Top 10 Most Popular Videos of the Year

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2012 was NutritionFacts.org’s first full year in existence. This year we added about 10,000 twitter followers, 10,000 facebook fans, and 20,000 new subscribers, whose collective enthusiasm in sharing this body of work resulted in over 6 million views. But it’s not about the numbers; it’s about the people whose lives have been changed or even saved. On my wish list is to put up a “testimonials” page so I can share with everyone the kinds of stories that land in my inbox every week. People who found the site, improved their diets, and whose pain went away, whose disease went away, whose lives returned. As one person wrote me last week, “My doctor is shocked, thrilled and hugged me!” That is why this site exists. That is why I’ve volunteered my time to get a new video up every day. A heartfelt thank you to everyone who has made this public service possible. If you’d like to join others who have supported this free, nonprofit, noncommercial effort please consider donating here.

NutritionFacts.org arises from my annual review of the scientific literature. Over the last year 6,733 papers were published on human nutrition in the English language. Right now I’m in the process of recording the first batch of 2013 videos. How do I choose which articles to highlight? In general I strive to focus on the most groundbreaking, interesting, and practical findings, but which topics resonate the most? I went back to see which videos were most popular this year to guide my selection and thought others might be interested in what I found:

#10 Doping With Beet Juice

Coming in at #10 was the first in a three-week video series exploring the phenomenon of nitrate-rich vegetables improving athletic performance while reducing oxygen needs (which overturned a fundamental tenet of sports physiology!). I find the whole story fascinating with tangents like Bacon and Botulism, but you can jump straight to the end with So Should We Drink Beet Juice or Not?

 

#9 A Better Breakfast

Along with videos like Antioxidants in a Pinch, this video makes practical the overwhelming new antioxidant database I start profiling in Antioxidant Content of 3,139 Foods. It compares standard American breakfast fare to a smoothie that contains berries, white tea leaves, and Indian gooseberry (amla) powder (introduced in Amla Versus Cancer Cell Growth).

 

#8 The Benefits of Caloric Restriction Without the Actual Restricting

One mechanism by which caloric restriction may extend one’s lifespan is by upregulating dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), the most abundant steroid hormone in the human body. Though DHEA supplements are discouraged, this video suggests there may be a natural way to conserve levels as we age. Longevity appears to be a perennial favorite. One of the most popular videos of 2011 was Research Into Reversing Aging.

 

#7 Dietary Treatment of Crohn’s Disease

We’d known that animal protein intake is associated with an increased risk of inflammatory bowel disease, but only recently discovered that plant-based diets may not only help prevent such conditions, but treat them as well, resulting in the longest recorded remission rates for Crohn’s disease. Fighting Inflammation in a Nut Shell was another wildly popular video this year, but just barely missed the top ten.

 

#6 The Best Way to Boost Serotonin

Why does removing meat and eggs from one’s diet improve mood? (as explored in Improving Mood Through Diet) Although it could be the arachidonic acid (Chicken, Eggs, and Inflammation), this video offered an alternative explanation. It’s the third of a three-part series, preceded by The Wrong Way to Boost Serotonin and A Better Way to Boost Serotonin.

 

#5 Is It the Diet, the Exercise, or Both?

This video answered the question: Whose blood is better at killing cancer cells? People who eat a standard diet and exercise strenuously or those who eat a plant-based diet and just exercise moderately? This is a follow-up on a video about an extraordinary set of experiments, Ex Vivo Cancer Proliferation Bioassay. How does simple lifestyle changes make one’s bloodstream so inhospitable to cancer in just a matter of days? You can jump ahead (*spoiler alert*) to The Answer to the Pritikin Puzzle.

 

#4 The Leaky Gut Theory of Why Animal Products Cause Inflammation

A single meal of meats, eggs, and dairy can cause a spike of inflammation within hours that can stiffen one’s arteries. Originally this was thought to be the result of saturated animal fat causing our gut lining to leak bacterial toxins into our blood stream leading to endotoxemia. It turned out though, that it appeared to be the bacterial toxins present in the animal products themselves (See the follow-up videos The Exogenous Endotoxin Theory and Dead Meat Bacteria Endotoxemia). Even when the bacteria are killed by cooking, the toxins in their cell walls may still trigger inflammation within the human body.

 

#3 Better Than Green Tea?

This is another along the lines of a A Better Breakfast and Antioxidants in a Pinch. The antioxidant content of a number of popular beverages is compared: black tea, coffee, Coke, espresso, grape juice, green tea, hibiscus (Jamaica flower) tea, milk, Pepsi, Red Bull, red tea, red wine, and white wine. Which beat out even powdered (matcha) green tea?

