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Medical Meat Bias

When famed surgeon Michael DeBakey was asked why his studies published back in the 1930s linking smoking and lung cancer were ignored, he had to remind people about what it was like back then. We were a smoking society. Smoking was in the movies, on airplanes. Medical meetings were held in “a heavy haze of smoke.” Smoking was, in a word, normal. Even the congressional debates over cigarettes and lung cancer took place in literal smoke-filled rooms. (This makes me wonder what’s being served at the breakfast buffets of the Dietary Guidelines Committee meetings these days.)

I’ve previously talked about a famous statistician by the name of Ronald Fisher, who railed against what he called “propaganda…to convince the public that cigarette smoking is dangerous.” “Although Fisher made invaluable contributions to the field of statistics, his analysis of the causal association between lung cancer and smoking was flawed by an unwillingness to examine the entire body of data available…” His smokescreen may have been because he was a paid consultant to the tobacco industry, but also because he was himself a smoker. “Part of his resistance to seeing the association may have been rooted in his own fondness for smoking,” which makes me wonder about some of the foods nutrition researchers may be fond of to this day.

As I discuss in my video Don’t Wait Until Your Doctor Kicks the Habit, it always strikes me as ironic when vegetarian researchers are forthright and list their diet as a potential conflict of interest, whereas not once in the 70,000 articles on meat in the medical literature have I ever seen a researcher disclose her or his nonvegetarian habits––because it’s normal. Just like smoking was normal.

How could something that’s so normal be bad for you? And, it’s not as if we fall over dead after smoking one cigarette. Cancer takes decades to develop. “Since at that time most physicians smoked and could not observe any immediate deleterious effects, they were skeptical of the hypothesis and reluctant to accept even the possibility of such a relation”—despite the mountain of evidence.

It may have taken 25 years for the Surgeon General’s report to come out and longer still for mainstream medicine to get on board, but now, at least, there are no longer ads encouraging people to “Inhale to your heart’s content!” Instead, today, there are ads from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention fighting back.

For food ads, we don’t have to go all the way back to old ads touting “Meat…for Health Defense” or “Nourishing Bacon,” or featuring doctors prescribing meat or soda, or moms relieved that “Trix are habit-forming, thank heavens!” You know things are bad when the sanest dietary advice comes from cigarette ads, as in Lucky Strike’s advertisements proclaiming “More Vegetables––Less Meat” and “Substitute Oatmeal for White Flour.” (You can see these vintage ads from 2:34 in my video).

In modern times, you can see hot dogs and sirloin tips certified by the American Heart Association, right on their packaging. And, of all foods, which was the first to get the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ “Kids Eat Right” logo on its label? Was it an apple? Broccoli, perhaps? Nope, it was a Kraft prepared cheese product.

Now, just as there were those in the 1930s, 40s, and 50s at the vanguard trying to save lives, today, there are those transforming ads about what you can do with pork butt into ads about what the pork can do to your butt: “Hot Dogs Cause Butt Cancer—Processed meats increase colorectal cancer risk” reads an for the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine’s “Meat Is the New Tobacco” campaign, which you can see at 3:56 in my video. As Dr. Barnard, PCRM president, tried to convey in an editorial published in the American Medical Association’s Journal of Ethics, “Plant-based diets are the nutritional equivalent of quitting smoking.”

How many more people have to die before the Centers for Disease Control encourages people not to wait for open-heart surgery to start eating healthfully?

Just as we don’t have to wait until our doctor stops smoking to give up cigarettes ourselves, we don’t have to wait until our doctor takes a nutrition class or cleans up his or her diet before choosing to eat healthier. No longer do doctors hold a professional monopoly on health information. There’s been a democratization of knowledge. So, until the system changes, we have to take personal responsibility for our health and for our family’s health. We can’t wait until society catches up with the science again, because it’s a matter of life and death.

Dr. Kim Allan Williams, Sr., became president of the American College of Cardiology a few years back. He was asked why he follows his own advice to eat a plant-based diet. “I don’t mind dying,” Dr. Williams replied. “I just don’t want it to be my fault.”


I find this to be such a powerful concept that I have come at it from different angles. For other takes, check out Taking Personal Responsibility for Your Health and How Smoking in 1959 Is Like Eating in 2019. Are the health effects of smoking really comparable to diet, though? Check out Animal Protein Compared to Cigarette Smoking.

The food industry certainly uses the same kind of misinformation tactics to try to confuse consumers. See, for example:

In health,
Michael Greger, M.D.

PS: If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my free videos here and watch my live presentations:

Discuss

Michael Greger M.D., FACLM

Michael Greger, M.D. FACLM, is a physician, New York Times bestselling author, and internationally recognized professional speaker on a number of important public health issues. Dr. Greger has lectured at the Conference on World Affairs, the National Institutes of Health, and the International Bird Flu Summit, testified before Congress, appeared on The Dr. Oz Show and The Colbert Report, and was invited as an expert witness in defense of Oprah Winfrey at the infamous "meat defamation" trial.


140 responses to “Medical Meat Bias

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  1. I love Dr. Barnard. I love both of you.

    I already know that some doctors are a big pain in the pork butts of the meat industry.

    Dr. Barnard was talking about the meat inspectors that are dying from COVID-19 now and how they have stopped releasing the information about how many of them have COVID-19.

    There isn’t a law that they have to be transparent about food safety issues?

    Anyway, I haven’t been weaning off of processed food, but what I realized is that YouTube is the one who is giving me all of these vegan versions taste tests and I gain weight with processed food, but I laughed that one vegan chicken won a best fried chicken contest versus real chicken products.

    I might be making that for Christmas so my chicken-eating sister-in-law can taste it.

    1. Deb,

      I think that processed food can result in weight gain, even if eaten in moderate portion sizes.

      My experience is anecdotal: When I met my husband 12 years ago, he was overweight, and unhappy about it. He kept a food diary, which I looked at — and I realized that he wasn’t eating too much, he was eating moderate portions. But, as a widower for over 4 years, he was eating most to all prepared and processed foods. And I recall wondering at that time: “How can processed food in moderate quantities make a person gain weight?” Well, I have had that question answered, on this and several other websites, as well as from additional research.

      But when he switched to vegetarian eating (he enjoyed eating my modest home cooking) and practicing portion control (For the few processed food items he continued to eat, such as ice cream and cheese), my husband lost about 50 pounds in about 18 months. So yes, he did switch to vegetarianism, but he also cut out most processed food, and practiced portion control for the few that he still ate. And I think that limiting processed food caused his weight to drop. (Though I think the vegetarian eating caused his cholesterol to drop.)

      Now we eat whole plant foods, and very few processed food, and usually only lightly processed. And we each lost a little more weight in going from vegetarian to whole plant food eating, though that wasn’t our objective; our reasons were in part health oriented.

    2. “There isn’t a law that they have to be transparent about food safety issues?”

      laws are only as good as those enforcing them. in the case of big ag who owns many levels of the government, what little there is in terms of laws is very rarely if ever enforced. as just one of countless examples, just look at the vile Kaporos ritual in New York city where every year thousands of helpless chickens are tortured and abused on public streets in the name of a ridiculous and archaic religious ritual. this event breaks countless laws but the city refuses to do anything about it for fear of angering the jewish voting contingent.

    1. Marian,

      I think that this blog addresses your question: People like meat. So they look for research that confirms and supports their behavior. Moreover, it’s “normal,” everybody does it, so it must be “healthy.” Just like smoking was. Until, finally, it wasn’t.

      From the blog: “ As Dr. Barnard, PCRM president, tried to convey in an editorial published in the American Medical Association’s Journal of Ethics, “Plant-based diets are the nutritional equivalent of quitting smoking.””

      Most of the doctors and scientists concluding that eating whole plant foods is a healthier way to eat were not raised that way; instead, their research convinced them that avoiding animal products and processed and prepared foods was healthier.

      Your question would be more interesting to me if these doctors were vegan, say for ethical reasons, but still advocated eating meat as the healthier option, based on all of their research. Since I am not familiar with either of them, perhaps you could tell me if they are carnivores?

        1. We have been eating meat in small amounts, not at every meal (not by a long shot) and often for only parts of the year (winter). Ancient people dried meats and ate small amounts of jerky, for example. When an animal was killed, there might be some ceremonial meals that included large portions, but the majority was usually saved, unless there were mitigating factors like the inability to preserve the meat, or a wandering tribe that could not carry much with them (although, the jerky was again very likely to have been their meat rations).

          Every element that makes up an animal comes from plants and dirt. There is no special thing that happens in an animal’s body, it’s just concentrated sources of of the nutrients in plants and dirt. Mushrooms do the same thing, but don’t have the downsides.

        2. That’s called the ‘appeal to antiquity’ fallacy Greg. Just because people have been doing something for a long time, it doesn’t mean it must be either healthy or right.

          People have been practising cannibalism, murder, rape, incest and infanticide for a long time too We’ve also been likely consuming alcohol since before our ancestors became human.

          https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2014/12/ability-consume-alcohol-may-have-shaped-primate-evolution

          That doesn’t prove that any of those things promotes healthy longevity.

