Why I Don’t Eat Pork

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By Matt Stone

In 2006, my natural contrarian tendencies getting the best of me, I decided that fat, not carbohydrates or protein, was the bestest thing ever.  So I embarked on a diet with roughly 70% of my calories coming from fat.  In all the world’s anti-fat hysteria, they must have missed what is truly the optimal human diet.  Or so I led myself to believe as I watched my abs pop out, my moods stabilize, my cravings for all of those “poisonous” modern foods disappear, and so on.  Pork was a huge centerpiece of my menu, especially in Hawaii where tasty pork bellies abound and you can go to a supermarket and pick up weird piggy stuff like the pig’s head shown left (that’s me holding it).

But by spring of 2008 I started noticing something a little bothersome.  It started when I would lay out at the beach, soaking up Hawaiian sun.  I would go to sit up, flip over, or perform some other rigorous task endemic to Hawaiian life, and a pain in the center of my chest would hit me like a brick wall, forcing me to roll over onto my side and sit up other ways.  The trials!  The tribulations!

Over the next few years, the pain in my chest would come and go.  It would get worse, and then better.  I would start getting excited that it had gone, then it would hit me harder than ever.  I never really could make any connections to what caused it.  It seemed to surface during my low-carb era, so I distanced myself from that diet as much as possible – thinking it would go away.  But even eating very little fat or going on brief, fruity vegan stints, the pain in the chest wouldn’t go away.

Finally, in 2011 I decided, despite my better judgment, to do a weird dietary experiment known as RBTI.  Pork is restricted on the diet, and although I had serious doubts that pork was inherently harmful somehow, it didn’t take but a few weeks before I noticed the chest pains had improved.  After a few months I realized that they had really, seriously, gone – as in totally eradicated.  There were many facets to this peculiar dietary regime, and I still didn’t know what, specifically, had led to the chest pains going away.  But I soon found out.

I ate some sausage on a pizza after roughly 8 months of completely avoiding pork – not just the meat but also avoiding pork gelatin, pork fat, and for a while even avoiding touching pork or eating from cookware that had cooked pork before.  And, sure as shit as they say, the chest pains came back and lasted for several days.

Since that time I have had two distinct instances where the chest pains came back very slightly – just enough to be noticeable for a few days each round.  Nothing very severe but an unmistakable feeling.  Once was after eating some roasted marshmallows around a campfire, and another time I was stumped.  I definitely hadn’t eaten any pork.  I hadn’t eaten marshmallows or pork gelatin or anything.  But after it came and went after a predictable time period of a few days I realized that it was from handling pork bacon on two consecutive days – cooking it over a campfire and serving it to two lovely ladies.  Kosher beef weenies for this dogg.

I also must say that, for the first time as far as I know, I developed a very strong aversion to pork.  Something about ham, bacon, sausage, pork chops, and all that stuff I used to eat like a boss seems completely and totally revolting.  I have deleted a lot of stuff out of my diet at various points in my experimental eating career, but it never made a food revolting.  It usually made it more attractive.  But pork?  Yuck.  It’s been a strange adventure.

Anyway, that’s why I, personally, avoid pork.  Plus I got to see several hundred sets of urine chemistry in the last year or so, and pork shows up in an eerily predictable manner in many people’s urine chemistry.  In the world of RBTI, pork is perhaps best known for elevating the urea levels in the urine in proportion to other test values.  And high levels of urea in your urine will give you the stamp of having “chest pain,” a hard heartbeat, and/or pain in the left shoulder depending on how high they are.

There’s a lot of taboo surrounding pork.  Some people just think it’s gross instinctively.  Many others claim that it is toxic for dogs and cats to eat, and makes their pets sick.  There are multiple religions and cultures that forbid consumption of pork to the extent that some followers have been known to turn to cannibalism before eating a fat, juicy hog.  Pork seems to be one of the quickest foods to be shunned without an abundance of evidence as to why a person shouldn’t eat it.  There’s certainly a weird and mystical aura surrounding it as a food item unlike any other food – spanning many religious beliefs, cultures, continents, and centuries.  While I don’t generally hold tradition, culture, or religion in high regard, I can’t dismiss it all as moronic and devoid of credibility.

In terms of modern scientific evidence against pork consumption, the evidence that was the catalyst for my recommendation against the consumption of pork (and poultry) in favor of other meats was that pork fat has the highest concentration of arachidonic acid of any known fat.  Arachidonic acid is a type of fat that is highly involved in many inflammatory processes, and reduction of dietary arachidonic acid intake has been found in some cases to immediately reduce the incidence of over-inflammatory conditions like asthma.  Floyd Chilton’s book Inflammation Nation is a good read on this topic.  I wrote about Floyd “Ski” Chilton and his work in a post a while back.

But if you would like some further reading on some scientific perspectives damning pork, try reading the Weston A. Price Foundation’s article showing blood changes from consuming pork, as well as Paul Jaminet’s series on pork.

