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eliminate 99% of all medication with permaculture polyculture?  RSS feed

 
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Full disclosure, I'm an eye doctor.

And I know quite a few doctors of various kinds.

I think the medical community is not suppressing a cancer cure.  Trust me, the doctors wouldn't stand for it.  I'll tell you a story about an anti-angiogenesis drug, and a doctor I know very well.

Until recently, there was no good treatment for "wet" macular degeneration.  If you had the fast/destructive "Wet" macular degeneration, it meant you're bleeding in/under the macula, and you're going to go blind very fast.  Tragic, awful disease. 

Then a retinal specialist down at Bascom Palmer Eye Institute ( I think Phil Rosenfeld, but don't quote me) had an idea that you could use the anti-angiogenesis drug Avastin to treat mac. degen. patients that were otherwise just going to go blind in a hurry.

Angiogenesis is the development of new blood vessels.  Sometimes, that's a good thing, like developing compensatory vessels to help supply your heart if you have a coronary artery that's blocked.  But in cancer, it's a terrible thing.  Some tumors secrete compounds that "attract" and "cause" new blood vessel growth, to help feed the tumor so it can grow faster and faster.

Avastin is used systemically to slow or stop that process, with pretty good success in colon cancer patients. 

Wet macular degeneration involves a similar process (although not cancer) where a bunch of new (defective) leaky blood vessels grow under the macula and trash it. 

So, the Bascom Palmer guy injects this stuff into patients eyes who are rapidly going blind, no other treatment hope, AND IT WORKED! Not every time, but most of the time.  This was the first time ever we could say that about wet mac degen.

It spread like wildfire among retinal specialists who treat mac degen.  The other awesome thing, is that Avastin is used in pretty high doses to treat the colon cancer patients, and the ophthalmologists only needed tiny little amounts to inject into the eye.  So they would have a pharmacist split up a "big" bottle into a bunch of little doses.  We're talking maybe fifty or a hundred bucks a shot.  For this kind of application, that's dirt cheap.

OK, here's where it gets interesting.  The company who makes Avastin (Genentech), instead of being happy they're doing all this wonderful good, tries to suppress the use of this stuff, in favor of a similar new drug developed specifically for M.D., but at the cost of well over a thousand bucks a shot, or more.  They threatened to sue the pharmacists, the pharmacies and the retinal specialists who were doing this.

Retinal specialists across the country threw a hissy fit and Genentech got a ton of terrible press about taking this cheap effective drug away from old people who were going to go blind because they couldn't afford the more expensive drug.

So, my favorite retinal referal doc here in town, he was one of those guys who put tremendous pressure on Genentech and worked through FDA channels, to insure that Avastin was still available.  It worked and Genentech backed down.  We can still get Avastin, and cheaply.


This is the community of doctors you are accusing of keeping a cure away from patients.  It's complete poppycock.  If you have ever met  and gotten to know an oncologist, most of them would sell their firstborn child to cure cancer.  Seriously.  No drug company in the world could stop the oncology/doctor community from getting a cheap cure out, if it existed. 


OK, second topic.  I've been an organic gardener for almost 30 years.  I do a ridiculous amount of work to conserve energy in my house and my car.  I am steadily developing my permaculture orchard on my 7 acres.  I grind my own breakfast cereal from organic hard red winter wheat, and corn that I grew myself, organically.  My mom raises organic grass fed beef.  Etc. etc. etc.  I mention these things so you have an idea where I am coming from.  Yes, I think diet and lifestyle matter tremendously.

And, I'm a trained scientist. 

So far, I haven't seen any proof that polyculture food can cure anything, compared with similarly grown organic, in rows, without polyculture.

It's a nice theory.  I hope Paul is right.  I WANT Paul to be right.  I am ROOTING for Paul to be right.

But show me the evidence.  Maybe it's out there and we just haven't seen it yet.  I hope so.

So called "anecdotal" evidence can be used to prove anything.  It could even be used to prove that monoculture/GM/pesticide/herbicide/fungicide food that results from the evil empire that is Monsanto, is better for you than polyculture/permaculture food. 

Because of this, I would encourage everyone to not use singular examples as proof that polyculture cures anything.  They're just not. 

This does not mean that examples are not interesting, or that I can't learn anything from these examples.  By all means, bring on the examples.   But they are not proof, in any convincing scientific way.

No matter how attractive and common sense the theory appears to be, that doesn't make it true.  Hey, I have an idea.  Let's prove it scientifically!  Wouldn't that be fun to rub in Monsanto's nose?

Maybe they'll pay Paul a million dollars to suppress the truth, and he can take the money and then double cross them anyway and spread the great news.

Finest regards,

Please carry on,

troy
 
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H Ludi Tyler wrote:
What are the cancer-fighting foods?



