Should We All Take Aspirin to Prevent Heart Disease?

Should We All Take Aspirin to Prevent Heart Disease?
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The benefits of taking a daily aspirin must be weighed against the risk of internal bleeding.

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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.

Salicylic acid, the active ingredient in aspirin, has been used for thousands of years as an anti-inflammatory painkiller in the form of willow tree bark extract, which Hippocrates used to treat fever and to alleviate pain during childbirth. It became trademarked as a drug in 1899, and remains, to this day, probably “the most commonly used drug in the world.” One of the reasons it remains so popular, despite the fact that we have better painkillers now, is that it also acts as a blood thinner. Millions of people now “take aspirin on a daily basis to treat or prevent [heart] disease.”

It all started back in 1953, with the publication of this landmark study in the New England Journal of Medicine: “Length of Life and Cause of Death in Rheumatoid Arthritis.” The paper started out with the sentence: “It has often been said that the way to live a long life is to acquire rheumatism.” They found fewer deaths than expected from accidents—which could be explained by the fact that people with arthritis probably aren’t out, you know, going skiing—but, also, significantly fewer deaths from heart attacks. Maybe, it was all the aspirin they were taking for their joints that was thinning their blood, and preventing clots forming in their coronary arteries, in their heart. And so, in the 1960s, there were calls to study whether aspirin would help those at risk for blood clots. And, in the 1970s, we got our wish—studies suggesting regular aspirin intake protects against heart attacks.

Today, the official recommendation is that low-dose aspirin is recommended for all patients with heart disease. But, in the general population, for those without a known history of heart disease or stroke, daily aspirin is only recommended when the heart disease benefits outweigh the risks of bleeding.

The bleeding complications associated with aspirin use may be considered “an underestimated hazard in clinical [medical] practice.” For those who’ve already had a heart attack, the risk/benefit analysis is clear. If you took 10,000 patients, daily low-dose aspirin use “would be expected to prevent approximately 250 major vascular events”—such as heart attacks, strokes, or, the most major event of all, death. But, that same aspirin would be expected to cause approximately 40 major extracranial bleeding events—meaning bleeding so bad you have to be hospitalized.

“Thus, the net benefit of aspirin for secondary prevention”—meaning like preventing your second heart attack—”would substantially exceed the bleeding hazard. For [every] 6 major vascular events prevented, [only about] 1 major bleeding event would occur.” So, “the value of aspirin for secondary prevention is not disputed.”

But, if you instead took 10,000 patients who had never had a heart attack or stroke—yet—and tried to use aspirin to prevent clots in the first place (so-called primary prevention), daily low-dose aspirin would only be expected to prevent seven major vascular events, at the cost of causing a hemorrhagic stroke (bleeding within the brain), along with three other major bleeding events.

So then, the benefits are only like two to one, which is a little too close for comfort—which is why the new European guidelines do not recommend aspirin for the general population, especially given the additional risk of aspirin causing smaller bleeds within the brain as well.

If only there were a safe, simple, side effect-free solution. And, there is. Ornish and Esselstyn proved that even advanced crippling heart disease could not only just be prevented and treated, but reversed, with a plant-based diet, centered around grains, beans, vegetables, fruits, with nuts and seeds treated as condiments—and no oils, dairy, meat, poultry, or fish.

Bill Castelli, long-time director of the longest running epidemiological study in the world—the famous Framingham Heart Study—was once “asked what he would do to reverse the [coronary artery disease] epidemic if he were omnipotent. His answer? ‘Have the public eat the diet…described by Dr. T. Colin Campbell.” In other words, he told PBS, if Americans ate healthy enough, “the whole [heart disease epidemic] would disappear.” Though, Esselstyn clarifies, we’re not just talking about vegetarianism. “This new paradigm” of heart disease reversal means “exclusively plant-based nutrition.”

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image credit: stu via flickr. Images have been modified.

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.

Salicylic acid, the active ingredient in aspirin, has been used for thousands of years as an anti-inflammatory painkiller in the form of willow tree bark extract, which Hippocrates used to treat fever and to alleviate pain during childbirth. It became trademarked as a drug in 1899, and remains, to this day, probably “the most commonly used drug in the world.” One of the reasons it remains so popular, despite the fact that we have better painkillers now, is that it also acts as a blood thinner. Millions of people now “take aspirin on a daily basis to treat or prevent [heart] disease.”

It all started back in 1953, with the publication of this landmark study in the New England Journal of Medicine: “Length of Life and Cause of Death in Rheumatoid Arthritis.” The paper started out with the sentence: “It has often been said that the way to live a long life is to acquire rheumatism.” They found fewer deaths than expected from accidents—which could be explained by the fact that people with arthritis probably aren’t out, you know, going skiing—but, also, significantly fewer deaths from heart attacks. Maybe, it was all the aspirin they were taking for their joints that was thinning their blood, and preventing clots forming in their coronary arteries, in their heart. And so, in the 1960s, there were calls to study whether aspirin would help those at risk for blood clots. And, in the 1970s, we got our wish—studies suggesting regular aspirin intake protects against heart attacks.

Today, the official recommendation is that low-dose aspirin is recommended for all patients with heart disease. But, in the general population, for those without a known history of heart disease or stroke, daily aspirin is only recommended when the heart disease benefits outweigh the risks of bleeding.

The bleeding complications associated with aspirin use may be considered “an underestimated hazard in clinical [medical] practice.” For those who’ve already had a heart attack, the risk/benefit analysis is clear. If you took 10,000 patients, daily low-dose aspirin use “would be expected to prevent approximately 250 major vascular events”—such as heart attacks, strokes, or, the most major event of all, death. But, that same aspirin would be expected to cause approximately 40 major extracranial bleeding events—meaning bleeding so bad you have to be hospitalized.

“Thus, the net benefit of aspirin for secondary prevention”—meaning like preventing your second heart attack—”would substantially exceed the bleeding hazard. For [every] 6 major vascular events prevented, [only about] 1 major bleeding event would occur.” So, “the value of aspirin for secondary prevention is not disputed.”

But, if you instead took 10,000 patients who had never had a heart attack or stroke—yet—and tried to use aspirin to prevent clots in the first place (so-called primary prevention), daily low-dose aspirin would only be expected to prevent seven major vascular events, at the cost of causing a hemorrhagic stroke (bleeding within the brain), along with three other major bleeding events.

So then, the benefits are only like two to one, which is a little too close for comfort—which is why the new European guidelines do not recommend aspirin for the general population, especially given the additional risk of aspirin causing smaller bleeds within the brain as well.

If only there were a safe, simple, side effect-free solution. And, there is. Ornish and Esselstyn proved that even advanced crippling heart disease could not only just be prevented and treated, but reversed, with a plant-based diet, centered around grains, beans, vegetables, fruits, with nuts and seeds treated as condiments—and no oils, dairy, meat, poultry, or fish.

Bill Castelli, long-time director of the longest running epidemiological study in the world—the famous Framingham Heart Study—was once “asked what he would do to reverse the [coronary artery disease] epidemic if he were omnipotent. His answer? ‘Have the public eat the diet…described by Dr. T. Colin Campbell.” In other words, he told PBS, if Americans ate healthy enough, “the whole [heart disease epidemic] would disappear.” Though, Esselstyn clarifies, we’re not just talking about vegetarianism. “This new paradigm” of heart disease reversal means “exclusively plant-based nutrition.”

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image credit: stu via flickr. Images have been modified.

Doctor's Note

More on preventing, arresting, and reversing heart disease in:

This is the first of three videos on the risks versus benefits of taking aspirin. Preventing heart disease and stroke are not the only benefits, though. A daily aspirin may also decrease the risk of certain cancers. In that case, should we take an aspirin a day, after all? See my next video, Should We All Take Aspirin to Prevent Cancer? And then, I end with Plants with Aspirin Aspirations.

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

166 responses to “Should We All Take Aspirin to Prevent Heart Disease?

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  1. Is there any backstory information that you could share about how Nutritionfacts was recently identified by PropOrNot as a Russian propaganda website? Perhaps there was a post about Russian Red Kale?




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    1. The Washington Post seems to have a lot to do with this. https://consortiumnews.com/2016/11/30/the-fake-news-about-fake-news/

      Every once in a while we’re urged to take aspirin every day ’cause it’s so darn good for our hearts. VERY rarely, I might take half an aspirin for a headache brought on by stress or whatever, but I avoid all drugs. And now they’re saying that even if we have low/normal BP in a doc’s office (I stay away from docs too), we could still have high BP. Scare porn all over the place.




