Kurt G. Harris MD

PāNu means paleonutrition. The "paleo" here signifies "old" and not necessarily paleolithic. The PāNu approach to nutrition is grounded on clinical medicine and basic sciences disciplined by knowledge of evolutionary biology and paleoanthropology. The best evidence from multiple disciplines supports eating a pastoral (animal-based) diet rather than a grain-based agricultural one, while avoiding what I call the neolithic agents of disease - wheat, excess fructose and excess linoleic acid.

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PāNu Forum > Therapy versus Life

Here endeth the First Lesson.............!

Points taken.

February 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDudleyP

I am an admitted therapy chaser, and I suspect a lot of other folks are for the same reason. You begin eating low carb, paleo, whatever, and lo and behold all these nagging health issues disappear. In my case insomnia, acid reflux, and hot flashes disappeared. BUT, some issues only improve, but don't disappear. In my case migraines. Hope springs eternal. You think you are on the right track, just need to tweek it. So I'm trying the coconut oil fast. No apologies. :)

February 9, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterkate

One doesn't have to look hard or far to see we are living in a golden age of narcissism. It's everywhere. And, remarkably, even in this economy no humbling is in sight. And what Kurt is talking about is just another symptom of the age.

And while I agree with him completely there's no looking back. This is it, baby. Me me me.

Which reminds me...I have a question about my LDL subfractions...

February 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterPeter

hahahahah I thought Dr Harris' new post was spot on...money post ahhahahaha. i spit my coffee out reading the iodine and 'pig' part pill.

he was spot on, 100% true to many or most paleo-sphere people. EVERYONE IS A HYPOCHONDRIAC, and everyone seems to think something besides eating real, whole food and living a real social focused life will 'cure them'.

February 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMallory

for some reason Kurt's post reminds me of 'life of brian' - when he's in the desert & they all want to know what to worship, etc. he insists he isn't the messiah, then he says he is to be left alone: 'now, F*CK OFF!' to which Cleese's character asks 'how shall we f*ck off, o lord?'

February 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterReneeHenry


February 9, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterchristine m.

Based on the other posts I've seen in the last 24 hours, many people appear to have 1) not read the post, or 2) don't care about the message and are still seeking therapy. Funny :-)

February 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAravind

When I read the blog post in question I thought to myself, finally somebody said it. When I read rob wolfs post on his recovery nutrition I was shocked at the amount of supplements etc that were necessary for his recovery and I like Mr. Wolf very much.Life is simple at it's best and the sweet spot between acceptance and being a victim is a worthy goal.

February 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterRod

I absolutely love this post - the magical thinking part is spot on. The belief that somewhere, out there, is a healthy lifestyle, a food, a medicine, a diet, a practice, that means I never have to get ill, and I never have to die, is so widespread. You often hear conversations that go something like - "how did he drop dead of a heart attack, he ate "healthy", never drank or smoked, ran miles every day..." Regardless of whether the person speaking is well informed about health-promoting behaviours or not, the sub-text is "he lived a healthy lifestyle, HE shouldn't have died."

Sorry, but disease and death have always been with us. There is no "secret" lifestyle or diet that will prevent this - our ancestors certainly weren't able to. BUT, what we can do, is avoid a lot of UNNECESSARY health problems by running our bodies in the way they were meant to be run, and that means we can invest strongly in the full enjoyment of our lives, vocations, creative strengths, battles and relationships for such time as we are alive.

(Note that there is a puritanical flip side to this type of magical thinking. And that is that if you do get ill, and die, you must have "sinned" in some egregious way - "gluttony" and "sloth" are today's most fashionable sins - and that everyone "owes" it to society, and their families, etc, to live a morally "healthy" lifestyle! The "puzzlement" at a "healthy" person's death nowadays is therefore similar in its underlying structure to an ancient Greek saying - "he made all the right sacrifices to Zeus and Hera, HE shouldn't have died!)

