Back In Town

      20 Comments on Back In Town

Thank you all for your condolences about my grandmother. At her funeral, the minister mentioned that she had three children, eight grandchildren, 38 great-grandchildren, and three great-great grandchildren. Until he pointed it out, it hadn’t occurred to me how many of us trace our existence back to her.

She mostly raised those three children alone, by the way. My mom’s father worked on a railroad and was killed at age 36 when a boiler exploded. My grandmother remarried several years later, not long before I was born, so her second husband was always Grandpa to me.

A few us enjoyed a chuckle remembering how much Grandma loved ham. She’d eat ham and eggs, ham sandwiches, ham steaks, green beans with bits of ham, and probably ham with a side of ham salad at times. Years ago, when I was in my vegetarian phase, I speculated that she was conducting a one-woman experiment to see how long a person could survive on an all-ham diet.

Joke’s on me. She lived to be 94. I was happy to find that the little church she’d attended for 40 years served ham after her funeral — and green beans with bits of ham.

The funeral was yesterday and we drove back to Tennessee today, so I checked emails and comments this evening for the first time in two days. I have more than 300 emails sitting in my inbox. Those will have to wait until tomorrow.

There are also dozens of DVD orders to fill. Thank you all very much for supporting the film.


20 thoughts on “Back In Town

  1. Molly

    This post leaves me a bit teary-eyed thinking of my own grandmother who died exactly 5 years ago today. She loved ham, too. Never ate veggies or drank milk and smoked for 50 years before quitting cold turkey at around 70. She lived to 93 and didn’t even need her glasses to read! Here’s to fond memories. And ham.

  2. Tom Miller

    My condolences on your loss. Since you have been away from home for a few days, did you get a chance to see Gary Taubes on the Dr Oz show the other day? I was curious to see what you thought about his appearance. Welcome back!

    I plan to watch it soon.

  3. Elenor

    Well we love you, Tom, and support you like crazy! I’m hoping to actually meet you this August at the Ancestral Foundation Symposium. Got my ticket — now working on finding the airfare from Georgia!!

    I was thinking sourly, having watched stupid Dr Oz trying to ‘show up’ Gary Taubes, that I needed to send Oz your film… and I just might! Just steaming from how stupid Oz was being (and how gracious, direct, and firm Gary was being!). Still, Oz DID have Gary come lecture at his hospital– that was a shocker! You probably didn’t get a chance to see it, what with being out of town — but it’s posted on Oz’s site. Worth seeing, even if it does make your head steam!! Gary did a super job, within the idiocy that is TV entertainment…

    (Along with a link to an excerpt of his new book!)

    I haven’t seen it yet (still catching up on emails and orders), but I will watch it. Thanks for the link.

  4. MedPhyzz

    Welcome back, Tom. Your grandmother was very wise. Ham certainly is a health food. The two most long-lived groups of people in the world (from Ovodda and Okinawa) are big pork-eaters. Google ‘The Island of Pork’ and see what you get.

    I’m a huge fan of the pig these days.

  5. Susan

    Sorry to hear about your grandmother, Tom. I hope that you had the opportunity to listen to her often and come away with some good gems of wisdom from her as well as some interesting history of her life. Ninety-four is a long life!


  6. Rebecca Latham

    Welcome back, Tom! I thought you might be interested to know that Fat Head is all the rage on the Atkins Community Forum. It seems to be mentioned and recommended and discussed a few times every day.

    Every time a new person has fears about “eating all that artery-clogging saturated fat”, at least one person will suggest that they watch Fat Head and they post a link.

    You and Fat Head have really had an impact. So many people on the Forum have their family members watching it.

    Thank you!


    That’s great news.

  7. Ericka

    Perhaps we’re related, because I swear my grandmother had the same diet. Ham, and she added Land O’Lakes butter. She sounds like she was a very special lady, and I send my condolences. I hope you don’t mind the prayers, either.

    Happy to have the prayers and the condolences.