A wide variety of fruits and vegetables appear to offer some protection in terms of preventing various cancers.  A few examples:

Broccoli, Cauliflower, Cabbage contain sulforaphane, which dietary and lab studies point to as anti-cancer:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=sulforaphane

Omega 3 fatty acids protective:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=omega%203%20cancer

Tomato consumption/lycopene linked to reduced prostate cancer risk:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?term=lycopene%20prostate%20cancer


The list goes on - turmeric, garlic, anthocyanins from berries, etc. etc.  Probably not the best choice after being diagnosed, but the idea of a healthy, diversified diet to prevent cancer or reduce the risk? That makes sense.
 
pollinator
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Thanks. 

 
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Good post Troy!
 
pollinator
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Lots of interesting perspectives on this thread. My perspective is that I certainly don't believe there's any magic bullet cancer cure that's being suppressed, there are a good deal of individual cases where alternative medicine and/or diet and lifestyle changes have led to remarkable improvements in a variety of conditions. I've stayed away from conventional medicine for a while now because of a difference in philosophy, the conventional doctors I've seen have for the most part viewed their patients as like machines that need to be fixed, while the philosophy of the right wholistic practitioners (and they're certainly all not like this, there are certainly scams and people who don't really know what they're doing, but that's how it is with anything) view us as living beings with the capacity to truly heal. Also I'm not taking any chemicals that will persist in the environment and cause contamination. Mind you, my own health issues have not been as serious as cancer, and I don;t know what my reaction would be if I had cancer. I don't expect everyone to do the same as me, but I do get upset when people (not saying anyone on this forum, but plenty of people with this attitude out there) try to restrict others choices in health matters and force everyone to buy into their mechanistic view of health. Really, should our whole society be putting all our eggs in one basket here, diversity of healing systems ranks just as important to me as diversity of food crops.
 
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Hi Ludi,

H Ludi Tyler wrote:
What are the cancer-fighting foods?



Also do not overlook medicinal mushrooms, however be very careful of where you source them from.

Solarguy2003,

I jump around a bit sorry about that. So it sounds like the treatment for macular degeneration is pretty successful. However I thought it was interesting that it is/was being used without FDA approval and they do not seem to be meeting the same resistance that special diet supporters or raw milk drinkers are! Things like armed raids and seizure of property.



So far, I haven't seen any proof that polyculture food can cure anything, compared with similarly grown organic, in rows, without polyculture.



Keep looking the information is starting to come to the surface. Unfortunately there is not a lot of money available in this arena even for the publishing of the data. If nothing else growing in rows still requires some form of tilling the soil which will destroy the mycillium contained in the soil. There is absolute proof of the many benefits of eating medicinal mushrooms as well as their benefit in cycling nutrients and growing better and healthier produce. Ex. higher in anti-oxidants and major vitamins.  Besides cures are not really what we are talking about here, it is more along the lines of no longer needing a cure. It is perhaps ironic at least to me but it comes back to permaculture again: "the problem is the solution."



Avastin is used systemically to slow or stop that process, with pretty good success in colon cancer patients. 



I admit to being out of my element here again but my understanding is the the FDA is actually recommending the removal of Avastin for treatment of metastatic disease.



OK, here's where it gets interesting.  The company who makes Avastin (Genentech), instead of being happy they're doing all this wonderful good, tries to suppress the use of this stuff, in favor of a similar new drug developed specifically for M.D., but at the cost of well over a thousand bucks a shot, or more.  They threatened to sue the pharmacists, the pharmacies and the retinal specialists who were doing this.


This is interesting!! I can only assume the new drug was worth more to Genentech than Bevacizumab which is marketed as Avastin and is/was one of the most expensive drugs around. This really is mind blowing when you consider that in 2008 Avastin sales generated almost $2.7 billion dollars for Genentech.


This is the community of doctors you are accusing of keeping a cure away from patients.  It's complete poppycock.  If you have ever met  and gotten to know an oncologist, most of them would sell their firstborn child to cure cancer.  Seriously.  No drug company in the world could stop the oncology/doctor community from getting a cheap cure out, if it existed.



So I feel compelled to address this even though I do not think you were addressing this at me directly. I don't think anyone is accusing doctors perse certainly not individuals. However current laws and regulations prevent practically any entity but a large corporation from funding the research and publication of data for FDA and/or USDA approval. Often companies with a revolving door process with those same regulatory entities. Frankly I would love to see doctors step up the pressure, but I also understand they need to make a living and I realize that is quite hard to do without a license. 

So the timing of me coming across the below article was odd. While poking around today forming this post I comes across this:

"A case in point: it turns out that only about half of the new prescription medications pushed onto the market over the last decade had the proper data together for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration - yet the FDA approved them anyhow."

http://www.naturalnews.com/032279_Big_Pharma_fraud.html

It would be interesting to see who and what got approved without the proper data would it not?

