I’ve now crossed the six-year mark on my vitamin A elimination diet. That’s a big milestone. I also turned 60 a few months ago. That’s also a big milestone. Except, it’s one that I’d rather not acknowledge as it now places me into the senior citizen category. However, I’ve not entered curmudgeondom just yet.
Like with last year’s update, my health has only slightly improved over this year. However, the accumulation of the annual small improvements is adding up. Subjectively, I’d say that my health is now the best it’s been in the last 10 years. So, as I am getting older I’m getting healthier. I think that’s a pretty neat trick, and especially so when you consider my diet of mostly just three basic foods.
So now, after six years of having virtually no vitamin A in my diet, and for the last three years being officially in a severe deficiency state, I have absolutely no signs of vitamin A deficiency. How can that be possible?
Oh, I know that there are people who’ll claim that it’s the trace amount of vitamin A I get from eating beef that has me still clingy to life. Except, that’s one of the reasons I mostly consume bison. It’s much lower in fat than beef. I buy my bison directly from a rancher here in Southern Alberta. Bison is also not sent to feedlots for finishing, unlike beef where the animals are fed grain and corn. The USDA database reports bison’s vitamin A concentration to be 0 IU / 100g.
Additionally, for the last two years I’ve been making regular blood donations.
I even recently doubled down on it by making plasma donations. Those donations should offset any tiny amount of vitamin A I might get from my food. So, what’s keeping my skin, teeth, bones, and eyes healthy? According to the vitamin A deficiency theory all these tissues should have developed metaplasia or even disintegrated or have become infected by now. But, most importantly, if vitamin A deficiency were a real thing, then I should see at least some early indication of it after six years of virtually no vitamin A in my diet. However, it’s completely the opposite. I have absolutely no sign of it, and I’m just getting healthier.
I had a complete eye exam done a few weeks ago. The results are that my eyes are in excellent health. There’s no sign, like none at all, of any eye disease; no glaucoma, no macular degeneration, no retinopathy. The pressure in the eye is at a low-normal (a good thing). Additionally, I now have no sign of cataracts. My vision is very good. It’s not quite perfect, but it’s still very good for a 60 year-old. The eye doc said that he could give me a prescription for reading glasses, except it would be so mild that there’s not much point in it. If it’s interesting to anyone, I’ve included a link here to the retinal scanning report he provided me. I think this result is very significant because the de facto disease defining conditions of vitamin A deficiency are poor night vision and progressive xerophthalmia. Yet, I have no sign of ANY eye disease, and my day and night vision is very-good to excellent too. Again, how is that possible?
I don’t know about you, but the science that I was taught is that if even a single experiment fails to support a theory, then the theory is wrong. So, it’s time to call it. The theory that so-called vitamin A is an essential “vitamin” needed for eye health, vision, cell differentiation, etc. is simply dead wrong!. Whether you like it or not, it is just a fact. It’s game over for so-called “vitamin” A. Of course, I do know that it will probably take another 5 – 10 years for that to become widely accepted.
I recently had my bi-annual dental checkup. As like for the past three years, everything was fine. No decay, no cavities, the x-rays showed good density in my teeth, and my previous gum recession has nearly completely resolved. After examining my teeth my dentist actually said to me “your teeth look fantastic.” That is the very last thing I ever expected to hear from my dentist regarding my teeth. Although my teeth do feel stronger, smoother and cleaner, I don’t think they look “fantastic”, but hey, I’ll take whatever compliment I can get about them.
This dental result is very important too because one other major sign of so-called vitamin A deficiency is the secession of enamel formation and the development of bleeding gums. Yet, after six years of nearly zero vitamin A intake, my teeth now are in the best shape that they’ve been in in a decade or more. So, what’s all the vitamin A consumption in North America really doing for people’s teeth? It’s clearly not helping. Check this out: CDC: Half of American Adults Have Periodontal Disease
My sleep has remained to be very good, and is always restful. I have no problem falling to sleep quickly. And, as I wrote about before, I continue to dream every night and often experience some rather intense dreaming. So, there’s definitely been some sleep benefit of my low vitamin A diet. I suspect the deeper sleep is mostly due to a drop in cortisol levels.
My weight has remained remarkably steady over the last 4 to 5 years, Most people would probably agree that losing weight is not the difficult part, rather it’s the keeping it off for the long term that’s really difficult. But, for me at least, keeping that weight off has been easy-peasy, like no problem at all.
My physical fitness has remained about the same as it was last year. But, I feel my muscle strength has gotten a bit better. I can now bench-press 225 lbs. Although that’s not particularly exceptional, it’s still not too shabby for a 160 lb senior citizen. My cycling endurance is still good, with long hill climbs being my measurement. I’m telling ya, it’s the rice.
I feel that my cognitive health and mental well-being continues to be very good. My learning ability and memory recall are good, I’m consistently quite calm, relaxed and almost nothing gets me stressed out. Even the occasional hate mail I get, with the childish name calling, doesn’t bother me one bit.
It’s been known for over a decade now that retinoic acid accumulates in the brain, as well in other tissues. It has also been known for decades now too that retinoic acid causes depression, anxiety, significant drops in IQ, and there are hundreds of suicides officially attributed to accutane use, etc. Therefore, it should be of no surprise that reducing the amount of RA nicely accumulating in our brains is going to result in our improved cognitive functioning. I mean, who would have thought it possible?
Updated labs for Cholesterol etc.
