“I do not think about being beautiful. What I devote most of my time to is
– Ann Bancroft
_The Daily Tonic is a two to five minute read sharing science backed
health news and tips, all while getting you to crack a smile or even_ lol on occasion.
Friday. So much for being a prestigious Ivy League institution. C’monHarvard–you can do better. I guess getting a perfect score on the SAT andbeing captain of every club and sports team does not guarantee having somecommon sense when it comes to putting forward health and food policyrecommendations. Let’s dive in.
*Note: we will not be sending a newsletter on Monday, July 5th. Enjoy the long weekend!
How Do You Know If Someone Went To Harvard?
If they did, they would’ve already told you about it. Kind of like vegans orpeople that do CrossFit. Ok–enough jokes at the expense of our favorite groupof Cambridge nerds (last one). What’s all this have to do with health, andmore specifically nutrition? The Harvard T.H. Chan School For Public Healthrecently put out the world’s first “scientific targets” for a planetary healthdiet, along with this visualguide tohelp people understand what their daily diets should look like. This thing isjust as bad as the food pyramid we had back in the 90s. How could such aprestigious institution get it so wrong? Alright, let’s pick this thing apart.For starters, the plant-forward diet emphasizes using unsaturated plantoils–olive oil, canola, peanut oil–over saturated oils such as palm or coconutoils. Maybe Harvard missed the memo, but polyunsaturated fats (PUFAs) fromhighly processed and typically rancid oils like canola oil are incrediblyinflammatory and bad for yourhealth. TheHarvard “scientifically backed” diet also recommends prioritizing whole grainsand plant-based proteins, such as nuts and seeds and legumes and of course,and limiting meat and dairy intake. Prioritizing whole grains? We areliterally back to the 90s food pyramid! Aside from getting the whole PUFA andwhole grains thing completely wrong, the Harvard Chan School of Public Healthseems very aligned with the narrative that all meat and dairy are bad for ourhealth and for the environment. A quick google search for Harvard’s stance onthe matter will bring up several write ups like thisone thattalk about the very real problem of how our current food industry is making ussick and contributing to climate change. However, when it comes to presentinga solution, it seems to always boil down to “cut out red meat”, withabsolutely no mention of one of the most powerful tools for reversing climatechange through sequestration of carbon from the atmosphere, which is, ofcourse, regenerative agriculture. So many people felt that Harvard got thisone wrong that they were forced to turn off the comments on this Instagrampost. Sowhat gives? How does the pinnacle of academia fall so far on one side of the”all meat is bad” argument? If I had to guess, I would assume that the HarvardSchool For Public Health probably gets sizable donations from plant-basedinterests, but who knows? Maybe they just haven’t subscribed for The DailyTonic over in Cambridge yet? Either way, many people look up to institutionsof prestige for their health recommendations. These are supposed to beinstitutions dedicated to advancing our knowledge as a society and putting outsound recommendations based on their work. Do better, Harvard.
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In some non-Ivy League related news–pork prices are on thedecline. Whydoes this matter? Well, the reason U.S pork is getting cheaper is becauseChina has finally rebuilt its herd after a 2018 widespread case of swine feverforced the nation to cull nearly 40% of its herd. As much as we love pokingfun at silly plant-based recommendations to consume more canola oil to savethe planet, we will also never give conventional meat production a free pass.The reason China had to kill millions of their hogs to mitigate the spread ofdisease is a preventable side effect of how we conventionally raise livestockaround the world. Raising pigs in crowded confinement, on slabs of concrete,makes them susceptible to widespread disease. It also leads to unhealthy porkproducts for us and a stressful, inhumane life for the animals. We don’t needto stop eating meat, but we do need to raise our livestock differently. “Nomeat” isn’t the answer, but “better meat” is.
- It’s Friday. Unwind with some Surely.
- Looking for some gut-friendly recipes this summer? Look no further.
- Glyphosate isn’t doing our health any favors… and it is found on a lot of foods. Deep dive with this podcast.
- Really relax this weekend… with some breath work. Try it here!
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