Keto, Intermittent Fasting and ¿Vegan? (Gam... - Healthy Eating

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Keto, Intermittent Fasting and ¿Vegan? (Game changers) Nutrition

S11m profile image

Have you seen this, TheAwfulToad?

He says that 70% of food comes from farms smaller than 25 acres, and there is an organic farm has three times the productivity of typical large farms.

23 Replies

Hi S11m

Nice to see you in Healthy eating community, and hope you're having a great day.

Zest :-)

ex-vegan, eh? :)

I don't have time to watch it right now, but I will!

The statistic is broadly correct. Small acreages are more productive both in terms of raw output and profitability, mainly because they're managed with a lot of attention to detail. Big acreages, in contrast, have zero or negative profits mainly because the farmer can't give them enough attention.

As andyswarbs likes to point out, most of the big farms are actually producing animal feed. It doesn't have to be that way, but that's the way governments like it. I have no idea why.

S11m profile image
S11m in reply to TheAwfulToad

I was brought up on a large farm, and we produced malting barley, mustard (for Colman's) seed rape and grain, sheep, outdoor pig, hatching eggs...

Not all "agricultural land" is suitable for automation, and large areas of the UK are not very suitable for anything except sheep and deer (OK - and cloudberries).

TheAwfulToad profile image
TheAwfulToad in reply to S11m

It sounds like your farm wasn't "large" in the grand scheme of things? 100acres maybe? These days a large farm is 4000acres.

What happened to the farm? AFAIK I lot of those mixed farms were deliberately shut down in the 80s so that folk from London could buy a bijou barn conversion and the arable land sold off to conglomerates.

But yeah, most people don't understand that any random piece of land can't just be ploughed up and planted with tomatoes. Most land, taking the planet as a whole, could not economically grow vegetables. I have a sloping field that was originally used for sheep pasture that I'm converting to mixed use. It's going to be a long, slow, expensive process.

You might be interested in what Joel Salatin does. He has quite a few videos on YouTube. His profits didn't just drop into his lap - he's spent decades refining and tweaking his method (and fighting the men with clipboards). His current production method relies on some very specific operations and equipment.

S11m profile image
S11m in reply to TheAwfulToad

Large mixed farms are unusual.

One of my father's ex-students was telling an Australian about his little farm on which he was "cutting his teeth" to gain experience before taking over the family farm from his father:

"How big is your farm?"

"about 200"

"square miles?"

The estate where I spent some time in Scotland was 30,000 acres - but much of it was ptarmigan and deer territory.

My sister ran the farm for a while - and, one year, the accountant advised that if we did not spend £100,000 before the end of the tax year, the taxman would take most of it!

We did not own all the land we farmed, and the neighbouring tenant bought most of what we owned.

Most of the farm was poor thin soil over chalk, so my father bred pigs out-doors - and this converted land that struggled to grow barley to growing a good crop of wheat.

Where I lived before, they did plough up the field next to my house and grow tomatoes. It was good Vale of Evesham horticultural land, they did build a greenhouse over it and they did, over a year or so, put about two metres of manure on it! The next greenhouse was hydroponic.

If you can grow grass on land, and graze animals on it, it will improve the soil. Much of the UK was forested - and forestry makes good soil.

Economical it was not, but, when the Victorians planted an arboretum, they moved or created the soil that each tree needed.

andyswarbs profile image
andyswarbs in reply to S11m

The vegan society has a team that advises animal farmers on how to transition their land for best effect. Yes, there are parts of the UK that are not suitable for growing crops. But that does not mean one has to have animals on them. To support those animals you will need to feed them crops from land that can grow crops. By removing farm animals from the equation that non-crop land can be returned to much needed projects like rewilding, either through natural means or tree planting. Such projects naturally improve biodiversity, something this planet is in much need of!

The bottom line is in an increasingly vegan world the need for crop land reduces dramatically because raising animals, per calorie, is such an incredibly inefficient use of crop land.

S11m profile image
S11m in reply to andyswarbs

Uncroppable land can support grazing animals without supplementary feeding - except, perhaps, occasionally when everything green is covered in snow.

Our diet has to include more than calories - and animals are the main source of limiting amino acids.

Cooper27 profile image

Interesting video, just adds to the overall confusion of the day!

Dietary health is a confusing topic, because every argument seems to have an equal counter-argument.

