Saturday, March 28, 2009

Storm & Family: Degenerating Raw Vegans

While individual dietary experimentation can be fascinating, far more valuable information can be gained by observing entire groups of people on certain diets. Weston A. Price's studies are a good example of this, as each unique primitive group he came across displayed varying levels of health on varying diets. What they had in common was beautiful cavity-free teeth and freedom from degenerative disease. All were healthy and vibrant beyond a modern person's wildest dreams. All included animal foods in their diet.

With this in the back of my mind, a friend of mine informed me of a family of 100% raw-food vegans. She handed me a DVD of the family that endorsed their diet and themselves as the ultimate way to optimal wellness. She simply said to me, "I think you'll find this very interesting."

The idea in and of itself was intriguing: an entire family on a raw vegan diet. What did they eat? Were the parents healthy? Were the kids healthy? What were their temperaments like? I was excited to observe the family with these questions in mind.

Here's a decription of the family from their website:

Storm has been eating a raw-vegan diet of fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds in their natural unheated state for over 30 years and is known for his body builder's physique. At 60 he looks far younger than his years. Jinjee started eating a raw diet 15 years ago. Her before and afters show her weight loss transformation. Our family is 100% raw-vegan and thriving! On this site we share our photos and stories, photos of the kids growing up raw, and videos of raw vegan cuisine being prepared.

Watching the DVD, it's clear that this is a family on a mission to be the healthiest people they can possibly be. Storm, the husband and father, is the most enthusiastic of the bunch, sharing his reasoning behind the "Garden Diet" (as he calls it) and stories about improved health in his family and others who have experimented with this way of eating. His physique is quite impressive for a raw vegan, although nothing close to some of the omnivorisitic hunter-gatherers I've seen. Over the years he'd eaten higher-fat and protein versions of the raw diet -- mostly nuts and seeds -- which seemed to be best years for him in terms of building muscle and being fit. Slowly he transitioned to a more low-calorie raw vegan diet, and now he drinks mostly fresh orange juice for his calories. A low-protein, low-fat, high-sugar diet. Whoa, dude.
Here are a few pictures of Storm over the years.

It's pretty easy to see that his transition from nuts to orange juice isn't helping him much. To be fair, he is 60-years-old now. But this ripped, omnivoristic Austrailian Aborigine (below middle -- not a raw vegan) amidst some other phenomenal physical specimens from his tribe looks to be about the same age or maybe older, and time doesn't seem to be hurting him much:

Of course, there's more to a person than their physical form. In addition to appearance, Weston Price also noted the generous, vibrant, and uplifting nature of the healthy primitives. So I kept an eye out for the overall temperament of the raw vegan family members while watching the film. In certain segments, Storm can be seen philosophizing about the raw lifestyle in a very solemn, kind of soft, muted tone. His eyes look relaxed and sedated. Other scenes find Storm all fired up and ranting like a madman with his eyes bugging out all over the place. There seemed to be some definite blood sugar swings going on, which would make sense since the man was living on orange juice during the making of the film. Lacking a proper balance of amino acids, fats, and b-vitamins -- not to mention a complete absence of fat-soluble vitamins -- Storm appears to be unstable and obsessive. Someone get this man some fatty meat!

Storm's wife, Jinjee, makes several appearances on the DVD, endorsing the raw vegan way of life as whole-heartedly as her husband. Yet Jinjee expresses difficulty in sticking to the diet. She describes periods where she reverted back to cooked foods, but she "knows" raw is the ultimate path to unimaginable health and energy -- if she could only stick to it for life! It's evident that she's torn between listening to her body -- which obviously is craving cooked foods -- and adhering to the arbitrary law of raw. Her pregnancies were either mostly raw or 100% raw, as she explains in the film. Video clips are shown of her pregnancies with each child, and it's a little disturbing how skinny she is for a pregnant woman (see photos).

This brings us to the most fascinating portion of the film: the children. In Weston Price's studies of primitive populations, he discovered that adults suffered suboptimal health when abandoning their traditional diet for one rich in industrialized foods. The children of those adults then grew up with lowered immunity and physical degeneration. We'll get to the raw vegan kids shortly, but for now let's remind ourselves what a healthy traditional child (left) looks like compared to an unhealthy modernized child (right), according to Price:


Notice the round face, prominent cheek bones, wide nostrils, square jaw, and broad dental arch of the child on the left. Now observe the narrow face, sagging cheeks, pinched nostrils, weak jaw, and dental deformities of the child on the right. The child on the left was raised on nutrient-dense food (including animal foods high in vitamins and minerals), while the child on the right grew up eating processed foods like white flour and sugar.

Now that we've been refreshed as to what a healthy, properly-developed child on a traditonal diet actually looks like, take a look at the kids who Storm and Jinjee raised raw vegan (see photos).

Observe the narrow faces, weak jaws, pinched nostrils, and sagging cheeks of the raw vegan children. Like every modern child raised on a deficient diet, these children exhibit facial and dental deformities. The raw vegan diet -- though consisting of primarily whole foods in their "natural, unheated state" -- has not rescued them from the classic manifestations of poor physical development.

The theory of raw veganism is steeped in fanciful and delusional thinking. There has never been a group of human beings in the entire evolution of our species that were 100% raw vegans -- or even vegan for that matter. During Price's travels he was always on the lookout for a primitive population that subsisted solely off of vegetable foods. He never found one. Not only did every group utilize animal foods, they also made great efforts to obtain these foods and held them in very high regard -- particularly for child-rearing. Anthropologists and archaeologists have determined that meat and animal fat consumption (in some cases full-on carnivory) have been a mainstay in the human diet for several million years. Today, healthy traditional cultures all over the world eat cooked plant and animal foods and stay healthy from generation to generation.

Those that believe raw veganism is the ultimate path to wellness -- as Storm and his family do -- fail to take note of these facts and completely disregard hundreds of thousands of years of time-tested human foodways. We were left with the knowledge of proper diet by our ancestors -- perhaps we will only attain optimal health by returning to those food traditions of the past.

58 comments:

chlOe said...

Sweet comparisons. I remember reading about them when I was into raw vegan food. I think they have a website.. I wonder what would happen if one of their kids started to get sick. Also, I don't know why they would call Storm a bodybuilder physique; he looks more like a normal guy, except maybe a little flabbier. At least compared to those Aborigines.
And man do I always remember people complaining about wanting to eat something cooked on the raw vegan boards. It's really a shame how someone could believe how toxic a simple cooked vegetable is. It really is quite a negative group of people over all as well (often criticizing anyone who doesn't eat raw food - labeling everyone as either SAD eaters, and how dumb they are, or as raw foodists).
Once I posted a link about Vitamin A from the weston price foundation (that was even when I was still eating Graham's way, but was reading from other sources). And I was trying to see what people thought of it and some moderator took it off and said non-vegan links weren't allowed. Graham's boards also don't allow any links to any sites period. It's like they're closed off to debating anything. Partly the reason why I probably stopped doing that because this stuff obviously has much more to offer sense wise.
I can say intuition played a part for me there.. I always had this bubble of doubt in my head every time I would read about it and even doing it I was always looking for conflicting information to read about (like www.beyondveg.com, and weston price before I even know who that was). It just sounded so religious and I'm more science attracted anyway..haha.
I also had those mood swings you described about Storm. And for some reason I really started disliking my pets generally. I can't really believe how much more I enjoy them now again. That lifestyle really is centered around fear; from my experience at least, and looking at how most other people act.
Anyway, lovely!

