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Vegan "Transformations"--Simply from Cutting The Junk...or?...

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  • #46
    Originally posted by JennaRose View Post
    When I was a veg-head, I came across Alicia Silverstone's blog. I still check it out every now and again for recommendations on beauty products or whatever. Regularly, she posts a testimonial from someone for the vegan diet. Of course, the people in the testimonials praise a vegan diet, that they have no more ailments, they have more energy, they feel amazing. They gave up dairy and their acne went away, blah blah etc! One woman attributes dairy to being the only cause of her female hormonal problems (pcos, etc.), as she had been a vegetarian for most of her life.

    Anyway, my point is, do you think these people benefit because they are cutting out low-quality meats/dairy/eggs and most processed food to become a vegan?(in the ''real'' sense of the vegan word--minimally processed foods) For example, this woman with the hormonal problems--do you think she would have had the same results if she had simply tried switching to raw, organic dairy? (Or, perhaps, it could be possible she just cannot tolerate dairy.)

    When I made the switch from junk fooder to vegan, I felt amazing. But, also, when I made the switch from vegan to primal, I felt amazing! It struck me as interesting to think about.

    Thoughts?
    Health is definitely more about what you're not eating.

    Ancestral Health Symposium Thoughts, Paleo Vegetarianism, and Other Fun Things Raw Food SOS
    Now let’s compare that “avoid” list with what Kurt Harris refers to as the three neolithic agents of disease—the modern nasties driving many of our health woes:
    • Excess fructose
    • Excess linoleic acid (typically from high-omega-6 oils like soybean oil)
    • Wheat or gluten


    Ancestral or “paleo” diets specifically eliminate all three. Incidentally, the near-vegan diets with a track record for fighting disease eliminate the first two. And in many cases, they inadvertently slash wheat intake by promoting a more diverse spectrum of grains, tubers, and legumes than the average person on an industrialized diet consumes (in which grain products are overwhelmingly wheat-based).

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    • #47
      Originally posted by Heth View Post
      It's similar except that, the failure rate of raw veganism seems to be a lot higher, and that this forum seems to be open, not moderated by nazis who modify the posts of anybody who is having trouble on the diet/lifestyle. There is more openness to discussion about the truth of things not working here, than on somewhere like 30 Bananas a Day. Vegans tend to be more fanatical and have more agendas to defend, in my experience.
      I was talking about a diet not a forum.

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      • #48
        Originally posted by jojohaligo View Post
        I would say that if nutrition is the process of nourishing (to provide with food or other substances necessary for life and growth) or being nourished, especially the process by which a living organism assimilates food and uses it for growth and for replacement of tissues, that by definition there is no such thing as bad nutrition.

        The mercury laden tuna provides a certain level of nutrients that nourish the human body. It just so happens that it also provides a dose of mercury (although some people might crave it like that), which makes it "not" as nourishing to the body as an nice piece of seared tuna that has no mercury.

        By definition something is either nutritious or it is not, or less or more nourishing. It's not a case of good or bad.
        In this case the GMO grains provide nutrition. We are discussing semantics here bad = less nourishment. If that's how you want to put it that's fine with me. I will stick to identify for myself GMO grains as bad nutrition.

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        • #49
          Originally posted by Timthetaco View Post
          Kathy sure did start a really big argument just because she doesn't believe protein and fat are the most satiating macronutrients.

          Damn.
          I didn't say that. I was questioning generalizations stated.

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          • #50
            Originally posted by zoebird View Post
            Actually, KathyH, your argument qualifies as a slippery slope/continuum fallacy -- not a valid argument.

            we can define what "good nutrition" is, drawing clear lines along the way in the continuum.

            I haven't read anything particularly contentious here. Human bodies like fat, carbohydrate, and protein. It seems from the science on which this diet is based (as well as the WAPF's science) that the body prefers to run on fat over carbohydrate, and as such, people whose diets are largely carbohydrate may not feel satiated in general.

            I cannot say that the diet that Silverstone asserts is "unhealthy." I think it is quite healthy overall -- a macrobiotic vegan diet can work well for some people in the long term. It works for a lot of people in the short term because it often clears their diets of all kinds of chemicals in processed foods, white sugar, and related. It's a whole foods diet based on what is seasonal.

            Once people have cleared their diets of processed foods, things perk right up. The same was true of me, and my diet wasn't that bad to start out with (growing up). But, now it is considerably better, because we eat seasonal, local (as possible), whole foods. It happens to include meat and dairy and eggs (obviously not vegan), but that is part of the reason why this diet is accessible.

            I learned two things going vegan: 1. i have modest lactose intolerance, so it's good to avoid dairy (but I do have it on occasion) and 2. food can be very diverse and interesting (i learned to cook). I have learned two things since going paleo: 1. i am not that sensitive to gluten, but being off grains did make me leaner very quickly in ways that I didn't expect; and 2. local and seasonal food is really fun and where-it's-at for me.

