So after a fair amount of time reading and a comment I made and then instantly regretted making in regards to the vegetarian/vegan diet I have something to post about. Science.
You have to love it to be interested in health and wellness, as I am. Unfortunately, once you actually dive deep into the science-y goodness, it turns from a fountain of knowledge, into a huge pile of bullsh*t, with the odd nugget of gold (not corn) interspersed. Unfortunately, todays post is not about the gold.
I like to think of my time as valuable. And in endeavoring to learn and increase my knowledge, I like to read. For the past few years I’ve read everything from blogs to books, to magazine and journal articles. From the poorly researched, to the overly researched to the not researched at all (sort of like this post, I suppose). This post is about the naysayer. The Debbie downer. Negative Nancy.
This person gets “published”, and doesn’t deserve it at all. This person often is the author of randomized controlled trials that don’t tell you anything. Those trials that required some SERIOUS statistical gaming to come up with significance. This person gets published in arenas where all they’ve done is criticize someone else and offer nothing of value to the world.
I’m tired of reading this crap. I don’t know how these people can feel fulfilled while making a living off spewing negativity and putting people down.
Ok. Onto the guts of this post. I commented on the Men’s Journal article about how to become a vegan. I knew I shouldn’t have. I knew it would attract the wrong kind of attention, but I thought my easy-going nature and polite tone would save me a lot of trouble. It more or less did. The jist of my post; read about the diet, and it’s positives and negatives before trying it, please. I asked people to consider reading Lierre Keith’s “The Vegetarian Myth” for a great argument against the vegan/vegetarian lifestyle/diet. I only received 2 comments, but one of them said this:
“You are wrong.” and “Lierre Keith? Are you kidding me? She’s been completely debunked!”
The person then provided me with a website where the debunking occurs. I humoured this person and read the site. I won’t post it here because it isn’t worth wasting your time reading. It’s complete crap. Perfect for someone, say a vegan, who wants to feel reassured that what they’re doing is right. Unfortunately, it doesn’t debunk anything. All the critique does, is attack the WAY she makes her arguments. So now the person can feel at ease, because that person who challenged their paradigm was wrong, of course.
Moving on. I read a lot of Robb Wolf’s information and generally agree with what he has to say. I recently heard he did an interview on T-Nation and there was a subsequent review/reply to this interview by Alan Aragon. Alan Aragon apparently publishes a literature review each month. I have nothing bad to say about Aragon as I haven’t read his publication. This argument is purely with his appraisal of the Robb Wolf Interview. I feel as though he’s jealous of Wolf’s current fame (if you’d call it that?) and has a bone to pick with anyone who says anything that isn’t backed up 100% by a randomized controlled trial. I’m not going to post his review here as it’s a document that costs money. He attacks Wolf in a way that makes Wolf seem unscientific and biased. According to Aragon, the paleo approach to diet that Wolf advises is unscientific because any speculation about what paleolithic people ate is purely that, speculative. So then I guess the existence of dinosaurs needs to be reconsidered too, since it’s also speculative? I mean, there are no LIVE dinosaurs around now, so who’s to say the bones weren’t engineered by some evil (and extremely creative, and awesome, might I add) scientist? Where the “concrete” evidence for that?
In his review he offers a lot of arguments against not only WHAT Robb Wolf says, but HOW he says it. He insults Wolf for using correlative data, but then criticizes Wolf later, backing up his criticism with correlative data. It’s ridiculous and most importantly for me… it’s exhausting!
You’re killing me people! Asking people not to eat grains due to the phytic acid, lectins, lack of nutrients and abundance of insulin spiking carbohydrates is NOT nutritional blasphemy! If you don’t agree with someone’s information, give a reason and an alternative. Simply putting someone down isn’t doing anyone any good and is DEFINITELY not improving “science”.
Thanks for reading, the next post will be positive, I promise
p.s. Make sure you actually READ the journal articles you read too. Methods and Results and that’s it. Come to your own conclusions on what the data says.