Animal Protein Compared to Cigarette Smoking

Animal Protein Compared to Cigarette Smoking
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Only about one in 10,000 people make it to be 100 years old. What’s their secret?

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Only about one in 10,000 people make it to be 100 years old. What’s their secret?  Well, in 1993, a major breakthrough in longevity research was published: a single genetic mutation that doubled the lifespan of a tiny roundworm. Instead of all being dead by 30 days, the mutants lived 60 days or longer. This lifespan extension was the largest yet reported in any organism.

This Methuselah worm medical marvel is the equivalent of producing a healthy 200-year-old human—all because of a single mutation? That shouldn’t happen; I mean, presumably, aging is caused by multiple processes, many genes. How could just knocking out one gene double the lifespan?

What is this aging gene, anyway? This gene that so speeds up aging that if it’s knocked out, the animals live twice as long? It’s been called the Grim Reaper gene. What is it? It’s the worm equivalent of the human IGF-1 receptor. And mutations of that same receptor in humans may help explain why some people live to be a hundred, and other people don’t.

So, is it just the luck of the draw whether we got good genes or bad? No, we can turn on and off the expression of these genes, depending on what we eat. Three years ago, I profiled a remarkable series of experiments about IGF-1—insulin-like growth factor 1—this cancer-promoting growth hormone, released in excess amounts by our liver when we eat animal protein. So, men and women who don’t eat meat, egg whites, or dairy proteins have significantly lower levels circulating within their bodies.

Switching people to a plant-based diet can significantly lower IGF-1 levels within just 11 days, markedly improving the ability of women’s bloodstreams to suppress breast cancer growth, and then kill breast cancer cells off.

Similarly, the blood serum of men on plant-based diets suppresses prostate cancer cell growth about eight times better than before they changed their diet. This dramatic improvement in cancer defenses is, however, abolished if you add back just the amount of IGF-1 banished from their systems because they were eating and living healthier.

This is one way to explain the low rates of cancer among plant-based populations: the drop in animal protein intake leads to a drop in IGF-1, which leads to a drop in cancer growth. An effect so powerful, Dr. Dean Ornish and colleagues appeared to be able to reverse the progression of prostate cancer without chemo, surgery, or radiation—just a plant-based diet, and other healthy lifestyle changes.

Now, when we’re kids, we need growth hormones to grow. There’s a rare genetic defect that causes severe IGF-1 deficiency, leading to a type of dwarfism—but also apparently makes you effectively cancer-proof. Not a single death from cancer in about 100 individuals with IGF-1 deficiency. How about 200 individuals? None developed cancer. See, most malignant tumors are covered in IGF-1 receptors. But if there’s no IGF-1 around, then they may not be able to grow and spread.

This may help explain why those eating low-carb diets appear to cut their lives short. But not just any low-carb diet—specifically those based on animal sources, whereas vegetable-based low-carb diets were associated with a lower risk of death.

But look, low-carb diets are high in animal fat, as well as animal protein. So, how do we know it wasn’t the saturated animal fat that was killing people off, and it had nothing to do with the protein? What we need is a study that just follows a few thousand people and their protein intakes for 20 years or so, and just see who lives longest, who gets cancer, who doesn’t. But, there’s never been a study like that—until now.

6,000 men and women over age 50 from across the U.S. were followed for 18 years, and those under age 65 with high protein intakes had a 75% increase in overall mortality, and a fourfold increase in the risk of dying from cancer. But not all proteins; these associations were either abolished or attenuated if the proteins were plant-derived. This all makes sense, given the higher IGF-1 levels among those eating lots of animal protein.

 The sponsoring university sent out a press release with a memorable opening line: “That chicken wing you’re eating could be as deadly as a cigarette,” explaining that eating a diet rich in animal proteins during middle age makes you four times more likely to die from cancer than someone with a low-protein diet—a mortality risk factor comparable to smoking cigarettes. And when they say low-protein diet, what they actually mean is just getting the recommended amount of protein.

“Almost everyone is going to have a cancer cell or pre-cancerous cell in them at some point. The question is: Does it progress?” said one of the lead researchers. That may depend on what we eat.

“The question is not whether a certain diet allows you to do well in the short term,” one of the researchers noted. “But can it help you survive to be 100?” It wasn’t just more deaths from cancer; middle-aged people who eat lots of protein from animal sources were found to be more susceptible to early death in general. Crucially, the same did not apply to plant proteins, like beans. And it wasn’t the fat, but the animal protein that appeared to be the culprit.

What was the response to the revelation that diets high in meat, eggs, and dairy could be as harmful to health as smoking? Well, one nutrition scientist replied that it was potentially dangerous. It could damage the effectiveness of important public health messages. A smoker might think, “Why bother quitting smoking if my ham and cheese sandwich is just as bad for me?'”

It reminds me of a famous Philip Morris cigarette ad that tried to downplay the risks by saying, “Hey, you think second-hand smoke is bad, increasing the risk of lung cancer 19%; well, hey, drinking one or two glasses of milk may be three times as bad—62% increased risk of lung cancer. Or doubling the risk frequently cooking with oil; or tripling your risk of heart disease eating non-vegetarian; or multiplying your risk six-fold eating lots of meat and dairy.” So, they conclude, “Let’s keep some perspective here.” The risk of cancer from secondhand smoke may be well below that of other everyday activities.  So, breathe deep. 

That’s like saying: yeah, don’t worry about getting stabbed, because getting shot is so much worse. It’s like saying if you don’t wear seat belts, you might as well have unprotected sex. If you go bungee jumping, might as well disconnect your smoke alarms at home. Two risks don’t make a right.

Of course, you’ll note Philip Morris stopped throwing dairy under the bus once they purchased Kraft Foods.

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

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image thanks to gholem via Pixabay.

Only about one in 10,000 people make it to be 100 years old. What’s their secret?  Well, in 1993, a major breakthrough in longevity research was published: a single genetic mutation that doubled the lifespan of a tiny roundworm. Instead of all being dead by 30 days, the mutants lived 60 days or longer. This lifespan extension was the largest yet reported in any organism.

This Methuselah worm medical marvel is the equivalent of producing a healthy 200-year-old human—all because of a single mutation? That shouldn’t happen; I mean, presumably, aging is caused by multiple processes, many genes. How could just knocking out one gene double the lifespan?

What is this aging gene, anyway? This gene that so speeds up aging that if it’s knocked out, the animals live twice as long? It’s been called the Grim Reaper gene. What is it? It’s the worm equivalent of the human IGF-1 receptor. And mutations of that same receptor in humans may help explain why some people live to be a hundred, and other people don’t.

So, is it just the luck of the draw whether we got good genes or bad? No, we can turn on and off the expression of these genes, depending on what we eat. Three years ago, I profiled a remarkable series of experiments about IGF-1—insulin-like growth factor 1—this cancer-promoting growth hormone, released in excess amounts by our liver when we eat animal protein. So, men and women who don’t eat meat, egg whites, or dairy proteins have significantly lower levels circulating within their bodies.

Switching people to a plant-based diet can significantly lower IGF-1 levels within just 11 days, markedly improving the ability of women’s bloodstreams to suppress breast cancer growth, and then kill breast cancer cells off.

Similarly, the blood serum of men on plant-based diets suppresses prostate cancer cell growth about eight times better than before they changed their diet. This dramatic improvement in cancer defenses is, however, abolished if you add back just the amount of IGF-1 banished from their systems because they were eating and living healthier.

This is one way to explain the low rates of cancer among plant-based populations: the drop in animal protein intake leads to a drop in IGF-1, which leads to a drop in cancer growth. An effect so powerful, Dr. Dean Ornish and colleagues appeared to be able to reverse the progression of prostate cancer without chemo, surgery, or radiation—just a plant-based diet, and other healthy lifestyle changes.

Now, when we’re kids, we need growth hormones to grow. There’s a rare genetic defect that causes severe IGF-1 deficiency, leading to a type of dwarfism—but also apparently makes you effectively cancer-proof. Not a single death from cancer in about 100 individuals with IGF-1 deficiency. How about 200 individuals? None developed cancer. See, most malignant tumors are covered in IGF-1 receptors. But if there’s no IGF-1 around, then they may not be able to grow and spread.

This may help explain why those eating low-carb diets appear to cut their lives short. But not just any low-carb diet—specifically those based on animal sources, whereas vegetable-based low-carb diets were associated with a lower risk of death.

But look, low-carb diets are high in animal fat, as well as animal protein. So, how do we know it wasn’t the saturated animal fat that was killing people off, and it had nothing to do with the protein? What we need is a study that just follows a few thousand people and their protein intakes for 20 years or so, and just see who lives longest, who gets cancer, who doesn’t. But, there’s never been a study like that—until now.

6,000 men and women over age 50 from across the U.S. were followed for 18 years, and those under age 65 with high protein intakes had a 75% increase in overall mortality, and a fourfold increase in the risk of dying from cancer. But not all proteins; these associations were either abolished or attenuated if the proteins were plant-derived. This all makes sense, given the higher IGF-1 levels among those eating lots of animal protein.

 The sponsoring university sent out a press release with a memorable opening line: “That chicken wing you’re eating could be as deadly as a cigarette,” explaining that eating a diet rich in animal proteins during middle age makes you four times more likely to die from cancer than someone with a low-protein diet—a mortality risk factor comparable to smoking cigarettes. And when they say low-protein diet, what they actually mean is just getting the recommended amount of protein.

“Almost everyone is going to have a cancer cell or pre-cancerous cell in them at some point. The question is: Does it progress?” said one of the lead researchers. That may depend on what we eat.

“The question is not whether a certain diet allows you to do well in the short term,” one of the researchers noted. “But can it help you survive to be 100?” It wasn’t just more deaths from cancer; middle-aged people who eat lots of protein from animal sources were found to be more susceptible to early death in general. Crucially, the same did not apply to plant proteins, like beans. And it wasn’t the fat, but the animal protein that appeared to be the culprit.

What was the response to the revelation that diets high in meat, eggs, and dairy could be as harmful to health as smoking? Well, one nutrition scientist replied that it was potentially dangerous. It could damage the effectiveness of important public health messages. A smoker might think, “Why bother quitting smoking if my ham and cheese sandwich is just as bad for me?'”

It reminds me of a famous Philip Morris cigarette ad that tried to downplay the risks by saying, “Hey, you think second-hand smoke is bad, increasing the risk of lung cancer 19%; well, hey, drinking one or two glasses of milk may be three times as bad—62% increased risk of lung cancer. Or doubling the risk frequently cooking with oil; or tripling your risk of heart disease eating non-vegetarian; or multiplying your risk six-fold eating lots of meat and dairy.” So, they conclude, “Let’s keep some perspective here.” The risk of cancer from secondhand smoke may be well below that of other everyday activities.  So, breathe deep. 

That’s like saying: yeah, don’t worry about getting stabbed, because getting shot is so much worse. It’s like saying if you don’t wear seat belts, you might as well have unprotected sex. If you go bungee jumping, might as well disconnect your smoke alarms at home. Two risks don’t make a right.

Of course, you’ll note Philip Morris stopped throwing dairy under the bus once they purchased Kraft Foods.

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

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image thanks to gholem via Pixabay.

Doctor's Note

A newer study just came out this month. Entitled Association of Animal and Plant Protein Intake With All-Cause and Cause-Specific Mortality, Harvard researchers concluded “Replacing animal protein of various origins with plant protein was associated with lower mortality.”

The IGF-1 story is so pivotal that it’s one of the first video series I ever did on NutritionFacts.org. I’m so glad to finally get around to the long-awaited update. If you want a blast from the past, you can see the original series starting with Engineering a Cure.

 For more parallels between the tobacco industry and the food industry, see:

For more on healthy aging and longevity, see:

Note the so-called “low” protein intake is actually the recommended protein intake, associated with a major reduction in cancer and overall mortality in middle age, under age 65. But note it says not among older individuals. All covered in my next video, Increasing Protein Intake After Age 65.

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

317 responses to “Animal Protein Compared to Cigarette Smoking

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  1. Did I understand correctly that it is animal protein that is the problem and not necessarily fat as in butter for an example?




    0
    1. no, IGF-1 is the problem and it is present in butter as well.

      On top of that the fat is another problem and the animal protein a third




      0
          1. It’s funny to see when people cannot counter the arguments with scientific facts then out fly the troll, non scientist, big pharma, etc. arguments. Human behaviour is sometimes strange.




            3
            1. But routinely challenging the conclusions of these videos with arguments based on *your* preferences is not? Human behavior IS sometimes strange!




              1
            2. “Human behaviour is sometimes strange.” Cognitive dissonance and pluralistic ignorance are very powerful psychological conditions exhibited by those wishing to hear good things about their unhealthy and unethical lifestyle choices.




              6
            3. I don’t think you are a troll, just misinformed. I understand your argument but saturated fat has no real benefit over other fats and have a lot of complications regardless of source – ie: energy utilization. That it tastes like crap and dairy in general is only consumed in the quantities it is because of a post WW2 marketing blitz is another matter (well intention-ed Ag types). Dairy is the one thing I avoid like the plague but I do not scrutinize all the baking I run into. Low level contamination is OK but I know there are better ingredients used in my house which have superior flavor profiles.




              2
        1. That paper seems sketchy to me. Kempner’s famous diet used no fat and lots of sugar including white table sugar, yet reversed a slew of deadly diseases and extended life. Our bodies are not good at handling concentrated, ingested fat, period, else the epidemic of diabetes and other lethal health problems wouldn’t be an issue in this fried everything, high fat land. I was diabetic and eating a high complex carb, low fat diet reversed it in a few weeks five years ago. If I want to raise my fasting blood sugar I just have to eat a high fat meal…great motivation not to!




          2
          1. You should reduce fat intake. That’s a given, no question about it. I reply to the question of butter above in the context of IGF-1, not fat. In general, you should not consume fat from butter regularly because it is concentrated fat. If you do then you have to cut other fat intake to counter it. But butter as well as saturated fat are not poison that you have to avoid them like a pest. If a cake has butter or coconut then eat it but don’t sweat over it.

