Is Vegan Food Always Healthy?

Is Vegan Food Always Healthy?
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Healthier plant-based diets compared to unhealthy plant foods and animal foods on diabetes risk.

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

In my video on flexitarians, I talk about how the benefits of eating a plant-based diet are not all-or-nothing. “Simple advice to increase the consumption of plant-derived foods with [parallel] reductions in the consumption of foods from animal sources [was found to] confer a survival advantage,” a live-longer advantage. They call it a pro-vegetarian eating pattern, just moving in that direction, as a more gradual, gentle, doable approach.

If you’re dealing with a serious disease, though, like diabetes, avoiding some problem foods completely may be easier than attempting to moderate your intake. It’s like clinicians would never tell alcoholics to simply cut down on alcohol. Avoiding alcohol entirely is more effective and, ironically, easier for a problem drinker.

“Paradoxically, asking patients to make a large change may be more effective than making a slow transition. Diet studies show that recommending more significant changes increases the changes that patients actually accomplish. It may help to replace the common advice, ‘all things in moderation’ with ‘big changes beget big results.’ Success breeds success. After a few days or weeks of major dietary changes, patients are [more] likely to see improvements in weight and blood [sugar] levels—improvements that reinforce the dietary changes. Furthermore, they may enjoy other health benefits of…plant-based [eating]” that may give them further motivation.

Those who choose to eat plant-based for their health say it’s mostly for general wellness and disease prevention, or to improve their energy levels or immune function. They felt it gave them a sense of control over their health, helps them feel better emotionally, improves their overall health, and makes them feel better. Most felt it was very important for maintaining their health and well-being. For the minority that used it for a specific health problem, it was mostly for high cholesterol or weight loss, followed by high blood pressure and diabetes. Most reported they felt it helped a great deal.

But others choose plant-based diets for other reasons, like animal welfare or global warming, and it looks like they’re more likely to be eating things like vegan doughnuts, and sugary and fatty foods, compared to those eating plant-based because of religious or health reasons.

I mean the veganist vegan could bake a cake (using soda instead of eggs), with frosting, covered in marshmallow fluff and chocolate syrup, topped with Oreos, with a side of Doritos dipped in, vegan bacon grease. But fruit for dessert… in the form of Pop Tarts and Krispy Kreme pies? This, is a vegan meal.

Yes, plant-based diets have been recommended to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. However, not all plant foods are necessarily beneficial. Like in that pro-vegetarian scoring system, you got points for eating potato chips and French fries, just because they were technically plant-based, but Harvard researchers wanted to examine the association of not only an overall plant-based diet, but both healthy and unhealthy versions. So, they created the same kind of pro-vegetarian scoring system weighted towards any sort of plant-based foods, and against animal foods, and then also created a healthful plant-based diet index, where at least some whole plant foods took precedence, and Coca-Cola was no longer considered a plant. Then lastly, they created an unhealthful plant-based diet index by assigning positive scores to processed plant-based junk, and negative scoring healthier foods and animal foods.

And, they found that a more plant-based diet in general was good for reducing diabetes risk, but eating especially healthy plant-based foods did better––nearly cutting risk in half, while those eating more unhealthy plant foods did worse. Now, but is that because they were also eating more animal foods? People often eat burgers with their fries; so, they separated out the effects of healthy plant foods, less healthy plant foods, and animal foods. And, healthy plant foods were protectively associated, animal foods were detrimentally associated, and less-healthy plant foods were more neutral when it came to diabetes risk. Here’s what the graph looks like: higher diabetes risk with more and more animal foods, no protection whatsoever with junky plant foods, and lower and lower diabetes risk associated with more and more healthy whole plant foods in the diet. So, they conclude that yes, plant-based diets are associated with substantially lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes. But it may not be enough to just lower the intake of animal foods, but also less healthy plant foods as well.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image credit: Miguel Andrade via unsplash. Image has been modified.

Video production by Glass Entertainment

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.

In my video on flexitarians, I talk about how the benefits of eating a plant-based diet are not all-or-nothing. “Simple advice to increase the consumption of plant-derived foods with [parallel] reductions in the consumption of foods from animal sources [was found to] confer a survival advantage,” a live-longer advantage. They call it a pro-vegetarian eating pattern, just moving in that direction, as a more gradual, gentle, doable approach.

If you’re dealing with a serious disease, though, like diabetes, avoiding some problem foods completely may be easier than attempting to moderate your intake. It’s like clinicians would never tell alcoholics to simply cut down on alcohol. Avoiding alcohol entirely is more effective and, ironically, easier for a problem drinker.

“Paradoxically, asking patients to make a large change may be more effective than making a slow transition. Diet studies show that recommending more significant changes increases the changes that patients actually accomplish. It may help to replace the common advice, ‘all things in moderation’ with ‘big changes beget big results.’ Success breeds success. After a few days or weeks of major dietary changes, patients are [more] likely to see improvements in weight and blood [sugar] levels—improvements that reinforce the dietary changes. Furthermore, they may enjoy other health benefits of…plant-based [eating]” that may give them further motivation.

Those who choose to eat plant-based for their health say it’s mostly for general wellness and disease prevention, or to improve their energy levels or immune function. They felt it gave them a sense of control over their health, helps them feel better emotionally, improves their overall health, and makes them feel better. Most felt it was very important for maintaining their health and well-being. For the minority that used it for a specific health problem, it was mostly for high cholesterol or weight loss, followed by high blood pressure and diabetes. Most reported they felt it helped a great deal.

But others choose plant-based diets for other reasons, like animal welfare or global warming, and it looks like they’re more likely to be eating things like vegan doughnuts, and sugary and fatty foods, compared to those eating plant-based because of religious or health reasons.

I mean the veganist vegan could bake a cake (using soda instead of eggs), with frosting, covered in marshmallow fluff and chocolate syrup, topped with Oreos, with a side of Doritos dipped in, vegan bacon grease. But fruit for dessert… in the form of Pop Tarts and Krispy Kreme pies? This, is a vegan meal.

Yes, plant-based diets have been recommended to reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. However, not all plant foods are necessarily beneficial. Like in that pro-vegetarian scoring system, you got points for eating potato chips and French fries, just because they were technically plant-based, but Harvard researchers wanted to examine the association of not only an overall plant-based diet, but both healthy and unhealthy versions. So, they created the same kind of pro-vegetarian scoring system weighted towards any sort of plant-based foods, and against animal foods, and then also created a healthful plant-based diet index, where at least some whole plant foods took precedence, and Coca-Cola was no longer considered a plant. Then lastly, they created an unhealthful plant-based diet index by assigning positive scores to processed plant-based junk, and negative scoring healthier foods and animal foods.

And, they found that a more plant-based diet in general was good for reducing diabetes risk, but eating especially healthy plant-based foods did better––nearly cutting risk in half, while those eating more unhealthy plant foods did worse. Now, but is that because they were also eating more animal foods? People often eat burgers with their fries; so, they separated out the effects of healthy plant foods, less healthy plant foods, and animal foods. And, healthy plant foods were protectively associated, animal foods were detrimentally associated, and less-healthy plant foods were more neutral when it came to diabetes risk. Here’s what the graph looks like: higher diabetes risk with more and more animal foods, no protection whatsoever with junky plant foods, and lower and lower diabetes risk associated with more and more healthy whole plant foods in the diet. So, they conclude that yes, plant-based diets are associated with substantially lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes. But it may not be enough to just lower the intake of animal foods, but also less healthy plant foods as well.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image credit: Miguel Andrade via unsplash. Image has been modified.

