Mark Tassi

Holistic Health the Way Nature Intended

Tag: herbivorous

Nature’s Design

I find it interesting that people, upon having certain problems while on a particular diet, rashly jump and blame those problems on the diet. I am now referring, in particular, to a primarily fruit and vegetable based diet, or a diet of fruits and tender leafy greens with the inclusion of small amounts of raw nuts and seeds. Instead, in full faith of the perfection and completion of nature and the understanding of one’s exact place in that scheme, of closely and carefully analyzing one’s actions in one’s personal practice and trying to ascertain those shortcomings which would cause one to do anything but thrive, those individuals often blame the diet, ridicule the messenger and condemn that which the Creator put into place in the beginning.

I’ve heard people blame all sorts of things on the fruit and vegetable diet from loss of libido to being unable to maintain or attain muscle mass.

What these people do not realize is that the body takes years to correct years of abuse and unnatural living. They have a lack of faith in the design, in the natural plan. They are lost, having been unable to ascertain what the natural plan is in the first place.

Admittedly, it is not always so easy to discern what is natural from what is not in a world where false prophets and self-styled “teachers” abound. What is more, propaganda from the media instigated by the “food” industries lead most astray. The protein anthem is heard at every turn: “Where do you get your protein? Where do you get your protein?” Stuff and nonsense is spread by the three industries as they deal in death.

It took me over 12 years of eating fruit before my body was able to derive the full benefits of its nutrition. If one has trouble when first adopting such a diet, it’s not the diet, it’s you! How can a food, which our species was designed to eat, bring anything but the highest benefits? To think otherwise is not logical.

When I almost died of hyponatremia nearly 3 years ago, it would have been easy to blame it on the diet as most around me already had. However, not only did I make mistakes in the diet’s application which I ascertained from objective analysis, but it was also the first time in over 20 years that I had been absolutely stimulant free. To understand the significance of this, one must first understand the significance of the hormone, aldosterone. Aldosterone, among other functions, is responsible for the conservation of sodium. When sodium intake increases, aldosterone production drops. When sodium intake decreases, aldosterone production rises, thereby balancing one’s serum sodium level. However, aldosterone is produced by the adrenal glands, which, in most people, in our so-called “modern” society, are ravaged by lack of sleep, lack of carbohydrates, dehydration and stimulants. For the past 3 and a half years, I have been entirely stimulant free so my adrenal glands are more than likely doing the job they were intended to do, but that was more than likely not the case 3 years ago.

The point being is that if one is to succeed on any plan, one must have faith in that plan. I think that from the information presented in the post, Man the Frugivore, we may rest assured that man is indeed an herbivore/frugivore. If one, through careful analysis and meticulous study, can arrive at such a conclusion, the next logical step would be then to implement a plan based on that study and conclusion. The more logical one’s conclusion, the more dogged resolution one will have in carrying that plan out especially when one is faced with the consequences of either a body which is developing through the process or because of certain indiscretions which may be committed especially in the beginning of such a bold and rigorous step forward in one’s overall progress.

Veganism – A New Age Experiment?

I was going to save this one for a video, but I haven’t gotten a video camera yet. I think it’s going to be easier to convey a lot of these concepts in video rather than writing long winded posts.

At any rate, here goes.

Going low on B12 had me thinking quite a bit. It caused me to reevaluate what I have been doing, i.e. I’ve been completely vegan or on a 100% plant-based diet for nearly 15 years. However, before that, I had eaten very little animal products for years. The last animal product I’d eaten before I’d gone completely plant-based was a small amount of unpasteurized goat dairy on occasion.

As we know, B12 is produced by certain bacteria, however, according to orthodox nutritional theory, our primary source of dietary B12 is animal products.

As conveyed in the last post, I more or less “lost” nearly 3 years of my life from severe depression due solely to B12 deficiency. I had speculated that this was caused by my episode of fatal hyponatremia in that I didn’t notice any signs of the mental imbalance that was to come until after that ordeal. (I have since ordered the lab reports from the two hospital visits for hyponatremia, but at the time of writing, these have not yet come in. When I receive those I will be able to see what my B12 levels were at the time which may shed some further light on my theory.)

Was I becoming lower and lower in B12 during my years as a vegan and in the years prior when I severely restricted animal product consumption which the trauma of the critical hyponatremia then pushed me over the edge? I really don’t know. I have no clinical evidence as to what the B12 level was before the hyponatremia and can only speculate based on how I felt.

What I do know is that vegans are generally notoriously low in serum B12. Of course, having said that, their “omnivorous” counterparts are generally not that much higher either.

