White House Cookbook And Longevity In The 1800s

A reader sent me this message yesterday:

Hello, Tom!

I had a great find at the used bookstore today. It was an old copy of the White House Cook Book, which was copyrighted in 1887! It’s not in the best condition, but it includes photos of the first ladies as well as rooms in the White House. I perused some of the recipes and as expected, they have lots of fat – heavy cream, lard, you name it!

She also informed me that the book is available online courtesy of Project Guttenberg.  So I perused the text, and while there are recipes for breads and cakes and other sweet or starchy goodies, there is indeed a heavy emphasis on meats, butter, lard, suet, etc.   Here’s a quote from a section on proper frying:

Many French cooks prefer beef fat or suet to lard for frying purposes, considering it more wholesome and digestible, does not impart as much flavor, or adhere or soak into the article cooked as pork fat.

What, no soybean oil?  No Crisco?  No canola oil?  Of course not.  Nobody cooked with that garbage back then.  The technology required to extract garbage oils hadn’t been invented yet.

Since this book was written before refrigerators were common, there’s also a section on preserving eggs:

There are several recipes for preserving eggs and we give first one which we know to be effectual, keeping them fresh from August until Spring. Take a piece of quick-lime as large as a good-sized lemon and two teacupfuls of salt; put it into a large vessel and slack it with a gallon of boiling water. It will boil and bubble until thick as cream; when it is cold, pour off the top, which will be perfectly clear. Drain off this liquor, and pour it over your eggs; see that the liquor more than covers them. A stone jar is the most convenient—one that holds about six quarts.

Eggs can be kept for some time by smearing the shells with butter or lard; then packed in plenty of bran or sawdust, the eggs not allowed to touch one another; or coat the eggs with melted paraffine.

Butter and lard again.  Who even keeps lard in the house these days?  (Besides me, I mean.)

The book includes a brief section on how to handle common ailments:  figs for constipation, alum and brown sugar for whooping cough, and so forth.  But my favorite was the treatment for asthma:

Sufferers from asthma should get a muskrat skin and wear it over their lungs with the fur side next to the body. It will bring certain relief.

I was diagnosed with mild asthma some years ago, but it disappeared when I stopped eating wheat.  If only I’d known about muskrat skins …

Amusement value aside, clearly people back then weren’t worried about butter, eggs and lard clogging their arteries and giving them heart disease.  And why should they have been worried?  Heart disease was rare.  Yes, some heart attacks probably went undiagnosed, since the EKG wasn’t commonly used until the 1920s.  But even after doctors could properly diagnose heart attacks, the rate of heart-attack deaths didn’t take a sharp rise until the 1940s – when consumption of butter and lard was dropping.

When I’ve pointed that out in previous posts, I’ve heard from lipophobes who insist that the only reason few people died of heart disease back in our lard-powered past is that they didn’t live long enough to die from a heart attack.  “Of course people weren’t dying of heart disease!” they tell me.  “Most people died before they turned 40!”

What they apparently believe is that most adults died sometime around age 40.  That’s simply not true.  They’re citing (without understanding) the average life expectancy in the 1800s.  Before antibiotics were developed, lots of children and teens died of infections, which dragged down the average.  But the people who survived into adulthood had a very good chance of living to a ripe old age, despite the lack of drugs and surgeries available today.  You can get a clear sense of how dramatically childhood deaths affected the statistics by visiting this site, which shows not just average lifespan, but average lifespan starting from different ages.  For example:

In 1850, the average lifespan from birth for boys was only 38 years.  But for boys who had already reached age 5 in 1850, the average lifespan was 55 years.  For young men who were already age 20, the average was lifespan was 58 years, and for men who were already 40, the average was 66 years.  Keep in mind those figures would include violent deaths, not just deaths from diseases.

