Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Sounds Kind Of Like


First, the state of nutritional science in 107 words:

The Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than the British or Americans.

The French eat a lot of fat and also suffer fewer heart attacks than the British or Americans.

The Japanese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than the British or Americans.

The Italians drink excessive amounts of red wine and also suffer fewer heart attacks than the British or Americans.

The Germans drink a lot of beer and eat lots of sausages and fats and suffer fewer heart attacks than the British or Americans.

Conclusion: Eat and drink what you like. Speaking English is what kills you.

That's about the sum total, folks. No one really knows nothin', outside of a few hints.


Dhoti? Dhow? Dia? Dido? Die? Die Away? Die Out? Diode? Dit? Ditto? Ditty? Do Away With? Do It? Doh? Doha? Doodad? Doodle? Dot? Dote? Dotty? Dowdy? Dud? Dude? Due Date? Due To? Duet? Duty? Dye?

Nope. Diet. Let's talk diet.

A diet is a way of eating to achieve a purpose. All diets exclude. Every general-purpose diet, intended to cover people in general, is a fraud. Let's label that fraud as "fad". There are three broad classes of diets. Two of them are not fads, and they are critical, but those two classes are so narrow and so tiny that they are almost non-existent. We'll start with them.


Class One Diet

What works for you. Like the woman who eats only beef, with water, and a bit of salt. Perfect.

I'm happy for her. Whatever she says is fine. I cannot judge what she does, and I also have no interest in even trying to eat this way because I don't want to. I also don't think that it would help me in any way. Probably the opposite.

This diet is exclusionary.

I know that I could not eat cow brains, cow livers, cow kidneys, or cow hearts to get at their essential fatty richness, which is required because lean meat will not sustain life. I wasn't raised on organ meats and could not even force myself to eat them now. I also know that I could not afford to buy enough beef to keep myself alive, and I have no interest in spending hours each week cracking open long bones to get at marrow.

This diet is an interesting data point for me but nothing else, a curiosity. Some people are more oriented toward vegetables and grains, or fish, or meat. Some can't handle milk. Some can. Evolution has worked in different directions in different parts of the world. We have all been tuned differently. We come from separate sub-species. We need to eat differently, accordingly.

My people are flatlanders. They are tough and stupid, hard to kill. They can stand out on the prairie in their underwear, at night, in a blizzard, just to see what it feels like and say things like "Hey! This is the real deal then, not?" And then go back inside to watch more TV. They eat potatoes and meat and butter and milk and cheese and eggs and dumplings and a little cabbage and some borscht now and then, and grow very old and feel utterly fine, while remaining skeptical of those vegetable things lurking in the garden. And they love gluten, passionately.

Maybe not you, but who's asking?


Class Two Diet

This one is prescribed by a qualified, knowledgeable, experienced medical professional for exactly one person, based on a diagnosis backed up by verifiable, quantified data, to treat a real medical condition. It is exclusionary.

End of story.


Class Three Diet

The fad.

I break this out into "fad", "fantasy", "fetish", and "cult" subclasses, but they are really all the same. They claim to be applicable to one and all — just "Do this, and everything will be perfect." That's the hook. Always with the hook.

These are also exclusionary.

Some exclude sugar, some exclude all fat, or only "bad" fat. Some exclude protein. Some exclude starches. Some leave out fruit, leave out everything but fruit. On and on. All of them promise. Promise big time. Lovely promises, all.

  • Cult
    • The Jim Jones Kool-Aid diet. Ends all your problems in mere seconds. Drink up.
    • Breatharian. Ditto — Death, but slightly slower to arrive.
    • Vegan. Guaranteed to kill you as well, but it could take a decade or two, due to deficiencies in vitamins K2 and B12 (B12 is not produced by plants).

  • Fetish
    • "Detox" diets, as if the body didn't do this, day and night, forever, on its own, relentlessly.
    • "Clean food" diets. (Which apparently prevent everything you eat from turning to shit.)
    • "Macrobiotic". Do anything you want, because the food will protect you, because it makes you holy.

