• Your life and health are your own responsibility.
• Your decisions to act (or not act) based on information or advice anyone provides you—including me—are your own responsibility.


“Live Now, Live Later”: Paleo Diet, Paleo Life

From a mailing list I’m on:

> These long life diet plans always make me think of the Ninja warriors
> in Hollywood films who train daily for twenty years, then meet the
> American hero who pulls out a gun and shoots them dead. So much for
> their twenty years training!

That’s why I enjoy and advocate a more paleo-centered diet: because for me, and apparently for others, it results in an empirical increase in quality of life right now. I am leaner and stronger, my mood and attitude has improved dramatically, I don’t suffer food coma, I can skip meals at will, and I am both more creative and more capable. Any long-term life extension benefits are just a bonus, like avocado slices—though I am pleased to note that the research is pointing towards such effects.

Standard low-fat diets (Ornish, Pritikin, the “food pyramid”) basically eschew everything that tastes good. Sure, candy and donuts aren’t paleo: but prime rib, bacon and eggs, and a side of sweet potato with avocado slices most certainly are—and they beat the hell out of tofu, lentils, and brown rice. I deeply regret the year I spent trying to be vegetarian, and the decades I spent not eating the delicious food I eat now because it was ‘too high in fat’.

Are you a rodent...

...or a human?

Most diets involve substantial suffering: eat seeds (‘grains’) like a bird or rodent, and force yourself to ‘do cardio’ on machines that go nowhere, like a hamster on a wheel. “You have to work hard and give up your vices if you want to live longer,” their proponents say, as if boredom and misery is the healthy and natural state of humanity. (Vegetarianism is religious in origin.)

It’s dispiriting to shop in a ‘health food’ store. I see gaunt, prematurely aging supplicants carefully filling their shopping carts with the nutritional equivalent of Styrofoam peanuts (‘rice cakes’, ‘low-fat’ yogurt, ‘high-fiber’ cereal), buying crumbly, unsatisfying accretions of industrial products designed to simulate real food (‘soy milk’, ‘veggie-burgers’), and seriously obsessing over which variety of processed, extruded birdseed soaked in diesel fuel (i.e. ‘crackers’, ‘granola’) is ‘better’ for them.

They are buying these food simulations and eating them. How do they live on that stuff? It’s not even junk food…it’s not food at all! Are they even the same species as me?

But then I remember: that used to be me. There are uncountable billions of dollars devoted to subsidizing and advertising non-food, and I myself was bamboozled for years. I wish I could retroactively vomit up all the soy nuts and Kashi I ate.

“Paleo” is not just a diet or an exercise program. It is living as humans have lived for millions of years, and doing the same things that shaped us from apes into humans. Go outside, climb trees and mountains, chase animals and people. Play in the sun and the snow. Make and fix things with your hands. Sprint, lift heavy objects, eat meat. This is fun! If it’s a chore, you’re doing it wrong.

I reject the bizarre concept that millions of years of evolution has selected us to enjoy only things that kill us, and to avoid everything that keeps us alive and healthy. I reject the false dichotomy that we must be either sybarites (“Live now, pay later”) or self-flagellants (“Pay now, live later”). I propose a more accurate and joyous maxim for the paleo movement:

Live now, live later.

(And I’m reasonably sure that the gnolls agree with me.)

Live in freedom, live in beauty.


(Interested in trying it yourself? Start with my motivational guide “Eat Like A Predator, Not Like Prey”, and my Paleo Starter Kit.)

“Live now, live later” is a trademark of J. Stanton. Not that I intend to sue anyone, I just don’t want to see it stolen for the title of someone else’s cheeseball diet book.

The “Lipid Hypothesis” Has Officially Failed (Part 2 of many)

“We spend more time sick now than a decade ago
Despite longer life spans, fewer years are disease-free”

Original paper: Mortality and Morbidity Trends: Is There Compression of Morbidity? Eileen M. Crimmins and Hiram Beltrán-Sánchez. J Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci (2010)

A 20-year-old today can expect to live one less healthy year over his or her lifespan than a 20-year-old a decade ago, even though life expectancy has grown.

Actually, it’s even worse than that…more below.