Jeff
 
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Well, about testing polyculture foods... anyone here have access to quality chemical analysis equipment? We could try to find a university to do testing, but it would have to be off the beaten track for agricultural research (since most ag research colleges have their programs funded primarily by Monsanto and others). A liberal sciences college could be rather helpful. Also, polyculture, even if not better in good soil, will in the end be better since it keeps erosion lower and will therefore retain more nutrients in the soil compared to row crops. Which means that (without tremendous inputs) 10 years of row crops on land will drop in nutrients over time(as a vast body evidences they have - the amount of iron in an apple, for example, has dropped by more than half in the last century). The polyculture will stay nice or even improve because of dynamic accumulator plants. And I agree that it is primarily the drug companies working to suppress good cures.
 
Emerson White
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The people I know in agrotech academia don't take money from industry, but are all very industry friendly, and constantly attacked as if they did take money from industry. Monsanto does give some money to some schools, but such a great majority that it can be treated as if it were all are completely independent of any biotech money.
 
Troy Rhodes
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Dear Jeff,

Yeah, no offense taken and no offense meant.

"... current laws and regulations prevent practically any entity but a large corporation from funding the research and publication of data for FDA and/or USDA approval. Often companies with a revolving door process with those same regulatory entities. Frankly I would love to see doctors step up the pressure, but I also understand they need to make a living and I realize that is quite hard to do without a license." 


Agreed.  The FDA/Pharma relationship is waaaay too cozy.

I would like to see the FDA privatized and run by, ummm, scientists.  FDA approval of new drugs, or old, would be optional.  If you want to sell unproven drugs to the public, go right ahead. 

Oh, but if you hurt somebody, you have no protection from liability lawsuits.  You personally, and you corporately.  Jail and everything would be on the table.  So, it would be in your best interest to work with the FDA to do reasonable and unbiased trials.  And since it would be run privately, as a business, cost would drop by more than half, and the speed and efficiency would increase dramatically.

Anyway...

troy
 
Tyler Ludens
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Jeff Mathias wrote:
Hi Ludi,
Also do not overlook medicinal mushrooms



Thanks, Jeff, I will try to find more information about that.

 
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Some of the Native Americans, in their own words, indicate they were living to be 130 to 140 in near perfect health, before the white man came.  Then they gradually adopted the white man's diet, to their detriment.  They ate from Nature, pure and wholesome, polyculture in its raw, pristine state. 

All plants put certain exudates into the soil from their roots, and many grow in symbiotic relationship to each other.  When the microbial life is actually ALIVE in the soil, and the humus is intact, minerals do not wash out but are held sequestered until needed by plant roots and attracted through their root exudates.  Old growth forest is loaded with fungal hyphae and mycorrhizal growth.  Clear cut causes an immediate die off of microbial life. 

Of course, having a balance in the soil life and mineral content makes for better health.  Cancer was practically unheard of when people were living naturally and eating from the land and using good farming practices.   When the soils were depleted through ignorance of what healthy soil means, health started deteriorating.  If we can but mimic nature, we've come a long way.   We also need to eat a variety of food crops, from a local, let's say. 60 mile radius of where we live.   

If we didn't pollute our taste buds with artificial sweeteners, or refined flour, sugar and salt, we would have the good sense to eat intuitively and take what we needed from the plethora of nature and our gardens.  Even different varieties of one fruit or vegetable can be vastly different in the chemical array and composition.  So taste of many things and see what "your body" tells you you really want.  Eat slowly, savor your food, and pay attention to how each bite makes you feel, and you'll learn to select those healing foods your body needs to remain balanced. 

It just isn't natural for plants to grow in rows or in a monoculture.  It depletes soil nutrients and atracts bugs.  I totally agree with Paul. 
 
Richard Kastanie
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Weston Price's book "Nutrition and Physical Degeneration" clearly shows the difference that diet makes on health. He has been criticized for not taking a representative sample of indigenous peoples, but that wasn't his goal. He seeked out the healthiest populations, which were all "primitive" peoples eating nutrient-dense food with no modern processed foods (there were a lot more of those people still around when he did his work in the early 20th century). He also saw the effect that processed foods had on these populations, where some of the people were still on their native diets and others adopted processed foods the ones on the native diets were much healthier. Of course diet wasn't the only change these people had to deal with when confronted with modern society, but it sure was a big one.

Some of the people Price studied were agriculturalists and some hunter-gatherers, and their diets were very diverse, although he found some common characteristics, particularly in their being quite nutrient dense. This indicates to me the importance of treating the soil well rather than doing any sort of fad diet, as healthy soil is the foundation for all plant and animal nutrition.
 