My GP would not authorize a requisition for getting updated labs done this year. Last year’s CRP level was <0.3, which is below the detection limit of the test. My HbA1C was 5.1, and my LDL was 1.04 mmol/L and he said that these values are exceptional for a 60 year old. So, his position was that since my current health is excellent, and combined with last year’s lab results, he could not justify the expenditure to our health system.
I really don’t want to personally spend the extra money on getting labs done privately, but am open to doing so if someone wants to help cover the cost.
Blood Glucose levels
I’ve tracked my blood glucose levels for a while now. It seems to hover around the 5.2 mmol/L (94 mg/dl) mark.
That’s a bit surprising considering that I’ve been eating rice three meals a day for the last six years. Maybe rice isn’t so bad for our blood glucose levels after all?
Better tolerance of Hot and Cold weather
One other odd observation I’ve made is that I now seem to be much more tolerant of hot and cold weather. Somehow, my skin and body temperature just adjusts very quickly to the outside temperature. I also almost never sweat in hot sunny conditions. Could this be because I have a lot less of a highly light absorbing molecule in my skin?
Faster wound healing
I’ve noticed that small cuts and bruises heal very fast now. How can that not be a good thing?
In summary, my health remains to be very good. I’ve not been afflicted by the horrible consequences of vitamin A deficiency. I know that I never will – because it does not exist.
But, what we do know, and we know it with certainty, is that vitamin A is a very toxic molecule. We know that the “active form” of vitamin A, retinoic acid, is an extremely toxic molecule. So much so that even back in 1987 the HHS termed it a direct “POISON.” Except, we should all now realize that it is not a vitamin, at all. What is it really? It’s the toxin that has poisoned a large percentage of the human population. It’s also very likely responsible for most of the mysterious chronic diseases slowly killing so many of us, and destroying the lives of our children.
Consider this nice progress report from the CDC on chronic disease:
6 IN 10 Adults in the US have a chronic diseaseChronic Diseases in America
4 IN 10 Adults in the US have two or more
THE LEADING CAUSES OF DEATH AND DISABILITY
and Leading Drivers of the Nation’s $3.5 Trillion in Annual Health Care Costs
And it’s not just adults, as there is now about a 50% rate of chronic disease in American children too.
A national and state profile of leading health problems and health care quality for US children
Results: An estimated 43% of US children (32 million) currently have at least 1 of 20 chronic health conditions assessed, increasing to 54.1% when overweight, obesity, or being at risk for developmental delays are included; 19.2% (14.2 million) have conditions resulting in a special health care need, a 1.6 point increase since 2003.https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21570014/
We must do everything we can to turn this situation around.
What’s next for me?
I’ll continue with my diet for at least the next 4 or 5 years. I seriously doubt that I’ll ever again in my life consume any food that has more than negligible amounts of vitamin A or the carotenoids. But, my biggest motivation for sticking to this diet is not for health reasons, rather it’s to prove the scientific point.
I’ll also continue making the plasma donations for at least the next year. Of course, I don’t have some deep hatred for vitamin A. It would be silly to harbor hatred towards inanimate molecules. But, I will do whatever I can to keep expelling every last bit of this vile, poisonous, disgusting, reprehensible and scheming little yellow serial killer from my body.
In October I’ll put up another survey to gauge how people are doing with this experiment. Last year’s survey was put together rather hastily. That’s because that survey was kind of an emergency response trying to uncover why so many people were encountering the detox setback. Therefore, I’d like to do a much better job on his year’s survey. If you have any ideas or questions that you think are important to include in the survey, please let me know, or add a comment on the forum here.
Sleeping Tiger said:
Thanks for the update. I’m curious, what kind of rice have you been mostly eating, white or brown? (Or I guess there’s black too.)
This year I’ve changed to eating bit more brown rice. It’s probably brown rice 70% of the time. Previously I was at about 50% white – 50% brown.
Thank you Grant for this update. I take my hat off to you for these outstanding achievements!
You have been eating rice, beans, meat and some olive oil for 6 years with no nutritional deficiencies. Yet, there seems to be a concern among the low VA community in regard to the nutritional deficiencies and in some circles supplements are recommended.
Do you think that this concern is unwarranted? Why so many people do not seem to be able to share your success and after 6 months or so feel like they are falling apart?
I don’t really know if I’ve had nutritional deficiencies along the way or not. It is certainly possible. What I do know is that I don’t have scurvy.
I think people are right to be concerned about potential deficiencies; based on our collective discussions on this forum I think it was likely that some people were encountering a B vitamin deficiency. Especially so if they were eating mostly white rice.
There’s some good early reports about vitamin C being very important too, and that it is reduced in a vA toxicity state. More and more reports I read are stating the importance of zinc. Eating bread (gluten) in the same meal as say red meat significantly reduces the uptake of zinc,
People should not mimic my personal diet. I think people need to find what works best for themselves.
Agreed, the progress reports are all over the map. We don’t know why there is such a high rate of variability. But, people are coming into this from a wide variety of health and dietary backgrounds; that might be the biggest factor.
I think six months is way too soon to expect to see big improvements for many people. This is a slow multi-year process. I think I was lucky in that I just surged my vA intake, and that pushed me into a disease state. Whereas, for others it was a very slow progressive accumulation, saturating more of their tissues. So, I think it’s just going to take a very long time for many.
Life would have been much simpler if we could follow exactly your diet and get the same results. I am not sure whether various permutations and addition to the diet are helpful or actually halt the progress. It seems that a sufficient amount of meat and beans provide a robust amount of necessary nutrients (as per cronometer).
It is understandable that you are not encouraging others to follow your diet. Yet if it works for you so well, why are we struggling to “enhance” it. Just musing…
Thank you again for sharing your work generosity and freely.