Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.

Archive for December, 2009

17 Dec

In Defense of Meat Eaters, Part 2: Animal and Human Well-Being

meat2Yesterday, I debunked a few of the common, “evolution-based” arguments leveled against meat-eaters that might have the potential to stump anyone with only cursory knowledge of evolutionary science. By and large, these are arguments that appeal to our emotions. They invoke a peaceful, gentle pre-history of slender, humane early humans co-existing in perfect meatless harmony with the animal kingdom, an image that sounds great and makes us feel all warm and fuzzy inside. Those sharp spears found at various dig sites, you ask? Why, those were just used to skewer hard-to-reach apples, or perhaps to gently separate two squirrels battling over an acorn. But the fossil record shows distinct markings on large ruminant bones that seem to indicate cuts, tools, and butchering – how do you explain those? Oh, those? See, early humans were so grossed out by animal carcasses that they couldn’t bear to actually touch them with bare hands. They developed tools so that they could move the offending meat out of their line of sight without actually putting hands to flesh. Pretty ingenious!

16 Dec

In Defense of Meat Eaters, Part 1: The Evolutionary Angle

meat1Meat is murder.

Meat will clog your arteries.

Meat is an unnatural food.

Man is really an herbivore.

Meat will give you cancer.

Meat is bad for the environment.

It’s easy to forget that these are the common arguments leveled against meat-eaters. It’s easy to forget that most of the developed world assumes meat is inherently unhealthy – for our health, for the environment, and for animals. It’s easy to forget these things because, as Primal Blueprinters, we’re immersed in the literature and are actively involved in what we eat. To that end we understand that man evolved eating meat, that meat is an important part of a healthy human diet, and that meat production doesn’t have to be the unsustainable, industrialized monster it’s mostly become (and which rightly garners the most negative press). Still, what is the average meat eater to say in opposition to these charges?

15 Dec

Primal Holiday Gifts

giftEvery year around the holidays I get requests from readers asking for shopping tips. Some readers are looking for other Primal family members and friends. Others are looking toward the new year (and new goals) while they pass along ideas to spouses and family. We’ve offered up gift ideas in the past, but I thought I’d get more specific this year and share some of my personal favorites.

There’s just enough time to get your last-minute gift orders placed to ensure adequate shipping time, so check out the list below and share your gift ideas in the comment board.

14 Dec

Dear Mark: Canola Oil

canolaoilI get a lot of questions about differentiating fact from fiction when it comes to all the “healthy” labels out there. Spanning everything from “heart healthy” to “boost your child’s immunity,” these classic marketing ploys are just part and parcel for the food industry. And yet these companies wouldn’t get away with the games if their claims didn’t reflect conventional wisdom on some level. The industry’s marketing tactics simply manipulate already strained, twisted messages about health and nutrition. The consumer is left to wonder what’s truth, half truth and bold-face scheme. Unfortunately, it’s never safe to judge a product by its label. In fact, if it needs a label at all, it’s already subject to questioning. The safest assumption is this: there’s always more to the story.

Dear Mark,

I’ve been adapting my diet to the Primal Blueprint over the last few months. I like olive oil for salads but wonder about the bottle of canola oil sitting in my cupboard. I tend to use it more for cooking, but I don’t see canola oil mentioned on MDA like I do olive oil. The label says something like “good source of omega-3.” Is this true? I’m wondering what your take on canola is. Thanks!

13 Dec

Weekend Link Love

weekend link loveWant it raw? Don your trench coat and shady shades, and beware of the cops when purchasing black market milk. Natural News has the scoop on the shake down of the underground milk market.

School lunch meat vs. Taco Bell meat and the winner is… Taco Bell? USA Today discusses the abysmal health standards of grade school nutrition.

You may have heard of a banana hammock, but I suggest the simpler, more effective banana bag.

A few weeks ago I wrote a post on diet as dogma. Free the Animal says there’s nothing authoritative or dogmatic about Primal living, and he’s right.

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