  • Fantasy
    • Want a butt like Kim Kardashian? Then eat what she does.
    • Want a husband like Kim Kardashian? Then eat what she does.
    • Prefer Suzanne Somers? Then try Somersizing. Works for me! Ya-sure-you-betcha-right.

  • Fad
    • Almost anything, really — too numerous to list them all.
    • Mediterranean. (Enjoy sunny, lazy days the yacht, guzzling olive oil).
    • Baby Food Diet. (Yeck. You know how hard it is to hire a diaper-changer?)
    • Cabbage soup diet. (Like starving in the old country, when we felt blessed to find bugs in our soup.)
    • Gluten-free. (As if.)
    • Fruitarian. (Recommended by Sir Shitsalot.)
    • Grapefruit. (Or his wife.)
    • Master Cleanse. (Cf. Sir Shitsalot.)
    • Morning banana. (What — apples are out?)
    • Paleolithic. (Drag them knuckles, Knut. Grunt and fart like you mean it.)
    • And an infinite number of others.


Class Act Diet

This isn't a diet. It is inclusive.

The trick is you just eat. Food doesn't really matter that much unless you fork with it. Like by not eating it, which is what each and every "diet" mandates. Or by obsessing over it. There is a line spouted by some that goes "Don't eliminate, replace." But replacing one food with another is eliminating. Fish isn't beef, isn't chicken, isn't tofu, isn't pork. Each is similar to the others in some ways, but no food is a drop-in substitute for any other. Better to add or maybe alternate than to either eliminate or replace.

Instead of all this crap, go back to step one, but not to eating only beef. Rather, pick a cuisine that appeals to you — Vietnamese, Peruvian, Icelandic — anything. Just pick one. Or what your grandmother ate, if she was born before the 20th century, before food became big business.

What you'll get is good food that has been vetted for centuries, possibly millennia. Guaranteed to make you happy and keep you well, because it tastes good and because it also supplies everything you need to keep going. Because it's what people have voted for, with their mouths, and because they stayed alive and happy and healthy on it.

Cuisines are continuously evolving, but they do so slowly, by adding new items, and seeing a few items gradually fade out. This is good. Because, if nothing happens suddenly, then there is plenty of time to make corrections. And because there are millions of mouths involved, the cuisine gets voted on by all sorts of people with varied lifestyles, body types, and nutritional needs, constantly.

That means that you yourself are guaranteed to be well treated by a cuisine, any cuisine, and if you just eat it you will be OK. That's it, all there is.

But I bet that much more depends on getting lots of sleep, shunning dangerous chemicals like tobacco and other drugs, avoiding contact with communicable diseases, and getting a lot of exercise. This last one is probably the most important. A good goal might be a tithe — exercise for 2½ hours a day, every day. Pant and break a sweat. Repeat tomorrow, forever.

Even a hundred years ago most people were physically active most of the time. Imagine being on your feet for 10 or 12 hours a day, at a job, moving, using your muscles, and then walking home and doing chores. We don't do that now. Maybe we should. Fewer of us might be crazy.

And food would be just something to eat and enjoy.


Comments? Send email to hoofist@nullabigmail.com

See if that helps.

Sunday, February 3, 2019

Anything happening out there? 31 JAN 19

APOD Partial Eclipse over Beijing.  2019 January 11.  Visit site  ▷

Idle Words Gluten Free Antarctica.  Far below the Antarctic circle, I watch a woman cry real tears because she can't get gluten-free toast.  Visit site  ▷

Behance N A T U . R A E VIII.  The sublime according to Immanuel Kant is the sense of awe that man feels when faced with the greatness of nature.  Visit site  ▷

Reddit -- WildernessBackpacking Baffin Island: Auyuittuq Traverse 2016.  Mount Thor, located in Auyuittuq National Park, on Baffin Island, Nunavut, Canada.  Visit site  ▷

