11

votes

VEGETABLES necessary in the diet?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created March 09, 2011 at 3:40 PM

I am new on the forum and am curious as to whether vegetables are a necessary element in the diet. Nutrient-wise can one get away with total abstinance and simply derive the nutrients needed from other sources(animal fat, etc.)? How would this affect contipation/digestive transit of paleo-friendly foods? How would constipation be avoided without taking a fibrre supplement for example? Anyone out there feel the need(verified by scientific evidence or sound theory/speculation) for VEGETABLES? What substances, if any are exclusive to vegetables(and which kinds; and which are best??) that can't be derived from the aforementioned paleo-friendly foods? Any feedback would be great as I am attempting to create a cost-effective(time/$/effort) diet plan that will support my athletic endeavors--ideally without pesticide-laden vegetables and a stomach digeting veggie matter. -PersonMan

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 04:09 AM

So you don't eat modern bred animals like cow or chicken? What animals are you eating?

56c28e3654d4dd8a8abdb2c1f525202e

(1822)

on February 22, 2014
at 04:05 AM

Nutrition and Physical degeneration states that Inuits avoid scurvy in winter by eating the adrenal glands of the animals they catch. Other articles on the WAPF site state that native americans ate small intestines of buffalo, including content, to increase vitamin content of food. In short, it can not be done nowadays, unless you butcher your own animals. it is going to be quite a large experiment, all these people avoiding vegetables for years.

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:42 AM

Eating vegetables is not REQUIRED, if one eats "nose to tail", that is a variety of animal products, including skin, bones, organ meats, eggs (milk?). But there are plenty of things in plant foods that do not occur in animal products, such as various phytochemicals, which _seem_ to provide anti-cancer effects via hormesis (see dr harris's link above), and additionally provide other health benefits - and for other examples, see the research on green tea, or lycopene, or coconut oil. No one is going to force you to eat veg, but there are it seems benefits that make it seem more sensible.

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:35 AM

What about hormesis?

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:34 AM

Muscle meats? Or skin, eyes, bones etc? Nutrients, for the whole animal yes. But plants aren't just nutrients are they, they are also bioactive phytochemicals. Look at lycopene, or medium chain fats - plants have things to offer, than meats simply do not, even nose to tail.

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:31 AM

Look at for example, coconut fats. Or lycopene. Or any other number of studies on heart disease or cancer, and fruits and vegetables, or studies on individual plant chemicals - I am not sure its clear exactly _which_ plant foods are ideal, but it seems fairly clear to me, that some of our evolution occured during exposure to these chemicals, probably largely tropical ones (IMO).

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:28 AM

True, but that's not a lot of plant matter. They tracked the nutrients in the whole animal type diet they eat, and things like vitamin C are stored in skin, eyes. I am just saying that because all nutrients exist at some place in an animal body (for example, take a human), you can technically survive eating nose to tail - thats probably what we did in the ice age. But like a high carb diet, I don't personally believe its optimal. In fact there are so many studies showing the healthful effects of phytochemicals, and nutrients, I am quite sure its not.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:25 AM

Inuit also eat plants whenever available. Stored for periods when plants aren't available.

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:19 AM

There is a heck of a lot of science that supports plant foods in general being good for you.

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:16 AM

Leafy greens are not a waste of time when some smaller amount of your time is spent in hungry. Likely, it was mostly seen as a filler, like drinking water when you are hungry, or something to "put on the plate" to bulk up a meal. But there is also this - eating a whole plate of meat isn't as enjoyable as a plate of meat with a few veg. The taste/texture variety makes the meal more palatable, and makes the meat easier to digest.

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:13 AM

I am not sure what the connection between america and american indians and our paleolithic anscestors is....

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:11 AM

Modern farm animals are exactly the same. There was no "cow" 10,000 years ago. Or "chicken". Plus some plant foods are pretty much unchanged. If this was an argument for not eating fruits and veges, it would be an argument for almost eating no food of any kind. Additionally, its likely that the exodus from africa, was largely tropical - think about it. West coast of africa = tropical. Asia = tropical. The tropics are filled with good plant food eating, that have amazing health benefits in humans (fish, coconuts, tropical fruit phytochemicals etc), and they are plentiful food environments

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:05 AM

I wonder how you get sufficient minerals, vitamins etc. The broth would certainly help with minerals. Do you eat organ meats, skin, etc? Or are you just eating muscle meats? Its understandable avoiding fiber, I eat lower carb, low inulin, eat antibaterial foods like cranberry, dark grape and coconut oil, and regular probiotics for the same reason (gut bacterial issues). For about a year I ate regular bone broth (stock) based stews. There are some noteable nutrients in spices & herbs, which are plant foods too. But I am curious about your diet & how long youve been on it

7160a3fb485cb0af573c0292fdb08144

(35)

on February 21, 2014
at 10:28 PM

Yes. Mark is a huge fan of veggies. With Mark being a well-respected guy on these forums, I find it surprising he staunchly disagrees with most in this thread.

Be157308a0438e382b88d9db4c12ab30

on February 21, 2014
at 10:16 PM

I actually found Mark's post to be supportive of vegetables.They provide some nutrition, a lot of flavor and don't really cause any substantial weight gain (except for the starchy root vegetables). Can't see why it would hurt to eat them, unless they were outright toxic, but that isn't really the case with our modern-day crops, which are quite harmless.

618fc5298c4a96b817c4918c795a875f

(1217)

on April 04, 2013
at 11:30 PM

From what I understand from all of my Paleo/Primal reading, there is no one-size-fits-all diet. Each person has to find their own true, optimal diet. Eating someone else's diet is like wearing someone's else's clothes - it will probably not fit. Even if the fit is close, it will pull and tug in places unless tailored. But I'm very new to all this! Still learning!

9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

(15833)

on April 04, 2013
at 09:59 PM

Can you provide some information / background / studies / papers suggesting that we evolved 99% of the time without vegetables?

048dd52752c45129c1212bfffb37ca72

(3150)

on April 04, 2013
at 02:06 PM

Being there so many different opinions about whether they're necessary or not (or better even, good or bad) it's both amazing and discouraging at the same time. Will we ever have the clue to a true, optimal diet?

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on April 04, 2013
at 01:08 PM

Why would our ancestors eat something that doesn't taste good? Because they didn't have fluorescent-lit ailes of choices on hand. I'm sure there were plenty of times where 'doesn't make me sick' was qualification enough.

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on April 04, 2013
at 01:05 PM

I would think that tubers would be the primary vegetables for the Paleo area. Without structured growth patterns (as in agriculture) I'd think leafy greens and most other veggies would be more trouble than they're worth. Of course, I'm sure plants would naturally cluster for reproduction's sake... and then fruit-bearing trees would be an obvious food source.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on January 11, 2013
at 03:01 PM

Water and black coffee. A very occasional bit of clear alcohol like vodka or tequila, but I don't seem to be able to drink much anymore. Which is fine; I never was a big drinker anyway.

Cc69a51b427eaad36251cce9dcca4d3a

(1074)

on January 11, 2013
at 04:38 AM

so u just eat meat but what do you drink? coffee/tea/alcohol/sodas? jw

Medium avatar

(10611)

on January 11, 2013
at 12:31 AM

Supplements are only necessary to the person selling them. If paleo diet is the ideal, how did grok get the jars of capsules he needed to survive.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on January 11, 2013
at 12:29 AM

Why not? Why do we have different breeds od dogs and cats? One kind should satisfy everyone.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on January 11, 2013
at 12:27 AM

Why oh why do people here dwell on not eating things they enjoy?