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    2. GreenSmoothieParty: I don’t know what the real story is, but what I heard was that some anonymous group used a mysterious algorithm to come up with the list. And then they did nothing to verify if the list was accurate. I’d call that bad science being reported by bad journalism. I don’t know how true that is. I’m just sharing what I heard. Since, as @Kevin pointed out, Dr. Greger got NutritionFacts removed from the list very quickly, I think my story is probably pretty close to what happened. But who knows, maybe it was as simple as some sort of typo or something.




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    3. Totally makes sense. Providing information that people can use to improve their health sounds like one of the more insidious forms of sabotage.




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    4. How could a website devoted to science-based truth NOT be on their list?

      What I find amazing is the unconsciousness of most of the commentaries on this site….like some first graders in a sandbox unaware that down the street some crazies with bulldozers and tanks are lining up to raze the landscape….sandbox included.




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  2. this is an off topic question but, does it matter if I choose whole grains every meal if I’m eating a cup of beans and lots of veggies at each meal? I ask because when I get over 60g of fiber a day my stomach starts to hurt.




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    1. Though not as nutrient dense as whole grain products, in my experience I’ve always felt great eating refined products like pasta and bread or white rice as long as I combine them with lots of fruits and vegetables. You get plenty of nutrients and fiber from the veggies and the refined grain products are a cheap source of energy (carbs).




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    2. #chad
      First thoughts they crossed my mind, when I read your lines: How much water you drink daily? How long are you at the whole, plant-based, low-fat diet? Sometimes such symptoms comes from suppress the air, may because you work at a office? Also free sugar (maybe hidden in some junk food) can be a reason. If you have sugar an Sunday and the next at Wednesday maybe your gut will never relax…




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    3. I used to eat some parboiled rice and refined bread flour before I watched this video. http://nutritionfacts.org/video/great-grain-robbery/ That put things in perspective. The switch to whole grains alone made a visible difference in how lean I am. I would think that the more whole grains you eat, the better your digestive tract would feel and work. I’m sure there are a bunch of videos on digestive health on the NF homepage in the topic index.




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    4. As an experiment, I would try sprouting them. They are easier to digest and more nutrition is bioavailable. I eat almost all of my grains whole and sprouted.
      John S




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  3. It’s not all about vascular disease and bleeding. In this meta-analysis of primary prevention RCTs, low-dose aspirin resulted in a 12% reduction in total mortality, mostly resulting from from a ~25% reduction in cancer mortality after the third year of use.




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      1. They do, however in the metaanalysis I cited, only major extracranial bleeding (requiring blood transfusions, or fatal) was considered. Most of this is from gastric bleeds. Notably, the measured risk of bleeding declined with time in the RCTs (2x risk for 0-3 years, falling to nonsignificant 0.63x risk for ≥5 years), suggesting that only a subpopulation is susceptible to internal bleeding with aspirin and left the trials, leaving those who tolerated it well.




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  4. This may well be part of the reason that plant-based nutrition helps to prevent heart trouble. Plants contain aspirin, I recall that NF once reported that it’s all over the place. It would be interesting to see if –yet again– the whole-food version has all of the benefits and none of the downsides.




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    1. Yes, vanrein, even my doctor agrres with you in recognizing the blood thinning properties of plants , and of some of the spices that I use daily in cooking (such as cumin seed for example). I have run into bleeding issues with taking omega 3 supplements and dropped them, but have no qualms about taking daily baby aspirin, enteric coated, and my magnesium glycinate.




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      1. omega 3 supplements??? May be this is the problem – supplements. Take walnuts, hemp seeds, chia seeds or flax seed and you will have no problems with bleeding. Me and my family take about 1 teaspoon of flax seed daily, sometimes walnuts in addition or hemp seeds and we have no problems with bleeding at all. I’m a endurance athletes but never have problems with magnesium… because there is enough available at my nutritions. ;-) Why do you think you need this? :-)




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        1. hi Steffen Jurisch! thank you for your response. Yes, I agree with you re the omega 3 supplements and flax seed, chia etc. When I tried taking omega 3 (doctors strong recommendation) , I had bleeding and bruising issues. So, I threw out the omega 3 and take flax seed in my oatmeal instead.

          I exercise a lot ie swim and hike, and had trouble with cramping of foot muscles. With magnesium/glycinate I dont seem to have trouble. Maybe a coincidence, I dont know. Calcium, magnesium and potassium just tested recently , and the doc was amazed. All levels were perfect. She is taking notes now on wfpb eating. I do take B12 though.




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            1. hi Rebecca, yes, though I dont even like the very idea of supplements, magnesium is the only supplement I feel much better by taking. I sleep better, me heart ‘runs’smoother, and no cramps. My diet is very good, beans &greens, lots of veg, fruit , and oatmeal, so I know Im eating enough.

              On another note Rebecca, I was just reading Tom’s post above, about how some vegetarians and pescatarians did better than vegans in for example the Adventist studies… at this point I am thinking that it doesnt matter to me ..would I go back to dairy or fish ? no way! I havent felt better than I do now, eating wfpb. Just wish I had clued in much sooner.




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              1. I guess I missed that part of the Adventist story. We do all have differences, so who knows what they will discover next?

                I have no interest in either dairy or fish, either, especially with Colin Campbell’s work on dairy and cancer. I’m re-reading The China Study and realizing I’d forgotten a lot!




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          1. Hi Susan: This not a food advice :-) Maybe the reason for your cramping is not related to a mineral deficiency. Which part of muscle is involved? From my patients and my work experiences point I would recommend you to look for a N.O.T. therapist. N.O.T. means neuronic organisation technic, maybe you have something like a subluxation of your hip joint, your Atlas or your jaw joint… that can be the root causes…




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            1. Wow! Yes, you are right, I am overdue for my physio appt, and had hip trouble. I just learned of a therapist in the city nearest to me that works on the Atlas joint. Thank you Steffan Jurisch !




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        2. Same here, heavy sports (Parkour, so climbing rugged concrete walls) and no blood running thin. I also mix ground flax seed in, 1-2 tablespoons a day. I use it to add some fibre when I have a sweet craving, for instance for the (sweet but otherwise pretty healthy) Bessola / Krentjebrij, a Dutch dessert consisting of juiced berries, raisins, blackcurrants and pearl barley.




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    2. Plants contain the bioactive compounds that aspirin is made from – salicylic acid is found in most fruits and vegetables. Salicylic acid is a defensive agent in plants. Bioactive compounds, the parts of plants that are thought to have “anti-cancer” properties, are in the parts of plants that protect the plant from insects. Things like the peels, seeds, bark as three examples.

      There are various kinds of salicylates. The amount of salicylate can vary from one variety of a fruit to another, and even the levels in a particular plant can change. For example, organic fruits in an orchard that has been attacked by pests will make more salicylate than other fruits.
      Different parts of a plant might have different levels of salicylate. The amounts can vary between the pulp, seeds, and peel of a fruit or vegetable.

      I agree with your theory that the whole food version has all of the benefits and none of the downsides!




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  5. Maybe the ability of aspirin to reduce the risks of other diseases lies simply with its anti inflammatory effects, another suspected cause of CAD. If that’s the case, other life style measures that reduce inflammation without drugs, such as diet, exercise, and stress reduction should be paramount. Of course things like turmeric and ginger couldn’t hurt.

    I was recently told by one med student that he believes aspirin reduces colon cancer. We do know that NSAIDs, or at least the COX2 inhibitors, even good old aspirin, have deleterious effects on the digestive system, maybe even further down stream than the stomach. There’s only one COX1 inhibitor on the market, Celebrex. The other, Vioxx, was taken off the market because of a serious side effect: death. I think I’ll continue avoid them all as much as possible.




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    1. Joe, it is always a great idea to check with your physician before discontinuing any medication regimen. If you decided to take aspirin for your heart on your own, and you eat a whole foods plant based diet, you may find for yourself the aspirin has risks that overcome the benefits. Plant based diet is the strongest prevention (reversal mechanism) for heart disease.




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    2. Dr Greger pointed out in his book that 1 teaspoon of ground cumin may provide the same amount of salicylic acid as a baby aspirin (p. 247). Check with your doctor.




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    3. You should immediately start taking copious quantities of fruits, vegetables and whole starches for your heart. A WFPB diet (when followed consistently) avoid new arterial plaques and shrink existing plaques. The diet also will lower blood pressure and reverse insulin resistance, both of which are injurious to blood vessels and so increase the risks of an ischemic event (heart attack, stroke, pulmonary thrombosis, ?). That will render the need to take aspirin to thin the blood so as to reduce the chances of clotting as a result of an ischemic event moot.




