The Vegetarian Myth

Mari

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
A new study shows how lack of vitamin B12 shrinks the brain in vegetarian/vegan children!!!

Also, if the mother is a vegetarian/vegan, the child's ability to absorb B12 is severely reduced!!!


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B12 deficiency harms young children's development, and the food relief we provide isn't good enough



Vitamin B12 deficiency in infants leads to poor motor development and anaemia, according to a study from Burkina Faso conducted by the University of Copenhagen and Médecins Sans Frontières. B12 deficiency is an enormous, yet overlooked problem, and the food relief we currently supply is not helping. According to the researchers, the problem calls for new solutions.

In Denmark, cases of poor psychomotor development are regularly seen in young children raised on vegan diets, though such outcomes are preventable with daily B12 supplements. But for children in low-income countries, the chances of ever meeting their vitamin B12 requirements are far worse. This is reflected in widespread B12 deficiency among young children in Burkina Faso, according to a study from the University of Copenhagen conducted in collaboration with Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctor's Without Borders). The results have been published in the journal Plos Medicine.

A lack of vitamin B12 doesn't just potentially lead to anaemia, it can damage the nervous system. And for young children, B12 is crucial for brain development.

"Among the many children who participated in our study, we found a strong correlation between vitamin B12 deficiency and poor motor development and anaemia," says Henrik Friis, first author of the study and a professor at the University of Copenhagen's Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports.

For many years, there has been a focus on vitamin A, zinc and iron deficiencies when it comes to malnutrition across the globe, whereas there is a paucity of research on B12 deficiency.

"B12 deficiency is one of the most overlooked problems out there when it comes to malnutrition. And unfortunately, we can see that the food relief we provide today is not up to the task," says Henrik Friis, who has worked with nutrition and health in low-income countries for many years.

Over 1,000 children with acute malnutrition aged 6-23 months participated in the study. The children's B12 levels were measured both before and after three months of daily food relief rations containing the recommended B12 content. When the study began, two-thirds of the children had either low or marginal levels of B12.

Short term food relief does not fill up B12 stores

"During the period when children were provided with food relief, their B12 levels increased, before decreasing considerably once we stopped the programme. Despite provisioning them with food relief for three months, their stores remained far from topped up. This, when a typical food relief programme only runs for four weeks," says Henrik Friis.

Even after three months of food relief, one third of the children continued to have low or marginal levels of B12 stored. The unfortunate explanation is that there is a cap on how much B12 can be absorbed.

"A child's gut can only absorb 1 microgram of B12 per meal. So, if a child is lacking 500 micrograms, it will take much longer than the few weeks that they have access to emergency food relief," explains Vibeke Brix Christensen, a pediatrician and medical advisor to Médecins Sans Frontières and co-author of the study.

"Furthermore, longer-term relief programmes aren't realistic, as humanitarian organizations are trying to reduce the duration of treatment regimens with the aim of being able to serve a larger number of children for the same amount of money," continues Vibeke Brix Christensen.

She points out that it might make a difference to divide the necessary amount of vitamin B12 across several meals, which would probably allow children to absorb the same amount of B12 each time. But the problem is that if widespread B12 deficiency appears among children in low-income countries, it is difficult to do anything about it.

New solutions needed on the table

Preventing B12 deficiency would be the best course of action. Unfortunately, lasting solutions have yet to become readily available according to Professor Friis.

Because our bodies cannot produce B12 on their own, we need to have it supplied to us through animal-based products or synthetic supplements. However, in many low-income countries, access to animal-based foods is incredibly difficult for the general population. One might wonder, are tablets or fortified foodstuffs the way to prevention?

"Possibly, but the problem in low-income countries is poorly resourced and weak health care systems. Handing out tablets to millions and millions of people is not cost-effective. And to enrich foods with B12, it must be added to foodstuffs that are accessible to the poor.

This requires industrial expansion, as many people currently eat only what they can produce themselves. Furthermore, it requires legislation that it is not based on voluntary participation," says Henrik Friis, who has greater faith in other types of solutions:

"Individual households could be incentivized to keep chickens and perhaps goats, which a mother could manage and use to provide access to animal-based foodstuffs. Finally, work needs to be done to develop fermented products with B12 producing bacteria -- something that doesn't yet exist, but towards which researchers and companies are already working," concludes Henrik Friis.
The researchers are in dialogue with UNICEF's Supply Division, based in Copenhagen, about how products to treat moderate to acute malnutrition can be improved.