Ryan Koch said...

Chloe,

Thanks for sharing your experiences. Sounds similar to many stories I've heard from former raw vegans. They're usually very intelligent people, but also very dogmatic and rigid -- very close to being relgious, as you said. I've "converted" a few vegans to meat-eating by sharing the information in this post. I saw one dude eat a huge pile eggs the morning after I told him about Storm's family!

chlOe said...

hahaha smart man

Jake said...

A disclaimer to the "Healthy"

A great dejection to the orthodox myths, this is one the greates triping stones to the Paleo Diet “so and so physique is far better than modern man - and he is a Vegan.” The fact that they eat better than the average American must be noted, yet compared to their ancients they are weaklings. Your point is superb, maybe more on how the vegans, especially traditional vegan (chinese, koran) can survive.

I suffer from a similar ailment, of the vegan’s robust health, from one of my sisters teachers. An amazing climber and athlete he is famed throughout the school for being 100% Vegan, yet he is never sick. He has become the model of health and longevity at the school.

I wonder if the bar for what is sickness and health has dropped to such a degree that there meaning is lost, if we have gotten to a point that sickness is an evening chore; where being "healthy" is impossible because our version of it is a fantasy, along with below the bar.

One of the themes of this paper that I think completes it is, the comparison of Storm a "healthy" individual, but when compared to his ancients he is a feather in the wind. The true beauty of Dr Price’s findings is the ancients are defined. Let us not just survive, but live in health and happiness.

Live What You Love, don’t live just to survive

Jake of Flagstaff

Ryan Koch said...

Hey Jake,

You bring up a lot of interesting thoughts. How it is that vegans even survive without animal foods? Good question. Apparently Storm has been raw food vegan for 30+ years. Not to mention that he's had 5 children with his wife, who is also mostly a raw vegan. That's an immpressive run for including no animal foods in the diet, although his health is only phenonmenal when compared to junk-food eating folks. Nature doesn't condone the deficient raw vegan diet, as seen by the degeneration of his kids. Children are the ultimate test as to whether or not a diet is healthful, IMO. Peter Bigfoot (who we both know personally) was vegetarian for 30+ years until he realized that his body needed meat. It seems that an unnatural diet devoid of animal foods can only last so long before the reality sets in.

There are many vegans out there, like your school teacher, who make claims of superior health. But, as you said, the meaning of health is lost in our modern times. Health for an infant, for example, no longer means a round face and a chubby build. Health for a woman no longer means having adequate fat stores and wide hips. Health for our children no longer means resitance to disease and a calm, stable mood. If anything, disease and weakness has become normal -- i.e. braces and "flu season" -- while true wellness is a long-forgotten art.

Couldn't agree more, buddy: "Don't just live to survive."

Anonymous said...

The photos of the raw vegan family above have been elongated. You can click on them to see the actual size of the photo, where they do not look so thin.

chlOe said...

Haha, aahh..they're the same size. And that doesn't change their facial features either ma man.

Ryan Koch said...

Anonymous,

Yes, the photos as they appear on the blog are just a tad elongated due to my poor web editing skills. Oops!

This wasn't intentional, and I appreciate you pointing it out.

And, as Chole said, this doesn't deter from the fact that these kids have poor overall facial structure, crooked teeth, sunken cheek bones, pinched nostrils, and all the markers of physical degeneration.

Anonymous said...

You guys are just as religious about humans needing meat as those raw foodies are about not eating meat. 99.9 percent of life on the planet is raw. You should do some homework and open up your mind to the amazingly complex and versatile machine you have, your body. Test it yourself before you believe in anyone elses findings, by the way, we know nothing but a glimpse of the past as less than 10% of what was becomes fossilized. If you want to see our living past, go to the zoo, observe monkeys, and their diet. A good read is "The China Study" Read it if you think that fruits, and especially veggies are nutritionally devoid. It's the other way around. Beta carotene is a precursor to vitamin A, UVB is a precursor to Vitamin D, B12 comes from Bacteria, which can reliably be found in your own shit, so eat it. It seems you like to speak it. Strength is found in your ability to change and keep an open mind. Not in your ability to disprove something that someone else is doing well just because it threatens your belief system.

chlOe said...

Anonymous,
People are weird creatures. What other animal also has complex language and learning skills that we have? Our brains are much bigger than monkeys - something that's extremely important. Ask any scientist researching a chimpanzee and they'll tell you we're millions of years different from them. It's call evolution.
Should we also stop having intricate conversations because 99.9% of the animal kingdom doesn't have them?
Speaking of animal kingdom, there are animals who eat cooked food (gasp). As one example, there's a bird that will roast a grasshopper in the sun to get rid of the toxins. Toxins - something found highly in vegetables and any other food.
The fact that Price studied these people who do eat meat, and a long rainbow of cooked foods, knocks your dick in the dirt for the argument that we're somehow supposed to eat raw food. Why..cause some monkeys eat raw food? Yeah, if you want to eat your feces, go for it. Some Gorillas at a zoo became infertile after they weren't able to eat bugs - a source of B12. Further more, it's not just as simple as beta carotene converting into Vitamin A. Just because it can doesn't mean it will. If your body worked right (i.e. thyroid, hormones, etc. were at the right place) then perhaps, maybe. But I'm guessing you're not a scientist and don't know much about any of that. You obviously don't care to read a different side that isn't raw food heavy (because of YOUR belief that people should be eating raw food - without much any proof other then "cause they (the animals) are"). I am an ex rawvegan and I've seen that side. There isn't much there, other than some people using China Study as a bible.

And The China Study sucked. Ok, well, it sucked dick. And it sucked dick because the studies in it were extremely controlled and flawed (such as him using rancid unsaturated oils, and things of that sort).

This isn't a belief system, and I don't personally believe people "need" meat. They can be healthy eating it, certainly. We're omnivores. This is a debate, and it requires bringing information against the beliefs out there (one being raw veganism).
Those kids don't look healthy, comparing them to actual HUMAN indigenous cultures.

Ryan Koch said...

