by Eve Lees
Lettuce Belly (a spoof on popular diets)
Message from the author . . .
This article is just for fun. Its intention is not to belittle or ridicule those who suffer from gluten sensitivities or allergies, especially those with Celiac Disease. These people must avoid gluten-containing foods, just as those with severe reactions to peanuts or shellfish must avoid those foods.
However, I am ridiculing the way many popular diets vilify certain foods. It is wise to follow a diet of a wide variety of foods, to ensure we consume all the nutrients, antioxidants, etc., that we need to survive. The article below jokes about the "toxic" goitrogens in lettuce. But don't worry, there are no dangers in consuming the goitrogens in lettuce. In fact, all our plant foods have properties in them that, while they could be dangerous in huge quantities, there is no danger in the small amounts present in most foods – especially in the small amounts we should sensibly consume! These protective properties in plants most likely save them from extinction: Being overeaten, infected by insects, etc. This is nature's design. And yes, some of us may react badly to any of these properties.
However, it is inaccurate to tell everyone to omit a food because of a "potentially harmful" property it has. Poppy seeds contain opiates used to make heroin. I eat them for their rich calcium content, but they've never made me "high" (darn). By focusing on only one substance in a food, we risk taking it out of context from the whole food: It is misleading to fixate on one “part” and omit the benefits of the “whole.” I hope the following parody on popular diets will make you think rationally before you decide to follow a 'diet.'
I had fun writing this. I hope you have fun reading it. – Eve Lees
Step aside gluten . . .
It’s really the goitrogens in lettuce you need to fear!
Want weight loss? Want to lower your risk for illness? You won’t achieve either one if your thyroid gland is not functioning properly due to the negative effects of the goitrogens in lettuce. Yes, there are goitrogens – toxins – in lettuce!
The TRUTH about lettuce . . .
Goitrogens are substances that can interfere with the normal functioning of the thyroid gland. And they can make it more difficult for the thyroid to produce the hormones your body needs for normal metabolic functions.
And if your thyroid gland is supposed to be regulating your metabolism, this means if you need to lose weight, you are screwed. Big time. Yeah. Ditto if you want a strong immune system: With a slow metabolism you'll likely have low resistance to disease. But really, it’s all about weight loss and being skinny. Who gives a damn what your overall health is like, especially in the long term? You need weight loss NOW!
Who am I – and what do I really know about lettuce?
Really? It doesn’t matter who I am. Obviously, you don’t have to be a nutrition specialist or expert to write a nutrition book. I mean, look at any best-selling book warning us about things like gluten and the other lectins. Are they written by Registered Dietitians: professionals who are required to have no less than four years of education (a Master’s Degree) in Nutrition Science? Of course not. And what for? When a medical doctor’s curriculum includes about 20 hours of studies in Nutrition Science, really, why shouldn’t a medical doctor or a cardiologist write a nutrition book? And who cares that Medical Science and Nutrition Science are two completely separate and totally different sciences? Quit focusing on the small stuff.
Anyway, toxic lettuce is huge, critical stuff everyone should know about and "they" (the government and the huge lettuce-producing industry) aren't telling us the truth because they need us to be fat and lethargic. Fat and lethargic people are much easier to control (and "they" are aware I'm revealing this conspiracy because I strongly sense I'm being followed).
And what do I really know about lettuce? Oh, for Pete’s sake, it’s everywhere. Stop eating so much of it. It’s the most common vegetable we are eating today. It’s in every restaurant, in every salad and side salad, in every burger, in every sandwich, in every grocery store, every farmers market, and lurking inside every refrigerator (go ahead, peek in yours, and what do you see? Aha! I told you so).
Quit lettuce for many health improvements . . .
Here’s another thing I know about lettuce . . . since I stopped eating it, I lost 20 pounds, my blood pressure dropped to the lowest it’s ever been, my teeth turned white, that pain in my heel disappeared, my neighbour stopped tapping on her window to invite me in for tea (she is really boring) because she no longer sees me outside in my garden, I’m pretty sure I’ll never get cancer, I no longer have that awful lettuce-breath, the last pimple I had only lasted a day, and I can now play the piano. And all of this happened because . . . because. . . I was . . . ah . . . where was I going with this?
Oh yeah, right . . . so step out of the garden! Find your way back from insanity. Stop eating lettuce. It’s probably GMO anyway. Yeah, it’s Frankenlettuce. That’s right. You read it here. For that matter, stop eating apples* (the seeds contain arsenic). And don’t eat broccoli*; it’s also loaded with arsenic and goitrogens too! And what about cassava*? What do you mean, what is cassava? It's full of cyanide, that's what. Potatoes* and blueberries* have solanine (that stuff can paralyze you). And so many other foods have toxins too. Are we nuts eating these? (And incidentally, nuts* have phytates and lectins, more "bad stuff.") Who cares that all these foods also contribute lots of “good stuff,” far outnumbering the “bad stuff.” That's just a bunch of hype. And who cares that all the "good stuff" in those foods (like the antioxidants and fibre) likely dilutes or removes the "bad stuff." This is just more hype.
Soooooo much misinformation . . .
You’ve probably heard this before: Eating a wide variety of foods, and not eliminating any food, is our best assurance we get all the known and unknown nutrients humans need to survive.
Well, forget that fake news.
I avoid all those toxic vegetables and I'm just fine. Although I seem to have a strange craving for poppy seeds.
Believe me, even if a food has tons of nutrients in it, as long as it has a single goitrogen (or gluten or other lectin) in it, you won’t even be able to keep that thing you use to think with . . . um . . . yeah . . . your brain . . . you won’t be able to keep your brain working optimally as well as your body. And anyone on that new diet that's mostly just fat (Kilo or Keto or something), knows we DO NOT need lots of vitamins, or fibre, or even the antioxidants in 'carbs' to be healthy!
We are surrounded by dangerous vegetables! Get out of the garden. Step back from that produce aisle. DO. IT. NOW. Your thinness depends on it. And you might not get cancer. And your heart will still work. Face it: You will never be truly skinny or even learn to play the piano if you eat those foods that somehow – and I really can’t explain the exact mechanisms, but I’m sure I can dig up a study or two – will affect your ability to lose weight.
And we just can’t have that. You need to lose your weight right now!
More proof to stop eating lettuce . . .
Since many 'popular diet' books helpfully offer references and studies to back their claims, here are the studies I found for that perfect science-based touch . . .
Study that says lettuce is mutated https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3263626/
Even the CDC advises us not to eat it
Lettuce and ethylene??!! https://www.ethylenecontrol.com/produce-storage/lettuce-romaine-cos/
WTF! You actually checked my references? Well, so what if they have little or nothing to do with my argument? Apparently, neither do some of the references in those other books – nor does there seem to be any conclusive science.
Eve Lees has been a Health Writer/Researcher & Speaker for 40 years. When she wants a really good laugh, she surfs the internet to read all its ridiculous nutrition information.
*NOTE: Every food mentioned in this article (lettuce, poppy seeds, apples, potatoes, broccoli, etc.) actually do contain the properties noted (arsenic, cyanide, etc.). That part wasn't a joke.