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Messages - maxscan

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General Discussion / Re: Nude sunbathing testosterone rises 200%
« on: August 13, 2010, 10:53:10 pm »
Hi Raw-Al

Not entirely sure where I read this - I think possibly but potentially other medical websites I read. You're absolutely right though, it does depend on the person but I think mainly down to skin type and pigmentation. There is a specific amount of sun you need depending on various factors such as skin type, time of day, latitude, cloud cover etc. in order to produce appropriate amounts of vitamin d - anything after that is not necessary. In some places, at some times of year, that could mean spending the whole day in the sun, in other places at other times of year it could be 10 or 20 minutes, even if you're dark skinned. Getting burned is bad for you but the easiest solution is to get out of the sun - the point about being in the sun when it's at its most intense is to do with getting balanced UVA and UVB rather than with getting really strong sun or large amounts of sun.

I came across a sun exposure calculator a while back, created by the Norwegian Institute for Air Research, that can help you work out how much time you need in the sun depending on where you are in the world, time of day, skin type etc. See my post here:

General Discussion / Re: Is melanoma from the sun BULLSHIT?
« on: August 13, 2010, 07:14:46 am »
Hi Pioneer

I think you're 100% right about the suntan lotion and the media government bullshit - though there does seem to be a bit of movement, at least in the UK, back to some 'safe' sun exposure for vitamin d production. From what I've read the key is balanced exposure to both UVA and UVB - UVA is the one that causes pigmentation change and potentially burning if you overdo it, while UVB mitigates against this. Trouble is, UVB is easily blocked / scattered so, for example, working behind glass (eg offices, cars etc.) tends to block the UVB so you just get UVA. Also, time of day affects exposure - UVB gets blocked / scattered by atmospheric pollution during morning and evening when the sun is low in the sky - ideal time is middle of the day as the sun is more overhead and direct. That said, I think there is still some danger of melanoma if you get repeatedly burnt - that's why there's variations in skin tone depending on where in the world you're from genetically - if there's more sun you have darker skin so you don't absorb so much so easily, further from the equator and you have paler skin because you'd typically get a lot less exposure. I think the main thing is to listen to your body and tan over time - if it feels uncomfortable, find some shade - but definitely get some sun too.

General Discussion / Re: Nude sunbathing testosterone rises 200%
« on: August 13, 2010, 07:02:53 am »
So, I don't want that intense? Is it that my body can't utilize that high of intensity and it is actually doing damage? Is this just anecdotal or is there some science behind this?

From what I've read you do want that intense. Something to do with UVA & UVB - for vitamin d production you want UVB but this is much more easily blocked / scattered by atmospheric pollution - between 10am and 2pm the sun is more directly overhead so you get much more UVB. UVA can be dangerous if you get too much of it in isolation - there's some speculation that the rise in skin cancer is due to working behind glass - window glass blocks the UVB but the UVA gets through so you get an unbalanced dose and skin cancer...

Don't know about the States but at my butchers they do that some of the time, other times not - they've got a couple of cutting tables at the far end of the shop so they usually use those but sometimes they go get a smaller bit out of the fridge or whatever. I guess depends on how much you trust them in general - if you've got a bad feeling then maybe worth finding another butcher anyway as they might be labelling things creatively or whatever so even if they cut it in front of you you couldn't be sure...

That said, round here butchers are pretty rare and they have to compete with supermarkets so they usually go the extra mile for customers in my experience...

General Discussion / Re: Does parma ham count as raw?
« on: August 13, 2010, 06:12:38 am »
It sounds like your grandmother picked a perfect spot! I love the mountains - got into them via skiing / snowboarding but it's the space and scale that brings me back every year, just so good for your head space and makes you feel glad to be alive. The sea has a similar effect on me though unfortunately I've had several ear surgeries since age 13 and I can't really get them wet so it's difficult to fully appreciate - before that happened you couldn't get me out of the water.