By contrast, the average lifespan for a boy born in 1950 is listed at 65, but for a young man who was already 20 in 1950, it’s listed at 68 — just a few years older.   In other words, by 1950 antibiotics were saving a helluva lot of kids who otherwise would have died from some disease.   That’s why the average life expectancy shot up, not because adults went from routinely dying at around age 40 to dying at around age 70.  There have been 70-year-olds in human societies for a long, long time.  Even in the Bible — hardly a modern work — there’s a reference to our lifespan being three score and ten years.

I recently finished reading Killing Lincoln (which I enjoyed immensely) and was reminded again of how common childhood deaths were in the 1800s.  Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln had four sons.  Eddie Lincoln died at age four.  Willie Lincoln died at age 11.  Thomas “Tad” Lincoln died at age 18.  But Robert Lincoln lived to be 82.  The average lifespan of the four Lincoln sons:  28 years.  But Robert, the only son to survive into adulthood, certainly lived long enough to develop heart disease – as did most people who saw their 20th birthday.

When answering the “people died before they turned 40!” crowd, I’ve occasionally pointed out the longevity of some of the country’s founders:  Thomas Jefferson died at 83.  John Adams died at age 90.  Benjamin Franklin died at 84.  (One of Franklin’s legitimate children died at age 4.  The other died at age 65.  Average lifespan of his legitimate children:  34.5.)

Curious if I was cherry-picking the few old-guy founders who came to mind, I looked up brief biographies of the 56 men who signed the Declaration of Independence.   This was not a group of old men — their average age in 1776 was 46.  I excluded one who died in a duel and another who disappeared at sea when he was 30.  Of the remaining 54, the average age at death was 68 – old enough to develop heart disease.

But again, that’s just an average.  Of the 54 remaining men who told King George to stuff it, 43% lived past the age of 70, and 26% lived past the age of 80.  In other words, there were plenty of very old Americans back in the day and therefore plenty of potential candidates for a heart attack.  But heart disease was rare.

So here’s the history lesson:  Cook like your great-great-great-grandma and don’t be afraid of meat, eggs, butter and lard.  Follow the recipes in the White House Cook Book of 1887.

I predict you’ll like the squirrel soup in particular.


49 thoughts on “White House Cookbook And Longevity In The 1800s

  1. Beowulf

    Very interesting, and I appreciate the great link to the lifespan site. My only lingering question is this: After I make squirrel soup, what ailment can I cure with the squirrel skin?

    I’m fairly certain you could cure a case of cold hands by wrapping them in a squirrel skin.

  2. mezzo

    Eggs can be kept for some time by smearing the shells with butter or lard; then packed in plenty of BRAN or sawdust

    THAT is the best use for bran that I have ever heard of. And here is another person who always keeps lard in the house and has banished most vegetable oils from her kitchen.

    I prefer to just eat them before storage becomes an issue.

  3. Susan Hogarth

    But these people also were big bread eaters. Yet you don’t recommend following that aspect of their diet, I presume? Maybe bread is as good as lard.

    Couple of issues there: I’ve never seen any dietary advice from back in that era recommending 6-11 servings of grains per day, and we know their sugar consumption was a tiny fraction of today’s sugar consumption. Their total carb load was probably lower than what people consume today, and their refined carb load certainly was lower. When they did eat bread, it didn’t come from the semi-dwarf wheat that we consume today.

  4. LCNana

    Great post, Tom. I agree that the “they all died at 40” mantra is one of the most annoying stupidities out there. Don’t they teach math in schools anymore? Of course it’s one of many “math frauds” we’re saddled with. We can get numbers to say pretty much anything.

    Another one is that 1 in 9 women will die of breast cancer. What they mean is that by end of life (I think the age is 92) 1 in 9 women – who are that age – will die of breast cancer. Not quite the same thing.

    Anyway, as I type we’re suffering just the tip of “Sandy” as it blows out. Way up here in Southern Ontario we’ve had the high winds and a ton of rain. We feel sorry for those in the thick of it. How terrifying nature can be. Another reason not to exaggerate what nature does!!

