Food and climate change

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Alphaville
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by Alphaville »

im doing a bit of a no-starch thing to rebalance the body right now, and people think this means MEGA-PROTEIN. keto! meats! ultra-beef!

no.

proteins are building blocks. starches are energy. the alternative for starches is not protein but FATS (domino).

sssso, i decided to list my main fat sources and look at the carbon and other externalities they might ooze.

this is a partial note to review/edit later. just trying to log things here. in all cases i favor organic when possible/available because reasons.

my main fat ones are:

-coconut, as coconut milk (saturated)
-olive oil (mono)
-whole flax seed (poly, omega3)
-whole chia seed (poly, omega 3)
-heavy cream + butter (i thought this was just for taste but i must plead guilty upon review)

my tasty ones are:

-macadamia nuts (mono... pricey!)
-walnuts (poly, reasonable 3/6 ratio)

my supplementary ones:

-fish (dha/epa), but i've let it run out. currently looking for a replacement. algal is $$$, im on the fence.

additional ones:

-avocado (mono/poly6, for high temp cooking)

smuggled ones:

-fats in pastured egg yolks (daily)
-fats in canned atlantic mackerel and other small fish (a couple of times weekly)
-fats in whole milk yogurt (have been eating less, sorting out schedules)
-fats in tasty french cheeses (guilty, and an incorrigible recidivist)

==

that about covers it? will mull over/add data.... feedback on fats welcome, particularly with a view to ecological impacts, carbon/pesticides/biodiversity/human/etc (let's please not revisit "starches are good" atm, dead horse, just temporarily for focus on fats).

Qazwer
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by Qazwer »

Hristo Botev wrote:
Tue Dec 01, 2020 3:47 pm
Here's where I'm starting to go (and this is NOT directed at you, to be clear; it's directed at ME): I think from a society perspective there's something wrong about a society that encourages people to relocate to a new city/town "for work" (or, for that matter, for advanced degrees); it's a job/career-centric mindset as opposed to a mindset that is more centered on family/place/community. Maybe that's something COVID might have a lasting impact on, if people really do start moving less for work because jobs are less location-specific. But, even pre-covid, I can say DW and I have moved around A LOT for education/experiences/jobs over the past 20+ years, and for what? As much "success" as we've had in our respective careers, we're both burnt out at middle age, and we'd likely be living just as well/comfortably (or likely better) had we never left our hometown, aided by the fact that we've got a community there (we have one where we're at now, as well, but we had to work real hard to create it), AND, we "know and understand" the land and its history. And all those years in all those different places we spent building up little disparate communities were years we weren't focusing on maintaining and strengthening older community links and family ties.

I know it's all very Wendell Berry of me to say--except he says it much, much better than I do--but there's a more "spiritual" aspect here that's important when you're talking about your connection to "the land"; and, for one, it's hard to know "the land" when you've got different land under your feet every few years, the way DW and I did for the first 15years or so of our adult lives.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that I suspect transience has a big environmental impact that we don't really factor in as much as we should.
Wendell Berry before settling down in his place
Was educated at UK (university Kentucky) for undergrad and masters;
Attended prestigious training at Stanford - then had a fellowship to Italy and France - then taught at NYU - then went back to teach at UK - then moved to his home
Amongst those with a good education and training, I wonder how much of it is fetishizing living in a ‘place’ for your whole life. Berry writes well. It may have something to do with his international training.
Good lawyers also move around before settling down.

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Alphaville
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by Alphaville »

ellarose24 wrote:
Tue Apr 20, 2021 7:40 am
I apologize, I have never met others who are educated and have so many resources to share! I got a bit overly excited.
lol i was rereading the thread and realized this is not your fault, this thread went into a long tangent about urbanism, which @qazwer just reminded me of. i was looking elsewhere for some posts by @chenda which.... were right here ha ha ha ha. oops!

so if this where this goes, this is where this goes...
Qazwer wrote:
Tue Apr 20, 2021 9:12 pm
Wendell Berry before settling down in his place
Was educated at UK (university Kentucky) for undergrad and masters;
Attended prestigious training at Stanford - then had a fellowship to Italy and France - then taught at NYU - then went back to teach at UK - then moved to his home
Amongst those with a good education and training, I wonder how much of it is fetishizing living in a ‘place’ for your whole life. Berry writes well. It may have something to do with his international training.
Good lawyers also move around before settling down.
@hb and i have had a related conversation before where i suggested berry must have paid for the farm with his writing and teaching and fellowship income. i think it's a hobby farm, and i don't mean it in a derogatory way, i mean hobby in the conventional sense that i don't think it makes enough to support a family with it, or pay for itself, and might need cash injections to survive in our economic climate, because other small farmers who aren't successful writers are going under everywhere but he can fund schools etc.

that doesnt mean i reject his ideology, it's just that it's a bit of a utopia not every farmer can afford in the current economic climate. he's for resource conservation and a healthy biosphere though, and i'm definitely for that, but we need a different political environment for it. see: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/01/opin ... m-bill.htm

7Wannabe5
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by 7Wannabe5 »

OTOH, Scarlett O’Hara.