Adventure Journal The Backpacker Who Carries Too Much.  We must call him Jeffrey. Not Jeff. Not Jay. And certainly not "Turd Head,' which was the nickname we'd given him. Jeffrey was his name. He insisted on it.  Visit site  ▷

Iain Macdonald Wind River High Route Trip Report.  July 29 - August 6, 2018 And August 23 - August 29, 2018  Visit site  ▷

National Geographic Part of Earth's crust went missing, and Snowball Earth may be to blame.  A fifth of Earth's geologic history might have vanished because planet-wide glaciers buried the evidence.  Visit site  ▷

The National Parks Girl Backpacking 101.  National Park Backcountry Permit Cheat Sheet.  Visit site  ▷

American Geophysical Union Meet IceWorm: NASA's New Ice-Climbing Robot.  A robot that can inch up icy surfaces.  Visit site  ▷

The Trek After Tens of Thousands of Miles....  Has Hiking Legend "Nimblewill Nomad" Finally Retired?  Visit site  ▷

REI Understanding Sleeping Bag Temperature Ratings.  If you have a reasonable idea of the coldest conditions you anticipate on your adventure, you can pick a bag that will keep you warm at or below that temperature.  Visit site  ▷

Reddit Morning in Goat Rocks Wilderness.  Photo was taken on August 24th 2018 while hiking the Pacific Crest Trail.  Visit site  ▷

Nomadic Pawprints Backpacking the Wind River Range, August 2018 [in three parts].  There is no hiding anything on a backpacking trip...if you have a wedgie you fix it, everyone makes prolific use of the "farmer blow' and everyone knows when you have to poop.  Visit site  ▷

REI How to Visit and Explore Patagonia.  Ready to get planning?  Visit site  ▷

Whiteblaze.net Wow! What a pack!.  Can't get all your gear in your old pack? Try this one!!  Visit site  ▷

Daily Mail Online Icing with death.  Base jumper's 120-metre 'death' plunge after parachute fails to open. (Survives.)  Visit site  ▷

Backpacking Light StoveBench.  A stove testing protocol for comparing the performance of backpacking stoves.  Visit site  ▷

Jill Outside Windswept paradise.  I'm beginning to think my friends don't believe me when I insist that the Far North in wintertime is my version of heaven.  Visit site  ▷

BBC In Search of Snow Leopards.  A journey into the remote Altai mountains to look for one of the world's rarest animals.  Visit site  ▷

Behance Massiv IV.  Dolomites, Italy.  Visit site  ▷

Leor Pantilat's Adventures Glacier Ridge via Tablelands.  One of the snowier spots in the Southern Sierra.  Visit site  ▷

Pmags Colorado transit options for the outdoors.  Getting to the Colorado trailheads without a car can be interesting.  Visit site  ▷

Outside Online This Couple Created a New Thru-Hike in the Northwest.  Thanks to a new thru-hike created by Ras and Kathy Vaughan.  Visit site  ▷

Hiking For Her Benefits Of Hiking.  Gifts To Yourself.  Visit site  ▷

Ars Technica What could have wiped 3km of rock off the entire Earth?.  Some evidence for the cause of geology's Great Unconformity.  Visit site  ▷

Hike Meal Plan Pack lighter, eat better.  Inspired by LighterPack.  Visit site  ▷

The Trek Hiking the Hayduke.  Welcome to the Wild, Wild (South)West.  Visit site  ▷

Behance Mystical.  Once you walk into the tangled web of trees you are transported.  Visit site  ▷

Miguel Marquez Outside Private Shouting Room.  Occupied/Vacant.  Visit site  ▷

Jill Outside It's just life on Earth..  Part one of five.  Visit site  ▷

Fox In The Forest The Step-by-Step Guide.  How to Find Free Camping in the USA.  Visit site  ▷

