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Dietary Guidelines: Science Versus Corporate Interests

The USDA Dietary Guidelines Committee stands accused of ignoring the science to justify its recommendation to eat meat.

November 2, 2011 |
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Sources Cited


Cartoon: ARLO AND JANIS © 2011 Jimmy Johnson. Reprinted by permission of Universal Uclick for UFS.  All rights reserved.  Image thanks to familymwr.


Commentators on the USDA dietary guidelines committee recommendations note that there is “no discussion at all, of the scientific research on the health consequences of eating meat. If the Committee actually discussed this research, it would be unable to justify its recommendation to eat meat, as the research would show that meat increases the risks of chronic diseases, contrary to the purposes of the Guidelines. Thus, by simply ignoring that research, the Committee is able to reach a conclusion that would otherwise look improper.”

We know that “A plant-based diet of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, and no meat reversed heart disease, completely prevented deaths from heart disease, and slowed the progression of cancer, and an almost identical diet is promoted by the World Cancer Research Fund to prevent cancer, as based on the largest review of scientific studies to date.”

The best summary of the dietary guidelines that I’ve found comes not from Greece, which I talked about, not from Harvard, but from a cartoonist, Jimmy Johnson: The new dietary guidelines have been released. They tell is to eat healthier…

But, not so healthy as to noticeably affect any corporate profits.

paraphrasing of course.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Peter Mellor.

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Dr. Michael Greger

Doctor's Note

Please feel free to post any ask-the-doctor type questions here in the comments section and I’d be happy to try to answer them. Be sure to check out all the videos on dietary guidelines and heart disease. And as always, there are 1,449 subjects covered in my other videos–please feel free to explore them!

For some context, please check out my associated blog posts: Dietary Guideline Graphics: From the Food Pyramid to My Plate, Harvard’s Healthy Eating Plate, and PCRM’s Power Plate and Watermelon For Erectile Dysfunction.