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Updated: 5 hours 7 min ago

Summertime Creamy Cucumber Salad

Thu, 08/17/2017 - 13:26

The summer months bring on loads of fresh produce from the garden, and what better way to use a bumper crop of cucumbers than to make this delicious cucumber salad? Choose whatever herbs you wish to change the flavors to your liking, and serve this with burgers, steak, or grilled chicken. My family loves this!

  • 4 cups cucumbers, cubed or sliced thinly
  • 1/4 cup cream cheese
  • 1 Tbsp white wine or apple cider vinegar, or juice from fermented sauerkraut or pickles (Be sure to use herbs that compliment, rather than interfere with, the flavors of the ferment )*
  • 2 Tbsp fresh herbs, minced (basil/mint/tarragon is my favorite combination)
  • 1 tsp unrefined salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper

Mix all ingredients together in a bowl and let sit for 20-30 minutes in the refrigerator before serving, for flavors to meld. Serve chilled.

*For example: Garlic dill pickle juice: fresh dill, mint, tarragon

Plain sauerkraut juice: any herbs you like!

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Health 101 Simplified

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 14:32

Health 101 Simplified
Dr. Donald K. Weber, DC
(Audio CD)

Dr. Weber’s views on blood pressure are a little different from those of most other doctors. He believes that your blood pressure is what it is supposed to be. In other words, artificially adjusting it with drugs is not “correcting” anything. Blood pressure is controlled by oxygen levels in the brain. If the brain is not getting enough oxygen it raises the blood pressure until it does get enough oxygen. Normal blood pressure is considered to be around 120 over 80, although the pharmaceutical companies would like to lower those figures so that they can make a whole lot more money selling their drugs to a lot more people.

The ratio of 120 over 80 is 3:2. If your pressure is higher but in the same ratio (150 over 100, for example), then you are dehydrated, according to Dr. Weber. I’m pretty sure there is not a drug in the world that cures dehydration, but I’m not a doctor. Weber also mentions that chemicals from things like processed lunch meat can raise blood pressure.

Many doctors seem to prefer prescribing expensive drugs to lower blood pressure. Do they work? Well, they lower pressure but they do that by weakening the heart. That doesn’t sound good to me but, as I’ve said, I’m not a doctor. The result is insufficient oxygen to the brain resulting in dizziness, light-headedness or even blackouts. That is a known side-effect of blood pressure medication. Over the long run, brain cells start dying when they don’t get enough oxygen. That doesn’t sound too good to me either, but then, I’m still not a doctor.

A variety of subjects are covered in this CD. Dr. Weber takes a similar approach to analyzing cholesterol levels: your cholesterol level is what it is supposed to be. Lowering it with drugs is a shortcut to Alzheimer’s disease or cancer.

The best sources of vitamin D are fish and the sun. Weber clarifies that farmed fish are not a source of vitamin D. They don’t have any. The sun should be a good source but because many people don’t get enough saturated fat or other nutrients, they burn too easily. Since they burn too easily, they stay out of the sun. Dr. Weber recommends fermented cod liver oil as one of the best sources of vitamin D.

As for other topics, Dr. Weber believes soy is not digestible and GMO foods are effective for birth control. He discusses a rice diet. That doesn’t sound like a Weston A. Price diet, and it’s not. He does not advocate this diet long term, yet instead recommends it for recuperation and explicitly includes fermented cod liver oil and butter oil to supply vitamin A and D, which are not provided by rice. My thumb does not have a strong opinion on some of these things but is inclined to point UP for the CD as a whole.


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Farming in Fear

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 14:29

Farming in Fear
Written & Produced by Sean W Malone

Martha Boneta purchased a farm in Paris, Virginia that was a bit run down. She put years of work into rebuilding and turned it into a very nice place. There was an easement that specified that no urban development was to take place. She agreed to that and complied with it completely. She had managed to get everything operational and was selling products from her farm store when trouble commenced.

The Piedmont Environmental Council began snooping around and making accusations, threats and demands. The county decided her handmade signs in the farm store were not good enough and had to be professionally made. A neighbor sent a picture of an abused horse to animal control agents accusing Boneta of abusing animals. The photo was not of Boneta’s horse nor had she anything to do with it.

The harassment and unreasonable inspections got worse. The source of all the antagonism was unknown until 2009 when Boneta discovered that a group of powerful people were orchestrating these attacks. County supervisor Peter Schwartz, former farm owners Phil and Patricia Thomas, and the Piedmont Environmental Council were out to “rein in this dreadful woman.” She was farming her land and selling her produce from her farm store on her property. This outrage had to be stopped.

Boneta was charged with phony zoning violations for selling what she produced from her farm. Every other farm in the area did the same thing without harassment. Boneta was eventually forced to shut down for a while. In the process she found out that this same kind of thing is happening to people like her all over the country. Farmageddon continues.

Boneta worked with local representatives to introduce a “Right-to-Farm Act” which was defeated in the Virginia senate. At one point County Supervisor Schwartz publicly disclosed that Boneta was being audited by the IRS. What made this even more chilling was that Boneta herself had not been informed of that fact yet. How did Schwartz know that at all, let alone before she did? This gave Boneta a new understanding of how powerful and corrupt the forces against her were.

Fortunately, positive progress has been made. Boneta worked with larger groups to introduce a new right-to-farm bill which passed in 2014. For now, at least, it is legal to farm in Virginia. Thumbs UP to that and to this video.

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Low-Carb High-Fat Convention by Zoë Harcombe

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 14:22

Low-Carb High-Fat Convention: The Obesity Epidemic
Zoë Harcombe
Real Meal Revolution

Harcombe presents some pertinent statistics behind the well-known surge in obesity that began around 1980, give or take a few years. In the UK in 1966 the obesity rate was 1.8 percent. By 1999 it was up to 25.8 percent. She shows a picture of one of the more extreme cases, a teenager named Georgia Davis who weighs in at a svelte 400 kg. We in the States have never been big fans of the metric system so I will translate. That is about 880 pounds.

What happened? Did we suddenly become lazy pigs? Maybe some did, but in general, no. One key development about that time was the release of new dietary guidelines by the committee headed by George McGovern. These guidelines really kicked off the lowfat craze in the United States, followed a few years later in the UK and then the rest of the world. A lowfat diet by necessity becomes a high-carb diet, and the most tempting carbs are the sugary junk foods. What could possibly go wrong?

The next question is why the big change in dietary recommendations? Many assume that there were studies showing fat as the favorite weapon of the Grim Reaper. The main culprits covered in this video are Ancel Keys and Bugs Bunny. Bugs Bunny himself actually was not to blame and, as a cartoon character, was rather harmless (and highly entertaining). It was all those rabbits who were fed cholesterol in animal experiments and got clogged up by it. The thing is, it wasn’t really their fault either because they were fed things they were not designed to eat. More appropriate animals like rats and dogs had no problem eating cholesterol.

As for Ancel Keys, he claimed early on that dietary cholesterol had no effect on blood levels of cholesterol, yet later in his Seven Countries Study he asserted that higher dietary fat and cholesterol led to greater risk of death from heart disease. As we’ve said many times, that study came from heavily cherry-picked data. Harcombe points out that there is a stronger correlation in his data between heart disease and latitude than cholesterol. Maybe all we need to do to fix this is move south.