          Sure, in the right circumstances, getting extra calories from booze, eating each other or eating meat may have been the difference between life and death. Eating meat is definitely healthier than starving to death.

          Is it good to eat meat in wealthy Western societies with access to adequate calories/nutrition? Probably not given its association with higher mortality risk
          https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2014/12/ability-consume-alcohol-may-have-shaped-primate-evolution

          As for the claim that organic/grass fed/wild meat is healthy, there is no evidence for this. It is wishful thinking. those cultures famed in the past for eating large amounts of grass fed meat, were also famed for poor health for example
          https://www.drmcdougall.com/misc/2014nl/feb/grassfed.htm

          1. You can’t prove that meat eating is dangerous. Not all doctors and scientists agree on this issue. For example, look at this video and start at around the 29 minute mark. Dr. Krauss is the director of the Atherosclerosis research at Children’s Hospital, Oakland Research Institute.

            https://youtu.be/7gZt9DQqtZI

            1. It’s extremely easy to prove meat eating is dangerous and you don’t need any special skills to do it.

              All you need is a powerful food processor such as a Vitamix.

              Put chunks of raw meat in it as you spin it up. Once it’s all in punch up to liquify and in seconds flat whatever meat you put in there is a liquid.

              But, you don’t stop it. You let it run until it starts to warm up then pour it out into a bowl.

              Then you look into the Vitamix to see what if anything is left. If that was lean venison, moose, elk, big horn sheep or goat, you will see nothing.

              If it was any kind of domestic animal, especially beef, the walls of the Vitamix barrel will have a thick coating of lard all the way around except on the blades.

              That is what your veins and arteries look like inside if you are a domestic meat eater.

              Of course you eat it while it’s hot, so it’s liquid. But after you swallow it, it cools to body temperature and reverts to the same consistency it was in the cow: solid.

              So, thing a meat eater today is the equivalent of a prehistoric meat eating human is pure self delusion.

              Of course doctors don’t get that. Once again, they don’t have a clue.

              Are there citations to support this assertion? No. But I have dissected and liquified more hearts than anyone alive, so I am the uncontested expert on this subject.

              Doctors never liquify hearts. They want their hearts to keep on ticking. I want mine in particles small enough for fish that have just used up their yolk sac. At that size you need a microscope to see their mouths. So when I’m done there is zero fat, cartilage, connective tissue or veins in the meat.

              But no, that is incorrect. The liquified meat is refrigerated for a few hours. As the liquid cools, the rest of the fat floats to the surface and forms a hard, dense layer that seals the meat liquid from the air like it had been hot wax.

              Our bodies don’t digest that stuff but we are very good at storing it.

              All about how to dissolve and wash the lard from our tissues Is part of what my book KILL THE CORONAVIRUS is about. So while killing the virus, you get to lose weight at the same time. A two for one deal.

              1. It’s not easy that’s why not everyone agrees. And, there has never been a society who solely survived on a vegan diet. Never.

                Hong Kong consumes more meat per person (695 grams per day or about 1.5 pounds) than any other nation, with a life expectancy of 84.3 years, the world’s highest.

                What about India?
                Indians only eat on average 7 pounds of meat per year.

                Indians life expectancy is at 68.3 years. With such a large amount of India’s population being vegan and vegetarian you would think they have less cardiovascular issues. But do they? Nope. India has a major cardiovascular problem. 32% of India’s adult deaths are the result of cardiovascular disease.

                Another epidemiological study showed that Red Meat plus Dairy was beneficial for a healthier longer life.

                This study looked at diets from 218,000 adultsover 50 countries and saw that those who ate three portions of dairy (animal products) and 1.5 unprocessed meat per day chopped the risk of dying early by 1/4. Also the chances of dying from a heart attack dropped by 22 percent.

                Andrew Mente one of the researchers behind this study even said, “regarding meat, we found that unprocessed meat is associated with a benefit.”

                Effects of Ketogenic diet on cardio risk factors – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5452247/

                Dr. Attai on cholesterol – https://youtu.be/8GDx5sObceI

                https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/30/health/red-meat-heart-cancer.html

                https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/30/health/red-meat-heart-cancer.html

                http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-41158365

                1. Guess what Greg, the meat from those cows is far, far less fatty that those in North America. Those cows are not fat on four legs like ours.

                  Didn’t I earlier write about thinking things through?

                  1. New Study:

                    Association of dairy consumption with metabolic syndrome, hypertension and diabetes –

                    https://drc.bmj.com/content/8/1/e000826

                    Conclusions Higher intake of whole fat (but not low fat) dairy was associated with a lower prevalence of MetS and most of its component factors, and with a lower incidence of hypertension and diabetes. Our findings should be evaluated in large randomized trials of the effects of whole fat dairy on the risks of MetS, hypertension, and diabetes.

                    While previous studies have shown that higher intake of dairy is associated with a lower risk of diseases such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease, this study expanded beyond those by including data from all over the world—not just Europe and North America.

                    Using data collected from 21 countries, the researchers collected data sets to find evidence of the relationship between dairy intake and risk of cardiovascular disease or diabetes across different cultures and dietary habits.

                    In relation to cardiovascular disease, the researchers saw that those who consumed dairy, and, in particular, full-fat dairy, twice a day were less likely to experience symptoms of metabolic syndrome, which include high blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess stomach fat, high blood fats, and abnormal cholesterol levels and is a risk factor for heart disease.

                    They found that two daily servings of any dairy product were linked to 24% lower risk of metabolic syndrome, while two daily servings of full-fat dairy, in particular, showed a 28% lower risk—both compared to no dairy at all.

                    Overall, the researchers saw that two servings of dairy per day was associated with an 11 to 12% lower risk of both diabetes and metabolic syndrome, which rose to 13 to 14% lower risk with an additional daily serving.

                    1. So there you have it. Don’t be fooled by the percentages. What those percentages really mean is that dairy is something you should stay far, far away from. It doesn’t work 100% of the time, only 24 – 28% better. That is the way science is used to put across errors and bad outcomes. This is not a good thing.

                2. Mente is one of the saturated fat/dairy etc is good for you gang at McMaster University, that is behind the PURE studies. They have been promoting dairy and saturated fat etc for years and Mente himself is a regular on the low carb circuit. He also wants to relax sodium guidelines issued by international and national health authorities. meat and dairy are high in sodium of course.

                  Attia is another one of this low carb tribe and has been repeating lies about Ancel Keys for years. He is also a cholesterol crank.

                  PlantPositive exposed Attia years ago.
                  http://plantpositive.com/display/Search?moduleId=19496100&searchQuery=attia

                  HK may consume more meat now but what about 20,30, 40 years ago? There is a lag effect with diet and disease

                  I really don’t understand how you can continue to believe this nonsense Greg

                  Even this ‘doubt’ and ‘disagreement’ tactic is pretty transparent now
                  https://nutritionfacts.org/video/sprinkling-doubt-taking-sodium-skeptics-with-a-pinch-of-salt/

                  1. What do you think folks in the keto community say about vegan doctors? They think it’s all political too. I’m just trying to point out that not all doctors and scientists agree when it comes to diet.

                    Just look at this brand new dairy study –

                    Association of dairy consumption with metabolic syndrome, hypertension and diabetes –

                    https://drc.bmj.com/content/8/1/e000826

                    Conclusions Higher intake of whole fat (but not low fat) dairy was associated with a lower prevalence of MetS and most of its component factors, and with a lower incidence of hypertension and diabetes. Our findings should be evaluated in large randomized trials of the effects of whole fat dairy on the risks of MetS, hypertension, and diabetes.

                    While previous studies have shown that higher intake of dairy is associated with a lower risk of diseases such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease, this study expanded beyond those by including data from all over the world—not just Europe and North America.

                    Using data collected from 21 countries, the researchers collected data sets to find evidence of the relationship between dairy intake and risk of cardiovascular disease or diabetes across different cultures and dietary habits.

                    In relation to cardiovascular disease, the researchers saw that those who consumed dairy, and, in particular, full-fat dairy, twice a day were less likely to experience symptoms of metabolic syndrome, which include high blood pressure, high blood sugar, excess stomach fat, high blood fats, and abnormal cholesterol levels and is a risk factor for heart disease.

                    They found that two daily servings of any dairy product were linked to 24% lower risk of metabolic syndrome, while two daily servings of full-fat dairy, in particular, showed a 28% lower risk—both compared to no dairy at all.

                    Overall, the researchers saw that two servings of dairy per day was associated with an 11 to 12% lower risk of both diabetes and metabolic syndrome, which rose to 13 to 14% lower risk with an additional daily serving.

                    1. The aim of the study is to find a bullet that will not kill you when it hits you.

                      Greg, and the rest of you, AND Dr. Greger, you need to stop taking those percentages at face value and understand what you are really being told.

                      One hundred of you are stood up against a wall. 28% of the guns aimed at you will have no blanks in them. The rest have real bullets. Would you stand against the wall?

                      All of you would do that. This is the idiocy your believe in processed foods amounts to. Especially where grain and dairy are concerned. Meat you seem to have mastered.