Tesla Tower Ideas For Tesla.  Offers the ability to live in your decked-out, personalized, AWD Tesla Van in an urban environment.  Visit site  ▷

The Hiking Life Time-outs and Tarptent Aeons.  Here are my initial impressions of the shelter.  Visit site  ▷

Section Hikers Backpacking Blog NEMO Equipment Rocket 2 Tent Review.  The NEMO Rocket 2 is a two person, single wall, ultralight backpacking tent weighing 22 oz.  Visit site  ▷

Climate Reanalyzer A platform for visualizing climate and weather datasets.  Access climate information using interfaces for reanalysis and historical station data. Maps, timeseries, and correlation analyses...  Visit site  ▷

The Atlantic Photos of the 2019 Harbin Ice and Snow Festival.  Every year, in northeastern China's Heilongjiang province, the city of Harbin hosts the Harbin International Ice and Snow Sculpture Festival.  Visit site  ▷

The Shooting Star How I Fit All My Life Possessions in Two Bags as I Travel the World.  After 5 years of long term travel, I write about my digital nomad packing list.  Visit site  ▷

Lady On A Rock How to Hike Hands Free with an Umbrella.  I have tried many different combinations of ties, pads, and small bungies. All have been okay, but moved around a bit. My latest system works perfectly.  Visit site  ▷

Into Cascadia The Volumetric Efficiency of Trekking Pole Shelters.  The least material to provide that space should clearly be desirable.  Visit site  ▷

CONTEMPORIST A Series Of Elevated Cabins Were Built On A Farm In Norway.  On a farm in Finnskogen, Norway.  Visit site  ▷

The Atlantic Plants Use Flowers to Hear the Buzz of Animals.  And they react to the buzzing of pollinators by sweetening their nectar.  Visit site  ▷

Behance PERAT II.  The mountains.  Visit site  ▷

Backpacking Light Tarptent Stratospire Li Review .  Large, cozy, and stable while remaining ultralight, it won't let you down-assuming you can stomach the price tag.  Visit site  ▷

U.S. National Park Service Bear Series, Part One: A Bear's Sense of Smell.  A black bear's sense of smell can easily be measured in miles.  Visit site  ▷

Reddit Overfill. An attempted explanation.  The notion 'overfill' refers to a base quantity of down receiving a request for extra fill.  Visit site  ▷

Captains of Us Doomsday.  Mt. Doom! Or, more appropriately, Mt. Ngauruhoe.  Visit site  ▷

Andrew Skurka.com Ineffective & outdated.  Six reasons to not hang a bear bag.  Visit site  ▷

Alastair Humphreys Adventures on Foot.  In Praise of Simplicity and Slowness.  Visit site  ▷

The Trek Thru-Hiking After 50.  Prepare for an Amazing, Life Changing Experience.  Visit site  ▷

Quartz Arborists are bringing the "dinosaur of trees" back to life.  They're cloning saplings from the stumps of the world's largest, strongest, and longest-lived trees-felled for timber more than a century ago-to create redwood "super groves".  Visit site  ▷

Mountains with Megan 20 of the Best Wilderness Hikes Around the World from Travel Bloggers.  From multi-day to multi-week and span six different continents.  Visit site  ▷

The Great Outdoors Chris's Column: Tarptent Moment DW Tent.  Overall the Moment DW is a good lightweight tent for three-season backpacking.  Visit site  ▷

Backpacking Light Tarptent Notch Li Review (First Looks).  Representing Tarptent's first use of Dyneema Composite Fabrics (DCF, formerly, Cuben Fiber) in their shelter line.  Visit site  ▷

Fox in the Forest 10 Unforgettable Treks and Walking Holidays in Europe.  As told by local European bloggers and trekking experts.  Visit site  ▷