Emerson White
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Red Cloud 31 wrote:
The human species is supposed to live at least 140 years, not the 70 or 80 they usually do now  ...  Living in a polluted world, under constant stress and eating less than optimally, certainly takes its toll. 



I don't think we have that knowledge, based on our heart size and lean body weights it's unlikely that we are built to live past 120. Another animal our size would be able to live that long, but not if it had a brain as big as ours that it used. The candles that burn brightest burn fastest.

There have always been things taking their toll, We have more pollution and more toxic substances that we meet, but far less disease, and far more nutrition, than our distant ancestors. It's only because we sit atop cushy western diets that we no longer see carbs, fats, protein, and salt as nutrients. No one in history has been able to grow food as well as we can now, this is progress, Joel Sallatin was inspired by old means, but he invented something new. Bill Molison and Fukuoka invented new things, they did not go back to traditional methods.
 
Melba Corbett
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Emerson White wrote:
I don't think we have that knowledge, based on our heart size and lean body weights it's unlikely that we are built to live past 120. Another animal our size would be able to live that long, but not if it had a brain as big as ours that it used. The candles that burn brightest burn fastest.




Emerson, I appreciate what you are saying, but I didn't just make up the 140 year life span.  That came from medical research done by an associate physician I worked side by side with for 12 years before I retired to the farm.  He wrote a book on the subject.  He said it has more to do with heart rate than brain capacity.  Faster heart rate ages an animal.  The very slow heart rate, for example, of a turtle, causes it to live longer than humans. 

When we think of history, don't just compare today's nutrition (which has degraded horribly since people started eating white flour and food preservatives), to the past few hundred years.
We don't know a lot about ancient history, other than in very ancient history, people lived a lot longer, unless taken by untimely death not related to diet or health. 



 
Emerson White
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How did he calculate it? The thing is that the big brain takes resources that require a faster heart rate. If our brain weren't sponging up 25% of the metabolic resources then we would be able to have a slower heart rate.

And no I was not thinking about todays nutrition, I was thinking about human nutrition at every point in human history. It has never been as good as it has in the last 100 years in the west before.
 
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Emerson White wrote:
And no I was not thinking about todays nutrition, I was thinking about human nutrition at every point in human history. It has never been as good as it has in the last 100 years in the west before.



I think that might depend on how you define 'good nutrition'.  If 'good' means 'keeps you supplied with calories' then maybe you're right. 
 
Emerson White
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Good nutrition is nutrition that doesn't involve you dying for want of nutrients. We now have an excess of calories, but as a problem that's not nearly as bad as the crippling shortages of calories and vitamins we had in the past.
 
                                            
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H Ludi Tyler wrote:
Except Native Americans didn't have their own writings (no written language).   

Very old people can live to a very old age.  That's certainly true. 



Well the Cherokee have a written language invented by Sequoyah.... of course that was in the 1800s after the white man came

I don't believe there is any consensus on the upper limit of human lifespan.  Certain diseases become almost universal at advanced age - dementia and cancer are two that come to mind.  It is hard to know much of this is due to the modern lifestyle and diet because comparison groups of "primitive" people are genetically distinct and also they die from injury or infection before they reach an advanced age.  People who state that we are supposed to live 200 years or 140 years or 120 years are basically guessing.

Large populations studies have confirmed repeatedly the lifestyle and diet that are known to promote a longer healthier life.  These are:

1.  Daily physical activity (in the form of something that has to be done as part of your daily living so it's not optional like going to the gym.  like you have to walk to get around, you have to go garden and dig stuff, you have to row a boat around, etc)

2.  A diet that is predominantly based on a wide variety of plants rather than predominantly based on meat.

3.  A strong social support structure.

Of the three, many argue that number three is the most important which may indicate that health is more a state of mind than a state of body.
 
Melba Corbett
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I believe that Dr. Woodard based his book on the human lifespan being 140 years from a lifetime of research he did on cancer and health after his son died of cancer while in college.  He was devastated from that and changed his medical focus after that.  I do remember him saying that there is a formula he used based on maturity age of mammals and comparison to smaller vertebrates, plus many other factors, like normal heart rates.   Don't have all the details, just wanted to share with all of you that we can be healthier than we are.  I don't think it matters whether people can live that long or not, its the quality of the years rather than the number that counts. 

According to what Naturopathic medicine teaches, exercise is actually more important than the food we eat, but nutrition is also important, and nutrient dense foods are a big part of this.  If we don't get sufficient exercise, the blood flow and lymph flow slow down and the toxins are not filtered out properly and nutrients don't always get to where they are supposed to.  We also need to chew our food at least 20 times, more if we aren't feeling well, so saliva mixes with it thoroughly and it is so well masticated it is almost a liquid.  This alone will greatly improve digestion.  Attitude (feeling happy instead of grieving or feeling frustrated or angry), can make a huge difference in how we digest our food and how our immune system responds.  That's one reason why cancer patients who are "cured" usually get it again if they are harboring any negative feelings.  They need to stop worrying, laugh a lot and spend time with friends who are uplifting.  It's very hard to laugh when you know you are suffering from cancer. 