              1. According to PlantPositive back in 2014, Krauss has received funding from the Atkins organisation as well

                ‘Ronald Krauss is also quoted in the article. He’s one of the co-authors of that 2010 meta-analysis, and he’s also taken money from the Atkins Foundation and others in the animal food lobby. Krauss is Walsh’s reference for the now discredited claim that some LDL particles can cause heart disease while others can’t. But his judgment on that subject might be slightly influenced by the fact that he holds a patent, the value of which is riding on the acceptance of this notion.’
                http://plantpositive.com/blog/

                These enlightening PlantPositive videos also discuss Krauss’ papers and other industry funded ‘research’
                http://plantpositive.com/blog/2012/3/26/tpns-52-54-the-best-low-carb-research-money-can-buy.html

  2. I think people giving up meat may be harder than people giving up cigarettes, because it is ingrained in our culture that meat is ESSENTIAL for health and is an integral part of our lifestyle.That myth has to die.

    At least with meat there’s no “second hand smoke”. If the person next to me wants to eat meat, it won’t affect my health. That unfortunately is not the case with smoking. I’m sensitive to it because my dad recently died of lung cancer. He never smoked, but was subject to second hand smoke for decades as his parents and sister smoked, and many of his co-workers puffed cigarettes all day long in the office.

    1. actually, not ever eating any flesh, dairy or eggs again is the easiest thing in the world as long as one does it for the countless innocent, helpless victims who are tortured, abused and violently killed in the name of trivial and selfish taste pleasure and profit.

    2. The meat equivalent of second hand smoke are the environmental degradations of the “farming” and processing of the animals. Have you ever smelled a chicken farm that hasnt been tended to properly or the runoff produced by said farming? Gross!

    3. Julie,

      I’m sorry about your dad. The only 2 people I know of who died of lung cancer did not smoke. One was a 33 year old scientist, who left behind a husband and an 18 month old son; she was a co-worker of mine.

      And as far as meat is concerned, there actually is a “second-hand smoke” effect from meat — if it’s grilled: https://nutritionfacts.org/video/meat-fumes-dietary-secondhand-smoke/

      “The polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons in the vapors released from cooking meat may be hazardous for fetal development, and increase the risk of cancer.”

      I think about this, when my neighbors are grilling outside. Luckily, that doesn’t happen often, and I’m guessing that the smoke I’m exposed to is quite diluted. But then, there are restaurants:

      “Even just living next door to a restaurant preparing meat may pose a hazard. They measured the “incremental lifetime cancer risk,” the excess cancer cases expected in back-door neighbors of restaurants, given what’s spewing out of the exhaust outlets attached to the fume hoods in the kitchen…. How bad is it? Well, they estimate that given the excess cancer risk, you wouldn’t want to live behind a Chinese restaurant more than a day or two a month—though maybe you could squeeze in an extra day behind one of the other restaurants.”

    4. There are secondary effects of meat consumption that will directly affect your health like higher medical costs and global warming to name just two.

      It easy to give up cigarettes if you never start smoking them. We should take the same approach with meat.

    1. it depends on what you consider bias. is studying the research along with personal clinical experience biased or is it simply following the science to it’s logical conclusion? the peer reviewed research is very clear-humans do not require any flesh, dairy or eggs to be healthy and the production and consumption of them is a driving factor for both human disease and environmental destruction. but the real question is if a momentary taste sensation is more valuable than the suffering ,death and entire existence of another sentient being.

      1. David H, most doctors, if they are honest, agree eating meat isn’t healthy. Why else would they day to ‘limit’ meat if you have health issues.

        Not healthy for us, and certainly not healthy for these poor animals.
        Reading the news I found that pigs grow so fast, that slaughter houses won’t accept them older than 6 months.
        Chickens live even less time. They all live in awful conditions, and are then slaughtered.

    2. If even the US Dietary Guidelines – jointly issued by HHS and the US Department of Agriculture – state that Americans should be eating less meat, there’s obviously more to it than just ‘bias’.

  3. I had no difficulty giving up meat, but I was never that fond of it to begin with, probably due to allergies. I remember the ads for cigarettes, and I know they contributed to my smoking in my youth. I gave up smoking 3 times, at 18 when I moved in with an allergic boyfriend, at 32 after I resumed smoking when my marriage to that allergic boyfriend ended, and at 37 (for good) after I resumed smoking when my mother died. Each time was cold turkey, as was my giving up alcohol (at the same time I gave up meat), and later, eggs and cheese. Each time I gave something up, it was because I convinced myself I was doing the “right” thing. Other than starting smoking at 16, advertising never had anything to do with my bad habits.

    1. In all truthfulness, I never understood this need to “”give up”” smoking. What’s the attraction to COUGHING? I don’t see this discussed. Is coughing addictive? Do you inhale chimney smoke, TOO? I frequent bars (only drinking occasionally) and I have yet to see a smoker outside the bar NOT cough. These guys are very very VERY experienced in smoking all types of ‘inhalables,’ shall we say.

      People love to talk about this concept called “”common sense”” but I guess it doesn’t extend to doing something that causes one to COUGH and somehow label that symptom as ‘addictive.’ Upside-down world. Funny, too, how the tobacco companies didn’t use the foregoing logic to defend themselves against lawsuits. They could have argued in a court of law: “Come on people, even an infant would know to turn away from what gets you coughing….and infants don’t know anything about health or medicine!!”

    2. Barbie,

      I developed allergies to meat, too. Seven weeks of throwing up took meat out of my vocabulary when I was in my 20’s. Easy peasy to give up that way.

      My mother developed the same problem with fish and she was someone who loved fish so much.

  4. I’ve never had a doctor tell me anything about diet until I was diagnosed with prostate cancer. I had to ask the urologist and all he said was stay away from red meat. That’s all he said which I guess was more than I expected. Nothing of course about diary, smoking, chicken or anti-oxidants. When I then visited an oncologist he said you can’t eat your way into or out of cancer, so obviously a dis-believer. When I told him about the Ornish studies he said nothing. Oh well, as Dr. Greger, maybe someday the doctors will be encouraged to take more nutrition classes.

    My response was to immediately go vegan and it wasn’t hard at all.

    1. It surprises me that there aren’t a lot of law suits filed against doctors for gross incompetence or withholding life saving information. Especially cardiologists. I know an lot of people who died of heart disease and not one was ever counseled on diet by their cardiologist.

  5. I liked what you wrote about how smoking and cancer was ignored for decades because it was the norm. I think your point about doctors knowing very little about health and nutrition is correct. They know very little about what sugar and dehydration will do to our cells. They treat symptoms with drugs rather than ask what their patients are eating and how much water they drink.

    That having been said, I’m a meat eater…but not all meat are created equal. “You are what your animals eat” and “Your health is equal to the health of the soil”….I raise my own beef and pork, eggs and chicken. Not everyone can do this. However, if there is a demand for grass-fed, organic meat, the ranchers will provide. Before I could raise my own meat, I was mostly a vegetarian, with the occasional fish. Vegetables must be raised on regenerative, organic soil, unsprayed. I understand your push for this type of diet. However, when grass finished, organic beef became available, I turned to eating beef…and felt more energetic and stronger. It surprised me. I now eat a paleo/keto diet with fat that I render from my pigs, and beef, pork, goat, chicken that I slaughter. I sell to friends and family. I’m 76 yrs old and see no doctors, eat no sugar, carbs, grains, legumes. I can run this homestead by myself.

    1. i’m sure it’s a great comfort to the helpless beings whom you are exploiting and murdering that you are in supposed good health. you don’t raise “meat” btw-they are living, feeling individuals who feel pain and fear and do not want to die anymore than you or i do.

      “Suppose that tomorrow a group of beings from another planet were to land on Earth, beings who considered themselves as superior to you as you feel yourself to be to other animals. Would they have the right to treat you as you treat the animals you breed, keep and kill for food?” –John Harris

      “A man can live and be healthy without killing animals for food; therefore, if he eats meat, he participates in taking animal life merely for the sake of his appetite. And to act so is immoral.” -Leo Tolstoy

      “Our humanity isn’t measured by how we treat other people…Our humanity is measured by how we treat animals.” –Chuck Palahniuk

      1. You have no idea how often I have said those same words. But keep in mind, If we did not eat domestic animals, most of them would be killed because we could not afford to keep them alive. Other than horses, pigs snd goats the rest would be slaughtered. In a month, farm animals would be nearly extinct. Who would spend time milking several thousand cows every day for nothing?

    2. Farmermei, you seem to have great intentions, but the longest living peoples of the world differ from what you’re doing in significant ways – the Blue Zone peoples. They do not consume a paleo/keto diet (they never have). They are whole food plant based (WFPB), not vegetarian – also the diet which is used by the likes of Professor Dean Ornish and Dr Caldwell Esselstyn in their heart disease reversal studies. Organic, grass fed beef still has no fiber, no water, no carbohydrate; and excess protein and fat which causes people hugely increased risk and incidence of disease and pain long term.

      Vegetarianism can make people ill long term, for also having excess animal protein and added oils, whilst illness on a WFPB diet is virtually unknown, after reversal of symptoms and good monitoring and medical management, if needed.

      Sadly we still have a demand for tobacco – that doesn’t mean it’s healthy. We’ve always had demand for drugs – they aren’t healthy either too of course.

