Reasons


Following is a class assignment from my course in plant-based nutrition. I chose to write about dairy products as it was the most striking of issues which I learned during the course. It is downright criminal what we have done to our bodies by believing in all of the information out there about how good milk and dairy products are for our bodies, and from an early age our constant access and education about drinking milk.

There is a new book out, which I have begun reading and plan to write more about later. The book Whitewash: The Disturbing Truth About Cow’s Milk and Your Health is now available, and I hear it is being made into a film. I strongly encourage everyone to get a copy and begin to understand what are the realities of lifelong milk consumption.

I had some fun with this assignment, so it is a bit tongue-in-cheek, and I may have written things slightly different with all the additional information I have acquired since taking the course, but I hope you will take away the important message that we have been hoodwinked with our understanding of dairy products.

Here is the Assignment:

From what you have learned in the course, write a press release on an issue you found particularly compelling regarding the benefits of a plant-based diet in chronic disease.

Note: I decided for this assignment to step into the future. In all likelihood, some of the specific names and organizations will need to be edited before its final release.

NEWS: PCD MEDIA CENTER

EMBARGOED UNTIL January 16, 2012

Supreme Court: Dairy Products Must Have Warning Labels

Parents of Diabetic Children Lawsuit Halts Retailers and Manufacturers from Selling Dairy Products Without Warning Label.

Minneapolis, MN (January 16, 2012) — Major dairy product retailers and manufacturers will no longer be permitted to sell dairy products without a warning label, according to a settlement in a lawsuit brought by the Parents of Children with Diabetes (PCD).

“Parents need to know the risk of serving dairy products to their children,” said PCD member Frances Bovina. “Warning labels will make mothers aware of the extreme risk to their children and families.”

Under the settlement, over 6,000 product retailers and manufacturers, including Associated Milk Producers of New Ulm, MN and Dean’s Foods of Dallas, TX, agreed not to distribute or sell dairy products without a warning that they have been shown to cause Type 1 diabetes in infants. By law, these products should bear warning labels as of January 30, 2012.

PCD filed the lawsuit against the companies citing the Food Safety and Modernization Act passed by the 111th Congress and signed into law by President Obama on January 4, 2011. Under Section 105 of this strengthened act, a hazardous substance is in part defined as a “substance or mixture of substances may cause substantial personal injury or substantial illness during or as a proximate result of any customary or reasonably foreseeable handling or use, including reasonable foreseeable ingestion by children.” According to the act, these substances “require labeling in accordance with 105 CMR 650.000 in order to protect the public health.”

The prosecution brought as their most powerful witness Dr. T. Collin Campbell, who during his testimony cited numerous studies including a Finnish study in which children aged 4-12 had antibodies measured against BSA (bovine serum albumin). Of the 142 children with juvenile diabetes, every one had an antibody titer greater that 3.55 and not one of the 79 non-diabetic children had an antibody titer greater than 3.55. Many other studies supported this evidence that the defendants were unable to construct a strong counterargument.

According to a doctor and member of the Parents of Diabetic Children, “We were tired of letting the powerful lobbies for the National Dairy Council defend themselves with biased studies and corporate sponsored research.”

The new label will read “Dairy products are the primary cause of Type 1 diabetes in children.”

In an interview shortly after the decision, Lawrence Green, one of the lawyers hired by the National Dairy Council, in a moment of suprising honesty said “I think my clients knew it was only a matter of time. After hearing the testimony of Dr. Campbell, my family and I have made the decision not only to take dairy products completely out of our diets, but to also move toward a complete plant-based whole food diet.”

Other organizations including the American Heart Association and the American Cancer Society are preparing their own lawsuits, hoping to expand the extent of the warning labels on dairy products.

Parents with Diabetic Children is a non-profit group to be formed sometime in the coming months to demand justice from those that seek profits over public health concerns.

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Sorry about the absence lately, I have been spending much time in research. I continue to realize tremendous effects of my own change of nutrition and lifestyle, however I started becoming overwhelmed with differing opinions on what is the ideal diet, so I have been digging into the books. The snow outside my window reminds me that this is a good thing to do here in Minnesota this time of year.

While I continue to stand behind everything I have posted so far, and remain completely committed to learning more, I may be making some changes, or adding comments as well as putting up some new information soon. Please don’t loose any interest, and keep the questions coming as I am here to help anyone who wants to follow me to a longer healthier life.