Medium avatar

(10611)

on January 11, 2013
at 12:24 AM

Humans don't do well on uncooked vegetation. Starch needs to be cooked to release digestible polysachharides, and foliage/stems are cellulosics which are indigestible even when cooked. You could make a case for eating precellulosics from plant buds, but these are highly seasonal. Fruits and nuts were definitely paleo, but the other plant parts hardly at all.

Bdc4873264ec9dbec27505e678dabce0

(432)

on November 01, 2012
at 02:25 AM

I am trying a diet without vegetables, ambimorph, but I find myself worrying about vitamin C. What are your thoughts on vitamin C.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on May 24, 2012
at 11:12 PM

Yup. That's the one I was alluding to in my comments to my answer. I really like that study for various reasons, and the reporting of negative results is a big one, especially since it seems likely not to be expected by any researchers in the field. It's sort of amazing it was published.

1dd1d4bde5b46b4c90efeadea3a96a75

(180)

on May 19, 2012
at 05:20 AM

I think it's a myth that they are 'surely good for you'. Why, conventional wisdom?

1dd1d4bde5b46b4c90efeadea3a96a75

(180)

on May 19, 2012
at 05:18 AM

I think fruits do want to be eaten (to spread their seeds via feces), and we are meant to eat them (why almost everyone likes sweets). However they weren't meant to be eaten year round or in highly concentrated forms (sugar, syrup etc). Wild fruits would be smaller, lower in sugar, and higher in fibre and seeds. It's probably likely even the effects of sugar(fat gain) are beneficial to us, we would put it on in the summer when food was plentiful in preparation for less resourceful winters.

Medium avatar

(195)

on May 17, 2012
at 02:40 PM

might wanna invest in one of theses.... http://squattypotty.com/ lol

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 17, 2012
at 02:01 PM

Also, there's this funny study on an attempted intervention to control oxidative damage (using green tea extract) that the researchers presumed must occur on a plant-free diet. The punch line from the abstract: "Since no long-term effects of GTE were observed, the study essentially served as a fruit and vegetables depletion study. The overall effect of the 10-week period without dietary fruits and vegetables was a decrease in oxidative damage to DNA, blood proteins, and plasma lipids, concomitantly with marked changes in antioxidative defence." http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12064344

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 17, 2012
at 01:55 PM

It's also theorized (sometimes stated as fact, but it seems the main study it depends on was conducted in vitro, and may be physiologically irrelevant) that glucose "competes" with vitamin C, and is preferentially taken into the cells over vitamin C (they're structurally similar), so a high-carb diet might necessitate a higher intake of C.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 17, 2012
at 01:36 PM

Why is meat a poor source? "Fresh meat from animals which make their own vitamin C (which most animals do) contains enough vitamin C to prevent scurvy, and even partly treat it." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scurvy#Prevention

C836b2644e7319bb957fbb794a97708e

on May 17, 2012
at 04:58 AM

(and meat is a very poor source)

C836b2644e7319bb957fbb794a97708e

on May 17, 2012
at 04:55 AM

What about vit c? We cant make our own so we need it and that is found in fruits/veggies.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 16, 2012
at 01:40 PM

Coffeeandcream, your comment made me laugh. I feel the same way; I am not a lover of plant foods, and never was as a kid. As an adult I felt virtuous eating veggies, but I also felt gassy and arthritic. I've been ZC/XLC for nearly three years now, and have never felt better in my life.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 16, 2012
at 01:35 PM

(And behavioral/cultural strategies, of course, include cooking.)

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 16, 2012
at 01:34 PM

Allport's chapter does an entertaining job describing the various counter-plant-toxin strategies that plant-eaters have to develop. Most of them are physiological, but some are behavioral (including avoidance of the most toxic plants). There's a plant that kills intestinal parasites, but it also kills monkeys (iirc) if chewed. So the monkeys roll the leaves and swallow them whole, like a pill, so the leaf passes through the stomach and doesn't release its toxins until it hits the intestine.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 16, 2012
at 01:28 PM

Excellent point about fruits and berries, which do "want" to be eaten. (although you can still find poisonous fruit). FWIW, I do think we're omnivores, but omnivory comes with a risk. Imagine yourself on a desert island with no humans and no familiarity with the local flora and fauna. You're much safer killing and eating something with a face than taking a nibble off random plants and hoping you don't eat one you can't handle. I believe safe plant eating depends greatly on cultural knowledge (and it's why we're so nosy about what everyone else eats).

C836b2644e7319bb957fbb794a97708e

on May 15, 2012
at 11:40 PM

Also why is it that we are not built like carnivores if we are meant to eat nothing but meat. I thought we were omnivores?

C836b2644e7319bb957fbb794a97708e

on May 15, 2012
at 11:23 PM

I am interested in researching this idea more So just know that I am open to new ideas. What about fruits and berries that want to be eaten (to spread their seeds in a convenient fertilizer)?

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 15, 2012
at 02:32 AM

I appreciate a good snark. :) In all seriousness, though, the critter has external defense systems: claws/fangs/whatnot, plus a possible escape route. Plants really do have boatloads of toxins, and critters who eat them have to develop systems to manage them. Susan Allport -- no fan of Taubes -- wrote an excellent chapter on this in The Primal Feast (Chapter 8): http://bit.ly/JDgSnI

C836b2644e7319bb957fbb794a97708e

on May 15, 2012
at 12:34 AM

True Rose, however when the animals ran, swam or flew away what would be for dinner..( good natured snark on my end)

Bbb65dfde2b925e334048eb6438b3950

on May 14, 2012
at 10:56 PM

I am the complete opposite. When I read the words "live on just meat, eggs and fat", I swear my heart skipped a beat and I just felt really happy.

1dd1d4bde5b46b4c90efeadea3a96a75

(180)

on May 14, 2012
at 09:19 PM

Agreed - there isn't a lot of wild vegetation that would easily fill your nutrient/caloric needs, not to mention most of them don't taste that great without dressing/spices etc. If you do stop to really think about it, it's unlikely Paleo people ate veggies unless trying to prevent starvation.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 14, 2012
at 08:42 PM

Yes, ancestralstars, but animals can run, swim, or fly away.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on May 14, 2012
at 08:17 PM

Why though.... ?

C836b2644e7319bb957fbb794a97708e

on May 14, 2012
at 08:08 PM

I always found the "plants dont want to be eaten" a little dubious ...animals dont wanto be eaten either ...

1dd1d4bde5b46b4c90efeadea3a96a75

(180)

on May 14, 2012
at 06:43 PM

Agree with WHY? I think it's just hard for people to change from the almost religious dogma of veggies being a health food. They seem 'natural' and we have been told they are good our whole lives.

1dd1d4bde5b46b4c90efeadea3a96a75

(180)

on May 14, 2012
at 06:39 PM

Look at the history of 'The Bear' in zero or low carb forums. He subsisted on pretty much steak with smaller amounts of high fat cheese for I think close to 50 years, before dying in a car accident. He claimed to have virtually not aged since his 30's and never get sick. Seemed like a highly intelligent person and his studies concluded veggies are simply not necessary. I believe he wrote that your requirement for many nutrients goes way down once you remove carbs (ie vitamin C as you mentioned).

