Do Any Benefits of Alcohol Outweigh the Risks?

Do Any Benefits of Alcohol Outweigh the Risks?
4.65 (92.91%) 110 votes

What would happen if you effectively randomized people at birth to drink more or less alcohol their whole lives? Would they get more or less heart disease?


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.

Once you remove from studies on alcohol and mortality the systematic error of misclassifying former drinkers as if they were lifelong abstainers, moderate alcohol consumption, like a glass of wine a day, does not appear to be protective after all. “The immediate implication from this [new research] is that clinicians need to be highly sceptical about the hypothesized health benefits of alcohol consumption and should not advise their patients to drink to improve their life expectancy. This is especially important given increasing awareness of cancer risks from even moderate alcohol use.” Given the cancer risk, if there’s just harms and no benefits, then the ideal alcohol intake on a routine day-to-day basis should really be zero, potentially making it a red-light beverage.

The problem was that many of these population studies classified those that quit drinking in response to ill-health as nondrinkers. This is the problem of reverse causation: instead of abstaining leading to poor health, poor health may have lead to abstaining. It’s like when studies show those who sit around and watch TV have worse health; is more TV leading to illness? Or, is illness leading to more TV? That’s one of the reasons why, if you look at the “hierarchy of evidence,” where higher on the pyramid means stronger evidence, interventional trials—like randomized, controlled trials—tend to offer better evidence than observational studies of populations, which can suffer from both reverse causation and confounding factors. For example, light drinkers as a group may be more likely to drink their glass of wine with a salad than a cheeseburger, and that’s why the wine appeared protective. But, sometimes it’s hard to do randomized, controlled trials—like, you can’t randomize people to smoke a pack a day for a few decades. So, sometimes you have to base your decisions on observational studies. But now, we have a new tool: “Mendelian randomization.”

“In cases where [randomized, controlled trials] are not feasible or practical,” this new tool “can provide reliable evidence on the [cause-and-effect] relationship between exposures and risks of disease.”

It’s like the HDL story. Alcohol does raise your HDL “good” cholesterol levels. But, unfortunately, it seems good cholesterol isn’t any good at lowering heart disease risk after all, based in part on Mendelian randomization studies, where people who were randomly assigned higher HDL levels genetically from birth don’t appear to be protected. Is there any way to study people who were randomly assigned since conception to not drink as much? Remarkably, yes.

Alcohol is detoxified in the liver to carbon dioxide and water by two enzymes. But, in the process, a toxic intermediate metabolite is produced, called acetaldehyde, which can cause unpleasant nausea and flushing sensations. So, if people are born with a slow variant of this enzyme, or a superfast variant of this enzyme, acetaldehyde can build up, making alcohol drinking for these people a relatively unpleasant experience throughout their lives. So, they are born less likely to drink as much. So, do they have an increased risk of heart disease, like the original observational studies would suggest? No, they have a reduced risk of heart disease. “This suggests that reduction of alcohol consumption, even for light to moderate drinkers, is beneficial for cardiovascular health.”

So, this just “sheds [further] doubt on [the] protective association…between ‘moderate’ alcohol consumption and…heart disease,” which was already plagued with the confounding and bias. “…[N]ow the scientific pillars on which it is based appear increasingly shaky,” leading some to suggest “the leaning tower of presumed health benefits from ‘moderate’ alcohol use has finally collapsed.” “Given the harms attributed to alcohol use, it is not surprising that reports [suggesting] benefits attracted enthusiasm among consumers, the media, and [of course] the alcohol industry. [But] [t]hese apparent benefits are now evaporating.”

“What conclusions should we draw from this emerging evidence…? Firstly, in health as elsewhere, if something looks too good to be true [like “butter is back”], it should be treated with great caution. Secondly, health professionals should discourage [drinking]. Thirdly, health advice should come from health authorities, not from the alcohol industry…[which] should remove [all] misleading references to [purported] health benefits,” which are increasingly looking more like “a triumph of spin-doctoring” than good science, “as contrived as the alleged split among scientists over climate change,” advanced by the petroleum industry.

“As an intoxicating, addictive, toxic, carcinogenic drug, alcohol is not a [great] choice as a therapeutic agent,” even if it does help. There are better ways to prevent heart attacks—namely, diet and exercise (and drugs when necessary). “In contrast to that of alcohol, effectiveness of lifestyle interventions has been demonstrated and [as a bonus, these interventions have] no abuse potential.” There’s a reason there’s no Appleholics Anonymous.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image credit: Maya83 via flickr. 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.

Once you remove from studies on alcohol and mortality the systematic error of misclassifying former drinkers as if they were lifelong abstainers, moderate alcohol consumption, like a glass of wine a day, does not appear to be protective after all. “The immediate implication from this [new research] is that clinicians need to be highly sceptical about the hypothesized health benefits of alcohol consumption and should not advise their patients to drink to improve their life expectancy. This is especially important given increasing awareness of cancer risks from even moderate alcohol use.” Given the cancer risk, if there’s just harms and no benefits, then the ideal alcohol intake on a routine day-to-day basis should really be zero, potentially making it a red-light beverage.

The problem was that many of these population studies classified those that quit drinking in response to ill-health as nondrinkers. This is the problem of reverse causation: instead of abstaining leading to poor health, poor health may have lead to abstaining. It’s like when studies show those who sit around and watch TV have worse health; is more TV leading to illness? Or, is illness leading to more TV? That’s one of the reasons why, if you look at the “hierarchy of evidence,” where higher on the pyramid means stronger evidence, interventional trials—like randomized, controlled trials—tend to offer better evidence than observational studies of populations, which can suffer from both reverse causation and confounding factors. For example, light drinkers as a group may be more likely to drink their glass of wine with a salad than a cheeseburger, and that’s why the wine appeared protective. But, sometimes it’s hard to do randomized, controlled trials—like, you can’t randomize people to smoke a pack a day for a few decades. So, sometimes you have to base your decisions on observational studies. But now, we have a new tool: “Mendelian randomization.”

“In cases where [randomized, controlled trials] are not feasible or practical,” this new tool “can provide reliable evidence on the [cause-and-effect] relationship between exposures and risks of disease.”

It’s like the HDL story. Alcohol does raise your HDL “good” cholesterol levels. But, unfortunately, it seems good cholesterol isn’t any good at lowering heart disease risk after all, based in part on Mendelian randomization studies, where people who were randomly assigned higher HDL levels genetically from birth don’t appear to be protected. Is there any way to study people who were randomly assigned since conception to not drink as much? Remarkably, yes.

Alcohol is detoxified in the liver to carbon dioxide and water by two enzymes. But, in the process, a toxic intermediate metabolite is produced, called acetaldehyde, which can cause unpleasant nausea and flushing sensations. So, if people are born with a slow variant of this enzyme, or a superfast variant of this enzyme, acetaldehyde can build up, making alcohol drinking for these people a relatively unpleasant experience throughout their lives. So, they are born less likely to drink as much. So, do they have an increased risk of heart disease, like the original observational studies would suggest? No, they have a reduced risk of heart disease. “This suggests that reduction of alcohol consumption, even for light to moderate drinkers, is beneficial for cardiovascular health.”

So, this just “sheds [further] doubt on [the] protective association…between ‘moderate’ alcohol consumption and…heart disease,” which was already plagued with the confounding and bias. “…[N]ow the scientific pillars on which it is based appear increasingly shaky,” leading some to suggest “the leaning tower of presumed health benefits from ‘moderate’ alcohol use has finally collapsed.” “Given the harms attributed to alcohol use, it is not surprising that reports [suggesting] benefits attracted enthusiasm among consumers, the media, and [of course] the alcohol industry. [But] [t]hese apparent benefits are now evaporating.”

“What conclusions should we draw from this emerging evidence…? Firstly, in health as elsewhere, if something looks too good to be true [like “butter is back”], it should be treated with great caution. Secondly, health professionals should discourage [drinking]. Thirdly, health advice should come from health authorities, not from the alcohol industry…[which] should remove [all] misleading references to [purported] health benefits,” which are increasingly looking more like “a triumph of spin-doctoring” than good science, “as contrived as the alleged split among scientists over climate change,” advanced by the petroleum industry.

“As an intoxicating, addictive, toxic, carcinogenic drug, alcohol is not a [great] choice as a therapeutic agent,” even if it does help. There are better ways to prevent heart attacks—namely, diet and exercise (and drugs when necessary). “In contrast to that of alcohol, effectiveness of lifestyle interventions has been demonstrated and [as a bonus, these interventions have] no abuse potential.” There’s a reason there’s no Appleholics Anonymous.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image credit: Maya83 via flickr. Image has been modified.

Motion graphics by Avocado Video.

Doctor's Note

If, like me, you’re interested in the cool, nerdy world of Mendelian randomization—which isn’t only cool and nerdy because it was named after a Gregor!—check out my video Coconut Oil and the Boost in HDL “Good” Cholesterol.

In case you missed the first three videos in this four-part series, see:

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

196 responses to “Do Any Benefits of Alcohol Outweigh the Risks?

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  1. How do we know that the accelerated ADH1B and slower ALDH2 that lead to little or no alcohol consumption are not, themselves protective at the same level as 1 drink a day?

    I am playing devil’s advocate as I am a life long non-drinker (well, 2-3 drinks a year).

    1. “The fact that the variant genotype [which accelerated ADH1B and slowed ALDH2] had no association of CHD among non-drinkers [with the same genotype]” makes this possibility unlikely.

      Chikritzhs TN, Naimi TS, Stockwell TR, Liang W. Mendelian randomisation meta-analysis sheds doubt on protective associations between ‘moderate’ alcohol consumption and coronary heart disease. Evid Based Med. 2015;20(1):38.

  2. Fantastic video, Dr. Greger. It’s exciting to see genetics being using to improve the quality of results –ethically– from medical trials on people.

  3. Dr. Greger stated: “There are better ways to prevent heart attacks—namely, diet and exercise (and drugs when necessary).” I’m so glad he added the parenthetical comment, because although diet and exercise may help many to most people, there will be some who need more help. I read that about 80% of our current chronic conditions are caused by a poor diet (and lack of exercise, smoking, and drinking alcohol) — which leaves about 20% of the population for whom other causes are responsible for their chronic diseases. Though I agree that addressing diet, exercise, smoking, and alcohol consumption should always be tried first, with drugs a last resort.

    1. How about a series on “Do Any Benefits of Coffee Outweigh the Risks?

      “(Reuters) – Starbucks Corp and other coffee sellers must put a cancer warning on coffee sold in California, a Los Angeles judge has ruled, possibly exposing the companies to millions of dollars in fines.

      A little-known not-for-profit group sued some 90 coffee retailers, including Starbucks, on grounds they were violating a California law requiring companies to warn consumers of chemicals in their products that could cause cancer.

      One of those chemicals is acrylamide, a byproduct of roasting coffee beans that is present in high levels in brewed coffee.

      Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Elihu Berle said in a decision dated Wednesday that Starbucks and other companies had failed to show there was no significant risk from a carcinogen produced in the coffee roasting process, court documents showed.”

      1. Alef1, Dr. Greger has a video on here somewhere that addresses the acrylamide in coffee and it is incredibly insignificant.

        As far as prop 65 goes, I don’t worry about inevitable things from the soil but rather adulteration. If we limited ourselves to only what passes prop. 65, some of us may not be able to eat on a daily basis. Luckily our bodies don’t hold onto the metals from plants like it does from animals. But I still think prop 65 is a great thing.

        1. Hi S –

          “Alef1, Dr. Greger has a video on here somewhere that addresses the acrylamide in coffee and it is incredibly insignificant.”

          Perhaps – but if Dr. Greger has an addiction to coffee like most of people do I’d worry about his objectivity . . .

          Seriously though, as best I can tell any business has two objectives. First, to make money, and Second, to minimize or eliminate liability that could lose money. Unless the health of human beings ties into one of these objectives in a significant way, this will play no part in how a business operates. This applies to any business, and any industry, whether the tobacco industry, the alcohol industry, the pharmaceutical industry, the food industry, and yes the coffee industry. And in the event of a particular problem cropping up with respect to health, each deals with it pretty much in the same way:

          Stage 1 – Denial of any effects. Fund research studies specifically designed to show this. Hire lobbyists.
          Stage 2 – Limited acceptance of some effects, denial of any harmful effects. Fund research studies specifically designed to show this, and to counter studies showing harm. Hire more lobbyists.
          Stage 3 – Acceptance of small harmful effects, denial of any significant harmful effects at current levels of exposure. Fund research studies specifically designed to show this, and to counter studies showing harm. Hire even more lobbyists and experts to set “safe” levels of exposure as high as possible.
          Stage 4 – Acceptance of significant harmful effects at current levels of exposure, revision of safe exposure levels by government regulatory agencies.
          Stage 5 – Safe Exposure levels actually enforced by the goverment, warning labels and educational materials provided to the public.

          So while I suspect that coffee might have more pluses than minuses, I’d like to see a hard-nosed look at the research, just to see how many studies showing a positive or not harmful effect of coffee may – or may not – have the same problems that the positive studies on alcohol did.

          1. I wouldn’t worry about Greger’s objectivity in the least. It’s pretty clear that he presents the evidence from an unbiased stand point.
            I wouldn’t guess he’s a big coffee drinker from what I’ve gathered, but we do know he’s been an avid hibiscus tea drinker after coming across the evidence showing its antioxidant content. And even with that, despite it being his leading beverage, just due to the fact that there were no studies available, like there are with actual tea, that show that we do not hold onto the alluminum within it, he decided to limit his intake and gave a reccomended daily allowance. If anything, Dr. Greger seems to err on the side of caution.