Anonymous,

I agree completely: the human body is an amazing and versatile and beautiful thing -- we can survive on a wide variety of diets as a result. Correct me if I'm wrong, but it seems that you have a bone to pick with anyone who says that animal foods are a necessary component of the human diet. Are you a raw vegan? If you are, that's okay! I have plenty of friends who believe in --- and some who follow -- the raw vegan way of eating. They're all good people who I love dearly, and, to be honest, they aren't the healthiest, most vibrant people in the world. Most of these folks have been receptive to the findings of Weston Price and have incorporated animal foods into their diet in one way or aother. I find that many of them follow raw veganism because they're afraid to "harm" any living thing. I believe this perspective to be a detrimental, self-limiting, and unrealistic way of thinking.

I myself was vegetarian for 3 years before I realized how unhealthy I was and started eating meat. My body, mood, hormones -- everything came back to balance when I made the switch. I'll post on this self-transformation sometime in the near future. I've met countless people -- like Chloe above -- who have experienced a similar change after dropping vegetarian/vegan ideals.

Continues next post ...

Ryan Koch said...

As to your "glimpse of the past" comment, I think that we know much more than what the fossilized records contain. We have had living examples of our hunter-gatherer ancestors for millenia to study and learn from. As someone who has watched many films on aboriginal peoples and visited isolated groups in Mexico, I can attest to their vibrant health and balanced, happy demeanors. These are, to me, real human beings. And they all eat animal foods -- some more, some less. The point is that I have humbled myself by recognizing that I was not a healthy person, and it took observing people that were healthy to realize that.

Storm and family are healthy people compared to the average modern American, but when compared to our ancestors, they fall far below the benchmark. It's a hard thing to explain, but I believe there is such a thing as "true health" and the bar is far above anything that any modernized human being will ever experience in their life, me included. True health is more than being free of disease. It's also about how a person behaves, moves, breathes -- and the ease at which he/she does these things. We can look to traditional cultures to see this in action. Visit the Amish, for example, and see them toss bales of hay into a truck with ease or haul wood smoothly and efficiently. Observe how calm and centered they are. Witness the lack of tension in their bodies, their easy, flowing breath. These are very subtle aspects of health, but, to me, are very important. And, yes, the Amish eat animal foods (in addition to having community and culture in their lives, which is another aspect of health).

Anonymous (what is your real name, BTW?), you have challenged us to research the other side, which many of us meat-eaters have -- both physically and intellectually. I challenge you to find a completely vegan culture in human history. My experience has been there is no such thing (unless you count chimpanzees as human and disregard hundreds of thousands of years of human evolutions in which we ate plenty of animal foods). You challenged us to read, The China Study. The flaws in this study can be found in any quick search on google. I challenge you to address those flaws in an unbiased, objective manner.

You said:

"Strength is found in your ability to change and keep an open mind. Not in your ability to disprove something that someone else is doing well just because it threatens your belief system."

I couldn't agree more. I have tried my best to keep an open mind, and I would love to think that human beings can be raw vegans and thrive. But my experience has been that this isn't true. I'm open to being convinced, though. It just hasn't happened. Maybe you're the person that opens my eyes. You're going to have to do better that referencing The China Study for that to happen.

Anonymous said...

this is ridiculous i know meat eaters who have a thin face similar to those children. have you ever heard of the word genes? both parents have a slender face. plus they do annual check ups at the doctor. they are all healthy and seem to be striving. when children are developing teeth are not complete up until well into their late teenage years. i have been eating your typical american diet and have crazy teeth which i eventually needed ALOT of dental work. i have cavities, spaced teeth i am wearing braces now.
his ranting is the love he has for raw vegan diet and how it helped save him and probably could have saved the rest of his family.
when you have been doing one thing for so long it's extremely hard to get out of that habit. jinjee has had problem at the beginning like most people but she has not "fallen off the wagon" in a while. it's like smokers and alcoholics. all of those children are healthy but can't speak on the rest of the fat american kids....

Jonathan said...

Anonymous, despite meat intake(feedlot, overcooked, mcdonalds half soy processed canola oil burgers), the SAD diet is still deficient, like the raw vegan diet. This is why raw vegans get cravings. If you get what Ryan is saying, its not that just eating animal muscle will save you. That is the "omnivore = western diet fallacy".

Those children may be healthier than a lot of children but they are not optimal.

Its not genes. Weston A. Price observed that when refined flour and sugar etc. were introduced into the diet of primitives, despite meat intake, maldeveloped occured. The problem is deficiency/toxicity.

chlOe said...

Exactly - it's not just a "eat meat and improve" situation.

If you haven't read "Nutrition and Physical Degeneration" then it would make more sense for you so that you can get out of that gene-destined way of thinking.

Actually, the way that genes started to interfere with health studies was very interesting..and what I've read from Ray Peat was started during WWII..well, at least towards the study of cancer.

"From the 19th century until the second quarter of the 20th century, cancer was investigated mainly as a metabolic problem. This work, understanding the basic chemistry of metabolism, was culminating in the 1920s in the work of Otto Warburg and Albert Szent-Gyorgyi on respiration. Warburg demonstrated as early as 1920 that a respiratory defect, causing aerobic glycolysis, i.e., the production of lactic acid even in the presence of oxygen, was an essential feature of cancer. (The formation of lactic acid is normal and adaptive when the supply of oxygen isn't adequate to meet energy demands, for example when running.)

Many people recognized that this was likely to be the key to the "cancer problem." But in the US, several factors came together to block this line of investigation.

The world wars contributed to the isolation of German scientists, and Warburg, of the famous Jewish banking family, continued his work in Germany with the support of the government, despite his open opposition to Nazism. In the years after the war, nothing positive could be said in the US about his work on cancer.

The metabolic interpretation of disease that had been making progress for several decades was suddenly submerged when government research financing began concentrating on genetic and viral interpretations of disease.
"

As well, it's pretty messed up of doctors to claim kids are healthy by reading from a chart and being obsessed with numbers that tell them what to think. I think most doctors know very little about real health; Weston Price was a dentist and he figured this out by actually traveling and viewing the phenomenon.

Ryan Koch said...

Anonymous,

I'd highly recommend you check out Weston Price's work. While in a sense you are correct that simply eating meat is not going to correct facial structure, there is far more to it than that. It appears to be a question of nutritional deficiency during the formative years (ages 0-25), particulary of the fat-soluble vitamins found primarily in animal fat, that makes the difference when it comes to the structural development of the face (and the entire skeletal structure). This was the point of observing the facial structure of the vegan youth: they are the physical indicators of the effectiveness of the raw vegan diet because they are still "forming."

The crooked teeth and narrow faces are not genetic, as Weston Price showed in Nutrition and Physical Degeneration. These deformities are the result of poor nutrition (lacking the "special foods" of the primitives, such as grass-fed butter during the spring and summer, liver, certain shellfish and insects, etc.) during the formative years.