1dd1d4bde5b46b4c90efeadea3a96a75

(180)

on May 14, 2012
at 05:59 PM

Why would your cholesterol or risk of cancer be too high? There's absolutely no studies to prove this.

531db50c958cf4d5605ee0c5ae8a57be

(8878)

on February 13, 2012
at 02:53 AM

Karen, I don't dispute that. But spices are not "vegetables." They're spices.

9f9fa49265e03ddd2bf2bba5477a556b

(3184)

on March 13, 2011
at 06:40 AM

I never claimed they didn't exist, I just want to know what the hell veggies they were eating (and supposedly in bulk) when modern agriculture hadn't turned little weeds into big bunches of chard and cauliflower. The only greens that I'm aware of the Chumash eating in any quantity was clover. Otherwise it was acorns and chia seeds. And any other seeds they could pound into something edible. Makes sense, seeds are calorically dense. So who are the Paleolithic salad people? I'm sure they existed, but actual evidence is nice and I'm happy to be directed to said evidence.

Medium avatar

(39821)

on March 13, 2011
at 12:44 AM

I eat a half pound (uncooked weight) of steamed spinach every day. The oxalate scare is ridiculous, in my opinion. Eating liver every day would likely result in vitamin A or copper toxicity, hence the kidney.

07154e6d8e42065f230d06249700fe5b

(2057)

on March 12, 2011
at 08:52 PM

I thought the Masaii ate only meat, milk, and blood? Or at least they used to...

Cc93847bfa820f0f2da654060b401fa5

(746)

on March 12, 2011
at 07:55 PM

If you're undergoing athletic endeavors, you'll be better served at the other end of the spectrum.

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on March 12, 2011
at 07:42 PM

Just because you don't know about them doesn't mean they don't exist. Native Americans in your area harvested vegetable matter often, though perhaps mainly for flavor.

Ef4c5b09fdccf73be575d3a0c267fdd9

(2539)

on March 10, 2011
at 06:07 PM

The fibers in veggies feed different species of gut flora and Dr. Ayers at coolinginflammation makes a pretty good case that raw, dirty veggies contain new bacteria for the digestive tract, and with persistance, the gut flora adapt and change with the inclusion of diverse veggies. There are actually studies that show that when children start eating more veggies/less refined carbs, their gut flora changes too, to a kind that "keeps them thinner". Not sure if that is really the case considering most research on gut flora is in its infancy.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on March 10, 2011
at 04:13 PM

I agree with your reasoning on the condition that a complete nutrient profile can be obtained through a protein/fat(animal product) diet. It appears it can...but: can it? Also, what about herbs/spices? I include alot of spices(turmeric, cayenne, paprika, ginger, black pepper, oregano powder, etc.): which would you recommend if any?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on March 10, 2011
at 04:11 PM

WHY? This is the question posited in the post: "Are they necessary" entails: WHY are they necessary? What had prompted me to ask the question was whether I am wasting my time with a superfluous diet item, just like whether a CEO is wasting his time paying for bodyguarding services when none of the paranoids are out to get him. Are vegetables necessary= WHY. Hopefully someone can shed some light as I feel digestion is enhanced through their omission.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on March 10, 2011
at 04:07 PM

Would you care to elaborate on the relationship between gut flora restoration and the consumption of vegetables?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on March 10, 2011
at 04:06 PM

Would the function of vegetables be mainly for cleansing the digestive system through fibre(given the assumption that complete nutrients can be obtained from non-vegetable matter) or other substances? Wouldn't ViNEGAR be a better option?

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on March 10, 2011
at 04:04 PM

If I eat liver every day would this enable me to eliminate the veggies? If you would recommend veggies what would be best? The only ones I am willing to eat are garlic, parsely and dill/herbs currently as I have been scared off by the info regarding oxalates and pesticides as well as human feces in the soil many vegetables are grown(eg. spinach---whereas I had made spinach a staple before researching it in greater 'depth').

5ccb98f6ae42ce87e206cf3f6a86039f

(11581)

on March 10, 2011
at 02:44 PM

You are eating vegetables though, just in the form of dehydrated spices. Chilis and paprika = dehydrated peppers (vegetable fruit), turmeric is a tuber (actually a rhizome), cinnamon = bark, bay leaves and most herbs = leafy greens. So you are getting lots of veg phytonutrients from some pretty concentrated vegetables. Not saying that's a bad thing at all, but definitely not totally veg free.

47a42b6be94caf700fce9509e38bb6a4

(9647)

on March 10, 2011
at 07:20 AM

How could we have had all these answers (and great ones) without a link to Dr. Harris's recent post? http://www.paleonu.com/panu-weblog/2011/2/28/william-munny-eats-his-vegetables.html

Ac1e55cf06c2180f4008ff01953d10dd

(3524)

on March 10, 2011
at 02:38 AM

you can also live all of your life without eating any meat, as the hindis and vegans do. Also you could spend your entire life on pasta, hamburgers and fast food. I do not see why any of those restrictions would help you...

Fe6e37f8d4c49de1ecbc926c8900cd54

(1902)

on March 09, 2011
at 08:57 PM

So you're right, they don't just eat meat, milk and blood anymore.

Fe6e37f8d4c49de1ecbc926c8900cd54

(1902)

on March 09, 2011
at 08:56 PM

"In Kenya two tribes, the Maasai and the Kikuyu, live in the same country, the same climate, the same political system and the same environment. The Maasai, when wholly carnivorous, drinking only the blood and milk of their cattle, were tall, healthy, long-lived and slim. The Kikuyu, when wholly vegetarian, were stunted, diseased, short-lived and pot-bellied. ... Since 1960 the Maasai diet has also changed ... They are now eating less blood, milk and meat, replacing it with maize and beans. Their health has deteriorated." http://www.second-opinions.co.uk/vegetarian.html

89e238284ccb95b439edcff9e123671e

(10299)

on March 09, 2011
at 08:29 PM

Sorry, but the Masai don't eat just milk and blood: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6T8D-3WJ6X40-1&_user=10&_coverDate=07%2F31%2F1999&_rdoc=1&_fmt=high&_orig=gateway&_origin=gateway&_sort=d&_docanchor=&view=c&_searchStrId=1672136334&_rerunOrigin=scholar.google&_acct=C000050221&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=10&md5=7eb939bc8fc0cc78afaa92e369ba5488&searchtype=a

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on March 09, 2011
at 08:03 PM

@sherpamelissa LOL, what a lofty title! I love the diversity here, too. I think lots of lucky people do just fine on vegetables.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on March 09, 2011
at 08:01 PM

@TWS That's true. I spent a lot of time there when I was first acclimating to zero carb.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on March 09, 2011
at 08:00 PM

I tend to think that if you remove what's causing ill health, you don't need the medicinal effects of plants. For example, I think I once read that the health effects of taking antioxidants are more pronounced in smokers. Wouldn't it be more effective to quit smoking?

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on March 09, 2011
at 08:00 PM

It's good that you called me out on my strong wording, Ignacio. My confidence is pretty high at this point, though. The only studies I've seen that make vegetables look good we're in the context of the SAD, so must have had the vegetables replacing grains or refined carbs. I've also seen at least one that showed better oxidation markers with no vegetables.

A968087cc1dd66d480749c02e4619ef4

(20436)

on March 09, 2011
at 07:53 PM

I agree that there is no human requirement for vegetables. You may feel better with them - or not. If you are quite athletic, you might want to consider some starch (yams, potatoes, even rice) or fruit to help with training. A lot of folks on LC Paleo for a long time add some starch back in and report feeling better: Nikoley, Dr. Harris to name a couple.