She then shows a graph from a modern version of the Seven Countries Study but now including one hundred ninety-two countries. The data points are very scattered but there is a slight trend toward lower deaths from all causes (a much better metric anyway) and higher cholesterol levels. In other words, higher cholesterol correlates with living longer.

Returning to a diet featuring animal foods and the fat they contain—the diet that has sustained us for 99.9+ percent of our human history—might seem oddly radical in today’s world. Our experiment with lowfat, tasteless swill has failed, so maybe it is time for something radical.

Obstacles to this radical change include public health authorities, economic factors and conflicts of interest. Health authorities and experts in general always hate to admit they were wrong and might not be as smart as they want everyone to believe they are. Economically speaking, what are we going to do with all those employees of fast fooderies when we start eating real food again? And what of the medical practitioners who will be out of jobs due to lack of patients? What about Pepsi? Pepsi makes more money than 65 percent of the countries of the world. The economic devastation is just too great to contemplate. We can’t afford to get healthy.

Several charts on conflict of interest paint the picture clearly. The American Dietetic Association is sponsored by the likes of General Mills, Kellogg’s, SoyJoy, Mars, Coca Cola and Pepsi. The British Nutrition Foundation is sponsored by Nestlé, Coca Cola, McDonald’s, Kellogg’s, Kraft, Cadbury, Pepsi, and others. The Association for Dietetics in South Africa is sponsored by Kellogg’s, Nestlé and so on. In many cases, these are not just sponsors but “partners.”

Michael Pollan is famous for saying, “Eat food, mostly plants, not too much.” In contrast, Zoë Harcombe likes to say, “Eat food, mostly animals, quite a lot.” The lecture hall where this talk was given has a nifty widget on the podium with green, yellow, and red lights to alert the speaker. Green: you have plenty of time. Yellow: time to wrap it up. Red, you’re done, watch out for the big hook coming at you from the side. As the red light was flashing, Harcombe referred to the late Barry Groves who said civilized man is the only chronically sick animal on the planet. She asked whether this might be because he is the only species clever enough to make his own food … and stupid enough to eat it. I think the red light is blinking on this review, so to sum up: thumbs UP.


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Seeding Fear

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 14:17

Seeding Fear: The Story of Michael White vs. Monsanto
Kings Point Productions

Michael White stares at his father’s grave as he tells the story of the confrontation between his family and Monsanto in this ten-minute YouTube video. Monsanto sued his father in 2003 for saving soy seeds. Michael declares that his father never grew a soybean in his life. He paints the picture of an old man using a walker to make his way into court to go up against a pack of rich, well-dressed lawyers. Even after the case was over and White’s father won, he was tormented by the prospect that Monsanto might come after him again and the nightmare would be repeated. The psychological trauma ultimately destroyed him.

Ninety percent of the corn, soy and cotton grown in the United States is produced by Monsanto. Monsanto has attacked hundreds of farmers for doing nothing more than farming, using strong-arm, underhanded tactics to drive nearly all seed savers or seed cleaners out of business and making it dangerous for farmers to clean seeds. Monsanto sends undercover agents in to seed savers with GMO patented seed. The agents lie to the seed saver, claiming it is regular seed. The seed saver does his work and then he is busted. It’s a sick game. Some farmers, including Michael White, have also received death threats.

Very few Americans have read Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein although almost everyone is familiar with the movies that caricature the novel. If you have actually read the novel you know it is a haunting nightmare of a tragedy. Nicknaming Monsanto’s products “Frankenfood” is therefore a very appropriate sinister sobriquet. One commentator has said that unlike other classic authors, the very young Mary Shelley didn’t offer many answers to the dilemma she wrote about. I think she did offer one very clear answer to dealing with the fallout of playing God: Don’t. Do. It. Idiot.

Monsanto is doing it. We are all paying the price and living the nightmare. But there is a difference between Monsanto and Dr. Frankenstein—Victor Frankenstein at least was horrified by what he had wrought. Monsanto has shown no detectable trace of conscience or morality.

Michael White is a man of faith who knows that all giants in history have fallen sooner or later. This one will, too. This video rates a thumbs UP.

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The Truth About Cancer Ty Bollinger

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 13:26

The Truth About Cancer: A Global Quest Episode 1, The True History of Chemotherapy and the Pharmaceutical Monopoly
Ty Bollinger

One hundred years ago there were several choices for health care. There was homeopathic, chiropractic, herbalist or the relatively new pharmaceutical-based medicine. Suppose you are rich, evil and have a lot invested in the pharmaceutical medical approach. You want to eliminate the competition and monopolize drug-based medicine. You want to be sneaky. How do you do it?

The answer, if you have a lot of money like Rockefeller and Carnegie, is to establish charitable foundations that give away lots of money for medical programs, education and research. Sounds great to those who don’t pay attention to the details. They are generously giving away piles of money to help people. How wonderful! Unfortunately, all that money is only going to the drug-based system. Then you establish a very official-sounding certification system which only certifies practitioners and facilities that you approve of. Your education system carefully identifies as a quack anyone you don’t certify.

That is what Rockefeller and Carnegie did, and they did it well. Such schemers can throw studies into the above mix where they pay for results that favor drugs and discredit the competition. Because they have a lot of money they can flood the literature with their propaganda studies, then fool the weak-minded by constantly saying the majority of studies show blah, blah, and blah. If anyone tries to spill the beans, they are labeled conspiracy theorists and everyone knows there are no conspiracies.

With people like this running the system nothing should come as a surprise. As a result of barbaric research done in the 1940s, it was found that mustard gas lowers lymphocytes, which could be useful for certain kinds of cancer. This led to chemotherapy, which may reduce tumors but also kills other cells you really need to stay healthy. Early theories said all cells can become cancerous but more recent research indicates only cancer stem cells produce cancer. Recent research also suggests that chemotherapy may kill tumor cells but does not kill cancer stem cells. In fact, it makes them more aggressive. That and many other side effects make chemotherapy a bonanza from a money-making point of view.

Even if you don’t believe the latest research on chemo, surveys have revealed that 90 percent of oncologists would not prescribe chemo to a close family member and would not take it themselves. They must know something they don’t want to tell the rest of us. This video was the first episode of a series available online. I have not seen the other episodes but this one definitely rates a thumbs UP. Available at

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In the Interest of National Security by R. James Roberson

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 13:22

There are many great quotes in this movie like the one from Voltaire, “It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong.” So you know what I mean when I say it is dangerous to be right in the United States. One of the many ways the U.S. government is wrong is in how it goes about regulating the economy and, more specifically, how it regulates food production. All great empires in history have fallen primarily because they failed at food production. Here in the twenty-first century we have a front row seat to the collapse of the American empire.