It's like having minerals in the soil and depriving it of oxygen or microbes.  The plant can't take it up no matter how much is in there, or at least very little.  It's about balance.  When we eat mineral deficient crops, they also don't contain the proper enzymes we need to digest them.  That's why biodynamically/organically grown (with the proper amount of everything), gives us food that is superior in every way.  Permaculture/polyculture takes the next step up, and balances the plant relationships in the soil and then nature can find its own balance as different plants pull up different nutrients and make them available to other plants in a manner we are only just beginning to understand.  When we eat that food, of course, we will have better health. 

I don't believe there is any vitamin product on the market that can equal really good, fresh food due to the enzymes in that food which immediately start biodegrading as soon as it is picked.  A raspberry is at its absolute best and highest nutritional point from the plant, into your hand and into your mouth.  We take vitamins to make up for the fact our food does not have all the nutrients we need in it.   It is a second choice and yes, vitamins have their place, and so do minerals, but pre-digested by the plant is the very best.  Our bodies recognize that as food and rapidly assimilate the nutrients from those real foods.   Vitamins simply help fill the gap, kind of like patching a hole in the concrete wall with a little more cement.  . 

There is an old book called Goat Milk Magic which tells of a man who treated many people with serious, chronic illnesses with goat milk, at his clinic, but it had to be fresh from the goat, not more than 3 hours old and he said at that stage it goes intracellular.  Older than that and it is still good, but not as good.  True health always begins with the soil, and the more removed from that and processed it is, the less healthy.   Our livestock are only as healthy as the plants they eat.  So when we drink milk or eat eggs or meat from those animals, how can we be healthy and get optimum nutrition if they are not? 

The standard American diet at this time  is truly very SAD.  Just look at the faces of children in the grocery stores as people check out with all those fast foods and refined products and ready made to eat foods.  Do you ever see a healthy child today?  They are few and far between.  Then look at the children of the people who grow organic and permaculture, and are eating whole foods, rather than processed, and see how robust and healthy their children are (if they are indeed eating what they grow).   It speaks for itself.
 
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Rather than delete 20 posts in this thread, I'm going to ask that folks go through and edit their own stuff to shift it into my comfort zone.

For example:

The supposition that somehow the medical community is suppressing a cancer cure is ridiculous.



I am not comfortable with suggesting that somebody on permies.com utters ridiculous things.  I would prefer that this read:

I think the medical community is not suppressing a cancer cure.



-----

It would please me if the following:

The human species is supposed to live at least 140 years, not the 70 or 80 they usually do now.



instead said

It is my impression that the human species is supposed to live at least 140 years, not the 70 or 80 they usually do now.



----

Emerson, It would please me if your posts supported the other folks and then you present your alternative position.  Sometimes it reads a bit as if your position is the only one that matters.  You post a lot and have come a long ways in understanding what works for me.  I would appreciate your help in setting a healthy pace for healthy discussion.  If you were to add a little of this to your posts above, that would be peachy.

----

I would prefer that this:

This is why anecdotes don't make a good basis for beliefs.



were instead this:

I like how this explains how anecdotes might not be a good basis for beliefs.



------

It would have been much faster for me to delete a bunch of stuff here.  I am hoping that I will not regret this alternate approach - that me taking this time to convey all of this will have a longer term payback for my effort.



 
Tyler Ludens
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barefooter wrote:
Humans got shorter at the dawn of agriculture not because they were growing food in mono cultures, but because they were eating a mostly grain based diet



A monocultural diet, instead of the polycultural diet available to non-agricultural people.

 
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barefooter wrote:
Cancer and heart disease research are both huge frauds, because there will probably never be a cure, but this doesn't prevent them from wasting billions on developing new pills. Money token from unknowing people who donate thinking they're helping. Sure, some may be able to heal from these diseases, but for some a lifetime of exposure to toxic environments, toxic food, stress, lack of sleep, etc. can not be undone.

Paul, I think you may be over estimating the effects of poly cultures on food nutrition. I think you may be onto something, but it seems like it would probably only account for a small percentage of the nutritional value of the food, with the majority coming from the soil quality. Humans got shorter at the dawn of agriculture not because they were growing food in mono cultures, but because they were eating a mostly grain based diet instead of the much more nutritious wild meat, fish, nuts, greens, berries, etc.