Recognizing that regional management of ecosystems is often better does not mean that humans can’t be mobile. For example, “Don’t litter” can be practiced universally and taking note of your watershed preservation group in a new location is not much more difficult than finding a new car mechanic.

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Alphaville
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by Alphaville »

7Wannabe5 wrote:
Wed Apr 21, 2021 7:39 am
OTOH, Scarlett O’Hara.
????

my mother made us watch that movie once when it played in a repertoire house. ages after, i still want my 4 hours back :lol:

what does she symbolize here? (i can't help thinking "slavery," but i'm sure that's not what you mean)
7Wannabe5 wrote:
Wed Apr 21, 2021 7:39 am
Recognizing that regional management of ecosystems is often better does not mean that humans can’t be mobile. For example, “Don’t litter” can be practiced universally and taking note of your watershed preservation group in a new location is not much more difficult than finding a new car mechanic.
truth.

eta: but the level of effort might strongly depend on commitment to place.

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Alphaville
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by Alphaville »

anyway i keep trying to find info on ecological impact of dietary fats but no solid info appears yet. it's mostly broad strokes like "palm oil bad, coconut oil good" and "olive good, canola evil" or something really unspecific and random hearsay.

i got a new fish oil supplement derived from small cold water fish (sardine, herring, mackerel, anchovy). it's from a reputable source and covered in seals and certifications which i don't know if they mean something or they're just marketing... but with dha being 8% of brain weight, i can't afford the luxury of going without. :(

for the the rest of omega 3s i'm doubling down on flax and chia. literally, my "daily grind."

eta: see: viewtopic.php?p=241889#p241889

chenda
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by chenda »

@alphaville - which brand do you use ? I use the solgar triple strength omega 3, horribly expensive but gives me 1008 mg of EPA.

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Alphaville
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by Alphaville »

chenda wrote:
Wed Apr 21, 2021 2:00 pm
@alphaville - which brand do you use ? I use the solgar triple strength omega 3, horribly expensive but gives me 1008 mg of EPA.
whoa! that's a really nice amount. x2 caps permday yes?

solgar is an old reputable brand. they've been in health foods for ages. great choice.

we just picked up a 365 brand (whole foods house brand) during a bicycle expedition. each cap is 10 cents i think but the yield is just 120mg dha / 180mg epa (jar says take just one a day).

it's not a lot, but maybe it's enough, esp. while curbing omega 6s.

before we were taking costco brand.

wish i could get algal dha, but prices are absurd. hoping vegans buy a lot so widespread use brings down prices :D

chenda
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by chenda »

Alphaville wrote:
Wed Apr 21, 2021 2:12 pm
whoa! that's a really nice amount. x2 caps permday yes?
Yes 2 a day, averages about £30/$40 a month but very few brands seem to provide the high doses, yes the seaweed would be great if it becomes cheaper :))

white belt
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by white belt »

@Alphaville

There isn’t a good solution for getting your DHA/EPA other than with fish oil at the moment. First off, see here about how even fatty farmed fish probably don’t have the levels of DHA/EPA compared to their wild counterparts: http://fisheries.tamu.edu/files/2013/09 ... Health.pdf

I thought krill might be another possibility, but I’m not sure if you can even source frozen krill for human consumption in the USA. It’s also probably similar environmental impact to fish oil. As far as I can tell there are only 2 locations in the world doing experiments on breeding krill in captivity (requires special equipment), so it’s not something that’s viable at the moment.

Here’s another article I don’t have full access to that might provide more information: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs ... 08.02150.x

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Alphaville
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by Alphaville »

white belt wrote:
Wed Apr 21, 2021 4:05 pm
There isn’t a good solution for getting your DHA/EPA other than with fish oil at the moment.
yeah it's ah it's a double edged sword, see.

i grew up by the sea. love the oceans. love fresh fish and seafood. dislike farmed (except for trout--farmed trout can be excellent. though that's not from oceans).

BUT we're disgracing the oceans. so i gotta minimize my favorite food on the planet. just so we can keep having it!

living landlocked now, best i can satisfy requirements is from oil from wild small fish like i do--@chenda's brand is also that and it's a+.

