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I have heard that there are no vegetarian cultures thriving but...

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  • I have heard that there are no vegetarian cultures thriving but...

    Everyone brings up India, the Jaines etc. Is it true that no culture can thrive as vegetarians?
    Primal since April 2012 Male 6' 3" SW 345lbs CW 240lbs GW 220lbs and when I get there I am getting a utlikilt. This one http://www.utilikilts.com/company/pr...ilts/workmans/ actually.

    Join me at www.paleoplanet.net, where all the cavemen hang out.

  • #2
    Considering their physiques and general state of health, I'd hardly call Indian vegetarianism "thriving"...
    “The whole concept of a macronutrient, like that of a calorie, is determining our language game in such a way that the conversation is not making sense." - Dr. Kurt Harris

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Chaohinon View Post
      Considering their physiques and general state of health, I'd hardly call Indian vegetarianism "thriving"...
      Exactly my thoughts.

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      • #4
        I know of no long term reproducing communities that are 100% vegetarian. Most vegetarian communities that reproduce allow dairy and /or egg consumption. Some even occasional meat. Many monk communities I have read eat vegetarian to keep the boys from getting too frisky...probably with each other.
        Primal/Paleo is not for everyone, it's for those who have committed to understand.
        READ THE BOOK! ...as Robb Wolf says: "Trying to convince people to save their own ass will burn you out."

        Vegetarians are the enemy of everything good and decent in the human spirit, and an affront to all I stand for -- the pure enjoyment of food.” Anthony Bourdain

        and yes, calories DO count my little piggies

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        • #5
          Jains are lacto-vegetarians. They also don't eat that way for longevity or health but to end their term in the cycle of reincarnation.
          Female, 5'3", 50, Max squat: 202.5lbs. Max deadlift: 225 x 3.

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          • #6
            Of course cultures could thrive as vegetarian. Vegan would be more tricky.

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            • #7
              Considering their physiques and general state of health

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              • #8
                So that would be a no then? good.
                Primal since April 2012 Male 6' 3" SW 345lbs CW 240lbs GW 220lbs and when I get there I am getting a utlikilt. This one http://www.utilikilts.com/company/pr...ilts/workmans/ actually.

                Join me at www.paleoplanet.net, where all the cavemen hang out.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Forgotmylastusername View Post
                  Of course cultures could thrive as vegetarian. Vegan would be more tricky.
                  Do you have evidence of a long term completely vegetarian culture? By long term I mean a community which reproduces healthy children over many generations. Not a 20/21st century concept. (no animal products)
                  Primal/Paleo is not for everyone, it's for those who have committed to understand.
                  READ THE BOOK! ...as Robb Wolf says: "Trying to convince people to save their own ass will burn you out."

                  Vegetarians are the enemy of everything good and decent in the human spirit, and an affront to all I stand for -- the pure enjoyment of food.” Anthony Bourdain

                  and yes, calories DO count my little piggies

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                  • #10
                    There are long-term surviving lacto-vegetarian cultures but no long-term thriving vegan cultures. Jains and many Hindus are lacto-vegetarian (some castes eat meat). Eggs are generally considered meat in India though.

                    People sometimes get confused by the Indian term "pure vegetarian" and think it means vegan, but it actually means eating only sattvic foods, which includes milk and milk products as well as honey and so is not vegan.
                    “If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.” --Audre Lorde

                    Owly's Journal

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                    • #11
                      One thing that has struck me re modern vegetarians unless they are going out and buying seaweed, without supplementation they will find it very hard to get adequate iodine levels that we would get from wild fish.
                      Eating primal is not a diet, it is a way of life.
                      PS
                      Don't forget to play!

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Chaohinon View Post
                        Considering their physiques and general state of health, I'd hardly call Indian vegetarianism "thriving"...
                        Quite.

                        I think both the Sikhs studied by Sir Robert McCarrison:

                        McCarrison - Nutrition and National Health - Contents

                        and the Swiss villagers studied by Weston Price:

                        Nutrition and Physical Degeneration: Chapter 3

                        would make a better case for the case for a high percentage of meat not being necessary for a good physique.

                        The Sikhs were a warrior people, tall, well built, and capable of holding the Islamic invaders of India at bay, which would have been no easy task. The rats McCarrison fed on the several different Indian diets make the point just as well.

                        The Swiss were big, athletic people, sought throughout Europe as mercenaries for centuries and making up the Pope's own bodyguard in Rome. The villagers Price saw had minimal dental caries and, as Price would have put it, "well-formed dental arches". And what goes for teeth tends to go for bones -- and health in in general.

                        As Stefansson amusingly comments somewhere dairy products are not actually vegetables, although vegetarians are illogical enough to reckon them as such. Both of these cultures used those. The Swiss seem to have been eating meat broths regularly, too, although actual meat-on-the-bone rather infrequently. The Sikhs may have had some animal flesh infrequently -- not sure on that.

                        It does seem you can do OK on not a lot of meat. Actually, I bet few people posting on this board could boast a mouthful of teeth as good as those Swiss. Few people nowadays don't have "deformed dental arches" and impacted wisdom teeth -- and/or extractions.

                        Speaking personally, if the meat's around, I'm there. Furthermore, I think that people like Professor Michael Crawford and Dr. Stephen Cunnane have proved their case as regards seafood: it's not really believable that anything else could have driven human encephalization. And that seems to have created a continuing need for the nutrients found therein. So I wouldn't like to take my chances on just meat from land animals. You could probably do OK as regards DHA if you ate the brains of grass-fed livestock, but who nowadays does that? And iodine is an issue, too, as someone already commented.

                        I think just meat and no seafood (or even fish oil) could be playing ducks and drakes with one's mental health. How much more foolish not even to eat meat?

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                        • #13
                          Also bear in mind that Jains were found to be getting their B12 from rat droppings and insect eggs/parts in their food. Eating a cleaner version of their diet, they may start showing problems associated with B12 deficiency.

                          In other words, healthy vegetarian/vegan tribes are healthy because they eat:
                          -eggs
                          -dairy
                          -fish
                          -animal droppings
                          -insects
                          -or insect larvae.
                          Most healthy "vegetarian" peoples have actually been pesco-vegetarian or ate small amounts of meat. Those who didn't, like the Jains, unknowingly got nutrients from other animal sources. However you look at it, entirely eliminating animal products isn't healthy and even cutting them back isn't optimal for most.
                          Last edited by Kochin; 11-28-2012, 12:11 PM.
                          --
                          Perfection is entirely individual. Any philosophy or pursuit that encourages individuality has merit in that it frees people. Any that encourages shackles only has merit in that it shows you how wrong and desperate the human mind can get in its pursuit of truth.

                          --
                          I get blunter and more narcissistic by the day.
                          I'd apologize, but...

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                          • #14
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                            • #15
                              I think it's vegan communities that don't exist healthily, and that vegetarian societies consuming animal products such as eggs and milk get along reasonably well.
                              Meat is Prized, Wheat is Despised.

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