I think there are no 100% cures and cures for every kind of cancer, since cancer comes in so many varieties and types (and mutations and permutations), but there are many treatments and preventatives, including natural ones or strong suggestions from research that supports natural treatments. Well-known and popular examples are soy and isoflavones. You can run a quick search on Pubmed to see how many studies have been done on isoflavones and cancer. Also, I think you're doing a disservice to the amazing powers of the body for healing and regeneration.

It's my understanding that Native Americans living on the Plains were actually taller and healthier than the American settlers coming from the East. Probably for the reasons you state. Diet makes a huge difference in health, life span, disease prevention, and vigor.

http://www.jstor.org/pss/2677910

A diet rich in wild game, fish, organ meats, nuts, berries, greens, etc. apparently had a good effect on them. However, many of the Plains Native Americans did eat maize, squash, etc. as I recall. But as I understand it the bulk of their diet came off the land.

I've noticed some of my posts have disappeared in the past for no explained reason (and I don't think I've been flaming people or posting nonsense), so I've been avoiding threads like this, but I thought I'd contribute a little on the Native Americans.
 
Tyler Ludens
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The Plains peoples had the advantage of that diet and way of life their entire lives.  I guess I wonder how successful a polycultural diet would be at healing the ills caused by growing up in the modern civilized world with all the plastics and other toxins we're exposed to, etc.  And if you're being treated with pharmaceuticals, how will you know if a change of diet is helping you unless you go off the medications, risking the effects the medications are supposedly preventing?



Can a lifetime of all these bad things be undone by a change of diet?

 
Emerson White
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Plains people had their own set of problems to deal with. Harsh winters where game was scarce, hunting injuries, etc. Those who survived turned out taller and better fed, but they weren't living in a utopia.
 
maikeru sumi-e
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Emerson White wrote:
Plains people had their own set of problems to deal with. Harsh winters where game was scarce, hunting injuries, etc. Those who survived turned out taller and better fed, but they weren't living in a utopia.



While I don't disagree with the essence of your post, I have some niggling doubts about the details that only the survivors turned out taller and better fed. You dismiss it too quickly and summarily. I never said it was a utopia. Let's not forget the warfare the tribes engaged in and hard, active, physical lifestyle they lived. Many of the Plains tribes were also semi-nomadic with the seasons and not only with the herds. However, I believe there is enough scientific and nutritional data to indicate that diets rich in minerals, nutrients, and protein often lead to better growth and health, and often that height can be a good indicator of nutritional status (it's one of many indicators). Similar observations have been noted among other groups such as impoverished Scots and Irish who followed traditional diets.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110407093244.htm
http://www.newyorker.com/archive/2004/04/05/040405fa_fact

Maybe it's something in epigenetics, natural selection, etc. I don't know exactly. Nutrition is not my area of expertise, but I was exposed to enough food for thought, so to speak, when I was working in research.
 
                                
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Red Cloud 31 wrote:
Exercise is actually more important than the food we eat, but nutrient dense foods are a big part of this.



I don't think you can be so sure about exercise being more important than nutrition. I think how lifestyle effects health is a very complicated matter and statements like that really aren't productive. I don't claim to know the answer, so I try to give attention to all the areas where I think we've moved away from how are bodies have evolved to stay healthy -- food, exercise, sleep, relationships and social interactions, stress, water, environmental toxins, sun exposure, etc.
 
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Late last night I moved a bunch of stuff here to a new thread in MD about anecdotal stuff.
 
Emerson White
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I think this thread makes some very strong implied claims, and that discussing the root of those claims is important in this thread.
 
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For those who are TRULY interested in what they eat and how it effects EVERYTHING/their life experience....these books I've read lately have really put things into perspective for me. I saw a one-liner recently that really stuck out:
Food not Medicine

How true!

Anywho, the books are:
Conscious Eating by Gabriel Cousens &
The Sunfood Diet Success System by David Wolfe

They do a splendid job at tying together diet with the whole big picture of the cosmos

Enjoy

Edited: For those of you who were discussing cancer (or any disease)-fighting/preventing foods, this is a most excellent documentary: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ye4N8EH3dog
 
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Paul and Jocelyn review the movie, Ingredients in this podcast podcast 119

They talk about health.
 
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paul wheaton wrote:

you do have to return what you take away, or the soil WILL become depleted.



I dunno. 

I think there is some truth to that, and I think that it is possible for the soil to get richer while consuming some and putting nothing back.

I guess the thing I'm really fishing for here is the idea that a carrot grown in a permaculture polyculture can have far more nutrition and flavor than a carrot grown organically in rows.  I'm even going so far as to say that if a sick person can replace 80% of their diet with polyculture food then I wonder if this will cure what ails them.  Could this be a cure for cancer?  Could this cure all sorts of illnesses that have people so heavily medicated now?

If this is crazy talk, I would sure like somebody to help me understand why.