      I wish you the best with your homestead, and your health of course long term. It’s difficult to change – I had difficulty as well, but going WFPB was my restoration to health, supported by the science – as it has been for other people.

        1. what about the health of those he is killing & eating?
          ————————————————————————–
          Assuming you are claiming them to be sentient beings… then it is up to them to strike and withhold their eggs, milk, flesh. And if that doesn’t work, RIOT! ‘-)

          (Apoligies for making a joke about something you are obviously concerned about. When a smart-ass remark enters my head, I have to get it out or chaos ensues. ‘-)

    3. I’m 76 yrs old and see no doctors, eat no sugar, carbs, grains, legumes. I can run this homestead by myself.
      ———————————————
      Farmermei, sounds like you also get a lot of exercise. ‘-)

  6. I think Dr. Greger, your own dietary blind spot is equally laid bare every time you talk about how wonderful whole grains are without ever mentioning their downsides which are many.

    We evolved as omnivores. But we did not evolve as grain eaters. Nothing did that but microbes, fungoids, some insects, some birds and rodents. In each case, these life forms evolved bodily features and processes that allowed them to consume grains with impunity. Humans have none of those specialized features. We have our original digestive tracts without options. We have teeth that stop growing. We don’t eat our own feces. We used to as other animals still do but we stopped.

    We also failed to understand what all other animals understand; fecal material, far from being poison, are pure nutrients our bodies did not need. The fact that we excreted the excess doesn’t mean there was anything wrong with what we dumped. You know that because all animals including bears shit in the woods. You don’t often see any because those excretions are high value nutrition for the next animal that comes across them. It’s the hidden food source that nature documentaries leave out.

    It’s also why fecal wine is still a thing in Korea.

    Grain is a seed. Nature did not intend seeds to be food sources for human beings or most other animals. Seeds are the next generation for something. Excess is produced to ensure survivability. Ingestion when it happens is so that the seeds are widely scattered. Even in the plant world, proximity is important. No plant wants to be jammed up against a sibling.

    Gluten (glue) and casein (more glue) were never intended as dietary staples for human if nature can be said to have an intent. Consequently, no animal has a digestive system capable of dealing with it including rodents.

    Health restoration sequences do not happen while glue is being ingested. It’s as simple as that. You don’t put a fire out with gasoline.

    1. funny how so much of the peer reviewed research directly contradicts your Appeal to Nature logical fallacy about grains & seeds not being “meant” for human consumption. no other animal cooks their food either so by your reasoning we should eat everything completely raw.

      1. We originally did eat everything raw. Don’t forget that stoves are very recent inventions.

        Even after we mastered fire, we had no pots in most places until 10,000 years or so ago.

        Even today, most vegetables are eaten raw.

        Every life thing on planet earth eats raw food. We eat cooked dead food and are the sickest species of anything that has ever lived for all of time.

    2. John, as what you’re proposing is obviously in great contrast to the science talked about on this site, as well as that recommended by many health bodies worldwide. Perhaps you’d be willing then to provide scientific links to the points you’re making? As the Blue Zones peoples – the longest living peoples in the world – consume wholegrains across the different continents, it seems important to try and ask what sources you are using for these kind of arguments.

      I actually am in agreement with your point about casein; and perhaps a more recent proliferation of gluten has been a problem for some vulnerable people, but this does not seem to be the majority of people, according to some of the scientific literature at least.

      1. Hi Barry,

        I just finished speaking on the phone with an orthopedic surgeon based in Georgia. I’m in Canada. He was calling for car parts. When he mentioned his profession, I decided I’d bounce the same ideas off him that I did here including how to KILL THE CORONAVIRUS, my forthcoming book. Everything I said to him, he said made sense. Then you know what he said? I’m going to do some research to find out what the literature says about what you’ve said. MUSIC TO MY EARS! You know why? This was a guy who is not afraid to go and look stuff up for himself without being spoon fed. This was a guy with an open mind who understands bodily processes. He did not attempt to shoot me down, he was all ears.

        Think about it. This was a guy who did not know me at all until I picked up the phone and said hello. He wants body panels for his car. He did not expect the conversation we had. He could easily be forgiven for being skeptical. But once I started talking, he did not care whether or not I have a PhD because I was making sense and filling in blanks and answering questions about Covid-19 he had been unable to learn the answers to anywhere else.

        I sell specialized car parts available nowhere else in the world. But I’ve also been an interior designer, taxidermist, artist, and many other things. I’ve dissected more hearts than most heart surgeons. I know how lung tissue grow because I’ve made it happen using other materials. Before that, starting in the 50s, I was an environmentalist, a tropical fish hobbyist, a tropical fish food manufacturer of some note and I restore cars. That wide range of pursuits helped me considerably in the 40+ years of medical research I’ve done. In the fish business for instance, I learned the mechanics of pandemics. If you have any kind of a science background, you know fish are used to figure out human dynamics of every sort. Pandemics regardless of species follow the same process. You learn proximity requirements. All species have those including us. Ignoring them and nutritional requirements always leads to pandemics. Pandemics are extremely predictable.

        My fish food was designed so I could raise fry when they needed to transition from surviving on their yolk sacs until they could eat food of normal dimensions. It had to be very nutritious so they would eat it all and not leave any to rot on the bottom. Rotting food increases bacterial count very quickly. No one needs to be a genius to figure that out.

        By the same token, indigestible dead food in the human gut also causes fermentation. No surprise right?

        What ferments in the human gut? Well, we know that grain ferments. So does dairy. We also know that the protein gluten, which is Latin for GLUE is water-insoluble. You know what that means right? That means indigestible too. Casein, the collective term for the thirteen proteins in dairy, is also glue right. The stuff used to make casein paint stick to walls and labels on beer bottles? You can look that up. Both gluten and casein are major sources of casein. That is why no higher order of animal ingest either gluten or casein without certain physical features the human race does not possess.

        You also know that eating fat lines your respiratory and digestive system with fat globules.You never swallow it all. At body temperature fat is a solid. You can check that too. If you’ve ever washed a fry pan you know that dish soap cuts grease like nothing else. Not rocket science either.

        Any biologist on the planet will tell you all you need to know about how saponins are plant based soaps that are extremely powerful. Being soap they dissolve FAT. Saponins are very digestible and found in every vegetable you eat. Do you need a scientist to tell you that water soluble soap once absorbed will dissolve fat in veins and arteries? Do you need a scientist to tell you that water-insoluble glue is going to cause cumulative blockages?

        There are studies out there to tell you that. But this stuff is my thinking from back in the 80s.

        One thing you people on this site are not used to is this: someone who thinks for themselves. It doesn’t really matter whether you believe me or not. I hope you don’t. I do hope you try to prove me wrong without cheating. THAT is when you will start to realize that the medical community is rife with doctors and scientists who have never had an original thought in their lives. At some point, for there to be progress, someone has to step up and say, Hey, what it says in this medical textbook makes no sense and does not match my expectations.

        When someone does that, progress is made one way or another. Somehow, Dr. Greger’s followers all seem to think that his thinking is flawless. Apparently that is the level where thinking stops. I have seen zero effort here to embrace a single original thought or heaven forbid, have an original thought and express it here.

        What I don’t see here is this: “What a good idea!” Not even Dr. Greger gets that. His offerings are far from original thinking. What is his original thinking is his questioning the status quo. Even so, he is still relying on someone else doing the heavy lifting.

        You people are not used to witnessing someone who actually does the heavy lifting. In this context, that heavy lifting is called a theory. Theories on this site seem to be regarded on the same level as blasphemy and heresy.

        I’d be willing to bet Dr. Greger would not agree with your belief that he is God’s gift to new thinking in the world of nutrition, which really is his one trick pony. That being so he makes mistakes and so do his minions. The blind belief in grain is one of them. And having this belief barrier, that impedes further creative and instructive thought. The people who staff this site have a handicap and that is that they’ve evolved in a flawed system. As such, there are certain sacred cows they are blind to. It happens in every profession but the medical profession is vulnerable to more stultified thinking than most because the entire profession is saturated with dinosaurs at the top with a stake in the status quo. Even worse, a lot of flawed thinking is enshrined in legislation around the world.

        I am far from the status quo, I’m from outside the profession and the system. I am more than capable and qualified to throw rocks at these quacks and charlatans.

        Look for the citations for my work yourself and learn something. Try and prove me wrong by trying to prove me right.

        1. John,

          Dr. Greger was asked recently if he was a Plant-Based doctor and he has been asked if he was a Vegan doctor and, to both comments, he replied, “No, I am an evidence-based doctor.” and he has given studies that go against his belief systems. You can go to the Parkinson’s topic and he will talk about nicotine and if you had been part of his stroke webinar, he is one of the only doctors in the vegan and plant-based community that brought a seriously original viewpoint and looked at the hard answers for vegans and stroke and he went outside the box to Japan and tied concepts together.

          He is not a researcher, like Dr. Ornish or Dr. Barnard or the other doctors and, you are right, because he is “study” oriented, he won’t do “good ideas” or “original thought” even his own.

          In the Q & A’s people have asked him about the latest vegan natural food source of B12 and he didn’t promote it. He said that there are a lot of studies that need to be done first before we know whether people can rely on it.