FACTS:

VICIOUS CIRCLE

  • B12 deficiency can be transmitted from mother to child. If a mother is B12 deficient, her child will be born B12 deficient as well, before receiving breast milk with too little B12 in it. A child's B12 deficiency can affect the formation and regeneration of their intestinal cells. Consequently, the child's capacity to absorb B12 and other vital nutrients will be reduced. In this way, B12 deficiency contributes to the development of malnutrition.
ABOUT ACUTE MALNUTRITION
  • Since 2010, the Department of Nutrition, Exercise and Sports (NEXS) at the University of Copenhagen has worked with the WHO and UNICEF, among others, with a focus on improving the emergency food relief used to combat childhood malnutrition.
  • According to UNICEF, approximately 200 million children under the age of five suffer from malnutrition worldwide. Malnutrition contributes to the death of three million children every year.
  • Acute malnutrition in children is characterized by children who are too thin in proportion to their height. Globally, it is estimated that approximately 50 million children are acutely malnourished, with two thirds of these suffering from moderate malnutrition and the remaining third suffering from severely acute malnutrition.
  • Today, only about 20% of severely malnourished children receive emergency food relief.
ABOUT THE STUDY
  • 1,609 children from Burkina Faso with moderate to acute malnutrition participated in the study. The researchers were able to measure cobalamin serum levels in 1,192 of these children.
  • The children received three different types of food relief rations, all of which met with WHO standards.
  • The study is a reanalysis of data collected in Burkina Faso under the research project TREATFOOD.


Story Source:
Materials provided by University of Copenhagen - Faculty of Science. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.

Journal Reference:
  1. Henrik Friis, Bernardette Cichon, Christian Fabiansen, Ann-Sophie Iuel-Brockdorff, Charles W. Yaméogo, Christian Ritz, Ruth Frikke-Schmidt, André Briend, Kim F. Michaelsen, Vibeke B. Christensen, Suzanne Filteau, Mette F. Olsen. Serum cobalamin in children with moderate acute malnutrition in Burkina Faso: Secondary analysis of a randomized trial. PLOS Medicine, 2022; 19 (3): e1003943 DOI: 10.1371/journal.pmed.1003943




Also, interesting FB post here where this doctor Steven Lin references the same article above:


The child pictured here had anemia, brain atrophy, retarded myelination, with the frontal and temporal lobes mainly affected.

They were a 14.5-month child born from vegetarian parents.

We’ve long known that children need nutrients only found in meats for normal growth and development.

After 5 months of supplementation the brain atrophy had recovered, however it’s not always this easy.

One study in Denmark, where cases of poor psychomotor development are regularly seen in young children raised on vegan diets they looked at the affect of reintroducing meats.

A lack of vitamin B12 doesn't just potentially lead to anaemia, it can damage the nervous system. And for young children, B12 is crucial for brain development.

Over 1,000 children with acute malnutrition aged 6-23 months participated in the study. The children's B12 levels were measured both before and after three months of daily food.

There are a few very real factors that compound the impact on a growing child.

B12 deficiency can be transmitted from mother to child. If a mother is B12 deficient, the newborn receives breast milk with too little B12 in it.

B12 affects the gut:
A child's B12 deficiency can affect the formation and regeneration of their intestinal cells. Consequently, the child's capacity to absorb B12 and other vital nutrients will be reduced. In this way, B12 deficiency contributes to the development of malnutrition.

Short term nourishment doesn’t always fix the problem.

Even after three months of food relief, one third of the children continued to have low or marginal levels of B12 stored. The unfortunate explanation is that there is a cap on how much B12 can be absorbed.

https://www.sciencedaily.com/rel.../2022/05/220503141353.htm

Pregnant women need to be educated that a lack of animal foods or highly targeted supplementation may affect the dental, immune, and neurological development of their child.

What are your thoughts?
 
