Saturday, March 22, 2014

WHS on the Masai

At approximately 14 years old, Masai men are inducted into the warrior class, and are called Muran. For the next 15-20 years, tradition dictates that they eat a diet composed exclusively of cow's milk, meat and blood. Milk is the primary food. Masai cows are not like wimpy American cows, however. Their milk contains almost twice the fat of American cows, more protein, more cholesterol and less lactose. Thus, Muran eat an estimated 3,000 calories per day, 2/3 of which comes from fat. Here is the reference for all this. Milk fat is about 50% saturated. That means the Muran gets 33% of his calories from saturated fat. This population eats more saturated fat than any other I'm aware of. 

How's their cholesterol? Remarkably low
. Their total serum cholesterol is about half the average American's. I haven't found any studies that broke it down further than total cholesterol. Their blood pressure is also low, and hypertension is rare. Overweight is practically nonexistent. Their electrocardiogram readings show no signs of heart disease.

It is hard to draw firm conclusions from this data, beyond the fact that about half of the people I see everyday would like to be as healthy as these Masai eating high fat animal products.

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