          In his pandemic video, he didn’t go beyond the studies that are already out there and he also didn’t go beyond the studies for the cancer webinar.

          Basically, he waits for the studies and then he breaks them down and gives the statistics.

          It is that process that causes some of us to come here.

          The first video I watched from him was a very hard-hitting video about vegan outcomes. The numbers have changed in that community since that first video came up.

          Either way, I am not going to argue with you about whole grains. I will just say that it is okay to have beliefs, but the Blue Zones eat so many whole grains has to be kept in the math because it hasn’t harmed them at all. It has helped them.

          Does that mean it will help everybody? Not necessarily. That is why we end up doing a lot of studies.

          I am actually probably more like you in that I look at mechanism and I do question everything all of the time and I do listen from every direction, but I can’t throw grains out.

          Because there are communities thriving on them.

          That doesn’t mean that everybody has to eat them because there are also Blue Zones that don’t eat many grains.

          1. “Somehow, Dr. Greger’s followers all seem to think that his thinking is flawless.”
            – – – – – – –

            John (“You People”), you’re not as smart as I thought you were if you really think this. For one thing, he doesn’t know how to choose spiffy-looking photos that seem to flatter him. And I’m not referring to that same ol’ green shirt and tie.

            Actually, I’m always interested in the birth signs of unusual people who think outside the box. Not the usual sheepies. You seem to have a lot of diversified interests /possible talents. I’d also be curious to know if you are married (,for that matter, is Dr. Greger?).

            And now you’re cranking out another book. I’m still wondering how SHIT did/is doing. Is it on the best sellers’ list and sold in book stores everywhere, or is it a self-published book and you had to pay for the whole thing. And it tanked. :-( Oh well, can’t win ‘m all. (No, I’m not interested in how many times you go in a day — be it 8, 9 or 10. Yikes.)

          2. Good answer Deb.

            I was curious about the Blue Zoners and their grain consumption. The reality is that while some of them do eat whole grains, none of them eat much or enough to be a burden.

            Virtually all of them maintain a level of fitness that exceeds national averages.

            There is also a big difference between the Blue Zoners in terms of quality of life. The more grain the less quality and fitness.

            Those who remained the most active tend to live at higher altitudes in hilly areas and walking is how they get there. The food they eat has to be dragged up there by someone. That means a minimum of room on the cart for foods that don’t contribute to a healthy life. So not much grain goes up the hill.

            Another thing people overlook is that most, if not all of their neighbours are dead. Living in a Blue Zone is no guarantee of long life.

            I would say the dead Blue Zoners were those who ate a more modern diet.

            Keep in mind too, those Blue Zoners lived and ate for almost their entire lives with no Processed foods because in those areas there was none.

            Another thing to consider is demeanour and attitude. Emotionally stable people who are also active suffer less from constipation. People don’t think about how constipation shortens lifespans. My research shows that processed foods – that is dairy and grain are implicated or linked to 55 major degenerative diseases.

            People don’t realize how bad grain is for the body because of the amount of time that elapses between the meals and the onset of symptoms.

            Think about how everyone is carrying water bottles around all the time in an effort to stay hydrated. That did not used to be.

            The difference between then and now is more processed foods and more sugar.

            Delete those from your diet and goodbye water bottles.

            1. John,

              One of them eats a lot of whole grains and very few fruits and vegetables.

              That is the one that interested me because there are also Blue Zones which eat few grains and a lot of fruits and vegetables.

              1. Keep in mind that in any group there are always anomaly’s. There are nearly always odd balls that can’t be accounted for because we don’t have all of the relevant information.

                In my experience few people tell their doctor/researcher everything needed to be known.

                For example I started my research doing Iridology. Most of my subjects did not believe in what I was doing or would intentionally try to trick me, especially if the reading was in public.

                Those cases often backfired on them in unexpected ways when the readings exposed issues the subjects did not expect to be divulged. One had a sexual disease, one was missing a kidney and had been abused by his surgeon in a way that was endangering his life when I discovered it, another had had a partial sectioning of her colon without proper post surgery care and another had suffered such a severe beating he nearly died.

                So just because it appears the results point in a certain direction does not mean the results are meaningful or interpreted properly. I have never ever seen a person who eats grain regularly who was healthy in over 40 years of looking. I flatly refuse to believe it’s possible even if they live to over 100+ years. Quality of life has to be factored in. The Blue Zone testing did not do that. In fact that book/study was entirely anecdotal and way less stringently conducted than my research. The guy who did it did not expect it to become taken as an authoritative medical resource.

                However in the complete absence of any other studies, and the expense of duplicating his work we have a body of work that is notoriously incomplete that stands as gospel, when it’s almost farcical in medical and scientific terms.

                In fact it’s more of a travel book than anything else. The locations themselves are also poorly described and the lifestyles of typical inhabitants of those areas barely mentioned.

                In the case of your grain eating relative, I could give you a rundown of her health issues without even seeing her because grain eaters all suffer common health issues the presume are normal. Everyone including doctors think they are normal because they have never heard of or seen a naturally normal person in their entire lives.

              2. In addition to my last comment Deb, you can certainly add Dr. Greger to the list of people who has never seen or heard of a naturally healthy person who is also a grain consumer. Add dairy, sugar, meat and caffeine to that and you have your 21st century sick North American.

                You just cannot consume that stuff and suffer no consequences because there are physiological incompatibilities that interfere with natural metabolization.

                Just because science has not gotten around to studying these things does not make outcomes less real or me wrong because I’m the first person to describe them even though I’m no doctor or accredited scientist.

                Asian Indians knew the real value of lemons 600 years before Europeans arrived at even a partial understanding of their medicinal application for scurvy. Today, 200 years later, they still don’t know as much as I do and as a result, continue to chemically assault patients with their clinical arrogance.

                As you can tell, I don’t have a lot of respect for modern medicine which in my opinion is government sanctioned organized crime on a global scale. That is not to say a conspiracy. That would be giving credit for unwarranted intelligence that does not exist.

                Doctors are just not that bright.

                  1. No. I’m just not blindly believing without asking questions. As I’ve said often enough, don’t take my word for anything I say. Try and prove me wrong instead.

                    What I say is the result of having tried out the information on myself after finding that medical directives not only didn’t help, but were making me sicker.

                    I would be long dead if what I say did not work. I practice what I preach. But I’m also a processed food Addict so I’ve had plenty of occasion to try out different varieties of ruining my own health and then having to bring myself back from the brink.

                    I have a huge bag of medications I had to stop taking because they did not work and were making me worse.

                    I’m no smarter than an amoeba doing the same thing over and over trying to get different results with grains. Nothing ever works. I get sick again starting the very day of my transgressions. That makes me a great guinea pig and an idiot.

        2. I just finished speaking on the phone with an orthopedic surgeon based in Georgia. I’m in Canada. He was calling for car parts. When he mentioned his profession, I decided I’d bounce the same ideas off him that I did here including how to KILL THE CORONAVIRUS, my forthcoming book. Everything I said to him, he said made sense.
          ——————————————————————————————-
          John, did it ever occur to you that the guy was buttering you up in hopes of getting a discount on the car parts?

          1. The man is a doctor, not a juvenile. Besides that his questions were intelligent. My prices are my prices.

            Ironically every doctor and real scientist I’ve spoken to has been impressed with my work. The people who give me a grilling are always dabblers who seem to think that because I’m not a doctor, they are going to find flaws in my thinking.

            The thing is, I am far from the last word on this subject; I’m the first word. So I fully expect others will come along and attempt to discredit me while others will steal my ideas and call them their own. That’s how original thinking gets traction when you’re a maverick in a given field.

            Look at the hard time Fumblefingers is having getting his head around the concept of eliminating grain consumption. He’s being critical without trying it himself.

            By doing so, he could prove me right or wrong, but he’s either afraid to do it, a blow hard or is more comfortable throwing rocks.

            Of course if he did that, we would want a blow by blow account of his grim battle for survival.

            Plus we would want starting weight, dimensions, current bowel habits, transition times. menu, exercise routines and the details, starting blood pressure, blood sugar and so on.

            Then we’d need a full medical history to get a complete before and after comparison.

            Without that information we couldn’t take him seriously. Just as you don’t take me seriously.

            The reality, this forum is just that; a forum where we can discuss ideas.

            It turns out, I’m the one who brings ideas and others take pot shots Instead of offering their own ideas. Or, instead of new ideas we get links. They are good but short on original thinking just like most doctors.

            1. “It turns out, I’m the one who brings ideas and others take pot shots.:’- – – – – – –

              Don’t whine, John. There are no victims.

                1. Maybe not, but you cared enough to comment in the first place. If you truly didn’t care, you wouldn’t say anything at all regarding “pot shots.”

                  You would be detached from it all.

    3. There are multitudes of animals including humans that consume grass seeds (grains) and always have.

      Your fanciful belief that no living creatures ‘naturally’ consume grass seeds is as bizarre as it is inaccurate.

      1. Correct, but that is you misinterpreting what I said. Of course grain gets eaten by some animals as they are actually eating other things like grasses, but eaten like that, grain is not the meal it’s collateral and does not have the impact a mono meal of grain would have on a daily basis.

