“Let your food be your medicine.”
Sound familiar? It may surprise you to learn that this was the primary teaching of the founding father of medicine.
Unfortunately, modern medicine no longer recognises the value of these wise words and has chosen the laboratory over the land to solve the problem of disease. However, the laboratory has not proven successful in eliminating disease and as a result countless ‘diets for health’ have appeared, each of them promising to do what medicine has not.
Despite how convincing these diets may sound, they have often fallen short in some way, and people are still struggling with their health. Perhaps this is because the diets were created by the mind and not remembered by the body? Every animal on the planet is born with an instinctual programme of nutrition. Confusion about what to eat has never been an issue for a sheep. Could it be that every animal but man knows how to nourish itself? Is it possible that there still exists a group of people that remember this instinctual programme, and could this be the answer to the problem of disease?
This was the question Dr Weston A Price asked himself as he watched a growing number of patients pass through his clinic with what he referred to as ‘physical degeneration’. He had noticed disturbing changes in their bones and teeth which he knew indicated a weakening of the entire body. He was so concerned about what he was seeing, he decided to search the world for an existing culture that might be free of this degeneration. After 10 years of travel, Dr Price discovered there were in face many primitive cultures that enjoyed excellent health – from the very young to the very old. However, the 14 cultures he examined were so varied in climate and diet, it was difficult to for Dr Price to know what they all had in common. Determined to find the answer, he spend many years researching and analysing all of their foods. Eventually Dr Price was able to identify the principles of nutrition that connected every culture. These isolated people, living in different parts of the world, with no way of communicating with one another, all knew the formula for a long and healthy life.
Could this awareness be the same as the instincts of the animals? If so, does it still exist within us? Or have we developed our intellect to such an extent that we have overridden our instinctual programme? Fortunately for those who think this programme has been deleted, Dr Price has provided a refresher course to help you remember what your body has forgotten. As you might expect, the wisdom of these primitive people bears no resemblance to what the current ‘experts’ are telling us. By the end of this article you should have no trouble recognising who the real experts are!
7 Basic Principles of Nutrition – according to Dr Weston A Price
1. The traditional cultures all consumed some form of animal protein with fat
If the meat was too lean, they threw it away. They knew that without the fat the meat was harmful to the body. As difficult as this information is to believe, we now have an explanation for it. Science has finally caught up with these primitive cultures by validating this practice. Current research indicates that animal fat supplies vitamins A and D, which are necessary to properly assimilate protein and utilise minerals in the meat. True vitamin A can only be found in animal products, so plant carotenes are not a useful substitute.
2. All cultures ate some animal products raw – especially meat and fat
They were aware that important nutrients and enzymes were destroyed by cooking. Vitamin B6, plentiful in raw meats and raw dairy products, is destroyed when these foods are heated. Recent studies have revealed that vitamin B6 contributes to the proper function of over 100 different enzymes. Deficiencies of B6 have been linked with diabetes, heart disease, nervous disorders, kidney failure, asthma and cancer. The traditional cultures didn’t experience these diseases.
3. Traditional diets contained some salt
Yes, I know salt is supposed to be bad for you, but not all salts are created equal, especially what passes for salt at the supermarket. Natural salt contains an abundance of minerals, while typical refined table salt is left with only two. During the refining process, caustic substances are used to remove the minerals. In most countries a form of aluminium is added to keep the salt from absorbing moisture and then it is chemically treated with bleach. This is salt is bad for you.
However, unrefined, quality salt is vital to many functions of the body. It activates enzymes for brain development and is necessary for the proper digestion of carbohydrates. Salt helps in the production of hydrochloric acid for the digestion of meats, and is important to adrenal health.
4. Traditional diets were all high in food enzyme content from raw products
This includes meat, dairy, fish, raw honey, tropical fruits and lacto-fermented vegetables, fruits and beverages. All raw foods such as dairy, meat, honey and tropical fruits contain their own enzymes. Nature is infinitely wise and incredibly generous to provide us with food that comes with ready-made enzymes for digestion, so that our bodies don’t have to work to produce them. Foods such as vegetables and most fruits (except tropical) come with very few of their own enzymes, so the lacto-fermenting (using whey from raw milk) process is used to break up the nutrients and enhance the amount of enzymes (in some cases as much as 20 times the original amount) to make them easier to digest. This preparation also greatly increases the vitamin and mineral content of the foods and provides lots of healthy bacteria for the gut. Lacto-fermented beverages, consumed before a meal, enhance the body’s ability to digest cooked food where the enzymes have been destroyed. It’s important to note that vegetable were used as condiments, not as side dishes as they are today.
