Many people does not make the difference between high fat and high protein diets. High fat diet consists mainly of organ meat, fatty meat, egg yolk, butter, seafood, fatty fish etc. High protein diet consists mainly of lean muscle meat.
For example, the Inuits and Native Americans of the Great Plains knew how to stay healthy, especially early spring when the animals they hunted were lean. Sometimes native populations had no choice but to subsist on rabbit meat (leanest of the animals) for a short period of time, until other animals (caribou) fattens up and become ready for hunting. "Living on lean game is somewhere between unhealthy and fatal." (- Stephan Guyenet). This is called Rabbit Starvation.
The fiber hypothesis is based on the study of a single investigator namedDenis Burkitt, former missionary surgeon in Uganda. He proposed that a diet high in fiber, as he observed among native populations in Africa, is the key to prevent chronic diseases especially colon and rectal cancer.
Most of us are born with a perfect genetic blueprint. If we give the right nutrients during our lifetime to our body, then the genetic expression will be perfect. If our food is deficient in nutrients, then our body will try to adapt to a poor diet, we still survive, but develop chronic diseases. The genetic expression depends on the building material we provide to our body. As we age, genetics play less and less role in the development of chronic diseases, meanwhile nutrition and lifestyle become more and more important.
When we eat, there's a hormone called leptin which signals to the brain to stop eating once we had enough calories or energy intake. When we eat a high carbohydrate meal, leptin is not doing it's job. That's why we are still hungry after a big chocolate cake, but we are not hungry even after a small high fat diet meal (if it is not consumed together with carbohydrates).
In my post about Evolution, I mentioned that during more than 2 million years saturated fat was part of our diet. Evolution should be our best guide for what constitutes a healthy diet. The longer we've been eating a certain food as a species, the less harm it is likely to do. We are supposed to consume food we are genetically adapted to. Most probably a few thousand years are enough to adapt to a new kind of food, but a few hundreds are not.
Our best guide for a healthy diet is evolution. The longer we've been consuming a certain type of food as a species, the less harm it is likely to do. If we want to avoid chronic disease, the best way would be to restore "biological normality - that is ... the conditions to which presumably we are genetically adapted." (George Rose - Sick Individuals and Sick Populations, 1985)
When we take animals from the wild, we first see what their natural environment is, then we attempt to recreate it in order to keep them happy and healthy. Same goes with food. We have to give these animals the food they evolved to eat and the food they would choose to eat in their natural environment.
I've already wrote about deficiencies that might occur in vegetarians and vegans. Today, I will talk about deficiencies occurring when eating a western diet, as I receive more and more emails from people taking supplements, even though they seem to be consuming a "healthy diet" (low fat, high in fruits, vegetables, healthy carbohydrates) recommended by different health authorities.
Vilhjalmur Stefansson (November 3, 1879 - August 26, 1962) - Harvard anthropologist, Arctic explorer, spent 10 years among the Inuit of northern Canada and Alaska eating nothing but meat. The Inuit diet consisted of caribou, seal, polar bear, rabbits, birds and eggs. In extreme necessity the root of a local plant was consumed as well. The Inuit considered vegetables and fruits "not proper human food".
Diabetes: the body is unable to use the carbohydrates circulating in the blood for fuel.
Symptoms: hunger, frequent urination.
Type 1 diabetes (childhood diabetes): the pancreas is unable to produce insulin. Type 2 diabetes (adult onset diabetes): this disease is linked to excess weight and characterized by an insensitivity to insulin. Type 2 diabetes is a result of chronically elevated sugar levels in the blood. It can be improved by the adoption of a diet low in sugar and carbohydrates.
The eyewitness testimony from missionary and colonial physicians lead to two observations:
1. Diseases of civilization were rare to non-existent among isolated populations.
2. These diseases appeared only after populations were exposed to Western foods, in particular sugar and white flour.