            The following article from Cleveland Clinic gives a moderate view of fat:

            http://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/healthy_living/getting_fit/hic_Reducing_Fat_Intake




            0
            1. These topics are so complicated. It seems clear to me that replacing fat like olives, and avocadoes with sugar or any high glycemic carbohydrate is clearly bad for you. Even Neal Barnard says to go low glycemic. Replacing meat fat with any vegetable is good for you. However, some vegetable oils are high in omega 6 and are GMO. WHen they are used for cooking they change into something harmful. Dr. Greger has several videos about the dangers of acrilamides and high temp cooking. Brain doctors like Daniel Amen say a low fat diet is a disaster for the brain. I am going with olives, nuts, avocado, estra virgin olive oil, seeds, and a little bit of yogurt, kefir and small portions of meat until it becomes clearer to me.
              http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20711693

              John S




              3
              1. I was struggling with this too, for years, until the end of last year when it suddenly became clear to me. The situation is that there are two types of diet which appear to work well, but they are practically opposite extremes and so it is difficult to make sense of. One diet (the “ketogenic”) is high-fat, low-starch/sugar. The other is low-fat, high-starch/sugar. Most people’s diets lie between these extremes, and this is where all the disease is found. So it would appear to be the case that the human body is not good at handling a diet which is both high in fat and high in sugar/starch: it has to be one or the other.

                One might now consider how scientific researches could produce contradicting results, eg. a researcher might find that his subjects do better if they increase their fat intake, while another finds that his subjects do worse because, in the first case, the subjects normal diets were “in-between” whereas, in the second case, they were low-fat.

                I myself have now experienced all three diet types. For two years, until the end of last year, I tried out the high-fat diet (actually a vegan version of what Dr Mercola recommends, as I had bpersuaded by his arguments). Before this, I had been mixing fats and sugars/starches without much thought. Since the beginning of this year, I have been following Dr Greger’s advice. Here’s what I found. On the Mercola diet, I lost some stubborn fat from around my waist (I’m quite skinny otherwise) without any extra exercise; but my blood pressure and cholesterol were both somewhat high, which I feel could cause problems in the long term. On the Greger diet, the fat has stayed off and the blood pressure is nicely low (but I haven’t checked the cholesterol). I am feeling confident that this is the way to go for long-term good health. It also seems more natural to eat this way since high-fat foods are fairly rare in nature; and what could be more appealing to eat than fruits?

                I disagree about sugar and carbohydrates necessarily being bad for you, and you might convince yourself by taking a look at: http://www.30bananasaday.com This site is run by “Freelee the banana girl” and her partner Durianrider, who will both happily drink smoothies of bananas and dates and with refined sugar thrown in for good measure, and they stay fit and healthy; but they keep their fat intake extremely low. I vaguely recall Dr Greger in one of his videos saying that glycemic index isn’t an issue on the WFPBD.

                For these reasons, you might want to reconsider your “compromise” diet.




                0
                1. Thank you for sharing the results of your experiment Josh. I agree that sugar in fruit is not a problem. Alas, white sugar is a disaster in so many ways. It is an outstanding method of building cancer cells in your body. It leads to so many problems that I can’t start. I find your approach really interesting.




                  0
                  1. This video [http://nutritionfacts.org/video/if-fructose-is-bad-what-about-fruit/] shows that white sugar, while nasty on its own, is not a problem when combined with berries. The research only looked at berries, but I suspect the principle would extend to all low-fat fruits and vegetables. I don’t use any white sugar myself because I am happy using liquidised bananas in recipes, and this is bound to be more nutritious; and I am not trying to promote white sugar. Rather, I am just relating the theory which has grown on me that it is only high fat intakes which turn sugar (refined or not) and starch ugly.




                    0
                  1. Thank you so much for making me aware of that! It is quite an epic article which I am still only part way through. I am finding it fascinating, and looking forward to exploring the rest of the site.




                    0
                    1. joss levy: Denise Minger is not a reputable source of information. She is infamous for spouting a lot of pseudo science that sounds good, but is not actual science. I’m not saying she gets *everything* wrong. But her material is not one that lay people will be able to weed through (picking out the good from the bad) with much success. You can learn a little more about Minger here if you are interested: http://plantpositive.com/display/Search?moduleId=19496100&searchQuery=minger




                      0
                    2. Minger is an english major with no qualifications in the nutrition field. She is not an authority to listen to.




                      0
                2. I don’t agree that both ends of the fat spectrum are healthy diets. Everything I have seen shows that a high fat diet always increases insulin resistance within hours. Most people have enough insulin making capacity to crank up the insulin levels and shove the blood sugar past the resistance. But if a high fat diet is eaten consistently for years eventually the pancreas gives out and blood sugar starts to rise and so transitions into full blown diabetes. So perhaps you are right that to keep the damage done by a high fat diet from becoming even worse, you have to keep the carbohydrates really low. But this really is just disease management, not health.




                  0
                  1. Thank you for responding, Jim. I had been envisaging a graph of Healthfulness versus Fat Intake showing a two-peaked curve but, upon reading your reply, it is looking to be more a case of Dr Greger’s Mountain and Dr Mercola’s mole-hill with the SAD valley in between. The ketogenic diet doesn’t appear to have been around very long, so there’s a frightening prospect of how it may turn out in the years to come. I am still having doubts however, since you say this diet leads eventually to diabetes and yet, in the comments section following Dr Mercola’s articles, I see many thank-you notes from grateful Mercola followers who have successfully reversed their diabetes.




                    0
                    1. I reviewed the paper from two years ago by Bazzano in another kinda gigantic comment. This paper compared a low-carb to a low-fat diet in obese individuals. The study was a complete train-wreck. The low-fat diet was anything but low fat and the low-carb diet was low carbs.

                      But there was one interesting bit of data that the authors just glossed over and that is that the fasting insulin level (a prime measure of insulin resistance) went down in even in the group that increased its percentage of fat from 34% to 43%. So that would certainly seem to indicate that you can reverse insulin resistance and thus diabetes by eating more fat. But looking closer and you see these low-carb dieters dropped their daily calories from 2011 to 1414. So even though their percentage of fat when up, the total number of grams of fat went down from 76g to 66g.

                      So my hypothesis is that what matters to insulin resistance isn’t the percentage of calories from fat itself, but rather the absolute amount of fat consumed. So if these folks thanking Mercola were dropping the number of calories enough so that they were eating fewer grams of fat even with an increase in percentage of fat went up, could be the reason reason they saw improvements in their diabetes.

                      Also the folks in this study didn’t yet have diabetes, so they still had sufficient insulin producing capability to keep their blood sugar out of the diabetic range. In folks who have progressed to full diabetes insulin production capability has been damaged to the point they can’t crank out the huge amounts of insulin to overcome the resistance. In this group even small reductions in insulin resistance should result in large improvements as the little insulin they do produce is able to better control their blood sugar.

                      And that is troubling, because once these folks reach their weight loss goals and increase their calories back to the level to maintain that weight the number of grams of fat they eat will shoot back up, their insulin resistance will return to its previous levels, and their diabetes will come roaring back. Now they could at this point switch to truly low-fat diet that kept fat grams low even as calories went up, but they could have done the same thing right from the start and seen even more reduction in insulin resistance like the supposedly low-fat group in the study.




                      0
                    2. Thanks for another detailed response, Jim, and I can see how it makes sense because if you move to a diet with an ultra-high fat concentration it would start to feel satiating, and then nauseating, after fewer mouthfuls and so you may well end up eating less overall; in which case my perceived second peak, rather than just being shallower than the first, might not exist at all.




                      0
                3. I like Freelee the banana girl. Many scientists are coming to the conclusion (as does Ayurveda, Chinese medicine, and Nicholas Gonzalez) that each body is different and has different needs. I will include your data as a data point in my ongoing search for what makes me healthy, John S




                  0
            2. The thing you may be overlooking though, is the fact that you get more than enough saturated fat from other sources. Butter would be a TERRIBLE addition to most people’s diets, especially if they aren’t currently eating it. For example, I eat ounces of seeds and nuts a day. I eat tons of hemp seed, drink homemade cashew or almond milk, and eat peanut butter daily with hemp and chia on toast for breakfast; that alone is a large amount of saturated fat (along with healthier fats), and more than enough for the day. In addition, let us realize other foods have small amounts of saturated fat in them as well. My wife and I often make carrot dogs or maybe a stirfry—the base of those which consists of ground (tahini) or full sesame seeds. If you are already eating healthy, it is simple to realize the addition of butter will make your diet LESS healthy.




              0
              1. Blaice: OK, I just *have* to know: what’s a carrot dog? I think I saw something like that a PCRM e-mail recently. Do you marinate a carrot to kind of taste like a hot dog? Do you eat it on a hotdog bun?




                0
                1. Yes, we get eizekel hotdog buns, or just use bread, but I marinate them in a homeade tahini ground with ACV, balsamic vinegar, garlic cloves, tumeric, paprika, cummin, white and black pepper, ground mustard seed, a lot more spices, and soy sauce. We peel large carrots and then let them soak in the brine preferably for a couple days at least (doesn’t need to though). Then we cook them with water and the some of the brine in a pan on the stove until they are “soft” on the inside (I mean they are healthier cooked after all!). We sometimes add onion or cabbage in with the carrots while they cook, we do scoop up the brine that and coat the top of the dog with it when done, then we put on sauerkraut and eat it with homeade ketchup and regular or sweet potato fries (baked without oil) and sometimes she makes a sidesalad with raspberry vinegar. We like to use mustard as well. They are amazing.




                  0
                  1. Blaice: That sounds awesome. I think you can expect a herd of NutritionFacts fans to be standing in line at your doorstep tonight. I’ll be first in the line.




                    0
                  2. Don’t forget the liquid smoke in the marinade! The first time I had carrot dogs was a revelation. Spiced correctly, a carrot can morph into a “hot dog”. This along with fakin’ bacon made with tempeh just proves that the essential part of many of these foods that meat eaters just couldn’t imagine life without has everything to do with the seasoning and little to do with what gets seasoned. This is especially the case if they are paired with lots of other things like all the fixin’s. I like mine with mustard, catsup, relish, onions and diced pickled jalapeño. Or the fakin’ bacon in pasta carbonara where silken tofu blended with nutritional yeast replaces the eggs.

                    Also great is to use the carrot dogs to make chili dogs topped with onions. So good, and with the beans in the chili adding the heft that the carrots are a little short on.




                    1
                    1. I’m pretty meh about the whole liquid smoke thing. I don’t know what “natural hickory flavor” is, and I don’t like how almost all of them have caramel color, cane sugar, and other additives. Granted I never cared for actual hotdogs, even as a kid, I can say they NEVER tasted like hickory, or what liquid smoke denotes. I will stick to a healthier substitute by using tahini and the different vinegars, but maybe someone I know will have made them with a healthier liquid smoke that I could try. If you know of a liquid smoke devoid of these additives I’ve listed, please let me know and maybe I’ll give it a try!




                      0
                    2. Blaice: I’ve seen liquid smoke with those additives and also turned up my nose. But there are other brands that do not have those additives. Wright’s is a common brand that I’ve seen at several stores: http://www.wrightsliquidsmoke.com/products/wrights-hickory-liquid-smoke/
                      .
                      My personal experience with liquid smoke is that it’s ability to improve a dish is greatly related to dose. It does not take much to be too much and make a dish taste wrong. But a little bit can sure improve some dishes in my opinion. Love it.
                      .
                      Smoked salt can be a great alternative taste-wise. I find that the smoky-ness is usually just right when I use smoked salt. However, smoked salt would not be a good addition for someone trying to cut down on salt/eat healthier. That’s why I like having the liquid smoke as an option too.




                      0
                2. I’m just catching up on my moderator shift and have to say I’ve enjoyed carrot “hot dogs” many times, but my method is very simple. Just cut carrots size of traditional hot dogs, boil until soft, then grill (just so there is a little evidentce of grill marks. Put in a whole grain bun with condiments you love (mine requires mustard and relish) and ENJOY. I have introduced many to this healthy version and they love them. I really can’t tell the difference.




                  0
                  1. joanlarryd: Nice! Thanks for the tip on making it simple. :-) I may be more picky as I’m not terribly fond of cooked carrots. But maybe I could transition to the simple version at some point in the future. And I’m sure others could jump on this idea and run with it right now!




                    0
                1. Paz Paz: The following site lists the commercial GMO crops. Notice that peanuts are not on the list. http://www.nongmoproject.org/gmo-facts/high-risk/
                  .
                  Your other claims about liver damage and gases are interesting. Do you have supporting evidence to back up those claims? From what I have seen on this site, peanuts appear to be pretty healthy. Check out this video: http://nutritionfacts.org/video/tree-nuts-or-peanuts-for-breast-cancer-prevention/
                  .
                  I have heard that peanuts used to be stored in conditions that caused a dangerous mold to develop. That mold could cause liver problems. But that has not been a problem for American store-bought peanuts for many years as I understand it.




                  0
                2. Well, that is personal opinion and conjecture, and yes, they aren’t nuts, they are legumes, which are very healthy. Show me research claiming peanuts are unhealthy and I’ll provide you five times as many that say otherwise. By the way, I buy organic peanuts and peanut butter, so no, they aren’t GMO.

                  In addition, your opinion is riddled with ignorance, please see:http://www.gmo-compass.org/eng/database/plants/33.peanut.html to realize trails have been done, but not approved for use.

                  And finally, also realize despite it being unnatural, GMOs have had zero statistically significant implications on human health. I am not a supporter, but you sound very ignorant speaking about such things without any citations or proof of claims.




                  0
        2. i went to your link and it talks about blood lipids and heart disease, not igf1 and cancer like Dr Greger’s video. stay on topic or dont waste peoples time




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        3. For the lowdown on IGF1 growth hormone read prof. Jane Plant CBE’s book “The No Dairy Breast Cancer Prevention Program”. Don’t believe that? Breast cancer regions of the world are exactly the dairy regions of the world. Cows use IGF1 to grow calves into cows in two years, since IGF1 helps fast growing cells grow faster. In human adults, those are cancer cells.




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          1. There’s a gem of a book titled “Don’t Feed Your Cancer” written by an Irish Doctor and his experience with turning off and on cancer cells with his patients. What was amazing is that some of his patients would rather die than give up meat and dairy. My motto is that I’m not afraid of dying but I am afraid of being sick which makes the option easy for me. No meat, though I ate fish for a few years but not now, for over 40 years. I like and enjoy being healthy.




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        4. I did see that your source including “O’Keefe” who I know to be of the Paleo diet. O’Keefe is not only wrong about being for an animal based diet. He is also wrong about exercise. He thinks that saturated fat from animal sources is OK, but that exercise in anything but very modest amounts is deadly. I wouldn’t trust anything “O’Keefe” has to say.




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        5. Even in small quantity, butter hurts me. I know that from direct experience. Butter is a largely empty (especially of the most important nutrient, fiber) calorie. It only put fat around my waist line, yes, even in small quantity… I was 95% plant based then I realized I could just go all the way 100% plant based and get better results.




