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Lose weight and get healthy: Eat meat and get movingPosted Tuesday, February 19, 2013, at 8:22 AM
If I hadn't heard it with my own ears, I might not have believed it.
In a recent episode of "The View," the great and powerful Dr. Ehmet Oz said, "Meat is not the cause of obesity in America. Red meat is okay."
It's the same thing those of us in production agriculture have been saying -- and living -- for many years.
Later in a Time Magazine article, Dr. Oz endorsed regular, supermarket milk over organic. He also said nutritionally, there's not much difference between grass-fed beef and feedlot corn-fed beef.
He went on to say, "The American food supply is abundant, nutritionally sound, affordable and, with a few simple considerations, comparable to the most elite organic diets. Save the cash; the 99 percent diet can be good for you."
On "The View," he cautioned Barbara Walters and the others to stay away from white foods (flour, sugar, rice), eat real foods and cut down on sugar.
When I heard the statement on "The View," I have to admit my first thought was, "Well, duh." Nonetheless, I was glad it was said on national television.
Two years ago I lost almost 60 pounds on a diet from the local doctor's office. The high-protein, low carbohydrate diet included an abundance of lean meat and eggs. In fact, I could have eaten up to 16 eggs a day and still been in compliance. The diet also included fruit, vegetables and lots of water.
But what I couldn't eat was even more important: sugar, bread, fried foods and high-starch vegetables like potatoes.
The many hundreds of people who have lost weight on this and similar diets know it works. I've kept the weight off. And I've never, ever given up meat or eggs.
I started on my diet because of very high cholesterol. After losing weight by eating and continuing to eat a ton of eggs, beef, pork and chicken, my cholesterol is now perfect. A friend of mine was on three different kinds of blood pressure medicine. After losing 50 pounds on the same diet, she is off all of her medicines and her blood pressure is normal again.
In other words, it's the extra weight -- and lack of exercise -- causing our problems. Not the meat.
I really don't need more proof. After all, I live with farmers who eat meat each meal and most snacks. I live near 80-and 90-year-olds who have had bacon and eggs for breakfast every day of their lives. They believe a meal wouldn't be a meal without meat on the table. But most importantly they are still living healthy, active lives.
There is no doubt there is an obesity problem in America, but the cause is still being debated. Red meat, field corn and most recently, wheat, have been labeled as causes.
Perhaps they are easy targets, but the truth is, in order to lose weight we have to give up the thing most of us love the most: sugar-laden junk foods.
In the last 20 years, the amount of sugar each person consumes yearly in the United States has soared from 26 pounds per person to more than 135 pounds per person.
The average teenage male now consumes more than 34 teaspoons of sugar per day. The average adult consumes 22 teaspoons of sugar per day.
Since 1983, sugar consumption has been steadily increasing every year by an average of 28 percent.
Therefore, it is no coincidence that in 1962, there was a 13 percent obesity rate. By 2008, the obesity rate skyrocketed to 33.8 percent (adults) and 17 percent (children).
At the same time, red meat consumption has dropped steadily since 1972. In fact, Americans consume less red meat now than they did in the 1950s.
Obviously, Dr. Oz is right. It's not the meat, cornfed or otherwise. It's the sugar, and the pies, and the cakes and the cookies.
So I can't help but wonder, why are some groups still promoting Meatless Monday?
Here's an idea, perhaps if we really want to stop obesity, what about Sugarless Sunday, Walking Wednesday or better yet, Exercise Everyday?
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