4

votes

Best history of "red meat is bad" myth

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created November 19, 2010 at 8:28 PM

I'm back in a U.S. for a visit, and it really seems to me like there is a widespread belief among health-conscious types here that red meat it bad for you.

I'm wondering where this idea comes from. I'm familiar with the story of the lipid hypothesis. Is there another story here? What's the most clear, concise history of this myth that you've read?

Edit: I don't want to be dogmatic, so I'll qualify the title of this post with "assuming it is a myth." We could be wrong, after all.

9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

(15833)

on May 18, 2011
at 02:27 PM

I have always thought the dietary advice that comes from committees and the government has had a Puritan streak, the idea seems to be that the only path to health is through abstinence and denial of some kind. Fat, meat, and salt are all to be avoided, and there is always the implication that these are somehow hedonistic or unholy.

02736efa3fda31740e8890eed0cb663d

(1813)

on November 24, 2010
at 11:57 AM

It's already been said, but I don't think anyone here is not open to dissenting points of view, but this is just trolling. But, in the spirit in avoiding being too closed-minded, I'll edit my post a bit.

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on November 22, 2010
at 04:23 AM

Endogenous nitrosamines at very high levels have been correlated with cancer. However, they are also natural in all humans. What I will need to see is evidence that red meat in a healthy diet contributes to unhealthy levels of something. Most things in the body have a 'sweet spot' or balance point at which they are healthy and then become unhealthy beyond that. FOr instance, overhydration can cause death but you don't see me worrying that water intake raises levels of hydration. Red meat is a natural food for humans so I am not going stress over it because of vague 'unfleshed' theories.

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 21, 2010
at 11:26 PM

See, again, taking what could be a good dialogue and turning it into a mean-spirited pissing contest. I also hate nutritional dogmatism, unerring rigidity in thought, and short-sightedness. I think a lot of other people on here do, too, which isn't to say it never happens. That's why I also love Matthew's contributions. (But, yes, the ten minutes and few thousand characters that I have expended here says a lot abt me. Maybe I should throw out the hundreds of pages of writing that I have done so far for my thesis and just submit one page that says "this s*** is so orwell!")

4ecfaf48bde1f86c8045a54ab3950108

(35)

on November 21, 2010
at 10:11 PM

@amanda Judging by the novels you write to me and the sheer redundancy they contain, you can certainly not be short on free time. You're right, though, from what I have read on this site, I do indeed regard most contributing members as deluded health cultists (but there are also venerable exceptions, such as Matthew).

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 21, 2010
at 09:11 PM

...On this site I have found a huge respect for disagreement and little for childish ad hominem attacks. It's because of that kind of BS that I find replying to your stuff pointless. Why waste my time exploring contradictions in religious thought regarding flesh/animality/fasting/utilitarianism/etc, digging through Kristeva's Power of Horror, books on colonial food history and more for quotes (things that are normally my passion) for someone who has already decided anything I say must just be meaningless talking points of *teh crazy paleo gospel*?

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 21, 2010
at 09:10 PM

Really, dude? I can't speak for anyone that down voted you, but if I were to down vote you, I know it would be not because of your ideas, but rather your attitude being completely unhelpful to a discussion that could be really interesting. I have enough unsatisfying debates about health IRL without having to come here, a place where people's stated purpose is approaching things from an evolutionary health perceptive, and deal with smug self-satisfied little zingers from someone who seemingly only posts here to combat some imaginary slavish paleo cultism....

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 21, 2010
at 09:00 PM

Really, dude? I can't speak for anyone that down voted you, but if I were to, I know it would be not because of your ideas, but rather your attitude being completely unhelpful to a discussion that could be really interesting. I have enough unsatisfying debates about health IRL without having to come here, a place where people's *stated purpose is approaching things from an evolutionary health perceptive*, and deal with smug self-satisfied little zingers from someone who seemingly only posts here to combat some imaginary slavish paleo cultism....

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 21, 2010
at 08:48 PM

Really, dude? I can't speak for anyone that down voted you, but were I to it would be because of your ideas, but because of your attitude. I have enough unsatisfying debates about health IRL without having to come here, a place for people whose *stated purpose is to approach things from an evolutionary health perspective*, to deal with smug little zingers from people who only come here to fight this completely imagined tyranny of thought. I find there is a huge respect for disagreement here, but thankfully very little for childish ad hominem attacks.

