This is to be my 100th post in over a year of blogging here. That’s not a lot. I don’t have a lot of time to blog, so I try to make each and every post count. Blogging more regularly would mean more followers, more comments, more “attention.” But I’m not here for that. I’m here to share my experiences and what I learn with other people, with the hope it keeps me moving forward and that perhaps I can help someone else. That’s it.
I don’t pretend that I know everything about food, nutrition and health. There comes a point when you’ve read enough books, articles and personal stories, that you realize just how complex nutrition and health can be–and how very easily people are led astray.
I remember when I became suspicious of cow milk several years ago. I had read an article that suggested cow’s milk was only ever intended for baby cows. To support this idea is the fact that so many people struggle with digesting cow milk, and others suffer mental affects from the milk protein casein getting into the brain. After weaning or after a certain age in childhood, most people stop producing lactase, the enzyme needed to break down the sugar lactose that is found in milk. As if to confirm this idea, when I got pregnant, my stomach bloated very painfully every time I drank milk. Even later I noticed I got brain fog when I had a lot of dairy.
But no, I wasn’t convinced. Every time I heard someone insist that cow milk was only for baby cows, it just didn’t seem right to me. Maybe it was because I believed that before people started getting all “scientific” about food, when people used to eat food in a more natural state, when people had to use their wits and surroundings to even survive, that God was providing them with good food to eat–natural food–and that included milk.
Then I learned how terrible conventional dairy is and that there is a huge difference from it and raw, grassfed dairy from the right kind of cow. I also learned that gut health problems so common in today’s people makes digesting milk much more difficult than it would be in a healthy gut. I started to learn some of the history of milk, and rather than being a health problem, it actually saved entire civilizations! Throughout history, raw pastured milk from “old-fashioned” cows kept people alive and well. On top of that, my own health saw improvement after I added raw dairy into my diet. And yet, I’m not entirely sure it’s the best thing for my body. If there is anything I’ve learned, it’s to keep an open mind.
I put a lot of stock in traditional food wisdom (such as described by the Weston A Price Foundation) because to me, it makes more sense than anything else. Rather than contradicting, it seems to support my religion’s health code. It’s incredibly fascinating to read of how people learned to be healthy in ways we modern people would never think of. For example, one traditional group who lived too far from the sea to get enough iodine in their diet, learned to burn grass (a source of iodine) and add the ashes to their food. Another group, who had little to no access to carbohydrate foods, ate the thyroid of animals to support their own thyroid. Another group, who had few sources of vitamin C in the wintertime, learned that eating the adrenal glands of animals would prevent scurvy. All of these groups learned to eat extra “sacred” foods like seafood and organ meats when desiring to have children–foods that we now know are rich in nutrients like folic acid and selenium, which are very important in pregnancy. To me, thousands of years of accumulative traditional wisdom trumps any modern ideas we have about food.
But that doesn’t mean I think I can just eat a traditional diet and be perfectly healthy. There’s just too much that goes into our individual health.
Even if I may disagree with some diet philosophies, I really try to remain respectful of other types of diets. I’m not going to disagree that these diets work for other people. A recent visitor to my blog insisted that the only diet we should eat is a 100% raw diet, and I disagreed, pointing out Weston Price’s studies and the incredible wisdom of traditional peoples that I look to, and how I’ve been healing very well in the last year and a half. He told me that anyone would get better after ditching a “McDonald’s diet.” Which, of course, I was not eating before I started on traditional foods (I was eating as naturally as I knew how). I conceded that he may, in fact, be right about 100% raw food being the best way, but that I hadn’t yet been convinced. Hoping I had found someone who could help me learn more about eating raw meat, I quickly learned that he did not, in fact, eat raw meat because he was too paranoid. He couldn’t give me any resources for it, either. The only thing he managed to do was insult me and condemn traditional food wisdom, which he clearly knew nothing about. He had made up his mind about what diet was best, and that was that, no one else could possibly be right.
I don’t want to be like that guy. I don’t want to get so fixated on one idea that I cannot recognize truth when it is presented to me, or that I think everyone else around me is wrong. I’m really not so high and mighty as to think I know everything there is to know about eating right. I certainly do not want to be the kind of person that insults others for what they believe about food (they might know more than I do, for all I know!). And I do not want to be a hypocrite, preaching one thing yet doing another.
I might not promote traditional foods to the ends of my days, but for now, that’s what makes sense to me. Special healing diets like GAPS (the one I’m on) work for some, and not for others. Sometimes I find I do need to keep my enthusiasm in check, reminding myself I am here to share my journey and what I’ve learned, not to convert everyone to the same diet. My own diet is ever-evolving as it is.
I believe in trusting that God has provided what His children need, and that it can be found in nature. But I also believe that we need to use wisdom in our food choices, rather than just randomly eating natural foods and calling it good. I believe in respecting God’s creations by keeping the earth healthy and treating animals with kindness. I believe in showing gratitude for our food, and acknowledging that lives are taken when we eat meat–but also acknowledging that we may need to take these lives in order to be healthy. We are part of this world God created, not above it.
I believe that by being humble, we learn better. By being humble, we can find the abundance in our lives. Through humility, we will find the least resistance to finding good health and enjoying our lives to the fullest.
I hope what I share here benefits more than just me. Thinking I might help someone else is what keeps me blogging.
I can’t promise that I’ll always be right. But I do promise to be honest. And I’ll try, try, try to be humble about what I learn.