To use an analogy I've heard: dental palate and facial deformities can be compared to what happens when a suitcase is overpacked. The brain, glands, ear canal, teeth, nasal passage and other important parts of the head are squished and pushed in all different directions, as an over-packed suitcase might poke out clothing or other objects in a disorganized fashion. The impact of such a misconfiguration on human health is only just recently being understood.

It is not -- I repeat, NOT part of any human genetic blueprint for any human being to have crooked teeth, pinched nostrils, and a narrow face. Some traditional cultures used to discard any infant that displayed signs of veering from the typical physical appearance of their people. This may sound harsh, but it makes sense given that the physical appearance is an indicator whether or not a newborn is "optimal" -- i.e. in accord with the genetic blueprint typical of human beings everywhere prior to the introduction of industrialized foods. Broad, round facial structure, prominent cheek bones, wide flaring nostrils, square jaws, and perfectly straight teeth -- wisdom teeth included -- these are the qualities of a perfect physical human specimen. Anything less is deformity, if we are to agree with the research of Price (which I do, obviously).

As Jonathan and Chloe pointed out, it's not just about meat. It's also important to steer clear of harmful foods like sugar and white flour while supporting the body with adequate amounts of nutrient dense foods. Does that mean we eat gobs and gobs of animal foods? Not necessarily. Many healthy cultures ate diets fairly low in animal foods -- but every human culture in existence ate animal foods to some capacity. To disregard this is pure hubris, in my opinion.

Jonathan said...

Im not sure how to judge they're facial structure but if a narrow face and saggy cheeks means crowded thus crooked teeth... well they don't have crooked teeth...

Im not saying they have no developmental flaws but neither am I saying that a low carb diet doesn't come with flaws. ;)

Here is a photo album with higher quality.

http://www.thegardendiet.com/beforenafter.html

Comparing these to the WestonPriceFoundation photo baby photo albums.

http://www.westonaprice.org/children/babies.html

Remember, lets not pick and chose. ;)

Ryan Koch said...

Jonathan,

Thanks for the feedback -- much appreciated.

You're right, upon closer inspection the children that appear to have crooked teeth (the two oldest) simply have erupting permanent teeth. Oops! I guess I kind of shot from the hip on that one. I'll edit the entry to correct it.

However, if you look closely at some of the photographs of the children, you'll see that they have a strong indication of a future need for braces -- weak jaws, overbites, a natural inclination to rest their mouths in an open position. These are all symptoms of crooked teeth to come, according to several orthodontic websites I perused.

There's a possibility that some of them are mouth breathers, as well, due to their open-mouth positions. Hard to tell from photographs on that one, though.

As for the younger children, who appear to have straight teeth, once their baby teeth fall out to create space for the permanent teeth (around 6 or 7 years old), I'm guessing their won't be room for the permanent teeth to come in straight.

It would be interesting to pair these kids up with Weston Price kids to see how they compare in person. But since photos are all we have, let's take a look:

The photos of the kids on the WAPF site are all toddlers, and you'll notice most of them have chubby, round cheeks. 10-month-old baby Shale appears to lack this quality. Some of the older kids on the WAPF website also appear to have very square jaws and prominent cheek bones -- indications of proper facial development. Contrast this with the older raw vegan kids.

And I agree -- let's not pick and choose. I try my best to remain unbiased and leave emotions out of it, but its hard for me to do so when I see kids being raised against their will on a raw vegan diet based on their parents' unfounded philosophical ideals. In my opinion, these kids are going have many health issues down the line after the resiliency of childhood passes.

Sure, it's just as much of a disappointment when parents raise their kids on standard American diets with junk foods and all, but it's even more sad to me when parents like Storm and Jinjee knowingly and confidently raise their kids on, IMO, a very deficient diet, limiting them to raw plant foods and denying them of the nutrients found only in animal foods.

I will admit that I'm impressed with the fact that raw vegan parents can raise illness-resistent raw vegan kids without any failed pregnancies. But, the real question is this: Is the health of this famiy really that extraordinary? I really don't think so.

And that's the point. These folks, though admirable for trying something different, are not on their way to reclaiming the health of our ancestors.

chlOe said...

They do all also look rather thin, if you ask me.

Anonymous said...

Uh, wow, I don't even know where to begin on the assumptions you are making. I am not a raw vegan, I am 99.9% vegan and I am the healthiest I've been in my life. My (mostly vegan, 100% veg) son is the only one of my friends' kids that has not had bronchitis or asthma, and has NEVER been seriously ill despite being exposed to numerous germs in preschool. My son's face is normal, with plenty of room for those adult teeth. He is also extremely strong, and has been that way since birth. I credit his vigorous health with having well-informed vegan parents who read about how to feed a vegan child properly. I also breastfed him until he was two. The aborigine was "ripped" because he probably exerted some serious physical effort to obtain his food. Anyway, I'd be a little careful not to swallow everything the Weston Price Foundation feeds you (pun not intended). Peace.

Ryan Koch (Health Matters to Me) said...

Anonymous,

Interesting personal account -- thanks for sharing. I'm always open to hearing the other side. I'm not claiming to be right and I'm well aware of my bias, just generating some discussion/debate about the validity of a vegan diet.

I'm working on a post right now about the Boutenkos, a raw vegan family who certainly can make a skeptic like myself think twice. They have beautiful broad faces and seem to do well on a raw vegan diet. There are some things that I'm skeptical of, however, which I get into in the post.

I commend you on doing your best to provide a healthy life for your child. Many people feed their kids junk, so good for you! That being said, I'm more of a see-it-to-believe kind of person and your account of the health of you and your son hold little weight in the argument for a vegan diet. For example, what do you mean by being the "healthiest" you've ever been in your life? Does this mean you were eating donuts and drinking sodas, then you switched to a vegan diet and your health improved? Ever try a traditional diet with animal foods while avoiding junk foods? Just wondering what your story is because many people jump on the vegan bandwagon from eating a poor diet and attribute the wonderful changes to veganism when other factors (elimination of junk) play an important role.

As to your son not being sick -- that's wonderful. Most parents can't say this about their children. However, I hope you'll forgive me for questioning what you mean by saying that your son's face is "normal with plenty of room for those adult teeth." It would be interesting to see a picture of him if you're willing. Were you vegan when pregnant with him? Was he raised vegan? How old is he?

And when you say that you're well-informed, what are your sources of information on health and nutrition? Have you actually read any of the WAPF's material? I don't "swallow" everything they write, but a lot of it is pretty solid.

About the ripped aborigine: the point I was making is that Storm is claiming to have extraordinary health and to have the physique of a body-builder through exercise and nutrition. He's not so impressive when observing omnivirous aborigines who don't lift weights or intentionally exercise, aside from their daily lifestyle which probably involves lots of walking, squatting, and possibly some short-term running. These guys weren't doing bicep curls and bench-presses, though. Abo lifestyles are often quite relaxed, actually. Their incredible physiques are, in my opinion, largely attributed to a nourishing diet with plenty of animal protein and fat.

