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  1. #1
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    Recommend me some new foods! I'm changing my diet.

    Hey everyone. I've recently given up dairy and wheat and I'm looking for some new foods to fill the gaps. I ate a lot of brown bread and pasta before, and it's been difficult to find alternatives that are healthy and easy to prepare. In general I'm eating more fruit and veg than before, trying out new things like dried apricots, cashews, humous and soya milk which are great, but I'm lacking options when it comes to complex carbs. Right now, brown rice and potato's are my best choices but they take a long time to prepare and I'd like some variety. I bought quinoa earlier today which looks good but it wasn't cheap at �2.80/500grams. The equivalent price for rice came as low as 60p.


    Also, what are your opinions on grains? How much do you eat? Making up half of the government food pyramid they do seem to cause digestive problems for lots of people. Is there some political/economic reason why we're told to eat so much of them? I read on an alternative nutrition website that our genes never really adapted to them and they'll cause damage to the body over the long term. It cites the fact that for our first 190 000 years we just ate fruits, veg, roots and meat, which (apparently) contains everything the body needs.

    It begs the question though.. where did we get our energy from?

    Here's the article if you're interested.

    http://www.marksdailyapple.com/definitive-guide-grains/



    Could you list some of your favourite, more unusual foods to give me some ideas.

    Thanks.

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    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    Since the average lifespan of those who can afford to eat natural or at least good foods keeps going up, I don't see why one would advocate for going backwards. The Healthy Hunzas eat wheat. Rice eaters do well, too.

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    why are you removing wheat from your diet, what do you think the health benefits would be?

    Some suggestions - sweet potatoes, rye bread, brown rice pasta, wild rice
    Quinoa is excellent, my local Costco had a huge bag at a good price.

    For some recipe ideas try these sites
    http://www.eatingwell.com/
    http://www.cleaneatingmag.com/Home.aspx

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    Not safe for work cyclokitty's Avatar
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    We were also scavengers but I don't like picking up squirrel a la Hyundai.

    Whole grains are an excellent source of energy. Unless your doctor has recommended a wheat free diet, I don't think whole wheat is going to harm you. But mixing up the grains you eat is a good idea so your body can get nutrients froma wider selection of foods. Rice is pretty mild to a digestive system but make sure you cook it thoroughly -- not until it is mush, but it shouldn't be crunchy. A former room mate discovered that the hard way. You could try rye, barley and oatflakes for breakfast. Sweet potatoes are tasty and easy to prepare, similar to potatoes. Do you like green leafy vegetables? My familiy's favorites are collards, kale, chard, beet greens and mustard greens. After you wash the leaves of dirt and grit, pile the leaves and roll them up and chop into thin ribbons. Sauté in a bit of olive oil and garlic. Cooks in a few minutes.

    Or lentils and canned beans. Eden's Organics makes their canned beans without salt. Great for soups, adding to salads, or add spices then serve with rice. As well, cooking from scratch is pretty straight forward, even more for lentils. Red lentils take about 20 minutes to cook from dry and are dead cheap.

    Even omelets are considered healthy again. Beat a couple of eggs, pour into a hot frying pan and add some thinly sliced mushrooms, peppers and onions.

    Variety of different foods starting from fresh ingredients will help keep you full and healthy.


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    The food pyramid, while well intentioned, is garbage.

    The article that you linked, while well intentioned, the author is biased big time.

    Don't get me wrong, we all have our biases. It usually works like this; we care about eating healthy, so our choices will gravitate towards a healthier fare. On top of that, we overlay a bunch of biases and then declare that our biases are what make our diets healthy.

    Me, I try not to eat anything with corn syrup, partially hydrogenated oils, prepared frozen anything, and certainly nothing that doesn't decompose.

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    MilkRace
    why are you removing wheat from your diet, what do you think the health benefits would be?


    Better digestion. Right now it's pretty poor. Since cutting down on the grains and dairy though it has improved somewhat.


    Carbonfibreboy, I see the point but I doubt whether as a species we're healthier now than we were a hundred years ago, or a hundred thousand years ago, just that now we've eliminated many of the threats (now it's backfired and we have the biggest threat we've ever faced - overpopulation).

    Cancer rates and heart disease continue to rise, we just develop better ways of treating them. Surely quality of life is a better indicator of health than years lived, and for the majority, that continues to drop.



    Anyway thanks for the replies, I've got a few ideas for the next shop!

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    <riding now> BigAura's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by enfilade View Post
    we just ate fruits, veg, roots and meat, which (apparently) contains everything the body needs
    Don't forget nuts & seeds.