In relation to DudleyP's post, of course it IS appropriate to seek therapy for specific illnesses - that is what therapies are for. Migraines, in particular, are very debilitating and seeking respite whereever it can be found is a worthy quest. But it is NOT appropriate to substitute therapy for a life - although many people, sadly, seem to be doing this.

Absolutely spot on post, Dr Harris.

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterScotlyn

Sorry, misread the order of comments - that should say "re Kate's post"

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterScotlyn

Definitely a great post but not necessarily true for all of us. I am 44, switched from high carb/low fat to ATkins in 1996, switched to Paleo (no more Splenda, low carb bars, etc.) in 2003, felt great, loved it, never even saw the inside of a doctor's office nor did I bother running tests. I felt and looked good. Started having digestive issues in 2008, fatigue, distended abdomen, trouble sleeping, swollen eye lids, suddenly started gaining weight despite no change in diet or exercise and on and on. Now I have a list of about 40 daily symptoms, I am unable to do my job (database programmer) due to brain fog and I've gone from exercising 5 to 6 days a week to cleaning the house once a week. So what did I do when all this started? I went to doctors and got various tests. Has it helped? Not one bit. I have seen more doctors in the last 2 1/2 years than I did in my entire life leading up to getting sick. I have never been a sick person so this is mind boggling to me.

Having said all that - I feel I have sort of come full circle. I tried various therapies, supplements, and what not and now I am back to taking hardly anything. Stopped all supps except HCl and digestive enzymes because without them the abdominal distention is so bad I am in pain. I take Vitamin D3, fish oil if I am not getting grass-fed beef or fish, etc. I am hoping that as Dr. Harris suggested in his post that my body will eventually heal - given the right nutrients (and rest, reduction of stress, etc.).

I will admit though that I have considered the coconut oil fast so @kate - would love to know how you do with it.

Love this blog and forum. Thank you Dr. Harris!!

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKristina

So PaNu's 7 words (in response to Pollan's 7 words), "Eat food, mostly fats, drop the wheat" ?

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAaron

KH has excellent info & insights in his blog posts which keeps me coming back but he has always comes off a bit preachy, bitchy, thin skinned & arrogant
(to me) in his blog posts.

I'm 64 & many in my age group have some sort of health issue for which main stream medicine has has zero answer (usually after wasted $1,000's & wasted years).
So of course we are searching for therapy - any damn place we can find it.

What would KH have us do - shut the hell up & suffer in the corner - go off & die?

Not me. I don't give up.

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterT.O.

Knowledge is power.

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDudleyP

I am happy to see most of you get it.

TO - what the hell are you doing here if you don' t like what I have to say? Just coming to call me names on the forum I offer you for FREE? Do you like to be called names? How about if I call you names, jerk?

It should be obvious I am not saying it is impossible to be sick. And I am not saying all therapy is useless. I am saying the healthy should not assume they are sick and even the sick may be wasting their time trying to fix what can't be fixed.

These are perhaps unpleasant facts. So be it.

If trying to save you from harm by seeking futile treatments is "arrogant", well, then you are welcome.

February 10, 2011 | Registered CommenterKurt G. Harris MD

"KH has excellent info & insights in his blog posts which keeps me coming back but he has always comes off a bit preachy, bitchy, thin skinned & arrogant
(to me) in his blog posts."

this is WHY i LOVE the PANU blog!

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMallory

T.O. diet isn't alone &/or always going to solve chronic, serious illness. Following the basic ideas here will help keep you healthy & let your body heal. Obsessing about ratios & looking for magic bullets isn't very productive (not saying that you, T.O. do this per se). Point is folks keep asking Kurt about these types of issues - not sure why sense he was repeatedly said he isn't interested in this aspect of issues. Since he is kind enough to have this forum others are free to post & answer such questions.

I think you seriously misread his post if you interpreted it to mean 'go in a corner and die'. That's an irrational response.

