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Sunday Miscellany: Off-Grid, Facebook Socio-Political Posts, All Pills Are Antibiotics, and Whole Grains I’ve Been Eating

The RV off-grid experience is going pretty well. The two, 6-volt golf-cart batteries are really fantastic. The solar panels I have—equalling only 38 watts charging capacity—have proven insufficient. Since I was going to need a backup generator anyway (for eventual inclement weather over days), I got the Ryobi 2200-Watt Digital Inverter Generator. It’s about as quiet as the super-expensive Honda at about half the price. In two weeks, I’ve only had to run it for up to an hour or two every 2-3 days, and have burned only 1.5 gallons of gas so far.

But, I just got two 100-watt solar panels, and should have the 30-amp charge controller by tomorrow. That should limit generator usage down to only seriously inclement weather over multiple days. And, if I need, I can add two more batteries and two more panels, for 460 amp-hours of battery, and 400 watts of charge. It’s very fun fiddling with this stuff.

Tomorrow I get Internet installed, finally. Sunk the 8′, 2″-diameter chain-link fence-post yesterday, in order to mount the dish that will hit the tower on the top of Mt. Umunhum, about 20 miles away. It should substantially increase my Internet activities here.

…I’m back on Facebook, as some 60 followers so far know, but I haven’t gone out of my way to advertise or promote, but perhaps will. It’s open for anyone to “Follow,” and you can “Like” or “Share” stuff I post, but only my tiny collection of 20 FB friends (mostly family and people I see or know in person) can post comments.

See, back when I had my followable personal page before, and my page for this blog, it had a combined 8,000 followers or so, and the comments were just too much to handle. They’re of quite a different sort than is typical for this blog. So, I’m not going to do both. If you wish to engage in comments, this is the only place to do that.

Otherwise, I’m doing FB different this time. I’m sharing a good amount of stuff I find, or what’s posted by others, but a mix of stuff in terms of what I agree with or disagree with, or other quibbles. But, I take the time to write a blurb or mini-essay, usually not too vitriolic, which I’m quite enjoying. Here’re a couple of examples over the last day or so.

3 Things You Should Know About Birthright Citizenship

Your papers please, update. National citizenship is a silly concept. Defining someone by means of a document issued by a state is silly.

If nobody had a “right” to live at the expense of others by means of “qualifications,” including citizenship, or an “obligation” to take up arms and kill others at the behest of a citizenship “granting power,” the whole notion would become a moot artifact of history that would cause people to roll their eyes.

Bernie Sanders Announces Bill To Abolish For-Profit Prison Industrial Complex

Typical stupid solution.

Just get rid of all laws that criminalize anything other than crimes where there is a clear and distinct victim. Y’know: murder, rape, kidnapping, burglary, battery, fraud, etc. as a start.

That strikes at the root. This “solution” merely shuffles money around, a shell game for the sheeple.

Other than that, a little something for everybody. Trying to feel out being a bit more selective, however, such that it’s a pretty decent newsfeed with commentary, but with a bit more depth than my 140-character Twitter. And, I share funny stuff too.

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Common Medicines Make Superbugs, Not Prescription Antibiotics. That’s a new post at Cooling Inflammation, by Dr. Art Ayers.

Careless prescriptions and cattle fattening antibiotics are blamed for the rise of superbugs resistant to everything in the hospital arsenal, but that’s all wrong. Antibiotics fail, because we are all abusing common medicines that also have powerful antibiotic activity. All painkillers, anti-inflammatories, statins, antidepressants, and the whole list of common pharmaceuticals are the problem. We simply use too many drugs.

Common drugs should also be labeled as antibiotics, because they kill the sensitive bacteria in your gut and leave behind just the resistant bacteria. Unfortunately, the genetic mutations that make your gut bacteria resistant to drugs, also provide resistance to antibiotics needed to stop infections and that broad resistance to antibiotics can spread to pathogens that then become the dreaded superbugs.

We take too many pills. Food should be your medicine and food has both pro and anti-biotic properties, balanced both unto itself and to the organisms, including humans, that have evolved eating it for eons. For the same reason that it’s better to drink a glass of whole milk that whey protein isolate, popping pills is isolating a single plant or synthetic compound while not considering the integrated whole. In that sense, it may be better to seek out whole herbal remedies when needed for various acute maladies, as you’ll be dealing with a whole, and not an isolate.