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    2. Animal protein is a problem but butter also has it’s difficulties. You can check out video’s and references by going to health topics and choosing a topic of interest. You could check out one’s on butter, fat or saturated fat. In addition to animal protein butter contains saturated fat. If you are trying to maintain a normal per cent body fat you want to avoid high energy dense foods such as butter. Make sure you subscribe to NF.org to keep up with the latest in nutritional science.




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      1. Yes thanks for the reply , I was reading some of Colin Campbell take on fat and he doesn’t seem to think saturated fat is or at least the most worrisome part of eating meat .
        Myself , have no problem with omitting butter , but some of the people I talk to act like their world will now end without butter on their popcorn and potatoes. lol
        Oh yes I subscribe and buy Dr. Greger,s books and DVD ,s on Amazon .




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        1. LOL on the butter and I would include cheese in that comment though I can say that cheese was my most difficult dairy to give up though I treat myself to French brie twice a year on my birthday and NY eve. I stopped eating meat in college. Re: compassion with animals. That makes no meat, not even fish over half my life. I became a vegan when John Robbins book Diet for a New America or is that Planet? Stayed on vegan diet until Dr. Fuhrman’s book, Eat to Live came out and went WFPB lifestyle since. Now nearing 80, I take one pill daily for genetic hypothyroid. I do yoga, since college, and walk. My doctor says to keep doing what I’m doing and that it’s her job to keep me as healthy as I am. Well, not quite the truth as her thigh is as large as my waist! I exaggerate a tiny bit but not by much. The last time the doctor sent me for a heart check up, per my doctor, he told me I was “ridiculously healthy,” keep doing what I’m doing and to stay away from doctors. Excellent advice. The problem is that all my friends are dying. I’ve lost 5 friends in the last year and all due to diets and one smoker and all younger that I am.




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      1. Butter is actually animal fat. There may be traces of protein in the butter, but is specifically the fat that is coagulated from whole milk after it is cooled, and because it is coagulated at room temperature, it is mainly saturated fat. You should look up a video of how butter is made. Pretty interesting.




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    1. Careful for confirmation bias. I know the WFPB diet appears to be the best in many ways, but hucksters and frauds will twist facts to sell products.




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      1. Dr Greger, I like your humor but extrapolate from a worm to a human isn’t a little bit of a stretch? :) And also dwarf people do not have a very long lifespan to get cancer. But I do agree with you on IGF-1, the growth hormone.




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        1. Children are getting more cancer than ever before. It seems less and less to be simply for older people. The same is true for diabetes. Adult onset diabetes had to be changed to type two, because so many children now are diabetic.




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        1. I don’t remember, but it was one that the vegan doctors and paleo doctors all agreed upon. Can you guess which part the paleo doctors talked more about? :)




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      1. I have to weigh in and agree with mbglife (below). There is lots of mythical talk that the elderly need more protein. However, I have not seen any science clearly demonstrating that need (doesn’t mean there isn’t any, just that I’ve not seen it). So I am with mbglife, please provide some legitimate science demonstrating that “fact”. And while you’re at it, provide the difference of that need between animal and/or plant protein in the elderly – since that is the point of this video today.




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    1. Bartke, A., 2012. Healthy aging: is smaller better?–a mini-review. Gerontology, 58(4), pp.337-343.

      beneficial effects of protection against cancer, diabetes and atherosclerosis are counterbalanced by the increased risk of death from other causes, which in Laron dwarfs in Ecuador include accidents, seizures and alcohol abuse

      In the general population, genetic predispositions that reduce IGF-1 receptor quantity or activity are associated with exceptional longevity.

      Van Heemst et al, 2005. Reduced insulin/IGF‐1 signalling and human longevity. Aging cell, 4(2), pp.79-85.
      Suh et al, 2008. Functionally significant insulin-like growth factor I receptor mutations in centenarians PNAS, 105(9), pp.3438-3442.




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  2. Once again, doctor Greger does cherry picking to support his agenda.

    “But, there’s never been a study like that—until now.”
    This statement is false. There has been several studies (Kelemen et al 2005, Lagiou et al 2007, Trichopoulou et al 2007, Nilsson et al 2012) that predate the Levine et al study that Dr. Greger presents. In all these studies, higher protein (or animal protein) was not associated with higher all-cause mortality or higher cancer mortality, and these studies were much larger than the Levin et al study.
    For example, In the largest of these studies (Nilsson et al) the RR per decile of protein consumption was 1.00 for all cause mortality and 0.99 for cancer mortality.




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    1. If you provide links to those I’d be happy to look at them. I hadn’t found any other prospective studies that lasted that long that split up plant protein vs. animal protein and measured IGF-1 levels.

      FYI: Here’s the latest, published just this month out of Harvard: Association of Animal and Plant Protein Intake With All-Cause and Cause-Specific Mortality. As you can see, they concluded “Replacing animal protein of various origins with plant protein was associated with lower mortality.”




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    2. This was the conclusion for three of the studies you have mentioned which don’t say anything positive and doesn’t support what you are saying.
      Lagiou et al 2007
      Prolonged consumption of diets low in carbohydrates and high in protein is associated with an increase in total mortality.
      Trichopoulou et al 2007
      A diet characterized by low carbohydrate and high protein intake was associated with increased total and particularly cardiovascular mortality amongst women. Vigilance with respect to long-term adherence to such weight control regimes is advisable
      Nilsson et al 2012
      Long-term adherence to high-protein diets, without discrimination toward protein source, may have potentially adverse health consequences.
      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17136037 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17391111 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15671256




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      1. Looks like Trichopoulou just looked at total protein, no? Do you see how if animal protein is associated with higher mortality, and plant protein is associated with lower mortality, if you just look at total protein intake one might miss this link? Note that particular study looked at low carb scoring. If you look at the meta-analysis of all such studies (so there is no picking of cherries), it concluded “Low-carbohydrate diets were associated with a significantly higher risk of all-cause mortality.” And the other studies you cited (Lagiou, Kelemen, Nilsson) didn’t last as long as the one I’m featuring here, and so I don’t know how you can say my statement is false. There had indeed never been such a study like that and now with the new Harvard study this month, even bigger, with an even longer follow-up and the same basic conclusion, it really underscores the importance of choosing the best protein sources for optimal health and longevity, don’t you think?




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          1. The science can be very confusing and Dr. Greger certainly does a nice job at explaining it. When you consider the special interests behind some of the studies and the inherent mathematical problems it is hard to know. I find it is helpful to take a step back and look at the big picture. For me when I eat whole plants and consume adequate calories I know I will get adequate essential amino acids and that my body will adjust to its needs.




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            1. Agreed, my body KNOWS the very obvious truth even if I am not thrilled with all of it! :) “De-nile” isn’t just a river in Egypt!




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        1. Dr Greger, I am neutral on the following and I would like your opinion.

          Most people who eat a lot of meat tend to eat very little plant foods and plant foods are where the phytonutrients are. So is it because they don’t eat a lot of plant foods in the first place that causes them to have diseases and short life or is it because they eat meat no matter what? How about people who eat a little meat but a lot of plant foods, or people who eat a lot of meat and plant foods? I am only asking from a scientific point of view, not moral point of view.




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          1. Dr. Greger has covered this in his videos. There is a definite benefit, holding meat consumption constant, to eating more plants. That is a huge lack in most people. But eating large amounts of meat still has a negative effect, even if you do eat a lot of plants.




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        2. 1. The Levine paper also looked only at total protein (they do try to say something about the difference between animal/plant protein, but their analysis is invalid).
          2. Lagiou lasted 12 years, Keleman lasted 15 years, while Levine 18 years. This is not a big difference, and while these studies are slightly shorter, they had much more participants, making them more reliable.
          3. Why the Harvard study is not mentioned in the video, and you only mention the Levine study which is much smaller?
          The Harvard study is another study that show NO ASSOCIATION between animal protein consumption and mortality, contradictiong the claims you make in the video.
          The Harvard study did find an inverse association between plant protein and mortality, but the effect size was very small, and the result may be due to residual confounding. This result also became non-significant when restricting to participant with healthy lifestyle (non-smokers, etc.). Additionally, there was no association between plant protein and cancer mortality.
          The only conclusion that you can draw from this study is that consumption of <4% of plant protein MAY be too low, and consuming 5-6% MAY give a SMALL benefit. You cannot conclude from this study that more that 6% plant protein has benefits on mortality, or that you should consume 0% animal protein.
          4. How about studies that actually compared vegan (0% animal protein) to meat eaters? Those studies did not show reduced mortality in vegans. In the latest results of the EPIC-Oxford study (which is also a long study, about the same), vegan had non-significant 11% MORE mortality than regular-meat eater, and 19% (perhaps significant) MORE mortality than low-meat eater.




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          1. A partial response: earlier this year I attended the VegMed conference in Germany (where Dr Greger spoke) and there was a presentation from one of the researcher of the EPIC-Oxford study. The vegetarian category in this study included consumption of dairy and eggs, thus, a lot of animal protein and animal fat. The vegan category excluded all animal products. These categories focused on what was NOT being eaten, and did not look at what the vegetarians and vegans actually ate—whether they ate any fruits, vegetables, grains, beans, nuts, whether they used vitamin b12, or whether conversely they consumed primarily processed denatured foods, fried foods, trans fats, quantities of salt, etc. I recall the results were disappointing and the researcher seemed disappointed as well, but my sense is that the study did not really ask the right question, or did not ask the question in a way that would have produced truly meaningful information about healthy diet.




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            1. While the diet of the vegans in this study was not optimal, so was the diet of the meat eater, and there is no reason to assume that vegans consumed less “healthy” food or more “unhealthy processed” food than the meat eaters. In fact, on average, vegetarians&vegans ate more fruits and vegetables than the meat eater. However, Dr Greger claims in the video that animal protein has HUGE detrimental effect, particularity on cancer mortality (“fourfold increase”). So even if the vegan weren’t eating enough healthy food, they still were supposed to have much less cancer mortality, according to the claim above.

              The video presents a study with 3000 participants, while there are much larger studies, with similar or longer follow-up duration, that do not show any effect of animal protein on cancer mortality:

              The Harvard study had 130,000 participants, and those eating the least animal protein had non-significantly 1% MORE cancer mortality compared to those eating the most animal protein.

              The Oxford study had 60,000 participants, and the vegan (0% animal protein) had non-significantly 10% MORE cancer mortality compared to regular meat eaters.

              The Nilsson et al study had 80,000 participants, and those eating the least protein had non-significantly 9% MORE cancer mortality compared to those eating the most protein (this study did not look at animal protein separately, but the paper presented in the video didn’t either. Moreover, it is stated in this paper does that the increase in total protein intake was attributable to eating more animal protein).

              The Adventist 2 study had 70,000 participants, and the vegan had non-significantly 8% less cancer mortality compared to regular meat eaters.

              The studies above are large studies showing no effect of animal protein on cancer mortality, yet Dr. Greger chose to present a single small outlier study, ignoring other studies that were done on this topic. This is the definition of cherry picking.




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              1. You said “In all these studies, higher protein (or animal protein) was not associated with higher all-cause mortality or higher cancer mortality” but the three i manage to find actually went against what you said. Please explain.




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                1. no. In the Trichopoulou et al/Lagiou et al studies, low-carb consumption was associated with higher mortality. When these paper looked at protein consumption, no association was found.




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              2. None of the other studies looked at populations consuming less than 10% of calories from protein, for the simple reason that only about 1% of the population eats this way. Only about 5% of the population consumes more than 20% of calories from protein, and most of the hazard ratios from the study are comparing these two tails of the bell curve.

                It’s important to note that Levine et al’s reanalysis of NHANES data was done by experimental gerontologists, not by a nutrition epidemiology department. They were looking for some human data which would corroborate the dozens of animal studies which have demonstrated lifespan benefits from protein restriction. What they found is that A) yes, protein restriction appears to work in middle-aged humans, and B) very high (>20% E) protein diets are less harmful if from vegetable sources.




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                1. “very high (>20% E) protein diets are less harmful if from vegetable sources.”

                  Why do you claim this? I don’t see anywhere in the Levine paper support for this claim.

                  “None of the other studies looked at populations consuming less than 10% of calories from protein…”

                  The Lagiou/Trichopoulou/Nilsson papers partitioned the cohort into DECILES, and the the protein consumption in the lowest decile was about 10%. It is true that these paper report only continuous analysis and do not report the RR per decile, but it is reasonable to assume that the researchers did look at the per decile data, but didn’t find something interesting in this data. Moreover, since the Levine et al does show dose-response behavior, it does not matter that other studies did not have a specific <10% category, as there still should have been a difference between the lowest and highest category.




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    3. Evaluating scientific papers to make a recommendation requires choosing the studies with the best design (and studies that actually address the question) etc and discard poor studies. If cherry picking mean that you only take the finest cherries and not the rotten ones, I understand the analogy – you only use the best studies and the studies that address the question – well then science is about cherry picking……




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        1. I can see by the nature of your comments in this thread that you have no training or background in how science is performed and how the entirety of the concept works. Let me suggest you take a beginning science course and start from the beginning. When you finish the course I think you will see that your comments here serve only to display that you are not informed or educated in this realm.




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            1. I am a scientist. This site is about the science and facts of nutrition which is why I enjoy it. Those of us with scientific training understand the scientific method which is the basis for accepted scientific research published in peer reviewed journals – again, what this site is about.
              One doesn’t need to be a Nobel Laureate to appreciate the great contributions of science and to appreciate this site (developed and run by a scientist). Thank you.




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              1. I completely disagree. If you google eggs, there are 1000s of websites with phd Scientists that advertise the numerous health benefits of Eggs. Scientists are a dime a dozen (like attorneys). They work for hire. Bacon company can hire a bunch of scientists and they will write 10’000 pages of health benefits of bacon.




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  3. It’s funny. IGF1 along with some other human growth factors have been marketed as an anti aging preparation to make one’s skin look younger. The research that Dr. Greger sites in today’s article suggests that all it does is helps one leave a prettier corpse sooner if these preparations actually work as advertised.

    I’d rather dial back my functional age by means of a plant based diet thank you…




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    1. I am not totally convinced of IGF1 yet but it gives me pause. But I am convinced of the existence of phytonutrients in plant foods, not just from scientific studies but from my own experience after eating a lot of plant foods. And a lot of cultures that eat a lot of varieties of plant foods do have less diseases and live long. But that’s separate from IGF1.




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      1. The human body produces IGF-1 so presumably, it has a part to play. It may very well be that their is an optimal level of IGF-1, and there are probably better pathways for its creation such as exercise vs. meat consumption.

