Thursday, 30 July 2015

New ketosis hypothesis

The comments section over at Peter Attia's Eating Academy attracts a diverse range of people and opinions. 

Either Rita has a unique sense of humour (it certainly made me laugh) or perhaps her time would be better spent investigating whether ketosis cures stupidity. 

Sunday, 19 July 2015

Scylla Serrata - a crustacean like no other

In terms of flavour, a thick, fresh, South Australian scallop fried in butter sits on top of my "favourite seafood to eat" list. But there are reasons why I think mud crabs (Scylla Serrata) beat out the wonderful SA scallop for overall enjoyment.

For starters, what's not to like about the look of these animals?

If I wasn't dead, I would totally mess you up right now.
Part alien, part vicious, angry killer, these body-builders of the sea could easily take off a finger or toe if you're silly enough to leave them dangling near those nippers.

My father in law recently returned from a stint 'down south' where a nice person gave him their liver to replace his cancerous one. A few months waiting for a liver plus another 3-4 recovering, one of the first things he wanted to do upon coming home was go crabbing.
the fish didn't co-operate that day, but a few mid-sized crabs did
And who could blame him, these animals, when caught at the right time in their 'moulting' cycle are big and full of sweet, rich flesh that makes a blue swimmer crab look like a puny, tasteless waste of time.
a boy and a girl. Not big specimens, but tasty all the same.
The crabs are caught in large wire pots, and we use chicken carcasses soaked in tuna oil for bait. Euthanised by placing in the freezer for half an hour or so, no one with a brain throws them alive into a pot of boiling water anymore.
what they look like inside, before taking the 'feathers' and guts out.
Depending on what you're going to use them for, the body parts are kept fresh and uncooked or boiled in salt water for roughly 15 minutes, like this one:
cooked and ready to crack open for the goodies inside.
My brother in law tells a good story about a day out fishing - he and his cousin had been observing another man checking crab pots. Upon finding a big, fresh mud crab in the pot, he simply look disappointed and tipped the animal back in to the water and resetting it, for what, they had no idea. After watching this going on for quite a while, curiosity got to them and they asked "why are you not keeping the big muddies you've been catching?"

He replied "they're not the type I'm after. I don't want the brown ones, I want the ones with the orange-coloured shell".

Going by the pictures above, I won't bother explaining the idiocy.

Like a lot of well-known dishes, Singapore chilli crab has many different recipes. We use a variant of this one, but I don't think any version is what you'd call 'low carb'.
Sugar aplenty. The rest of the book is clean.
finger licking awesomeness
 The boiled crab was used for a more typical LCHF meal - brekkie the previous morning.
eggs, bacon, black pudding and crab with chilli and onion
From the moment you pull the pot from the water and see the big, brown, beautiful crab staring back at you - to the moment you put the rich, delicious flesh in your mouth, I think the mud crab provides enjoyment like no other animal from the sea.

If you ever get the chance to indulge, I certainly encourage you to do so.

Saturday, 18 July 2015

That Sugar Film - speed review

Watch it.

It's not flawless but it's above average and worth a look. It's now available for download or purchase on DVD in some parts -  see the link above.

It's a bit annoying in parts when they dance around the topic of "good fats" without explaining exactly what that means to them, but I s'pose if they were to pronounce the wonders of animal fat, they may be seen to be going off the sugar track and lose most of their target audience.

I imagine something along the lines of: "That Sugar Film is great, but then they go all Atkins and totally lose the plot. Shame they refuse to see the truth that is the Heart Foundation's brilliant message".

Other than that, listening to big boy Stephen Fry talk about nutrition is a bit surreal, but that's as far as the negatives go.

There'll always be the nutters who say they eat 50 cumquats a day and have super strength and immortality and that sugar is a super food, but unfortunately these same people just refuse to stop being demented pricks.

I've watched quite a few of these types of films and this one is probably up there among the best in terms of production quality, content and overall ease of viewing. The science is, of course, generalised and you could pick a few holes in it here or there, but for the target audience it's intended for (everyone who isn't totally set in their vegan/fruitarian ways) I think it hits a pretty good sweet spot.