…Post coming up this week on various whole grain stuff not covered here. It’s going to be a work of The Duck Dodgers. I’m well aware that many think this has gone completely overboard, now, but stick with it. To prepare, re-read the chapter on the remote Swiss village in the Loetschental Valley in Weston A. Price’s Nutrition and Physical Degeneration.

The nutrition of the people of the Loetschental Valley, particularly that of the growing boys and girls, consists largely of a slice of whole rye bread and a piece of the summer-made cheese (about as large as the slice of bread), which are eaten with fresh milk of goats or cows. Meat is eaten about once a week. In the light of our newer knowledge of activating substances, including vitamins, and the relative values of food for supplying minerals for body building, it is clear why they have healthy bodies and sound teeth. The average total fat-soluble activator and mineral intake of calcium and phosphorus of these children would far exceed that of the daily intake of the average American child. The sturdiness of the child life permits children to play and frolic bareheaded and barefooted even in water running down from the glacier in the late evening’s chilly breezes, in weather that made us wear our overcoats and gloves and button our collars. Of all the children in the valley still using the primitive diet of whole rye bread and dairy products the average number of cavities per person was 0.3. On an average it was necessary to examine three persons to find one defective deciduous or permanent tooth. The children examined were between seven and sixteen years of age.

I recall reading that way back in 2008 and just living with the cognitive dissonance. It must be understood that what I’m talking about is the whole grain or wheat berry, and recently milled, and fermented if possible. Anyway, I’ll give my own results of eating a substantial amount of whole grains at a future time. Here’ s just a couple of examples.

First, on Beckmann’s 9-Grain Sourdough (I also have 3-Seed Sourdough, and they also have a product line where they grind the whole grains fresh every day), we’ve got liver pate, smoked oysters, smoked clams, three kinds of French cheese and for fun, a mini PB&J. That was taken together with a glass of raw whole milk.

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Next, on Mestemacher Pumpernickel—which is basically whole kernel rye—we’ve got fresh homemade egg salad (from 2 farmer’s market pastured eggs) and sliced Bubbies pure kosher dill pickle.

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Other than that, it’s been some quality oatmeal, as well as some whole grain cereals. And, some, but not huge amounts, of whole raw milk and nice cheeses. I must say I am loving the convenience.

Other reports at a future date.

Richard Nikoley

I'm Richard Nikoley. Free The Animal began in 2003 and as of 2021, contains 5,000 posts. I blog what I wish...from health, diet, and food to travel and lifestyle; to politics, social antagonism, expat-living location and time independent—while you sleep—income. I celebrate the audacity and hubris to live by your own exclusive authority and take your own chances. Read More

22 Comments

  1. Jackie D on August 23, 2015 at 14:14

    I appreciate your experiments and the shared insights. Doing one of my own now: am on a Weston A. Price Foundation-recommended fertility diet. Every day I’m supposed to have one quart of raw, whole, grassfed milk; four tablespoons raw, grassfed butter; fermented cod liver oil; blue ice butter oil capsules; mollusks; fish roe; bone broth; coconut oil; fermented veggies, and more. I’m struggling to get it all in, and now feel like I’m gaining a bit of weight from all the dairy (which isn’t good for fertility).

    Worst of all: diet boredom. How did all those ethnic populations eat the same stuff all the time (with limited seasonal variations)? I guess I’m just a spoiled modern human.

    • Resurgent on August 23, 2015 at 15:02

      @Jackie D – Please spare some time to read this report about CLO, written by an office bearer of WAPF.
      Not standing in judgement, just pointing to something that I recently read that may interest consumers of CLO.

  2. Beans McGrady on August 23, 2015 at 15:14

    “We take too many pills. Food should be your medicine…”
    Go play your djembe. Fuckin Hippie.

  3. Tim on August 24, 2015 at 08:19

    Richard,

    I remember stumbling upon the Weston Price stuff a few years back. Same thing. I had to hold that information in cognitive dissonance too while I was getting caught up in the low carb mania. Slowly, with much of what you’ve been doing, it’s all coming together.