I will leave you with some reading from an article published a few years ago that helps to better explain why most doctors don’t give us the information we need, and next time you are encouraged to take a medication, you might want to look for another opinion.

Harvard Medical School in Ethics Quandary

 

 

 

 

enlightening

I read recently that of the so very many weight loss programs, there are many success stories, but far more stories of people that may have lost some weight, but then return to their previous weight, or even end up heavier months after completing a program.

The only real success happens with changing permanently the way we eat. Many find it difficult to embark on a diet that is forever. This is why I don’t like calling whole-food plant-based nutrition a diet as this word is associated with a temporary program. Long term change means behavioral change. I believe the best way to see behavioral change is with strong motivation. This motivation can come from a wake up call such as a disease, a report of high cholesterol or other dramatic lesson, but wouldn’t it be better to achieve this change before this point.

The other way that we can achieve the motivation needed is through education. This is why I post videos by doctors that have spent their careers understanding how the body works, and links to books that you can read to better understand the damage we have been doing to our bodies, especially our immune system by consuming oils, animal-based foods, and other damaging foods. By truly coming to understand the science behind why plant-based nutrition is so life giving we eventually get to a point that we can no longer deny that this is the right choice for our lives.

When you are finished with this very inspiring story, be sure to check out her website: www.purejeevan.com

This morning I was asked a question like this. I answered by explaining first that this is not a diet. Diets have been shared for generations now and new ones are being released almost every day, some see results with these diets, some don’t, but I think that most experience the thought that this is a temporary way of eating, and can’t wait to finish regardless of the results.

I am going to make a point of avoiding the word ‘diet’ from now on.’ What I am discussing on this blog and experiencing first hand is plant-based nutrition. Now that I am approaching one year of leaving behind dairy and foods with a lot of oil, and having left behind meat many years ago, I can’t even imagine returning to my previous ways of eating. Why would I want to give up the new-found energy and vitality I feel, the better sleep patterns, not carrying around an extra 30-40 pounds, improved vision, no soreness in my joints to name a few results, so that I could spend my money on foods that don’t offer me the best most life giving nutrients again.

If you’re thinking “yeah, but I enjoy eating some of those foods,” trust me, your taste buds change and so do your ideas about what “looks good” to you.

All that said, if it helps you to consider it a “diet” so that you don’t have to look at it as a permanent change, do so for 2 months, and then let me know if it was a diet, or if you are now ready to continue offering your body what it best needs to take care of itself so that it can offer us all of its energy and health to continue to love and serve God, others, and the world around us.

Thanks for finishing this, I’ll now step down from my soapbox 😉

Sometimes people use this reasoning for not changing to a plant-based diet. Someone may know a family member who lived a long healthy life and ate meat and dairy every day. Let me explain why this argument falls down under closer inspections.

As much as science and the medical community tries to understand the human body and why some people get diseases and others don’t, there is never any absolutes. Even heavy smokers sometimes outlive their friends who never touched a cigarette. I once knew a man dying of emphysema, and he had never smoked, or had any exposure to anything that could have triggered the disease. Well, we don’t now say I can smoke all I want because I knew someone who lived to be 100 that smoked because we know that the vast majority of people will eventually suffer adverse effects if they continue to smoke. There is a generalization that smokers suffer more debilitating diseases than non-smokers. The opposite is true as well. The 20 year China-Cornell-Oxford Project, known more commonly as The China Study was conducted by the Chinese Academy of Preventive Medicine, Cornell University, and the University of Oxford. In this study they determined that people of rural China who did not suffer from Heart Disease, Cancer, and other common diseases in the United States was due to their common trait of eating a plant-based diet, so we can conclude that generally speaking one will be more likely to avoid these diseases by changing their diet, and like my friend with emphysema, there will be exceptions to this as well. So one way to increase the likelihood of not developing these diseases is to change our eating habits.

