Ask Norm Next Tuesday


Master of the Metaphor
That is interesting (and suggesting ideas about investing in stocks) , but I kind of got lost when they stated that it takes 18,000 gallons of water to produce a pound of meat. Not saying it isn't true but I would be interested in checking how they came to that number as opposed to the substantially lower number of gallons (740) needed to grow a pound of peas. Keeping in mind neither a pound of meat nor a pound of peas are a natural occurrence, I believe you get about 440lbs of meat out of a 1000lbs cow and I have no idea of how many pounds of peas are produced by a plant.
Based on comparative life expectancy it takes more water per pound for humans...... not that we’re tasty. Well, maybe with some fava beans and a fine Chianti. :)
Based on comparative life expectancy it takes more water per pound for humans...... not that we’re tasty. Well, maybe with some fava beans and a fine Chianti. :)
Don't forget that some of us also wash themselves...more water! Also, can using water be considered 'consuming' of natural resources? Once consumed, water is then expelled in some form by the body in one form or another, hence is recycled. You may need energy to make it usable brain hit auto-shutdown mode threshold!
I'm going to throw my $0.02 in on the fake meat stuff, because vegan.

My history with veganism:
Shortly after my wife and I first met we watched 'Forks Over Knives' together. I don't recall any particular reason why, so I'm not really sure what set us on the path. Anyway, after watching, we went vegan for a few months, then flip flopped back and forth for years. The idea of being vegan to preserve our health sounded great, but was always hard to keep going with it.

Fast forward a few years; A few months after we get married, I ditch my new wife for a weekend in Disney with my sister, brother in law, and niece. I'm having a great time swimming in the hotel pool the night before I'm to get on a plane back home when I feel my heart go into an irregular rythum. It feels like a-fib, I know it's a-fib. I fly home the next day and figure I'll go to work and see how I feel by the end of the day. Half way through my shift I feel completely exhausted, so much so that I start to fall asleep while standing at my computer workstation. So, being I work at the hospital, I tell the charge nurse to listen to my heart; She immediately hooks me up to the EKG and there it is, a-fib, hearts beating at 160 bpm. They make me take a wheel chair to the ER and I spend my weekend as a patient. A-fib goes away with some meds and I get sent home with a halter monitor to wear for a month.

At my follow up with the cardiologist he says he wants me on a statin because my cholesterol is too high (it was 200, high LDL, low HDL ). I decided I didn't want that and figured I'd give this vegan thing a real try for a month and if my cholesterol goes down I'll have no excuse to not stick with it. It was 148 (high HDL, low LDL) when I got it rechecked after ditching all the meat and dairy (I really wasn't eating much of it at that point anyway, as I really did want to keep that stuff to a minimum). I was cured, I was convinced. Been vegan ever since. That was in 2015.

To get back to the topic, the fake meat stuff for me was great for helping to transition to a whole food plant based diet. I still craved burgers at BBQs and cheese on pizza, etc... And so we are a lot of beyond burgers at the beginning and slowly learned to shift our diets and eating habits. Now I can't remember the last time I've eaten any kind of meat alternative, though I will occasionally order an impossible burger when we go out to eat with people as they are starting to show up everywhere. I'm not sure why I do it though, it always kinda grosses me out, it's too close to the real thing, and it's just not appetizing to me anymore. Now I mostly just eat stuff from plants. I eat as much as I want and I'm the lightest I've been in decades. Also feel better than ever.
Prior to having the a-fib, I used to get PACs (extra heartbeats here and there) a lot. I was always able to feel it: I'd hook myself up to an EKG and see what it was. Even after I went vegan, I'd still get PACs all the time. It wasn't until about two years ago when we finally ditched all the transitional fake meats and processed foods that it finally went away. I can't remember the last time I had any PACs.

TL:DR- In my sample of 1 experience, Animal products are bad for you, fake animal products are slightly less bad for you, plants are best for you.
I'd never say that anyone needs to ditch animal products altogether, but I do believe they are best eaten in moderation. I'm not good with moderation, so I abstain altogether.
While going through the early days of transitioning to eating differently, all the other documentaries really helped keep me on track as well. Seeing how bad animal agriculture is for the environment (Cowspiracy), how shitty animals are treated (Earthlings), and how shitty the whole industry really is (What The Health) helped to keep me going.
There's another documentary that I'm looking forward to seeing called 'The Game Changers' that is premiering in theaters on the 16th. It's focus will be on vegan athletes.

We live close to Philly and that city makes it really easy to be vegan. They have vegan pizza shops, a vegan cheese steak shop, there was a vegan taco shop but I think it's now a vegan Mexican place, a vegan Puerto Rican restaurant, and a bunch of other great vegan places. Dottie's donuts are all vegan and are the best donuts I've ever had, the dunkaroo donut is God like. We had our sons christening catered by Hip City Veg and no one had any idea that the cheese steaks, chicken sandwiches, and chicken nuggets were vegan. Everyone loved it.



