Well, does this book provide any sort of dietary guidelines?
Has anyone here read Michael Pollan's Food Rules yet? I read Omnivore's Dilemma and In Defense of Food last year. I am looking forward to Food Rules, which supposedly has 64 little rules to help you stay away from "edible food-like substances" etc. Generally, I like Pollan's philosophy of "eat food, not too much, mostly plants."
Is the paleodiet the same thing as the cave-man diet thing I saw on the Daily Show?
Yes, all of these including "An Unburdened Life" are interrelated. They are part of a trend to return to what some people think is a Traditional or Natural Human Diet. It goes against the Low-Fat or vegetarian way of eating.
Very basically, the idea is that diets free of processed food and sugar and high in protein ( Meat and fish) is what we are genetically programmed for. Wheat, Soy..Pasta breads etc etc, ..are not well suited for humans, though they have had many advantages in terms of feeding hungry populations. We should eat more like Hunter Gatherers or at least like Traditional Peoples ( non-western diets)
So, about 70% meat ( YEA !!) and your carbs come from vegetables and fruit and nuts 30%. It's important to eat GRASS FED meat as much as possible as the nutritional value is far different than grain fed animals from a factory.
There are a few side issues like the amount of fat vs lean and the role of Dairy. If you would like to get into those, post on our Nutrition and Diet thread.
Eating a 70% meat diet seems horribly irresponsible on a financial level; in terms of ecological impact; and, based on the little I know of the patristic teaching on this subject, on a spiritual level.
Yes, at first glance that was what I assumed too. However, there is more to this than you may think.
For example, eating an unnatural diet ( Lots of grains, low fat, high carb, low quality grain fed meat, full of sweetners like corn syrup, etc.) may be causing all of the the so called Modern Ailments. Obesity, Cancer, Diabetes, Dental problems.. on and on. A sick population sucks up tremendous resources. Right? What if our meat came from animals allowed to pasture, not from factories? The land would be naturally fertilized.
How much does corn destroy the ecosystem? How much fertilizer is needed? How many birds and insects and rodents are killed off?
Here is part of an article by Sally Fallon. Click on link to read the whole thing.
"It takes 15 pounds of feed to get one pound of meat. But if the grain were given directly to people, there’d be enough food to feed the entire planet. In addition, using land for animal agriculture is inefficient in terms of maximizing food production. According to the journal Soil and Water, one acre of land could produce 50,000 pounds of tomatoes, 40,000 pounds of potatoes, 30,000 pounds of carrots or just 250 pounds of beef."
No land anywhere in the world will produce 50,000 pounds of tomatoes, 40,000 pounds of potatoes or 30,000 pounds of carrots per acre year after year after year unless bolstered with fertilizer. Such land rotated with animal grazing will be fertilized naturally; without the manure and urine of animals, synthetics must be applied—synthetics that require large amounts of energy to produce and leave problematic pollutants, such as fluoride compounds, as a by-product. And much of the world’s land—mountainous, hillside, arid and marginal areas—is incapable of producing harvestable crops even with a large fertilizer input. But this land will support animal life very well. Eliminating the animals on this land in order to produce vegetable crops will indeed create famine for the people who live there. http://www.westonaprice.org/Twenty-Two-Reasons-Not-to-Go-Vegetarian.html