111 Comments

  1. Remember everyone — The Jews of ancient Israel knew it first!!

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    • Is this really Ravi Zacharias?

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      • I know, I was shocked when I saw that name too. haha. Could it be?

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      • I didn’t know who this was and just checked out one of his youtube videos. He’s a homophobe with a slightly better vocabulary than most Tea Party people.

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    • Yea I want to know too. Me love some Ravi(oli). He has a mesmerizing voice. Kinda like Matt’s face.

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  2. Have you experimented with lots of ruminant aminal’s fat instead of pork? Would you recommend it?

    In limited amount (10-30 g) pork fat has been used for ages in some cultures as a very valuable dietary supplement, but it wasn’t a “staple food” in full sence.

    Probably from the evolutionary point of view we were eating ruminant animals mostly. Or may be it’s the domesticated pig’s fat that’s so imbalanced?

    … And the moral is – too much of a good this is a bad thing.

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    • I’ve heard that truly free ranging pork (and boar) have a much better omega3:omega6 ratio, and that it’s only pork raised with lots of grain that is bad. Note: lots of “free ranging” pork is supplemented with corn.

      I can’t speak to the validity of that, but it seems to make some sense.

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      • The fat composition might have a role- I hear in the pacific islands piggies have high levels of lauric acid in their meat thanks to the coconuts they eat.

        But it might have to do with other components beside the fats, like the proteins or other non-macronutrient components.

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    • Very interesting. I’ve tried to go McDowell, made me feel awesome for a little, but then totally collapse mentally and physically. I wondered what was missing. Their forum suggested B12, but I didn’t feel like it made a difference. Neither did vitamin E.

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    • Umm… I don’t see where he said that it was.

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  3. I can eat bacon a couple times a week, but I won’t touch a pork chop, sausage or ham. It’s not for any specific reason apart from a feeling that I just don’t want it. I used to eat it all the time as a kid, but since I started living on my own and cooking for myself, I just don’t buy it except for bacon.

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  4. Thanks for this post. I have had weird chest pressure and so I will experiment with this – though it is a sad thing, since we just got a half of awesomely raised, pastured pork from a friend and the pork chops were so yummy and I was excited to finally eat bacon again, since I hadn’t bought it due to price. I’ll let you know if it works for me too!

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  5. Okay…I’ve actually been interested in seeing you write an actual article on this, as I have seen you mention the pork thing a few times in the past. I will be the first to admit that I haven’t done a lot of research on the topic, but I have seen people kind of debate the subject before. What makes me skeptical is looking at all the cultures who have traditionally eaten a lot of pork and pork products and been relatively healthy, like, say, Mexico and Italy? Maybe not the topmost example of the absolute healthiest cultures in the world but still, doing a lot better than those of us here in America eating more “modern/processed” diets. If a person has no noticeable difference whether they eat pork or not, is it still worth it to cut it out entirely? Do you think they will still see noticeable health benefits from doing so?

    And on another note, wow, it’s really depressing to think about not being able to cook with bacon (gives so much flavor!), no more sausage with pancakes, no more prosciutto or pancetta, no more ham hocks or bacon in veggies or beans, sigh…you’re really killing me here Matt :-)

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    • Don’t know about Italy, but Mexicans tend to eat the entire thing in one way or another.

      There is also another factor: the diet the pigs are on. The fat of pigs is highly reflective of what they are eating and maybe Mexico and Italy are feeding their pigs better whereas the US pigs are mostly fed on corn, corn, and more corn. This might be enough to reduce the so called “badness” of the animal in some way.

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      • Yes, in Italy they definitely use the whole thing (that is true of food in general for them, not wanting to waste a single thing). And yes, I’m sure the diets are much better than here in the States. In fact, in Italy, they eat a lot of wild boar which is, obviously, completely wild. However, I have seen Matt say that it doesn’t matter to him if the pork is pastured or not, he won’t touch it. I just have a hard time reconciling that to the fact that many cultures have traditionally eaten a lot of pork and done just fine (Asian cultures as well).

        I guess for me, I’m not above cutting it out if it really is needed, but I need some pretty hardcore evidence before I’d consider it, as it’s about a lot more than just choosing beef over pork or not eating the occasional pork chop. Pork plays a huge role in flavor with a lot of dishes (like using bacon or ham hocks in veggies or beans, using a combination of beef and pork for a traditional bolognese which gives it such great depth of flavor). I guess the fact that I am from the South and also have a great love for Mexican and Italian food makes it especially difficult for me :-).

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        • Those traditional cultures also had better soil health and overall better nutrition than most modern Americans get, which could make a huge difference. I think the RBTI creator said you could eat anything if your food comes from properly mineralized soil. I avoid pork anyway to be safe (prob wouldn’t if I had perfect health), and it’s fattening anyway. Don’t miss it at all, and my cooking feels plenty flavorful without it.

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        • I hear that- pig was definitely my favorite animal when I started eating meat again. I remember saying to a friend that if I could choose only one animal to eat, it’d be pig. Bacon, ham, sausages, chops, lard to cook with- those wonderful magical animals do it all.

