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“Better Living Through Chemistry” (Part I)

Updated on August 13, 2019
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Richard Petras N D, is a Naturopath. Graduate of Trinity School of Natural Health with 30 years of experience.

Biohacking with Deep Nutrition...or Cobwebs?

Deep nutrition involves powerful biohacking of our genes/DNA… a thing underheard of the age when the Federal government was playing diet guru with “food pyramids,” “minimum daily requirements,” “low fat diets,” “dietary cholesterol,” “no egg yolks, shellfish or liver portions”… all of which overlap with the era when cobwebs, chicken soup and salt were in vogue

What do cobwebs have to do with health? Well...

Challlenges to Longstanding Guidelines

It’s no surprise that longstanding nutritional guidelines are now being challenged

America’s Love Affair with Medical Technology and Gurus

I grew up in the last years of an era that remembers when baking soda was still used to clean teeth. Just about all of us in my age group today had a Grandma who’d make chicken soup when it seemed like we were gettin’ a cold. Applying salt was for mosquito bites. Of course, cod liver oil was ubiquitous… It was ordered for just about everything. Cobwebs were for…[1]

Indeed, the clock is ticking! These “old fashioned remedies” used by my family and revealing a bit about my chronological age, were much like anything else: some seemed to work, some… not so good. But, for all of the old-fashioned remedies, Americans were a comparatively healthy bunch (that is, compared to today).

But then came the tech euphoria following World War II. No doubt the War impressed everyone with the power of technology… obviously, its capacity to destroy. Atomic bombs, radar, firestorms, Panzers, Blitzkrieg, kamikazes, aircraft carriers, digital computers, Enigma codes… a whole new vocabulary surrounding the incredible power of technology went mainstream.

However, we reasoned such power could (most said “should”) be harnessed for “good.” Problem: “What was ‘good’?” “How was ‘Good’ to be defined.” More importantly, “Who” is doing the defining?

No one took the time to define the term. And few cared to do so. You see, we’re Americans. We don’t have time to quibble over philosophy. We reasoned we’d all know if a thing was “good” after we’d invented it … kicked the tires… took it for a spin… worked out all the flaws.

America turned to the field of Health and concluded advancements in technology and science should lead us to turn our health concerns over to the medical and pharmaceutical professionals. Afterall, cod liver oil, chicken soup and cobwebs can’t be expected to compete with sulfa drugs, radiation, and penicillin in combating infectious diseases. “Prior to antibiotics, infectious disease was the leading cause of death worldwide.”[2]

As a nation we were convinced the medical, dental, veterinary and pharmaceutical professionals had medical cures “in the bag.” Our health could safely be turned over to government, corporations, and other distinguished authorities. Such “experts” – then and now – have convinced us …

…women could be freed from the confines of the kitchen if only they were willing to abandon traditional ingredients and recipes and place their trust, instead, in industrial products from corporations such as Dupont, which promised “better living through chemistry.[3]

The point expert Catherine Shanahan, M.D. makes in her book Deep Nutrition, is that eating the right foods is crucial to quality of health. Thus, healing and good health through natural ingredients were removed from the kitchen and farmlands of America, being deemed inconvenient. We’ve been conditioned to accept chemical shortcuts around the body’s demands for good nutrition.[4]

[1] Only kidding… but, yes, “cobwebs” were once touted as a remedy of some sort. There’s always a fringe…

[2] Dr. Raymond E. Tobey. Advances in Medicine During Wars. Center for the Study of America and the West. Foreign Policy Research Institute. February 23, 2018. Accessed Online, June 24, 2019:; Dr. Raymond Tobey served 28 years in the United States Navy including his service at the U.S. Naval Hospital in Yokosuka, Japan during the Vietnam War, 1965-68. He retired a Commanding Officer of the Naval Regional Medical Center, Philadelphia, PA in 1982.

[3] Catherine Shanahan, M.D., and Luke Shanahan. Deep Nutrition. Why Your Genes Need Food. (Flatiron Books: New York, NY, 2008), xvii

[4] Ibid., xvii

“How’s that been working out for you?”

