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  1. #1
    ahuderot's Avatar
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    I wish Mark (or someone else) writes a response to this...

    Primal Fuel
    Hi all!
    My primal life is about a few weeks old, and I believe primal living have improved my life extensively. Though, I'm relatively new to this web site.
    I'm reading several anti-primal or anti-paleo ideas from several sources over the internet. The latest one I read is in the following link:
    Dissecting the Myth: Why Grains and Gluten Aren't Bad for You | Outlaw Fitness
    The author is a grain-lover, and so he does not like the primal strategy offered by the Primal Blueprint. In the article, he quotes Mark and writes his responses to each point in some of Mark's articles on this site.
    I wish Mark could write a response to that, and so enlighten the unknowledgeable ignorant such as I.
    Alternatively, if any of you could do that (or point me to some direction), I would totally appreciate it.
    Thank you for your consideration.

  2. #2
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    He makes some good points.

    I'm not going to get scientific, but there are a few things that more people need to understand:

    - There's more than one way to do things. Some people eat gluten, grains, peanuts, whatever and have absolutely no problem. I know people who have gone through the entire process of eliminating them from their diet, and they saw no difference, so they added them back in. This is purely anecdotal, but there are plenty of people who handle gluten just fine.

    - Condemnation of a certain food group, macronutrient, vitamin/mineral, whatever, is completely useless if you don't consider the context of the entire diet. There's always a shift in what the culprit is: is it carbs? Is it gluten? Is it fat? This is something Tom Venuto terms "information isolation", and it's a very narrow way of thinking. Blaming one small aspect without looking at the entire context of the diet is just plain misleading, in my opinion.

    Sorry for the rambling, just my 2 cents. I just wish people would understand that there is not only one way to eat to achieve great results regarding health and/or body composition. People have seen great results with the Primal methods of eating. People have also seen great results eating a higher carb, lower fat diet. Some do awesome on ketogenic diets, some do terrible on them.

    I think there are arguments that can be made in favor and against both sides of the coin, but what really matters is what's most effective for you in your situation.
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    The whole grains healthy or not thing is like a jigsaw puzzle with most of the pieces missing and just to add to the confusion additional pieces from different puzzles have been thrown in.

    In the end it comes back to each individual to make an assessment on the balance of probabilities, there is no concrete evidence for either argument.
    The majority of evidence suggesting grains are healthy is irrelevant as it is based on studies comparing whole grains to processed grains, there has been no significant research to determine the health differences in a no grains diet compared to a grain based diet.

    From my perspective with the reading I have done, I avoid consumption of grains, particularly wheat, this is based on two primary reasons:
    1 / Grains do not provide any dietary nutrition that cannot be sourced easily elsewhere in the diet.
    2 / The trend in research and medical recognition over the last 50 years or so indicates that the incidence and range of grain and gluten sensitivity type conditions is on the increase, whether this is through better detection or a true increase is irrelevant, the fact is that the trend indicates that in 20 years time that the rates of these conditions will likely be much higher than today.

    When you add the variety of conditions being linked, which include depression, bipolar, schizophrenia and other neuralogical diseases through to various autoimmune and chronic conditions and consider that these gluten type compounds have the ability to affect you from head to toe and these effects can be so subtle that they don't get tested, yet have profound effects on ones quality of life.

    How does one determine if they are Gluten sensitive or not, antibody testing can only confirm a positive result, but a negative result does not mean one is not sensitive, so the only way is by strict elimination, careful consideration of subtle changes in oneself and then re introduction and repeated elimination to confirm suspicions.
    This can be very difficult as for example anyone that has any experience with neuralogical conditions like bipolar or depression will understand that the shifts can be quite subtle, yet have a profound effect on ones long term quality of life.

    I'd venture a guess that many of those that say they have no problems with gluten at all, may well fall into the subtle cumulative effects and if one was to study them more deeply possibly find that they do show symptoms of one type or another, just not severe enough to warrant a visit to the doctor.

    So for me, as far as grains go there is a high risk of negative impact with no actual benefits.
    "There are no short cuts to enlightenment, the journey is the destination, you have to walk this path alone"

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    While I think those are all great articles, and I agree with most of what they're saying, I think that it's important to be unbiased and look at the other side of the coin as well.

    My personal opinion is that people's diet shouldn't revolve around grains, but if they're not intolerant, then in moderation they are perfectly fine. When you start dealing with absolutes and saying that someone should never eat grains, that's where I start to draw the line.

    I recently read a great paper debunking a lot of the faulty claims in Wheat Belly by William Davis.

    Here it is: http://www.aaccnet.org/publications/...-57-4-0177.pdf

    In my opinion, people need to stop demonizing nutrients and food groups and start looking at the entire context of the diet, rather than dealing with absolutes.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jakejoh10 View Post
    While I think those are all great articles, and I agree with most of what they're saying, I think that it's important to be unbiased and look at the other side of the coin as well.

    My personal opinion is that people's diet shouldn't revolve around grains, but if they're not intolerant, then in moderation they are perfectly fine. When you start dealing with absolutes and saying that someone should never eat grains, that's where I start to draw the line.