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    4. Even though Jim Felder said the final thing on the matter :) I have something to add

      Your questions is not correct as a conclusion from the video. The video explains that the chances of trouble are half as high as the chances of good fortune, and as a result there is no consensus in advising aspirin for primary prevention (which you seem to be talking about?). That is a different matter from asking whether it could be a personal choice, based on a simple x>y comparison.

      This is where statistics come into play — small changes are less likely to be “significant”; but you might still make your own choices.

      If I were you, I’d be reading Jim’s post really carefully though; I would also expect the aspirin to be moot when all the trouble has been taken out of the system.




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    5. If you’ve had angioplasty, a bypass operation or some other type of heart surgery then it’s too late and you got to stick to the medication. Blood clots can easily form on surfaces that are not part of your body, and there is then nothing that your body can do to get rid of those clots.




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      1. You should make your statement a bit more clear. Maybe it is to late to avoid the medication because the surgery – but it is never to late to change to a healthy diet – to the WFPB. Because also the angioplasty can get clogging, all heart surgeons can sing a song of that. It’s like the example from Dr. Greger with the table and the shinbone. ;-)
        And purely hypothetical, the clogging heart arteries are only “one symptome” of a whole body issue. So if anyone after a open heart surgery decide to have future a WFPB diet, why shouldn’t help that? May we ask Dr. Esselstyn for his experiences to the issue “once you have to take medication you have ever to take medication” I personaly don’t believe that. Of course, not in the beginning but by the time, monitoring by a responsible working physican like Dr. Ornish, Esselstyn, Barnard, McDougall or others…
        Don’t give up
        ’cause you have friends
        Don’t give up
        You’re not beaten yet
        Don’t give up
        I know you can make it good ;-)




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    6. You might be surprised to learn that stopping daily aspirin therapy can have a rebound effect that may increase your risk of heart attack. If you have had a heart attack or a stent placed in one or more of your heart arteries, stopping daily aspirin therapy can lead to a life-threatening heart attack.

      If you have been taking daily aspirin therapy and want to stop, it’s important to talk to your doctor before making any changes. Suddenly stopping daily aspirin therapy could have a rebound effect that may trigger a blood clot.
      http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/heart-disease/in-depth/daily-aspirin-therapy/art-20046797




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  6. But what do the numbers look like when all health effects are included such as cancer reduction? So often reports come out that focus on a narrow outcome but ignore the bigger view…the whole person’s health.




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  7. My issue with aspirin is that MANY people need to take it for several years in order for just a few to benefit. Just search “number needed to treat aspirin”. This is not even taking into account the side effects of the drugs!

    For me, aspirin is just another pharmaceutical drug that does not work in harmony with the body and should be avoided – period. I’m not saying all pharmaceuticals are useless but most are unnecessary – just take care of your body.




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    1. However, if they focused just on those having a genetic tendency to heart attacks and strokes, E4, it might be worth the risk to take aspirin, on alternate days perhaps.




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    1. Several studies have compared enteric coated and plain aspirin and found no benefit (1, 2). It’s not an issue of an aspirin getting caught in one of the folds of the stomach and irritating its lining, but of the intestinally absorbed dose, through its mechanism of irreversibly inhibiting COX enzymes, preventing clotting.




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      1. OK, that’s weird. I’m surprised they accepted you after told them what you did. You did tell them right? Because blood pumped with aspirin given to a patient that needs it could kill them.




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        1. Please don’t misunderstand. The blood center asks whether donors have taken aspirin in the last 24 hours, and I’d skipped my supplements (etc) a full day or more before that one donation. Given the half life of aspirin is 20 minutes and that of its salicylate metabolite a couple hours, I should have had negligible amounts in my donated blood. However, I believe I still had markedly reduced levels of active COX enzymes in my platelets given how swiftly the donation went, and that was enough to

          Curious historical fact: its suspected that Rasputin “cured” the bleeding of Tsesarevich Alexei by halting his treatment with newly discovered aspirin.




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  8. From watching these videos, there seems to be a clear dichotomy.

    A – The medical establishment recommends adding a product (a drug) to fix a condition
    B – The emerging science recommends removing a product (remove flesh, animals from diet) to fix a condition

    I can see how adding an oil additive to an engine could show some better numbers to justify the additive (A).
    But why not eliminate the source of the problem in the first place? (B)

    By adding ‘additives’ (drugs) to the body, you run the risk of encountering long term omissions from lack of data.




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  9. Hello – I am a volunteer moderator for Nutrition Facts and help Dr. Greger answer questions! I am also a plant based dietitian located in Scottsdale, Arizona. Although comments today seem focused on whether or not taking a baby aspirin every day is useful in preventing Heart Attacks. Once again, the best treatment is prevention – through a plant based diet. So, why don’t physicians recommend that??




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    1. Well, it’s really not their business or in their best interest is it? Doctors go to school for 8-10 years, (and can acquire huge student load debts), in order to learn to treat disease with drugs, surgery and radiation. Are doctors all that interested in preventing disease? The whole point of this video that I see, and most of Dr. Greger’s work, is that there is no such thing as cardio disease, or many others, but for a lifestyle choice. I watched a bunch of people I know die a miserable death from cardio and I never knew that is was easily reversible until I discovered Dr. G. and his work a few years ago. As far as I know, none of them knew this either. Despite multiple bypass surgeries and years of debilitating drugs. It’s simply not in the best interest of doctors or the establishment to prevent chronic dietary disease under the socio/economic system which we live. As far as I know, cardiologists are the highest paid group in the country and if we all adopted a WFPB diet, virtually all of them would be out of work. Dr.McDougall has a lot to say on this subject. https://www.drmcdougall.com/health/education/webinars/webinar-04-28-16/




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      1. Far be it from me to defend the medical establishment status quo.

        That said though, there’s the adage of Hanlon’s razor that states “Don’t assume bad intentions over neglect & misunderstanding.” From Dr G’s video on the training of med students… “On average, out of thousands of hours of preclinical instruction, doctors get about 24 hours of nutrition, with most getting only 11 to 20.” Drs can’t advocate knowledge they haven’t been taught.

        I boggles the mind that the medical establishment ignores/suppresses the idea that what we eat significantly impacts our health.

        What really frosts my shorts is when doctors patronize patients and decide for us that we’d never be willing to shift to a whole-food plant-based (WF-PB) dietstyle. That attitude led me to fire my last cardiologist when he thought he was doing me a service by telling me how I could keep cheese in my life by microplaning flavorful hard cheeses. I managed to find one of the five vegan cardiologist in metro-L.A. and never regreted my decision.

        Worse still is when doctors denigrate patients who choose to adopt a WF-PB. Doc G has an excellent video that details how the medical establishments willful ignorance impacts our society’s health (http://nutritionfacts.org/video/the-tomato-effect/).

        Fundamentally, I think it comes down to our society’s love affair with pills, procedures and technology over low-tech, inexpensive prevention, especially if it allows the ill to manage to live (survive) while they revel in consuming the foods that are inexorably killing them.




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        1. “Worse still is when doctors denigrate patients who choose to adopt a WF-PB.”

          It’s not just doctors! I live with a hopeless romantic. The Hallmark TV Channel is on way too much. I can’t tell you how many times their shows blatantly ridicule vegetarian, vegan, or even moderately healthy diets. Happiness is candy, cake, cookies, cream, ice cream, deep fried food, bacon, eggs, meat, meat, and more meat.

          [Other things I’ve learned from Hallmark. Country good, city bad. Blonds find love more often than brunettes, especially with cowboys. Caucasians are more numerous than I thought. Love comes to those who ice skate or ride horses. All young women have voice fry.]




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        2. Instead of Big Pharma reps providing continuing “education” for doctors, ‘Big Broccoli’ would do well to adopt some educated plant based reps and have them organize certified volunteer teams to go forth and really educate doctors with some in depth facts and appropriate citations on the medical importance of diet…and even offer to educate their patients with lifestyle diseases. Win win! If I had some certificate or validation to flash and make it look official, I’d be happy to do it myself because it is so desperately needed!




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          1. Hey, Vege-tater, Your comment above as been like a sliver in my mind over the past couple of days.

            With only respect intended, I’m curious who you consider to be the ‘Big Broccoli’ who would underwrite this initiative? The food conglomerates who also market high margin sugar-oil-protein foods to all of us? Farmers who sell through Farmers’ Markets? Just who is this Big Broccoli?

