Smacked in the Almonds

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Smacked in the Almonds

Postby MilesFromNeihu » 03 Jun 2012, 02:58

I am disappointed to learn that the almonds that I have been buying from Costco, which used to be raw, and which still LOOK raw, are not. They are pasteurized.

I discovered this appalling fact yesterday in the course of some casual internet browsing. It seems that in 2007, the Almond Board of California (ABC), the FDA, and the USDA, together I'll call them BigAg, put their heads together and decreed that all almonds produced by the ABC would have to be pasteurized before being sold. As it happens, 100% of the commercial almonds produced in the US come from California. In fact 80% of the almonds in the WORLD come from California. So it's not so easy to get raw, unprocessed almonds any more.

The reason I find this distressing is that cancer has been very popular with my family and friends. Without even trying I can think of nine that cancer has taken, and it's not a pleasant way to go. Edgar Cayce said that eating almonds prevents cancer. Experts say that it's the B17, also known as laetrile, in the almond, that zaps cancer cells. But pasteurization zaps the B17. Anyway, I have been eating raw almonds for a few decades now. At least I thought they were raw.

People have been eating raw almonds for 10,000 years (conservative estimate), and it wasn't a problem. It wasn't a problem until 2007 that is, when more and more people were waking up the to the fact that they could eat raw almonds and prevent cancer. Obviously something had to be done. So BigAg bravely put its foot down and protected us.

What is BigAg protecting us from, exactly? At first glance it looks like they are protecting us from being too healthy, which everyone knows can be bad for business. Of course they cannot say that directly. What they said was that there were two different incidents, one in 2001, and another in 2004, in which a total of about 130 people got sick from salmonella-infected almonds. So BigAg decided that almonds should be pasteurized.

Incidentally, do you know how many people are killed (not merely sickened) by cigarettes every year in the US? Over 300,000, plus another 5,000 burned to death in smoking-related fires. Not a problem, says the FDA. How many died from tainted almonds in 2001 and 2004? Zero. But I digress.

There are several ways to pasteurize an almond: dry roasting, deep frying, steam processing, and gassing with propylene oxide (PPO), which also happens to be used in the manufacture of insecticide. BigAg likes that one best. Granted that use of PPO for food products is banned in the EU, banned in Canada, banned in Mexico, banned in a number of other countries; granted that our own EPA recognizes PPO as a probable carcinogen, still BigAg likes PPO the best. It is undetectable by the consumer. The almond looks the same, and has the same texture, after treatment as before. Besides, PPO is nice and cheap.

So in 2007 the long arm of BigAg secretly reached out and smacked me. Right in the almonds. It only took me five years to find out.
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Re: Smacked in the Almonds

Postby Chris » 03 Jun 2012, 07:55

MilesFromNeihu wrote:Edgar Cayce said that eating almonds prevents cancer.

Edgar Cayce isn't a credible source on any topic.

This post was recommended by cranky laowai (03 Jun 2012, 11:24)
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Re: Smacked in the Almonds

Postby Confuzius » 03 Jun 2012, 09:14

Chris wrote:
MilesFromNeihu wrote:Edgar Cayce said that eating almonds prevents cancer.

Edgar Cayce isn't a credible source on any topic.


Your opinion.

OP clearly disagrees.
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Re: Smacked in the Almonds

Postby MilesFromNeihu » 03 Jun 2012, 11:07

Confuzius wrote: Your opinion. OP clearly disagrees.


Yep. Confuzius right on.
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Re: Smacked in the Almonds

Postby kelake » 03 Jun 2012, 13:09

Little bit more here: http://reallyrawfood.com/forum/index.php?topic=583.0

We eat a tremendous amount of almonds in our home. It’s my fast food.
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Re: Smacked in the Almonds

Postby Nuit » 04 Jun 2012, 13:35

This thread is plain nuts.

We go through a lot of raw cashews and almonds here too, I'd no idea about this debate.
It seems totally wrong that a nut can still be labelled as raw when it's been cooked (pasteurised) at high temps.

Looking in the fridge, we have "100% organic walnuts, origin USA, no preservatives, no sulphur dioxide: Qing He Organic Ltd"
Are they pasteurised? Doesn't say so in English, and can't see anything extra in Chinese.
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Re: Smacked in the Almonds

Postby superking » 04 Jun 2012, 13:54

There are lots of things with B17 in them which you can use as a substitution, though I understand your frustration is more about being duped and the fact that you could have made the switch years ago. Here is a list which will help you... http://www.vitaminb17.org/foods.htm
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Re: Smacked in the Almonds

Postby MilesFromNeihu » 05 Jun 2012, 16:01

Nuit wrote:This thread is plain nuts.

Right. Plain nuts is what it's all about. :)
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Re: Smacked in the Almonds

Postby MilesFromNeihu » 05 Jun 2012, 16:05

superking wrote: Here is a list which will help you... http://www.vitaminb17.org/foods.htm
Thanks for the tip. I was aware of apple seeds and apricot, but not many of the others.

There used to be concessions for bitter almond powder in the basement of Carrefour in NanGang, and in RTMart#2 in Neihu, just beyond the checkout lines, but I don't remember seeing such concession vendors recently. But bitter almonds (or apricot seeds) must still be available somewhere around here? I hope.
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Re: Smacked in the Almonds

Postby trubadour » 05 Jun 2012, 18:03

rant appreciated, thanks OP

how about bitter melon?

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