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    3dw
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    Mark Sisson is good stuff. He is definitely biased but most all of his ideas are based on pretty sound science and thoroughly thought out. But, I don't think the point of this thread was to debate the pros and cons of primal eating.

    I eat oatmeal for breakfast at times, as well as rice and quinoa for dinner. As mentioned Costco seems to have the best prices for quinoa. I don't eat tons of these things since they do contain a fair amount of anti-nutrients but as an alternative to pasta and bread to refill your glycogen stores I think its a good option. (mark has an interesting article on rice as well)

    Sweet potatoes/yams make up a huge chunk of my carb intake. Don't forget that many vegetables contain carbs and if you are eating a lot of them the small amounts add up. I just kind of got away from the idea that each meal needs a protein, veg, and starchy carb. Meat, veggies, fruits, and nuts are going to give you what you need. After a hard workout or pre/post race up the carb intake. Bottom line is I think a lot of people over estimate how many grams of carbs they really need.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 3dw View Post
    Mark Sisson is good stuff. He is definitely biased but most all of his ideas are based on pretty sound science and thoroughly thought out. But, I don't think the point of this thread was to debate the pros and cons of primal eating.
    That wasn't my intention at all. I fully agree with the guy with his views on the glycemic index. The insulin roller coaster is what's making most people fat.

    Healthy eating with a bias is still healthy eating. I got mine, he (article author) got his, but there is still a lot that can be learned by talking about it.

    Digestibility of food is a tricky subject. Your stomach, like any other system in your body, adapts to what you do with it. When I spend a few weeks on an ultra clean diet mine gets very pissed off if I throw in there a burger. Yes, it has trouble digesting the burger, but it is because it became unaccustomed to digest that level of crap.

    Grains; I limit them because most modern grains (to include most forms of breads) are refined to the point that they are devoid of nutrients. This is where I disagree with the article; modern breads are as digestible as table sugar, with just about the same nutritional value (when compared to true, whole grain breads). Add to that the fact that corn syrup is the #2 ingredient on most breads and you'll find that digestibility is the least of your problems.

    Milk; easy to digest provided that your body has a healthy bacterial flora. Between wholesale use of anti bionics, and not consuming foods with healthy bacteria, it is not surprising that our system can digest it. Heck, did you know that some people that are lactose intolerant have no problem drinking whole, unprocessed milk? Straight from the cow the milk has everything we need to digest it, right until it all gets killed.

    If you want to be nice to your digestive track, look up kefir. Your gut will never be the same.

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    3dw
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    Quote Originally Posted by abdon View Post
    That wasn't my intention at all. I fully agree with the guy with his views on the glycemic index. The insulin roller coaster is what's making most people fat.

    Healthy eating with a bias is still healthy eating. I got mine, he (article author) got his, but there is still a lot that can be learned by talking about it.
    For sure, my intention wasn't to come across snarky at all.

    One thing I've noticed when talking about this subject is people at times get defensive about what they eat. It's almost as if they are taking personal offense to you stating that you don't eat something for health reasons that they eat regularly. It's kind of an interesting emotional reaction. I actually try not to discuss it at work during lunch for that very reason. Some people can get a bit strange when their ideas and what they've been taught about food (food pyramid) are questioned.

    You're totally right about the fact that a lot can be learned by talking about it. That's one frustrating thing about it. Nutritional Science is an extremely young science and new ideas and theories are always being brought to attention. It can be hard at times to sort through it all.

    Luckily it's basically non debatable that eating fresh fruits and vegetables, meat, and other whole non processed foods is going to be good for you.

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    Thanks for starting this thread, there is some good information in the posts.
    Some foods that are marketed as "healthy" are surprisingly not so be sure to read the labels e.g. cereals have a lot of sugar, granola usually has a lot of fat, yoghurt often has a lot of sugar added. I also cut out dairy except for egg whites, I used to eat a lot of cheese and my cholestrol was way high.
    Also try eating smaller meals throughout the day, 6 small meals (eat every 3 hours or so) will help keep your glucose level steady.
    I have also switched to Spelt flour, spelt is an ancient variety of wheat and is easier to digest. A combination of spelf and oat flours make great pancakes and muffins.

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    This is the one bit you rarely see spelled out: You got a huge hysteria with eating saturated fats, but nobody bothers to notice that your body is a saturated fat factory. This is not just saturated fat, but the worst kind, long-chain saturated fat. Every last one of the calories that you eat and don't burn is turned into long chain saturated fat.

    Next time you see a snack labeled as low fat or no fat think twice; at the end of the day it could be 100% saturated fat.

