Flashback Friday: Is Organic Meat Less Carcinogenic?

Flashback Friday: Is Organic Meat Less Carcinogenic?
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Researchers tested 76 samples of different kinds of meat, both organic and conventional, for 33 different carcinogens.

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

This study, on “the carcinogenic risk associated with the intake of” various meats, estimated the risk was so great that we may not want to feed beef, pork, or chicken to kids more than like five times a month. This was in Europe, where lamb contamination is a particular problem. In the United States, if there was any standout, it would be chicken and PBDEs (flame-retardant chemicals)—not only compared to other meats, but other countries. U.S. chickens are like 10-20 times more contaminated than the samples taken from other countries that have been tested—though diet is not the only source of exposure, as those eating vegetarian have only about 25% lower levels in their bloodstream than those eating meat, though a large proportion of the levels in omnivores may be from chicken.

For other chemicals, diet may play a larger role. Studies of the “pollutants in [the] breast milk of vegetarians” dating back over 30 years have found the average vegetarian levels of some pollutants were “only 1 to 2 per cent as high as the [national] average.” In fact, for the six out of seven pollutants they looked at, there wasn’t even overlap in the range of scores; “the highest vegetarian value was lower than the lowest value obtained in the [general population].” This is presumed to be because these pollutants concentrate up the food chain. So, by eating lots from all the way down the food chain—plants—those eating vegetarian may “have an edge.”

For example, dioxins. “Meat, fish, and dairy are believed to contribute almost all of the dioxin body [exposure].” And, indeed, if you look at those eating strictly plant-based diets, they may only have about a third of the levels of dioxins and PCBs, or even less than a fifth, circulating throughout their bodies.

This study really struck me. “India has been facing a major problem of treating its [millions of pounds of electronic] waste” every year. And, these poor workers at these electronic waste recycling plants can be exposed to high levels of toxic chemicals, ending up with this kind of concentration of PCBs in their bloodstream—nearly twice as high as those living about 250 miles away along the coast. But these were non-vegetarian workers at the waste plant. The PCB levels of the vegetarians working at the same plant was even lower.

The problem with these cross-sectional studies is that we can’t single out the diet. Maybe vegetarians have other lifestyle behaviors that protect them. You don’t know until you put it to the test. Change people’s diets and see what happens.

That’s hard to do with persistent pollutants like PCBs, which may take literally decades to detoxify from the body. But, we can get rid of heavy metals, like mercury, in a matter of months. And, indeed, within three months of “the exclusion of meat, poultry, fish and eggs” from their diets, there was a significant drop in the levels of toxic heavy metals in their bodies, including mercury, cadmium, and lead.” Up to about a 30% drop within three months.

What if we just stick to organic meat? Certified organic meat comes from” livestock [that are] fed with organically produced feed that is free of pesticides and animal by-products,” by law. Therefore, one would assume “that there should be [a] lower accumulation of chemical residues.” However, on a practical level, there were simply “no studies on the chemical residues’ content in organic meat”—until, now.

Researchers “acquired 76 samples of [different kinds of] meat, both organic and conventional, and “quantified their levels of contamination with 33 different carcinogenic [persistent organic pollutants].”

After all, “the ingestion of food contributes more than 90% to the total current exposure to these compounds, especially…food [of] animal origin.” “On the other hand, an increasing number of consumers” are choosing organic. In fact, “organic food production increased by 50% during the last decade.” So, are consumers of organic meat protected, or not?

Well, “no sample was completely free of carcinogenic contaminants,” which is to be expected, given how polluted our world is these days. But, what was surprising was that “the differences between organically and conventionally produced meats were minimal.” Furthermore, “the current pattern of meat consumption exceeded the maximum limits” either way.

“Strikingly, the consumption of organically produced meat [not only] does not appear to diminish this carcinogenic risk,” but was sometimes found to “be even higher.” Bottom line, sadly, is that the “[c]onsumption of organic meat does not diminish the carcinogenic potential associated with the intake of [these pollutants].”

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image credit: Ralph Aichinger 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.

This study, on “the carcinogenic risk associated with the intake of” various meats, estimated the risk was so great that we may not want to feed beef, pork, or chicken to kids more than like five times a month. This was in Europe, where lamb contamination is a particular problem. In the United States, if there was any standout, it would be chicken and PBDEs (flame-retardant chemicals)—not only compared to other meats, but other countries. U.S. chickens are like 10-20 times more contaminated than the samples taken from other countries that have been tested—though diet is not the only source of exposure, as those eating vegetarian have only about 25% lower levels in their bloodstream than those eating meat, though a large proportion of the levels in omnivores may be from chicken.

For other chemicals, diet may play a larger role. Studies of the “pollutants in [the] breast milk of vegetarians” dating back over 30 years have found the average vegetarian levels of some pollutants were “only 1 to 2 per cent as high as the [national] average.” In fact, for the six out of seven pollutants they looked at, there wasn’t even overlap in the range of scores; “the highest vegetarian value was lower than the lowest value obtained in the [general population].” This is presumed to be because these pollutants concentrate up the food chain. So, by eating lots from all the way down the food chain—plants—those eating vegetarian may “have an edge.”

For example, dioxins. “Meat, fish, and dairy are believed to contribute almost all of the dioxin body [exposure].” And, indeed, if you look at those eating strictly plant-based diets, they may only have about a third of the levels of dioxins and PCBs, or even less than a fifth, circulating throughout their bodies.

This study really struck me. “India has been facing a major problem of treating its [millions of pounds of electronic] waste” every year. And, these poor workers at these electronic waste recycling plants can be exposed to high levels of toxic chemicals, ending up with this kind of concentration of PCBs in their bloodstream—nearly twice as high as those living about 250 miles away along the coast. But these were non-vegetarian workers at the waste plant. The PCB levels of the vegetarians working at the same plant was even lower.

The problem with these cross-sectional studies is that we can’t single out the diet. Maybe vegetarians have other lifestyle behaviors that protect them. You don’t know until you put it to the test. Change people’s diets and see what happens.

That’s hard to do with persistent pollutants like PCBs, which may take literally decades to detoxify from the body. But, we can get rid of heavy metals, like mercury, in a matter of months. And, indeed, within three months of “the exclusion of meat, poultry, fish and eggs” from their diets, there was a significant drop in the levels of toxic heavy metals in their bodies, including mercury, cadmium, and lead.” Up to about a 30% drop within three months.

What if we just stick to organic meat? Certified organic meat comes from” livestock [that are] fed with organically produced feed that is free of pesticides and animal by-products,” by law. Therefore, one would assume “that there should be [a] lower accumulation of chemical residues.” However, on a practical level, there were simply “no studies on the chemical residues’ content in organic meat”—until, now.

Researchers “acquired 76 samples of [different kinds of] meat, both organic and conventional, and “quantified their levels of contamination with 33 different carcinogenic [persistent organic pollutants].”

After all, “the ingestion of food contributes more than 90% to the total current exposure to these compounds, especially…food [of] animal origin.” “On the other hand, an increasing number of consumers” are choosing organic. In fact, “organic food production increased by 50% during the last decade.” So, are consumers of organic meat protected, or not?

Well, “no sample was completely free of carcinogenic contaminants,” which is to be expected, given how polluted our world is these days. But, what was surprising was that “the differences between organically and conventionally produced meats were minimal.” Furthermore, “the current pattern of meat consumption exceeded the maximum limits” either way.

“Strikingly, the consumption of organically produced meat [not only] does not appear to diminish this carcinogenic risk,” but was sometimes found to “be even higher.” Bottom line, sadly, is that the “[c]onsumption of organic meat does not diminish the carcinogenic potential associated with the intake of [these pollutants].”

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image credit: Ralph Aichinger via flickr. Image has been modified.

Motion graphics by Avocado Video.

Doctor's Note

There are also Carcinogens in Meat that are created during cooking. I also did one about the heavy metals issue: How to Lower Heavy Metal Levels with Diet.

What about organic versus conventional produce? Check out:

If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here. And remember, captions for all videos are available in several languages. To find yours, click on the settings wheel on the lower-right of the video and then “Subtitles/CC.” 