            Second, I don’t know which doctors you hang around with, but when I told my doctors of my desire to incorporate a whole-food plant-based dietstyle as part of my healthcare, all I get is a respectful lukewarm response. I can’t imagine them giving me anymore credence just because I had an official Big Broccoli Volunteer Educator badge. Even though I’ve offered to sympathetic doctors my willingness to educate other patients on how I’ve been able to cultivate a WF-PB, I never hear back (and I don’t think it’s because I’m being a jerk about my experiences and thoughts though I could have a blindspot). I think fundamentally, they like the results that I’ve been able to achieve, but they decide for other patients that they’d not be willing to make such changes and so continue dispensing pills, procedures and lectures to ‘improve

            I’m in violent agreement with you about the crying need to get this info out to the populace, but for now, I think the only viable avenue is to live the WF-PB dietstyle and educate those who say they want the health we nurture.




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            1. ‘Big Broccoli’ is kind of a generic term Dr G uses sometimes to infer that healthy plant foods have no wealthy lobby to recommend them like the meat and dairy industries do. My usage was satirical and I just meant any group that could muster the support to get the ball rolling.




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              1. Sorry ’bout that… I guess my Acme Irony-o-meter™ needs recalibration… with all the talk about official badges and training and all, it sounded like you were serious. Oh that such a group were able to mobilize folks to do such an effort, but I figure they wouldn’t be able to compete with3233371000




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              2. Oh, sorry, my bad… my Acme Irony-o-meter™ must need recalibration. With all the talk about official badges and training and all, I figured you were serious about organizing such an effort.

                That said, even if such a group were organized, it wouldn’t stand a chance getting a meeting with the doctors unless it bought the doctors weekly lunches and sent them on regular Caribbean cruises.




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                1. RalphRheineau, I love what must have been a slip when you refer to doctors’ office staph. Is that kind of staph as deadly as the kind you can pick up in hospitals?




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                  1. Rebecca, you are so kind to assume that I’d made a mistake when I wrote about doctors’ staphs… truth be told, I’m an inveterate and incorrigible punster. Your close reading and amusement only serves to reinforce my continued practice of the art of ‘punishment’, much to my best wife’s on going dismay.

                    To be honest, most of the folks who support the doctors I visit are earnest and diligent and don’t deserve to be compared to the disease causing buggers, but that’s never stopped me from to revelling in one of my favorite amusements.




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                    1. Oh Ralphrheineau, Your punsterism hit right up against my literal fundamentalist background with a big bang! I’ve long since put aside the fundamentalism, but literal interpretation dies a slow and lingering death!

                      So, in that vein, I’m wondering what your less-than-best wife (wives?) thinks of your amusements?




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                    2. Thankfully, it only took me two marriages to find my best-wife. While I dutifully send my tribute payments to the worst-wife to keep her attack-lawyer at bay, I don’t have any other interaction with her and don’t give her much attention in my mind.

                      At this point, I’m content to bask in the love and devotion that my beloved best-wife & I nurture together and let the memories of the worst-wife continue to be healed over by the balm of passing time




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      2. Blair, I think I read somewhere that medical oncologists make the most $$$ because they are the doctors who profit from those nasty, overpriced chemo drugs that have such a poor track record.




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    2. Because they are exactly like their peers of yesteryear. But instead of cigarettes it’s junk. And a belly to show their lack of knowledge.




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    3. I never had a heart attack or bleeding issue but I did have a triple bypass 16 years ago at age 65, for artery blockages. It was requested then that I enter an asprin trial when it must have been started. I never did at that time. But eventually my doctor did suggest I take the baby asprin which I have been doing, sort of for past 10 years or so. So should I really need to take it now?




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  10. Gosh, I expected some mention of, “Just one teaspoon of ground cumin may be about the equivalent of a baby aspirin.” Greger & Stone (2015, p. 247).




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    1. Joshua Pritikin: Nice addition to the discussion! I had forgotten about that. I wonder how much of his work Dr. Greger himself forgets? Probably not much. If you read the doctor’s note (below the video), you will see that Dr. Greger will be covering more about plants and aspirin in it’s own video at the end of this series. So, I think Dr. Greger didn’t mention it here because he’s going to give it full coverage in its own video. :-) Still, nice of you to give folks a head’s up.




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  11. The aspirin effect may come from the reduced iron levels in the body. This correlates with a wide array of evidence that links iron levels with heart disease and other chronic illness. [For example, “The Big Idea: the coxib crisis Iron, aspirin and heart disease risk revisited” J.L. Sullivan, 2007] Iron causes massive increased in free radical formation.




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  12. Another excellent video on an important topic. I like the inclusion of number needed to treat (NNT) and number needed to harm (NNH). I also like the distinction of populations between those who have had a heart attack form those who haven’t. I would comment on the use of the terms primary and secondary prevention which is so prevalent in the literature. I favor thinking about primary prevention as lifestyle factors that prevent a condition from developing, secondary prevention as lifestyle modification to cure a condition and tertiary prevention as an intervention that minimizes complications from a condition. Using these terms in this fashion maintains the focus on lifestyle interventions and the possibility of curing a chronic condition. It also relegates the use of drugs such as aspirin to tertiary prevention. In reading the literature I feel like when someone says “primary” it should be the first thing to do or that it is the most important. The use of language has a powerful effect on beliefs and behaviors as has been pointed out by Professor George Lakoff who is a cognitive linguist at UC Berkeley and author of numerous books including “Don’t Think of an Elephant”. Hope everyone is having a good holiday season and gearing up for a healthy 2017. I recommend following NF.org and encouraging others to do so as the science keeps changing.




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    1. Don Forrester MD: I got excited reading your post. I agree that language used affects our thinking. I really like your ideas in this area. Thanks for sharing. Let’s hope it catches on!




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  13. On a different, yet related topic, did anyone see the blog from Dr. T. Colin Campbell where he stated that he doesn’t think saturated fats are the main cause of heart disease? He doesn’t think it is biologically plausible, places the blame on animal protein and PUFAs.




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      1. Yeah, I should have. Here it is: http://nutritionstudies.org/plant-oils-are-not-a-healthy-alternative-to-saturated-fat/

        The article is an easy read, but here is one interesting quote:
        “…It should be emphasized, however, that excess saturated fat in the diet, although not causal, is a very good indicator of an unhealthy dietary practice. It indicates the dietary presence of saturated fat-laden, animal-based food (meat, milk and eggs) and for many, the presence of added fats like saturated fat-laden butter and lard derived from milk and meat, respectively. It does not say that saturated fat is the cause of diseases promoted by these foods.
        Focusing on fat as the main culprit of an unhealthy diet is seriously misguided for a variety of reasons. …”

        And

        “…Falsely focusing on saturated fat as a health villain, a widely held view, allows food and health policy boards to make relatively useless propositions on a relatively trivial concern …”

        He’s certainly not saying eating SFat is healthful, but that people are confusing correlation and causation when it comes to heart disease and animal SF.




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        1. MantisVegan: I’m by no means an expert, but this argument makes no sense to me. What about the studies that feed people butter or coconut oil (pure fats without protein) and cholesterol levels go up? http://nutritionfacts.org/video/does-coconut-oil-clog-arteries/
          .
          I have no problem believing that animal protein is part of the problem. I also have no problem believing that the saturate fat along with the protein and cholesterol and lack of fiber in animal foods is a potent combination that works together to be especially bad. But I think there is way too much evidence pointing to saturated fat being at least part of the problem that I don’t buy the argument in the quote you shared. That’s my 2 cents.




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      2. You might find commentary by Dr. Campbell with associated references of interest. http://nutritionstudies.org/fallacious-faulty-foolish-discussion-about-saturated-fat/
        Since saturated fat and animal protein usually come in the same package it most likely isn’t an either/or question. The question for myself as a practicing clinician is what foods to recommend. The nutrient issues make for interesting and confirmatory science but has limitations associated with reductionistic scientific approach. For me given my understanding of the science it is whole food plant diet at this point… better for health, environment and animals. A caveat is that there are plant food triggers for many chronic conditions (e.g. migraines headaches, autoimmune disorders).




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    1. Yes, he doesn’t really cite any evidence though, if I remember correctly. it seems to be largely just an opinion/assertion. Also, I didn’t get the impression that he is saying that saturated fat in quantity is not a problem – merely that animal protein is a much bigger problem.

      Unfortunately, people cite him out of context. He thinks animal foods and processed plant foods are unhealthy. But some people use his comments on saturated fat to suggest that cheese, butter, coconut oil etc are harmless.

      I quite agree with him that saturated fat in the quantities found in (relatively) unprocessed plant foods is not a concern.




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  14. Great vid, but it does beg the question: Does a WFPB eater on LDAspirin have an unacceptably higher risk of bleeds?

    before my heart attack I used to brag about my fast clotting, viscous dark red blood(!) After a short time on WFPB, a small cut would release a runny bright pink torrent that took noticeably longer to clot. I quit taking the LDAspirin because I fear the bleeds.




