I have received some feedback from people following my review of the book Cure Tooth Decay, and before posting my review of the next chapter, will take some time to add to previous topics.
Some questions/comments have been raised regarding the work of Dr. Weston Price, as this is a primary source for the author of Cure Tooth Decay and thus warrants further attention. Dr. Price’s research goes back many years, but there is still relevance to his work today. However, his work needs to be taken in its entirety, and caution must be taken to avoid only pulling out bits of information and ignoring the context of his work. Something the author of Cure Tooth Decay may have slipped on a bit in his work.
A big focus for Dr. Price’s work focused on the foods people where eating that were exhibiting a relatively disease free life. In a nut shell, the foods eaten where whole, fresh foods that were not processed. This is something civilized society has greatly fallen away from with mass production and busy lifestyles driving the food industry. I believe this is the basic aspect that should definitely be taken from Dr. Price’s work and applied to our lives.
For specific food choices, this is where things get more challenging. We can not take the foods eaten by the people groups Dr. Price studied and apply those directly to use without modification. A big example would be high fat diets which included things like lard. Dr. Price did not notice the high rate of heart disease we currently associate with high fat diets. However, if you factor in the amount of food consumed in a day, as well as lifestyle, I suspect this is what will largely make up for the discrepancy.
For comparison, consider two different people groups, both on a high fat diet like those described by Dr. Price. Take group one which only consumes 1500 calories per day, and is physically active throughout the day. People group number two consumes 2500 – 3500 calories per day, same foods just more of them, and has a desk job and watches tv the rest of the time. People in group one may not have much of an incident of heart disease from the high fat diet due to quantity and physical activity altering the cholesterol balance in the system to keep it healthy. With the second group, although the foods are the same, the quantity is over and above what the body can process which allows harmful concentrations of negative byproducts/ingredients to accumulate in the system. Combine that with inactivity and stress, and you have a perfect breeding ground for heart disease and other health issues.
The take home on this is there needs to be a balance between our lifestyle and our foods. The more physically active we are, the more our body will need certain foods and a certain calorie intake per day. The less active we are, the less food we will need, and the more critical to keep a good balance. Add into that environmental factors like exposure to sunlight which affects Vitamin D and ripples through the system for proper absorption and utilization of other nutrients, and now you really have a complex system of factors to consider.
In conclusion, the diet that would work for a hunter or farmer along the equator who is physically active and outdoors most of the time, can thrive of a very different diet than required for someone who has a desk job in an office with no windows, who lives in a norther community that has winter 6 months of the year. So when we compare our diet to those of other “tribes” or historical people groups, we have to consider all aspects of their life to understand why their diet worked for them, and how we can use that knowledge to adapt and improve our own. We cannot take their diet as is, apply it to us, and assume it will be healthy for us.
Until next time when I continue my review on Cure Tooth Decay,
Dr. Raed Kamal