            I’m always for more research but it’s a far cry to compare coffee, a seed, to alcohol, essentially a chemical. It’s long been known and witnessed to be very toxic, the argument or skewed studies weren’t aimed at denying that but rather claiming that in “moderate” amounts it had benefits and that it was only toxic in large amounts.

            1. Everyone deserves to have the objectivity questioned, Gregor or not. A seed is essentially a chemical too, as well as every other thing in existence… Alcohol is also created primarily through fermentation by yeast, so I guess I’m not quite grasping why a “natural” chemical is under scrutiny by a “chemical” definition alone. I still would like to see more conclusive data rather than an genetic disposition on the matter. Humans have been drinking alcohol for literally centuries and the amount of science is honestly bafflingly bad. Tobacco has unquestionable throngs of papers linking it to disease without question, yet I still wish for more from this “alcohol is bad” series Gregor has been doing recently. I know asking for perfect studies is a utopian ideal, but it doesn’t change the fact that what I’ve seen so far isn’t exactly perfectly accurate or conclusive (not saying the ones linking alcohol to health benefits are either).

              1. Blaice, yes, technically we can say everything is a chemical or an object consisting of various chemicals, but come on… you KNOW what I mean…
                The evidence of alcohol being in and of itself, essentialy poison, is well known. Yes people have been drinking for ages, but with some moderation. Human people have also been eating other animals for ages and yet it harms our bodies in all kinds of interesting ways.

                I think as far as questioning the objectivity of others goes, that there’s no need to keep questioning when the character and actions of a person had already answered. Dr. Greger does a pretty good job at laying out the science and letting us apply our thought.

                  1. Don’t you wish there was an edit button? Surprised one hasn’t been implemented in such a popular comment section…

                    I’m not going to sit here and say alcohol is good for you, but if you offer me a beer or a steak and ask me which is healthier there is no question to me, and I’ll take the beer every time. I personally enjoy drinking a beer here or there (I am still in my 20’s after all). If eating entirely WFPB from 25 on isn’t enough to protect me from such a small risk factor (from the evidence I feel I’ve seen thus far over light-moderate drinking), so be it—it was meant to be.

              2. So my brother – with a masters in biochem and a DDS – tells me (a lifelong non smoker) that American Indians did NOT suffer from tobacco related illnesses; that indeed, it is the addictive garbage that Big Tobacco added that has caused the many, many illnesses.

                Brother also has NEVER smoked in his life. Just an FYI………..he’s done the research; I haven’t.

                1. The heterocyclic amines and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons present in all tobacco smoke are known carcinogens as shown by many many peer-reviewed research studies, so any clinical research demonstrating an absence of early death or disease in a group like native Americans would be very interesting. Please post the PUBMED research link referred to so that we can see for ourselves if it is a well founded study. Some studies are invalid, a prime example is the original papers attempting to assert that the native fish consumers in the Arctic had lower rates of heart disease, which turned out to be false, but nonetheless resulted in completely worthless fish oil consumption.

                  Dr. Ben

          2. I would just like to say that I agree with alef1 regarding the coffee; that is, I suspect that coffee has untold harms that corporate interests have buried. THANK YOU alef1 for the accurate and current information regarding the recent decision for coffee to be listed as a carcinogen in California. In Dr. Greger’s most recent Q/A video, he seems to lean toward recommending decaf, and going as far as telling viewers that he chooses decaf green tea. I am so grateful that you shared this message Dr. Greger. I understand how important green tea, and EGCG are to human health, but I think that caffeine tends to muck things up for humans. I see it in so many people each and nearly every day. Those who choose the decaf tea route get all the benefit while the coffee and caffeine addicts suffer (in comparison). I know that this is very low quality of evidence (case report), but it is shown to be better than animal studies in this very video

            BTW that means that this video links additional resources which can enlighten the animal research proponents. Policy is changing. The National Academy did some great work in showing that all chimpanzee data is completely useless, and this resulted in 90% of all chimpanzees to be liberated by the NIH.
            Former NIH Director Dr. Elias Zerhouni stated,
            “We have moved away from studying human disease in humans … We all drank the Kool-Aid on that one, me included … The problem is that it hasn’t worked, and it’s time we stopped dancing around the problem … We need to refocus and adapt new methodologies for use in humans to understand disease biology in humans,”
            in the June 21, 2013 NIH Record.

            Even the most successful nootropic companies have gone so far as to announce their distaste for the nonsense of animal research:

            “While [companyX ] values the previous work and research of talented and dedicated scientists on various substances, we also value the principles of ethics towards which many of the world’s top scientists strive. There is already a large amount of data published on [drug X’s] effects on rodents and small mammals, including toxicity studies on domestic household animals. Please avoid redundancy, especially when it comes to animal research.”

            Please, take the time to read a bit more here:

            1. Unfortunately, it is very hard to decaffeinate tea without also removing much of the EGCG. I looked into this extensively a while back, and it seems to be the case for all the available processes, including supercritical CO2 extraction.

            2. Mike I agree that animal research is ridiculous at its very best, but that’s about all I agree with in your post. Seriously, if we’re going to freak out about the hidden dangers of natural amounts of caffeine, we might as well just start living as paranoid cave people now. Seriously, let’s start prepping… I’ll get my rock and stick.

              Sorry, sorry… but I just think people get a little too carried away sometimes. I get that not everyone likes caffeine and some people prefer to stay away from it for various reasons, but that doesn’t mean its a demon and the world must be rid of it and we’re all under its power.

              Also, prop 65 is super strict. Just because something doesn’t pass proposition 65 does not mean it’s actually a carcinogen. The cacao the Kuna Indians drink probably doesn’t pass it and yet its linked to their longevity. I’m just saying. Honestly, I don’t even know if my kale would pass it but I don’t think they have to test kale.

              1. Dear S,

                Ugh.. Ugh!! Ooga ooga. LOL. No seriously, I am not demonizing caffeine or coffee. For some people, coffee/ caffeine is all they have to make life worth while. What I would like to suggest for some capable people is to try hard to find better solutions. Ask yourself why you use coffee or caffeine. Push yourself to uncover information regarding the situation which lead you to use the substance. Then, if you are capable, try to find other drugs (or drinks) which are shown scientifically to accomplish your goals more effectively than coffee. Without advertising for drugs, I can tell you that at least one or two exist which are more effective than coffee for depression/attention/focus, but also hold more promise for improving lifespan. Some of them are prescription only, but none of them are scheduled narcotics (except in Japan). This makes acquiring them less difficult.

            3. But there has been research about the toxicity of the process to make tea and coffee decaf………liver damage. Used to buy “water processed” decafe coffee but have never seen such a claim re: green tea.

            4. Coffee appears to have may benefits including possibly reducing the risk for Alzheimer’s.

              However, new research seems to suggest that in people who already have the disease, coffee/caffeine may worsen the symptoms

              “Our observations of adverse caffeine effects in an Alzheimer’s disease model together with previous clinical observations suggest that an exacerbation of BPSD-like symptoms may partly interfere with the beneficial cognitive effects of caffeine.”

              (BPSD = behavioural and psychological symptoms of dementia)

              While this was only a mouse study, it does seem to indicate that (water) decaffeinated coffee may the prudent choice especially for older people. Tea contains much less caffeine than coffee (on average) so cffeinated may be less of a problem/risk factor..

          3. In his book, Dr. Greger highlights the benefits of coffee but notes that he does not drink it because each cup of coffee he drank would be a lost opportunity to drink a cup of green tea.

        2. S

          Sounds to me like: if you are addicted to caffeine (I clearly observe withdrawal symptoms in a friend), then you say the acrylamide is insignificant, but if you do not drink caffinated beverages, then you say: Hey, It’s a carcinogen.

          1. Sydney, sounds to me like you’re making baseless conclusions form your own passionate point of view. First of all, I don’t believe that anyone had said that caffeine was a carcinogen in this discussion, correct me if I’m wrong. But you sound pretty childish to accuse a random stranger of having an addiction because they don’t share the same thoughts you apparently have on caffeinated beverages…? Dear god people… wtf? Lol.

            Ok, I actually don’t drink coffee but I do enjoy it on rare occasion. I’m more of a tea drinker and drink a daily cup of matcha. If that makes me “addicted to caffeine” then I guess there’s a pretty low bar of what it takes to be “addicted” to something.


            1. S

              My apologies. I did not make it clear enough that is the acrylamide in caffeinated beverages that is carcinogenic.

              I thought it had been well established that caffeine is addictive. But I am not aware that I accused anyone of being addicted. What I did was to say that I observe withdrawal symptoms in a friend.

              1. Sydney, Dr. Greger has a video on acrylamide in coffee and shows that it is such a minuscule amount that it is not significant. If the tiny amounts of acrylamide formed in brewing coffee were causing cancer, we’d all have been doomed long ago considering the relevant and high amounts of acrylamide found in other foods. If we pick apart all the compounds we’re aware exist in just about any healthy food, we could find something carcinogenic. It doesn’t mean the whole food is going to act as a carcinogen in the body.
                Dr. Greger actually has quite a few good videos on here about coffee, some I wasn’t even aware of. Coffee appears to be beneficial in some ways but can have some negative influences but longevity seems to increase a small amount with its consumption. Tea is better but I will appreciate the antioxidants in my rare occasional cup of black coffee. He did point out in one of the videos that the caffeine in coffee does not appear to be harmful… he has some other stuff on caffeine too, I’m not remembering it all right now. Obviously too much caffeine is not good and can even be dangerous.

                With your wording but perhaps not your intention, you passively accused my comment on acrylamide of being biased due to a caffeine addiction.

                I’ve never found cafffeine to be addicting but perhaps it is to some people. Seems more of a dependence to the get up and go of caffeine people develop as a habit more than an addiction.

                I know others may share a different perspective and that’s totally cool (obviously), I just didn’t appreciate what appeared to be a random accusation.

            2. Me? I’m addicted to an hour of vigorous cardio 6 out of 7 days a week. Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh, that adrenaline high.

              Perhaps we should start a group called “Healthful Addicts Anonymous”. I’m sure there are some marketing geniuses on this thread who could come up with a catchier phrase. Addiction R Us…………….

              Any suggestions?

    2. Many decades ago I heard that some researchers believe that a layer of sugar has to be first laid down on the artery wall before a fatty plaque can form. In case that is true it might account for the people who need drugs in spite of a supposedly good diet. But I also heard the the NIH was not funding studies to see if there is a link between sugar consumption and arterial plaque so don’t expect to see info on the NIH website.

      For myself, I never eat any food that has any form of sugar added.

      1. But Sydney, did you not say in previous discussions that you consume some animal products and other forms of fat in your diet ? Sugar does not alter my cholesterol levels at all, but can raise my bp if eaten on successive days. Any kind of animal products raises cholesterol in me. I quit 3 yrs ago.

        1. jan

          Yes I eat 4 – 8 ounces of 100% grass fed beef and/or lamb per day and also four eggs per day. (I stopped eating organic chicken drumsticks after reading Dr Greger’s article “How Healthy is the Mediterranean Diet?)
          However my BP and chol are both low without medication.

          I did NOT say that eating sugar raises one’s cholesterol. What I said was some researchers think that a layer of sugar first needs to be laid down on the artery wall before fat/wax/cholesterol cn be deposited. Just how that would work I have no idea.

          1. Thanks for your response there Sydney.. I know you did not say sugar raises one’s cholesterol. I just find it interesting how different people react to various foods and how people are attracted to different foods. Like salt vs sugar vs fat. I should have qualified my statement about sugar though.. for me, flour products, or baking, can affect my cholesterol levels in a bad way. To get the lowest cholesterol levels I can means giving up most starchy whole foods, and eating only vegies, fruits, leafy greens, and a small bowl of oatmeal per day… it’s just my luck I guess.

            1. Jan

              I agree about starchy foods. I do not eat any potatoes, corn, rice etc. Also: I no longer add salt to my food (though there is plenty in the 100% whole rye bread I eat). I do not eat any foods that have any forms of sugar added.

          2. Re meat eating, I just saw this on Science Daily

            “The study, which was published online today by the International Journal of Epidemiology, found that people who consumed large amounts of meat protein experienced a 60-percent increase in cardiovascular disease (CVD), while people who consumed large amounts of protein from nuts and seeds experienced a 40-percent reduction in CVD.

            The study, which included data from more than 81,000 participants, is one of the few times detailed sources of animal protein have been examined jointly with animal fat in a major investigation.”

            I am not sure how they define large amounts though since the full article is behind a paywall. Even so, it doesn’t exactly make me want to rush out and take up meat eating again. Grass-fed or not.

            1. TG et al

              Here we go again:

              Time after time I see studies quoted here that apply only to a specific case, but are interpreted here as applying to all meat.

              One study was quoted about how meat affects obese people. People get obese generally by eating junk food and/or starchy food and/or sugary foods etc, so why would anybody think that that study should affect people who eat Dr Greger;s diet but with modest amounts of 100% grass fed cooked on low heat beef.



              There’s lot more of these, but I have to out bike riding to get my HDL up.