An American example of the importance of food to the security of a nation occurred in the nineteenth century when the U.S. military went up against the Plains Indians. The U.S. military was stopped cold and manifest destiny had to wait until the buffalo, the food supply of the native Americans, was wiped out. In public schools we are led to believe we were able to prevail over the native Americans because of superior weapons. Not really. Muskets were inaccurate, unreliable and took forever to reload. The bow and arrow was the more efficient weapon, much faster to reload and just as deadly. But when your food is gone, weapons don’t matter anymore. As the title of the movie suggests, secure production of high quality food is critical to national security.

Another great point about basic economics comes from Jean Baptiste Say. Products pay for other products. Money is just the conduit. Creation of more money just creates more inflation and ultimately less consumption and less production. Abundance of products is more important to an economy than abundance of money. Government economic policy over the last century has been more concerned about money than production. In many cases, farmers have been paid not to produce.

This video is loaded with fascinating historical film clips documenting government regulation of farming and food production. One is struck by the insanity of policies that set prices below the cost of production, then fixed that by subsidies. As we have seen in practice, those subsidies go to the food industry that produces the lowest quality plastic swill.

This video is a bit long, over two hours, and doesn’t provide any clear solutions or suggestions. It does contain a lot of detailed information that will interest the student of history. While the mainstream wrings its hands over global warming and gun control, the much bigger crisis is revealed by the average age of American farmers. Because government policy has made it impossible to do well on the farm, many have dropped out of farming—young people are not up for impossible careers. The average age of the American farmer is approaching sixty. Now that’s a crisis. The thumb is UP for this video.

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Diagnosing and Treating Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 13:07

Diagnosing and Treating Vitamin B12 Deficiency
available at

Vitamin B12 deficiency can look like many things—multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, autism and others. It often goes undiagnosed. Often it is identified only after a long string of misdiagnoses. According to the Framingham Offspring study, about forty percent of Americans may have suboptimal levels of vitamin B12. It is needed in only small amounts compared to other vitamins which might lead some to think it is not very important. B12 is necessary for the health of all DNA and insufficient levels cause neurological problems, such as a tendency to irrational anger. So yes, it is kind of important.

This vitamin is hard to digest and several things make it even harder. Nitrous oxide neutralizes B12. Common medications that block B12 include metformin (diabetes drug), acid suppressants, oral birth control pills, chemotherapy drugs and statin (cholesterol) drugs. High folic acid increases the need for B12.

Vitamin B12 deficiency is widespread because most people, including doctors, don’t know about it. If left to progress too far, there is no known way to reverse the damage. Raised awareness would save a lot of people a lot of grief and this video does that so my thumb is UP. The video is available at

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Evidence of Harm by Randall Moore

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 12:17

Evidence of Harm
A Randall Moore Film
DoNoHarm, LLC

The three main sources of mercury from human activity are power plants, mining and dentistry. Industry has recognized the fact that mercury is a problem in power plants and mining and has taken steps to protect public health. Some dentists also understand the dangers, but many others are slow to get it, perhaps because they are exposed to so much of it. Mercury in dentistry is the subject in this video. Many dentists now no longer use mercury-containing amalgams but still must remove amalgams to replace with composites. Tests have shown that even those dentists with their extensive safety protocols have much higher levels of exposure compared to the general public.

This video follows the stories of three people involved in mercury amalgam toxicity. Stacy Case and Karen Burns were victims suffering illness from mercury exposure, and Boyd Haley, retired professor of chemistry at the University of Kentucky, has been researching mercury exposure for many years.

Stacy Case is a reporter and young mother in Tennessee who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis after having four amalgams replaced. Karen Burns worked in a dental office for many years until her symptoms were too severe to continue working full time in that high-mercury environment. Both women experienced great improvement after heavy metal detoxification. Stacy in particular felt much better one week after starting detox therapy.

Professor Haley did research for many years and never had trouble getting funding for that research until he started trying to get money for researching mercury in amalgams. The money immediately stopped. If you look him up on the internet you can find a lot of nasty things being said about him. He must be on to something. Like they say, the flak is worst when you are over the target.

According to Haley, the science is very clear. After many years of studying things like the damage to neurons seen in Alzheimer’s patients, only one thing causes that kind of damage. That one thing is mercury. As he said, the science is not the problem. Even the United Nations has tried to mandate that mercury be removed from amalgams by 2013. The politics are the problem.

In the film, the FDA is scrutinized; their action on mercury in vaccines is suspicious, to say the least. Their ruling that amalgam is safe contained at least twenty-seven errors. Margaret Hamburg, a former commissioner of the FDA, had and has significant financial ties with the company Henry Schein, one of the biggest makers of amalgam. After the release of FDA’s questionable ruling Henry Schein was very grateful for Hamburg’s help in preserving a major part of their business. The FDA did come up with some restrictions on the use of amalgam. They did this very quietly—so quietly that almost no one knows about them. One of those restrictions states that amalgam should not be used with anyone who is allergic to mercury. I think that would include about 7.293 billion people on this planet. I don’t know about any other planet even though some people seem to think I’m from another … Anyway, if you are not one of the 7.293 billion people allergic to mercury then amalgams may be just the thing for you. The thumb is UP.

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Bright Spot

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 12:13

Bright Spot
Produced by Rob Tyler and Tamer Soliman
Sympactful Wellness Media
(available from Vimeo)

The indigenous people of the Cayman Islands had a great appreciation for the tree of life, which is what they call the coconut palm. It provided one of the most important foods in their traditional diet. Coconut oil in particular provides great health benefits. When consumed it is not stored as fat but burned as energy. It provides medium-chain fats that are important for the brain and are hard to find in other food sources.

Tragically, through the magic of modern industry, most coconuts in the Cayman Islands end up in the trash. Western factory food pushers launched a smear campaign claiming coconut oil will kill you and aggressively marketed processed cooking oils, margarine, and other junk made from genetically modified crops soaked in pesticides. That is what is currently being promoted as healthy food in a world where up is down and left is right. Cayman residents now suffer from the same chronic illnesses as the rest of us: diabetes, cancer, heart disease, and so on.

This video was produced by subversive forces who are working to give the islands an oil change. Their goal is to rescue the coconut from the trash and restore it to the food supply where it belongs. The result would be improved health for the people and improved health for the local economy. They could even export it to the rest of the world and improve everybody’s health. The thumb is UP for that.

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The Syndrome

Wed, 08/16/2017 - 11:43

The Syndrome
Freestyle Digital Media
Available for rent or sale from

Logic 101 teaches us that you can’t prove a negative. If I ask you to prove you have never scratched your armpit, you can’t do it. That is why, in a court of law, you must be considered innocent until proven guilty. The burden of proof must be on the prosecution, not the defense. Any court that operates otherwise is corrupt. In many cases if you have to prove your innocence you are put in an impossible position.

This video documents many “Shaken Baby Syndrome” cases where parents are being put in exactly that impossible position. Parents bring their baby to a hospital with a problem, doctors investigate, find severe brain inflammation or similar damage and call the police. The medical and court systems assume the damage was caused by violent shaking and someone goes to jail, usually one or both parents or a caregiver who was with the baby at the time.