Fe6e37f8d4c49de1ecbc926c8900cd54

(1902)

on March 09, 2011
at 07:09 PM

What are the primary causes of death?

Ac1e55cf06c2180f4008ff01953d10dd

(3524)

on March 09, 2011
at 07:07 PM

young Masai eat just meat, milk and cow´s blood. But only males up to thirty five years old. And the Masai are not known for longevity, either, besides having a huge level of physical activity, almost impossible to match in the Western world, unless you are a professional athlete...

Ac1e55cf06c2180f4008ff01953d10dd

(3524)

on March 09, 2011
at 06:33 PM

how are you certain they are not needed? Zillions of papers have shown the value of vegetables for optimal health!

7e746be2f0e550a8cd7df881322ae705

(18701)

on March 09, 2011
at 05:55 PM

I was hoping you would see this one! You are our Zero Carb queen! I love that we have such a wide range of "Paleo" represented here.

B289fd8670257e77badb0c77709f8572

(10)

on March 09, 2011
at 05:28 PM

The folks over on ZioH don't seem to feel the need for any vegetation. They've got some interesting tales of restored health by eliminating plant foods.

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23 Answers

13
531db50c958cf4d5605ee0c5ae8a57be

on March 09, 2011
at 04:50 PM

I don't eat any vegetables (or fruit) per se and I've never felt better. My reasoning was digestive. I simply can't tolerate sugar and fiber. Bacteria food in the small intestine = not good for me. I tolerate meat, fish, eggs, and cream very well.

I eat a lot of meat stew. I load up my stews with spices, including paprika, dried chilis and chili powder, turmeric and other curry spices, cinnamon, bay leaf, etc.. I also add bone broth, of which I always keep a supply in the fridge and freezer. I'm pretty sure I'm getting all the micronutrients I need, although the vitamin C content of my stews is certainly lower than the RDA. The paprika and chilis help. I'm not convinced the RDA has any scientific heft, anyway. I don't think I need supplements, although I take some vitamin C because I'm paranoid.

I don't make recommendations based on what works for me because I seem to be a bit of a mutant. But I'm very happy with the results. It is my personal experience that fiber is utterly unnecessary for digestive health, as are probiotics; in fact these are about the worst things I could include in my diet (except for gluten and soy, which cause me pain and grief).

5ccb98f6ae42ce87e206cf3f6a86039f

(11581)

on March 10, 2011
at 02:44 PM

You are eating vegetables though, just in the form of dehydrated spices. Chilis and paprika = dehydrated peppers (vegetable fruit), turmeric is a tuber (actually a rhizome), cinnamon = bark, bay leaves and most herbs = leafy greens. So you are getting lots of veg phytonutrients from some pretty concentrated vegetables. Not saying that's a bad thing at all, but definitely not totally veg free.

531db50c958cf4d5605ee0c5ae8a57be

(8878)

on February 13, 2012
at 02:53 AM

Karen, I don't dispute that. But spices are not "vegetables." They're spices.

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:05 AM

I wonder how you get sufficient minerals, vitamins etc. The broth would certainly help with minerals. Do you eat organ meats, skin, etc? Or are you just eating muscle meats? Its understandable avoiding fiber, I eat lower carb, low inulin, eat antibaterial foods like cranberry, dark grape and coconut oil, and regular probiotics for the same reason (gut bacterial issues). For about a year I ate regular bone broth (stock) based stews. There are some noteable nutrients in spices & herbs, which are plant foods too. But I am curious about your diet & how long youve been on it

10
9f9fa49265e03ddd2bf2bba5477a556b

(3184)

on March 12, 2011
at 07:31 PM

I'm actually sort of perplexed at the notion that vegetables are Paleo. Don't get me wrong, I love my veggies, but they're a totally neolithic food for the most part. Most of the veggies we eat are all derivatives of the Brassica family and date from maybe 3,000 or so years ago. Asparagus and lettuce showed up with the Egyptians. Carrots show up around the 1st century CE. Okra showed up around 1200. Spinach in ancient Persia, but not widespread until the middle ages. Celery ancient Egypt and Greece. And then we have all the various new world "veggies"--your potatoes, tomatoes, squashes, eggplants, avocados, etc. And even the oldest of those only go back to 10,000 years or so (e.g. basically neolithic).

I'm looking out on this hillside by my house in Southern California and I see chaparral. I've spent a lot of time growing up hiking all around California and I'm pretty familiar with the sorts of goodies available in the chaparral and oak woodlands. And I don't see anything at all like my big bowls of salad greens, kale, chard, squashes, brussel sprouts, asparagus, etc. There's some various flowers in bloom right now that have some tender, edible green bits, and if I foraged carefully enough I could find some edible herbs, but mostly it is nasty, tough drought resistant plants that aren't really edible. What I do see up in those hills are lots and lots of rabbits (probably because there's not many coyotes and foxes anymore) and lots and lots of various rodents. If I were a Paleolithic person in SoCal I would have focused by efforts on getting those rabbits, not rummaging through bushes to gather some greens. I would go through the oak savannah and collect as many acorns as possible (which is precisely what the natives did) because they're an easy to collect, nutrient dense source of energy. Maybe, if I were down by the coast, I'd gather up some seaweed that washed up on shore. But mostly, I reckon that I'd be eating lots of rabbit, deer and acorns. I guess back in the day when we had salmon, I'd eat some that. If I were really ambitious and we still had bears around, I'd try and spear one of those. We also used to have Steller's sea cows in the waters off SoCal, so I might rig a kayak together and go out and harpoon myself a nice fat sea cow and haul that in. Point being, there's no natural salad bar around here. And that goes for a lot of regions. I've spent a lot of time in the Hill Country of Central Texas, which is a lot like SoCal. Lots of oaks and little shrubby things, lots and lots of deer, but no salad bar.

This all leads me to question just how much "veggies" Paleolithic people really ate. I know Cordain and folks like that argue that they ate a lot. But where? In the US, pretty much except for the Pacific Northwest and the Gulf Coast/Florida, you're not going to have green stuff growing year round. And the Great Plains, Rockies, and Southwest it is just too dry to support foraging on greens if you're a person. This pattern would hold for lots of places in the world that aren't tropical. There just weren't gardens laying around, we hadn't selected veggies yet, so what were all these greens and veggies people were eating at the expense of eating mammals, birds, lizards, amphibians and fish?

9f9fa49265e03ddd2bf2bba5477a556b

(3184)

on March 13, 2011
at 06:40 AM

I never claimed they didn't exist, I just want to know what the hell veggies they were eating (and supposedly in bulk) when modern agriculture hadn't turned little weeds into big bunches of chard and cauliflower. The only greens that I'm aware of the Chumash eating in any quantity was clover. Otherwise it was acorns and chia seeds. And any other seeds they could pound into something edible. Makes sense, seeds are calorically dense. So who are the Paleolithic salad people? I'm sure they existed, but actual evidence is nice and I'm happy to be directed to said evidence.

9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on March 12, 2011
at 07:42 PM

Just because you don't know about them doesn't mean they don't exist. Native Americans in your area harvested vegetable matter often, though perhaps mainly for flavor.