4ecfaf48bde1f86c8045a54ab3950108

(35)

on November 21, 2010
at 04:12 PM

@Eva (Pt3) In vitro studies have, by the way, also confirmed that heme induces this kind of endogenous nitrosation.

4ecfaf48bde1f86c8045a54ab3950108

(35)

on November 21, 2010
at 04:02 PM

@Eva (Pt2) The next best thing would be controlled studies on biomarkers that are known to increase cancer risk (e.g., carcinogenic nitrosamines), and in the case of dietary heme (found predominantly in mammal meat), these have been done and proven positive causation. I've already referenced two of such studies in my other reply, but the Web has more to offer.

4ecfaf48bde1f86c8045a54ab3950108

(35)

on November 21, 2010
at 04:02 PM

@Eva (Pt1) Theoretically at least, observational studies could prove causation if all possible confounding factors were known and controlled for. I do not mean to insinuate that this is the case here, but on the other hand, long-term controlled studies on various cancers that invole actual humans are practically and ethically infeasible. You'd therefore have to rely on animal or in vitro testing, which introduce their own uncertainties.

4ecfaf48bde1f86c8045a54ab3950108

(35)

on November 21, 2010
at 12:08 PM

@amanda & WCC Paul Why would an ideology that vilifies flesh consumption for whatever reason differentiate between different kinds of flesh? Why would eating "red meat" then be considered more "extreme" than eating other meats? The more-or-less arbitrary culinary restrictions of Judaism and Islam aren't that influential in the Western world. @patrick3000 What kind of source do you expect? You probably wouldn't accept the USDA, would you: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/Fact_Sheets/Pork_from_Farm_to_Table/index.asp Anyway, keep modding me down, you enlightened true believers!

88905cfc5bb098ad3830671a1af373a8

(803)

on November 21, 2010
at 10:22 AM

Hugh, I question whether red meat is synonymous with "mammal meat." Pork, for example is considered white meat, and do you deny common biology that tells us a pig is a mammal?

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on November 21, 2010
at 05:21 AM

My advice would be to flag his post as offensive.

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on November 21, 2010
at 05:19 AM

How do you know that red meat is not the confounding factor. The prob here is there people assume red meat is bad and therefore cannot be the confounder. But the epidemiological research can only show correlation. It cannot show that red meat is the only cause and all others are confounders. The only way to show causation is in controlled studies and controlled studies have not been able to implicate red meat as more unhealthy than other foods. The fact that controlled studies cannot replicate the assumption is evidence that red meat consumption is not the actual cause.

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 20, 2010
at 05:02 PM

whoa, interesting! totally want to look more at him now, too. all these nutrition reformers must be rolling over in their graves. salisbury because his namesake food is now essentially a hungry man dinner covered in sugar sauce and served with starch and kellogg/post because their inventions have just become sugar cereals. really telling examples of corporate co-option of good intention.

47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on November 20, 2010
at 04:11 PM

I think I might be repeating in part what Amanda has written, but it is most certainly could "hold up" to say that the reaction against red meat could have its origins in vegetarianism if poultry and fish are still seen as beneficial; red meat is the *extreme* on the side of the meat-eating camp, and therefore the most likely thing to get attacked. Perfectly reasonable.

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 20, 2010
at 03:45 PM

5. I certainly wasn't saying that the root was in vegetarian movements, simply that they were taking preexistant religious ideology that vilifies flesh in multiple ways and in some cases mandates abstinence from meat (catholics on fridays during lent, etc.) for spiritual growth and applying it to contemporary concerns (such as germ theory, fear of race mixing, and other instances of differentiating between purity/contamination), some of which still affect us today. This greater context and history can begin to explain in part why red meat is viewed differently than white meat.

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 20, 2010
at 03:45 PM

4. in modern day america, where most people are so disconnected from food sources and production, positive and negative values applied to food often have little to do with healthfulness. we rely instead on "experts" to produce our food AND tell us what to eat--these experts are often just as disconnected as we are or have motives other than health promotion.

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 20, 2010
at 03:42 PM

1. white meat and fish are not always "neutral"--to a large segment of the population pork and shellfish are considered dirty and unhealthy and prohibited. 2. in lots of cultures red meat is associated with virility (and hence masculine in post-agricultural hierarchies) and white meat/dairy/eggs are feminized, and then dealt with accordingly based upon the cultural values assigned to these markers at the given time. 3. people often reject certain foods in order to reject the stereotypes they have come to embody--in the case of red meat there is savage, fat cat, redneck, cowboy, etc.