There is a problem with this. It is known by a wide range of experts that there can be many different causes for this syndrome. There is an even bigger problem. In many of these cases, the baby’s neck is undamaged. It is physically impossible to shake a baby hard enough to cause brain damage without also causing serious neck damage. So a lot of people have gone to jail and families have been ripped apart when they were not guilty. Experts have testified at trials, explaining that this syndrome can be caused by several things and cannot be caused by shaking. Sometimes the courts listen. Sometimes they don’t, maybe because they are too busy scratching their armpits. Then people go to jail not because they are guilty but because they couldn’t prove they weren’t.

There has been a lot of resistance to this truth even though a number of well-qualified experts from several related fields have stood up for it. But progress is being made. Some courts are throwing the cases out after preliminary hearings. Other cases that have already been decided are being overturned.

There is still a lot of work to be done. One thing that might be slowing it down is the connection between this kind of syndrome and vaccines. We all know what paragons of virtue vaccine manufacturers are and how they fervently believe that the greater good is better served by sending innocent people to jail than to reveal awkward truths that might threaten their precious profits. It will take a lot of effort to send the big pharma trolls scurrying back to the fiery underworld whence they came. The thumb is UP (for this video, not the trolls).

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Journal, Summer 2017, Nurturing Therapies for Heart Disease

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 15:45

Journal in PDF Format  (6MB)



President’s Message

by Sally Fallon Morell

Heartless medicine—that’s how I would describe today’s ruling medical paradigm. Today’s doctor bases his treatment on a few false assumptions—that the heart is a pump, that nourishing nutrient-dense foods clog our arteries and that cholesterol is the enemy. The result is a “health care” system that treats heart disease with toxic drugs, soulless diets and macabre surgery—such as opening up the chest with a circular saw to perform heart bypass surgery, the bread-and-butter operation of most hospitals. (Likewise, doctors impose poisonous chemotherapy which makes cancer patients miserable and harsh protocols for pregnant women and growing children—from ultrasound to multiple vaccinations.)

This issue focuses on nurturing rather than ruinous therapies for heart disease, starting with Stephanie Seneff’s fascinating description of the role played by cholesterol sulfate in maintaining the health of our veins and capillaries. Eating a sulfur-rich diet and spending time in the sun ensures that our bodies produce plentiful amounts of this healing substance—which beats lying in a hospital bed after surgery any day.

Pam Schoenfeld looks at the dark side of vitamin D supplementation—calcification of the soft tissues, including the arteries—while Tom Cowan expands on his favorite theme—that the heart is not a pump.

All three of these talented writers will be speakers at Wise Traditions 2017, our eighteenth annual conference, to be held in Minneapolis, along with many other perennial favorite speakers and knowledgeable new faces. The theme this year: hormone health. . . and more. And as always, we provide a mix of speakers who range from advanced and technical to basic and practical. One thing we promise: you will come away with good solid information, not a lot of hype and product promotion. Information and registration is at

We are also striving to provide ways to make the conference affordable—although our conference fees are already very reasonable, considering that we provide five nutrient-dense meals over the three days of the event. For newcomers, we are offering a one-day pass for my Nourishing Traditional Diets seminar plus lunch for sixty dollars—space for this is limited, so if you are interested don’t delay in signing up. We have a number of full scholarships and work scholarships available, and also can help you organize ride share and room share. The exhibit hall is free on Saturday and Sunday, as is the Friday evening film.

For Monday activities, we have streamlined to just three offerings: our ever-popular guided farm visit with Will Winter; an all-day seminar with Chris Masterjohn; and for the first time ever, a master cooking class that I will give. In the class we will prepare three full meals, with attention on sauce-making and what to do with leftovers. As always, we look forward to seeing you there!

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Deja Vu – Is Animal ID Making a Return

Mon, 08/14/2017 - 15:00

Twelve years ago, American farmers started to hear about a federal program called the National Animal Identification System (NAIS). The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) documents called for every person who owned even one livestock or poultry animal to register his or her property, individually identify each animal (in most cases with electronic ID like microchips or radio-frequency identification [RFID] tags), and report their movements to a database. At first, many people didn’t pay much attention, some because the program was labeled as “voluntary at the federal level” and others because it seemed too absurd to be taken seriously.

And then we took a closer look. The paper trail revealed a decade of planning by agribusiness groups. They had developed the plan for an international system of tracking animals in order to grease the wheels for exports and imports. The goal was to throw open the border so that when there was a disease outbreak in a country they could claim that they could safely continue exports because they could supposedly guarantee that the exported animals or meat had not had any contact with sick animals. The huge market for RFID tags and database management meant that technology companies eagerly joined the push for this massive program.

The agribusiness interests that had developed the program had included provisions for group ID for animals that were owned by the same entity, and not commingled with others, from birth to death. The way it was written, the vertically integrated meat packers—companies like Tyson and Cargill who control every stage of production in poultry and swine operations —would face minimal costs. And the vast differences between the costs of individual ID for independent producers and group ID for such operations would inevitably drive many small farmers and independent ranchers out of business, leading to the consolidation of the beef industry and the loss of the burgeoning sustainable livestock movement.

For consumers in general, this would have meant a significant loss of options. For WAPF consumers, who emphasize nutrient-dense animal foods, it would have been a disaster.

When small farmers and their consumer allies became aware of this plan in 2006, we were already far behind the curve. Despite claims that the program would be “voluntary at the federal level,” USDA’s documents laid out the method for making the program mandatory on every livestock owner in the country by January 2009, and the momentum was all on the side of agribusiness.

But as activists spread the word, USDA faced a firestorm of protests from organic farmers, independent ranchers, horse owners, property rights advocates and others. Thanks to the organized grassroots outcry, then-Secretary Vilsack withdrew the plans for NAIS in 2010. At the same time, he announced plans for a replacement program, to be called the Animal Disease Traceability (ADT) program. We spent the next two years fighting to ensure that USDA kept its commitment to make ADT a reasonable, cost-effective plan.

In 2012, USDA issued the ADT rule. It covered inter-state movements only, requiring that cattle and poultry that crossed state lines be identified. Traditional, low-tech forms of ID were expressly allowed, and several exemptions that we had fought for were included.

Among other things, the final ADT rule dropped the proposed requirements for “feeder cattle”—beef cattle younger than eighteen months of age. The USDA explicitly stated that it would revisit the issue of feeder cattle in the future, allowing a focused discussion on the specific problems posed by identifying younger animals in a separate discussion.

So when USDA posted a notice for a series of meetings to discuss ADT this spring, it was not a major surprise—we had known that sooner or later there would be a discussion about feeder cattle.

Then, a week before the first meeting, USDA posted the supporting documents. The meeting handout hinted that the underlying agenda is to begin pushing intra-state requirements and electronic forms of identification again—in other words, a NAIS-type system. See (see pages 9 and 10 of the handout).

Reports coming from the first meeting in Oklahoma City confirmed these fears. Reading the attendees’ accounts was like a flashback to the NAIS debates—all the same arguments about the export market, agency failures in tracing animals, and scare tactics about disease (but with no explanation as to how electronic ID solves disease problems). And, yet again, the proponents of animal ID dismissed the concerns of small-scale producers, going so far as to say that if they couldn’t comply with such a system, they should get out of the business.

