- A look at why Soy is not a part of my diet.
- The Primal Blueprint Diet
- My recent Carnivore exploits
Why I do not include Soy products in my diet
So recently the FDA announced they were going into a consultation period, regarding Soy products not being able to make claims about them being good for your heart health. Since 1999 anything with Soy Protein in it could have a sticker slapped on it, saying it was good for your heart. You may note the FDA have not apologized for allowing this in the first place. Plus they are not saying Soy is bad for you, just that the evidence it is good for your heart is wishy washy at best. It really does wind me up that people are still doubling down on dietary saturated fat and cholesterol being bad for you.
Below I am going to discuss why I do not eat Soy. I am aware that the biggest consumers of Soy are vegans, and I am not trying to vegan bash. If I was a vegan, and knew what I know about Soy. I would probably still eat it. I would take the health risks on the chin, because I would need to get protein in somehow.
Probably the main reason I don’t use Soy products, is that the Soy bean is well a bean. I have stopped eating beans altogether. Well apart from the occasional portion of Baked Beans on a Full English Breakfast. You see Legumes have high levels of Phytic Acid. This is a powerful anti-nutrient. Which among other things prevents the proper absorption of key nutrients like calcium, magnesium and zinc. All vegetables have Phytic Acid, but it is broken down my cooking or soaking. However legumes have a hardy form, which can not be broken down by these methods. The only way you can break it down is by fermenting. If you notice all the traditional cuisines that do use Soy, it is in fermented forms like Tempeh. Unfortunately unless you are using a traditional recipe, you are not even getting them benefits anymore. For example Soy Sauce should use fermented Soy beans. However nowadays most Soy Sauce is made from an industrial chemical process. So you are getting all the bad stuff and none of the benefits. That said, that is a problem across the board in relation to industrial food production. It is not just a Soy problem.
This is another gripe I have with Soy production. It is billed like you are saving the planet by eating it. However Soy agriculture is terribly hard on the planets top soil and requires high level of pesticides, in fact all Soy is genetically modified. It also means more land is passed into the hands of the multinational corporations, rather than local farmers. It is also devastating on the local ecosystems, so not very animal friendly at all. Then the actual process of getting anything out of a soy bean is extremely industrialized. You can not milk a bean like a cow, you have to pulverize it and add all sorts of agents. For example to make Tofu look like a cheese, they have to add an coagulant. No big deal you may say, but the often used coagulant is what you find in Plaster of Paris or dry wall!!! Hardly the signs of a healthy natural product is it. You also will find MSG is often added to Soy products to mask the natural unpleasant taste. However you can make your Soy Bean oil at home if you would prefer, check out the recipe here. Like a lot of recipes passed down through the generations, you will need some Hexane. A flammable solvent derived from Petroleum. Good luck with that.
There are high levels of Phytoestrogens in beans too. Again cooking breaks them down in other veg, but its harder to break down in beans. Phytoestrogens play havoc with the endocrine system, and if you are eating something that’s inhibits and blocks hormones. You know that’s not going to be a good thing. Plants use Phytoestrogens as chemical warfare against herbivores, so imagine how ill equipped carnivores or omnivores are at managing them.
Also there is a bit of a myth with Soy beans in relation to protein, as with all beans. They do contain relatively high protein content for a plant based food. However like all plant based protein is is incomplete, compared to the building blocks our body needs to maintain structure. It takes a high level of planning to get all the amino acids your body needs from plants alone. For example Soy Beans lack the important amino acids, methionine and cystine. Animal meat obviously has all the amino acids we need because we ourselves are made up of animal meat. It is only logical that protein from plants would differ to what we need, because well they are plants!
The last bit is something that I did not know before but is horrifying if true (Plants have different ways of protecting themselves, one is the use of anti nutrients that either prevent you from absorbing nutrients from the plant or leech nutrients from your body). Shockingly Soy is linked with blocking the absorption of Vitamin B12 and Vitamin D. I am presuming most people that eat Soy are vegans, in that case eating something that decreases your Vitamin B12 is incredibly poor judgement. As it is something every Vegan on the planet will be deficient in. Also Vitamin D is vitally important. I did a quick google of Soy milk sold in supermarkets. They all seem to be fortified with Calcium, Vitamin B12 and Vitamin D. This shows manufacturers are aware of the problems with Soy. However don’t be fooled this is helping you. You will find fortified products like this and cereals, use synthetic vitamins. Unfortunately your body has no idea what these fake vitamins are and cant use them. This is also an issue you will find with 99% of multivitamin tablets.
Conclusion – at best non-fermented Soy products might even themselves out and you may get as many health benefits as you get health risks. At worse they are robbing your body of vital health ingredients, whilst over egging their benefits. I think the heavier the amount of beans in your diet, you are amazingly likely to be at a nutrient deficit. Therefore requiring even more other types of vegetables to get the vitamins and minerals you need. However like I said before you pretty much have to eat beans to get your protein levels up if you are not eating meat and fish.
The Primal Blueprint
What can you eat
The good stuff
This diet is just a pure classical low carb high fat diet, and one I would recommend for people just starting out. As it should be really easy to do.
Right off the bat grains, legumes, processed sugar and bad fats are banned. That is the litmus test for me. Any diet that says you can have any of these 4 things is playing roulette with your health.
Then apart from that it is the usual mix of meats, nuts, vegetables and healthy fats. Whilst I am moving away from plant food, eating this diet would do you a lot of good in comparison to normal western diets.
I also like how they are trying to get you to move more. It does not mean go out and get a gym membership. It means do some walking, lift something in your garden or play a game of catch. Simple regular movements do make a difference.
The bad stuff
The diet is too high in carbs for my taste, but is still definitely low carb in relation to the whole diet spectrum.
They also recommend and sell their own food products. Whilst some manufacturers will be better than others, at the end of the day it is something I try to avoid now. They might be able to tell me how all their bars are made from Primal appropriate products, but they are still too carby for me. The first one I checked had 14g carbs in a pretty small bar, I think that’s a bit excessive. You are always best making your own food.
Conclusion – This is a very simple and effective LCHF diet, which ticks all the right boxes. Offers a good amount of protein and fat, whilst cutting out foods that will cause inflammation. I especially like the focus he gives to exercise, sun, sleep and play. Also the website Mark’s Daily Apple is an excellent source of information.
My recent Carnivore Exploits
I forgot to make a daily list of what I ate this week. However basically on Saturday for breakfast and lunch I was carnivore, but on the night I was out at a party so ate badly and had a lot of booze. Sunday I was hungover so had a pizza and a Chinese takeaway. Monday to Friday I was strict Carnivore again. I must say on the Monday I felt awful and ran awfully, that wasn’t the booze hangover. It was definitely a carb hangover. It has taken me all week to recover from the carb fog. I don’t beat myself up for “cheats”, as there has to be a bit of life into living and I do enjoy alcohol. However I have not enjoyed how I have felt all week, so it is something that needs to be moderated. The alcohol hangover would have been a day and done, but I was really surprised to how sensitive I am becoming to carbs. It is even more pronounced on Carnivore than it was on Keto. Luckily I don’t suffer from digestive issues, I just feel like crap for a while.
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