm simply mimicking way tat would be like.
There's one sage saying I've heard Mark Sisson say several times: "Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good."
Apparently these gentlemen know how to make compromises and set aside differences of opinion for the sake of progress rather than tearing each other down. What a novel idea.
They always find a way to niche Evelyn into an extreme position she and many of her commenters DO NOT take. I don't see anyone here recommending SAD. I don't see anyone saying go eat junk to your heart's delight. I do see folks questioning food dogma and trying to see what the better shaped studies and research may say about what is best for folks with or without chronic conditions and obesity. I do think that people who set themselves up as advice-givers and product-sellers to others on the claim of "best health" ought to be scrutinized in case they are pitching something NOT good or False. Someone has to be the scrutinizer. And they don't tend to be popular.
I would not be surprised if it's less about keto-adaptation then binge-repair. Did he announce weeks ago that he was planning a fast? Or is this a spontaneous idea? Hm?
I will add that I believe occasional fasts are healthful (unless there is an underlying medical condition where going without food would be deleterious), and spiritually, it's got a longstanding tradition. I have no issue with a fast. I do have issues with using fasts to get off weight fast cause one pigged out, and a weeklong one at that, which guarantees muscle loss (which makes no damn sense for those who want to INCREASE lean mass and lose mostly fat.) Geesh.
"There's one sage saying I've heard Mark Sisson say several times: "Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good.""
Mark Sisson made that up? Is there any limit to the abysmal hero-worship of your brain-dead cultishness?
"Apparently these gentlemen know how to make compromises and set aside differences of opinion for the sake of progress rather than tearing each other down. What a novel idea."
What progress, tell me? Like they've made a dent in the obesity epidemic?
I must have walked more than I thought....but according to some dogma, walking or any kind of exercise is irrelevant. (I realize that you are not one of the crowd that thinks exercise is irrelevant, but some do.)
I understand he has a POS fan who has paid Evelyn the compliment of a satire website, who is taken in by his latest stunt. What a naive little fool. Apparently she came into the middle of this movie, and doesn't realize that Moore is only repeating a failed cycle.
What part of "don't have time" was unclear? Also please show me where I claimed that Sisson made that up? Perhaps Robb Wolf is on to something with his "reading comprehension" statement.
Look, you have time to come by twice and make comments. Then make some time to back up your charge that at least one argument here is a strawman.
"There's one sage saying I've heard Mark Sisson say several times: "Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good." it sounds as if you are attributing the coinage to him. It's a common phrase that everyone uses, so you can use it without mentioning your guru. Your wording was exceedingly stupid.
And stop with the adolescent nonsense insulting my reading comprehension. I'm 57, and I got a 750 on the reading/English SAT before it was renormed for retards like you. And I'd smoked a joint the night before and wasn't even functioning 100%.
Of course I know that is a common saying and I would assume most readers would understand that I was not attributing it to Sisson. If my wording was imprecise, I apologize for that.
Excuses, excuses. Your at work and you are checking into this blog - why? Goofing off at work is a form of theft. You are either stealing from your boss, or from your clients.
Let me say something for the benefit of everyone who reads here, since we are talking about gender and stuff....of all the sneering, adolescent boy bullshit that really gets my goat, I mean, is guaranteed to literally inflame me and turn my guts into sulfuric acid, it's the phrase, "What part of XXXX isn't clear?" often followed by a charge of inadequate reading comprehension. It's that implicit aggressive sneer that raises my hackles.
Mike: you come around here and insult people by saying that our arguments are worthless. When challenged to give one small example, you say you have "no time." When challenged on that, you puff up your chest and attempt to intimidate.
When people attempt to intimidate me, I react very badly.
So here it is Mike, back up your charge with one example, just one, or get lost. And stop stealing time from your boss, or your clients.
for me this turned out to be the worst approach - and I now know PROBABLY why this is so - reward theory.
When I stay low reward I can stay with it a long time. The cheats tend to creep in more and more often. I've tested this notion several times now.
This is one of the arguments that I consider a straw man attack:
"The underlying premise of the paleolithic diet is not a "template", it is the absolute belief that humans have not evolved since the paleolithic"
After listening to literally hundreds of hours of podcasts with Robb Wolf and other paleo advocates, this is simply a false representation of their position. Here is how Mat Lalonde recently summarized the argument at AHS:
“there’s been insufficient time and insufficient evolutionary pressure for complete adaptation to seed consumption to arise in homo sapiens and as a result, individuals that tolerate grains and legumes should be considered the minority, not the majority.”
I consider that to be an entirely reasonable argument and allows for plenty of individual variability. It's also quite unlike Evelyn's characterization.
Evelyn has often taken low carb and paleo authors to task for making declarative, absolute statements and more often than not I agree with her criticisms. In this case, I think she is making the same error she has accused others of making. Once you recognize that she's tearing down a straw man, much of the argument falls apart. There is "wiggle room" for adaptation and continued evolution within the paleo template.
I accept your apology, and I applaud your efforts to back up your sweeping generalization with one example.
I consider the example you have given to be, excuse me, and I mean this in the sincerest way, pathetic.
I am not a scientist. I do not pretend to be. There is a place in the world for the scientific popularizer, the person who translates genuine science for those of us who do not have the chops to read the real stuff.
As an example, I highly recommend Simon Singh's BIG BANG (not the show!). He does the miraculous in this book: makes astronomy from the Greeks to the present comprehensible to laypersons/doofuses like me.
