Lead in Calcium Supplements

Lead in Calcium Supplements
4.51 (90.18%) 55 votes

Do calcium citrate and calcium carbonate have as much lead as calcium supplements derived from dolomite and animal bone?


Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

I’ve explored the role calcium supplements may play in reducing lead exposure during pregnancy and breastfeeding, but this is assuming that the supplements aren’t themselves contaminated. It all started with an extraordinary case report published in 1977, entitled “Lead-Contaminated Health Food.”

“A doctor prescribed a dietary supplement…for a young woman with [painful periods].” Not just any woman, though: TV and film actress Allison Hayes, famous for such roles as Attack of the 50-Foot Woman. And, not just any physician, but physician to the stars Dr. Henry Bieler, who told his patients to forget about toxic drugs. “Food is your best medicine”—which, in this case, was a calcium supplement made from horse bone. She took it every day, but got weaker and sicker, and by 1967, her acting career was over, when she was unable to walk without a cane. She saw doctor after doctor after doctor, to no avail. She decided she could give up, commit suicide, or figure it out herself.

So, she had some friends drive her to a medical library. By then, she couldn’t even walk, and “had to be carried in.” She sat on the floor day after day, and finally came across a book on industrial toxicology that described what she soon realized was a classic case of lead poisoning. She paid to have the calcium supplement tested, and indeed, it was full of lead. At first, she was relieved, but “[t]hen the anger set in.” Doctor after doctor had basically dismissed her as hysterical, and she had to depend on herself to end up educating them.

The silver lining was that the FDA, in a letter, actually credited her for being “a ‘key stimulus'” for their plans to look into regulating heavy metals in foods and supplements. Unfortunately, the letter arrived after she had already died, from leukemia, which may have been triggered by the lead poisoning, or the 300 X-ray exams she got from those 22 baffled physicians.

You’d think the supplement industry would clean up its own act, but perhaps “[i[t is unrealistic to expect the ‘health food’…and ‘wellness’ [industry] to dampen their evangelistic promotion of these products” on their own. Where did the lead come from? Well, lead gets stored in your bones; and so, when you eat supplements made out of bones, you can get exposed. So, was that one calcium supplement just “the tip of an iceberg”? At first, we thought it was just from the bone supplements and dolomite, a mineral that can be lead-contaminated. But then, calcium carbonate—oyster shell calcium, chelated calcium─was found to have comparable lead levels to animal bone. And so, this inspired a comprehensive survey of the “Lead content [of] 70 [different] brands of calcium supplements.” And, “lead levels…varied by almost 300-fold,” some of which were two, three, or even four times the tolerable daily intake of lead for children—especially the most common: “natural source calcium,” like oyster shell, with more than half exceeding the benchmark for children.

A follow-up study confirmed that most calcium supplements from natural sources exceeded at least some of the most stringent lead standards, but the levels only got up to about eight micrograms, whereas some of the synthetic sources were up to three times that.

A small human study of calcium citrate was performed, in which bone biopsies were taken before and after about five years of supplementation. No change in the control group, as expected, and only a statistically insignificant increase in the calcium citrate group, though “[O]ne [can’t] assume that a given brand is uniformly safe, because some of their products may have high and others low lead levels.” So, name brands, or “recognized pharmaceutical companies” that should know better, are no guarantee.

But, the good news is that after decades of concern, lead levels in calcium supplements have come down—so much so that lead level changes in your blood, taking the average lead-contaminated calcium supplement, would be “minimal” at this point. So, these findings on supplement lead contamination should be a cause for “celebration,” not “alarm”—or at least according to a calcium supplement manufacturer consultant.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Motion graphics by Avocado Video

Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

I’ve explored the role calcium supplements may play in reducing lead exposure during pregnancy and breastfeeding, but this is assuming that the supplements aren’t themselves contaminated. It all started with an extraordinary case report published in 1977, entitled “Lead-Contaminated Health Food.”

“A doctor prescribed a dietary supplement…for a young woman with [painful periods].” Not just any woman, though: TV and film actress Allison Hayes, famous for such roles as Attack of the 50-Foot Woman. And, not just any physician, but physician to the stars Dr. Henry Bieler, who told his patients to forget about toxic drugs. “Food is your best medicine”—which, in this case, was a calcium supplement made from horse bone. She took it every day, but got weaker and sicker, and by 1967, her acting career was over, when she was unable to walk without a cane. She saw doctor after doctor after doctor, to no avail. She decided she could give up, commit suicide, or figure it out herself.

So, she had some friends drive her to a medical library. By then, she couldn’t even walk, and “had to be carried in.” She sat on the floor day after day, and finally came across a book on industrial toxicology that described what she soon realized was a classic case of lead poisoning. She paid to have the calcium supplement tested, and indeed, it was full of lead. At first, she was relieved, but “[t]hen the anger set in.” Doctor after doctor had basically dismissed her as hysterical, and she had to depend on herself to end up educating them.

The silver lining was that the FDA, in a letter, actually credited her for being “a ‘key stimulus'” for their plans to look into regulating heavy metals in foods and supplements. Unfortunately, the letter arrived after she had already died, from leukemia, which may have been triggered by the lead poisoning, or the 300 X-ray exams she got from those 22 baffled physicians.

You’d think the supplement industry would clean up its own act, but perhaps “[i[t is unrealistic to expect the ‘health food’…and ‘wellness’ [industry] to dampen their evangelistic promotion of these products” on their own. Where did the lead come from? Well, lead gets stored in your bones; and so, when you eat supplements made out of bones, you can get exposed. So, was that one calcium supplement just “the tip of an iceberg”? At first, we thought it was just from the bone supplements and dolomite, a mineral that can be lead-contaminated. But then, calcium carbonate—oyster shell calcium, chelated calcium─was found to have comparable lead levels to animal bone. And so, this inspired a comprehensive survey of the “Lead content [of] 70 [different] brands of calcium supplements.” And, “lead levels…varied by almost 300-fold,” some of which were two, three, or even four times the tolerable daily intake of lead for children—especially the most common: “natural source calcium,” like oyster shell, with more than half exceeding the benchmark for children.

A follow-up study confirmed that most calcium supplements from natural sources exceeded at least some of the most stringent lead standards, but the levels only got up to about eight micrograms, whereas some of the synthetic sources were up to three times that.

A small human study of calcium citrate was performed, in which bone biopsies were taken before and after about five years of supplementation. No change in the control group, as expected, and only a statistically insignificant increase in the calcium citrate group, though “[O]ne [can’t] assume that a given brand is uniformly safe, because some of their products may have high and others low lead levels.” So, name brands, or “recognized pharmaceutical companies” that should know better, are no guarantee.

But, the good news is that after decades of concern, lead levels in calcium supplements have come down—so much so that lead level changes in your blood, taking the average lead-contaminated calcium supplement, would be “minimal” at this point. So, these findings on supplement lead contamination should be a cause for “celebration,” not “alarm”—or at least according to a calcium supplement manufacturer consultant.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Motion graphics by Avocado Video

Doctor's Note

What an amazing—and amazingly sad—story.

Should Pregnant Women Take Calcium Supplements to Lower Lead Levels? is the pregnancy video I mentioned.

Even if supplements had no contamination, Are Calcium Supplements Safe? and Are Calcium Supplements Effective? Check out those videos to learn more.

What about dairy sources of calcium? See Is Milk Good for Our Bones?.

I have many more videos on lead here.

If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.

254 responses to “Lead in Calcium Supplements

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    1. Nevermind…found it on your post re oxylates:
      Healthy sources of calcium include: kale, broccoli, collards, beans, tofu, dried figs, fortified plant-milks, and even blackstrap molasses – one of the healthiest sweeteners you can use! Calcium needs for adults 19-50 years old is 1,000 mg per day. Adults older than 50 need 1,200 mg of calcium per day, but calcium recommendations vary greatly by country.

        1. There is a natural form of plant calcium in laminaria (amongst a long list of other beneficial nutrients – the dehydrated juice of a nutrient rich macro algae as found in nature called ultra life 1000 by ultra health store is a clean one, low sodium & optimised for bioavailability.

      1. Bryan, the 1,000 mg per day recommendation was based off of an old, not very thorough study. Since more research was done, the many doctors now recommend 600 in the U.S and 700 in the U.K. When Dr. Greger guest starred on Bite Size Vegan’s youtube channel, he recommended getting at least 600 a day which is very easy to accomplish and almost hard not to. It would be difficult not to get enough calcium if you’re eating a balanced WFPB diet, unless you’re not eating enough.

          1. ^the phosphorus subject concerned me a bit, but then later in one of Dr. Greger’s videos he explained (or was it in his book… I don’t remember) that phosphorus from plants was not as bioavailable as that found in animal product. Though we should avoid the additive phosphoric acid as found in pepsi, coke, etc., and even in some plant milks.

      2. But then again….

        There are considerable variations in the quality of drinking water in Norway. The researchers studied variations in magnesium and calcium levels in drinking water between different areas, as these are assumed to have a role in the development of bone strength. They wanted to examine whether there was a correlation between magnesium and calcium concentrations in drinking water and the incidence of hip fracture.

        The study results show that magnesium protects against hip fracture for both men and women. The researchers found no independent protective effect of calcium.


        It’s well known that cardiovascular deaths, including sudden cardiac deaths, occur far less frequently in areas that have hard water, which contains lots of minerals, compared to areas with soft water, which is relatively mineral free. British researchers took a close look at this data and narrowed the protective effects to one specific mineral: magnesium.

        Magnesium is a viable option for preventing sudden cardiac death because it plays key roles in several aspects of cardiovascular health, and deficiencies are linked to an increased risk of hypertension, heart attack, heart failure, and death. Subpar levels also promote electrical instability in the heart and are associated with a variety of rhythm disturbances, including ventricular arrhythmia and sudden cardiac arrest.

    2. Yes. A whole foods plant based diet is abundant in calcium. We don’t only get them from leafy greens, calcium is abundant in many plant foods. Cronometer may help you get a general idea.
      If you actually read the back of an unfortified plant milk, like New Barn for example, there’s actually significant amounts of calcium in a single cup. Calcium is abundant in plants.
      Supplementation of calcium is harmful: https://nutritionfacts.org/video/are-calcium-supplements-safe/

  1. I would like to congratulate Dr Greger and his Team for having such a valuable and effective website! A sure sign that the NutritionFacts website is becoming effective in changing people’s eating habits is the recent appearance of what appears to be several paid trolls who post comments here all day long every day only to criticize and contradict most of Dr Greger’s videos. There has been one person from the dairy industry and also even a supplement salesman posting a comment here the other day trying to drum up business for his supplement sales website!

    Keep up the good work Dr Greger. Your message is making more and more people healthy day by day.

    1. I agree. I’ve watched hundreds of Dr. Greger’s videos and created my own reference listing for those subjects most relevant to me. Nobody works so hard at being such a Paleo troll as someone in particular who comments here daily unless they are being paid to do so.

        1. Navy Corpsman, Not if the facts don’t support your opinion. Science is based on observation and experimentation, coming to conclusions based on the results, then testing to see if the conclusions are valid and predictive.

    2. I’d like to second the good words, but also say that I’ve learned a whole lot about the research in the discussions that go on in the comment section. While I understand the frustration the ones who have documented research that disagrees with what has been posted multiple times, someone, like me, who is relatively new to this site, may have missed the discussion under a previous vide. Having the references to previous videos or repeating the comments gives me a “rabbit trail” to take to learn. This is over and above just using the search since sometimes the results can be a much larger list. Thanks to everyone for all the time you spend, I’ve learned so much in the last few months.

      1. Thanks, S. I didn’t realize there were 2 trolls on here from the dairy industry! Most of the trolls try to disguise themselves by posting a “positive” comment every once in a while, so some are hard to recognize. After all, they are paid professionals and know all the tricks.

    1. I have been taking VegLife’s Red Marine Algae calcium and I don’t see it listed on the ConsumerLab website anywhere. I hope it’s okay. It was recommended for helping heal the plantar fasciitis in my right heel and I have to say it seems to be working~~

      1. Could be a placebo effect though, in which case I hope I didn’t just ruin the placebo effect! lol. First rule of the placebo effect: don’t talk about the placebo effect!

    1. Yep it seems to be the processing that causes this lead contamination as the lead problem no longer exists.

      And we should always buy GMP grade supplements in general like you said.

    2. This Consumer Reports story has interesting information about different seals of approval found on some products::


      “What ‘USP Verified’ and Other Supplement Seals Mean

      While seals from these companies don’t reflect the high standards for safety and efficacy set by the FDA for drugs, they’re still important because the agency doesn’t routinely do that kind of testing of supplements. Manufacturers must pay to get their supplements tested and certified, which may be a reason that only a tiny fraction of the 90,000 or so dietary supplements on the market carry one of these seals. USP, for example, has verified only 139 products to date.”

      I found it rather disconcerting that aside from Consumer Labs, that gets their samples from stores, that the other three all test samples that come directly from the manufacturer, who would I feel certain, make sure they sent in a clean batch (tested beforehand by a different party) so they passed.

      1. Ed,

        I knew an Eddie Kellogg back in 1962 in Chula Vista, California. He went on to get his Ph.D. in art and has been an art professor at the University for a number of years. That wouldn’t be you would it?

      2. In other words…ConsumerLabs is doing SOME of the testing the govt would be doing to protect consumers IF it wasn’t controlled by corporate interests and working for business interests instead of consumers?

        1. Actually, although I don’t have much respect for the FDA, this situation really does not seem their fault. As best I can tell, they have NEVER had the resources to do any proactive policing of the supplement industry – or the food industry. Instead they wait until people end up dead or in the hospital, or until someone like Allison Hayes discovers a problem and makes them aware of it.

          With respect to food safety, I pretty much gave up on the FDA years ago as doing pretty much much effective with respect to actually protecting the consumer years ago, except perhaps for contaminated foods that send people to the emergency room. In part because of the strong connection to the food and pharmaceutical industries (many staffers eventually leave the FDA to have positions there), but primarily because of how very few employees they have – for example, only about 1000 to police the entire Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition section for the entire United States :


          And that thousand includes secretaries, technicians, janitors, managers etc. I wonder how many food inspectors they actually have?

          And while Consumer Labs seems better than nothing, they seem a far cry from a public safety organization like Consumer Reports who they named themselves after. In general, they usually test supplements that manufacturers pay them to test (how they make their money, at $3,000 to $5,000 per product.) , and as I understand it, in the case of tests where the product fails and where the manufacturer paid for the tests, the manufacturers have the right to keep Consumer labs from publishing the results.

          On the other hand, it does seem good sign that an organization, “Health Wyze”, that formerly wrote a VERY critical article about CL, has now reversed their position and removed the paper: https://healthwyze.org/reports/348-evaluating-the-evaluators-from-consumer-lab

      3. Despite this, a lot of supplement suppliers still flunk the CR tests.

        And the FDA, despite giving a bad name to supplements, do not test them. I guess that they are scared of helping supplements to replace drugs.

  2. Has anyone analyzed Algae-derived omega-3 oils for lead? Since Algae-derived calcium contains lead from natural processes, I’ve been looking for an analysis. Algae naturally takes up lead and other heavy metals. Perhaps tank-cultivated algae is free of this risk. I hope that it is lead-free, but I can’t find a single reference that proves that, or even discusses the water source for the tanks.