Video production by Glass Entertainment

Motion graphics by Avocado Video

Doctor's Note

As a physician, labels like vegetarian or vegan just tell me what you don’t eat, but there’s lots of unhealthy vegetarian foods, like French fries and potato chips and soda pop. That’s why I prefer the term whole-food, plant-based nutrition. That tells me what you do eat: a diet centered around the healthiest foods out there.

The video I mentioned is Do Flexitarians Live Longer?

And are some past popular videos on plant-based diets:

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

92 responses to “Is Vegan Food Always Healthy?

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  1. That was useful.

    The first year of this process, I ate a lot more transition food things like Amy’s nondairy bean burritos, vegan cheeze in lasagna, and Chickn patties and I had some tofurky at Thanksgiving.

    I can’t remember the last time I ate directionally vegan processed foods.

    I haven’t really seen the benefits in weight, but I am hopeful that the second year of salad and fruits and vegetables maybe has helped something.

      1. Joe Vegan,

        It means that when I started I was eating nondairy burritos and vegan cheeze and Mary’s Gone Crackers, then, I transitioned to nutritional yeast with cashew cream sauce, then to just nutritional yeast.

        Mainly, I eat great big salads with every vegetable that I can afford and some bean dishes.

        I still buy the cauliflower with cheeze packages in the produce section at Whole Foods.

        I was still buying Cindy’s no oil salad dressings, so that would be processed and Good Neighbors no oil hummus with Wasa light rye crisp breads.

        The first year, I had Halo nondairy icecream. The second year, I switched to Lara Bars when I get a sugar craving.

        Occasionally, Ezekiel bread or Ezekiel English muffins with 100% pure powdered peanut butter.

        The thing is, I have to be so good at compensating that when I cut out the Lara bars, I find a way to crave things like 5-Bean casserole.

        1. Looking at it, I never did the Oreos and Twizzlers version and that is probably surprising given my background.

          What is obvious to me is that I can’t eat any hummus or the salad dressing.

          I thought if I am eating cauliflower with cheeze for dinner, I could have the hummus for breakfast, but It isn’t working.

          1. I find the hummus and cauliflower with cheeze sauce from Whole Foods comforting. Same thing with the nondairy burritos, but those have oil, so I stopped them, but it seems like I intuitively know how to switch to something else that isn’t going to work. It’s a gift.

            1. And I know I have already annoyed people enough trying to figure it out and the answer is so obvious that I can’t eat any hummus and I can’t eat Cindy’s no-oil salad dressing or Lara bars at all.

              But each thing I have thought, “This will be it” thinking, “Oh, look, there is oil in my plant milk” if I get rid of that it will help. If I get rid of the Starbucks green tea latte, I thought that would help. One thing after another I thought, “This will be it” and none of it has been “it” so I guess I should just shut up and know that I don’t know anything at all yet.

              Worse is that two of my Keto friends have lost 75 pounds now. They still both have diabetes, but one of them was 100 pounds heavier than me and she is so much closer to my weight now.

              1. Most people don’t take into context that we are not made to eat all the same foods. One thing I found incredibly helpful was doing an Ayurvedic Dosha Quiz and then researching my results. It was a huge game changer as I do not do well on beans etc. I suggest it only as a reference point as in all things they are just helpful guide posts…Two places you can verify your self test results:

                Life Spa has amazing articles and suggestions: https://lifespa.com/ayurvedic-health-quizzes/body-type-quiz-dosha-ayurveda/
                Banyan Botanicals, great resource: https://www.banyanbotanicals.com/info/dosha-quiz/

                1. Yes, Dr. John Douillard is really very well-researched and thoughtful. The Ayurvedic system makes sense, as does the CHinese medical system of balancing, something we don’t do much of in the West.

                  1. Douilliard is a chiropractor not an MD. Chiropracty is a pseudoscience. He appears to be a good internet marketer though.

                    Ayurvedic medicine includes the use of toxic heavy metals. Chinese medicines are also based on dubious propositions and include things like tiger penis and rhinoceros horn.

                    On the plus side, both promote regular exercise and the placebo effect can be very powerful. However, ignoring scientific evidence in favour of plausible speculations and alternative health philosophies is probably a losing proposition in the long run. And we are playing for the very highest stakes here.

                    Just as not all ‘vegan’ foods are healthful, not all ‘vegan’ health gurus are trustworthy sources of information.

              2. Worse is that two of my Keto friends have lost 75 pounds now. They still both have diabetes, but one of them was 100 pounds heavier than me and she is so much closer to my weight now.
                ————————————————————
                Deb, just now reading this and thinking it might be something you would want to know about ketones vs glucose as fuel.
                _______________________________________________________________________________
                In the article titled “Diet modulates brain network stability, a biomarker for brain aging, in young adults,” they showed, using large-scale life span neuroimaging datasets, that functional communication between brain regions destabilizes with age, typically in the late 40’s, and that destabilization correlates with poorer cognition and accelerates with insulin resistance. Targeted experiments then showed this biomarker for brain aging to be reliably modulated with consumption of different fuel sources: glucose decreases, and ketones increase, the stability of brain networks. This effect was replicated across both changes to total diet as well as after drinking a fuel-specific calorie-matched supplement.

                “What we found with these experiments involves both bad and good news,”… “The bad news is that we see the first signs of brain aging much earlier than was previously thought. However, the good news is that we may be able to prevent or reverse these effects with diet, mitigating the impact of encroaching hypometabolism by exchanging glucose for ketones as fuel for neurons.”

                “We think that, as people get older, their brains start to lose the ability to metabolize glucose efficiently, causing neurons to slowly starve, and brain networks to destabilize,” said Mujica-Parodi. “Thus, we tested whether giving the brain a more efficient fuel source, in the form of ketones, either by following a low-carb diet or drinking ketone supplements, could provide the brain with greater energy. Even in younger individuals, this added energy further stabilized brain networks.”

                Deb, maybe why your friends are losing weight on the ketone diet is because they get their fuel needs through ketones rather than through glucose. To me this doesn’t suggest you need to stop WFPB eating… and there are ways to add ketones without reverting to animal based eating. As mentioned above, there are ways to add ready made ketones to your diet through a powdered drink (I have some and take it from time to time) orrrrrr, by adding same MCT oil to some of your fare that readily converts to ketones.

                I have some of that as well. That is, I’ve recently purchased some C-8 MCT Oil in a glass bottle. The C-8 is purer than C-8 + C-10. This one is made from organic coconuts. It is very thin. Mine came with a pump that lets you know how much you were getting out. The pump is plastic so I took it out and just eye-ball how much I’m using.

                They suggest you start with a teaspoon at a time. I’ve been pouring it over various foods and forgot I had done so one day and did it again. Let me put it this way… if you feel you need to scour your bowels, this stuff will do it if you load up on it. ‘-) Anyway, I’m back to using it at the lower level and feel it is a good option.

                On the other hand, if I feel I need to do some hard work outside, I fix-up a drink from the powdered ketone mix and drink it down. Seems to keep me energized. It could turn out that you can get the added benefits of ketones without going through the process of feeding the body the makings of internally created ketones.

                And maybe for you Deb, it could stop your cravings?

                https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2020-03/sbu-ssl030420.php

                1. Lonie, Dr. Dale Bredesen in his book on Alzheimer’s recommends eating a diet producing ketones for those with cognitive problems. Most people automatically assume that means high protein and animal products.
                  That isn’t what he recommends however. It can absolutely be done with a WFPB diet. Especially not difficult at all when combined with adequate exercise. The idea is to have your muscles use the carbs you do eat.

