06 February 2014

Know Read Meet

I posted this article back in January 2014, but I've decided to update the content, the organization, and the message. So it will be worth a second reading by my followers. Here goes!

The title of this entry is significant, "Know Read Meet," as a tribute to my college students who struggle with spelling, syntax, sentence structure, and punctuation. No Read Meet, No Red Mete, Know Read Meat. See what I mean? I teach Freshman Composition at "The Best Small College in America -- Snow College (Ephraim, Utah). My poor freshmen struggle with writing, especially the ESL students who have to make sense of the English language. I expend a tremendous amount of energy trying to interest my students in the mechanics of English. I've been known to use a Russian accent, copious anecdotes, mild swearing, and doggedness to help hold their attention, but it is always an uphill battle.

On the other hand, my students teach me a lot. For example, I have read several research papers showing the connection between e coli in beef and the symptoms of Alzheimers Disease that show up in humans who have eaten infected beef and pork. OMG!!! I'm not making this up. In fact, all the literature on autoimmune disorders strongly suggests that red meats can have a negative impact on the digestive system and overall wellness of individuals with autoimmune (Lupus, MS, Fibromyalgia, ALS, Crone's, etc).  Therefore, in January 2014, I made a conscious decision to forego eating beef and pork from now on. I can honestly say I have never found myself craving meat, so it hasn't been a super sacrifice. My step-daughter Rebecca is a natural-born vegetarian; when she was little, she seldom ate the meat we served on her plate. She ate everything else, but just didn't have an affinity for meat.

Eat Mor Chikin

I came across this cool graphic representing "Integrative Nutrition" - a reference to the basic needs of the evolved human. The inner circle breaks down our physical needs into the common denominators: water, oils, fruits, grains, protein, and veggies. The outer circle refers to the social/emotional needs of modern woMan: relationships, spirituality, activity, and career.

The foods in each of those colored quadrants remind me of my healthy favorites:
apples and carrots, quinoa, pasta, and rice;
eggs and cheese;
squash, broccoli, and tomatoes;
beans, including refried and humus.

I still eat chicken on occasion, but it's probably no safer than the others. However, the more I read about the foods fed to cattle and hogs, the more I find myself  unable and unwilling to eat red meat; the antibiotics and growth hormones given to livestock, the diseases these animals carry, and the GMOs (genetically modified organisms) they eat are far from safe for human consumption. My already-compromised immune system does not need red meat. In fact, I'm certain the break from these meats will reap positive results. I'll revisit this topic later in the year. In the meantime, I would love to read your comments. Feel free to agree or disagree. Let's get this issue on the table. :)


  1. You go, girl! Whatever will help you feel strong and alive is the right choice with foods. I'm plunging in and exploring the benefits of natural yeast (aka sourdough starter) and know several celiac people who are able to eat breads made that way. A side benefit is that in an emergency situation (prepper hat on) you can use all that stored wheat even after your stored yeast runs out.

  2. UPDATE: As of August 1, 2014 my diet has remained about 95% free of beef and pork this year. I have dropped 25 pounds and my husband has dropped 28 pounds. I feel good about these two accomplishments. I hope it can inspire someone else.


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