    1. Yep the algae is mostly cultivated in tanks. Like you said, if the water is contaminated then we have the same problem as if it is grown in the ocean. This is similar to fish farming vs wild caught. I always eat wild caught fish and I carefully pick the source where it is not contaminated. But the main thing is the nutrients, especially DHA/EPA. Anything grown artificially tends to have less.

      1. Jerry, please start at least occasionally CITING where you get this information. Algae grown in tanks is not grown “artificially” just as kale grown in a garden as opposed to the wild is not being “grown artificially.” The algae is simply grown in a controlled environment away from toxic pollutants. Growing practices and location should alway ben considered.
        There is no such thing as a fish that is not contaminated.

        1. S

          To be fair, I think Jerry’s comments on this are pretty sensible.

          From what I have read, farmed fish like farmed cattle etc have very different eg lipid profiles compared to wild caught and it is usually considered inferior. Infections and diseases are apparently common in farmed fish like other farmed livestock. They may contribute, for that reason, to the spread of antibiotic resistant pathogens

          However, the nutrient profiles of wild caught fish do differ from one another also. For example, coastal fish and freshwater fish from low selenium regions are low in selenium compared to oceanwater fish. In essence, farmed livestock (and crops for that matter) reflect what they are fed and their environment generally…… as do wild animals. The diets of farmed animals and crops tend to have limited variety, narrower nutrient profiles and contain supplements and antibiotics and often hormones (for animals anyway).

          It is a wise precaution to buy algal oils from trusted sources only.

          1. Wow, I give you a thumb up :)

            I read funny articles which said that farmed fish is better because they have more fat because they are fed with corn and soy. Well having more fat does not translate into having more DHA/EPA.

            It’s the same with grass fed cow meat and milk having CLA while grain fed beef and milk having none.

            Farmed plants have less of a problem with nutrition compared to wild plants. But plants that are grown organically are still better.


          2. “Farming” animals is very different than growing plants, though. I was only referring to the fact that growing a plant in a controlled environment is far from being “artificial,” and then he goes onto imply that due to this “artificial” environment, the plant would contain less of whatever it should contain. I would like to see where he’s getting this idea about algae outside of his own head.

            You won’t find me arguing about trusted sources, that is extremely important. Even in a controlled environment, it can be grown in a polluted area or say for example, in China where I believe they don’t even allow foreign inspectors and have created many false reports and are notorious for creative additives. I think it’s important to know where something is grown, how, and what kind of tests are done.

            1. S

              Yes. I understand your point. However I think Jerry was simply trying to say that the algae are not grown in a natural environment. This has advantages as you say – the water, growing medium and nutrients can all be controlled. However, it is likely that certain trace elements found in the marine (or freshwater) environment are not present in the water/growing medium/nutrients fed to famed algae. Even the access to natural sunlight (filtered through water) may be different. We don’t really know what effects these differences have.

              Don’t get me wrong. I abandoned fish oil years ago and now take algal oil supplements instead. There are various reasons for choosing these
              “the importance of an adequate provision of these nutrients and several properties of microalgal oils are particularly appealing, such as their sustainability, high purity and quality, “vegetarian” origin, and improved organoleptic qualities when compared to fish oils.”

              However, you can make a rational argument for fish oil. It is the most studied source of DHA/EPA after all. That said, there is evidence that algal oils have similar effects to fish oil and are widely considered an acceptable alternative eg

              Of course, there is also some evidence that well-planned vegetarian diets are healthy without DHA/EPA supplementation eg
              ” Arterial stiffness, which is a measure of arterial aging, appears to be lower in vegans than in omnivores; and risk of CVD in vegetarians and vegans is approximately one-third that in omnivores. Prospective cohort studies showed higher intakes of EPA+DHA, and less consistently ALA, to be associated with a lower risk of CVD, especially fatal coronary heart disease, but meta-analyses of randomized controlled trials of supplementation of EPA+DHA or ALA in secondary prevention of CVD showed no clear benefit. Current evidence is insufficient to warrant advising vegans and vegetarians to supplement their diets with EPA or DHA for CVD prevention.”

              I suppose that all I am saying here is that there are pros and cons on both sides and that Jerry’s comments (in this instance at least!) seem to be reasonable. Nothing is completely black and white and, while the risks of contamination in fish oil are real and have been documented, there is no guarantee that algae sourced supplements are completely safe either. People have been infected with viruses from algae.that affect brain function. I doubt whether algal oils are tested for viral contamination. Or fish oils for that matter.

              I think it is appropriate to confront Jerry when he makes unfounded claims or makes arguments based on logical fallacies but I see no harm in acknowledging those comments of his which are sensible and rational.

              1. I see your point TG and agree. I can concede to my response being somewhat misplaced. To me his comment seemed to coincide with his overall agenda on this site, I wouldn’t have thought much of it if it weren’t for his history so my response was more based off of preexisting posts.

                I know some testing is done in the case of algae which lead to finding the neurotoxin only present in the brains of alzheimer’s patients found in spirulina. And I know you can get spirulina that is claimed to not contain certain harmful compounds, but I could never find much on the nuerotoxin other than Dr. Greger’s video on it.
                As Dr. Greger recommends, I stick with chlorella which I get from Clean Chlorella which does various tests. They have two separate kinds, I get their sun chlorella which is grown with natural sunlight, I believe it’s grown in Japan. The other is from Tawain which is the purest but is not grown in sunlight.

                I’m not sure what kind of tests are done for micro algae oil, but it would definitely be nice to know. And hopefully one day soon, regulations for supplements will become much stricter.

        2. There is no such thing as a human that is not contaminated…..though vegetarians would be safest to eat….if you are cannibalistic. Humans are at the top of the food chain…so they are generally not safe to eat. They also surround themselves with various toxics …due to the “products” that they like to collect and use.

          1. Bugs, when it comes to animal protein, one of the reasons it’s so harmful is because it’s so similar to our own, so theoretically, if we ate human flesh, that would be especially dangerous because it’s even more similar. Dr. Greger has a fascinating video on this, I would link it but can’t remember the title. Had to mention it though since cannibalism was brought up.

            1. Shaylen, you need to study about amino acid versus protein.





              Some authors have recently suggested that a vegan diet would lengthen lifespan because of its naturally low methionine content.9 If methionine restriction primarily increases lifespan by increasing the ratio of glycine to methionine, however, then this suggestion could not be more wrong, because vegetarians show signs of glycine deficiency.1 Vegan diets are low in total biologically available protein, not just methionine. Human studies suggest that low-protein diets waste glycine by using it simply as a source of much-needed nitrogen.10

              1. Jerry you are full of absolute nonsense. Once more, please CITE YOUR SOURCES when you make such broad claims contradicting the collective evidence.

                I would instead suggest that you look into the plethora of studies showing and explaining the many detrimental effects animal protein has on the human body. But I already know you’re not interested in learning or conceding to the best evidence, so I along with others don’t make many suggestions to you at this point.

                Your claims are a bit lost on people who actually eat a plant based diet as we experience the incredible difference in overall health for ourselves.
                You may also want to send that warning to the many plant based athletes out there. Including the woman who was awarded the title “best female athlete” a few years ago and was also vegan or plant based.

                Funny stuff.

                1. Btw, a WFPB diet is very rich in protein. When I used to go by Cronometer, my chart always showed that I exceeded the DV in overall protein as well as every essential amino acid. But the protein argument is an old one, I’d move on.

                  1. Lol, I just don’t even know what to do with that statement… Protein is made up of amino acids, some amino acids are produced naturally by our bodies while others are not, those which our bodies do not produce on its own are considered the essential amino acids.

                    Any studies I’ve even seen implying that vegans or those eating a plant based diet were more “deficient” in nutrients, used examples of malnourished vegans or persons eating plant based who did not eat a healthy diet. At best, that is just poor science.

                    The deficiencies you should be worried about are fiber, vitamin c, magnesium, folate, antioxidants, and so on… things that those eating a diet rich in animal products have problems with.

                    What the evidence actually shows is that the way to obtain and maintain optimal health is through a whole foods plant based diet. But as per your usual MO, you state an argument against a plant based diet based on a single idea, in spite of the insurmountable evidence right in front of your face (literally, as you are on a website that is a virtual encyclopedia of the best and latest evidence in nutritional science).

                    If the studies and collective evidence aren’t enough for you, soon enough time itself will be too overwhelming to argue, as it will only become more and more astoundingly evident that those on a WFPB diet are exceedingly healthier than those consuming animal products.

                2. 1.↵ Levine RL, Mosoni L, Berlett BS, Stadtman ER. Methionine residues as endogenous antioxidants in proteins. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 1996;93:15036–40. Abstract/FREE Full Text
                  2.↵ Moskovitz J. Methionine sulfoxide reductases: Ubiquitous enzymes involved in antioxidant defense, protein regulation and prevention of aging-related diseases. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2005;1703:213–9. CrossRefMedlineGoogle Scholar
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              2. Jerry

                You will be led down the garden path if you believe the claims of cranks like the Weston Price Foundation.

                You only cited one credible source in your post and if you actually read that article, it states “Methionine may also be metabolized by a transamination pathway. This pathway, which is significant only at high methionine concentrations, produces a number of toxic endproducts.”

                This would explain, at least in part, why methionine restricted diets appear to extend life. High animal protein diets contain lots of methionine of course. That said, as we have already discussed, vegetarian diets provide plenty of protein without reaching dangerously high levels. The real danger in first world countries is high protein diets and vegetarians are at much lower risk of this than omnivores. There are quite a few studies out there that document increased mortality risk from eating higher levels of protein and decreased risk from consuming higher levels of (complex) carbohydrates eg

                “Decreasing carbohydrate or increasing protein intake by one decile were associated with increase in total mortality by 6% (95% CI: 0-12%) and 2% (95% CI: -1 to 5%), respectively. For cardiovascular mortality, amongst women 40-49 years old at enrolment, the corresponding increases were, respectively, 13% (95% CI: -4 to 32%) and 16% (95% CI: 5-29%), with the additive score being even more predictive.”

                And, frankly Jerry, if you insist on eating flesh foods, based on the findings from large long-lasting studies, you are better advised to eat fish or chicken not red meat or processed meats.
                “Our findings suggest that people should consider eating more plant proteins than animal proteins, and when they do choose among sources of animal protein, fish and chicken are probably better choices.”

                And if people want to learn more about protein and amino acids, they should not go to sites run by ignorant but highly opinionated bloggers or cranks like the Weston Price Foundation. They should go to sites like the US National Academies of Sciences.

                If people want something shorter or less technical, they can go to other credible sources like Harvard

                This website too is a rich resource of reliable information on protein as it is on other nutrition matters

                As for your implied claim that so-called “vegan” diets make people die early, there is no evidence for this whatsoever. In fact studies like the 7th Day Adventist study show that “vegans” have a significantly lower mortality risk than meat eaters. Fruitcakes like the Weston Price Foundation manufacture all sorts of spurious reasons like these to show why their opinions should be correct even when the actual facts of the matter clearly show they are wrong.

        3. S, for fish oil, at least there is an organization called IFOS that check for its quality. The requirements are very strict. Look it up.

          For algae oil. well they grow algae in tank, obviously for cost. You don’t have to harvest it in the ocean. Of course now the marketing will say that it is for controlled environment, blah blah blah. Beside the potential of using dirty water to grow the algae (they could use ocean water or grow next to the sea), there is also a question of quality, who is going to test if certain algae oil contains the amount of DHA as claimed, is it rancid or not? Is there an organization equivalent to IFOS to inspect?

          For fish in general, if you select the source where the fish is caught in the wild then there is less pollutants. There will be some, I admit, but within safety tolerance. We live in an industrial society and we cannot avoid it. Billions of people are eating fish today and with benefits and without any problem.

          Boy the PC where you nutrition-fact emits radiation and the kale that you eat also has pollutants inside.

          1. Jerry,

            You do have a lot of INFO in your brain. What do you think about sardines as a source of amino acids, omea 3’s, iodine, and the sort.

            1. Sardine is one the safest fish to eat.

              In term of Omega 3, sardine ranks as high as salmon (wild caught) which is the top fish.

              In term of iodine, sardine is about average. Cod has the most iodine but it is not a safe fish to eat.

              The following web site shows the nutrients in each fish.



              The top fish to eat is anchovies but not the one sold here but the one from the Mediterranean sea off Spain.


              1. Sardines are severely endangered. Marine animals are starving due to their overfishing. I would hardly call that alone, safe, for anyone. Anchovies are also endangered. At this point, just about every fish is endangered, except the jellyfish which is overpopulated in some areas due to their natural predators, such as sea turtles, being endangered. The oceans are dying so people can consume, consume, consume… and all while harming themselves to do it.
                Fish is one of the most harmful things to eat, not only due to pollution, but due to pollution in a very big way. Fully unnecessary and one of the biggest epidemics on the planet.

                1. To build off of my above comment, even if someone doesn’t care about fellow animals or the planet, by creating and perpetuating a demand for these things and promoting the perpetual demand for these things (these beings, I should say), they are sickeningly selfish with even other humans… How will your grandkids get all these “healthy” sources of this or that? I guess that really isn’t on anyone’s mind… but they sure do all want kids and grandkids one day! Ironic is one word for it.

                  1. Nobody promotes anything. We are just talking about nutrition. If you talk about the benefits of almond, is is promoting destroying the environment because almond plants need a lot of watering.

                    Also, is this site about nutrition or about veganism?

                    1. Jerry, almonds do not BEGIN to compare to animal agriculture i Regards to water use, but nice try. Plants ar necessary to our health and survival, animals are detrimental to it and the “farming” of them is collectively the biggest threat to the planet.
                      Do not deny that you regularly promote the use of animal products on this site!! That is just about ALL you do here. I’ll give you credit for acting more mature under this video compared to others, perhaps you’ve caught on that you were only making yourself look bad.

                      Do explain to me why bringing up an environmental epidemic is making this website about veganism? Always your go-to, isn’t it?
                      Environmental concerns are just as important to human health as diet.

                    2. Re: Almonds don’t need as much water as livestock do Jerry

                      If you compare a cow that feeds a village and a nut that feeds TG then I agree.

                    3. You are comparing a cow to a single nut? Look at the amount of water it takes to produce a lite of milk and then compare it to the amount of water needed to produce a litre of alnmond milk. Almond milk requres far less.

                      Not surprising really because
                      “Per ton of product, animal products generally have a larger water footprint than crop products. The same is true when we look at the water footprint per calorie. The average water footprint per calorie for beef is twenty times larger than for cereals and starchy roots. When we look at the water requirements for protein, it has been found that the water footprint per gram of protein for milk, eggs and chicken meat is about 1.5 times larger than for pulses. For beef, the water footprint per gram of protein is 6 times larger than for pulses. In the case of fat, butter has a relatively small water footprint per gram of fat, even lower than for oil crops. All other animal products, however, have larger water footprints per gram of fat when compared to oil crops. From a freshwater resource perspective, it is more efficient to obtain calories, protein and fat through crop products than animal products.”