                  1. In my opinion, doctors like Bredesen selling sensational books making big claims without good evidence aren’t trustworthy sources of information. What do good quality published scientific studies show?

                    The ketogenic diets marketed today are just the same tired old low carb high fat diets that have been marketed for decades. There is evidence and good reasons to think that high fat diets damage brain health eg

                    ‘The effect of a high-fat diet (HFD) on cognitive function. Consumption of HFD induces reactive oxygen species (ROS). Accumulation of ROS leads to DNA mutation and protein/lipid oxidation and subsequently reduced the mitochondrial function. Overproduction of reactive species that occur in the mitochondrial DNA can lead to neurodegenerative disease and brain dysfunction. Systemic inflammation and hypothalamic inflammation promotes cognitive decline via secretion of inflammatory cytokines such as tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), interleukin-1 beta (IL-1β), and interleukin-6 (IL-6).’
                    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6893649/

                    The benefits of weight loss may mask some of the adverse effects of HFD/keto diets in the short term but the long term effects of eating such diets aren’t likely to be pretty especially if they are high in saturated fats
                    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4107296/

                    1. There is a lot of good evidence that Bredesen’s protocol works. He has well over 1000 people whose cognitive function has improved.
                      Also lumping all fats together is wrong. Each type of fatty acid has a different effect on the human body. Some fat is essential.
                      In point of fact, Bredesen isn’t advocating a high fat diet, he advocates a diet high in lower glycemic vegetables. And, as I said, using the carbs in the diet for exercise. Bredesen is not talking about popular keto plans for weight loss, but a lower glycemic diet for Brain function.

                      Dr. Longo also has a quite similar diet, using nuts and high quality olive oil. Dr. Joel Kahn says Longo has the best possible research on his side. Have you read any of these studies, or spoken to any of these patients?

                      For that matter, Dr. Greger also says avocados and nuts are healthy foods.

                  2. Marilyn

                    Unless I have missed something, to my knowledge, the evidence showing that Bredesen’s approach may work consists entirely of his case studies and the case studies of other physicians who bought a licence to use his protocol

                    Also, Bredesen’s case studies are just that. Case studies. They are almost certainly not the entire population of patients treated by Bredesen and the network of physicians he has licensed to employ his protocol. However this isn’t absolutely clear from his published papers. In fact, I don’t think he has ever reported the total number of patients treated according to his protocol. I’d be happy to be proved wrong but it’s fairly easy to report spectacular results if you just publish cases with positive outcomes and ignore cases with mediocre or negative results. And if you also pick the indicators you measure improvement by, which also seem to have varied from patient to patient if I recollect. For comparison, look at statins for example:

                    ‘Statins used in AD patients had beneficial effects on the scores of MMSE scale in the short term (≤ 12 months), and statins could slow the deterioration of neuropsychiatric status and significantly improve activities of daily living ability in AD patients, but statins did not show an advantage in the change of the ADAS-Cog scale scores.’
                    https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10072-020-04243-6

                    I am not aware of any major body or professional association being swayed by Bredesen’s claims, which I think is telling.

                    As for Bredesen’s diet, he calls it the ‘ketoflex diet’ so I am assuming that it is intended to generate ketones. I don’t see how you can generate ketones without a eating high fat, low carb (or engaging in strict fasting).

                    Yes, there are differences in fatty acids and Alzheimer’s risk. Transfats and saturated fats appear to significantly increase dementia risk while PUFA and MUFA are associated with lower dementia risk (at least relative to TFAs and SFAs). Does Bredesen spell out this distinction?

                    Also if I remember correctly, Bredesen claims that low serum cholesterol is a risk factor for AD – a claim also made by Mercola and similar marketers of alternative health nostrums. In fact and to the contrary, AD may be a consequence of cholesterol dysfunction:

                    ‘genetic studies have linked AD susceptibility to genes related to cholesterol metabolism [37–43], including ApoE, a major cholesterol transporter in the circulation
                    and in the brain [40–44]. Therefore, abnormal lipid metabolism could be an important early event in the pathogenesis of AD’
                    https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.2217/17460875.1.4.441

                    …. and indeed we find that while high cholesterol levels are a risk factor for AD, declining cholesterol levels may be an early preclinical marker of AD

                    ‘Results Cholesterol levels in men with dementia and, in particular, those with Alzheimer disease had declined at least 15 years before the diagnosis and remained lower than cholesterol levels in men without dementia throughout that period. The difference in slopes was robust to adjustment for potential confounding factors, including vascular risk factors, weight change, alcohol intake, and use of lipid-lowering agents.

                    Conclusion A decline in serum total cholesterol levels may be associated with early stages in the development of dementia.’
                    https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamaneurology/fullarticle/793179

                    I may be too cynical but I get the impression that Bredesen uses a scattergun approach (some of these treatments have just gotta work!), including pressing all sorts of fad alternative health buttons (keto, ‘high serum cholesterol is healthy’ etc) for good measure, and then reports successful cases. Hey presto, a sensational best-selling book.

                    Neither Longo nor Greger recommend keto/high fat diets to my knowledge so I am not sure where you are going with that.

                    In conclusion, case studies by physicians with a financial interest in reporting positive results don’t constitute ‘good evidence’in my book.

                    1. Mr. FF, when using a new approach, case studies may be all you have. What caught my attention, was a ‘case study’ here. A patient in his 60’s diagnosed by a board certified neurologist with Alzheimer’s. He had had to resign his job due to his impairment. His neurologist started him on Aricept, which he said helped only for a little while. Being an engineer, he decided to try to figure out the cause of the disease, and read Bredesen’s book. His neurologist was not supportive, but agreed to test him every 3 months or so.
                      His diagnosis went from Alzheimer’s, to Mild Cognitive Impairment, to normal function over a year or so.
                      His neurologist is still not using, or recommending the protocol, “too early to tell”.

                      N of 1? Absolutely! But since there is no alternative, why not allow people to choose for themselves?
                      To me, it’s the worst disease there is, Other diseases rob physical health, Alzheimer’s destroys all that makes us human.

                    2. There are always people who will swear that eating almond kernels cured their cancer or praying to some saint or other delivered miracles. Testimonials aren’t always reliable guides

                      But if you are interested in testimonials, what about this one reviewing Bredesen’s best selling book?

                      ‘This book does not contain accurate information about the number of people who have participated in the protocol, supervised by a trained doctor and the outcome rates. We paid 30k be part of the official immersion training program and have spent thousands more implementing the protocol. We have not had success and none of the other patients we are in touch with have either. We are not getting any answers. I fear this is more about making money than sharing a scientific discovery. Buyer beware! This has been a bitter disappointment.’
                      https://www.amazon.com/End-Alzheimers-Program-Prevent-Cognitive/dp/0735216207

            2. Thanks Deb. My occasional “comfort food” indulgence is Amy’s vegan Mac & Chezze, I upgrade it with turmeric, pepper, and garlic powder. Otherwise I stick to whole grain pastas.

              1. I don’t understand what is confusing about it.

                I taped Dr Greger’s Daily Dozen list to the wall. You can download the app too for your phone. I only eat what is on the list. Pasta isn’t on the list. But rice, oats, quinoa etc is. Dinner might be a baked yam, steamed broccoli, sliced tomato and green salad with 1 tbsp vinegar dressing. I still eat this way, though I will throw the whole foods in a pot for a curry or soup. The list makes it so easy, and the portion sizes are listed (in the video about the daily dozen ) Dr Greger has done the rocket science for us… we just need to wash whole foods and eat them. No brainer.