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      1. This person is typical of a class of faker that is an emergent feature of the internet. They’ve always been with us but now they have access to everybody. Among us are the gullible from whom this fellow can glean large dollars.

        A pair of them found my father as he was dying from Hodgkins back in the late 50’s. Amazing how gullible impending horrible death can make one. Before long they had him (and us) eating a special kind of dirt. Didn’t work. Well it worked for them but it hurt us. I’ll let you take the measure of how much.

        So lets politely and ever so gently tell the gullible how to sort out these persons before they too suffer the needless harm of ignorance.




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        1. I have a neighbor who got really messed up in a motorcycle accident years ago… ruptured his aorta and almost died. He’s a bright guy, but insists his atherosclerosis and repeated bypass surgeries are the sole result of the accident and has nothing to do with his diet, because “it’s almost perfect.” (which may be a bit better than a SAD, but is still full of oil and animals, though he is trim). Instead he’s invested lots of time studying isolated recommendations of potions and relies heavily on this book he calls his “bible” which is nothing more than some wanna-be recommending his cures and pushing a whole catalog of supplements! To his credit, he does advocate for a “good diet” including lots of produce, but that ain’t all folks. There are actually order forms stapled into the spine, but my neighbor insists this guy doesn’t profit from those sales! It disturbs me so much because he is a great guy, so I temporarily traded my copy of “How Not to Die” with him, hoping it might alert him to the huge dichotomy between some unknown self proclaimed “expert” pushing his individual opinion, ideas, and products, and an actual doctor citing proven facts and studies who does it for free because he cares. His comment afterward reading it? “We have a big difference of *opinion*”! … I tried!




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    1. I have found that most people claiming to tell us The Truth about this, that or the other – or to tell us “secrets”, want to sell us something and usually turn out to be snake oil merchants. The internet is full of plausible rogues who misrepresent the science for profit. Of course, it is hard to tell them apart from articulate cranks who also misrepresent the science because they are unwilling to let the facts get in the way of their opinions. Some of them too manage to turn their obsessions into profitable businesses. In the end, it doesn’t matter, both types are a danger to both your health and your wealth.

      Regarding Bergman as an authority on anything is very unwise. Why not do some research on what the science really shows, instead of just believing some internet health entrepeneur?




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      1. I’ve started asking truth-people “How do you know that”? I used to let so much BS pass but now anyone preaching “TRUTH” gets questioned.

        But I do feel sorry for people who were never taught to think critically and ask questions. It is so tempting to give your trust to some charismatic character who has no qualification but lots of things to say. I’m interviewing for a cabinet job with one of those guys today. No, its not Forest Gump




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  15. Though it often sounds like a good idea to add a little of something to tip the scales in our favor, changing the fine tuned balance of our bodies and challenging it’s wisdom can just as easily tip the outcome in the opposite direction. You cannot change an individual thing without creating a cascade of effects that are unpredictable and often undesired. As was mentioned, unless there is a specific NEED to make the risk worth it, best to expend your efforts maximizing lifestyle and not trying to skate with shortcuts. I mentioned before that everyone I know has a huge spectrum of supplements, vitamins and other potions as adjuncts to their medical prescriptions, but try mentioning the larger benefits of changing diet or lifestyle and you become an instant pariah!




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    1. Yes, everybody in my family wants to take pills. and they want me to take them. you know cuz i have the disease. Of course they all share a lot of my genes and they have not followed my example one iota. So they have the disease and are just waiting for their bypasses. One after another… As we were leaving the hospital my wife and I were stopped dead in our tracks. As we passed one of the rooms we could hear the buzzing of the electric razor they use on the hirsute gents. One after another like Fords off Henry’s line, one after another … “Room for one more, Honey”

      Before I threw my medical team away, but after following their insistence on the quad-by pass right into my wallet and after sending them the required FOK DVD, the Cadiologist sez like this, “Oh right, eat your veggies” like i’m an 8 year old. Well, mentally sure but I’ve learned the hard way that there is no interest in our health from the medicos in general. They blame us for our bad habits while developing the disease themselvs. I’m grateful for the good Dr.s and nutrition/exercise experts who pitch in here and elsewhere. I’m just another slab of meat, but they are the ones who will turn heads, however long it may take.




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      1. Ha ha, I say I fired my doctors, but I like throwing them away even better! The final straw was when I brought her in a print-out on PCRM’s diabetes study because she was insisting ADA’s diet or the South Beach diet was the way to go, and a plant based diet was deficient, despite the success I was having. She took the papers and scoffed, “yeah, you can find *anything* on the internet” and tossed them on the chair without even glancing at first page! I didn’t even bother to protest, I just shook my head and told her I was paying her to be my advocate and partner, not a closed minded dictator, and walked out. She was so PO’ed, when I tried to call in for a refill on my thyroid meds, she refused!




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      2. Well, to some extent, they are simply following the evidence as it is represented in the dietary guidelines and major journals.

        For that mainstream evidence, you can look at things like eg EPIC
        “Within the studies, mortality for major causes of death was not significantly different between vegetarians and nonvegetarians,”
        http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/78/3/533S.full

        Even in the Adventist studies, fish eaters had lower mortality risk than strict vegetarians. Among women, the results were even more contrary – fish eaters, dairy eaters and semi-vegetarians all had lower mortality risk than strict vegetarians (Table 4)
        http://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamainternalmedicine/fullarticle/1710093

        In the US dietary guidelines, a “vegetarian” dietary pattern is recognised as healthy …. but ” Dairy and eggs were included because they were consumed by the majority of these vegetarians.”
        In fact the Guidelines DO state that strict vegetarian diets can be healthful but this is buried deep in the appendices and I doubt if many physicians are even aware of it
        https://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/2015/guidelines/appendix-5/

        In any case, everybody knows that strict vegetarian diets are deficient in B12 and that is unhealthy, right?

        And most people don’t really understand the difference between WFPB diets and vegetarian diets.

        Consequently, I don’t blame mainstream physicians. On the basis of the evidence they are aware of, they are being quite reasonable. There is no double blinded RCT long term trial showing the superiority of (WFPB) vegetarian diets re mortality and observational studies are inconsistent. And then there are the saturated fat studies ………….




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        1. It’s worse than that, really. The whole point of having top-level peer-reviewed journals such as BMJ is to give doctors a benchmark on matters that they can’t research themselves. If something is published in BMJ, or NEJM, or Lancet, it’s supposed to have gone through the most rigorous possible critical review. These journals are considered the best of the best. No doctor wants to be in the position of saying, “I know what it says in BMJ, but I know better!”, especially if she or he is not an expert in the relevant specialty. And as we all know, when it comes to matters of diet and health, virtually no practicing doctor is an expert.

          Taubes and Teicholz did an immense amount of research and wrote books that present their case forcefully. They will continue to have great influence until someone systematically dismantles their arguments. As far as I know, the only person who has attempted to do so, with Taubes at least, is the anonymous “plantpositive”, in his series of videos. But that, unfortunately, is the wrong approach. Anonymous videos will never reach the audience that needs to be reached. They are almost the definition of a “fringe” or “crank” venue. Taubes and Teicholz have put their names on the line. Greger, Campbell, Bernard, McDougall, and Esselstyn have also done so, of course, but nobody with a reputation to risk has yet responded in a systematic point-by-point manner to Taubes and Teicholz.

          Plantpositive has clearly done enough research to publish a book-length rebuttal, but to be taken seriously he will need to unmask.




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          1. Todd: Have you seen the following critical review of Nina’s book? It looks at source material to validate Nina’s claims point by point. The author’s name is attached to the article, though only the first name as near as I can tell. He does give his picture and background on the About page.
            .
            Part 1:
            https://thescienceofnutrition.wordpress.com/2014/08/10/the-big-fat-surprise-a-critical-review-part-1/
            .
            Part 2:
            https://thescienceofnutrition.wordpress.com/2014/06/30/the-big-fat-surprise-a-critical-review-part-2/
            .
            Just thought you would be interested.
            .
            Note: I consider this website to be something of a point by point refutation of Taubes and Teicholz’s work. Also, I don’t see why it matters who Plant Positive or “Seth” is. The work can be taken seriously because it is. The points either one writes can be checked, because the sources/references are provided. In Seth’s case, many of the references come from Nina herself. Given the bullying nature of the internet, which sometimes even bleeds into real space, I fully understand why the person behind Plant Positive wanted to protect his identity. From my perspective, Nina and Taubes don’t put their “names on the line.” They put their names out as part of the marketing strategy to make money.