1dd1d4bde5b46b4c90efeadea3a96a75

(180)

on May 14, 2012
at 09:19 PM

Agreed - there isn't a lot of wild vegetation that would easily fill your nutrient/caloric needs, not to mention most of them don't taste that great without dressing/spices etc. If you do stop to really think about it, it's unlikely Paleo people ate veggies unless trying to prevent starvation.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on January 11, 2013
at 12:24 AM

Humans don't do well on uncooked vegetation. Starch needs to be cooked to release digestible polysachharides, and foliage/stems are cellulosics which are indigestible even when cooked. You could make a case for eating precellulosics from plant buds, but these are highly seasonal. Fruits and nuts were definitely paleo, but the other plant parts hardly at all.

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on April 04, 2013
at 01:05 PM

I would think that tubers would be the primary vegetables for the Paleo area. Without structured growth patterns (as in agriculture) I'd think leafy greens and most other veggies would be more trouble than they're worth. Of course, I'm sure plants would naturally cluster for reproduction's sake... and then fruit-bearing trees would be an obvious food source.

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:11 AM

Modern farm animals are exactly the same. There was no "cow" 10,000 years ago. Or "chicken". Plus some plant foods are pretty much unchanged. If this was an argument for not eating fruits and veges, it would be an argument for almost eating no food of any kind. Additionally, its likely that the exodus from africa, was largely tropical - think about it. West coast of africa = tropical. Asia = tropical. The tropics are filled with good plant food eating, that have amazing health benefits in humans (fish, coconuts, tropical fruit phytochemicals etc), and they are plentiful food environments

5
7cf9f5b08a41ecf2a2d2bc0b31ea6fa0

on May 14, 2012
at 09:30 PM

This is one aspect of convention I can't get over, fruit and vegetables are surely good for you and they taste lovely

I couldn't live on just meat, eggs and fat!

Bbb65dfde2b925e334048eb6438b3950

on May 14, 2012
at 10:56 PM

I am the complete opposite. When I read the words "live on just meat, eggs and fat", I swear my heart skipped a beat and I just felt really happy.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 16, 2012
at 01:40 PM

Coffeeandcream, your comment made me laugh. I feel the same way; I am not a lover of plant foods, and never was as a kid. As an adult I felt virtuous eating veggies, but I also felt gassy and arthritic. I've been ZC/XLC for nearly three years now, and have never felt better in my life.

1dd1d4bde5b46b4c90efeadea3a96a75

(180)

on May 19, 2012
at 05:20 AM

I think it's a myth that they are 'surely good for you'. Why, conventional wisdom?

Medium avatar

(10611)

on January 11, 2013
at 12:27 AM

Why oh why do people here dwell on not eating things they enjoy?

5
1dd1d4bde5b46b4c90efeadea3a96a75

(180)

on May 14, 2012
at 06:32 PM

It makes sense that they are not necessary for a number of reasons:

  • most vegetables, especially in their ancients forms, are simply not palatable. Spinach on it's own? Kale? Cauliflower? There's a reason almost all little kids don't like them. Add some fat and you can get them down. Apparently olives before brining are inedible. Why would our ancestors eat something that doesn't taste good?

  • most ancient vegetables were far more toxic. The ancestor of lettuce was very high in opiate properties and would put you to sleep. The common ancestor of broccoli, kale, cabbage, cauliflower, brussel sprouts was toxic. All plants have toxic defenses - they don't want to be eaten! We have simply made them a lot better through 5-10000 years of cultivating they less toxic ones. This is the same reason paleos don't eat grains - why are they accepted in veggies?

  • many vegetables were simply not available in paleolithic times. Tomatoes and peppers are new world veggies. Variety compared to today's supermarket was not even close.

  • ancient veggies return on investment would be extremely low. Wild plants were probably half the size of today, and even today's plants provide little caloric return. They wouldn't be growing in neat rows. The cost of finding, gathering and processing would be greater than the calories expended.

  • you can thrive on an all meat diet.

All signs point to veggies being anti-starvation foods that we learned to farm. Prior to grain cultivation we needed something with a lot of calories to feed our needs - meat. Why would our ancestors waste time on low returning and toxic veggies?

C836b2644e7319bb957fbb794a97708e

on May 15, 2012
at 12:34 AM

True Rose, however when the animals ran, swam or flew away what would be for dinner..( good natured snark on my end)

C836b2644e7319bb957fbb794a97708e

on May 15, 2012
at 11:23 PM

I am interested in researching this idea more So just know that I am open to new ideas. What about fruits and berries that want to be eaten (to spread their seeds in a convenient fertilizer)?

C836b2644e7319bb957fbb794a97708e

on May 14, 2012
at 08:08 PM

I always found the "plants dont want to be eaten" a little dubious ...animals dont wanto be eaten either ...

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 14, 2012
at 08:42 PM

Yes, ancestralstars, but animals can run, swim, or fly away.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 15, 2012
at 02:32 AM

I appreciate a good snark. :) In all seriousness, though, the critter has external defense systems: claws/fangs/whatnot, plus a possible escape route. Plants really do have boatloads of toxins, and critters who eat them have to develop systems to manage them. Susan Allport -- no fan of Taubes -- wrote an excellent chapter on this in The Primal Feast (Chapter 8): http://bit.ly/JDgSnI

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 16, 2012
at 01:35 PM

(And behavioral/cultural strategies, of course, include cooking.)

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 16, 2012
at 01:28 PM

Excellent point about fruits and berries, which do "want" to be eaten. (although you can still find poisonous fruit). FWIW, I do think we're omnivores, but omnivory comes with a risk. Imagine yourself on a desert island with no humans and no familiarity with the local flora and fauna. You're much safer killing and eating something with a face than taking a nibble off random plants and hoping you don't eat one you can't handle. I believe safe plant eating depends greatly on cultural knowledge (and it's why we're so nosy about what everyone else eats).

C836b2644e7319bb957fbb794a97708e

on May 17, 2012
at 04:55 AM

What about vit c? We cant make our own so we need it and that is found in fruits/veggies.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 17, 2012
at 01:36 PM

Why is meat a poor source? "Fresh meat from animals which make their own vitamin C (which most animals do) contains enough vitamin C to prevent scurvy, and even partly treat it." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scurvy#Prevention

C836b2644e7319bb957fbb794a97708e

on May 17, 2012
at 04:58 AM

(and meat is a very poor source)

C836b2644e7319bb957fbb794a97708e

on May 15, 2012
at 11:40 PM

Also why is it that we are not built like carnivores if we are meant to eat nothing but meat. I thought we were omnivores?

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 17, 2012
at 02:01 PM

Also, there's this funny study on an attempted intervention to control oxidative damage (using green tea extract) that the researchers presumed must occur on a plant-free diet. The punch line from the abstract: "Since no long-term effects of GTE were observed, the study essentially served as a fruit and vegetables depletion study. The overall effect of the 10-week period without dietary fruits and vegetables was a decrease in oxidative damage to DNA, blood proteins, and plasma lipids, concomitantly with marked changes in antioxidative defence." http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12064344

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 16, 2012
at 01:34 PM

Allport's chapter does an entertaining job describing the various counter-plant-toxin strategies that plant-eaters have to develop. Most of them are physiological, but some are behavioral (including avoidance of the most toxic plants). There's a plant that kills intestinal parasites, but it also kills monkeys (iirc) if chewed. So the monkeys roll the leaves and swallow them whole, like a pill, so the leaf passes through the stomach and doesn't release its toxins until it hits the intestine.