WAPF and other groups have quickly gone to work to oppose this attempt to revive NAIS. Even USDA officials acknowledge that the feedback it has received so far at the meetings has been strongly against any expansion of the ADT program.

Why are we so concerned? The idea of a comprehensive animal ID program may sound good. But consider the following:

• It’s too expensive. The profit margins for most livestock producers are tiny. A NAIS-type program means not only buying RFID tags (which are more expensive than the traditional metal or plastic ones), but having the infrastructure to place the tags properly, read them and manage the data.

• The program doesn’t address animal disease. Traceability is part of the program to control and limit the spread of disease—but it does nothing that actually addresses disease. The real focus needs to be on prevention. If the government and industry spent even a fraction of the time that they have spent on NAIS addressing overcrowding in feedlots, poor nutrition and the overuse of drugs, and preventing imports from countries with outbreaks, we would have far healthier animals and less risk of disease in this country. But those things cost the industry money and limit their international markets, so they’d rather focus on tagging and tracking animals.

• It’s about money. The real reason the industry players want electronic ID and tracking is to boost their own profits. The first time around, it was about exports to South Korea and Japan—because with a 100 percent traceability program exporters have greater leverage to claim that countries must open their borders to our products. This time, they’re talking about exporting to China. Not to mention the profits to be had from selling tens of millions of electronic tags, or from managing the massive databases that would be part of the system. Multiple companies and trade organizations stand to make a lot of money from the program—at the expense of the vast majority of farmers and ranchers.

We don’t need every animal to have an electronic tag in its ear and its information entered in a database. What we need are programs that support independent producers, a vibrant competitive market and healthy animal management to prevent disease. Unfortunately, it appears that we will have to fight this battle all over again. Fortunately, this time we have been tracking this issue vigilantly and are on top of it from the beginning.


In addition to the public meetings, USDA is accepting written comments. You can submit them online at until July 31 at midnight.

SAMPLE COMMENT FOR CONSUMERS: Extensive new animal ID requirements could have significant impacts on our agricultural and food system.

I buy my food from small farmers who would be particularly hard-hit by the cost and burdens associated with electronic ID. I do not want to see the farmers who provide food for my family and me burdened by requirements for the benefit of those who are exporting to other countries. A local food system is vital to our health, economy and food security, and I urge USDA to prioritize the needs of small farmers.

SAMPLE COMMENT FOR PRODUCERS: Any action by USDA should be limited to the question of whether young cattle should be required to be identified when crossing state lines. That is the issue that USDA  committed to reviewing when it adopted ADT just a few years ago.

(Add any comments or experience you have with animal ID requirements. Have you shipped cattle or poultry across state lines? Have you been involved with a traceback? What would be the impact on you if young cattle [under 18 months] had to have individual identification? What would be the impact if electronic ID were required? If you live in Michigan, which already requires electronic ID, what have been the impacts?)

President Trump’s nominee to lead the FDA, Scott Gottlieb, was confirmed by the Senate in May. While Dr. Gottlieb was a clinical assistant professor at New York University School of Medicine and has several years of prior experience at FDA, his main work has been with pharmaceutical companies and in the venture capital world. He is a venture partner at New Enterprise Associates, a director at Tolero Pharmaceuticals, and a member of GlaxoSmithKline’s product investment board. Gottlieb’s financial disclosure letter during the nominations process disclosed financial relationships with over twenty-five entities, many of them giants in the biotech and pharmaceutical industries.

As predicted based on the Presidents’ list of likely candidates to lead the FDA, Gottlieb is a supporter of measures to allow companies to bring drugs to market much faster. This might open the door for more innovative alternative therapies—but only if the costs of FDA approval are drastically reduced in the process.

On the food side, we know very little about Gottlieb’s views, just what came out during the confirmation process. In response to questions from the Senate committee, Gottlieb stated: “The Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) provides FDA with important tools and authorities to support its responsibility to ensure the safety of our nation’s food supply. If confirmed, I will work to ensure the agency has the appropriate policies, processes, and resources in place to implement FSMA, as intended by Congress. FDA should implement FSMA in a way that protects and promotes public health by enhancing food safety, while also collaborating with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, state officials, and other government agencies to conduct regulatory activities in a manner that takes into account the unique challenges faced by small farmers and small businesses.”

One of the Big Food industry’s top priorities is to delay until 2021 new nutrition labeling requirements that were due to take effect this year. The excuse is that the USDA will be requiring GMO labeling in 2021 (although it will likely be of little use to consumers, since the DARK Act included so many loopholes). Big Food claims that changing labels twice in four years would be too confusing for consumers. Gottlieb has indicated that he is open to the idea, and the agency already temporarily delayed the rules during his confirmation process.

The post Deja Vu – Is Animal ID Making a Return appeared first on The Weston A. Price Foundation.

HR3615 Action Alert

Fri, 08/11/2017 - 09:36


Support a study of vaccinated vs. un-vaccinated children

 CORRECTION: A couple of days ago we sent you this action alert and we would like to make a couple of corrections:


  1. A) Representative Posey does not accept emails out of his district, so please forgo # 3 on the action items if you do not live in Florida’s 8th Please be sure however to contact your own representatives.
  2. B) Talking point #5 correction: In August 2014, Dr. Thompson stated that a MMR vaccine safety study conducted by the CDC “demonstrated a causal link between vaccines and autism symptoms.” The CDC denies this finding. In February 2015, the U.S. government granted whistleblower immunity to Dr. Thompson, allowing him to testify before a Congressional committee without suffering any consequences from his employer. Dr. Thompson has yet to be subpoenaed by Congress.

Proponents of vaccines claim that they save lives and protect children’s health. Yet the most basic of comparisons between unvaccinated children and vaccinated children has never been done.  The government has never conducted a single study looking at the overall health of a vaccinated vs. an unvaccinated population.

Now we have a chance to fight for the science needed to make truly informed decisions about vaccines.  U.S. Representative Bill Posey has introduced a bill calling for a comprehensive study comparing the health outcomes in vaccinated populations versus unvaccinated populations in the United States.

The Weston A. Price Foundation believes such a study is long overdue.  Americans are seeing an explosion in chronic disease and disability in our children including ADHD and learning disabilities, asthma, allergies, inflammatory bowel disease, obesity, juvenile diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, seizures, encephalitis (brain swelling), and autism.

Could some of this be connected to the fact that the vaccine schedule has tripled since the 1980’s, and children now receive 69 doses of 16 vaccines?

A recent independent pilot study showed that unvaccinated children have lower incidences of allergies and neurodevelopmental disorders than vaccinated children:

We need a larger, comprehensive study, recognized by the U.S. government.  Representative Posey has been arguing for such a study for years; check out this video of a 2012 hearing, in which he confronts a CDC official about the CDC’s failure to study vaccinated vs. un-vaccinated outcomes:

If H.R. 3615 passes, the study could prove a turning point for vaccine policy in our country – and the future of our children.  Please take a few moments to urge your U.S. Representative to support H.R. 3615!



Contact your U.S. Representative and urge them to SUPPORT H.R. 3615.  You can find out who represents you at: or by calling the Capitol Switchboard at 202-224-3121.