          But I worked with a guy who ate halal and avoided pork last year, and then messed around with the RBTI stuff, and then started working with Chief, and haven;t had pig intentionally in probably a year. And oddly, like Matt describes, I have a little bit of a distaste for it now. Not outright revulsion, but it just doesn’t call out to me like it once did.

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  6. Matt, have you ever been tested for the HLA-B27 gene?

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    • Did you guys eat it at the shire?

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      • Yes, pork pies mostly – “the foods cultivated and eaten by the hobbits are all foods that would have been grown or raised in rural England prior to the industrial revolution. Many of the foods described are stereotypical English dishes: the fish and chips Sam offers to cook for Gollum, the buttered scones, putting the kettle on for a cup of tea, the mince and pork pies.” – Well-stocked Larders: Food and Diet of Hobbits

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        • Ha! that’s awesome Bilbo, The Hobbit is definitely my favorite Tolkien book.

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  7. Maybe irrelevant here, but Ray Peat eats bacon, but only after frying the grease out and then re-frying it in coconut oil.

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    • Honestly, at that point, why bother? Just eat a hamburger and be done with it, or a piece of chicken.

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  8. Hell… i got the same chest pain and i had been wondering,
    even going into slight paranoid premonition of approaching
    heart attack which is a bitch of a wild idea..
    i am 37; healthy and female and i’ve
    been eating a tons of pork lately..
    Damn, i love pork..

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  9. Agree with the facts stated, especially the inflammation part. My husband and I both notice that we feel ‘uncomfortable’ when we consume too much pork…and we buy all our ‘proteins’ directly from the growers! Damn…!

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    • Hilarious!!!

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  10. I think pork is really fattening, too, more so than any other food.

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    • Nope, donuts trump piggy any day of the week.

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  11. Just to play devil’s advocate, I got pains in the chest, too. It wasn’t a heart attack or anything like that (had it checked), but I do have what is called a conduction defect which means SOMETIMES the electrical impulse to my heart is slow. It is apparently not dangerous but on rare occasions can feel scary.

    I never thought pork was gross until I got round the health diet folks. Then I started INTUITIVELY knowing that it was gross because I heard it from EXPERTS. The same thing of course happened with milk, sugar and when I was a vegetarian ALL MEAT. Funny how one’s intuition coincides with the latest dogma.

    That said, if removing pork does do away with the chest pains, then by all means remove it. I am just bringing up the point is that OUR EXPECTATIONS very often play a role. Man, I used to feel so bad after eating sugar, or after drinking milk or eating meat…..I really did. It’s difficult separating true intuitions, indications from dogma.

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    • Yep- we can definitely learn aversion. I’ve convinced myself of lots of bad reactions to ‘bad’ foods in the past, some of which went away when I thought differently about the food.

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      • Well,I’m glad it works beneficial for most people here…..As much as I ‘convince’ myself of certain foods(sugar,icecream,tiramisu,whipped cream etc.) not being harmful,or in other words ‘shut my eyes” bc I like them so much&they’re addictiveness,I simultaneously know it’s total crap and not doing me any physical good and just feeding molds&parasites even more,causing damage to organs,weakening the immune-system etc.
        And now,I can’t quit it anymore and am getting into serious problems,also financially…….:'(

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        • I wonder….with all the people here,who now claim to be ‘sugarlovers’….isn’t there anyone,who finds that for instance it robs their body of certain vital minerals&vitamins? causing ‘fatty liver’ symptoms,bad gut flora etc.?

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          • Blackstrap molases will take care of mineral deficiencies. I simply mix it with water and drink it like juice or even instead of water.

        • Dutchie,

          You’re really worried about molds and parasites- I’m not sure what’s convinced you that that is the scourge afflicting you.

          I thought of this old article by Matt about anorexia rehab : http://180degreehealth.com/2010/07/anorexia-rehab and one of the points he makes is that when you’ve been undernourished, and your stress hormones are elevated through things like low carbing or calorie restriction, your feel good hormones soar, but your receptor sites become less sensitive. When you start doing the things your body needs like eating more calories or carbs or whatever, you’ll feel like shit for a while because you’re no longer spiking those stress hormones and you lose your fix of the feel good stuff.

          You seem so worked up and worried and stressed and it sounds like you’re looking for the perfect solution, somebody who’s had your exact constellation of symptoms and experiences and then got better, all while staying lean and maintaining your current dietary prescription. I don’t think that person exists, but you don’t want to really give it the old college try and jump in and trust that something (like eating more and abandoning your commitment to four times weekly exercise or fructose avoidance or whatever) might make you feel worse in the short term, but better in the long term. I can’t make any promises that it will, but you have all the information you’re likely to need to make some changes. Right now I see paralysis by analysis- you’re looking for the perfect final answer, and it probably doesn’t exist. But some of the many ideas people have offered here are likely to get you moving along and feeling better, if you decide it’s worth going for. It just has to get to a point where continuing what you’re doing is costlier than trying something new.