So again, what is the answer to this? It does seem that B12 deficiency is epidemic in our modern, polluted and sterilized society. Yet at the same time, it does raise the question, is veganism a new age experiment or are humans naturally vegan?

Natural hygienists like to site the fact that humans are classed as anthropoid apes and that all anthropoid apes are herbivores/frugivores. While this is certainly true, when one researches the diets of anthropoid apes in the wild, one finds that none of them are vegan! Most anthropoid apes eat around 2% to 3% animal products mostly in the form of insects, but they also do on occasion eat small mammals. They are not vegan! What then does this say for humans? After all, as mentioned, we are likewise anthropoid apes; we do have 4 canine incisors. While these incisors are small and only make up 4 of 32 teeth, they are still there and would be in keeping with the small amount of animal products that anthropoid apes in the wild eat. They are not there by chance, one can be sure of that.

Of course, there are vegans like Harley Johnstone, aka Durianrider, who put videos up of their blood test results on YouTube showing how perfect they are. Of course, they should be. We are herbivores/frugivores and anyone following such a diet and lifestyle is bound to have favorable results. But what about B12? We know that Harley injects B12. He was the one who suggested that I do. And thank God that he did. I have my life back because of it and then some!

It was discussed in the last post how the average vegan is destroying B12 producing microbes through the ingestion of excitoxins i.e. garlic, salt, caffeine, alcohol, spices etc. But would vegans produce enough of their own B12 otherwise? Some seem to do well. I certainly seemed to prior to the critical episode with hyponatremia where I seemed to deplete my B12 reserve. All this would be interesting research.

What is more, in a perfect world, one not sterilized with chemicals and pesticides, one not polluted, would the vegan thrive, and by thrive I mean produce and get enough B12 or would we be more like the wild ape supplementing our plant-based diet with small amounts of insects and the occasional small mammal?

In these days of science and technology, the vegan can supplement, and as mentioned in the last post, and until this is solved, that is what I intend to do. I’ve since had a few experiments with animal products recently after 15 years a vegan and I did not like the results. I got sick every time and lost my energy. Actually I didn’t get as sick as I thought I would. I had, in the past, gotten violently ill from accidentally consuming a small amount of animal product in the past, but in these few experiments did not get that sick but felt sick and miserable indeed. I simply have to too much to do to waste days on the couch sick from an unnecessary experiment.

Having said that, if I were not able to supplement or inject B12, I probably would eat some animal products in the attempt to raise the B12 level. I’ve never been an ethical vegan and in fact, do not consider myself vegan at all. I follow a plant based lifestyle recognizing that plants have lives too. Not that I want to kill. I’d attempted a fruitarian diet in the past as I did not want to kill plants, but again, do not believe that humans are fruitarian, but instead frugivorous/herbivorous.

Veganism undoubtedly came about as a reaction to the extreme processed and factory farmed lifestyle, in particular, the lifestyle reliant on the factory farm and all the horror that it entails. If I were to eat meat again, I certainly would not rely on that. Instead, I would supplement my frugivious/herbivorous diet with meat obtained through other sources. I haven’t taken that step and probably never will, but that’s what I would do.

For now, I will continue to rely on the occasional B12 shot but I have thought of these things, which brings us back to the question: is veganism a new age experiment? With everything said in this post, especially with the fact that none of the other anthropoid apes are vegan, I would say yes, veganism is indeed a new age experiment. But perhaps it is an experiment whose time has come. After all, humans are the most evolved of all the apes, are the most evolved creatures on the planet for that matter. Perhaps it is time that we evolve way from the need for animal products. Perhaps as humans, we can obtain sufficient B12 from our environment and bacteria on plants providing that all conditions are right. And until then, with our great ingenuity and cleverness, we can supplement. I feel utterly amazing since injecting B12. Well it’s not the B12 injections that are responsible, I felt this way 3 years ago before the hyponatremia and all that was to follow. It is because of the frugivorous/herbivorous lifestyle that I feel this way.

The bottom line is that we will not feel well if we are deficient in any essential nutrient. A deficiency in sodium nearly killed me two and a half years ago even though everything else was pretty much perfect.

Life is a delicate and perfect balance, so delicate and perfect that it puts one completely in awe of creation and the Architect which conceived it all in the beginning.

To your health,



Could It Be B12? by Sally M. Pacholok, R.N., B.S.N. and Jeffery J. Stuart, D.O.
B12 Exposed by David Rainoshek
WEIGHT LOSS TRANSFORMATION TIPS: B12 injections? by Harley Johnstone
GORILLAS: Diet and Eating Habits
Correcting the Vegetarian Myths About Ape Diets


Someone asked me what the best way is to transition from SAD (standard American diet) to an 80/10/10 or herbivorous/frugivorous approach.