The original video aired on July 6th 2018.

107 responses to “Flashback Friday: Is Organic Meat Less Carcinogenic?

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  1. Off topic post.

    Given the discussions we’ve had previously about the ‘flu vaccine. I thought it might be useful to quote this Alzheimer’s Association press release. It is thought=provoking

    ‘Three research studies reported at AAIC 2020 suggest:

    At least one flu vaccination was associated with a 17% reduction in Alzheimer’s incidence. More frequent flu vaccination was associated with another 13% reduction in Alzheimer’s incidence.
    Vaccination against pneumonia between ages 65 and 75 reduced Alzheimer’s risk by up to 40% depending on individual genes.
    Individuals with dementia have a higher risk of dying (6-fold) after infections than those without dementia (3-fold).
    “With the COVID-19 pandemic, vaccines are at the forefront of public health discussions. It is important to explore their benefit in not only protecting against viral or bacterial infection but also improving long-term health outcomes,” said Maria C. Carrillo, Ph.D., Alzheimer’s Association chief science officer.

    “It may turn out to be as simple as if you’re taking care of your health in this way — getting vaccinated — you’re also taking care of yourself in other ways, and these things add up to lower risk of Alzheimer’s and other dementias,” Carrillo said. “This research, while early, calls for further studies in large, diverse clinical trials to inform whether vaccinations as a public health strategy decrease our risk for developing dementia as we age.”’
    https://www.alz.org/aaic/releases_2020/vaccines-dementia-risk.asp

    1. Tom,

      That is interesting.

      They don’t know whether there is a mechanism, such as decreasing inflammation, or whether people with stronger brains choose to get vaccinated more often.

      I looked at it and they also said that getting flu shots after you already have brain problems is perhaps even more important because when people who have dementia end up hospitalized with an infection, they have a 6 times higher risk of dying and that risk of dying remains that much higher for ten years.

      1. Barb,

        Yes, I had been reading that about the flu.

        That is such good news.

        China just vaccinated 100,000 people with their covid vaccine but I don’t even understand how they are going to figure out if it works because they have barely had any cases since the beginning.

        Masks have been compared to vaccines in effectiveness but dictators work more effectively than masks or vaccines.

        1. ‘China just vaccinated 100,000 people with their covid vaccine but I don’t even understand how they are going to figure out if it works because they have barely had any cases since the beginning.’

          Perhaps it is primarily a safety trial then? That said, China is still getting new cases reported …… especially as a result of people returning to China from abroad.
          https://www.todayonline.com/world/chinas-new-covid-19-cases-rise-infections-abroad

    2. I’m sure this was covered in the study, but I wonder if body temperature has any role.

      If you get vaccinated, and thereby get the flu less often (assuming you don’t die), then you have a higher chance of having had more frequent episodes of high body temperature. Can this be cumulative?

      The effects of high body temperature on the brain could perhaps influence onset of later dimentia and alzheimers perhaps.

      This would mean it isn’t the vaccine helping, but rather the fact that ones temperature was more stable thought ones life, and it may be that there are ways to stabilize ones temperature without shooting ones self with, well you know…stuff.

      Admittedly its easier to administer than is information itself, like its easier to take a vitamin pill than to get vitamins into your system through whole foods, but there may also be stuff in those largely unregulated OTC pills apparently.

      Just some thoughts, I haven’t researched it.

      My question too is will vaccines help my spelling because this post was a doozy there…(typing fast)

      1. jazzBand,

        I don’t know quite what you mean by episodes of high body temperatures: do hot flashes count? Those came roaring back for me, after treatment for breast cancer. I was already a supflasher from earlier, having had an extended period (10+ years of them), and was pleased to have them gone — and none to pleased to have them return. Could this be a reason why women live longer than men? (Just kidding)

    3. Mr. Fumblefingers,

      In looking through the url you posted:

      https://www.alz.org/aaic/releases_2020/vaccines-dementia-risk.asp

      No causal links are stated. Just associations – with no apparent attempt to deal with even one of many many many possible confounding factors present.

      These are the sort of presentations or press releases that could have just as easily started with the intended conclusion – and just piled on carefully selected supporting materials to bolster whatever conclusion the presenter or reporter wishes to attain.

      As far as actual science is concerned – this conference report is of papers that are an intermediary step – between idea – brought about by seeing associations – and the actual proof of multiple controlled double-blind experimental studies.

      In other words – we are reading a report of sausage being made. Not of the finished product.

      Clinically – there is no there there.

      This is clear. Reading the report we see – and I quote:

      “It is important to explore . . .”

      “It may turn out to be . . .”

      . . . calls for further studies . . . ”

      “previous research has suggested vaccinations may have a protective factor . . .”

      ” . . . was associated with . . . ”

      “Our study suggests . . .”

      “. . . was also associated with a lower risk . . . ”

      “Vaccinations against pneumonia before age 75 may reduce Alzheimer’s risk . . . ”

      “Our study supports the need to investigate these relations even further . . .”

      ——————————————

      Again – at this time – clinically –

      There is no there there.

      Mr. Fumblefingers.

      All the best –

      Vivamus

      1. Yes, thanks Viv.

        These are just association studies and therefore don’t prove causation. It’s possible for example that people with preclinical Alzheimer’s or other dementias are simply less likely to get vaccinated because they are more forgetful.

        Nevertheless,there are a number of studies pointing in the same direction which suggests that further investigation is warranted.

        Make of it what you will.

        However, given the very minor risks associated with flu and pneumonia vaccines and the range of benefits that have been demonstrated, this is information that people may find useful. I personally do although I don’t think that flu and pneumonia vaccines are easily available in my neck of the woods.

  2. Well… This was a press release about a report presented at an AAIC meeting (this year, I guess).

    I can’t imagine this was a randomized, double blind, placebo controlled study – for obvious reasons. Of course, it begs the question (not answered in the release): what was the experimental protocol for determining this difference?

    Did they simply get medical histories of a cross section of an aging population and noticed that many more of those with higher Alzheimer’s incidence had been inoculated with fewer annual flu and pneumonia vaccines than the non-Alzheimer’s group?

    I’m a skeptic until I know more…

    1. dr cobalt,

      There were two studies represented in Tom’s paragraphs.

      The first one was a med student from the University of Texas Health Science Center who analyzed a large US national dataset. It should be fairly straightforward in whether people got vaccinated or not and whether people were diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or not. It is possible that people with brain problems from Alzheimer’s might choose not to get vaccinated versus getting vaccinated preventing Alzheimer’s.

      The second study was a researcher from Duke University Social Science Research Institute who investigated associations between pneumonia vaccination, with and without a seasonal flu shot, and the risk of Alzheimer’s disease among 5,146 participants age 65+ from the Cardiovascular Health Study. The pneumonia vaccination reduced the risk of developing Alzheimer’s by 25-30%.

      But there have been previous studies suggesting that vaccinations may have a protective factor against cognitive decline.

      And, if it doesn’t prevent cognitive problems, the third study was from Denmark where 1,496,436 people were in the dataset where they examined mortality rates of people with dementia being hospitalized infections. Being hospitalized for infections increased the mortality risk in people with dementia by 6 times and that risk remained higher for 10 years.

      Not proof but all three of the recent studies point in the same direction and other smaller studies have also pointed in that same direction.

        1. I didn’t mean the proof.

          The part that I was talking about was that the information was in a dataset versus them looking for people with brain problems and synthesizing that it was Alzheimers and asking their family members to remember if they had a flu shot.

          1. We watch a lot of Cohort studies where it is people answering questions about how many servings of everything they eat in a day and that is not dependable at all.

            The part that I find comparably more straight forward is that there would be diagnoses and doctors records versus, ”I eat 5 serviNgs of vegetables most days, we’ll maybe not today or yesterday and next week is a holiday and the weekends are ’free’ and work ran over time last week, so……”

            To me, that is probably what most other cohort studies are really like.

            Hard to figure how they make it quite as willy-nilly when the markers are vacinnes, medical diagnoses, and mortality.