Vienna to Ventimiglia - that's quite a drive, though as you say some pretty spectacular scenery on the way. As you go further south in Italy the landscape really changes and it has a different feel about it, especially from Rome down. By the time you get to Sicily it's like you've gone back in time 100 years and you're in North Africa, very different flora & fauna. A really nice country for a road trip or a long train journey...

Thanks for the LFM tip by the way, had a look at the website and will definitely check out the Twickenham & Wimbledon ones - I've tried Borough Market but I think I'd need a 2nd job to shop there regularly!

General Discussion / Re: Bacteria - my understanding - is this right?
« on: August 13, 2010, 05:55:14 am »
Thanks for clarifying - I've started reading 'Bechamp or Pasteur' just to get a bit more of a handle on it - really eye opening - guess I've just had 30 plus years of germ theory drummed into me and finding it hard to let go! The sad thing is it makes you realise just how much harm modern medicine does to people - we look back on blood letting & leeches with horror - in a hundred years time they'll be looking back at pharmacy with even more incredulity...

General Discussion / Re: Does parma ham count as raw?
« on: August 10, 2010, 04:19:42 am »
Cool! I went skiing some years back in Limone and since then I've always fancied the coast along there as a perfect spot for a holiday home as you are really near the mountains but also the sea there is supposed to be good & clean.

Where my mum's family are from you're about 45 minutes from a beach (Lignano) but it's the Adriatic so it's a very green sea and often quite dirty, and the drive up to the mountains takes a good couple of hours... (though they're the Dolomites and breathtakingly beautiful)

What made you choose Liguria? Have you travelled much around the rest of Italy?

General Discussion / Re: Why does everyone think suet is inedible?
« on: August 10, 2010, 04:10:27 am »
It's a small local butcher and they've gone for a 'high quality' proposition to compete with the supermarkets so all the beef they have in there is grass-fed or organic and the lamb is all salt marsh. The beef I get is not technically organic - it's Scottish heather-fed and they can't certify the land organic because it's publicly accessible but to all intents and purposes it's organic - they have certification to prove origin, feed etc.

They're based in Teddington / Strawberry Hill - the only downside I would say is that they're not cheap unfortunately...

I did a raw food dinner for some friends the other night. They are not RAFers but they do all like their food. I think because they can see I'm looking really healthy after only a couple of months doing this and because they know I'm a bit out there with food & diet they gave me a chance.

To make it as easy as possible for them I chose 'restaurant' dishes they might be familiar with - started with oysters, then a monkfish ceviche, then a raw take on a 'tagliata' (an Italian dish, thinly sliced sirloin or ribeye with flakes of unpasteurised parmesan, rocket and some garlic, rosemary & olive oil) and finally a raw cheeseboard & raw honeycomb for dessert.

Doing the more familiar dishes helped them relax and by the third course they were in the kitchen with me trying chunks of suet and the fat trimmed off the sirloin! (though the wine may have helped...)

I think the key is to treat it as normal yourself and other people will more likely accept it without questioning - if you are unsure or nervous that gets communicated. The other thing I find is it helps to have some science to back it up - things like the role of enzymes and ease of digestion, the differences in bacteria found in grass-fed vs grain fed meat, the fact that the body releases white blood cells in response to cooked food and not to raw etc. these sorts of little snippets are easy to accept and can allow people to go with it.

I also really liked GoodSamaritan's post the other day!/ - just point them at that - how can anyone argue?!

Hot Topics / Re: Fat Trimmings better than Suet?
« on: August 10, 2010, 03:37:19 am »
Never tried making pemmican but I really like the fat trimmings off the grass-fed beef I get - really buttery and sweet tasting, melt in the mouth unlike the suet (though I like that too)

The only thing with fat trimmings is that I find they're very often layered with connective tissue and can be a pain to get at - sometimes I can 'skin' the fat off the connective tissue with a sharp knife but other times I end up chewing more than suet...

