[Sca-cooks] Butter

Terry Decker t.d.decker at worldnet.att.net
Tue Jun 24 13:02:44 PDT 2008

> So what we have here is a tertiary source (Wilson)
> quoting another tertiary source (Drummond).  What's
> more, "The Englishman's Food" is one of the root
> sources for the Moldy-Meat-Myth.  Again, since vitamin
> D was unknown before the 20th century (along with any
> connection to rickets), and since butter can only
> *lose* vitamin D over time, Drummond's statement is
> certainly completely fabricated.
> When I get home I'll check through my copy of Drummond
> and see if he has any sources at all to back it up.
> I'll be really surprised if he does.  I'm used to
> expecting fluff in Drummond's book.  Unfortunately
> this makes me have to double check "facts" in Wilson's
> book as well.
> - Doc

Butter may or may not lose vitamin D over time.  I don't know of any 
specific tests on that point.  However, irridating foods with ultraviolet 
light to modify the natural sterols in food, particularly milk, fish and 
eggs, to allow the liver to convert the vitamin D in them more easily is a 
fact.  Irridating people directly causes the body to produce vitamin D. 
Harry Steenbock patented the irridation processes beginning in 1923.  The 
patents were revoked in 1946 on the basis they were a discovery rather than 
an invention.

Vitamin D was isolated by E.V. McCollum in 1922.  If there was any 
relationship between irridating food and rickets prior to that it would be 
on the basis of observed reaction rather than understanding of the 
underlying principlea.  I would expect an observation of a correlation 
between irridated butter and preventing or easing rickets would appear in 
the observer's writings.


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