I've read that the one animal that has the perfect ratio of omegas for human consumption is the horse. Well, I'm a horse lover and I don't think I want to eat one because they are so useful in many other important ways as well as beautiful. But what about pigs? One might expect them to have the right ratio of a lot of things important for human nutrition if they are genetically similar in some ways and are, themselves, given a balanced diet.
The omega ratios of any meat is determined by diet for herbivores, probably one of the reasons the C’s said we should have a wild diet. But in general, grass fed cattle, sheep, horses, goats, alpacas and their wild herbivore relatives have the correct ratios of omegas, grain finishing ruins the ratio of omega 6/3 and makes the 6 too high. The same goes for wild fish, farmed fish are absolutely poisonous for our health and the environment. Probably one of the reasons lard is so healthy, but again it’s gotta be from grass fed animals. Here’s a quick link.


Essentially it’s not the animal, it’s what type of food they consume…. Also, raising animals on pasture is the fastest way to capture carbon and improve soil health if done correctly. The soil will then capture rainwater instead of it running off recharging groundwater and natural springs.

Animal fibers also tend to be superior to the synthetic ones, whether alpaca, wool or quivet. It’s all interesting stuff, plus the finest threads created have to be hand spun which I find interesting, because it always seems like the human can beat any machine, at least in the quality of certain things.
 

Claus

Jedi Master
I have a question...
I am a vegetarian, but now, that I am here I think about to quit that.
But I dont know, if it is recomandet to do it like a switch, or if it is better to slowlie change it.
Now that it is about 13,5 jears, that I havn't eaten any meat.
First I felt better whitout that, more healthy. But now, after reading here and in the session transcripts, when I think back, I think there are things, that hintet me to go back, but I have not seen this before.
So is it possible to go back emediately, or should I chane it slow?

Thank you for your help 🙃
 

Mari

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I have a question...
I am a vegetarian, but now, that I am here I think about to quit that.
But I dont know, if it is recomandet to do it like a switch, or if it is better to slowlie change it.
Now that it is about 13,5 jears, that I havn't eaten any meat.
First I felt better whitout that, more healthy. But now, after reading here and in the session transcripts, when I think back, I think there are things, that hintet me to go back, but I have not seen this before.
So is it possible to go back emediately, or should I chane it slow?

Thank you for your help 🙃
Well I’m not a doctor so no idea if there could be some „shock“ to the organism, so maybe you can go and buy yourself a nice Kalbskotelett and make a nice big bawl of mixed salad - and enjoy!!!

I would go with veal because is tender for the stomach and simply taste excellent.

😉
 
I have a question...
I am a vegetarian, but now, that I am here I think about to quit that.
But I dont know, if it is recomandet to do it like a switch, or if it is better to slowlie change it.
Now that it is about 13,5 jears, that I havn't eaten any meat.
First I felt better whitout that, more healthy. But now, after reading here and in the session transcripts, when I think back, I think there are things, that hintet me to go back, but I have not seen this before.
So is it possible to go back emediately, or should I chane it slow?

Thank you for your help 🙃
Your microbiome is probably changed from eating vegetables for so long so I’d say go slowly and also be very aware of what types of meat you’re eating. Grass fed and finished animals are the best along with wild caught fish, although fish from places like the Baltic Sea are very polluted.

It’s worth doing some research into why that type of diet is beneficial. Weston Price wrote a book back in the 1940s called Nutrition and Physical Degeneration. It’s very clear what type of health problems come from the Western Diet after reading that book.
 

fifty_five

Padawan Learner
I have a question...
I am a vegetarian, but now, that I am here I think about to quit that.
But I dont know, if it is recomandet to do it like a switch, or if it is better to slowlie change it.
Now that it is about 13,5 jears, that I havn't eaten any meat.
First I felt better whitout that, more healthy. But now, after reading here and in the session transcripts, when I think back, I think there are things, that hintet me to go back, but I have not seen this before.
So is it possible to go back emediately, or should I chane it slow?

Thank you for your help 🙃
2 cents. with your body you can do what you want if you know and respect it. In this case, if you have no particular health problems, sticking glue can be a problem and maybe you may need a preventive detox. As a percentage of your daily diet, how many grains and dairy pasteurized products have you been eating for 13 years?
 