The question intrigues me. While some may make the transition in a relatively shorter time, others may take longer, much longer. Personally, I belong to the latter group. From the time of hitting the nail right on the head at the age of nine when I told my mother that I was going to stop eating junk and just eat fruit, to the place where I am now, over 40 years later, I went all the way around the block and back again. I literally came full circle. It can be amazing, the direct and simple perception of the child as compared with the adult that thinks with his head rather than perceive with his heart. “I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes.” – Matthew 11:25. Until we begin again to listen to the inner promptings of the heart, we will not get very far.

Certainly, there is a way to get from point A to point B very successfully and not do that over night. That was my approach; that was my path, even though it wasn’t necessarily a predetermined approach or path, at least not consciously. If you are interested in transitioning to a healthier diet, you must take certain steps in order to achieve this goal and must do so at a pace which is entirely comfortable for you.

First of all, whatever you are eating, whether it is plant-based or not, learn about food combining. This won’t put right dietary indiscretions, but it will increase the digestibility of whatever you are eating and will help to reduce the toxic load, as improperly combined eating practices will likely cause the food you eat to ferment or putrefy, which will create toxic by-products in their wake.

The first items that I would recommend removing from the diet would be all animal products including eggs and dairy and I would also remove oil. Animal products are associated with circulatory diseases and cancer as well as a host of other maladies including constipation, body odor, bad breath, acidosis, endometriosis, diabetes, stroke and high blood pressure, as well as the dangers from environmental contamination from factory farms.

Oil is a refined fat. Olive oil has been shown to slow circulation by 32%! Studies have also shown that vegetable oils increase heart disease the same way butter does. Get rid of the oil. Reduce your fat intake, or at least make steps towards reducing your fat intake to no more than 10% of your calories. 10% of your calories from fat isn’t much since most fruits have approximately 5% of their calories from fat, and vegetables, more specifically green leaves, have generally approximately 10% of their calories coming from fat. So if you ate fruits and vegetables only with no added fat whatsoever, you’d still be consuming about 7% of your calories in fat. What is more, it is so easy to overeat fat, fat being a much more dense calorie source than carbohydrate for instance, especially oil which is 100% fat and contains no fiber, carbohydrate or protein. The body has no way to regulate or recognize the overeating of oil. The body has no satiation mechanism to measure oil being that oil is a refined fat, is 100% fat, and not a whole food. There are no foods in nature that are 100% fat. All whole foods contain varying ratios of the three macronutrients, namely carbohydrate, protein and fat.

I would recommend eliminating dairy for obvious reasons. No animal in nature takes milk from its mother after weaning let alone from another species. Casein, the protein found in cow’s milk has been shown to be highly carcinogenic. All milk, whether from cows that are grass fed or not, contain the hormone, IGF-1, which has been proven to accelerate tumor growth. In fact, cow’s milk contains 80 active hormones. Milk is highly mucous forming and acid forming along with all other animal products. Milk has also been shown to be a major factor in a variety of auto-immune disorders such as multiple sclerosis, type 1 diabetes and crone’s disease to name a few.

Contrary to current dairy propaganda, milk is not a proper source of calcium. It is a fact that countries with the highest incidence of osteoporosis are also the countries that consume the most dairy.

Cow’s milk is for the calf, certainly not for the human, baby or adult. Some may ask, “What about goat’s milk?” It can be said that goat’s milk is closer in composition to human milk and is less mucous forming than cow’s milk, but it is still an animal product with the problems associated with other animal products and is a mammary secretion from another species. Again, no animal in nature takes milk after weaning let alone from another species. If one is struggling to overcome a dairy addiction, then goat’s milk would be a better choice, but my advice would be to get sufficient calories from your favorite plant-based sources and leave cow’s milk for the calf and goat’s milk for the kid.

After you learn how to properly food combine, get off the animal products and oil and get your calories from whole plant-based sources keeping the fat intake low, not more than 10% of your calories.

So at this point in the transition, we have a diet of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds. Once one feels comfortable and established at this stage, I would begin having fruit for breakfast and then whatever whole, plant-based foods that you want for lunch and dinner. At some point after this, I would recommend having as much fruit as you care for all day and then having whatever whole, plant-based foods that you want for dinner. Once you had gotten to this stage, if you went no further, you would be doing very well indeed.

The next step in the transition would be to remove all glutenous grains from the diet. From a biological standpoint, humans are simply not grain eaters. Humans don’t have gizzards and therefore cannot properly digest grain lest it is cooked and even then grains are mucous forming, clogging and difficult to digest, and what is more, difficult to eliminate. It’s not by chance that in the word, “gluten” is the word glue! In fact, grains were not a part of the human diet until the advent of agriculture 10,000 years ago, not long when you consider the long history of man on this planet.