    I also had to hold Martin Berkhan’s view of carbs in cognitive dissonance. With a body like his, I just assumed he had to be into low carb. (btw, I was happy to see that he finally did a new post recently after being gone for over a year. I’m going to test his suggestion for the grip on dead lifting)

    I love the old man picture.

  4. Eric on August 24, 2015 at 09:08

    So this means you’re not worried about wheat belly any more?

    And what’s your take on sprouted grain bread? I got some and it tastes kind of weird unless it’s slathered in (grassfed) butter and raw honey.

    I started eating bacon and eggs for breakfast every single day a couple years ago and the results were fantastic. Lost belly fat and no more crashing before lunch time even after eating a huge, bloating pile of carbs for breakfast BUT recently I’ve been craving a pastry mid morning, not because I was hungry or anything like that, I just really want it for some reason, so I’m adding a couple slices of good bread to my bacon and eggs, hopefully that will prevent these carb cravings. Add that to the anecdotes about how low carb paleo can feel great at first but not so much in the long run.

    • Richard Nikoley on August 24, 2015 at 09:24

      Nope, haven’t the slightest concern over wheat belly.

      I don’t claim to understand how a guy like me with a propensity to store fat in the gut while I can have fine popping veins on my legs & arms, can suddenly slowly lose belly fat without trying.

      Perhaps it’s the focus on gut health, maybe something else, maybe a combo but what I do know is that I seek to satisfy my need to eat in a way that’s enjoyable and not fraught with any sort of obsession and is usually fairly easy.

      Grains are pretty wonderful in terms of ease, and the way I’m doing it appears to be working for me. Just last night I made some chili dogs, but instead of using hot dog buns of white refined flour, I toasted three slices of a Beckmann’s 9-grain deal, sliced them into about 9 pieces (5 for me, four for Bea) to line the bowl, then in went the dogs, chili, cheddar and onion. I only ate 3 of the pieces and gave the other two to the dogs.

      Whereas, I could not stop eating bread until I’d eaten way too much, I now find that my satiety signal comes about midway through any meal. Other than micro-meals, I almost always leave food on a plate, now, and I’m not even trying.

    • Eric on August 24, 2015 at 11:38

      Well my theory is that going paleo and high fat for a while teaches your body how to deal with fat again and learn how to use different cues for satiety as opposed to the full belly feeling you get when you eat enough carbs for your energy needs. In this way low fat versions of common foods make some sense for most people who rely on the belly full feeling. Just the common usage of the word “full” to mean satisfied may have many implications for the way people eat. I wonder if other cultures use their word for “full” the same way.

    • Colombo on August 25, 2015 at 15:18

      I hate how they always terrorize people with wheat and sugar. But I hate even more how others terrorize people with fat, for decades now. It’s crazy. “Meat will make your blod acidic and dissolve your bones” Crazy. “Sugar cause all cancers and should be banned”, yeah like alcohol prohibition or marihuana prohibition did any good.

      Why there always have to be something to fear? If you don’t vaccinate, you’ll die. No, if you do vaccinate, then you will die. Stupid, ludicrous.

      If you eat butter you’ll have gallstones, because cholesterol is so evil, but doctors use cholic acids to treat gallstones!

      You only can know if something is bad for you after you try. I believe the Pygmalion effect is very strong in how will your body react to the things you eat.

      And, let’s be sure. If I eat meat and butter and I feel awful, then I should not eat meat and butter (for a while, at least). If I eat raw vegetable juice, and I feel like dying, I should not follow that idiotic advise to keep on doing the vegetable juicing because I have to feel worse before I feel better. Absurd self-castigation. I must not despise people for what they eat or what they don’t eat.

      I believe that each and everything that is real food (that is, something bacteria will devour quickly) can be nutritious or harmful, depending on the person, the state of health, and the state of the food.

      Salt will give you cancer. Bullshit!
      Fat will make cancer grow Bullshit!
      Thou shall drink eight cups of water or you will become a raisin. Bullshit!
      Do not drink mineral water, drink distilled water! Bullshit!
      Eggs will kill you! Bullshit!
      Fruit will kill you! Bullshit!