General Discussion / Re: Why does everyone think suet is inedible?
« on: August 10, 2010, 03:33:52 am »
Ah ok, will ignore it from now on then - there are often little bits of kidney attached too - I haven't tried raw organ meat yet so I guess that could be a gentle introduction!

I've been quite lucky with the butcher in that they just give me the suet as they'd only throw it away normally - although I do spend a bloody fortune on the grass-fed beef so I guess they're still doing ok!!

General Discussion / Re: Does parma ham count as raw?
« on: August 10, 2010, 03:31:19 am »
Fair point about the salt and yes, will definitely be eating carpaccio when I find it!  :)

My family is Italian (mum from a little village near Venice, dad from Palermo) so I've been over there a fair bit but this will be my first time 'raw' - didn't realise that about the beef so thanks for the heads up! It's a real shame though - my parents are convinced of the fact that food in Italy is of the highest quality but I wonder if they're thinking back to their childhoods before they came over to the UK in the 70s - certainly the cooked food is great by cooked food standards and fruit & veg is generally of a much higher quality than the UK but I think that's down to the amount of sun. Whenever I talk to them about food quality they refuse to accept that anything in Italy could be raised badly...

That said, I was in Palermo in May for the first time in years (profile photo is in the botanic gardens - not that you can see much!) and we were wandering around the markets - they go on literally for miles winding through the side streets - stall after stall of seafood, meat, fruit & veg - I'm sure I could find something in there!

Tyler whereabouts do you stay in Italy? I'm not really familiar with Liguria, have spent most time in Veneto and Friulli but also some time in Rome & Sicily. King Salmon - spent a week in Le Marche inland from Ancona - absolutely beautiful countryside - are you staying in Ancona itself?

General Discussion / Re: Bacteria - my understanding - is this right?
« on: August 10, 2010, 03:00:50 am »
Hi Susan, Tyler

Thanks for the clarification - and I had in indeed forgotten about Bechamp's work that AV raises - so, would this be better:

  • Bacteria are not a cause of disease but instead a sign of an unhealthy environment - any breakdown they perform is actually a cleansing function.
  • If one's system is healthy, naturally occurring bacteria will not thrive to the extent that they will cause problems - it is only when the individual is unhealthy that bacteria will perform a cleansing function which is mistaken as the 'disease' itself.
  • Eliminating bacteria may allow an unhealthy body to continue functioning longer but eventually the body will break down because the 'disease' is still there, it is just no longer being highlighted by the presence of bacteria. This break down is what we commonly understand as chronic disease.

(effectively I'm paraphrasing what Susan said I think...)

All this said, Tyler's last point about aged cooked foods confuses me a little in that these will likely make one ill (and I assume this is because of the bacteria) so I have trouble finding an explanation that fits with the above.

I'm guessing the fact that the food is cooked makes it an unhealthy environment and this is why bacteria thrives? Also it is an unnatural environment and perhaps because of this stronger or mutated forms of bacteria thrive and your body cannot regulate this type of bacteria and, because they are stronger, they are more likely to cleanse healthy tissue? Or perhaps it's the large numbers of bacteria and these overwhelm the body's controls?

So... this makes me wonder if there is an element of acclimatisation to bacteria if one has only recently started eating raw - in that their body is likely in need of cleansing and so perhaps some care should be taken with exposure to bacteria until the body has (re)learned / is healthier and therefore able to regulate bacteria so the cleansing process doesn't go unchecked?

Apologies if I'm being over-complicated - I realise I am fairly new and therefore have quite a bit of residual fear of bacteria as a result of years of conventional thinking (& scaremongering cleaning product advertisers!) - it just seems to me that in certain circumstances bacteria can still pose a danger to humans and so perhaps should be avoided in those cases whether because they are in large concentration or of a different form to that found under natural conditions... does that sound right?