        2. Jan

          You say “Any kind of animal products raises cholesterol in me”. Have you tried 100% Grass Fed Beef or Lamb? Many people say 100% Grass fed beef and lamb LOWERS cholesterol. My own experience: I once was eating 2 – 2 1/2 lbs of standard corn/wheat fed beef per day and my cholesterol was 240 and I got osteoporosis. Then I switched to eating ground turkey breast which I mixed wth oats and olive oil and my cholesterol went down to 170 and I stopped losing bone mass. Then I switched to eating 100% grass fed beef and my cholesterol dropped further to 140 and I have slowly been regaining bone density.

          But if you do decide to try 100% grass fed beef or lamb, Because the WHO declared beef cooked at high heat a carcinogen, MAKE SURE YOU COOK IT AT LOW HEAT.

          What I do:

          I put 2 – 4 servings of 2-3 oz each of 100% grass fed beef/lamb in a stainless steel bowl. But first I heat a large pot of water to boiling and then turn it down to simmer. When all the bubbles have stopped I gently put the stainless steel bowl flouting on the simmering water. It would be best to use a glass cover for the big pot because 100% grass fed beef/lamb, while it takes a while to warm up to the temperature of cooking, once it does start cooking, it cooks faster than standard beef, so it would be best to watch it through a glass lid.

          1. Jan

            Do NOT buy Organic Beef or Lamb unless it is clearly marked “100% Grass Fed.” Corn and wheat, whether organic or not, is quite bad for cows and the resulting meat is quite bad fir you.

          2. I am sure that grass fed beef/lamb lowers cholesterol RELATIVE to grain fed meat, trans fats etc – but I supect that it would raise it relative to a WFPB diet.

            Also your statement about the WHO conclusion about red meat and cooking is incorrect. The WHO agency IARC reviewed all the all the evidence and concluded that red meat is “probably carcinogenic”. High heat cooking may make it worse BUT
            “However, there were not enough data for the IARC Working Group to reach a conclusion about whether the way meat is cooked affects the risk of cancer.”

            And, as I have noted previously, a Uriguayan study (where all the beef is grass fed organic) showed that as beef etc consumption increased so did cancer rates.

            Sorry, but I just regard all this grass-fed stuff as wishful thinking and a feeble attemot to rationalise meat eating. Even grass-fed meat contains saturated fat, cholesterol, animal protein, IGF1, Neu5GC etc

      2. There are more things than just sugar, which cause the damage to the endothelium.

        Dr. Greger did a series saying the damage starts in childhood.

        If you have ever smoked a cigarette or had high blood sugar or ate food with pesticides or been exposed to pollution, you already have the endothelial damage, which the animal product intake can build upon.

        He has photos of hardening of arteries in the video about abdominal aortic aneurysms.

      3. Sydney This sounds like the usual low carb/saturated fat/cholesterol sceptic mix of speculation and conspiracy theories. And the NIH isn’t the only funder of research on nutrition and health.

        If there was substance to this, I would have expected the dairy and meat industries to have fallen over themselves in the rush to fund such studies.

    3. Dr. J, but also drugs are sometimes necessary when someone is so far gone that they basically need emergency care, no? I would imagine in those circumstances, which there are far too many of, that good diet and exercise would be essential to pair with any medication they need and with that, hopefully eventually be able to get off the medication.

    1. Whether or not other people are interesting when you drink, alcohol is considered to be the third leading cause of preventable death, and obviously causes a lot of disability. It won’t be as interesting when you get in a car wreck and lose the ability to walk, or die from cancer.

      The sad thing is, so many other substances exist that can truly make things interesting and fun for yourself, and your family/friends. Nootropic substances can definately make life feel great, and seem interesting. They also open up an entire world of knowledge that is right at your fingertips. With alcohol, you are paralyzed – with nootropics, you can live long and prosper. You can do, and think things you never would have imagined possible.

  4. David eats apples to make other people interesting.

    About me, me, me. I have been drinking for 15 years after having had a fine ten year drinkless run of sobriety in AA. (Worked for me when it worked). I have become sick and tired of being sick and tired. This video is especially germane to me. It was the final nudge needed. Today I am beginning my use of the √ list of twelve and now have been motivated to return today to my favorite noon-time AA group across the street from the UCSD campus. In the past, very few of our WFPB leaders have addressed alcohol. Thank you Dr. Greger!

    Wish me luck!

    1. Good for you, Connie!

      I watched “Eating You Alive” last night and they talked about making the decision as Step 1.

      Good for you!


      1. Thanks Deb!

        I appreciate your comment so much. I was also at “Eating You Alive” last night. In San Diego. Enjoyed your “Literally” humor also : )

        1. Connie, glad you got to see it!

          They did such a great job!

          All of the doctors were so effective in their communications and it was fascinating to watch their personalities.

          I laugh, because I felt like there was a doctor for everybody and like they balanced the personalities so well. The Cameron’s are laid back and positive. Samuel Jackson made me laugh that he is eating meat to get fat enough to be in a movie role. Dr. Ornish was so business-like, professional and there will be people who need that style of communication and presentation and Dr. Barnard has such a pleasant, encouraging personality. He is someone I could just follow around and he is like food versus a multivitamin. I was taken by Dr. Fuhrman walking his Cancer patient through to healing and Dr. Greger was in his peak excellence in comic timing and is so insightful and so passionate and I am already following him around on the internet. Dr. McDougall did a great explanation of fats and I have started listening to some of his teachings, because he is sincerely knowledgeable and I love T. Colin Campbell and found out that he has classes on-line, which the woman who teaches vegan cooking in my state has taken. I looked up his topics and started watching videos on the topics. Maybe someday, after I finish my kitchen, I can invest in actually learning more about all of this. I watched a kid’s version of “Organs of Digestion” by someone who doesn’t speak perfect English, but they did a cool cartoon and had a bird repeating the words. I forgot which ones they got wrong. I think it was somewhere around “Pancrease” I loved Dr. Lisle’s example of people used to feel “safe” riding in cars without seat belts, but they don’t know how unsafe they are until they get in an accident at 50 MPH. That is how diet really is, that people aren’t afraid of the risks in their 20’s and so many of us stayed in denial until our 50’s, but things like Cancer are like hitting something at 50 MPH. I even loved the cooking sections. I still haven’t made the cashew cheese, but I have those OXO containers and if I like it, the concept of having a container full of it in my brand new cabinets sounds like a good idea. If I like it. The animals being abused on the farms breaks my heart so much. And the man who cried after finding out that he had been healed of Diabetes made me start tearing up, along with the man who had lost so many of his relatives.

          It made me decide that I have to start playing with vegan chicken dishes, to get something my family would substitute for at least one of their deadly vices. I already know that the chicken patties I eat are pretty close to the right taste. I am going to try the vegan chicken strips in something.

    2. How wonderful! Please keep yourself healthy and alcohol free. Try watching Cowspiracy and What the Health to take your mind and body to the next level of feeling good.

  5. I have been sober for 30+ years, and in rehab read some sort of study that indicated the buildup of aldehydes in the system of alcoholics allowed a neural transmitter to react with the aldehydes creating a morphine like substance that went straight to the morphine addiction center in the brain. So the addiction to alcohol was actually an addiction to the secondary morphine created.

    This always made sense to me since a common way alcoholics use to avoid drinking was to consume sugar to stop the craving- which has a similar breakdown with aldehydes as an intermediary by product. Another bit of advice was that even non drinking alcoholics had their disease progress just as if they were drinking, so a relapse started at a worse place, not the same as when they quit. Since aa is notably weak on good dietary knowledge to actually help the liver, it would be expected that a bad liver would simply continue to deteriorate, especially with all that extra sugar making the prophecy come true

    just wondering if the research which I only vaguely remember reading 30 years ago can somehow fit in with the analysis Dr. G gave re: some people not liking it BECAUSE of the negative effects of aldehyde buildup.

    1. It is extremely unlikely that these pathways are reinforcing your (or other people’s) addiction. In fact, this video, is based on the opposite finding. Aldehydes are shown (in the science of this very video) to cause great pain/ nausea in the drinker. So much pain actually, that the effects of acetaldehyde are the cause of lifetime abstinence (or only drinking very, very rarely) in people who are slow to process it (or quick to process ethanol into it). The Mendelian Randomization studies where based on the concept that aldehyde causes severe pain / nausea, leading to abstinence.

      To take it a step further, pain disorders are now being treated with drugs / procedures that clear aldehydes out of the body, or stop them from being produced in the first place. New research hopes to reduce the need for pain killing medications (such as morphine) and improve the lives of those who suffer from chronic pain.

  6. I eat a plant based diet and exercise greatly .My sole “vice” is that I do enjoy a single glass of wine with my wife in the evening. Maybe 10 times a year on social occasions or holidays I have 2 glasses of wine, never more. I have never drunk wine for the health benefits but purely for enjoyment. The question I have is how detrimental to my health is my consumption of wine in light of my otherwise healthy lifestyle. ? For me the balancing act is not health benefit vs. detriment but social enjoyment vs. detriment.

    1. Kirt, those types of decisions are ones we all make in one way or another.

      Whether it be cookies or a glass of wine or watching too much television or spending too much time with a cell phone against our heads.

      For me, it took me a year to slowly move to Vegan, almost Whole Food Plant Based, but there are still weeks where I am closer to just plain Vegan.

      I watched, “Eating You Alive” last night and am reviewing my nuts and avocado and oil usage, and also found out that my organic tomato sauce, which I only use occasionally, has sugar and there are things like vegan butters, which I never looked to see what is in them at all.

      I am saying all this, because “It is a process” but part of that process is undoing all the lies, like “Wine is good for me” and replacing it with maybe finding out the risk for moderate drinking and how it affects Cancer risks. Dr. Greger has that topic.

      Information might help you make the decision.

      If you aren’t drinking for pleasure or craving, then cut back or cut it out.

      If that is harder than you think, it might be that you have to change your self-talk, because it would be a bit of denial, which might have crept in.

      Maybe cut the size of your glass of wine in half or cut consumption back to those celebrations.

      That is what I have done with sugar. I eat desserts on holidays and birthdays.

      Any day other than that, if I get a sugar craving, I eat a date and usually one will do.

      1. Hi Deb,

        Connie again. I will benefit from your timely reminder of “change your self-talk”. So much of adopting this life style is over-coming negative self-talk that slips back in. I think of support as a healthy brain washing when my brain gets a bit mucked.

        Thanks again

        1. Connie,

          You are sweet!

          I already value your energy and transparency.

          You are walking through something and so am I and I am going to tell you to up the level of your nutrition right now.

          Add in the superfoods.

          There are physical reasons to go up in nutrition.
          Your brain needs to heal. Your gut needs to heal.
          Be very kind to yourself and if you struggle get support.

          I am applauding you!

    2. With a healthy WFPB diet that is in itself, cancer protective, I would doubt that your glass of wine would be detrimental to your health. But I personally wouldn’t want to consume it daily in light of this information. It would be cool to hear how Dr. Greger would respond to your question, Kirt. In fact, maybe try asking during his next live Q&A? I’d be very curious to hear it myself!

    3. I suggest finding another outlet. The top scientists in gerontology can tell you that anything that harms your health will harm your cells. The more damage your cells accumulate, the less potential you will have to feel healthy. Try utilizing prescription anti-aging drugs and supplements instead. These can cause limitless joy in many cases.

    4. Hi Kirt – I’m Janelle, a Registered Dietitian and a Health Support Volunteer for Thanks for your great question! First off, it is great to hear that you have many other healthy habits when it comes to diet and exercise. In terms of alcohol consumption, even low to moderate intake, Dr. Greger explains in this video here ( that for each alcoholic beverage we drink, we see an increased risk in all-cause mortality. No health protection is seen at low levels of alcohol consumption. Any steps taken towards limiting overall alcohol consumption, such as cutting back further on quantity or frequency, will only benefit your health further. I hope this answers your question!

    5. Hi there. I’m a RN health support volunteer with NutritionFacts. First of all, congratulations on your healthy lifestyle overall. In full disclosure, I enjoy a glass of red wine myself too. I used to do it regularly, hey there is health benefits, right? But when I realized there really isn’t benefit and there is significant risk, I tried to make it a special occasion thing.

      I don’t think there is anyway to measure or quantify what risk you might be taking on with your very modest intake of alcohol. So none of us can tell you what to do. Any alcohol intake carries risk, but your intake sounds very modest to me. I’m inclined to say this small amount of alcohol is outweighed by your otherwise healthy lifestyle. But I don’t have a research study to support that.

      In reality, our bodies face oxidative stress from all kinds of things all the time- environmental pollution etc. It is unavoidable. The point is to get our bodies in the maximum healthy state so it can fight that stress which is inevitable and fight those few cancer cells that we all grow before they go on to become a measurable tumor. That is why Dr. Greger talks about antioxidants so much ( )
      I am inclined to think that your healthy lifestyle can handle that small amount of alcohol. But ultimately, its a decision you have to make.


  7. This has nothing to do with the video, but I would like to know when a person is on a Keto diet and in a state of ketosis, if that person can eat a lot of carbs in a day or two (cheat days) and still be in a state of ketosis, and if possible how much carbs can be taken in through out that period?

    1. Hi I’m a RN health support volunteer. If you are looking for advice on how to do a Keto diet, I have to say you did not come to the right place. Based on the current research, we do not recommend a Keto diet.