  7. Are there any good studies regarding causes of death of vegetarians or hospitalizations for serious illness or cardiovascular disease for vegetarians or vegans?

    1. Donald J Aiken,

      You might find your answers in the book “How Not to Die,” by Dr. Greger. (The title means how not to die prematurely). The book may be in your library, or you can buy it (which I highly recommend; it’s packed full of information). It contains pages and pages of references (132 pages, with small print, I just checked my copy), with many addressing your question.

    2. It’s a bit complicated by the fact that many people take up vegetarianism as a consequence of health concerns of one kind or another. This can skew the figures if you get significant numbers of sick people becoming vegetarian. On the other hand, vegetarians may be more likely to adopt other healthy behaviours such as exercising or not smoking, which could bias the figures in the opposite direction.

      It’s probably best therefore to look at groups like the 7th Day Adventists or Asian buddhist-influenced societies which adopt vegetarianism for ethical or religious reasons rather than health reasons eg
      https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23836264/
      https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6893615/

      The China Study by Colin Campbell is worth reading on this point.

      Note though that Dr Greger doesn’t advocate vegetarian or so-called vegan diets. He advocates whole food plant based diets. These amy or may not include small amounts of animal foods.

      1. This despite a great attempt to be unbiased, our cultural belief in grain and grain products was not separated out.

        Grain, despite being gastronomic glue was not understood by anyone to have any bearing on outcomes. Grain is the common denominator. In vegetarian groups of any persuasion grain products replace meat for satiety through habit rather than need.

        If grain in all forms had been omitted from the vegetarian diet so that it really was vegetarian, I think the outcome would have been different with the plant eaters doing measurably better.

        Another thing that was there but left out of the conclusions was quality of life between groups. The vegetarians exercised more than the meat eaters. Exercise is strongly associated with better quality of life.

        Cancer is strongly associated with fermentation in the body. Grain is a very significant cause of gum diseases, cardiovascular diseases, cancer and 52 other types of degenerative diseases.

        So failing to even begin to understand the mechanics of their own hypothesis invalidated the entire study.

        What a phenomenal waste of time, money, resources and opportunities- all squandered due to species-wide belief in a food fantasy.

  8. I always learn so much from these articles. Thank you for all you do. Thank you for making this information free to everyone! You are a blessing to me and my family.

  9. Comparing cigarette smoking with meat eating does anti-meat people little good. I agree eating red meat three times a day contributes to heart disease and other ailments. However, I have a stable full of relatives in their 90s that ate meat all their lives with little apparent ill effect. I don’t know any smokers that every made it much past 80. I might add, I yet to meet a vegan that doesn’t look like they were just this side of death’s door. The problem with the cigarette / meat comparison I doubt there are many people that believe it. Everyone has friends and relatives brushing with antiquity that are meat eaters. Few know any vegans that could be so characterized. If Dr. Greger wasn’t such an absolutest he might be believed. Cutting back on processed foods and meat consumption is good. Becoming a vegan, probably not.

    1. I like that term absolutist
      I was in a lecture by Dr G and all
      His points featured peer reviewed
      Material. I wish my pharmacy college
      ( Columbia U) taught about nutrition
      when I attended but as for me at
      84 I share Dr Gs goals- he is not out
      in this for himself or glory

      1. “Dr Gs goals- he is not out in this for himself or glory”

        I never thought he was. I fully agree lots if meat in your diet is bad. But I don’t agree that no meat in your diet is good. There is just too much observational evidence that surrounds us that says it isn’t so.

        1. “Dr Gs goals- he is not out in this for himself or glory”
          ————————————————————————
          I might have agreed with this statement until he put himself full-sized in his videos. ‘-)

          1. The only way anyone would stay the course as he had is to live the life. There is nothing fake about Dr. Greger. At this level anything less than full giving of self would be conspicuous.

            1. The only way anyone would stay the course as he had is to live the life. There is nothing fake about Dr. Greger. At this level anything less than full giving of self would be conspicuous.
              ——————————————————————–
              John, I would have thought if anyone understood the ego trap it would be you. ‘-)

          2. “I might have agreed with this statement until he put himself full-sized in his videos. ‘-)”
            – – – – –

            BIG CHUCKLE. :-D

      1. Lonie:

        If yer still on the Earth Plane, did you ever get the results of your virus test?
        —————————————————————————————————–
        Not a peep. But I haven’t been to my account on the VA website to see if anything new has been posted.

        And I’m only getting mildly better with passage of time. Finally got a full nights sleep last night although I do remember awakening with discomfort during the night but not so much that I would have felt much better sitting up rather than laying down.

        Still having trouble deep breathing but even that is getting closer to being doable. Still weak as a kitten… I kinda know how Sampson felt after Delilah cut his hair. ‘-)

        1. “But I haven’t been to my account on the VA website to see if anything new has been posted.”
          – – – – – – –

          You mean that’s the only way you can find out? Through High Tech? I suppose you can consider no news good news (“Get your ass in an ambulance!) but I sure would want to know as soon as possible. *sigh* You can’t get good help from the medical bunch these days. :-(

          And we’re so damn dependent on the ‘Net. Last night about 10 PM. our whole section of the city went totally black. I could see smoke from my bedroom window, and some fire trucks zooming by, but we had no way to find out what happened. They’re still trying to find the cause of a fire that totally destroyed two residential buildings….people got out in time, but lost all their stuff. Who needs that misery on top of this virus BS?

          So of course those in the surrounding neighborhoods (moi especially :-) had to worry about having to throw out perfectly healthy food because if the refrig loses power for….what is it, 4 or 5 hours or more?……most everything spoils so gotta toss. And any surrounding take-out places would have the same problem.

          Sigh of relief when the power went on after a little over an hour. Am sending XXXX to those in the first responders professions. :-)

          1. I suppose you can consider no news good news (“Get your ass in an ambulance!) but I sure would want to know as soon as possible.
            ——————————————————————————————
            I went and checked my account for messages after earlier posts. Still no message.

            I messaged them essentially what you said “No noose is good noose” ‘-)

          2. Sigh of relief when the power went on after a little over an hour. Am sending XXXX to those in the first responders professions. :-)
            ———————————————————–
            Yeah, I hate loss of power. Reminds me, stormy season is getting nigh so I’d better top off the charge on my various battery packs.

    2. William,

      I have a family where the main meat-eaters started dying at age 40.

      40, 50, 50, 53, 54, 60, 63, plus, some I don’t know their age of death.

      My mother’s father died the year she was born and her grandfather died not far from then, too. Both of my grandparents on one side of my family died when I was a young person. So did a few uncles and cousins.

      None of them were from the processed food or junk food generation.

      They were from the meat and potatoes generation.

      But when you go before that, my family was poor and the women were still alive into their 90’s and what I learned was that they often, very often, didn’t have meat back then. Because they didn’t have refrigeration and they didn’t have electricity some of the time and they didn’t have close by grocery stores or convenience stores or fast food.

      If you met my elderly relatives, you would think they grew up eating McDonald’s every day and pie and ice cream every night, but that is an old person’s prerogative. They grew up with a garden and doing canning. They ate a lot of beans because they were filling and they ate a lot of oatmeal. Again, easy to store. Dry goods and canned goods lasted the winter.

      I watched the Poison Squad documentary and if you go back before refrigeration, canned meat tasted and smelled like formaldehyde and actually had it in the can. Not very appetizing.

      When people hunted, they ate what they hunted and everybody ate it and I hated venison, but we had to use it up because those were the rules.

      Elderly people didn’t live in modern society.

      Again, my 90-year old relatives talk about McDonalds and ice cream and Betty White talks about vodka, I think (but she turned vegan for her health and never mentions that)

      1. When my great-grandmother was growing up, canned meat contained embalming fluid and cleaning products.

        If I go through the time periods like the flu pandemic of 1918, the Depression, rationing for World War 2, and just plain poverty and lack of convenience back then, they spent much of their lives eating few calories and no sweets and rarely meat.

        That did change, but still, they were adults before McDonald’s Supersizing happened and they didn’t supersize anything. Because they still didn’t have a lot of money and then they became fixed incomes and still didn’t have a lot of money.

        1. Refrigerators didn’t get a separate freezer compartment until the 1960’s. That was when the concept of being able to store foods for longer than a week really started to take off.

          1. To me, that dividing line is when meat switched from seasonal and occasional to “meat and potatoes” for many people. Canned meat sucked. Frozen dinners followed swiftly.

            1. I will also mention that a lot of people pre-1960 were in traditional marriages and the women very often stayed home and prepared dinners.

              The food charts they were taught by were to eat a little bit from every type of food and they tended to eat in moderation and had rules of society. Particularly because of the years of rationing and scarcity, it was rude to take large portions. There were rules to eat at the table and not leave the table until everybody was finished. They would eat whatever was given whether they liked the taste of it or not and often they didn’t.

              Cooking hadn’t become televised yet. Cookbooks weren’t out there.

              Most of the rules no longer apply at all.

              1. If we go back to the pandemic of 1918, 1/3 of the world’s population died and a lot of it was the young people.

                People before that might mentally go back to the Civil War in the USA and there was food shortage then.

