Refined foods are a fairly recent innovation for humans. I do not believe they are a good one, either. They are not especially good for anyone, but aboriginal people lack the generations of exposure to them that non-aboriginals have. If you carry aboriginal genes, refined foods can be a slow poison to you.
One of these deadly refined foods is alcohol. For most aboriginal people, drinking alcohol is like trying to run a Volkswagen bug on jet fuel. It rots out your insides and your brain. You get diabetes and need to have limbs lopped off as you get gangrene. Heart problems and strokes are part of the results of drinking alcohol for most Aboriginal people.
White sugar and white flour are not a lot better for Aboriginal people than alcohol. They may not cause damage as quickly as alcohol, but eating that kind of junk is almost as deadly in the long run. Whole wheat and other whole grains are a more natural aboriginal diet. We have had those as a part of normal diets for many generations, unlike the refined carbohydrates. Potatoes and corn were domesticated by Native Americans and are complex carbohydrates that are much better for aboriginals' health.
Meat that is full of hormones and antibiotics is not good for anyone, but is even worse for aboriginals. It is expensive to eat organic meat that is free of the bad stuff, but medical care is even more costly.
Dairy is not good for a lot of people who are not even aboriginal. Many people are lactose intolerant, but a higher proportion of aboriginals have this problem. There are lactose intolerant remedies to help lactose intolerant people eat dairy without bad effects. Health food and even groceries often carry them. Not everyone is helped by the enzyme drops for lactose intolerance. Low fat powdered milk does not cause me the problems that whole milk does, but I only use it in foods most of the time. Mozzarella is a comparatively low fat cheese and cheese substitutes are available in health food stores.
This blog post is a real bear for me to write because of the emotional issues involved for me. I have told other Native Americans about this before. I expected the answer to, why we have such a problem with alcohol as a group, would be well received. It was by a very few. Most said the idea of a genetic predisposition to problems with alcohol would be used as an excuse for more prejudice. The logic of this escapes me. The Drunken Indian cliche is kinda hard to combat when you see it live and in person so much. The only ones who escape this reality are escaping reality.
Scientists discovered something they call a "thrifty gene" that many aboriginal people have. The good part about it is that people who have it make it through famines more often than those who don't. When a thrifty gene person does not get enough to eat for a while, their body sort of shifts gears and becomes more efficient about burning food/fuel. More work can be done on less food, or even stored body fat. That allows enough work to be done to get more food to survive the famine. Someone without the thrifty gene will simply become too weak from lack of food, to work to get more food to survive, and they die.
The bad part of the thrifty gene is when someone with it eats refined foods, including alcohol, it messes up our insides and we get diabetes, heart trouble, strokes, high blood pressure and alcoholism. People without the thrifty gene can eat all the refined foods, including alcohol, because they have had so many generations of people eating those refined foods that their bodies tolerate them. This does not mean those refined foods are actually good for people without the thrifty gene.
I see no reason to feel inferior to people who can tolerate refined foods, because their ancestors spent so many generations consuming things that were bad for them, that their bodies are not as hurt by the refined foods any more. It does not seem like a good reason for people who do not have the thrifty gene to feel superior to people who have it either. I can see their point about people who have the thrifty gene trying to catch up on exposing their bodies to refined foods, especially alcohol, in one generation.
I figure I have the thrifty gene. I do not consume refined foods much. This is better for anyone, but close to essential for someone who has the thrifty gene. I have come to prefer whole grain flour to bleached and brown rice to white, etc. I don't drink alcohol. I have eaten those things in the past, but it has been a long time since I ate a lot of them. I am not a diabetic, and my blood pressure is low. I am slightly overweight, but will be within my correct range shortly.
There are some tribal groups that are making a great effort to return to their healthy traditions. I feel this is a matter of common sense. This is not a bad idea for anyone, to eat things that are good for them, whether they have the thrifty gene or not. If you have genes from an aboriginal people, refined foods will make you very sick and probably kill you early. Please take care of yourself and stop consuming the foods and alcohol that will kill you. Think of the seven generations before you and the seven that will come after you. You are not only hurting yourself when you consume things that are bad for you.
I wanted to give you links about the thrifty gene but found that scientists are arguing about it now. The message still applies. We know that refined foods, and alcohol are bad for aboriginal people so we should not consume them. Osiyo.