                1. Barb, I grew up in an Italian community and still love pasta. When I get the occasional craving I make one of the legume pastas. There are black soybean, lentil and chickpea versions. With a homemade sauce of lots of vegetables and a salad it’s a decent meal. I can easily have 6-8 serving of veggies, some cooked, some raw that way.

                  1. Marilyn Kaye, thanks for your comments. I agree.. I really do, but! you are an athletic, disciplined individual. ( look how you did the 5 day fasting mimicking diet for example ! ) You can carefully buy and portion your pasta etc and not worry. Someone who is very overweight and frustrated for years about what constitutes ‘whole food’ and isn’t seeing’ the Daily Dozen on the wall’ maybe needs to back away from lasagne for a while.

                    I make whole foods dishes in different cuisine styles that I enjoy making. I am just saying that a person doesn’t need to know a whole lot in order to eat the well-designed Daily Dozen, and reap the health benefits and weight loss that is sure to follow.

                2. Barb,

                  I agree with you; I don’t understand the confusion, either. Perhaps it’s possible to overthink what one is eating?

                  And I agree that the Daily Dozen app provides excellent recommendations; I use it for guidance. On my phone, there are links from the app to information about what foods are included in each category (eg, beans) and what a serving size is. There are further links to videos with more information about each particular food group. I keep the list in mind when planning meals, and I sometimes actually check the little boxes to see how well I’m doing.

                  But truthfully, I don’t have to understand why a particular food is healthy for me; all I have to do is keep in mind the Daily Dozen recommendations.

            3. This is why I like Dr. Greger’s daily dozen. I’ve found that most people get depressed with a list of what they can’t have. Better to get excited about adding some yummy nutrition.
              I realize that for people with specific health issues, particularly cardiovascular problems lowfat may be recommended. But for most people healthy fat from foods like nuts, seeds, soybeans etc. helps to create satiety, so they don’t overeat.

          2. If you still have weight to lose, you might look into Bright Line Eating, which can be done vegan, veggie, Omni, etc. It is a food addiction type of plan (no sugars or flours/weight or measure everything.)
            I’ve lost about 80 lbs(at my goal weight for the first time in 25+ years.) I had no idea I was addicted to certain foods!
            There is a website, books, and many free YouTube videos

    1. You will see a difference I assure you…we make just about everything at home with an emphasis on low fat. This was the first time my husband got a clean bill of health especially where his cholesterol levels were concerned. We’ve both dropped weight, 15lbs. for me and 10 for my husband. Such a huge turnaround…

    2. I from the get-go wiped out processed foods of any description; did have a transition year with some fish and occasional plain greek yoghurt but gradually upped my fiber so after apologizing to last sashimi I was vr lucky indeed. I do understand people remembering childhood dishes I’m no different; it’s honestly all in the spices; never thought Serbian bean soup (pasouji) could be made without a lamb shank .. surprise! I like this video vr much; timely reminder. In terms of weight loss; I had been 40 lbs overweight but I was also a practising alcoholic so in transition year 6 months to trust myself and get support network and another 3 months to get a dog; a rescue puppy poetry in motion and still hasn’t stopped; best thing I ever did. Best wishes! …. I never use more than a teaspoon of olive oil or tahini in any given meal; nuts seeds inevitable avocado and my lunches usually salads are huge hope this is helpful just taking it one day at a time!

  2. The quality of your diet is just as important as the quantity of food you consume. Just because you eat a vegan diet (or any other particular eating plan) doesn’t mean you’re automatically healthy. It’s also the foods that you select within the realm of that particular eating plan that makes a difference. Doing your food research is key. It’s worth spending some time researching different foods and finding out what will work best for your health within your chosen eating plan.

    1. My eating plan: Eat healthy whole plant foods such as veggies, fruits, beans/legumes, nuts/seeds, grains, and fungi that are amazing for you and drink lots of water and tea. It works for me because it’s super easy to remember.

  3. Beware! Plant-based proteins aren’t vegan. They’re not food. Nine out of ten times they’re simply chemicals laced with MSG and MSG-aliases like autolyzed yeast extract to give them flavor, and they contain manufactured free glutamic acid, the brain-damaging ingredient in MSG.

        1. Adreienne, search the site for MSG. In an old video he shows a study where it did not appear that MSG lives up to its negative rep. I personally stay the hell away from the stuff, but don’t mind yeast extract as much should I run into it for a holiday recipe… it’s concentrated but at least it’s concentrated glutamic acid from a natural source.

        2. Like you Adrienne, I believed the “common knowledge” about MSG and only recently learned there is not evidence for MSG to have such a bad rap. Check these two sources out for some background:
          https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/expert-answers/monosodium-glutamate/faq-20058196
          https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2018/03/20/why-americans-still-avoid-msg-even-though-its-health-effects-have-been-debunked/

          I’m not recommending you use MSG if you feel strongly about it, but you may want to know more about this substance and learn, like I did, that science in this case doesn’t appear to agree with what “every knows”

    1. So true. Watched the CEO of the team responsible for the Impossible Burger and he made it quite clear this stuff was not meant for vegans; goal is to win over dedicated carnivorous omnivores to save grazing land and monocrops etc. Rich Roll podcast; worth watching.

    2. Adrienne,

      They absolutely are vegan. For the record, you could eat a cardboard box and it would be vegan because veganism is one thing and one thing only: the lifestyle which excludes the consumption, use, and exploitation of animals by what is possible and practical.

  4. Mr. High Protein, minimal veggie, lots of beef, keto, etc., not just as a diet but for life, MD, claims:

    No increase in inflammation
    No detriment to blood lipids

    And others are claiming the same.

    What gives?

    1. Key word here- ‘Claims’- he can ‘claim’ anything. Proving it is another thing. The facts are indisputable.
      Why pay attention to claims?

    2. You REALLY have to do your research these days. Who is backing the studies and most importantly, the longevity of the study. Most are over a short period of time…Studies on high protein diets show they work initially but a year or less in the negatives start to show up. Weight gain, inflammation, cholesterol etc. A book that really lays out the hard facts with real research is “Proteinaholic”. The author is a Bariatric Doctor who put every patient on a paleo type diet until he realized how poor his own health was eating the same. Also if you haven’t read Dr. Greger’s book, it is chalk full of real data…
      The poster child of the Paleo movement, the Inuit do not have good health, they die younger than our national average. Their health is beginning to improve as they started supplementing with legumes. The best science is to look at long lived cultures with low health issues that is unbiased & undeniable…

    3. Internet marketers and sellers of sensational books who wear white coats are still just internet marketers and sellers of sensational books.

      High protein diets shorten lifespan in many species
      https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5247493/

      And humans for that matter
      https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article-abstract/109/5/1462/5435773

      As for what’s going on, there is a lucrative market of people who want to be told by a medical doctor that eating steak, eggs, cheese, butter etc etc is not just harmless but healthy. They are happy to buy books and diet plans that reassure them that their diets aren’t causing their obesity, T2D and CVD etc. Just double down on your high fat and high protein diet and you’ll be fine. That’s the formula that made Atkins many many millions of dollars (and ushered tens of million into an early grave). It’s a model that many others have emulated and continue to emulate. It’s a proven formula for wealth-making.

    4. Others have given wise comments, Bill, but I’ll remind you as a nurse who teaches about Fake Nutritional News, that claims by doctors are not research and often are backed up by nothing more that wishful thinking to support an unhealthy diet that they are accustomed to. Dr. Greger has spoken about the lack of nutrition education most doctors have received and your doctor may be a shining example. Ask your doctor to show you well-designed research studies that beef, keto diet, high proteins are healthy and do not lead to inflammation (not infomercials!) . If he cannot, you may determine to find a doctor better-educated and willing to accept research.
      Just as one example, consider what the research says about the health hazards of eating meat https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26780279 Health Risks Associated with Meat Consumption: A Review of Epidemiological Studies.

