Aside: Logic and stress

There is this idea out there that blows my mind. It’s the idea that somehow being a baby is stressful or harmful.

That a rapidly growing and developing baby who is in ketosis and is consuming a protein-restricted-low-carbohydrate-diet i.e. breast milk is somehow in a state of stress. That if a baby never weaned after some magical age from breast milk that eventually they would go from a healthy growing thriving baby to developing the following symptoms:

  • Gastrointestinal disturbances (diarrhea, vomiting, nausea, constipation, GER)
  • Inflammation risk
  • Thinning hair/hair loss
  • Kidney stones
  • Muscle cramps or weakness
  • Hypoglycemia
  • Low platelet count
  • Impaired concentration/cognition
  • Impaired mood
  • Renal tubular acidosis
  • Nutrient deficiency
  • Disordered mineral metabolism
  • Poor growth in children
  • Skeletal fracture
  • Osteopenia/osteoporosis
  • Increased bruising
  • Sepsis, infection, bacteria overgrowth
  • Pneumonia
  • Acute pancreatitis
  • Long QT intervals
  • Cardiomyopathy
  • Shift towards atherogenic lipid profiles (including hypercholesterolemia and hypertriglyceridemia)
  • Heart arrhythmia
  • Myocardial infarction
  • Menstrual irregularities and amenorrhea
  • Death

If you are to believe the high-carbohydrate-low-fat people and their interpretation of physiology that is the implication at the end of the day. That somehow after weaning we fundamentally transform into an organism which once had a metabolism that predominantly utilized saturated fat, ketones, and lactate to a metabolism that to be in its optimal state post weaning should now utilize primarily sugar.

It’s like a bad joke. I’m not into the habit of believing that we are screwed before we can walk if we can’t find and climb an orange tree. Typically it is us who give ourselves the reach arounds.

Somebody skipped the part where saturated fat, ketones and lactate support rapid growth and in fact are necessary for normal development.

Anyway enough with that crap (I originally wrote this post without the symptom list and then came across that ridiculous post).

Some people get all tickled when you say you are doing it wrong. I’m not in the habit of saying your doing it wrong but clearly babies are doing it right. Shrug. I dunno.

Moving on:

Curiosity, movement, abstract thinking, problem solving, and imagination support brain development, idleness retards it (lowered stress). Anything that puts a demand on energy is stress.

People view stress as a bad thing, it is chronically, but I think of the organism more like a “muscle” much like exercising the neurons in the brain leads to improvements in cognitive functions. Perhaps we should look at acute stress more like “exercise”. After all it would be a more intuitive paradigm.

4 Comments Aside: Logic and stress

  1. Patrik

    Hi Edward, what do you think caused Sigmund Freud’s oral cancer by most ? He was smoking quite lot of cigars in a day and I do not think that in cigars there are lot of additives or other chemicals. Is ketosis the answer or smoking is really the big risk ? (How would you prevent this kind of cancer ?)
    Thank for your answer

  2. Craig

    The language of stress, the common usage, is whacky. There is a much more nuanced version to be had from extending the metaphor with engineering concepts; stress is an applied pressure, strain is the response to that pressure. Ultimate strain, beyond the elastic limit, is fracture or distortion and happens at suitably high stresses which can be high or low depending on the material being stressed. Stress/strain relationships may be linear, non-linear, multi-dimensional, plastic, viscous and are concerned with energy storage and release as in the compression of a spring : “ut tensio, sic vis”

    That’s pretty rich ground. Combine it with the ideas of exercise and practise and it has great descriptive potential.


  3. Matt

    Definitely more intuitive to embrace stress than to avoid it, as the avoidance often leads to additional stress. I think the avoidance is often a necessity, however, if the energy demands of stress cannot be met, so I think best results are obtained by increasing energy.

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