      1. Deb,

        I think the issue for me is that it was a press release from a presentation at a conference, not an actual study. Here’s what they did post (in brief):

        Method 1 We used the Cerner Health Fact EHR dataset and excluded patients less than 60 years of age
        and included patients with ICD9 code ‘331.0’, i.e. Alzheimer’s disease. From this population, we
        constructed a cohort (N=311,424) for statistical analysis. etc.

        This was a demographic, cohort study based on a dataset (historical medical records?)

        Method 2 We investigated associations between pneumococcal vaccine, with and without an
        accompanying flu shot, and the risk of AD among 5,146 elderly participants (65+) of the Cardiovascular
        Health Study, etc.

        This was presumably another cohort study. It doesn’t say “how” they reached their analytical conclusions, because the PR does not get that specific.

        Method 3 We conducted a nationwide registry-based prospective cohort study using data from Danish
        national registries. etc.

        Another cohort study. They seem to be looking at historical medical records and analyzing patterns in the data. This is all useful, but it doesn’t show a clear cause/effect relationship in my mind.

        From Wikipedia: Examples. An example of an epidemiological question that can be answered using a cohort study is whether exposure to X (say, smoking) associates with outcome Y (say, lung cancer). … Such studies typically follow two groups of patients for a period of time and compare an endpoint or outcome measure between the two groups.

        I think this is similar to abductive reasoning: trying to figure out the best answer to a question when you have only results to study. For example. if you visit your doctor with sniffles, stuffy nose, sore throat, achy, yucky feeling… he may look at a calendar on the wall, see it’s January, and tell you to go home because you have the flu. But how does he “know” that it’s the flu? Maybe it’s some other source. Abductive reasoning only gives you the “best” answer you can make now to a question under investigation. You don’t have 100% certitude.

        It’s ok if you disagree, Deb. We can both disagree and still get to heaven. =]

  3. Back to Dr. Greger’s video:

    The last line is a doozie.

    “Strikingly, the consumption of organically produced meat [not only] does not appear to diminish this carcinogenic risk,” but was sometimes found to “be even higher.”

    I want to understand the mechanism for that. How could the risk by higher? What are the organic farmers using?

    1. Why you want to know, you are supposed to be a veg*an ;)
      Jokes aside, can we take it as calling bullshit on the “organic” industry and just eat conventionally made produce and meats?

      1. Laughing.

        I am pretty much a vegan. I have kept the “ish” in case I use a honey bandage or beeswax moisture barrier or eat a piece of birthday cake at a party someday.

        But I have only even met one vegan in my whole life and I will have way more conversations about organic meat than about Plant-based meals in my lifetime.

      2. Nicola, oh, no, no! Eating organic fruits and vegetables instead of conventional is far better. Imbibing herbicides and pesticides is not exactly healthy. And wfpb people eat a lot more of those making it even more important to go organic as much as possible.

        This is one of many articles on the subject. Just scroll down to 3.3 – Clinical trials (Whole diet substitution) for results. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7019963/

    2. Deb,

      You wrote: “Strikingly, the consumption of organically produced meat [not only] does not appear to diminish this carcinogenic risk,” but was sometimes found to “be even higher.”

      I want to understand the mechanism for that. How could the risk by higher? What are the organic farmers using?”

      I would like to know the mechanism, as well. For two reasons.

      (1) Mediterranean people I have known eat a lot of lamb. Leg of lamb is the most popular dish in Middle Eastern restaurants ordered by Arab gentlemen – the Americans tend skew toward shish kabob. I had assumed that lamb would be relatively low in pollutants, as the lamb does not have the time to acquire much. But the one study indicates that lamb is of the highest risk:

      “Strikingly, the consumption of organically produced meat does not diminish this carcinogenic risk, but on the contrary, it seems to be even higher, especially that associated with lamb consumption.”

      The whole conclusion is counterintuitive. Strains credulity. Does not pass the sniff test.

      Does anyone know what is actually going on?

      Just quoting those study results would not be credible without understanding and being to explain the mechanism(s) involved. I simply would not be believed. Heck – I find the conclusions difficult to believe, myself.

      I do not have access to the full study – only the abstract. Anyone have access to the full study?

      Consumption of organic meat does not diminish the carcinogenic potential associated with the intake of persistent organic pollutants (POPs)
      https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25893622/

      (2) Animal flesh consumption twice a month or so is associated with long life. As evidence, I offer the example of Muja:

      “His diet consists of skinned rats, rabbits, birds, horse meat and beef”

      “I genuinely hope that we could celebrate his 100th birthday, as I believe he could live comfortably for another 15-20 years”

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=59AYEvGJ1CY

      https://phys.org/news/2020-08-world-oldest-captive-alligator-years.html

      Bon appétit –

      Vivamus

      —————————-

      (A special note to our British friends: the material in regard to Muja is intended to be lighthearted, and is not intended as a serious dietary recommendation for those pursuing a Whole Foods Plant Based diet. Thank you.)

      1. Joke or no joke, it’s perhaps worth remembering that In the 7th Day Adventist mortality study, eating meat twice a month or so was not associated with longer life among humans. In fact, people doing so had the second highest mortality risk of all groups (regular meat eaters had the highest mortality risk).
        .
        https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4191896/

        As for that study you are interested in, a copy of the full paper is here

        https://www.academia.edu/13365620/Consumption_of_organic_meat_does_not_diminish_the_carcinogenic_potential_associated_with_the_intake_of_persistent_organic_pollutants_POPs_

        1. Mr. Fumblefingers,

          Thank you for the access – I gotta learn how to do that!

          We’ll look at the second study first – it’s newer and a whole lot more interesting.

          And it is even relevant to Good Dr. Greger’s current video!

          Then bring in the first study at the end.

          ——————————————————

          OK.

          No explanations are offered in the “Consumption of organic meat . . .” article – not even speculations – as to why organic meats might contain more of a number of fat soluble pollutants than non-organic meats.

          It certainly is counter-intuitive.

          But then – so is quantum physics.

          They do state that they are the only article in the literature of which they are aware (as of 2015) comparing these matters in organic vs. non-organic meats.

          No obvious flaw in the study that I can see – and I am lookin’ hard!

          No obvious conflicts of interest, but I no nothing of these organizations:

          “Acknowledgments
          This study has been supported by ProgramaInnova Canarias 2020 from Fundación Universitariade Las Palmas (FULP). The authors thank Mrs. María de los Reyes Suárez Hanna for her technical assistance.

          Conflict of interest
          There are no actual or potential conflicts of interest to declare for any author.”

          Hmm . . .

          I wonder what is goin’ on . . .

          —————————————–

          My thoughts at this juncture:

          (1) “Organic” labeled food in their purchasing area may be fraudulently labeled. Butcha know – if it is fraudulent there, it might just as easily be fraudulent here. And why would the organic meats be even more polluted than the non-organic meats – unless any fraudulent guys are very, very nasty, indeed. I.e. – no honor among thieves.

          Could be. Not a pretty picture.

          (2) The study may be wrong. No comparable studies = no confirmation. We will wait for duplication for greater certainty. Still – the study looks legit. Most confusing. Most disturbing.

          Most interesting . . .

          —————————————

          Lets say they’re both right. Let us stipulate honest Organic meat labeling by dedicated idealistic farmers – and an accurate study. What explanations might there be?

          (1) The organic pastureland may be more polluted than the factory farmlands producing animal forage. Prior crops and persistent pesticide exposures, location downwind of cities and factories – whatever.

          (2) Electrostatic effect. I know that the pine forests took in a lot more Cesium 137 from Chernobyl because the pointed pine needles have more of an attracting electrostatic charge than other physical objects, attracting the Cesium 137 in the air and concentrating it (recollect your lightening rod physics). Perhaps the tips of grasses act the same way in regards to pollutants in the atmosphere – attracting pollutants more than, say, ears of corn fed to non-organic cattle might do. So pastured animals might actually be more susceptible to settled air-borne pollutants than corn-fed animals.

          Sounds like this might be able to use a wee bit more study . . .

          (3) Lamb. If the organic lamb are feeding naturally of their mother’s full fat milk, that may put them one step higher on the fat soluble pollution-concentrating food chain than their formula fed non-organic brethren. So organic lamb carrying a higher fat soluble pollutant load just might make some sense.