Phone calls have a greater impact than emails.  You can leave a very short message (“I urge my Representative to support H.R. 3615) or ask to speak to the staffer who handles health issues, and have a conversation to increase your impact.  Be clear and concise about why this issue matters to you and/or the people in your community.  You can use some of the talking points below to help you get your thoughts in order.

If you do use email, be sure to use a clear subject line (“Support HR 3615”), and keep it short, but personal.


Does this issue REALLY matter to you?  Nothing has a greater impact than meeting with your legislator or their staff face-to-face!  And now is a great time, because Congress is recessed and the Reps are back in their home districts – near you.

Find out who your Rep is at and then click on their name to visit their website.  Under Contact, they will have information for both their DC and their district offices – contact the district office nearest you and ask about meeting.  If the Rep’s schedule is already packed, say that you’d be happy to meet with the staff – that truly does make a difference!

Once you have a meeting scheduled, you can contact WAPF for more tips on how to make it as effective and impactful as possible:


Email Representative Bill Posey and thank him for his brave introduction of H.R. 3615.



 View the bill here:

1)      We need a study that evaluates the health outcomes among children who have and have not been vaccinated according to the federally recommended vaccine schedule.

2)      Even though America has one of the highest child vaccination rates in the world and spends the most on health care, our children are among the sickest in the developed world, crippled by chronic disease and disability including; ADHD and learning disabilities, asthma, allergies, inflammatory bowel disease, obesity, juvenile diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, seizures, encephalitis (brain swelling), and autism. A vaccinated vs. un-vaccinated study would provide vital information to help improve the wellbeing of our children.

3)      The public is increasingly distrustful of the one-size fits all childhood vaccine schedule, while vaccine makers and the healthcare providers who administer them bear zero liability for vaccine injuries and deaths.  A study that looks at the overall health of vaccinated versus unvaccinated children would go a long way to restoring the public trust.

4)      A recent study by the Children’s Medical Safety Research Institute (CMSRI) shows cause for concern. This study found children 6-12 years old were more likely to be diagnosed with pneumonia, otitis media, allergies and neurodevelopmental disorders if they were vaccinated.

This study concluded that vaccination coupled with preterm birth was associated with increasing odds of an NDD (defined as a learning disability, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and/or Autism Spectrum Disorder.)

Excellent article on the first study:–XHYNDgRo7iqTWz3nnF5tFFMOdDqbQ7p_EOiMVTMi20XWgxDMMwdnk3jF2I3IMqDFS9fyucHnXy0k_Ix36UjLPgMxLvwiW9jnH0kIm_w26jGa-R48&_hsmi=51549520

5)      Not only has no study been done that looked at comprehensive health outcomes, but the far more limited studies that have been done are not trustworthy.  Just last year, CDC scientist William Thompson confessed that he and other CDC scientists destroyed their own data showing a link between the MMR vaccine and autism.

Remember, your involvement and activism works!

The post HR3615 Action Alert appeared first on The Weston A. Price Foundation.

Pregnancy and Fluoride Do Not Mix by John D. MacArthur

Thu, 08/10/2017 - 14:59

Pregnancy and Fluoride Do Not Mix: Prenatal Fluoride and Premature Birth, Preeclampsia, Autism
by John D. MacArthur

Exposure of the fetus to fluoride (mostly from fluoridated water) is associated with many harmful effects including damage to red blood cells, low birth weight and premature birth, cognitive problems and autism, obesity, iron-deficiency anemia, disruption of gut flora, thyroid disorders, hyperactivity, preeclampsia, and placental and vascular calcification. MacArthur has compiled a long list of references to back up his urgent warning: pregnant women should avoid all exposure to fluoride in water and drugs. Thumbs Up.

The post Pregnancy and Fluoride Do Not Mix by John D. MacArthur appeared first on The Weston A. Price Foundation.

Drowning in 8 Glasses

Thu, 08/10/2017 - 14:56

Drowning in 8 Glasses: 7 Myths About Water Revealed
by Adrienne Hew, CN:

Did you know that too much water can make you go into a coma? That there is no science behind the recommendation to drink eight eight-ounce glasses of water per day? That too much water can result in reduced intracellular hydration? That pasteurized milk, alcohol, coffee and tea can accelerate tissue water loss? That animal fats keep your skin hydrated and wrinkle-free while too much water can dry out your skin and accelerate wrinkles. Adrienne Hew has compiled these and many other interesting facts about water in this important booklet. She also provides a plan for providing the body with the water it needs in the most effective way, starting each morning with a glass of warm water containing a pinch of salt. Thumbs Up.

The post Drowning in 8 Glasses appeared first on The Weston A. Price Foundation.

Just Breathe Out by Betsy Thomason

Thu, 08/10/2017 - 14:32

Just Breathe Out: Using Your Breath to Create a New, Healthier You
Betsy Thomason, BA, RRT
North Loop Books

Just as the Weston A. Price Foundation has helped shift the way people look at butter and cholesterol, respiratory therapist Betsy Thomason asks us to think of breathing in a new way. Thomason explains that most of us think of breathing (if indeed we think of it at all) as sucking air in when, in fact, she says it is just the opposite. The BreathOutDynamic (BOD) system “redefines breathing as the active, spine-stretching outbreath and a passive, relaxed inbreath.” In simple terms, the book teaches you how to breathe out-in rather than in-out.

The author uses the metaphor of a fireplace bellows to explain what will happen in your lungs as you do BODs. If you push air out (squeeze the bellows) you create a vacuum and when you expand your belly (open the bellows) the air will automatically and quickly come back in. We don’t need to work at sucking air in. In fact, it wastes energy to do so. Other helpful metaphors include blowing up a balloon and blowing on a pinwheel.

Thomason explains that “most people’s breathing is rapid and shallow, leaving the body pleading to take in more oxygen and get rid of more carbon dioxide.” The “pleas” come in the form of health problems but we don’t recognize them as a cry for oxygen, or if we do we don’t know how to help ourselves. Do we simply get connected to an oxygen tank? Thomason suggests we focus on and change our breathing. Through her professional work and in her research, she has seen that this system offers improvements in energy, pain management, athletic performance and overall health.

The author’s metaphors and simple how-to chapter make BODs easy to learn and start right away. I was able to do BODs in only a few minutes after reading just part of the book—which is great for busy people who want to do something effective for their health without a huge investment of time. I found the simplicity and brevity attractive with one exception—why are we just learning this now and have we been breathing wrong since humans took their first breath? She only mentions briefly the fact that the method was developed by Ian Jackson, an Olympic cycling coach, although ancient yogis knew this method but only told a few. Even infants breathe this way when they are first born, but later lose it.

In every other regard I liked the concise, clear explanation and format of the book. Thomason seems to have anticipated the many questions a reader would have and answered them with enough of the research, anecdotal evidence and practical explanations (including drawings) to make it convincing to try and succeed at doing BODs. Even if done only a few minutes a day, it is helpful. As the author explains, “BODs maximize well-being because every cell in your body relies on the oxygen you breathe for its existence and intelligence, and because breathing efficiency equals effectiveness.” My pinwheel and thumb are up—and my breath is out for this book!

