Sunday, February 24, 2013

Gangs of Nutrition

If you get all of us together, we ain't got a gang, we've got an army.
The streets of Nutirtion are rough. The city itself has several boroughs and each controlled by rival gangs, of which the loyalty and devoutness of the gang members put the Hell's Angels, Black Panthers, MS-13, Bloods, Crips, and KK to shame.

Like any gang, there are different layers of membership with those who loosely follow the rules of the street on the outskirts, but once you get into the inner circles, people can get very extreme going as far as tattooing their loyalty on their arms (or at least wearing t-shirts or having bumper stickers like "Yes, Vegetarians do eat animal crackers," "I eat vegetarians," and "Get your Grock on!"). Moreover,  they all fight for territory in the supermarkets, blogosphere, podcasts, and scientific journals. Drive-bys occur frequently as another "scientific" study or book takes down the research of another. They all seem to be at odds with each other and truce does not seem to be on the horizon. Consequently, I am here to ask "can't we all just get along?"

Earlier this year, when I was thinking about moving boroughs, I sat down with several of the gang leaders (at least met with them in my mind and tried to reconcile all the differences.
The Butcher
I met with:

  • The Double Ps  from the north side (Primal and Paleo)--a rough but strong group who runs their business out of grass fed butcher shops usually. 

  • The Vegs (vegans, vegetarians, and fruitarians) who are the loudest of the bunch. They like to drag race hybrids but are also known to lead raids on Zoos and vandalize Fast Food joints. If you cross them, you may get tofu brick heaved through your window.   

  • The Ketoes (those in dietary ketosis and low carbers) from the south side who are notorious cereal killers. These guys some time team up with the Double Ps. You think Dr. Atkin's died because he slipped on ice? Think again. They also like to mark their territory with the spray paint has tag "nsng "(no sugar, no grains) 
  • Biohackers- a very scientific group that espouses that they are bullet proof. 
  • The SAD mafia (standard American diet--this was a tough group to get a hold of. They currently control Tammany Hall and have tons of money backing them. I was a little worried that dealing with them would be dangerous. If I did not watch my step I would wake up one morning with ketchup all over my sheets and a dead horse head next to me (the body was used for some English burgers--too soon?). They also control the pharmaceutical industry and push anti-obesity drugs. Halfway through my moderation, they left the table "to go for a lunch" and never returned.
The Godfather himself
They may disagree a lot but here is what I heard as what they agree on (with the exception of the mafia of course):
  • Dark leafy green vegetables are good. Other vegetables and fruit are debatable depending on their glycemic load and index
  • Protein is important but not too much (the source of protein is a sticking point)
  • N64 is much better than the Wii with the best game being Golden Eye and Mario Cart '64
  • Exercise is good (how much and the type is debated hotly) 
  • Healthy fats found from sources like avocados are good 
  • The less processed the food the better
  • Moderation is critical to any diet
  • The best diet is that which you can sustain for a lifetime
  • Fad diets are not sustainable. 
  • Sweets should be limited if not eliminated (what defines a sweet is debatable).
  • Science backs their point of view
  • The "Rocky" movies get better with each instalment with the exception of Rocky V, where the kid ruins everything. 
The list maybe longer but these are the ones I came up with (if you have other similarities, please comment).The above list is pretty solid advice but the devil is in the details.

I am not sure which borough I want to live in right now. I am still moving between them to see which one I like and works best for me. For now, I like living in the suburbs of moderation and experimentation. 

As I listen to more podcasts and read more blog posts from the gang leaders, the tensions between these groups seems to be on the rise. I have therefore come up with a solution:

I would really like to see a WWF style (that is the World Wrestling Federation not, for hippie, tree-huggers like me,  World Wildlife Foundation, or, If Alec Baldwin is reading this, Words with Friends ),  "winner-takes-all," to the death, Monday Night smack down cage fight between all the diet gangs out there. 

Who do you think would win? 

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