Joel Chudnow, a natural health promoter in my area, talks alot about proper nutrition being a huge contributor to health.
(This link is to a video of a talk that he gave somewhere: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sjcbi7wjxBE&feature=related)

He usually talks about how not eating the crap that the average American eats, and instead eating a balanced diet goes along way to maintaining and recovering poor health.

However, I suspect that polyculture would tend to synergize in the ways that you are talking about and contribute something more to our nutrition -- all the things we don't know about yet in our science.

And one more thing will relevance to the comments below what I have quoted from you which I have only skimmed at this point, Cancer is curable with plant means -- it's just that the Feds don't want anyone to know about that. They call some of those plants "poison" when they really aren't that at all.


 
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Just my quick word, but I've spent a few years researching (not formally) alternative treatments for cancer and other common diseases. Most likely cancer is epigenetic in nature and has many factors involved in its formation. And its treatment is also varied and there is no one solution. Most of these factors come from the modern world as can be evidenced by the low disease rate in preindustrial times. Theres no money to be found in simple, healthy preventive measures such as food and avoiding environmental toxins so your not likely to hear these two in mainstream science.
 
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Paul,

Back in 2009 you wrote:
"Agriculture started about 10,000 years ago. I've heard from several sources now that when we dig up a bunch of human fossils, if the folks died young and puny with messed up teeth, that is in agricultural society. If the folks died really old and tall with nice teeth, that's a hunter/gatherer society.

Spencer Wells, Geneticist, anthropologist, and all around pretty brilliant guy wrote a book about the unintended consequences of our agricultural revolution 10,000 years ago. It's called Pandora’s Seed: The Unforeseen Cost of Civilization. In it he talks about, among other interesting things, how our diet and our genes have changed through the last 10,000 years. He contends that our diet and lifestyles have taken a negative turn since that advent of agriculture and animal domestication, while diseases became more prevalent.

He gives a good talk here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BZe4B3nfPJM . Despite not being able to see the slide show he does a good job explaining his premise. It's worth watching the whole thing but the first 13 minutes or so is mostly intro if you'd rather skip it.

Hopefully this post comes through alright. It's my first contribution to the forums.

Regards,
Kalvin (NorthernFall)
 
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Interesting discussion

I believe that healthy nutritious food is only one factor of several that determine good health (leading little or no recourse to medication). Other factors would be (as others have pointed out in this thread) clean air & water (lack of toxins / pollution), good hygiene habits (to keep away infectious diseases), proper exercise, healthy social networks... among others

Also: Good health depends not only in what we do (what we put in our mouths, plus exercise, etc.) but also on what we refrain from doing (what we avoid putting in our mouths - cigarettes, alcohol and other drugs would fall into this category; and TV watching)

But on a certain level I could agree with Paul's thesis. Think of this: if we were to live in a society where food was grown exclusively using soil-sparing (soil-building) polycuture systems, wouldn't you expect the whole social set-up, the collective thinking and behaviour, people's way of life in general to be conducive to better physical health - and hence less use of medication - than in our present society? So Paul is right !
 
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There is an emotional aspect to health that could never be properly studied with a control group. The placebo effect is real.

The opposite is also real. A large number of people (unsupported factoid that you can feel free to disregard) find their health rapidly declines, sometimes to the point of death, just after being diagnosed with a major illness. It is my unsubstantiated belief that a large part of this comes from a loss of hope. People sometimes die rapidly of a cancer that was steadily eating away at them for years just because they've been diagnosed.

Another unsubstantiated belief of mine is that gardening in any form is healing. Part of this comes from physically connecting with nature. The unseen microbial flora and fauna gives us health. But there is also a peace that comes through connecting with and honoring our food.

After this highly scientific post, my two cents are hardly worth counting, but I thought I would add my different voice to the chorus anyhow.
 
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weston price has done alot of research on this. nature loves diversity and variety. we are at our best when we participate in this wholly and happily.
cancer is actually not an end all but a by product of a process in the body. this forum is not the place to go into this, but modern science is way behind and in the dark about the body and its synergistic systems which must be looked at as a whole. for those who are interested, they can discover many things if they are willing to know.

modern society is not more healthy or evolved due to the drug and chemical industries, even though we are taught this.. better hygiene and access to clean water and nutrition is what is responsible for a longer, better quality of life. and this goes back to the benefit of the polyculture, which is the way things used to be.

quantum physics is the most exciting field of science today and the closest to uncovering ancient wisdom and truth. the question is, will arrogance and ignorance again outweigh prudence for the human species? as long as forums like this continue to grow, and we remember our place in nature, we have a good chance of creating a better outcome.
 
