Are Lectins in Food Good or Bad for You?

Are Lectins in Food Good or Bad for You?
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Might lectins help explain why those who eat more beans and whole grains have less cancer?

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

Lectins are to blame for the great “white kidney bean incident” of 2006 in Japan. One Saturday evening, a TV program introduced a new method to lose weight. The method was simple: toast some dry raw white kidney beans in a frying pan for three minutes, grind the beans to a powder, and then dust it on their rice. Within days, a thousand people fell ill—some with such severe diarrhea and vomiting they ended up in the hospital. Why? Lectin poisoning.

Three minutes of dry heat is not enough to destroy the toxic lectins in kidney beans. If you don’t presoak them, you need to boil large kidney beans for a full hour to completely destroy all the lectins—though if you first soak them overnight, 98% of the lectins are gone after boiling for just 15 minutes, and all gone by half an hour. And indeed, when they tested the white beans, toasting for three minutes didn’t do a thing; no wonder people got sick, whereas 95% of the lectins were inactivated after boiling them for three minutes, and completely inactivated after ten. Evidently, “’Do not eat raw beans’ is a traditional admonition in Japan to [avoid] intestinal problems”—and now, we know why.

While canning may completely eliminate lectins from most canned beans, some residual lectin activity may remain in canned kidney beans—though apparently not enough to result in toxicity.  And ironically, “[l]ow doses of lectins may be beneficial by stimulating gut function, limiting tumour growth, and ameliorating obesity.” What? I thought lectins were toxic.

For as long as people have speculated dietary lectins are harmful, others have conjectured that they may be protective. “If this theory is correct, appropriate lectins by mouth should be of use in the [prevention] (and possibly treatment) of colon…cancer.” Or, of course, we could just eat our vegetables.

Interest in the purported “antitumor effect of plant lectins” started with the discovery, in 1963, “that…lectins could distinguish between [cancer cells] and normal cells.” Researchers at Mass General found a substance in wheat germ—the lectin in whole wheat—which appeared “to be tumor cell specific”—clumping together “the tumor cells, while the normal cells” were left almost completely alone. So specific that you can take a stool sample from someone, and based on lectin binding to the colon lining cells that get sloughed off into the feces, you can effectively predict the presence of polyps and cancers.

And subsequently, it was discovered that lectins couldn’t just distinguish between the two, but extinguish the cancer cells, while largely leaving the normal cells alone. For example, that same white kidney bean lectin was found to almost completely suppress the growth of human head and neck cancer cells, liver cancer cells, breast cancer cells, and (at least most of the way) cervical cancer cells—within about three days. But, this was in a petri dish. That’s largely the basis of the evidence for the antitumor activity of plant lectins—these petri dish studies. How do we even know that dietary lectins are absorbed into the body?

Colorectal cancer is one thing. I mean, the fact that lectins can  kill off colon cancer cells in a petri dish may be applicable, since lectins we eat may come in direct contact with cancerous or precancerous cells in our colon—”providing a mechanism [by which bean consumption may help in] the prevention and treatment of colorectal cancer.” Or, even more exciting, the potential for effectively rehabilitating cancer cells. “[T[he loss of differentiation and invasion are the…hallmarks of malignant [tissues]”—meaning that when a normal cell transforms into a cancer cell, it tends to lose its specialized function. Breast cancer cells become less breast-like; colon cancer cells become less colon-like.

And, what these researchers showed, for the first time, is that the lectin in fava beans could take colon cancer cells and turn them back into looking more like normal cells. Here’s the before picture: cancer cells just growing in amorphous clumps. But then, here’s those same cancer cells after two weeks exposed to the fava bean lectins. The cells have started to go back to growing glandular structures, like normal colon tissue. Therefore, dietary lectins, or putting them in a pill or something, “may slow the progression of colon cancer[s],” potentially helping to explain why dietary consumption of beans, split peas, chickpeas, and lentils appears to “reduce…[the] risk of colorectal cancer,” based on 14 studies involving nearly two million participants. Okay, but what about cancers outside the digestive tract?

“Although lectin-containing foods [like beans and whole grains] are frequently consumed cooked or otherwise processed, these treatments may not always [completely] inactivate the lectins…For example, lectins have been detected in roasted peanuts.” Peanuts are legumes, and we don’t tend to eat them boiled, but just roasted, or even raw. Yeah, but are we able to absorb the lectins into our system? Yes. Within an hour of consumption of raw or roasted peanuts, you can detect the peanut lectin in the bloodstream of most people. Same thing with tomatoes. Some of the non-toxic lectin in tomatoes also makes it down into our gut and into our blood. The wheat lectin, known as WGA, the wheat germ agglutinin, doesn’t seem to make it into our bloodstream, though, even after apparently eating the equivalent of more than 80 slices of bread’s worth of wheat germ! And, if you ate something like pasta, the boiling might wipe out the lectin in the first place, anyway.

In terms of phytochemicals in the fight against cancer, lectins are able to “resist digestion resulting in high bioavailability,” potentially “allow[ing] the cellular mechanisms of the host to utilize the full potential of the [“dramatic”] anti-cancer [benefits] lectins have to offer.” But, these dramatic benefits have yet to be demonstrated in people. But look, we know that population studies show that “the consumption of a plant-based diet is strongly associated with a reduced risk of developing certain types of cancer.”

Now, they could just be eating fewer carcinogens. But, plants do have all those active components that do seem to protect against the “initiation, promotion, [and] progression of cancer.” And so, maybe lectins are one of those protective compounds. Look, we know people who eat more beans and whole grains tend to get less cancer overall; we’re just not sure exactly why. Now, you could say, who knows? Who cares? Well, Big Pharma cares. You can’t make as much money on healthy foods as you can on “lectin-based drugs.”

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image credit: Kristina DeMuth. Image has been modified.

Motion graphics by Avocado Video

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

Lectins are to blame for the great “white kidney bean incident” of 2006 in Japan. One Saturday evening, a TV program introduced a new method to lose weight. The method was simple: toast some dry raw white kidney beans in a frying pan for three minutes, grind the beans to a powder, and then dust it on their rice. Within days, a thousand people fell ill—some with such severe diarrhea and vomiting they ended up in the hospital. Why? Lectin poisoning.

Three minutes of dry heat is not enough to destroy the toxic lectins in kidney beans. If you don’t presoak them, you need to boil large kidney beans for a full hour to completely destroy all the lectins—though if you first soak them overnight, 98% of the lectins are gone after boiling for just 15 minutes, and all gone by half an hour. And indeed, when they tested the white beans, toasting for three minutes didn’t do a thing; no wonder people got sick, whereas 95% of the lectins were inactivated after boiling them for three minutes, and completely inactivated after ten. Evidently, “’Do not eat raw beans’ is a traditional admonition in Japan to [avoid] intestinal problems”—and now, we know why.

While canning may completely eliminate lectins from most canned beans, some residual lectin activity may remain in canned kidney beans—though apparently not enough to result in toxicity.  And ironically, “[l]ow doses of lectins may be beneficial by stimulating gut function, limiting tumour growth, and ameliorating obesity.” What? I thought lectins were toxic.

For as long as people have speculated dietary lectins are harmful, others have conjectured that they may be protective. “If this theory is correct, appropriate lectins by mouth should be of use in the [prevention] (and possibly treatment) of colon…cancer.” Or, of course, we could just eat our vegetables.

Interest in the purported “antitumor effect of plant lectins” started with the discovery, in 1963, “that…lectins could distinguish between [cancer cells] and normal cells.” Researchers at Mass General found a substance in wheat germ—the lectin in whole wheat—which appeared “to be tumor cell specific”—clumping together “the tumor cells, while the normal cells” were left almost completely alone. So specific that you can take a stool sample from someone, and based on lectin binding to the colon lining cells that get sloughed off into the feces, you can effectively predict the presence of polyps and cancers.

And subsequently, it was discovered that lectins couldn’t just distinguish between the two, but extinguish the cancer cells, while largely leaving the normal cells alone. For example, that same white kidney bean lectin was found to almost completely suppress the growth of human head and neck cancer cells, liver cancer cells, breast cancer cells, and (at least most of the way) cervical cancer cells—within about three days. But, this was in a petri dish. That’s largely the basis of the evidence for the antitumor activity of plant lectins—these petri dish studies. How do we even know that dietary lectins are absorbed into the body?

Colorectal cancer is one thing. I mean, the fact that lectins can  kill off colon cancer cells in a petri dish may be applicable, since lectins we eat may come in direct contact with cancerous or precancerous cells in our colon—”providing a mechanism [by which bean consumption may help in] the prevention and treatment of colorectal cancer.” Or, even more exciting, the potential for effectively rehabilitating cancer cells. “[T[he loss of differentiation and invasion are the…hallmarks of malignant [tissues]”—meaning that when a normal cell transforms into a cancer cell, it tends to lose its specialized function. Breast cancer cells become less breast-like; colon cancer cells become less colon-like.