 

#2 What Women Should Eat to Live Longer

A competing risks analysis of the Harvard Nurse’s Health Study compared the danger of smoking cigarettes to the danger of animal product consumption (cholesterol) and the benefits of plant foods (fiber) to the benefits of exercise. This is the study that found that the daily consumption of the amount of cholesterol found in a single egg may cut a woman’s life short as much as smoking 25,000 cigarettes! Harvard’s Meat and Mortality Studies offers similar insight for men as well.

 

#1 Uprooting the Leading Causes of Death

Hands down the most popular video was my 2012 year-in-review. Recorded live, it was my attempt to explore the role diet may play in preventing, treating, and even reversing the top 15 killers in the United States (in as entertaining a way as I could!). The breadth of NutritionFacts.org is one of its strengths, covering more than 1,500 topics, but I realize it can be a bit overwhelming. My annual review talks are my attempt to bring it all together. Stay tuned for the 2013 review in July!

I’m really excited about all the new material I’m poring through. Make sure you don’t miss a day by subscribing to my daily, weekly, or monthly email newsletter.

Happy New Year!
-Michael Greger, M.D.

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  • Lori

    CHEERS to many more years of NutritionFacts.Org !

    • http://nutritionfacts.org/ Michael Greger M.D.

      Thanks Lori!

  • Jamiie

    Your information is so helpful. I share much of it with family and friends and will share this as well with my high school students who so need to understand how to regulate their diets in this world today (as do their parents). Thanks for your hard work!

  • Karen

    Thanks for the education, delivered with wit and humor. Only a few years ago I attended one of your lectures and asked the predictable “How do you get enough protein from plants?” question. Now I’m answering it for others. Many thanks for your life-saving (for us and the animals) work.

  • DRRKREMER

    This site is a GREAT blessing— it is a valuable resource for both healthcare professionals and patients–KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK!

  • Caroline Graettinger

    What a wonderful end-of-the-year gift Dr. G. I remembered some of these and rewatched all of them. A great stroll down memory-lane.

    Oops, the link on #6 points to the wrong video.

  • Lauraleahallan

    thanks so much for this life changing advice…

  • Howard & Carol Duncan

    Dr. G, This info has dramatically changed our lives. Merci.

  • Roxanne

    Since finding you this year, we have become whole-food vegans, dropped our cholesterol, our weight, and our joint pains. When I think of a health or food question, I come here first to see if you’ve already answered it. We even listen to your videos for entertainment.

    THANK YOU for what you do.

  • disqus_sOXKpa9BN3

    The addition of a Testimonials page would convey a greater justification for altering one’s life style. It would please me to add my story to this page. One foot note. An update to this lecture http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=88A0lWQOiGI would be on my wish list and to have it added to nutionfacts. It has been 10 years, and wondered the out come / findings. This lecture is just as important, if not more important that the #1 video since the intake of vitamin b12 is so important to vegetarians/vegans.

  • Aloha

    I am an alkaline vegan. I went through the pH balancing treatment four years ego (“The pH Miracle. Balance Your Diet, Reclaim Your Health”) for a breast tumor and I am a living testimony that it works 100%. I already know a lot about food and nutrition, but I still learn from your priceless information and it confirms what I went through before. Thanks to my friend I could know about your website. Thank you Dr. Greger for your time and heart to let people know about food that cures roots of diseases not just their effects/symptoms. You make America more healthy. My roots are European and I do remember simple food with lots of vegetables, legumes and nuts, which kept us healthy when I was young. We did not know anything about processed food, we had none at that time. I started change my diet ten years ago, became vegan much later. I feel and look 20 years younger than I am because of living healthy and being vegan. Thank you again for your hard work and dedication!

    ……………………………………………………………………………….

  • Paula

    Dr. G — Thought you would be happy to know that your 2012 Presentation is being shown on a Queens public access channel.

  • Deepak

    Hello……………….

    http://deepakagnihotri.tumblr.com/

  • Jaco

    Your daily videos are insightful, enlightning, and downright entertaining. Thank you for this year of change, I never felt better!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=670735069 Tan Truong

    Thank you to Dr. Greger and his team for dozens and dozens of life-changing, life-saving, and quality of life increasing information.

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  • Barton van Buskirk

    i spends hours on this web site every week and im still learning …has changed my life to such a great deal..im finally learning what to eat with out a sales pitch ..i feel very grateful every days tks again ..

    • http://nutritionfacts.org/ Michael Greger M.D.

      You are so sweet–I’m so glad you find my work useful.

      In health,
      Michael