      A Keto diet is not a diet you can “cheat” or splurge on. Your body’s preferred source of energy is glucose, which is found in carbohydrates. When you deprive your body of that, out of desperation, it burns fat. This causes a stressful, negative state in the body called ketosis. Your body thinks it is facing a famine. Ketosis is state of illness, not a natural state for your body. Splurging and having some carbs stops this fat burning process and has your body looking for glucose again. It thinks the famine is over. Its going to want to hold on to that glucose you gave it.

      So Keto really is an all or none diet. And not a healthy one.


    2. Hi Jonathan – I’m Janelle, a Registered Dietitian and a Health Support Volunteer for Thanks for your question! Generally, a person will enter into ketosis after just a few days of eating less than about 50 grams of carbohydrates each day. Your body begins to rely on fat for fuel instead of carbohydrates. This low level of carbohydrate must be maintained in order to stay in ketosis. When you begin eating higher amounts of carbs again, you will no longer be in ketosis as your body will start using carbs again (the preferred fuel source) for energy. We do not have studies on the long-term health outcomes of ketogenic diets yet. We do know that plant based diets rich in carbohydrate foods like fruits, whole grains, and legumes are disease protective and improve body weight ( Hope this answers your question!

    3. As one of the volunteers has said, there are no long term studies of heakth outcomes of peope on keto diets. However, these have been used with some success in chifren with refractory epilepsy. Note that these diets have been practised under strict medical supervisions.

      Nevertheless, over the years there have been a number of reports of adverse side effects in these patients eg heart abnormalities

      and this one
      “RESULTS: The most common early-onset complication was dehydration, especially in patients who started the KD with initial fasting. Gastrointestinal disturbances, such as nausea/vomiting, diarrhea, and constipation, also were frequently noted, sometimes associated with gastritis and fat intolerance. Other early-onset complications, in order of frequency, were hypertriglyceridemia, transient hyperuricemia, hypercholesterolemia, various infectious diseases, symptomatic hypoglycemia, hypoproteinemia, hypomagnesemia, repetitive hyponatremia, low concentrations of high-density lipoprotein, lipoid pneumonia due to aspiration, hepatitis, acute pancreatitis, and persistent metabolic acidosis. Late-onset complications also included osteopenia, renal stones, cardiomyopathy, secondary hypocarnitinemia, and iron-deficiency anemia. Most early- and late-onset complications were transient and successfully managed by careful follow-up and conservative strategies. However, 22 (17.1%) patients ceased the KD because of various kinds of serious complications, and 4 (3.1%) patients died during the KD, two of sepsis, one of cardiomyopathy, and one of lipoid pneumonia.”

      Frankly, it sounds like a pretty risky diet choice to me. Also, it’s a diet which woud seem to increase the long term risk for chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes and cancer …. but as noted before, we have no actual studies on this.

  8. I agree and do the same Kirt. There is a social component to drinking. Loneliness will kill a lot more people than one glass of red wine.
    John S

    1. John, you may be right about loneliness, but people always say that about meat and junk food and every other “vice” and social situations. In my family, it would be pizza and social situations.

      Funny thing is, I have gone vegan and I am still going to the same gatherings and it isn’t less lonely. It is better, because I am also so sure that I am getting healthier.

      You are doing the “Just one glass” concept, but it is one glass a day and I don’t remember how much it takes to increase cancer risk, but I will tell you that cancer is even lonelier and suddenly all of the shallow social people run away, because they don’t know what to say and don’t want to get “sad” or “scared” thinking about you.

      LOL! It is still a personal choice, but all of our lives, people want to peer pressure each other to do the same “vices” we have, so we don’t feel alone doing it. There are lots of WFPB social communities out there and lots of them are hearing this message and you can find new friends who want you to be the healthiest person possible.

      1. I posted that comment, but came back, because there really is a loneliness going Whole Food Plant Based for me, when all the other people are going Keto. I don’t have anyone to learn recipes with or strategize foods with. I almost signed up for a Vegan cooking class, but missed enrollment by a few days. Maybe next year.

        The thing is, on top of that loneliness, there is a second deep loneliness, because my family does drink a little every day and they eat meat and eat cheese and eat junk food and also drink soda and lots of oils and white flour and every bad thing on the list and I know I will lose them and that is THE topic, they can’t have with me, because they are defended against WFPB and I have to leave these adult decisions to them, but I will be so lonely if they die, too. I have so many friends and family members in that category and their health is also in that category and I know that there is a genuine loneliness, which comes with transitions. I have the same loneliness as a Christian in a family, which didn’t choose that direction. Many of them have at the end of their lives, but I went to church alone, rather than with family members. Seems like loneliness is part of the ride, but we have to learn to rise above it and make healthy decisions or at least accept responsibility when we choose not to.

        1. I really do think that taking a stand, when everybody else takes an opposite position, can be lonely.

          So can, going against your conscience on an issue.

          Transitioning to something or someplace new or changing your life also can be exceedingly lonely.

          I have friends who went through AA and had to change who they hung around with and where they hung around and all sorts of things to succeed at breaking alcohol off of them. That process starts off ridiculously lonely, but now they are ten years sober and have deeper friendships, because they found support systems to walk them through things.

        2. Deb, look for a PlantPure Nations pod group near you. I attend the meetings for one that start with a potluck. It’s WONderful! Lots of great people who share their recipes and new social groups are starting out of this pod group: a WFPB book group and exercising groups who go out to parks and enjoy getting out and moving around together.

      2. John, I want to apologize to you, because I am giving superficial answers and you are right that facing the loneliness of something like stopping drinking is a genuine problem.

        I answered in “pat” solutions, because I don’t really drink, but I do know people who do drink and there are people who have spent a lifetime building relationships with other drinkers and it is not simple to leave those relationships to get sober. It can be highly worth it, but it isn’t always easy.

        1. I have brain issues and facing things like mental health or physical health problems or loss of loved ones. All of it is lonely.

          Coming out the other end, is such a relief.

    2. John S.

      Why do you feel that not drinking alcohol equals loneliness?

      I suggest the goal needs to be being able to enjoy your friends without any intoxicants.

  9. I know 3 people right now that have cancer and they are all non-drinkers. One of them is a Seventh Day Adventist vegan. And the longest living WW!! vet is in his 100s and says he has coffee and whiskey every morning and sometimes just whiskey and loves Campbell’s soup. Not quite the diet I strive for. He is active, still driving, clear head and married to a spry woman in her ’90s. The mind is powerful and wonder if that is the key.

      1. There are numerous studies demonstrating that some of the longest living populations in the world are moderately drinking. E.g., the Blue Zones. Not sure how this comports with the well-preserved findings of Dr. Gregor. But these populations can’t all be “outliers.” Perhaps it is the relaxation and congeniality that is associated with moderate drinking that contributes to an overall longer life? A non-drinker who is filled with stress, worry and anxiety perhaps is shortening their life? More study obviously needed.

          1. The French were not named in the Blue Zone studies. The Blue Zone populations lived considerably longer than the French and most other Mediterranean populations.

          1. Not assuming anything all non-drinkers are stressed. Some are and may benefit from relaxing. The Blue Zone populations tend to exhibit relaxed lifestyles (which often include moderate alcohol).

        1. That’s wishful thinking I am afraid.

          Just because a dietary or lifestyle practice is followed in one or more Blue Zones communities doesn’t automatically mean it is healthy. And sine alcohol is consumed in virtually every country and region in the world, the outlier concept doesn’t apply here. It’s only really relevant in the case of individuals in this context. The Blue Zones are only outliers in terms of longevity not their drinking culture. There is one exception though – the longest lived Blue Zone grpup of all. The California 7th Day Adventists. Their religion requires them to consume no alcohol.

          As for studies on alcohol and health, the World Health Organization agency IARC published a report summarising the studies about and evidence for the carcinogenity of alcoholic beverages. It was 128 pages long. That’s an awful lot of studies;

          I wish you were right because I drink occasionally myself. But it’s unfortunately not true that the jury is still out on this.

          1. 128 pages.

            Some of the topics that I have looked up have shown me that Dr. Greger does quite a bit of mental labor wading through all of the information.

            Tonight was a birthday in our family and people were drinking wine, and I don’t drink it at the birthdays. Only the weddings and anniversaries.

            Pondering levels of moderation and I feel safe with that level.

            Birthdays would become every month and they all have three glasses and I just don’t want that much toxicity.

            1. Yes, I drink at Xmas, New Year, on my own birthday and special reunions but otherwise no. As you say, you’d end up drinking every month if you weren’t very discriminating about the occasions on which you allow yourself to have a drop.

    1. SS BreakingWind

      There are a few people who have jumped from the Golden Gate Bridge…and survived. Your analysis has encouraged me to buck the trend and really live! I’m putting on my Speedos and heading out the door.
      I truly believe that my mind is powerful. I’ll post again, when your “key” hypothesis has been confirmed. Smoke a pack, in my memory!

    2. I can see Campbell’s soup getting on this… lol. The mind I think has so much to do with overall health as well, definitely a powerful thing.

    3. Yes, but please do not confuse people who want to take every advantage given to them to extend life. A person who eats well and avoids alcohol/ tobacco will almost always outlive a person who does not. That is why statistical data is important for most people. Unless you are willing to bet that you will be dealt a royal flush in the card game of life, which is extremely unlikely, you will likely need every possible arrow in your quiver to feel the best and live longest. This means you need stress reduction in addition to, not instead of a healthy life.

    4. LOL! Yes, his advice for longevity is that everybody ought to chain smoke cigars, drink whiskey and coffee, eat fried catfish and butter pecan ice cream every day. :

      He is over 100, so he may well not die of Cancer, but the people who listen to him sure might get it.

      There aren’t studies where 100% of smokers, fried food addicts, dairy eaters, or whiskey drinkers die from heart disease or cancer or get diabetes. 100% never happens, but people lose their whole family from these things and that gets lonely. I still miss my mother, who died at 53. I never saw her drunk, but she would have rum and coke now and then. My mind still wonders which of the risk factors gave her cancer.

  10. Yes, SS Windbreaker, life is complex. Ultimately if one wants to drink and justify it, they can find research, drinkers that have lived for 100 years, etc. I dont drink and I dont want to put something in my body like the hydrocarbon that alcohol is (ethanol). Its toxic, has no nutritional value. Something made your friends or WWII vets live 100 years but it wasnt alcohol. Dr Greger is helping us find out what that is.

  11. What about coffee? When it comes to coffee there are also merely observational studies indicating health benefits.

    1. Coffee is high in antioxidants. Have you seen Dr. Greger’s other videos on coffee? I haven’t watched them in a while but I consider coffee a healthy beverage and feel great about all the antioxidants I’m getting when I do drink it but I’m mostly a tea drinker.

      1. I’ve seen Dr Greger’s videos on coffee but I have doubt because there are not any interventional studies about coffee. There are merely observational studies.

        1. More insight would be cool. I suspect it is as healthy as believed so long as not exceeding a certain amount of caffeine. It’s definitely worthy of insight since it’s a staple beverage in so much of the world.

  12. Another awesome series exposing the unbiased truth. What I would like to to know (and would love if you did a video on it) is what are the “healthiest” or rather, better choices if someone does decide to have a drink which realistically many people still will on occasion. I’d love to see how red wine/beer/white wine/liquors react in the body to help sift out the worst from the best (the best choice I would imagine is obvious, red wine). I think that would be incredibly helpful information but of course that isn’t to try to make a case that alcohol consumption is healthy.

    Also, now I’m wondering if this is true… does alcohol actually thin the blood or is that too just a common misconception?

  13. My favorite aunt was a bar tender. She told my Mom she did not drink alcohol. I think people like her drink soda that looks like alcohol. People who are secure in who they are find a way to be sociable and sensible. I stay away from drinks containing alcohol and soda too. I really admire people willing to share evidence that is wildly unpopular. What the world needs now is more courageous whistle blowers like Michael Gregor.

  14. Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone involved in finally taking steps to bring down this destructive force of suffering.

  15. Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone involved in finally taking steps to bring down this destructive force of suffering. Alcohol has destroyed every person in my extended family so far. All of my relatives going back at least 3 generations have been sickened throughout their lives, and then killed at least 8 years below the average life expectancy. My childhood was terrifying due to constant alcoholic anger and violence from all of my caretakers. Once I was able to get my mother clean of this drug, the damage and terror finally evaporated. NO AMOUNT IS ACCEPTABLE – think of the damage you cause by sending the message to people that moderate drinking is somehow OK – and now, no person of intellectual authority should be able to lie through their teeth in order to satisfy their own secret addictive desires. To think of themselves in a positive light. No, this is unacceptable.

    1. Defense from infectious illness has been shown with the WFPB diet, especially nuts. Defense against infectious illness is also due to which bacteria you have living on you and in you which can be augmented by probiotics and prebiotics. The best probiotics are the naturally occuring ones that grow all over the fresh fruits and vegetables that are eaten as part of a WFPB diet. They cannot be washed off, so don’t worry about washing them. The prebiotics are the fresh fruits and vegetables themselves. As a totally unscientific example, I used to get 10-12 “colds” per year before I ate WFPB. Now that I do, I have not had a cold in many years.