      Hope this clarifies a bit…

  5. The more spartan my approach to the daily dozen, the better things get. Switching from lettuce and vegetable salads to steamed kale both saves money and improves the quality of the greens. In an effort to save money and avoid can liners I boiled some beans. I discovered that I like pintos cooked with just a little salt and nothing else. A steamed potato with pepper is now much better than a baked potato with butter, sour cream, bacon and cheese. The buttery potato now seems disgusting.So breaking habituation has been important. The food processing industry knows habituation so avoiding processed food really helps the development of better replacement habits. So I believe that if you are overweight and not losing then you aren’t actually doing the daily dozen. It’s whole foods, not just plant based. There’s the exercise and liquids as well.

    Dr. Greger does not mention coconut oil in the video. I’ve heard ideological vegans deliver monologues on the virtues of coconut oil. But there is nothing good about coconut oil except its structural aspects when replacing shortening or butter in baking. Healthwise it’s not good and deserves special mention as there is obviously some baloney about coconut oil going around.

    And if you hate oatmeal then try whole oat groats. They are great with a spot of molasses, teaspoon of cocoa powder and shake of cinnamon.

  6. I think you have to be realistic about your diet. Eating healthy can be taken to extremes. This is like people that are on a very tight budget. They keep the heat so low in the house and dress in layers just to watch TV. They don’t flush the toilet after each use because not doing so saves them about 10 cents. Not washing their clothes or showering when they need to in order to save more money, even though they smell. Buying canned goods with dents in them to save 2 cents on each can,. etc… If it is someone’s birthday, then yes, I will have a small piece of cake to be sociable. I do not keep cake, cookies, or sweets in the house. I am not going to sit there and explain my draconian diet to every one else for the next hour while I nibble on a twig. Once in a blue moon I like to have a sirloin hamburger cooked on the grill with a cold beer. Otherwise I have a small piece of fish or chicken once or twice a week. I mostly eat steamed vegetables, salads, and drink water or perhaps an occasional glass of wine with pasta. No soda, no sugar, no caffeine. If you are an alcoholic or recovering from drug addiction then I can understand 100% avoidance. If you eat 3 meals a day for 365 days that’s 1095 meals a year. If you indulge a bit on 5-10 meals a year, I don’t think it is going to make a difference. Again, I’m talking about a sirloin hamburger on a bun with 1 beer and salad and vegetables with fruit for desert. I’m not talking about a 3 ground chuck burgers with melted cheese, bacon, with extra butter and mayo served with a defib. I think some people put themselves under so much stress about every thing they put in their mouth, that the stress causes more problems than if they just relax occasionally and enjoy a cold beer and a burger, than worrying all night if those carrots their friend served them at dinner were really organic or not.

    1. Jack,

      If you type “coconut oil” in the search bar, you will see a list of videos that mention or even discuss it. I wouldn’t eat it, though I do use it as a body lotion.

      And it’s not necessary for baking; it’s possible to make delicious plant food baked goodies without it. Even without oil at all. There are recipes on Forks Over Knives, and individual sites sites such as https://www.veganricha.com/. (There are lots of other sites).

      Oh, and steel cut oats are a nice compromise between oatmeal and oat groats. Especially when cooked with apples, raisins, cinnamon and nutmeg, and plant milk. Just sayin’…

    2. Jack, if you are satisfied with the state of your health, I’d say your approach is just right for you. I do think being satisfied should include being satisfied with your Dr’s test results. Some people are just born healthy and are able to waver from a “draconian” diet.

      But I think many here are facing specific health problems and their best result comes from following a strict diet. The good news (for them) is they come to love their diet. Maybe I should include myself in that category as there are changes I have made that preclude me from eating a food that is ingrained in my consciousness as bad for me.

      On the other hand, I do deviate from the so called “best practices” diets, and enjoy smaller amounts of the forbidden foods that are often reviled here. ‘-)

      1. Hi Lonie. I think that those with serious health issues who learn to love their diet are doing so because they have the proper attitude. I just think that those who struggle with their diet to the point where it is causing them so much undo stress, would be better off indulging once in awhile and not trying to restrict themselves to the point of misery. I also think that exercise and meditation help a lot with making a spiritual connection between our mind and body. Just my opinion.

  7. My version of the vegan thing is the whole food plant-based diet ala Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn. It stipulates “no oil”, not even olive or canola, etc. I only cheat with white pasta blended with whole wheat pasta so I cannot taste the whole wheat at all, it’s like 60 white, 40 whole wheat. I keep the fat out except for occasional spray of PAM such that a can lasts about half a year. I also used a jar tomato sauce with a tiny bit (1 g) oil because they all have some oil and it’s needed to absorb lycopene, an oil-soluble nutrient important for prostate health. Most jar sauces contain 2 to 8 g oil, but Classico is very low, as is Cucina Antica. The worst is probably Rao’s which is quite high in olive oil. The diet works well for the heart thing, however weight will go up a little if I eat too much pasta or eat snacky bars like peanut/oatmeal crunchy things, simple because they get too numerous. I started that habit when going to the gym I wanted a quick carb hit, but in weeks found these bars followed me around everywhere, the car, the house, pockets, etc. and I put on 10 lbs. My diet pushed my weight down from 215 to 175, then it came up to 180 for years, then 190 with the bars thing, now back to around 182, coming back to 180 slowly. I exercise with weights, which helps burn calories off slowly since muscle consumes calories, and I also climb stairs which keeps my cardio in shape. You can’t use nuts at all, or olives, avocados, coconuts and expect to keep weight down, I’ve tried all those things. For sustained energy and to remove cravings, try adding a little cooked pearl barley to dishes, it has 4 times slower sugar release than brown rice. Gladiators used barley for over 1000 years to keep their energy up in the arenas of ancient Rome, and they could eat whatever they wanted, but they were not stupid, they chose the barley and a little beans with it. As long as animal products are left out, my blood sugar stays in range but if I cheat it rapidly goes to range of out of control diabetic. Comes back in range if I stick to the diet. I’ve succeeded in staving off heart disease problems so far and plan to continue on the wfpbd of Dr. Esselstyn. It is getting easier to do, and adding Indian spices to the legumes and grains really makes things taste great. I put about a dozen spices in little boxes which are put inside a bigger box with tight lid so I just open it up like a tackle box and use pinches of this and that, more or less randomly, and I get great flavors, much better than processed foods can get. My body is starting to crave the whole plant foods especially with the Indian spices, and I use some soy sauce with lower sodium (PF Chang’s soy sauce is quite delicious) in small amounts for a great flavor with the Indian spices. All these things make the diet healthier and satisfying. I love Mexican salsas as well. An Indian dish lately for me, is chick peas in both light and dark colors, brown basmatic rice, wild rice, barley, cauliflower florets, corn, garam masala Indian spice, PF Chang soy sauce, onion, mushroom all lightly steamed. I cook the chickpeas and rices in a pressure cooker and store half in the fridge, the other half in the freezer, so cooking is minimized. Good luck! Bob :)

    1. One thing Esselstyn, especially his son, Rip, says, it “just read the labels” when you see oil, fat, etc you will know how it will impact you. Your “phony cheese” is better than real, but not from the caloric effects, weight gain, artery damage, etc. I know it’s hard to get that “satisfied” feeling without some fat in your food, but after a few months without it, I noticed my favorite “veggie shwarma” dish from the Mediterranean Kitchen restaurant tasted disgustingly oily and I couldn’t finish it, which totally shocked me. The fat receptors in the brain take 3 months to down-regulate, says Dr. Esslestyn, and persisting is worth it. Having a dire prognosis of heart artery clogging was very helpful in motivating me, I’m almost sorry for people who think they’re healthy and can’t quite drive themselves to go all the way whole food plant-based with no added oil or oily foods. It’s really not so bad, it’s a kicky little diet that you get stuck on eventually if you do it full-bore, so try it out and have some faith. The research results on Essy’s diet are stunning, it’s just people don’t want to be pushy about it, and it sounds so fierce, it’s really just very cool.