                2. Given the ever increasing rate of people eating animals, the human race is going to eat themselves out of food and be forced to go back to eating plants. In the mean time, many animal species will go extinct. The extinction of many species is going to upset the environment and might create difficult areas for humans to live in. The ever growing human population is going to result in a global catastrophe at some point in the future. There are Chinese, Russian, and North Korean nuclear submarines cruising up and down the American eastern seaboard, western seaboard, and the gulf of Mexico 24/7. Last year a Chinese nuclear submarine about 50 miles off the coast of Oregon launced a missle with no warhead into the deep Pacific ocean in the opposite direction of Oregon itself. They were just testing how it would feel to actually launch a nuclear missle into the heartland of America. For years America felt safe to be surrounded by two mighty oceans. Now, these oceans are actually turning out to be a handicap in the light of nuclear submarine fleets. The Russians and Chinese submarine fleets taken together far out number the American submarine fleet which is need of repair. Russians and Chinese laugh at the American government which is a house divided against itself.

                  1. There is no reply button on the four comments above starting with a comment from S to TG Currently at this time .
                    To answer S and TG about animal agriculture , I wonder if you have ever imagined the outcome of doing away with domestic agriculture ? What would it look like ? Before 1491 when Europeans came there were up to 70 million buffalo and abundant wild life according to Mann’s book titled 1491 . So what would the landscape look like according to you S and TG ? You now we have vast tracts of land that is not needed and mostly can;t be used for crops anyways , would you want to see buffalo return ? One thing for sure wild life would fill in right up to the max carrying capacity in a very short while , that is how nature works . So now we need to eliminate these ruminate creatures that would roam freely over former cattle farms and ranches , because we all know how much pollution ruminates cause don’t we ? We would need to have people go out with machine guns to mow down the ruminant deer that would explode their current population with cattle now gone .
                    See ruminate deer and other wild life have a specific purpose in the scheme of things , all erosion from high ground goes to low ground and then into rivers and finally the sea . Ruminates such as deer or even domestic cattle is a force and the only force in nature that carries nutrients back onto the hillsides , deer have a habit of foraging on river flats and getting up high on hills to keep bugs and predators away while they chew their cud and do their business . A smart cattle farmer will take advantage of this to fertilize the higher ground where organic matter is scarce to improve his farm yields . Cattle always revitalize farms , every year making more organic matter in the topsoil not less like crop land . The prairies have the lowest organic matter content in history , they have been called the bread basket of the world , they are in critical condition right now . What would your world look like ?

                    1. buster, I didn’t see your comment until now because I don’t generally like to waste my time with dairy industry trolls, but I did just now happen upon it and I am compelled to say a little something… First of all, you are full of absolute crap. When you say domestic agriculture, I assume you mean the “agriculture” of domesticated animals… you and fellow ag affiliate tend to want to leave out the name or names of the sentient beings you use – a cowardly habit of yours. Anyways, your question answers itself; all it takes is a mild bit of learning about nature. If animal agriculture ended, millions of people would be fed around the world, much of the world’s water crises would be resolved, and nature would rebalance itself as it really is the only thing that can manage itself and thus, never needed nor needs managing in the first place. The only time there has ever been an imbalance in nature, has been due to human interference.

                      “Vast tracks of land that is not needed” WOW, and deemed as “unneeded” by who, an animal agriculturist such as yourself? That is industrial SMUT. There is no such thing as land that is “not needed.” Land is there not for you or your fellow men, it is there for all life, it is there for itself, it is there for the balance of something BILLIONS of years old and billions of years beyond your comprehension.
                      Why on earth would you be concerned about buffalo? This land was far better off when native animals lived here prior to the European invasion and having the world of animal agriculture, among other things, become a thing here.
                      If you read up on your Native American History, you’d know that this land was widely populated with Native Americans and in fact, there was more diversity here than there actually was in Europe! But people tend to lump up the indigenous of America as just being one people. You seem to imply that this land, prior to the invasion of the Europeans, was wilderness void of human life when in fact, this is completely inaccurate! Tribes lived all across America – or Turtle Island :) They even had disputes with other tribes over their resources from time to time. But they lived harmoniously with nature.
                      So how were the abundant NATIVE humans who lived here LONG before Europeans even knew of this land’s existence, able to manage to live with all this overrun wildlife? I can’t make up my mind which is more ridiculous, the propaganda of “hunters” or that of the animal agriculture industry… we might have to call it a tie. Yours is like “sister propaganda,” both help sustain each other’s nonsense.
                      Oh and I’m sure you’ll say they hunted, but they actually rarely hunted. Many tribes relied mostly on crops, rarely fished, and even more rarely hunted but when they did, they did so in modest amounts.

                      The truth is, is nature is its OWN balance and it is only the unintelligent arrogance of man and his greed that has ever lead to an upset in this balance. There is a boom and bust cycle. The ecosystem is brilliantly designed by something human beings can’t begin to comprehend in full. We’re specs in the universe trying to learn our best from our own perspectives, and most are coming from a place of bias, agenda, arrogance, and mostly all of the above.
                      So what would happen if humans lived harmoniously with nature? Well the Native Americans (prior to their land being stolen from them) had been doing it for thousands of years and likely longer.

                      There are unnatural amounts of so-called “cattle,” once again, due to HUMANS. Nature never exceeds controlled amounts unless drastically interfered with by man as humans do, such as killing off all top predators and so on.
                      No need for machine guns, calm down killer… it’s called the boom and bust cycle. And that is just one piece of the intricate design that is, once again, billions of years beyond you. I highly suggest watching this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ysa5OBhXz-Q

                      Funny you should bring up the brutal and sadistic massacre of wild animals because that is exactly what your industry already does to wildlife! On this “unnecessary land” you’ve decided to conveniently call the land you grossly take over, and on it you use it for the perpetual breeding and keeping of extraordinary amounts of animals who are not a part of the ecosystem as they have been bred and are not native nor wild, but oh no! Seems that those pesky deer, wild horses, wolves, and so many other species native to this land living here and thriving here harmoniously with all life on earth prior to the “New World” and man’s way of doing things, and how dare they try to survive on the land you’ve taken from them of which they’re native to as well as VITAL to. No worries though! You just grab some ammo, go up in your helicopter, and go on a killing spree! Or have others do it for you, rather. Plus, the hunting industry gets to bank in on saying there is “overpopulation,” making millions off of blood thirsty cowards. The irony of you trying to turn it the other way around is quite literally painful… expected, but painful.

                      Also funny how you like to present yourself as an authority on the subject (oh you incorrigible animal agriculture industry scamps!) in saying you’re “answering” me and another poster, when in fact, no one asked anything let alone for a comment on the dairy industry’s behalf.

                      You and your industry are truly sickening… wish you had the sense to be ashamed of all that you do and promote.

                3. Ignorance is bliss. Do you know that sardine is the most abundant fish.

                  If you overeat anything, let say almond, it will have a severe impact on the environment.

                  And do you know that the kale that you buy at supermarkets are pollinated by bees who are tortured?

                  And last, I want Shaylen the monkey to climb tree to pick coconut for me.


                  1. “Ignorance is bliss” … I guess you should know, Jerry ;)

                    Speaking of ignorance… sardines are absolutely not abundant! Not anymore. Where did you read that? The sardine industry? Conservationists actually fear that they are endangered of becoming extinct due to overfishing. Sea lions are found starving to death in California due to depleted sardine populations. Sardine populations have hit historic lows to the point where they’ve had to ban their fishing for two years in a row.






                    Lol, overeat anything? You’ve never grown kale, have you? But seriously, it’s incomparable. When you fish, you are taking an animal out of their natural environment. It takes 16 lbs of grain to produce 1 single pound of “beef” just to give some perspective. The U.S alone could feed millions of people (I have the article saved somewhere with the exact number) if they ended animal agriculture.
                    It is beyond possible to feed the human population solely on plants in a sustainable manner. You could feed the world with the amount of crops used to feed “livestock,” but people want their meat, eggs, and dairy…

                    Jerry, I’ll climb that coconut tree for you if given the opportunity, but I may accidentally drop one on your head while I’m up there ;) My apologies in advance.

          2. They grow algae in a tank for purity, I don’t think it would be very safe to eat wild algae… Not to mention it is much more sustainable this way. The fact that it is for purity is pretty much common sense. The oceans are also in a very depleted state, so it would be irresponsible to take plant life out of it just as it’s irresponsible to take animal life out of the oceans, but greed trumps responsibility among other things.

            Within safety tolerance according to who, Jerry? The FDA? A single can of tuna is the equivalent of 100 mercury laden vaccine shots, but it’s totally approved for human consumption.

            There you go with your blanket statements in total opposition of the truth… The detrimental effects of consuming fish has have been published time and time again. But you say “lots of people eat fish and no one has any problems” and this is supposed to mean something? You are just ridiculous.

            Funny you should mention contaminants in kale. If you actually watched the videos here, you might have learned that our bodies do not absorb heavy metal contaminants from plants like we do from animal products. Even in the most polluted areas of the world where vegetation is the most contaminated and can increase heavy metals in the blood, studies show that the benefits of consuming the plants outweighs the negative effects of contamination. I suggestion this video: https://nutritionfacts.org/video/cadmium-and-cancer-plant-vs-animal-foods/

            I don’t think anyone here would argue that the supplement industry needs much better regulation, in the case of algae and all supplements.

              1. No it really doesn’t sound that way, Jerry. Farmed fish are actually raised in the ocean, but they’re kept in certain areas. The concern most certainly isn’t purity, either. Given that they’re forced to eat GMO grains and given other additives like a type of dye in place of astaxanthin. They’re also raised in filth and sometimes fed other depleted fish populations either raised in filth or taken from the wild. Very, very different things altogether, but great way to try to twist it.

                1. Farmed fish is definitively dirty and bad for the environment. I don’t eat it and it is a waste of time to talk about it.

                  I simply raise the issue that it is not because algae for Omega-3 oil is grown in a pond that it is always clean. You can have a bad supplier let say from China, who uses dirty water to grow it and you can still have contaminated algae. And you know that algae is used for water purification because it sucks up all contaminants.

                  A while ago, I consume chlorella, a type of microalgae. They are grown in pond too but there are 3 types on the market: from Japan (very expensive), from Taiwan (average price) and from China (cheap). I chose the one made in Taiwan because I don’t trust the Chinese commie.

                  I also raise the issue that there are differences in nutrients between plants/animals raised in nature versus plants/animals raised in a pond. You should know that plants grown in greenhouse are not as nutritious as plants grown in the open field.

                  And last, you should know that fish oil is made from the skin and leftover of the fish after they already take out the meat, and so it’s basically
                  made from fish waste, and so there is not much impact on the environment. And at least there is an independent organization called IFOS to check the quality of fish oil. I only buy fish oil that is IFOS certified. Do you have a similar organization like IFOS for algae oil or do you trust the snake oil salesman Fuhrman?

                  1. I will not argue with the fact that it is very important to know where and how a product is grown and manufactured and what kind of tests are performed.

                    I get chlorella from Clean Chlorella, they have both Japan (grown in natural sunlight) and Taiwan grown which is the purest but not grown in sunlight. It’s more expensive than lower quality chlorellas, but I know what I’m getting and they perform tests on their products. And actually it’s very affordable. 100 servings in the bag I get, and it’s about 64 dollars or around that (I don’t remember, I actually got mine on sale), so in retrospect, it is quite affordable. Plus I don’t even have the full serving size daily so it lasts me longer.

                    Please provide the source to your information on greenhouse growing instead of telling people they should know something. Typically I do not eat green house grown plant foods in any case. But “unnatural” growing methods of plants without question, produce an extremely healthy food source. Even with foods grown in pesticides, the benefits of eating these plants far outweighs the negatives as Dr. Greger explains, but organic is always better.
                    And growing plants hydroponically may actually increase antioxidant content. Dr. Greger talks about this in one of his videos in regards to a particular plant. It’s my understanding that cranberries grown in water have significantly higher antioxidant content as well.

                    Jerry, you are wrong. Since the demand for fish oil supplements, overfishing has increased a substantial amount, sharks have even fallen victim to the fish oil craze in a big way. In any case, overfishing is done due to a high demand for fish, whether the demand is for the flesh, the oil, or anything else, it is one of the main causes of the depletion of our dying oceans. The higher the demand for marine animals for any purpose, thus creates more profit to be made and more fishing. In regards to fish consumption, much of the fish sold is sold with the skin intact as well as often, the whole fish.
                    The depletion of fish also effects the forests. Wild animals hunt for fish in rivers, for example, then leave the skin leftover remains in the forest and as the remains decompose, they produce a gas that nourishes the trees. This is yet another example of how overfishing negatively impacts the earth, even the forests which one typically does not connect to the health of the oceans.

                    Well, I certainly trust the word of reputable companies over something that is known to cause harm, such as fish oil. I also trust Dr. Greger’s recommendations because I have observed how he goes by the best available science and always errs on the side of caution. But as I have said many times, I personally do not supplement with DHA/EPA, I feel no need and without supplementation, my blood levels came back good in this regard. I consume flax daily. I also do not openly trust organizations as they are often corrupt. I don’t know enough about IFOS to comment on them.

                    1. Also if you are worrying about killing all the fishes but you don’t eat any, then what are the fishes for? So that bigger fishes can eat smaller fishes? Then who will eat the bigger fishes? The bears? Then who will eat the bears? The tiger? Then who will eat the tiger? Shaylen?

                      What we need is responsible fishing and responsible foods consumption without wasting. It is all the waste and tons of foods that go into the garbage cans that destroys the environment. It is not because car causes accidents that we ban cars.

                      In my state/city, the schools give the kids more vegetables at lunch. Most of the kids throw them in the garbage can and then buy potato chip from the vending machine.

                    2. Shaylen,

                      Thank you for your comments to Jerry.

                      Do you know any reason why items grown in greenhouses are less healthy? My local farmers, (I live in the north,) grows vegetables all winter in a hoop house, and I have a CSA with them. I get fresh kale, carrots, cabbage, greens, beets, etc. In the summer, they are grown outside in the sun.

                    3. FYI, Dr G now agreed that DHA/EPA is needed for your brain. Flaxseed Omega 3 which is ALA, cannot be converted to DHA/EPA very efficiently (something like less than 5%).

                    4. Jerry, what you’re referring to is the fact that there are more antioxidants in organically grown plants vs. conventionally grown and one of the reasons may be because plants produce more antioxidants when bugs go at them. It appears that plants grown under stresses create more phytonutrients to protect themselves.
                      That doesn’t necessarily mean that algae would act the same way. It’s a bit different than a leafy vegetable. I couldn’t tell you. But in the case of micro algae for DHA/EPA, it’s being taken for DHA/EPA… we get tons of antioxidants on a WFPBD, even if unable to eat organically. In the case of algae such as chlorella, its taken for many different nutrients as an addition to the diet. The studies done on chlorella, I’m quite sure are done on the chlorella powders that are sold, not wild collected… I don’t even think that would be safe. And the nutrient content levels measured in cultivated algae are going by that which is grown in tanks.
                      I’m sure there are unique compounds to things grown within the ocean or freshwater, but unfortunately it isn’t always safe due to pollution and harmful bacteria. There’s also the case of people drinking “wild water” for all the micro organisms or whatever else, but it isn’t necessarily safe. One doesn’t need to eat dirt, drink straight form streams, or consume wild growing algae to receive incredible benefits from a plant based diet though.

                    5. Shaylen, I don’t know why you are so worked up on the subject of algae oil. a supplement you don’t even take (at your risk). Anyway, I think that I touch your comfort zone that anything coming from a plant food must be safe and the best.

                      So you may be interested with this Q&A by someone working for your doctor, I think. He is not sure if the algae oil that your doctor recommended, didn’t contain any natural toxin such as BMAA because it may be derived from blue-green algae?