          One other question, philosophical and rhetorical, so you don’t have to answer it publicly: what do you have to gain by being in the current state of health you’re in? What would you lose or sacrifice by becoming healthier in the ways you imagine?

          I read this recently:
          http://www.mommypotamus.com/what-is-a-mommypotamus/
          —–
          I was alive, but I wasn’t living. I was sick of being sick, or so I thought. After seeing doctors, quacks and I don’t-even-know-what-to-call-them, I came to a very strange conclusion: Being sick had a payoff for me.

          Being “sickly” got me attention. Being afraid to “get out there” and take chances didn’t. I wanted life to come to me without me having to take any risks. But in choosing to be a “hanger-backer” I had slowly evolved into “the girl in the plastic bubble.”
          —–
          You’re obviously a thoughtful woman and seeking sincerely for some help. Lots of commenters have done their best to give you some ideas- but there’s only so much anyone can do who’s not you. I hope you can find whatever breakthrough you need.

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          • Very well said Rob! My sister is like this…complains about this problem or that problem (health) but when I tell her about something that’s worked for me for the same problem she just looks at me and when I give her something to try she takes it home and then throws it in a drawer, I guess, but never tries it. I’ve decided, just like the Mommypotamus says, she’s going to have to come to it in her own time! I just keep emailing her relevant blogs I find in the hopes of eventually saturating her mind and that something will click.

          • Hi Rob,
            I really wish it were that easy as to “eat whatever,JERF” etc.,but unfortunately it’s not.
            Aside from that,I’m really getting tired&slightly annoyed by people labelling me off as ‘anorexic/eating disordered’ etc.

            “One other question, philosophical and rhetorical, so you don’t have to answer it publicly: what do you have to gain by being in the current state of health you’re in? ”

            The ‘current state’ I’m in,is a state I’ve been in for years,also the years of ‘eating whatever’. From past experiences,It seems that whenever I eat ‘whatever I feel like/what I like’ I’m doing some not so beneficial things. Even when I started Paleo(though I didn’t know exactly what is was yet)….I avoided sugars like the plague and usually felt blissfull as with sugars too. However,turns out I was eating&’loving to eat’ more&more of the yeastfeeders(such as nuts,smoked/cured meat&fish,PUFA rich foods such as chicken with skin/drumsticks).

            So,whether I eat clean or not,I constantly have to second guess myself when I crave/like something…..and keep being in the vicious cycle. As to which causes/cures what….I have no idea; are it the parasites&molds that are causing the long list of metabolic issues?…I don’t know anymore. On top of that every issue/organ seems to need it’s own ‘dietary stuff’ which are quite contradictory sometimes….so where does one even begin?!

            For instance: I saw this video of Josh Rubin(he seems nice) about Candida&dietary regimen,which is total opposite of another video where he talks about ‘dietary regimen'(Kaufmann Diet?) to fight of molds/worms.
            I have both…..so where to even start nutrition-wise,bc it seems that whatever I eat,I’m basically fucked by feeling like crap/mood disorders etc.

          • Hi Dutchie,

            Eventually you might get tired of the “he’s saying this, and she’s saying this” game and start trusting yourself completely. Trusting all those parts of yourself that are not being allowed to come out as long as your mind is dictating your food choices.

            You don’t need to read anything else. You don’t need to go into any more nutritional minutiae. Forget about the parasites, the fungi, and all the other things you think are causing your problems. There is no “right” diet for you. Don’t think that if you eat the “right” foods or diet that you will immediately feel better. It doesn’t work that way. Ice cream and french toast will fuck you up just as much as green veggie juice if you are eating them for the wrong reasons. All you can do is give up, trust yourself by doing what feels right no matter what you’ve read or believe, and see what happens. There will never be any certainty but trusting yourself does get easier.

            You are fucked and NOBODY can help you out of it. I mean that. I know what it’s like to go through that. Nobody can lead you out of it but you, because nobody has ever lived what you are living.

            And get ready to look at the rest of your life too, because your problems didn’t start with the food.

            If you find yourself breaking down over and over, because you feel helpless and confused that’s a good start.

          • “like!” excellent comment!

          • yes i second that “like” :)

          • Hearing about how candida and whatever else starts producing filiaments to permeate more tissue in search of food is freaky friday. Idk if thats what they do, but it makes sense, and I’ll just keep drowning them fuckers with so much food they’ll lose their appetite like I do! =) #FungusHasLeptinToo hehe psyche idk..

          • I don’t really understand what you’re saying/meaning with “producing filiaments to permeate more tissue in search of food is freaky friday” and the “#FungusHasLeptinToo “

          • wheres the “like” button? very well said Rob!

      • Learned aversion is definitely part of our physiology and something that would have been selected for by evolution.

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    • Hmm yeah I do agree with you, Thomas. I guess the trick is to figure out which dislikes are genuine.