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 17, 2012
at 01:55 PM

It's also theorized (sometimes stated as fact, but it seems the main study it depends on was conducted in vitro, and may be physiologically irrelevant) that glucose "competes" with vitamin C, and is preferentially taken into the cells over vitamin C (they're structurally similar), so a high-carb diet might necessitate a higher intake of C.

1dd1d4bde5b46b4c90efeadea3a96a75

(180)

on May 19, 2012
at 05:18 AM

I think fruits do want to be eaten (to spread their seeds via feces), and we are meant to eat them (why almost everyone likes sweets). However they weren't meant to be eaten year round or in highly concentrated forms (sugar, syrup etc). Wild fruits would be smaller, lower in sugar, and higher in fibre and seeds. It's probably likely even the effects of sugar(fat gain) are beneficial to us, we would put it on in the summer when food was plentiful in preparation for less resourceful winters.

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on April 04, 2013
at 01:08 PM

Why would our ancestors eat something that doesn't taste good? Because they didn't have fluorescent-lit ailes of choices on hand. I'm sure there were plenty of times where 'doesn't make me sick' was qualification enough.

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 04:09 AM

So you don't eat modern bred animals like cow or chicken? What animals are you eating?

5
100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on March 09, 2011
at 05:00 PM

I don't eat vegetables, and I'm certain they are not "necessary" for optimal health. On the other hand, I don't think optimal health necessitates avoiding them either for most people, though it may be true for some, including me.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on March 09, 2011
at 08:01 PM

@TWS That's true. I spent a lot of time there when I was first acclimating to zero carb.

B289fd8670257e77badb0c77709f8572

(10)

on March 09, 2011
at 05:28 PM

The folks over on ZioH don't seem to feel the need for any vegetation. They've got some interesting tales of restored health by eliminating plant foods.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on March 09, 2011
at 08:00 PM

It's good that you called me out on my strong wording, Ignacio. My confidence is pretty high at this point, though. The only studies I've seen that make vegetables look good we're in the context of the SAD, so must have had the vegetables replacing grains or refined carbs. I've also seen at least one that showed better oxidation markers with no vegetables.

Ac1e55cf06c2180f4008ff01953d10dd

(3524)

on March 09, 2011
at 06:33 PM

how are you certain they are not needed? Zillions of papers have shown the value of vegetables for optimal health!

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on March 09, 2011
at 08:00 PM

I tend to think that if you remove what's causing ill health, you don't need the medicinal effects of plants. For example, I think I once read that the health effects of taking antioxidants are more pronounced in smokers. Wouldn't it be more effective to quit smoking?

7e746be2f0e550a8cd7df881322ae705

(18701)

on March 09, 2011
at 05:55 PM

I was hoping you would see this one! You are our Zero Carb queen! I love that we have such a wide range of "Paleo" represented here.

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on March 09, 2011
at 08:03 PM

@sherpamelissa LOL, what a lofty title! I love the diversity here, too. I think lots of lucky people do just fine on vegetables.

Bdc4873264ec9dbec27505e678dabce0

(432)

on November 01, 2012
at 02:25 AM

I am trying a diet without vegetables, ambimorph, but I find myself worrying about vitamin C. What are your thoughts on vitamin C.

3
Medium avatar

on March 09, 2011
at 06:25 PM

I think it's misguided to do so, but if you must, make sure you're eating ruminant liver every week.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on March 10, 2011
at 04:04 PM

If I eat liver every day would this enable me to eliminate the veggies? If you would recommend veggies what would be best? The only ones I am willing to eat are garlic, parsely and dill/herbs currently as I have been scared off by the info regarding oxalates and pesticides as well as human feces in the soil many vegetables are grown(eg. spinach---whereas I had made spinach a staple before researching it in greater 'depth').

Medium avatar

(39821)

on March 13, 2011
at 12:44 AM

I eat a half pound (uncooked weight) of steamed spinach every day. The oxalate scare is ridiculous, in my opinion. Eating liver every day would likely result in vitamin A or copper toxicity, hence the kidney.

2
0ee59c0b3ee7d670790417c486d09870

on January 10, 2013
at 11:58 PM

For years I had asthma and a weird dry feeling in my mouth that goes away after I hadn't eaten in a while. I lost 34 pounds on an organic vegan diet. I even tried raw vegan. I felt great and full of energy. I never missed a beat to exercise on top of that. My mental focus was excellent---until i developed severe respiratory issues and dark rash on my face. I came to a point I was dependent on my long acting and short acting inhalers. I first suspected citric acid allergy because after eating oranges for one weak, I developed symptoms of allergies. However, then it became mushroom, kiwi, eggplant. On top of that, I have gastritis. I developed a small tumor in my pituiatary gland (that is in the brain) while eating this organic all-vegetable vegan diet. I always suspected I would get a tumor or cancer because I always didn't feel well. Plus, I have insulin resistance and polycystic ovarian. I developed uterine fibroid while on a very healthy diet. My stomach wouldn't stop blowing up and I was negative for celiac disease. I have a fluid in my gut that doesn't get obsorbed. I think there is fluid all over my body that is not getting absorbed. It occurred to me gastritis means you cannot eat ANY plant products. Fruits have citric acid and it is inflammatory. Vegetables have fiber and I can't tolerate it. My asthma disappeared, but I do better on a meat and rice diet. I read online histamine causes the prolactin level in the blood to go up, which is what the tumor does. Well, histamine comes from fruits and vegetables for me. Elevated prolactin can cause tumors in other organs too. Never had I felt better. But my intolerance includes chocolate, tea, and coffee, because they are plant products too. I also read inflammation is what causes tumors and cancers and allergies is a form of inflammation. I found an organic milk that is unhomogenized and unfortified to drink and now I don't retain fluid anymore. Fortification of foods come from vegetables.

2
89e238284ccb95b439edcff9e123671e

(10299)

on March 09, 2011
at 04:10 PM

I guess there is lots of speculation and discussion possible on the amount and sort of vegetables. The answer will probably be something like: 'you have to experiment for yourself'. And that is probably right. Another possible answer could be: 'make sure to vary a lot and eat all the colours of vegetables'. That is probably right too.

Just some food for thought: there is no hunter gatherer population that only ate animal foods. Even the Inuit, known for their diet heavily based on animals, eat quite a variety of plants. I know this does not necessarily mean that you cannot live without plants (although it could).

Why would you not eat vegetables? Especially for an athlete worried about cost effectiveness, I think plants are very useful.

I'll leave the technical stuff (minerals, phytochemicals, polyphenols, vitamins, macronutrient ratio brakedowns, hormetic effects, ...) to the real paleohack nerds ;-)

07154e6d8e42065f230d06249700fe5b

(2057)

on March 12, 2011
at 08:52 PM

I thought the Masaii ate only meat, milk, and blood? Or at least they used to...

1
3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on May 17, 2012
at 02:14 PM

I know this is an ancient question, but I thought it might be worthwhile to post this interesting study in response. Essentially, the researchers assumed that a fruit-and-vegetable "depleted" diet would result in an increase in oxidative damage, and so administered green tea extract (GTE) in meat patties to their study group of 16 people (8 smokers, 8 non-smokers) as an intervention. The GTE showed no effects one way or another in their blinded study, and the punch line from the abstract reads:

Since no long-term effects of GTE were observed, the study essentially served as a fruit and vegetables depletion study. The overall effect of the 10-week period without dietary fruits and vegetables was a decrease in oxidative damage to DNA, blood proteins, and plasma lipids, concomitantly with marked changes in antioxidative defence.

