Erectile Dysfunction, Tooth Decay and Traditional Fats- Oh My!

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By Rob Archangel, 180DegreeHealth.com staff writer

Today on the Real Food Summit, I listened to Kim Schuette and Rami Nagel.  Both were big boosters of traditional fats like butter, coconut oil, and animal fats. Kim spent a little time talking about how traditional fats can be helpful for erectile dysfunction, and Rami describes dietary ways to combat tooth decay and some of the problems with modern dental practices.

First, the *big* question (haha) – how do fats in our diet help with ED? If you eat low in fat (and cholesterol), your body’s ability to synthesize hormones like testosterone and progesterone goes down.  This is a bad thing. These hormones are the hormones of youth and fertility ( progesterone= pro-gestation), and also aid in other health benefits like building lean tissue and experiencing strength and vigor. This is also a reason why low fat, vegan diets like 80-10-10 can cause a crash in libido, and are not advisable.

Schuette also mentions cholesterol-lowering statin drugs, and how they contribute to a similar effect. If we artificially lower our cholesterol, we reduce our body’s raw material supply for these fun-times hormones, and possibly run into problems like erectile dysfunction. As an aside, raising our metabolism often lowers cholesterol levels, since the body revvs into high gear and starts making use of the extra cholesterol floating around, turning it into these useful hormones and correcting any deficiencies we might be facing. Once again, a high metabolism is king.

Rami’s talk was next for me, and I like that he points out that bacteria don’t cause tooth decay. S. mutans is the one often fingered for decay, but as it turns out, it performs the useful function of keeping yeast overgrowth in check. Hey, surprise surprise! correlation is not causation. Maybe these bacteria are more prevalent when there’s tooth decay, but they (and their acidic by-products when we eat starches and sugars) are only problematic to weak teeth, and only proliferate when we’re susceptible. If our teeth (and our bodies) are robust and healthy, the bacteria can’t mess with us.  Which is to say, germs don’t cause illness- poor health does. There will always be micro-organisms within and around us. Rather than trying to avoid that (not possible), we do better to focus on getting and staying healthy so that exposure does not lead to getting sick.

Animal fats and especially the fat soluble vitamins are pretty important to him as well. The body makes use of them in tandem with minerals to help build and strengthen bones and enamel. He’s especially fond of raw grass-fed dairy and cod liver oil, though mentions that bugs are also a good source of these fats. Back when I was living on a permaculture homestead in Indiana, a friend and I thought about traveling to the Purdue University Bug Bowl to taste some insects. Never made it, sadly. Maybe one day.

Anyway, both talks are probably worth checking out.  I wouldn’t fetishize traditional diets, especially if it stresses you out trying to source everything “perfectly,” but go ahead and eat some tasty, quality fats.  Just don’t make the mistake of thinking that since some is good, more is better, and walk yourself into low-carb land with that delusion.

16 Comments

  1. The best remedy for erectile dysfunction is vitamin D. And hardcore Asian porn.

    Reply
  2. We produce hormones out of cholesterol. Matt has gone over this, dietary cholesterol has almost no bearing on the body’s production. Carbohydrates make our livers produce cholesterol.

    Body fat, not dietary fat, is a factor in hormonal regulation. We can synthesize saturated and monounsaturated fats, if need be, from carbohydrates.

    Low-fat diets don’t have to mess with hormones. Some rat studies show a mysterious boost in metabolism when the animals go low in fat.

    Good quality saturates help with nutrient absorption, and possibly have anti-microbial properties, but devouring sticks of Kerrygold in some misguided attempt at health is PaleoTarded™. These fat sources occur in nature coupled with important nutrients.

    Vegan diets kill libido because they are protein and fat-soluble-vitamin deficient.

    Reply
    • Hey bambam,

      Maybe I’m misunderstanding, then, and I’ll defer if so. But my memory was that we do need a threshold level of fat to maintain production of hormones like testosterone. Maybe it is related to the fat-soluble nutrients.