Again, thanks for the comment, and I hope you're not a hit-and-run commenter like some of these other folks because I would like to hear more about your experience/side of the argument.

chlOe said...

Haha I've totally read "Green For Life"; that book by the victoria of the Boutenkos. vegan days, vegan days.

Jonathan said...

Speaking of the Boutenkos... have you ever noticed Victoria Boutenko looks over weight? Whats up with that?

I know you were thinking of doing a follow up on them but is it even trustworthy that they are actually on the diet they claim to be on?

Anonymous said...

Just my 2 cents - The Boutenkos were not raw until the kids were about 7 and 9. Their round faces were already formed and passed on from generations of a traditional Russian diet. They had problems with their teeth until they incorporated a couple of bunches of raw greens per day in their diet in the form of green smoothies.

However many of their diseases disappeared after going raw. Likewise Storm had a heart attack at age 20 which is the reason he went raw/vegan. He watched all his siblings die from various problems at early ages. I don't think he'll be dying of a heart attack anytime soon!

However, I agree that his kids' faces look narrow. And they are very skinny in general (don't know if that's a bad thing - wish I was skinnier!) They have no tooth decay, however, and neither do Storm nor his wife. Both Storm and his wife drink lots of green juices (Lots of vitamin A,K, and minerals). I think the children just started on green smoothies.

I have brought my kids up on the Nourishing Tradition style diet and they have the wonderful broad faces as seen in those Weston Price pictures. However there was a period of time when we didn't have access to raw milk. We were eating meats, cheese and sourdough bread and this was the one time any tooth decay crept in. We immediately went back to raw milk and it disappeared.

Anyway perhaps the debate should not be about meat/vegan or raw/cooked (although cooking may play a negative role in the case of milk)but minerals/no minerals. Raw vegans get very little minerals unless they eat greens. The SAD people get very little minerals unless they are drinking raw milk or bone broth.

Anonymous said...

Hi I am finding this little debate extremely interesting, I really hope to hear more on both sides of the story. I do find that the annonymous user very one sided up until last entry I am trying to get through the Green for Life but find it hasn't sparked an interest for me to go completely raw food vegan, but I do have a green smoothy everyday. The one thing that does stand to be true is we lack in having not enough green leafys.
From personal experience, I was put on a detox for about a month with eating only fruit and vegetables (cooked for liking) after about 3 weeks I was badly craving red meat. So I cheated, I had a small portion and felt fantastic. In saying that my skin looked better than iit ever had after the detox. No gases no pimples more energy.
I believe from that experience I came to the conclusion I need a little meat every now and then. perhaps we eats too much meat in a western diet and animal products. I eat very very little dairy products now and eat meat 3 times a week which I only buy from a butcher who ensures me the animals are grass fed and aren't caged.... But I suppose we can't believe everything we hear. We can only go by the facts that support the information that is given.
Really looking forward to hearing more on this debate
Kirsty

Anonymous said...

I would love you to check out this site for me and let me know your thoughts - http://www.fredericpatenaude.com/blog/?p=1208#comment-171299
Kirsty

Anonymous said...

Raw veganism for pregnant and growing children is dangerous IMHO. If you think Storm and Jinjee's kids look bad (and they do have very weak constitutions) take a look at this- this little boy has only ever eaten FRUIT- not a green vegetable. I've seen other pictures of him and I am surprised this boy is still alive. So tragic and sad when dogma get's in the way.

http://www.fruitgod.com/fruitarianbabie.html

Anonymous said...

Please stick with your Weston Price primal diets. As people like you keep dieing from heart attacks and strokes, it will only support that all of the science about animal food diets is true. Even Stephen Byrnes one of WP followers died of a stroke at 45 years old. Anecdotal yes but people seem to accept real life anecdotal evidence and the world needs more examples. So keep eating that butter, cream, cheese, and meat!! Yumm!

Ryan Koch @ Health Matters to Me said...

Hey all,

Sorry for the late comments. I haven't been as involved in the blogging world as of late because the summers in southern Utah are absolutely beautiful, and I don't want to be sitting in front of a computer if I can be out playing in the sun.

Anyway, here's some responses to the above comments:

Kirsty,

The website link you posted, while interesting and well-articulated, doesn't say squat about anything. It's just the same vegetarian theory and rhetoric that I've heard ad naseum over the years. A lot of fluff with no substance and no hard evidence to back any of it up. Typical stuff from the veggie vantage point.

Many points that the author brings up can easily be disproved, but I hesitate to waste my time on the arguments. Instead, I'll just repeat what I always say to the veggie/vegan camp: there has never been a fully vegetarian human culture in the history of the world; and many cultures in the world thrive from generation to generation eating meats, fats, and cholesterol-rich foods. To ignore this fact is to be in complete denial of reality.

Ryan Koch @ Health Matters to Me said...

Anonymous 1:55 PM,

Please research both sides of your "anecdotal evidence" before making the assumption that you are making. Some good info on Byrnes can be found here. Here's a quote in case you don't like doing your own research:

"The fatal stroke that poor Dr. Byrnes suffered was undoubtedly the “rupture” type rather than the “clogging/clotting” type which is attributed to animal fat and cholesterol by the morons of mediocre medicine. Clogging/clotting strokes are extremely rare in the young. Even if animal fats could be attributed to clogging/clotting strokes (which they simply haven’t been), they certainly are not attributed to rupture strokes, which are much more common amongst the sushi-loving Japanese. The cause of the stroke had nothing to do with the meat and dairy Byrnes advocated eating.

It had entirely to do with the fact that the poor guy had AIDS. Rupture strokes are very common causes of death in AIDS sufferers. Byrnes knew he had AIDS, and he was busy trying to save his own life, and the lives of fellow sufferers. Medical drugs destroyed his health and made him feel worse, so he opted for naturopathy as a way to make himself better. Sadly, things didn’t work out for him."


And for you to sarcastically wish death upon followers of a WAP-type diet is simply childish and uncalled for. I would delete your comment, but frankly, it provides a pretty good glimpse into the types of dogmatic and self-righteous people that vegetarianism attracts -- so I'll leave it for the sake of that argument. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Hi guys!

In my personal opinion the "thin"-comment is absolutely not making sense, what are you guys comparing to when you state that someone looks "thin".

Personally I think this culture is pervertedly obsessed with beefy/muscluar body figure that is not making sense if we judge it from an objective point of view.

As you may have studied other cultures - 'uncivilized' cultures etc. they rarely look like beefs or particularly gorilla-muscular in my experience, rather they look lean, but still with strength and flexibility, which is more significant to the human species than some kind of bear power, beef chunk.

also as for the nutrients claimed to be only available in animal products, tough luck for horses etc.

who do you compare to when you find it "disturbing how skinny she is for a pregnant woman"?