          Only guess I can come up with on a few minutes notice, anyway.

          (4) Bottom line – minimize animal flesh consumption. Which I do, anyway.

          For the healthiest, longest lived peoples on the planet – that means animal flesh typically 4-5 times a month.

          Okinawa (Japan); Sardinia (Italy); Nicoya (Costa Rica); Icaria (Greece); and the Seventh-day Adventists in Loma Linda, California.

          And their scientific study results are those of multiple lifetimes in five cultures.

          The Seventh Day Adventist Study that you like to quote was one culture over an average follow-up of less than six years.

          In my judgement, the Blue zone data easily trumps the Seventh Day Adventist data –

          With hundreds of years and four additional cultures to spare.

          Mr Fumblefingers.

          Always a pleasure –

          Vivamus

          1. Thanks Viv.

            Yes, it seems very odd to me too. It may just be that the types of food fed to ‘organic’ lambs and their dams are more prone to POP contamination than conventional feed. Or it may be just be a statistical fluke. .It doesn’t raise any red flags with me though …. why would anyone falsify results for lamb and not beef or chicken? There’s no indication that the authors were connected with the conventional lamb industry.

            Whatever the reason, it is academic as far as I’m concerned since I don’t eat meat of any kind.

            As for your remarks about the SDA study and Blue Zones, they are all just associational studies and therefore all are prone to confounding. They can’t be relied upon as demonstrating causality.

            Also, the SDA study is arguably much more methodologically rigorous than the Blue Zones thesis. But whatever floats your boat as they say.

            My personal view is that a WFPB diet is the way to go. This may or may not include small amounts of animal foods. Whether a WFPB diet containing small amounts of animal foods is superior to one without but supplemented as per Dr G’s optimal nutrition recommendations is a matter of speculation. If I were going to eat a WPFB diet with animal foods, I’d personally choose small oily fish rather than meat.

            1. Mr Fumblefingers

              You wrote: “If I were going to eat a WPFB diet with animal foods, I’d personally choose small oily fish rather than meat.”

              Makes good sense to me.

              Vivamus

  4. ~Alzheimers associaton press release they maybe have profitable connection with big pharm? How many people were tested what socio economic were those tested from? At 77 I will take my chances with covid rather than trust companies making vaccine. Remember Thalidomide? manufactured by a company set up by men who experimented on my grandfather’s people in German death camps. So many scandals here in the UK over many years with the products of big pharm. Having said that Herbert Shelton and kekei Sidwha presidents of Natural Hygiene, raw food and Vegan orientated in the USA and UK both sadly suffered in the last years of their lives with Parkinson’s disease maybe an omega three deficiency? We have learned a lot and have much to learn and I have known some who were profoundly disappointed not to be able to thrive on a Vegan diet. A Vegan diet certainly has worked for me for fifty years…so far :-)

    1. Tony,

      The three recent studies were from 3 different groups. The press release may have had an agenda, but one of the studies is from Denmark, and one is someone analyzing a national database, so that should be pretty straight-forward.

      Glad that vegan is working for you. I have chosen to go vegan, too.

      I already had brain problems from things like too high saturated fats, uncontrolled blood sugar, heavy metals, mold, lack of nutrition, etc.

      Mentally, I tried to do the math as much as I could and it seemed like vegan as close to WFPB as possible crossed so many of the potential causes of Alzheimer’s off my list that it just added DHA and B12 and Vitamin D which I was already getting none of.

      I have chosen to supplement those.

      The thing is, I am someone who is likely to sometimes fall into processed food whether I do a vegan version or not, so vegan makes sense for me.

      We pick on junk food vegans, but would they be better off switching to junk food non-vegans because that is likely to be the option that could happen.

      I am not doing vegan “junk food” but I like not having to do food prep or cooking and I was at a grocery store yesterday and the vegan processed food is getting bigger and bigger. I ended up getting Green Giant Simply Steam Southwest chipotle sweet corn blend yesterday and I don’t even know what is in it but I see beans, corn, peppers and onions and I am probably not going to do this process well for a long time.

      1. I actually have about 6 steamer bags of vegetables for today.

        And I know that the steamer bags are probably bad. I wonder if steamer bags are obesogenic.

        Wouldn’t surprise me.

        Well, I like vegetables and that is all I can handle right now.

          1. Thanks, Barb!

            Yes, I am doing the bagged vegetables this week. I have been doing beans and rice but I keep seeing all of the new combinations at the stores and I want them to make more so I have to support the effort.

            The fine print is so small that I couldn’t tell what was in there. There were maybe 5 food ingredients and about 30 items on the ingredients list way too small for me to read. But it was low in fat and low sodium – Mrs Dash no-salt seasoning. I tried to look it up online but it is so new that they didn’t even have it on their own site yet.

            But they have a whole lot of “Nutritionist approved” packages of vegetables.

            I want to research to see if I can find out which nutritionist approved their combinations. They have doubled their new things.

            Every company is trying to cash in on Plant-Based right now, so if now is when I can speak by buying things.

            1. Deb,

              I have poor eyesight; I find a magnifying glass very helpful for reading fine print. If it also has a little LED light, all the better.

              But the best of all is to buy food without ingredient lists — because ingredient lists means processed or prepared foods, which you know you want to avoid.

              Buy whole plant foods and prepare meals at home. Fruits and veggies, legumes and whole grains, and nuts and seeds in moderation. Use the Daily Dozen for guidance, look for simple recipes online, and start.

              It sounds as though you are way overthinking this — which could be an excuse, or a form of denial. Why?

              1. Dr J

                Maybe.

                I don’t know.

                I looked at what I was eating and it looked like beans, corn, onions and peppers and it said 5 mg of sodium 2 gm fat.

                But there was a long list.

                  1. Dr J

                    I like Amys enchiladas and rice dish. I could eat that every day.

                    I could eat the Gardein soups every day.

                    Yes, I don’t want to give them up.

                    I did give up Amys pizza and Amy’s none-dairy burritos and Sweet Earths The Curry Tiger.

                    But it is hard for me to eat before 9 pm unless I grab a microwavable bag or something like an Amys dinner.

              2. Dr. J.,
                I agree with your strategy. I use whole plant foods. I do eat lots of canned foods, but I try to find these with few or no additives. I usually do not wear my glasses while shopping, but most of the time I can decipher the ingredients if I position the script at the right distance from my eyes.

                1. Yes, if only my arms were just a little bit longer.

                  I do have a Supervision App, but my phone was not charged, and, honestly, 5 mg sodium and the number 2 next to the Total Fats seemed something that I could deal with. I think it was 80 calories for the whole bag.

                  Mrs. Dash was on the front of the bag, so I could read it.

                  I tried 2 of the brand new Mrs. Dash Nutritonist approved simply steam bags and they were both fine.

                  Not as decadent as the prepared meals, but one of them had beans and one had potatoes and both bags were so low in sodium and fat that I just took the chance. But it still didn’t make sense that there would be that many ingredients in the bags.

            2. Deb,

              You wrote: “There were maybe 5 food ingredients and about 30 items on the ingredients list way too small for me to read.”

              The most important information is always the information in the finest, most unreadable print.

              That is, of course, intentional.

              Michel Pollan, in his wonderful little tome “Food Rules: An Eater’s Manual” (2009 -just 140 pages) includes a few applicable thoughts.

              Paraphrasing from memory (corrections are welcome):

              – Only eat foods containing five ingredients or less

              – Don’t eat any foods where the ingredient list reads like a chemistry set

              – Shop only the edges of the supermarket

              – Don’t eat any foods with health claims

              https://www.amazon.com/Food-Rules-Eaters-Michael-Pollan/dp/014311638X/ref=sr_1_5?dchild=1&keywords=michael+pollan&link_code=qs&qid=1599891509&sourceid=Mozilla-search&sr=8-5&tag=wwwcanoniccom-20

              —————————————–

              Oh, yes – it’s magnifying glass time.

              Happens to everyone with time.

              And is useful in certain types of work.