APOD 2019 January 14.  Meteor and Milky Way over the Alps  Visit site  ▷

Smithsonian The Short, Frantic, Rags-to-Riches Life of Jack London.  In his fictional universe, lone wolves die and abusive alpha males never win out in the end. In 18 years, he had written 50 books, 20 of them novels.  Visit site  ▷

Motherboard Antarctica Is Losing Six Times As Much Ice Mass As It Was 40 Years Ago.  We expect multi-meter sea level rise from Antarctica in the coming centuries.  Visit site  ▷

Adventure Journal This Map Shows in Vivid Color How Territorial Wolf Packs Actually Are.  It's scent, right? You're using just your nose; there are no geographical markers. That's a really cool part of it.  Visit site  ▷

The Trek Women on Trail: Stories of Courage, Endurance, Empowerment.  Our stamina is questioned. We get romantically pursued whether we want it or not. We may be criticized for hiking solo. We get asked if we're carrying a gun or pepper spray.  Visit site  ▷

Explorersweb Unsupported Solo Death Valley Crossing — Trip Report.  I tried and failed 4 times. When I set off, on December 27th 2018, it finally felt right.  Visit site  ▷

Bad at Backpacking A Tour of Hobbiton.  It was honestly the most peaceful spot I could imagine, even with hundreds of tourists wandering the area.  Visit site  ▷

Backcountry Post Three days in Utah_Arizona.  My goal this time around was to visit spots that we hadn't been able to make it to.  Visit site  ▷

The Guardian When the ice melts.  The catastrophe of vanishing glaciers.  Visit site  ▷

The Adventure Blog The Trans Dinarica is a New European Bike Route Connecting 8 Countries.  Through Slovenia, Croatia, and Bosnia and Herzegovina. The plan is to eventually add Montenegro, Albania, Kosovo, Serbia, and Macedonia.  Visit site  ▷

APOD 2019 January 23.  Orion over the Austrian Alps.  Visit site  ▷

Adventure Journal The Story of Doug Peacock and the Soul-Saving Grizzly Bear.  Peacock sought refuge in those blank spots on his map, the zones without people. Without roads, without buildings. With trees, rivers, and lakes. With grizzly bears.  Visit site  ▷

PopUpBackpacker Today You Have an Extra Hour to Use — or do You?.  Instead of contemplating a mystical appearance of an extra 60 minutes in our lives, perhaps we should recognize that each of us will have a finite amount of time to live.  Visit site  ▷

Serac Hammocks Staying Dry.  How to hammock in the rain.  Visit site  ▷

Backpackinglight Podcast 002.  Dyneema Composite Fabrics (DCF aka "Cuben Fiber")  Visit site  ▷

iTunes Podcasts With Park Rangers.  The Virtual Kampers explore the importance of our National Park and Historic sites from those who live and work in them every day.  Visit site  ▷

The Ultralight Hiker Best $5 Spent on Camping Gear Ever.  What is the most useful piece of gear you can buy for $5? You will notice many such items in my gear list.  Visit site  ▷

Outside Online Frozen Alive.  You've traveled to a place where there is no sun. In the infinite winter of space, heat is tiny; it is the cold that is huge.  Visit site  ▷

NOWNESS Johanna Under The Ice.  Finnish freediver Johanna Nordblad holds the world record for a 50-meter dive under ice.  Visit site [video]  ▷

Anomaly London The 12 Days of Christmas.  A Tale of Avian Misery  Visit site  ▷

Anomaly London DEAR SATAN.  (It's never too late, too early, or too much for Xmas.)  Visit site  ▷

Adventure Journal When a Housecat Goes to Africa.  What if instead of becoming brunch she tapped into her primordial instincts and went native?  Visit site  ▷

Obtainium Works Neverwas Haul.  "Damn the Blinkies, full steam ahead!" — Major Catastrophe  Visit site  ▷

Death touches my ear. 'Live,' he says, 'I am coming.' -- Virgil
(Died September 21, 19 BC, age 50)


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Comments? Send email to hoofist@nullabigmail.com

See if that helps.