BUT krill oil is available, i see it for sale everywhere (eg costco). only problem is marketing geniuses add artificial red dyes and other genius additives. genius! :lol: ***

anyway, fish doesn't make the oils. there is a *very long chain* of phytoplankton AND zooplankton before dha enters the fish. it's like 10 levels up or something

if we can grab dha straight from phytoplankton--that is the lowest impact.

and we do, but... $$$$

eg see: https://www.pharmaca.com/nordic-natural ... 0-softgels

from this "crop": https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/ag ... zochytrium

30 servings for $30 :lol:

cut the price to 20c/day and i'm in

--

also there is algal oil for biodiesel in the works. maybe some day.

--

*** eta: i can't spot red#40 in current formula? either it changed or i misremembered. you have to be able to see full label for actual ingredients. in maker's website some formulations have fake vanilla, caramel color, tapioca, etc. but have not seen colorants (yet).

white belt
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by white belt »

I wasn't sure which thread to put this in since we have so many that overlap, but I found this design for a DIY Solar Food dryer that seemed pretty cool: https://horticulture.ucdavis.edu/inform ... yer-manual

Might be useful for those who are growing some of their own food and trying to figure out how to dehydrate it without using a ton of electricity.

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Alphaville
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by Alphaville »

an update on my first experience with "real fake meats" (as opposed to old school veggie buger)

BEYOND BURGER

last weekend i got a pack of beyond burger "for science". it was a lot pricier than beef, but discovery requires experimentation. ok. two 1/4lb patties, $7, ouch, but cheaper than a restaurant for a "party" meal, so why the hell not.

since i didn't want us to have a disappointing experience, i gave them the full cheeseburger treatment: beefsteak tomato, colby slices, sweet onion, bread and butter pickle chips... washed all down with a nice glass of dry red wine.

since we're skipping starches here, no bun was used. no lettuce either, which i never buy... instead we had an arugula salad afterwards.

verdict: it was pretty glorious for plant-based (plant-based exception for the colby cheese obviously).

tasting notes:

my wife, who grew up on hamburgers, and is having a harder time than me parting ways with beef, gave them a thumbs up, will buy again.

for me, i found that it satisfies about 80% of the pleasure of a burger, without the environmental clusterfuck. not as juicy as an 80/20 lean patty but maybe closer to a 90,95, or bison burger? so the cheese helped add tasty fats. 20g protein per patty, plus another 5g or so for the cheese... hit the spot for the moment, but i felt a bit hungry too soon later (research shows appetite for protein is independent of calorie appetite). texture-wise, it had the about the same level of "string" as ground meat.

cooking notes:

went per package instructions, and used avocado oil to prevent smoke.

one nice thing i observed while cooking is that unlike old style veggie burgers this one didn't soak up oil. instead it oozed a bit of fat, like a real burger! later studying the ingredient label i realized this is refined coconut oil chunks, which are visible on the raw patty. great job designing this feature! for this reason in the future i'll fry in refined coconut oil instead--it's more neutral tasting than avocado actually.

where this differed from a real burger is that the crust formed easily and readily without intervention of high searing flames. so it was all cooked on medium, power 5 on my induction, i think i lowered to 4 for b-side, and cheese was added to the last minute and covered with a lid (used a sautée pan).

future plans:

we'll continue to buy this as "party meat" because it's not priced as a staple. we noticed there is a 1lb square package (not patties) that sells for $10 regular-- this is still double the price from good ground beef, but i think if we can drive up demand and scale production, prices should eventually come down to competitive levels.

having proven to be tasty, future iterations can safely be served cheese-free. with mushrooms maybe? plain-old "hamburger" even? why not.

also i gotta remember with this meal to take a shot of b-12 sublingual spray for nutritional... "roundness"? seems like the only bit missing. but hey! it's a party meat not a staple...

--

eta fixed some typos, added details, & clarified info
Last edited by Alphaville on Wed May 12, 2021 2:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Western Red Cedar
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by Western Red Cedar »

@Alphaville - I bought a few packs of Impossible Burgers at a discount store a couple months back. I think the deal was two packs (4 total patties) for $5. I went back the following week and they had cut the price in half, so I bought a few more. They were cheap because the "best by when frozen" date was rapidly approaching. DW and I have been really impressed by the taste and consistency as well (We had previously tried the Impossible Whopper at Burger King and did a comparison to a traditional Whopper. Not much of a difference in our opinions). I probably won't buy them very often, as I'd rather just make my own black bean burger or eat something else, but they are tasty.