The other issue that our generation now faces is the changes in our environment. We are exposed to far greater levels of chemicals, radiation, electromagnetic fields especially those in the microwave range (cell phones). In addition to this, the food we eat has many more chemicals, and the meat and dairy industry has completely changed the way that most of these foods are produced. Hormones are now used in animal confinement areas that our 100 year old grandma was never exposed to, or if she was not for a prolonged period that we have been. Even if you are now only eating free range meat and poultry, if you’re like me for many years you bought the cheap beef, or stopped at a fast food restaurants before we realized what was happening. And then there is the genetically modified organisms (GMOs) that our ancestors could’t even dream of. These GMOs, still not allowed in most European countries are in an estimated 80% of what is sold in a grocery store in the US.

With these two points combined, I see a much stronger reason to eat a plant-based diet, then I do to hang on to a thought that I might happen to be as lucky as my great aunt.

If a 15 year old, at age 12 can go raw vegan in an omnivore household, what is holding us back from a plant-based diet?

Be sure to check out his blog and the book he published!

“I don’t use the word “vegan” or “vegetarian.” I don’t like those words. People who chose to eat that way chose to because of ideological reasons. I don’t want to denigrate their reasons for doing so, but I want people to talk about plant-based nutrition and to think about these ideas in a very empirical scientific sense, and not with an ideological bent to it.” -Dr. T. Colin Campbell

After putting up the quote from Dr. Cambell, I realized that I should elaborate for those that know my ever changing ethical beliefs about eating, and why I like this quote so much.

I have been vegetarian for now over 25 years. I originally made the choice as I considered is a way to live more simply, as it means surviving lower on the food chain (all the necessary grain, corn, water etc needed to produce meat). As I learned about factory farming, it was easy to incorporate reduction of animal cruelty into my reasoning for remaining vegetarian. I even at times was willing to consume small amounts of ethically raised (free range) meat. Though I have felt strongly that this was important for me, I have always respected that others need to form their own decision in regards to ethics, and have remained judgement free about other people’s consumption of meat.

Now that I am becoming educated in plant-based nutrition, I remain non-judgmental as far as the ethics of whether or not we should eat meat and consume dairy products,  however, as I learn the health benefits of a whole food plant-based diet, and experience the benefits of having switching my own diet, I find it increasingly difficult to watch people I care about miss out on these benefits. I know that everyone has to find their own path, and will only realize their own benefits after making their own lifestyle changes, but I feel a growing urge to give this gift that I have found through my own lifestyle change. If I had found a free vitamin that offered all the same benefits, I would be dolling it out to all my friends so that they could experience the same. Unfortunately lifestyle changes are not something you can hand out, and I have to be patient and wait for others to become willing to change.

But I will say for the record, while everyone struggles with their own ethical decisions of how they should eat to care for their planet, other species etc., I encourage everyone to transition toward a point when they can try, for 4-6 weeks, a whole food, plant-based diet to experience their own benefits, and then make a decision about whether or not to eat meat and dairy products for health and vitality. Is it not worth a few months of your life to experiment with something that can offer you more energy, better sleep, easy weight management, and lowered risk of disease and illness? I am here to help you 100%, just let me know what you need.

Peace,
geoffrey/pax

I just spent a few hours looking more into this question, and want to share my opinion as it has now formed. To be honest I hadn’t really dealt much with the issue as I have never really been an enthusiastic fish eater.

Fish protein is still animal protein. The overall negative effects of consuming animal based proteins remain high with fish consumption.

The biggest benefit touted about consuming fish is Omega3 essential oils. Our bodies have to consume Omega3 as we do not produce any ourselves. If a person’s diet contains little of the plant based sources of Omega3, then fish is a good source, and certainly better than other meats. If a person is consuming a plant based diet, there is little need to worry about lack of Omega3. Some of the better sources of Omega3 in the plant world are:

  • ground flax-seed (add it to everything you can)
  • green leafy vegetables (lettuce, broccoli, kale, spinach and purslane)
  • legumes (mung, kidney, navy, pinto, lima beans, peas and split peas)
  • citrus fruits, melons, cherries
Like other nutrients, our bodies better utilize the nutrients from plant based sources, and don’t have to deal with the negative effects of animal based sources.
Fish in addition to being animal based, also comes with a risk of consuming toxic dioxins or heavy metals. I am glad that I never had much interest in fish, but if you do, I hope you will consume it in moderation, and work toward losing your desire for it.

Dean Ornish, MD <– Great Video!

This will be the place to discuss the fantastic benefits of a plant based diet. Here are some great videos you can enjoy while you wait.