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    Faster but still slow slowandsteady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by abdon View Post
    This is the one bit you rarely see spelled out: You got a huge hysteria with eating saturated fats, but nobody bothers to notice that your body is a saturated fat factory. This is not just saturated fat, but the worst kind, long-chain saturated fat. Every last one of the calories that you eat and don't burn is turned into long chain saturated fat.

    Next time you see a snack labeled as low fat or no fat think twice; at the end of the day it could be 100% saturated fat.
    Bingo.
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    Quote Originally Posted by enfilade View Post
    Carbonfibreboy, I see the point but I doubt whether as a species we're healthier now than we were a hundred years ago, or a hundred thousand years ago, just that now we've eliminated many of the threats (now it's backfired and we have the biggest threat we've ever faced - overpopulation).
    What is this based on? Life expectancy has been rising steadily in the US for a long time. Definitely higher than a hundred years ago.

    It is estimated that life expectancy at birth was around 30 years from the stone ages until the middle ages (colonial America is said to have been about that bad). And the current estimate for the world average is something like 67. And industrialized countries are over 70 (or 80).
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Life_ex...tion_over_time

    "Public health measures are credited with much of the recent increase in life expectancy. During the 20th century, the average lifespan in the United States increased by more than 30 years, of which 25 years can be attributed to advances in public health.[26]"

    Edit: of course life expectancy at birth is heavily affected by infant mortality, but even looking at life expectancies from various ages (life tables), there has been a steady increase in those in the US as well.
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    For a quick-cooking brown rice alternative try whole wheat cous cous. Use a little more than a 1:1 ratio of water (or chicken stock) to grain, bring the liquid to a boil, turn off the heat, add cous cous, cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Fastest thing ever and pretty delicious.

    I like to make a cous cous salad with broccoli, cherry tomatoes, feta cheese, pine nuts, and balsamic that's a good, fast meal. I also make one with israeli cous cous (a bit more like pasta so I don't eat it often), pistachios, green beans, cucumbers, feta cheese, and rice wine vinegar that's tasty. For quinoa I like to make it with tomatoes, corn, black beans, and cumin.

    I'm a fan of whole grains in general. I eat a lot of whole grain spelt bread, brown rice, quinoa, whole wheat cous cous, and a little bit of whole wheat pasta. The other vegetables everyone mentioned are great as well, especially sweet potatoes.
    You're not punk, and I'm telling everyone.

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    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
    Since the average lifespan of those who can afford to eat natural or at least good foods keeps going up, I don't see why one would advocate for going backwards. The Healthy Hunzas eat wheat. Rice eaters do well, too.
    What I said was . . .

    Life expectancy in the US has been rising rapidly for those who can afford to live. This is mostly due to better education for the wealthy, not so much medical. A result of better education is better lifestyle choices like nutrition.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/23/us/23health.html
    and that was over two years ago. The gap continues to widen rapidly.

    There were a lot of problem in early agricultural societies which did depend mostly on grains. Unsustainable populations died off during periods of drought or other local difficulties. That was, however, not the fault of the grains.

    Some few individuals do have celiac disease and can't tolerate wheat. Most people do fine on it, though, and have for the past several thousand years.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
    What I said was . . .

    Life expectancy in the US has been rising rapidly for those who can afford to live. This is mostly due to better education for the wealthy, not so much medical. A result of better education is better lifestyle choices like nutrition.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/23/us/23health.html
    and that was over two years ago. The gap continues to widen rapidly.
    I have been in many parts of the world and let me tell you; what comes with living in an industrialized world is choices. If I have to choose between owning a cell phone and not having to feed McDonald to my family because it is cheap, I wold not own a cell phone. Repeat with everything that is not a bare necessity.

    There is a guy here in the forums that owns a $12k bike. Guess what; he doesn't make that much money. He also doesn't own a car. All about choices.

    A sociologist on the 70's wrote a book about the culture of failure (I'll see if i can find the name and title and update the post). He found sub cultures within larger cultures that no matter what, they knew how to get ahead and managed to pass it on to their kids. The Jews right after world war II, in a lot of places they were plunged into abject poverty, with nothing to their names and in environments where there was nothing to be had. Actually they had one thing going for them; the knowledge that you job is to work hard and better yourself. Within a generation most family lines were back on their feet and thriving. Look in contrast the 4th generation welfare families that have more going for them, more choices, but yet can't (or won't care to) figure things out.

    In a modern society, not taking care of yourself is a CHOICE. Junk food, grains, or the demon de jour is not making you fat or robbing you of years of life, YOUR CHOICES are.

