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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Not sure if anyone here knows about this (considering our alternative food choices from the rest of the world I'm guessing a few of us must), but what do you think of this diet? He claims that meat, fish and eggs are things we're supposed to eat because our ancestors did... bullsh*t or not? I was pretty convinced that animal products all together weren't part of the natural/healthy human diet, not just meat. Thoughts on this?
 

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I have a decent amount of knowledge in this, so I will try my best....

I do not think many people would argue AGAINST what the primal diet advocates. Dairy is a gray-area, as there do exist some ancestral civilizations that did live off of it, but it advocates that if it is used, it should be grass-fed and raw. (I.E. bearing no resemblance to what is in stores). Even though meat is under the diet, it is to be made without oils, and only the leanest portions used. No grains, no soy, but VERY heavy on vegetables and fruit. The bottom line is that nothing should be processed, so it is basically a raw foodist diet with lean meat/fish (eaten without breading) added in. It is a paleolithic diet, and it has been around for 50 years.

I think that the argument against it says that moral issues exist in killing an animal, and that a return to "primal living" would be terrifying in any other area. I think that in general, the vegetarian/vegan movement operates on the idea that the barbarian thinking of "might means right" must be rejected. In this, we recognize that the world DID operate this way for millenia, and that yes, eating a theoretical grass-fed, painlessly killed animal may give needed protein. I could also argue that my directing a mass-murder somewhere might somehow reduce population. I could argue that sterilization and a strict eugenics program is the only way to better humanity for future generations (as Plato's Republic does). I realize this seems like a jump, but it is not. In both cases one is participating in atrocity, in knowingly inflicting suffering on something sentient to it, with the goal of longer life or a better community....but the means to that end is not acceptable to us, in our collective rejection of "might means right".

So yes, I could corral a bunch of animals in my backyard for years, only to murder them in order to eat them, and I might have slightly bigger arms.....or I could use modern technology to grow soy, grow grain, supplementation, and give me the same result. I can reject the idea that just because I CAN subjugate someone or something, that its suffering is worth the end goals for myself and myself alone. I think to discuss the "primal diet" and to ignore the moral side of it is to deliberately steer the argument away from the uncomfortable places where is it weak...
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yeah I was thinking it was pretty close to a raw vegan diet with the few obvious exceptions. And yeah I agree about steering away from the moral side of it, as most omnivores do anyway though. Cheers for the input.
 

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I posted a quite lengthy article the other day where a person promoting this mindset interviewed a vegan paleontologist. This thread received no replies as of the typing of this post, perhaps because it contradicts the "humans are natural vegans" dogma that certain elements of these boards tries to promote, but it's a good read.

At the end of the day the point is we're functional omnivores who evolved from functional fruitivores who could survive on a diet consisting of either meat or plants. There really is no such thing as a natural or optimum human diet. With proper preparation we can digest almost any organic material derived from either plants or animals. The vegan discussion should always come down to things like ethics and environmental concerns. The health and naturalist claims could support either a meat based or plant based diet depending on how you approach it.
 

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If our ancestors were meant to eat meat, then a human would easily be able to kill an animal without using weapons like, say, members of the cat family can.

That's the argument I use all of the time with carnivores anyway.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh James xVx View Post

I posted a quite lengthy article the other day where a person promoting this mindset interviewed a vegan paleontologist. This thread received no replies as of the typing of this post, perhaps because it contradicts the "humans are natural vegans" dogma that certain elements of these boards tries to promote, but it's a good read.

At the end of the day the point is we're functional omnivores who evolved from functional fruitivores who could survive on a diet consisting of either meat or plants. There really is no such thing as a natural or optimum human diet. With proper preparation we can digest almost any organic material derived from either plants or animals. The vegan discussion should always come down to things like ethics and environmental concerns. The health and naturalist claims could support either a meat based or plant based diet depending on how you approach it.
Yes, I read the paleovegan exchange. I agree that humans are omnivores, although it depends on how you define 'human'. I'm supposing from Homo habilis, but Homo sapiens is of course more definitive. There's no doubt that prior to about 4 million years our ancestors were vegetarians (frugivores (fruit) and folivores (leaves). But as you say, in evolutionary terms the 'veganism for healthy eating' debate is just about meaningless. There are other ways of healthy eating. The ethical focus probably should be the primary one. I understand that others will disagree.
 

