Nature’s Brilliant Protocol and a Popcorn Fart in the Wind with Josh LaJaunie: PYP 174

josh-scottJosh LaJaunie is, by his own admission, a simple Bayou coonass who discovered plants and running, and transformed his life. His backstory is well documented in a couple of Rich Roll Podcasts, which you should drop everything and listen to if you don't know Josh yet (links below).

We hung out last month at Plantstock at the Esselstyn farm in Claverack, NY, where I snapped this photo of Josh (left, in white) and plant-based running icon Scott Jurek.

Josh and I got on the phone to talk about a Twitter discussion that broke out among Josh, Dr. Garth Davis, and Joe Rogan about the basics of human nutrition. What I appreciate about Josh is his logical approach to the evidence.

Here's what I mean by that. Millions of people see articles on their Facebook feeds supporting the meat, dairy, egg, and processed junk food industries. And because they don't have scientific backgrounds, they are easily swayed, or at least easily confused, or at least easily subject to doubt sufficient to keep them stuck in unhealthy diets.

For example, last week someone emailed me about a new article in the British tabloid The Telegraph. The headline: “High-fat cheese: the secret to a healthy life.” My first reaction is to look up the original study and explore its funding sources, methodology, data, and conclusions. And then look at how those conclusions may have been taken out of context or misinterpreted by the media. (Spoiler: the study was 100% funded by the dairy industry, as you can see from the screenshot below.)


Josh can do that kind of reductionist rebuttal as well as I can, but he prefers to stay out of the weeks and just talk in terms of common sense. So when Joe Rogan tweeted about a report that the sugar industry had influenced scientific studies on the dangers of saturated fat by proclaiming “China Study RIP,” Josh jumped in.

Joe argued: “There are certainly benefits to eating lots of plants. The question is are there also benefits to eating animals.”

Here's how Josh responded:

I wanted to talk with Josh about this concept: that simply by looking at nature with curiosity and humility, we can intuit how we should eat and move and live for optimal health and happiness.

So that's the conversation on this episode. A caution: Josh employs “salty” language, so keep the earbuds on if you're listening in the presence of the innocent 🙂

We covered:

  • reductionist science: enjoying the music rather than analyzing every note
  • appreciating the brilliant self-sustainable protocol of nature
  • “human animals are the only ones that f— it up”
  • modern human culture is a “popcorn fart in the wind”
  • the “quantity problem” of animal food consumption
  • extrapolating the pointy stone at the end of a spear to CAFOs and heated box blinds with porn and beer
  • hunting and fishing in the woods – a drive to understand one's relationship to the environment and its resources
  • our reliable calories and nutrients: tubers and leafy greens
  • how to get off track within the plant-based paradigm (nut butters, breads, pastas)
  • on not judging hunters
  • running and human survival
  • overfeeding a deer on dead birds
  • and much more…

Enjoy, add your voice to the conversation via the comment box below, and please share – that's how we spread our message and spread our roots.


Josh on the Rich Roll Podcast, Part 1

Josh on the Rich Roll Podcast, Part 2

The “Cheese is Awesome” article

The “Cheese is Awesome” study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition – abstract only (in front of the paywall)

Support the Podcast

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Thanks to Plant Yourself podcast patrons
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for your generous support of the podcast.


This is my first double-header week – two episodes in a single week. The reason – I've got too many awesome interviews in the can, and I started feeling embarrassed about telling my guests that their episodes would air 10 weeks from now.

I'm a little nervous about doubling the output, particularly as that decision relates to a potential drop in income-producing hours. So I'd love to hear from you the listener about whether you value the twice-a-week schedule. (And especially if that feedback comes in the form of patronage, or supporting my work by hiring me as a coach or speaker.)

I can help you navigate the medical system and adopt a healthy lifestyle

I'm available for one-on-one consulting and coaching to help you navigate the medical system, make informed decisions, take control of your health destiny, and achieve true wellness and not just medical management of disease.

Ask your questions or share your feedback

Comment on the show notes for this episode (below)
Call 919-794-3735 to leave a voicemail

Connect with me

Visit Howard Jacobson's health consulting site,
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The Plant Yourself Podcast theme music, “Dance of Peace (Sabali Don),” is generously provided by Will Ridenour, a kora player from North Carolina who has trained with top Senegalese musicians.

It can be found on his first CD, titled Will Ridenour.

You can learn about Will, listen to more tracks, and buy music on his website,


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2 Responses to “Nature’s Brilliant Protocol and a Popcorn Fart in the Wind with Josh LaJaunie: PYP 174”

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  1. Trailmomma says:

    Great podcast Howard and Josh!! Love it and I love and fully agree with Josh’s way of viewing this lifestyle. Simple. Basic. Healthy. Well done, both of you!

  2. Vicki Reesor says:

    Amazing, amazing! The ideas developing here on PYP are echoing my process of the last 6 years since I first read The China Study and adopted WFPB. I Love Josh’s way of expressing the wholeness of the “protocol”.

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