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            1. @disqus_EXJURIXKLQ:disqus In an ideal world it wouldn’t matter who plantpositive or Seth are, or what their credentials are, but we don’t live in that world. BMJ has the reputation it has precisely because it is published and peer-reviewed by experts with the best possible credentials. I agree that the information on this site is, in the aggregate, a refutation of Taubes and Teicholz, but it’s too diffuse. Have you read T&T’s books in their entirety? I have. They are massively researched and forcefully argued. That’s how they got to be as influential as they are. T&T were certainly not the first to argue most of the points they make; they just did it better. That’s how you get noticed. That’s how you eventually get the attention of the BMJ, despite a lack of medical credentials. And yes, when you put your name on a book you take a risk. If your book fails your reputation takes a hit. Moreover, it takes thousands of hours of work to write books like theirs. If they fail, that’s time wasted. Time is a precious resource for all of us, but especially for writers.

              Yes, Taubes and Teicholz are now enjoying financial rewards. To a great extent they’ve commoditized themselves, rather successfully. You could say the same of Dr. McDougall, whose books not only generate income but also publicity for the services at his California center, and so on. I don’t fault anyone for trying to make money doing what they’re passionate about, and that includes T&T. My point is simply that if the WFPB community wants to counter the influence of T&T, someone has to step up and do what they did, as well as they did it. Seth and plantpositive show that the ability is out there, but the delivery is lacking. Dr. Greger’s book is superb but his mission is not to take on T&T directly. Maybe Dr. Barnard is the one to do it, what do you think?




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              1. Todd: I truly appreciate this line of discussion. Please note that the length of my response is not frustration. It is engagement in the topic and respect for your post.
                .
                I think this line of discussion gets at an underlying belief that many share. To put the basic argument into my own words: The reason T&T and others have been so successful is because they have well researched books that are well written and forceful. If there wasn’t something valid to the main tenants of their arguments, then someone would have shot them down and these people and ideas would never have gotten ahold of our society the way that they have. If someone would just do that now, the problem (of misinforming people) would be solved. T&T’s reputation would be shot.
                .
                While the above is a line of reasoning that I understand, I don’t think it is true. For an example, Dr. Greger’s book is extremely well researched, well written, engaging, and even a best seller according to one measure on Amazon. It was on the New York Times best seller list for a few months. Dr. Greger is actually credentialed and is something of a big name. And yet the information in the book has not taken over the thinking of our society the way that the atkins/paleo/wheat belly/etc thinking has done. Combine Dr. Greger’s books with the books of the other authors you have mentioned, Barnard, Campbell, Esselstyn, etc and I think we have a set of books that balances out the other books in terms of volume, “names”, etc.
                .
                In other words, I don’t believe that any single book could be written to go over the points of the T&T books and such a book would make any difference. I don’t know if you had a chance to go over the text of that Seth article I linked to. He’s not a mainstream person, but he shows that Nina’s book is full of lies. This is not Seth’s opinion. This is verifiable, objective information. Nina’s book may be “forceful”, but it is not actually true. But Nina’s book *is* forceful and in line with what people want to believe. For the true believers in Nina’s book, would they believe the information in someone else’s book? Would they even bother to read it? Would not such a book make them hopelessly confused? (as so many people already are today) Would the media look at both books and do anything other than muddle the situation? The media would do the false equivalency thing and present both books as legitimate instead of explaining to people that one book truly debunks the other. I could just see the interviews where 60 minutes pits Barnard against Taubes–with no fact checking or calling BS on Taubes when he says something untrue. The point: If Barnard wrote such a book, he might be giving legitimacy to T&Ts books rather than steering people away from those beliefs.
                .
                There are several huge reasons the atkins/paleo/etc themes have taken such hold in our society. People *want* to believe that eating meat, dairy and eggs is good for them. Why? Off the top of my head, here are some of the forces in play:
                >> Most people have been eating animals their whole lives. It is comfortable.
                >> Family and peers pressure us to eat animals so doing so makes life easier.
                >> Humans like the food they eat. When people eat unhealthy food, they tend to like unhealthy food and dislike healthy food. Retraining taste buds takes commitment.
                >> We grew up being taught in schools that eating animals is important for our health.
                >> The message from the government affects people on some level and that message is that eating animals is healthy.
                >> What’s more, the government subsidizes animal products and does not make the animal industry pay for all their externalities. So, food choices are artificially skewed by cost.
                None of these deep cultural, psyis going to be fixed just by a book that busts T&T, no matter how big the name that publishes the book. I’m reading a fascinating book right now called Don’t Think of An Elephant. It talks about how progressives keep using facts to explain to people how conservative ideas will just hurt middle and lower income people. Even tho
                .
                Despite saying all that, I do actually agree with you that it would be nice to have a book that refutes the points in T&Ts books. Especially if that book got some traction in our society. I just believe that such a book would just be one *tiny* and potentially risky step in moving our society forward. Would writing such a book be the best use of Dr. Barnard’s time? I don’t think so. Not with all the amazing work that PCRM is doing effectively and from various angles. But maybe we could get *someone* to do it. Hmmmm.




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                1. Oh fudge. My fingers hit the keys to submit my post, but it wasn’t done. So, if you are going to read my post, please wait a bit and then read it on line. I’ll get it finished soon. :-)
                  .
                  One of the things I was going to add is that I won’t be offended if you choose not to read my post. It got way longer than it should be. I won’t be offended if you choose to ignore.




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                2. @disqus_EXJURIXKLQ:disqus That’s very interesting, on many levels. It inspires me to use a term that I normally try to avoid: “metanarrative”. You’ve presented such a metanarrative in your post, and it’s one that I’m increasingly pulled to, but I still feel the force of the previous one.

                  I’ve had a weight problem most of my adult life. I’m 63 now, and still obese (but close to dipping under BMI 30!). Back in the 1990s I read Barry Sears’s *Zone* books, which presented a very moderately low-carb diet that was also very low in calories. It was also my first exposure to the insulin theory. Sears made the case that insulin was the key not only to obesity but also inflammation and many other things. I went on the diet and lost an immense amount of weight. In fact, I lost too much, too fast. I got down to about BMI 25 and was tired and cold all the time, and noticeably weak. But the main thing is, I was pretty much convinced by Sears’s arguments, and in particular his “paleo” argument. That is, Sears made the case that his “Zone” macronutrient ratios were similar to what humans ate for hundreds of thousands of years prior to agriculture. This was all new to me, and it made perfect sense.

                  I couldn’t sustain the semi-starvation Zone diet and I began to research the whole paleo concept. Back then, few people were talking about it. I became involved in a listserv devoted to paleo diet discussion, and I started to try to follow such a diet myself. In the course of the discussions I also started reading and collecting journal articles on nutrition and so on. I had hundreds of them, sorted and stacked in my office–actual paper photocopies. They were all lost some years ago when my office was flooded.

                  Anyway, I became a True Believer in the paleo way of thinking, long before T&T showed up. And I bought into the paleo metanarrative, according to which cereal grains and dairy are the two main causes of the diseases of civilization, as they were the two main food sources that mark the end of the paleolithic and the beginning of the neolithic and with it, civilization. And that’s when we see the start of the widespread ravages of heart disease, cancer, osteoporosis, tooth decay, and so on. Or so the story goes.

                  Actual meat has been a part of the human diet for as long as there have been humans, so we’ve had plenty of time to adapt to it, and the fat that accompanies it. According to this metanarrative, even though game meats are typically very lean, total carcass fat is fairly high, and hunter-gatherers didn’t just eat the lean muscle. They got all the fatty parts, including bone marrow (hence the evidence of cracked open bones at ancient sites).

                  Every metanarrative needs villains. In the WFPB metanarrative, this role is played by the Meat Industry and the Dairy Industry. In the paleo worldview, the Dairy Industry is still a villain, but Big Agriculture and government also play a role. Potatoes, for example, are the leading vegetable crop in the US. Ore-Ida, a leading source of spuds, is owned by Kraft-Heinz. Monsanto is also heavily involved in the potato and sweet potato crops in the US. So even though Dr. Greger makes funny comments about “Big Broccoli”, the nonexistent foil for the Meat and Dairy Industries, in the paleo metanarrative, companies like Kraft-Heinz and Monsanto are every bit as powerful and evil.

                  The Atkins diet has been around since the early 1970s and was heavily criticized for most of that time. It’s only in the last decade or less that low-carb diets have been somewhat vindicated in both the scientific and popular literature. We can, and should, consider carefully whether that vindication is sound, but I don’t think we can write it off as simply an appeal to what we all wanted to hear, because if that were so these diets would have been accepted decades sooner. But they just weren’t. Atkins was ridiculed, and so were Sears, Eades, and so on.