      I was raised on veggie dogs and beef dogs, but we almost always avoided the pork kind. I would have taken the pork ones over the veggie ones. I liked traditional pork sausage. XD I was also raised without sugar, even though I liked it.

      Now I’ve been eating pork, thinking it’s perfectly fine for me, and I don’t know if I really like it all that much anymore. I’d much rather have a hamburger pizza, than a pepperoni pizza. I don’t get any weird pains from eating it, I just don’t find it that appetizing.

      Sugar was much much more evil in my mind than pork (I mean I read William Duffy, AND Weston A. Price, AND all the low-carb people), and I’ve taken to sugar again despite all that knowledge. XD I used to tell people I thought sugar was “gross” but I mean, come on, can anyone truly mean that?

      Pork on the other hand? Eww. Lamb? Mmmm. Perhaps I’m just picky. Or perhaps it’s all in my head. Or perhaps pork isn’t really the food my body likes at this point.

      I was to a Naturopathic doctor a few weeks ago, and he told me pork is a pretty low-quality source of protein, and he’s rather see me eat chicken or red meat. So I’ll give it a try and see if I notice any changes.

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      • I am almost certain that there is a reason (if you want to look for it) to avoid almost EVERY food out there. You can find something toxic in all of them. If we were to cross study all of the diets and avoid the collectively proscribed foods, we would all starve to death.

        My concern here is that Matt has identified a food that does him harm. He has identified a potential toxin found in that food. We could then jump to the conclusion that we should all avoid pork. That would probably be a mistake.

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    • Thomas, I so agree with you. Once I get it into my head that a food is causing some serious adverse effects in mood or otherwise, I develop an aversion to it.

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      • Josefina, you are not alone. I may be wrong, but I am really liking this idea of “intuitional eating”. However, it is easier said than done. We are taught NOT to trust our gut feeling and so, when it comes time to use our intuition (or instinct, or whatever term you feel comfortable with), we find it difficult to forget what we’ve learned. That’s a hard one to overcome.

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    • I completely agree with you, Thomas, I used to feel sick and snotty after drinking milk or eating cheese but can’t get enough now with no mucussy feeling whereas before I avoided it like the plague.

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  12. Hmm,
    See, I thought it was all the methionine it the muscle that was hard on the liver, but now its the fat as well, are you implicating pork gelatin too? You seem to be. Gelatin is fat free so the AA argument doesn’t make much sense to me, but on the other hand I have some of these symptoms most of which I believe are due to adrenal fatigue, (pounding health beat, pain in left shoulder) so I guess I’ll nix the gelatin, or get some kosher gelatin and try that for a while. Matt I generally believe you to be the voice of reason when it comes to health fanaticism, so for reals, buying new cookware is not an option for me financially, is my tainted cookware going to ruin the results of my pork-free experiment?

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    • I can’t speak for Matt- I know I’ve been avoiding pork for a while now, and continue to use the same cast iron skillet I used to fry up sausage and bacon in. It’s been cleaned often enough that I don’t stress it too much. If I had a more serious reaction I might consider getting some cheap-o skillet to work with, but for now, I feel fine using it.

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      • Yeah, I think you’re right. I mean both Matt and Chief, anti-porkers, eat out and really you’d have to be incredibly naive to think that your food doesn’t harbor traces of everything else that’s on the menu. Now that I think of it, I used to work at a pizza place and I assure you we rarely wiped between cuts, maybe like if someone ordered a medium goat cheese with anchovies, pineapple and cashews, I mean maybe I’d wipe the blade before the next pizza was cut, but probably not. Anyway I just realized that extreme avoidance measures may be hopeless for now as I am on a small dose of prescription porcine thyroid, and it has eliminated much discomfort so I guess I’ll just avoid it as a food for a while and binge on it when its offered as holiday fare to see if I get a reaction.

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  13. “Plus I got to see several hundred sets of urine chemistry in the last year or so, and pork shows up in an eerily predictable manner in many people’s urine chemistry. In the world of RBTI, pork is perhaps best known for elevating the urea levels in the urine in proportion to other test values. And high levels of urea in your urine will give you the stamp of having “chest pain,” a hard heartbeat, and/or pain in the left shoulder depending on how high they are.”

    Interesting topic for sure. My understanding is that high levels of urea indicate the body is using amino acids for energy. In other words, when protein is consumed it either gets used for structure building or gets metabolized for energy. The by product of all protein metabolism is the production of urea which is excreted through the urine.

    So, if pork consumption does elevate ones urea levels then that would suggest it’s amino acid composition is not very useful for structure building in that persons body, at least in it’s present state of health. By ‘present state of health’ I’m referring collectively to that set of genes involved in the digestive process that are currently ‘up regulated’. Other genes, also involved in digestion, could be ‘down regulated’ at the time that would otherwise be more efficient at utilizing porks amino acids.

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    • I’ve heard the explanation that the body “burns up” or metabolizes pork too quickly – and that’s stressful to the body. That would mesh with your explanation about it being metabolized instead of used for structure building.