                      “I suggest contacting the companies who sell algae-based or yeast-based omega-3 supplements and ask if they ever test for BMAA or other contaminates. (Gold stars for anyone who can find more literature on this topic or write to a company!). Perhaps our research fund will have the finances necessary to run such tests. I sure would like to know more!”

                    6. Thanks Liisa. I actually would like to know the same thing, I’ve never heard of anything like that before which is why I once again asked that Jerry actually provides a source for his claims.
                      I’m no scientist or expert on the subject but I can’t think of any reasons off the top of my head why there would be a difference. They’re still grown in natural soil (provided things are grown organically), and like you said, in sunlight… it seems the main difference is simply temperature control.
                      Dr. Greger talks about the benefits hydroponically grown produce can have and didn’t mention whether it mattered if they were grown indoors or out (to my memory) and I’ve read a lot of hydroponically grown produce is grown in a greenhouse.

                      Maybe someone else can shed some light on the subject.

                    7. I don’t know where you’re getting that I’m “worked up” on the subject of algae oil, are we not both discussing the topic? You’re simply making arguments against it and for fish oil based off of your own your supposed suspicions of algae supplement companies and other assertions, which btw is extremely ironic considering when it comes to virtually all other supplements, your argument is literally the other way around, calling the rest of us paranoid and even “morons” and boasting about the greatness of supplements, an industry which as a whole, is poorly regulated.

                      I am however in general, worked up about about the dying oceans and total disregard for this epidemic, and justifiably so.

                      That response isn’t surprising, Dr. Greger and his team are always searching for answers. But for many reasons, Dr. Greger and many others refer to algae oil as a safer alternative to fish oil supplementation as explained in various videos here. Fish oil is known to contain numerous toxins, IFOS or not, there is no way to filter out all the toxins and heavy metals. It’s also the only sustainable and cruelty free solution provided one gets a supplement without palm oil derivatives added. Incidentally, research is being done on algae being used to replace the uses for palm oil derived ingredients. Amazing stuff!

                    8. Oh dear, I just saw your comments Jerry…

                      First let me address this: “FYI, Dr G now agreed that DHA/EPA is needed for your brain. Flaxseed Omega 3 which is ALA, cannot be converted to DHA/EPA very efficiently”

                      Oh the little twists you like to put on things… Dr. Greger has LONG recommended the use of an ALGAE based DHA/EPA supplement NOT because of the theory of a conversion rate, but because evidence shows that supplementing with DHA/EPA can reduce brain shrinkage.
                      There is no answer to the rate of which our bodies convert ALA into DHA/EPA because everyone’s body is different in this (and diet accounts for a lot) and there really aren’t many studies on it. In fact, the subject of DHA/EPA blood levels and the conversion of ALA into DHA/EPA in the human body are seriously lacking from what I’ve gathered. Most of the information out there is based off of the supplement industry. If you go to your regular doctor, if asked, he or she will likely tell you that the relevance of DHA/EPA in the blood isn’t really understood.
                      I’d also like to know the diets of the people tested where all of these references come from that it’s believed we have a “low conversion rate.” I always see that claimed (from those selling fish oil supplements) but never any references.
                      Dr. Greger seems to be adamant about pregnant or nursing mothers taking an algae oil supplement based on the evidence.
                      I choose not to supplement and my blood levels came back quite well.
                      Emily of Bite Size Vegan got hers tested (she doesn’t supplement and from what I’ve seen, doesn’t even consume flax or anything like that) and her doctor told her that her levels came back really good and to keep on taking her fish oil supplements which he had assumed she did based on her results.

                      Ok, now to approach THIS comment: “Also if you are worrying about killing all the fishes but you don’t eat any, then what are the fishes for? So that bigger fishes can eat smaller fishes? Then who will eat the bigger fishes? The bears? Then who will eat the bears? The tiger? Then who will eat the tiger? Shaylen?”

                      Ok…smh… Jerry, I’d like to refer you to a billions of years old little thing called planet earth where there is an intricate ecosystem that has been evolving since the beginning of time long before man was ever introduced. Nature had evolved in a perfect design creating a self-managing and self-sustaining ecosystem. Every animal (outside of humans) plays a vital role in this. The only time there was ever an imbalance was due to human interference. For billions of years the ecosystem had been handling itself beautifully until man came around and thought he knew better…
                      Humans, play no role in this ecosystem… we simply didn’t evolve as a part of it. We actually are the only real threat to this planet and without us on it, the planet and all native life on it would thrive. If humans had evolved as part of the wild and thus were a part of the ecosystem, our roles would be that closest to apes, FAR from the position we’ve decided to give ourselves.

                      I’ve realized by now that you live in a “Jerry knows best” universe, but if you talk to any actual (and I do mean actual… plenty of CONservationists out there) conservationist or environmental scientist (who AREN’T being paid by the fishing industry and what have you – don’t forget we live in an age where “science” can be bought), they will assure you that at this point in time, the oceans are in such dire conditions that there is simply no such thing as “responsible” or “sustainable” fishing. In fact, many predict the oceans will be completely depleted of fish within our lifetime.
                      Therefore, what we actually need, is to stop depleting the oceans through taking life out of it which is done for many reasons (“food,” supplements, “delicacies,” “trophies,” culling, whaling, marine parks, etc.), dumping toxic waste, plastic pollution, sonar testing, and so on… These are all actual things we need to do, unfortunately they don’t tend to fall on the side of human greed.
                      I assure you, Jerry, that whether that pound of salmon goes in your stomach or in the trash can, it’s still detrimental to the ocean and entire planet.

                      And as far as schools and potato chips go, I think that vending machines are a stupid idea for schools… I guess we’d probably agree there. But the dying oceans are much more complicated than throwing leftovers in the trash.

                    9. Shaylen,

                      You wrote an excellent reply to Jerry. I would like to add one comment to your essay about DHA and EPA. I don’t see how eating fish or taking algae oil suppements or fish supplements play that big of role in your body manufacturing DHA and EPA. My case in point are the desert Indians of Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, and west Texas. The Apache Indians and the Navaho Indians lived successfully in these desert regions for thousands of year. And yet, they were far away from the ocean, and there were few streams in the desert. How did these Indian nations get there DHA and EPA?
                      They couldn’t run down to the local health food store and buy a bottle of NORDIC fish oil capsules. And yet…..many of these Indians lived to have healthy lives into their 70’s and 80’s. Geronimo lived to be 79 years of age. How was he able to live such a healthy life without his salmon, without his bottle of fish oil, without his bottle of algae oil?

                    10. Thanks John. I think you make a great point and it’s one that I often think of as well. I grew up vegetarian and never supplemented with DHA/EPA and my brain seems to have developed fine. It’s hard to get real research on this because it’s so driven by the supplement and fishing industries. I think the evidence showing that supplementation can reduce brain shrinkage is relevant, however as I’ve said before, I would be interested to know what types of diet the supplemented and un-supplemented groups were on. I’d also be interested in a study that compared the brains of those on a WFPB diet w/o supplements to those on a WFPB diet w/supplements to those on a SAD diet w/o supplements to those on a SAD w/supplements. I’d actually also like to see the un-supplemented groups divided into those taking ground flax everyday and not adding flax.
                      I personally suspect that a WFPB diet is efficient alone for optimal brain health, maybe added EPA/DHA would help for some people and be even better, maybe on a healthy enough diet it wouldn’t make a significant difference kind of like red wine having a health benefit to those on a SAD and those on healthier diets not having any impact.

                    11. Shaylen,

                      I agree with you about DHA and EPA. My understanding is that you only get DHA and EPA from ocean fish, and you cannot get DHA or EPA from fresh water fish. I could be wrong about this idea of salt water fish versus fresh water fish. But, I know that salt water fish get their DHA from algae. I don’t know if the right kind of algae grows in fresh water for fresh water fish to ingest enough algae to build up DHA and EPA in their flesh. But, you could extend my thought about the desert Indians of southwest America to the early pioneers of inner America. If you were a pioneer back in 1830 living in Kansas, you had no access to ocean fish. You could even look to the inhabitants of the Gobi desert, or the Sahara desert in Africa. Where did these millions of individuals over the thousands of years in these locations get their DHA and EPA from? Before the industrial revolution people just ate what was available in their locality. The thousands of mongols livng under the rule of Ghengis Khan in Mongolia had no access to ocean fish except for the times they invaded Korea and parts of China. The Eskimos who had a 99 percent meat died early deaths and autopsies of frozen corpses that were hundreds of years old showed that they succumbed to atherosclerosis at an early age. Dr. Greger has a video on the myth of the Eskimo diet of blubber. Funny, the Eskimo diet is the one that Jerry supports….a diet of supposed “good” fats. Eskimos ate salmon, seal blubber, whale blubber, caribou flesh and fat. They were eating all of those “good” fats that Jerry loves to eat and he loves to encourage others to eat. Eat like the Eskimos and you will wind up like the Eskimos in an early grave riddled with atherosclerosis.

            1. Shaylen,

              This was an excellent video by Dr. Greger on how plants protect us from heavy metals even though the plants themselves have taken in heavy metals from the soil. According to Dr. Greger, plants possess molecules that protect themselves from heavy metals even if heavy metals are uploaded into the roots, stems, and leaves. Plants have this self protective mechanism from heavy metals in the soil in order to protect their own life cycle. In this video, Dr. Greger shows studies that prove that people who have a lot of heavy metals in their bodies can lower those levels by eating plants, even if the plants themselves have heavy metals. This video and others are what I was referring to when Lonnie was challenging me with the idea that even if I bought produce in the grocery store, or if I grew my own garden I could still get heavy metals into my body. Not so Lonnie. Lonnie if you are reading this check out this video by Dr. Greger: https://nutritionfacts.org/video/cadmium-and-cancer-plant-vs-animal-foods/

              1. Yes I have seen that video, it’s one of my favorites!! Thanks for sharing, John. I think it’s an important video for people to see, it really gives great insight and perspective!

                The video also shows that even when plants are grown in the or one of the most polluted areas of the world and at that point, heavy metals can be elevated in blood, it shows that the benefits of the plants outweighs any effects they have. So the plants also work at protecting against the harm heavy metals in the body can cause.

            2. Re: the benefits of consuming the plants outweighs the negative effects of contamination.

              Sure this is true for all beneficial foods, plant or animal based.

              1. Jerry, that is COMPLETELY FALSE! The negative impacts of animal products, whether the issue is contamination of heavy metals, antibiotics, etc. or even just the natural detrimental impact animal fats and proteins have on the human body have, far outweigh ANYTHING nutritious they have to offer us. The only time this could be true, would be if someone were to immediately face starvation or eat a can of chicken. The can of chicken would be unhealthy, but it would stop one from starving to death in present time. Clearly, like most of the videos on this site, you haven’t even watched the video or attempted to learn before spewing out blatant misinformation based on your own preferred idea of things – science vs. what one wants to believe.

                Here’s where that ignites anger… you are stating your opinions as FACTS which could mislead people and be dangerous.

            3. Re: John: The Apache Indians and the Navaho Indians lived successfully in these desert regions for thousands of year. And yet, they were far away from the ocean, and there were few streams in the desert. How did these Indian nations get there DHA and EPA?

              Using your “logic” or lack of then since the Eskimos don’t eat plant foods then we don’t need to eat plant foods. Since the tiger eats only meat and has all these muscles then we should only eat meat.

              1. Eskimos have a lot of plaque build up in their arteries. Dr. Greger has a video on the Eskimos. They have discovered ancient Eskimos in the ice, and they all have clogged arteries from eating to much meat, blubber, and SATURATED FAT. Bringing up tigers is like comparing apples to oranges.
                Eskimos today have a lot of health problems from eating seal, caribou, whale, and other meats. Jerry, you are wasting your time trying to destroy Dr. Greger’s credibility. He is a much better man than you are.

              2. Jerry, you’re trying to compare an animal of an entirely different species, and one that is a carnivore at that, to human beings? It really shows much learning you have to do. As has been stated, the Eskimos were very unhealthy, so much so that adopting a more westernized diet (a very unhealthy diet) actually improved their health! And btw, they did eat some plants, just very little.

                Here is the video: “https://nutritionfacts.org/video/omega-3s-and-the-eskimo-fish-tale/”

                And a quote within it that I feel is appropriate to share: “Man prefers to believe what he prefers to be true.” –Francis Bacon

                1. Shaylen,

                  You presented a good argument for Jerry Lewis to ponder. He obviously does not understand the Inuit Paradox and its false premise. I was watching a John McDougal video on the dangers of the Eskimo diet and his presentation is super good because he has pictures of autopsies of 500 year old Eskimos.
                  His graphics and references are excellent and of course his speech is very persuasive. I think McDougal has the best video on proving that Eskimos are extremely unhealthy. Here is the link to the video.

    2. I don’t like this guy Mike Adams because of his paranoid/doomsday attitude but sometimes he publishes good stuff and so I still follow him.

      Anyway, he has a lab whereas he tests products for contaminants.

      In the following article, he tested chlorella, a type of microalgae, and all are grown in ponds but some are indoors and some are outdoors. Not surprisingly, the product from China is the most contaminated followed by surprisingly Japan. Taiwan’s and Korea’s are the most clean.

      But then he compares the contamination of chlorella to other vegetables like cabbage and celery then chlorella is much less contaminated. But if you don’t eat contaminated foods in the first place then a little or a lot are equally bad.


  3. Re: But, the good news is that after decades of concern, lead levels in calcium supplements have come down—so much so that lead level changes in your blood, taking the average lead-contaminated calcium supplement, would be “minimal” at this point.

    First of all, calcium is so easy to get from foods, plant and animal, that supplementation is not necessary unless it is due to some special circumstances.

    So if we take supplements, I don’t quite see the goal of this video as it talks about an issue that no longer exists. Apparently the cause is due to the processing and not due to the source where calcium is extracted from, in this case mostly animal bone and oyster shell. If lead exists in bone like this video alleges then why do the calcium supplements don’t have lead anymore? That leads me to believe that the goals of this video are:

    – Trash animal foods as usual and expected, especially consuming bone broth that brings tremendous benefits and has a few downsides.
    – Put a bad name on supplementation. A few bad apples should not spoil the rest of the supplements that in a lot of cases, save lives.

    Other than this, it would be more beneficial if this video shows the DV requirement for calcium and which foods provide it, which are plenty. But sign! The doctor is too busy trashing animal foods rather than discussing nutrition.

      1. Ah yes Will, Jerry is too busy trashing vegans, wfpb folks and Dr Greger to actually READ an article, oe actually WATCH a video! Can’t seem to get the hang of the search feature mon this site either – otherwise Jerry would have noticed these resources on the topic of calcium, and sources of calcium. https://nutritionfacts.org/topics/calcium/

        1. It’s really frustrating to see Jerry making suggestions to people and offering them answers with no cited sources, likely just his own beliefs or opinion, but does so in such a way that gives them impression to those unfamiliar with him, that he is well-researched or has some authority on the subject which we all know is far from true. People don’t come here to be mislead by someone only interested in pushing their bias on everyone and I worry about who he could be harming.

  4. Thank you for warning of the hazards of too many x-rays. I have had several dentists. They never ask how many dental x-rays I’ve already had. They seem to be unaware that the damage of x-rays accumulates. Teeth can be seriously weakened by over use of dental x-rays over the years.