    I’ve had lipophobes make the same argument about paleo people who lived by hunting — well, they were all dead by age 40, ya see. It’s not easy to find lifespan figures on paleo people, but I did find that Geronimo and Red Cloud both lived to be 90.

  5. tess

    well done, Tom! you probably had no idea how many ridiculous beliefs people have about the past … until you found this iceberg-tip. 😉 and thanks for the link to that graph — kewl!

    I wonder if the people making these arguments have ever read a history book. Andrew Jackson died at age 78. Martin Van Buren died at age 80. John Quincy Adams died at age 81. Cornelius Vanderbilt died at age 82. Andrew Carnegie died at age 83. The examples go on and on. To believe that most adults in the 1800s died around age 40 requires rather stunning ignorance of history.

  6. Walter B

    I haven’t seen squirrel at the grocery stores, Whole Paycheck, or even at the local farmers’ markets.

    Does the cookbook have substitutes?

    Nope, but you can surely find squirrel in your local forest.

  7. Bruce

    I like my squirrel grilled over a wood fire. I have fond memories of building a fire in the fireplace and cooking game with my dad and brother. We usually had venison but we would also cook the occasional squirrel, rabbit or goose.

    Okay, I have to ask: does squirrel taste like chicken?

  8. Joe Dokes

    Your analysis of life expectancy is very good. As a history teacher I often have to explain that infant and youth mortality brought average life expectancy way down, and if you were lucky and made it to 20 you were likely to live a fairly long life.

    While the average life expectancy of people who reach adulthood is the late 60s in the 1800s, which is actually pretty close to where it is now, your analysis doesn’t tell us is the actual cause of death, for those who lived to their late 60s.

    In all likelihood heart disease played a role. After all when grandpa didn’t wake up in the morning, people simply said he died of old age. Well old age isn’t a cause of death. Personally, if eating fat and beef and read meat will keep me diabetes free, and relatively healthy into my early seventies I’ll be pretty happy. I am also convinced that a diet high in fat doesn’t cause heart disease. But to say heart disease wasn’t an issue in the 1800s simply can’t be proven, as the statistics simply don’t exist.


    Joe Dokes

    I suspect some people did die of heart attacks that were undiagnosed. But I’m not aware of doctors back then describing large numbers of old people with the classic symptoms of a heart attack: pain down the left arm, etc. What triggered national alarm over heart disease in the 1950s was the growing number of men in their 40s and 50s who were having heart attacks, so while the rise in the disease may have been exaggerated by lack of proper diagnosis before the 1920s, I believe the rise was real.

  9. gallier2

    Hi Tom,

    to answer Susan Hogarth with her bread remark, here a link to a video showing one of the problems with modern wheat, even Dr.Davis didn’t account for. The video is completely in french and has no subtitles but the pictures will be enough to illustrate the point.


    If you go at 8:01 the guy in the video shows the state of a modern dwarf wheat field planted with modern techniques (fertilizers, tractors on open fields etc.). The plants are ill, because the soil is dead (the whole video is about topsoil quality and the consequences), the are full of fungi, they are attacked by pests and their grains are bad. But nobody cares, the farmer gets the same price for that shit.
    In the video at a moment he shows how high wheat used to grow in older times, it’s at the height of his shoulders.

    In a sequence before the wheat sequence he shows roots of wineyards, modern wineyards are completely deformed, the roots grow up because the soils are hard and impenetrable instead of growing down to search for water and minerals. It’s a pity there’s no english translation of that document because I think you’d have loved it.

    I’ll give it a look anyway.

  10. gallier2

    People only need to go to 3rd world countries to see that the “the are all dead at 40” is complete BS. I’ve been on Comoros , the life expectancy there was in the lower 50s, but it didn’t bother my mother in law and all her friends (lovers and neighbours) to be far beyond 70. Apparently they hadn’t got the memo.