As far as I see it, if these claims made in this text were in any way accurate, then wouldn't these children show more significant signs of poor health than speculative-possible-future-to-be and "being on the skinny side" (compared to what I do not know..yes compared to the standard chubbyness of children in this perverted culture, certainly.

/Little Richard

Anonymous said...



Many points that the author brings up can easily be disproved, but I hesitate to waste my time on the arguments. Instead, I'll just repeat what I always say to the veggie/vegan camp: there has never been a fully vegetarian human culture in the history of the world; and many cultures in the world thrive from generation to generation eating meats, fats, and cholesterol-rich foods. To ignore this fact is to be in complete denial of reality.


Maybe we could put together a reality show one day, one vegetarian culture-camp, one animal-eating culture-camp and then they could live their lives and in the end we would see which culture would be the most harmonious. it would be fun.

May I ask by the way, what values are important to You personally Ryan when you determine what is a sign of success in human-ness?

Out of curiosity do you have any examples of flesh-eating families and their childrens development?

/Little Richard, again

/Little Richard

Anonymous said...

The reason for the degeneration was not from people eating a natural raw diet, it was from people going to a processed, refined diet. You are comparing apples to oranges so to speak here.

These kids look fantastic and the family is very well adjusted, why don't you go to one of their retreats and see for yourself instead of making false assumptions?

Anonymous said...

I was referring to Weston Price's findings btw, that his subjects he studied were on a refined and processed diet.

You cannot take a raw vegan family and make the same assumption based on their diet.

Price's whole conclusion was about a natural diet, not about how much meat, organs and fat you should stuff into your body.

Anonymous said...

Where are your ethics? I am assuming you have no children. What would drive you to post pics of other people's children, without the parent's permission, and make negative and insulting comments like that. This is wrong on so many levels.

Anonymous said...

LOL. Whats wrong with any of those kids? Sorry if all are teeth arent naturally as perfect-no-gaps like those in the dental ads. They're certainly white enough for them though.
Watch this video, and check out his others - including his teeth video and then tell me low fat raw vegan isnt the way to go.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V7FRfaLtpo8&feature=player_embedded
This whole website is dangerously foolish.

Anonymous said...

Where's the proof that there has never been a vegan tribe in the world? Its 100% speculation. Just because tribes documented in the last few hundred years - and how many have been found and how many have been thoroughly documented for preference, seasons and food availabilty? I wonder how many were eating meat before fire?
I have yet to see research that several different conclusions can't be drawn from, and most of the quoted research I come across was done in the 80's and 90's - the high protein is healthy era, and the conclusions are questionable.
Is there anything humans need that fruit and veg can't provide? No. If humans do consume meat is it beneficial? Only when a diet that is primarily fruit and veg but isn't being done optimally lfrv811 whole fresh ripe raw organic plants. Lumping all vegans in one category is misleading. There's nothing wrong with any of those kids, no frailty, no chronic complaints, no malnutrition. Clear eyes, white teeth, clear skin. I find it unbelievable someones posted about how unhealthy they are.
Also Humans are definitely not omnivores. If you want to live a 100% faunivore diet (humans are biologically frugivores), then you can consume maybe 2-6% raw, fresh, freerange, organic, lean meat and then the remaining 94-98% fresh fruit and veg and sure you'll probably be very healthy. Its still not optimal, and thats what should be addressed.
Stephen

Anonymous said...

It seems to me you see what you want to see. In a mirror is an image of your fear. You describe yourself and your fears. They are irrational.
You are afraid not to eat meat ergo someone who does not is ill. No you are ill they look cool to me. Narrow heads. You have a narrow head on the inside not the outside.

Ryan Koch @ Health Matters to Me said...

(Sorry for the multiple posts -- I'm having trouble getting this comment up.)

Okay, thanks for the comments, everybody.

For more info on our history as meat-eaters, I refer you all to Dr. Michael Eades' posts on vegetarianism:

Michael Eades on Vegetarianism

Specifically, check out his posts on "Are We Meat Eaters or Vegetarians?"

For a comparison of what healthy children look like -- and this includes adequate fat on their bodies -- check out the Weston A. Price Foundation's Healthy Babies Gallery. Please note the difference in facial structure in many of animal food eating children when compared to the raw vegan children.

And, finally, I'd like to respond to the questioning of my "ethics." My ethics are this: People have the right to choose what they want to believe. My own personal stance on this is that my beliefs should come from a place of education and experience. Any "assumptions" I am making have been well-thought out, and it only takes a little bit of research to understand where I'm coming from. Storm has a wonderful family, and there's no doubt that his intentions are good. But he is no different than any other family out there making the uninformed and fanciful conclusion that animal products are somehow harmful to our bodies. These folks need to be called out for this erroneous claim, as there is a great possibility that it could ultimately do more harm than good.

Research from vegans and vegetarians proving the validity of their diet is weak, to say the very least. When such folks can step back from their severely biased and subjective position and truly take a look at anthropological evidence, they might just find that meat and fat never harmed anyone -- and that literally hundreds of generations of humans have been healthfully raised on an omnivorous diet. What I mean by "healthfully raised" is proper formation of the craniofacial structure and a full set of teeth, including wisdom teeth. The same cannot be said about veganism.

Anybody who experiments with such a diet is taking a risk that may affect future generations. I believe that Storm is taking such a risk with his family, and it is irresponsible for him to "educate" people about the raw vegan diet with absolutely no substantial science to back it up -- only a strong faith in his dietary path and some pictures of him and his family. On the other hand, traditional diets -- all of which include animal-foods -- have hundreds of thousands of years of proven efficacy. If a person reads Storm's website and decides to follow his regimen, good luck to them. Raw veganism is an experiment that is not based on the reality of human dietary patterns throughout time, and there is no proof whatsoever that it is an optimal diet. Lots of theory; no proof. Plain and simple.

Anonymous said...

I would not even bother replying to the above comments made by the vegans- they all come from a website Give It To Me Raw- they have zero understanding of health and nutrition. One pregnant women when asked where she gets her protein from answered - with protein thoughts. So there you go- real smart.

Anonymous said...

Ryan, anthropological evidence is subjective, and doesnt in anyway show that we ate meat. Lots of theory, no proof. You sidestepped the issue again that fruits and veg following 80-10-10lfrv supply EVERYTHING the body needs. If you look as good as storm at 60 -lets face it, he looks 20 years younger than he is, and everything youve said again is opinion. Humans are supposed to have a low body fat! Like you actually know anything about proper facial structure development.

Anonymous said...

http://becomehealthier.org/art_diet2.htm

Anonymous said...

2 more: -
http://www.scribd.com/doc/17111888/Science-Verifies-That-Humans-Are-Frugivores
http://www.ecologos.org/omni.htm

Ryan Koch @ Health Matters to Me said...