And, what these researchers showed, for the first time, is that the lectin in fava beans could take colon cancer cells and turn them back into looking more like normal cells. Here’s the before picture: cancer cells just growing in amorphous clumps. But then, here’s those same cancer cells after two weeks exposed to the fava bean lectins. The cells have started to go back to growing glandular structures, like normal colon tissue. Therefore, dietary lectins, or putting them in a pill or something, “may slow the progression of colon cancer[s],” potentially helping to explain why dietary consumption of beans, split peas, chickpeas, and lentils appears to “reduce…[the] risk of colorectal cancer,” based on 14 studies involving nearly two million participants. Okay, but what about cancers outside the digestive tract?

“Although lectin-containing foods [like beans and whole grains] are frequently consumed cooked or otherwise processed, these treatments may not always [completely] inactivate the lectins…For example, lectins have been detected in roasted peanuts.” Peanuts are legumes, and we don’t tend to eat them boiled, but just roasted, or even raw. Yeah, but are we able to absorb the lectins into our system? Yes. Within an hour of consumption of raw or roasted peanuts, you can detect the peanut lectin in the bloodstream of most people. Same thing with tomatoes. Some of the non-toxic lectin in tomatoes also makes it down into our gut and into our blood. The wheat lectin, known as WGA, the wheat germ agglutinin, doesn’t seem to make it into our bloodstream, though, even after apparently eating the equivalent of more than 80 slices of bread’s worth of wheat germ! And, if you ate something like pasta, the boiling might wipe out the lectin in the first place, anyway.

In terms of phytochemicals in the fight against cancer, lectins are able to “resist digestion resulting in high bioavailability,” potentially “allow[ing] the cellular mechanisms of the host to utilize the full potential of the [“dramatic”] anti-cancer [benefits] lectins have to offer.” But, these dramatic benefits have yet to be demonstrated in people. But look, we know that population studies show that “the consumption of a plant-based diet is strongly associated with a reduced risk of developing certain types of cancer.”

Now, they could just be eating fewer carcinogens. But, plants do have all those active components that do seem to protect against the “initiation, promotion, [and] progression of cancer.” And so, maybe lectins are one of those protective compounds. Look, we know people who eat more beans and whole grains tend to get less cancer overall; we’re just not sure exactly why. Now, you could say, who knows? Who cares? Well, Big Pharma cares. You can’t make as much money on healthy foods as you can on “lectin-based drugs.”

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image credit: Kristina DeMuth. Image has been modified.

Motion graphics by Avocado Video

Doctor's Note

This is the last in a three-video series on lectins. If you missed the first two, check them out here: Dr. Gundry’s The Plant Paradox is Wrong and How to Avoid Lectin Poisoning.

Lectins are starting to remind me of the phytate story—other bean and whole grain components thought at first to be harmful, but more recently, evidence suggesting the opposite is coming to light. Check out Phytates for Rehabilitating Cancer Cells and Phytates for the Prevention of Osteoporosis.

What else may explain the protective effect of beans? See, for example, Gut Dysbiosis Starving Our Microbial Self. Soybeans may be particularly protective against certain cancers; for instance: BRCA Breast Cancer Genes & Soy.

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

122 responses to “Are Lectins in Food Good or Bad for You?

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  1. If this is your first video, or first week of Nutrition Facts exposure, please do read the doctor’s notes and note all the supporting/relevant videos he lists there. Also note that the archive is fully searchable and that all sources are listed for YOU to be able to read the reports yourself and answer many of your other questions.

    There is no prohibition against discussion of dissenting ideas and positions but please realize that this site is about the nutrition facts as found by the latest research, and OFTEN these things will be somewhat different from mainstream and popular belief and thoughts. Also that facts are subject to change depending upon findings, and that nutritional research is a difficult task for many reasons.

    Most common questions and conflicts on very many subjects have been previously addressed and can be found, along with the supporting studies and discussion if one will simply take a few minutes to look for them.

    We are glad to have you here with open mind and ready palate. WFPB works for so many of us, and works well! We hope to support your transition and create a tide of change. Thanks for stopping in.




    30
    1. I am finding so many conflicting data sources in the pubmed database that I will just jump to the ” Pudding ” part of the riddle. What human evidence is there in peer reviewed journals on lectins ( so far I have found 4 publications ). I try hard to not cherry pick information, but this publication on 978 patients, all with previous CAD ( coronary artery disease ) , has me convinced Dr. Greger is not doing the same. How can this possibly be ignored, collecting data for 12 years on these patients, and expecting a recurrence rate of 30-40% on the typical low fat/low cholesterol diet, exercise, and making use of lipid lowering agents .
      ” we have enrolled and followed 978 pts (aged 42-89 yrs) with known CAD, defined as previous MI, stent, CABG, or positive stress test/angiogram, positive Corus score greater than 30, into a diet and supplement based, physician coached program, which emphasizes large amts of leafy green vegetables, olive oil, radical reduction of grain, legumes, nightshades, and fruits; and 4 oz amts of animal proteins, emphasizing shellfish, wild fish, and grass fed meats, while avoiding commercial poultry (Matrix Protocol). All Apo E 4 genotypes ate large amts of shellfish and avoided animal fats and cheeses. All pts were instructed to take 2-4,000 mg of high DHA fish oil, 200mg of Grape Seed Extract, and 50 mg of Pycnogenol per day. Supplements were individualized based on results of Advanced Cardiovascular Risk Markers, which were sent to three core labs, (Berkeley Heart Labs, and Singulex, Alameda, CA, Health Diagnostics Labs, Richmond,VA) q 3 months and followed to measure compliance and to change supplement/eating regimens.

      Results: Pts have been followed for 1.5 to 12 years (mean 9 yrs). While enrolled, 13/978 pts (1.3%) have received a new stent, two that were predicted by a rising Lp-PLA2, two required CABG, based on a rising Corus score, despite HDL’s of 110-120 mg/dl. There have been no MI’s, unstable angina. One pt underwent carotid endarterectomy ; one pt suffered a CVA and died, while in atrial fibrillation, A second pt expired from a ruptured cerebral berry aneurysm. Total CV events over 12 years is 16/978 (1.6%). ”
      ( http://atvb.ahajournals.org/content/35/Suppl_1/A309.short )

      One other point as i am trying to be objective and not biased as i investigate this, but his position on beans has been misrepresented. There are numerous references to beans in the index of his book, but on pg. 180: ” Better yet, pressure -cooked beans, shorn of their offending lectins, serve as a smorgasboard for your gut buddies, and can improve longevity and enhance memory” . ( the plant paradox )

      His work is consistent with the discovery made by Dr. Seignalet of France, Dr. Terry Wahls, and now we find very consistent with the protocol of Dr. Bredesen, of the book ” The End of Alzheimer’s “.




      5
        1. Jessica Gorski he has been asked that question in interviews and says he is making the information available as rapidly as he can. A large part of the reason he resigned his position as the Chair of the Thoracic Care Unit at Loma Linda University was that he saw a reversal in plaque buildup in one of his patients, Big Ed. When Big Ed told him about all the supplements he was taking he assured him he was only making expensive urine.

          To humor him he did take a look after the 6 month interval, and was very surprised to see half the plaque buildup was gone. Big Ed was now a candidate for the surgery.

          Over the years he has seen the plaque progressively decline, and has said, in interviews, that he would not do surgery, at all, for conditions like Big Ed . He is confident the plaque will reduce as the diet and lifestyle is changed.

          I agree that clinical studies are needed, the sooner the better, but we can make good use of information like this, if we choose to. Dr. Bredesen has a lot of problems being unable to get funding for a clinical study, but it is being reported that the state of California may fund these studies as their expenses for Alzheimer’s are expected to triple in the next three years. He has reported on 329 patients , with 89% experiencing cognizance improvement, and of the ones who had to leave their jobs, 75% are able to return to work. Dr. Bredesen is saying the meat content of a meal should be like a condiment, and Dr. Gundry saying 4 oz per meal, and at the higher intensive care phase, 2 oz. Dr. Bredesen is saying to keep the total sugar below 15 grams per day, and Dr. Gundry is saying little fruit, and in the intensive care phase, no fruit at all. They are both opposed to all grains, with few exceptions. One patient , from Peru, found she could resume eating her quinoa as long as she pressure cooked it, like her mother did when she was home.

          The biggest problem I have with the grains, from a scientific point of view, is due to the glyphosate. This substance kills beneficial bacteria in the gut and these bacteria are essential to our well being.

          I considered the two studies in February , 2015 , the straws that broke the camel’s back, as one study, crossover, showed increased brain fog and depression, statistically significant , from the gluten. The other study demonstrated all human patients experienced increased permeability in response to exposure to gliadin. This last was a Fasano study.

          Cause and effect studies give us more valuable information than association studies, IMO.