  8. My wife suffers from Rheumatoid and Osteoarthritis and has been on a Whole Foods Plant-Based Diet with no dairy or meat for over a year now. She has discontinued taking Methotrexate RX prescribed by her Rheumatologist. She exercises daily and would appreciate any other suggestions that would be helpful to her. We are both members of Sun City Hilton Head Eat Smart Live Longer Club and have heard Dr. Greger speak at our club and follow all his videos and have read his books.

    1. Fran, if your wife is still having joint swelling and pain, she should do an elimination diet. After making the changes you mention, it’s the next step for my patients.
      Some are helped by avoiding tomatoes and peppers, some find they react to wheat, for others it’s citrus. All these are good foods, but just not for everyone.
      Many don’t react to the food itself, but to the glyphosate in them. For those people switching to an organic form makes all the difference.
      For the osteoarthritis part, adding the mineral Boron, 6mg. per day helps many. Takes a few months to see the difference. (You can check online and see if there is enough Boron in your local area.)
      Congratulations to her for the changes she has already made!

  9. Why is it that when I look up studies on egg consumption on pubmed.gov, I am unable to find any that show an association with heart disease?

      1. Barb has an excellent point… The egg industry is filthy rich. They have done mounds of their own “research” and then some. Pubmed contains all published data, not just the pure stuff.

        Try checking the links posted below Dr. Greger’s egg videos on this website as those are direct links to quality studies.

        I can’t imagine trying to scour through pubmed searching for the best studies… it would take a lot of dedication and time!

      1. An excellent example of how you can cherry-pick for anything to come out as a positive or less negative. Especially easy to do when you pretend the mounds of existing data dissipate with each “pro” claim.

        1. An excellent example of how you can cherry-pick for anything…
          ———————————————————————————-
          Heh! BMJ (erstwhile British Medical Journal) is some fruit tree for cherry picking. ‘-)

          But I get it… DR Greger doesn’t cherry pick from the BMJ so naturally you would label anything from there as Forbidden Fruit. ‘-)

          1. Lonie, nice try… I don’t care where the link came from, it’s the content and quality of the study that matters including who funded it, etc. We all know this here, even you know exactly what I mean. Thus the rest of my comment… “Especially easy to do when you pretend the mounds of existing data dissipate with each ‘pro’ claim.”

            If you think it will help your argument, I’m sure you can find some pro-egg stuff on pubmed, too. I have absolutely no doubt about it. You could find pro-saturated fat junk, too, I don’t doubt.

            1. S, I wish you could be more open-minded about the study rather than dismissing it out of hand because it somewhat (not entirely because it limits the intake to one per day to be benefical) counteracts the fashionable dogma that eggs are unhealthy.

              Thirty two years is a pretty long (observational) study, no?
              _______________________________________

              “To evaluate the association between egg intake and CVD, repeated measures of diet and lifestyle factors over a long period of time are needed. It is also important to consider the effect of eggs on CVD risk compared with other animal and plant-based foods.

              So a team of US researchers investigated the link between egg intake and cases of CVD – including non-fatal heart attack, fatal coronary heart disease and stroke – using repeated measures of diet over a period of up to 32 years, starting from 1980.”

              1. Having a mind does not equal lacking an open one, Lonie… that’s a cheap argument anyone could use for anything.

                “counteracts the fashionable dogma that eggs are unhealthy.”

                Lol, you’re joking, right? Quite LITERALLY the opposite is true… the very and extremely “fashionable dogma” is that eggs are healthy and a great source of protein and a rich source of nutrients–none of which is true. But what the so very unpopular science has to say about eggs is that they are linked to an array of diseases and health issues to heart disease to cancer risk to diabetes and so on.

                Again, the collective data–which is overwhelming–all dissipates with one study? Who funded the study? And how well-designed was the study? These things are so tricky it can take an expert to find the flaws in a study. And thanks to experts like Dr. Greger teaching how to spot flaws in studies as he goes along, many of us know that more than ever. And we know how cleverly desired outcomes can be crafted.

                Moreover, let’s say there is a seemingly flawless study that shows that cigarette smoking, in some given moderation, is safe to do… That wouldn’t and shouldn’t make us thing “oh, hey, smoking is ok then?” no, because we already have the overwhelming data. Instead that should raise the flag “what the hell went on in that study?”

                1. Quite LITERALLY the opposite is true… the very and extremely “fashionable dogma” is that eggs are healthy and a great source of protein and a rich source of nutrients–none of which is true.
                  —————————————————————————————-
                  I suspect almost everyone would disagree with you… eggs are one of the most nutritious foods on the planet. Chickens are easily manipulated to have even healthier eggs through their feed. Feed that contains flax seed for instance.
                  __________________________________________________
                  “This depends on how the hens were raised and what they were fed.

                  Conventional eggs: These are your standard supermarket eggs. The hens that lay these eggs are usually fed grain, supplemented with vitamins and minerals.
                  Organic eggs: The hens were not treated with hormones and received organic feed.
                  Pastured eggs: Chickens are allowed to roam free, eating plants and insects (their natural food) along with some commercial feed.
                  Omega-3-enriched eggs: Basically, they’re like conventional chickens except that their feed is supplemented with an omega-3 source like flax seeds. May have had some access to the outside.” https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/pastured-vs-omega-3-vs-conventional-eggs
                  ——————————————————————————————————–
                  And since this was a 32 year study, the early eggs consumed may not even be as healthy as the ones available today… but then, we don’t know if most of the cohort ate the best or the cheapest eggs.
                  ________________________________________________
                  Again, the collective data–which is overwhelming–all dissipates with one study?
                  —————————————————————————————————————
                  No, I’m not saying that… I’m just saying the data stands on its own. Eating too many eggs, as pointed out in the study, leads to health complications. Just like, to your point about cigarettes, eating too many of them is also very unhealthy… but who knows, maybe someday a “flawless study that shows” eating just one cigarette per day can cure CoVid-19. ‘-)

                  1. “I suspect almost everyone would disagree with you… eggs are one of the most nutritious foods on the planet. Chickens are easily manipulated to have even healthier eggs through their feed. Feed that contains flax seed for instance.”

                    I agree that almost every standard-American-dieter who hasn’t learned anything on the real science of nutrition would disagree with the fact that eggs are not a highly nutritious food or a food for humans at all. But you would get more boasted antioxidants from a bowl of captain crunch, more protein from 3 cups of raw kale; a tiny serving of oats; ¼ cup of almods; 2 tablespoons of peanut butter; 1 cup of soy milk; a large potato, etc… and that is if we’re comparing it to a LARGE egg.
                    The boasted biotin in eggs is not bioavailable to us so therefore, we do not even get one of the most boasted nutrients in eggs, from eggs. Worse than that, if your eggs are not properly cooked or raw, they contain avidin which not only binds to the biotin within the egg, but exceeds it by binding to ANY biotin you’re taking in at that meal with the eggs and can and has actually caused biotin deficiency.

