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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Butter is your friend

Have I told you lately that I  Not in a piggish, gluttonous way, but in a way that I am just totally amazed at what God has created to help us to function in the best way possible.

Side note: if you haven't read Nourishing Traditions (Sally Fallon) or Food Is Your Best Medicine (Dr. Henry Bieler), you better get your hands on a copy of those things.  Seriously, mind = blown. (insert blow up noise)

Now then.  Today, for your infotainment, I will be bringing up the delicious and controversial subject of (bum ba da daaa!!) BUTTER!  Isn't butter delicious?  Isn't it wonderful?  Isn't it the stuff dreams are made of?  (Okay, yes, I may have slightly gone a little be overboard on that one, but you get the gist.  My dream was something about cleaning out an outdoor pool that had a bunch of gross leaves in it.  Dreaming about butter would have been way better.)  

But oh!  The sad days butter has had!  Remember when (for like 20 years) poor old simple, sweet butter was demonized as a murderer?  A killing machine, ready to suck your heart out, stomp on it, do an evil laugh and drown your face in cholesterol?  Poor butter.  

It's making a comeback as people do more research on the horrors of partially hydrogenated poisons oils.  I was reading a bit on the history of margarine.  Some French dude in the late 1800's came up with a way to make a "poor man's butter".  You'll be delighted to know that Napoleon III was personally involved with making sure this came about - with the decline of means through the Franco-Prussian war, it was necessary to find a cheap way around it.  Originally, margarine/oleo was made of tallow and was composed of animal and vegetable fats.  Today, we're just straight up making some hideous chemical concoction that is sure to cost less than butter initially and just make up for it later when you're dying and you have to pay horrendous medical bills.   Excellent.

I remember the time when my parents switched our family from butter to margarine in the era of evil cholesterol.  I used to stick my finger in the butter dish and eat it plain.  When my sweet butter dish was sadly filled with this new margarine, I took a lick at it once - and never did that again.  Ew.  Sick.  If you're totally disagreeing with me right now, do me a favor: lift your right hand and slap it on your forehead.  Repeatedly.  Then look in the mirror and ask yourself what kind of morbid torture you must have endured to believe such painful lies. Then go buy yourself a pound or twelve of butter and eat a stick.

Do you know that your body needs fats (good yummy fats) to absorb the goodness out of things like veggies?  A smart chef indeed it is who does such things for the palate and the body of their mouth-watering eaters.  

We would be remiss if we were to abandon some histories of butter, so if you don't mind, I shall share some with you.

In A Diet of Tripe, Terence McLaughlin says this (quoting William Harvey's writings):
  "Old Par, [an English peasant] who lived to the age of 152 years and 9 months, existed and even thrived on a diet of 'subrancid cheese and milk in every form, coarse and hard bread and small drink, generally sour whey, on this sorry fare, but living in his home, free from care, did this poor man attain to such length of days.'"

What.  Aren't you eating enough subrancid cheese?  Apparently you shouldn't knock it until you've tried it?

S. J. Connoly in The Oxford Companion to Irish History states: 
     "Butter also formed an essential part of the daily diet.  People ate fistfuls of rancid butter rolled in oats, spread butter on oatcakes and even ate butter on its own.  The importance of butter is indicated by the practice of burying stores for future consumption in cool, damp bogs."

HECK YEAH!  I wish I had a damp bog!  Oh, yeah, I just use a fridge.  I still like their fistful  idea, though.

One more.  For now, anyway.

Uffe Ravnskov, MD, PhD, in The Cholesterol Myths says this interesting little ditty:
   "On average, Finnish peole have the highest cholesterol in the world.  According to the diet-heart idea's proponents, this is due to the fat-rich Finnish food.  The answer is not that simple, however.  This was demonstrated by Dr. Rolf Kroneld who compared inhabitants of the village of Inio near Turku with those of North Karelia and in southwest Finland.  
  "Apparently a health campaign had struck Inio.  There the consumption of margarine was twice as great and the consumption of butter only half as what it was in the other places.  Also, the people of Inio preferred skimmed over more fat milk; the residents in the other places did not.  But the highest cholesterol values were found in Inio.  The average value for male Inio inhabitants was 283, in the two other places it was 239 and 243 mg/dl.  Regarding women, the difference was still greater."

Two things: Finnish Suomi people are awesome.  If you don't believe me, ask one of them and I/they will plainly tell you.

Secondly, and this may totally freak you out because of the high level of brainwash that has been poured out gallon upon gallon in this regard, but LIKE OH MUH GAWSH, newslflash: eating cholesterol does not cause you to have high (bad) cholesterol.  I know, you're all repeating back to me what you've heard - well, when diet and exercise aren't enough...  What are you, a freakin Lipitor commercial?  If you were, you'd need to go on for about forty-five seconds spewing side-effects like liver damage, yellowing of the eyes, loss of limbs and death.  Or other such fun things.

I am just suggesting that perhaps you might want to consider and question what you have heard.  What if it helps you to do your own research?  Yes, people think you're crazy, but HEY, take it from me, it's not all that bad.  You can still be awesome (almost as awesome as a Finnish person  - see 2:33 - warning: sassy bad language just prior to 2:33).

Okay, totally lied.  One more.  It's quick.

William Campbell Douglass, MD, in The Milk Book tells us what he thinks, "Man has been eating meat and fat for thousands of years, but hardening of the arteries is a new disease.  My father, practicing medicine in Georgia fifty years ago, rarely saw a heart attack.  Heart attacks have only become common since the advent of homogenized pasteurized milk, oleo-margarine, and the increase consumption of polyunsaturated vegetable oils."

Butter was given to people during their childbearing years because in wise old societies; they believed it significantly promoted fertility.  

All I'm saying is - look it up.  It's yummy, it might even be GOOD FOR YOU.  

Now go on, go imitate Kristen Wiig in her Paula Deen SNL skit with Seth Myers where she rubs butter on her hair and licks it like a lolly.  Well, or, no.  But you could.  It wouldn't be bad for you.  

I'll say it loud and say it proud: I LOVE BUTTER!!!

Peace, love and buttery goodness,
Ms. Daisy

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