                  Taubes and Teicholz by no means invented the low-carb/paleo metanarrative. Much of what they say had been said by others. But it was Taubes in particular who put it all together in a systematic way. Teicholz mainly emphasized the role of one individual: Ancel Keys. She also has a lot to say about the involvement of certain industries in the so-called “Mediterranean diet” fad, namely the olive oil businesses. She describes at length how the Mediterranean diet was never even well defined. But Taubes succeeded where others, such as Atkins, Sears, Eades, et al. had failed. It’s largely because of him that low-carb diets, including paleo diets, now enjoy some degree of respectability.

                  If that change is going to be undone, then Taubes’s arguments will have to be systematically dismantled by someone with comparable talent for writing and presenting things. I don’t pretend that a single book of that sort will turn it all around, but I do think it’s a necessary step.




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                  1. Todd: Thank you for sharing your story and clarifying your thoughts. re: your weight. Congrats on the success you are experiencing now. I think that’s really great!
                    .
                    I’m not sure I buy your point about Atkins not being wildly successful, at least at the common person’s level, all this time. I knew lots of people who bought into the Atkins philosophy and tried the diet. I also think the success that Atkins had with the population at large was part of the root/success for what has followed with the whole paleo narrative.
                    .
                    That’s a tiny point/reaction to your post. The biggest reaction I had to your post was your talk about metanarratives. That’s so interesting to me because I think it might be the same or similar concept to the information behind a “frame” that is discussed in the book I mentioned previously, Don’t Think Of An Elephant.
                    .
                    I had never heard of the term metanarrative before, but I like it. I thought you had made up this super smart word and idea, but I just did a quick search on the term and can see that you were using an existing word. And here I thought you were brilliant! ;-) But I still give you props for knowing the word and concept. Maybe you could write that book you think needs writing? (insert slightly evil laugh here-wink, wink. I know you want a big name to do it.)
                    .
                    Have a great day and I hope that you are able to meet all of your health goals.




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                    1. Todd: I meant to add: If someone were going to write such a book, I’m thinking Dr. Furhman might be a good one for the job.
                      .
                      Also, I’m not sure if you’ve seen Dr. Greger’s book called Carbophobia. He wrote it a long time ago and has recently made it available for free electronically. https://drgreger.org/pages/selected-writings Dr. Greger starts by directly addressing Atkins info. That book may not fully meet the scope of what you are advocating for. Just wanted to share about it in case you were unaware as it is related to our discussion.




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                    2. Thea, my point wasn’t that the Atkins diet wasn’t popular. It surely was. The books stayed in print for decades because they sold. But in the scientific-medical community Atkins and low-carb had zero credibility until quite recently.




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                  2. “Actual meat has been a part of the human diet for as long as there have been humans, so we’ve had plenty of time to adapt to it, and the fat that accompanies it.” That’s funny, from everything I’ve seen here, it’s the opposite. They ate whole plant foods. So how exactly did our evolutionary ancestors kill all these animals without any metal? Stone tipped spears and arrows? I don’t think that’s really realistic.




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                    1. The evidence suggests that for a very long time early hominids scavenged carcasses killed by other predators. Gradually they became predators themselves. And yes, stone tools and weapons were used for a very long time. http://humanorigins.si.edu/evidence/behavior/getting-food and http://www.livescience.com/5656-hunting-easy-cave-man.html
                      I also suggest reading Craig Stanford’s *The Hunting Ape*. I stand by the claim that humans and pre-humans have eaten meat for as long as we have any evidence of their existence. I don’t claim that’s all they ate, by any means. But I think the record is completely unequivocally in support of the position that we and our predecessors ate meat for at least the last 3 million years. There’s certainly room to discuss the implications of this, if there are any, for current dietary practices and health, but there’s no basis for a claim that our species or our hominid predecessors were ever vegan. Even Dr. McDougall, who argues that the human race is “essentially” a starch-eating species, doesn’t commit the mistake of claiming that we were ever *exclusively* plant-eaters. He merely insists that the natural human diet was predominantly (not exclusively) starches.




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                    2. My guess is that these authors never did much killing. Small animals more very fast. And they don’t like you getting very close to them. You might develop some level of proficiency with a stone spear, but it would be a very hard way to make a living. As far as large animals go, it seems more likely to me that these people would end up as dinner than eating dinner.




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                    3. Well, it really isn’t about guessing. There’s actual scientific evidence to confront. I mentioned Craig Stanford’s The Hunting Apes, but he’s by no means the only one to make the case that humans and hominids have always been omnivores. In fact, you’d be hard-pressed to name a single scientist in this area who says otherwise. Even Wrangham, who stresses the importance of tubers in hominid/human evolution, doesn’t claim that humans and proto-humans were ever vegans. What we know is that where stone tools were found, evidence of butchered animals was typically present as well. See http://www.livescience.com/31974-earliest-human-hunters-found.html And we also know that even modern chimpanzees get 3% or so of their calories from meat and another few percent from insects.

                      It’s true that the *ratio* of meat to plant food in human ancestral diets is the subject of much dispute, and probably always will be. See http://www.americanscientist.org/issues/pub/2016/3/meat-eating-among-the-earliest-humans for example. But nobody claims they were eating no meat at all, since that claim isn’t supported by evidence. Here’s one more source, http://www.nationalgeographic.com/foodfeatures/evolution-of-diet/ , that suggests that the reality was more complicated than what some “paleo” enthusiasts have been saying, but still not supportive of a plants-only view. Part of the problem is the ambiguity of the term “plant-based”. Some use it to mean plants-only, but semantically it also encompasses plants-mainly. The Blue Zone people of Okinawa and Sardinia have diets based mainly on plant foods, so it’s fair to call them plant-based, but it’s wrong to call them vegan or plants-only. The Sardinians even eat significant amounts of dairy, in the form of pecorino cheese. The National Geographic article makes the case that ancestral human/hominid diets were plants-mainly but by no means plants-only.




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                    4. Okay, sorry, I guess I forgot what this was all about. So my response is “so what?” So what? The whole point of nutritionfacts.org and all of Dr. Greger’s work is to establish the scientific evidence that a WFPB vegan diet is the best for human health and eating animal products and refined foods is harmful and the cause of many of our diseases. If you don’t believe that then go and eat animal products. I’m wondering why some anonymous individual would be on this website putting forth elaborate arguments that evolutionary man was a meat eater. There must be dozens if not hundreds of websites advocating a diet consisting of animal products. What exactly is the motivation behind this?




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                    5. Yes, I think you lost the context. My original statement was about the paleo “metanarrative.” That metanarrative is not entirely false. It is certainly beyond dispute that evolutionary man was an omnivore. No elaborate argument is needed, since all the available evidence supports the view. If there were evidence that ancestral humans/hominids were vegans, you would have already cited it. As I already pointed out, even McDougall doesn’t make such a claim. It is also a fact that chimpanzees, Okinawans, Sardinians, Nicoya Costa Ricans, et al. are not exclusively plant-eaters.

                      So, if you’re curious about my motivation, it’s simply this: I’m interested in truth, not spin. It may well be that an exclusively plant-based diet, such as the diet advocated by Dr. Greger, is the best for human health. I’m certainly betting that this is the case, since I’m following the kind of diet he suggests myself. The paleo argument isn’t based on the single premise that the evolutionary human diet had meat in it. It includes other premises, such as the premise that the evolutionary diet is the template for the healthiest possible contemporary diet. As Thea and others have pointed out more than once, that second premise is open to dispute. But the first premise is not. It doesn’t help anybody’s argument to resort to false assertions, such as the claim that the evolutionary human/hominid diet was *exclusively* plant-based.

                      The question in front of us is not, “Should we eat animal foods, since our ancestors didn’t?”, because that question is based on a false premise. The question should be, “Should we avoid animal foods, despite the fact that our evolutionary ancestors didn’t?” As I see it, the answer may well be yes. I think Dr. Greger makes a powerful case but even Pam Popper, a great advocate of WFPB diets, urges caution against absolutism on this. See https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IcTj6I6DWLk&t=4s




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          2. Thanks Todd.

            I am not sure that either Taubes or Teicholz did an immense amount of research as you describe it. It is easy enough to copy a whole pile of citations from a relatively small number of secondary sources. Many undergraduates do exactly this without bothering to read (let alone understand) the listed citations.

            Taubes and Teicholz may also have done this. The ridiculous stories they tell in their books about Ancel Keys and the Seven Countries Study certainly suggests so. The Seven Countries study is still operating and has its own website. How much “research” would it have taken award-winning investigative journalists to fact check the allegations? But, hey, the guy’s dead so who cares?