                    The amount of nutrients in 1 large egg: potassium 1% vitamin A 5% calcium 2% vitamin D 11% B12 (if the birds are being supplemented that is) 10% vitamin C 0% Iron 3% vitamin B6 5% magnesium 1% …if you think that is an impressive array of nutrition from something with so many harmful side effects (or even something with no harmful side effects) you are unfamiliar with the food chain.
                    There is ONE impressive nutrient in eggs, so in this regard it is indeed a powerhouse of a particular nutrition… 1 single little egg contains 62% DV of cholesterol… something our bodies are not supposed to ingest but make on our own.

                    But even though you’re, sadly, probably right on the number of people who would disagree, the USDA certainly doesn’t disagree with my statement: https://nutritionfacts.org/video/who-says-eggs-arent-healthy-or-safe/

                    It’s a ridiculous argument to say that a “food” can be made healthier by feeding/supplementing the animal who produces it. Dr. Greger has referred to meat, for example, as the ultimate processed food because you’re getting the very minute remnants of the stripped and leftover nutrients that the animal ate.

                    “I’m just saying the data stands on its own.”

                    No it doesn’t, not when it completely contradicts the overwhelming collection of the most thorough science. And again, studies like the one you’re presenting are so easy to manipulate for a desired outcome. Using the “moderation” spiel is exactly the egg industry’s MO to get around the whole cholesterol thing. So again, who funded the study? …An important factor among others.

                    And all of the battle rages on so the egg industry can stay multibillionaires and the literal holocaust of the birds for their eggs continues on as does the ill health of uninformed and moreover, MISINFORMED public.

                    What a thing to spend your time arguing… or trying to, anyway.

                    1. It’s a ridiculous argument to say that a “food” can be made healthier by feeding/supplementing the animal who produces it.

                      There is ONE impressive nutrient in eggs, so in this regard it is indeed a powerhouse of a particular nutrition… 1 single little egg contains 62% DV of cholesterol…
                      ————————————————————————————————–
                      FROM THE WEBMD ARCHIVES
                      What would we do without the egg? It’s a dietary mainstay, not only for breakfast but to feed finicky kids, stand in for a quick lunch or supper, blend raw into holiday nogs, and as an ingredient in all kinds of sweet and savory dishes.

                      But for a few decades there, eggs had a rather unwholesome reputation. Thanks to its high cholesterol content, the egg was deemed villainous. Years went by while many of us shunned eggs, ate only the whites, or ventured into the world of egg substitutes.

                      Then, in 2000, the American Heart Association (AHA) revised its dietary guidelines and gave healthy adults the green light to enjoy eggs once again. The AHA’s guidelines now allow an egg a day for healthy adults while still advising a total daily cholesterol limit of 300 mg.

                      The confusion over eggs stems from their cholesterol content. One large egg contains 213 mg of cholesterol, accounting for two-thirds of the recommended daily limit.

                      When scientists learned that high blood cholesterol was associated with heart disease, foods high in cholesterol logically became suspect. But after 25 years of study, it has become evident that cholesterol in food is not the culprit — saturated fat has a much bigger effect on blood cholesterol. Full-fat dairy products and fatty meats are examples of foods that are loaded with saturated fat and which trigger the body to produce cholesterol.

                      Let Us Eat Eggs
                      With science on our side, we can once again enjoy the wonderfully nutritious egg. Along with milk, eggs contain the highest biological value (or gold standard) for protein. One egg has only 75 calories but 7 grams of high-quality protein, 5 grams of fat, and 1.6 grams of saturated fat, along with iron, vitamins, minerals, and carotenoids.

                      The egg is a powerhouse of disease-fighting nutrients like lutein and zeaxanthin. These carotenoids may reduce the risk of age-related macular degeneration, the leading cause of blindness in older adults. And brain development and memory may be enhanced by the choline content of eggs.

                      But the full health benefits of eggs can only be realized if you store them properly — in the refrigerator — and cook them thoroughly to kill any potential bacteria. As a child, I loved my father’s eggnogs, made with fresh, raw eggs blended with milk, vanilla and ice. These delicious treats are no longer considered a good option — unless pasteurized eggs are used in place of the raw eggs.

                      Creating Designer Eggs
                      Not all eggs are created equally. Manufacturers and chicken farmers have taken steps to enhance eggs’ nutritional properties, spawning an entire industry devoted to improving the dietary quality of the egg.

                      “Designer” eggs may come from chickens that are allowed to roam freely (free range) or whose feed is supplemented with omega-3 fatty acids. Hens given feed that is free of animal products produce vegetarian eggs, while those given all-organic feed produce organic eggs.

                      Some chicken feed is enriched with canola oil, bran, kelp, flaxseed, marine algae, fish oil, or vitamin E to increase the eggs’ healthy omega-3 fatty acid content. Certain types of feed are designed to reduce the saturated and total fat content of the egg yolk. Marigold extract has been used to increase the lutein content of eggs.

                      Beyond nutrition, other specialty eggs use a pasteurization process that heats the egg just enough to kill bacteria without affecting the texture of the raw product.

                      CONTINUE READING BELOW
                      Keep in mind that, with designer eggs, you generally get designer prices. The good news is that if you prefer organic, vegetarian, or nutrient-enriched eggs, they are widely available on the market. When choosing eggs, check the label and contrast the nutritional content of designer eggs to the profile of the generic egg, which is 213 mg cholesterol, 1.6 g saturated fat, 1 IU vitamin E, and 35-40 mg omega-3s.

                      A Satisfying Source of Protein
                      Another good reason to eat eggs is that they help keep you feeling full. An egg, a few slices of whole-grain toast, and half a grapefruit is a low-calorie breakfast that will keep you satisfied until lunch. As you face the challenge of losing weight, it’s important to eat foods that are naturally nutrient-rich and stave off hunger between meals. The egg is an “eggcellent” example.

                      Eggs are easy to eat, well-tolerated by young and old, adaptable to any meal, and inexpensive. Whether you prefer designer or generic eggs, manage your egg intake over the course of a week. On days when you enjoy eggs for breakfast, it’s wise to limit foods high in cholesterol and saturated fat for the rest of the day.

                      Of course, it’s a good idea to know your blood cholesterol level and talk with your physician about the cholesterol and saturated fat content of your eating plan. People with high cholesterol levels should follow their doctor’s advice about eating eggs.
                      =====================================================================================================
                      What a thing to spend your time arguing…
                      —————————————————————-
                      AGREED! Especially since I haven’t eaten an egg for quite a few years. But according to the study, consumed properly, there is the potential for fewer deaths and CVD for those who eat eggs. And maybe the study will cause those who eat more than an egg a day or 5 a week… maybe it will cause them to reduce that number down to the suggested limit to gain a potential health benefit.

                      Such a long and large study, in my mind, mirrors the great majority of average populations. You know, the ones who don’t obsess about the individual specs of the food they eat. Give them a simplified result from the change to the way they eat and they just may adopt that change.

                      I may even go back to eating a poached designer egg once in a while. Not eating them regularly would make that an inexpensive choice.

                    2. Dear God, Lonie… there is no way I’m going to spend my time reading all that. Especially knowing it is all utter nonsense that goes against the mounds of scientific fact in regards to humans and egg consumption; a desperate attempt to defend a bad habit.