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      • Yes, it does mesh. But I have no idea why pork protein would be metabolized too quickly and not used for protein synthesis (structure building).

        On other comment, it’s possible to use the smell of urine as an indicator of it’s urea content. Seems that people on this forum like self-diagnostics.

        Urea itself is colorless and odorless but it produces ammonia (which gives urine its distinctive odor) in the presence of water.

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  14. One other point about the cooking pans.

    Any residue left in pans from cooking pork, whether AA or protein, would only contribute ‘trace’ (compared to an actual serving of pork) amount after even one decent cleaning. NO WORRIES on that.

    I would be more concerned about the metals used to make the pan, or high-tech anti-stick coatings.

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    • Yeah, I concur, I read a little book called the Fluoride Deception a few years ago and nixed the non-stick pans, which were never tested for human safety, and because I think the pfc’s that leach into my food might be an additional burden for my body, but also because the manufacturing process pollutes the local environments where pans are manufactured with persistent environmental toxins that are nearly impossible to clean up and poisons the workers that work in these plants who have no legal recourse when they get medullary thyroid cancer or have a child with horrible deformities of the eyes, since pfcs don’t have the same regulations as say, mercury or lead. And really Teflon pans are throw away pans, they don’t last for ever and I’m just sorta sick of the disposable nature of most of our consumer goods, I only want to buy it once.

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      • Um, Sorry, bit of a rant.

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        • Hey, if we can’t rant here, where can we?

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      • Hey Christal, what pans do you use? I did the same (got rid of all my non-stick pans) a few years ago after being concerned about the chemicals they are made from, and replaced them with expensive cast-iron ones. But then I read about how excessive iron is thought to be really bad (atherosclerosis, heart disease, bacteriemia, hemochromatosis, etc) and have sort of went back to non-stick. So I’m wondering if there is something better (I guess stainless steel would also leach iron??)?

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        • You need to season the pan with lard.

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          • hahahaha!!

  15. we always promote our bias/biochemistry. just the same as pork isn’t right for you a lot of people have issues with dairy gluten white sugar and caffeine!

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  16. I have a similar aversion to beef. I really can’t stand it. I’ve been trying to add veal to my diet, I think it’s working better.

    I love pork though. Both my parents’ ancestries are huge on the pork meat (Portuguese and Swedish) and I grew up eating a lot of pork. I avoided it for several years since I was told it’s bad for you. Once I went back to eating it, I felt like I had come ‘home':). I like that it’s sweet. Which is why I don’t care for beef much, just too manly and aggressive:).

    Sometimes, depending on the cut, the pig, and cooking method, pork can taste absolutely horrendous. But same goes for any meat I think.

    At least in the case of the Muslim taboo on pork consumption, there is a theory that the taboo was created by the Elite when woodlands became scarce in the Middle East, thus reducing the natural habitat for boar, making it less available. The idea is the upper class wanted it for themselves.

    In Celtic lore, boar meat was considered the meat of the gods, and eating it would bring you closer to them. Pork has been a staple in so many cultures (Pacific, European, Asian), it’s not possible to even suggest it’s *universally* bad for human health. But sure, on an individual basis, I can see that it may be problematic, due to various factors. I’m not sure if this claim is true, but according to Sally Fallon, a large amount of fatty pork was/is consumed traditionally by the Soviet Georgians, who are known for their longevity and health.

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    • well played.

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    • That’s interesting Josefina, but I must add that boar and pig meat are very different. I get both from a farmer I know (the boar is a wild boar x ancient domestic breed, Gloucester old spot I think, if it was truly wild he couldn’t farm it) and the animals are raised exactly the same, free to roam about and supplemented with barley when necessary. The pork is unbelievably fatty. The meat is lush when you can get to it though. The boar on the other hand is lean, dense, dark and close textured, some fat but far far less than the pork.

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  17. I get a malware warning when I try to click on the WAPF link for pork. FYI.

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    • Ya I get the same thing, I didn’t think Vegans were that smart!

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  18. While we are sort of on the topic of RBTI. I tried min-col and didn’t have a good experience with it. Fairly quickly after taking it, it inflamed my small intestine just out of my stomach. I remember Josh Rubin having a video about this condition. I can’t remember what he called it.

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  19. This is an interesting topic. I have been vegetarian, vegan, low carb, high carb, low calorie, calorie cycled, and through it all what I have learned is that what is best for you is easiest determined by yourself and the reaction of your own body. The thing is: that can change. When I was a teen, I couldn’t digest meat. When I was 21 years old, something in my head snapped, and all I wanted was beef. When I had shattered my right foot into so many pieces that the radioligist couldn’t count how many, I just wanted one ‘Little Debbie’ snack cake and two sodas. My bone healed. Now, I want dairy. I also have a broken right index finger (smashed it with a car door, it wasn’t my fault, we had an earthquake.) I’ve even eaten ‘completely clean’ and GF. That didn’t help. But, what does help is paying attention. When something makes me feel sick, I don’t eat it. For me, thats too much fruit and too little fat. Some tolerate more sugars, thats fine. Some don’t. Some tolerate pork, some don’t. The point is: don’t just be a follower of a ‘diet ideal’, pay attention to your own body.