          6
      1. Fred Lander: Let me just quote T. Colin Campbell from his excellent article about Dr. Gundry and “The Plant Paradox”:

        “Earth shattering findings demand extraordinary scientific evidence. It would be nice to see some peer-reviewed science that supports his astounding claims, so we took a peek through the early part of the book to see what kind of references he offers.

        His first big claim (pg xv) is that his findings are published in peer-reviewed medical journals. His “peer-reviewed” medical publication cited is an abstract published in the journal supplement for a poster presentation. Making a poster to display at a conference is nice, but this is a world apart from publishing actual clinical trial results in a peer reviewed journal. In other words, there is no detailed publication of his methods, his subjects, his results, or his intervention as would be commonly expected in a normal publication. His glowing description of this abstract is misleading, to put it mildly.”

        I recommend reading the entire article and following references whenever in doubt.

        http://nutritionstudies.org/the-plant-paradox-by-steven-grundy-md-commentary/




        20
        1. Ishay: Gold star for you! Really great article. Thanks for bringing our attention to it.

          For those people who were looking for more of an in depth review of the claims behind Dr. Gundry’s book, the article Ishay referenced is *excellent*.




          10
        2. Ishay, I think guys like Gundry are counting on the average person not knowing the difference between an abstract published in a journal supplement for a poster presentation & publishing actual clinical trial results in a peer reviewed journal. Is it even possible that someone like Dr. Gundry wouldn’t even know the difference himself? Imo, the answer is no. I think he’s like a hit-and-run con artist, laughing all the way to the bank. I’m so glad he doesn’t have my money. And I’m so grateful for organizations like Nutritionfacts.org & Nutritionstudies.org for cutting through the morass of mis- and disinformation.




          8
        3. Ishay I read the entire content of the Colin T Campbell link and did not come away with a grade of excellent.

          This would be similar to reviewing the contributions, in 1906, of that nutcase in the patent office with all these strange ideas of space and time, and ” he was almost fired from his job teaching as he was encouraging his students to drop out before their curiosity was destroyed”. The similarity I am talking about is to totally ignore the content of the peer reviewed publication in a physics journal and make a big deal of the fact that it was, like an abstract, not a full publication. The content of the abstract is of no concern , then? ( not saying the Physics publication was an abstract)

          Probably the most valuable contribution of Dr. Gundry was in the 2014 publication in Circulation, once again as an abstract. This was after the publication ( February, 2014) Dr. Greger has been relying on so much in his videos, which I was able to download as a full document, and which has , basically , debunked all the evidence to that point ( February, 2014) that ascribed harmful effects to the plant lectins. The document can be downloaded at this link: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/260006060_Health_effects_of_wheat_lectins_A_review

          The March, 2014 publication of Dr. Gundry, in a peer reviewed journal, contained this bit of very valuable information:
          ” When the lectin and gluten free diet was instituted, all TNF-alpha levels became normal in all 1,000 pts (<3.0 pg/mL), within 6 months and remained normal, if the diet was followed, for up to one year of study. However, despite normal TNF-alpha levels, Adiponectin levels remained elevated in 790/800 pts with AID hx. Late lack of adherence to the diet occurred in 56/1,000 pts (6%) (as determined by questionnaire) resulted in re-elevation of TNF-alpha in 56/56 pts (100%).

          We conclude that elevated Adiponectin is a marker for lectin and gluten sensitivity, while TNF-alpha can be used as a marker for gluten/lectin exposure in sensitive individuals. These findings probably explain the Adiponectin paradox. TNF-alpha levels appear to be useful as a marker of response to a lectin/gluten limited diet, and as a marker for degree of adherence to such a diet. "
          ( http://circ.ahajournals.org/content/129/Suppl_1/AP354 )

          TNF-α is the target of at least 5 very popular prescription drugs, including humira, and this makes this information very valuable to many of us with autoimmune disorders. We can normalize the levels of TNF-α, to a normal level below 3.0, by just making some substantial diet changes and the chance of success, based upon this collection of data from 1000 patients , is 100%. We do not have to worry about the serious side effects that come with making use of strong prescription drugs that suppress the immune system pathways, instrumental in fighting off bacteria and viruses and fungi, and that typically only work for a few years and then stop working. The other big advantage of making these diet changes is that the only side effects are positive side effects, especially in regards to the diseases involved in the majority of mortality in our culture , including heart disease, Alzheimer's, cancer, obesity, diabetes, fatty liver disease.

          So far I have brought into the discussion here partial contents of two of his publications, in peer reviewed journals, and I hope we can all do a more thorough review of the actual content of his peer reviewed publications. As with most scientists, it is their publications in the peer reviewed literature that is the truest guide to their contributions, whether the contributions are negative or positive.




          4
          1. Fred Lander: So Gundry is the new Einstein? Methinks not. Besides, in the world of theoretical physics, lives are not at stake if they get it wrong.




            8
          2. Fred Lander, So are you comparing Dr Gundry to Einstein? I don’t recall ever hearing of Einstein getting rich selling supplements to keep people from being sucked into a Black Hole ;-)

            I think Dr Greger is a much closer fit to Einstein. Isn’t Dr Greger the one fighting an uphill battle against all the biased research funded by the meat, egg, and dairy industries. Not to mention all the charlatans out there trying to make a fast buck with some new diet theory.

            It seems to me that the whole plant food way of eating is most in line with what humans have evolved with, based on their physiologic characteristics. Sure there are exceptional people who may have sensitivities to various food components, but all the evidence seems to indicate that the vast majority will do fine with WPF, including beans and whole grains properly prepared.




            9
            1. “I think Dr Greger is a much closer fit to Einstein. Isn’t Dr Greger the one fighting an uphill battle against all the biased research funded by the meat, egg, and dairy industries. Not to mention all the charlatans out there trying to make a fast buck with some new diet theory.”

              Yes, indeed, Darwin Galt! Dr. G & T. Colin Campbell are both a much closer fit.




              4
              1. Funny, do you think that only Dr G talks about plant foods or WFPB? FYI, all nutritional doctors including the so-called “meat doctors” talk about plant foods more often than Dr G. They must be all Einstein.




                1
          3. Hi Fred Lander,
            Thank you for your thoughtful reply. I think it is fine that no one here has swayed your opinion-it sounds like you are speaking from personal experience as well as following research. When I came to nutritionfacts.org, I was persuaded by the research presented to change my lifestyle-not because anything was particularly wrong with me, but because I wanted to set a good example for my male family members who are probably at high risk for heart disease. Because Dr. Gregor has shared compelling evidence with me that a plant based diet can reverse heart disease-i switched once I could no longer refute what I was seeing. So, I believe the “default” diet for humans should be one that is largely plant based–especially now that we know how large amounts of livestock are killing our planet. But that doesn’t mean that every person is the same–our bodies adapt and react to the environment, and many times there’s an overreaction and we basically become allergic to certain aspects of the environment-even healthy ones (here we could go into GMOs as well, but who has time for that?). I’m sure many of us have already been exposed, or overexposed to various toxins and some bodies may react negatively to otherwise healthful substances-and for this there should be alternatives. Further investigation SHOULD TOTALLY continue! But I wish science could be done in a way that doesn’t demonize a whole protein class, that it looks like we actually don’t know a whole lot about. These kinds of plans should be lifesavers for those who DO react to -specific- lectins negatively, especially as it sounds like we still have much to learn about how they actually work within the body. But at least everyone can AGREE that we all need to EAT MORE DARK GREEN LEAFIES!




            1
            1. Jessica I agree that there is a lot in common, and I agree with the other posters that Dr. Greger is also similar to Dr. Gundry and Einstein in that they are all out of the mainstream and all waging an uphill battle. The point I was trying to make was that we should not ignore the publication of his in the physics journal in 1905 , and just dwell on some kind of subsidiary, irrelevant fact , like that he almost got fired from his teaching job. This is actually a type of denial to completely ignore the contents of the peer reviewed publications.

              Dr. Gundry makes money selling supplements so let’s take that one head on. He was one of the most successful heart surgeons in the world and him and his partner had performed the most heart transplants on infants, in the world. He now practices at his clinics 5 days a week, takes medicare and medicaid, and has many patients who speak Engish as a second language. He does heart surgery two days a week and anybody can just imagine how much more money he would make if he resumed his old surgery schedule, especially where he had established such a reputation that he was getting patients that nobody else could help. He could almost name his fee. I have reviewed the contents of some of his products and they are of a very high quality with some compounds that are not usually found due to their expense. His prices are comparable to other high quality vendors like Thorne ( I compared the olive leaf extract of the two ). I personally unsubscribed from his emailing as he is just so overly enthusiastic about the products ( which are good! ) that he bombards you every day with all kinds of promotional videos and he is just out of touch on that one. He should just hire somebody to take over the marketing aspect..

              I have disagreements with him on 6 or 8 matters, but the overall benefit of his contributions are enormous for those of us with autoimmune disease and the details and evidence of that are in his peer reviewed publications, including the abstracts. I have lots of personal anecdotal experiences, but as a trained scientist ( not a trained medical practitioner- big difference ) I avoid anecdotes whenever possible.

              My most recent experiments have been with the ratio advocated by Dr. Terry Wahls, who was able to reverse her MS, and drive it into remission, after being a vegetarian for ten years, and then paleo for 2. ( now on a modified ketogenic diet ). She is advocating 9-12 cups of vegetable per day, with 1/3 leafy green, 1/3 high sulfur, and 1/3 bright and colorful ( another staple of hers is 1 1/2 cups of homemade bone broth daily ). She says these guides are the optimum nutrients for the cells and mitochondria to thrive, not just survive. Well, what I am noticing is that when I make sure and get plenty of the high sulfur, like one whole onion, some garlic and some broccoli sprouts ( heated to 70C for 10 minutes ) my horrible leg cramps diminish considerably. I have tried all the commonly heard suggestions for leg cramps, more potassium, pickle juice, quinine, electrolytes, etc.




              2
              1. Fred Lander: The article from the Campbells shows that Gundry’s book has a *pattern* of deceit. It’s not just one little reference or false claim that they blew up out of proportion. The Campbells looked up a bunch of references and found those references did not back up Gundry’s claims. That type of critical evidence seems pretty relevant to me. If Gundry is lying about so much that we can verify, I have to wonder about all the claims that he did not back up with evidence. I don’t find the Campbell’s review so easy to dismiss as you do.




                9
          4. Fred Lander: As T. Colin Campbell commented in his article, this kind of abstract presentation is generally not peer-reviewed, and certainly shouldn’t be relied upon when the conclusions contradict the overwhelming body of scientific evidence on the topic.

            Given Gundry’s numerous fraudulent claims throughout the book, I don’t see any reason to believe the information in this abstract is reliable. As an aside, note that he is the only author of this publication, which is unusual in actual peer-reviewed literature.




            6
      2. I thank you for your comment. I can only state my personal experience. I feel that Dr Greger, whom I admire, has not distinguished the type of lectin, whether it is from bicotyledan plants (mainly tree and other leaves) which our microbiome has adjusted to and these are healthy, whereas the monocotyledans (grasses, grains, sugars including fruit and new world plants like nightshade plants and beans) are bad for you.

        I am 80 years old and have heart failure with associated angina. I followed a total vegan diet for 5 years bur still had angina. Since starting the diet recommended by Dr Gundry, my angina has totally gone.




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          1. Julot, ty for posting that chart. It makes an excellent summary and quick reference. We could do worse than to aspire to the same approximate dietary proportions as what these successful populations did.




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        1. Dr David Browne, the problem I see with vegans or a lot of people on this board, is that they think if it a plant food then they can eat all they want, or anybody can eat all plant foods. I see people claiming that they eat WFPB and so they must be super healthy. The bad vegans are obvious such as people who eat potato chip, but it is not so obvious when vegans load up on grain, bean, nut, carb in general, vegetable oil that becomes rancid, etc.

          We have long passed the debate of the need to eat plant foods and nobody denies that anymore. But people just overlook on how to eat plant foods the healthy way and with adequate nutrition.




          0
          1. Long-time followers of Dr Greger’s advice refer to their eating pattern as a whole food plant diet. Neither they , nor Dr Greger espouse potatoe chips, nor vegetable oils or satuarated fats. Whole grains, legumes, vegetables, fruits, small quantities of nuts and seeds are all recommended at this site because that’s what the science says is healthy to eat. The evidence for it is presented here daily.

            It’s getting beyond tiresome .




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          2. Jerry Lewis, About your quote: “the problem I see with vegans or a lot of people on this board, is that they think if it a plant food then they can eat all they want”. My question is, how did you ever arrive at this conclusion? Are you a mind reader? I’ve been visiting this website for several years and reading the comments section daily, and I’ve noticed just the opposite.




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          3. You’re conflating vegan diet and WFPB diet. Yes, vegans can be just as unhealthy as the next guy, because they think they can eat anything. But, WFPB food is in a different league of it’s own. It by definition excludes proccesed foods, potato chips, oil, etc.




            2
    2. Rick Bergles, no one is keeping you from coming here and saying whatever you want, which is not the case on other websites. No one is shouting but you.




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    3. In my opinion, moderators should consider intervening and deleting disrespectful / cancerous comments like this one by Rick Bergles. Isn’t the comment section supposed to be about nutrition and health? Correct me if I’m wrong but this seems to be nothing but pollution to me.




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    4. Ryan didn’t use caps. You did. Ryan used bold … a standard way of emphasising important points.

      Why do you consider this a problem? Oh, yes … some people make a habit of posting false claims here but you don’t think new visitors should be warned of this. Most of us do though and we think that it is important enough to justify the use of bold font.




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  2. it sounds like it’s the amount or the dose that makes lectin poison , a little bit is good for you a lot can kill you , I think that is what to-days video was saying?
    and are lectins in red kidney beans somehow different then say lectins in a raw tomato? I can’t seem to find a chart to show quantities of lectins in foods either.
    cheers !




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    1. hi Ignatius, this page might be helpful. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lectin They show a list of some lectins specific to various plants, though I haven’t been able to find a chart showing quantities.

      I really enjoyed this video series. It thoroughly debunked the current fad diet gainst lectins, offered useful, practical suggestions on how to incorporate beans into the diet and why it benefits us to do so – all in a very entertaining package. ( well done Avocado Video! ) Thank you Dr Greger!




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    2. Paracelsus was a 16th century Swiss German physician, alchemist, astrologer who found the discipline of toxicology. He came up with this basic principle of toxicology: The dose makes the poison.

      “All things are poisons, for there is nothing without poisonous qualities. It is only the dose which makes a thing poison.”




      4
      1. “All things are poisons, for there is nothing without poisonous qualities. It is only the dose which makes a thing poison.”

        Including water. I’ve heard of 2 people who died from so called ‘water challenges’. One was in the UK in the 90s, the other was in LA in about 8 or 10 years ago.




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      2. Except that eating is not equal to a dose of poison. Can all foods become a poison if over eaten? No.There are physical limitations when eating. For example, look at cows eating all day. Therefore not all foods are poison.




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    3. Lectins are a broad term for proteins that, in high concentration in vitro, cause red blood cells to agglutinate/cling together. They are otherwise generally unrelated to each other. Legume lectins have practically nothing else in common with tomato lectins and aren’t evolutionarily related to each other, and our own bodies produce our own endogenous lectins. So, while Dr. Gundry paints them with an overly broad brush, I’m not sure that Dr. Greger placed enough emphasis on the term “lectin” being no more descriptive of what’s going on at the chemical level than the term “adhesive”.

      Some lectins probably have hormetic dose response, as you describe (many toxins, in fact, do). Others may be entirely benign, or not helpful at any dose. Elmer’s glue claims to be safe for children, superglue, not so much.




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    4. Hey Ig, thanks for writing! Actually, what the video is saying is that COOKING – not the DOSE – is what makes the difference. You can eat lots of lectin-containing foods as long as you cook them, which eliminates the ability of these phytochemicals to cause harm.




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  3. Evidently, what I learned in the high-school biology class a long time ago was wrong; some proteins do get absorbed from the gut to the blood stream intact.




    4
    1. Tight junctions between enterocytes are important to prevent intestinal permeability to large molecules, like incompletely digested proteins. Diets deficient in vitamin C, zinc, or the amino acid glutamine are all known to impair tight junctions and increase permeability. Some foods, like the medium chain fatty acids in coconut oil or the capsianosides from sweet/hot peppers impair tight junctions and increase permeability, while others like black tea, black pepper, nutmeg, bay leaf and star anise appear to improve tight junctions, at least in vitro.




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      1. Darryl, regarding saturated fat increasing gut permeability, it is not true according to this detailed study. You can called it biased if you want because it is sponsored by the pork industry but I think you should evaluate the study based on its own merits.

        Personally, I know that myself and my acquaintances and billions of people in the world for thousand of years, have consumed saturated fat without any problem. “Saturated fat” is a false theory that was invented in the U.S. in the 70s to get people to use “cholesterol lowering: drugs and sugar and corn syrup, vegetable oil, etc. And of course in the lab as the studies show, they feed the poor rats nothing but fat and no water, and of course the poor rats will get sick.

        https://nutritionandmetabolism.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1743-7075-10-6

        P.S. You are among a few ones or probably only one on this board who look at things from a scientific and unbiased point of view.




        1
        1. “… but I think you should evaluate the study based on its own merits”

          Let’s do it then: First, the study was conducted on pigs, not humans. Second, this is from the study you referenced:

          “In conclusion, these data suggest that dietary oils can differentially alter intestinal endotoxin transport. Oils rich in DHA and EPA attenuate endotoxin transport, while oils high in saturated fatty acids augment endotoxin transport.” – meaning that saturated fat did increase endotoxin transport permeability. Not that it matters much, because humans are not pigs, but there are other human studies showing similar results (1)

          Which leads me to asking – did you read the study before posting it?




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          1. Ishay: I think English is not his native language. That coupled with not being a scientist could be an explanation for his lack of understanding & comprehension of the studies.

            I’m not trying to make excuses for him, & it certainly doesn’t explain his know-it-all attitude, which is so very annoying. I’m just offering it as a possible explanation for why he seems unable to read & comprehend complex scientific studies well. It’s kind of like a double whammy.




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        2. Caprylic (8:10) and capric acids (10:0) have been used to perturb tight junctions and improve oral bioavailability of large drug molecules for decades (1, 2, 3).

          As for the study you linked (4), it says little about paracellular permeability and tight junctions, but confirms that endotoxin transport in vivo and ex vivo are increased by coconut oil. Endotoxins are also transported via the chylomicrons that distribute most digested fats (5) and
          most fats appear to increase endotoxin transport including lard (6, 7, 8, 9, 10), palm, rapeseed, sunflower oil (11), olive oil (12), corn oil (13), milkfat (14), and emulsified sunflower oil (15). In humans, plasma endotoxins correlate with fat intake but not protein or carbs (16), increase with a high fat meals (17, 18, 19, 20, <a href="http://care.diabetesjournals.org/content/35/2/375?sid%3Dd11eaa4a-b47f-4e97-8df4-61ab2f7b46ae=
          21, 22),
          and in a 1 month metabolic ward study, subjects on a Western diet had 71% increases in plasma endotoxin, while those on a low total and saturated fat diet had 31% decreases (23)




          2
    1. As a rule of thumb, biochemical reactions occur roughly twice as fast with each increase of 10 °C. If the denaturation of bean lectins occurs at 100 °C in boiling water, it would occur a fraction of the time at 121 °C (boiling temperature in standard 15 psi~1 atm pressure cookers). In fact, I’d expect it to occur roughly 4 times faster.




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    2. Yes, because you have to account for the cooking time to bring to pressure and then I let the steam to be released naturally for like 30 minutes. I only open the lid after pressure is released naturally but I don’t force the pressure release. Total cooking time is between 45 minutes to one hour but it is hand free.




      0
    3. Hey Sonal, thanks for writing! Yes, that should be fine. The key aspect of this is that the beans be cooked: cooking denatures (breaks down) the lectins so that they are no longer intact and capable of causing harm. Enjoy!




      0
  4. I have eaten beans almost every day for most of my life. The trick is not to OVER-cook them, because then they become mushy. My method:

    Soak a bag of 16 bean soup (or make your own mixture) over night in a pressure cooker. Pour off the water (’tis where the farts reside.)

    Add a box or can of organic vegetable broth, a can of tomato chunks, some barley, rye, and mixed rice. I season with black pepper and curry (or just turmeric.)

    Heat until its about to boil, then secure the lid. Bring up to pressure and cook for ten minutes. Since beans can froth-up and plug the pressure relief wobbler, cook at as low temperature as possible to keep steam releasing slowly.

    Remove from the stove, let it sit for another ten minutes, then run cold water over the lid to relieve pressure, Add a diced onion or leeks, maybe some carrots. Cover, let stand until cool.

    Eat a bowl if you like, but let the rest sit over night. Then divide into freezer containers for the next week’s suppers.

    The ingredients should still have some texture when you finish, for that insures a maximum amount of rough fiber for those Bacteroides bacteria in the colon.




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    1. Thanks for the recipe, Rick. It sounds yummy! I made one recently that includes lentils and red kidney beans. It’s a recipe from Forks Over Knives called kidney bean & lentil dal. It has turmeric, ginger, coriander, cumin, cinnamon, cloves & lime juice. It was delicious.




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    2. I cook bean with my Smart Instant Pot. I choose the “no fried bean” recipe which cooks the bean under pressure for 10 minutes. After this, I let the pressure to release by itself naturally. Total cook time is somewhere between 45 minutes to one hour. After this then I put the bean in the refrigerator to eat for a week. I eat bean sometimes by itself or by adding to a salad, stir fry, rice, taco, bone broth, etc.




      4
      1. I LOVE my instant pot! I cook all kinds of beans, whole grains, soups, stews, and other dishes,and even steam vegetables in it! It makes cooking easier and more reliable — and more fun! This week I’m going to make an applesauce (3 ingredients: apples, cinnamon, nutmeg — maybe water) and a peach jam in it. My eating has become more adventurous since I bought it about 2-3 months ago.




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        1. I totally agree. I have a pressure cooker and I just love it! I remember the olds days when my mother would spray the roof of the kitchen when she made dahl and did not monitor the, “whistles”. Now pressure cookers are so safe and great to use. Beans are done in no time and I can freeze bags for lunches a dinners and to take to restaurants to add to a salad or a potato. Gotta try the steaming.




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        2. Dr J, I bought my IP during last year Black Friday and I am going to get another one soon because my IP is in constant use in my family. I have a lot of slow cookers that I now retire and donate except for one that I keep to cook bone broth which extract the collagen and nutrition better by cooking at low temp over a long period of time. The price of the Smart IP has dropped to $130 something the last time I checked.

          You mentioned “cooking stew” in your post. I don’t know if you meant by vegan stew or meat stew. I am not trying to influence you to eat animal foods but if you do then I will pass you some tips. Since owning the IP, I now buy the most chewy and bony meat that I can find. Not only it is cheaper, it is also more healthy and nutritious and also more tasty to eat that kind of meat. Previously with a slow cooker or regular pot, it will take forever to cook that kind of meat. But now I can cook sparerib in 10-15 minutes under pressure and about 1 hour total, and I can cook the best sparerib. With other meat, I now cook sous-vide. Not only it is more juicy but it is also healthy.

          Again if you are a vegan then I apologize for talking about meat. But for plant foods, the most you need to cook is 10 minutes under pressure, 45 minutes – 1 hour total, for hard to cook bean, sweet potato, etc. For vegetables then you can either choose the steam menu or cook under pressure for just one minute. No matter how much time it takes to cook, it is unattended cooking and you can set up a delay so that you will have dinner ready by the time you get home.




          1
    3. Great post, thank you. I love Lorna Sass’s pressure cooking cook books. She advises a little oil in the pressure cooker to control foaming. I rinse the beans after to get most of the oil off and then complete my recipe or freeze them.

      A proud monthly supporter of Nutritionfacts.org




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  5. This is a good video. Just like everything in life, there are the good and the bad intermixed to make life more meaningful.

    And so Mother Nature has created foods that are nutritious, and foods that are anti-nutrient to suppress nutrition and in the process, growth. And you know that cancer is nothing but normal cells that go out of control and keep growing without dying and getting replaced by new cells. Such foods contain phytate or lectin. You are not supposed to eat too much though and you need to eat nutritious foods that counter anti-nutrients foods. For instance you eat spinach but you a;so need to eat kale and broccoli.




    3
    1. Jerry Lewis, About your comment “you need to eat nutritious foods that counter anti-nutrients foods. For instance you eat spinach but you a;so need to eat kale and broccoli.”

      Could you enlighten us on which of these three foods you consider to be the anti-nutrient?




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  6. Wow! What a huge amount of research this video must have taken you and your team to be thorough! And I compare that to the Copy and Paste article “research” that so many try to use as evidenced based nutritional science.

    I just love eating my beans and smiling at the power of foods to heal me and keep me healthy. Nutritionfacts.org videos are my daily medicine. Thanks Dr. Greger and team for doing the research so that I don’t have to with my limited research analysis skills!

    A proud monthly supporter of Nutritionfacts.org.




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  7. Another fantastic video! Thank you Dr Greger fpr your, and your teams, hard and valuable work in the world. May I please request, or ask, that you either talk about in seperate videos or include other cancers in your videos like leukemia, AML, in your research?




    3
    1. Hi Damian Paone and thanks for your question. I have included links to other videos which discuss interesting/helpful topics about the cancer process in general and the role of nutrition in prevention and limiting promotion of cancerous cells. The video on phytates speaks briefly to blood based cancers such as leukemia. I can also send your request on to our larger team and Dr. Greger. I hope these help:
      https://nutritionfacts.org/video/how-not-to-die-from-cancer/
      https://nutritionfacts.org/video/phytates-for-rehabilitating-cancer-cells/
      https://nutritionfacts.org/video/can-green-tea-help-prevent-cancer/




      0
  8. If the lectins make cancer look more like regular cells, wouldn’t that just make it harder for the body to recognize the cancer cells, thus making it harder to get rid of the cancer?




    1
    1. What the Dr meant is that lectin will make the cancer cell back to non cancerous cells, and therefore you don’t need to destroy it anymore. You know that cancer cell is nothing but normal cell that goes out of control for a number of reasons. Now you turn the bad guy into good guy again. Same analogy, bad guys are good guys that turn bad but they were not born as bad guys to begin.




      2
    2. Hi Will and thanks for your question. We want our cells to look and act like the tissue from which they arise. In the case of cancer cells, they lose many of their tissue specific functions which allows them to travel and invade throughout the body. Having them return to their normal differentiated state (meaning return to their regular function and appearance) would prevent the progression of cancer.




      1
  9. When listening to a Dr. Gundry interview, he was asked why the Greece population is so healthy when they eat most of the Lectin rich foods, he stated that yes they live long lives but have many aches and pains from Arthritis and other related physical ill effects. His way of saying that eating these proteins will cause you pain for many many years :)




    1
    1. Yep everything in moderation. It’s not because some foods are beneficial that you can load up as much as you want. I keep hearing that some population in the world is healthy because they eat blah blah blah. But first, they only eat a handful amount of that food, and secondly they eat other foods or have different lifestyle that can counter the “bad” food. Take for instance, there is a myth that the original Okinawans were eating a lot of sweet potatoes. First of all it is not true, and even if it is true, there are several differences with us, i.e. 1) they eat more natural grown sweet potatoes that have less carb and sugar, 2) they eat other foods such as fish and seaweed that suppress the inflammation, and 3) the original Okinawans are poor fishermen who are very active even in their old age because they have to work to make a living, and so by working, they will burn up all carb and sugar.

      But now if we copy one part of the Okinawans and eat buckets of sweet potatoes then we will get inflammation all over the place.




      1
  10. In your recent video there is no mention of the use of mistletoe in cancer treatment . This plant is rich in lectins and considered responsible for many cytotoxic effects. I would encourage you to research the European white berry mistletoe which is used in Anthroposophical medicine since indicated by Dr Rudolph Steiner in the early 1920s and now used extensively




    1
  11. Greetings! Last week i received in my email from MEDSCAPE a very controversial study that is causing a lot of conflic in the nutritional field. Please could you analyze and if possible react to this ??? Thank you very much
    this is the name of the study ;
    “Associations of fats and carbohydrate intake with cardiovascular disease and mortality in 18 countries from five continents (PURE): a prospective cohort study

    http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/884937
    http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/article/PIIS0140-6736(17)32252-3/fulltext




    0
  12. Thea I did look into those references, particularly the one Dr Greger looked into and found he was sloppy as the reference was only to the shellfish, not the yolks, but when I did an independent search in pubmed of yolks and cholesterol I found a publication with 3 references that yolks were not escalating cholesterol. I can dig this out, if you wish. .
    My main point remains that ignoring, completely, the peer reviewed publications is a type of denial.I can go and look at the questionable references and realize he is stretched too thin, and getting sloppy. This is not the first time.
    But many of you are overlooking the extremely valuable information in those peer reviewed abstracts. We can lower TNF-alpha to a normal range, with just food changes! People with CAD can lower the risk of recurrence from 30% to 1.6%.
    Everything he is discovering is consistent with other experts like Dr Bredesen and Dr Wahls, and things you may even expect on a primarily plant based diet. The big differences we have is grains, and to a lesser extent sugar and frictose.
    Thinking this is about money and selling supplements does not fit with him abandoning a practice as one of the most successful heart surgeons on the planet.
    He takes medicare and medicaid and most of his patients are blue collar.




    2
    1. Fred Lander: It’s not just one “sloppy” reference. That’s my point. It’s a pattern of deceit. Yes, you can find studies which show that yolks don’t affect cholesterol, but we know from NutritionFacts how those studies are flawed. And anyway, that’s irrelevant to Dr. Gundry giving us lots of references which do not in fact say what Dr. Gundry claims they say. Excusing Dr. Gundry numerous “errors” as being ‘stretched too thin’ boggles my mind. It’s a published book…

      I don’t know what peer reviewed publications you are talking about that you think we are ignoring.

      Regarding your point about CAD (heart disease, right?): It’s not surprising that food can cure this problem. We have known it for a long time now. NutritionFacts covers heart disease and the impacts a whole plant food diet can have on reversing heart disease. To the extent that Dr. Gundry’s diet follows a whole plant food diet, it is not surprising that risk of adverse events is lowered. That doesn’t mean that the same would not have happened had the patients eaten intact grains and beans as well. Maybe they could have gone to below 1.6% risk if they had replaced that little bit of animal foods that they are allowed with grains and bean instead.

      As for Dr. Wahls reported reversing of her MS, her story is an anecdote–a single case study at best. Last I heard, she had no published studies showing that anyone else got their MS cured following her diet. I would not call her an ‘expert’. I’m not familiar with Dr. Bredesen and can’t say anything about his work.

      Here’s another thought for you: You are putting a lot of faith into the idea that the guy is not making any more money than he previously did as a surgeon. And that he just loved being a surgeon. By your reckoning, Dr. Gundry has no financial or job satisfaction conflict of interest in selling us his ideas. I don’t know if that’s true or not. I’m guessing that between the supplements and books etc, he could easily be making more money than he ever did as a heart surgeon. Again, don’t know either way. Just saying that it seems like a pretty big leap of faith to assume that’s not true–especially given the lack of evidence to back up his claims. Put money aside. Where is the published, peer-reviewed clinical evidence? Combine the two problems we have: no evidence to back his claims and selling a WHOLE lot of expensive supplements and it doesn’t look good.

      Meanwhile, Dr. Greger has showed us some pretty interesting evidence that beans and grains are healthful for the general population…




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      1. Thea I think there are two fundamental errors in the Campbell’s analysis. They misrepresent what Dr. Gundry says with carefully clipped excerpts out of context, and then they claim the reference he utilizes does not back up the claims, which they actually do. Let’s use the first two examples they select so as to keep this random and since Dr. Greger and Campbell utilize his very first note, after the introduction, as their examples of deceit and forgery and all kinds of insidious intents, we can start with that one. Here is the quote , word for word. You can quickly see that the evidence he has is the information he has collected on his patients, not the references. The reference is an add-on, The word ” Plus ” is referring to the first sentence and so the reference itself is basically irrelevant. Do you wish to contact him and ask for the data on what happened when his patients ate more shellfish and egg yolks. There is nothing stopping you from calling his office and asking them to look into the matter as we have a right to know some of the actual facts he collected as he is making public claims. To say this is deceit, when you have not even seen the actual data, is quite a stretch.
        ” ” The more I removed vegetables that have lots of seeds, such as cucumbers and squash, the better my patients felt, the more weight they lost, and the more their cholesterol levels improved! ( By the way, any so-called vegetable that has seeds, such as tomato, cucumber, or squash, and even string beans, is botanically a fruit ). Plus, the more shellfish and egg yolks the patient ate, the lower their cholesterol numbers. Yes, that’s correct. Eating shellfish and egg yolks dramatically reduces total cholesterol. 1 As I said in the Introduction, forget everything you thought you knew was true.” ( pg. 4 The Plant Paradox ).”

        So I was completely wrong about him being sloppy. I was sloppy! Here is some documentation on the egg yolks controversy, just to validate that there is evidence in the peer reviewed journals.
        ( https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-017-01370-7 )

        5; Goldberg, S. et al. Egg consumption and carotid atherosclerosis in the Northern Manhattan study. Atherosclerosis 235, 273–280, doi:10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2014.04.019 (2014).
        CASArticlePubMedPubMed Central
        6; Rong, Y. et al. Egg consumption and risk of coronary heart disease and stroke: dose-response meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies. BMJ 346, e8539–e8539, doi:10.1136/bmj.e8539 (2013).
        ArticlePubMedPubMed Central
        7. Spence, J. D., Jenkins, D. J. & Davignon, J. Egg yolk consumption and carotid plaque. Atherosclerosis 224, 469–473, doi:10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2012.07.032 (2012).
        CASArticlePubMed

        The second item involves this passage, which Campbell carefully cut off : ” The longer you have been eating particular plant lectins, the longer you have been producing gut bacteria specifically designed to defuse them. 15 That’s why if you eliminate all gluten from your diet , the gluten-eating bugs die off; then when you do revert to eating gluten or eat something eat something you don’t realize contains gluten, you cannot digest them, causing discomfort.”

        In this area of his book Dr. Gundry is discussing the four-pronged defense mechanisms that protect us from the toxic effects of plants, and specifically lectins. The point he is making is very similar to the point Dr. Bredesen makes about Alzheimer’s, as when people eliminate the main offenders, this lowers the little bit of protection they have, and if they resume the old way then the results are often disastrous and the person is worse off than ever.

        Now let’s go to the publication he referenced to back his claims about the decline in certain bacteria when we make diet changes. The whole point is the decline of gluten eating bacteria when we eliminate gluten from our diet .
        ” Immunostimulatory properties of feces, which up to 50% can be represented by bacteria, were remarkably reduced as a consequence of the GFD, inducing a significantly lower production of pro-inflammatory cytokines and chemokines (TNFα, IFNγ and IL-8) and anti-inflammatory cytokines (IL-10) in PBMCs than those collected before the GFD. It seems that GFD led to a generalized reduction of bacterial-induced cytokine production as a result of the generalized reduction of the total large intestinal bacterial load, as detected in patients under a gluten-free diet.8 ”
        ( https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3023594/ )

        I specifically did select that passage as many of us in the western world have some kind of autoimmune disease, and elevated cytokines are often intimately involved in the process of the body attacking itself. The point of diet induced change of bacterial composition is made in numerous other spots in the publication.

        As far as the information on Dr. Wahls I think we need to look at the source of your information as she completed her first clinical trial about two years ago and began another one. It may have been completed also. The data on the amount of remission of other people with MS is substantial.




        0
        1. Fred Lander: I appreciate your dialog, but I’m still not seeing the logic of your point. I’ll take the first one you bring up since that’s the one I understand best. The additional context you gave for the quote actually hurts Dr. Gundry’s case more. For example, he says, “The more I removed vegetables that have lots of seeds, such as cucumbers and squash, the better my patients felt, the more weight they lost, and the more their cholesterol levels improved!” As we have learned in a previous video here on NutritionFacts, just losing weight causes cholesterol to go down for most people. You can lose weight any number of ways, including through cancer. And yep, cholesterol goes down! It’s not surprising in any way that when people lost weight, their cholesterol went down. That has nothing what so ever to do with giving up foods with seeds. If Dr. Gundry does not know this very basic information, then he is not an expert. If he does know it…

          You think that the following sentence is relevant: “Plus, the more shellfish and egg yolks the patient ate, the lower their cholesterol numbers.” That the patients were eating more shellfish and egg yolks is not relevant in the context of losing weight. It is also not sufficient information to judge what caused the cholesterol numbers to go down. For all we know, they ate more shellfish and egg yolks while they gave up cows and chickens and pigs in addition to giving up whole plant foods with seeds. In that case, it would be a simple substitution effect with lower calories that caused their cholesterol to go down. That doesn’t mean that eating shellfish and egg yolks causes cholesterol to go down. For it to mean that, he would have to back up that statement with really good studies. He does not:

          Then Dr. Gundry makes a general claim, not about his patients, but in regards to a study. “Eating shellfish and egg yolks dramatically reduces total cholesterol. 1” That’s how it plays out because that’s what it means when he makes a general statement followed by a reference. Dr. Gundry is saying in that statement that the reference in question backs up his claim. Both Dr. Greger and the Campbells say that that reference does not back up Dr. Gundry’s claim.

          I’ll say again: that you found studies that seem to say that egg yolks do not affect cholesterol levels is irrelevant for two reasons: 1) Those are not the studies that Dr. Gundry used, and 2) We know from digging into lots of those types of studies that they are often invalid. They use tricks like Dr. Gundry’s of lowering overall calories so that people lose weight and thus their cholesterol levels go down. Or they use tricks of starting with people who already have high cholesterol, thus taking advantage of a well known phenomenon that for many people, cholesterol levels tend to top out at the high, already dangerous end for themselves. Etc.

          I will say one thing about your next point. Here is the relevant sentence: “The longer you have been eating particular plant lectins, the longer you have been producing gut bacteria specifically designed to defuse them. 15” The reference comes after this sentence, not the next one. His reference has to back up this sentence. At least it is my understanding that reference numbers come at the end of a point that they back up. And according to the Campbells, that reference does not back up the statement. FYI: I don’t understand the subject enough to judge myself whether his reference backs up other points made in the paragraph.

          What you say about Dr. Wahls is very interesting to me. I’ll see if I can find her published studies and that data you mentioned. Thanks.




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          1. Thea I think the reason you are having problems seeing the logic of my post is that the rule books have been rewritten , and the new rules say that if the author of a book makes two statements of fact in a sentence, and he includes a reference to one of those statements of fact, then he must , automatically, include a reference to the other statement of fact. They have also added to this brand new rule the fact that anybody who has not done this is automatically a shady and uncouth character, who must be some kind of charlatan out to just sell his snake oil. And best of all, this new rule does not apply to themselves or to anybody else, except Dr. Gundry.

            Dr. Gundry made statements of fact that the shellfish and egg yolks lower cholesterol , as a component of his own collection of information, which he commented about in two previous sentences. He included a reference for the shellfish fact, and Dr. Greger went to the shellfish reference and decided the authors had reached the wrong conclusion about their own research. So we now know this point is controversial, right? Then there is the fact he stated, without a reference , that egg yolks lower cholesterol. The main point I wish to make is that he does not have to list a reference for all statements of fact, in the book. The basis for his egg yolk statement of fact, could be the previously mentioned personal collection of data. Or it could be data in peer reviewed literature, if they exist. We are not positive what is the basis of his statement as he did not include a reference.

            But it turns out there are numerous citations in the peer reviewed literature, including meta-analyses, that back up his position, and I have listed 3 of them in other posts here. So, we have the personal collection of data on his patients, and his analysis of that data, and we also have the existence of publications in peer reviewed journals, which agree with his own collection of data, on his patients.

            As far as your point about the reference coming at the end of the sentence , yes, I agree that is the established rule. But in this case, the whole point of the author is that the gluten is changing the balance of bacteria in the gut, and that that change can have effects in good or bad ways. The reference he uses makes that point 4 or 5 times in their presentation-that the gluten is changing the bacterial balance in the gut.

            As far as the overall message of the reference, the Campbell’s have reached the conclusion that the publication weakens Dr. Gundry’s position on other matters, and I have posted the details of the publication, not a excerpt wrenched out of content, that shows gluten are fostering a bacterial balance that is leading to the increase of certain master inflammatory cytokines, ( like TNF-α ) , which are often involved in very serious autoimmune disorders.

            It is very important for people with autoimmune disorders, like myself, to know this. This lectin, gluten , does damage to our health in a variety of ways. The gliadin in the gluten has been demonstrated to incresase intestinal permeability in all patients studied, not just the celiac patients. The gluten iteself was demonstrated in a study in people , crossover study, to increase brain fog, intestinal permeability, intestinal bloating, intestinal pain, and canker sores.
            ( https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25701700 )
            (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25734566)
            ” CONCLUSIONS:
            Increased intestinal permeability after gliadin exposure occurs in all individuals. Following gliadin exposure, both patients with gluten sensitivity and those with active celiac disease demonstrate a greater increase in intestinal permeability than celiacs in disease remission. A higher concentration of IL-10 was measured in the media exposed to control explants compared to celiac disease in remission or gluten sensitivity. ”

            The reason I am highlighting these two studies is because that was when I stopped being an enthusiastic follower of Dr. Greger, February, 2015. I thought these two studies had enormous merit and soundness and I could not understand why Dr. Greger would not even acknowledge their existence.

            Since then, I have seen experts in the field of autoimmune disease, like Dr. Tom O’Bryan of the book The Autoimmune Fix, highlight that study in his written works and have seen other experts refer to it.
            This gave me more confidence that these are indeed landmark studies, and studies that should not be ignored.




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            1. Fred Lander: I’ll say again that I appreciate the conversation. At this point though, I feel we are going in circles. It’s not about whatever studies you can come up with. In my mind, the discussion is about validity of Dr. Gundry’s book and whether the reviews of his book are valid. So, I’m going to end this conversation now. I wish you the best of luck with your condition and hope that you get a good recovery.




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              1. Thea I will certainly respect your wishes and want you to know the little gestures of courtesy and respect are appreciated. If we bumped into each other at the local gym or in the neighborhood I think we would enjoy speaking with each other and would wind up smiling some, perhaps even laughing a little.




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            2. And let’s not forget that the one thing tying all the Blue Zone healthy centenarians together is that they ALL eat beans every day!

              Also, remember that often studies like those showing that eggs don’t raise cholesterol, are usually funded by Big Egg, or Big Chicken or organizations they support – and should be viewed as marketing rather than honest research. One reason Dr Greger is trustworthy is because he checks out the source of the research, who paid them, and where they were published, to eliminate marketing disguised as research.

              And Dr McDougall has many testimonials from people following his starch based diet who have turned their autoimmune diseases around, halted them or cured them, all while eating beans, whole grains, veggies, fruits and nuts.

              I’m sure there are people who are sensitive to just about any food you can name, since we all have individual bodies with reactions peculiar to us. But to paint lectins as bad with a broad brush automatically eliminates many, if not most, of the healthiest foods – foods that entire nations and races of people have thrived on for hundreds, even thousands of year.




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    2. Thanks for your contribution to this discussion. A lot of people here are just looking for the one-size-fits-all Plant Based Foods diet. You on the other hand understand there are nooks and crannies in nutrition that can enhance or at least ameliorate health matters that simply eating plant based doesn’t address.