      Starch does seem to be really good for increasing the metabolism though, and in a hypercaloric state, low-fat might not be negative in the way it seems to be in a hypocaloric state (I’m thinking mainly of the loss in lean tissue compared to a hypocaloric low-carb diet). I thought too that low protein levels were not as big a deal in a hypercaloric state, which ’30 bananas a day’ eaters often are in, despite their proclivity for endurance exercise and the lower absorption rate of their raw fruits and veggies.

      Reply
      • I’m a bit Peat-biased here, but my understanding is that improved digestion and assimilation from fat in the diet is de-stressing, which indirectly upregulates hormonal balance, and that also lowers-stress, heh.

        Fat with every meal is great, but there is no reason to season a chuck roast with extra suet. A “healthy” level of body fat, getting carbs for cholesterol, and keeping thyroid in check by any means are the big things.

        In terms of muscle-building, protein becomes less important in a hypercaloric “balanced” diet. For normal purposes, protein helps the liver clear out poisons, like estrogen. Vegan and fruit, of course, are neither normal nor balanced.

        A plant-based diet, especially raw, is usually indigestible. The lack of fat removes any chance at a shred of nutrition. The protein-void leaves out things that come along, like b12. The protein would also help dump endotoxin and the stress hormones produced from all that fiber.

        A cooked vegan diet based around fruit, potatoes, pea protein, nutritional yeast, and coconut oil would suck ass, but it could work. One doesn’t voluntarily go vegan with logic, though.

        80/10/10 might as well be a pure sugar diet. Fruit is elegant in it’s ability to get energy right to the cells and fill glycogen…but then what? The diet ludicrously raises the metabolism, but there’s no variety to meet the nutritional demands called for – dangerously catabolic.

        Reply
        • You don’t sound like your peat biased because he doesn’t mind a high fructose diet.

          Reply
    • Okay, that was funny stuff right there! I had to read it to my husband so he would know why I was giggling like an idiot! Thanks for sharing, Lorelei!!

      Reply
  3. I have ghee and eat liver from time to time because of Rami’s talk with Sean Croxton a few years back. I actually think ghee tastes like shit.

    Reply
  4. I have ghee instead of just pastured butter because I bought it when I was trying to stay away from dairy when my face was totally FUCKED. God I’ve done so many stupid things. At one point I was mixing vitamin C and Stevia together in glass kombucha bottles and drinkin that in the mornings and for why? I don’t even remember…But I know I was smokin sometimes and my acne was terrible and I was trying to detoxify in all kinds of ways. Was eating low carby at the time too. Started a new labor intensive job at the time and was almost passing out from bending over. The more vegetables and health foods I ate and the more I avoided cravings the worse my health got. Now I’m eatin fukitol chiefy style getting fat and strong and its freakin awesome accept the fat part particularly my genetic trait of gaining quickly in the handles therefore totally fucking my pants sizes. Bout to go eat a chinese lunch special. I know I have cavities and a few weeks ago it was startin to get real painful. I stopped brushing as much and only use scope and no toothpaste, still focusing on lowering stress, getting enough to eat, not drinking too much fluid and diluting my cellular energies. Appreciate all these posts.

    Reply
  5. Forgot to mention the pain in my teeth is gone, for now.

    Reply
  6. Nice one Lorelei. And true these pandas are on silly vegan diets of bamboos, are fat and have no libido whatsoever. When is the last time you’ve heard I sha***d like a panda?

    Reply
  7. The Rami Nagel talk and an article from Weston A. Price http://www.westonaprice.org/digestive-disorders/acid-reflux-a-red-flag have me thinking about the effect of amalgam fillings on metabolism. If, as the article claims, heartburn is improved by replacing these fillings that change our microbial inhabitants, then if follows that the fillings are a stress on the body with associated metabolic changes. Has anyone actually documented the effect of removing fillings on BBT?

    Reply
  8. I removed fillings 2 years ago, no affect on BBT for me.

    Reply
  9. I am hot and horny as hell -(so are most of my friends) 20-30 yrs average on vegan or veggie diets…your theories make as much sense as the 9-11 commission report!

    Reply
    • Good for you! Doesn’t work for everyone, even if they’re doing it “right.” That’s who we’re talking to.

      Reply
  10. i always knew butter was the sex.

    Reply

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