              The Pros always used 5 inch glass handheld magnifying glasses with no extra bells or whistles – no nasty little distracting “bifocal” lens, no embedded light.

              They used to run around $50.

              No rectangles. No Fresnel lens. No goosenecks.

              People used to steal mine – so I bought more of them. A bit of a stack. Not a problem.

              I thought of them as Christmas presents that I would have been happy to give away, anyway – and stopped worrying about it.

              People are people – love ’em or hate ’em.

              And I prefer not to hate.

              Bad for the digestion.

              But they don’t seem to make these magnifying glasses, anymore.

              Not that I can see – if anyone knows a source, please inform.

              The closest I can find for you is in plastic – but plastic scratches easily.

              If you get one of these – make sure you store it in a felt bag between uses.

              Avoid any with the “bifocal” lens – they are a visual abomination.

              The 5″ on the left is the goal: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dcEoTyjcIT8

              https://www.amazon.com/Jumbo-Handheld-Magnifying-Glass-Ergonomic/dp/B01AO9197O

              https://www.magnifier.com/large-magnifier.htm

              Deb.

              All the best –

              Vivamus

              1. Deb,

                One last note on these larger round magnifying glasses – lookin’ at reviews –

                People who are unfamiliar with 2X to 3X magnifiers think that they do not magnify much.

                The secret is to hold them as far away from the viewed material as the focal length of the lens allows.

                Then they magnify very well, indeed – with a wide field of view.

                Particularly good for maps when you are bouncing along the highway (as navigator – not driver!).

                Remember maps?

                I am now looking at the intentionally overfine print on a food package – sweet spot is 7-10 inches from the package, measured by a handy ruler.

                Every word is crystal clear.

                The glass – some scratches here and there – no negative visual effect. Had it for more years than some of my nieces and nephews have been alive.

                And they now have kids.

                Glass lasts –

                Vivamus

                1. Vivamus,

                  I have a SuperVision App on my cell phone. That works pretty well.

                  Though, sometimes with small writing it will just blurr and I give up.

                  I have 2 magnifying apps.

                  I probably should have a handheld, too.

          1. Thanks, Marilyn.

            That is a good idea.

            The bags are so convenient and don’t require cleaning but I have that niggling sensation that they aren’t good but aren’t sure how bad they are.

      2. Deb what precisely is the issue with cooking? Just put your laptop on the counter and cook, while you are hanging out here for those hours. Multitasking, in this case is advised.

        Also, please read “The Practicing Mind” Thomas Stearner to control your process of going for processed foods. (It is a short read, and many find it helpful in understanding what/why the heck they are doing really, rather than succumbing to insecurity or feeling of inability to accomplish something.)

        1. jazzBass,

          I can’t multitask with cooking. I honestly have mentally broken down every holiday making a single side dish. Plus, I have destroyed my food processor a few times and threw out the pusher once and could never get the instapot to cook starches (though neither could Consumer Reports and Wired Magazine) and I have started one fire on my stove and have no depth perception and am not good at knife skills and end up spending over $100 even on a stupid sweet potato casserole recipe and I cognitively have problems that probably have made it such a nightmare. With those holidays, I didn’t succeed most of the time after 2 days of trying to do a single dish. The recipe says 45 minutes but I could work on it all week and still fail. I am not sure what happens actually.

          I will be practicing, but it is emotionally devastating to me and I have talked to a few people who have the same thing so maybe it is that my brain isn’t working properly to organize properly.

          Plus, I don’t have a computer or wifi or internet or landline at home. I have my cell phone and data plan but I can’t read the small letters a lot of the time and videos use up the data plan quickly.

          I am not trying to make up excuses. I am just telling you what has happened.

          I do plan to do brain plasticity with cooking eventually but I had to buy new cooking pots and pans which I have. And I also bought knives and finger protectors. It is a step by step process for me. Getting there.

          1. There weren’t any birthdays or holidays this year, so I didn’t get to see if my brain has gotten better.

            I still haven’t bought the replacement pitcher for my food processor and my coworker is going to kill me if he sees that I have a whole bed covered in cooking things when he helped me empty that room 7 or 8 months ago.

            I think not knowing how to do things is such a problem for me that I just can’t do it the way other people do.

            I do succeed. It just takes time for me.

            1. I am thinking that I should get induction burners next. I don’t have a gas stove, so I have felt safe-ish as long as I don’t place anything on the stove but induction burners are even better.

              I stopped using things like coffee pots at home and do most of my cooking microwave at work.

              The thing is though, right now, at 10 of midnight, what I know is that I never ate the dinner that is up in the microwave at work.

              But with an induction burner, I can build in extra safety in a few ways.

              I did get a slow-cooker and that is on the bed and I did buy a new rice cooker to replace the Aroma that had the nonstick coating peeling off and that is also on the bed.

              I am turning the closet of that room into a pantry and might be able to get the things off of the bed.

              Yes, this is a slow process for some of us.

              Plus, my relative died tonight. That might be why I forgot dinner.

              1. Right now PBS has a hacking the mind documentary about how people make decisions using auto-pilot.

                People who have the emotional part of the brain have the troubles making decisions like I do.

                I laughed though because they had a person who is blind but his eyes are functioning and he perfectly walks an obstacle course even though his brain can’t see. His brain doesn’t believe the scientists that there even was an obstacle course there or that he navigated it perfectly.

                I feel like I might have something like that sometimes.

                I do everything in my slow thinking part of the brain because my auto-pilot part of my brain is either broken or I just can’t see it working.

                1. That persons brain is blind but his eyes can see and it has to be one part of his brain listens to the eyes but his conscious mind can’t hear the conversation and thinks that he is blind.

                  Having brain problems is fascinating.

                  Anyway, they were talking about training your brain to come out of autopilot and do a slow process when you know you are making mistakes and that is what I am doing with everything.

                  Laughing

                  I talked with Vivamus about how the schools backed the children up from addition and subtraction to drawing dots and counting them and that is like counting fingers and toes instead of trying to learn multiplication but I think that is similar to what I have done. I took everything out of autopilot and never went back.

                  1. At work I had started making so many mistakes because I really do have pretty serious brain problems but since nobody could fire me I have been able to adapt and put in double checks but you would be shocked at how many I need.

                    It is working well but I am the one who is shocked. But I have come out of autopilot and everything needs a long process now.

                    1. I think people tell me stop analyzing everything but that show on the brain is saying if my brain isn’t functioning properly, start analyzing everything but what I learned from the show is that most everybody else is not processing things. They went into autopilot a long time ago and I will frustrate them because they want to stay in autopilot 95% of the time and my needing the slow process harms them because fast process takes less effort and is less stressful and is more spiritually and emotionally satisfying.

                      Yes, I am annoyingly processing symbolically aloud but I am closer to understanding things like these and eventually I think I will get brain plasticity in the form of autopilot.

                    2. Deb,

                      My condolences. I hope that you are not doing too badly.

                      . . .

                      Very clear writing on cognitive dysfunction.

                      Food for thought.

                      Now it is time for sleep –

                      On autopilot.

                      Good night –

                      Vivamus

                      ————————————————

                      I lay me down and slumber
                      And every morn revive.
                      Whose is the night-long breathing
                      That keeps a man alive?

                      When I was off to dreamland
                      And left my limbs forgot,
                      Who stayed at home to mind them,
                      And breathed when I did not?

                      . . . . .

                      — I waste my time in talking,
                      No heed at all takes he,
                      My kind and foolish comrade
                      That breathes all night for me.

                      Housman
                      XIII
                      More Poems

    2. Tony well said. It is well documented for instance, that the US government tested drugs and psychotics on black people in this country into the 1970’s, amputated and performed unnecessary medical procedures on them for study, withheld known cures to see what happened, and followed the subjects for years telling them they were special cases that just didn’t react well to the medicine (had given them only placebos).

      This is the same authority one needs to trust in order to take action on their advice.

      I don’t say these things as to make a case not to get vaccines, but rather to illustrate that if there are those in society who feel they cant trust the citations and studies, it is because the truth of the various nefarious activities of our governments eventually leak out and this brings blame not on the distrustful, but rather onto the administrations who secretly execute these activities in willful blindness of their likely and often known effects.