The post Just Breathe Out by Betsy Thomason appeared first on The Weston A. Price Foundation.

Tomato, Corn & Cuke Salad

Thu, 08/10/2017 - 14:29

With these veggies coming in the garden now, this is a really yummy combination of flavors. I also like this salad because it will keep for several days in the refrigerator. Quantities are approximate, as I don’t measure.

  • 1 cucumber, diced
  • 4 small plum tomatoes, diced
  • 1 ear sweet corn
  • 1 Tbsp raw apple cider vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 tsp unrefined sea salt
  • 1/4 – 1/2 tsp minced ginger
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/2 tsp prepared mustard
  • 1 Tbsp Sucanat or other dark unrefined sugar recommended in the WAPF Shopping Guide
  • Tabasco sauce, to taste
  • Chopped tender garden greens (optional)

Cut the corn kernels off the cob. Mix kernels with all other ingredients. I added a mix of lamb’s quarters, chickweed, oxalis, and parsley from the garden for my greens. Refrigerate overnight to blend flavors.


Use summer squash instead of cucumber.

The post Tomato, Corn & Cuke Salad appeared first on The Weston A. Price Foundation.

Eat Fat, Get Thin By Mark Hyman

Thu, 08/10/2017 - 14:28

Eat Fat, Get Thin: Why the Fat We Eat Is the Key to Sustained Weight Loss and Vibrant Health
By Mark Hyman
Little, Brown and Company

Dr. Mark Hyman gladly jumps onto the fat-is-good-even-saturated-fat bandwagon with his latest book, Eat Fat, Get Thin. The cover photo—showing nuts, avocados, olives and vegetable oil—tells us what to expect before even cracking the book open. Hyman describes his diet as whole-food, low-carb and paleo-vegan (“pegan”), but what he really is prescribing is a semi-vegan high-fat diet with all the wrong fats. Hyman also recommends a long list of supplements, conveniently for sale on the website set up especially for this book. A fiber supplement three times a day? So much for whole food.

In the book’s acknowledgements, we discover that the recipes come not from Hyman but from a chef-nutritionist who also compiled recipes for Hyman’s 2013 book The Daniel Plan. The recipes feature many current food fads (cauliflower rice, raw kale salads, zucchini noodles, bulletproof coffee with coconut oil, resistant starch, smoothies with raw goitrogenic spinach and vegetable broth).

Dr. Hyman thanks Neal Barnard and Joel Fuhrman (vegans), Deepak Chopra, Jeffrey Bland, Chris Kresser (twice) and others who helped him “get the science and story right.” Despite the focus on accurate science, Hyman is confused (or confusing) when he calls palmitoleic acid (an omega-7 monounsaturated fatty acid) a saturated fat. He also misinterprets studies that he uses to argue that although saturated fats aren’t bad on the whole, a few are (mainly palmitic and stearic acid), and he points out that carbs drive the formation of these saturated fatty acids in the liver. But wait—isn’t stearic acid the one saturated fat that experts have always rated as benign because it doesn’t raise cholesterol levels? Hyman deems meat and eggs as acceptable (after lengthy deliberation), although they are common sources of palmitic and stearic acid.

Hyman’s comments about cholesterol are confusing. He argues that we should leave total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol tests in the twentieth century, yet he devotes a couple of pages to explaining what our numbers should be on lab tests. He states that cholesterol in older people should be higher but recommends total cholesterol under 200 mg/dL. And so on.

Lies, darned lies and statistics! Dr. Hyman gives us a little lesson in research methods, despairing at the use of food frequency questionnaires, which he perceives as worthless, although they are all we have to gauge food intake. He also notes that whereas investigators like to use the statistical measure of relative risk to grab headlines, it is not a very truthful tool to predict whether a given population will develop a particular chronic condition. Calculating absolute risk is the real game-changer in assessing risk. Hyman also discusses statistical problems such as small sample sizes, poor study design and overreliance on meta-analyses and epidemiological (observational) methods that cannot prove causation. He then turns around and relies on meta-analyses and studies that use relative risk and food frequency questionnaires.

A word of caution to individuals with health issues such as kidney stones, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, digestive challenges or malabsorption. Before considering Hyman’s diet, please research the anti-nutrient content of the foods he recommends. Many contain medium to high levels of phytates, lectins, oxalates and trypsin inhibitors. For example, Hyman enthusiastically recommends eating nuts and seeds of all kinds in many different forms, although raw nuts and seeds are indigestible and harmful unless they have been soaked and dried before eating. Roasted nuts and seeds have high amounts of oxidized fats, trans fats and denatured proteins. Roasted almonds, pine nuts and cashews are high in oxalates, which are often a problem for children with autism. Anti-nutrients from nuts and seeds can pass into breast milk and cause digestive distress in infants.

Almonds contain the most anti-nutrients of any nut and have an omega-6 to omega-3 ratio of almost two thousand to one, yet almonds are Hyman’s go-to food, appearing in numerous recipes. These include homemade almond milk, almond milk smoothies (four recipes), almond sauces and almond pesto. A reviewer commented: “But how much almond milk can a person stand?” Another remarked that she became weary of the “weird almond concoctions.” Hyman recommends getting organic raw almonds to “protect yourself from. . . contaminants,” but “raw” is a misnomer. If the almonds come from California—and most do—they are either pasteurized or sprayed with a toxic chemical.

A chapter on “controversial foods”—which includes eggs, coconut oil and olive oil—provides more “good news on nuts and seeds.” Hyman touts a “37 percent reduced risk of heart disease if you eat nuts,” gleaned from observational studies such as the Seventh Day Adventist Health studies, the Nurses Health Study, and the Physicians Health Study.

Regarding the diet plan itself, a reviewer states: “The original 21-day plan is the minimum, and this plan is however long it takes to lose the weight you…need to lose. So your ‘21-day plan’ might last a year or more. While on the 21-day plan, the restricted food list is very, very, very long.” After completing this phase, the full “pegan” diet incorporates beans, lentils and one-half cup of non-gluten grains per day. Hyman does not include beans and grains in the initial stages because of their lectin content. (Don’t nuts have lectins?)

Hyman characterizes his diet as an “elimination diet” because it initially eliminates gluten, dairy and many other foods. Unfortunately, large quantities of allergenic nuts as well as plentiful soy may defeat the purpose of an elimination diet. At some point, Hyman allows you to add back in small amounts of gluten and dairy, depending on “how you feel,” but only “from time to time.”

Most of the recipes avoid dairy, instead featuring coconut milk, cashew cream, nut butters, avocado and lots of coconut oil mayonnaise. The recipes also use cashew grains, substituting coconut flour, seeds and ground nuts. For “healthy” oils, Hyman recommends a good dollop of olive oil along with sesame oil and walnut, almond and macadamia oils (which are expensive and usually rancid), although elsewhere he unjustifiably demonizes macademia nut oil for its high palmitoleic acid content. Hyman’s list of healthy fats does not include any animal fats, although the latter certainly qualify as paleo. Maybe he is worried about saturated fats after all? Butter briefly shows up in a few recipes and in the “controversial foods” chapter. There, he applauds the saturated fats in butter and compares them to saturated-fat-rich breast milk.