                The Depression had dire food rationing and that lasted 10 years.

                Food rationing for World War 2 lasted 14 years and didn’t end until 1954.

                My relatives from those ages ate a lot of baked beans and oatmeal and potatoes.

                Meat was a special occasion thing and they weren’t against eating meat. It just wasn’t something you could store easily.

                Their neighbors still didn’t have running water or electricity in 1955.

                1. I will tell you that everybody who lived through the Depression and World War 2 rationed for most of their lives and probably didn’t make a lot of money and probably rationed again at fixed income on social security.

                  1. I was trying to do the math, but I think that most of the elderly people went through so many decades of rationing of things like meat that I don’t understand that most of them had access to meat for decades.

                    During the Depression, there was also a Christian movement to not have food be over-stimulating and that was big in the USA. There was also a movement of canned food because of fear of food not being sanitary enough.

                    Even after the Depression, there was a type of rationing during World War 1 with a campaign called “Food will win the war” where they encouraged conserving anything that could be sent to the troops. If you look at the school lunches at that time, there aren’t any meats listed. It was vegetable soup and fruits and bread and pudding and dairy.

                    When rationing came back in World War 2, meat, butter, eggs, oil, sugar were heavily restricted. People ate potatoes, root vegetables, and bread. They ate a diet much higher in carbohydrates and lower in fats by necessity.

                    1. Your entire diatribe supports my claim that grain is a huge factor in modern health decline.

                      The oats eaten back then were also very different than what is eaten now in bigger portions loaded with sugar and milk.

                    2. Greg and John,

                      I respect that you both are processing logic from your own worldview.

                      John,

                      I agree about sugar and about the fact that most oatmeal in the USA has even had its fiber removed. The companies have removed the health benefits from a lot of food.

                      Looking at the history of food in America tonight, I really saw that packaged food had some reasons for being. The fact that they wanted the food to be sanitary and the fact that there were so many food shortages and so many people moved into the cities and couldn’t hunt or fish or farm.

                      NY was already HUGE by 1900.

                      I also came to terms with why families did the “Eat every bite, people are starving in China” and why a lot of the etiquettes came.

                      I remember being told, when I was young, that if people offered you food, they don’t really want you to take it. If they offered 3 times, it was a genuine offer.

                      Children needed to not want special food. They needed to be content with simple food and scarcity. They needed to train their children to never take food on their own because food needed to be divided and there was often a parent doing heavy labor who also needed nutrition.

                      Just looking at it gave me an appreciation of so many things.

                      It also helped me to understand why the census is asking things like if people are eating and how afraid people are of food scarcity.

                    3. Yes Deb, there are important foundational reasons for processed foods. The initial intent was genuine and sorely need. It still is. But the ability to mass produce fake foods for huge profits overran the initial intent and warped into the dietary insanity we have today. Profit is now more important than the consumer: 1. Profit; 2. Advertising 3. Product ease of remembrance; 4. Taste; 5; Buy me factor; 6. Safety from law suits; 7. Nutrition.

                      This marketing sequence didn’t exist in the dirty 30s. It rules now.

                    4. Greg

                      This sort of fantasy thinking been killing people for years… but it sure sells books eh?

                      You’d think that after witnessing the dramatic reductions in diabetes and heart disease in European countries in WW2 following rationing and the consequent dramatic reductions in meat and animal fat consumption, people would have known better in 1958.

                    5. Memories are short. No matter how good bad or indifferent a message is you can count on people forgetting their own birthdays, so any other message is ephemeral without reminders. The world wars would be forgotten without reminders.

                    1. Deb is trying to figure out the likelihood that the elderly people were lifelong meat and sweet eaters.

                      I would have thought the same thing if I were young now and was looking at my 90-year old relatives, but they are a sneaky bunch, and I have heard their stories.

                      I also know that they “Don’t eat as much as they used to” has already also happened.

                2. I went back to 1918 to see how long the global food shortages were after that and it looks like much of the globe was in severe food shortage by 1917 through the 1920’s and then we get to the Depression, so we didn’t catch much of a break.

                  There were other factors contributing to this, such as the effects of World War I, droughts in Europe and Asia, economic crises and revolutions – Russia was the greatest grain grower and had been involved in the Revolution of 1917 and was still in a civil war when the pandemic hit.

                  They said that the U.S. was hit hard by the flu in waves over almost two years that came at critical junctures in the agricultural calendar and that the farmers and farmworkers were not able to work and the people were already starving before the Depression.

          1. I backed up further and there were a lot of droughts at the end of the 1800’s.

            It seems to me that America has more of a history of food scarcity than gluttony, though gluttony is trying to catch up.

            1. Boy, my great-grandmother lived through so many time periods of severe food shortage. I knew some of it, but she spent much more time laughing than telling stories of the things she went through.

              But there were Civil War droughts and after the Civil War droughts. Endless food shortages.

              1. I did the math and many of my elderly examples went almost straight from a lifetime of food scarcity to a fixed income on social security based on wages from a lifetime of poverty.

                When freezers we’re finally able to store meat, they were already trying to stretch it out.

          2. And not in significant quantities as not important sources of gluten/glue. There are huge differences in rice. White sticky rice, the killer, was not on their Menu for most if any of them because it is a major source of constipation.

    3. I have yet to eat a meat eater who didn’t smell like farts or act like they were full of excess hormones. There, this was fun.

      1. I have yet to eat a meat eater who didn’t smell like farts or act like they were full of excess hormones.
        —————————————————
        Cats, dogs, wolves, bears, hogs, wolverines, buzzards, hawks, eagles? etc.

        M M, that is some menu of meat eaters that you eat. ‘-)

        1. Eating meat does not cause the fermentation that causes bad odour unless there are preexisting blockages due to grain and/or dairy consumption. So at least one of several forms of constipation.

          When grain and dairy are eliminated from the diet meat transitions through the body to quickly to ferment or rot.

          So, without those blockages there are no farts at all, no snoring, no sleep apnea, no snot, no blocked sinuses, no phlegm, so no throat clearing, no ear infections, no high blood pressure, no hardening of the arteries, no acne, no boils, no dietary constipation and so on.

          There are at least 28 forms of constipation and not all are caused by diet, so if a person has say stress related constipation, then they will still have the other symptoms that would otherwise disappear in the absence of both grain and dairy.

          Eating whole grain does not guarantee an absence of constipation because grain sourced fibre is always dry, dead fibre that is only partially effective for hydration. In fact grain in any form ensures that proper hydration is a losing battle that requires more water that we should need.

          1. YAWWWNnnnnnn… streeehhhtch!

            Sorry John… not meant as a commentary on the right or wrong of your post.

            Actually I don’t believe in absolute right or wrong. In my view, right and wrong are kinda like magnetic North which is currently moving toward Russian Siberia.

            That is, it’s a moving target so I don’t get caught up much in that anymore.

            Enjoy your time in the sun. ‘-)

    4. Well, male ‘vegans’ had the lowest relative mortality risk of all groups studied in the Adventists study and meat eaters had the highest mortality risk of all;
      https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23836264/

      As for long lived meat eaters, that’s just statistics. In a meat eating society, most people who live to old age are going to be meat eaters. it’s the same reason, why many centenarians are/were smokers and drinkers. Most people of their generation were.

      Think about it. If, out of every 100,000 people, five percent are vegetarians, and meat eaters have only a one third chance of making it to 85 and vegetarians have a 50% chance what do we see? We see 31,666 meat eaters and only 2,500 vegetarians living to 85 despite the fact that meat eaters have a much higher mortality risk.

  10. While my tendency is to side with veganism (I am one), my opinion is that this discussion, rightfully, will be decided by the evidence generated by science. I think the power of Dr. Greger’s discussion is pointing out how bias must be accounted for. Anybody even remotely involved with the evaluation of scientific evidence knows how powerful bias can be.
    Eric Houghton, MD

    1. While my tendency is to side with veganism (I am one), my opinion is that this discussion, rightfully, will be decided by the evidence generated by science.
      ———————————————————————————-
      Eric, If I may… a slightly different twist to the statement above. That is, I will suggest the discussion will be moot due to science giving everyone what they are used to and want by changing lab grown meat into something as healthy as plant based food, and making plant based food even healthier.

      I can envision whole countries becoming Blue Zones.

      (Some wacky “food for thought”… wouldn’t it be unique if science is able to take a muscle biopsy and grow meat based on our individual body type? Self-Cannibalism be damned! ‘-)

      1. It will not be decided while the scientists conducting the experiments are all fundamentally constipated to the point where they are not fit to interpret their own work. That happens more often than you might think.

        1. It will not be decided while the scientists conducting the experiments are all fundamentally constipated to the point where they are not fit to interpret their own work. That happens more often than you might think.
          ——————————————————-
          O.K., my last yawn was due to poor sleep the night before…

          YAWWWWWNNNNnnn…

          this one was due to boredom at your response.