      Dr. Ben

  16. Hello, Trying to find an answer to my question. This is not related to video. I am curious if anyone know any research on people with average BG levels lower than the recommended 70-100 mg/dl. My last 2 PCP visits I have had 2 BG readings of 62 and 52 after about a 1:30 eating breakfast (corn based cereal no added sugars, 1-2oz walnuts, 1 tbs ground flax seed, fresh and frozen berries, soy milk, cinnamon, turmeric). I am an amateur athlete consisting mostly of ultramarathon training w/ crossfit/strength training days as well. Resting heart rate while sleeping 34 bpm, relaxing 40-45 bpm. I follow for the most part a WFPB diet except for rare indulgences w/ processed vegan foods. On these days of the lab draws I woke at 4:30am working out by 5:30am finish at 6:30am eat at 8:00am and draw blood at 9:30am. This last time the MD tested my insulin which returned normal as well. Neither him nor I think I am diabetic. I do not feel shaky or any other symptom as I would expect from hypoglycemia. If anyone has any research or knowledge they could share I would greatly appreciate. Tried looking on PubMed w/o much luck. Thanks

    1. John Edmonton:

      I am guessing BG means Blood Glucose. If so you may have a condition similar to mine. If I eat any food that gives me a rapid increase in blood sugar, my body over reacts and my blood sugar goes way down and stays down for several hours. This has led to my almost falling off a chair etc. The thing to do is to eat foods that give only a slow gentle rise in blood sugar. I would stop eating any foods that have any form of sugar added. I find corn to be a poor food. Does your corn cereal have any type of juice added? If so that is disguised sugar. I find much better “cereals” are organic hull less barley and organic (plain!) rolled oats. Berries are too sweet for me so I only eat one at a time. Perhaps you should ask you MD to order a six hour glucose tolerance test. If you don’t feel symptoms, you should feel lucky.

      1. Hi Sydney,

        Thanks for taking the time to reply. Yes BG is blood glucose. The cereal has no added sugars. I do try to avoid all added sugars. Usually berries in studies tend to lessen blood sugar spike. I know Dr. Greger has a video on this and there are multiple more studies on pubmed that verify the this. I go in spurts with my breakfast habits. Drank smoothies for almost 3 years. Then oatmeal for about 3 and now have been on a cereal kick for the past year. Yes I am thankful no symptoms which make me think that it might be normal for me but unsure. I guess I could buy a BG test kit but really didn’t want to hassle with it, but might have to to make sure. Thanks again.

        1. Edmistonhw

          I have never seen a commercial cereal with no added sugar, though often the presence of sugar is disguised
          by another name. I once came across a website of an Australian group that counted something like 89 names for sugar.

          Could be TG is right suggesting Reactive Hypoglycemia, though I don’t know any details about the condition.
          My only experience is again suggesting a six hour glucose tolerance test – if your MD knows how to interpret the results.

          BTW: If I say to an MD that I have hypoglycemia they give me a a1c test and them tell me I am normal which to me seems pretty wacky because a1c measures average blood sugar over three months whereas in my condition the blood sugar shoots way up and then goes way down which averages out to normal but while it is down I am pretty dysfunctional. Maybe the term reactive hypoglycemia is better understood.

          1. Nope not disguised added sugar just cane sugar. Apparently my mind skipped right over it when I was reading. Although 4g of added sugar 5g total which is equivalent to 1 tsp. And it is a quinoa amaranth flax corn cereal. I forgot I switched bc I started shopping at a new grocery store that opened in my area.

            Yeah I’ve had my a1c take its 5.3. I can understand reactive hypoglycemia but I would think I would feel an effect. Thanks again for your time.

    2. This is a very specialist area but I understand that 30% of athletes have reactive hypoglyaemia so your situation may not be uncommon.

      That said, you may need to get BG testing at various times of the day to determin if your levels are reactive or more or less stable throughout the day.

      You should probably consult a specialist sports physician or diabetologist to determine the cause of your BG readings.

      However, in the meantime, this article by a Canadian sports physiologist (I think he is still at the Canadian Sport Institute in Victoria, BC) may be helpful

  17. I want to make it clear I do not drink out of “loneliness”. I never drink during meals, even during holidays. I never break my vegan diet, even during holidays. I drink no sodas of any sort with sugar or sugar free. I have no problem eating strictly Vegan when I socialize, including Easther, Thanksgiving, and Christmas and I feel no more lonely because of what I choose to eat during the meal than the meat eater who chooses not to eat brussell sprouts. I follow Dr. Esslestyn and take nothing with oil other than that naturally in vegetables, fruits, and legumes. Per Esselstyn I do not eat avocado or anything high in oil.

    I don’t say the above to brag. I just want to make it clear I drink wine because I LIKE THE TASTE and chatting with my wife or friends over a glass. I find it hard to believe that eating a pure vegan diet leaves me so fragile and subject to cancer by having a glass of wine a day. The things I enjoy on this journey of life are as important to me as extending my life. I do not feel I it is a weakness to have a glass of wine just because it is alcohol.

    1. Kirt, by posting this on a video which was designed to help the majority of the population by steering them away from this addictive carcinogen you are no better than the alcohol industry. Think of the example you are setting, the message you are sending to these vulnerable people. I know you aren’t denying that alcohol hurts many people, but you are empowering the very people that alcohol hurts with an excuse to drink.

      Think about this, a child is playing with its favorite toy. The mother cannot take that toy away without the child crying. The mother then finds out that the toy has lead paint all over it. The mother then says ‘oh well, the child likes it so therefore I must let them play with it (as to not cause a lack of pleasure).’ The reason this mother is behaving irrationally is because she could easily remove the lead from the toy, rendering it safe and enjoyable. This is called non-alcoholic wine, or for bonus points 100% whole grape smoothie made in a high power blender to ensure smoothness of texture.

      Now think about this. A corporate giant, the alcohol industry, who manipulates the public in any way to maximize profit does not care that they are considered by the National Institute of Health to be the third leading cause of preventable death, and a major contributor to the world’s suffering. Right now they have one primary enemy – This is because Dr. Greger’s website is an extremely rapidly growing public health organization that has already amassed an audience of over a million people. Please, don’t do their dirty work for them. Don’t make their jobs easier. We are their greatest obstacle because we have factual information that is measurable and quantitative. They can skew it all they want, but the most elite minds are not fooled, and have already labeled alcohol as a group 1 carcinogen. This means that the official determination of the World Health Organization is that alcohol is the cause of so many cancer deaths alone that it is in the most dangerous category (only substances that definitively cause at least tens of thousands of cancer deaths each year can be in this group). In fact, the CDC states that alcohol causes “2.5 million years of potential life lost (YPLL) each year in the United States [alone].”

      Anyone who still thinks letting the baby have its bottle has clearly ignored not just the message of this video series, but has let all reason fly right out of the window along with the baby.

    2. Kirt Mahlum

      My experience is “taste” can be tricky. If my body realizes it needs something it will taste good to me even though it may not have tasted good at first. If my body realizes something is bad for me, it will taste bad even if it originally tasted good. I was once addicted to chocolate bars (yes cocoa is addictive). It took me three months to break the habit even though I knew they were bad for me (I’m not supposed to have sweets or stimulents.)

      So wine may taste good to you, but your body may eventually realize wine is not good for it.

      1. Sydney, you seem quick on the draw to say things are addicting when even alcohol is not addicting to every person. I wonder what else may have been in those chocolate bars. High amounts of refined sugar consumption can have addictive qualities, for example. Or maybe the dairy, which may have addicting qualities. But based on the evidence presented to you on this site alone (which I can only assume you’ve seen), you know that the animal products are horrible for you, yet you choose to continue on with them. Why are you able to be so selective about what scientific evidence you should pay attention to and which you can ignore? Maybe “addiction” is the answer here.

        1. S

          I have no way of responding to your suggesting that I am addicted to animal food. However, I believe I get a lot of important nutrients from 100% grass fed beef and lamb and I believe the studies quoted by Dr Greger have a lot of holes in them.

          1. Sydney. I don’t eat animal foods because all available evidence points the fact that I’ll likely die sooner if I eat them. There is no doubt there are important nutrients in animal products like grass fed beef/lamb. The problem is that in the food we eat, there is TOO MUCH important nutrients to the point that we are poisoning ourselves with “important nutrients.” An example is cholesterol. We’ll die without it, but too much kills us too, which is the reason that 25% of all deaths in the western world are due to heart disease. I’d love a reason to start eating grass fed beef and lamb again, so please post ANY clinical evidence that I’ll live longer and not die younger by eating grass fed beef/lamb. None of us have ever seen any evidence like this, so you’ll be my hero.

            Dr. Ben

            1. Not only too much, but in forms our bodies haven’t evolved to handle. Such as heme iron. We just aren’t capable of “closing the flood gate” once we’ve had enough which leads to iron toxicity. Among others, there are also issues with copper and I believe zinc when coming from animal sources.

          2. Studies from Dr. Greger really don’t have many holes from where I stand… where they exist, he’s usually the first to point them out e.g. petri dish studies and what have you. But you can click on all the studies and review them all for yourself if you think his presentation has holes. I also suggest the book “How Not To Die,” though you may very well have already read it.
            Some studies do leave more to be desired but Dr. Greger gets all the existing evidence out there exceptionally well. However I think in the case of animal products being detrimental to human health, the evidence is overwhelming and from various angles at that. It’s not just animal products cause cancer, it’s not just animal products cause heart disease, it’s not just animal products cause diabetes.. they are linked to every single one of our biggest killers in profound ways.

            While I do believe in a sense, that animal products are addicting (because I believe anything we get into a habit of and learn to love can in some sense be “addicting” and we might be “addicted” once we consume it even with substantial evidence that it’s bad for us or worse, harmful to the very victims we’re eating and the planet as a whole) I was being sarcastic more than anything because earlier you seemed to have accused me of having a caffeine addiction out of nowhere, but I’ll take your word for it that it wasn’t what you meant and I sincerely apologize for my attitude that I admit I had.

            I also think that much of the time, things aren’t necessarily addictive, but maybe people just find enough pleasure in them to justify it and it becomes a personal choice. However, the problem with animal products are that it is not a personal choice because there are victims involved and it’s a pretty horrific scene, factory, “family,” kill on site, and so on… I’ve seen it all. Unbearable.

    3. Kirt, you didn’t owe that explanation to anyone and I think you came across that way in your original post to begin with. I think some people simply have the tendency to become ridiculous about some things on this message board. Your question was a valid, real question that would be very interesting to hear answered by someone qualified to answer it. However, left with our common sense, I think you pretty much answered your own question. Ironically some other people on here who are demonizing caffeine and suggesting you 100% abstain, eat animal products on occasion. I love how we as humans can just morph our righteousness to our own liking so readily.

      ….Caught me in a sarcastic mood tonight… But some of these conversations drove me to it. I can’t even read through all the comments, but Mike, this video isn’t DESIGNED for anything other than getting the real scientific evidence out there to the public… Dr. Greger is about truth, not brain washing. I’ve been told we’re intelligent beings capable of making up our own minds and it’s certainly easier to make a conscious choice when given the real information, but again… intelligent beings… our own minds.

  18. Mike,

    Because I question whether having one glass of wine at the end of the day with my wife which I enjoy, in light of my otherwise totally healthy lifestyle is harmful you say I am “no better than the alcohol industry”. That is inane. I thought I had a viewpoint to contribute and a legitimate question to ask. . In light of comments like yours its not worth my time to post in the future. A final observation is that it is self righteous staetments like yours that drive many people away from considering a plant based lifestyle. I have no desire to get into an argument with you, so you may reply or not. I am done.

    1. Well said, Kirt. This kind of craziness gives a bad impression of those following a healthy lifestyle and has the opposite effect of encouraging others to do so. Moreover, I do not believe such a mindset is a healthy one to have. Very sorry to see you have to put up with this over posting something relevant and interesting to the topic.

    2. Such anger. Are you that attached to the one glass of an evening with your wife? If something is a poison why would you want to take any of it? With some things there are countervailing values, as in foods with nutrient value but the risk of say heavy metals, but there is arguably no upside to alcohol- once, that is, you get past the psychological attachment. I comment on the depressive effects and the questionable social benefits elsewhere.

      1. Gillian, where was there anger in his comment? I think maybe you didn’t read his original post and responses which is why he made this follow-up comment. It’s a bit out of order.

    3. I agree with Mike. Think of all the people who are born into a life of difficulty because their mothers did not know, or care if they were pregnant. People need to set a good example, which means not glorifying or even justifying alcohol use. The toll that this evil alcohol giant is taking on humanity is obviously being underappreciated. Just look at the CDC statistics which show that ten percent of mothers admit to drinking during the pregnancy. The very first sentence on their Data & Statistics section states that because they are relying mostly on surveys they “do not know exactly how many people have fetal alcohol spectrum disorders.” ( Now, try reading the first sentence of Alcohol Use in Pregnancy

      “There is no known safe amount of alcohol use during pregnancy” (

      This statement has to be re-worded THREE times in this short document because people can’t get it through their thick skulls that alcohol is very damaging to humanity because pregnant women end up drinking. Society probably could have avoided many of these problems

      “Abnormal facial features, such as a smooth ridge between the nose and upper lip (this ridge is called the philtrum)
      Small head size
      Shorter-than-average height
      Low body weight
      Poor coordination
      Hyperactive behavior
      Difficulty with attention
      Poor memory
      Difficulty in school (especially with math)
      Learning disabilities
      Speech and language delays
      Intellectual disability or low IQ
      Poor reasoning and judgment skills
      Sleep and sucking problems as a baby
      Vision or hearing problems
      Problems with the heart, kidney, or bones”

      if they would just wake up, and smell the corruption.