  11. Galina L.

    I cooked a squirell killed by my son with an air gun by chance in our backyard. Couldn’t tolerate to waste the killed animal. It didn’t taste like chicken at all. Meat was very dark and flavorful. Skin was unbelievably hard to cut, bones were thin and strong. I wouldn’t mind to eat it more often, but it is not easy to shut.

  12. Becky

    Ha, I saw that same cookbook at an antique store the other day, and loved browsing through it. In fact, I have acquired a number of older cookbooks and am purging my shelves of the newer ones that extoll legumes, grains and low fat. You can lose a lot of household weight getting rid of those books. 🙂

    Also, my mom (85) says yes, they did eat bread and baked goods, but not nearly in the quantities people do today. Flour and sugar were expensive, and the wood-burning ovens were usually full of roasts and vegetables. She remembers VERY clearly the “treat” of a CAKE on her birthday! Rest of the year, not so much. I’m just grateful that she fed us kids very carefully on meats and vegetables and fruits, and kept a sharp eye on processed foods, limiting them. This during the post-war, instant crap, high-starch epoch of the 50’s and 60’s! Thanks, Mom.

    Smart mother.

  13. Mike P

    My mom had a collection of cookbooks from the early 1900’s that she gave to my wife shortly after we were married. The recipe’s are just like the White House book you describe – fully promoting healthy fat [lard, meat, butter, cream]. They certaintly have their share of pastries and other starches, but all prepared as wholesome as they can be – no Crisco anywhere.

    Speaking of Crisco [which stood for crystallized cottonseed oil], I read a blog post recently regarding the history of Crisco and it was very disturbing. At first I couldn’t believe it all, so I did a little research on my own and verified most of the claims. It was initially created by Proctor & Gamble and the patented hydrogenation was intended for use in soaps, to replace the more expensive animal fats back in the day. P&G was originally a soap and candle company [they sponsered radio shows, which is how the term ‘soap opera’ came to be] It eventually ended up as a cooking agent to replace lard. At the time, it was the only food product P&G had ever produced. They mounted a huge marketing campaign – free cookbooks to housewives that only contained Crisco recipes. Fast forward to the late 20th century and it was the norm. Needless to say, the history was fascinating to read.

    I will look when I get home from work tonight, but I think one of the books has recommendations on what your daily diet should look like. I am sure you can imagine what they are…

    Great post!

    Yup, I’ve read that about Crisco.

  14. Laura F

    Thanks for the link to the lifespan site! I love this blog so much, I’m not going to have a life again until I finish reading all the archives.

  15. desmond

    “Who even keeps lard in the house these days? (Besides me, I mean.)”

    I do! Thanks to a “boutique charcuterie” I recently discovered within a couple of miles of my house. So far I have only used it to fry chicken, and my family enjoyed it. (Yes, I know, the flour coating is bad for us.) Maybe I can use the White House cookbook for more lard recipies.

    I haven’t looked, but I’m sure there are recipes out there for batter that don’t use wheat flour.

  16. Mike T

    A couple of years ago I came across a site that had old pictures where they used pose their recently dead family members in lifelike poses (~1880’s), it was quite macabre. But saddest thing was the majority were of infants and children. The impression was that if you made if through the first years, you had a good chance of making it to a reasonably old age.

    Wow. I can’t imagine sitting my dead child up for a picture.

    1. Walter Bushell

      OMG! Please pass the brain bleach. I have just gone through the write up of the movie up the current (1 March 2017) image of your daughters and visualized the act.

  17. fredt

    My grandmother had a White House cook book that she brought from the US in 1915, when she came to Canada.

    At home, when I was young, growing up in near wild, eggs were kept from when they were in excess to late winter in a crock of water glass (which is Sodium silicate) in the root cellar. Then we started to keep a few hens in a portion the pump house, which had a wood heater in it, and then we had fresh eggs year around.

    Squirrel skin is good for inside lining the cuffs of parkas and the inside upper lining of winter moccasins. They are too small for much else. These were lose linings, and could be rolled up to form a fringe when it was not so cold.