                      But wow…. I knew you were super pro-egg by your comments, but I had no idea you were THIS upset about the scientific data. It is amazing the lengths people go to in order to defend their own habit… I get it, you want to feel good about the thing you like eating, but it’s not ok to not care who that aggressive misinformation to defend it, might and does harm—human and otherwise.

                      But if this isn’t the end of the conversation, and you want to write another report, go ahead and have the last word. No matter how hard you try, you can’t change the truth. But we’re all free to waste our time in almost anyway we’d like.

                    3. Dear God, Lonie
                      ————————–
                      Thanks for the promotion, but I’m not quite there yet. ‘-)
                      ______________________________________________
                      there is no way I’m going to spend my time reading all that.
                      ——————————————————————————–
                      Yeah, it is pretty long… but I think you will read it because deep down inside you know the truth will set you free. ‘-)

    1. Kristen, I applaud you for wanting to look at studies on pubmed on the association of eggs and heart disease. As it turns out, this is one of those times when what you see in pubmed may not be as helpful as it usually is because the egg industry has spend tons of money to publish misleading studies which unfortunately have been accepted as credible despite bias and bad design.

      Yes, there ARE studies that conclusively show a positive association of heart disease and eggs in PubMed but there are other studies claiming the opposite. Dr. Greger clearly outlines why this is happening. I’d suggest you go to this link for an overview https://nutritionfacts.org/topics/eggs/ then check out the many videos on eggs which cite credible studies showing that positive egg-heart disease relationship (as well as other videos showing the evidence of the association of eggs with other negative health conditions. You can just go to the Sources to find the studies appearing in PubMed that you were looking for)
      Hope this is helpful and clears up the egg confusion which the Egg Board does a great job of creating!

  10. AND NOW, A WORD FROM DR. GREGER
    .
    The audio on this presentation is very difficult to hear clearly. Although I can hear quite well, Dr. Greger’s little voice goes through conversational volume changes which kill his clarity. He speaks in the same manner and volume as if he were at a much closer distance, and hopes the mike catches all of it.

    Clarity is why all professional speakers sustain their average volume and pitch deliberately, so we can hear every word. If Dr. Greger wants to speak in only a conversational style and volume level, the audio specialist must boost the mike pickup level to capture his every syllable.

    As noted before, the difference in volume between the video opening music (signature theme) and Greger’s narrative voice is huge, meaning we always must adjust the volume upward quickly to catch Dr, Greger’s opening words.

    1. Yes the opening music is unpleasantly loud compared to the sound in the rest of the video. I have even wondered if it could cause hearing damage to those of us wearing headphones.

    1. “So, they conclude that yes, plant-based diets are associated with substantially lower risk of developing type 2 diabetes, but it may not be enough to just lower the intake of animal foods, but also less-healthy plant foods as well.”

      Shorthand of that final clause: It may not be enough to lower A, but also B.

      It’s a heck of a sentence to parse.

  11. Nothing is ever ‘always’ or ‘never’. Air is not always healthy. Vitamins are not always healthy. Vegans are not always healthy. Surprise to who exactly?

  12. I’m trying to prevent the formation of postoperative abdominal peritoneal adhesion. I’m having surgery for scar tissue after a hysterectomy and want to do everything I can to prevent more scar tissue from forming. Any specific foods to eat or not to eat?

    1. That is a good question, Brenda… Are there any foods that can help prevent/reduce scarring and any that might promote greater scarring… That would be very useful to know!

  13. Hi Dr. Greger

    Thank you for all you, and your team, do to help us make “right”choices in order to stay as healthy and as vibrant as possible. However, one still can be lost when deciding what “right” lifestyle is. I, and I’m sure many other of you followers did too, came across conflicting information. Here is one I would love to see your comments on:

    “Being overweight is now believed to help protect patients with an increasingly long list of medical problems, including pneumonia, burns, stroke, cancer, hypertension, and heart disease…” https://qz.com/550527/obesity-paradox-scientists-now-think-that-being-overweight-is-sometimes-good-for-your-health/
    Thank You So Very Much.

    1. Sceptic

      This association between being overweight and lower risk for disease is probably a consequence of ‘reverse causation’.

      Many diseases cause weight loss or loss of appetite which in turn leads to weight loss. Common examples are HIV/AIDS, cancer and TB but there are others eg see
      https://www.mayoclinic.org/symptoms/unexplained-weight-loss/basics/causes/sym-20050700

      This weight loss can occur years before a formal diagnosis is made.and unexplained weight loss therefore may be a preclinical indicator of disease as seen eg in Alzheimer’s
      https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5739594/

      It is therefore perhaps not surprising in a society where being overweight/obese is normal that simplistic observational studies find an association between not being overweight and disease states/increased mortality risk. In most cases, though, it is probably the disease states and poor health that cause people to be relatively underweight – not the other way around.

      I can only think of two conditions where not being overweight might be a risk factor. These are trauma and infections. In both cases, the body needs to manufacture very large numbers of new cells very quickly. In the first case, the body needs to build new tissue to repair damage. In the second, it needs to produce large numbers of killer cells to fight infections. In these cases, having large amounts of readily available energy and readily available building blocks of new cells like cholesterol can be an advantage. Fat people will, all other things being equal, probably do better in such circumstances even though they will be at significantly higher risk of chronic diseases like CVD, diabetes, Alzheimer’s and cancer.

  14. Lol, you (rightfully) throw in palm oil-free to the moral and ethical dieter and a lot of that junk is cut out, but there’s still plenty of junky options. To me it seems that the way that guarantees the healthiest outcome–the most diligence–is those who are in it for morals/ethics because those are the ones who will NEVER waver, but who also learn the science and take their health seriously. The WFPB VEGAN is certainly the gold standard in commitment and health I would say.

    These results are so cool to see because they fit with my experience going vegan. I was not a WFPB vegan when I first started and was eating LOTS of refined foods. Despite that, my health actually improved pretty dramatically in various ways. But when I started shifting to a whole foods diet, the effects were freaking incredible. Just to name one… I actually needed glasses but was avoiding it, my vision improved to perfection. I’m not even joking, I couldn’t read road signs to say the least.

  15. I’m sorry, but this is nonsense. I’ve been meat-free for 35 years. I’ve NEVER known a vegan who eats Pop Tarts, Tater Tots, Doritos, sugary cereal, etc. The vast majority of vegans avoid these and other ultra-processed and junk foods.

    1. Then your social circles are limited. Most of us here know many “vegans” that eat all those vegan junk food items. They are content in their protection of animals but often quite unaware of the damage they are doing to their own health.

    2. godfree kd, how is this nonsense? All he’s saying is that vegan-friendly food doesn’t have to be healthy. And indeed, veganism is not about health, it is about morals/ethics; justice and compassion. It’s simply about doing what’s right and respecting other life.

      Not all vegans eat healthy or eat optimally all the time, which is ok if that’s what they want to do. To suggest that all vegans are incidentally into health or understand how to eat for optimal health is absurd.

  16. Thank you for this video.
    I have been vegan for the last nine years.
    I went to the Vegan Conference in the summer of 2017,in Pennsylvania, and was appalled about how much sweeteners were used in the vegan foods provided.
    Sweeteners feed cancer cells. Although they are plant based, I would put them in the unhealthy end of the vegan food choice spectrum.

    1. Carol, sugar feeds cancer cells no different than oxygen feeds cancer. While it’s true we should limit our intake of added sweeteners and choose smarter ones over the most refined forms, for multiple reasons, the hype over sugar and cancer was blown way out of proportion and that popular conversation would have been much better spent on meat (especially processed meat) and dairy and even eggs on increasing cancer risk dramatically.

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