        The following video seems to suggest that there is a balance to be struck between a healthy diet and exercise to get the beneficial effects of IGF-1 while minimizing the negative effect, AND it is not contradictory to Dr. Greger’s interpretation of the research. Best Regards:

        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AjSl4n_KdOY




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        1. I like her analysis of IGF-1, thanks. She has a series of interesting videos on Vit D and other subjects that I will watch later.

          I agree with the approach of getting IGF-1 and at the same time suppress it, as you often see in nature like phytate foods have something else to counter their anti nutrients, or other foods do. Or eating fat for your brain health and metabolism but not too much to protect your heart. She ruled out calorie restriction but that’s not the same as fasting from time to time. isn’t it?




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          1. Rhonda Patrick has some very interesting things to say. She practices time restricted feeding, which I can attest does improve sleep.

            She has done cancer research and I’m sure she is very well aware of the risks. I suspect that she believes that other aspects of her diet/lifestyle may offer her protection from cancer.




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            1. “Rhonda Patrick has some very interesting things to say. She practices time restricted feeding, which I can attest does improve sleep.”

              I will watch her video regarding this time restricted feeding. By this, I think it is the so called intermittent fasting. If that’s the case then I practice it too, such as eating at least 4-5 hours before bedtime so that the duration of time without food is more than 12 hours (assuming 8 hours of sleep) plus I have a very light “dinner”, a small salad plus vegetables juicing only. My breakfast and lunch and midday eating are heavy.

              I like her explanation regarding IGF-1. Yes you need it for growth, as a kid and even after 65 when you need more protein. But you need to suppress it or otherwise you get cancer. She does it through strenuous exercise. It’s like eating foods with phytate and eat foods without to suppress it, eat a little bit of fat but not too much and exercise, etc. I just saw Dr Greger latest blog regarding coffee, it has both beneficial and harmful compounds for heart and arteries health.

              As often in nature, good and bad go together.




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              1. I prefer the term ‘time restricted feeding’ since intermittent fasting can refer to several different practices, such fasting (completely off food or just 500 calories/day) two non-consecutive days per week.

                Do watch her interview with Dr. Panda. The minimum fasting period seems to be 13 hrs., and the minimum fasting period for endurance benefits is 15 hrs.




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                1. OK, I like the term too.

                  That’s what I want to do. I don’t want total fasting for days because I want nutrition, but I want ‘time restricted feeding’ to induce fasting. On the weekend, I sometimes eat nothing for 14-15 hours simply because I get up late and then I have coffee and enjoy it for hours before I eat breakfast.

                  Dr Greger has a video that says eating some foods (I forgot which but it’s in the Daily Dozen) and it signals fasting to the body without really fasting.




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                  1. The coffee counts as breaking the fast since your liver has to work to process the alkaloids.. Only water can be consumed during the fasting period. Wish it were otherwise.




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              1. She’s definitely not vegan / vegetarian; she seems to lean towards slow carb. Still, she convinced me to add kale to my morning smoothie (which is/was mostly berries and some spinach and flax). My skin is finally smooth after years of keratosis pillaris (and the flax alone didn’t do it).

                She’s also convinced me to mind my folate and magnesium intake and up my vitamin D.

                I use ideas from a lot of different sources. What matters to me is whether it works for me.




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    1. Hi Matthew,
      A mainly plantbased diet is about staying healthy and avoid diseases – not everlasting life.
      As a bonus you will probably live a couple of years extra – and the best is that you will probably not spend the last 10 years in a nursing home.




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        1. This is a study by a notorious creationist. The results derive from the initial assumptions. Different assumptions, different results.




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          1. Well, the article wasn’t published in the highest impact journal, but Baumgardner is a qualified scientist with a PhD in Physics and a researcher at Sandia National Laboratories. And yes, he is a creationist. But I don’t think that makes him “notorious.” And we can’t tell if his assumptions about God led to his scientific conclusions or if his scientific investigation led to or reinforced his assumptions about God. But he does seem to make a good case for his creationism.




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            1. I was referring to the assumptions used in this particular study, which led to conclusions that are inconsistent with the fossil record and the fact that we share DNA with other apes.




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    2. Jesus schmeeesus………..Mathew this is a site for science, facts & figures. Not theology. I’m sure there are many theologically centered sites out there that would welcome your dialogue. Jesus (and the myriad of myths that follow his life), in my opinion, aren’t part of a constructive dialogue on the biology and science of nutritive physiological topics.
      If I want to have a theological discussion, I’ll speak with my Mother – ordained minister.
      Go take a hike.




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    1. Yes, acromegaly is a good example of excessive IGF-1 and what it does to the body: not only does it cause giant-ism, resulting in people being 7 or 8 feet tall, but in shorter lives, reduced immune systems and heart disease.




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    1. Dr Greger has videos on that, including how fast oils go rancid, which causes inflammation. Oil is not a whole food. I also recall a Dr McDougall lecture on youtube where he talked about cancer risks from oil.




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    2. Some cooking oil has a burning temp which is too low, even the light olive oil. You need to buy the extra virgin olive oil, the one with dark color in dark bottle. Even that, olive oil goes bad very quickly and you should look at expiration date when you buy.




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    3. Hi John
      Dr. Greger’s overall message is that oil is not a whole food. Better to eat the entire olive/avocado. I am sure there is some video under topics above. I water sauté.




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  4. Jeanne Calment who made 122, had a mediterranean diet, smoking 1 cigarette a day until 120 and was eating 100g of chocolate a day… eating proteins from plant every day and animals for special events. All her nutriments were Bio( organic ) and she was drinking volcanic water and sometime a glass of wine .




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    1. Cigarette smoking is 1000 times more damaging than eating animal foods, I can tell you that without having to be a scientist. Eating burned foods of any kind is like cigarette smoking to a lesser extend. Eating chocolate with real cocoa and not sugar, is beneficial and anti heart disease and cancer.




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      1. She was eating the real chocolate, being in a place where the first high quality chocolate started to be produced, The movie Chocolate was shouted there, on purpose. She has never smoked seriously, one cigarette to be “modern woman ” for her social class at the time, she started very late for a funny reason to relax with 1 cigarette a day. She has a more than 70% plant based diet. She was not drinking wine everyday , only one glass for celebration. Her way of living is the same than I saw to many friend family and patients in France. In the US when i coach people to do so , they see this as very restrictive, when they take more than 3 months they are good, and stay on it later on, feeling younger , but my book is on sale no 1 person today bought it, and all the proof readers thought it is excellent, scientifically upscale, funny, good recipes easy to do. Since french women are not fat American people do not want to ear anything from French lifestyle.
        French are travelers, they bring home a lot of new ideas, transform them is cooking good ideas and make an appealing lifestyle, as life is good they want to make it long.




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        1. Obviously I don’t promote smoking and I have never smoked myself. But I wonder if some indulgence from time to time and enjoying life will make people live longer and have a happy life, instead of worrying every minute about the poisons we have in our environment and our foods and forget to live our life. Some people smoke but they exhale everything and don’t let the smoke go into their lungs and so the harm will be lessen.




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          1. I am a neuro immunologist and my ex husband is an oncologist. I did extensive clinical research on Ginkgo biloba, and other herbs and diet involved in longevity. I let my daughter smoking no more than 10 cigarettes a day when she was in college in Northfield MN because she was stressed out but living in a non polluted little town. When she was in NewYork she stopped to smoke, because it is the same than smoking 10 cigarettes in the middle of no-where. I use for me and the people I coach a strict everyday diet, with just what is going to help them to be healthier and prevent what they are susceptible to have as disease. Strictly organic , portion control, no addition of sugar and salt, the reward is to feel free to eat whatever we want when we are celebrating an event, sometime just to share lunch with a significant other. The human nature needs fun as for any other animal. To be healthy you need to enjoy your instant, because you eat your greens and know that doing so you will be able to eat the most decadent meal, with pleasure and your body is in a great shape to take care of the cleaning. To know how to enjoy the instant is the supplement your immunology needs to work properly, it is not on sale at Walgreens. To eat intelligently is an art, today mandatory to stay healthy.




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    2. Her genes helped, both parents lived to an old age. She also didn’t appear to have any money problems, never worked, no worry or stress, participated in many sports and rode a bike until 100.




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      1. She had only a daughter who p[assed early and she took care of her grand son. She has a nice free social life of Provence, no money problem, no time table to work, rich social connection , singing in choir etc and part of different sport clubs. She is the example to eat a mediterranean diet as a base help to do “bad” things with moderation without harm.




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          1. No she is not an anecdote but a case to study the common data she share with other long living persons . We looked also if she had in common, data with different diseases. She had a plant based diet since she was born. She leaner to play piano to sing to make some sport , to play bridge , she was reading, having responsibility in her community, since school to her 120th years , she made a CD with a music editor to raise money for retirement homes for people without ressources. As with Okinawa people she had a good social network, she was a positive mind and she was walking and riding a bike. She was enjoying to indulge herself, she was eating the fantastic birthday cakes etc A friend of my grand mother was very identical she passed at 104.




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            1. It is anecdotal evidence because it is just one single case. You need a lot more then that and you need clinical trials to know which of the lifestyle habits were effective at increasing lifespan. She most likely just had good genes.




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              1. She has been a case well studied because she was well educated intelligent etc, Her profil was used to compare with other cases. In France there is a registration birth book where we can control people with special interest. it is a reason the food has been regulated early, because new diseases has been observed, evaluated and some chemicals were banned.
                In the case of extreme old people different studies have been done internationally. We can say that 50% of millennials must pass 100 if the parents were food concern and they have been well educated. My followers are millennials because they have understood we are what we eat. They do not know what to eat and how to make it.




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        1. …and she was 110 when she first left her apartment in Arles near the big market to go to assisted living. Anecdotal? Match it, or approach it.




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        2. Most of the worlds longest lived people are lifelong smokers. Jeanne Calment had begun smoking as a young woman. At 117 she quit smoking (by that age she was just smoking two or three cigarettes per day because she was blind and was too proud to ask often for someone to light her cigarettes for her). But she resumed smoking when she was 118 because, as she said, not smoking made her miserable and she was too old to be made miserable. She also said to her doctor: “Once you’ve lived as long as me, only then can you tell me not to smoke.”
          When Mme. Calment died at 122 in l997, the new longevity champ became 116-year-old Marie-Louise Meilleur, of Canada. Mme. Meilleur had chain-smoked all her adult life (as her grandson said, “She always had a cigarette dangling from her lips as she worked”.
          The worlds oldest man around that time was Christian Mortensen who had been a cigar smoker for most of his life–and still smoked them up to his death at 116.
          Britain’s oldest man, George Cook, died at 108 in his sleep in September, 1997. He “smoked heavily for 85 years before giving up tobacco at the age of 97”.

          Mme Calment’s title as the worlds oldest ever person is now in serious jeopardy however. According to the documents recognized by Indonesian officials, 145 year old chainsmoker, Mbah Gotho from Sragen in central Java could be the oldest living man documented. According to his ID, Mr. Gotho was born on December 31st, 1870.

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QlioKsP_jqc




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          1. That’s debatable. Coffee roasting is a type of burning, and that appears to increase hormetic responses which increase endogenous antioxidant activity and reduces inflammatory signalling. Burn potato fiber and cancer cells are inhibited.




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            1. Roasting is not burning. Burning has to be at high temp and you know when the food is burned. I roast my walnut at 350 deg for 10 mn all the time and I buy roasted seeds. Otherwise how do I cook or do I eat it raw? Yes you can eat raw nut and seed but it is not chewable.




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        1. Hi – I think you are trying to ask about the charring on meats and carbohydrates when grilled or cooked in such a way as to form browning or charring. In carbohydrates the brown/black produces acrylamides. In meats it produces heterocyclic amines. Both of which are cancer causing. These are not IGF-1. This is a completely separate issue from the IGF-1 issue discussed here today.
          You are correct that it is the dry direct heat that causes the charring. Boiled, steamed items do not have the dry crusty browning-charring that grilled, fried items do.

          I would, however, disagree with Jimmy, above. IGF-1 is directly strongly linked to cancer. Read The China Study by T. Colin Campbell, Ph.D. and you will get the whole clear scientific picture. Dr. Greger also has numerous videos detailing the IGF-1 linkage.




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          1. Hi Ginger
            I think that’s what I was trying to recall. But if I remember right, it’s not just charring or even browning, it’s also in baked goods. I have a vague recollection that Dr Greger made a video on this. I’ll try to review that again.
            Thanks.
            Mark




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    1. IGF-1 is produced by our own bodies in response to food nutrients. Animal protein has higher levels of the amino acid leucine, which is known to directly stimulate IGF-1 production.




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      1. Isn’t grain also high in leucine? So, should we eat less grain? I hear that methianine can result in more cancer. Beans are high in methianine, so should we avoid them. I’m being a little bit of the Devil’s advocate here. I see no difference in quality between animal and plant protein. If a person eats a variety of plant protein sources, they’ll probably get about the same amino acid ratio as an omnivore. It seems to me that it’s the quantity of protein that’s the problem and that we want to eat less of the stuff. Apparently, about 5 % of our calories from protein is sufficient, although our government has doubled that amount to include the few individuals who need more- and perhaps to promote the cattle and dairy industries. There’s no reason for vegans to supplement with protein powders. I think they’re doing themselves harm by the practice. Personally, I only eat 3-4 servings of grain a day and only a couple of servings of beans and a quarter cup of nuts. Most of my food is fruit and veggies.




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        1. Leucine is the most common amino acid in the proteins of most if not all organisms, which is perhaps one reason concentrations of free leucine are used to monitor protein status from yeast to humans. There are other systems (GCN2) that detect when amino acids are deficient, which inhibit synthesis and start housecleaning autophagy. It looks rather likely that while some amino acids are clearly harmful in excess (methionine being the most toxic), its the overall balance between anabolic and catabolic state that has a large effect on longevity and risk of some chronic diseases. We’re adapted to grow fast, reproduce often, but die young in times of plenty, but live through famines to have another chance in times of scarcity.

          The very incompleteness of plant proteins may contribute to plant food health benefits. Grains tend to be low in lysine. Beans, particularly soy, are fairly complete proteins. While most whole plant based diets offer complete protein, its possible to devise diet like Dr. Kempner’s white rice diet which runs about 40% short of lysine requirements. Earlier paradigms in nutrition would see this as a severe flaw, and for some purposes (childhood growth, bodybuilding, preventing sarcopenia in the elderly) it certainly is. But experimental geronology is a rather different world, and in every species studied, protein restriction, or restriction of amino acids methionine or tryptophan, extends lifespan. We may not be able to practice it in childhood or old age, but as a non-bodybuilder approaching middle age, I’ve got a few decades to give it a shot.




