الثلاثاء، 13 أغسطس، 2013

Fat Fiction


Dietary fat is incredibly misunderstood. For decades it was painted as the cause of obesity and heart disease. Then the Atkins diet came along, painting a new villain, and it lowered cholesterol, triglycerides, and all of the other mediocre indicators of heart disease risk. Then, suspiciously, we were all supposed to avoid carbs. As the carb fanaticism has faded, we’re now uncertain about what we’re supposed to eat. Although controversy still reigns supreme about any and all dietary guidelines, one thing I’ve discovered to be a real blessing is deleting the myths about dietary fat.

At first, those on the lowfat bandwagon pushed the agenda to lower fat intake because diets that are extremely low in fat showed some evidence of lowering cholesterol. Cholesterol at the time was cast as the villain of heart disease because those with genetic hypercholesterolemia (chronic high cholesterol genetically inherited in about .5% of the population), had higher rates of heart disease. This is where the story ended for the next half century (including right now). Few have had the sense to ask questions like, “Does eating more fat raise cholesterol?” or “does high cholesterol increase risk of heart disease in those who don’t have hypercholesterolemia?” The ones who have asked these questions found out that the assumptions made about cholesterol in the 60’s just aren’t true no matter who is telling us that it is. In fact, high fat diets have never conclusively been shown to raise cholesterol levels, and lowering cholesterol has been shown to slightly reduce heart disease and increase the risk of death from all causes. You won’t hear that on the pharmaceutical-owned and endorsed news stations tonight!

Now I don’t expect you to believe a punk 29-year old nutritional consultant with an English degree over the FDA, American Heart Association, American Medical Association, and 90% of doctors worldwide. But honestly consider the questions I’m about to present.

With 40 years of research on lowering dietary fat and lowering cholesterol levels, why are heart attacks at an all time high?

Why do African Zebu cattlemen, who consume over a pound of butterfat per day, have low cholesterol (150 on average) and no heart disease?

How can the healthiest humans studied in the 20th century, the native Eskimos, live into old age without heart disease on a diet with 80% of their calories derived from mostly saturated animal fat?

Why do the French, who live off of eggs, butter, cheese, and liver (high in saturated fat and cholesterol), have one of the lowest rates of heart disease in the modern world?

Why do the people of Thailand and Indonesia, the world’s largest consumers of coconut (the highest known source of saturated fat), have far less heart disease and practically no overweight citizens?

How did Okinawa come to be known as the healthiest and longest-living industrialized area when they cook most of their food in lard?

How am I able to be thinner and healthier at 29 while eating 50% fat calories and exercising 3 hours a week than I was at age 9 eating whole grain cereals and skim milk and running around like a madman at least 3 hours a day?

How did legendary nutritional guru Weston Price spend a lifetime traveling the globe doing nutritional research on the world’s healthiest people and come to the conclusion that raw butter, organ meats, animal fat, and fish eggs are the healthiest foods a human can consume?

The point is that fat is not the perpetrator of all evil. There are too many contradictions for it to ever possibly be the cause of weight gain and heart disease. Granted, there are types of fat that have proven to do this, like trans fats from polyunsaturated vegetable oils that have been completely destroyed during the manufacturing process, but healthy fats from whole food sources that haven’t been annihilated are great for our bodies.

Take a deep breath and reprogram yourself to see these items as the health foods that they are and have always been (all of them organic or biodynamic ideally):

Coconut meat, milk, and Extra Virgin Coconut oil
Raw olives and Extra Virgin Olive oil
Sprouted raw nuts and seeds
Game meats, fat, and organs
Beef meat, fat, and organs
Other meats, fat, and organs of those animals
Fatty fish and fish eggs
Raw butter, raw cream, raw cheese, and raw whole milk
Avocado
Eggs (especially the yolks!)


As a final note, one thing that most of the healthiest fatty diets studied throughout history have in common is that many of these foods were consumed raw. This is probably due to the enzyme lipase, which is essential for proper fat digestion and assimilation into body tissues. Lipase is destroyed at 118 degrees F. Contrary to common belief, red meats can be consumed raw without fear of parasites if the meat has been frozen for two weeks or longer. This is an FDA approved technique for reducing the likelihood of food borne illness, and is used in the restaurant industry for the preparation of carpaccio, tartare, and other safe to eat raw meat dishes. Raw fish that hasn’t been frozen or treated with lime as in ceviche can transmit parasites, but even so the Japanese sushi lovers have the lowest rates of heart disease in the industrialized world and have health and longevity that exceeds that of Americans and Europeans – parasites and all.

A diet rich in these foods in their raw, organic form has been thoroughly proven to lower risk of heart disease, cancer, and just about any other degenerative disease pandemic to eaters of a modern diet full of cooked, processed, and lifeless foods. Bon appetite!

Carpaccio recipe (serves 2)

Contrary to the belief that raw beef is “yucky,” this Italian appetizer is an incredibly delicious dish that is trendy among upscale restaurants across the globe. The texture is beyond tender, like the finest meat you’ve ever had. Similar to sashimi, the taste and texture of raw meat is superior to the cooked version, and leaves you feeling lighter and more energized afterwards.

6 oz. New York strip steak (frozen for 2+ weeks); organic and grass fed
1 green onion; sliced
1t Extra virgin olive oil
Pinch of celtic sea salt
Pinch of Hungarian paprika
Pinch of cayenne pepper
A few drops lemon juice or Organic apple cider vinegar

-Remove steak from freezer and allow it to thaw at room temperature for 10 minutes.
-Slice as thinly as possible, leaving all of the fat on the meat.
-Mix in a bowl with other ingredients.
-Place on a plate, spreading the meat slices delicately across the plate to stretch but not tear the slices.
-Serve with a very simple arugula or field greens salad and shaved Parmigiano Reggiano cheese (which is unpasteurized and full of lipase)

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