The average number of healthy years has decreased since 1998. We spend fewer years of our lives without disease, even though we live longer.

Apparently 1998 is when the increased lifespan afforded by the advance of medicine was overwhelmed by our deteriorating health.

Functional mobility was defined as the ability to walk up ten steps, walk a quarter mile, stand or sit for 2 hours, and stand, bend or kneel without using special equipment.

Anyone whose otherwise-whole body can’t walk up ten steps, or who can’t bend over without special equipment, is already dead. What kind of life is that?

Actually, I think we know already. It looks like this...

...or this.

A male 20-year-old today can expect to spend 5.8 years over the rest of his life without basic mobility, compared to 3.8 years a decade ago — an additional two years unable to walk up ten steps or sit for two hours. A female 20-year-old can expect 9.8 years without mobility, compared to 7.3 years a decade ago.

So we’ve lost a year to disease—and over TWO YEARS to being so broken, or in so much pain, that we can’t move.

Why is that?

“There is substantial evidence that we have done little to date to eliminate or delay disease while we have prevented death from diseases,” Crimmins explained. “At the same time, there have been substantial increases in the incidences of certain chronic diseases, specifically, diabetes.”

From 1998 to 2006, the prevalence of cardiovascular disease increased among older men, the researchers found. Both older men and women showed an increased prevalence of cancer. Diabetes increased significantly among all adult age groups over age 30.

The proportion of the population with multiple diseases also increased.

In other words, we’re getting diabetic and having heart attacks, with more cancer as a bonus. And Type 2 diabetes tracks neatly behind our massive increase in obesity, charted here in Part 1.

Why is that?

Could it be because we suddenly decided in the 1970s that fat and cholesterol were EVIL—and that everyone needed to eat a lot less meat, eggs, and butter, and a lot more sugar?

Fun fact: cholesterol is absolutely required by all animal life, and is manufactured by almost every cell in our bodies. A 150-pound person contains about 35 grams of cholesterol, and synthesizes about 1 gram a day. If we eat cholesterol, our bodies simply synthesize less. Still scared of the 210 mg in an egg? You shouldn’t be.

Eggs, serum cholesterol, and coronary heart disease. TR Dawber, RJ Nickerson, FN Brand and J Pool. Am J Clin Nutr October 1982 vol. 36 no. 4 617-625
“Using either method of analysis (the actual follow-up from the time of the diet study, (or, as presented here, the 24-yr follow-up from inception of the Study), there was no evidence of any significant association of egg consumption with the incidence of death from all causes, total CHD, myocardial infarction, or angina pectoris (Table 2).”

“Heart-healthy whole grains” are mostly carbohydrates, which is to say: sugar. The glycemic index of “heart-healthy” whole wheat bread (72) is greater than that of Skittles (71). Metabolically, a whole wheat bagel is the same as two bags of Skittles.

Let that sink in for a while. We’re told to eat 7-11 servings of sugar (“grains”) each day…and now we’re surprised that we’re fat and diabetic.

“The growing problem of lifelong obesity and increases in hypertension and high cholesterol are a sign that health may not be improving with each generation,” Crimmins said. “We do not appear to be moving to a world where we die without experiencing significant periods of disease, functioning loss, and disability.”

Did you catch that? We were told to eat low-fat, low-cholesterol foods, so we did…and now we have hypertension and high cholesterol!

The “lipid hypothesis” was a giant, uncontrolled experiment on an entire nation. It has failed catastrophically. More people have been killed by Ancel Keys, the McGovern committee, the CSPI, and assorted hangers-on like Ornish and Pritikin than were killed in the Rwanda genocide…

…and the death toll continues to mount.

How many millions more will die before the US government and the medical profession abandon the failed “lipid hypothesis”, and its zombie avatar the “food pyramid”?

Stay healthy, stay strong.
Eat meat, eggs, vegetables, and root starches.
Don’t eat seeds (‘grains’) or seed oils (‘vegetable oil’).
Live in freedom, live in beauty.


This article is Part II of my continuing series on the failure of the “Lipid Hypothesis”. See Part I. If you want to know how we got here, watch Tom Naughton’s presentation Big Fat Fiasco. And here’s what I eat.