    Oh, one more thing: pork is not recommended for people with gout because it raises urea levels.

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    • Yup, this is exactly what I’ve found. Listening to your body is the answer, and you will want different things at different times. Still think it’s a good idea to try and eat a fairly balanced diet and minimize junk, but in general your body will point you to what it needs.

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  20. I haven’t eaten pork or any other scavenger for years. The original “kosher” diet as we are told in the book of Leviticus was for health reasons, so that the people would not get certain diseases. scavengers were not to be eaten, they were created to clean up the garbage of dead and decaying animals or people.
    God didn’t set up “rules” to make one’s life miserable, it was for their good.

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    • wow this is RETARDED. What makes you think that humans are not scavengers?

      All organic matter is recycled through all levels of life. Go fuck yourself and then blow the jizz back in your mouth. Leviticus was an ass muncher.

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      • The Bible aside, I think there is a difference between us being scavengers and us eating scavengers. Like ruminant animals having specific digestive processes for what they eat etc…Like if you feed a pig and a cow the same thing, their enzymes and acids and shit will make it into two different things. I think…That was harsh what you said but also kinda of funny to be honest…

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        • Priceless metal dude!

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  21. It’s interesting that you mention Paul Jaminet – I’ve been following the Perfect Health Diet and am feeling wonderful on it. Was curious what you’d think about it. My moods are incredibly good so far, and I do have bacon but haven’t noticed anything yet. I’m satisfied with fewer pieces, or none at all. This is different for me – I can usually eat an entire package. The happiness and getting thin part is lovely. Have you ever gone back to a 70% fat excluding pork? I’m waiting to be on PHD for a few months to do an RBTI test just out of curiosity.

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    • Paul Jaminet seems like just another run-of-the-mill nutrition god, if you ask me, and PHD just like another run-of-the-mill nutrition dogma. Anyway good luck to you and let us know how it works after 6 months. ALL diets work for at least a few weeks.

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      • I still don’t know what PHD entails exactly,differs from Paleo. However,isn’t it the case that Paul recommends different kind of dietary advises concerning one’s health problems?

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    • I loosely follow that diet and I feel great too, I like the philosophy just eat lots of fat eat some starch and go do stuff. I can follow it when I’m out too which is a bonus, I don’t have to eat 10 bananas while everyone eats dinner.

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      • highfat and carbs/starch,isnt that a surefire way to get obese immediately? What about proteine?

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        • Ya your right if your metabolism is a little sluggish high carb and fat will probably make you gain, but PHD isn’t high carb. If you eat say 2000 cal/day then 400 cal will come from starchy tubers or rice 200 cal from protein and the rest from fat. I understand the shortfalls of the diet, the title for one is pretentious and it’s still based on a weak theory carbs = insulin = fat and Barry Groves’s retarded idea that all mammals eat a high fat diet, but that said it works well for me.

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  22. I don’t think there is anything wrong with pork in itself. It depends on what was the animal fed on. Mangalitsa meat (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mangalitsa) is probably more healthy than beef, chicken or even fish.

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  23. Hey Matt, I’m sorry for such a out of place comment, but I’m having an argument with a friend about human height in the context of a project we’re doing.

    He’s one of those people who believes it’s entirely genetic… but I think it’s a lot more than that what with epigenetics and dietary factors and what not. If you had to summarize, what would you say are the big determinants or the big promoters of height in humans?

    Reply
    • big determining factor on height , available calories and proper nutrition during the first 16 or so years of life…a guy did a study on families in mexico following them for their whole life giving only half of the a vitamin and after reaching adulthood they was a huge difference in height between the supplement and the non supplement group.

      Reply
      • Wait Chief, do you mean “half of them” and “a vitamin” or ” half of the A Vitamin” lol

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        • LOL half of them got a multi vitamin supplement

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          • haha I figured. how does metabolism really fit in then? do people with higher metabolism throughout their lives grow taller than people with shorter metabolisms?

          • LOL!!!! I can’t stop laughing! I’m an idiot!

  24. hi kids, this reminds me of how i’d go to the chinese restaurant once in awhile and order my fave, “pork with three ingredients” and next day have an asthma attack from the arachidonic acid. still would have a BLT with artisan bread and heirloom tomatoes though!

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  25. When I was 7, I was at a camp-out where they roasted a whole pig on a spit. It was pretty disgusting, watching it go around and around all day, but I still tried some when dinner-time came. From the first bite I knew something was “wrong.” I tried to eat a few more bites but quickly became disgusted. Hours later, I threw up violently all over our camping trailer. No one else got sick, so I’m really not sure if it was the pork or not, but since that day pork has always revolted me and I refuse to eat it now, even tiny bits. ug. Just reading this article made me feel ill, lol.