      I’m a low-carber most of the time. I’m a better person when I eat butter. With my kefir I’m in control. Everything tastes better with butter and cream. I never liked meat or vegetables, and now I know they taste great with some fat and salt. No problems with food anymore. The only problem is that it takes more time to prepare your own food. But it is much better to spend time cooking than complaining.

      Just find what is good for you, what is bad for you, and don’t be fearful ever!

    • Richard Nikoley on August 25, 2015 at 15:47

      Nice rant, Columbo!

  5. EF on August 24, 2015 at 09:21

    My nutritional journey has led me to believe that 99.9% of whole foods are healthy when prepared correctly. (With the exception of outliers like celiac, etc.) It’s when you start taking things out and putting them back in where things get wonky.

    One of the smartest observations on this site was Richard’s comment about the arbitrary distinction some make that somehow grass fed beef is different than feed lot and leaf lard is different than crisco but somehow a potato is just as bad as white bread.

    “Human subtlety will never devise an invention more beautiful, more simple or more direct than does nature because in her inventions nothing is lacking, and nothing is superfluous” – Leonardo Da Vinci

    Oh, and there’s nothing like a grilled cheese made with mestemacher rye (or pumperknickel) with quality butter and cheese. Very satisfying – must be the northern European heritage. Tomato soup, anyone?

    • Richard Nikoley on August 24, 2015 at 09:53

      Ha.

      Well, what Da Vinci is expressing is that evolution, while causeless, is an individual organism affair and that there are winners and losers is the point. Though, it’s non-conscious and it just doesn’t give a shit (humans tend to anthropomorphize everything, essentially why we have doGs, when no-plan nature does just fine). If lions with their beautiful mains can’t hack it…you’re done.

      I have never liked tomato soup, and it ruins a grilled cheese for me. OTOH, I had a grilled cheese on a rustic bread in “The Village” one time at about 1am that had fresh tomato, added after the grilling and that was sublime. I like tomato bisque, though, but have never bothered to investigate the distinction.

    • sassysquatch on August 24, 2015 at 10:11

      “no-plan nature does just fine.’

      Truer words have never been written!

  6. Colombo on August 24, 2015 at 19:43

    Hi.
    Just wanted to share a video.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FzMAycMMXp8

    You may not want to watch it. Depending on your worldview, it may hurt a lot.

    How can people fool themselves so much?

    Please, someone explain why some people can live with that.

  7. Amy on August 25, 2015 at 10:03

    I’m not skeerdz of the glutenz n’ lektinz n’ stuff, but you might want to watch omega-6 intake. Grains have a lot of that. Too much of it *will* make you pack on excess weight.

    That said, it all looks deeply yummy. Thanks for making my mouth water on a fasting day.

    • JOhn on August 25, 2015 at 22:58

      Grains have a lot of omega 6?

      Omega 6 will make you gain weight?

    • Duck Dodgers on August 26, 2015 at 07:47

      Amy said: “you might want to watch omega-6 intake. Grains have a lot of that. Too much of it *will* make you pack on excess weight.”

      As far as I can tell, that’s a myth that was perpetuated by Bang & Dyerberg who thought that the Eskimos had low heart disease. Their data was recently shown to have been false.

      So, I have yet to see any evidence that the omega 3/6 ratio matters in terms of consumption of whole foods.

      Refined oils, like those from soy that are high in linoleic acid (LA)—a polyunsaturated omega-6 fatty acid—have been linked to obesity, but the reasons why are unclear.

      Interestingly, the iron hypothesis can explain it…

      Transport of Fe2+ across lipid bilayers: possible role of free fatty acids (1987)

      “Fatty acids can form lipid-soluble complexes with Fe2+. Incorporation of fatty acids into phosphatidylcholine/cholesterol liposomes renders them permeable to Fe2+. Of several fatty acids tested, the most effective Fe2+ carriers were linoleic and oleic acids followed, in decreasing order of efficacy, by linolenic, myristic, arachidonic and palmitic acids. ….. It is suggested that free fatty acids may act as mediators of Fe2+ transport across biological membranes, particularly isolated intestinal brush-border membrane.”

      Should you happen to have a diet high in refined oils, it might just make you absorb lots of fortification iron, which appears to promote increased accumulation of iron in adipose tissue, and/or key organs—both of which appear to promote inflammation.