Best of luck to you in your journey to health - for some people it may be a journey without a destination in the sense that some things that are broke can't be fixed but only alleviated. I myself am in this bracket - I do what I can for optimal health but some things I can't change, I try not to let it ruin my enjoyment of the time I have.

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterReneeHenry

That's hilarious for someone to complain about blogside manner by insulting the blogger and calling him preachy, bitchy, thin skinned & arrogant . Irony at its finest

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAravind

T.O: Such audicity. For someone who speaks of manners, you seem to lack the grace and kid gloves you seem to desire from Dr. Harris. As he points out, its pretty disrespectful to use the forum that he provided to you { not only for FREE, but at a substatial personal expense} as a platform to make personal attacks on his communication style, his emotional intellegence, and his general character.
"As I said, I love your info doc, just not your blogside manner."
Well, isn't that just the nicest backhanded compliment ever. My grandma would be ashamed of you.
But I didn't come here to needlessly defend KGH from blog comments. I came to say thanks for the blog post discussed in this thread. It IS pretty easy to get caught up in the neurotic longing for immortality sometimes... seriously, how will the world go on with out ME!?! hahahaha

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

*intelligence. My favorite misspelled word on teh internetz.

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSarah

I'll share a story. A few years ago some friends came over to our house huffing and puffing about a doctor visit they just came from. It seems their son was sick and just wouldn't get better. The doctor told them that their son needed to lot of weight because he was severly over weight and that his diet could very well be the cause. They said, "she told us he was fat!".
The son was in fourth grade and weighed about two hundred pounds, feet turned out, knees rubbing together, arms stuck out, and could barely get up if he fell down. He was obese.

Why do some people get bent out of shape when the obvious is stated? Why don't people appreciate when the truth is stated? It's so rare to hear the truth from someone who is qualified to say it, especially from the medical field.
T.O. it hasn't been said gently yet. You misunderstood Kurts blog. He did not say that you shouldn't want to get well. There's nothing wrong with wanting to get better. Read it again with the intention that he's on your side and recompute.
Mr. Harris M.D. my hat is off to you. Thanks for "telling it like it is". I wonder if we appreciate the risk that Mr. Harris is taking by speaking directly against his "employers" welfare. What happens if the Pharm business gets word that Mr. Harris is encouraging people to not "fall for" their products?

Bravo Kurt Harris M.D.

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterB. Snyder

Anyone ever read Richard Bach's "Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah"?

"And hearing, the Master was glad, and gave thanks and came down from the hilltop humming a little mechanic's song. And when the throng pressed him with its woes, beseeching him to heal for it and learn for it and feed it nonstop from his understanding and to entertain it with his wonders, he smiled upon the multitude and said pleasantly until them "I quit." "

Thanks for what you do Kurt! And for keeping a simple message simple.

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTim Huntley

I think it is Dr. Kurt's low tolerance for BS that you are reading as arrogance. I get the feeling he studies an issue in great depth before he makes a pronouncement on it. I learn and he does all the heavy lifting...works for me!

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDiane

Hey TO,
I think most of us, if we are honest, have what you speak about. It is the human condition. The sweet spot I spoke about earlier is just accepting the ways things are and not giving up. You can never start over from the start but from where you are right now. One thing I know the world needs is more people entering the twilight years with wisdom but for the most part I see fear and anger and a realization that we just didnt get it and that god isnt handing out gold watches and a free bus pass to heaven. Try hard, dont give up, but be able to laugh when your ass gets kicked because it will. TO, if you had the power,what would you have the medicals do for you that would really have any meaning beyond another illusion of imortality for few more years? Just be the best old dying MFer you can be.Thats all that is left.

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterRod

Haven't donated in about eight months. I am now after that post!

I wouldn't want KGH attitude any other way and in the words of Andrew @ evolvify.com "I endeavor to (mostly) keep this site geared toward alienating people who disagree with me..." tends to cut down on the comments..

its a FREE BLOG that you VOLUNTARILY choose to read. don't read it anymore if you don't agree.

February 10, 2011 | Unregistered Commentertexasleah