Friday, 17 July 2015

Secretive smart arses and coming out. A little bit.

It has occurred to me quite a few times over the life of this insignificant blog that I take a lot of pot shots at certain groups that promote a low fat, low red meat, high cereal/grains diet and I don’t think I’ve ever specifically explained what it is that I do myself. My posts of meals are few and far between, but are a small insight into what I put in my stomach.
I love cows
I absolutely understand that this information will be of zero interest to almost all people who stumble in here, but there are at least a couple of websites that I’ve visited in the past that have ultimately annoyed the crap out of me for this very reason. The information they post might have been useful, had I not been distracted by the nagging thoughts of ‘why are you so secretive of what you put in your own mouth?’

Vagueness irritates me.I know I'm a smart arse, but I had not intended to be secretive or vague smart arse - I just didn’t think the information was that interesting. Of course it isn’t, but to get it out of the way in an attempt at transparency, dot points are go:

  • I have never been morbidly obese, pre-diabetic or member of a fruitarian commune.
  • I tolerate gluten and lactose without immediate or obvious adverse effects.
  • My mother’s side are naturally thin, my father’s side are medium build. Dementia has shown itself on both sides and there is a tenuous, almost non-existent history of heart issues.
  • I'm somewhere between 35-45 years of age. 
  • I studiously counted grams of saturated fat on food labels for a lot of my adult life.
  • My peak heftiness was at age 21 - about 96 kg (212 pounds).
  • My average adult weight on a low fat diet was between 84-88 kg (184-194 lbs).
  • My weight has been stable at 78-80kg for the last 3.5 years on a high fat diet (171-176lbs).
  • I could lie and say I am 6 foot tall, but I’m actually a bees’ dick under at 182cm.
  • That makes my BMI 23-24. Whatever that means, BMI is stupid.
  • I have an ApoE profile of E4/E4, of which I’m weirdly proud and probably talk about too much.
  • I could lie and say I'm ugly, but of course I am incredibly handsome.
  • No, I'm not posting any photos, you'll just have to trust me on that.
Habits after discovering my talent for being a knowitall smart arse
  • Depending on the time allowing and my mood, breakfast is one of two extremes – 2 coffees with a dash of cream/milk OR 3-4 home-grown eggs with some fatty meat (sausages or bacon or both). Blood sausage if I have it. Onions if I can bothered.
  • Lunch could be leftovers or a hamburger with no bread, sardines and cheese, roast chicken, smoked salmon with cream cheese etc.
  • I eat about 20-40g of 85% chocolate a day, usually with a handful or two of macadamias and/or almonds.
  • Dinner could be lots of things but it usually involves some fatty protein in the form of a curry, stew or grilled animal flesh with some non-starchy veggies. We always have prawns in the freezer for easy access and also eat fish, usually salmon, once a week.
  • On average I have 3-4 alcohol-free days a week. On the other days I’ll drink one or two beers, and/or red wine and/or gin/vodka/whisky.
  • I probably eat too much bacon and salami but I'm not totally sold on the 'processed meat' thing. 
  • I take cod liver oil and Vitamin K2 (MK-4) almost every morning. K2 is Alzheimer’s/CVD insurance, cod liver oil is just because. I don’t get sick as much as I used to so it’s sort of based on that. Lately I've added some Vit C, Magnesium, CoQ10. The magnesium better be worth it 'cause the pills are fucking huge and make me gag.
  • I have a few drops of Iodine/Potassium (lugol's solution) if I haven’t had any shellfish recently.
  • I don’t count calories or macro-nutrients but if I had to guess, I’d say my daily intake comprises roughly 50-70% fat, 20-30% protein, 5-20% carbohydrates. I could be way off, but that's what it seems.
  • My only form of exercise is lifting heavyish weights 4-5 times a week and running around with my kids.
I’m not a zealot. If I feel like eating sugar or bread, I will, it just doesn’t happen that often. I might eat some basmati rice or flat bread with a curry or stew. I might eat some pizza or pasta once every few months but I will make and cook it myself so that it's not shit. 

One of my weaknesses is a half-decent meat pie. I know full well the pastry is full of margarine but the so-called 'national dish' of Australia has proven hard to kick.