  19. Kirt agree with you. “by posting this on a video which was designed to help the majority of the population by steering them away from this addictive carcinogen you are no better than the alcohol industry.” this is a absurd contention…
    As to the question I could take a lot of time to find substantial study result to prove this but will in this specific just fly by the seat of my pants and draw from dim recollections, as to this question…”
    is how detrimental to my health is my consumption of wine in light of my otherwise healthy lifestyle
    I would say it has little to none.

    I curiously used to drink heavily at one time.. Going through a rough and ready lifestyle hanging with crowds and peoples who were at home in the doing of illegal things as likely as legal. Curiously as I just found the effect of alcohol for some mysterious reason changed from one of euphoria to really just feeling tired. I tried it a number of times after that and it is always the same…..years and years now gone by it is as if I had taken a drug to make that happen but I did not.

    That aside my personal experience is versed just to show I have no dog in the fight. Used to drink as a kid stopped many many years ago so don’t really personally care at all.
    People are worried a bit to my opinion about little teeny tiny things and always looking for one supplement to right a world of dietary wrong. The thing is the world of what we eat and drink, the mainstay, not the minor things of addition to it.

    Some here will probably say that is completely wrong and take me to task on it and I could respond but will probably not. You have to consider a bit the audience here….nutritionists RN’s some docs with a speciality in nutrition some who research nutrition, a couple of vegans who are probably quite constrictive in their view of that thing, some trolls probably on the dole from corporate or religious sponsorship, and some others in minority from what one would call…the general population.

    So as to this….“That is inane. I thought I had a viewpoint to contribute and a legitimate question to ask. . In light of comments like yours its not worth my time to post in the future.
    You do have something to contribute and your question is legitimate. No offense to those who post here but they trend a bit odd.
    One can take the thing of diet a bit to seriously.
    Dr Greger I am fond of repeating almost had a terminal event with the consumption of home grown elder berries I think it was. Grew them then ate them. Toxic if not cooked he had a very serious potential poisoning from which he luckily recovered from by vomiting them all up.
    The how not to die author came close to dying by consuming a thing he thought healthy. He laughs now when he remembers the irony of this.

    So not to worry I think your consumption of alcohol is not a problem in the degree to with you indulge. And as a social instrument, alcohol has served for thousands of years in that manner. Anyone who visits Ireland or England experiences the pub culture which attests to that. And it is not filled with alcoholics but peoples socializing.
    So consider reconsidering.
    I personally do not care to much on who comes here or not little endeavoring this site. If I find compassionate peoples on sites who behave humanely I continue on them. If not I do not. But each to their own. I do find a reason such as yours stated to be not substantial considering the audience and subject matter. Taking a site and comments to seriously may be a error as well. I do that at times myself. Like them taking diet a bit to seriously. Though this is a dietary website we do not necessarily have to be pigheaded about it. It is important but abstaining some moral concern perhaps if one feels that way or some significant illness, it is after all just diet, a part of our lives not all of it.

  20. My own personal experience with alcohol…..which is only moderately on topic and perhaps only minorily of interest.

    AS a kid I changed truck and tractor tires(backhoes bulldozers and such) for a large large construction company. On a hot hot day after working all day changing how many tires I forget many of which were only able to be moved by pry bars and such as they were so heavy we went to yes, a topless bar.
    WE all went there it was what we did, bunches of us the economy hopping all of us working and working hard at hard hard jobs all day in the sun mostly.
    Hot dead tired cool inside I had one beer with friends of course friends at that age being most important…..that one beer the first was the reason for a thousand after. A feeling from drink any drink never replicated.
    The mistake was in the thinking it could be replicated. It was the whole thing which was the experience not the drink.the beer.

    Some I guess could find that thing again in that one beer that first one and find it and leave it at that. I could not deny that would be possible.
    Would that then be a detriment to their health all other things considered if one lived as that sort of life implies…I would guess not.
    That sort of life had so many other threats to health within it that one things was perhaps not significant.

    Alcohol is a health wise a negative thing always no doubt in my mind. But life is all context and context in that thing is most important.
    Saying this or that in alcohol makes it safe and beneficial…no probably almost certainly not.
    That being said and true there are reasons for its use which are not all detrimental and speak to the why of it allowances in societies for many many years.
    Despite the rational assumption it is damaging it is nevertheless allowed for reason and they are not all due to corporate influence as back in the day this thing was before corporation. Virtually every culture has this allowance excepting some cultures which have nuance we would not logically care to replicate. The puritans come first to my mind. Others may verse theirs.

    Alcohol it is not healthful. I don’t really need Dr Greger in this to say that. We all know it. A bit, probably not a bit harmful that as well.

  21. The public needs to be informed on this thing. And Dr Greger is doing certainly his part and a required part this nutritional aspect.
    But if prohibition is considered though not named in discussion consider this…we those americans on this board here…we have that in our history and it failed miserably. Probably the most miserable of any thing ever done in American politics.

    Great harm and abuse come from this thing. And always In any generation a number will present with genetic predisposition to addiction to it and suffer and die as result. But prohibiting it has never worked and will never work. In things like this drugs it never does. Education as Dr Greger is doing here and medical treatment and support groups do work.

    So kudos to Dr Greger for his efforts in that regard to educate us. To those who take this as a call for prohibition I say…..stuff it. Your day and time has come and gone about almost a hundred years prior.
    Hopefully education and treatment for alcohol abuse and drug abuse of any kind will one day take precedence as opposed to the barbarism of incarceration and prohibition as remedy. A medical approach to this is the only solution to it though little approached.

  22. … and as the final nail in the coffin for those who claim psychological/ social benefits for alcohol, as in mood lifting, alcohol is actually a depressant and in those already depressed increases the risk of suicide. On the socialising issue, If you need to numb your senses to tolerate the company of others this could be God’s way of telling you that those others are toxic in your life, not that you need a bigger toxin to make them bearable or even appear enjoyable.

    1. If you need to numb your senses to tolerate the company of others this could be God’s way of telling you that those others are toxic in your life, not that you need a bigger toxin to make them bearable or even appear enjoyable.

      Most who drink socially do not do it as a necessity to numb their senses to tolerate the company of others.
      Those one may drink with are not necessarily a toxic or toxin in their lives.
      Nor are peoples drinking to make others appear enjoyable.
      Nor is God necessarily existant nor nevertheless telling us anything if she did exist at all.

      They drink with other socially as it makes most more slightly at ease in situations of social interaction which they may find otherwise not. And it serves as a commonality of interest, a talking point so to speak. Something both and others are doing socially like a good meal. Similar to that.

      I do not drink but when significantly younger did quite often and regularly so have a degree of familiarity with it which others may not.
      Most drinkers can identify social drinkers as a specie separate from them. The reasons and rational differ.
      So identified cause differs.

      So I verse a alternative. Disprove it.

      1. As to known depressive effect of alcohol….I pose the consideration of a paradoxical effect of drugs dependent upon doseage.
        To whit I present this link referencing the seemingly paradoxical effect of stimulant drugs upon children which if found to be not paradoxical at all but a normal found to be dosage dependent.

        Alcohol is obviously not a stimulant drug but I contend to a degree though a depressant has varying effects that are specific to parts of the brain and may seem stimulative depending upon the particular psychological profile and tendency of a person. Some depresents cause sleep, some cause calming and are prescribed in that accord by MD’s. If they all served only to depress they all would have only one prescription and thus only one effect.
        But we find they do not.Multiple depressents are prescribed for multiple effects. Alcohol has depressant effects but similiarily has some that are unique to it. As a depressant in sole consideration does not imply what is stated as a certainity.
        Per for instance the inverse…most all who drink socially never consider suicide at all.

        The link references a calming effect from stimulant drug perscription with children.

          1. A quote from the study..“There is good agreement that alcohol’s ability to induce striatal dopamine release is the mechanism underlying alcohol’s stimulatory effects;

  23. In the field of alcohol study there is a variance as to cause of alcoholism. Some contend, and I do agree with this theory, that the amount of stimulation one gets from alcohol by proportion adverserially considered to the degree of depression(both independent of motor function consideration) determines who becomes prone to this disease.

    Personally I first became aware of this by observation. When I did drink heavily but was not necessarily a alcoholic…. some I found to have their response to alcohol completely different than mine. I for instance knew with certainty I was a poor driver under its influence and must exert extreme caution to not be caught driving drunk. One I knew had the feeling when drunk he became a superior driver and drove in a wild manner. Similiarily some others I noticed to famously in this field of bars and such, they developed what we called beer muscles when drunk..thinking then they had superior physical skills. And of course got frequently beaten up.

    Those stimulated in this fashion felt better more capeable and thus by my read more prone to actual alcoholism. The fast driver I mention went on to become a chronic alcoholic to the extreme of brain damage eventually with alcohol as cause.
    I drank heavily but it was a situational drinking or circumstance friends lifestyle culture type thing. So I eventually easily moved on.

    So we here in New Mexico have peoples being caught drunk driving ten or more times. They think under the stimulatory effects of alcohol to be actually better at driving so they do it…drunk. And cannot be stopped as they become that when drunk. They are of course all alcoholics.
    Alcohol despite the motor impairments which actually make them far worse drivers make them in their mind stimulatory better at things, a non depressive effect.

    But the science the book is still out on this theory. Some science supports it and some does not. That alcohol has stimulatory effects is not in debate… it does.
    Degree varies per individual likely by genetic determination nor circumstantial. AS does usually predominance of tendency to alcoholism.

    1. For those that are interested this study elaborates a bit on this issue of variance of response to alcohol..

      Three effects of alcohol are evident, impaired motor response depressive affect and stimulative affect.
      Curiously in study done on attention deficit disorder students who took stimulative medications to counter the affliction it was found as to retention congnition and such, the results non medicated were equal to medicated. The only measurable difference found was in the perception of increased ability. They performed the same in test but felt they performed better when medicated with amphetamine like substances, prescribed drugs.

      So alcohol by my read has abstract the motor response deficit…the same effect on those prone to alcoholism. They feel have the perception of increased capeability. Motor response deficit is of course not evident with amphetamine like substance use.

      1. A quote from that study……”There is also evidence that ascending limb stimulant effects are more pronounced or operate differently for high-risk individuals.

        1. To whit G23…I have countered your secondary claim and consider it refuted by reference found in scientific study of a published well designed sort some of it to include review of multiple study.
          I may produce many more to support this but think it unnecessary.
          Alcohol has depressive and stimulatory effects.
          If some majority proportion who commit suicide do have also alcohol in their system upon the commission of that act I would contend it would be to assist in the numbing of their minds to that actual act not as cause. A corrospondence not a cause.
          A basis of rational thought in scientific study which allows for the furtherance of study, a consideration that two or more things occurring at the same time and space are not necessarily indicating cause or relationship is a absolute. That absolute first come upon in our European history at about the age of enlightenment. It allowed for advancement in science and logic.
          In that same vein I further this opposition to your unfounded claim.

  24. i remember reading an hypothesis somewhere that alcohol provided a survival advantage to Europeans, Africans, Middle Easterners and others which is why most of their descendants can metabolisee alcohol relatively well but many East Asians/Orientals cannot.

    The theory was that following the introduction of farming and/or permanent settlements, local water sources were increasingly likely to be contaminated. Alcohol is a disinfectant and provided an effective way making drinking water safer. In addition, beer was fermented and this provided some additional protection. Those who drank alcohol may have therefore been more likely to survive in times and eras when waterborne infections were common.

    In fact in centuries gone by, apparently many Europeans (including early American settlers) drank beer or some form of alcohol with every meal. This included children. Hence perhaps the widespread consumption of “small beer” and watered down wine. Alcoholic drinks also provided a relatively concentrated and less perishable source of calories which may also have been important in times of famine and food shortages.

    In East Asians (eg Chinese, Koreans, Japanese) though, tea cultivation and consumption developed early and this required boiling water which sterilised it. Consequently, there would have been less evolutionaty pressure to select for an ability to more efficiently metabolise alcohol in those populations. This, it is speculated, is why East Asians are more likely to experience an alcohol flush response.

    Of course, adaptations which provide a short term survival advantage do not always contribute to healthy longevity – eg also sickle cell anaemia and perhaps dairy consumption.

    1. Interesting stuff Tom. I have heard some alternative theories on the subject matter but really have not had a look see at any science to substantiate these.

      The proposition was the alcohol derived from commonly eaten sources materials in their respective cultures provide humans with enzyme activity that allows for mediation of the alcohol efficiently. In other words sake a Japanese alcohol, is metabolized by Japanese as its base efficiently has rice, a thing often eaten. European base materials such as barley are not so much consumed in Japan. So the Japanese developed a ability overtime for this with no overt side effects. Sake consumption has not the overt side effects found with consumption amongst some but not all Japanese who consume barley based alcohol.

      Just to throw it out there for discussion I have not remotely studied it.

      Native americans some theorize have a inordinate amount of alcoholism due to genetic tendency. Why is this present overtly in natives and not in Europeans.The theory is that evolutionarily considered natives to America did not have alcohol widely available. So the Europeans efficiently weeded out due to affect of alcoholism on detrimental effect on gene ability to be reproduced in offspring those who present with this tendency. In Europe alcohol was widely available and has been for thousands of years. So those who reproduced generally could not be alcoholics by tendency of gene.Alcoholics if they do even have kids the kids are poorly cared for and in midevil times would die prior to maturity.
      Natives could as alcohol was not present widely and as such present no detriment to reproduction.