      They have a term for justifying these byproducts of unilaterallism and not morally vetting actions, also used in war “theater” (hopefully the irony of that term smarts) when referring to civilian casualties, and socio-economic polices. They call them “externalities”.

      Literally the coldest shit I have ever heard, considering that on its face, it sounds as such an innocuous word. (“externalities” that is.)

      So Deb, and Tom, I think the problem with citing study after study on this topic is that the viewer may have healthy blinders to studies conducted in the name of putting something in your arm which has a direct profit benefit to anothers “arm”, even as it may well have a health benefit.

      That is your biggest challenge if you would like to champion vaccinations for all.

      Cleaning the house up such that the public trust can improve greatly means making healthcare democratic and free. Free too, from patent interests.

      If the argument is to be believed that “Who would pay for it then? There is no incentive to make these drugs then”, then I submit to you that this indicates it is not being done for the benefit of humanity but rather for profit. (this goes to the selfish sickness within that very system) Especially when these same firms spend billions courting congress. The problem is that while one is protecting ones profits, one is eating and destroying smaller efforts which may be in direct competition with your effort. Or better. :)

      The model of big institutions today is: Buy and kill. (Spend way too much on the purchase of a small company doing good, and well, then kill it so you have no competition. I know startup entrepreneurs who literally create companies for the express purpose of being a gnat to BIG Anything”, with the express purpose of being bought out. Rinse lather, repeat. Its laughable to them. Its sick, and we all suffer because of it.)

      Ok I guess I will retract an earlier post of mine, since I mean to say this IS, “fairly straightforward”. :)

      PS:
      I’m aware that many here know this info, but it seems that there is such loyalty too here, to institutions which simply have been shown to act outside of the greater human benefit, even as they are trusted to be a positive, even protective entity.

      1. jazzBass,

        You wrote: “Tony well said. It is well documented for instance, that the US government tested drugs and psychotics on black people in this country into the 1970’s, amputated and performed unnecessary medical procedures on them for study, withheld known cures to see what happened, and followed the subjects for years telling them they were special cases that just didn’t react well to the medicine (had given them only placebos).”

        All of the institutional abuses that you have mentioned are age-old, have been addressed, and could never happen again.

        Just ask the Vietnam veterans.

        And the Gulf War veterans.

        And the people getting unnecessary coronary artery angioplasties.

        And the gentlemen getting unnecessary prostatectomies.

        And the diabetics getting advised to go on extraordianarily restrictive low carbohydrate diets by their R.D.s

        And . . . well . . . um . . .

        Never mind.

        ————————————–

        It looks like these sorts of things have been a problem ever since Hippocrates first picked up a scroll.

        And have been recognized – in one form or another – ever since that time.

        It’s a bit of a game of whack-a-mole.

        Knowledge, experience, judgement – all come into play.

        Which reminds me – how did the hunt for a plant-based Physician go for you?

        Meeting of minds? Failure? Or split decision?

        Inquiring minds long to know.

        jazzBass.

        All the best –

        Vivamus

        ———————–

        Gulf War Syndrome:

        Approximately 250,000[8] of the 697,000 U.S. veterans who served in the 1991 Gulf War are afflicted with enduring chronic multi-symptom illness, a condition with serious consequences.

        Exposure to pesticides and pills containing pyridostigmine bromide (used as a pretreatment to protect against nerve agent effects) has been found to be associated with the neurological effects seen in Gulf war syndrome.[11][12] Other causes that have been investigated are sarin, cyclosarin, and emissions from oil well fire, but their relationship to the illness is not as clear.[11][12]

        Wikipedia entry

      2. JB

        I don’t want to champion anything at all. The press release was posted for information. I thought it was extraordinary.

        Not everybody want to hear this stuff, I know. But some people do.

        Associational studies always need to be taken with a pinch of salt. That said, always assuming that stuff we don’t want to hear is the product of some awful conspiracy is an approach that also needs to be taken with a pinch of salt. The fact that there have been conspiracies in the past does not prove that every conceivable modern speculation about conspiracies must be true.

        I am sure that Big Pharma and the researchers it funds will massage the data to suit its financial interests. That’s why all these studies need to be examined critically. That’s not necessarily the same thing though as automatically casting about for reasons why my opinions must be right and all evidence/studies to the contrary must be wrong and/or faked.

        I’m all for caution and firmly believe that it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese. Somebody else can trial Covid-19 vaccines. Not me. I would say though that the safety etc of flu and pneumonia vaccines seems relatively well-established.

        People should make their own choices based on the balance of evidence.

      3. jazzBass,

        Yes, I am aware of the abuse of power of the government in the USA.

        Those studies on the Black population and the studies on the military and the studies on prisoners are all devastating to me.

        Part of me is in the “Hell, no we won’t go” camp who just watched the documentary on Woodstock and loved it and also would agree with my conservative relatives who would point out that the young people felt all lovey-dovey smoking pot after stepping over a fence and attending a concert where they were being fed for free and were seeing the best musicians the USA had to offer for free and where they were not getting in trouble for destroying a field or for being naked or for not paying for tickets and they grew up and idealized the whole experience but never want anyone else to treat them like that. But the sentiment was beautiful even 50-years-later. Yes, I am fascinatingly in the middle all of the time. Middle child syndrome.

        I am someone who almost always skips vaccinations.

        Unless other people may be in danger if I don’t get one.

        But I also stand up and applaud what Bill Gates is trying to do and the results that are in the global studies.

        And I do not trust any Big Pharma.

        But vaccinations have saved lives.

        So, it is read every single thing possible from every side and look at studies and figure out if there are any experts out there for me to trust.

        And then, come to the point of having to make a decision

        and risk being fooled by evil people

        and risk being taken advantage of by greedy people.

        and risk being wrong

        and know that not deciding is also a decision

        and not deciding will have consequences, too.

        Almost 20% of Californians know someone who has died from COVID-19.

        In the end, we make decisions and live with those decisions and this process of collecting as much information as possible is part of my process.

        But there is no action that is 100% without risk.

        I don’t distrust the vaccination studies as much as you do.

        I do distrust the junctures where money and power are involved.

        But I still come to the junction of the Roads-more-or-less traveled and make a whole bunch of decisions.

        What you might not understand is that every decision in my entire life is excruciating for me on one side, but I rarely regret anything after the decision is made. I can’t even think of an example of having made a big mistake when faced with big decisions. Not even one.

  5. The vegetarian workers at the e-waste plant having that low levels of PCB’s are also fascinating.

    I wish they had done levels of vegetarians who didn’t work at the plant.

    Comforting.

  6. Re: the video. For the sake of any meat eaters who would watch this video, I prefer that after that final punchline you mention any known reasons to prefer organic meat over non-organic; I have many friends who eat meat, and I don’t feel that any of them would have a positive takeaway from this video (nor would it be successful in getting them to give up meat).

    1. philosurfer,

      Yes, I am surrounded with meat-eaters and their question is whether organic / grass-fed is better. Organic sometimes being even more carcinogenic is a bummer for their sakes.

    2. There is also some controversy about organic vs. non-organic produce, eggs and dairy. I always mention that my personal health is only one consideration for choosing organic most of the time. At least with organic products, no additional chemicals are added to the environment hopefully helping to protect our soil, water and air as well as protecting farm workers. There will be residual chemicals in our environment for quite some time, but we don’t need to be adding more if we can help it. That seems to me to be a very good reason to buy organic products when possible.

  7. I’m confused. Humans have been eating meat since before we learned to write. However, diseases like cancer and heart disease didn’t show up until about a Century ago when chemicals were beginning to be added to our environment. That is one study that cannot be fudged.

    1. Yes. I know cancer became much more prevalent around the 1980’s-1990’s when GMO’s and chemicals were being used almost full force. It’s only gotten worse. Our food system is so broken and toxic ….

        1. Tom,

          That is fascinating.

          A 1.1% decrease in cases of cancer per year for ten years and a 1.5% decrease in the deaths from cancer per year during that time.

          When a trend lasts 10 years it becomes interesting in more ways than one.

