Rose offers the scientific context/framework for Ancestral Health

Science is a mess today as is medicine. Every day we hear a new this or that. Many hold very strong beliefs based on what? What was missing was a context for health. This is what Michael has offered us. And this is the problem that he can help us with: (Snip from Rob Wolff) He starts with his frustration with many of the public pontificators of health such as Dr Oz and Dr Melina of CNN – this is how he sums up their position…

“The paleo way of eating has transformed my life, healed many an ill. There is tons of science to back it, but evolution is just bunk…”

That friends, is what made me seriously consider scrapping this whole project.

Here are the things we are up against:

  1. Modern refined foods are both damn tasty AND likely addictive. It takes a serious desire for change to bypass these foods.
  2. Billions of dollars are spent in the marketing and advertising of these foods. We are assailed from every direction, every day.
  3. Our “medical experts” have agendas far removed from health. General Mills, Monsanto, Farm subsidies are all playing the background music of “dollars from heaven” for those willing so sell out.
  4. It’s not likely you will get an audience with the media if you are selling legitimate health. Faith-healers and “nutrition” bars, yes. Remedy for Multiple Sclerosis, no.
  5. When I, or people like me try to take the fight to these “people” (a term of endearment ala Al Swearengen seems more appropriate here…) I can expect less than 16% of America to have my back in this fight.Folks may think paleo eating is just ducky, but man did not come from ape.
  6. Without a comprehensive, epistemological base to stand upon, the medical community, academia etc. will continue pushing the same erroneous bull-shit. Without this epistemology based approach, we are reduced to what is effectively urban warfare, clearing house to house (“their” study vs “our” study) with no hope of winning or really changing things.

I know I’m going to piss-off and alienate some people but…this is the same character flaw that got me bounced from CrossFit. I knew that smart CF + paleo eating was saving lives. I tried like crazy to get the leadership to acknowledge that fact but you know how that turned out. So…

Here are two interestingly similar quotes:

“One need not believe in God to receive help from God.”


“One need not believe in science for science to work in our lives.”

Both are obviously belief systems. Science tries to “have all the answers” but never will. One place that certain science oriented people miss the boat is trying to bring science to bear on the question of faith or religion. By definition this is the realm of the supernatural and science is not well suited to comment on this topic. On the other hand we have religious doctrine which appears to be at odds with certain scientific concepts. Likely the most prominent modern case, that evolution is not a fact. In the past, religion felt set upon by the teachings of Galileo which conflicted with the view that the earth was the center of the universe. Science has largely won this argument,  although there are still people who believe in a Flat Earth. Might evolution see the same vindication? Galileo was put on house arrest for his ideas in the 1600′s. He was formerly exonerated by the church in 2000. I guess we can expect broad acceptance of evolution sometime in the 2360′s if we can use the first example as a guide.

At the end of the day, I do not give two-shits about this stuff relative to the desire to simply help people. I’ve meet too many people whose lives have either been transformed by this paleo diet concept to just let it drop. Here is a funny thing: as a non-religious, non-spiritual guy I feel a MORAL IMPERATIVE to help as many people as I can because I’m pretty sure I have information rattling between my ears that can save lives. I by no means have all the answers but a firefighter does not need to know the ins and outs of thermodynamics to save a family in a burning house. I (and most all of you) know enough about this paleo shtick to literally transform the world as we know it.

As a scientist I am forced to constantly reevaluate my belief system. When someone shows me something that helps people better than an evolutionary biology oriented approach to health and medicine, I’ll be the first person in the pool. Until then I’m going to push what I’ve seen to be the most beneficial, be it evolutionary biology or Libertarian economic ideas. It’d be nice to have y’all on the team because we have a serious scrap ahead of us and I do not expect Dr’s Oz or Melina aiding our cause.

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1 Response to Rose offers the scientific context/framework for Ancestral Health

  1. Biblical literalism is not just based on ignorance of science, but on ignorance of theology. At Augustine argued (in “The Literal Interpretation of Genesis”) that the interpretation of the bible must be consistent with scientific and other knowledge. This was a 1600 years ago and it was not even a controversial view at the time. Similar views can be found from many theologians from Origen to Aquinas.

    Please also realise that Christians churches other than American based or influenced evangelicals have no problem with evolution. They are a minority who cannot understand what any educated Christian would have in the late Roman Empire.

    Galileo did not really get into trouble for that view, and that the many other supporters of the heliocentric view did not get into trouble. It was more a matter of politics and the corrupting influence of the church having temporal power. Obviously this was very bad, but it was a different problem from the common perception.

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