There are two assumption that need addressing. The first is easily worked out in a simple scorecard. 1) How has the guru leadership been successful in leading our society in the Health field since World War II? The simple scorecard shows us:

● “The War on Cancer has had minimal effect.”[1] In 1960, a woman’s lifetime chance of getting cancer was 1 in 22. Now, it is 1 in 8. It certainly appears cancer is thriving.[2]

● Childhood cancer has increased by over 60%.[3]

● In the United States, childhood obesity affects approximately 12.5 million children and teens (17% of that population) (1). Changes in obesity prevalence from the 1960s show a rapid increase in the 1980s and 1990s, when obesity prevalence among children and teens tripled, from nearly 5% to approximately 15%...[4]

● Cardiovascular disease is still the Number 1 killer of males and females.[5]

● The prevalence of diagnosed diabetes increased from 0.93% (less than 1%) in 1958 to 7.40% today.

● According to the CDC, “In 2015, 23.4 million people had diagnosed diabetes, compared to only 1.6 million in 1958.”[6]

● Administration of antibiotic therapy has increased the risk of developing resistant bacteria (currently, as much as 25% of diagnosed infections!) while killing off hundreds of types of beneficial bacteria needed for sustaining human quality of life. Some of the beneficial bacteria may never make a comeback to help us defend against the “bad bacteria” again.[7][1]

● If the latter is true, then “good” bowel bacteria is depleted to the point that it affects brain health. The increase in mental health problems correlates with the rise in antibiotic usage in combating disease.

● Alzheimer’s disease has now reached diagnosis in a whopping 44% of the population ages 75 – 85.[8]

Put bluntly, as a nation, we’re sicker than ever…[1] But, we’ve been so successful with the technology that Health care is now our leading industry! Talk about a “success story!” Just when we’re “sicker than ever” our health system appears to be “there” for us![2]

These experts, into whose hands we have entrusted our lives and those of our children, have comparatively unlimited resources, so they can continue to lead us as blind men down the blind man’s path. “What’s the expression?”

“If the blind lead the blind, they both fall into the ditch.”

And this “success story” has no end in sight. The pharmaceutical industry has more dollars to lobby Congress than the combined financial capacity of the oil, gas and military defense industries.[3] Technology and guru-itis have failed to keep us healthy.

[1] One major bright spot: infectious disease control in some diseases which once ravaged society, has produced significant decreases in reported cases and deaths, including polio, smallpox and TB (though the latter is making a frightening comeback). However, many other infectious diseases have increased over the decades as well. All of this helps to highlight the issues concerning nutrition and diet!

[2] That was a joke.

[3] Shanahan, xviii

[1] Ibid., xviii

[2] Ibid., xviii

[3] Ibid., xviii

[4] "Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR)"; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. January 21, 2011/60(02);42-46; accessed online, June 25, 2019:

[5] According to the CDC: and Both pages accessed online June 24, 2019.

[6]Page 2 of CDC document found online at: and more specifically, ; all accessed online, June 24, 2019.

[7] Shanahan, xviii

[8] According to Alzheimer’ 2015 statistic, April 2, 2014 at http://www. Alzheimer’ Alzheimer’s-statistics/ accessed online June 24, 2019. Cited in Shanahan, xviii.


The Clock is Ticking- Biohack Now!

Are nutrition and diet major factors in the new field of nutrigenomics (Deep nutrition gene hacking)?

The second assumption is more complex: Are nutrition and diet major factors in the new field of nutrigenomics (Deep nutrition gene hacking)? The answer is an astounding “Yes.” That’s the thesis of Deep Nutrition. However, statements within her book pressure us into some very serious self-examination and precise questioning:

● The good doctor writes: “If you eat a properly cooked steak from an open range grass-fed cow, then you will be receiving information …about the health of that cow’s body,

But… like the drowning man, we must find safety now

We are all victims of the great dietary experiment endorsed by the Federal government, lobbied extensively by the food and pharmaceutical industries. Given the fact that the major industry in America is no longer steel, lumber, cars, clothing, et. al., we need to correct this state of things.

… But… like the drowning man, we must find safety now. Diet damage is an experience of all of us. Deep nutrition is the field to learn about HOW to find solutions more immediately. So, go here now. Get the information that could satiate your energy needs, address children’s health, secure counsel needed for heart, cancer, diabetes … and a host of other diseases. Your clock is ticking … but you is possible to “rewind it’ - for you and those you love.

This content is for informational purposes only and does not substitute for formal and individualized diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed medical professional. Do not stop or alter your current course of treatment. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.

© 2019 Richard Petras N D


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