4ecfaf48bde1f86c8045a54ab3950108

(35)

on November 20, 2010
at 11:21 AM

Mark Sisson has either misunderstood this study, or is intentionally deceptive here. It is true that this study only found positive correlations, which may or may not be casually related, but "marriage status, smoking, high BMI" etc. etc. are all confounding factors this study controlled for, which invalidates his fluffy retort.

4ecfaf48bde1f86c8045a54ab3950108

(35)

on November 20, 2010
at 11:17 AM

@patrick3000 In the nutritional sciences, "red meat" is usually synonymous with mammal meat, i.e. it doesn't denote the actual colour. Why have you enclosed "mammal" in quotation marks? Do you not believe in the existence of mammals?

B124653b19ee9dd438710a38954ed4a3

(1634)

on November 20, 2010
at 10:43 AM

Nice quote. Interesting note: Salisbury invented the Salisbury steak and authored a somewhat paleo book over a century ago. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Salisbury Surprised I haven't heard of him sooner.

88905cfc5bb098ad3830671a1af373a8

(803)

on November 20, 2010
at 07:32 AM

is whether or not the meat is "mammal" a key factor, according to your research?

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 20, 2010
at 06:30 AM

I certainly wasn't saying that the root was in vegetarian movements, simply that they were taking preexistant religious ideology that vilifies flesh in multiple ways and in some cases mandates abstinence from meat (catholics on fridays during lent, etc.) for spiritual growth and applying it to contemporary concerns (such as germ theory, fear of race mixing, and other instances of differentiating between purity/contamination), some of which still affect us today. This greater context and history can begin to explain in part why red meat is viewed differently than white meat.

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6 Answers

6
95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 20, 2010
at 01:28 AM

This is a great question, Nico. I would love to find something along these lines, too.

A pretty fascinating part of it would have to be the whole Battle Creek Sanitarium nexus in the mid-1800's to early 1900s. There you have existent Protestant obsessions with purity and revulsion towards animality (see Kellogg and Graham equating flesh consumption with sexual lust over and over again, with scary leaps and consequences, advocating fasts and veganism as a way to curb dangerous base desires) coming together with the social movements of the time (temperance, abolitionism, and yes, eugenics), big business (Kellogg and Post eventually give birth these now huge companies by investing grains with timely moral significance) and people of great influence (patients included presidents, celebrities, authors, industrialists, abolitionist leaders, and more.) While one can chuckle at the most egregious examples of wackjobbery found in this movement, you can't ignore the long-lasting effects that it has wrought upon America, its people, and notions about health. (This post has inspired me to delve deeper into this. Plan on picking up this and this book soon...)

Upton Sinclair was also a patient and I don't think one can forget the role his works, as important as they were to bringing attention to the dangers of industrial food production, had in helping spread the red meat=unhealthy/bad/gross equation. Interestingly, I recently came across a quote from him that surprised me in a good way:

Recently a friend called my attention to the late Dr. Salisbury's book, "The Relation of Alimentation to Disease." Dr. Salisbury recommends a diet of broiled beef and hot water as the solution of most of the problems of the human body; and it may be believed that I, who had been a rigid and enthusiastic vegetarian for three or four years, found this a startling idea. However, I make a specialty of keeping an open mind, and I set out to try the Salisbury system. I am sorry to have to say that it seems to be a good one; sorry, because the vegetarian way of life is so obviously the cleaner and more humane and more convenient. But it seems to me that I am able to do more work and harder work with my mind while eating beefsteaks than under any other regime; and while this continues to be the case there will be one less vegetarian in the world.

B124653b19ee9dd438710a38954ed4a3

(1634)

on November 20, 2010
at 10:43 AM

Nice quote. Interesting note: Salisbury invented the Salisbury steak and authored a somewhat paleo book over a century ago. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Salisbury Surprised I haven't heard of him sooner.

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 20, 2010
at 05:02 PM

whoa, interesting! totally want to look more at him now, too. all these nutrition reformers must be rolling over in their graves. salisbury because his namesake food is now essentially a hungry man dinner covered in sugar sauce and served with starch and kellogg/post because their inventions have just become sugar cereals. really telling examples of corporate co-option of good intention.

