I got a missive from a reader the other day wondering why on earth an ad for a militant vegetarian dot com appeared on my blog. Good question, since this site and our respective philosophies of eating aren’t particularly aligned.
That’s not to say that I have any quarrel with any adult’s adopting vegetarianism as a reasoned ideological choice, because I don’t. I will argue (and often have done)that it’s not a healthier choice for the individual, rather, it’s a matter of sacrificing one’s own nutritional best interests–i.e., eating the meat-based diet that humans were designed to eat by eons of selection pressure–for the sake of a deeply-held belief system, whether religious or ideologic. Which, if it’s sincere, is quite noble.
When the choice to abandon meat-eating is not religious, however, I strongly recommend reading the fascinating book, The Covenant of the Wild, before committing to the philosophy on ideologic grounds alone.
During our many years in practice we have helped quite a few vegetarians adopt a lower-carb eating regimen in sync with their philosophy. It’s tougher and quite a bit more restrictive, but then the vegetarian lifestyle is a tough, restrictive decision to start with. Low-carbing vegetarians, an admittedly small group, can even find welcoming support and link up with like-minded dieters on the Protein Power website’s discussion board.
Still, it seems a bit odd that an ad for going vegetarian would appear on my site. One wouldn’t suspect it as being very fertile ground for gathering clicks.
And that’s the point of this discourse. When you agree to accept google ads to your site, which both Mike and I elected to do to help offset the cost of hosting the site, you have very limited input as to what pops up. We don’t control it and, as in the go veg case, it’s often beyond our ken. The ads are supposedly content driven. A nameless, faceless, bodyless webcrawling engine searches for key words in each new post and matches ads to it. Or sort of matches ads to it.
For instance, Mike wrote a piece a while back called “Carbohydrates or Weight Loss or Both” that generated a whole bank of ads for legal services which didn’t relate in even the remotest of ways to the content; we still can’t fathom what particular wording in the post tripped the webcrawler’s trigger for that one.
I wrote one about arsenic that populated the sidebar with ads about colon cleansing–a process that I am mildly opposed to as a means of improving health. Although cleanliness is supposed to be next to godliness, I suspect ‘cleaning oneself out’ through the use of cathartics, irritants, or enemas would more likely damage the stable ecology of the gut than help it. (That bias probably stems from a childhood spent trying to avoid adults bearing spoonfuls of milk of magnesia and enema syringes.)
And this piece will probably generate ads for going veg, cleansing your colon, and heaven knows what else. It should prove interesting to see exactly what does appear.
Suffice it to say that the content of ads on this (or I suspect) any other site do not always reflect the opinions of the hosts. Caveat click-or!