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          1. I’d also like to give a shout out to the spermidine in beans, often called a longevity elixir because it induces autophagy, the cellular housekeeping process that gets rid of bad cells. Fermented beans are especially rich in spermidine (as is sperm, from which the name derives).




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  5. As I was filling the car with gas to-day , I looked over at the fast food joint right next to the gas station and they had a big sign up that said “Our egg laying hens are fed a hormone free vegetarian diet” . Wow what are they saying ? Are they saying we know vegetarian diet is better? But we will feed you humans a animal diet anyways ? this sign was on a very large chain type fast food joint popular in Canada and the States.




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    1. I think you have to separate hormone from vegetarian. Hormone is bad no matter what. Now chicken are supposed to eat only plant foods and so they are vegetarian by nature. Same are the cows. But the meat industry feeds animal foods to them. I am not sure if it creates any toxins but the chicken do not grow naturally anymore. Same with chemicals they use to make plants grow faster and bigger. The whole food industry is filled with chemicals. Eating organic reduces some of the risks but not quite if the producers cheat.




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      1. Chickens eat grubs, insects, worms, and even slugs if they are hungry or trained. Chickens are great to have in your orchard because they eat the larva or worm form of codling moth or apple maggot, they give the tree “fertilizer” and then you can have organic apples without worms for free basically. Compare at $3 per pound.
        John S




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        1. Oops you are right, I forgot in the old days when the chicken are freely roaming cage free, they ate primarily insects, worms, slugs, etc. So all these vegetarian ad words mean nothing. It’s only the hormone that you don’t want.




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        2. My sister kept some chickens and when my nephew saw them eating the slugs in the garden, he refused to eat their eggs anymore! lol




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          1. I don’t care if it’s snakes, beetles (the eggs), frogs, newts or whatever. Anyone who eats the slugs in my yard and gives me more vegies, mushrooms, and fruit is my friend.




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        3. There are some Quakers near here who have small apple orchards and they keep sheep in the orchards to eat the fallen apples . The fallen apples usually have apple maggots and the apples being eaten by the sheep stop the life cycle of the apple maggot . Pretty smart I guess.




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    2. Feeding hens a “vegetarian diet” means nothing if the diet consists of GMO corn which is most often what they are fed. If the eggs are ORGANIC then the hens would not have been fed GMO corn feed so if one is going to eat eggs (which I don’t necessarily recommend) then I would say you are safest with organic eggs, if you are concerned from a toxin perspective.
      By the way esben andersen I think that’s an interesting point you made about them essentially acknowledging that vegetarian is better while marketing animal based food products. Brilliant!




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    3. Its just a marketing catch phrase. Consumers are concerned about the synthetic hormones given to cattle, which is used for milk, milk products, and of course beef. So they’ll tell you their poultry is “hormone free”, which by the way is saying nothing, because its illegal to use hormones in poultry in the US.




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    4. Well, I can’t help but say that a vegetarian diet is not natural for chickens. In natural surroundings they scratch up bugs and worms to eat. So the whole thing is topsy turvy. Humans do better with plant based eating, so they feed us chickens who were vegetarians, when they should not have been! How ironic!




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  6. I eat a balanced diet that includes meat but I think a Vegan diet is health.
    Whats bothering me is all the speculative wording in these post. We think….Blah Blah. Looks like Blah Blah. We can assume Blah Blah




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    1. To me, careful wording like “we think” and “looks like” is a sign of competence and knowledge of science. It shows that the speaker understands that there is no scientific study that can present facts with absolutely no risk of error. The best we can get is lots and lots of studies that are 99% sure that all point in the same direction coupled with very few studies pointing in the other direction. So anyone saying “we know” and stuff like that, I would take less seriously




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      1. Remember the “scientific” study on the “harm” of drinking coffee? Poof, it’s even gone to the opposite direction. It’s not only not dangerous but beneficial to drink up to 6 cups of coffee per day.




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        1. Not for everyone. Some people cannot get enough sleep drinking that much coffee, or any coffee at all. It just depends on the person.




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          1. Yep I agree, coffee is not for everyone but what was gone is that coffee causes heart disease and cancer and shortens life. It’s actually the opposite.




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      2. For those interested in scientific method, I strongly recommend the discussion in chapters 9-10 of Sean Carroll’s The Big Picture: On the Origins of Life, Meaning, and the Universe Itself (2016), in which the physicist relates experiment to updating Bayesian probabilities.

        Bayes’s Theorem is one of those insights that can change the way we go through life. Each of us comes equipped with a rich variety of beliefs, for or against all sorts of propositions. Bayes teaches us (1) never to assign perfect certainty to any such belief; (2) always to be prepared to update our credences when new evidence comes along; and (3) how exactly such evidence alters the credences we assign. It’s a road map for coming closer and closer to the truth.




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    1. Look in the sources tab for links to all articles referenced in the video. Some sadly are behind a paywall, so you might not be able to read the full article without paying or being close enough to a large university library where you can use their access to read it.




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  7. I don’t eat meat because I believe it is less healthy, so this is NOT a pro-meat posting..

    However, I do question the many “type of protein” studies published.

    1) Never tested is ordinary meat versus meat from cattle fed only organic feed over
    their ENTIRE lifetimes, including finishing to increase marbeling (fat) – which most often
    includes corn – at the feedlot prior to slaughter.

    2) Never tested is organic fed (lifetime) versus grass-fed (no pesticides, etc.) – with and without finishing.

    3) No account in these studies is taken of the method of preparation, added sauces, foods
    accompanying the meat meals, how much meat is eaten at each meal and each day, etc.

    4) Rarely is the effect of processed meats separated out from “ordinary meats”.

    5) Bison meat is never compared to similarly prepared beef meat.

    The published studies are not yet clear enough to be definitive.




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    1. In The China Study the people eating the most animal protein had the most cancer. I’m pretty sure that was not factory-produced meat as it is in this country.




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      1. The China Study has many flaws, including no identification of other environmental factors, how the meat was raised, etc. These have been pointed out by many researchers over the years. Extreme care is needed when citing the China Study.




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        1. I see the China Study as verification in people of what Campbell and others had already shown over many, many years and experiments in his lab with rats at Cornell.

          In my own case, after following the Weston Price model, eating properly raised beef, chicken, eggs, wild-caught salmon, etc. for two years I discovered a large, aggressive stage 3 triple negative breast cancer that had not been detectable a year earlier. That was all the evidence I needed to back off the animal protein. I’ve now outlived one oncologist’s predictions by over five years.

          Science focuses on one thing or another, but with food synergy of components, some yet to be identified, is too important for that method to be the only way it is studied.




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          1. Rebecca – I’m with you. I don’t care who or what interprets China Study at this point. Since reading it I changed to a WFPB diet. I reversed my pre-diabetes, lost 30lbs, reversed gout, reversed osteopenia, lowered cholesterol, lowered LDL, removed constipation, increased energy and just cannot tell you how good I feel. Mr. Tyler can get caught up in the minutae of splitting hairs on China Study if he so chooses. But for those of us whose lives are changed by such improvement, I say, to heck with him – I’m with Campbell!!
            And btw, I, too, went the Weston Price route. My weight, cholesterol shot up and everything else went to hell in a handbag. Good for you for your continued good health. I wish you all the best.




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    2. Regardless of how the animal was raised or whether it comes from a bovine or a bison or even a chicken or an egg, all animal protein has very similar amino acid profiles. Specifically animal proteins have much higher proportion of the amino acids methionine and leucine than plant proteins. These higher proportions stimulate the body to produce more IGF-1 and TOR which in turn effect cancer proliferation and cell aging and death.

      The additional unhealthy aspects of how some animals are raised, such as corn fed for higher fat, feed sprayed with pesticides that bio-accumulate in the animal and then in you just add to the pile of negative health effects that come from eating animal flesh and ova, and drinking their breast milk. There are certainly many vidoes that address things like saturated fat that shows that adding even more fat to meat with rich feed like grain rather than leaner pastured animals is a bad thing without having to specifically address feedlot finished versus grass finished beef.

      And #4 is simply not correct. Dr. Greger frequently breaks out the additional negative health effects of processed meat.




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    3. I am not a Dr. or dietitian but just use common sense. If you eat the meat RAW all these things you discuss may have an impact. But 99% of consumed meat is cooked-burnt (extreme heating) and eaten with taste altering plant foods and spices. Example: cheeseburger, fried chicken, bacon, steak, sausage, etc… I doubt if these 5 things make any difference at all except maybe in consumer’s mind (psychologically makes them feel good or at least better). I used to eat free-range chicken to not buy meat produced in concentration torture factories. It made a huge psychological impact on my well being. It may have also helped the animals. But burnt meat is burnt meat. And talking of “China Study”, Chinese eat burnt meat of dog and cats (and I think they also eat shark & rat meat). In some other countries they eat worms, snakes and crickets.




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  8. Genetics and how tall you are play a major role in how long you live, people with good genes and who are shorter(<5'10) live longer.




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      1. Since you asked elsewhere, I do take supplements. In the context of a whole plant based diet high in prebiotic fermentable fiber and hormetic polyphenols while low in methionine, I add some vegan nutritional insurance:
        • liquid B12 (cyanocobalamin) added to a filtered drinking water pitcher kept in the refrigerator
        • 1 algal oil capsule with 360 mg DHA & 180 mg EPA
        • 1 kelp tablet with 225 μg iodine
        • 2 home filled ‘OO’ capsules with a daily total of 500 mg creatine, 250 mg β-alanine, 250 mg taurine, 100 mg carnitine, and 20 mg zinc, to mimic omnivore intakes

        This “combo” pill is more speculative, inspired by this essay.Other things I take as an admittedly n=1 longevity experiment:
        • 1 heap tsp (6-10) g glycine (USP grade) added to bedtime beverage
        • 2 x 500 mg niacin (as nicotinic acid)
        • 2 x 467.2 magnesium salicylate (sold as an OTC back pain medicine)
        • 2 x 750 mg vegetarian glucosamine
        • 1 x 200 μg K2mk7
        • 1 x 400 mg andrographis extract




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        1. What is your view on niacin for CVD management consideration the recent studies where it was an add on to an statin showed no benefits in terms of mortality? Do you still think it has a purpose as a mono therapy drug?




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          1. In AIM-HIGH, the study design permitted titration of the statin to meet LDL goals, so those randomized to statin+niacin had a lesser dose of statin. In HPS2-THRIVE, those randomized to statin+niacin had higher myopathy, so niacin was definitely potentiating this known statin side effect. However, in the studies conducted prior to the statin era, niacin monotherapy reduced CVD events 31%. So niacin definitely doesn’t play well with statins, and shouldn’t be used in conjunction with them. Perhaps the movement to extended release niacin in the modern trials defeated the benefits caused by intermittent sharp flushes.

            I’m mostly interested in immediate release NA as a NAD+ precursor/sirtuin activator, given that it is more effective in more tissues and far cheaper than the compound nicotinamide riboside currently being investigated for this purpose.




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          1. Taurocholic acid is an endogenously produced bile acid used to emulsify long chain saturated fats. In this study, the authors found that adding butterfat to mice diets increased taurocholic acid production, which in turn caused blooms of the pathobiont Bilophilia wadworthia and colitis. However, in the absence of high saturated fat intake, I’d expect most taurine to be rapidly absorbed, as we have a couple enterocyte transporters, and hence it wouldn’t be available to Bilophilia.

            Could supplementation increase taurocholic acid production? Perhaps, but I expect the more significant effect would be sparing cysteine and thence methionine requirements, and perhaps interfering with benefits seen in lower sulfur amino acid diets. However, while there have been only a few clinical trials in humans, I find the evidence of far lower heart disease mortality in diverse populations with high urinary taurine excretion intriguing and compelling, there are plausible mechanistic links, and there are plenty of animal studies pointing to potential benefits.




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    1. This paper by Melnik certainly got my attention. So not only might it be semaphore signaling with a given amino acid profile in her milk that the mother uses to signal her infant to grow, but it could also be that she is also sending genetic material that directly influences gene expression in the infant!

      Gross enough thinking about nursing even second hand on a cows teat, but that doing so could mean that I have bovine miRNA swimming around inside me controlling my gene expression and enzyme production! PASS!




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  9. Dear Dr. Greger,

    I’m a strength coach and I work with athletes who consume a lot of protein. I’m also a PhD in public health. Your video intrigued me, so I read the full paper.

    You did not mention the following in your video:

    1) [From the abstract] “These associations were confined to participants with at least 1 unhealthy lifestyle factor based on smoking, heavy alcohol intake, overweight or obesity, and physical inactivity, but not evident among those without any of these risk factors.”

    2) [From the full text, p. E4] “The positive association with all-cause mortality for animal protein intake and the inverse association for plant protein intake were restricted to the unhealthylifestyle group (P for interaction <.001), although the association with animal protein intake did not reach statistical significance."

    3) [From the full text, p. E7] "Protein intake from processed red meat was strongly associated with mortality, whereas no association was found for protein from fish or poultry."

    Based on the above, I think we should realize that these results were limited to "participants with at least 1 unhealthy lifestyle factor based on smoking, heavy alcohol intake, overweight or obesity, and physical inactivity" and restricted to processed red meat. Based on these results, I think it's unfair to imply that all animal proteins are harmful for the general population.

    Perhaps these limitations should be the focus of another video?

    Best regards from Montréal,

    Etienne Juneau, PhD
    Doctor of Public Health




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    1. Hi Etienne
      “Based on these results, I think it’s unfair to imply that all animal proteins are hateful for the general population.” I didn’t read all of the 20 or so links Dr. Greger posted but based on the one you are referring to–the general population has at least one of those unhealthy lifestyle factors. I know the majority of my patients do. At the very least they are inactive.

      But you must admit as a strength coach working with athletes there is this crazy over emphasis on eating meat. As a side note did you see the UFC flight on Saturday. Diaz is a vegan.




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    2. Or another way to look at it–if you are really healthy and active your body can better deal with the insult from meat. We need that study for sure.




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  10. My view is that once Phillip Morris devalued Kraft foods enough so they could then buy them, they then ceased the milk scare campaign, then being unprofitable of course.