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    • I forgot to follow up my story with the best part. Nowadays I get my raw milk from a farm which brings the milk to another farm closer to town as a drop-off point (TX laws only permit selling of raw milk from the farm.) So anyway the farm I go to to get the milk raises organic pigs. The kids always want to get out of the car and look at all the animals, so one day we were standing there looking at the pigs, and one pig started urinating. It came out like a fire hose straight out from behind. Another pig moved directly behind, opened its mouth, and drank the first pig’s urine until it had stopped. That pretty much sealed the deal for me that I will never, ever eat pork again!

      Reply
      • Good thing Bear Grylls wasn’t there!

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      • Dont you know urine is a health drink!

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      • Rabbits eat their shit. Actually, they must, because their faeces contains essential nutrients only available after the excrement came out. So what?
        Ever tried fried pig blood? It’s delicious with onion. Traditional breakfast on pig slaughter day.

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        • yes, I have seen rabbits eat their own shit, but it wasnt anywhere near as gross as the fire-hose of urine that dirty pig was chugging down. No offense, it wasn’t meant to be some scientific conclusion to not eat pork. I just have some mental hurdles that won’t be overcome.

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        • so what what? I’ll drink you pee

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  26. Interesting! Last week I made some pasta with pancetta and my husband, who occasionally gets pains like you described, said he had chest pain for a few days afterwards. Obviously we’re not ruling out any other number of causes but in my husband’s case it does seem like it might be related to diet. I don’t eat a whole lot of pork myself because the smell of cooked pork usually makes me nauseous.

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  27. Interesting stuff. I also used to eat a high-fat diet a few years ago (around ~70% fat, see here for mroe: http://inhumanexperiment.blogspot.fi/2009/02/typical-paleolithic-high-fat-low-carb.html) but have now cut back on fat intake. And, like you, I experienced weight loss and lower body fat as a result — though the fact that I was doing intermittent fasting most of the time might’ve had an effect as well.

    I ate quite a bit of bacon too but never experienced the chest pains though.

    – JLL

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  28. As Matt knows I have always had an aversion to pork – especially bacon. Since I was a kid the smell of it was nauseating to say the least. Sometimes I’d even have to go outside while my parents cooked it for Sunday morning breakfast…Anywho very interesting that it has the highest level of arachindonic acid of any known fat – which has a direct link to inflammation! Inflammation adds to the complexity of all diseases and biological imbalances in the body – so knowing cutting pork out of your diet can help with inflammation is very note worthy! Thanks Matteo

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  29. In between travels, I stayed at a place with an old bloke who was a control freak, interfering with everyone’s business, including food. He insisted on removing every saturated fat from the kitchen except for Canola oil, as according to him, his doctor said that he had perfect cholesterol (whatever that is supposed to mean? Also, he was blind as a bat). After he cleared out the kitchen, I went and bought some lard (the horror!). Terrified, he then relented to allow me to use butter for cooking, ignoring my statement that butter, although great, was not suitable for cooking.

    I thought, what a dumbass! Butter is more saturated than lard! Not only that but he also ate bacon for breakfast, chinese food twice a week and cakes on Sunday. Chinese food is cooked in pork fat as this is what gives it its distictive taste. Also, the secret to good pastries and cakes is lard; so if it tastes great, then likely it was cooked in lard.

    I once was given some wild boar with crackling and it was delicious, the taste and texture much different from store bought pork. Worth the overeating. I do love pork and bacon, but I only eat them occasionally.

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    • Isn’t most chinese restaurant food cooked with corn oil and the like nowadays?

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  30. I just learned that Jello is made from pig skin. Disappointed that I’m going to have to shell out for gelatin.

    The “tradition” surrounding pork is long standing for good reason: it is a hybrid Atlantean creation. I’m amazed when people say they eat bacon or sausage.

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  31. pork makes my side hurt. my gallbladder side. I mean serious pain. So i also limit pork consumption.

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  32. Matt! You so right! I slid off the pork wagon (heh) this past week. Someone handed me a burrito with bacon in it and once I chewed one of those crunchy bits with a little bit of fat left to melt in my mouth I was exhausted. I followed it up with ribs and well, tasty as helz. but no. can. do.

    Thanks for the reminder as to why :)

    Reply
    • I would have never known that pork had a negative effect on me if I hadn’t stopped eating it completely for a while. I thought I would miss it but that strange repulsion I feel towards it keeps me away. And ribs and bacon and all that stuff was like my Raison d’être.

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  33. After I eat pork, I’m pretty sure I can fly. Now, beans… That’s a different story. But pork does my body good. ;)

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    • Really? I would think the beans would give you jet propulsion. Works for me.

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  34. Hey Matt/Rob, the Weston A. Price Foundation’s article showing blood changes from consuming pork link isn’t working.

    Reply
    • Thanks Kelly- think I got it back.

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  35. I’m not into the religious reason for avoiding pork, but when I eat bacon, I get the WORST heartburn. And pigs are such nice, and smart beasts, as in Wilbur in Charlotte’s Web.

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