Master of the Metaphor
Good stuff here @Mahnken. This is consistent with my thought process. If health is the goal, then real veggies makes more sense that something entirely lab produced. Not that most of our crops aren’t “genetically modified”, but that genie is not going back in to the

Im guilty here. I’ve gotten way too spoiled by being able to have seasonally inappropriate produce any time I wish. I don’t give it a second thought and that’s on me.

To be fair, we’ve saved billions of people from starvation by genetically modifying our agricultural products and that fact can’t (and shouldn’t) be ignored.

Honestly, our food is slowly killing us in this country. I think we all (at some level) know this. The laughable criteria around what is “allowed” to be called “Organic” alone demonstrates just how insidious things are.

Having a pink slime pusher like “Burger King” wave the lab meat banner really gives me pause.

I’m sorry, I just can’t shake the feeling that lab meat is just someone playing the profit over lives long game here.


aka Fidodie
Staff member
i dunno - i'd be more on the 'everyone has their sensitivity' train.

if i pull out a poison ivy vine, and throw it off the trail, i don't think about it, cause it doesn't bother me.
bee stings me, no biggie. i got stung 50 times when my brother hit a hive with a basketball while i was near it.
other than my hand hurting from punching him, and my mom in a panic, it was just a bunch of annoying bites.

on the other hand, i get debilitating hangovers if i drink too much - and i don't mean falling over drunk. you'd think that would be enough to stop me from
drinking, nah. but it is enough to remind me to slow it down.

To Dan's point, the availability of food of all types, at all times, has def contributed to health problems in some -
esp those that can't stop their sugar/dairy based diets. i'm not sure any one or class of products should be
blamed for a blanket health crisis.

read somewhere that it was the ability to cook and preserve meat, and the amount of protein available per unit was
a primary contributor to humans thriving. We can now process veggies to get the concentration of protein like meat -
although boiling, and adding salt or citrus (or calcium chloride - yeah, ice melting stuff) doesn't sound too bad.

edit: certainly there's 'things' added to food that are/were proven harmful.....

tl;dr - everyone should identify their food sensitivities and avoid them. just like any lotions/soaps/cleaning products, etc...

as an aside, bread used to get mold in 3 days. it can sit in the fridge for a couple weeks now. what's up with that? <--Norm's question.
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Love Drunk
Jerk Squad
@Norm #ANNT Official Question

What is the fake meat endgame?

People have been pushing meat substitutes for as long as I can remember. Some do so because of the whole cruelty to animals thing. Ok, I don’t subscribe to that but I can totally understand it.

Others push it for the claimed health benefits. Ok I guess I can see that too. Despite the

But here’s the thing, if you’re opposed to the whole meat thing, why would you try to make it look and (laughably, taste like) meat?

Calorie wise, many meat substitutes actually have more calories (ton of oil) than the real thing (fast food excluded of course).

So we now come to the so called “impossible burgers”. They came up with a formulation that gives the “soylent green” the taste of charred flesh, they even have hemoglobin in the name. Why? It “should” make the veggie folks sick to taste something that “tastes” like cooked flesh. And anything “that” modified has got to be a health “time bomb”.

So why? What is the real endgame?
I have been vegetarian since March or April 1994, 25+ years ago, pushing 60% of life. I went vegetarian for animal rights reasons, had zero to do with health reasons. I probabl;y lived on french fries for a solid 6 month period.

I have seen the whole evolution of the meat substitute (i dont know what the "it" term is) from going to the one health food store in all of York County to get veggie dogs and Okra patties to the rise of garden burger/morningstar/tofurky products and now impossible and beyond brands (which are GD amazing). Also saw the transition of restaurants offering a steamed veggie plate, to portabella mushroom substitute for burgers to impossible and beyond burgers being EVERYWHERE. I tried Burger Kings version just yesterday, even though it was drowned in mayo/ketchup.

I have also transitioned from being an angry sXe kid / super up front to a more mellow adult (yes, I know, i know, I WAS WORSE) and I no longer care if anyone else eats meat or whatever. I also don't do it for health reasons, similar to I don't ride for health reasons and similar to I don't do drugs, smoke or drink for health reasons. That being said, health benefits is a bi-product of all of those things.

So, I have heard the argument if you don't like meat so much, why do you eat stuff that mimics it. The taste of meat/fish products isn't why I went vegetarian in the first place, it was the practices in place to maintain that industry. One could make some connection between being so disgusted with that industry that a veggie burger is disgusting trying to mimic it. I have never been of that mindset and I am so over that argument because it is what kids would argue about in high school.

So now, I am sure someone will bring up how going to x-y-z is supporting the meat industry. This is why I don't argue with people on the issue anymore. I wear canvas vans for basically all my shoes, vans also sells leather shoes, so by buying vans, I support that industry. I also haven't research if vans uses animal glues in their shoe making process. So where does it stop, lets get to the level of parent companies and what they own. I digress...

I love beyond burger products, the burgers, the sausages, the ground meat that I made meatballs with the other day.

I will recommend watching Forks over Knives, I know it is hard to know the real story on anything, but some of these facts are undeniable.