Of course, I'm still not convinced that eating small amounts of grass fed beef that comes from a farm managed as a system (such as Joel Salatin's) is particularly bad for the environment. I haven't weighed in much here recently, but it seems like a lot of the research posted earlier on carbon impacts of different food types is based on an analysis of industrial food systems. I think comparing food from an industrial model vs. a local model is like apples and oranges (pun intended :D )

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Alphaville
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by Alphaville »

Western Red Cedar wrote:
Wed May 12, 2021 1:27 pm
Of course, I'm still not convinced that eating small amounts of grass fed beef that comes from a farm managed as a system (such as Joel Salatin's) is particularly bad for the environment. I haven't weighed in much here recently, but it seems like a lot of the research posted earlier on carbon impacts of different food types is based on an analysis of industrial food systems. I think comparing food from an industrial model vs. a local model is like apples and oranges (pun intended :D )
ah, sure. i'll try to address. the problem with cows is not where they live or what they're fed so much as the sheer number of them in existence. their ruminant stomachs are a veritable methane factory. same thing happens with sheep meat (lamb or mutton) which is i believe always grass fed, nevertheless ful of methane. yeah... it's about total numbers of ruminants at this point. we have too many (we have too many people to feed).

as for artisanal vs industrial production.... i should add the terrible news i read recently (where?) that the factory chicken i despise is actually more carbon efficient than the organic pastured chicken i prefer :cry: yeah... not switching to industrial chicken though... i don't actually eat much anymore, sticking to "party weekends" for meat consumption.

so anyway, meanwhile, the beyond stuff is made basically from peas and mung beans. tastiest mung beans i ever ate! :lol:

eta: a guy quoted in this article claims factory cows are "greener" than grass fed: https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-28858289 :(
fml...
but yeah we have too many damn cows

and currently i depend on dairy monday through friday, so count me among the perps. successive approximations though...

Western Red Cedar
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by Western Red Cedar »

And the reason we have so many cows in existence is because of the industrialized model. We would naturally eat less meat with a more localized system, and higher costs for meat, that accurately reflect the time and labor necessary to tend to those animals. There isn't much you can do to get around the methane issue for sheep and cows, but they can be part of a system-based approach to small scale agriculture that has a net environmental gain.

I don't think it's wise to focus solely on carbon when looking at the issue either. We need to consider other factors like soil health, water consumption, water quality impacts, public health, land use changes, along with the health and quality of life for both workers and animals.

Western Red Cedar
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by Western Red Cedar »

Alphaville wrote:
Wed May 12, 2021 2:44 pm
eta: a guy quoted in this article claims factory cows are "greener" than grass fed: https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-28858289 :(
fml...
Well he is the CEO of an industrialized cattle operation. Mark Zuckerburg claims his business model is benign and connects people, but I don't necessarily believe that.

That BBC article kind of exemplifies the problem with this discussion. They throw out a few quotes from different people and leave the reader with the impression that factory farms may not be so bad. They throw out a caveat that there are other environmental considerations, but don't get into any details.

Aquaculture can be a net positive for food and protein production when done correctly, or it can be incredibly destructive (when scaled up to an industrialized level).

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Alphaville
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by Alphaville »

right, i agree with you, industry is what allows proliferation, but the industrial system is a response to high demand under conditions of price competition. so it's too many humans wanting cheap stuff, in the end.

i agree also carbon is not the only element, which is why my other animal products tend to be of the pastured/organic/indie farmer/local/pricey variety.

but ditching beef was a decent heuristic for me in an ever-complicated food landscape. also, where we used to live, free roaming cattle basically has wrecked the land... so here's to beef demand cratering :twisted:

there are some guys in north dakota herding beef in a way that contributes to soil health in the prairie, but... maybe we should just repopulate with buffalo. i don't know, i can't compute all the variables. ditching beef altogether was an easy call though.

chenda
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by chenda »

I wonder if this problem will sort of fix itself, if climate change disrupts food grain production prices will rise and meats will increasingly become an expensive luxury, factory farms too costly to run and meat provided at a local level as @western suggests.

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Alphaville
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Re: Food and climate change

Post by Alphaville »

chenda wrote:
Wed May 12, 2021 3:36 pm
I wonder if this problem will sort of fix itself, if climate change disrupts food grain production prices will rise and meats will increasingly become an expensive luxury, factory farms too costly to run and meat provided at a local level as @western suggests.
i think either tastier plant-based or meat grown in vats will end up supplying the masses

https://www.theguardian.com/food/2020/d ... ant-israel

while the rich feast on endangered species

https://www.pri.org/stories/2014-10-20/ ... extinction

i think israel is a good example of a possible future because they already are under serious geographical constraints to feed themselves. so, while they have imports, their productivity per area is pretty amazing for their climate.

same thing i think with agriculture in the netherlands? they're the hothouse kings if i'm not mistaken. and their dairies are superproductive.

of course they both require grain imports...

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