  5. I think this woman’s story is an important one in this video.

    That is, like our computers which tell us to set a restore point each time we make changes to the way they operate, we should stop taking a medication or supplement when, after a period of getting used to, we still feel worse for taking them.

  6. Thank you Dr.Greger and your helpers your doing a great service for the public.I love that there are not pop up ads all over your website like on most other.I was just wonder why Allison Dr. didn’t do a blood test to see if maybe there was some kind of heavy metal contamination causing her problems. He should have told her just to eat more green leafy’s let food be they medicine you know.So sad to think that there are others out there that this probably happened to that never found the answer ; (

  7. Great video. It is very important that we learn about the history of supplements, the history of medicine, the history of nutrition….because those who fail to study history are doomed to repeat it. The story about the actress and her ordeal with lead poisoning and dealing with money grubbing doctors who only “cook book” their diagnoses and treatments is a good history lesson for all of us to be aware that in many cases you have to be your own researcher in order to find out what is causing your health problem. Thank God, we have Dr. Greger’s videos and blogs to help us in our search for better health. This is a good reminder that you can’t always trust your doctor, and remember they have time restraints. They don’t have time to research your unsolved problems. When you go to their clinics they are theoretically allotted 7 minutes of time per patient. That’s why you sit and wait in the examination rooms for such a long period of time. The “good” doctor is visiting 5 other patients in other small cubicle examination rooms.

    The lesson we can learn from this nutritional history lesson about lead in calcium is that you really can’t trust products in the health food store. MLM vitamin companies, health food stores, manufacturers of vitamins, and internet website vitamin stores are out there for only one reason and that is to make a ton of money. They are to busy counting their money to take time to see if their products are safe or not. Human beings have evolved over millions of years without ingesting the latest “wave” of miracle supplement break throughS. All you need is what your ancestors ate: PLANTS….PLANTS….PLANTS…… AND MORE PLANTS.

    1. John, the reason the human species became the Alpha upright big brained humanoid is because of meat and as important meat fat. It fed the growth rate and brain development and humans thrived to become THE dominant survivor . Caught prey weather raw or cooked (mostly it was cooked over a fire as early on man knew the cooking broke down the proteins and meat then could be digested more quickly. the meat and mostly its fat provided 3, 6 9 lipids in perfect balance and the omega 6 was responsible for early human brain growth. Ergo , babies had such big heads they didn’t walk till like 11 months old or more. Ergo breast fed and close to mom for a long time. Omega 6s are mostly responsible for human brain development . Plants have some of that but humans do not have 4 stomachs to process the massive amount of cellulose and phytates plants have that is why cows chew their cud over and over–greens do not break down with one chew and a swallow. Meat cooked does and provides the needed lipid fats and essential and non essential amino acids. So, Plants Plants are nice for ethical reasons and have nutrients (some have anti nutrients) and some have a bit of protein too. However, genetically we are meat eaters. However , we can make vegs and fruit an equal part of the diet too. You would not feed a pet snake cheerios and green salad–it is a meat eater and it would die. Can not change genetics that way. Man may an omnivore but he must choose foods which serve his ability to thrive and choose wisely and use small portions of whatever he eats.

      1. Here is a second video made by Mic. The Vegan on YouTube debunking the idea that human brains evolved because of meat eating. Everyone should watch this video and others that he made which debunk the paleo crowd, and the meat eating crowd who boast that humans only evolved to where we are today because humans were primarily meat eaters. Watch this video, it is fascinating. This video will help you to debate people like Linda.

      2. References please. This is a science site based on evidence. Each fact asserted to be referenced to be believed.

        Eg “genetically we are meat eaters” – research disagrees with you.
        Our ancestors were frugivores. They ate predominantly fruit.
        Ref :

        Looking into the reference we see gems such as:
        “The essence of Walker’s research is that even though humans have adopted omnivorous and carnivorous eating practices, our anatomy and physiology have not changed. We remain biologically a species of fruit eaters”

      3. Linda, Consider what one of our closest biological relatives eat in the wild:


        “Gorillas stick to a mainly vegetarian diet, feeding on stems, bamboo shoots and fruits. Western lowland gorillas, however, also have an appetite for termites and ants, and break open termite nests to eat the larvae.”

        “Charismatic and intelligent animals, gorillas share 98.3% of their DNA with humans. They are our closest cousins after chimpanzees and bonobos.”

        Talk about strong bones, sound teeth, and super strong muscles! And all on a diet of primarily PLANT foods with no supplements :-)

        And as far as I know, they don’t have 4 stomachs either.

        1. WFPB-Hal

          Thank you for that insightful comment on the dietary habits of gorillas.
          That really helps to put into perspective the debate between addicted meat eaters and whole plant food eaters. And, for other readers you can click on the links I shared about the videos Mic The Vegan has put up on YouTube where he debates addicted meat eaters on this issue of evolution and anthropology of humans.

          1. Jerry, If you believe in Darwinian evolution, then of course you believe that you came from the apes. Or, do you not believe in Darwinian evolution?
            Yes, people that eat meat….crave meat. Most meat eaters eat meat 3 times a day. They love their bacon. Nice crispy bacon. Bacon, eggs, and hash browns all cooked in grease. They love it. Ask them what they want for breakfast, the answer is usually bacon and eggs, toast dripping in butter with some fructose laden grape jelly. It would be a rarity for a meat eater to simply ask for oatmeal sprinkled in nutritional yeast and a little bit of pulverized flax seeds and for a side dish of an orange or a grapefruit and maybe some red grapes. Nah….no way….meat eaters crave, and I really mean crave BACON…BACON…BACON. OK, now you ask meat eaters what they want for lunch and the answer is usually tuna fish sandwich with potato chips, or maybe a big JUICY hamburger with melted cheese with french fries on the side and of course a thick, cold milk shake…..Then ask a meat eater what they want for dinner, and their favorite answer is a BIG JUICY STEAK with a side order of a baked potato drenched in butter, sour cream, green onion chips. And of course through out the day some meat eaters are munching on beef jerky or maybe a beef taco or chicken taco. If you take away the meat from a meat eater they don’t like it. Meat gives them pleasure. Their taste buds and brains prefer meat. So yes, they do have a degree of addiction to meat. So, Jerry I take it that you at times have desires and strong urges to fire up the old grill and cook up a nice filet mignon steak. Have you not in the last year had strong desires to munch down on some barbecued beef, barbecued chicken, or barbecued pork? Whole plant food people never have those desires, our taste buds have been reconditioned. We find joy and great taste in the simplest of foods. For example, when I eat red cabbage, I never cook it. I don’t do anything to it. I just get a large kitchen knife and slice off a piece of red cabbage like it was a slice of bread and just eat it raw. I love it. It tastes good in combination with the other raw foods and some cooked foods I eat. I eat Dr. Greger’s DAILY DOZEN everyday. And, it tastes wonderful.

            1. I don’t know any meat eater who has to eat what you described. It is more that people are conditioned to eat certain dishes based on what their parents cook, on what they eat when they go out to restaurants, eat with friends, BBQ at family gathering, etc. So they can envy to eat steak one day, or a salad the next day, Thai Tom Yum soup the next, Spaghetti the next, etc. When you cook with plant foods then there is some extra work to make it as delicious as cooking with meat. A lot of people don’t know how. Myself, I know how to make plant foods delicious because I eat those plant foods often. But most days, I don’t have time to cook a complicated recipe, and so I prepare in a way that it is bearable to eat. Now if you talk about addiction then I feel like eating vegetables if I have not eaten for several hours. So do you call that addiction to plant foods?

              In term of where we came from, that’s a science topic but I only know up to my parents and grandparents.

              The above is just a waste of time to discuss. It is just stereotyping and profiling that meat eaters are this or that type of people. FYI, your parents and ancestors are all meat eaters. Veganism was only born like a few decades ago but it already looks like a religion that you can be jailed or killed if you don’t follow. Does it ring a bell to any religion that you hate based on your past posts?

              1. We are all addicted to food. Some are addicted to healthy foods and some are addicted to unhealthy foods. My eating habits are different than yours Jerry. You, like 99 percent of the human race want your foods to taste good, to be pleasurable. I am like a Spartan. I do not eat for pleasure.
                I eat strictly for health. I never use salad dressing on my salads…I just eat it plain and raw. Take cabbage for example, I’ll wash off a head of red cabbage, get it cleaned up and then I will just slice off a piece, pick it up with my hands and eat it like sandwich….just raw cabbage with nothing added to it. After a while you get used to it and you like it. I don’t think anyone on this forum could follow my eating habits of NO OILS, no dressings, no salt, no “milks”, no sugar, no spices ( a lot of spices like tumeric have lead ). So, getting back to our first debate, the real question is, which addiction is the best addiction to be addicted to?

              2. Jerry

                “Veganism was only born like a few decades ago ”

                The word may only have been coined relatively recently However, vegetarianism as a concept has been around a lot longer and simply means adherence to a diet of vegetables. The current modern usage of using it to mean a diet that excludes meat is clearly in error and contradicted by the word itself: vegeta – rian.

                But these are just words. This way of eating has been around for a very long time. According to Wikipedia “Vegetarianism has its roots in the civilizations of ancient India and ancient Greece”

                In fact, in most civilisations, it seems that the bulk of the population – the poor – probably ate a mostly vegetarian diet

                Odds are that it was not a new practice even then.

                1. The man who coined the term vegan also defined it as not using animals for anything by what is possible and practical. A good example of this is that it is possible and practical not to buy eggs, but if one can’t ensure that the tires on their car don’t contain animal derivatives, it doesn’t make them less of a vegan.

                  Speaking of the idea of veganism being very old, Leonardo da Vinci has actually said “The time will come when men such as I will look upon the murder of animals as they now look upon the murder of men.” He also has other quotes relating to animal rights.
                  For that matter, the Christian bible has many things in it pertaining to a “vegan” diet and lifestyle: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_eAhKIwaj70

          2. Well if things like double “bacon” cheese burgers aren’t addictive Jerry, do explain to me why even people warned by their heart doctors that these things can kill them, still eat them. Also please explain to me why people getting away from these “foods” for health reasons often have such a hard time? I’d call that alone evidence of addiction.

            When our tastebuds are saturated with things like animal fats, salt, and refined sugar, they are altered. This is known. Suddenly fruit doesn’t taste as sweet on the tongue of someone eating a snickers bar a day for a couple of weeks. But It only takes a couple of weeks to regulate them.
            Then there are artificial ingredients added for the purpose of making things more addictive.
            And of course in the case of dairy, there are casomorphins which are an opioid. I know of one study where they conclude that casomorphins are not addictive like morphine, but that study was done on rats. Casomorphins or not, I think it’s extremely evident that the western world is hugely addicted to dairy whether you want to call it addiction or not.

          1. Jerry, then I suggest ridding yourself of all your luxuries, tools, weapons, etc., going out into the jungle and attempting to chase down an animal, kill the animal with those fearsome claws and ferocious little canines of yours, rip them apart, and consume raw their skin, fur, flesh, muscle, organs, brains, etc. Let us know how it goes.

            1. S, should I ask you to be like a monkey and climb tree to pick banana and coconut?

              Where does your kale come from? Is is grown in your yard or do you get from the supermarket? Do you pollinate the plants that you eat or torture the bees to do that work?

              1. Jerry, I wouldn’t be as good at climbing trees as a monkey, but it’s certainly doable, also sounds pretty fun. Unfortunately I don’t live near any coconut or banana trees, also I don’t think banana trees get high enough to require much climbing but I could be wrong.
                However, you absolutely COULD suggest to me that if I want to live like our actual ancestors or like my actual physiology and biology dictates, to go off into the wild and eat as I’m designed to, which would be foraging for plant foods. So yes, yes you COULD ask me to go into the wild and eat plants.
                Since I don’t live in the wild, I have a garden and buy from markets. I don’t torture bees for my garden and bees naturally pollinate on their own, no need for torturing them. I’m also not sure how bees pollinating plants would justify the systematic torture, slavery, abuse, and murder of animals you have no need to consume.

      4. Linda, that theory has been debunked time and time again, it is based off of very poor science. I highly suggest this video which explains it quite well and I’ll provide other links below as well: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xmbG4tJhubM&feature=youtu.be

        Here is another aticle you may find helpful:

        and here is a video by Dr. Greger addressing the problem with the Paleo theory:

        Lastly, I’ll share this article on the subject by Dr. McDouggall:

        Humans never “caught” prey. We do not have the biology or instincts to do so. Humans were not able to hunt animals until they learned to make tools which enabled them to do so and learned how to cook.
        It’s hard to know exactly what our ancestors ate, but what is known is that they ate whatever plants were available from region to region, season to seaoson, and likely the only animlas they ate before they developed tools, were insects. Our ancestors were not the “great hunters” they’re made out to be, they actually lived more like scavengers.
        We do not have the physiology to chase down, kill, or tear apart other animals. We also lack the appropriate means to consume animal flesh raw without causing great harm to ourselves and even death. If anything, if you actually look at the science, consuming meat or other animal products is incredibly harmful to our brains and causes them to shrink.
        Humans didn’t evolve to eat meat, our bodies simply were able to survive on it in desperate times.

        Humans being the “dominant survivor” is a matter of perspective. We’re also single handedly the biggest threat to the planet and all life on it including our own. It’s actually been speculated that human beings act as a cancer in the role we play on this planet and our growth for the sake of growth mentality.

        The “anti nutrients” is another myth that has been debunked by actual science time and time again. The phytic acid which you refer to, does not inhibit nutrient absorption and is even in and of itself, an important nutrient.

        Human beings are not omnivores. The science is overwhelming, but all one needs to do is compare our basic anatomy to other animals. Everything from our teeth to our jaws to our senses to our instincts to our stomach acid to our digestive tracts to our fingernails and so on, indicates that we are biologically designed to consume plants, not animals.

        You are completely onctradicting the insurmountable evidence of a plant based diet being not only optimal to human health, but exactly how nature intended. I suggest you start getting your information from relevant sources as opposed to Paleo blogs. Science vs. hype.

      5. Linda

        This claim that w evolved to our present status because of meat consumption is just an hypothesis. However, it is an hypothesis that meat eaters have elevated to the status of holy writ. They pretend that it is an established fact. It is not. It is just one hypothesis among many. You will nevertheless find many cranks and even otherwise sensible persons loudly proclaiming it is true.

        Some claim we reached our present status because our ancestors ate starchy foods, or fruit, or fish,

        1. This debate is pretty useless. Our ancestors basically ate what they can find where they lived. For instance you cannot expect Eskimos to eat plant foods. Even nowadays, we pretty much eat what our parents ate and what the culture around us eat.

          What changed is that now we are in the information age and global economy and people travel all around the world. So not only we eat foods and cuisine from other cultures because they taste good but we also do for health.

          Born are the Mediterranean diet, and Okinawan diet and China study diet. Problem is that what other cultures eat is twisted around and only told with one side of the storey such as the Okinawan fantasy diet composed of 3% calorie in animal foods and the rest in sweet potato, or the Chinese eat mostly plant foods when in reality the Okinawans and Chinese eat plant foods but also eat a certain amount of animal foods which include saturated fat and cholesterol.

          Anyway I deviate from TG post above to say that nowadays health conscious people in affluent countries, eat the most nutritious foods that other healthy cultures eat regardless of what our parents or closed ancestors eat. For instance, I put turmeric in all kind of dishes regardless of its necessity for flavoring, so that I consume enough turmeric per day. If I follow Indian cuisine then I have to wait until I cook curry to use turmeric.