            Just because I eat this way now doesn't mean i'm against what anyone else is doing. I consider veganism to be perfectly fine. I don't think it's a cure all for all people, or that it's going to work long term for everyone, but I think it is a perfectly fine way to eat if a person is able to sustain it and they are healthy. And how they understand their health is up to them, too. I don't need to get into debates about it per se.
            You are basing your opinion on the science on which Paleo diet was based. What about the science that supports other diets?
            This is a never ending debate as there is no ultimate authority on nutrition. There are many perceptions what constitutes good nutrition and I am not defending any of them. But I see a lot of swooping generalizations that favor one diet over the other based on individual preferences.

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            • #51
              Originally posted by onalark View Post
              I sound like someone on a paleo forum, who has read books on nutrition, and Mark's articles:
              Curb Your Appetite with a High Fat Diet | Mark's Daily Apple
              Pass the Protein, Please! | Mark's Daily Apple
              What is Leptin? | Mark's Daily Apple

              My comments on veganism originally and specifically targeted Silverstone's plan (which is low in fat, low in protein, high in carbohydrates). If you want examples of other vegan diets that are low on fat and protein and high on carbohydrates, look to McDougall (McDougall Plan), Fuhrman (Eat to Live), Christina Pirello (Crazy Vegan Life), and Esselstyn (Engine 2).

              Veganism, as it is presented in the mainstream media, is largely fat phobic, and shrugs off the importance of protein; Esselstyn even goes so far as to villainize it, purporting that it's been given too much credit because it's "manly" to eat meat. And then there's the (in)famous Cordain/Campbell protein debate:

              Cordain/Campbell protein debate

              I'd argue there is a perfect diet. It's the one you stick to. If veganism works for you, superawesomeradical. I don't care. I think, as a lot of folks have mentioned here on this forum, that it's probably even better than the industrial crap people eat every day. But I don't think it's optimal.

              There are outliers for whom it works like a charm. I don't doubt they exist. But I believe evolution, and the lack of a pure vegan culture in history, proves that they're just that: outliers.
              I am an omnivore, never tried vegan diet so can't say whether it would work for me. I am not defending it either. Just questioning why you are passing swooping generalizations. There is as much evidence that veganism works as much as there is for Paleo. Lack of pure vegan culture is not an indicative that veganism has no merit as a good/bad nutrition.
              Being exposed to insurmountable amount publications on nutrition does not make one an expert on such complex issue. The fact that mankind have so many acknowledged scientist debating nutrition is a proof that so far we have not concluded what constitutes an optimal diet. But you come across as an authoritarian on the subject.

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              • #52
                You are an only child.

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                • #53
                  Originally posted by Omni View Post
                  As for the OP's own experience:
                  Going from Junk to Vegan, felt amazing, then Vegan to Primal, felt amazing.
                  More detail required, were any health issues involved?
                  How long Vegan?
                  Surely going primal would have taken you to Super Amazing if you were already starting off at the amazing position, did the vegan diet effect fade, was it merely a case of the placebo effect fading?
                  I grew up eating a very SAD, cereals and many processed carbs, little to no veg, and conventional fruits and meats. I made the switch to vegan at 17--i attributed my veganism for ridding me of my exercise-induced asthma, but then realized i had moved out with my boyfriend at the time, away from my parents house where three people smoked constantly. I didn't lose weight as a vegan, I actually lost weight eating meat--but I felt awful. BUT the diet I lost weight on was incredibly low-fat. I had nightmares every night that I thought were caused by eating meat, but I just realized, perhaps it was the lack of fat that caused that. I felt better returning to being a vegetarian, as I was eating eggs. This continued until I tried a raw diet for a few months. then, went back to cooked vegan, then vegetarian, then pescatarian--i ALWAYS felt better when I included eggs and fish, but I was in serious denial and felt ashamed that I couldn't be a vegan. After being "successful" with raw food for three months, returned to cooked food AGAIN and continued the flip-flopping guilt ridden vegan trials.
                  All in all, I was a veg*n for about 6 years, (but keep in mind, i'm only 24). This past year (2011), I was so fatigued, weak, unable to sleep, hungry constantly, had intense heartburn every meal, woke up very nauseous every morning, and my menstrual cycle was incredibly brutal, I finally had to realize that my veg*n diet wasn't working and tried primal and immediately felt better. And now, I could NEVER imagine going back to being vegan.

                  I really wonder though, that if I had made the switch from SAD to primal if I would have felt the same. I didn't even consider primal an option, though, because my reason for becoming vegan was solely based on an emotional response to factory farmed videos. when I made the switch to vegan, I don't really remember any health issues. Mostly heartburn after eating and the asthma, but only when i exercised. I was also very much overweight, probably obese for my height/age.

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