John Robbins
                                      Weston A. Price Foundation

                                                                   “Reflections On The:
                                       Weston A. Price Foundation”
                                                                  By: John Robbins
                                                                             November 2009

                                                        Weston Price was an American dentist
                                                        who traveled around the world, camera
                                                        and film in hand, in the late 1920s and early
1930s.  An entire chapter in my latest book,
Healthy At 100, is devoted to his

Price specifically sought out native peoples who were still eating their native
foods.  He asked about their dietary habits, then examined and took
photographs of their teeth.  At the same time, he undertook similar studies and
took similar photos of people from the same cultures who had become
exposed to Western foods, and who had begun to substitute foods like white
flour, white sugar, marmalade and canned goods for their native diets.  

The differences, as shown in Price's 1939 book
Nutrition and Physical
, were startling.  Time and again, Price found that those people
who were still eating their native diets had very few if any dental caries (decay
or crumbling of teeth), and appeared to be in radiant health, while their
counterparts who were now eating refined and processed foods from the
West were exhibiting massive tooth decay and malformation of their dental
arches, and were suffering from a growing cascade of illness and

Price came to believe that dental decay was caused primarily by nutritional
deficiencies, and that the same conditions that promote tooth decay also
promote disease elsewhere in the body.  

Price photographed the teeth and dental arches of the people he
encountered.  He found that as long as these people consumed their native
diet, their mouths and jaws developed so that they never experienced
crowded teeth, overbites, underbites, or tooth decay.  

When their wisdom teeth came in, they always had plenty of room.  But as his
photographs poignantly showed, once they left the wisdom of their native
foods for
"civilized" foods the results were ruinous.  Now all kinds of dental
problems that had been previously unknown became rampant.  

And it wasn't just dental problems Price found that as people shifted to refined
foods, birth defects increased, and people became more susceptible both to
infection and to chronic disease.  

As people ate ever more refined and devitalized foods, he said, they and their
offspring became increasingly weaker and more prone to all kinds of

Today, Price's work has attracted a loyal and devoted following among those
who rebel against processed foods and who seek a way of life more in tune
with nature's laws.  

Some of his more ardent followers say his accomplishments are more
important than those of Charles Darwin, Linus Pauling, or Jonas Salk, and that
he was a greater genius than Albert Einstein.  Others say his was the most
important health research of all time.  

Some of the most zealous of his followers now run an organization called the

Weston A. Price Foundation
.  A book by the foundation's president, Sally
Fallon, with the appealing title of
Nourishing Traditions, has been a best seller.  

No doubt the foundation is doing good in awakening some people to the
dangers of processed foods, but speaking as someone who has great respect
for the work of Weston A. Price, I am sorry to say that to my eyes, the
foundation that carries Price's name today is unfortunately exaggerating what
was unbalanced in his work, and abandoning much of what was good.  

For one thing, the foundation exudes an attitude of
"you're either with us or
you're against us"
that is reminiscent of the dark side of cults.  Those authors
and researchers who the foundation disagrees with are caustically mocked.  

If these authors happen to subscribe to the findings of modern nutritional
science, they are mocked and condemned for being
"politically correct."  

Reputable scientists who dare suggest that saturated fat contributes to heart
disease are denounced for being
"totally ignorant."  

Regrettably, those currently running the Weston A. Price Foundation seem to
be oblivious to the spirit of compassion, which motivated the work of the man
under whose name they act.  

Sadly, they are not just intolerant of people who eat or think differently than
the way they advocate; they frequently demean and condemn those with
whom they disagree.  There is a nastiness, a mean-spiritedness, to their
activities that is not worthy of the man in whose footsteps they presume to

In fact, the more I've gotten to know the
Weston A. Price Foundation, the less
I've felt that it is actually carrying on the spirit or the work of the man in whose
name it purports to function.  

For one example, Price never once mentioned the words
"soy" "soybean"
or "soy milk" in his 500 page opus, and spoke quite positively about
lentils and other legumes, yet the foundation has taken it upon itself to be
vehemently and aggressively anti-soy, calling soy foods
"more insidious than

For another example, Price discovered many native cultures that were
extremely healthy while eating lacto-vegetarian or pisco-vegan diets.  

Describing one lacto-vegetarian people, for example, he called them,
most physically perfect people in northern India... the people are very tall and
are free of tooth decay."

Yet the foundation that operates under his name is strikingly hostile to

Sally Fallon, the foundation's president, denounces vegetarianism as:

"A kind of spiritual pride that seeks shirk the earthly duties for which the
physical body is created."  

She further insults vegetarians by saying they frequently suffer from zinc
deficiency, but think it is spiritual enlightenment.  

In 1934, Price wrote a moving letter to his nieces and nephews, instructing
them in the diet he hoped they would eat.

"The basic foods should be the entire grains such as whole wheat, rye or oats,
whole wheat and rye breads, wheat and oat cereals, oat-cake, dairy products,
including milk and cheese, which should be used liberally, and marine foods."

Yet the
Weston A. Price Foundation aggressively promotes the consumption
of beef, pork and other high-fat meats, while condemning people who base
their diets on whole grains.  

One last example of the discrepancy between Price's actual work and those
who today purport to represent it: Price never once mentioned the word
"cholesterol" yet the foundation presuming to forward his work has declared
war on the idea that high cholesterol levels are associated with higher rates of
heart disease.  

"The truth is that cholesterol is your best friend" they write.  "There is no
greater risk of heart disease at cholesterol levels of 300 than 180."
 They might
as well say there is no greater risk of lung cancer for heavy smokers, or that
the Earth is flat.  

I regret to say that those running the
Weston A. Price Foundation today seem
to have their own agenda.  They are proponents of the philosophy that in
order to be healthy, people must eat large amounts of saturated fat from
animal products.  

They insist that only with the regular consumption of lard, butter and other full-
fat dairy products, and beef, can people derive the nutrients they need to be

Toward that end, the Foundation has widely publicized an article written by a
former member of the Foundation's Board of Directors, Stephen Byrnes, titled:
"The Myths of Vegetarianism."

The article is harshly critical of vegetarian diets, and concludes with an "About
the Author"
section which states:

"Stephen Byrnes... enjoys robust health on a diet that includes butter, cream,
eggs, meat, whole milk, dairy products and offal."  

In fact, Stephen Byrnes suffered a fatal stroke in June 2004.  According to
reports of his death, he had yet to reach his 40th birthday.  

By: John Robbins  

Reflections on the Weston A. Price Foundation

John Robbins is the author of: Healthy At 100, The Food Revolution, Diet For
A New America
, and many other bestsellers.  
John Robbins