Wednesday, May 29, 2013

IS A ONLY MEAT-BASED DIET THE BEST FOR HUMANS?


I would like to answer this question without writing pages and say here, right now: “YES IT IS!” And, luckily, I wouldn’t have to argue with a lot of folks on this blog…

But since you are here and reading, I think I have to add more and explain why and animal-based diet is probably the best-suited diet for humans.

I am not sure I want to discuss about the capacities of our body digesting foods of plant origins and if it was designed for it, so, yes, I will say it: we can digest “some of them” but I will immediately add “they are not a necessity”; they are more the kind of stuff we may ingest when there is nothing else available. It is more a “survival skill” then anything else.

Interestingly, anthropological studies confirm, we, humans, NEVER willingly adopted, I mean only by choice of taste, an all-plant diet; it was always done be necessity except, as you know, in the recent decades. But I will not insist on the “why” this happened. Life is too short…

I think the best way to understand why an animal-based diet is ideal for us is to look at what it PROVIDES compared to what a plant-based diet does NOT. This brings up the concept of “critical nutrients”, these being the precious molecules we can ONLY nourish our body while eating animal products.

The best example is Vitamin B12. Our body CANNOT produce it and only animal food can provide it, especially meat, fish and eggs. The main consequences of any deficiency of B12 is anemia, mental disorders including memory loss and, in kids, development of smaller brains. Sadly, many older folks diagnosed with Alzheimer disease, in reality, only suffer from a B12 deficiency that could easily be cured eating meat. Sadly, some brain damage can become irreversible.

Another good example of precious nutriments found ONLY in an all-meat diet is Vitamin D. This main source of this vitamin SHOULD be transformation from our skin cholesterol exposure to sun. This being said, we NEED the sun exposure and it has to be on a regular basis (at least once a week). Sadly, many of us live in northern countries and places where sun is available all year around, folks are now using sunscreens and any SFP protection over 15 stops production of Vitamin D by 98%...

There is 2 types of vitamin D in medical literature: D2 and D3. Note that D3 can only be produce from our skin or originate from animal sources, while D2 comes from plants. AND, please do note, there is still controversy if D2 can fully substitute D3 in the human diet. So don’t be fools about plants sources of Vitamin D…

Lacking vitamin D can be disastrous. From osteoporosis to hearth diseases, it can initiate cancer, affect the immune system and cause cognitive impairment. It is mainly known for absorption of calcium and phosphate.

The best animal sources are eggs, fatty fish and liver. And, let’s never forget: butter does contain a good amount of Vitamin D!!!

Interestingly, if you Google “food sources of vitamin D’ be prepare to find: cereals, milk and orange juice in the list. But, again, don’t be fools; in reality, they all contain ZERO vitamin D in their original form, as they are all “fortified” with artificially produced vitamin D…

If we continue in the list of the “critical nutrients” only find in animal food, we come now to Omega 3. This is an essential fatty acids our body cannot produce and it comes in 2 forms: DHA and EPA, but DHA is the most important.

Omega 3 is very important in brain functioning as it makes most of the lipids in this organ. It has also been proven important fighting depression and nowadays, psychiatrist largely prescribes it to depress patients.

The best sources are, again, fish, eggs, dairy products and meat. Grass-fed beef do contain more then cereal-fed but when you look at numbers, the difference is not that much and I note there is a trend to exaggerate the qualities of grass-fed meat. I am not arguing against it, I am just citing a fact.

You will read that plant food, especially flaxseed, is a rich source of “plant omega 3”. But again, note it comes in the form of ALA that needs to be transform into DHA (functional omega 3) in our body to be useful and studies are showing we are quite ineffective doing the job...

Another interesting nutrients only find in meat is CREATINE. It is well know by body-builders to grow up muscles. I will not insist here on Creatine as I will be the subject of a coming post.

Finally, other precious stuff only find in an all-meat diet are the antioxidants CARNITINE and CARNOSINE. But as they were the subjects of recent posts, I will refer you to them if you want to get any extra information about one or both.

To end this post, I hope you noticed how these exceptional nutrients we find in our animal-base diet on Zero Carb, target one big and important organ: the brain. If this doesn’t ring a bell in your head, what would???