For proteins, Hyman recommends eggs, grass-fed meats (except pork), fatty fish and shellfish, poultry, tofu and tempeh, seeds…and nuts—two to three handfuls daily in this “nutty” diet. Hyman appears to be unaware that nuts have variable protein content (from 3 to 50 percent) along with high levels of rancidity-prone polyunsaturated fats and anti-nutrients. Eating liberal quantities of nuts also does not encourage weight loss and may lead to weight gain. Dr. Michael Eades wonders whether nuts are truly paleo. Did our ancestors consume jars of nuts, nut butters and nut oils? Hyman expresses some reservations about protein powders but provides guidelines for using them in smoothies, and he wholeheartedly endorses them in The Daniel Plan, selling the “right” ones on his website.

I will let reviewers on Good Reads sum up my opinion of this book:

• “The groceries alone would be cost-prohibitive, not to mention the supplements and planning. …Would this new life you have be worth living when you literally cannot eat anything out there?”
• “In some local grocery stores, I can buy a pound of bacon and a pound of grass-fed beef for less than a pound of walnuts.”
• “At some point [Hyman] switched from being an authentic-sounding doctor, to being an infomercial salesman. “
• “There is no reason people need multiple bizarre supplements to be healthy nor do you have to cut out gluten and dairy if you don’t have an allergy to [them].”

Would I purchase this book if I weren’t reviewing it? Are you nuts? There are much more interesting books out there such as Sally Fallon Morell’s new book Nourishing Fats and Nina Teicholz’s The Big Fat Surprise. The thumb is DOWN for Eat Fat, Get Thin.

The post Eat Fat, Get Thin By Mark Hyman appeared first on The Weston A. Price Foundation.

Mastering Stocks and Broths By Rachael S. Mamane

Thu, 08/10/2017 - 14:16

Mastering Stocks and Broths: A Comprehensive Culinary Approach Using Traditional Techniques and No-Waste Methods
By Rachael S. Mamane
Chelsea Green Publishing

Reviewing books about food and cooking is an interesting endeavor. Sometimes you are excited about a book initially, but the more you read, the more your energy wanes. Other times, a book may surprise you. Each page only serves to increase your appetite for what the author has in store (and what you might go make for dinner)!

So it was with Mastering Stocks and Broths. Although the book addresses a topic with which I am already quite familiar, it became the most interesting and enjoyable read of 2017 thus far. Four hundred pages long, at first I thought, “How could someone write so much about broths and stock?” I was pleasantly surprised, and for good reason; the word “mastering” in the title is entirely apt.

Mamane moves deftly back and forth between history, science and culinary craft. The book is roughly divided into two parts. The first, shorter part explores what stock is, in all its historical and culinary diversity and glory. The second part, which represents about three-quarters of the contents, is dedicated to the application of culinary skills, covering not just the making of a multitude of broths and stocks, but also presenting a wide variety of recipes for all occasions. Almost no animal or vegetable seems to go unnoticed in the recipe section. I was delighted to see often overlooked things like rabbit or rarer vegetables like leeks and ramps make the menu. The recipe section also includes (and speaks in positive terms) of raw milk and real dairy products!

Although the application part includes recipes and techniques by the dozens and scores, marking Mastering as a cookbook as much as anything else, the book goes even further. In keeping with its “no-waste” subtitle, the book devotes an entire section to bone meal, dog food and charcoal. As a homesteader and farmer, I can’t help but appreciate this incredibly important and often overlooked subject. Even when a stock is done simmering, its bones and other contents are not done nourishing us. They should be returned to the soil, not sent to the sink garbage disposal or waste dump. While few authors ever get this far, Mamane reminds us to close the loop, turning refuse into riches that will spring forth from the soil, nourishing the plants and animals that provide the next batch of nutritious abundance.

For anyone who wants to know the history and alchemy that go into their humble chicken stock, the first part of the book is immensely enjoyable. Mamane also does an exceptional job describing the difference between industrialized, commercial pseudo-foods and the real thing. For example, Mamane discusses the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) requirements for commercial broth and stock: “The USDA requires a ratio of one hundred thirty-five parts water to only one part animal for broth manufacturers. This means that less than one ounce of meat for each gallon of water is used to make a batch of commercial broth. By contrast, the recipes in this book use four or more pounds of meaty bones for every gallon of water.”

For commercial beef stock, Mamane comments that stock “refers to a higher concentration of protein to water, about sixty-seven parts water to one part beef,” but notes that “additional ingredients—such as beef extract, beef powder, beef fat, and yeast extract—are used to enhance flavor and protein content.” Mamane concludes that “with so little meat—and no bones—used as the foundation, commercial stock requires additional substances to approximate the viscosity and nutrition seen in homemade stocks.”

It is the marriage of the historical, theoretical and practical that makes Mastering so much fun to read. You can be on page thirteen, skip to a matching recipe much later in the book and come back after an enjoyable meal to begin your learning journey afresh. The book also illustrates stock’s true staying power and importance, not only nutritionally but traditionally, showing why stock forms the “base” for so many dishes and cuisines. I learned about cooking techniques that I was previously unfamiliar with, and ways to incorporate stock that I never would have envisioned (along with matching recipes later in the book).

While the book is large, its organization and approach are easy to follow. It is full of short, helpful sidebars that summarize new information in easy-to-read and easy-to-remember formats. The recipes are well organized, neatly laid out and reader-friendly. Scattered throughout the book (though mainly in the latter half), the recipes also allow the reader to experience a few hundred years of cuisine, from making the original “portable soup” and “pemmican” from centuries ago to more modern dishes from across the globe.

Mamane’s emphasis on the importance of using high-quality ingredients—for ecological, ethical and edible reasons—is refreshing. She is able to show why obtaining good meat and bones matters, starting from the fresh pastures that feed the animals to the final bites of a meal. Such is the weight of this theme that she not only mentions it repeatedly throughout the book but also devotes an entire chapter to the topic of finding sources of high quality ingredients, including tips and questions to ask for those who are new to the issues involved in obtaining quality meats and vegetables. Mamane’s emphasis on quality even extends to her comments about water, salt and other often-overlooked cooking ingredients.

Early in the book, Mamane mentions Sally Fallon Morell’s influence on the stock and broth movement. WAPFers will be glad to see that Mamane is one of many seeking to make Sally’s dream of a “brothal” in every town come true. If only we all could have one close by that featured the level of culinary skill coupled with ecological and farm care described in Mastering Stocks and Broths.

A book of such immense size and scope is hard to review succinctly. As I mentioned, Mastering Stocks and Broths was my surprise read of 2017, one that turned duty into delight (and which will also continue to inform and improve our family’s approach to this aspect of traditional cooking). Even with my considerable knowledge about food and farming, I learned all sorts of useful things as I journeyed through Mastering. Two thumbs up!

The post Mastering Stocks and Broths By Rachael S. Mamane appeared first on The Weston A. Price Foundation.


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