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I think you are absolutely correct. We turn our minds' over to those who we are told are 'experts' and haven't a clue (many of us on this planet) that what we are being told, purposely, or not, may not be correct. I am 100% behind the idea that we are more sick than ever because of the lifestyles we are told we should have. We are constantly bombarded with negative news and stories and we even have a cancer channel so everyone believe cancers are part of our lives and that's the way it is... never stating, of course, as to WHY this supposed 'intelligent' and 'rich' nation has an outrageous amount of disease, obesity, and behavioral issues.

Knowledge is critical to our survival as individuals and communities and we are being denied much knowledge. Knowledge, to me, is more about searching various viewpoints and being able to decide, through trial and error (not on everything, of course), or through the forgotten ability to think and for ourselves (and use common sense) then deduce.

Bruce Lipton has some very good ideas regarding how cells behave in different environments, and we can place that into Quantum Physics, and beyond.

As far as permaculture goes, When we move further out, either in the US or other country, we do plan and having land with both permaculture and aquaculture (if there are no rivers running through my property).

Make and Drink your own Kefir!
 
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I absolutely agree with the original premise that started this conversation. Food is far superior, from a diverse ecosystem. Doesn't require scientists to prove that either. You can feel how good your food is just by how it feels in your body, or just how lacking it truly is. And if you aren't able to feel the difference then you can surely taste the difference. ..."let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food"...

This topic sorta took a turn down the path of "disease", and all of our opinions pertaining to it through our research and beliefs. So I wanna throw my beliefs and opinions, through experience and research, into the mix. I tend to try and not contribute in these types of topics as they often times turn into nothing more than a debate of ones beliefs, "even when those beliefs are unfounded, or misguided and created from, "someone", looking to make a profit from, "our", lack of knowledge".....yet here I go. Everyone do their own research because........."we don't know, what we don't know"

Just some tidbits to look into. My strong, "beliefs and opinions through research and experience".

Through my research I've learned that in large part, the human body uses simple sugars as it's fuel source. Everything else, that can be, needs to be, converted into a simple sugar to provide that fuel for the body.
Eating cooked foods causes the body to go into a reactive/protective mode, where it begins producing leukocytes, "white blood cells", to stop and eradicate the foreign invaders that have just inundated the body...."cooked food"....white blood cells are the same thing the body produces when it needs to eradicate a virus.
Look up Pottengers Cats. You'll begin to understand even more as to why the improper food, and even the proper food when cooked, is harmful to the body.
Disease, through my research, is nothing more than a body that is out of balance...the ph is way off, the mineral and nutrient balance isn't even close to what it should be, and it's clogged with lymphatic waste....what does one do when their garden soil is out of balance.......balance it.....ahhh hah.
Excessive protein damages cells and throws the body into an acidic ph state....."people begin peeing out their own bladder when they get too far down this, "gotta have protein", path. Granted, these people, "the ones I've heard about", are adopting a strict protein only diet." ....."so why are we being marketed to in such a large way that urges to us, we need more protein"....many may ask......and it's a question most definitely worth asking yourself.

If you're just not feeling well and you don't want to spend years researching, "or may not have the time", and you are ready to just feel better.....youtube, Dr. Robert Morse.

The human body has an optimum food source, just like everything else. And when we stray from that.......well, just take a look around.......
 
River Klein
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Yes, I understand what you are saying. We all have our opinions regarding certain matters that should/could be factual and everyone would be on the same page. However, we have so much dis/misinformation surrounding us on a daily basis--much of it, I believe is to confuse us--that it's very hard for everyone to be on the same page and/or want to explore more options, or trails, with data that will lead to positive end results.

It's really great to see individuals on here that realize that, yes, modern humans are walking cesspools of the industrial garbage we consume. The earlier we teach others about this, the better their lives will be. Food that can sit on a shelf for months, that has been 'chemically' treated sort of blows your mind when you think of it.

I don't believe the 10,000 years theory, but that's a decision I came to from reading various books and researching ancient lands--like Egypt (home of the Khemitians).

It's crazy that we have a 24/7 'Cancer' Channel on our TV providers list. Crazy because you know who it benefits and there's no way they are going to provide info other than mainstream. Also, I find it disturbing because they are promoting it like it is a natural event--more and more will get cancer because that's just life! Sick and hilarious! Let's not find the root, let's just radiate, hack up, and poison those that get cancer.

Anyway, I try not to come on here and rattle on or be too political... but, I just had to share my thoughts.

Thanks.
 
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Tyler Ludens wrote:

ontario wrote:
Eating cancer-fighting foods



What are the cancer-fighting foods?



Broccoli, spinach, kales, tomatoes, cilantro, parsley, ginger, tumeric, cucumber, cannabis, pumpkin, watermelon, etc, etc. Basically, anything bright, with heavy concentrations of terpenes, esters and polyphenols. Any cruciferous vegetable that is eaten in a sprouted seed state actually contains concentrated forms of these chemicals.
 
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It's like binging on 7 seasons of your favorite netflix permaculture show
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