9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

(15833)

on May 18, 2011
at 02:27 PM

I have always thought the dietary advice that comes from committees and the government has had a Puritan streak, the idea seems to be that the only path to health is through abstinence and denial of some kind. Fat, meat, and salt are all to be avoided, and there is always the implication that these are somehow hedonistic or unholy.

2
0d2dec01a5ed9363a9915e111ae13f7e

on November 20, 2010
at 03:29 PM

I certainly take no offense at a contrary position. But "Hugh"'s handle is offensive. Argue your conventional wisdom take on red meat, but simply use your own name, or less sophomoric handle.

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on November 21, 2010
at 05:21 AM

My advice would be to flag his post as offensive.

1
62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on November 20, 2010
at 04:10 AM

I suspect most people have no clear reasoning behind assumptions that red meat is bad. It's just one of those things that 'everyone knows' because other people who didn't know anything told them it was true. Dig a little deeper with your questioning and you will probably get the added statement that red meat if full of saturated fat and that 'everyone knows' that fat and especially saturated fat is bad for you. I do think there is a small percentage of people who really care about the life of the animals themselves, but not many. My guess is that the red meat is bad myth originated somewhere in the saturated fat is bad myth. ANd I think the saturated fat is bad myth originated in part from the corn oil and PUFA oil industry that was attempting (successfully I might add) to block the influx of foreign cooking oils like palm and coconut oils by launching a media campaign declaring the already established oils to be more healthy.

0
88905cfc5bb098ad3830671a1af373a8

on November 20, 2010
at 07:44 AM

As Mark Sisson puts it:

"Meat is unhealthy; everyone knows it, right? Of course they get the most diseases, the most heart attacks, the most cancer. They can even cite mainstream studies that claim as much, studies that make the front page of every mainstream publication. The latest was the infamous red meat study that seemed to show the more a person consumed red meat, the greater their cancer, heart disease, and total mortality. It makes for a good headline, but it doesn’t mean much. For one thing, it shows correlation, not causation (establishing a causative mechanism would require controlled studies), and for another, it also showed similar connections between mortality and marriage status, smoking, high BMI, lower education, low physical activity levels, and low fruit and vegetable intake. How many of these meat eaters were also eating potatoes fried in rancid vegetable oil, swigging a jumbo Pepsi, and polishing off the meal with a bowl of ice cream?"

source, with links to the studies: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/in-defense-of-meat-eaters/

4ecfaf48bde1f86c8045a54ab3950108

(35)

on November 21, 2010
at 04:12 PM

@Eva (Pt3) In vitro studies have, by the way, also confirmed that heme induces this kind of endogenous nitrosation.

4ecfaf48bde1f86c8045a54ab3950108

(35)

on November 21, 2010
at 04:02 PM

@Eva (Pt1) Theoretically at least, observational studies could prove causation if all possible confounding factors were known and controlled for. I do not mean to insinuate that this is the case here, but on the other hand, long-term controlled studies on various cancers that invole actual humans are practically and ethically infeasible. You'd therefore have to rely on animal or in vitro testing, which introduce their own uncertainties.

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on November 21, 2010
at 05:19 AM

How do you know that red meat is not the confounding factor. The prob here is there people assume red meat is bad and therefore cannot be the confounder. But the epidemiological research can only show correlation. It cannot show that red meat is the only cause and all others are confounders. The only way to show causation is in controlled studies and controlled studies have not been able to implicate red meat as more unhealthy than other foods. The fact that controlled studies cannot replicate the assumption is evidence that red meat consumption is not the actual cause.

4ecfaf48bde1f86c8045a54ab3950108

(35)

on November 21, 2010
at 04:02 PM

@Eva (Pt2) The next best thing would be controlled studies on biomarkers that are known to increase cancer risk (e.g., carcinogenic nitrosamines), and in the case of dietary heme (found predominantly in mammal meat), these have been done and proven positive causation. I've already referenced two of such studies in my other reply, but the Web has more to offer.

4ecfaf48bde1f86c8045a54ab3950108

(35)

on November 20, 2010
at 11:21 AM

Mark Sisson has either misunderstood this study, or is intentionally deceptive here. It is true that this study only found positive correlations, which may or may not be casually related, but "marriage status, smoking, high BMI" etc. etc. are all confounding factors this study controlled for, which invalidates his fluffy retort.