Thanks for the links. Unfortunately, they are based on extremely poor science and pure rationalization. You say anthropological evidence is subjective, then you site sources that are far-from-conclusive and include the authors' own subjective viewpoints about the validity of the "evidence."

What is subjective about acknowledging that hundreds of cultures around the world ate (and still eat) animal foods and reproduce healthfully from generation to generation? Your belief in the frugivore nature of human beings is all fine and good, and I wish you luck with that. But please realize that eating nothing but fruit or vegetables is purely an experiment and is relying completely on faith.

I myself would rather follow dietary patterns from our recent healthy and fully developed human ancestors. Even if we have been eating meat for "only" 2.5 million years, if it works, it works. There is no denying that human beings on traditional diets (not modern, processed diets) that include animal foods are astoundingly healthy.

What do I know about facial structure? Well, it is something I have studied quite a bit. The question is: what do you know about facial structure that I do not? Are you aware that human beings never required braces until very recently as we began to stray from traditional diets, all of which included animal foods? Do you know that prehistoric and traditional peoples all over the world had plenty of room for their wisdom teeth to come in, wide, square jaws, wide nasal passages, and prominent cheek bones? Do you understand what a completely developed human being looks like in terms of facial structure?

If the vegan experiment in eating works for people and their children develop properly as traditional people do, I'd be really surprised. I have seen kids raised on diets recommended by the Weston A. Price Foundation who develop optimally. I have not seen such in the vegan world. Storm's kids are not an exception to this rule, and any orthodontist you ask about their physical development will predict braces in the future. This means they are not optimally nourished. If I have time, I will give a more detailed explanation of this in a future blog post.

Anonymous said...

The point of the links was that everything is subjective. For every link you present, i'll match it with opposing evidence.
Humans simply don't have the biology to thrive off meat. I completely disagree with your facial structure argument, it holds nothing. Its genetic, not dietary. Ive found no evidence anywhere to support your argument.
http://facialexercisesguide.com/

http://www.detox.net.au/articles/vegan-and-vegetarian/is-eating-meat-healthy-for-humans.html

We don't have the enzymes in our saliva, our stomach acid isnt strong enough to properly digest meat, cooked meat is carcinogenic, and meat rots and clogs the intestines. Food is not meant to be inside of us for more than 24 hours.

Its fine if you want to eat meat, but our ancestors ate it as a last choice, and they certainly didn't thrive off it. Eating organs, bone marrow, raw flesh is not the same as a cooked steak. Unless meat is actually game you arent replicating a caveman diet. How long do you think they lived for? 120 years?

I ask - again - what does meat provide that fruit and veg do not? What benefits does meat offer? What dont fruit and veg provide that we need for OPTIMAL health? Protein is not an acceptable argument in any form. Theres no such thing as protein deficiency.
Again, sure you can be healthy with a small amount of meat, as long as the rest of your diet is primarily fruit and veg, or at least wholegrain carbs. This argument is one of time perspective. People like storm, who aren't aging at the same rate as the rest of the population, and don't suffer from any illness or disease will continue to live a long long time. I find it hard to doubt it in anyway.
You also said that this diet 'worked' for 2 million years. The SAD diet works. You can live for 50 or 60 years eating all the crap you want. Sure you'll die a not so great death, but 50-60 years would be pretty dam good for any caveman.

As for anthropological evidence, survival was tough, and theres nothing conclusive to be drawn from any of it. No evidence supports that meat eating is good for us. No science supports meat eating is beneficial - unless your diet is lacking - but you can then replace the word 'meat' with dairy, popcorn, oil, eggs, fruit, veg. Its all irrelevant. Health just wasn't a concern. This post is about what works, a proven track record - no ones been studying this long enough to 100% prove anything. So far however, all the lfrv's who have successfully followed it are all in excellent physical condition, far better than most. Time will tell.
Diet is only one piece of the puzzle, albeit an important one. Bare this in mind: All 811lfrv who have successfully adapted are lean, clear minded, clear skinned, look extremely good for their age, generally take good care of themselves and the environment, and have loads of energy - they are full of 'vitality'.

This link doesnt in anyway help my case, (apart from at one point, pointing that 'we know that eating meat is not good)' but I want to quote from it: -
http://www.immortalhumans.com/longevity-diet-secrets-from-super-centenarians-around-the-world/
''There is a constant bond shared by all of these unbelievable elders and that is that nothing troubles them'' Nearly all (if not all) 811lfrv are easy going good hearted, compassionate people. I'm not saying nothing troubles them, but theyre way ahead of the pack.

If your eating a substantial amount of meat your probably gonna suffer. And if your eating the standard tortured chemically enhanced animal, karma comes to mind - although I hope you don't.

Nourishing Nancy said...

Excellent, excellent! But very sad indeed. Found this out with my own children after being a vegetarian for years and before pregnancy: small palates, missing teeth, crooked teeth, rotting teeth as they were coming out of the gums! Now I blog about it....will always be sad I found this information out so late.

Zoe said...

Actually scientists did find that ancient humans did consume meat. How? Via human coprolites (ancient dried up human excrement).

Our closest relatives, the chimps also eat meat (they've been observed hunting smaller primates in the wild). Smaller primates also eat insects.

Hunting tools and bone fragments showed that humans made and used them to hunt and eat animals. Bones were cut open to get to the marrow. Fragments between teeth (plaque) also revealed meat fragments (I'm sure they weren't using meat to floss).

Coast lines from all over the world also have man made middens (where ancient humans throw their trash) which showed they ate AMPLE amounts of seafood.

Ancient cave paintings from France to Australia show pictures of humans with spears hunting all sorts of animals. I'm sure the spears aren't decorations and no plants were on the cave walls if they were so important. And yes, I'm sure humans painted the cave artwork - not aliens.

The position of our eyes (front) is what most predators share, the fact that human brain doubled in size (between 2 million - 100,000 years) while our body did not were all attributed to meat. Our teeth and stomach are not suited to lots of vegetation and ONLY vegetation (which is why we don't share the teeth nor stomach features of ruminant animals).

We are predatory omnivores. We can eat berries, nuts, tubers, insects, eggs, some vegetables, honey, seafood and meat. We're scavengers, gatherers and hunters all rolled into one.

If you do an analysis of all the cultures in the world, past and present, you will notice one common thread: they all have meat in their diets. If meat kills, then we'd all be dead or dying (both urban dwellers and hunter gatherers). Notice I said "cultures"? Cultures are different to religion because all vegetarian diets stemmed from different religions in the past. Which evolved to veganism, raw foodists, and all shades in between.

There's nothing wrong if you choose to go vegan, vegetarian or raw or a combination of the above. Any of those are better than the SAD diet. Plus it's good for the environment. But please don't say that there are no anthropological evidence that humans ate meat. That is going down the path of what creationists say when you tell them about fossils, evolution and genetics.

