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Thread: Lies an anthropologist told me page 2

  1. #11
    Graycat's Avatar
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    I think that some people simply can't bring themselves to say " high fat diet". Like saying "high protein" will somehow make it sound more reasonable.

  2. #12
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    I agree with you, Graycat. I have noticed that the words "high fat" or "fatty food" actually seem to mean unhealthy foods to people. Half the time, "fatty food" actually means sugary food in reality if you ask someone to list the foods that they consider fatty foods. It's like the word fat doesn't literally mean fat to people anymore and I think most people don't even realize they are doing this. I was talking to an Egyptian guy for whom English was a 2nd language and he kept listing all these great Egyptian foods that were obviously extremely fatty and meaty and he'd end every description of these foods with "no fat, very healthy!" I think he had actually picked up on this tendency to equate the meaning "fat" with "unhealthy" and "no fat" with "healthy" through his ignorance of the language. But the rest of us are just ignorant period. Including your anthropology professor. He ought to go discuss his mistake with a linguistics professor.
    Female, 5'3", 49, Starting weight: 163lbs. Current weight: 135 (more or less).
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  3. #13
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    I think that a lot of people just don't really put too much thought into what unprocessed food is really like... when someone says that an indigenous people live on "meat and milk from cattle", I bet most people today would automatically conjure up in their mind a packaged, lean steak and a jug of 1% milk, simply because that is all they know of their food. Furthermore, even though he is a biological anthropologist, that doesn't necessarily mean his focus within the field is on diet... it could easily be something like the development of bipedal motion, or hand bio-mechanics among early hominids. Many researchers tend to be incredibly specific within their field of study.
    "Itís not about how strong you are, itís how well you can move with that strength."

  4. #14
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    I think it can be simply explained by - it doesn't fit his paradigm.

    If something doesn't fit your paradigm then you tend not to see it. "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paradigm"

  5. #15
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    maybe he was thinking that since the meat isn't commercially produced that it maybe be leaner meat? I have to admit my first thought was, this guy doesn't really know what he's talking about when it comes to diets, not the other info

  6. #16
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    He asked about it on the final exam, but this time he applied it to the human species as a whole. Basically, "Humans went from a low fat diet to a high fat/high carb diet. True or false?" *Sigh* I hate having to choose between the truth and what the professor wants to hear.

  7. #17
    Lewis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kata View Post
    He asked about it on the final exam, but this time he applied it to the human species as a whole. Basically, "Humans went from a low fat diet to a high fat/high carb diet. True or false?" *Sigh* I hate having to choose between the truth and what the professor wants to hear.
    What did I tell you? He hasn't really thought about the numbers?

    I mean ...

    Humans went from a low fat diet to a high fat/high carb diet ...
    The implication there seems to be that both "fat" (type unspecified) and "carbs" (type unspecified) are "bad". But what else is there?

    There's only protein left, and that's almost always going to amount to less than about 30% of total calorific intake -- and often a lot less.

    Basically, someone needs to say to him: There are only there macronutrients in there; sort them out.

    As a civilization, i think we're hypnotized by numbers. Here's an example: most contemporary architects build horrendous buildings, because they have a quantitative grasp of things, but not a qualitative one. They can draw a ground-plan and work out stresses, but they don't understand how human beings really use buildings, and how to make a building "friendly". And they've never taken a pencil and tried to draw the facade of building and understand how that interacts with light and shadow.

    I think this guy is the other way round. He probably has a good idea of the sort of foods people might pick up, how they would butcher, how they would cook, and all the rest of that. But he's never crunched the numbers.

  8. #18
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    Loren Cordain has the science in a nice convenient chart. Sorry this is a PDF but it's colorful and a pleasant read.
    http://thepaleodiet.com/wp-content/u...and-Miller.pdf
    Female, 5'3", 49, Starting weight: 163lbs. Current weight: 135 (more or less).
    Starting squat: 45lbs. Current squat: 170 x 3. Current Deadlift: 220 x 3

  9. #19
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    I think one of the issues is the narrative that humans in general have gone from a fat-limited to a non-fat-limited diet.

    I remember being taught, not too long ago, that highly active people hundreds of years ago could basically starve to death while stuffing themselves with venison and wild rabbits because they didn't have enough "fat". There was a whole thing about how these people needed to augment their diet with fatty animals (bears, beavers, and so on) otherwise they couldn't get enough calories when living off the land. It was a fairly major point as I recall.

    If that's your perspective...that the native populations you are talking about were nutritionally fat-limited, it might seem very reasonable to say they had a low-fat diet even though by modern standards that is false. They just had a lower fat diet than they needed for optimal nutrition/health. Perhaps they even had less overall fat (including soybean oil and so on) than a modern 1st worlder, because we're eating more in general and soybean oil etc. - cheap fat - is loaded into a LOT of foods.

    I could be totally incorrect but maybe that's where he was coming from....

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