LOL. I certainly respond very well to being "deprived" of fruits and vegetables: No more joint pain, significantly reduced fat mass, and I haven't had a single cold or other sickness since dropping fruits and veggies back in Sept. 2009.

(This study is also notable for its reporting of negative results, the relative rarity of which is a hot issue among sciencey thinkers these days.)

100fd85230060e754fc13394eee6d6f1

(18706)

on May 24, 2012
at 11:12 PM

Yup. That's the one I was alluding to in my comments to my answer. I really like that study for various reasons, and the reporting of negative results is a big one, especially since it seems likely not to be expected by any researchers in the field. It's sort of amazing it was published.

Cc69a51b427eaad36251cce9dcca4d3a

(1074)

on January 11, 2013
at 04:38 AM

so u just eat meat but what do you drink? coffee/tea/alcohol/sodas? jw

3aea514b680d01bfd7573d74517946a7

(11996)

on January 11, 2013
at 03:01 PM

Water and black coffee. A very occasional bit of clear alcohol like vodka or tequila, but I don't seem to be able to drink much anymore. Which is fine; I never was a big drinker anyway.

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:35 AM

What about hormesis?

1
32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on May 14, 2012
at 07:55 PM

Necessary? No. Desirable? Yes.

B0fe7b5a9a197cd293978150cbd9055f

(8938)

on May 14, 2012
at 08:17 PM

Why though.... ?

Medium avatar

(10611)

on January 11, 2013
at 12:29 AM

Why not? Why do we have different breeds od dogs and cats? One kind should satisfy everyone.

1
Ef4c5b09fdccf73be575d3a0c267fdd9

(2539)

on March 10, 2011
at 06:33 AM

I think those who don't tolerate veggies very well have gut flora issues... and honestly I think veggies are actually crucial in trying to restore a healthy gut flora so it's a bit tough really.

Ef4c5b09fdccf73be575d3a0c267fdd9

(2539)

on March 10, 2011
at 06:07 PM

The fibers in veggies feed different species of gut flora and Dr. Ayers at coolinginflammation makes a pretty good case that raw, dirty veggies contain new bacteria for the digestive tract, and with persistance, the gut flora adapt and change with the inclusion of diverse veggies. There are actually studies that show that when children start eating more veggies/less refined carbs, their gut flora changes too, to a kind that "keeps them thinner". Not sure if that is really the case considering most research on gut flora is in its infancy.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on March 10, 2011
at 04:07 PM

Would you care to elaborate on the relationship between gut flora restoration and the consumption of vegetables?

1
C2502365891cbcc8af2d1cf1d7b0e9fc

(2437)

on March 10, 2011
at 03:53 AM

A good place for information and discussion on a meat only diet is http://zeroinginonhealth.com

I do this most days. I think it's a good idea to eat some offal. I could certainly eat more, but I generally try to eat some liver with my bacon and eggs on weekends.

Taking fruit and vegetables out of a standard neolithic diet is probably not a good idea. Adding vegetables to an all meat diet, however, strikes me as rather pointless. The meat has all the nutrition you need in denser, more satiating packages. There may be good reasons for eating vegetables, but health is not one of them (I'm thinking texture, variety, colour, flavour).

I do eat vegetables if they happen to be there, but most of the time they're not and I'm happier not to bother with them.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on March 10, 2011
at 04:13 PM

I agree with your reasoning on the condition that a complete nutrient profile can be obtained through a protein/fat(animal product) diet. It appears it can...but: can it? Also, what about herbs/spices? I include alot of spices(turmeric, cayenne, paprika, ginger, black pepper, oregano powder, etc.): which would you recommend if any?

1dd1d4bde5b46b4c90efeadea3a96a75

(180)

on May 14, 2012
at 06:39 PM

Look at the history of 'The Bear' in zero or low carb forums. He subsisted on pretty much steak with smaller amounts of high fat cheese for I think close to 50 years, before dying in a car accident. He claimed to have virtually not aged since his 30's and never get sick. Seemed like a highly intelligent person and his studies concluded veggies are simply not necessary. I believe he wrote that your requirement for many nutrients goes way down once you remove carbs (ie vitamin C as you mentioned).

8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:34 AM

Muscle meats? Or skin, eyes, bones etc? Nutrients, for the whole animal yes. But plants aren't just nutrients are they, they are also bioactive phytochemicals. Look at lycopene, or medium chain fats - plants have things to offer, than meats simply do not, even nose to tail.

1
Fe6e37f8d4c49de1ecbc926c8900cd54

on March 09, 2011
at 06:35 PM

This is an interesting question... I honestly don't know, but my thought is that the only way you could pull off a healthy no-veg diet (by healthy, I guess mean that you're getting sufficient micronutrients) would be by eating exclusively pastured meat and wild-caught seafood. If you're eating conventional meats, you'd probably be in trouble.

@Pieter -- I actually have heard of some tribes who exclusively eat meat and blood and are perfectly healthy. Again, though, they aren't eating grain-fed animals.

Ac1e55cf06c2180f4008ff01953d10dd

(3524)

on March 09, 2011
at 07:07 PM

young Masai eat just meat, milk and cow´s blood. But only males up to thirty five years old. And the Masai are not known for longevity, either, besides having a huge level of physical activity, almost impossible to match in the Western world, unless you are a professional athlete...

Fe6e37f8d4c49de1ecbc926c8900cd54

(1902)

on March 09, 2011
at 07:09 PM

What are the primary causes of death?

89e238284ccb95b439edcff9e123671e

(10299)

on March 09, 2011
at 08:29 PM

Sorry, but the Masai don't eat just milk and blood: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6T8D-3WJ6X40-1&_user=10&_coverDate=07%2F31%2F1999&_rdoc=1&_fmt=high&_orig=gateway&_origin=gateway&_sort=d&_docanchor=&view=c&_searchStrId=1672136334&_rerunOrigin=scholar.google&_acct=C000050221&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=10&md5=7eb939bc8fc0cc78afaa92e369ba5488&searchtype=a

Fe6e37f8d4c49de1ecbc926c8900cd54

(1902)

on March 09, 2011
at 08:57 PM

So you're right, they don't just eat meat, milk and blood anymore.

Fe6e37f8d4c49de1ecbc926c8900cd54

(1902)

on March 09, 2011
at 08:56 PM

"In Kenya two tribes, the Maasai and the Kikuyu, live in the same country, the same climate, the same political system and the same environment. The Maasai, when wholly carnivorous, drinking only the blood and milk of their cattle, were tall, healthy, long-lived and slim. The Kikuyu, when wholly vegetarian, were stunted, diseased, short-lived and pot-bellied. ... Since 1960 the Maasai diet has also changed ... They are now eating less blood, milk and meat, replacing it with maize and beans. Their health has deteriorated." http://www.second-opinions.co.uk/vegetarian.html

1
Ac1e55cf06c2180f4008ff01953d10dd

on March 09, 2011
at 06:24 PM

yes vegetables are needed for the average person. You can live without vegetables: yes! but most likely a long term diet without carrots, squash, spinach, broccoli, potatoes, or fruits will not be optimal: your cholesterol might be too high, your risk of cancer too, etc. I would not do that!