          1. Actually I’d say the majority of humans eat what the food companies push at them….thus the obesity epidemics around the world. Many of the trade agreements allow commodity growers/processors to sell their industrial food products all around the world…so cheap GMO/pesticide/herbicide laden food ingredients make profits most places. Foods designed to be addictive. They eat advertising?

        2. Sir Robert McCarrison was a doctor from Ireland who traveled extensively in India in the 1920’s , one of the first to record the life style of the Hunza people who some claim at least are the longest lived people in the world . Sir Robert was astonished to find these people to not have any modern diseases . Their chief food was wheat , then milk , vegetables and fruit according to Sir Robert .He set up a experiment using rats , feeding one group like Hunza diet and another group like an English diet . Many of the rats in the English diet perished before the conclusion of the 27 week diet , while none in the Hunza diet did . At 27 weeks the rats were all killed and examined , the Hunza rats were completely free of disease . This is very remarkably different than Campbells conclusion in his rat feeding experiments feeding heat treated casein in isolation .

          1. Thanks Buster but the link appears to be broken.

            Also, I think McCarrison’s experiment concerned a comparison of the Sikh diet with that of poor British people

            “One group was fed on a diet similar to that used by the Sikhs; the other on a diet such as is commonly used by the poorer classes in England. The latter diet consisted of white bread, margarine, over-sweetened tea with a little milk (of which the rats consumed large quantities), boiled cabbage and boiled potato, tinned meat and tinned jam of the cheaper sorts. It has many faults, of which vitamin and mineral deficiencies are the chief”

            I am not sure that comparing the outcomes in rats fed such an unhealthy diet (the WHO has identified processed meat as a class 1 carcinogen for example) with those in rats fed another but less unhealthy diet, is sufficient to demonstrate that milk is healthy. But McCarrison certainly was a fan of milk. However, I think that nutritional science has progressed somewhat since his day. Nevertheless, I would agree that a diet of whole wheat, vegetables and milk products would be superior to a nutritionally inadequate diet of white bread, processed meat, sugar and margarine made with hydrogenated oils

            If I recall correctly, Wrench’s book the Wheel of Health was the one that discussed the Hunza at length. I have a copy but it’s back in Australia. Wrench was a big fan of McCarrison if I recall. According to Wrench thee Hunza diet did include milk products but “The most conspicuous feature of the Hunza diet is the large quantity of fruit they eat, fresh in the summer and at other times dried, either alone or in wheatencakes”

            1. Thanks TG , I have found several books on Hunza . However in Sir Robert McCarrison own words .
              ” my own experience provides an example of a race , unsurpassed in perfection of physique and freedom in from disease in general whose sole food consist of to this day of grains , vegetables and fruits with certain amount milk and butter and meat only on feast days . I refer to the people in the State of Hunza situated in the most extreme northern most part of India . They keep goats and have wheat , barley , maize and a abundance of apricots .” ……”these people live disease free and live extortionately long lives .”
              look into the website ajourneytoforever .org farm library .
              I checked this website for info on Hunza people and came up empty , as did McDougall site . This is unlikely an oversight as there have been many books on Hunza over the years , it most likely has more to do with the selective nature of this site as they would not want to promote the image that a race of people could live healthy on a diet that included dairy and butter . In his experiments on rats using a diet as outlined above he got a very different result than what Campbell got feeding rats casein protein from milk .

          2. Buster, they do the same kind of experiment on the poor lab rats with regard to saturated fat. They feed the rat with nothing but saturated fat and the rat died. Of course. A lot of so called “studies” and “researches” are tailored to produce certain results to get grant money. You are not going to get grant money if you demonstrate that feeding lab rats with fat and let them eat also other foods, will make them more healthy.

            Unfortunately, observational studies are often dismissed because it is not controlled and double blinded. But for me, they are most valuable because it involves hundred of thousand if not billions of people. For instance billions of people in the world eat saturated fat and are healthy. Or Irish who drinks milk and are healthy. Or there are this more scientific study involving 21 studies combined and 347,000 people for like 23 years.


            Results: During 5–23 y of follow-up of 347,747 subjects, 11,006 developed CHD or stroke. Intake of saturated fat was not associated with an increased risk of CHD, stroke, or CVD. The pooled relative risk estimates that compared extreme quantiles of saturated fat intake were 1.07 (95% CI: 0.96, 1.19; P = 0.22) for CHD, 0.81 (95% CI: 0.62, 1.05; P = 0.11) for stroke, and 1.00 (95% CI: 0.89, 1.11; P = 0.95) for CVD. Consideration of age, sex, and study quality did not change the results.

            Conclusions: A meta-analysis of prospective epidemiologic studies showed that there is no significant evidence for concluding that dietary saturated fat is associated with an increased risk of CHD or CVD. More data are needed to elucidate whether CVD risks are likely to be influenced by the specific nutrients used to replace saturated fat.

            1. Jerry

              You linked to the notorious Siri Tarino study. It is widely regarded as flawed (perhaps deliberately so) but the cranks love quoting it. In fact it was recognised as so flawed when it was published that the journal felt compelled to publish an accompanying editorial highlighting some of its many flaws.

              And of course Dr Greger has done an analysis of the misleading nature of this study

              Plant Positive has also done an incisive analysis also

              It is also telling that the charlatans and cranks promoting high saturated fat diets never mention the latest meta analysis of saturated fat consumption and cardiovascular health published 5 years after the Siri Tarino study. It too found no association between saturated fat consumption and heart health. However, it also considered evidence from experimental studies (not just selected observational studies) and concluded that the lack of association was unlikely to be true. One factor is that in Western countries people usually eat refined carbohydrates in place of saturated fat and vice verse. Both are unhealthy. The study therefore concluded “Dietary guidelines for saturated and trans fatty acids must carefully consider the effect of replacement nutrients”

              Little wonder then that the saturated fat crowd never mention this study – except by mistake – and always rely on the old Siri Tarino paper.

      6. Linda, I make a conscious decision to eat certain of selective animal foods on top of plenty of plant foods for my health. Why? it’s because outside of work, I only have certain amount of time to eat and I look at all the nutrients that I need, if I eat only plant foods then I have to eat all day long and still come out short.

        Just imagine a factory worker, or a fireman, policeman/woman, soldier, etc., how do they find the time to eat enough plant foods to get all the protein? Do they have to grab a quick hamburger to eat in 10 minutes and go back to work?

        You may be interested to watch the following two videos:



        1. This argument doesn’t hold water Jerry

          Rip Esselstyn was a fireman and triathlete. He got plenty of protein from plants and had plenty of time to eat them. In fact, he had enough time to also write a book about it.

          It is pretty much impossible to be protein deficient on a varied plant-based diet. However, the meat and dairy industries are obviously keen to promote the role of protein and the whole issue is beset by myths and misunderstandings. Dr Greger has an interesting video on this

          The US RDA is 56 grams of protein a day for men and 46 grams for women (although higher intakes are recommended in pregnancy and for breast feeding). The US National Academies of Sciences report on dietary reference intakes concluded that consuming a varied diet ensures an adequate intake of protein for vegetarians (page 662) https://www.nap.edu/read/10490/chapter/12#662

          There is compelling evidence that consuming too much protein is unhealthy and the US National Academies of Sciences’report also states that no more than 35% of total calories consumed should come from protein “to decrease risk of chronic disease” (page 589)

          Dr Greger has some videos about the science around protein restriction as a life extension strategy eg

          1. Protein and amino acids (essential and conditionally) are two different things. Animal food protein is called “quality protein” for a reason.

            The last time I check, athletes who compete spend their day eating and practicing and exercising.

            I posted several times about the conditional amino acids that are very important as you age. You want to ignore anyway and so there is nothing that I can do.

            The info that Dr G publishes are for general health and general audience, and I understand his focus and his bias toward veganism. But it is not for optimal health I tell you, and not for people with special needs for health.

            1. Sorry Jerry but I prefer to get my information on protein and amino acid requirements from the US National Academies of Sciences rather than unabashed promoters of alternative health ideas which are based on misrepresenting the evidence and faulty reasoning.

              As for the high quality protein claim, my understanding is that this is simply about digestibility not health and safety Google Wikipedia’s summary on “protein qualty”. The link won’t post here.

              i don’t think digestibility is an issue for people in first world countries – we all eat too much protein anyway, even vegetarians. After all, beans, nuts, wheat, oats etc are all high in protein. Michael Bluejay’s page on this tpic is interesting

        2. Street cops typically die 15 years earlier than the regular SAD eaters…due to stress and hamburgers? A quick burger…then back to work?

      7. Exactly Linda.

        We are not monkey and even with soft vegetables, sometimes we need slight cooking in order to absorb the nutrients. And we don’t get protein from eating grass the way that elephants do.

        Even one generation or two can change the way our gene and body structure are made let alone thousands of years away. My parents certainly didn’t eat just fruits or grass.

        And last, our body can take in so much cellulose, lectins and gluten and anti nutrients. If you eat tons of those foods to get enough protein then we will get into other problems.

    2. John, it seems your original comment has gathered a Paleo dieter, a troll, and a dairy industry affiliate. Oh, that reminds me of a joke! A Paleo person, a troll, and a dairy industry affiliate all walk into a bar…

        1. Jerry

          “Conspiracy theory”? You mean like your claim that all the evidence showing that high dietary saturated intake and high levels of blood cholesterol are risk factors for various diseases is “bogus” and “faked”?

          And we don’t need a conspiracy theory. Buster has already told us that he is employed to promote dairy products in online communities such as this. All credit to him for being honest about it..

  8. Two thumbs up on this one to Dr. Greger – just for relating the heroic though personally tragic story of film actress Allison Hayes. But even if most calcium supplements today have a lot safer lead levels than they used to (though given the variation in levels from batch to batch, even from reputable companies, it still seem a bit like playing Russian roulette) calcium supplements unfortunately do not seem the only source of lead, or the most egregious.

    Turmeric has pretty much made it to the top of my list as a superfood, a food that now has an impressive set of benefits, validated by an ever expanding set of well-controlled research studies. ( Dr Greger has highlighted many of these in his videos: https://nutritionfacts.org/?fwp_search=turmeric&fwp_content_type=video )

    And because of this, many people for the best of reasons have started increasing the amount of turmeric powder or curry powder in their diet, or begun taking it as a supplement to improve their health. Unfortunately, some of these people – perhaps even many of these people, not because of environmental contamination, but because of the deliberate adulteration of this product with lead chromate, adding enough to improve (believe it or not) its COLOR ( https://nam04.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.astaspice.org%2Fthe-american-spice-trade-associations-statement-on-lead-in-turmeric%2F&data=02%7C01%7C%7Cb07ba040400f4c4eafd708d547d98b0f%7C84df9e7fe9f640afb435aaaaaaaaaaaa%7C1%7C0%7C636493922015042000&sdata=dYqoKvJgE2FaOui8TMjVkC96OLbx5Au2E5cZyif4FLE%3D&reserved=0 See also “Ground Turmeric as a Source of Lead Exposure in the United States” https://nam04.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fjournals.sagepub.com%2Fdoi%2Ffull%2F10.1177%2F0033354917700109&data=02%7C01%7C%7Cb07ba040400f4c4eafd708d547d98b0f%7C84df9e7fe9f640afb435aaaaaaaaaaaa%7C1%7C0%7C636493922015042000&sdata=zZLhCoP0dT%2BvL0na%2BVO%2B%2FjA2llOzIJPbGQTFWfGOZX4%3D&reserved=0 )

    Because of this I looked for sources that certify that they test their products for lead and optimally, also that their product meets California Prop 65 limits ( https://nam04.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.americanbiosciences.com%2Fproduct%2Fprop-65%2F&data=02%7C01%7C%7Cb07ba040400f4c4eafd708d547d98b0f%7C84df9e7fe9f640afb435aaaaaaaaaaaa%7C1%7C0%7C636493922015042000&sdata=ZPi8ac3tXp%2F6aD7fOe5Y4dfSQ%2FGEz%2BceS%2FfqekCa%2BcQ%3D&reserved=0 ) of 0.5 mcg / day for lead.

    The turmeric powder I use comes from: https://naturerestore.com/pages/our-story (Inexpensively available through Amazon):
    “Nature Restore also wanted to make sure that every supplement label actually contains the exact amount stated. Each and every product we provide to you yields the lowest amount of heavy metals possible (all soil contains minute amounts of metals), no pesticides, no plant-based fillers, and no synthetic vitamins & minerals.

    All of our ingredients have a specification sheet, and each production batch goes to a third-party for independent verification of metals, pesticides and gluten status.”

    Of course, you have to take their word for it – foods and supplements often have carry labels that misrepresent the contents – but at least this California company claims to have addressed this problem for the products they sell, rather than ignore it.

    Videos like this, and the ones on arsenic, make we wonder what other toxins lie hidden even in some of the healthiest foods out there, not just because of what we have done to the planet, but because of sloppy or even unscrupulous business practices of manufacturers wanting to increase profits in a woefully under-regulated and unsupervised industry.

        1. Yeah, I’ve been aware of these rumblings. That’s why your link is important because you’ve apparently done the work to insure its safety.

        2. I wonder if all of those tumeric loving, tumeric eating Indians, Pakistanis, and Asians have also read the headlines? And how long has tumeric been contaminated? If it was really that bad you would think that the Indians, Pakistanis, and Asians would be the canary in the mine shaft. Or, maybe, even the VEGANS and Whole Plant Food eaters would be the canary in the mine shaft because a LOT of people and I mean a LOT of people on this forum take a lot of tumeric.

          1. Not contaminated, but deliberately adulterated, adding enough lead chromate to actually change the color of turmeric powder! That amount of lead presumably seems a LOT more than what shows up in merely contaminated foods and supplements in the ppb range, such as green tea, chocolate, or calcium carbonate or bone meal.

            1. I wonder if the lead in calcium supplement in the past as mentioned in this video, is deliberately adulterated by adding lead chromate?

              1. Not likely.

                They add lead chromate to color turmeric or curry powder a brighter yellow-orange, to make it more appealing to the consumer, who expects it to look that way.

                In contrast, people associate white with calcium, like healthy white teeth and bones, and making a calcium supplement yellow-orange would lower its value and make it a lot less attractive.

    1. I have stopped taking Turmeric supplements due to a condition I had where my blood sodium was decreased dangerously low. A doctor in formed me that there
      was a chance caused from turmeric although the possibility odds were like 1 in a thousand or more.. Perhaps I am the one. So far no problem with my sodium in several months.

      1. Rondom,

        Your testimony is interesting concerning the use of tumeric and how it may have lowered your sodium. It just goes to show you that no matter what the double blind studies and other research seems to prove or disprove, nutrition is not a simple, clear cut science where one size fits ALL. For example, my cousin who is now 83 years old and he is 6 foot 4 inches tall has always weighed in around 250 or 275 mostly muscle and has always been on a SAD diet. He eats twice what a normal person would eat. It would be nothing for him to go back to the buffet 3 or 4 times and load up his SAD plate. And yet, he has seldom ever been sick, and today he has slowed down quite a bit, but he still drives, putters around the house, and still eating food like a ravenous wolf. Go figure ? But, in general terms, most people cannot get away with such a dietary life style. Eating the way he does would kill most of us. There are just some people who have strong genes that protect them from outrageous diets and foods. But, the majority of us have to dot or I’s and cross our T’s.