      A human is thought to have a natural gene mutation tendency to present some always in any population as alcoholics. But a overt amount indicates the population was not exposed to alcohol until very recent times. Those are by evolutionary tendency weeded out.

      Others state natives have a tendency to alcoholism as their culture was destroyed. But I hold to the former view. Places like Gallup New Mexico the place was literally filled with poor alcoholics dying usually in winter due to neglect. A place situated within Indian/native reservation, Navajo/Dine.
      Now steps are taken by local and tribal aims to remedy that a bit.
      The theory would presuppose Europe on the first introduction of alcohol to its population way way back in the day would be like Gallup. Seeing dead frozen peoples around lying in the streets initially due to freezing to death in a alcohol stupor. Population considered amongst Europeans it presents but rarely. Amongst natives in America especially initially it was a commonly seen thing. It seems to be now abateing a bit which would speak to this evolutionary theory.

      But still random genetic mutation provides a base who will always become alcoholic. Circumstances may produce alcoholism but I suppose it is of a different source. Really native americans in remote places like rural New Mexico sheepherding and ranching perhaps are little subject to pressures which one would correlate with productive of alcoholism by circumstance. Inner city minority race and religion yes certainly circumstance produces alcoholism.

      For your consideration if you have interest.

      1. When I was younger, I drove through the Wounded Knee area, and encountered alcoholism and I am going to say that a lot of it is their culture was destroyed and their sense of hope and identity.

        I say it, because I live in a State where the Native Americans own casinos and are wealthy and have jobs and purpose and museums and teach about their culture and they are empowered and it is different here.

        Poor Native Americans also end up in prison more. I haven’t heard of any of the wealthy Natives being arrested and there hasn’t been any talk about addiction being pervasive in those communities.

        I think about things like the Crazy Horse Memorial. I remember meeting the person who was doing it and I went there before the face was done and there is something about having a proud sense of your own history and not feeling dehumanized and about having hope for jobs and about feeling wounded and persecuted and betrayed.

        Lately, they have been showing a lot of historical things on PBS where groups of people have been dehumanized one way or another and what I remember, as a Christian, was reading an article about Native American’s who identified themselves as Christian who were basically looked down on and rejected out of our towns and out of the churches.

        I remember that it was about 15 years ago and on Wikipedia, they were called, “so-called Christians” and I remember thinking as a Christian that whoever would point to someone and call them a “so called Christian” might make me point to them and call them “so-called Christians” but I would probably be pointing to myself as one type of hypocrite or another.

        I have been utterly devastated watching things on the black experience in America and on the Holocaust and on poverty versus wealth and I know that the Native Americans are one group of people who genuinely were devastated collectively in so many ways and similar to the black communities – particularly in the cities and poor communities, many of them still haven’t healed from it.

        I know that there must be genetics with depression, but I look even at diets of poor people and I know cities have an epidemic of things like Diabetes. I also look at things like how neurotransmitters and Neurotransmitter receptors are different in people who have come from abuse. That is not genetic. That is something that happens in response to environment.

        1. I read an article about how having casinos had affected the tribes and it gave the “before” statistics, including alcohol deaths, imprisonment, suicide, and poverty level and lack of education and said that after there was increasing jobs, revenue, health benefits, education and there was “substantial reductions in social pathologies such as domestic violence, crime and suicide rates.”

          They didn’t mention the alcohol part, but the alcohol deaths had dropped, whether it was medical care saving them or less alcoholism might be covered in a different article, but just having jobs and education and health care did change everything for those particular tribes.

          That is why I say it.

          And, yes, I know that wealthy people may even have more addiction than poor people. Hollywood and sports figures come to mind.

          Having productive lives and healthy mind-sets and a sense of hope and purpose is a protection, which I believe trumps genetics. So does diet.

          1. The Native Americans and alcohol is still more complicated than that though and it is fascinating really, because some tribes got rid of poverty altogether and some tribes had poverty increase with casinos and some have successful casinos without alcohol and some were considering selling pot and some are doing drug tests for alcohol and drugs.

            Someone with a mathematical mind could probably analyze it and learn about cause and effect statistics – alcoholism and poverty and wealth, which I suspect has some sort of a U curve.






            To balance substance abuse, violent crime and suicide going down in the successful situations, that doesn’t extend to the communities around casinos, in general, when a casino opens, the people who live in the area have the opposite effects. “According to a 2012 study of casino crime by University of Maryland researchers, there is a 10 percent increase in substance abuse, suicide, violent crime, theft and bankruptcy when a new casino opens in town. Other studies found 8 – 9 percent crime increases at a cost near $70 per year for every person living nearby.”

          2. Well that is the debate Deb. I contend there are two things that may lead to alcoholism circumstance and genetics.

            The science I provided suggests who tends to alcoholism is one who finds more in the way of stimulatory effect than depression in alcohol.
            As to native life I have native as the majority of my family membership and spent in the past extensive time on the reservation attending to family responsibility. Living out there at times. All my descendents are native or Asian composite. The majority firmly identify as native.

            As to casinos and this and that, I find the problems with substance abuse chiefly alcohol persist despite gainful employment. Two co workers I worked with back in the day were native and both were gainfully employed with families and appreciable income. Both died from alcoholic related issues shortly after they left employment with enough in the way of assets to support their families for the rest of their lives. Some others in the same identical circumstance completely evade that. So personal experience is but personal and can be thus disregarded but it was fact as well.
            If it was all lack of opportunity such things would not happen.
            And lack of opportunity seems variable. I know of many families that have sons and daughters brought up in the same place and same fashion and one becomes a alcoholic and one becomes a complete success. If it was a circumstantial thing only such would also not happen.I suggest that is the norm. Complete families with all as alcoholics I find very rare. Families without a singular alcoholic amongst them I also find rare.

            The reality of it is there is a way out for those on the reservation and the military is it usually. That option is available to virtually all who are of employment age and many pursue it. It takes a sacrifice leaving home and all that but it is available to most all.Casino employment on the larger reservations such as the Navajo and apache just do not provide enough in the way of employment to make a statistical difference.
            A living is made in the traditional style often which presents statistically as unemployed but really is just a different way of making of living. Running cattle and sheep and minor farming are those occupations. I would guess a large proportion of the population endeavors such ways of life which prior to the advent of the Europeans was the only way of living for them.They are in a sense not countable. It is statistically dirt poor but the statistics do not favor the counting of difference in ways of living. So that remains and the cultural genocide has not changed it. So why then do so many become alcoholic? Is it not availability when once that thing was not available?
            Seems so to me. Not to disregard urban natives which do have the circumstances which are indeed favoring circumstantial alcoholism, discrimination racism lack of opportunity and all the rest.

            Tribes such as Navajo do provide some jobs power plant operations irrigation farming projects and such but not enough to fill in the gaps. Certainly most want a American way of life now but I debate opportunity as sole cause of the alcohol problem. Would full employment stop that thing…I personally doubt it.
            My experience is only my experience but it speaks directly against that in the non urban environment considered.
            Some peoples devoid of circumstance even amongst Europeans become alcoholic. So how do we account for such variance if it is solely circumstantial?

            1. Aside all that casinos really only reflect native populations near to cities.
              Which in no manner represent those such as the Navajo/dine which is the largest tribe in America. Most all on the reservations are far from cities and major thoroughfares. Shiprock the heart of the navajo reservation and their governmental center for many operations is for all intents and purposes in the middle of no where. Gallup is the nearest town and I40 the nearest thoroughfare but those are a good distance from
              shiprock and Gallup itself is a town not a city. All the miles between shiprock and gallup and for around a hundred miles around are inhabited however. Usually in part by those pursuing a native style of making a living. In part by those who commute. Some parts of the Navajo reservation are so remote as to become completely impassable with snows and mud during winter.

              1. Ron, yes, that is the debate and that is the population to do it with.

                I say it, because there is at least one tribe, which eradicated poverty and some, whose statistics on alcoholic deaths decreased and some whose poverty increased for the bulk of the tribe, while leadership got wealthier. There are some doing drug and alcohol testing and some selling alcohol and some considering pot.

                I see it as the whole of the experience of the Native Americans as the place to send the statisticians.

                The effect of community leadership will be my question, because one eradicated poverty and some made their own people poorer and some educated them and gave them health care and gainful employment, etc.

                Violence and suicide and alcohol deaths in some of the tribes decreased tells me that having gainful employment helps somewhat and many of the neighborhoods around the casinos those exact same things got worse, tells me that poverty is a factor.

                Genuinely, it might be more about leadership than anything. Parental leadership, governing leadership. The decisions people make in how they eat and drink and raise their children.

                It just seems like the answers to these age-old questions are in those communities.

                The question is how to get someone to make some studies out of it.

                1. They have some tribes, which increased education and health care and some didn’t.

                  They have maybe all of the tribes improved gainful employment, but some tribes had the overall poverty level of the tribe decrease.

                  They could isolate so many variables within these tribes. Money versus education versus health care versus addiction. Genetics, might be able to be examined, too, because they can test the people who have addictions versus those who don’t have addictions and they can test gainful employment versus those who are employed with a sense of responsibility and respect. It is all there.

                  It is extraordinary in my eyes, because these are all things the experts have argued about and the answers are right there.

                  1. It is even more extraordinary, because there are tribes, which don’t have the economy bump of casinos at all and some tribes who aren’t being recognized by our government (identity)

                    Plus, incarcerated parent and fatherlessness, which is also always discussed.

                    Crime rates dropping versus increasing in the community is already powerful information.

                    Crime comes with information which is already in computers.

                    I feel like every debate I have ever heard on these topics is right there between all of these tribes just waiting for a researcher and money for a study.

                    1. They may even have drinking out of hopelessness versus drinking out of stimulation and the effects on crime and suicide and homicide.

                      Seems like they have before and after the casino on both the Native American community side and the community surrounding its side.

                    2. Is it that it will go good for a while, then, maybe a King Arthur’s Knights of the round table or King David with Nathsheba in the season when the Kings go out to war phenomenon.

                    3. It has a lot of variables which confound good study however Deb.
                      As mentioned unemployment may not really be unemployment but a sort of American statistic unemployment. The people doing things and making products but with little monied income. Statistically it rates as not employed dropped out of the work force.
                      And there exist significant differences in conditions the various tribes function under. In Alaska per example they have not the reservation tribal ownership the lower 48 have but a special arrangement decided upon in the sixties. And as to culture some of the northeastern tribes have patriarchs while the Navajo and apache have a matriarchs. And the urban environment is completely different from the reservation environment. Which probably replicates more closely the black environment.
                      So it is difficult to come up with consistent findings that apply to all derived from things of a uniform nature.

                      Some tribes are well off due to various things. A Northeastern tribe I think does well, some in various places like Oklahoma due to oil revenue and this and that, casinos as you mention . Most of course do not. I think of one casino run by apache between a small town in New Mexico, Cuba and another Farmington, in of course the middle of no where. Not even in a town. A sad affair a building but not many in it.
                      But at least they give it a go.

                      Natives are little mentioned ever. Always America is described as a great land of immigrants..not really. And even the right to vote was not present in local elections in Arizona and New Mexico till just before 1950. Despite Navajo and others helping in the war effort.
                      A football team is still called by a native racial slur name…..
                      Canada I think has a similar history.
                      Colonialism sucks plainly.

        2. Deb, I didn’t read through all the comments, but I just thought I’d recommend a book I love, “Indian Nations of North America.” It’s a great book on some of the Native American History. It just came to mind reading some of this and thought you might enjoy it.

      2. Thanks Ron. Aboriginal Australians also have a reputation for being prone to alcoholism.

        Whether this stems from a lack of genetic adaptations to alcohol consumption (like aboriginal Americans, their culture had never known alcohol) or social deprivation I don’t know.

        On the other hand, there is some `suggestive evidence that alcohol has been part of the diet since even before we became fully human,
        “your body’s ability to break down the ethanol that makes you tipsy, dates back about 10 million years, researchers have discovered. The new finding not only helps shed light on the behavior of our primate ancestors, but also might explain why alcoholism—or even the craving for a single drink—exists in the first place.”

        1. Yes Tom it is subject to debate as the science is inconclusive.
          Did not know that about the ancestral rootings of alcohol, thanks for providing that.
          I versed to deb the reason why I personally favor genetic tendency as being cause but it is just personal opinion based on personal experience coupled with existant theory.
          That those who favor the tendency towards alcoholism also derive a inordinate proportional effect from the stimulatory side of alcohol is by my read factually based on scientific study. Not conclusively proven but a probable.
          Most think of alcohol as only being depressive which it certainly is not. Study has proven that.
          Like amphetamine it has variable result depending upon dose and personal physiology and perhaps psychology.
          Its depressive effect predominate at high doseage. Motor impairment is present at any dose but that is separate to a extent from depressive effect.

          Drunken people tend to get into accidents not only because their motor impairment is deficient but also because they tend to do things like drive at high rates of speed and other excess.
          Those behaviors are likely tied into alcohols stimulatory effect upon the psyche. Though motor impairment itself may cause accident.

  25. Another suberb myth busting video from Dr Greger. Unfortunately like so many proponents of the plant based diet, he had to inject a caustic comment about AGW skepticism. By conflating the profit driven motives of the scurrilous food and beverage industry with non profit organizations that dare to challenge the catostrophic predictions of CO2 emissions, well meaning health advocates only undermine their mission.