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I don't think the issue is whether our ancestors ate meat or whether we're capable of eating meat. We obviously are, but we obviously don't need to as well.
 

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This is an interesting counterpoint to claims that humans are naturally omnivores. It contains a link to a paper by Dr. Milton Mills that seems to offer a lot of physiological reasons why, even though we can digest meat, we weren't actually designed to eat the stuff. As it was pointed out, you can digest cardboard but is it something we should be eating?

http://michaelbluejay.com/veg/natural.html
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mia82 View Post

If our ancestors were meant to eat meat, then a human would easily be able to kill an animal without using weapons like, say, members of the cat family can.

That's the argument I use all of the time with carnivores anyway.
That's really... meh, we are omnivores by nature, and were scavengers way back when, its not a question of whether or not we did, because we *did*, it's a question of whether or not we *should*.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by GK420 View Post

Not sure if anyone here knows about this (considering our alternative food choices from the rest of the world I'm guessing a few of us must), but what do you think of this diet? He claims that meat, fish and eggs are things we're supposed to eat because our ancestors did... bullsh*t or not? I was pretty convinced that animal products all together weren't part of the natural/healthy human diet, not just meat. Thoughts on this?
Definitely bull**** about the eggs and animal milk. Prior to becoming domesticated, birds laid eggs once or twice a year, and the mammals whose milk people like to suck gave birth once a year. Hardly a realistic basis for claiming these foods should be consumed by modern people every day of the year.
 

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Originally Posted by SomebodyElse View Post

Definitely bull**** about the eggs and animal milk. Prior to becoming domesticated, birds laid eggs once or twice a year, and the mammals whose milk people like to suck gave birth once a year. Hardly a realistic basis for claiming these foods should be consumed by modern people every day of the year.
It almost infuriates me when people say it's natural to drink milk, wtf?!
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh James xVx View Post

At the end of the day the point is we're functional omnivores who evolved from functional fruitivores who could survive on a diet consisting of either meat or plants. There really is no such thing as a natural or optimum human diet. With proper preparation we can digest almost any organic material derived from either plants or animals. The vegan discussion should always come down to things like ethics and environmental concerns. The health and naturalist claims could support either a meat based or plant based diet depending on how you approach it.
This.

In addition, I think phrases/words like "we're supposed to" or "natural" or "meant to" are ultimately meaningless in discussing our diet or what we think we should be doing now.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by GK420 View Post

I was pretty convinced that animal products all together weren't part of the natural/healthy human diet, not just meat.
Humans are biological omnivores, therefore animal based foods are part of our natural diet. Our ancestors probably ate anything edible they could get their hands on to survive.

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Originally Posted by River View Post

It almost infuriates me when people say it's natural to drink milk, wtf?!
It is natural to drink milk. It's just another food that helped our ancestors survive. Oh, and of course it's not natural for infants?

Man, when are people going to stop this none sense.
 

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Originally Posted by Thorham View Post

It is natural to drink milk. It's just another food that helped our ancestors survive. Oh, and of course it's not natural for infants?

Man, when are people going to stop this none sense.
Past infancy, no it's not.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by Thorham View Post

It is natural to drink milk. It's just another food that helped our ancestors survive. Oh, and of course it's not natural for infants?

Man, when are people going to stop this none sense.
It's natural to drink your mother's milk, yes, but not squeeze on or suck a cow to get some for your cereal or cup of coffee lol.
 

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I've never understood how the ones arguing how people are evolved to eat meat disregard the physical aspects of our evolution. I don't the outcry of how people need the rush brought on from running from larger animals, or the physical exhertion involved in obtaining food. No one brings up the fact that our physiology is completely changed.
For that matter, weren't humans consuming large quantities of insects as well? That isn't questioned by these "paleo" eaters.

I really hate when people argue that eating meat is part of the "circle of life" when it doesn't thinning herds, or anything that represents need. I can understand hunting in places where vegetation is scarce and it is a dietary supplement, but other than that, it makes far more sense ecologically, and biologically, from humans to at least mostly eat vegan.
 
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