    2. I don’t worry about contamination too much in whole turmeric or whole amla, which is what I buy. Powder can have all kinds of things in there that they aren’t honest about.
      JohN S

    3. Consumerlab.com does a good job testing supplements. They list about 30 calcium supps that have OK levels of lead and other heavy metals, even by California standards. So, there are many safe calcium supps re too much lead. Many in the above video are (much) older forms that are much less used today. Interestingly, the only unacceptable calcium supp they listed, re too much lead, was a “food based” supp. :-))

      If you have any concerns about any supps, check them out at Consumerlab.com. There are many safe supps….

      1. Careful eater,

        Nicely done….. indeed there are low lead level supplements. As a consumer, you can easily ask your supplement company for a third party assay and get more of the story, including other toxin and excipient contents. Many of the bands listed are low in lead….. however do you want the other contents in their products ?

        If your supplement company has no 3rd party validation, be wary and chose another option and don’t forget to see how the assay was done. Good brands are transparent and will gladly answer your questions.

        The Consumer lab approach is brand limited and in the calcium review only 3 “physician” brands are present. It’s understandable as good independent testing is both costly in terms of time and finances. You might note that the Consumer lab policy is as follows:

        There is a testing fee paid by the manufacturer and results are proprietary to the manufacturer. However, if a product “Passes,” it may appear in CL’s Web site listing of the respective Product Review with a footnote indicating that it was tested through the Quality Certification Program. A product that “Passes” is also eligible to carry the CL Seal of Approval upon acceptance by the manufacturer of the CL Seal Use License Agreement (described below).

        I personally know a number of supplement manufacturer owners who because of the cost and diversity of the many groups having “certifications” chose not to participate. This is not due to poor quality, but time and cost exclusively. So don’t just look at this list….get the whole story and check out your brand.

        Dr. Alan Kadish moderator for Dr. Greger http://www.Centerofhealth.com

    4. It’s important when buying spices, powders, etc., to get from companies who do their own testing and have traceability as to where their products come from. The more transparency, the better. I usually contact companies directly and when some do not respond at all or seem reluctant when they do or do not give clear answers, it is a huge red flag to me. Anyways, thanks for posting. The more people become aware, the less and less these companies will be able to get away with things. And I also think the more people reach out and contact companies and ask questions, ask to see test results even, the better things will get as well. Putting the specific information out there, as you have in your post alef1, also helps people know what questions to ask.
      We do the best we can and things seem to be getting better as consumers become more aware.

      “Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.”

    5. Re: deliberate adulteration of this product with lead chromate, adding enough to improve (believe it or not) its COLOR

      This a good tidbit to know. I start to look at all of my supplements to see if they have this.

      A long time ago before I know anything about nutrition, I started to have arthritis. So I ate turmeric along with pepper but it didn’t help. Then I took a curcumin supplement and it worked within days. Since then, my arthritis was gone after I ate healthy but I continue to eat fresh turmeric and take curcumin supplement at the same time for precaution because it worked at one time.

      About the Natural Restore brand, Alef, do you know where do they source their turmeric? I want to use turmeric powder rather than using the rhizome so that I consume more turmeric but all turmeric in powder form comes from either India or China.

      1. Turmeric is very easy to grow. This summer I am going to grow a lot, then dry and grind it into powder to eat throughout the year.

  9. What about the calcium fortified foods, they have added calcium carbonate. I drink fortified organic soy milk, how would I know if it’s lead level are elevated from the added calcium ?

    1. Well, you could buy a mass spectrometer and learn how to use it, or send a sample to a reputable laboratory.

      But the next batch might give you a very different result than the one you tested. The same applies to Consumer labs tests. Just because they test one batch from a specific company and it comes up clean, does not insure that the next batch would give the same result.

      You can email the company that makes your soy milk and ask if they do any heavy metal testing, and if they do, how often, but more than likely, if they care about this issue at all, they trust their supplier to do the testing, and simply trust in their suppliers assurance they they supply a clean product without doing any tests themselves to make sure. Caveat Emptor.

      Tests cost money – and routine testing – especially for small companies – can really cut into the bottom line. At least now the problem has become a lot smaller – in calcium supplements – than 30 years ago. Thanks to Allison Hayes – and NOT to the FDA – we at least know about this problem, but not I feel certain, about many, many, others.

    2. BlueBird, it might be possible to buy plain soy milk, made from just water and soybeans (preferably organic). EdenSoy and WestSoy are two brands that I’ve seen; I understand that there are others. They also make a great soy yogurt. Or, you can make soy milk at home from whole soybeans (preferably organic; I order my soybeans online). I don’t even filter it anymore, we just shake up the sediment and use it — but only on granola and oatmeal, and for baking (waffles and such). We don’t drink soy milk, just water. I try to avoid fortified foods; if I wanted to take supplements — which is what fortification is — I would buy my own. I think it’s much better to get your calcium from your food.

      1. To much calcium is also as bad as too little if you are not eating a health diet where you might get enough. Excess might be in the arteries where it can be like plaque and affect circulation.

        1. They looked at 227 men and women 60 years or older. They used MRI scans to determine the total amount of brain lesions each person had. Then they correlated the results with calcium supplements. The results are scary.

          The results “revealed that supplement users had greater lesion volumes than non-users.” And this was true regardless of calcium intake from food, age, sex, race, years of education, depression, and even hypertension.

          In fact, the researchers stated, “The influence of supplemental calcium use on lesion volume was of a magnitude similar to that of the influence of hypertension, a well-established risk factor for lesions.” What they are saying is that as bad as having high blood pressure is for your brain, calcium supplements seem to be every bit as bad! Once again in their own words, “The present study demonstrates that the use of calcium-containing dietary supplements, even low-dose supplements, by older adults may be associated with greater [brain] lesion volumes.”

          Hopefully this study will put the final nails in the coffin of calcium supplements for bone health. That said, I have to also say that there is a place for calcium supplements. On a daily basis, taking 500 mg or less per day is fine for general health. Taking more than that should be reserved for when there is a medical reason for them.

          Frank Shallenberger, MD

          1. “In 1994, based on its investigation of several extremely serious complaints from his patients and their loved ones, the Medical Board of California found that Dr. Frank A. Shallenberger was subject to multiple disciplinary actions due to “gross incompetence,” “repeated acts of gross negligence,” and “acts of dishonesty and corruption which are substantially related to the qualifications, functions, or duties of a physician and surgeon.” In response, Dr. Shallenberger chose not to contest the Board’s findings, but to surrender his license to practice medicine in the state of California.”

            1. TG,
              Thanks for exposing the background of this poster! I wonder if Dr Greger has considered doing an investigation into which of the trolls on this website are being paid. It seems to me that a nice law suit may be in order. After all, they are causing damage to his website and I would think he would be entitled to some compensation for that.

              1. I agree! We need a lawsuit and Darwin Esq will lead. He can sue on ground that freedom of speech does not apply to this web site.

                1. Jerry, no one mentioned your name. You must have a guilty conscience!

                  And companies do get sued for stating false claims about their products like you continually do here.about nutrition.

                  NutritionFacts is the most tolerant nutrition website around when it comes to free speech. All of your favorite fake nutrition gurus ban people who disagree. But you are beyond disagreeing. Your purpose seems to be destruction and the spewing of false information day after day, the same thing over and over again: “Eat saturated fat, it’s great for you.”

            2. Tom,
              This “doctor” was quoted in January of last year on NutritionFacts.org. I took the liberty of re-posting your comment above. Thanks for all you do.

            3. https://epic.org/foia/epic-v-dhs-media-monitoring/

              In February 2011, the Department of Homeland Security announced that the agency planned to implement a program that would monitor media content, including social media data. The proposed initiatives would gather information from “online forums, blogs, public websites, and messages boards” and disseminate information to “federal, state, local, and foreign government and private sector partners.” The program would be executed, in part, by individuals who established fictitious usernames and passwords to create covert social media profiles to spy on other users. The agency stated it would store personal information for up to five years.

  10. Would calcium supplementation be beneficial for me considering that I was diagnosed with osteogenesis imperfecta, more commonly called brittle bone disease? It’s one of the milder forms but a recent bone scan shows osteopenia which means my bones are beginning to weaken. My wife and I have been eating 98% vegan for the past year and a half. Now my doctors tell me I need to start eating yogurt every day and take two 600mg calcium capsules with vitamin D daily even though my current 25-Hydroxy vitamin D level is 36 ng/mL which is in the normal range. I’ve already asked this on the McDougall forum but received no reply from the doctor or his staff. Perhaps no one has a good answer in my case.

    1. I can only offer you something that won’t hurt you and might help you.

      A few years ago I read that 6 dried plums (prunes) a day will keep your body from stealing calcium from your bones. I’ve searched for the link on my computer previously but can’t find it. If I do I’ll post it here.

      1. Hi I’m a moderator with NutritionFacts. It is common advice for osteoporosis and other bone conditions to increase calcium intake. Yet Americans consume more dairy than almost any population in the world and yet have one of the highest hip fracture rates in the world, a reliable indicator of osteoporosis. So something is not adding up here.
        One of the conclusions from the famous China Study by Dr. Colin Campbell, which Dr. Greger often references, was that animal protein and excessive calcium suppresses the production of vitamin D which sets up an environment for a number of diseases, including bone disease like osteoporosis. Dairy food has both animal protein and large amounts of calcium. The study also concluded that animal protein has also been shown to create an acid condition in the body. When this happens, the body pulls calcium from the bones to neutralize this. This only weakens the bones.
        Dr. Greger has some videos on dairy and osteoporosis you might like.

        Lots of information there. I really hope that helps you out.

        Nutrition Facts Moderator

      2. Lonie and Randy, dried plum contains vitamin K and other bioactives. Vitamin K helps routed the calcium to the bones instead of other organs such as kidney creating kidney stone. To get calcium to the bones, you need 3 things:

        1) eat calcium rich foods of course (or take an organic calcium supplement if you really have to)
        2) Have vitamin D either from the sun or from supplement
        3) vitamin K, either from dried plum or from K2 sources such as Japanese Natto or from supplementation.


        Dried plum is better than dried prune. I don’t know what the difference between dried and fresh plum but the study used dried plums.

        Dried plums must contain other bioactive nutrients beside vitamin K because a number of foods such as kale and spinach also contains vitamin K, but that’s K1.

        I read that for vitamin K to be absorbable by the body then you need vitamin K2.

        1. Jerry

          Good link, thanks. It was a useful summary of the research. However it was funded by the California Dried Plums Board so a certain amount of caution is appropriate.

          Note also that dried plums are prunes (as it says in your linked article). Apparently the marketers concluded that prunes have a bad image so they are now marketing them as dried plums instead. It is a bit like ‘kiwifruit” – these were always called Chinese gooseberries but in 1959 some New Zealand company decided for marketing reasons to call them kiwifruit instead and the rest, as they say, is history.

          The Oregon State University LPI has a good summary of what is known about vitamin K. Life Extension Foundation also has some good articles on this topic but since they basically make their money from selling supplements, including vitamin k supplements, they do have a financial conflict on interest in this area.

          1. Now TG, you have the tendency of accusing anyone to have conflicts of interest if they sell something or if they are pro meat eating. You need to look at the merit of what they write. And making money is not a crime. For instance Google and Apple make money by selling goods but that does not mean that any research coming out from them or even their products are not for the good of humanity. So if you look under each article, be it written by the kiwi or plum association or Life Extension or Mercola, first you see their reasoning and then you see their list of references and then you will evaluate the merit of each research or article.

            Now it is extreme to compare but I am sure that the terrorists are not doing for money but it is for their twisted ideology. So doing something not for money is not always good.

            As far as kiwi, I eat it almost daily first because it is delicious and then I always get the hunch that anything with a lot of seeds is good for you because seed is life.

            I read about vitamin K2 versus K1 from research articles a long time ago before I read from LE.

            1. Yes, Jerry. I didn’t say that we should ignore those papers merely that we should be cautious about their conclusions and recommendations.

              People selling products are never going to conclude that their products are unhealthy or useless, are they? They are always gouing to find reasons why we should buy their products…

              And yes, I believe that Chinese gooseberries/kiwifruit are very good for you. Unfortunately, they are rarely available where I live in the Philippines and very expensive when they are.

    2. Randy, I think it’s imperative you watch this video: https://nutritionfacts.org/video/are-calcium-supplements-safe/

      When you’re done, I suggest watching the other suggested videos in the doctor’s note section.

      I am no authority on this, but what about adding more calcium rich plant foods to the diet and then getting your blood tested after a few weeks? There are so many plant foods rich in high levels of calcium, for example there’s a lot of calcium in a single tablespoon of chia seeds (from my understanding, they should be ground first just like flax for bioavailability). Lonie’s prune suggestion couldn’t hurt to try. But yogurt definitely would as dairy is so unhealthy and actually has a negative impact on bone health especially in men according to the above video. And Dr. Greger addresses those issues in other videos which you’ll see linked in Doctor’s notes in the video I linked here.

      This article was really helpful to me when I was first looking into calcium: http://www.vegparadise.com/calcium.html

      Good luck! I hope you get a response from McDougall or Dr. Greger or someone from his team.

  11. Damn! After recent video I bought Kirkland calcium supplement 600mg for my breastfeeding wife to reduce baby’s lead exposure. Should I cancel my “prescription” now? Does anybody have any lab test for Kirkland calcium supplement?

    1. I never take any kind of calcium pill. I just don’t trust the sellers, the providers, and the manufacturers. I get plenty of calcium from eating spinach, aurugula, and kale.

      1. But John, how do you know those foods are grown in soils that aren’t high in metals? (Some farms have taken the gunk left over in water treatment and spread it on their fields as fertilizer… metals, pharmaceuticals, bacterium… you name it.)

        Sure they may claim their produce is metal free, but if you don’t trust supplement sellers why would you trust food sellers? Of course you could grow your own but then you’ve got to have your soil tested and fertilizer tested (especially if it is organic)…

        Just seems to me we have to do our due diligence and then trust our findings… oh, and insure we get the nutrients needed to ward off any ill effects from food/supplement problems that may have slipped through.

        1. I remember Dr. Greger had a video he made some time back that said that the heavy metals that might be in the soil, and then might get into the edible plant is changed in some way so that your body does not absorb it, but instead your body is able to get rid of it. I’ll have to go back and revisit that video. But, anyhow, I’ll take my chances with the produce in the fruit and vegetable department over the processed foods in the canned good section, dairy section, meat section, and the deli. You just have to choose the lesser of two evils. If people can survive up into their 70’s and 80’s eating processed foods and avoiding the produce section then surely we can do just as good or better by avoiding processed foods and eating primarily from the produce section even if their is some heavy metals.

          1. It’s funny that vegans have such a special body that they can eat plants that are grown on sludge, or turmeric or spices laced with heavy metals, and they cannot be affected because their body flushes out all pollutants. I also heard that vegans don’t need to eat much DHA/EPA because their body is special.