5. Traditional cultures understood that all seeds, gains and nuts need to be soaked, sprouted, fermented or naturally leavened because without this process these goods were poisonous to the body
There are many anti-nutrients present in these foods which make them indigestible as well as toxic. These preparations neutralise the anti-nutrients – the phytic acid that blocks the absorption of proteins and the enzyme inhibitors that block the enzymes needed for digestion. These processes, most of which require two weeks, also begin breaking down the complex carbohydrates and the gluten so they can be digested easily. Without this breakdown time, proteins cannot be digested and minerals cannot be assimilated. These foods, without proper preparation tend to leach you of your own minerals as they move through your gut. It seems that gluten isn’t the only thing that your body can’t tolerate.
6. Every healthy traditional culture consumed the entire animal
Yes, that’s right, primitive people ate the whole animal. That might seem a bit puzzling at first, but let’s examine this practice. Your first thought could be that they didn’t know when their next meal would be, so they’d better make use of what was available at the time. That would be a good answer except for one thing – they would throw away meat that was too lean, no matter how hungry they were. A better explanation must be that they found every part of the animal to be valuable. Believe it or not, science has now given us an explanation for this practice. All proteins are not broken down into amino acids, so where do those intact proteins go? They selectively travel to specific tissues for which they have an affinity. For example, a large portion of liver protein goes to the liver, heart protein to the heart, and joint protein to the joints. There was no need for a degree in biochemistry; these isolated people knew, without fully understanding, for instance that the richest source of co-enzyme Q10 is in fact organ meat such as heart.
7. The total fat content of the traditional diets ranged from 30 to 80 per cent, which came almost entirely from animal fats
Only a very small percentage (no more than 4 per cent) was polyunsaturated, which occurs naturally in grains, pulses and nuts. In fact, Dr Alice found that the Inuit, whose diet consisted of 80 per cent animal fat, were the healthiest of all the primitive cultures he examined.
Yes, I know that made you roll your eyes and clutch your heart, but let’s take a look at how much of your body actually is saturated fat. Let’s start with your brain: 60 percent of your brain is composed of fat and your brain cell membranes contain about 50 per cent saturated fat. In fact, every cell membrane in your body is ideally 50 percent saturated fat. This is what gives the membrane integrity so that viruses and bacteria cannot easily enter the cell. Let’s take a look at your bones. You need at least 50 percent saturated fat in your diet in order for calcium to be effectively absorbed into your bones. Could this be the reason for the rise in osteoporosis?
What about your heart? Good question, and you’ll like the answer. The heart’s preferred food is saturated fat. There is a natural concentration of saturated fat in the tissues surrounding the heart, which provides energy in times of stress. Even the lungs cannot operate without adequate amounts of saturated fat. The fatty acids in the fluid of the lungs are 100 percent saturated. Your kidneys need saturated fats, cholesterol and omega-3 fatty acids to manage blood pressure and filter toxins. Your body cannot make stress hormones or sex hormones without the vitamin A provided exclusively by fatty animal foods. Could this be why infertility is reaching epidemic proportions?
Let’s not forget your gut, which relies on saturated fat to fight parasites and pathogens because of its antimicrobial properties. And last, but certainly not least, your liver is protected from toxins and alcohol by saturated fat.
At this point you can breathe a sigh of relief and release the vice-grip you have had on your chest. But now you must be asking yourself, if this is all true, how is it possible that everyone has exactly the opposite information? Before I answer that question, I’d like you to ask yourself a question. Who has profited from keeping you in the dark?
Let me answer both questions by telling you a short story. For 25 years behind the scenes, a handful of scientists and researchers have been experimenting with fats in order to discover the truth about their effect on the human body. Some of them were threatened with censorship and others lost their funding because their conclusions did not match what the ‘experts’ were saying. The work of these determined people revealed that saturated fat and cholesterol have been demonised to the detriment of our bodies, while margarine and vegetable oil, the real offenders, have been destroying our health.
There is not enough space in this article to do justice to these courageous people, but two names must but be mentioned: Dr Mary Enig, whose fight to be heard lasted over 25 years, and Dr George Mann, one of the researchers of the Framingham Project, the study that launched the anti-cholesterol campaign. Dr Enig, an accomplished biochemist and nutritionist, was the first to sound alarm bells about the dangers of trans fats and vegetable oils. This brought down the wrath of the edible oil industry and Dr Enig encountered everything from outright threats to some of the most creative censorship I’ve ever heard. Dr Mann, knowing that the information the media carried was a fraud, attempted to inform the public of the truth by organising a conference in Washington, DC. Unfortunately a long list of scientists who privately agreed with him said they could not risk their funding by attending the conference. At the last minute, many speakers dropped out so Dr Mann was left without the support of the scientific community. He referred to the saturated fat/cholesterol lie as ‘the greatest scam in the history of medicine’.
So, as a result of this lie, vegetable oils that bear a closer resemblance to motor oil than food, are supposed to be better for you than the saturated fat of animals. And the saddest part of all is that the ‘experts’ have made people afraid of their own bodies; the saturated fat that makes them work. I think that if Hippocrates had known the direction that medicine would choose, he probably would have taken up plumbing.