    I recently read a great paper debunking a lot of the faulty claims in Wheat Belly by William Davis.

    Here it is: http://www.aaccnet.org/publications/...-57-4-0177.pdf

    In my opinion, people need to stop demonizing nutrients and food groups and start looking at the entire context of the diet, rather than dealing with absolutes.
    Grains are absolutely awful. If you take an analytical view based on risk/reward there is questionable up side with possibility of catastrophic down side. No brainer IMO based on the science.
    Last edited by Neckhammer; 06-23-2013 at 11:24 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Neckhammer View Post
    Grains are absolutely awful. If you take an analytical view based on risk/reward there is questionable up side with possibility of catastrophic down side. No brained IMO based on the science.
    I disagree that they are "absolutely awful" for everyone. In the context of the diet as a whole, if a person handles grains well (isn't gluten intolerant, doesn't see digestive issues, etc.), I don't see why they can't be included in moderate amounts.

    In my opinion, it comes down to individual adherence. When trying to get someone to stick to a diet, completely eliminating grains isn't always the best choice, and it isn't always necessary. Complete restriction leads to the increased risk of binging on crap later on.

    It comes down to being flexible. If a person has no problems with grains and enjoys their diet more when they're included, I don't see why that's not okay.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jakejoh10 View Post
    I disagree that they are "absolutely awful" for everyone. In the context of the diet as a whole, if a person handles grains well (isn't gluten intolerant, doesn't see digestive issues, etc.), I don't see why they can't be included in moderate amounts.

    In my opinion, it comes down to individual adherence. When trying to get someone to stick to a diet, completely eliminating grains isn't always the best choice, and it isn't always necessary. Complete restriction leads to the increased risk of binging on crap later on.

    It comes down to being flexible. If a person has no problems with grains and enjoys their diet more when they're included, I don't see why that's not okay.
    Yeah, I know you disagree and that's fine. In this area you have your knowns and unknowns. I just focus on what we currently know. My family includes one aunt type I diabetic and one uncle with late onset of RA (both autoimmune associated with genetic markers close to those implicated in gluten intolerance/celiac). What we know is the incidence of gluten intolerance is increasing as are many of the autoimmune diseases that fall along the line of the same genetic markers. We know that introduction to wheat within the first year of life increases your risk of future intolerance AND that intolerance can manifest at any time (I.e. its not simply genetic, but also lifestyle dependent) all the way into the elderly and seems to correlate with exposure. We know that it takes years to decades for the symptoms of autoimmune dysfunction to produce symptoms and at that point some degree of damage is already done. I know there is nothing in grains or wheat that is not attainable elsewhere with less risk. We don't know a lot on the subject, but based on what I do know I wouldn't risk my family with overconsumption of wheat product. To each their own though. Perhaps I'm just a bit more risk adverse.

    If I were to consider making wheat a staple I would get frequent GI functional medical testing to assure it was not impacting our bodies negatively. But, I 'm not going that route. I'm just gonna skip the wheat (for the most part).

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neckhammer View Post
    Yeah, I know you disagree and that's fine. In this area you have your knowns and unknowns. I just focus on what we currently know. My family includes one aunt type I diabetic and one uncle with late onset of RA (both autoimmune associated with genetic markers close to those implicated in gluten intolerance/celiac). What we know is the incidence of gluten intolerance is increasing as are many of the autoimmune diseases that fall along the line of the same genetic markers. We know that introduction to wheat within the first year of life increases your risk of future intolerance AND that intolerance can manifest at any time (I.e. its not simply genetic, but also lifestyle dependent) all the way into the elderly and seems to correlate with exposure. We know that it takes years to decades for the symptoms of autoimmune dysfunction to produce symptoms and at that point some degree of damage is already done. I know there is nothing in grains or wheat that is not attainable elsewhere with less risk. We don't know a lot on the subject, but based on what I do know I wouldn't risk my family with overconsumption of wheat product. To each their own though. Perhaps I'm just a bit more risk adverse.

    If I were to consider making wheat a staple I would get frequent GI functional medical testing to assure it was not impacting our bodies negatively. But, I 'm not going that route. I'm just gonna skip the wheat (for the most part).
    I absolutely understand what you're saying. The only thing that I'm against is the dogmatic condemnation of grains when, like you said, we don't have a great amount of research, and there are people (and large populations) that consume grains and maintain great health and longevity.
    My nutrition/fitness/critical thinking blog:

  10. #10
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    You obviously read none of the linked articles. They would have answered your assertion that not having readily apparent intolerances = tolerating grains well and that tolerating them means they are healthy for you. There is a level of health being "fine" that you can uncover with a paleo diet. Until you reach that level, you have no clue it exists.

    And for ahuderot, I posted those links because he hoped Mark would write a response. Mark has already written hundreds of blog posts on the topic so has no need to post a response in the forum.
    Female, 5'3", 49, Starting weight: 163lbs. Current weight: 135 (more or less).
    Starting squat: 45lbs. Current squat: 180 x 2. Current Deadlift: 230 x 2

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