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Research on Being

Maybe the Problem is Stomach Acidity

After reading a few posts over at Whole Health Source I am starting to think that maybe a deficiency in hydrochloric acid in the stomach is a common condition. First of all, this would lead to indigestion, gas, and the ability for pathogenic bacteria to spread rather than die quickly. These are all conditions that are relatively common and which are exacerbated by foods such as wheat and fructose so it would seem that, circumstantially, increasing the acidity of the stomach could stand to benefit a lot of people.

One way to do this is to supplement with Betaine Hcl which some people do. I took a look at Amazon and it was interesting to see that many reviewers reported not only a decrease in digestive discomfort but also less hunger and more energy. It would seem that their nutrient absorption improved, however, I see no reason to supplement with Betaine Hcl unless other options have been explored, namely, drinking dilutions of apple cider vinegar or lime juice with meals. Anecdotally, it appears to relieve gas and bloating which, in any case, are what I tend to have so I shall be trying this first.

This has all been getting me to thinking about eating raw foods again. Perhaps the reason that people sometimes get sick from raw foods has more to do with whether stomach acidity is sufficient to kill the harmful bacteria. As long as your digestion is healthy, raw meat shouldn’t be a problem. This may also be a cause of deficiencies and hyperphagia. If you’re not digesting food properly than it would make sense that you would want to eat more to get the nutrition you’re lacking and if you’re eating deficient foods in the first place, it would stand to reason that this could cause excessive eating.

References:

http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.com/2009/02/sugar-hydrogen-bacteria-and.html

http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.com/2009/02/low-stomach-acid-and-nutrient.html

http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.com/2009/02/more-thoughts-on-hydrogen-gas-and.html

http://www.livestrong.com/article/292143-what-foods-are-high-in-hydrochloric-acid/

Filed under: Diet, Digestion, Hcl, Nutrients, Raw meat, Stomach acid, Supplements

Raw Meat: Good or Bad?

After finishing Aajonus Vonderplantiz’s Recipe for Living without Disease I can understand why so many people think he’s crazy. While he makes some useful and helpful recommendations, he also makes a lot of wild unsubstantiated claims so it ends up being a book that really proves to be very marginally useful since I don’t know what to take seriously and what not to. I never imagined I would implement his diet but I was really looking for more information on the safety of eating raw meat and ways in which to implement it well. Instead all I found were dismissals of all concerns in regards to raw meat which, considering how unreliable the book is, I don’t really trust.

After a cursory look online it seems that with raw meat as with raw vegetables there are any number of food poisoning possibilities. But, so what? That’s how food is. What I want to know is how to decrease the likelihood of these things. For instance, people always say that you have to cook pork all the way through because of trichinosis but trichinosis is virtually eliminated in pork products and is really something that’s in the past now. I don’t want to be worried about things that are no longer real issues. The possibility of toxoplasmosis was raised by one blogger but after researching it cursorily it seems that it appears primarily in cats and from there can be transferred to other animals via exposure to feline feces and from there travel to other animals via consumption of raw or undercooked meat of animals exposed to feline feces and that generally toxoplasma gondii is more common in pork and lamb. So if you source your meat well, you should have a very low risk of toxoplasmosis since a good source will have sanitary conditions and if you also choose a meat type less likely to have it then that’ll be even better. It seems then that raw beef is probably the best choice for raw meat consumption.

Bacteria seems to grow on the surface area that is exposed so if you buy whole meat cuts instead of ground then less surface area is exposed. A recipe I found for carpaccio online calls for the meat to be seared on all sides for 30 seconds to kill bacteria appearing at the surface and then to trim this part off and proceed with the recipe. Additionally, vinegar and lime juice act as sanitizing agents so soaking meat in a vinegar or lime marinade will likely also kill any surface bacteria making it safer for consumption. But is this at all really necessary if you’ve sourced your meat well? I don’t know. If you were to ask Aajonus Vonderplanitz he would tell you that none of this is a big deal and that raw meat is fine in virtually any condition including severely putrefied or fermented (“high meat”) and that all that bacteria is just going to improve gut health and body ecology. We don’t have this same fear over vegetables after all but we do still wash them.

Now why raw meat? It seems to me like a balanced diet should also have a balanced preparation of foods. With most vegetables it pays to cook them since they are immobile and thus develop toxins to deter predators though some have pretty low toxin levels like cucumbers and lettuce. With meat, however, endogenous toxin levels are nil which means we should be able to eat meat cooked or raw and since these states can be extremely different from one another as far as the chemical structure of the protein, production of AGEs, enzyme availability, and so on it would make sense to me to eat both raw and cooked meats in a diet. I still need to do some more research on the issue of enzymes but, in any case, I do not see any reason why raw meat should be 100% forbidden from a diet when, presumably, we’ve been adapted to it. Even with fire, I cannot imagine every single meal was cooked and, besides, we have the example of the Inuit who did fine on raw meat and high meat.

Unfortunately, if you look up “raw food diets” online all you find are raw vegan websites and if you look up “raw meat diets” all you find are raw meat diets for cats and dogs so this quick summary will have to do for now but hopefully I’ll find a more reliable guide somewhere to raw meat consumption since I do not want to do anything risky but neither do I want to live in fear of something imaginary. For now, raw meat in acid marinades will have to do.

Filed under: Diet, Raw meat