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on November 22, 2010
at 04:23 AM

Endogenous nitrosamines at very high levels have been correlated with cancer. However, they are also natural in all humans. What I will need to see is evidence that red meat in a healthy diet contributes to unhealthy levels of something. Most things in the body have a 'sweet spot' or balance point at which they are healthy and then become unhealthy beyond that. FOr instance, overhydration can cause death but you don't see me worrying that water intake raises levels of hydration. Red meat is a natural food for humans so I am not going stress over it because of vague 'unfleshed' theories.

0
Ae04ef200f1bdc55d1d4bfae7ca93590

on November 19, 2010
at 09:58 PM

I don't believe there is one concise myth, but several beliefs related to this question. One primary reason is the lipid hypothesis. Another would be the unfortunate way beef is chemically modified and processed, which has some people thinking that it's always a bad food source. Clean eating and moderation is a challenge in the U.S. Also, there are some people who are against the cruelty of animals do to religious or personal beliefs. As I'm sure you've noticed, there is a lot of confusion where food and diets are concerned.

-4
51b876cf6a0fd1f41de090c6c703d67c

on November 20, 2010
at 05:27 AM

I'm sorry to go against the party line of this suggestive question, but there is the hypothesis that dietary heme found predominantly in "red meat" could induce carcinogenesis: http://cancerres.aacrjournals.org/content/63/10/2358.full http://carcin.oxfordjournals.org/content/17/3/515.abstract These are just two relevant results I got from Google Scholar, you can search yourself and check out the other related studies. There may also be other factors, such as cooking (cf. polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) and other preparation methods, that are not related to the health effects of "red meat" per se.

The claim that this "myth" had its root in the vegetarian or even vegan movements doesn't hold up as it cannot explain why "white meat" and fish are generally regarded as either neutral or beneficial. There are also studies that positively associated "red meat" intake with gastrointestinal cancers, but found no such association with "white meat" and fish (fish may even be protective).

All in all, I tend to agree with the current scientific mainstream that mammal meat does indeed increase overall cancer risk. I am again sorry for offending the prevalent groupthink in here.

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 20, 2010
at 03:45 PM

4. in modern day america, where most people are so disconnected from food sources and production, positive and negative values applied to food often have little to do with healthfulness. we rely instead on "experts" to produce our food AND tell us what to eat--these experts are often just as disconnected as we are or have motives other than health promotion.

88905cfc5bb098ad3830671a1af373a8

(803)

on November 21, 2010
at 10:22 AM

Hugh, I question whether red meat is synonymous with "mammal meat." Pork, for example is considered white meat, and do you deny common biology that tells us a pig is a mammal?

47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on November 20, 2010
at 04:11 PM

I think I might be repeating in part what Amanda has written, but it is most certainly could "hold up" to say that the reaction against red meat could have its origins in vegetarianism if poultry and fish are still seen as beneficial; red meat is the *extreme* on the side of the meat-eating camp, and therefore the most likely thing to get attacked. Perfectly reasonable.

4ecfaf48bde1f86c8045a54ab3950108

(35)

on November 21, 2010
at 12:08 PM

@amanda & WCC Paul Why would an ideology that vilifies flesh consumption for whatever reason differentiate between different kinds of flesh? Why would eating "red meat" then be considered more "extreme" than eating other meats? The more-or-less arbitrary culinary restrictions of Judaism and Islam aren't that influential in the Western world. @patrick3000 What kind of source do you expect? You probably wouldn't accept the USDA, would you: http://www.fsis.usda.gov/Fact_Sheets/Pork_from_Farm_to_Table/index.asp Anyway, keep modding me down, you enlightened true believers!

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 21, 2010
at 09:00 PM

Really, dude? I can't speak for anyone that down voted you, but if I were to, I know it would be not because of your ideas, but rather your attitude being completely unhelpful to a discussion that could be really interesting. I have enough unsatisfying debates about health IRL without having to come here, a place where people's *stated purpose is approaching things from an evolutionary health perceptive*, and deal with smug self-satisfied little zingers from someone who seemingly only posts here to combat some imaginary slavish paleo cultism....

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 20, 2010
at 06:30 AM

I certainly wasn't saying that the root was in vegetarian movements, simply that they were taking preexistant religious ideology that vilifies flesh in multiple ways and in some cases mandates abstinence from meat (catholics on fridays during lent, etc.) for spiritual growth and applying it to contemporary concerns (such as germ theory, fear of race mixing, and other instances of differentiating between purity/contamination), some of which still affect us today. This greater context and history can begin to explain in part why red meat is viewed differently than white meat.

