You Can’t Tell A Network By It’s Cover – What’s To Eat, Healthy Meals?

Death by plant monoculture agriculture

The Omnivore's Dilemma book recommended by FitOldDog

A fascinating book. Makes you think! But did I think enough? More thinking and research to do.

I find myself under increasing pressure to become a vegetarian, plant-only eater, Vegan or Paleolithic Lookalike, but which one would be good for both my body and the Biosphere, I wonder? What are healthy meals for every person, and the rest of the living skin of planet Earth?

As I was working on The Thoughtful Athlete website, the other day, I decided to add the topic of diet choices, because I suspect that no-one really knows the potential ramifications, good or bad, of making major changes to our eating habits in the Western World. People think they do, but networks are generally unpredictable, right now, anyway. One node can change the dynamics of the entire system, be it Einstein or the printing press.

Talk to a CrossFit person and they’ll say, “Paleo, is the way to go!”

Talk to a vegetarian, and they’ll say, “I don’t know how you can kill all those animals!”

Talk to a Vegan, and they’ll say, “You have to kill a lot of animals to eat dairy products or eggs!”

I look at a field of wheat or avocados and I see a kind of lifeless desert.

I look at a dairy farm, and I see a rich, biodiverse landscape, as described in Michael Pollan’s book.

But my sample size, physically and chronologically, is by the nature of my species, very small.

So how can I hope to ever understand the World? I’ll try, anyway!

Vegetarian meal for FitOldDog

A delightful, and satisfying, vegetarian (Vegan?) meal, cooked by Jess – thanks! Photo by FitOldDog with permission.

But then! I think of global warming, and I wonder about all that methane, highly flammable methane, as I found out as a young veterinarian in England in the 1970s, which is more of a heat trap than that wonderful plant food, carbon dioxide.

Then I think of those steak & kidney pies I loved as a boy, but then again, I really enjoyed the vegetarian meal that Jess set before me in Asheville the other day. How much of my love of meat products is simply a product of conditioning? Most of it, I suspect, given the power of memes over our lives.

[ASIDEI went to the Internet seeking a discussion of the power of memes, and was taken directly to the Smithsonian museum, but first I had to negotiate an advertisement for fried chicken, as a popup on their site – the essential power of money, clearly – how about that!!!].

I recently proceeded to experiment with vegetarian food, and make a key discovery – it’s all about the herbs! I did wonder why Sam went on about those herbs in the Lord of the Rings, and he wasn’t even a vegetarian!

And then there’s ‘Seeds of Permaculture,’ and the art of composting, without the help of ruminants.

I will continue my research, and report as I go along, at The Thoughtful Athlete, but first to master EverWeb.

Lots more thinking to do, and a half marathon in the morning. Life is good!

Happy Trails and Bon Appétit.



  1. But there’s no such thing as vegetarian Paleo, is there? So that would mean forsaking Paleo? I am at present experimenting with gluten-free and giving up sugar.

    • I didn’t say vegetarian paleo, I presented a mutually conflicting list, and I’m under pressure in both directions, which is interesting. -k

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Disclaimer: As a veterinarian, I do not provide medical advice for human animals. If you undertake or modify an exercise program, consult your medical advisors before doing so. Undertaking activities pursued by the author does not mean that he endorses your undertaking such activities, which is clearly your decision and responsibility. Be careful and sensible, please.