    Moving on the evil grains and glycemic index. I follow the glycemic index myself but it is not the end all/be all of nutritional knowledge. Insulin spikes for a reason, and often for a very good reason. To grossly oversimplify the subject; insulin spikes, nutrients get stored away (fat cells as fat, muscle cells as protein, glycogen in cells and liver), and if the spike was high enough, once the sugar gets removed from the blood stream other hormones drop the insulin, giving you what is termed a sugar crash and hunger spikes. Not good.

    But then, right after exercise, you want an insulin spike. Why? because you have a window of opportunity where for a change, your fat sells are insulin insensitive, and your muscle cells are insulin sensitive. The end result; high glycemic foods are driven into your muscles and glycogen reserves to accelerate recovery and muscle growth while bypassing your fat cells.

    High glycemic foods such as grains are just another way (natural if you like that word) for us to alter our biochemistry in a positive way.

    Digestibility of food. Sometimes rather than avoid hard to digest foods is better to look at ways to either get used to them or help digest them. I mean; raise your hand how many people here had a hard time getting their stomachs used to the idea of digesting while on the saddle. When you try to eat while riding hard for the first time, and you end up puking on the side of the road, you know what a food intolerance looks like. Yet you train your stomach to take it, because you know that it is good for you and it support your goals. I like milk, and cheeses. They are good for me and support my goals. I also drink yogurt and kefir, because they also support a healthy intestinal flora that helps me digest just fine.

    And now I'm late for the gym

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    Quote Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
    What I said was . . .
    Sorry my reply was directed to the OP (who was replying to you in the quoted text). I was actually agreeing with you
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    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by abdon View Post
    <snip> Junk food, grains, or the demon de jour is not making you fat or robbing you of years of life, YOUR CHOICES are.

    <snip>
    As I said, "A result of better education is better lifestyle choices like nutrition." Let's hear it for education. Everywhere it's been tried, it's worked, even in BF. But we better quit this before the mods catch us.

    Totally agree with you about the nutritional issues. I still have 1:10 before I have to go TT on my rollers. I just had a small snack, so I shouldn't puke.

  20. #20
    Not safe for work cyclokitty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GirlAnachronism View Post
    For a quick-cooking brown rice alternative try whole wheat cous cous. Use a little more than a 1:1 ratio of water (or chicken stock) to grain, bring the liquid to a boil, turn off the heat, add cous cous, cover and let stand for 5 minutes. Fastest thing ever and pretty delicious.

    I like to make a cous cous salad with broccoli, cherry tomatoes, feta cheese, pine nuts, and balsamic that's a good, fast meal. I also make one with israeli cous cous (a bit more like pasta so I don't eat it often), pistachios, green beans, cucumbers, feta cheese, and rice wine vinegar that's tasty. For quinoa I like to make it with tomatoes, corn, black beans, and cumin.

    I'm a fan of whole grains in general. I eat a lot of whole grain spelt bread, brown rice, quinoa, whole wheat cous cous, and a little bit of whole wheat pasta. The other vegetables everyone mentioned are great as well, especially sweet potatoes.
    O.O I'm making this for supper tomorrow. Delicious!!


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    Faster but still slow slowandsteady's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bijan View Post
    What is this based on? Life expectancy has been rising steadily in the US for a long time. Definitely higher than a hundred years ago.

    It is estimated that life expectancy at birth was around 30 years from the stone ages until the middle ages (colonial America is said to have been about that bad). And the current estimate for the world average is something like 67. And industrialized countries are over 70 (or 80).
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Life_ex...tion_over_time

    "Public health measures are credited with much of the recent increase in life expectancy. During the 20th century, the average lifespan in the United States increased by more than 30 years, of which 25 years can be attributed to advances in public health.[26]"

    Edit: of course life expectancy at birth is heavily affected by infant mortality, but even looking at life expectancies from various ages (life tables), there has been a steady increase in those in the US as well.
    Antibiotics, vaccines, surgical advances like coronary bypasses, and medical equipment. It sure isn't diet.
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    just another gosling Carbonfiberboy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by slowandsteady View Post
    Antibiotics, vaccines, surgical advances like coronary bypasses, and medical equipment. It sure isn't diet.
    What an absurd statement. Have you ever lived in an aboriginal culture, or known anyone who has? Do you have any idea why people today in wealthy countries are taller than even their parents, not to mention earlier generations? We do know that it's not genetics!

