Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Are Humans Herbivores, Carnivores, or Omnivores

Click the link below and read on if you think you know the answer. 
If you are vegan r vegetarian don't bother clicking on the link.  If you eat meat, even in small amounts, click the link and challenge your thinking. 

Note: This is somewhat related to athletic performance as there is a list of athletes at the end.


Reply to J-No's response--it started short, but became 'rantish', but its not mean or feverishly tyranical:
If you are going to put athletes who eat meat side by side with those don't and compare who's better, that's not really fair to either side. All that you can really get from that is that performance is not negatively affected by a vegan diet. The most notable in the triathlon world is Dave Scott (6x IM Kona champ while vegan). Here's a link to others: ATHLETES
In most all cases, an athlete who switches from meat-eating to no-meat will improve in some ways--IF they don't just cut it out, but replace the calories with nutritionally balanced non meat foods. You're probably thinking of ways to dispute that, but meat, by its very make-up is acidic, has little to no digestive assisting enzymes, no fiber, and contains [bad] cholesterol regardless of how low-fat it is. Cholesterol affects athletic performance so by removing it from your diet will make things run cleaner, which would lead to better performance and/or better recovery. Your body uses energy and nutrients to clear out things that don't belong. There is no nutritional benefit to dietary cholesterol and its only source is from animals. All nutrients that are found in meat are also found in plant-based foods that don't tax your body to digest. Nutritionally optimal foods= whole separate topic.

I have not eaten an egg in 3.5 years, but used to eat several per week because I thought I 'needed' the protein. I eat fish occasionally (1-2 times a month at most). There are varieties of vegetarians, but I don't consider your typical dairy consuming vegetarian any different than a person who eats meat--cows milk is basically liquid meat. A "strict vegetarian" used to be someone who eats nothing from an animal. "Vegan" is the current term for that, but some vegans consume or use nothing from an animal--no leather, no jello, no honey, etc. I am "vegan" when it comes to whole foods and meals. I am not an animal rights, non leather type. My take is from a dietary standpoint. No dairy, no meat as a whole, but if someone makes something that contains an egg (like cookies or something), or uses non-vegan sugar in a recipe, or honey, I am not going to decline it. It should be said that "vegan" doesn't mean you're any healthier, as most junk food is vegan like soda, candy, many off the shelf cookies and snacks, chips, etc are all junk, but vegan. Any dietary path you follow can be bad. I love oreos...just sayin'.

I don't push or spend time convincing others, but I like to share what I know is a healthier way to eat, with only the risk of better health, I like to throw it out there. If someone wants to talk about it, I'm in. If you want to eat ribs while I have something else at the same table, I'm not there to convince you otherwise, or gross you out, but if we decide to talk about it after, that's cool. I might ask for a piece [ribs] just to taste it. Who cares.

The problem with 'making choices' about the foods we eat is that they are not really choices anymore. They are government pushed, company funded 'requirements' (ie: school menu's, day care minimum servings, etc); Its dairy and meat that is pushed upon us, not veganism or vegetarianism. Meat and dairy are glamourized and advertised by the companies making their products out to be required for good health (ie: dairy products like yogurt and Muscle Milk) who use flawed studies that support their claims or twist their message. For example, Yoplait commercials don't say their product is good for you, they say that some of the nutrients found in their yogurt is good for you. I can say the same about a snickers bar or a pound of deep fried onion rings (both delicious). What dairy companies don't tell you is that the protein type in their products use a lot of bone calcium to process it--sometimes more calcium that their product contains. Do the math. Why do Americans have more osteoporosis than other other people, but we also eat the most dairy? With all they say, it almost makes it impossible that we went for millions of years without them (without eating meat and dairy at every meal). How in the world did we survive without our bones crumbling? Yet, our declining health correlates with the rise in dairy and meat consumption in addition to process junk that passes as food (so its not just dairy and meat). Did you know that that many schools' "health" education is provided by dairy companies and the national dairy council? I thought that was a myth and a lie until I looked at my kids crayola colored happy dancing cow and other 'fun' stuff he learned and brought home from school. Sounds like a conflict of interest and a one sided view to me. For those that eat SAD (standard American diet) it really isn't a choice, but the way we have been convinced and taught to eat. As a side note, I have no problem with companies selling whatever they want and think there should be less rules and guidelines on them including the sale of tobacco, alcohol, etc. (I miss Camel and Hamms beer adds.) But when their money influences and even builds, oh I don't know, the Food Pyramid, I have a problem with that. Ok, I gotta stop somewhere....

IMWI was a good time. Would like to do it again, but training for it was a bit stressful. While you were smokin ribs on that day, I was gettin smoked : )


J-No said...

Is there a comparative list of athletes who eat meat and a list of their accomplishments?

Do you eat eggs or fish? I'm not real clear on all of the denominations of being a vegetarian.

I have no problem with individual choices. Why do vegans/vegetarians seem to spend a lot of time trying to convince others how great is?

Nice job on IMWI. Pertinent to this conversation I was following you online while smoking a couple of racks of ribs.

Mario said...

My response led to a lot more so its posted in the post itself...

J-No said...

Thanks for the response. I'm not interested enough in the lifestyle to research it, but I appreciate your thoughts.

Are you going to do another IM? This is the first year that I have considered doing another one. Maybe when the kids are older.


Charly Tri said...

From what I understand, J-No's finish time at his IM was faster. So, in conclusion, meat wins. Statistics don't lie.

On a serious note, correlating stats means nothing. Osteoporosis may have risen, but you cannot point at a rise in meat consumption as the culprit without actual proof. Using the same logic; I could point at the rise of auto use, the increased size of the average home, the decrease in racism, or the increase in illegal immigrants as the cause for increased osteoporosis diagnosis. Things like people living longer, better diagnosis might play a big role as well. Just saying.

Mario said...

Dairy links to osteoporisis--not meat. I get your point though--correlation does not mean cause & effect. However, some correlations support cause and effect better than others when they have stronger ties connecting them. Increases in cars and home size, rascism, etc don't have the same variables connecting them as close as do osteoporosis to people consuming dairy which has calcium, which is supposed to insulate us from bone diseases. Dairy products main purpose is for consumption by people. They say "eat dairy for the calcium, calcium makes bones strong." They are trying to make the connection that isn't there. They are implying that dairy makes bones strong when its the opposite. Everything we consume uses something inside us to process it. And its a fact that casein (protein in dairy) uses bone calcium for processing. Too much dairy, because its so rich in protein, leads to a calcium deficiency. That was the point...

I'll admit, J-No is a better Ironman than I. But I'll bet he was "vegan" during the race :)

Mario said...

Forgot... Its not just too much dairy--its relying on dairy for all your calcium and not doing other things that ward off disease. Like exercise which is really what strengthens your bones as well as muscle. Enough...

Wait till you see the next post--you'll really be able to rip on me.

J-No said...

J-No is not a better ironman. I was indeed vegan during the race. I did enjoy a bacon cheeseburger soon after that.

I did P90x for a while. I did it full bore, diet and everything. It seems like I was spending way too much time trying to figure out what to eat. I also found that when it was nice or I had extra time I did not feel like doing the videos. Let me know how the program goes.

I eat most things in moderation, but way too much pizza. I don't drink milk because I do not like the taste. Time to pick up some pizza on the way home for dinner tonight.