            1. Jerry,

              All of the whole plant food folks on this forum seem to be doing good with their omega 3’s, B-12, protein, and such. Eating a diet without meat, dairy, eggs, or cheese is not going to hurt you. There are MMA fighters that are vegan. There are athletes that are vegan. There’s a video on YouTube about Dr. Ellsworth Wareham, M.D. He is a cardio thoracic surgeon.
              He is interviewed in this video, and Dr. Wareham says that he has been a vegan most of his life. The most impressive thing about this vidoe is that Dr. Wareham is 98 years old. I said 98 years old. He still mows his lawn.
              He even assists other doctors in surgery. The guy has all of his faculties.
              This is a must video for everyone on this forum. Jerry, I hope you watch this video, even if you disagree with Dr. Wareham, I think you will be impressed with him and all that he has accomplished in life as a vegan.
              Here’s the link. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FX58PyQwrcI

            2. Jerry

              That’s not true and the actual facts have nothing whatsoever to do with “vegans”‘. That’s just your personal hang-up in action.

              Heavy metals in plants are often bound to insoluble fibre and excreted. this may be why the bioavailability of heavy metals from plant foods is thought to be less than that from animal foods. This applies to everybody who eats plants foods, omnivore or vegetarian. A summary of the topic is here.

              Studies suggest that people who don’t eat fish (including meat eaters who don’t eat fish) are more efficient at converting ALA into DHA/EPA than fish eaters

              “Conclusions: Substantial differences in intakes and in sources of n−3 PUFAs existed between the dietary-habit groups, but the differences in status were smaller than expected, possibly because the precursor-product ratio was greater in non-fish-eaters than in fish-eaters, potentially indicating increased estimated conversion of ALA. If intervention studies were to confirm these findings, it could have implications for fish requirements.”

  12. Awesome video. Thanks once again or always getting the truth out there! I’m sure Allison Hayes would be pleased… so tragic. This kind of stuff must have happened so much more than people realize, and of course still does. Getting the truth out there like this can only help to prevent it as awareness is raised. You’re a pioneer.

  13. After watching dr G’a last video on calcium and giving it to pregnant women and then losing more bone calcium after, Leads me to believe we probably have an artificially inflated calcium in our diet, and so are our recommendation on daily intake. But I’ve got really good bones to this point after some life tragedies and very few broken.
    After a blood test was rated as low in calcium. But when ever I took any calcium supplements I would have excess inflammatory response. Later, I started taking vitamin D in the winter and found it helped with sleep and also it kept calcium from causing inflammation. Not sure what the research says but it appears if you’re not outside from April till September and or don’t take vitamins D then Calcium supplentms are probably harmful.

    So if our bodies are getting to much calcium, and sodium, and and we get accustom to that, is it possible when we try to reduce those , similar to the ladies in Africa, who got inflated calcium, might we actually see test results too low?

    1. The only ketchup recipe I ever used involved allspice, tomato paste, maple syrup (dates might work), apple cider vinegary, and salt to taste. I haven’t made it in ages, but I would like to again soon. It came out really good although I don’t remember the amounts and would have to search the internment for the recipe to find it again. Love it with baked sweet potato “fries,” which is just plain sliced sweet potato baked using parchment paper to prevent sticking, no oil needed.

      1. With the salt in it, I could just go and buy a bottle from the store. Miso instead perhabs, and then date syrup and your spices. Thanks.

  14. Before and AFTER pictures of people who went vegan or whole plant food based diets. In this video, Mic. The Vegan shows dramatic pictures of people overweight and how they lost weight and regained their health by going on a whole plant food diet. We talk about numbers, studies, and theories on this forum, but we need to actually look a real people on a whole plant food diet in order to be motivated and to know that our diet is really helping people. Here’s the LINK:

    1. These video channels like Mic the vegan are already available on youtube and youtube notifies you when new channel videos arrive, why post them here?

      1. Not everyone is familiar with Mic The Vegan. He agrees completely with Dr. Greger. He just has a different way of explaining things. Besides that, Dr. Greger does not have a video showing people’s before and after pictures with success of eating a whole plant food diet. The idea of this forum is the SHARE information. Everyone, on this forum has shared LINKS that are not a link to Dr. Greger’s videos. So, you should not have a problem with me sharing a link of Mic The Vegan that supports what Dr. Greger is teaching, unless you are anti-Dr. Greger.

  15. QUOTE from Dr. Greger’s video: “But, the good news is that after decades of concern, lead levels in calcium supplements have come down—so much so that lead level changes in your blood, taking the average lead-contaminated calcium supplement, would be “minimal” at this point. So, these findings on supplement lead contamination should be a cause for “celebration,” not “alarm”—or at least according to a calcium supplement manufacturer consultant.” ACCORDING TO A CALCIUM SUPPLEMENT MANUFACTURER CONSULTANT. Are all of you willing to take the word of a calcium supplement consultant? yeah….right.

    1. It simply does not matter John, eating whole foods will give you ample amounts of calcium. And plant based sources are perhabs 1/3th more bioavailable then animal sources lowering your daily DRI even further.

      1. One gets plenty of calcium on a whole foods plant based diet, it’s easy to exceed the RDA. Our bodes are very intelligent and absorb what we need from food and excrete the rest, that is in the case of plants. With animal products, we don’t have the same mechanisims to stop absorption such as in the case of iron and copper can be dangerous from animal sources and I believe zinc may be as well.

        If someone is concerned, or even just curious, it’s easy enough to get your blood tested for calcium. I don’t supplement and my calcium levels can back really good. I do supplement with vitamin d at 5000IU a day, so that may help with absorption.

      2. Hi Dr. Greger. I went back and read your information page on calcium supplements. You do not recommend supplementing and state an increased risk of heart disease, stroke and death. Not good! So I’m wondering if the calcium in unsweetened soy milk, tofu, fortified orange juice, etc… would fall into the category of a supplement? So also bad? Thanks

        1. I personally stopped using Pacific Brands of soy milk, almond milk, and hemp milk because they put A LOT OF calcium in those drinks to make the texture feel a little heavy just like whole milk feels when you drink it. The only calcium I get is from plants. I eat a bowl of mixed greens 3 times a day.
          When you get calcium from plants you are getting ORGANIC calcium. When you get calcium from supplements or as an additive to foods and hemp milk you are getting INORGANIC calcium. There are many people who say that your body has a tendency to store INORGANIC calcium not in the bones, but in the arteries and other organs which then become kidney stones, gallstones, and the such. For millions of years human beings thrives and lived long lives without calcium additives or supplements. Go back to the 1800’s, if you could survive infections, survive accidents, and ate from your garden, and got sunshine and plenty of exercise you could live up to 90 years of age WITHOUT calcium supplements or additives in your food.

        2. I do not believe there is any peer reviewed evidence on this, but I think the current consensus is in the amount of calcium which translates into rate of absorption and maximum blood levels. If the food has a small amount of calcium and you’re eating it over time, then you won’t spike your blood levels and therefore will reduce the chances of calcification or other bad things happening. That said, Dr. G always recommends “whole food”, but none of what you listed is a whole food. They are all processed and have their own inherent problems. Soy milk often has a lot of fat and all the fiber has been thrown away. Tofu has a much higher % of calories from fat as compared to whole soy beans. Juice is mostly sugar and no fiber, which has been shown to increase the risk for diabetes. Best to eat soy beans and oranges instead.

          Dr. Ben

          1. Hi, Dr. Ben,

            What do you eat for breakfast? I use unfortified organic soy milk with raw oatmeal, a tbsp of chia seeds, and fruit, (berries and a banana,) but it takes quite a bit of soy milk to moisten the oatmeal. Do you have some breakfast suggestions for me?

            1. What you’re eating sounds good to me….except for the soy milk since its a processed non-whole food. I can’t eat oatmeal because I can eat too much and get fat. I eat like a monkey and call it “Going Gorilla” (it just sounds fun…..even though gorillas probably don’t have access to all this food). My breakfast and all other meals are the same and consist of varied choices from the following (ALL RAW) VEGGIES (broccoli/sweet potato/cabbage/asparagus/spinach/kale) and NUTS (almonds/walnuts/pinenuts/peanuts/pecan/macs) and FRUIT (papaya/blueberries/ apples/oranges/mango/banana/watermelon). Notice how total processing could be done with a knife in about 10 seconds right after harvesting the food item from it’s parent plant, i.e. its all unprocessed, raw, whole food plant based. A lot of my fruit is frozen and I eat it that way since it slows down consumption which Dr. G has shown to decrease total consumption, which I require, since I tend to get fat. Same for the raw veggies; i.e. cooked veggies like sweet potato are WAY too easy to eat by the truckload. I can demolish 4 giant baked sweet potatoes in about 15 minutes, but a single raw sweet potato will last me two days. No need for the last part strategies if you don’t have a weight problem.

              BTW, I do love oatmeal, so when I “cheat” and eat it, I just add water.

              Dr. Ben

                1. We talk a lot about rat lung encephalopathy here in Hawaii but it’s extremely rare. I’m not a big fan of lettuce which is where the slugs and snails would be hiding. The vast majority of what I eat is actually imported to the islands, I wouldn’t be at risk.

                  Dr. Ben

                1. It’s actually really good. First I tried regular potato raw since my office manager loves it. I don’t, but it’s ok. Then I went to Bali and saw how they feed all the temple monkeys piles of raw sweet potatoes. I thought “hmmm, probably 95%+ DNA conserved between me and my little cousins, so if its good for them then it must be good for me.” I was really surprised when I first ate it. It tastes like a carrot but without that “dirt” taste which I really don’t like about carrots. The other thing is that it necessarily has a lower glycemic load since you just can’t eat it very quickly or very much like a cooked sweet potato. The only drawback to me is that a cooked sweet potato tastes better than a candy bar to me, so the raw version just leaves me pining for the cooked.

                  Dr. Ben

                    1. That’s great! But have you tried baking them in the oven at 450 in their own skin for 1.5 hours (big sweet potatoes. 1 hr for small)? They lose about 25% of their water, shrink down and caramelize. It may not be the healthiest according to Dr. G’s vids on high heat cooking, but they are better than candy bars.

                      Dr. Ben

                    2. Ah, that is likely much healthier since max temp is probably near that of boiling water in a microwave oven, but it won’t taste anything like the oven cooked version. Whatever you do, do NOT put it in the oven at 450F for 1.5 hours like I outlined. It will taste waaay too amazing and you won’t be able to stop eating them….just like me :)

                      Dr. Ben

  16. This just came to mind… there are a lot of supplements out there aimed mostly at women, for collagen production using collagen from animals (both land animals and fish). I wonder if those supplements could be similar to the original calcium supplement issue in regards to lead contamination.

    1. No, and you are just paranoid and mislead. Collagen supplement is mainly made from pig skin, a leftover. Skin cannot store lead just from a physiological point of view.

      1. Jerry, I wasn’t looking for more of your nonsense when I made my post. Actually, if you look it up, most collagen is made from chicken or fish collagen. At a health food store I frequent, I used to constantly see this “beauty collagen booster” supplement powder and even chewy candies (that was not the exact name, but you get the point), of course while I wasn’t vegan at the time, I was a vegetarian and they used cow bone in their supplements. Of course I was only ever initially drawn to the chewy fruit candies that promised to be good for the skin.
        This is nowhere near being paranoid, I have never taken nor would I ever take (obviously) a collagen supplement and think they’re ridiculous even if they were plant based. But I do think it’s scary to think of all the women who might believe the promise of better skin through these supplements and could possibly be experience harm in the same or similar way as this actress and many other did, and that actually does make me very sad and worried for people. I should think you’d be more concerned about others than your own relentless and baseless promotion of all things supplemental and animal product. What a selfish person you are.

        1. I meant to say I was a vegetarian and they used cow bones in their supplements, so I never considered them… the candies did look good though, prior to reading the ingredients. And who wouldn’t want candy promised to nourish one’s skin?

      2. Also, who were you implying I was being “mislead” by? Dr. Greger? Allison Hayes? The scientific community? The FDA? Are you implying that this was all just a ruse? And that questioning things is being paranoid? So ridiculous.

        1. Actually, I watch the videos and read and view the RESEARCH and EVIDENCE which leads me to think for myself. Perhaps if you allowed yourself to to do the same, you wouldn’t feel the need to troll here.

  17. Hey everyone….watch Dr. Greger being interviewed by “Happy Cow Vegan Guide” on a cruise ship in Norway. Dr. Greger answers some very interesting question about myths people seem to harbor about eating and nutrition. For example, Dr. Greger answers the question: “Does drinking water before a meal or during a meal dilute our gastric acids and create a problem for our digestion and absorption of nutrients?” What I like about this video is that Dr. Greger shows how much knowledge he has in his mind and can deliver that knowledge on the fly without any hesitation. Dr. Greger is a walking encyclopedia of nutrition. Here’s the LINK: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FsYqiQBlZnQ

    1. Jim, can’t answer your question on calcium, but you can find brand without fortifications. My favorite is New Barn, but I also like Malk. If I’m using it as an ingredients or soup or something savory like that, I go with Malk because New Barn is very almond-y (they use more almonds than most milks) which while tastes AMAZING, it doesn’t translate well into savory recipes or at least the one I’ve tried anyway.
      For another unfortified plant milk option, West Soy is completely unfortified but it’s of course soy milk, not almond.

  18. Hi Guys,

    I have been following the WFPB diet now for around 6 months and I am interested in finding out if Shilajit is good for you. It is plant based and therefore should have good health benefits. Would any of the learned community care to comment please?


    1. First I’ve heard of it. But just because something is plant based doesn’t necessarily mean it can’t be harmful. Noni fruit juice and powder was long promoted and sold as a health supplement and actually still is, but is actually harmful and can be very dangerous. Dr. Greger has a video on that.
      You have to be careful about the supplement industry and health food industry. I have no idea about shilajit, it definitely looks intriguing but I think it’s best not to take things before they’re studied. The first things that come to my mind is heavy metal concerns.
      If you’re looking at it for mineral supplementation, I would say that you’re better off just eating the whole foods Dr. Greger recommends in his Daily Dozen. A WFPB should more than efficient.
      Hopefully someone else here can offer some more insight into Shilajit.

      1. Hi S,

        Thanks for your reply and the time taken to reply. I look forward to other answers before I include it into my WFPB diet.



  19. Dr. Ben- Thank you for your reply. And STINK! Here I thought I was on the right track and soy milk and tofu were healthy. I bought fortified as I don’t think my kids eat what they need to get enough calcium. And was told by a very respected nutritionist to buy fortified. I will look into new options. Trying recipes from Dr. G’s cookbook. That should help. Really appreciate your response.

    1. My pleasure. I always suggest “follow the evidence” not the herd. The herd usually follows the money since that’s where the adverting dollars come from. In calcium metabolism questions, I always suggest blood testing for D3 as it’s low in so many people and so critical for calcium metabolism.

      Dr. Ben

  20. Hi there, do you have any articles about K2? Some blogger type articles say it’s important to take this as a supplement, as it’s only naturally present in some rare Japanese food (can’t remember what) and that without it we can’t process calcium properly. If you don’t have anything on this, can I recommend it for a future video? Thanks for all you do. You’re such a wonderful source of solid information and wisdom.

  21. My doctor said I need to take calcium d’glucarate to handle my beta-glucoronidaise condition. I take 200mg of calcium d’glucarate from Life Extension every day. How do I know whether this calcium supplement has lead? It does not indicate on the bottle the source of the calcium. It just says “calcium (200mg from calcium d’glucarate) and the “other” ingredients listed are: microcrystalline cellulose, vegetable cellulose (capsule), stearic acid and silica.

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