“In nature, the population of a species explodes until it exhausts its supply of food; then it crashes. In the market, an oversupply of a commodity depresses prices until either the surplus is consumed or it no longer makes sense to produce any more of it. In corn’s case, humans have labored mightily to free it from either constraint, even if that means going broke growing it, and consuming it just as fast as we possibly can.” Michael Pollan from The Omnivore’s Dilemma
A woman goes to see her doctor for her yearly checkup. The doctor looks at her amazed. “What happened?” he asks in disbelief. The doctor says, “The last time I saw you you weighed 60lbs more, and from looking at your latest bloodwork I can see that all your numbers are in the normal range. Your Type II diabetes seems under control and you are visabley healthier. Tell me what did you do?”
The patient responds, “About six months ago I started working out doing CrossFit. After being a vegan for 14 years, I was finally convinced that I should start eating meat again. My diet is meats and vegetables, nuts and seeds, some fruit, little sugar and no starch. I take fish oil supplements. I stopped eating grains. I feel better than I ever have in my life.”
The doctor responds, “Wow! That’s great. It seems you have found something that really works. I am just a little concerned and think you should add some more whole grains back into your diet.”
What the hell is wrong with doctors? Aren’t they supposed to be men of science. How can you look at evidence of success and totally contradict it with your subjective bias? If you are looking at objective markers of health like bloodwork and find somebody that has been able to correct their illness through diet, why on Earth would you advise them to backpedal? Here is what the doctor should have said, “Wow! That’s great. I have to read up on this diet and exercise that you are doing because it has worked astonishingly well. I have never seen results like this. I have never gotten results like this from any of my patients with the high carb vegan diet I have been counseling them to eat. Perhaps after I learn a little more about what you are doing I can try and suggest it to some of my other patients that are also Type II diabetic and see if I can get similar results from them.”
At CrossFit we use a Black Box method. We look at inputs and outputs. We want to see improved performance as measured by how fast you can go, how heavy you can lift, how far you can throw. We look at other objective measures like body composition, cholesterol, blood pressure, resting heart rate, and everything that modern opinion tells us are markers of good health and we try to move all those numbers in the right direction. We keep playing with the inputs in order to get the outputs we want. We have come up with a fairly simple set of inputs: WOD, Zone Diet and Rest. The outputs we are generating are phenomenal. They are so phenomenal in fact that most people do not believe that such a simple recipe can produce such amazing results. Thus they are quick to add well you should probably do some leg extension and crunches just to be safe and be sure to eat more whole grains and watch your fat intake.
I am currently reading The Ominvore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan and what is clear as he takes a long look at our food chain is that our inputs and outputs are screwed up. As a society we are becoming further and further removed from the source of our food. Food is a crucial input. By compromising the quality and integrity our food our health is suffering. Most of our food sources are dependent upon corn and petroleum and as a result we are slowly becoming more parts corn and petroleum. In this modern age the fear is no longer that Soilent Green is people but rather that people are Soilent Green!
“You can’t regulate integrity.” Joel Salatin owner of Polyface Farms
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