Denis



Thursday, May 23, 2013

QUALITY OF MEAT FATS ON ZERO CARB


I just finished reading a fantastic review on “dietary fats and health” and I need to share a few interesting hints for anyone on Zero carb.

Basically, the article reviews the recent data revealing saturated fats are NOT associated with cardiac diseases and other adverse health effects (ex: cancer). If there was an association in the past, it was NOT because of saturated fats but other reasons.

In a few words, it is described how saturated fats result in far LESS inflammation than diets with either omega-3 or omega-6 polyunsaturated fats. 

The less a fat is saturated, the more it is inflammatory. Monounsaturated fats (ex: olive oil) are more inflammatory then saturated (ex: meat, coconut oil), and polyunsaturated (ex: omega-6) are even more inflammatory then monounsaturated.

Al this being said, in nature, these fats are never 100% of one kind and so, they come in a mix. Coconut oil is 91% saturated, 6% monounsaturated and 3% polyunsaturated. Here are some components that can interest us:

                         Saturated   Monounsaturated  Polyunsaturated   

Coconut oil        91%                  6%                            3%                             

Butter                65%                   28%                          7%                             

Olive oil             14%                   72%                          14%

Beef                   50%                   40%                          10%

Pork                   44%                   48%                          8%

Chicken              25%                   50%                          25%

As we can see, beef and pork are, on the average, 50 % saturated and 50% unsaturated (mono + poly combined). So clearly, on an all-meat diet, we are getting a GREAT amount of the “inflammatory unsaturated fats”.

The big problem being theses delicate lipids are sensible to “oxidation” and “peroxidation” in our body and when they are scavenged by cells in our arteries, particularly around the hearth, it may lead to atherosclerosis. Because saturated fats are not susceptible to oxidation, they have not been found to be involved in these mechanisms.

One important consideration here is most of the time, sources of predominantly saturated fats, such as meat, are often cooked at high temperatures, which can induce “oxidation and peroxidation” of the unsaturated fats they contain and thus promote heart disease, cancer and several other chronic diseases.

So, again, overcooking our meat, aside destroying vitamins, denaturing proteins (including antioxidants carnitine and carnosine) and leaching minerals out of flesh, also oxidize the unsaturated fats it contains. This is another reason to eat our beef raw when possible or, at least, not overexpose it to extreme temperature.

A meta-analysis including over one million folks and 20 studies found red meat was not associated with cardiac disease. In contrast, processed meat do. This help us to understand, again, why saturated fat has no causality here, but it could easily be other factors such as preservatives included in processed meat.

The “saturated fat hypothesis” doesn’t seem to hold. Anyway, countries with high intake of tropical oil, rich is saturated lipids, have some of the lowest hearth disease in the world.

Luckily, on Zero Carb, we have eliminated fructose, which increases triglycerides, increases levels of oxidized LDL-cholesterol, especially the small atherogenic sub-particles, and contributes to the metabolic syndrome. And, by eliminating all carbs, we also prevent “glycation” of proteins which also has a big place in initiation of many diseases.

To conclude, lets say it seems saturated fats are not responsible for the adverse effects with which they have been associated in the past; it is more because of the oxidation + peroxidation of the unsaturated fats they come with, especially the way we treat the said fats.

Denis










Saturday, May 18, 2013

MEAT AND BODY INFLAMMATION WITH THE ZERO CARB DIET


There seem to be some controversy on the anti-inflammatory effect of meat on the human body so I decided to give a look to the subject.

No dough, inflammation is enemy number one of mankind, causing common diseases such as arthritis or fibromyalgia, but it is also responsible for serious stuff like arteriosclerosis, Alzheimer disease and initiation of cancer.

Strangely, there is not that much studies out there on the subject. Probably because treating the “main root” of many diseases would not be profitable for pharmaceuticals and all related health care businesses.

Our modern society is far away from doing “preventive medicine” as “curing medicine” keeps the economy going. Sadly, if one looks to do some of this “preventive stuff”, he can easily get lost in available information and can go on doing “wrong choices” thinking they are good, the best example being the “whole grain versus refined grain” propaganda.

Did you know the average “commercial WHITE bread” contains about 50 g carbs per portion, while “commercial WHOLE GRAIN bread” may contain 55 g carbs? Of course, publicity insists on the extra 2 g fiber you get with the WHOLE BREAD, while omitting you are getting an extra 3 g of “rapid carb” at the same time…

Back to inflammation and meat.