  8. David H

    So glad I found such an active blogger. I’m so glad to see someone speaking with common sense. I moved to a boarding school this time and a lot of people here speak about their pride of being vegitarians or vegans(and people wishing to be them). I looked up truths about fat and I am quite disturbed at what we are being recommended, it really doesn’t make sense. My realization that we aren’t herbivores was basically 9th grade biology, just by analyzing the digestive system, as well as the fact that many nutrients are called fat soluble. My dad has slimmed down by adding meats and other high fat foods. The only carb source he has is vegetables and the occasional rice. Growing up, my family knew what they were saying, they knew rice and potatoes were fatting and nonessensial. We have bread and rice with every dish, but when i was getting full i was told to just finish the meat, and my mom and my grandmothers would always tell me i needed the meat to grow strong and healthy. My grandpa, a microbiologist told me rice was sugar. All the women from my mother’s side (including my mom) of the family always seem depressed and angry and follow “healthy” lowfat diets. My dad is always robust and even under the stress of work is losing weight on a low carb diet. To quote you: Yes! Mother Nature knew what she was doing when she made us crave fatty foods, my ancestors knew! My food cravings know! We arent the only species that Nature designed us to eat foods that will kill us, The meat being calorie dense argument and tempting to herbivores doesnt work (i doubt a horse will choose steak over hay). Hell even my vegitarian bio teacher this year lost 10 pounds in a month (and he was already slim) by taking out wheat and soy to experiment adding back in fatty fish (makes me wonder what the results would be if he added those scary saturated fats). My condolences for your grandmother, my maternal grandmother passed away last year (heavily medicated), and my paternal grandfather is living in assisted living thanks to Alzheimer’s (who used to be addicted to his Lipitor…). I’m glad that you helped me see the light man! When i go back home this spring break since my dad owns a blood testing clinic Im considering going on all meat and some green veggies and see what happens to my HDL compared to the “healthy”, meat one meal a day and fake powdered eggs and egg white breakfast and corn and rice based meals… Glad people like you and Dr. Eades and many other blogs helped me see the light!!! Haha I’ll quit rambling, I hope the best for you and your family. I’ll look forward to your posts.
    To end on another note: stories like this make me sad, a woman with sky high LDL and HDL in the teens… And You don’t need an HDL drug it isn’t hard to raise (like the bottom article suggests it is hard to raise, and says we will “need” a drug). if you eat saturated fat it goes up high.

    Yup, those grandparents and great-grandparents knew what they were talking about. Too bad we listened to the white-coat crowd.

  9. David H

    Yup, now Me and my Dad have to sort of fight to get my living grandmother to listen to her older advice. Hopefully if she drops the “whole grains” and adds some meat back, she’ll lose the weight she wants and hopefully can live healthily longer. 🙂 I just wonder how on Earth to convince her to add some fats.

  10. Clark

    I’m sorry I didn’t send my condolences earlier. I was in such a rush to post a comment in the prior post. I pray that she reincarnate into a desirable life.

    Thank you.

  11. Erik

    It appears that the secret to a long and happy life would be to eat plenty of ham and to not get killed in a railroad boiler accident. I’ll be waiting for the USDA to revise the food pyramid.

    I’m also wondering why people who rave about the “Mediterranean Diet” tend to overlook cured pork products. The Spanish eat more ham per capita than any other country. Their ham has a lot of fat and a lot of salt, but it’s so flavorful that you don’t need more than an ounce or two for a full meal. Italy is loaded with cured pork as well. Prosciutto, pancetta, Soppressata, you name it.

    Yet, every time I see an American ‘nutritionist’ tell me what the ‘Mediterranean diet’ is, they say that it includes ‘small amounts of lean meat’. Small amounts, maybe. Lean? Not so much.

    People who’ve actually lived near the Mediterranean tell me it’s a high-fat diet with plenty of butter and lard.

  12. Adam

    My most sincere condolences.

    On a brighter note, I’m so glad I can finally buy a copy of the movie now (I’m in Singapore). A friend offered to burn me a copy he downloaded from somewhere a year ago, and I turn it down, prefering to buy my own legit copy.

    Finally, I can watch more than the YouTube clips.

    I eagerly await the arrival of Fathead!

    I appreciate you going for the legitimate copy. Makes me wonder how many pirated copies there are in the world, but of course there’s nothing I can do about that.

  13. Rebecca Latham

    Although my paternal grandparents were peasants before coming to America in their thirties, they still suffered from the diseases of civilization. They had their own small farm here, grew most of their own food, milked their own goats, ate lots of meat and butter and cream. Sadly, they also ate all the refined flour and sugar they could get their hands on. There were always homemade cookies, pies and cakes at their house, and right before bed every night they would eat these things along with a cup of herbal tea sweetened with plenty of home-grown honey.

    My grandfather had diabetes when he died at 79 of Parkinson’s Disease, and although my grandmother lived to be 88, she was a needle-packing diabetic by the time she was 60, and got cancer three times before it killed her. She almost died of diabetic shock a few times, too.

    In my case, I cannot look back at my grandparents and eat what they ate. They had the bad right along with the good.

  14. ward

    just watched fat head and was amazed, ive been on a fish salad diet for about 4 months lost 15 pounds, when you said in your movie that you were pissed that people told you to eat skinless chicken intead of steak, hell yah im pissed too. was wondering on any info you could give me about a diet plan, one you found to be a good diet, any help would be greatley appriciated, and loved the movie, wish mainstream media covered your movie like the spurlock one. thanks again. ward from wisconsin.

    Check out the books recommended in this post:

  15. Amy Dungan

    So sorry for your loss Tom. John’s grandmother passed away at 94 as well (several years ago). Her favorite food was beenie-weenies. His cousin put a can in her casket. She would have loved it. 🙂


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