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on March 10, 2011
at 04:06 PM

Would the function of vegetables be mainly for cleansing the digestive system through fibre(given the assumption that complete nutrients can be obtained from non-vegetable matter) or other substances? Wouldn't ViNEGAR be a better option?

1dd1d4bde5b46b4c90efeadea3a96a75

(180)

on May 14, 2012
at 05:59 PM

Why would your cholesterol or risk of cancer be too high? There's absolutely no studies to prove this.

1
3c7856106195fd0084a06b5892269d36

on March 09, 2011
at 04:19 PM

There is an article about a Crossfit athlete who has done this, https://games.crossfit.com/features/leonid-soubbotine-lion-chaser

0
Medium avatar

on June 06, 2014
at 06:16 PM

Hey there @dzone

I had Dr. Justin answer your question on BWR. Your question was answered at (14:25)

http://beyondwellnessradio.com/beyond-wellness-radio-episode-4-listener-questions/

I know this is super late, but I hope it is helpful.

0
8b9c2dcd3dfc929a0428d3d6dac4918e

(70)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:00 AM

The standard and I believe correct answer is that to get all nutrients from animal diet alone, one needs to eat an extreme variety of organ meats, skin, etc. Nose to tail. Thats what the innuit dietary studies teach us. Otherwise I think its pretty beneficial to eat plant foods, particularly those rich in rarer vitamins, or minerals (things like, nuts, dark leafy greens, colourful veges and fruit)

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on February 22, 2014
at 03:25 AM

Inuit also eat plants whenever available. Stored for periods when plants aren't available.

0
7160a3fb485cb0af573c0292fdb08144

on February 21, 2014
at 05:24 PM

This is an older thread, but I'd like to bump this and see if anyone else has anything to add. I've found this thread to be quite fascinating as I've always assumed it's ideal to eat veggies. Now, I'm starting to questions that. Mark Sisson had a recent post about this: http://www.marksdailyapple.com/do-you-really-need-to-eat-vegetables-to-be-healthy/#axzz2tnfNvMhJ

Be157308a0438e382b88d9db4c12ab30

on February 21, 2014
at 10:16 PM

I actually found Mark's post to be supportive of vegetables.They provide some nutrition, a lot of flavor and don't really cause any substantial weight gain (except for the starchy root vegetables). Can't see why it would hurt to eat them, unless they were outright toxic, but that isn't really the case with our modern-day crops, which are quite harmless.

0
9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

on April 04, 2013
at 10:17 PM

Vegetables are somewhere between necessary and really-make-your-life-simpler, and I am kind of perplexed by all of the baseless and upvoted answers that they aren't. You didn't mention fruits but I'm assuming you meant both fruits and vegetables, and other things like herbs?

To start with, humans can't synthesize vitamin C like some carnivores, in fact only a few mammals have this problem, they need some external source. You can get it from animals but primarily from the organs, and vitamin C is damaged by cooking, so that would be primarily raw organs. I doubt that many of the meat enthusiasts here are eating raw organs on the regular. Vitamin C is obviously widely available in fruits and vegetables.

I have heard that the adrenal gland of some animals is high in vitamin C, but let me know the next time you see one for sale at Whole Foods.

Many Paleo diets that include vegetables are low in magnesium and manganese because those minerals are not widely available from animals (primarily from certain shellfish) and are in foods that are avoided or limited (grains, nuts). Eating no vegetables exacerbates this. You can get enough of these if you work at it but you're not going to get it from steak. Ditto folates.

If you don't eat fruits or vegetables, type everything you eat into fitday.com and see if you are getting a rounded diet. If you are eating raw organs, shellfish and eggs on the regular you are probably doing better. But isn't it just easier to have a salad every now and then?

I don't think that the fiber in vegetables is essential and think that the need for fiber is a bit overblown.

0
89985542ffc00c296552951369fe809a

on April 04, 2013
at 08:48 PM

I eat a limited amount of vegetables. My digestion is miserable, so if I eat too much, I WILL KNOW. If you feel good eating vegetables, then by all means, chow down (well to an extent, lol), but if you're like me where eating even one cherry tomato causes your stomach to turn in knots, you may want to back away... The only veggies that seem to be okay with me have to be cooked and they include winter squash, spinach and green beans! (maybe asparagus on a good day!)

0
Ecf56c446c8ef2d3edc313c864a9ab0a

on April 04, 2013
at 12:29 PM

Vegetables are completely unnecessary, period. Here is nothing to talk about really.

If we evolved without them (99% of time without vegetables) why would anyone like to eat them these days? That makes no sense.

Of course there is answer to that question. Government and food industry produced propaganda (even Cordain is fooled by it!).

Vegetables are emergency food at best. They are toxic, low in energy, full of indigestible nutrients and expensive.

Of course one can adapt pretty well to vegetables. We humans can eat almost everything and thrive. However, diet without meat and animal fat is a poor diet.

I personally would not eat green salads and all that stuff because it makes me full of gas (even after adaptation period). When I switched to mainly animal food diet (and some fruit) my abdomen get much smaller in one week (without body fat change). With vegetables and starch it was like 104cm and after about one week on 99% animal diet went down to 94cm. Plus I feel much better since that change (and have more money for good meat and fat).

There is probably just one use for vegetables. And it's juicing while on Gerson anti cancer therapy. And this therapy is one of the best out there and it really works. Why? There is many reasons. However, toxic compounds in vegetable juices are known to kill cancer cells very effectively (or to be more precise they block spread of cancer).

But the Gerson diet (therapy) isn't for everyday use. I know because I have asked them and they told me to not use it as everyday diet. It's purely anticancer therapy (which is based on juicing).

Anyway, vegetables at they are (in their natural form) are useless.

9a5e2da94ad63ea3186dfa494e16a8d1

(15833)

on April 04, 2013
at 09:59 PM

Can you provide some information / background / studies / papers suggesting that we evolved 99% of the time without vegetables?

0
4781cf8ae1bfcb558dfb056af17bea94

(4359)

on March 09, 2011
at 11:34 PM

Not necessary in that you can live for a long time without them, but the better question is are they necessary to promote ideal health and longevity. I think the answer to that question is that they are indeed necessary.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on March 10, 2011
at 04:11 PM

WHY? This is the question posited in the post: "Are they necessary" entails: WHY are they necessary? What had prompted me to ask the question was whether I am wasting my time with a superfluous diet item, just like whether a CEO is wasting his time paying for bodyguarding services when none of the paranoids are out to get him. Are vegetables necessary= WHY. Hopefully someone can shed some light as I feel digestion is enhanced through their omission.

1dd1d4bde5b46b4c90efeadea3a96a75

(180)

on May 14, 2012
at 06:43 PM

Agree with WHY? I think it's just hard for people to change from the almost religious dogma of veggies being a health food. They seem 'natural' and we have been told they are good our whole lives.

-2
Medium avatar

(195)

on May 17, 2012
at 02:28 PM

I eat them because I enjoy them. I've found that the best vegtables to consume are green veggies, ALWAYS cooked, slathered in coconut oil... Adding fats is the far best way to consume them without affecting insulin/gluclose...

Also I would argue that SUPPLEMENTS are more necessary than vegtables - Gedgaudas points this out in 'Primal Body Primal Mind' - because we are being assulted with far more environmental toxins than Grok ever had to deal with...

Medium avatar

(10611)

on January 11, 2013
at 12:31 AM

Supplements are only necessary to the person selling them. If paleo diet is the ideal, how did grok get the jars of capsules he needed to survive.

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