      This may explain why developed fortified nations are the hardest hit, as people in developing nations would be less likely to consume refined oils.

      At any rate, there isn’t any good evidence that the omega-6 in whole grains is harmful. Likewise, eggs are high in omega-6, yet they do not appear to be harmful either—and, interestingly, eggs are well known to inhibit the absorption of iron.

      As you can see, the iron hypothesis is one of the few theories that can tie together all of these seemingly confounding observations into something that makes sense.

    • Amy on August 26, 2015 at 10:16

      Well, I heard it (from other sources, not in the context of that silly Eskimo theory), then I lived it. My experience is that an overabundance of omega-6 makes me gain weight.

      However, it could be that it’s all about the iron. My iron metabolism is quite deranged (been fighting “female-caused anemia” for years) and I lived a piss-poor lifestyle heavy on processed foods and severely lacking in good nutrition for decades. I’m only just now leaving my old lifestyle in the dust. Worth noting is that I’ve lost 60lbs by adhering mostly to other starches and cutting out almost all omega-6. The fat I’m losing it probably loaded with detritus from all those years of bad living. Sadly, I still have some more weight to go but for the first time since I got fat I know I will lose it and go back down to my normal, healthy weight, and stay there with no problem for the rest of my life. It’s a great prospect.

      Or it could be that the problem is omega-6 when combined with [relatively simple] sugar. I got out of balance a couple months ago, got a few cravings, and added walnuts, bananas, and more sweet fruits to the exclusion of starches to the mix. I gained five pounds fairly quickly. Worth noting is that without the walnuts, the sweet fruit (which I eat on a daily basis) doesn’t cause me to gain like that.

      That said, I still eat some grains. I *love* steel cut oats and eat a rather huge bowl of porridge a couple times per week. I’m not gluten sensitive and still eat bread when the fancy strikes me, etc. I’m not a phobe or an alarmist, by any means.

      But based on my experience, grains won’t ever be a major component of my diet, primarily because of the omega-6. YMMV.

    • JOhn on August 27, 2015 at 01:09

      Seriously?
      Poor old “omega 6’s”.

      Try cutting them all out and replacing them with coconut oil and butter (extremely low omega 6 content). I doubt that would be a good weight loss stragedy.

      Seems like your mind is still corrupted by Paleo and Ray Peat pseudoscience.

    • JOhn on August 27, 2015 at 01:18

      The fact that they are easier to “oxidize” makes them much more easier for your body to “oxidize” for energy, which makes them less likely to be stored as body fat. The healthiest fats, like DHA/EPA are the most easiest fats to oxidize.

  8. Harriet on August 25, 2015 at 17:07

    I allowed myself a small amount (very small amount) of wheat products while away. Oops, no, I can’t do that yet.

    Yet? I live in hope that fixing up the gut further will further improve my health. I used to be totally wheat intolerant, not able to deal with flour contamination which set off my auto-immune problem. Now, I only need to be 98% wheat free and contamination doesn’t bother me at all and the very occasional ice cream cone is tolerated OK. I noticed this morning that the arthitis in my fingers diagnosed as rheumatoid at age 15 and osteo at 50 has for the first time in memory gone. No pain, no limitation in movement.

    Yesterday morning I got home after 5 weeks away in Canada and the US and I started again on Elixa. This time I’ll take it for 12-18 days, not sure which yet. The six day course temporarily improved my skin and I felt calmer at the end of it. But 5 weeks of travelling undid those benefits. Will report back on my results for the longer course when finished.

    • Richard Nikoley on August 25, 2015 at 20:09

      Harriet

      You are perhaps the most longstanding trooper I’ve ever had in comments. Educated, informed, no fear and knows how to manage variables

      High salut.

  9. TempestTcup on September 2, 2015 at 12:13

    “The nutrition of the people of the Loetschental Valley, particularly that of the growing boys and girls, consists largely of a slice of whole rye bread and a piece of the summer-made cheese (about as large as the slice of bread), which are eaten with fresh milk of goats or cows.”

    This reminds me of reading Heidi in the early 1960s as a young girl; that was her usual lunch while wandering the fields when she lived with her Grandfather.

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