    Muskrat skins are so oily, likely an omega 3 rich oil, and raw skins have a odour that will truly clear you sinusitis, something like full strength Vicks. Those skins should prevent spreading of the virus… Nobody is going to come close. The other cure was to rub your chest with the inside of a muskrat sent glands. Same effect.

    Squirl is normally eaten whole. To much calcium and other things for me. The dogs like them. I never got that desperate.

    I hope to never need a muskrat skin, then.

  18. Sam Sinderson

    Great advice for most people, but the jury is still out on those with the genetic type Apo(E)4 who may have a difficult time with fat, especially saturated fat. Fortunately only around 30% have this genetic type, but when included in the total statistic for heart trouble their problems would be obscured by the majority who have no problem with too much fat. I refer those interested to the TYP program of Dr. Davis. You can find a link on this site.

    1. Walter Bushell

      That is another trouble with broad based trials. Individuality. Another example, you can’t do a random control trail for caffeine vice health, because no one who gets the shakes from a half cup of coffee is going to drink 10 cups probably not for one day without severe threats.

      Also caffeine tolerance shows good detox ability not shared by all.

  19. Diane

    Squirrel is delicious, but it does not taste like chicken. I don’t really know what to compare it to. My father enjoyed squirrel hunting and we usually had it two or three times in the fall and winter. Dad’s long gone now, but my sister, brother and I still get cravings this time of year.

  20. Susan

    When I was a little kid, the few times I ate squirrel it tasted like rabbit to me.

    I believe you, but I only ate rabbit once as a kid and don’t remember how it tasted.

  21. js290

    It’s not biochemically possible for bread to be as good as lard. Per carbon atom, fatty acids produces more ATP than glucose.

  22. Stefan

    And while we’re talking about longevity: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/28/magazine/the-island-where-people-forget-to-die.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0
    Published in the New York Times and yesterday republished in the International Herald Tribune for us here in Asia. Great read about Ikaria island in Greece (yes there is more news than just bancruptcy in Greece) where islanders live to the age of 90 (!) at 2.5 times the rate than in the US… 🙂 Note the livestyle including the naps, red wine and maybe most of all activity and socializing daily.

    Sounds like a pleasant lifestyle.

  23. Marilyn

    It’s always interesting to look at old death certificates and see at what age people died of senility/old age — or as one English death certificate called it, “senile decay.” One woman died in 1915 at age 64. The newspaper heading read, “Aged lady dies. . .”

    Why on earth would they have to preserve eggs that way? From August to spring? Why not just keep a few chickens around?

    I suppose preserving eggs was useful for city-dwellers. Chickens also produce fewer eggs in winter.

  24. Bret

    The “people died younger back then” pushback is the most common response I get when talking paleo with skeptics. I’ll have an even better counterargument to that nonsense now, thanks to this post. On another note, others have mentioned that heart disease was likely present in the 19th century. Maybe in trace amounts. That era certainly didn’t have the monstrous proportions of obesity and type 2 diabetes, both of which correlate closely with heart disease. As such, it seems quite the leap of faith to assert that heart disease was prevalent without providing any evidence supporting that notion.

    Agreed. Doctors surely would have noted in their records if large numbers of people were dying after complaining of chest pains, even without the benefit of EKGs.

  25. Marcus

    Hi Tom,

    I’ll see your 1867 White House Cook Book and raise you a copy of Mrs Beetons Book of Household Management – still in print since 1861. It’s a compendium of advice and recipes on how to run a Victorian household. Full of nose-to-tail cooking and a go-to source such things as making gelatine from calf’s hooves and every type of offal, there are download and web versions all over the Internet.

