At the talk I went to recently, Sally Fallon Morell gave us Price's key finding from this analysis.
Nourishing diets contain nutrient dense foods
Price discovered that primitive diets contained four times the calcium and other minerals compared with the modern American diet of his day.
They also contained ten times the fat soluble vitamins.
Some primitive cultures got their fat soluble vitamins A and D from seafood, including fish eggs, fish liver, fish heads, shell fish, oily fish and sea mammals. Others got them from grass-fed land animals - from butter and cream, egg yolks, liver, organ meats and animal fat. (Every culture Price studied ate some form of animal food, which was a big disappointment to Price who was hoping to find at least one healthy traditional vegetarian culture.)
In her talk, Sally made the point that the nutritional differences between traditional foods and ours would be even more pronounced today, and that got me thinking about some of the reasons why:
- We've had a further eighty-odd years of industrial agriculture stripping nutrients, microbes and bacteria from our soil.
- We live in a saturated-fat-and-cholesterol-phobic society, so we're deficient in crucial fat-soluble vitamins A, K, D and E.
- We eat a much more limited diet: only certain parts of an animal, rarely making use of the organ meats, bones, fat or marrow; as well as a much smaller range of fruit and vegetables.
- We eat so many empty/detrimental calories in white flour, white sugar, fake sugar, high fructose corn syrup, hydrogenated fats, soy, artificial flavours, colours, preservatives, additives and pesticides.
- In many cases we've shifted animals from their natural environment to raise them in convenient (for us) confinement, making the animals sick and the meat/milk/eggs they produce less nutrient dense as a result.
- We pasteurise the goodness out of our dairy products, turning them into allergens instead of nourishing food.
- We've forgotten how to prepare grains, beans, legumes and nuts to make them digestible, so we don't get the nutritional benefits they could provide.
But the list above has made me sad. So now I'm going to focus on the positive.
Dr Weston A. Price did conduct his research at the ideal time. And his research was so well done that it has lead to a ground-swell of change around the world. Thanks to Price's inquisitive nature, ordinary people like you and I are learning what's been lost from our modern diet, and are taking steps to redress the balance.
And we have the wonderful efforts of Sally Fallon Morell and the Weston A. Price Foundation to aid us on our journey. That makes me pretty happy indeed.
Want to know more about the work of Dr Weston A. Price and how to apply it today?
- Read Dr Weston A. Price's book, Nutrition and Physical Degeneration.
- Read my review of Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon Morell.
- Read my review of Super Nutrition for Babies by Katherine Erlich and Kelly Genzlinger.
- Check out a great selection of real food blogs in the Nourished Living Network.
This post is linked to Traditional Tuesdays.