Kai-- profile image
Kai-- in reply to Cooper27


If this helps at all, Cooper27, found the calm, level-headed ‘scientific’ reasonings of T. Colin Campbell to be sound, well-balanced ⚖️ in an ever-turbulent ocean 🌊 of confusion:

. . •

. . •

Found his broad, integrated, ‘wholistic’ perspective — earned wisdom — "a calm 😌 port in a storm ⛈ 🌫🌪 “.

😌 🙏 🍀 🌺 🌞


Cooper27 profile image
Cooper27Administrator in reply to Kai--

The main issue is that there's calm, level-headed scientific reasoning for every side of the coin. They all cite evidence supporting that their stance is right (confirmation bias perhaps?) which makes knowing who to listen to very hard. I'm glad you have found someone who you find reliable, I personally find it hard to trust anyone anymore!

Kai-- profile image
Kai-- in reply to Cooper27


Understood. 😌 🙏

Just as Douglas Adams’ said "All opinions are not equal. Some are a very great deal more robust, sophisticated and well supported in logic and argument than others," likewise are the ‘experts’ whose ideas we choose to consider.

Good luck 🍀 in finding anyone you can trust, Cooper27.


As I've suggested before, it's best to avoid arguments and counterarguments. Debate has very little place in science. It's results that matter. Does the proposed theory fit with observations? If it doesn't, then it wrong. End of story.

Citing evidence that your stance is right might add weight to your position. That's how hypotheses get built. But if someone comes along with evidence that your theory fails dramatically in some specific circumstance, then it's back to the drawing board for you.

In other words, science can only give you two answers, "no" and "maybe", and you have to frame your questions with that limitation in mind. If someone suggests that their theory is "supported by the evidence" and that it's therefore "scientifically proven", they probably don't understand how science works.

Anyway, I'm just watching the video now. Seems good so far. My only comment at this point is that the quest for an "ideal diet" is a fool's errand. There is no such thing. Certainly there are exceedingly bad diets, but that doesn't mean there's one optimum diet at the other end of the spectrum. That's like looking for an "ideal car". For one thing, it depends what your purpose is. If you're an athlete, your diet will not be the same as for someone who sits in an office all day. For another, humans have a highly sophisticated digestive system, which does fine on all sorts of things. We know this because humans are thriving in diverse locations, eating diverse diets.

Kai-- profile image
Kai-- in reply to TheAwfulToad


Are you familiar with T. Colin Campbell‘s work ( , ), TheAwesomeToad 🐸 ?. . . 🤔 🙏 🍀 🌺 🌞


andyswarbs profile image
andyswarbs in reply to Cooper27

The meat & dairy industry have learnt from the tobacco industry. There is a famous memo with the phrase "doubt is our product." Instead they sow the seeds of doubt, and that's all they have to do.

For example they fund research exactly the way the tobacco industry did. Increasing cigarettes from 20 to 25 per day is going to show little or no health implications. It's the first 20 that do the damage! In the food industry they do exactly the same with cholesterol, for example. That's why you will never find any industry funded piece of research featuring one group consuming zero dietary cholesterol vs say the SAD diet: the conclusion would be bad for the cholesterol deniers.

S11m profile image
S11m in reply to andyswarbs

I think the carbohydrate industry has learnt from the tobacco industry - and governments need to use the same methodology they used to reduce tobacco consumption to reduce the consumption of refined carbohydrates -AKA "junk food".

The conclusions that come from "research" are determined by who funds the research - and real data from real double-blind evidence does not come into it.

OK, so I watched the whole video. I don't have much to say about it, other than there wasn't anything there that was new to me but he did a very good presentation of the facts. Well worth watching for anyone who feels distressed by the "everything is bad for you" pronouncements from the medical/dietetic establishment.

The "nice and clear" bit (referring to the young man's blood sample) made me laugh because I had exactly that experience a couple of weeks ago.

We'd taken the dog for a cataract removal, and as part of the pre-op they did a routine blood test. The doctor came out to show us the centrifuge tube and pointed to the plasma, which was cloudy with fat. Look at this, she says, her blood is carrying a lot of fat.

My response was (as politely as possible): of course it's carrying a lot of fat. She's a dog. Dogs are carnivores (albeit with some modest omnivorous adaptations) and therefore run mostly on fat and protein. Her body (like human bodies) has a sophisticated mechanism for carrying fat through the bloodstream as fuel. If she has fat in her blood it's there for a good reason, unless there is some known disease state that suggests a malfunction in energy management.

"swoosh", went my argument, about six meters over the doctor's head. She recommended we put the poor dog on a "low fat diet". Fortunately, I've had this conversation before with the missus (regarding the cat, who is thriving well on a high-fat moderate-protein diet after being diagnosed with advanced kidney disease) and doctor's advice was politely ignored.