As well as being difficult to digest and eliminate, grains are also acid forming. What is more, the coarse, sharp insoluable fiber in grains is rather like finely ground glass and is highly irritating to the delicate mucosa of the intestine and associated with digestive dieases and disorders such as celiac disease, spastic colon, ulcers, diverticulosis, colitis, Crohn’s disease, irritable bowel syndrome and colon cancer. But the list of maladies associated with eating grains does not end there. Because grains are acid forming, the body produces mucous to protect the delicate tissue within the mucosa. Excess mucous production causes congestion and can lead to asthma and allergies. As well as this, the acid forming nature of grains and resultant acidic condition within the body has been linked to several types of arthritis. Acidosis, or an overly acidic condition, has been associated with many diseases. The high gluten content of certain grains, especially wheat, is exceptionally difficult to break down, highly congestive and constipating and can lead to gluten intolerance, celiac disease and other digestive disturbances.

And the list goes on. One could write a book on the health destroying characteristics of grains. In short, grains are not human food as evidenced by the need to process grains with high heat in order to make them edible. Any “food” which cannot be eaten as is in the field cannot be considered suitable for consumption. Any food which is not suitable for consumption will result in a host of health related problems. One cannot continually break the laws of Nature without the resultant consequences. Replace starch found in grains with carbohydrate found in fruit.

Having said that, however, at this stage of transition, by eating gluten-free grains, we mitigate some of the deleterious effects of grain eating. Limiting grain consumption to brown rice and millet, at this stage, would be highly advantageous, millet being the superior of the two. Millet is not only gluten free, but alkalizing, most grains are acid forming in the body, and what is more, millet is nearly mucous free. Brown rice, while being gluten free, is acid forming and mucous forming as well. Brown rice also contains phytic acid which can be considered an anti-nutrient as it partially blocks the absorption of key nutrients like calcium for instance. For this reason, I recommend, at some point, removing brown rice from the diet and restricting grain consumption to millet only. Millet is the queen of grains. It is easily digested and eliminated. I should probably also mention quinoa as an option, but as I have very little personal experience with quinoa, I am hesitant to recommend it. However, it seems to be an adequate transitional food.

At this stage in transition, we have a diet of fruits, vegetables, millet, nuts and seeds with the bulk of one’s calories coming from fruit, millet and baked tubers and a much smaller portion of one’s calories coming from vegetables, nuts and seeds. I should clarify here that while one would be eating a much smaller portion of one’s calories from vegetables, one may still be eating a rather large volume of vegetables, the caloric density of vegetables being relatively low.

As we are not grain eaters, the next stage in transition would be to remove millet from the diet all together having the bulk of the calories coming from fruits and baked tubers. It is at this stage, if not sooner depending on the individual, that one should begin to remove all excitotoxins from the diet. These would be salt, garlic, onions, caffeine, spices and most condiments as well as cacao, hot peppers, pepper, chili, turmeric, ginger and galangal. Excitotoxins are just that, toxic to the body and “exciting”, in other words, stimulating through their highly irritating characteristics. When you cut an onion, it irritates the eyes. Imagine what that does to the delicate layers of tissue in the mucosa when you consume it. There is a reason, as well, that garlic is a natural antibiotic. It is so irritating and toxic that it damages bacteria, both good and bad in the system. What is more, all excitotoxins disrupt and damage B12 producing bacteria in the body as well as tax the adrenals as particularly in the case of caffeine and cacao.

These substances, I won’t call them foods, are best left alone.

Vinegar, as well, should be avoided. Vinegar is acetic acid diluted with water. In the chemistry lab, you would find acetic acid with a skull and cross bones on its bottle. Missing vinegar? In the transition, use a squirt of lemon or lime instead.

At this point, I would recommend eating fruit, fruit smoothies and/or green smoothies during the day and a huge green salad at night or a green salad with baked tubers and/or baked winter squashes or lightly steamed vegetables.

At this stage of transition, you would be eating a very healthy diet and may decide to remain at this level for the rest of your long life. However, if you decided to take your progress to the next step and eat a completely raw herbivorous/frugivorous diet as one would find in pristine nature, then, at that point, the transition to this stage will be relatively easy. Simply remove the baked tubers and baked winter squashes and you’re there. Congratulations. You are now following the healthiest diet known to man. Use the energy wisely.

To your health,


Recommended reading:

80/10/10 by Dr. Douglas Graham
Grain Damage by Dr. Douglas Graham
The China Study by Dr. T. Colin Campbell
Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease by Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn