Controversy Over the Trans Fat Ban

Controversy Over the Trans Fat Ban
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The food industry fought tooth and nail to retain partially hydrogenated oils, even though they were killing 50,000 Americans a year.

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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.

In 1993, the Harvard Nurses’ Study found that high intake of trans fat may increase the risk of heart disease by 50%. That’s where the trans fat story started, in Denmark, ending a decade later with a ban on added trans fats there in 2003. It took another 10 years, though, before the U.S. even started considering a ban. All the while, trans fats were killing tens of thousands of Americans every year. Why, if so many people were dying, did it take so long for the U.S. to suggest taking action?

One can look at the fight over New York City’s trans fat ban for a microcosm of the national debate. “Opposition came,” not surprisingly, “from [the food] industry,” complaining “about government intrusion,” likening the city to a “nanny state.” “Are trans fat bans…the road to food fascism?” Yes, a ban on added trans fats might save 50,000 American lives every year, which might save the country tens of billions of dollars in healthcare costs. Not so fast, though. If people eating trans fat die early, think how much we could save on Medicare and Social Security. That’s why “smokers [may] actually cost society less than nonsmokers, because smokers die earlier.” So, “we should be careful about making claims about the potential cost savings of trans-fat bans.” “More research is needed on the effects of these policies.” Yes, we might save 50,000 lives a year, but you have to think about “the effects on the food industry.”

How about just “education and product labeling,” rather than the “extreme measure of banning” trans fat? As the leading Danish cardiologist put it, when we discover a food additive that’s dangerous, we don’t label it, we simply remove it. But, we’re Americans! “As they say in North America: ‘You can put poison in food if you label it properly.’”  But look, people who are informed and know the risks should be able to eat whatever they want. But that’s assuming they’re given all the facts, which doesn’t always happen, “due to deception and manipulation” by the food industry. 

And, not surprisingly, it’s the unhealthiest of foods that are most commonly promoted, using deceptive marketing. It’s not because junk food companies are evil, or want to make us sick. “The reason is one of simple economics—[processed foods simply] offer higher profit margins and are shelf-stable, unlike fresh foods, such as fruit[s] and vegetables.” So, their “model of systemic dishonesty,” some argue, “justifies some minimal level of governmental intervention.”

But what about the slippery slope? “Today, trans fats; tomorrow, hot dogs.” Or the reverse, what if they make us eat broccoli? This actually came up in a Supreme Court case over Obamacare. As Chief Justice Roberts said, Congress could start ordering everyone to buy vegetables, a concern Justice Ginsburg labeled “the broccoli horrible.” Hypothetically, Congress could compel the American public to go plant-based; yet, one can’t “offer the ‘hypothetical and unreal possibilit[y]…of a vegetarian state as a credible [argument].” As one legal scholar put it, “Judges and lawyers [may] live on the slippery slope of analogies, [but] they are not supposed to ski it to the bottom.”

If anything, what about “the slippery slope of inaction”? “Government initially defaulted to business interests in the case of tobacco and pursued weak and ineffective attempts at education” to try to counter all the tobacco industry lies, and look what happened. The unnecessary deaths could be counted in the millions. “The U.S. can ill afford to repeat this mistake with diet.”

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

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.

In 1993, the Harvard Nurses’ Study found that high intake of trans fat may increase the risk of heart disease by 50%. That’s where the trans fat story started, in Denmark, ending a decade later with a ban on added trans fats there in 2003. It took another 10 years, though, before the U.S. even started considering a ban. All the while, trans fats were killing tens of thousands of Americans every year. Why, if so many people were dying, did it take so long for the U.S. to suggest taking action?

One can look at the fight over New York City’s trans fat ban for a microcosm of the national debate. “Opposition came,” not surprisingly, “from [the food] industry,” complaining “about government intrusion,” likening the city to a “nanny state.” “Are trans fat bans…the road to food fascism?” Yes, a ban on added trans fats might save 50,000 American lives every year, which might save the country tens of billions of dollars in healthcare costs. Not so fast, though. If people eating trans fat die early, think how much we could save on Medicare and Social Security. That’s why “smokers [may] actually cost society less than nonsmokers, because smokers die earlier.” So, “we should be careful about making claims about the potential cost savings of trans-fat bans.” “More research is needed on the effects of these policies.” Yes, we might save 50,000 lives a year, but you have to think about “the effects on the food industry.”

How about just “education and product labeling,” rather than the “extreme measure of banning” trans fat? As the leading Danish cardiologist put it, when we discover a food additive that’s dangerous, we don’t label it, we simply remove it. But, we’re Americans! “As they say in North America: ‘You can put poison in food if you label it properly.’”  But look, people who are informed and know the risks should be able to eat whatever they want. But that’s assuming they’re given all the facts, which doesn’t always happen, “due to deception and manipulation” by the food industry. 

And, not surprisingly, it’s the unhealthiest of foods that are most commonly promoted, using deceptive marketing. It’s not because junk food companies are evil, or want to make us sick. “The reason is one of simple economics—[processed foods simply] offer higher profit margins and are shelf-stable, unlike fresh foods, such as fruit[s] and vegetables.” So, their “model of systemic dishonesty,” some argue, “justifies some minimal level of governmental intervention.”

But what about the slippery slope? “Today, trans fats; tomorrow, hot dogs.” Or the reverse, what if they make us eat broccoli? This actually came up in a Supreme Court case over Obamacare. As Chief Justice Roberts said, Congress could start ordering everyone to buy vegetables, a concern Justice Ginsburg labeled “the broccoli horrible.” Hypothetically, Congress could compel the American public to go plant-based; yet, one can’t “offer the ‘hypothetical and unreal possibilit[y]…of a vegetarian state as a credible [argument].” As one legal scholar put it, “Judges and lawyers [may] live on the slippery slope of analogies, [but] they are not supposed to ski it to the bottom.”

If anything, what about “the slippery slope of inaction”? “Government initially defaulted to business interests in the case of tobacco and pursued weak and ineffective attempts at education” to try to counter all the tobacco industry lies, and look what happened. The unnecessary deaths could be counted in the millions. “The U.S. can ill afford to repeat this mistake with diet.”

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Doctor's Note

Once added trans fats are banned, the only major source in the American diet will be the natural trans fats found in animal fat. More on this in my next video: Banning Trans Fat in Processed Foods but Not Animal Fat, which is an update on my earlier video, Trans Fat in Meat & Dairy.

Ideally, how much trans fat should we eat a day? Zero, and the same with saturated fat and cholesterol. See Trans Fat, Saturated Fat, and Cholesterol: Tolerable Upper Intake of Zero.

More on industry hysterics and manipulation in:

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57 responses to “Controversy Over the Trans Fat Ban

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  1. I do subscribe to the notion that govt. should not intrude too heavily in our daily lives, but will agree it should be at the forefront of educating us even when it goes against its interest (tax revenue from bad-for-us lifestyle.)

    In the end it may not matter as eventually the State will become less relevant in our lives as technology fills our needs… if you can believe the technologists.




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      1. I’m just repeating what the futurists are saying and what they are saying is that things like Artificial Intelligence, robotics, cheap tech will make everything so inexpensive we can all have what we want without coveting what someone else has. This should work on the micro as well as the macro level they theorize and thus should do away with wars and for that matter, borders… even money itself.

        Not saying I totally agree with what they are saying but I do like the idea they have that death is a conquerable disease, as long as it doesn’t involve anything unnatural in or on my body but relies on snipping out bad code in my DNA or rebuilding my blood to a younger state from time to time.




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    1. To further clarify my stance on govt. intervention in the food supply, I endorse the banning of proven health hazards like trans fats, some food coloring, toadstools etc., as long as it is at the manufacturers’ level.

      On a blog I once did I suggested the govt. limit the amount of alcohol that could be in liquor, beer, wine to help stop people from damaging their health so much and just over-consuming in general… (if a beer is 3.2 % alcohol, it takes quite a few of them to get a buzz ‘-)

      I take great issue with govt. proposals to regulate vitamins and supplements. Sure there are cases where unscrupulous sellers combine a bunch of things together for some promised purpose that an unwitting customer buys and suffers consequences, but most people who use herbs and spices and vitamins do their homework beforehand.

      I don’t want some bureaucrat deciding if I can utilize some obscure ancient tried-and-true herbal because he or she doesn’t think something like that could possibly be beneficial, and that’s one of the dangers we would face with regulation.

      And politicians?… they hauled Dr Oz up before Congress to question his advice to his viewers. That says a lot about how far out of the mainstream our politicians swim.




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      1. Dr Oz is also noted for hosting people who talk to the dead (and say they get answers). His advice is sometimes on the mark, but often off the wall.
        Dr. Greger, however, has mentioned the large number of supplements that don’t contain what they claim to but are among the popular choices. How does one do that kind of ‘homework’, and if it’s just not possible, why not let govt do its job (if it dares to buck corporate power)?
        Bureaucrats, being people subject to critiques from all sides, would find it hard to counter published, peer-reviewed evidence, which sometimes appears here in studies of relatively ancient remedies and practices.
        I’m a bit more worried about anonymous corporations whose rulers are seldom if ever personally subject to the consequences of their allegiance to the bottom line, and to the invisible hand searching our pockets.




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        1. There just comes a point where “buyer beware” kicks in. I’ve experienced this at times and each time have been left with a better understanding of the world and how to navigate it.

          Someday we’ll get your implied wish that life for everyone is just a bowl of sweet cherries. Personally, all yin and no yang is a life I would find dull. More Mortmorency cherries, please!!

          OBTW, I find your post to be easily understood. ‘-)




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          1. I share your preference for Montmorency cherries, having done a lot of homework. Corporate thinking seems to favor heavily dosed Bings, or possibly poisoned apples for Snow White ‘consumers’.




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  2. Maybe someone else has already stated this, but if the bottom line is of concern to the food industry, saving lives means more people to buy their food products. They are killing off their customers. Just like the cigarette industry.




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    1. The big food companies are now owned by the former cigarette makers. They learned very well how to fight what kills their market share in the tobacco industry that they lost. But now they apply the same techniques to processed food.




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  3. See the documentary on Netflix, “What the Health”. It shows how government, medical and pharma, and charities suppress information abou the causes and prevention of diseases.




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    1. Also “Fed-up” documentary mentioned the “nanny state” argument and other powerful defenses the food industry has deployed. We have major problems as a society where kids are super-obese with what was formerly known as “adult onset” diabetes, fast food contracts with schools, junk food sold in every kind of store at checkout. People who try to address these problems get co-opted, diverted, or seen as threats.




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  4. The issue is one of freedom of choice. If the state can dictate your choices, it can override your judgment in any area, good or bad. The question is, are you in control of your life or is someone else, i.e., the government? If you’re not in control of it, then whoever is can prevent you from pursuing life sustaining actions, just as much as it can force you to pursue them.

    Of course, deceptive, dishonest or misleading advertisement should be banned, because it tricks people into buying what they didn’t choose to buy. Fraud violates freedom of choice just as much as outright prohibition or coercion does.

    Persuasion is the proper method of effecting change. You have to allow people the right to disagree; otherwise what you have is a dictatorship of health or of virtue. No one wants to hear, “I know what’s best for you, and you’re going to do what I say!”




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    1. One caveat, common sense should play a role here also. Freedom as an absolute becomes meaningless if people choosing are just plain ignorant.




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      1. So if we disagree, and each of us thinks the other is “just plain ignorant,” who has the right to impose his will on whom?




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      2. Kevin: Ignorance is also a choice. I have friends who know I eat differently than they do. They admit that my diet is ‘probably’ better than theirs. But do they want to learn more about it. Not always. It’s a choice.




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    2. Indeed, no-one wants to hear that last remark. But it’s uncannily like the attitude attributed to Microsoft in recent years, so it’s not merely govt ordering us about.
      The boardrooms of major corporations tend to go in similar directions, and if the directions are toward finding the best ‘sweet spots’ combining fat-sugar-salt in whatever they manufacture, they do it… and here we are.
      Retail outliers like Trader Joe or Costco, giants but without many giant imitators, allow a bit freer choosing among food offerings. And my local co-op a few years back had a short half-aisle of ready-to-eat breakfast cereals (in contrast to the giant supermarket’s aisle that went the full depth of the store); so it would seem there was less ‘choice’. Yet when I examined the two, the smaller had MANY more ‘choices’ than the giant, which repeated the same old formulas under different brands.
      I see similar problems looking at offerings on Amazon: so many brands try to assert their uniqueness and superiority, with ratings and critiques almost identical. As Lewis Carroll said, they’re much of a muchness.
      I recall a visit to a friend’s home by some Russians she’d met traveling there and studying the language. Someone at the dinner, cued by common US beliefs about ‘choice’, asked how they liked our big supermarkets. There was an almost embarrassed silence, and then one volunteered that he tended to hit the produce and ignore most of the packaged foods. He was profoundly unimpressed by the ‘choices’, but tried to be polite about it.




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  5. Sorry Dr. G. Libertarian here. What the government should be banning is the revolving door between them and big industry that suppresses important information and has an impact on people’s decision making process. But of course that will never happen. I don’t trust the government to ban much of anything unless it’s their own overreach into our lives.

    Laws rarely ever change culture in democracy. Culture changes first, then sometimes laws are passed as a result, showing unity on a subject. Otherwise, laws can cause a backlash in a democratic society. It worked in Denmark because they have a different culture and the mindset was already there.

    Culture changes slowly over time, and I know you’re frustrated about that because so many more lives could be saved in the meantime. But in in my opinion, what you’re doing with nutritionfacts.org is way more powerful than any law that could ever be passed in our culture regarding our food system. The work you’re doing, along with the rest of the gang at NF.org, is helping to change our culture in a very positive way. You’re helping to save lives.




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    1. There are a lot of people who are not free to decide what they eat. A ban on trans fats protects them.

      Children in public schools have to eat what they’re given, especially if they’re poor and can’t afford to bring a lunch from home. Similarly, students at colleges and universities who are on meal plans are generally not allowed to go back into the kitchen, thoroughly inspect every ingredient label, and then go back to the cafeteria and decide what to eat or not based on what they learned in the kitchen.

      People in nursing homes, hospitals, and prisons also don’t get a chance to look at the ingredients list for every meal they’re given. Even if by some miracle they could inspect every ingredient in their food, they would never get the opportunity to refuse and replace parts of a meal because it contains trans fats. In those kinds of places, you eat what you are given or you starve.

      Not all Americans are free to choose what to eat. I think it’s strange to argue that they should be made to suffer just so we can maintain our individual freedom to choose.

      And while I agree that NutritionFacts is an important resource, you have to keep in mind that not everyone is privileged enough to have unrestricted access to it. There are many people in this country who do not have internet access. Nor does everyone speak English or Spanish well enough to understand the information here. If literally everyone in America started with the same hand and came from an educated, middle-class background, then there might be an argument to be made around the messy topic of choice. Sadly, the reality is much, much different, and I don’t think it’s right to maintain “individual freedom” when it is so harmful to the less fortunate.




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      1. There are a lot of people who are not free to decide what they eat. A ban on trans fats protects them.

        Let’s understand what a ban on trans fats means. It means that no one has a right to choose to consume a food that contains trans fats — that one is prohibited buy law from consuming it. It does not mean that everyone has the opportunity to avoid eating food with trans fats if their circumstances make it inconvenient or unavailable.

        People in nursing homes, hospitals, and prisons also don’t get a chance to look at the ingredients list for every meal they’re given. Even if by some miracle they could inspect every ingredient in their food, they would never get the opportunity to refuse and replace parts of a meal because it contains trans fats. In those kinds of places, you eat what you are given or you starve.

        Then work to convince nursing homes, hospitals and prisons to provide foods that do not contain trans fats, but don’t deny others the right to choose them at fast food restaurants or supermarkets!

        Not all Americans are free to choose what to eat. I think it’s strange to argue that they should be made to suffer just so we can maintain our individual freedom to choose.

        Of course, they’re not “free” to choose it if it’s not available. What you want is to deny people the right to choose it when it is available, just because you don’t think it’s good for them.




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        1. I apologize for my poorly written response (which deserved a dislike! :-(). Let me try again:

          Randy wrote, “There are a lot of people who are not free to decide what they eat. [e.g., children who must eat what’s on a school lunch menu]. A ban on trans fats protects them.”

          Let’s understand what “free to decide” means in this context. It means that people are not prevented by law from choosing a food that the government deems to be unhealthy. It does not mean that a particular food they would like to consume is always available for them to choose. That a food is unavailable, because a restaurant or cafeteria does not offer it, is not a denial of one’s freedom of choice.

          “People in nursing homes, hospitals, and prisons also don’t get a chance to look at the ingredients list for every meal they’re given. Even if by some miracle they could inspect every ingredient in their food, they would never get the opportunity to refuse and replace parts of a meal because it contains trans fats. In those kinds of places, you eat what you are given or you starve.”

          Then work to convince nursing homes, hospitals and prisons to provide foods that do not contain trans fats, but don’t deny others the right to choose them at fast food restaurants or supermarkets!




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        2. “Of course, they’re not “free” to choose it if it’s not available. What you want is to deny people the right to choose it when it is available, just because you don’t think it’s good for them.”
          William, your arguments for continuing to allow you to indulge in an overwhelming desire for trans fats would look stronger if they didn’t so closely resemble the tobacco industry’s selfless desire to allow us the “choice” to smoke cigarettes, or like arguments from illegal drug pushers and their addicted customers.
          Govt doesn’t think heroin is good for Americans, and acts strongly on that premise. I’m well aware that a number of Manhattan executives were, and some survivors still are, heroin addict-users. They may agree that govt is too heavy-handed in this matter; do you?




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      2. Randy: You bring up some very good points that I agree with. I had to bring food to my mother while she was in a skilled care facility. Choices for the less fortunate are made by the collective ‘we’ or the mainstream of our society. And unfortunately animals have been a source of food for humans for many, many centuries. It’s ingrained in our culture. It will take much more than a law banning all transfats by a small group of people, who have figured it out. We have to keep pushing for it to become the mainstream in our society. And unfortunately it will happen slowly over time. But it will happen.

        I see it here at work, and with my friends. They all know how I eat. As little as 5 or 10 years ago, they thought I was crazy. Now they marvel at how well I eat. Have they stopped eating bacon cheese burgers? No. But they have added a few more fruits & vegetables to their diets. The average person’s food choices are based on what tastes good to them, and not what’s good for them. The average person does not eat to nourish their bodies. THAT is what has to change. No law will ever change that. I would even venture to say that like what happened during the prohibition era, we would end up with black market meat & dairy if a law banning transfats were passed now. And if you think animals are horrendously treated in the meat & dairy industries now, a black market would make conditions 100 times worse for them.




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        1. Nancy, I was about to disagree about laws, when I saw how you’re right…in this way:
          We have laws against murder, which fail to stop it, obviously. Those laws also ‘create’ a black market in hired killers. It would seem to follow that such laws are worthless and merely reduce freedom, so we should eliminate them all. Yet, oddly, libertarians are not anarchists (though an anarchist I knew said they were chicken$h!+ anarchists).
          The ‘slippery slope’ argument may work here, but it works all ways, doesn’t it? The State may be corrupt, but the private sector may have corrupted it to private ends, leaving the public as collective victim.




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          1. p: HA! Yes, anarchists definitely think we’re chicken$it anarchists. I like to think to we’re more socially minded than they are.

            Laws aren’t worthless. They’re very important. They show what we value and what we stand for as a culture. But they rarely ever change culture. The change in culture usually comes first from within, then the laws are passed.

            Look at the practice of Chinese foot binding, which went on for over a thousand years. Several Chinese rulers tried to ban the practice from the 17th century to the 19th century, but the bans never worked. It wasn’t until the Chinese began to consider foot binding to be an aspect of their culture that needed to be eliminated. Anti-foot binding societies sprang up all over China. From that point it took a generation, but it was the collective ‘we’ that put an end the practice. The same has to happen (and is happening) for FGC in many places in Africa.

            Yes, I think the slippery slope works all ways. But our corrupt State is only getting away with what ‘we’ allow it to. That’s why websites like this one are soooooo important!




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  6. Many plant foods have saturated fat, including soy and avocados. Getting zero saturated fat would be nearly impossible. Are you meaning we should get zero from animal products?




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      1. Thanks PJ. In the doctors notes below the video it says “Ideally, how much trans fat should we eat a day? Zero, and the same with saturated fat and cholesterol. ” But there are saturated fats in most foods, not just animal products (unlike cholesterol). So my question is the same – is Dr. Greger proposing that we eat no soy, avocado, etc which are foods that have a fair amount of saturated fats? Or rather that we should strive to get zero saturated fat from animal sources?




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        1. Good question. There are some who avoid soy and avocado. Dr. Esselstyn’s post-heart attack diet. The non-heart attack group can eat those as long as LDL is below 70. The statin trial data also suggests the threshold for atherosclerosis is about at that level IIRC for most people. I guess people with good HDL numbers should be fine with some “healthy fats”.




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  7. I spent decades working in the aerospace industry, as a contracts person, with the responsibility of ensuring that the prime contractors for whom I worked were operating in accordance with the Defense Acquisition Regulation (until 1984) and the Federal Acquisition Regulation thereafter. Multi-billion dollar prime or subcontracts are subject to a plethora of regulations of the type and number that would raise the hackles of many a libertarian minded, right-thinking American.

    As a student of the regulations that control federal contracting, and after 40 years as an attorney working in the field, I can assure the readers that every single regulation, without exception, was written as a direct result of the government’s experience with cheating contractors, whether through fraudulent pricing, cost misrepresentation or outright criminal activity going back to the US civil war.

    Would libertarians really like us to have kept the lead in gasoline to give people a choice?
    Should we have left the opium in the teething medications for infants?
    How about the banning of asbestos or DDT? Do folks whose only job opportunity is to work around such deadly material lose out on the choice issue?
    In Maine recently, there’s been a push to do away with child labor laws–that’ll certainly give poor people more choices.

    Regulation is often necessary and it’s seldom done without good legal and/or scientific reasons.




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    1. steve: I agree 100% with your statement – “Regulation is often necessary and it’s seldom done without good legal and/or scientific reasons.”

      The regulations you mentioned in the aerospace industry made sense because they represent & re-enforce our cultural values. I think most people were already against cheating contractors, fraudulent pricing, cost misrepresentation & outright criminal activity. Unfortunately the average person does not yet see (or doesn’t want to see) what’s abhorrent about eating cheese burgers. They just think they taste good, so they’ll continue eating them. A ban would only make them more defiant.

      We didn’t ban smoking, either, and although there are still people who smoke, they only do it for the most part in their own cars & homes, & outside public buildings & businesses. Smokers are no longer welcome in restaurants, movie theaters, planes, stores, and even in most bars now. That was decided by the people. Any regulations passed were a result of that cultural shift. I remember back in the 60s & 70s when it wasn’t considered polite to ask someone not to smoke in a public space, a restaurant, or even your own house. In the 90s, an Italian friend of mine, who was a smoker, visited the US & lamented that he felt like ‘untermensch’ because he was a smoker.




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      1. Nancy, By my comments regarding my experience with regulations, I did not intend to suggest the banning of cheeseburgers, french fries or milkshakes. As a matter of fact, I support the decriminalization of all drug use by adults. What I was suggesting was that the government has a duty to ensure that those drugs do not contain dangerous additives in much the same way that the people of Flint, Michigan should have never been sold down the river by those in authority.

        On the other hand, the fast food industry is heavily subsidized by taxpayer dollars at every point in the production process (from seed, through slaughter, to drive-thru) and our society is not simply allowing its national health to be undermined by people making bad nutritional choices, but actively underwrites the whole process with our taxes. Then, various state legislatures pass their Ag-Gag laws that make investigation of the Big Agriculture a crime and criticism of the law suffices as probable cause to allow the authorities to bring critics under investigation, if not prosecution.

        In short, my point was that there are issues of sufficient import that regulations are absolutely necessary and that dogmatic libertarians who decry all such government action do no good for anyone except the people who exploit such an amoral system for their own profit. Hence, my examples of leaded gas, opium in teething medicines for infants (a large percentage of US citizens were using opiates via patent medicines prior to the Pure Food and Drug act), asbestos and DDT. This is not, of course, an exhaustive list…

        Finally, if I were to advocate the banning of anything from adults, it would be the manufacture of, and use of cellphones for anything other than telephone calls. And I’d keep the children from that narcosis, as well.




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  8. Please do a video on silent reflux (LPR)! It really sucks and the doctors can’t do anything about it – and it’s supposed to effect maybe 18% of americans.




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  9. I try to educate patients all day long on proper nutrition. Most don’t care! Even if they have had amputations due to diabetic complications. Two of my coworkers smoke. They know the risks, but don’t care. We should let people choose how they want to live their lives…




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    1. Due to the realities of epigenetics….these kinds of people…who are the product of the corporate drive for profits…are likely a separately evolving species…much like the Neanderthals who eventually died out. When dealing with the retrograde I try to ask myself…what I could be doing with my time and energy to improve my own life….where can I make improvements in my own life that would make a difference.

      We all live in the same reality permeated by corporate baloney…I find it difficult enough to avoid the worst of it…let alone trying to steer the unconscious to safety. Once you’ve tried a few times…it’s best to just leave things be? The retrograde live in a world of corporate fantasy…if they seem relatively happy…maybe it’s best to not disturb their slumber?

      I know this is not how many people have been trained….but maybe it’s time to think for one’s self?




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      1. Fred, I tend to find the separation of human groups into the individuals composing them to be an integral part of ‘corporate baloney’ that dates to the Roman ‘Divide et impera’ or ‘Split and rule’. It worked, for a time, and is enshrined in Vergil’s Aeneid as though it would work forever.
        One small consequence is our tendency to split ourselves from Neander Valley people (Neanderthals) who, in a real sense, didn’t die out so much as become us: 2-5% of anyone’s genes may be Neanderthal or Denisovan, and up to 40% of Neanderthal genes remain in somebody somewhere now.
        We are one species, one kind, and in the 200k or quarter million years since our beginning (maybe more, it’s still early days understanding ourselves) we’ve come close to extinction, as shown by genetic ‘bottlenecks’, and kept alive only by what Kropotkin called Mutual Aid.
        Maybe that’s a useful tool to think with, confronted with varied forms of processed animal products (baloney) like individualism or obsessions with self-centered ‘liberty’ [ignoring the equally important ‘equality’ and their binder ‘brotherhood’] that corporate boardrooms peddle as mental fast food for the masses.
        I don’t want to start ideological sniping or warfare, just to provide more ways to look at current realities. The constructive riposte is to point out things others and I left out, like the parallel triumvirate of Truth, Beauty and Kindness (or Compassion) Einstein once offered.




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        1. P, I have no idea what point you were trying to make from reading what you just posted, but I would guess there are maybe 20-25% on this forum who do.

          So, if you are content reaching 20 to 25% and losing 75 to 80% of the readers in the first few lines, then your o.k.

          But keep in mind that the 20 to 25% who did get your meaning can also understand plain speak, so utilizing that you could potentially reach 100% with your meaning. ‘-)




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          1. Sorry if I upset you, Lonie; it was a reply to Fred’s post, which brought up epigenetics, so I thought I’d keep the conversation at that level.
            I’d be fascinated to see the basis of your stats.
            Put it this way: you’re taught, most likely, that you’re separate from all other people; this goes with the proverb that we’re born alone and die alone, neither of which happens but folks repeat the proverb.
            In reality, we’ve been a close-knit bunch of folks for a long time, and have begun closing doors, as we began warring, in less than the past ten thousand years. Some current and former ideologues [Ms Thatcher comes to mind] like to pretend that only ‘individuals’ exist, and all our many sociocultural ties are mythic; the evidence doesn’t support that attitude, but that attitude is a fine way to exploit and be indifferent to others except as sources of personal gain, so it’s ‘natural’ for corporations ever craving a bigger bottom line to push the attitude.




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            1. Heh, not upset hence the emoticon smiley.

              But just as a matter of feedback, your point comes through clearly in your second posting.




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    2. Two of my coworkers smoke.

      It use to amaze me when I would see a respiratory therapists at work, lite up a cigarette. They deal with people unable to breath all day.. Talk about people not caring.. Then again when I was a kid I use to smoke. Nasty habit hard to quit…
      mitch




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    3. But their choices negatively impact the rest of us. For example, why should we pay more for health insurance because other people are stupid? (According to healthcare.gov, “Five factors can affect a plan’s monthly premium: location, age, tobacco use, plan category, and whether the plan covers dependents. FYI Your health, medical history, or gender can’t affect your premium.”) The more total claims there are, the more policies charge; the more unhealthy choices people make, the more claims there will be. (Or do all these early deaths reduce overall healthcare costs, like smokers society cost less? Given the billions profited by pharmaceutical companies, I doubt it.)

      So, at what point do we consider the effects their “choices” have on us (and our rights)?

      Arguably, such effects are the things that engender most laws. Legally, you can’t steal my stuff; you can’t kill me; you can’t drink and then drive because you might kill me; you can’t speed because you might endanger me; you can’t put certain things in your products because they might harm me; you can’t expose yourself in (most) public places because I might not want to see that; you can’t discriminate against me because that negatively, unfairly, impacts my life; etc. (Time to stop; I’m sure that’s getting tedious, haha.)

      Of course, Prohibition didn’t work out back in the day, but at least the Surgeon’s General warning label on cigarettes has reduced the percentage of Americans who smoke. Perhaps with something similar for bacon, deli meat, and milk, we can make some progress.




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    4. Hi David! I’m Corey one of the site moderators for Dr. G. Please don’t give up trying to teach proper nutrition! You and I both know that lifestyle change is hard!! Even when someone knows intellectually that changing his/her behavior will improve health in the long run, it’s tough to see beyond the immediate satisfaction received from the unhealthy behavior. People like you and me have to keep learning and sharing the truth about living a healthy life. Against all odds!!




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    1. The first study finds from a number of vegetable oils that only corn oil is susceptible to trans fat development during cooking. The second study I can’t read, and I find the abstract a little vague. So, yeah, it’s probably a good idea not to use corn oil in cooking or baking.




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      1. Actually corn oil is loaded with the unhealthy omega-6 fats and ANY fat that is heated above 350 deg F or higher becomes changed from CIS to Trans regardless of the type of oil.




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    2. Saturated fat isn’t harmless despite what wishful thinkers, the dairy, meat and egg industries and the Atkins Diet empire would have us believe




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  10. Hi there, is anyone aware evidence based studies of coconut oil?
    I became vegetarian after reading “how not to die” and I thought I read that Dr Greger recommended coconut oil for cooking.
    After reading the latest report from the AHA – I am now more confused than ever.
    Is it dangerous to eat coconut oil?http://www.sciencealert.com/here-s-what-you-really-need-to-know-about-coconut-oil?utm_source=ScienceAlert+-+Daily+Email+Updates&utm_campaign=b0b66343eb-MAILCHIMP_EMAIL_CAMPAIGN&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_fe5632fb09-b0b66343eb-365601105

    Cheers Samui




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    1. Samui, may I recommend not cooking with oil?

      I rarely cook in a pan and when I do it is usually to sautee onions by using peanut oil, which has a high smoke point. Even using peanut oil I generally cook at a temp that well below that smoke point. My theory is: If it smokes, throw it out!

      However, I’m not above using a little good oil brushed onto whatever I’m cooking in an air oven. I’ve found that whatever I cook in an air oven is almost as tender as when I steam cook, which if I have the time to do, I prefer.




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  11. Samui, the AHA report you referenced is clear about the problems with a high intake of saturated fats, including those in coconuts and coconut oils.
    It doesn’t seem to cover the additional problem, mentioned in some videos here, of saturated fat as carrier of toxic substances generated by intestinal bacteria. Sorry I don’t have the references.
    Nor does it begin to deal with the NO OILS idea, which has often been discussed here. It’s easy, and likely better, to avoid any oil for internal use, given the many things that can go wrong when it’s heated or let sit too long absorbing oxygen.
    Generally, a good rule of thumb is to limit the intake of saturated fats to 3-4 grams per meal, or (say) 9 per day.
    Hope that helps, and hope others supply relevant blogs and videos.




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  12. This is off-topic. I’ve found hibiscus tea to be highly acidic. It’s as bad as aspirin when it comes to eating away at my teeth. Just a few glasses of the tea makes a noticeable change to my teeth. Is there are a way to increase the pH of the tea by adding a food? Would affecting the pH reduce the health benefits of the tea?




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    1. Arthur, like you I find Hibiscus tea to be bitter (acidic) so I do something that makes it a little more palatable. That is, I combine it with another tea such as marjoram tea (morning) or chamomile tea (evening.)

      I’m not sure about the pH of these additional teas, but since it makes it smoother I’m assuming it raises the pH.




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      1. Baking soda should do the trick.

        I often add some balsamic vinegar to something like my peanut butter concoction (pour off the peanut oil, add MCT and walnut oil, some pomegranate powder, organic raw cocao powder, monk fruit powder or substitute pure maple syrup on occasion for a treat, blueberries or cherries) and then a couple of pinches of baking soda.

        Experiment. Your body will tell you if you got it wrong.




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  13. I was just in Germany for 3 weeks and I couldn’t find any butter replacements that I were sure didn’t have transfat in them-seeing 100% safflower oil in solid form made me Really nervous, there was nothing about TRans fat on the label. My German friend didn’t know what trans fat was and her mom is a nutritionist. Anyway, anyone know anything about other European countries and tans fat? Also, I was reading somewhere else in this site that it is expensive to eat Vegan in Germany, and in my experience, it definitely is not hard or expensive to get fresh produce or find vegan options at restaurants or even at food trucks.




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