07-12-2013, 05:37 PM
@Kestrel SF: Very good post, and about the most accurate I've seen on here.
I live off the land, about 90% at least, in eastern VT. I think the idea of fruit and veg being more "natural" choices is completely absurd to anyone that has ever grown crops in their life. Here goes:
1) All of the "fruit" you are referring to does not occur in nature in anything close to the form bought at modern markets or grown in your yard. Many of these fruits have been cross-bred for hundreds of years from ALL over the world to create what you buy. In every case, the amount of fruit, and thus CALORIES, has been radically upgraded by human intervention. Seeing as we didn't really understand any of this in a meaningful way until Mendel (who discovered alleles, or gene expressions) about 2 centuries ago, all of your "fruit" fantasies did not exist. ALL of the fruit you buy or can grow, 100% of it, has been heavily engineered by humans for millenia.....A wild apple is about the size of a golf ball and very sour. A wild banana does not exist.
2) All of these things you see at the market require EXTENSIVE cultivation to do what they do. There is a reason you don't see wild lettuce fields or wild peach fields....because creating any of these takes very specific conditions and care....lemons or mangoes or blueberries require very acidic soil, to where almost nothing else can grow. Growing spinach or lettuce requires cover never found in nature....as for the "land of fruit" idea, again you are using modern seed engineering to build assumptions that did not exist 10,000 years ago. Yes, if you grow modern fruit seed, let them mature, time your plantings, perfectly nourish, you CAN indeed get continuous fruit. This is because many of these varieties have been, again, BRED to fruit 2-3 times a season.....in nature this is almost unheard of. Creating fruit is a very energy intense effort for a plant, tossing fruit on the ground in the fall to die in the cold winter (as we've engineered them to do anyway) is wasteful and would be cut down by evolution.
The reality is that pre-historic man, what we all came from lived off eating many things which were likely highly unpalatable. Sour and rare wild fruit, an abundance of fibrous but low calorie ground leafy greens, and whatever animal they could catch.
Go spend one month at a cabin in the woods with a few other people. Give everyone a guide book of edible wild fruit and veg, some light stick weapons, and say "ok, go forage".....this has been done before.....and you will see what they come back with.
Rabbits, chipmunks, mushrooms, leafy greens, flowers, and some really sour "fruit".
Veganism as a model of our evolution is an openly ridiculous argument that does not require much rebuttal
07-12-2013, 06:46 PM
The Original post isn't really about food/nutrition. This person has found that they can ease their conscience, and not die. I was vegan for 10 years... And I felt really good about myself (morally). In that time, my formative years from 15-24ish... I also developed depression, anxiety, and fibromyalgia... Which are now life-long battles. These issues may simply have been a result of my genetic path through puberty and young adulthood, but I'm just saying... I certainly didn't get healthier because of my diet (I was all kinds of skinny-fat tho!)
All that being said... I still have trouble with the killing. I know it's natural, I know we're omnivores... But it's still hard to reconcile. So I understand the argument that the OP is trying to make. Idealism is a powerful force for some of us... But....
6 months on a vegan diet is enough time to benefit from some of the good things (high intake of plant nutrients) without enough time to realize some of the more severe negatives (mineral/vitamin depletion, fatigue/wasting, neurological problems from B12 deficiency... Etc). These things take a long time to get to a critical stage (ie, your body is maintaining your blood mineral levels by depleting your stores... It does this so you don't TODAY... What happens when your stores are empty?) Fortunately, for vegans (and former vegans) our resourceful physiology can keep us alive a long time without optimal nutrition (ALIVE, not healthy).
Anyway... My point is that very little of what was in the original post was relevant to nutrition and/or thriving... And I think it's like trying to argue against religion using science... It FEELS right, but it does nothing to dissuade the religious.
07-12-2013, 07:22 PM
KestrelSF- so interesting about your friend living off the land in New Jersey. Did he/she ever write about the experience?