General Discussion / Does parma ham count as raw?
« on: August 09, 2010, 12:28:10 am »
I'm going on holiday to Italy in a couple of weeks time and I am trying to think about what I can eat over there to stay as close to raw as possible. There will be plenty of raw fruit & veg and it should be possible to get unpasteurised cheeses however I'm a bit stuck on meat without knowing the source... Then I thought what about parma ham? Real parma ham is dry cured over a couple of years in a cool environment so passes the temperature test but not sure about the salting - is it acceptable as a raw food alternative or would I be better of passing on it?

General Discussion / Re: storing eggs at room temp?
« on: August 08, 2010, 11:38:09 pm »
I read up on this as I was confused that eggs were stored unrefrigerated in the supermarket but on the box it says to store them refrigerated when you get them home...

Basically, the explanation I found was that eggs are quite sensitive to changes in temperature and so in a supermarket, which is typically air conditioned and at a constant temperature, it is fine to keep eggs unrefrigerated, however when you get them home, because most homes aren't refrigerated and you might, for example, put them in a cupboard next to the oven or boiler or whatever, the advice is to refrigerate them because that's the closest thing to a temperature controlled environment.

This would fit with what AV says in that refrigerating the eggs and then removing them would be a couple of big fast temperature changes. That said I always keep mine in a cupboard that is not near anything that gives off heat so I think they stay pretty constant or temperature changes are very gradual.

General Discussion / Bacteria - my understanding - is this right?
« on: August 08, 2010, 11:29:45 pm »
Ok, so from reading the AV books and a load of posts on the forum I have a new understanding of bacteria to my previous conventional scientific thinking - just wanted to run it by everyone and see if I'm on the right track - I keep having to explain myself to people and don't want to mislead...

So, my understanding is that:

  • There are two main types of bacteria involved in regards to food & food 'safety' - spoilage bacteria (not sure of any particular strains) & pathogenic bacteria (by which I mean e.coli, salmonella)
  • Spoilage bacteria make food go off or high and it doesn't matter if you eat them and in fact can be beneficial eg hanging of meat, high meat etc.
  • Spoilage bacteria is present in the food already?
  • The activity of spoilage bacteria becomes obvious and visible over time ie the food rots, whereas pathogenic bacteria do not produce visible changes in the food
  • Pathogenic bacteria are generally not found in food unless there has been some sort of cross-contamination - ie if you left a piece of meat in a controlled environment, pathogenic bacteria would only exist / multiply if they were already present in the meat due to previous cross-contamination?
  • All bacteria, including pathogens, can be benign or even beneficial (eg the AV stuff about e.coli as a cancer cure and some tribes eating faeces as part of their diet)  - it is generally when an environment is unbalanced that a particular strain of bacteria can dominate or mutate and cause problems (eg e.coli in grain fed cows is far more dangerous to humans than the e.coli strains found in grass fed cows)

Does this make sense or am I talking rubbish? (probably quite likely!)

General Discussion / Re: Why does everyone think suet is inedible?
« on: August 08, 2010, 11:12:59 pm »
I'm eating salt marsh lamb suet at the moment - I tend to chop it up and then sometimes dip it in paprika or cumin for a little flavour otherwise yes, it can be a bit bland. Don't really like it mixed in with meat as the chewiness stops me wolfing down the steak!

Actually, I do have a question about suet - when I get it from the butcher it's sometimes covered in blood from where it's been cut away. If I'm eating it then and there that doesn't bother me but usually I keep some of it for the next few days - at that point is it better to rinse the blood off? I just wonder if blood goes 'bad' in some way easier than meat?

Hot Topics / Re: Vegan/soy diet does cause androgeny:
« on: August 08, 2010, 10:53:46 pm »
Hi Pioneer

When you say 'it cannot affect you much unless it is above 100 ng/dl' that would equate to above 0.1 mcg per 100 ml (4 oz approx) - is that right? If so everything on that chart is looking pretty scary! Hopefully I've got my calculation confused!!

Primal Diet / Re: Raw, unpasteurised apple cider vinegar
« on: July 30, 2010, 01:01:07 am »
I get eczema - at the moment on my right hand and both wrists - due to food intolerance / allergy / candida - mainly gluten but dairy too...