Singh has science chops, and I suspect that is central to his ability to communicate these ideas, but even if he did not, it wouldn't matter: the book is terrific. On the other hand, a prestigious physicist whose name I forget wrote a book about gamma rays, called THE BIGGEST BANGS*, which I found boring & incomprehensible.
I bring these books up because I think that Mat LaLonde and Robb Wolf are in no way comparable to Simon Singh.
Neither of them really understands evolution. Both of them have a distinct agenda, Wolff more so than LaLonde.
But to get to the actual quotation you supplied,
"“there’s been insufficient time and insufficient evolutionary pressure for complete adaptation to seed consumption to arise in homo sapiens and as a result, individuals that tolerate grains and legumes should be considered the minority, not the majority.”
It is meaningless. It is itself a straw man.
My suggestion is that you look up Greg Cochran and Henry Harpending, and take a look at their work. There are actually mathematical models which can measure and predict selection sweeps.
This is beyond me. I do not pretend to understand this completely.
But I have a functioning bullshit detector, and I detect BULLSHIT in what LaLonde said. I don't have time to waste on what he has to say.
If it's nothing more than just a method or gateway for adopting a real, whole foods diet, then that's fine with me. I've gone from obese to normal with little effort by using the "caveman" test in the grocery store and that's something I struggled with for almost 20 years. I'm grateful for the efforts of folks like Sisson and Wolf and while I don't think they are infallible gurus, I feel a bit defensive of their argument because it has worked very well for me.
Anyway, I'll leave my argument as it is. I sense we are all a bit too entrenched in our viewpoints to be able convince each other of anything.
I also really enjoy The Big Bang Theory. I've been surrounded by nerdy folks ever since I studied Electrical Engineering and ended up in an IT career.
No, I haven't read either of their books and I think that's where some of this disconnect may be. I've spent countless hours listening to their podcasts and reading their blogs where they address many of your criticisms.
I've read a few other paleo diet books and they generally follow the same formula: Some storytelling, some oversimplified biochemistry, some cautionary tales, some success stories and a bunch of recipes for filler. They are exactly what they are designed to be: A diet prescription for lay people with some scientific plausibility (for them, at least) and lots of motivational speaking. References for scientific criticism, they are not.
I've found that the better information and arguments are in their podcasts and blogs and I can more effectively spend my book reading time on science fiction, which I actually enjoy.
The core, if that's it, is fine and no one questions it. It's the science and the fanaticism/orthorexia that tends to come into question.
I can't recall who posted it, probably Charles, but there was a link to one scientist getting up and questioning Cordain because humans CAN adapt more quickly than the Paleo crowd has been telling us, hence maybe we CAN tolerate all these intolerable foods way, way better than thought.
I gave up gluten cause of the Primal/Paleo crowd and hubby and I don't much miss it. Cut down, way down on sugar. And that's probably quite good. I thank them for that. :) But I thank Evelyn and others willing to say, "Hold on, buddy, that statement may not hold water" or "Listen, you're reading the study wrong," or "This study was poorly set up". These are valuable contributions as well. Folks may not like HOW she says some stuff, but at least they should look at the substance of what she critiques. Instead of saying F-Off, maybe get another science person to critique it right back.
It's when folks who know what the hell science is talking about get together and critique each other, rather than towing the line, that we might learn something.
Guys who are good at making muscle and staying lean (or were never obese to begin with), how come they get to talk science, but science folks can't talk back and say they're a bit in the woods?
I was simply trying to convey that I don't have a vested interest in whether or not paleo is bullshit science but that I do feel a bit defensive because of my personal success.
My suggestion that Evelyn's statemen that the paleo diet rests on the "absolute belief that humans have not evolved since the paleolithic" is a straw man has resulted in me being called brain-dead, a cultist, adolescent, retarded, and a thief.
This single conversation has been exasperating enough for me to understand why Robb Wolf would give up and tell someone to F-Off. I'm not defending him for that action or saying that it was right, just that I understand why.
There was a more gentling of the message as time went on--about safe starches, about taking a look at fat intake after all when cholesterol levels were insane from all that coconut oil and ghee and red meat, about how calories just may count after all--which is why I do consider myself a supporter of looking at health and wellness with an eye to ancestors. :) I'd like to see the movement affect the quality of the food supply and what we subsidize (if we do) in terms of food production. I'd rather see organic veggies and happy hens and non-GMO corn. :D
The conversation here isn't as close-minded as some would think, since there are high carbers and low-carbers and middling-carbers and sugar-eaters and gluten-eschewers. Mostly, like you, no doubt, we want to eat better to live better. But we don't want only part of the picture. I visit and link on my blog to Primal and Paleo sites. But I also link here and to Paleo critics. I think to be closed off from critique is not a good thing for any growing movement. Groupthink bad.
So as the AH movement allows for diverse voices and gadflies, it can only improve and refine. They should not only welcome the criticism of PaleoFantasy, but of Carbsane, because, hey, it's the little dude or dudette on the fringe going, "Um, there seems to be something off here" who may have a true gem of an insight to contribute, and should not be shouted down.
(I like Paul's blog a lot, and his manner of presentation --he's way calmer than some voices out there--but as a crazy-butt-high-and-efficient fat absorber and storer, I can't eat the high fat levels of his diet. Liked the book, though.)
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