We should all be accepting of what others CHOOSE to eat, whether it's meat, vegetables, fruit, dairy or something in between.

Anonymous said...

Who are these 'recent healthy and fully developed human ancestors' you keep referring to and in what period of time did they live? If they were 'recent' what does that mean? 2 thousand years ago? 2 million years ago (no that doesn't sound too recent)

Last time I checked, in our recent past, the average man died quite young, by age 40. Also when you look at meat eaters, vegetarians and 'raw' or cooked vegans, in our last century, they seem to have pretty much same life span. Where are the vegans or meat eaters that live to be over 100? Probably very few. They are rare. I don't know of ANY. Norman Walker (who also ate cottage cheese and drank raw goat milk by the way) died at 99 contrary to popular beliefs that he lived to 112. Raw vegans/vegans don't really seem live longer than meat eaters or SAD eaters. The aborigines that Weston Price studied? How long do they live? Come on! Guess what? We are ALL going to DIE no matter what, OK? Even if you have a 'perfect' jaw or not! I believe in doing whatever works best for you. If something doesn't work, then try something else until you find what works for you.

I agree that in nature even animals like monkeys who are considered 'vegans' eat insects and sometimes even meat. This is proof that 100% vegan diet is practically impossible in the wild (even cows ingest small insects in the vegetation that they eat-so they are technically not vegans either). So veganism is really a man made thing. The fact that most long term (10+ years) vegans need to take supplements (myself included) tells me it is not our natural diet.

Anyway, I still want to know about these incredible healthy ancestors though... Who were they , where did they live and where they centanarians?

Suvetar said...

I had digestive problems my entire life.

I switched to a strict vegan diet when I was 39 in an attempt to improve my health. 4 weeks later,on top of losing rapid muscle and bone weight, I passed out and hit my head on the toilet. I woke up white as a ghost, cold sweat and in abdominal pain.
So my experiment ended after 4 weeks =P

Now I know this was all caused by a high grain consumption, which vegans usually fall into because they have nothing else left to eat.

Been following the primal/paleo diet (eat everything but grains and processed sugar) and have never felt this good and healthy. All health problems I've had my entire life have vanished.

Anonymous said...

Storm's children are breathtakingly gorgeous. And even if they weren't, that's no indication that a raw vegan diet is unhealthy.
This article is retarded. You must be slow.

De GroeneVrouw said...

What I'm always wondering about when people start claiming that a (raw) vegan or even fruitarian diet is 'natural' for human beings, is not even the proteins but the calories as a whole.

To sustain a healthy weight (which is NOT the overweight of the average American or European, myself included...) an average person will need around 2000 kcal a day.

But, if you were to be 100% raw vegan in times before supermarkets existed, you would have to gather all of that. And then afther gathtering, you'd have to chew (since it also was before the invention of the blender). It would cost you so much effort that you would by then have to eat 3000 kcal (there is a Dutch professor who has calculated all this, but I'm sure English evidence is out there). So how on earth are you going to gather 3000 kcal on raw vegan food - let alone on solely fruit?

Also, the fruitarian-lady-link above... she is eating fruit from all over the world! How is that possible in a 'natural' diet? Maybe if you live in California or in Mexico, you'd be able to find enough variety in your direct surroundings. But in Holland, where I live, we'd be eating apples and pears all winter, maybe some dried berries and that really is it.

And, last thing that popped into my mind while reading the comments: if humans really were not 'designed' (by whom?) to eat meat, how come the Inuit people (for example) are thriving on a diet of mostly meat and fish? They hardly eat any vegetable, yet do have quite a good health.

My thoughts are as some of the other commentors: people are entirely free to eat any way they like. Certainly, as long as people are 'allowed' to raise their children on McDonalds hamburgers and diet coke, no one should say anything about people trying to raise their children raw vegan or fruitarian (although, have you seen the McDonalds car in the picture of the 'child enjoying the sublime sapotes' http://www.fruitgod.com/sublimesapotes.html ? No, I don't think she is cheating, it was just funny to me).

But in the end, it is not the 'natural, intended diet' people should be on, because there are just too many things that are not logical behind raw vegan diets. Sure, you can find arguments, but you'd have to search for them, twisting and turning. So nothing wrong with the vegan diet as a rational choice - don't forget to take your B12-tablets though.

Susan said...

The Talifero family is gorgeous! Radiant, happy, healthy, joyful children. And incredibly strong and athletic if you've ever seen them in videos.

The pictures Weston Price shot are South Sea Islanders, a completely different genetic group of people than Westerners. It is like comparing apples and onions. No matter HOW great our diets are, or how great the diets of our children, they receive our genetic code and most families could not stand up to the scrutiny, be they vegan, vegetarian, meat-eating, etc.

You prove nothing with your analysis, except that you are blind to the extraordinary beauty, inner and outer, of the Talifero children.

Debbie said...

I haven't decided either way, but take aloof at Rose. She has been raw vegan, mostly fruit from birth. She is also still breastfed so it will be interesting to see if things change once she is weaned. Of course, being breastfed means you are not really vegan!

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Anonymous said...

Humans are omnivores and can thrive on both meat based and vegetable based diets. There's a radical concept for ya.

Anonymous said...

People should eat what they know is working for them. If that happens to be meat or no meat, cooked or uncooked, vegan, vegetarian, fruitarian, paleo, south beach, a little bit of everything in moderation or "fill in the blank", do what works. How will you know what's working best for you? Science.
Get regular physicals with your doctor, have blood work done frequently to make sure you are as healthy as you can be, and be willing to make diet/lifestyle changes when/if needed. If that means adding meat, or leaving it out then adjust accordingly.

el Ra Jewel eL high Ghair Mowshould said...

Dayum....you really fucked up for talking about his children like that....eye hope someone punches you in the mouth...thank goodness Arnold Ehret came to drop that math so we know you full of shit...animal products are alien to the human physiology

Anonymous said...

Ryan you are rude and sarcasm is the lowest form of wit. Your comments are out of line. All hypothesis can be supported in science any intellegent person understands this simple concept. The Talifero children are beautiful and healthy. I have disrespect for the Talifero parents due to other issues however their diet opinions are all sound. Veganism is natural for humans. Storm used to be a body builder when he was young. He gave it up when he got older so of course his body is 'normal' now. You have to twist and manipulate the facts because you cannot find support any other way. Small mindeness proves it!

Anonymous said...

Just so you know, the Talifero's have been involved in scamming nearly 900,000 USD on their "raw vegan village". Basically a ponzi scheme. Their older children are no longer raw, but are vegetarian.

Storm has two more children he had with his sister wife, Julie who has since left after the fraud came out.I do no believe those children were raised raw since they look much healthier.