I use apple cider vinegar diluted 1:1 with filtered water and bathe the areas of damaged skin. It might sting a bit but after a couple of minutes it stops the itching and then over the next half hour or so it dries out the dead skin so you can brush it off, helps to seal any weeping skin and generally soothes the area. Then after about an hour I moisturise and leave it for a while before repeating the cycle when it starts to get itchy again.

Has really helped me manage it while I'm sorting out my diet / candida

I think 'high' takes quite a bit longer - several weeks potentially, depending on temperature - if it's exposed to the air it dries a bit like a ham or something...

I tend to take mine out of the fridge for a couple of hours before eating. I just leave it on the counter with one of those mesh screens over it to stop any flies or whatever.

A couple of hours, even an hour, is usually enough for it to warm so it tastes good and that length of time doesn't really dry it out at all - at least with steaks etc. I think maybe ground or thinly sliced beef might dry out a bit quicker but then it wouldn't take as long to warm up either (thinner, more surface area)

General Discussion / Re: Allergies/Intolerances to specific meats.
« on: July 20, 2010, 04:31:31 pm »
I've had a couple of food intolerance tests over the last few years and in the last one I came up as intolerant to all the land meats they tested apart from chicken - I think my gut lining was f**ked...

Since going raw I've been eating mainly grass-fed beef and fish - it doesn't seem to affect me at the time but the reactions can be delayed by several hours so I'm not sure whether it still affects me eaten raw - the lab said they test the blood sample with raw organic ingredients to avoid false readings from pesticides, hormones etc. and also it strikes me that they're testing the blood directly rather than with digested raw meat...

My feeling (hope) is that eating raw is leading to better digestion so less problems - my only concern is that eating the beef might stop the healing of the gut wall - does anyone have experience with intolerance and gut wall damage? Would it be better to avoid the beef entirely or will it heal anyway if I eat a better diet?

Off Topic / Re: What are you listening to?
« on: July 20, 2010, 04:39:13 am »
Hey SkinnyDevil

Yeah was pretty unexpected - I've seen a fair bit of contemporary dance but nothing quite like this - it was almost like being at a rock gig - my ears were ringing for an hour or two after! Was pretty intense but also had some humour at points that stopped it getting too morbid...

Something a bit different anyway  :)

General Discussion / Re: Raw prawns...
« on: July 19, 2010, 06:02:08 am »
Hi GS, thanks for the tip - I've been wondering about the sanitising thing - I've actually been rinsing my meat & fish before eating, in the same way I would rinse an apple or whatever because my feeling is that I don't know how it's been handled so it might have some other, not so good, bacteria on it...

Do you sanitise all food or just prawns / seafood? Do you always use vinegar and does it leave a taste?

I do wonder if rinsing with water really does anything...

Hot Topics / Re: Vegan/soy diet does cause androgeny:
« on: July 19, 2010, 05:45:25 am »
Interestingly I've often found a lack of drive / work ethic with my vegetarian / vegan friends - they usually come across as very laid back but to the point where they rarely get anything done in life...

And I definitely know some overweight vegetarians, certainly doesn't guarantee being thin.

A while back I came across this sunlight / vitamin D calculator:

It was developed by the Norwegian Institute for Air Research and it calculates the amount of exposure you need to produce 25mcg / 1000 IU of vitamin D.

Takes into account date, time, location, skin type, cloud cover, altitude etc.

You need to put lat / long values in - you could just look at these pages:

US cities:
World cities:

Alternatively you can get them from Google maps if you put a place in, then click the 'link' button upper right, then scroll along in the first line 'Paste link in email or IM' - you'll see something like this:,-4.064941&sspn=17.937521,39.506836&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=London+SE1+1TL,+United+Kingdom&t=h&z=16

The bit in red is your lat & long values... (for where the red balloon icon is)

Hope this helps...

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