    Scientists in the AGW camp go to great lengths to conceal intricate details of their research. In real science you invite your peers to challenge your conclusions, not threaten to get them fired and throw them in jail. But their is a David and Goliath parallel in the two fields. The vast majority of climate science is financed by agenda driven governments and corporations with an insatiable appetitie for money and power. Sound familiar? As we have observed in human health research, never underestimate the corrupting influence of human greed.

    1. What having no success with trolling on the weather underground today? AGW is a proven scientifically with in excess of 97% of the science and scientists who have climate science as speciality supporting it.
      You may indeed find some meteorologists who are not climate scientists who support your absurd view.
      But even they are in vast minority status within their community.

      I suggest you may be more successful in discussion of the issue with the weather underground. You will be completely refuted in a matter of minutes by scientific rational and study by real authority In the matter .
      Easy target here I suppose you guess..nutritionists.
      Yes I guess so…but what served then in that?

      1. Here is a clue…Your side lost the battle for rational discourse of this thing AGW about five or so years ago. That is when the tide turned definitively.

        You now are that Japanese soldier found in a remote inaccessible pacific island fighting still for the emperor in world war2 but this being 1950.
        Everyone now knows it is real, the question is what to do about it and what are to be the affects to each of us individually locally and nationally.

        So waste time please on the weather underground. They have peoples who love to refute that idiocy and are quite capeable and current with it.

        1. Here Japanese soldier stuck on your island not knowing that the war was over ten years after it is a letter from the emperor saying to cease and desist it is over…

          Exon Mobile from their own site a statement on the reality of human produced global warming and the steps and considerations we must make to combat it….

          A discussion years ago on this same medium internet in regards to second hand smoke finally completely desisted when Altria/Phillip Morrris produced a statement on their own website admitting to the dangers of second hand smoke.

          So here is that admission from Exon Mobile produced.
          Now go gently away into the night and don’t let the door hit you on the backside when you leave.

          1. From the article on exon mobiles site the lead….”We have the same concerns as people everywhere – and that is how to provide the world with the energy it needs while reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

            The emperor conceded defeat. Time to go back to the mainland and get on with life.
            The question is what is the consequence and how do we best devolve it.

            1. So MIT Professor Emeritus of Meteorology Richard Lindzen is a troglodyte? And there are many others I could cite. If the science is so settled then why have so many climate models and predictions have been completely wrong. Why does NASA and leading scientists refuse to release their body of research and fight FOIA requests? Why did the bogus Al Gore hockey stick chart remain unchallenged even though it eliminated the medieval warming period when there were Nordic settlements in Greenland? The corruption was laid bare in the hacked East Anglia emails. When governments and tycoons stand to rake in trillions of dollars, nothing will stand in there way.

              Unfortunately due to the complexity of climatology, you can not perform a double blind placebo study in climate studies so you can propose any hypothesis you want to achieve your objectives. And then concoct some computer models which will never be held to account.

              1. Trot out any of the 3% who don’t believe in it.
                Unfortunately everyone else is admitting it… scientists with credible credentials backed big tobacco up until the very end around 1970 or so.
                But then the tobacco companies themselves started to admit to it.
                Shell oil on their climate change position.

                1. A copy of the lead in to their statement linked….”Our advocacy
                  We have recognised the importance of the climate challenge for a long time now, and we share our knowledge, experience and understanding of the energy system with policymakers.
                  Government policy should provide incentives for investment, balancing environmental objectives and economic growth, encouraging a range of solutions that include oil, gas and renewables. Meaningful government-led carbon pricing mechanisms are also needed, along with carbon capture and storage (CCS), if society is to achieve its climate goals.

                  Sound like denial does it? Not on your life it does, admits it in black and white.

                  1. The lead in to Chevrons statement on climate change…
                    Chevron shares the concerns of governments and the public about climate change and believes that encouraging practical, cost-effective actions to address climate change risks while promoting economic growth is the right thing to do.

                    Doesn’t say a thing about denial does it?
                    How many statements of admission can I produce…well how many multinational oil companies are there…that is how many.

                    1. Conoco Phillips lead in statement on climate change..”We recognize that human activity, including the burning of fossil fuels, is contributing to increased concentrations of greenhouse gases (GHGs) in the atmosphere that can lead to adverse changes in global climate. While uncertainties remain, we continue to manage GHG emissions in our operations and to integrate climate change-related activities and goals into our business planning.”

                      Miss the denial part of this as well. And on and on and on…..which leaves the deniers with basically not a leg to stand on….big oil uniformly now admits to it.

              2. To add do know that meteorology is not climate science and they are two very differing disciplines?
                One studies long term trend and one short term in prediction of weather on a local affect basis.
                A meteorologists opinion on climate change is about as relevant to the issue of climate change as a geologists. Predicting the weather with a local short term focus limited at the furthest extend to a year or so, has not a thing to do with climate change science.

                1. I think that VK would find a more receptive audience among the self-styled cholesterol and saturated fat “sceptics”. Those people consistently deny what the totality of the science shows and come up far-fetched to conspiracy theories to explain why the science delivers the findings it does. They sound like brothers-in-arms. Or soul-sisters perhaps.

  26. How about the emotional and spiritual benefits that literally billions of people have found from alcohol over millenia?

    People have been drinking wine and beer for thousands of years, not to avoid heart attacks, but to feel better. Life is hard.

    Seneca, writing in 49 AD: “Drink washes care away, stirs the mind from its lower depths, and is a specific for sadness as for specific maladies.”

    The negative avoidance of disease should not be our only goal of health. We should also seek the positive – and that includes serenity, even relief.

    1. How about it?
      As long as one admits to the physical potential harm they may make a educated decision on use or nonuse.
      It is after all a personal decision to drink or not. What is important is that peoples are educated to it and not to any misinformation.
      Dr Greger provides that education. Corporation sponsorship and corporately related science tends to deny that at times.

      None I feel certain in Dr Gregers office is calling for prohibition of alcohol.
      Personally I do not indulge. but see little harm in a occasional social drink with friends or loved ones as a adult and able to make informed consensual use decisions.
      If one has a good healthy diet a little drink is overweighed by the good to my personal opinion. Excess of course tips the balance to the inverse.

      It is necessary that we know the reality of it.

    2. PJK, I agree with you to an extent. But I think we should be able to do this without RELYING on alcohol or other substances. Sometimes I think a drink or two can be mentally healthy, but other times I see people overdoing it to feel good in the moment and then later being depressed and then going back to get drunk the next weekend and then becoming depressed or moody the next day and so on. I also have seen people actually avoid emotions and spirituality by drinking instead of dealing with them. On the other hand, I’ve also seen people open up emotionally. I think it’s a matter of balance. Abstinence is cool and so is having an occasional drink if you’re not an alcoholic and that’s what you like, but when you HAVE to binge drink to have a good time or open up, I don’t see that as spiritually or emotionally healthy in the long term. All that being said, totally agree… life is more than just about health, it’s about something much deeper and being less than “perfect” and living a little can in and of itself have health benefits imo.

  27. Science by polling? To be expected when the response to basic process questions are comprised of insults. I will concede, however that 97% of the research funding has been provided by agenda driven organizations.

    Oil Companies are now climate experts? Hardly. A logical business decision when a crazy Justice system allows fanatics to take you to court for selling a product that has been on the market for over a century.

  28. So you continue… what aim? None buy this anymore.
    There is no science by polling. There is science produced by scientists in the field of climate(not metorologists) which all arrives at the same conclusion. And no the science is not all produced by one particular group or another. NASA is one of the major fielders of science on this thing and none of their results are secret. The science is usually the product, each study, of multiple parties. And virtually all the science is by groups who are under the constraints of public information requirements. Each study and model produced has the sponsors listed first in the documents produced. And virtually all are sponsors which have credibility in academia and the specific of climate change.

    Oil companies have a necessity to sponsor and employ climate scientists as they have to plan and prepare for the future, that is part of the business. How high rigs are built in deep water due to anticipated sea level rise, what avenues of shipping are available, what areas will be free of ice to enable drilling, what modifications are necessary to pipelines in devolving permafrost areas, what requirements will likely present as per remediation of carbon, what will be oil demand in a changing climate…. all these and more are required things to be anticipated to preserve value of their company and the shareholders stock.
    If they did not plan and employ climate scientists they would be malfeasant and derelict in their duty to shareholders and could indeed be subject to litigation in that regard.
    Yes they know as they have to know to protect value. They are required by law to protect value in any publically held corporation. And all the multinationals are publically held corporations.
    They can and will be sued….. virtually any corporation that does not plan and prepare for the future in their respective fields. It is as common as peanut butter and jelly.
    So they must and do. When they cover up research as appears has happened with exon mobile is when governments get involved and sue.Not for production of product but for concealment of research. Like big tobacco in days past.

  29. So this puts to rest that story that a glass of red wine is “good for you”. I never believed it anyway but I haven’t so much as sniffed a wine cork in over 40 years. Now to find out what these Mendelian Randomized Control Studies are all about…….never hear of these kind of studies before.

    1. So, basically, Dr. Greger on his treadmill is working on his Krebs Cycle?

      I watched a video where a woman said that Krebs Cycle doesn’t happen without exercise?

      Laughing, I will catch up in a few years.

      1. Is there no Krebs Cycle for the sedentary?

        So how do nuts increase metabolism? I wonder.

        (Yes, I am walking, but my dog stops a lot, so I am thinking I might be doing more like golf.)

  30. I was doing the “enzymes” music video and that talked about environmental toxins change the shapes of substrates so enzymes can’t break them down and it talked about enzymes being very sensitive to PH and that fevers cause them to break down and things like that.

    I started looking it up related to alcohol and found things like how alcohol affects the blood PH and how alcohol affects enzymes and how enzyme malfunctions affect people so that they become alcoholics. There were also articles where alcohol could cause allergies and hurt food digestion.

    The last article has “Alcohol kills brain cells” in it and I have a very dear painter who works on my house who is an alcoholic and whom everybody points out that the alcohol destroyed his brain cells and it is visible. So how does the cognitive study work if alcohol is destroying brain cells at the same time? A mystery.

    1. This one adds “brain shrinkage” from alcohol and say their data doesn’t support improved cognitive ability.

      Newer studies say that even moderate drinking damages the brain, contradicting the studies of cognitive benefit.

      Back to the Brain Enzymes, and low Neurotransmitters contributing to addiction, not enough B12 may also contribute to becoming addicts or at least producing addiction in our children:

      I am still pondering that Bill W said that mega doses of B3 seriously helped people getting off of alcohol. I looked it up and alcohol increases homocysteine levels and decreases B vitamins.

      I didn’t find the study, but several sites said that Vitamin B deficiency could cause increased cravings for alcohol and that giving B vitamins could lower cravings.

      Thinking about the Native Americans and poverty – it would be a great population to try WFPB as a diet to decrease alcohol cravings and heal the brain enzymes and neurotransmitters and gut/brain connection.

      They could also probably look at vegan addicts and see if they forgot to supplement B12 and things like that.

      I remember Bill W. saying that one rehab, which used the megadoses of B3 had a 82% success rate of recovery. He seemed to really be into having the alcoholics studied, until other people in AA leadership came against him.

      Omega 3 is the other thing, which they said they had studies about helping reduce alcohol cravings.

      But the alternative diet link interests me.

      I would like the next WFPB movie to have addicts who ate the right fruits and vegetables and nuts and carbs and got their blood sugar under control and suddenly stopped craving alcohol.

      I would like it even better if it was a group like Native Americans, where they could genuinely figure things out to help those populations.

    2. To be fair Deb, painters are recognied at being of increased risk of brain damage because of all the chemicals used in paint manufacture – sometimes called painters disease or chronic painter’s syndrome. The alcohol may not be the only source of his cognitive problems.

      1. Tom, I believe that.

        One day he painted with Kilz and 24 hours later, I couldn’t be in my house without all the windows being open.

        It burned my eyes worse than accidentally touching my eyes with onions.

        He is a kind-hearted person with brain problems and addiction problems, but I genuinely teared up that he spent days doing that process for my house. In it all day long and he had a just as sweet apprentice and I thought about mad hatters. People sacrifice their lives for things like putting chicken on people’s plates or painting and people treat them as if they are less than and my painter told me that we are family now and I know his life is hard might be why he drinks.

        1. Working construction job sites as a kid year ago it was well known amongst the rest of us….. of all the contractors painters were the wild ones.
          Always wondered why:)

  31. I have been a moderate to heavy drinker for the last fifty years. With these findings, I hope it is never too late to stop. When a toxin like alocohol is removed , can the human body over a period of time repair some of the damage?Just another lifestyle change, l guess. Time for a hibiscus and green tea on the rocks.

  32. …and the cigarette industry continues to pay doctors to dispute the 7000 clinical studies showing a clear link between smoking and premature death. and the roundness of the earth is still being disputed by the flat-earthers. Do these indicate real controversy? No.

    This article was merely an opinion paper, that was not subject to typical internal peer review and there does not appear to be any requirement to list conflict of interest which is required in other major medical journals that exercise internal peer review. In short, there is a high risk of bias in this paper which represents low quality evidence. Alcohol is a known addictive carcinogen. Why take the risk by consuming it when you can simply avoid it and consume beneficial things (like blueberries) that have no known risks?

    Dr. Ben

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