What dietary clues do mass killers leave behind? Is anybody investigating?

CSI: Let’s Get to the Bottom of Mass Killings Once and For All!

by Kimberly Hartke

Why don’t more public health experts examine the root causes of the mass violence incidents happening across America and around the world? School shootings, church shootings, and now a theatre massacre. Are they too readily accepting these outbreaks of madness induced mayhem?

The medical system gets the blame for not “catching” these perpetrators before they strike. The gun lobby gets criticized for fighting tougher regulations. Violent video game producers feel the heat of stinging criticism.

But, what if the solution is right under our noses? If only someone would bother to sniff it out!

What if our heavy reliance on processed and fast foods is leading to widespread nutrient imbalances?

Dr. Weston A. Price, a researcher in the 1930’s found that primitive tribes eating a whole foods, natural diet high in animal foods and animal fat had no need for prisons. The moral character of these isolated people was strong. They were not incapacitated mentally or physically. In his book, Nutrition and Physical Degeneration, Price describes his travels around the globe, and he marveled at the stellar character of these people who had no access to modern manufactured foods.

Could it be niacin deficiency?

On page 486 of Nourishing Traditions: The Cookbook that Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and the Diet Dictocrats, is a shocking clue to the mystery of the scourge of violence amongst young people.

“While pellagra was being investigated as an interesting curiosity in Europe, it was becoming a way of life in the Southern United States…The general diet consisted of cornmeal and grits, soda biscuits, corn syrup and salt pork; and even when they had enough bulk of food, the Southerners developed sore skin and mouths, became thin and listless, and suffered from depression, hallucinations, irritability and other mental disorders.

The clinical description of the typical poor Southerner, any time between about 1900 and 1940, comes alive in the novels of William Faulkner–the brooding sullenness, suddenly shattered by outbursts of irrational anger, persecution, mania, the feeling of people living in a cruel and demented world of their own…Doctors knew very well that diet was at the bottom of all the misery they saw around them, and that disease could be kept at bay by a balanced food supply…”

Compare the modern junk food diet to the diet of poor Southerners: cereals, food bars, corn chips, crackers, and the high fructose corn syrup found in energy drinks and sodas. Not too dissimilar!

Vitamin B3 or niacin deficiency is the cause of pellegra.

When I googled Pellegra and violence, sure enough I find a letter to a U.S. Senator by Barbara Stitt, an author who once worked as a probation officer. She found that changing the diet of ex-offenders eliminated the hostility and other symptoms that would lead them to act out in a criminal fashion.

Her book is aptly titled, Food & Behavior: A Natural Connection and her work seems to confirm the findings of Dr. Weston A. Price on nutritional injury and the role it plays in juvenile delinquency and adult crimes.

A review of Barbara’s book mentions her concern about reactive hypoglycemia, sub-clinical pellegra and vitamin B deficiencies being at the root of violent criminal’s actions.

Check out this revealing quote from the review:

“The startling part of sub-clinical pellagra, like hypoglycemia, is that the symptoms also mirror those of schizophrenia, a problem so widespread that those who suffer from it occupy one out of every four hospital beds in the United States.”

The reviewer also excerpts a fascinating table from her book:

“A third topic the author details is vitamin B deficiencies, giving symptoms that could easily be confused with mental disorders. These B vitamins include B1, B2, B6, and B12. B12 deficiencies, for example, are well known for causing mental disturbances, such as paranoia, mental confusion, and dementia. In fact, the included table that compares vitamin B deficiencies to neuropsychiatric disorders is uncanny:”


Credit: Food and Behavior by Barbara Stitt

Please see my previous commentary on this topic, Madness and Violent Behavior: The Food Connection.

If you are a crime scene investigator and you are willing to start checking the pantry cupboards and refrigerator, as well as the computer hard drives of the assassins, please let Hartke is Online! know. We would like to see these increasing random acts of mass murder end.

Kimberly Hartke is the publicist for The Weston A. Price Foundation, a nutrition education non-profit.