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  11. the studies cited don’t seem to me to support the notion of turning off the IGF1 related gene, just reducing the levels of IGF1 in the body by not triggering IGF1 creation in the liver as a result of eating animal proteins. The author seems to say we can turn off the gene that triggers IGF1 receptor activity, like in the round worms or in those people living to be 100 or more. Ornish showed many cancer promoting genes turned off on plant based diet and lifestyle mods, as well as anti-cancer genes turning off. But we don’t have a clear idea if this IGF1 gene was affected or not. It is a little misleading. It still is sensible to limit or eliminate animal protein, of course regardless of which reason you may have, as there are many good ones.




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  12. I see everyone here getting stressed up because of Dr Greger conclusions but now go and check dr Robert Morse vidéos and the man clearly insists:all proteins whether animal or plant-based are acidic for the blood, suitably feed cancer environment and you basically should stay as much as possible away from them!




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    1. Citing people like Morse does not help at all, I am afraid. People from paper qualifications from dubious institutions who make money promoting their unscientific ideas are simply not credible. Even if they are vegetarian.
      The saturated fat and cholesterol denialists do not have a monopoly on dietary quacks, charlatans and cranks. More’s the pity




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      1. Agreed! But I still like them mixed into something that has a meatball-iness aspect to them like the walnut balls recipe I link to in my comment to Samuel.




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    1. I can’t eat just a little meat. If I try, I end up eating a lot more that I first intended over time. My will power will eventually sag and I’ll end up back where I started, eating a lot of meat every day. The only way I can eat a healthy diet is by cutting out meat and animal products COMPLETELY! Then I loose the taste for them and it’s no problem as far as will power is concerned. But eating just a little leads to just a little bit more… until eventually I’m back to my fat, unhealthy self.




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      1. Eating meat requires a willful ignorance of just what is contained in the meat you are eating. So you could make a deal with yourself and for those times you really want some meat you could watch the Mercy for Animals undercover videos while you eat. Very much doubt that the amounts and frequency would increase at all. In fact I would be surprised if anybody could get much past the first bite when the pain and suffering in your mouth is so graphically on display in front of your eyes.




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    2. Since my taste buds have recovered from their salt, sugar and fat induced coma, really high fat foods like ground meat taste awful. It is like my mouth has turned into a grease trap! But I still love meatballs in sauce over a nice whole-wheat pasta. So I substitute something like ground oats, pecans and walnuts for the ground meat. Then just add all the same spices and you have pretty passable meatball. Bake in a hot oven till they are firm and then simmer in the sauce of your choice. I like this recipe. I use a 50/50 mix of walnuts and pecans instead of all walnuts. Make a double (triple!) batch and freeze the extras after the trip through the oven and you always have some meatballs ready to drop in the sauce to get your meatball fix in just minutes. Mmmm!




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        1. What timing. We were looking for a new lentil loaf recipe for a dinner party this weekend for some new plant-based friends. They are still at the morning stage for the comfort foods they think they will never get to eat again, so we are going to have a meal of comfort foods (“meatloaf”, mashed potatoes, green beans, and almond ice cream with peanut butter and maple syrup topping for dessert)

          There is also a cautionary tale in here too of the bell that can’t be unrung. They are very concerned environmentalists we know from church, especially with regard to climate change. The husband rides his bike to work everyday. They drive a very fuel efficient car. They have a lovely garden and fruit trees and grow a lot of their own fruits and vegetables. And are proud that they now have replaced the last of their CFLs with LEDs. One day I asked them how they have changed their diet, especially with regard to meat, to reflect their concern about the environment.

          They looked a little perplexed and said that they do eat local, pastured and organic to the maximum they can. They were more than a little gob-smacked when I told them that animal agriculture accounts for at a minimum of 18% of human driven climate change with some accounting up to 51% (I don’t quite buy all of Goodland and Anhang accounting, but the parts I agree with total to about 30% of human climate forcing). That compares to 14% from the entire transportation sector (every car, truck, train, ship and aircraft!). In addition a kilogram of beef has a water footprint of 15,500 liters, with animal agriculture accounts for 47% of all fresh water used in California with direct use by consumers totally only 4%, so if not for animal agriculture, there would be no water shortage.

          But they are true to their convictions and so with the new information they started a very rapid transition to a plant-based diet. Since we (well I, as my wife keeps reminding me that it wasn’t her that rung this particular bell) precipitated this change, we are helping them find there way, including to this website.




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  13. Heart disease was around 3 percent in 1900, meat consumption 140 lbs per capita per yr in the US. By 2000, heart disease rose to over 50 percent (conservatively), a 1700 percent rise, while meat consumption rose to around 180 lbs- 200lbs per year, or tops about a 40 percent rise. Produce in 1900 was around 130 lbs but by 2000 it fell to around 11 lbs, a 1200 percent drop. Sugar went up quite a bit around 100 percent or more over the century, too. But the huge drop in produce is so numerically suspicious and inversely reflective of the rising graph in heart disease, the declining produce curve fits better than any other dietary change. Maybe it is what we do not eat that is killing us? Also, the people in 1900 did not even have produce available all year like we do, even though we eat so little of it now, we might as well not have it. To me these data represent the biggest study ever done on nutrition. 100 years, hundreds of millions of people of all backgrounds and genetics, wars, prosperities, famines, stresses, multiple generations, infant deaths, centenarians, healthy, sick, cripples, twins, triplets, name it, we got it…and produce fell an average 1200 percent while heart disease rose 1700. If you factor in the sugar and the increase in meat, plus whatever food processing and factory farming of cattle does, the 1200 percent drop in produce plus all that could account for 1700 percent rise in heart disease. So, folks, let’s take 2 scales, put your produce on the one, and all the animal products on the other…make sure the produce is equal or greater weight, eat it first, then eat whatever you want from the other scale. That would, to me, be applying science to nutrition based on the best study ever done.




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      1. The content of the fat might have included more omega 3 from grass feeding versus the danged feedlot, too. Reducing produce 1200 percent would then remove most of the rest of the omega 3 from leafy greens, the fiber, and vitamin K2, phytates (they got a bad rap from a researcher about depleting minerals, turned out a non-issue, the are very beneficial for heart calcium removal and cancer suppression, and nitrates for supplemental nitric oxide for flexible arteries (may be the major reason in folks over 40 for the heart and stroke disease levels, simple lack of nitrates from produce?). Nitrates and nitrites got bad rap due to cooking meat in them at higher temps, forming nitrosamines. But by themselves in produce they form nitric oxide, highly beneficial, and our bodies are already loaded with nitrates and nitrites, it is part of a basic loop that forms nitric oxide in older age when the l-arginine pathway breaks down. So I have read. It would be really interesting to plot the levels of produce consumption by years over the century, no? :)




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      1. absolutely right. The heart disease did rise 1700 percent, conservatively from 3 to 50 percent, so I wanted to express the quantity of produce consumed somehow that would be easy to see the comparison, ie 1700 vs 1200, but you are right you can’t reduce anything 1200 percent (if you could reduce produce 1200 percent, Americans would have already found a way to do it, however). :)




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  14. “So, men and women who don’t eat meat, egg whites, or dairy proteins have significantly lower levels circulating within their bodies.” Shouldn’t the yolks be included?




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    1. OhYeah: Egg whites are almost pure animal protein. But egg yolks are mostly fat. So, in the context of this video/discussion, egg whites are the bigger concern.
      .
      It is worth explicitly mentioning egg whites, because we get *so* many people on this website ask the question, “Well, I know egg yolks are bad for me, but surely egg whites are OK?” Explicitly mentioning egg whites helps people to understand that there really isn’t any part of an egg that is good for them – the white along with the yolk.
      .
      I did learn something today though. At your question, I looked up egg yolks. According to the following site, http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/dairy-and-egg-products/113/2 , egg yolks are 75% fat, 20% protein, and 5% carbs. That’s more protein than I expected. But still, it is a lot of fat. FYI: The same site also says that egg whites are 91% protein, 6% carbs and 3% fat, which is about what I expected.




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        1. WFPBRunner: LOVE it!!! I had not seen that interview before. I love how Dr. Greger answered many of the questions/criticisms that come up in this forum. People can see his answers in his own words. I also loved that Dr. Greger (as usual) did not mince words. He told it like it is and was very clear about it. Nice bedtime entertainment. Have a lovely night.
          .
          PS: Did you see the follow up/bonus interview? So funny! https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCOzSvhIOfhi4kUDn_N0Rk2Q




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    1. leon65: That’s tomorrow’s video. So, look for the video-of-the-day tomorrow, or check the link again tomorrow. Note: new videos are posted every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.




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      1. No actually whole soy foods will increase IGF-1 levels as well, if you eat enough of them (somewhere between 7 and 17 servings a day). Mitigating the IGF-1 produced in response to large amounts of soy is that the isoflavones in soy stimulate increased production of IGF binding protein, so some of the measured IGF-1 is bound and not available to stimulate cancer growth. There appears to be a sweet spot around 3-4 servings of soy (in any form) a day where the benefits to risk ratio is maximized. (1, 2, 3)




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  15. But what is the reason people live shorter lives for eating meat, dairy & eggs ? The reason is because meat, dairy and eggs are not natural human food because we are pure herbivores. Over millions of years our bodies have evolved and adapted to not only survive but to thrive on most abundant (cheapest) raw fruits, vegetables and nuts. That is the “most perfect” food for human – not champagne, caviar, eggs, cheese, butter and fillet mignon.




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  16. Dear Dr. Greger and fellow discussion members,

    I have been watching many of your videos and I have to say that I really appreciate your work. I read on your website nutritionfacts.org that you are very appreciative of messages that point you towards studies that you have not touched upon or that contradict things that you have said in your videos. I know that you are supportive of the elimination of all animal products from a health and nutritional perspective. I completely understand that there is a consensus in the community of nutritional science that eating more towards a whole foods plant based diet is the healthiest choice. However, it seems that some links between the intake of certain animal products and disease or mortality remain inconclusive. To be more concrete I am wondering about the following contradicting studies and your perspective on these:

    http://bmcmedicine.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1741-7015-11-63
    In this study they concluded the following: “a high consumption of processed meat was related to moderately higher all-cause mortality. After correction for measurement error, red meat intake was no longer associated with mortality, and there was no association with the consumption of poultry. Processed meat consumption was associated with increased risk of death from cardiovascular diseases and cancer.” Except for processed meat, this study did not find other types of meat to have negative effects on mortality.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10329343
    http://circ.ahajournals.org/content/109/22/2705.full
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10853639
    http://circ.ahajournals.org/content/early/2015/06/17/CIRCULATIONAHA.115.015607
    All the above mentioned studies focus on the relation between fish consumption and disease/mortality and speak of a ‘reduced risk’, what would your view on these conclusions be?

    http://nutritionstudies.org/fallacious-faulty-foolish-discussion-about-saturated-fat/
    In this article by T. Colin Campbell, he theorizes that saturated fat and dietary cholesterol are not necessarily bad but that it is actually the animal protein that causes health problems. I know that your view on saturated fats and cholesterol is different and therefore I wonder how you view Campbell’s perspective.

    Finally, I would very much appreciate if you could elaborate on a video about the “dangers of eating meat once a week” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kdJCP4j33pw) as the studies in this video mostly concern the effect of meat on diabetes. Is there a well-developed body of studies conducted that focus on a comparison between a vegan and non-vegan diet in which the latter living mostly on a whole food plant based diet but with a very small intake of meat and/or fish (less than twice a week for example and after controlling for age, weight, alcohol, exercise, smoking, family history for disease, etc.)? So in concrete – and without including the ethical or environmental aspect of veganism but only focusing on the health aspect – would a very limited intake of animal products in the form of fish or meat (so no dairy or eggs) differ from a strictly plant based diet? You also demonstrated the Okinawa diet, which mostly consists of plants but also a very limited amount of animal products, can promote longevity as well.




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    1. Daan, thank you so much for your well posed questions, and especially for all the links to studies that present results that are different with respect to the health effects of animal flesh. I’ll respond to just the first study you link to on meat consumption and mortality in the EPIC cohort.

      First I have some reservations about reading too much into the difference within the EPIC cohort. All members are drawn from European countries, where despite the differences in diet, nearly everyone eats some variant of the Western diet with a significant percentage of calories coming from animal foods. This includes the vegetarians since nutritionally eggs and dairy are almost identical to animal flesh. As such there is the risk that as expressed by Geoffrey Rose in his landmark paper Sick Individuals and Sick Populations,International Journal of Epidemiology 1985 that if everyone in a population is exposed to the same factor, the conclusions drawn from that population about the risks of that factor can be very misleading. To quote, “If everyone smoked 20 cigarettes a day, then clinical, case-control and cohort studies alike would lead us to conclude that lung cancer was a genetic disease; and in one sense that would be true, since if everyone is exposed to the necessary agent, then the distribution of cases is wholly determined by individual susceptibility.“. The fact that the real risk is smoking itself only becomes clear because roughly half the of the population doesn’t smoke at all.

      In the same way using a population where nearly 100% consumes significant quantities of animal foods to assess the risk of eating a specific animal food (red meat) could lead to very misleading and erroneous conclusions. In an attempt to address Rose’s concerns researchers will use statistical adjustments to try to tease out real trends from the potential confounding effects of variation in other variables. This approach can be useful, but there is the very big risk of over-adjustment where real trends disappear as all the statistical knobs are twiddled. So when I read the following from the study, “A high consumption of red meat was related to increased all-cause mortality (Table 2). Participants with an intake of 160+ g red meat/day had a HR = 1.37 (95% CI 1.23 to 1.54) compared with individuals with an intake of 10 to 19.9 g/day in the simple model taking into account age, study center, and sex. The association was attenuated in the multivariate model, but was still statistically significant (HR = 1.14, 95% CI 1.01 to 1.28). “, I am concerned that the data was over-adjusted and that perhaps the HR of 1.37 is the better number.

      What is needed is another population which consumes little or no animal foods. The EPIC Oxford cohort does includes those who self-identify as vegan would seem to provide this contrasting population. However, the study you give doesn’t identify data for vegan subgroup for comparison to the general cohort. And even if it did, I am not sure how much clarity the Oxford vegans would add. I have read that these are more the processed/junk food type vegans that as a group don’t seem to understand the need to supplement a pure plant based diet with vitamin B-12. As such the Oxford vegans might bring a host of confounding variables to the table which would muddy the results or invite more over-adjustment.