      Please pay no attention to the thumbs up on the comments that support the ones who challenge you at a ratio of 2 or 3 to one… more. Most of those are done by fanbois or fangoils of one another. This is a place that doesn’t tolerate very well, anyone who doesn’t toe the company line. Thanks for taking the heat.




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      1. Lonie, this site has a particular set of criteria when it comes to studying nutrition, which is to follow the scientific evidence. I know there are people, like yourself, Rick Bergles, JL, who use different sets of criteria than that of this website. Rick has mentioned Pythagoras, some mention doctors with diet programs.That’s your and their prerogative, & I respect that & quite frankly, it’s really none of by business. This comments section welcomes”vigorous debate of science.” But I think it’s unreasonable for you to expect people on this site to accept every set of criteria that comes down the pike when it’s not based on scientific evidence. So when someone sites a scientific study that says the opposite of what they’re claiming, or when someone tries to pass off a source as something it’s not, such as a single authored conference poster as a peer reviewed scientific study, people on this site will speak up & let you know about it. If that is ‘towing the company line’ or being intolerant in your opinion, then so be it. But the criteria for scientific evidence still stands here & always will. That’s what this site is all about and nothing else. There is no money making agenda here. There is no diet program for sale. And calling those of us who choose to follow the scientific evidence ‘fanbois or fangoils’ isn’t, imo, very constructive.

        There could very well be something to Dr. Gundry’s claims. But I prefer to wait for the science to speak for it rather than someone else. Like I said to Fred Lander, bring it on! We’re waiting…




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  13. “My main point remains that ignoring, completely, the peer reviewed publications is a type of denial.”

    Fred Lander: it’s a type of denial to completely ignore the fact that this kind of abstract presentation is not a peer reviewed publication. You keep insisting it’s something that it’s not.

    I think we’d all love to see a peer reviewed publications by Gundry on the subject. Bring it on! The point is, it doesn’t exist.




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  14. Hello
    I have my IgE test last month amd its 1700.I usually face sneezing,flu all the time and doctors used to say its allergy.my nutritionist recommend grape seed extract and turmeric extract supplements as my IgE was 1700.
    I am still facing the same symptoms.
    What should I do now.really worried about my health.
    Thanks and best regards AMMARA




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  15. A couple of things. Looking over at the ‘Age’ table listing foods by ‘age’ content I noticed that most nuts were relatively high in ‘age’ content, specially peanut butter and comparable to many meats. As a vegan this rang some bells and whistles. On the other side of the coin, lectins specially in uncooked beans, unroasted nuts etc. seem to pose dangers as well. Lokks like we’re cooked between a rock and a hard place. So what gives? Can you shed some balm on this dilemma?




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    1. I’m not sure which “Age” table you’re referring to, but the lectin issue has been researched thoroughly so there is really nothing to worry about. Simply follow the rules: Beans need to be cooked per the guidelines in the video which is very easy to accomplish as under-cooked beans will taste awful. You shouldn’t be eating peanut butter as the vast majority of clinical research demonstrates that only peanuts, not peanut butter, provide health benefits. Raw nuts are fine, except for truly raw cashews which you likely cannot even purchase as they must be cooked, and are still often called “raw”.

      Dr. Ben




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        1. Correct. Lectins and dAGE’s would not be a problem in your peanut butter, but I would still advise to not make/eat peanut butter. This processing creates isolated oils that are known to be atherogenic. I suggest you make peanut butter in your mouth by eating peanuts. There is voluminous amounts of peer-reviewed published evidence that shows the benefits of eating peanuts.

          Dr. Ben

          Virus-free.
          http://www.avg.com




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            1. Good question. I have not seen any evidence either way. Personally, I grind them and make salad dressing, but this may not be a good thing. However I find that I eat a lot less of ground sesame than I would peanut butter.

              Dr. Ben




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          1. Sorry, not buying eating peanuts is good for you but eating peanut butter is bad. Looks like there is one very old study on this.

            Makes me wonder if they used peanut butter with hydrogenated oils or maybe the peanut butter oil had gone rancid Where’s the data?




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            1. Agreed with Mr Silverglide. The listed ingredients in the study are really pathetic. e.g. there is no mention of raw peanuts. Most of the commercial brands of peanut butter list all kinds of other ingredients etc. The choice of foods is really pathetic as well. I am talking about the dAGE study btw. Are raw peanuts full of lectins or not? According the study tofu grilled has more glycogen content than most of the meats listed. I say ‘bull baloney.’




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            2. What you believe is up to you, but before you draw a conclusion, I suggest you read ALL the literature and not cherry pick what confirms your preconceived beliefs based on your love of peanut butter. If you read the many studies that evaluate nut consumption versus morbidity and mortality, some of them also evaluate peanut butter and see no benefit. There is one study I’ve seen that shows a slight reduction in Type II diabetes JAMA.
              2002;288(20):2554-2560. Peanut butter is highly processed just like making flour. You’re increasing the surface area and allowing the oils to separate. So you’re eating isolated peanut oil which is not good. All the feeding studies with nuts show minimal weight gain as compared to calorie consumption, which would only make sense in the context of the oil not being absorbed. If you want to eat peanut butter, go ahead.

              Dr. Ben




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              1. Interesting.

                What do you think is happening? Do you think the body simply metabolizes the peanut differently because the oil is intact with the other structures?

                I wonder if any of the studies on peanut butter found a mitigating effect when it is consumed with strawberry jam.




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  16. With regard to lectins in wheat germ, which Dr. Gregor says do not enter the blood stream, I’m wondering if they used toasted or raw wheat germ. Maybe the toasting reduces the lectins substantially?




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  17. Thank you for your question. The review from which the data was taken can be found here
    http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0733521014000228

    Essentially the review talks about heat treated but does not discuss the method of heat. Any form of heat treatment will prevent lectin having a harmful effect. In addition, the review points out
    ‘wheat germ is only 3% of the total whole-grain kernel weight. Thus, 50 g wheat germ would represent an actual consumption of 1666 g wheat or >80 slices of bread’. Therefore, continuing to eat wholegrain and beans is advisable for optimal health




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  18. As with a lot of food items I think it comes down to dosage. We know that large amounts (i.e. dry beans) are very bad and dangerous but it also appears that low doses may be beneficial. What I want to know is where is the limit and how different people are affected? For example it appears that people with blood type “O” are less susceptible to the negative effects than people with blood type “A” with the exception of peanuts being the opposite. There are many different types of lectins and some have larger effects than others.

    So much to still learn and yet so many people going off the rails while we are just scratching the surface of this very interesting subject. The best advice I can think of is the saying of a famous (or infamous) doctor “put it to the test” :)

    Remove all suspect lectin families (legumes, dairy, etc) for 7 days. Make sure to read labels so that you are not consuming a part of the lectin family hidden in a food. On day 8 reintroduce several of the family members, such as, if testing dairy, milk, cheese and sour cream or legumes, soya, kidney bean and peanut butter.
    Eat some of the family at each meal. Stop all of the family for the next two days. That is 7 days off, one day on and 2 days off. Check your symptoms on the day of testing and the following 2 days. Look for changes in energy, appetite, bowel function, mood, sleep, skin, and digestion, anything suspicious. Test only one ‘family’ at a time. You may remove as many groups as you feel are suspect but only reintroduce one family at a time. If you find you must eliminate one or more lectin families retest every six months to see if the intolerance is genetic or induced.




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  19. Forgot my reference to my comment:
    International Journal of Advanced Academic Research | Sciences, Technology & Engineering | ISSN: 2488-9849 Vol. 2, Issue 12 (December 2016)

    EFFECT OF SOME PROCESSING METHODS ON HEMAGGLUTININ ACTIVITY OF LECTIN EXTRACTS FROM SELECTED GRAINS (CEREALS AND LEGUMES)

    Dr. Udeogu Ebere (Ph.D)
    Awuchi Chinaza Godswill (M.Sc.)




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  20. Products like Lectin Lock, then, may be more harmful than helpful? I have multiple food sensitvities and took Lectin Lock for a while, but it didn’t seem to make any difference, so I decided to save my money and simply continue to eat sensibly and avoid the problematic foods. Now that I have chosen to eat WFPB, I’m glad I chose not to continue using Lectin Lock or any other similar product. Thank you, Dr. Greger, for waking us up!




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  21. I have a question about dry roasted soybeans. I have heard that roasted legumes are not good for you. Something about AG factor??? Nuts also, according to Dr. Gregger’s research are not a good idea. But what about organic non-gmo dry roasted soybeans? Is this good or not good for us?




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    1. Boiled would be better as the roasting process could, theoretically, create acrylamide. I have not seen any studies on roasted soybeans, only roasted nuts, but they are somewhat similar.

      Dr. Ben




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