  26. Exceptionally Brash

    I keep hearing the “but they ate lots of bread” meme, and am wondering if that is true. Bread takes time. Who has time when you are cooking and skinning your squirrel and muskrat? I know my dad’s family ate very little bread and plenty of potatoes, because potatoes were easier to grow, and cheap to purchase if you ever ran out. So that means potatoes fried in bacon fat for breakfast, boiled potatoes for lunch, baked potatoes with butter for dinner, and like the Wurtman’s a potato snack before bed if you needed one.

    Even if they did eat bread, their diet wouldn’t have consisted of donuts, croissants, sodas, Little Debbie Snack Cakes, ice cream, burritos, hamburger buns, etc.

  27. Galina L.

    I am in Russia right now. General crowd looks unbelievably thin, but most people are with gray, worn-out faces. I know that the cardio-vascular statistics here doesn’t look good, life expectancy is lower than in US. Many people smoke, drink, don’t practise preventive care. My husband just went in May to his univercity reunion after 30 years of graduation. There are already news that one guy from that group got a massive stroke, and one woman was diagnosed with breast canser in adwansed stage. My native country still lives on the old-fashion wariety of wheat (Eighorn), sour-dough rye bread is more popular than wheat bread, people still cook in absolute magority households. There are enough complains in press about not efficient agriculture due to the lack of use of fertilisers and intence methods of agriculture.

  28. Deniece

    Most people back then died in accidents or from infection in a wound. I remember reading about an ancestor that died at the age of 36 after he fell from the rafters in a barn. It wasn’t bad eating that caused death back then it was poor medical care or no medical care

  29. bob geary

    If “most people died at 40” back in “olden times,” then why did the writers of the US Constitution set the MINIMUM age for the Presidency at 35? Wouldn’t 35 have been the equivalent of like 72 today?

    Apparently they hoped their presidents would die in office.

  30. Janelle

    Anyone who has dabbled in genealogy knows that plenty of people lived to admirably old age throughout history–even without benefit of antibiotics. The decidedly portly Benjamin Franklin lived to be 84. My great-grandfather died at 90 while working on his land, still vigorous by all accounts.

  31. David

    I am curious what my great-great grandma ate like. When I was 12, she died at like age 98 I think and so I actually got a chance to meet her while she was around. Her daughter (great grandma) is currently still alive and living in her late 80s and could push 90 in the next year. Maybe since they are from an older generation, they could have been using butter and lard. They were raised in south Texas and so I am sure Mexican or Americanized Mexican was what was around before Americanized Mexican food turned to using refined flour or corn tortillas, rice, beans, and vegetable oils.

    My great-grandfather lived to be 101, and if any well-meaning doctors had tried to take away his bacon, eggs, butter or chicken fried in lard, he would have swatted them.

  32. Nowhereman

    Farside wrote “Heart disease was also common in ancient Egypt.”

    And you know what the scary thing is? The Egyptians were eating a far, far less harmful form of wheat back then.

    True, although I think the amount of honey consumed by wealthy Egyptians didn’t help any either.

  33. Mike G

    I ordered some almond butter (Artisana) and had my wife make the low-carb bread during Hurricane Sandy. Luckily we did not lose power during the storm. The bread turned out just as your photo advertised – so thank you very much! Add a little Kerrygold butter, and it’s the perfect snack or desert. Very filling and satisfying due to the high fat content. If only they knew about the recipe in the 1800’s… Great stuff!

  34. Janelle

    I watch the History Channel a lot, so I’m convinced most ancient Egyptians died of foul play. ;-D

    As do most Americans, judging by the primetime cop shows.

  35. Jim W.

    Hello Tom,

    Great post again, as always. I had a quick question for you — my wife and I watched Fat Head again last night, and I noticed one of the songs has been very catchy to me every time I’ve watched it. Do you by chance know where I can find the song/sound byte that has the “Somethin’ here just-a doesn’t add up. Somethin’ here just doesn’t go down’. It’s the song that plays right when you start to discuss Spurlock’s logic in calculating how many times he ‘claims’ to have eaten over 5000 calories.