      And a third concern I have is that this study is an example of inappropriate use of the reductionist approach where the health effects of a single component of the diet is pulled out of the overall data set. The issue is that diet is a zero sum game. If you increase one food, by force you must reduce one or more other foods in order to keep calories (and so weight) constant. So are the observed differences because more of the target food is present in the diet or is it because there is less of the other food(s). Or in this case is it that the red meat removed from diets was replaced by other foods that were just as hazardous like chicken and so the replacement food hides the risk of the red meat. Researchers try to account for this, but the necessary statistical adjustments again opens the door to more over-adjustment.

      So by restricting the subjects to just those in the EPIC cohort, I feel that determining the actual risk of eating red meat has at least these three major hurdles to clear in order to come to the right conclusion. One possible solution is to bring in data from global populations that eat truly different diets. The data on the disease risks and mortality rates of populations like those in rural Africa, Asia and Central and South America where animal food consumption is a very small fraction of that common in Europe could provide the needed contrast in the variable being investigated. But other non-food aspects of the lifestyle of these populations compared to Europeans such as levels of medical care introduces other variables that could add uncertainty.

      What is really needed is a “NutritionFacts.org” cohort of people who, other than eating a whole-food plant-based diet with little to no animal foods, live a western lifestyle. The same environmental pollutants, same type of medical care, same mix of genetics, same sources of stress as well as ways of dealing with that stress that make life-style matched comparisons much more straight forward. And even this NutritionFact cohort would still have the issue of diet being a zero sum game. So the only thing that could be said with full clarity would be the different HR for a range of different diseases between the entire WFPB diet versus other entire diets. Picking out the risks of single component like red meat would still be a very hard or even impossible.




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        1. Sorry if it is a bit over-elaborate, hazard of being able to type over 90 wpm. One of these days I promise myself that I will learn to write short comments.




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  17. So…how do IGF-1 levels relate to SOD levels?

    Any connection other than both are present?

    “Superoxide dismutase is found in all animals —
    from the smallest fruit flies to whales and elephants
    — that live in the presence of oxygen, even including
    some anaerobic bacteria.”

    “SOD’s power to fight off free radicals is second to
    none. Compared with vitamin C, itself a powerful
    antioxidant, SOD is 3,500 times stronger.5
    Animal studies have also shown that “supplementing”
    with SOD can also increase lifespan and healthspan.
    Researchers from Harvard gave SOD to tiny
    nematode worms and they lived between 50% and
    100% longer than normal, according to research
    published in Science journal.6
    In another study published in The American
    Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers genetically
    engineered fruit flies to have double the amount of
    SOD, and the fruit flies lived twice as long.7,8”




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  18. So what about masai, inuit or any other meat eating tribal population that live almost completely without cancer? How is that possible?




    0
    1. Hannes: Do you have evidence of that? It sounds like the same type of myth that the Inuit do not have heart disease. They do. They don’t typically die of heart disease, because they die of other diseases first. But the heart disease is there. It’s even documented in ancient Inuit mummies.

      Perhaps that’s the answer to your question right there. It can take time for cancer to grow. Perhaps the Inuit were dying off before the cancer could get them.

      A site called Plant Positive does a great job of covering these types of myths, including several videos on the Masai, Inuit(Eskimo), etc. I found one video showing evidence that the Inuit have been found to have cancers. Here is the video: http://plantpositive.com/blog/2012/3/25/tpns-27-28-the-eskimo-model.html From the transcript:

      “Traditional Eskimos had other health problems as well. They have been afflicted by some cancers, for example. A century ago reports stated otherwise, but they were later shown to be inaccurate. Any observed low occurrence of cancer soon was understood to only be a result of infectious diseases which ended their lives before cancers had a chance to develop.

      Eskimos actually have some of the world’s highest rates of certain cancers.

      Here is a graph for that.

      A cancer was also identified in the remains of an extinct Paleo-Eskimo.”




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    1. Yes, but how much meat? Is/was he a big steak guy whose plate had little room for foods like vegetables or whole starches? Or did he fill up on starches (whole grains, legumes, and tubers) with lots of non-starchy vegetables and fruit with a small amount of meat more for flavor than something to fill up on?

      Health and meat isn’t a binary thing where adding the tiniest bit of meat will wreck your health. Instead it is continuum where the more your diet that comes from whole plant foods the healthier it is and the more that comes from animal foods and highly refined plant fragments the less healthy it is.

      So if he was closer to the second way of eating with meat playing a small role and plants being the majority, then I am not at all surprised that he is still active at 94. And if it was the first way with big slabs of meat hogging the center of his plate, then I have to ask how many different chronic diseases (high BP, diabetes, kidney failure, diverticulitis, heart disease, etc) does he have to live with and how many medications does he have to take to keep him alive and able to play golf. The goal isn’t just to simply continue to live, but to live in great health for as many years as possible.




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  19. This Doctor is sure going to make a lot of money selling a book with a video that not a single viewer has the capacity to validate the authenticity.
    This is showing symptoms of Doctorcraft. I highly recommend to any watcher or vieewer to reallly double check the reviews about this book before spending money on yet another “health book” by yet another “well intention-ed Dr” in the never ending effort to try to help peaple decide what food is healthy and what food isnt…….

    ……except you know, we kind of already know if it is or not. *shrugs*




    0
    1. James Bernards: What are you talking about? Are you talking about Dr. Greger’s new book How Not To Die? The reviews are off the charts high. And the information in the book is all fully backed up by referenced, credible research. Also, Dr. Greger makes no money off the book at all. He also makes no money off of any DVDs that the site sells. Dr. Greger has a day job.

      Did you know all this? Did you mean to put your post on this site?




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  20. I fully agree with cigarette companies argument in support of their industry. What do smoking, eating meat, dairy & eggs have in common ? A LOT. They are all Legal, heavily subsidized by governments, very BAD for human health and eaten (smoked) by billions of impoverished humans. Meat, dairy & eggs, not only don’t have any health benefits but as these objective scientific studies Prove, they are even worse than smoking. At least when you smoke, you don’t deliberately and maliciously cause torture of an innocent, powerless third party, you don’t destroy the planet and cause global warming. The Earth is Hell thanks to a bunch of evil malicious Wall Street Corporations & their lobbyists.




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  21. Not clear scientific evidence for me by reading all this if the problem is protein, animal protein, or animal food. I take protein supplements and trying to find vegan sources but not always, so whey protein isolated from the rest of the milk is still an issue? Any research on this?




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  22. @Dr. Greger and staff:

    Why is in Doctors Note written:

    “Harvard researchers concluded “Replacing animal protein of various origins with plant protein was associated with lower mortality.”

    when in the original paper is written:

    “These associations were confined to participants with at least 1 unhealthy lifestyle factor based on smoking, heavy alcohol intake, overweight or obesity, and physical inactivity, but not evident among those without any of these risk factors.”

    ?

    I really appreciate your work, but this is nothing but cherrypicking. Why do you do that? Was is a mistake?

    If this sentence stays like this and you’re not answering my comment, it would really hurt your credibility, so I hope, this won’t be the case.

    All the best!




    0
    1. Hi John. Can you post the article you are referring to so I can check this out. Are you sure he isn’t quoting from two different articles?




      0
      1. Sure!
        At the very beginning (directly under the video on this page) under the headline “Doctor’s Note” there is written:

        “A newer study just came out this month. Entitled Association of Animal and Plant Protein Intake With All-Cause and Cause-Specific Mortality, Harvard researchers concluded “Replacing animal protein of various origins with plant protein was associated with lower mortality.”

        linked to the abstract from the cited study (on pubmed): http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27479196

        When you read the “Results” from this abstract, there is clearly wirtten: “These associations were confined to participants with at least 1 unhealthy lifestyle factor based on smoking, heavy alcohol intake, overweight or obesity, and physical inactivity, but not evident among those without any of these risk factors.”




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        1. Thank you for your input John.

          It is absolutely true what you stated when it comes to results of the study. There are others specifics which can be talked about all the studies mentioned by Dr Greger, whether it’s strengths, weaknesses, limitations and practical application. However, as you might understand if we were to that for every single publication, we could not move forward and there would need to be a video for each study doing a critical appraisal of the article. But again, I am not stating that you do not have a point and details are certainly important but the bigger perspective on the topic of the video is required.

          Nevertheless, other points were also stated by the authors in the study that might be worth considering too:

          Apart from the benefit on mortality risk found by this study, “substitution of plant protein for animal protein has been related to a lower incidence of CVD & type 2 diabetes”

          “Unlike animal protein, plant protein has not been associated with increased IGF-1 levels, and has been linked to lower blood pressure, reduced low-density lipoprotein levels, and improved insulin sensitivity”.

          Therefore, in my opinion, there certainly isn’t a good case for consuming animal protein as per this publication.

          Hope this answer helps.




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  23. Pahhh!

    Most of the worlds longest lived people are lifelong smokers. Jeanne Calment had begun smoking as a young woman. At 117 she quit smoking (by that age she was just smoking two or three cigarettes per day because she was blind and was too proud to ask often for someone to light her cigarettes for her). But she resumed smoking when she was 118 because, as she said, not smoking made her miserable and she was too old to be made miserable. She also said to her doctor: “Once you’ve lived as long as me, only then can you tell me not to smoke.”
    When Mme. Calment died at 122 in l997, the new longevity champ became 116-year-old Marie-Louise Meilleur, of Canada. Mme. Meilleur had chain-smoked all her adult life (as her grandson said, “She always had a cigarette dangling from her lips as she worked”.
    The worlds oldest man around that time was Christian Mortensen who had been a cigar smoker for most of his life–and still smoked them up to his death at 116.
    Britain’s oldest man, George Cook, died at 108 in his sleep in September, 1997. He “smoked heavily for 85 years before giving up tobacco at the age of 97”.

    Mme Calment’s title as the worlds oldest ever person is now in serious jeopardy however. According to the documents recognized by Indonesian officials, 145 year old chainsmoker, Mbah Gotho from Sragen in central Java could be the oldest living man documented. According to his ID, Mr. Gotho was born on December 31st, 1870.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?…




    0
    1. Parmenion59: What is your point? Is it your belief that your anecdotes mean that smoking is healthful for the general population? Or that people who smoke should also eat a lot of meat? Or????




      0
      1. I believe that tobacco has many benefits (as shown by smokers longevity) and that the ‘dangers’ of smoking have been massively exaggerated with very little credible evidence. I recently read an interesting article about an Italian village filled with cigarette smoking centenarians, but found it frustrating that all of the scientists seemed to be oblivious to the link between their longevity and their smoking habit, instead, drooling over matters such as they use a lot of rosemary in their cooking!
        http://news.nationalpost.com/news/world/does-an-italian-village-filled-with-cigarette-smoking-centenarians-hide-the-secret-to-long-life




        0
        1. Parmenion59: Most smokers do not have longevity. The vast majority of smokers die early. So, these benefits you believe in, if they exist at all, only seem to apply to a lucky few.
          .
          While there are over 100 studies showing smoking is neutral or healthful, there are over 7,000 studies showing the harms of smoking. And these 7,000 studies were generated at a time when everyone smoked an no one wanted to hear anything bad about smoking. I think the body of scientific evidence is pretty credible.
          .
          This is why it makes so much sense for scientists to look at other reasons for the lucky few people you have identified. Whether it is other factors of their diet or just lucky genes is an interesting question. But in the end, the majority of us are way better off not trying to beat the odds.
          .
          You may ask yourself: How long would they have lived if they had not smoked? Maybe these amazing people would have made it to 150! The bottom line is that I don’t find your evidence compelling for the point you want to make.




          0
          1. “The vast majority of smokers die early”

            The so-called ‘smoking related disease’ is one of the antismokers’ cleverest inventions. To say that a disease is ‘smoking-related’ is not the same as saying that it is directly caused by smoking, or that there is any actual proof of anything. It means simply that someone has decided that smoking MAY be a factor in that disease.

            Over the last couple of decades, more and more diseases have been added to the list, often with very little evidence. Heart disease was one of the first, even though it has something like 300 risk factors, and some major studies (for instance, that of the citizens of Framingham, Massachusetts, which has been going on since 1948) have shown not only that the link with smoking is weak, but that moderate smokers have LESS heart disease than nonsmokers.

            More recently it has become fashionable to blame smoking for just about everything… from ‘clogging up’ of the arteries (which happens to everyone as they get older) to blindness (well, they can’t blame masturbation any more) to AIDS. It has also become fashionable, every time a smoker dies, to try to find a way to blame their death on smoking.
            The fact is that many statistics about smoking (and especially ‘secondhand’ smoke) are simply made up. For instance, until cervical cancer was recently proven to be caused by a virus, a completely random 13% of cases were attributed to smoking!

            The great thing about the ‘smoking-related disease,’ is that it allows you to create the perception of a raging epidemic. The UK government says that 100,000 or 120,000 deaths per year (depending on who is speaking at the time) are caused by ‘smoking-related disease’. The impression given is that these are all deaths specifically, and provably, caused by smoking, but it is no such thing. These are not bodies in body-bags, but numbers churned out of the anti-smokers super computer, SAMMEC.
            It includes non-smokers who die of bronchitis or strokes, and smokers who die of heart attacks in their 80s and 90’s. It also includes people who quit smoking decades before. It is not exactly lying, but it is deliberately misleading, it is fearmongering, and in my opinion these charlatons should be ashamed of themselves.




            0
            1. Parmenion59: There is so much incorrect information in your post, it is not possible for me to respond to it all. For example, your belief that clogged arteries happens to everyone as they get older is verifiably untrue.

              Since this site is primarily about nutrition, I don’t have anything more to say to you on the topic of smoking. But if you would like to clear up your misunderstandings about nutrition and health, I would encourage you to stick around. There are lots of videos on this site that would be helpful. You could start with the videos on heart health. Here is an overview: http://nutritionfacts.org/topics/heart-health/




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    2. I have personally worked on Jeanne Calment’s data : 1/ she has never ever smoke more than 5 cigarettes a day, it was about 2-3 after meals and in company. She was living in a non polluted environment. When you live in New York London or Paris , and you do not smoke you , you general intoxication is equal to 5-10 cigarette a day. 2/ she has a perfect diet with more than 70% plant based. She has pain, but she overcome hurdles of life, she never experienced personal or money struggle. 3/ she has a very active life, playing piano, dancing , singing, playing bridge and circulating in bicycle until 110 or so. She was not practicing sport, but she played raquettes games as tennis, ping pong etc. She passed from dehydration during the great heat , that people are not well equipped in France.
      I started residency with psychiatry semester, I learnt the biochemistry of the brain , and I am an open mind doctor, because i have seen old people with diseases or anatomique defects that are not supposed to be compatible with life.
      Scientific results show more people passing from lung cancers, without smoking than people smoking and living healthy after 90. When people smoke and reach an extra longevity: 1/ they still have less than 40 paquet-year ( 20 cigarette /day for 40 years ) , I did the calcul for Jeanne Calment she was under 10 paquet-year. The high risk to have a lung cancer is 20 paquet-year, and it increased with different factors as genes, environment and of course food. I prepared a lot of data on this subject. Medicine needs always to be in equation to get reliable results. Meat+ smoking+ glyphosate rich food, when living a sedentary urban life : invest in a cancer center will be my prescription…..




