The Edge

Only the human animal will spend its entire life—wasting it—on trying to change the minds of others, their sets of assumptions, their paradigms, how it shakes out and most importantly: the market over your personal agents of force. – Richard Nikoley, Free the Animal

The human mind, where not given full detail, tends to fill in the gaps with its own concepts, whether from a set of assumptions from similar past situations, ideology, paradigms of the time or emotional hang-ups. We long to understand our world, and sometimes when we fail to grasp truth, we seek control over reality through different routes.

Our culture tends to promote confessions of failure, labels exhibitionism as pathology, and readily ties authority with corruption, but what if this is in development of a guise to cover the cultivation of power of another type? That is, the control of narratives and ultimately, people’s thoughts and actions through a façade of “I don’t bite”. You can be a “soft” authority by appealing to a demographic that believes your narrative, even if it is one of victimhood. In fact, sharing failures, being passive, and holding a plot of injustice can get quite a bit of attention.

Tribalism is a natural in-group bias that causes us to value people with similar interests, culture and appearance to us more than those who have very different or even opposing interests and cultures. Like any bias, it is an obstacle to the truth and predisposes us to “groupthink”.

A niche is a specialized but profitable corner of a market. Although a tribe or tribes often exist in this pocket, they are often unconventional and resist conformity.

Using tribalism and niche markets I will explore the power of holding the narrative, and how marketing to a niche will ultimately take the edge off and make the founders disperse to another edge.  Continue reading

Grass-Fed Butter in Alberta

Those following ancestral health inspired diets in Alberta may be excited to hear grass-fed butter and yogurt is coming to Calgary and will probably become more available across the country.

I originally started looking for grass-fed dairy about two years ago and found those determined to get it were ordering Kerrygold online from outside of Canada. Last summer I got my hands on some Organic Meadow pastured butter and realized this little addition to the label made a big difference to consumers.

butter1

However, not all dairies are indicating their butter is seasonally grass-fed. For example, Gay Hahn, CEO of Avalon Dairy in British Columbia, told me in an email their butter is seasonally grass-fed, but this currently not being indicated on the label.

I picked up Rolling Meadow grass-fed butter from Community Natural Foods a couple of weeks ago. I suspect this brand will become more available as time goes by and that dairies will indicate pastured or grass-fed indicator seasonally due to increased interest.

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I am an advocate of both ancestral health diets and restorative agricultural. Labeling grass-fed or pastured dairy and meat products gives consumers the opportunity to choose to support natural ecosystems, as our grasslands thrive with grazers, or healthier-eats, as dairy and meat produced this way tends to have more CLA, omega-3s and vitamins.

I am not much of a recipe blogger, but I often do a bulletproof style coffee or tea. Lately I’ve been having matcha green tea with a couple tablespoons of grass-fed butter, a table spoon of MCT oil (can be replaced with coconut oil), stevia and teaspoon or two of matcha. Delish.

Here is a more in-depth recipe I haven’t tried…but it looks good:

Make the Perfect Cup of Matcha

EDIT: PS, freezing butter works well; it doesn’t change the taste or texture. So when you see seasonal grass-fed butter on the shelves, buy in bulk. 😉

Arguement for a Local, Whole Foods Diet

Dr. Jay Wortman is a local low-carbohydrate diet advocate. Last night I watched his documentary My Big Fat Diet. Below is Part 1. Part 2 and 3 can be found here.

These ideas are extremely convincing and when put into practice the results unlike any fad diet can produce in health and fat-loss. Logically, if our ancestors lived in similar environments or more probable, environments with even less available plant starch and sugars, we can run well if not optimally on similar diets. I can imagine woody and fibrous plant parts with resistant starch would be something to munch on when there was not a lot of wild foods available.

There are not a lot of starches and sugars to be found in the ecosystems of the north. The sugar peak would probably be in the late summer and early fall, just in time for winter, and consist of fruit and starches loaded with fibre.

The sugar of our day and age is like rocket fuel, unbridled by the same amounts of fibre, nutrients or water as the natural state of sugar. This processed sugar doesn’t run clean in our bodies and creates all sorts of inflammation. Even fruit smoothies and juice creates an unnatural dose of sugar.

However, I do not think the conclusion should be starches and sugars are bad so cut them out completely, that is, unless particular health considerations dictate otherwise. Here are some arguments in favour of starch. Continue reading