          (But thanks for keeping it short… the long ones I nod off on without getting very far along. ‘-)

  11. Blessings from France,

    There is in deed in all this a relationship with time:

    1/ Many people believe that only what happens in the present is important, then many decision makers (like doctors, directors or politicians) are educated and rewarded to respond only to direct effects, and preferably because of one precise cause only. People are trained to believe that any real consequences ought to happen directly and just after a particular and well identified cause. Any relevant consequences should appear in a very short and measurable future, to be certain of a kind of mechanical and reproductive process. If you do this, then (like in mathematics, which is the domain that our modern civilized society uses to select people in charge) this happen. And this ought to always happen. There is no, if you do this, and then wait 10 to 20 years, then this is happening, or may be happening. This close and short mind set is just out of reach, for investors, and out of the normal life of those, who have to decide for all the others.

    When there is too much time, between a cause and its effect, then it is easy and convenient, because of the vast ignorance and specialisation of the scientific expertise, to consider that consequences would be normally and obviously diluted in the rest of the world, and the responsibility of the decision makers would not be questionned, when effects are far away beyond human memory and human ways of life.

    2/ In our complex new world, things are even more difficult, as many causes are brought together, and in a very long period of time, and in the mist of these myriad of causes interacting with one another, accumulating one after the other, maybe in opposite directions, or maybe in changing directions, it may not always be clear to identify a predictable cause, and one specific cause, may not always bring the same outcome all the time… But because we don’t know, or because it is not clear, doesn’t mean that nothing is happening, and that the science can reject with absolute confidence, that there is not a cause effect relationship between this and that.

    3/ Further more, all members of such an active, productive and professional society, are bond with the normality of their time and of their own society, from which depend their careers, their ways of sustaining themselves, and their position in the hierarchy. With such a strict, strong and structural dependance, then all players are forced to wait, it is in their own interest not to be too much of a revolutionary, and the vast majority prefer to stay safe followers, and all are waiting for all the others to make a first move. This delay relationship with time has been shown in all scandals involving industries, lobbying and enormous amounts of money made upon the misery and the ignorance of populations, that are not even informed… It is just a worthy business to wait…

    4/ In military, it is a well known strategy, to build barriers, walls and confusions, to handicap, to distract and to threaten, in order to gain time, space and knowledge from the ennemy that is advancing. And here it is important to understand that the enemy is the well awareness of the population. The enemy is the invincible truth that soon or later will be revealed, understood and accepted.

    5/ Finally, the responsible people in charge of our health and future, do not really mind about the truth, what matters is that it does not interfere with their businesses. Here again an elastic relationship with time is put deliberately in place, and there is a collusion mechanisms that is very convenient for all the members of the same club of deciders. People can agree and understand that for them it was some hardship investment to become in charge, and that such high privilege positions are not easy to leave behind. So unconsciously or willingly, it is preferable for all of them, experts, judges, representatives, journalists, investors, and multinational managers, to decide when it is acceptable and affordable for the truth to become officially the social truth and the recognized normality. And unfortunately the right time is often when careers are passed, when investments are paid, when friends are retired, and when no one alive could suffer from such revelations.

    I write this to make the statement, that in scientific matters and health considerations, not only the facts are playing a role, not only the interest of the client/patient is taking into account, and that many rivalries and opportunities, social and economical constraints, are also very much influencing the reality, the decision and the horizon. The medicine and the science are also social not so hard domains and practices, and when pharmaceutical multinationals are directing the operations, when politics are subdued to financial global private interests, when populations are disregarded and left uninformed, then, one can say that these domains are not just academic studies and researchs anymore, but sadly have become what they should never have become, just another type of business.

    May all be well
    May all be in peace
    May all be aware
    May all be responsible

    PatH

  12. I think the issues that science needs to tackle with regard to which diet is healthiest range far and wide. Things like how individual genetics, or even personality types, figure in. Blood types? Age? Times of the month? Effects of different chronic illnesses? Pregnancy? The sky is the limit. That’s the beauty of good research…it will go everywhere and accepts all questions. (But it is still man’s tool, and we are responsible for it.)
    Eric Houghton, MD

  13. Dr. Greger, Thank you for your insight. If researchers’ food habits ideally would be disclosed, then maybe that would also apply to the media covering healthcare. There are so many doctors now who are informed and saving lives but this is rarely covered by most of the traditional media. I hope that that changes. Thank you for getting the word out.

  14. Dear Dr. Greger,

    I believe you are a wise and knowledgeable man. However, my perception of your meat bias upsets me.

    First, have you studied the health effects of organic meat vs cafo meat? We eat organic meat because we know cafo meat is unhealthy.

    Second, have you studied the health effects of cooking methods on organic meat vs cafo meat? We know that charred meat with heterocyclic amines is more unhealthy then uncharred meat.

    Thirdly, have you studied the health effects of processed cafo meat compared to unprocessed organic meat?

    When I read your reports on meat I get the impression that you seem to be lumping all meat together without any healthy meat controls.

    I know you are fully aware of the use of controls in scientific inquiry so this is why it upsets me that you do not mention what kind of meat study controls are used, if any, when you discuss meat health science.

    Scott becker

    1. Domestic meat is full of fat. We evolved eating wild meat which is not full of fat. By that I mean the meat is sodden with fat. Nothing on earth evolved to eat such abused meat. We eat it and get clogged arteries and obesity. You are what you eat. Our pre historic ancestors were never obese. By prehistoric I mean people who existed before there was such a thing as domestic animals and grain consumption.

      1. Are you saying humans have not eaten fat in the past? I disagree with that. Humans have been eating fat and animals for neons.

        Ancient Humans Stored Bone Marrow Like: researchers from Tel Aviv University have discovered evidence that early humans began preserving their food — particularly bone marrow — much like we do with canned goods today as far back as 400,000 – 500,000 years ago.

        They saved animal bones for up to nine weeks before eating the nutritious bone marrow inside. The bones effectively functioned as cans, preserving the bone marrow.

        “Prehistoric humans brought to the cave selected body parts of the hunted animal carcasses,” explains Professor Jordi Rosell of the Universitat Rovira i Virgili and Institut Català de Paleoecologia Humana i Evolució Social.

        Bone marrow is chock full of nutrients, and was a dietary staple of prehistoric peoples living during this time period.

        “We discovered that preserving the bone along with the skin, for a period that could last for many weeks, enabled early humans to break the bone when necessary and eat the still nutritious bone marrow,” comments Dr. Ruth Blasco of Tel Aviv University.

        “The bones were used as ‘cans’ that preserved the bone marrow for a long period until it was time to take off the dry skin, shatter the bone and eat the marrow,” adds Professor Ran Barkai.

        Furthermore, this is the earliest evidence anywhere in the world of food preservation and storing food for consumption at a later time.

        * A taste for fat may have made us human:

        Long before human ancestors began hunting large mammals for meat, a fatty diet provided them with the nutrition to develop bigger brains.

        “Our ancestors likely began acquiring a taste for fat 4 million years ago, which explains why we crave it today,” says Jessica Thompson, the paper’s lead author and an anthropologist at Yale University. “The reservoirs of fat in the long bones of carcasses were a huge calorie package on a calorie-poor landscape. That could have been what gave an ancestral population the advantage it needed to set off the chain of human evolution.”

        The human brain consumes 20% of the body’s energy at rest, or twice that of the brains of other primates, which are almost exclusively vegetarian.

        In fact, eating lean meat without a good source of fat can lead to protein poisoning and acute malnutrition. Early Arctic explorers, who attempted to survive on rabbit meat exclusively, described the condition as “rabbit starvation.”

        1. You missed the point entirely Greg.

          Until we domesticated animals there were no animals that had fat saturating their meat.

          Wild animals in the tropic are not fatty.

          Animals in temperate zones only have fat on a seasonal basis.

          Can you not understand the impact of that?

  15. Hello Dr Greger,
    Been receiving your excellent weekly blog and video emails for over a year now, thanks.
    The evidence I’ve seen (mostly from you) is overwhelmingly on the side of veganism. However, I sometimes read/see something that seems to prove that that is not the case at all. I write because I just watched one such video on YouTube. Please ignore the credentials (or lack of) of the video creator but could you please give us your opinion on the references mentioned in the video:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1MH2ZKt35K4
    Thanks in advance.

    1. What you need to wrap your mind around is that domestic meat is mostly fat saturated meat. Compared to real meat that comes from a wild animal domestic meat looks like it comes from a diseased animal. Guess what? That is exactly what domestic animals are – sick. You are what you eat. Wild animals don’t need vets. The reason for that is because they get exercise and only eat what they evolved to eat.

      If you compare the meat between a cow and a moose, you will see what I mean. Beef in particular is nasty stuff. Tastes great though and that’s the problem.

  16. I have big issues with me smoking, and as well does part of my family.
    I have smoked several years and now finally swifted to an e-cigarret that is without “tart/black”
    I don’t have the English word for “tjære” but I see that they at one point (the manufactore) in the smoking fluid started to add something that makes the fluid burn faster, and I am afraid it also weakens my lunghes.
    I did never want to smoke and never wished to start doing that, but the hazzardess environment I am in keeps me downtrowlen and caught in a bad trajectory.
    Dr. Greger, kindly offer some advice or guidance to stop this bad habit of mine. And by the way I am vege, ovo-lacto now approxmitely 15 years in; a childhood wish of mine.

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