Usually When I Decide to Write an Article It’s Done in One or Two Days

Photo by Rachel Park on Unsplash

The pressure to write has been increasing for me. There are powerful forces out there who are creating food disinformation and are pushing assorted manufactured chemicals masquerading as “foodstuffs.” The results are malnutrition, obesity, and things far worse.

As usual it seems to be American companies who are creating this dire situation. And it still appears that where America goes, the world follows. It’s important to remember this as we explore human diets.

It’s hard to share what I know with an audience not versed in the hard sciences as I am. I can’t let that stop me, but it makes me cautious.

When I say versed in the hard sciences, I don’t mean that I took a class way back when. For me the knowledge of math and science has been a lifetime pursuit, starting 60 years ago. I’m always adding and adapting as the sciences evolve, and so do the situations.

There are a lot of good diet philosophies out there. I will be sharing some of them in this article. Some of the fad diets are ill-conceived or even dangerous, and I’ll either avoid them or point out the pitfalls.

A lot of my knowledge comes from observing myself. I know pretty well how the body metabolizes various proteins, fats, and the carbohydrates, including the carbohydrates that are essentially wood fibers. Each person’s personal gut biome determines how some of the essential nutrients get metabolized. There is not any one size that fits all, though there are some commonalities.

For my purposes I posit some starting points. One of the best is to consider our primal selves, say 100,000 years ago. Because we are still effectively those same people. They (we) were hunter-gatherers, so there’s a big clue right there. As hunters we caught and ate animals. We didn’t necessarily have fires, we didn’t necessarily cook the meat or guts of animals before eating them. We also didn’t wash our veges before eating them. In these ways we were unknowingly populating our gut biomes with whatever we ate.

Some things are simple to figure, just by imagining or by reading about contemporary primitive indigenous people. You know how they say, “You are what you eat?” In the case of meat, milk, eggs, even some grains, this is biologically true. Starchy seeds we begin digesting with saliva in our mouths, then in the esophagus, stomach, finishing up if needed in the small intestine. Animal fats and proteins also need go no further than the small intestine, far as I recall (no, I don’t know absolutely everything).

I want to break rhythm here and wander through one thread that begins to paint a picture about one style of diet.

This man’s diet is not dissimilar to mine. I use lard as a fat, not that I need much fat, but it sits well. I use olive oil to extract lard from pork meat, so I use both kinds of fat, pork and olive. Chris Ross found that he could eat his usual foods, just less of them, and lose weight and feel much better.

His story got me interested in a book called “French Women Don’t Get Fat” by Mireille Guiliano — a book that Ross saw Oprah Winfrey discussing on her show.

How do you like them apples. Or… but really. That’s no diet — it’s a feast!

It all depends on where you live. Or it should, anyway. I live in tropical Panama, living on very little money. But here in the tropics the abundance of locally grown foods allows for a luxurious diet. Since my poor old molars were long ago extracted, I have to eat foods that don’t need chewing.

But I refuse to eat pureed foods, the last step before the grave for old people. I dice the meat I eat pretty finely, but I don’t mash the grains (lentils or rice) or really anything (I love ‘yuca,’ which I think is called ‘cassava,’ though I don’t know anything about it except it remains firm and tasty regardless of re-heating).

All I can say is that it’s all gourmet, I have the physique of a young man, and really don’t know exactly why… Oh, sorry, the complaint department is about to close. I gotta run…

Sorry. That was a fake-out. I didn’t know what to write next.

Okay. I just needed a few moments to research something. What I found was an answer to “What is the Best Diet for Humans.” Uh, look folks. Turns out that this is the wrong question!


Now I remember mentioning something about our ‘gut biomes.’ Pat on the back for me. On the other hand, apparently our hunter-gatherer ancestors maybe ate meat, maybe grazed on greens and seeds… maybe some of both. Which actually rings more true than my previous thought that we were primarily meat-eaters. Live and learn (and die anyway, someday).

Be careful going out there on the internet to find answers, folks. Here’s how I had to craft an intelligent boolean string to catch a glimmer of reality:

Don’t worry about the language. Them Swiss!! The search string is in English. Them English!!

I had to tweak the search because there’s some kinda fad diet called “The Primal Diet.” Them Jerks!!

How about if I hit “Publish” while I’m ahead? Am I ahead? Should I check my editing. Nah. Might have to yank it anyway if the videos don’t all work.

Anyway, I’ll let it breathe overnight. Maybe add to it tomorrow…





Living in rural Panamá — non-extractive, non-capitalistic. Expat USA. Scientist, writer, researcher, teacher. STEM mentor +languages. Gargoylplex@protonmail.com

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Fred Ermlich

Fred Ermlich

Living in rural Panamá — non-extractive, non-capitalistic. Expat USA. Scientist, writer, researcher, teacher. STEM mentor +languages. Gargoylplex@protonmail.com

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