    2. Wayne, cancer and heart disease have been around a long long time. I was reading about dinasaurs the other day…
      https://phys.org/news/2020-08-malignant-cancer-dinosaur.html
      https://www.news-medical.net/news/20190923/Heart-disease-was-bigger-issue-for-human-ancestors-than-originally-thought-study-reveals.aspx
      Admittedly our modern day lifestyle has had a dramatic effect on the incidence of both. Obesity, smoking, drug/alcohol, environmental pollution, junk food and food additives, saturated fats, etc all contributing.

    3. Wayne, there is evidence of atherosclerosis in Egyptian mummies (which, by the way, were the bodies of the wealthiest in society who could therefore afford richer foods, more meat for example).

    4. Wayne,

      You wrote: “. . . diseases like cancer and heart disease didn’t show up until about a Century ago when chemicals were beginning to be added to our environment. That is one study that cannot be fudged.”

      Could you please direct us to that study? I have apparently been misinformed.

      Thank you,

      Vivamus

      ———————————–

      “The origin of the word cancer is credited to the Greek physician Hippocrates (460-370 BC), who is considered the “Father of Medicine.” Hippocrates used the terms carcinos and carcinoma to describe non-ulcer forming and ulcer-forming tumors. In Greek, these words refer to a crab, most likely applied to the disease because the finger-like spreading projections from a cancer called to mind the shape of a crab. The Roman physician, Celsus (28-50 BC), later translated the Greek term into cancer, the Latin word for crab. Galen (130-200 AD), another Greek physician, used the word oncos (Greek for swelling) to describe tumors. Although the crab analogy of Hippocrates and Celsus is still used to describe malignant tumors, Galen’s term is now used as a part of the name for cancer specialists – oncologists.”
      https://www.cancer.org/cancer/cancer-basics/history-of-cancer/what-is-cancer.html

      “The Hippocratic Corpus deals at length with diseases that produced masses (onkos), and includes the word karkinos to describe ulcerating and non‐healing lumps that included lesions ranging from benign processes to malignant tumors. He advocated diet, rest, and exercise for mild illnesses, followed by purgatives, heavy metals and surgery for more serious diseases, especially karkinomas. His stepwise treatment approach is summarized in one of his Aphorisms, “That which medicine does not heal, the knife frequently heals; and what the knife does not heal, cautery often heals; but when all these fail, the disease is incurable.”10 To his credit, he recognized the relentless progression of deep‐seated karkinomas and the often‐negative effect of treatment writing: “Occult cancers should not be molested. Attempting to treat them, they quickly become fatal. When unmolested, they remain in a dormant state for a length of time” (Aphorism 3811). Hippocrates died at Larissa, in Thessaly, at the probable age of one hundred. ”

      “Aulus Cornelius Celsus (25BC‐AD50), was a Roman physician and prominent Hippocrates successor. He described the evolution of tumors from surgically resectable cacoethes followed by unresponsive carcinos (he later called carcinomas) and fungated ulcers he advocated should be left alone12 because “the excised carcinomas have returned and caused death.”13 He explained, “It is only the cacoethes which can be removed; the other stages are irritated by treatment; and the more so the more vigorous it is. Some have used caustic medicaments, some the cautery, some excision with a scalpel; but no medicament has ever given relief; the parts cauterized are excited immediately and increase until they cause death.”

      Celsus acknowledged that only time could differentiate cacoethes from carcinomas, “No one, however, except by time and experiment, can have the skill to distinguish a cacoethes which admits of being treated from a carcinoma which does not.” He vividly described the invasive nature of carcinomas, “This also is a spreading disease. And all these signs often extend, and there results from them an ulcer which the Greeks call phagedaena because it spreads rapidly and penetrates down to the bones and so devours the flesh.” Reportedly, he is the first to attempt reconstructive surgery following excision of cancer.”

      “Archigenes of Apamea, Syria (75–129) practiced in Rome in the time of Trajan. He also stressed the importance of early stage diagnosis when various remedies can be successful but advised surgery for advanced cancer as absolutely necessary but only in strong patients able to survive surgery designed to extirpate the tumor in its entirety, warning, “if it has taken anything into its claws it cannot be easily ripped away.”
      https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/ijc.29134

      ——————————–

      If 2400 years ago is too recent for you – well, we can go farther back in time, if you like:

      If you have read the Edwin Smith Papyrus – now, where is my copy – the original dates from ~1600 B.C – yes, that’s ~3600 years ago – the black ink and the red ink remain clear.

      Say that for your computer data.

      The Edwin Smith Papyrus is thought – due to the archaic language – to be a copy of work from as far back as 3000 BC – roughly 5000 years ago – but that cannot be verified at this time.

      And who are we to quibble over a thousand years or two?

      Either way – I am not overly concerned about copyright issues.

      Now – now, where were we?

      Some would find my home a little disheveled – but I can usually find ‘most everything.

      It has been a while, really – I cannot really say that I have looked at my copy in a millennium.

      Ah, yes – yes – here we go –

      I confess to resorting to English translations – I hope you will forgive me – I am afraid that my Hieratic is limited to a few ancient limericks.

      And there are ladies present.

      Out of the 48 surgical cases discussed, eight relate to the breast / chest.

      We are not talking dinosaurs, here. These are very human stories.

      People just like you and me.

      In what to them was their modern-day present.

      I wonder what the top 40 was then? Let’s see . . .

      My favorite word in archaic Egyptian has always been: “doo-wah.”

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RNO2wKW4cBY

      I think it’s – case 39 – yes, yes, here it is:

      “A prominent head in his breast.” Whatever that may mean.

      But it sounds kinda big and irregular.

      “An ailment which I will not treat.”

      Yup. Can’t blame you there, fella.

      There’s only so much a man can do.

    5. ‘Humans have been eating meat since before we learned to write.’

      That doesn’t prove that eating meat is either healthy or safe long term. Stating that it does is called the ‘appeal to antiquity’ fallacy.

      As for a hundred years ago, people in the US then ate a lot less fat and protein than they do today. Perhaps that has something to with it too?

      https://www.fns.usda.gov/USFoodSupply-1909-2010

  8. Dioxins are highly toxic and can cause cancer, reproductive and developmental problems, damage to the immune system, and can interfere with hormones. More than 90% of typical human exposure is estimated by EPA to be through the intake of animal fats, mainly meat, dairy products, fish, and shellfish.
    https://www.epa.gov/dioxin/learn-about-dioxin

    90% of all human exposure of dioxins is quite a lot. Yet another good reason to go vegan.

  9. I have been watching the fires in California, Oregon, and Washington, and I sure hope that Dr. McDougall isn’t going to go through another fire.

    I looked at the fire map and it is not comforting at all.

    1. They said that people breathing the air in California are experiencing something similar to smoking 20 packs of cigarettes per day.

      And that the air quality is affected 1000 miles away.

      1. Deb,
        You are exackery wright. The quarantine in China gave people cleaner air to breath. The avoidance of lung cancer saved far more lives than the virus took. 68 % of all firefighters get cancer, and iit’s mostly lung cancer. 60 % of them die from their cancer. The moral to this story: Avoid grills, high temperature cooking, smoking, fireplaces, brush fires, controled burns and polluted air and the benefit would make a pandemic pale in comparison.

        1. Dan,

          The concept that we have been looking at those glorious images of clean air during the pandemic and now we are looking at images of smoke showing up on satellites. I am far away, but I am staying indoors because I watched it on the weather and it still looked like smoke all the way across the country. Anyway, I am indoors using an air purifier. I have so many friends out there. Plus, I have totally bonded with the homeless populations.

          There could be tens of thousands of new homeless people after the fires. I genuinely love them. This man is one who was posted about this week and he is one of the abused, foster kids and he has never had a job in his life.

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ho4AU4yo-jU&ab_channel=InvisiblePeople

          I wish I could tutor some of these people. Some of them didn’t learn to tell time until they were 17 and don’t know how to write out a check.

  10. I agree with Dr Greger that meat both standard and organic can be full of toxins, carcinogens etc. BUT:
    organic beef and lamb IS NOT THE SAME as 100% grass fed rumenant meat.