My personal philosophy and best guess on my body’s ideal nourishment
  • Notice I said “my body’s” - I understand there are lots of people who love to eat, and get by quite well, on eating "mostly plants". Damn, I hate that quote. I’m not one of those people and I never could be. Don't try and change me, bro.
  • Life is short and I don’t plan on living forever or punishing myself on purpose or to achieve some arbitrary number on a blood test that may or may not mean anything to a person who's not guzzling wholegrains soaked in sugar.
  • I don’t kid myself that I know for sure, but I’m guessing my body considers the ideal nourishment to involve a fair amount of animal products and the natural fat that goes with that. 
  • I quite like the taste of milk, but I’m on the fence as to whether it’s worthwhile. I don’t have access to milk straight from a cow’s boobs, so I don’t drink a lot.
  • Regarding Apo E4 -  I can’t get my head around a primitive gene requiring lots of veggies, salmon and olive oil. I concede I may be trusting my gut too much on that, but until I have convincing evidence to the contrary, I’m happy enough to live with what is considered very high cholesterol. 
  • I have no problem with other people eating fruit – it just doesn’t float my boat. I like eating veggies but I am not a big fan of shoving loads of leaves in my mouth – it feels unnatural. Similarly I don't see the point in eating a block of butter in one sitting or drinking a cup of lard. Unless, of course, you're hungry but too drunk to cook:

  • My routine allows me to eat foods I enjoy, until I am full, without the worry of counting calories or feeling hungry or guilty.
  • I know without a shadow of doubt that there is no way I could maintain my body fat percentage (hovers around 10-12%) on any other nourishment. I am a vain creature and not looking like a skinny-fat person means quite a bit, particularly as I age.
  • With a fairly robust immune system, stable blood sugars, sufficient energy and clear-headedness, it seems my body likes what I’m doing. That or it's doing a very good job at pulling my leg. I'm sure we'll all have great laughs when it turns around and gives me a terminal disease.
What I think you should do

  • Whatever you damn-well like.
  • As long as you don't make money from selling obvious bullshit to the detriment of others, then we're sweet.
I do "eat to the rainbow" every now and then on taco night.

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

Health workers say "fuck you" to a Government who thinks secrecy is only OK if the secrets are theirs.

To begin this post in a somewhat unintentionally flippant and obscure manner, it is often said that while watching a sport, if you don’t notice the umpires, they’ve probably been doing a good job. They’ve most likely been letting the game flow and imposing infringements only when absolutely necessary to uphold the spirit of the game.

I usually go out of my way to not notice our country’s umpires, the men and women who congregate in a very expensive building in our nation’s capital and determine what rules we all must abide by when playing the pretty easy game of being Australian. However, it has been increasingly difficult to ignore these people in the last few years because they keep changing the rules to suit their own grubby needs. Playing the game is still relatively easy, but it's getting harder and much more annoying and lots more people are getting hurt.

I've already said my piece on the nonsense laws introduced to monitor our internet activity. But now it seems the Canberra Arseclowns are at it again, introducing legislation that attempts to hide their disgusting behaviour toward asylum seekers.

The Border Force Act 2015 provides for the jailing of health workers who speak out about the conditions we put asylum seekers in. The background to our treatment of people seeking asylum in our country is a long and very sad one, but to summarise – the Government is so desperate to win the votes of the ignorant fools who feel we should “stop the boats” at any cost, that they ship asylum seekers off to a tiny island in the Pacific Ocean, where they languish until…well, I dunno… whenever.

A group of 40 health care workers have spoken up about the ridiculous new law, effective today, and in doing so have given a massive ‘fuck you’ to the Government. I love it. This sort of action should be applauded.. When a bunch of raving loons take over and start running the game however they want, and when the loons’ opposition stand by and wave the insanity through in the pathetic attempt at being voted in next election, we should all stand up and tell them to get fucked.

I encourage you to spread this story, and the open letter below, far and wide. The attempt to cover up disgusting behaviour is deplorable, but to do it just after weakening our own rights to privacy is the act of a bunch of retarded psychopaths. 

Also at the Guardian here.