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  24. Parmenion59: If you didn’t see it, it is because your post got caught in SPAM. I just approved it so the post is on the site now.

    As for trusting scientists, that’s what I’m doing.




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  25. More independent confirmation from PREDIMED:

    Hernández-Alonso et al, 2016. High dietary protein intake is associated with an increased body weight and total death risk. Clinical Nutrition, 35(2), pp.496-506.

    Higher total protein intake was associated with a greater risk of all-cause death in both carbohydrate and fat substitution models (hazard ratio: 1.59; 95%CI: 1.08, 2.35; and hazard ratio: 1.66; 95%CI: 1.13, 2.43, respectively). Animal protein was associated with an increased risk of fatal and non-fatal outcomes when protein substituted carbohydrates or fat.




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      1. Distribution of protein intake was similar to American intakes. Bold outcomes below were statistically significant.

        Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q5
        tot protein (% E) 13.6 15.4 16.6 17.7 19.8
        adj mortality 1.17 0.86 1.00 0.95 1.66

        Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q5
        animal protein 8.25 9.84 10.95 12.11 13.90
        adj mortality 1.24 0.88 1.00 1.12 1.92

        Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q5
        vegetable protein 4.48 5.06 5.49 5.94 6.59
        adj mortality 1.02 0.85 1.00 1.01 1.32




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  26. That’s right people stop eating meat! Enjoy watching your energy diminish! THIS IS ANOTHER POST FULL OF DISINFORMATION. WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT ALL THESE DIET WEBSITES IS THAT THE INFORMATION THEY PRESENT WILL ALWAYS CONFLICT. WHY? EVERYONE OUT THERE IN THE FOOD/NUTRITION WORLD ARE SELLING PRODUCTS. whats that? PRODUCTS! TO SELL THESE PRODUCTS THERE ARE LARGE CAMPAIGNS WORKING TO CONVINCE YOU THAT YOU NEED CERTAIN PRODUCTS IN YOUR LIFE. EAT AS PALEO AS YOU CAN OR SELL YOURSELF SHORT. The real problems are REFINED SUGARS, SALTS, DAIRY, PEANUTS, EMPTY STARCHES LIKE POTATOES AND RICE, AND WHEAT PRODUCTS, NONE OF WHICH WE ARE ADAPTED FOR OUR DIGESTION. MEAT HAS BEEN PART OF OUR DIET FOR 170K-300K YEARS. WE HAVE THE SAME DIGESTIVE SYSTEM AS CARNIVORES LIKE LIONS. Animal fat and protein are critically important to our bodies normal functioning. FIND A WAY TO GET THE PUREST HIGHEST QUALITY FORM OF DIVERSE MEATS VEGETABLES GREENS NUTS AND FRUITS IN YOUR DIET OR SUFFER FROM LONG TERM FATIGUE.




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    1. Russ W.: One of the problems with your argument is that Dr. Greger does not make a penny off of this site, his books, his DVDs nor his speaking engagements. Dr. Greger donates all the proceeds from these efforts back into this website. Dr. Greger earns his living with his day job. Sharing the body of scientific information with the public is a “labor of love”. Dr. Greger donates his time.
      .
      Another problem with your argument is the mountain of scientific evidence which contradicts what you are saying. You can learn more by investigating the pages on this site.
      .
      Finally, your claim that people will be harmed in some way (such as long term fatigue) by not eating non-human animal meat is directly contradicted by the experience (anecdotes) of the many, many humans who never eat animal products. These are people who have been eating healthy (whole plant foods) for decades. These are people who have been vegan since being weaned. And these people have no problem with their energy levels.

      .
      This is a site about the science – the body of scientific information. Note how all claims are backed up with references. This way, you can check the validity of claims yourself if you are interested. Good luck.




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  27. I checked the website video’s but could not find any information on bone gelatin. Does eating bone gel has the same IGF-1 issues as eating muscle and organ meat?




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  28. This video is misleading. While eating too much animal foods may not be good for some people, it cannot be compared to cigarette smoking. You can eat meat and live to 100 but not when you smoke. And a lot of cultures in the world eat meat and they have long life too.

    This kind of biased article will less persuasive to convince people to eat a lot of plant foods.




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    1. broccoli: Except that people are always talking about the person (or village) that smokes all the time and lives to be a hundred. I kid you not. A woman was on this forum the other day sharing an article about a whole village that smokes and has a lot of documented centarians. Does that make smoking healthy? Have we been fooled by over 7,000 studies telling us that smoking is harmful?
      .
      On the flip side, just like with smoking, you will find the rare person who lives to be 100+ and who eat bacon every day. But you are incorrect that there are entire cultures that eat significant quantities of meat and which live long healthy lives. That simply does not exist. The examples that the paleo people throw out there, for example, the Inuit, are false examples. Even mummies of ancient Inuit show signs of heart disease and cancer. What the longest and healthiest human cultures have in common are that they all eat whole food plant based diets. They aren’t vegan, but the vast majority of their diet is. For example, the Okinawans ate less than 5% of their calories from animal foods. http://nutritionfacts.org/video/the-okinawa-diet-living-to-100/
      .
      Bottom like is that what’s misleading is the information from our media and government and classrooms. Happily, with sites like NutritionFacts, the real information is starting to get out there.




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    1. Thanks for your question Reyes.

      As per T Colin Campbell (see here):

      “Plant proteins are somewhat compromised by their limitation of one or more amino acids. When we restore the relatively deficient amino acid in a plant protein, we get a response rate equivalent to animal proteins”

      (…) Some of the profile differences between animal and plant proteins have been previously noted by the ratios of arginine to lysine which are predictive, in turn, of tissue responses.

      Animal proteins also have a higher concentration of sulphur containing amino acids that get metabolized to acid-generating metabolites. As a result, a slightly lower physiological pH must be corrected and buffers like calcium are used to attenuate these adverse acid effects–to the disadvantage of the host.”

      Hope this answer helps.




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  29. So you lump together animal proteins from meat, dairy and eggs… are they all as bad as each other? or is it the amount and, for example, people tend to eat less egg and more meat so meat is worse?




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    1. susan: I think the NutritionFacts topic page for animal protein might help you see more details: http://nutritionfacts.org/topics/animal-protein/ Some of the risk factors associated with animal protein, such as promoting over production of IGF-1 (a growth hormone), would apply to all animal protein–meat, dairy and eggs. http://nutritionfacts.org/topics/igf-1/
      .
      To address your question about “amount”: I’m sure the often used saying “the dose makes the poison” applies to animal protein as much as anything else. But the amount of animal protein that is likely safe for generally healthy people (for sick people, zero might be the only safe amount) might be very small. For example, the traditional Okinawans, one of the longest and healthiest peoples on the planet, ate only about 4% of their calories from animal products. http://nutritionfacts.org/video/the-okinawa-diet-living-to-100/ That’s a teeny tiny amount when you consider how calorie-dense animal foods are.
      .
      NutritionFacts covers eggs in detail. Even small amounts of eggs have been shown harmful to health: http://nutritionfacts.org/topics/eggs As I’m sure you know, the protein part of the eggs is the white. Most people understand that the yolk is unhealthy, but lots of people have questions about the white. It’s just protein, right? I long ago put together an overview about egg whites, which I copied below for you in case you are interested. My point is that since you asked about eggs, I thought I would show the specifics in which egg protein is bad for you.
      .
      I hope this helps!
      .
      ********************************************

      My Standard Answer About Egg Whites

      There are two problems with eggs, the yolk and the white. (To paraphrase Dr. Barnard.) Egg whites are likely a big problem health-wise, just like the yolks. It is true that egg whites do not have cholesterol. But egg whites are essentially all animal protein. Here’s what we know about animal protein in general and egg whites in particular:

      Dr. Barnard links potential kidney problems to animal protein (though I don’t have the details on that). And Dr. Greger talks about the problems of animal protein in general in his annual summary video, “Food as Medicine: Preventing and Treating the Most Dreaded Diseases with Diet” http://nutritionfacts.org/video/food-as-medicine

      Here on NutritionFacts, you can get a great education on how animal protein is linked to the body’s over-production of a growth hormone called IGF-1. IGF-1 helps cancer to grow. To watch the series about IGF-1, click on the link below and then keep clicking the “next video” link on the button to the right until you get through the bodybuilding video. Then you will have seen the entire series.
      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/igf-1-as-one-stop-cancer-shop/

      Here’s another great tidbit from NutritionFacts on another mechanism linking egg whites to cancer as well as increased virus infections: “why would animal protein and fat increase cancer risk? Well, as I noted in Bowel Wars, if you eat egg whites, for example, between 5 and 35% of the protein isn’t digested, isn’t absorbed, and ends up in the colon, where it undergoes a process called putrefaction. When animal protein putrefies in the gut, it can lead to the production of the rotten egg gas, hydrogen sulfide, which, over and above its objectionable odor, can produce changes that increase cancer risk. Putrefying protein also produces ammonia.”
      To learn more details about the process, check out:
      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/putrefying-protein-and-toxifying-enzymes/

      Darryl at one point reminded me of the methionine issue, which I think I first learned from Rami and later from Dr. Greger. Egg whites have *the* highest concentration of methionine of any food:
      http://nutritiondata.self.com/foods-000084000000000000000.html?categories=1,18,9,0,13,14,5,4,42,16,17,15,6,3,2,11,7,19,21,12,10,8,22
      Dr. Greger did a nice video showing the link between methionine and cancer.
      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/starving-cancer-with-methionine-restriction/

      Darryl also pointed out that, “…high methionine diets increase coronary risk in humans. In its associations with cardiovascular disease and other disorders, homocysteine may be functioning partly as a marker for the major culprit, excess methionine.”
      http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0939475305001092

      Dr. Greger recently posted some videos on how animal protein can raise insulin levels. The first of the following videos even specifically addresses egg whites. The last link is to a post on the topic with some really great info.
      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/paleo-diets-may-negate-benefits-of-exercise/#comment-1978464793
      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/if-white-rice-is-linked-to-diabetes-what-about-china/
      http://nutritionfacts.org/2016/09/06/paleo-diet-may-undermine-benefit-of-crossfit-exercise/

      In summary: there are at least three pathways potentially linking animal proteins, especially egg whites, to cancer: the IGF-1, methionine, and putrefaction. And there is some good evidence that egg white consumption contributes to heart disease and potential problems with T2 diabetes by raising insulin levels in a bad way. All of these reductionist-type studies lend support the bigger general population studies showing that the healthiest populations on earth are those which eat the least amount of animal protein.

      With all of the information we have about the harmful effects of animal protein in general and egg white in particular, I think it’s best to stay away from egg white. Why not get your protein from safe sources? IE: Sources which are known to have lots of positive health effects and will naturally give you a balanced amount of protein? (ie: whole plant foods) Make sense?




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  30. I primi sono i conservanti additivi chimici presenti in alimenti-bevande, distruttori di Minerali-Oligoelementi-Vitamine-Aminoacidi e, peggio, se con carni e relativi derivati, da animali di allevamento con presenza, già tutti metabolizzati dall’animale!, di tutti i farmaci dati all’animale di allevamento, oltre a carne-derivati, da animale malato, nato-vissuto in totale stato di cattività-depressione-pessima-alimentazione, sin dalla nascita !!




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  31. Recently, Biochemist and popular bloggist, Dr. Rhonda Patrick has commented on this 2016 JAMA study looking at associate btw plant-based vs. animal protein intake and all-cause mortality, and other markers. No doubt, you have come across and probably referred to it in a video (I just can’t find it).

    The study was consistent with past studies that you have noted showing the link between animal protein and all-cause mortality. However, it seemed to say that the association disappears when the person being looked at does NOT have at least one additional lifestyle risk factor (smoking, slouching, drinking, etc).

    Now, I looked at the study (I am a lawyer, NOT a scientist) and it seemed to say that there was still some connection with heart-related death and still a positive association with plant-based protein, but it was tough to tell for me.

    If Dr. Patrick is correct – is there an explanation for this? Or are we to understand that there is no concern with animal protein as long as you are otherwise healthy? Clearly your video “Is it the diet, the exercise or both” would beg to differ.
    Thanks!

    Justin




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  32. Recently, a lady died at the age of 117. The BBC reporter proclaimed that the lady’s diet had been, for over 70 year, 3 daily eggs in the morning (2 of them raw) and chicken in the afternoon. Her doctor for 27 years, declared that she hardly EVER had any fruits or vegetables to eat.

    I am worried. Lots of people are now in a position of understanding the science behind Dr. Greger’s blogs and videos, and they, progressively, start making efforts to modify their eating habits. But, suddenly, a news of the BBC about the 117-year-old lady dying (after having eaten eggs and chicken for 70 years) could become a total blast in the face.

    Is there a way to dig deeper behind news like these.

    Also, just after sharing this video (which I believe to be excellent and its content and the science behind) in a family group (Whatsapp), I immediately received from a British in-law an invitation to visit a site which is, frankly, written in a language that, to begin with, is not easy to trust.

    I wonder why is there so much anger towards the kind of discoveries about food Dr. Greger exposes here.




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  33. I would love to have a primary source reference for the quote of the ad from Philip Morris. Is it in one of the sources cited? Dr. Greger says it is famous, but I can’t find it anywhere. Thank you.




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  34. Do you feel bone broth protein powders from grass fed animals is healthy since it is not from the meat/fat of the animals? Or are they a waste of money?




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    1. Linda Hoffa: I’m not familiar with “bone broth protein powders”. Wouldn’t the protein come from the flesh of the animal? Or are you saying that the protein is extracted from the bone? Where exactly is the protein coming from?

      Putting that question aside for the moment, I can’t think of any reason why that would be healthy. Are you concerned about your protein intake? I’d encourage you to take a few minutes to review the following protein 101 article. It should really put your mind at ease. http://michaelbluejay.com/veg/protein.html With the information from that article in mind, you can temporarily put the disease or healthfulness of protein powders aside and take answer your second question. Yes, those powders are a huge waste of money.




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    2. Hey Linda, thanks for writing! The answer is: the latter. You just don’t need all the extra protein – you get enough from plant foods!




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