    1. Sydney,

      I get confused about grass-fed animals because when I have tried to read it, first, they say 100% forage with no exposure to non-forage supplements.

      Then, the very next paragraph they always follow that 100% forage concept with

      In addition, grass pastured cattle may be fed approved non-forage supplements at a rate of 0.5% of body weight (20% of
      daily intake) during the growth stage (birth to start of finishing phase) and 0.75% of body weight (30% of daily intake; DM basis) during the finishing stage which they define as the last 200 pounds that they have to gain.

      So during birth to finishing phase and finishing phase to slaughter:

      The feeding of hay, haylage, balage, silage, forage products, crop residue without grain and roughage is not limited. The feeding of approved roughage products including dry beet pulp, corn cobs, cotton burrs or hulls (almond, cottonseed, peanut or soybean) is not limited.

      I have tried to understand it a few times but luckily, I get to use my vegan-ish card and say the 100% seems to be an exaggeration somehow.

      1. I think it gets confusing because when they say “100% with no exposure to” I expect there to be “no exposure to”

        And when they define time periods as “birth to finishing” and “finishing to slaughter” they don’t tell what comes between those time periods and if there isn’t a stage between the 2 stages, when do they do the “no exposure to” part at all?

        I guess I need a video showing what that means with pictures.

        I want them to show me the “no exposure to” stage.

    2. There is no evidence that ‘100% grass fed rumenant meat’ is safe let alone healthy to eat.

      As has been pointed out to Sydney before, all the beef from Uruguay comes from grass-fed, no added hormones etc cattle but the more beef people eat there, the higher their rates of cancer’.

      In the multivariable model there was a significant increase in the odds of cancers of the oral cavity and pharynx (OR= 3.65, 95% CI: 2.21-6.01), esophagus (OR= 3.36, 95% CI: 1.97-5.72), larynx (OR=2.91, 95% CI: 1.80-4.68), stomach (OR= 2.19, 95% CI: 1.31-3.65), colorectum (OR= 3.83, 95% CI: 2.37-6.20), lung (OR= 2.17, 95% CI: 1.52-3.10), breast (OR= 1.97, 95% CI: 1.04-3.75), prostate (OR= 1.87, 95% CI: 1.08-3.21), bladder (OR= 2.11, 95% CI: 1.20-3.72) and kidney (OR= 2.72, 95% CI: 1.22-6.07) with high intake of red meat and similar findings were found for total meat. In addition, intake of beef and lamb were also associated with increased risk of several cancer sites. High intake of processed meat was associated with increased risk of cancers of the esophagus (OR= 1.63, 95% CI: 1.08-2.47), larynx (OR= 1.84, 95% CI: 1.21-2.78), stomach (OR= 1.62, 95% CI: 1.07-2.44), colorectum (OR= 2.15, 95% CI: 1.49-3.11), lung (OR= 1.70, 95% CI: 1.28-2.25) and breast (OR= 1.53, 95% CI: 1.01-2.30). Our results confirm earlier findings of increased risk of digestive tract cancers, but suggest that meat consumption also increases the risk of several other cancers.’
      https://www.researchgate.net/publication/26702992_Meat_consumption_and_cancer_risk_A_case-control_study_in_Uruguay

      1. Thanks, Tom,

        I love that you keep track of all of these studies.

        I still haven’t figured out where the grass-fed animals are that there is enough grass to keep them fed.

  11. Given that ‘organic’ meats seem to present no real advantage over food not thus labelled, let me ask about the contamination levels in meat from wild game. Are the pheasant I hunt healthier than chicken from the market? Is the delicious meat from an Axis deer, say, or a Colorado elk, ‘cleaner” than what I buy down the street?

  12. Significant point in video:
    Eating plant based is a really good way to detox. Reason alone to eat this way, aside from feeling better, looking better, performing better, living healthy and having regular, detoxifying poops. Wash those problems down the drain (Draino commercial?).

      1. Dan C.,

        May I tell you a Roto-Rooter story? About 10 years ago, I didn’t have a list of who to go to when things happened in a house, and when I had roots going into my pipes, I called Roto-Rooter. But the males in my family were horrified that I didn’t have a relationship with all of the types of people who work on houses at all. And, Roto-Rooter guy showed up and lugged his equipment into the basement and I walked back upstairs from the basement and let him do his stuff and he came up and said, “The first thing I have tried didn’t work” and he went outside and came back with more equipment and said that the second thing he tried didn’t work and that he would have to replace the pipes and I suddenly felt suspicious and not sure if I could trust anyone and I called my brother who said, “Why did you go to Roto-Rooter? That sounds wrong and you should be going to….. ” and I told the Roto-Rooter man that the males in my family were going to be coming up and he quickly left. And my brother contacted my father who contacted his friend who works with all of the contractors and that man came and went down into my basement and called me to come down and he said, “I wanted you to see that the worker from Roto-Rooter never did anything at all. It is still the old cap, not ever opened. He did literally nothing at all.”

        He said that the scam goes this way, they tell you two or three times that they tried to fix it and you probably have a broken pipe and then they bring in equipment and intentionally crush your pipe and then they show it to you and you are grateful and hand them the thousand dollar plus check.

        The small company good guy came in and fixed it and looked with his visual equipment and said that there is no damage to your pipe and charged me something like $50.

        Yes, since that time I have developed a relationship with just about every type of worker who might do anything at my house.

        And, when possible, with every appliance that I bring into my house.

        1. Deb,
          That’s a great story. It is a “buyer beware” situation. One might wish for a rosier image of humanity. Fortunately we have built-in BS-O’ meters, if we will only use them.

        1. Tom,

          The word root is such a part of our language that my brain can’t even playfully replace the concept of root words and roots in nature and the symbolic root of things and see if there are funny things replacing them with…. the “F” bomb is what modern culture calls it…..

          But mentally, I can think about what the man from Roto Rooter did and the younger generation would say WTF?!?!

          I honestly don’t swear. I guess except symbolically if it is funny.

  13. Environmental note regarding grass-fed beef. While it is more humane for animals to graze it is unfortunately more straining for the climate. Cattle produce 2-3 x more methane than eg grain and bean fed cattle.
    https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2017/10/grass-fed-cows-won-t-save-climate-report-finds

    80% of arable land is already used for feed but produces only 18% of calories. If everyone wanted to eat as much meat and milk as Westerners, we would need 2-3 more planet earths. Forget Mars. Beef and dairy are the least efficient way to feed humans.

    It’s one thing that we burn down forests for cattle to graze (destruction of CO2 storage), it’s quite another to produce methane on it afterwards. Methane is one of the biggest short-term challenges we face. Methane is 85 x more potent than CO2 over 20 years and cannot be absorbed by plants.
    https://edition.cnn.com/2020/07/15/world/methane-emissions-record-scli-intl-scn/index.html

    Organic meats were a great idea in the 80s. The idea was that as demand for organics increases, the demand for cheap meat will decrease too and hence we will reduce our overall meat intake. Noble as this idea is, it cannot work. Obviously, it can only work the other way around. We have to first reduce our overall consumption of meat and dairy to give “organics” and less toxins a chance. It’s like the slogan “save the rainforest”. Yes, how?

    1. Hugo,
      There is a market reason for some grazing. Much land is too difficult for dirt farming. Grazers can be turned out on scrub land that has little other use. Money in the bank to ranchers though.

  14. Interlude.

    For those contemplating Novel Coronavirus vaccination, review of the following concepts may prove helpful.

    This is from Marc Hellerstein, M.D., Ph.D., out of Berkeley.

    The scientific literature version:

    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2590136220300231?via%3Dihub#

    A popular press version:

    https://www.thailandmedical.news/news/warning-covid-19-immunology-university-of-california-report-warns-that-vaccine-developers-have-a-misplaced-focus-on-antibodies-and-spike-protein

    There is much to learn –

    Vivamus

    1. Yes, Vivamus, I have been reading about those things, too.

      I guess, right now, mostly I still am happy that there are teams of scientists all trying things. I like that.

      I feel like globally there will be a lot of scientific and medical advancements after COVID.

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