    Having enough to eat, and especially enough protein to eat is critical, and especially for children. It's also possible to make good dietary choices today, which studies show do contribute to longevity.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
    What an absurd statement. Have you ever lived in an aboriginal culture, or known anyone who has? Do you have any idea why people today in wealthy countries are taller than even their parents, not to mention earlier generations? We do know that it's not genetics!

    Having enough to eat, and especially enough protein to eat is critical, and especially for children. It's also possible to make good dietary choices today, which studies show do contribute to longevity.
    There is certainly a degree of truth in what Slowandsteady says. How much truth? We don't know. How could we?! We haven't researched and documented change in diet and lifestyle for every human being that's walked the planet. Even if we had, the best we could do is form hypothesis about it. Proof is more difficult to attain. So we cannot be sure. What we do know is that modern medicine in most of its forms can extend a human lifespan, and any one of us is the evidence. How many of us would've fallen victim to TB or cholera by now? Or the many other diseases we've eliminated in the developed world? Even something as simple and overlooked as water treatment has had a profound effect on our health and life expectancy! The Aborigines never had the privilige of guaranteed clean drinking water each time they were thirsty, and so we can only speculate about the changes it would've made to their health. It may have added a year to their lives, it may have added fifteen. We must realize that in the grand scheme of things we know only an infinitesimal amount about the world and our own history and biology and development, and that our frail human minds are often proved wrong. Of course, education and informed dietary decisions are going to help and empower people. But to make strong fact-like statements on such a complex subject at this stage.. is a mistake.

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    Quote Originally Posted by enfilade View Post
    There is certainly a degree of truth in what Slowandsteady says. How much truth? We don't know. How could we?! We haven't researched and documented change in diet and lifestyle for every human being that's walked the planet. Even if we had, the best we could do is form hypothesis about it. Proof is more difficult to attain. So we cannot be sure.
    Not really. You can model and extrapolate with a high degree of accuracy.


    Quote Originally Posted by enfilade View Post
    What we do know is that modern medicine in most of its forms can extend a human lifespan, and any one of us is the evidence. How many of us would've fallen victim to TB or cholera by now? Or the many other diseases we've eliminated in the developed world? Even something as simple and overlooked as water treatment has had a profound effect on our health and life expectancy! The Aborigines never had the privilige of guaranteed clean drinking water each time they were thirsty, and so we can only speculate about the changes it would've made to their health. It may have added a year to their lives, it may have added fifteen. We must realize that in the grand scheme of things we know only an infinitesimal amount about the world and our own history and biology and development, and that our frail human minds are often proved wrong. Of course, education and informed dietary decisions are going to help and empower people. But to make strong fact-like statements on such a complex subject at this stage.. is a mistake.
    This is little more than a romantic view of the world.

    There are about 50 essential factors that our body need; 20 or 21 minerals, 13 vitamins, 8 amino acids (10 for children, 11 for premature infants), 2 essential fatty acids, a source of energy (more often starches or sugars), water, oxygen, and light. Too little or complete absence of a single one for long and degeneration occurs; you get sick, and eventually die. You put them in your body in the right amounts, your body thrives and repairs itself.

    To over simplify; degeneration of the body has two causes; malnutrition, or internal pollution. Malnutrition results mainly from deficiencies but can also be caused by imbalances and even excesses, poor digestion, and poor absorption. Internal pollution occurs from what we eat (pesticides, heavy metals, toxic chemicals), water (chlorine, soil-water-air pollutants) and air (dust, smog, ozone, molds, bacteria).

    No offense but I don't care what prehistoric primitives used to eat. Our understanding of biology, physiology, and human bio chemistry, while not complete, is slightly better than what they had.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Carbonfiberboy View Post
    What an absurd statement. Have you ever lived in an aboriginal culture, or known anyone who has? Do you have any idea why people today in wealthy countries are taller than even their parents, not to mention earlier generations? We do know that it's not genetics!

    Having enough to eat, and especially enough protein to eat is critical, and especially for children. It's also possible to make good dietary choices today, which studies show do contribute to longevity.
    Yes, we are not starving. We do not get scurvy or other conditions such as ricketts in this country. But to say that those things are the ONLY reason my grandmother is 83 and my grandfather is 92 is ridiculous. Why are the people in Haiti dying this week? Cholera. It isn't because of a lack of food. We as a nation has had plenty of food for quite a long time. The difference in life expectancy from say 1935 to today has everything to do with antibiotics, medicine in general and surgical interventions. People don't die of Polio or pneumonia or food poisoning at the rate they did just 50 years ago. This has nothing to do with diet.
    "Ride lots." -- Eddy Merckx

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