Claus

Jedi Master
From dairy I only eat the cheese, but grain products are on a daylie basis.
For a time it was gluten free, but now unfortunateli it is again with tat...
But I trye to eat not that mouch of it, i can feel that it is not good for me, only I can't get to zerro with it. (Unfortunately) I hope that I will get it back to zerro again, when time and money allows that.
 

manitoban

SuperModerator
Moderator
FOTCM Member
I have a question...
I am a vegetarian, but now, that I am here I think about to quit that.
But I dont know, if it is recomandet to do it like a switch, or if it is better to slowlie change it.
Now that it is about 13,5 jears, that I havn't eaten any meat.
First I felt better whitout that, more healthy. But now, after reading here and in the session transcripts, when I think back, I think there are things, that hintet me to go back, but I have not seen this before.
So is it possible to go back emediately, or should I chane it slow?

Thank you for your help 🙃
Fwiw, I was vegetarian for about 5 years, and when I stopped I just went straight back into eating meat without any problem. I actually quickly noticed that I felt better. The first thing I ate was bacon, it was so delicious!

However, I think everybody is pretty unique with how their body works, and you've been vegetarian for a much longer period of time, so it might be wise to take it slowly and see how your body reacts.
 

jhonny

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
grain finishing ruins the ratio of omega 6/3 and makes the 6 too high
Grass fed and finished animals are the best along with wild caught fish, although fish from places like the Baltic Sea are very polluted.
This could be true, but let's be honest, for the majority of people this is not sustainable (financially speaking), so the best approach to me would be, try to eat the meat you can afford. In fact, the best known carnivore, Shawn Baker, have said this on twitter:


So is it possible to go back emediately, or should I chane it slow?
As manitoban said, It would be wise to take it slowly, and I wanted to add that it may be possible that your stomach acid (HCL) is not ideal, so by stomach discomfort, you could try a Betaine HCL + Pepsin supplement.
 

fifty_five

Padawan Learner
From dairy I only eat the cheese, but grain products are on a daylie basis.
For a time it was gluten free, but now unfortunateli it is again with tat...
But I trye to eat not that mouch of it, i can feel that it is not good for me, only I can't get to zerro with it. (Unfortunately) I hope that I will get it back to zerro again, when time and money allows that.
I'm not sure if you simply want to add animal protein to your diet, if you just want to lower the carbs a little or completely change the type of fuel your body uses. Either way, an antiparasite detox is always good. Keep in mind that normally the protocols are gluten and sugar free. Balance your energy intake according to your lifestyle needs, take it slowly and enjoy . you will possibly have cravings and blood sugar level adjustments. If you don't feel confident, which is why I was saying that knowing your body is important, see a professional you trust and learn from him :-) .
 

Ant22

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I have a question...
I am a vegetarian, but now, that I am here I think about to quit that.
But I dont know, if it is recomandet to do it like a switch, or if it is better to slowlie change it.
Now that it is about 13,5 jears, that I havn't eaten any meat.
First I felt better whitout that, more healthy. But now, after reading here and in the session transcripts, when I think back, I think there are things, that hintet me to go back, but I have not seen this before.
So is it possible to go back emediately, or should I chane it slow?

Thank you for your help 🙃

I was vegetarian for 12 years so let me share a few of my experience in case it is helpful.

I can confirm it's perfectly possible to start eating meat immediately, there's no need to phase it. But do bear in mind that your digestive system has most likely suffered some damage and may need extra support. I discovered pretty quickly that I needed to add digestive enzymes and apple cider vinegar to my diet as without them I felt awful and food just sat in my stomach making me feel heavy and brain fogged.

It has now been over 6 years since I started eating meat again and I still need to take digestive enzymes and ACV with larger meals. But I was quite an extreme case and vegetarianism really ruined not only my digestion, but my body in general. If you're not this bad you may only need the crutch in the form of digestive support for a short while.

With digestive enzymes and ACV there shouldn't really be much need to go slow. The quicker you start eating healthy the better so there's no point delaying it. A small amount of the good stuff may not be enough to balance out the bad stuff so you may not really see too many benefits of going back to meat if you go slow.

Feel free to keep us posted on your progress with meat. Many of us have been on that path before and may be able to help you make the transition smoother :thup:

From dairy I only eat the cheese, but grain products are on a daylie basis.
For a time it was gluten free, but now unfortunateli it is again with tat...
But I trye to eat not that mouch of it, i can feel that it is not good for me, only I can't get to zerro with it. (Unfortunately) I hope that I will get it back to zerro again, when time and money allows that.

