Originally from NY, I now live with my husband, Keith, and our two younger children, Flint and Snow, deep in the Mojave Desert in Joshua Tree, CA. I have always been drawn to nature and making things.
How I became interested in tallow-based personal care:
For years we lived in Brooklyn and I ran my own pet care business. We would often spend weekends in Upstate NY camping and enjoying nature. Eventually I grew the business to the point where we could move Upstate to enjoy the country life full time. But somewhere in the wilds of the Catskill Mountains Keith got Lyme Disease, which went chronic. He was misdiagnosed for years and his health deteriorated. I became his caregiver, health coach and advocate, all while running the business and raising the kids.
After Western Medicine couldn't help (and probably did some harm), we were so grateful to discover a herbal protocol that saved Keith's life (see Stephen Harrod Buhner's amazing work, Healing Lyme: Natural Healing of Lyme Borreliosis and the Coinfections Chlamydia and Spotted Fever Rickettsiosis). With Keith's health stabilized, we decided to sell our business and start fresh. We packed the kids up in a camper and took a year to travel across the country to find a new home and new way of life.
Keith was still far from 100%. And I was feeling the stress from all the years of holding down everything and caring for (and worrying about) Keith. We were looking for a way back to health. Then we discovered the Keto diet and ultimately the carnivore way of eating. After "going carnivore" Keith's health transformation was incredible. His fatigued, anxiety and pain all resolved. His color came back and he lost 35 lbs. Friends and family we haven't seen in years are still amazed by the change.
I started carnivore as well and had a health transformation of my own. I lost the 30 pounds I gained from all my emotional eating (and drinking). The fatigue I thought was from a combination of aging and the stressful years of Keith's illness, resolved. My health continues to improve and I feel better than I have in years.
Our diet currently consists of meat and water and occasionally diary. We can't imagine ever eating any other way and believe this is the optimal diet for human health.
After this transition, it was a short jump to start thinking about the products I've been putting on my body as well. It felt wrong to use unnatural or plant based products. After some research, I found that tallow.
Tallow is made from rendering suet, which is the hard, white fatty layer that surrounds an animal’s organs, usually cattle. The structure of tallow is so similar to the structure of our skin that it's considered bio-identical.
The structure of our cell membranes is made up of approximately 50% saturated fats. And guess what? Tallow is also made up of about 50% saturated fat. Why is this important? This makes it compatible with our cell biology and makes all the vitamins and nutrients absorb-ale by our skin. This makes tallow highly skin compatible, allowing it to absorb easily into the skin to improve the protective barrier function of the skin, prevent moisture loss and regenerate the appearance of healthy, youthful looking skin. Tallow is rich with vitamins A, D, K, and E. It's also antimicrobial and antifungal. And anti-inflammatory, due to it's high CLA (conjugated linoleic acid) content , which is detoxifying.
Or as I like to think of it, tallow is magical food for your skin.
Wholly Human Tenets
- An animal-based diet is best for the human body. It is anti-inflammatory, anti-aging and prevents disease.
- Sugar and grains are unnecessary at best, poison at worst. This includes, whole grains and the sugars in fruits, honey, maple syrup, etc.
- Fiber is unnecessary.
- Cholesterol is not to be feared and is a critical component to human health.
- The be wholly human we need to be comfortable with the fact that something must die so that we can live. This is true for every diet, including vegetarian and vegan.
- Meat production is environmentally responsible and sustainable. It's critical for the health of our planet.
- Keto, paleo and carnivores diets are all a great way to be healthy. Everyone should experiment with what works best for them.
- Get some sun everyday and stop using sunscreen.
- Get good sleep.
- Don't make your life too comfortable.
- Eat the meat you like and can afford. Do not worry about the "grass fed" label.
*Our thoughts on "grass-fed":
There is much talk about grass-fed meat. ALL cattle in the US is grass-fed for the majority of their lives, then some are grass-finished and some are grain-finished. Many people like to say there's a big difference between the two, when in reality, the differences are negligible (site link here?).
This push that grass-fed/grain-finished meat is "toxic" plays into the whole meat is unhealthy campaign, which is what helped get us to our current health-crisis (obesity and autoimmune illness rates here). It's also interesting to see who's making this push, could it be the grass-fed/grass-finished companies trying to scare you into buying their product?
The carnivore way of eating hasn't been officially studied but there are people who have been eating this way for 20+ years and none of the long term carnivores that I've found eat grass-fed/grass-finished and ALL of them are very healthy.
The bottom line is if you eat meat (ANY meat) with the right fat to protein ratio and stay away from sugar/grains/carbs, you will find health. There are many people out there eating hamburger patties and bacon from the big box stores, who feel better than they ever have. in. their. lives.
So don't stress and eat the meat you like and can afford.