The usual way to evaluate the effect of a food item on inflammation levels in the body is to look at blood markers. The 2 most common one are the C-REACTIVE PROTEIN (CRP), a test routinely done while evaluating the risk for heart disease, and the ERYTHROCYTE SEDIMENTATION TEST (ESR), a very old but reliable and inexpensive blood test.

So what are the studies teaching us?

One interesting research substituted RED MEAT for carbohydrate, and it was observe meat do NOT create increase in these markers. So far, so good.

Another study, with the same substitution, showed inflammation markers could even go DOWN with increased red meat intake. Even better.

But the most interesting discovery concluded a diet high in red meat is not different “inflammation wise” from a diet rich in fish oil. Not a good publicity for oily fishes.

Still, a controversy remains and a molecule called NEU5GC, founded in mammalian meat, is at the center of the debate. This monosaccharide helps our immune system distinguish between our own cells and the cells of the animal meat we are ingesting. This allows our body to decide what “cells” to begin digesting so we don’t consume our own tissues. Some searchers are hypothesizing we are producing antibodies to this compound and this creates inflammation.

But at this time, it is pure speculation as NO studies are backing up the theory. Of course, fear is one sad human weakness and when exploited, it can lead to disastrous consequences…

Anyway, humans have always eaten meat and cultures thriving on “all meat diets”, devoid of heart problems and cancer, certainly wouldn’t have had elevated body inflammation. This is corroborated by anthropological studies but, sadly, they are described by many as the “Inuit Paradox” or the “Maasai Paradox”…

When will we learn when a paradox repeats itself with the same pattern, it becomes “the road towards the discover of a principle”?

Another “big guy” responsible for body inflammation is ARACHIDONIC ACID. Don’t be afraid of the name: it is just one of the essential omega-6 fatty acids our body needs as we cannot produce them along with omega-3 fatty acids.
As it is found primarily in eggs and meat, these foods are considered by many as the “guilty ones” and it is suggested we avoid them at all cost because of their content of ARACHIDONIC ACID. Which is not logical as some quantity of this is essential fatty acid is needed on a daily basis…
We must also consider we need SOME inflammatory response to answer any attack our body has to deal with such as bacteria or virus, chemicals, radiations ect. So, yes, we need some balance in ingestion here and, LUCKELY, meat provides us the correct amount of ARACHIDONIC ACID to answer our needs along with other essential fatty acids WITHOUT CREATING an excessive inflammation reaction.
But add other big sources of essential fatty acids omega-6, like vegetable oils, and the delicate balance of omega3-omaga6 nature has created for us with meat gets scrapped away.
Anyway, RED MEAT has a low content of ARACNIDOIC ACID because of its overall small content of omega-6 (especially when compared to chicken).
Interestingly, in the data base of NUTRITIONDATA, you can notice beef has one of the STRONGEST anti-inflammatory effect of all foods, while bread and pasta are all inflammatory.
So how can we resume the qualities of eating meat on a Zero Carb diet?

Meat is a source of COMPLETE PROTEIN which means it contains adequate proportion of all the NINE essential amino acids of our dietary needs, it offers important quantities of liposoluble antioxidant vitamins such as A, E and K, along with an excellent array of the B vitamins group, including EXCLUSIVE B12 only find in animal products, a lot of precious minerals such as ZINC, SELENIUM and IRON and, finally, it is plentiful of antioxidant molecules such as CARNITINE and CARNOSINE.

Denis


















Wednesday, May 15, 2013

DO ZERO CARB, OR DON'T DO IT, BUT NOTHING IN BETWEEN???

I am chatting online since years with this chap in Switzerlandwho is now on a Zero Carb diet since about 2 years, and he is just got out of the hospital for 5 hearth bypasses…

This brings up a lot of questioning for me especially since I was the one convincing him to try Zero Carb to control a Metabolic Syndrome…

Strangely, I was feeling quite good in these 2 years except the last 3 weeks when he had chest pain…

I must report that he has a family history of hearth problems…

My first step will be to question him and figure out if he was really doing Zero Carb seriously, which brings up, again, the same question: is it dangerous to do strict Zero Carb AND cheat once in a while allowing some high bad carb treats???

To be continued.

Denis

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