Gluten and dairy are likely to dilute any positive effects you will get from eating meat again so it would be useful to cut them out. I have been gluten free since 2013 and dairy free since 2016 and although I can tolerate a bit of dairy here and there gluten makes me feel awful. I recently had a bit of a gluten spree and it took me well over a week to start feeling fully well again.

I didn't use to react this badly to gluten but given that I ate it daily from early childhood it was like water to a fish to me, always present, so it was impossible to pin point its impact. But I was advised to cut it out completely for 3 months and start eating it again. If there was a strong reaction it was a clear sign that I was gluten sensitive. And there was a massive reaction, so no gluten for me. Maybe you could try a similar elimination method to see how bad gluten is for you?

I also wonder if all those years of vegetarianism made my food sensitivities worse. I was never a super healthy person, even as a child, and I always had some issues, many of them digestive in nature. But I was never as bad as when I was vegetarian. In fact, many of my food sensitivities have disappeared within the past couple of years after I started eating meat again. Except for gluten and dairy, those two seem to be here to stay, although I don't react to them as strongly as I used to.
 
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Ant22

The Living Force
FOTCM Member
I'm not sure if you simply want to add animal protein to your diet, if you just want to lower the carbs a little or completely change the type of fuel your body uses.

The main benefit of eating meat is the fat rather than the protein. A few useful articles about the importance of it were posted early in this thread. And animal fat cannot be substituted with non-animal products.

Also, a low carb vegetarian diet is rather difficult to achieve when most vegetarian products are carbs. Some sources suggest eating more dairy but milk protein and lactose are poorly tolerated by a lot of people and quite harmful too. One option would be eating less carbs with high glycemic index but this would still mean eating mainly carbs. Not to mention that the low GI ones usually have a lot of fibre, and this comes with its own issues. The book Fiber Menace was discussed on the forum before and it showed that fibre isn't really particularly great for us.

I'd say going back to meat would be the best option for Claus. Everything else would just be choosing the lesser evil instead of choosing a good option.
 

fifty_five

Padawan Learner
The main benefit of eating meat is the fat rather than the protein. A few useful articles about the importance of it were posted early in this thread. And animal fat cannot be substituted with non-animal products.

Also, a low carb vegetarian diet is rather difficult to achieve when most vegetarian products are carbs. Some sources suggest eating more dairy but milk protein and lactose are poorly tolerated by a lot of people and quite harmful too. One option would be eating less carbs with high glycemic index but this would still mean eating mainly carbs. Not to mention that the low GI ones usually have a lot of fibre, and this comes with its own issues. The book Fiber Menace was discussed on the forum before and it showed that fibre isn't really particularly great for us.

I'd say going back to meat would be the best option for Claus. Everything else would just be choosing the lesser evil instead of choosing a good option.
I understand, I am sorry for your digestive problems.
Otherwise I think it is a simple difference in approach, after all Claus was wondering how to go back. Between veganism and vegetarianism (low grain, basically raw even) I spent more than 20 years of my life. Being well. And it was never a sacred cow. Traveling a lot, in places where I couldn't choose what to eat, I always adapted, and before I left. So my personal focus is on flexibility in the system, with a little extra attention to parasites. A pizza has never killed me or caused problems. I've been on a keto diet in the winter and paleo in the summer for a few years now. And pizza, if it happens, continues not to kill me or cause me problems. I'm not exactly a hunter (for now at least, I buy the meat that I eat ) but I'm certainly a gatherer. Practically all the vegetables I eat I find in the meadows. And the only fruit I eat is what I pluck off the branches in the warm season.
 

seve

Jedi
I have a question...
I am a vegetarian, but now, that I am here I think about to quit that.
But I dont know, if it is recomandet to do it like a switch, or if it is better to slowlie change it.
Now that it is about 13,5 jears, that I havn't eaten any meat.
First I felt better whitout that, more healthy. But now, after reading here and in the session transcripts, when I think back, I think there are things, that hintet me to go back, but I have not seen this before.
So is it possible to go back emediately, or should I chane it slow?

Thank you for your help 🙃
Hello. I was a vegetarian for a while and the day my body asked for a steak, I gave it to him the same day and everything went well. Follow your feelings.! :-D
 
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