She's a fantastic eye doctor. If she had something to say about eyes, I'd say yes doctor, no doctor, three bags full doctor. But where she gets her information regarding canine metabolism, I wouldn't like to speculate.

Cooper27 profile image
Cooper27Administrator in reply to TheAwfulToad

That was the bit I fell over at. "Maybe it's supposed to be there" just didn't feel like a satisfactory answer for me.

I'm really curious about plasma tests now though - I really want to learn more about how it works, and what bloods look like for a range of dietary inputs. But I know that won't happen :D

Why do you find it surprising that your body does everything right?

One of the (many) things that winds me up about modern nutrition theory is the underlying assumption that the human body is a poorly-designed, jury-rigged heap of malfunctioning blubber, which goes off into the metabolic weeds if you do anything slightly wrong with your diet.

I know enough about anatomy to be awed by the body's construction. It has failsafes layered on top of failsafes. The control systems and the signalling mechanisms they use show astounding engineering elegance. Your body gets everything right over an incredible range of circumstances. There are very few ways you can "break" it, and it just so happens that the nutritionists have managed to find precisely the diet that humans can't cope with, and recommended it as the ideal.

Your blood plasma does look cloudy after a fatty meal. This is perfectly normal; as the guy in the video said, the "ick" reaction is just humans imposing their personal views of how something ought to work.

Unlike with glucose, your body has no imperative to maintain circulating fat at a certain level, so it drifts up and down depending on what's happening with your digestion or energy demands. People who have extremely high levels of circulating triglycerides are invariably eating massive amounts of carbohydrate. This article explains why:

The TL;DR version is that carbohydrates rapidly entering the blood have to be disposed of somehow to maintain blood sugar constraints, and the usual recourse is to convert them to fats, ostensibly for storage. However, as various subsystems become insulin resistant there's nowhere for this fat to go, and it ends up just drifting around until eventually something agrees to burn it or store it. This sort-of works because, as mentioned, you bloodstream can carry quite a lot of fat as a temporary buffer. But it's not an ideal scenario.

Cooper27 profile image
Cooper27Administrator in reply to TheAwfulToad

It's not a criticism, it just didn't satisfy my need to know (if that makes sense). I'm still in a state of wanting to see e.g. a vegan high fat meal compared to a meaty low fat meal, for example.

I did note that the chicken burrito test used fried chicken, as opposed to grilled chicken, so if it's the fat from the meal that's appearing in the blood, it starts to look like the test was rigged to compare fat content instead of protein source.

I wouldn't say the test was "unfair" as such. If you eat fat (any kind of fat - the source is immaterial) it will be disassembled to pass through your gut wall and then reassembled into triglycerides and packed into chylomicrons so that it can travel through (aqueous) blood. These are then disassembled when they get close to their destinations (ie., something that can use the fat for energy).

Blood that's full of chylomicrons looks like a colloidal suspension of fat. Because that's basically what it is.

The problem with the video was the value judgement: something that's cloudy is bad, because, uh, it's cloudy. It's really that statement that needs justification, IMO.

S11m profile image
S11m in reply to TheAwfulToad

Thanks, Toad.

So - energy in the diet can be in the form of fat, carbohydrate or protein?

In the blood, it can be transported in the form of glucose, triglycerides (fat) or ketones.

It can be stored in the blood or fat reserves as fat, and in the liver or muscles as glycogen?

Where do fatty-acids and ATP come in?

I looked for info about this the other day, but I did not find anything - do you know of any chart showing the conversion, movement and storage of energy in the body?

TheAwfulToad profile image
TheAwfulToad in reply to S11m

Google "Citric Acid Cycle" or "TCA Cycle". This is the basic mechanism that drives ATP production, ATP being the ultimate fuel that your cells use.

The way ATP is produced and used is pretty interesting because it looks a lot like a redox flow battery. We're almost electrical machines :)

There are a whole load of auxiliary pathways that convert glucose, fatty acids, or amino acids into something that can feed into the TCA cycle; generally speaking, that means acetyl-CoA. Your body can also convert between those substrates (up to a point) depending on the preferred fuels that are in demand at any given time. The conversions happen in various different places - sometimes in a distributed fashion (individual cells), sometimes centralized in specific organs (usually your liver).

S11m profile image
S11m in reply to TheAwfulToad

Thanks, TheAwfulToad.

As you say:

there wasn't anything there that was new and

a very good presentation of the facts. Well worth watching

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