    That’s just a snippet of a song that my composer friend Tom Monahan created specifically for the film. He wrote several of those for Fat Head along with the theme and most of the incidental music. I wrote the song for the closing credits.

    We started working on an album project together that would include expanded versions of the song snippets and some other original songs, then both got sidetracked. I hope we finish it someday. I’ve always liked Tom’s songs very much.

  36. Wolverine

    The other problem with the stupid argument that people 200 years ago didn’t live long enough to develop these diseases, is the fact that we are now seeing record numbers of obesity and type 2 diabetes in children. Why weren’t the children 200 years ago more obese and diabetic than modern children with all that animal fat they consumed?

    The really odd thing is that I had just released a new article on the same subject. If anyone wants to read more facts concerning this ridiculous argument that everyone died at the age of 40: http://roarofwolverine.com/archives/3442

    Keep exposing those lies Tom!

    Well done.

  37. Chad F

    Totally just went and bought that book as a gift for the mother-in-law. Got one for me too! Even has the cure to hiccups! hahahaahha

  38. Scarlet m

    Why is Jimmy Moore getting fat again?

    When I go to his website I still see a picture of him when he was skinny.

    Your disc golf video on YouTube from 3 months ago shows him as a pretty, plump, sweaty man.


    Looks like low-carb isn’t always sustainable on the human body over the long term.

    Apparently you haven’t been following the story. Jimmy learned that his hyper-insulin response can be triggered by excess protein. He lowered his protein intake and increased his fat intake to get into nutritional ketosis. Now he’s lost more than 50 pounds since May.

    He was sweaty because were playing in 102-degree weather. I’m pretty sure even a skinny little vegan would sweat under those conditions.

  39. Brian s

    Hey Tom,

    Fuck you and your animal killing and your huge carbon footprint you’re making j your farm. I hope you end up getting fat again and your knee gives out so you can’t play any more disc golf. Piss off.

    -a dedicated vegan for life

    Always nice to hear from the vegan intellectuals out there.

  40. Scarlet m

    Apparently you haven’t been following the story. Jimmy learned that his hyper-insulin response can be triggered by excess protein. He lowered his protein intake and increased his fat intake to get into nutritional ketosis. Now he’s lost more than 50 pounds since May.

    Just a thought – but someone that gains and loses 50 pounds on a whim is not healthy. He might want to get checked out as to why protein is causing an insulin response. He’s probably close to being a diabetic. Just sayin’.

    It wasn’t on a whim. Like many people with damaged metabolisms, Jimmy found that even calorie-controlled meals didn’t prevent him from regaining. So he sought advice from the many researchers he knows. The advice that worked was to cut back on protein and up the fat content in order to get into nutritional ketosis. That worked. He doesn’t need to get checked out to learn why protein causes an insulin response. Protein causes an insulin response because 1) insulin is required to transport amino acids into cells and 2) protein that isn’t required for rebuilding tissue can be converted into glucose.

    Meanwhile, he’s been monitoring his health for years and is, despite regaining weight, healthy.

  41. SimonPure

    Here’s another family that keeps lard in the house at all times. My wife is Mexican-American and will only make refried beans using lard.

    Also, we were recently in a Ukrainian restaurant and tried “salo”, which is similar to lardo. My wife, who usually looks down on my high-fat endeavors, surprisingly loved it!

  42. Lisa L

    So the “all cavemen died early deaths” doesn’t have much credence as well? If they lived past childhood then they also had a pretty good chance of living a long life. Just like the people living in the 1800’s.

    I want a copy of that cookbook for my collection. I will get rid of the Betty Crocker 1985 version in trade. Now, where can I get some lard?

    Chareva found lard at our local Kroger.

  43. Becky

    I keep lard in my house! I had to go out of town to find a butcher who made his own non-hydrogenated lard but I found him. In fact I’m rendering my own next weekend to freeze for paleo fried chicken and the occasional sweet-potato fries. Hope Warsaw can have her Crisco, thank you very much!


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