88905cfc5bb098ad3830671a1af373a8

(803)

on November 20, 2010
at 07:32 AM

is whether or not the meat is "mammal" a key factor, according to your research?

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 21, 2010
at 08:48 PM

Really, dude? I can't speak for anyone that down voted you, but were I to it would be because of your ideas, but because of your attitude. I have enough unsatisfying debates about health IRL without having to come here, a place for people whose *stated purpose is to approach things from an evolutionary health perspective*, to deal with smug little zingers from people who only come here to fight this completely imagined tyranny of thought. I find there is a huge respect for disagreement here, but thankfully very little for childish ad hominem attacks.

4ecfaf48bde1f86c8045a54ab3950108

(35)

on November 21, 2010
at 10:11 PM

@amanda Judging by the novels you write to me and the sheer redundancy they contain, you can certainly not be short on free time. You're right, though, from what I have read on this site, I do indeed regard most contributing members as deluded health cultists (but there are also venerable exceptions, such as Matthew).

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 21, 2010
at 09:10 PM

Really, dude? I can't speak for anyone that down voted you, but if I were to down vote you, I know it would be not because of your ideas, but rather your attitude being completely unhelpful to a discussion that could be really interesting. I have enough unsatisfying debates about health IRL without having to come here, a place where people's stated purpose is approaching things from an evolutionary health perceptive, and deal with smug self-satisfied little zingers from someone who seemingly only posts here to combat some imaginary slavish paleo cultism....

02736efa3fda31740e8890eed0cb663d

(1813)

on November 24, 2010
at 11:57 AM

It's already been said, but I don't think anyone here is not open to dissenting points of view, but this is just trolling. But, in the spirit in avoiding being too closed-minded, I'll edit my post a bit.

4ecfaf48bde1f86c8045a54ab3950108

(35)

on November 20, 2010
at 11:17 AM

@patrick3000 In the nutritional sciences, "red meat" is usually synonymous with mammal meat, i.e. it doesn't denote the actual colour. Why have you enclosed "mammal" in quotation marks? Do you not believe in the existence of mammals?

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 20, 2010
at 03:45 PM

5. I certainly wasn't saying that the root was in vegetarian movements, simply that they were taking preexistant religious ideology that vilifies flesh in multiple ways and in some cases mandates abstinence from meat (catholics on fridays during lent, etc.) for spiritual growth and applying it to contemporary concerns (such as germ theory, fear of race mixing, and other instances of differentiating between purity/contamination), some of which still affect us today. This greater context and history can begin to explain in part why red meat is viewed differently than white meat.

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 21, 2010
at 09:11 PM

...On this site I have found a huge respect for disagreement and little for childish ad hominem attacks. It's because of that kind of BS that I find replying to your stuff pointless. Why waste my time exploring contradictions in religious thought regarding flesh/animality/fasting/utilitarianism/etc, digging through Kristeva's Power of Horror, books on colonial food history and more for quotes (things that are normally my passion) for someone who has already decided anything I say must just be meaningless talking points of *teh crazy paleo gospel*?

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 20, 2010
at 03:42 PM

1. white meat and fish are not always "neutral"--to a large segment of the population pork and shellfish are considered dirty and unhealthy and prohibited. 2. in lots of cultures red meat is associated with virility (and hence masculine in post-agricultural hierarchies) and white meat/dairy/eggs are feminized, and then dealt with accordingly based upon the cultural values assigned to these markers at the given time. 3. people often reject certain foods in order to reject the stereotypes they have come to embody--in the case of red meat there is savage, fat cat, redneck, cowboy, etc.

95601768ec9cb75cc3a9cbcd2271ed14

(2206)

on November 21, 2010
at 11:26 PM

See, again, taking what could be a good dialogue and turning it into a mean-spirited pissing contest. I also hate nutritional dogmatism, unerring rigidity in thought, and short-sightedness. I think a lot of other people on here do, too, which isn't to say it never happens. That's why I also love Matthew's contributions. (But, yes, the ten minutes and few thousand characters that I have expended here says a lot abt me. Maybe I should throw out the hundreds of pages of writing that I have done so far for my thesis and just submit one page that says "this s*** is so orwell!")

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