            It is, though, particularly disappointing to consider the BMJ’ role in all this. Especially since there is some reason to think that the Teicholz article was a paid placement. I don’t know about the Taubes article.
            http://carbsanity.blogspot.com/2015/10/nina-teicholz-bmj-nutrition-coalition.html

            That said, the US Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee did do a rebuttal of Teicholz’s BMJ article
            http://www.bmj.com/content/351/bmj.h4962/rr-1

            You might also say that their books have in effect already been refuted by major reports on nutrition and health. Going through T&T’s books/articles to provide a point by point refutation would also be a waste of a serious professional’s time. It would give their arguments a dignity they don’t deserve and give the mistaken impression that there is a genuine debate about the evidence. Wasn’t it Samuel Clemens who wrote never argue with a fool, onlookers may not be able to tell the difference? Delete the word “fool” and insert the term you prefer, but the principle is the same.

            Most professionals are also busy enough already. There are dozens of similar books published each year by people with a lot more credibility than a couple of journalists, including cardiologists and tenured academics. Responding to all of them would be impossible but, like cleaning the Augean Stables. it’s far better to just let the evidence itself flush them away..

            Further, both Taubes and Teicholz are media savvy and very well connected, so getting into a public debate with these people is not an attractive proposition. It would also just provide more publicity for their books.

            I think that, in addition to Plant Positive, the scienceofnutrition website has however done a fairly detailed refutation of T&T’s claims eg
            https://thescienceofnutrition.wordpress.com/book-reviews/




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            1. @tom_goff:disqus I’m inclined to agree with much of what you’ve said, and I don’t claim to know all the facts about who got paid for what. But I disagree with your point that it would be a waste of time for someone with decent credentials to give a point by point refutation of Taubes in particular (Teicholz’s case is a bit different), preferably in book format. Media savvy needs to be countered on its own terms. Taubes may be wrong, but he’s no fool.

              To consider a similar case, Denise Minger was fiercely critical of The China Study. Her critique has been very influential, I believe. An updated version of The China Study is due to be released very soon, and I hope (and believe) it will include detailed responses to her and others’ criticisms of the study’s methodology and results.

              When people take the position that Taubes, Minger, and others are too unqualified or wrongheaded to deserve the time and effort required to reply to them in full, it gives them momentum by suggesting their views are unanswerable.

              I agree with you and Thea about the excellent quality of the material at https://thescienceofnutrition.wordpress.com/2014/08/10/the-big-fat-surprise-a-critical-review-part-1/ and I note Seth’s comment, “I wrote my first review of this book back in 2012,
              but after writing it I felt very unsatisfied. GCBC is such a dense book
              filled with so many unsubstantiated claims that I felt the book
              demanded a more thorough review. Other bloggers, like James Krieger at Weightology,
              seem to feel the same way and have tried to provide such a review only
              to eventually give up once they realize the gravity of the task. I may
              also give up at some point. I actually have given up a number of times
              only to feel compelled to hit at least one more chapter.” That is, he and others recognize the importance of this job.




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              1. Thanks Todd.

                I agree with you that such a rebuttal would certainly be useful to me and others here. My point was more that it wouldn’t be of any particular professional or personal benefit to a researcher or academic to spend a lot of time refuting the sensational claims of journalists in mass market books.

                Also, IMO, the fact that a number of the claims that Taubes makes in his books have been exposed as false is sufficient to completely discredit him as an “authority” on nutrition and health. If people are unwilling to accept that he is an untrustworthy guide on such matters when exposed to such evidence, then I suspect that a full detailed point-by-point rebuttal would make little difference. Some people just want to believe.

                To repeat a previous point, I believe that spending a great deal of time and effort responding to the likes of Taubes gives the impression that he has an argument that is worthy of a serious response. The best response I think is just to give a couple of examples of where Taubes has misrepresented or ignored key evidence and then refer to actual scientific reports on nutrition and health.

                I don’t see the US Air Force responding point-by-point to every new “flying saucers are real” book. The World Health Organization and national health authorities around the world don’t respond to every fad diet book either. For much the same reasons I suspect.

                However, I do think that the BMJ giving air time to these people is deplorable. But that is a specific problem with the current BMJ editorial and commercial regime. As I noted before, though, the US DGAC did respond to Teicholz’s claims. The BMJ has also just published a correction to Teicholz’s claims. Too little, too late but better than nothing I suppose.
                http://www.bmj.com/content/351/bmj.h5686?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign_name=201612344&utm_source=etoc_weekly




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  16. I know this isn’t exactly related, but a family member keeps telling me that plant-based diets are deficient because of poor soil quality and nutrient decline in crops… what could I show them to address this?




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    1. Mcpherson: NutritionFacts does not disappoint. Here is an older video on exactly this topic. As Dr. Greger says, so eat an extra broccoli floret. Really not a big deal: http://nutritionfacts.org/video/crop-nutrient-decline/ To really round out the answer, check out the following video showing common deficiencies in omnivores vs vegans: http://nutritionfacts.org/video/omnivore-vs-vegan-nutrient-deficiencies-2/ . Looks like your family member, who is concerned about deficiencies, needs to go vegan! :-) Or more accurately, whole plant food based.




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    2. Another approach is to just side-step the issue of who’s right and just tend to improving-maintaining your health and deflecting their ‘concern’. I hope you don’t have a ‘concern troll’ on your hands. If you do, they aren’t likely to be interested in your welfare and you might in fact represent a threat to their ability to ignore their unhealthy eating habits.

      There’s an interesting psychologist, Dr Doug Lisle, who talks about how to deal with such situations and has made a presentation of his available on his website via this link:
      http://esteemdynamics.org/video/getting-along-without-going-along/

      His presentation runs 55½ min long and I while I think you’d likely find his ideas and wry sense of humor engaging, you may want to move ahead to the 34:55 mark to get to the most relevant portion of his talk.




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      1. “…they aren’t likely to be interested in your welfare and you might in
        fact represent a threat to their ability to ignore their unhealthy
        eating habits”.
        Well said and so true!

        I love Doug Lisle, but unfortunately I have an abrasive streak like McDougall that won’t let me side-step something I so strongly believe in…but only when confronted! Been trying to manage my reactiveness forever, but I fail!




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    3. and the plants they’re feeding the animals are coming from the same overworked and contaminated soils.

      Tell them of the inflammatory properties of animal products. Doesn’t matter what they are fed. Also that supplementing or eating “enriched” foods shows no gain in actual studies.

      Or simply smile and be healthy and seek an more receptive audience. Don’t beat yourself up trying to help those who are still eating from the great trough backed by BILLIONS of dollars telling them it’s “OK” and “Cool” and “FUN” and “Natural” and “Good for You” and “Not a Problem”.

      There are many that will never learn the truth and will suffer miserably for it. A society should be ashamed of this fact, but we are FAR behind that level of achievement.




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      1. Just wondering Wade, were you pretty much a WFPB eater from the start or did you work it out on your own? How did you get here? Like for me, it was those pictures of people’s arteries, before and after. I had actually watched the dye struggle through the narrows of my own coronary arteries. Its forever burned into my memory. Seeing the results those people had…I just had to have that. Whats your story, if you have not already told us.




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        1. Don’t mind you asking, I’ve sketched it here and there. Here’s the story as I’m telling it today, maybe not too much of a bore:

          I was pretty much a SAD eater by family and culture until I started reading up on nutrition as an interested adult. I started learning bits and pieces of the bigger picture, and things they didn’t tell us in school, by reading Andrew Weil’s works and eventually The China Study, and a several more. I never was satisfied with the “common knowledge” of how/why our great society was so sick and so medicated and not living so much longer than our ancestors.

          I tried various dietary rules, sticking to none of them as I was seeing/feeling no big results. I did incidentally quit dairy in the form of milk, and thereby cure my lifelong-until-then sinus issues that doctors couldn’t fix. The incident was that me and my roommate couldn’t keep fresh milk at the rate we consumed it, so we quit buying it. Years later did I discover that that was why I didn’t have to take the pills and get the injections and suffer the miseries of sinus infections and such.

          But I never was that heavy. I kept active and am an on/off again cyclist to the level of racing on mountain bikes now and then.

          Eventually I took a serious approach to eating better with my interpretation of the 80/10/10 Fruitarian deal. I did it 5/2 days of the week. I ate tons of fruit and drank gallons of smoothies-a quart at a time, snacked constantly and was always hungry. I lost a lot of weight fast, and was riding too.

          This lasted for something over a year, but then I grew weary of buying, washing or peeling, and eating so many bushels of fruits and greens every week. And I decided to quit using nicotine.

          I let myself full backslide into junk eating in order to kick the nicotine monkey to the curb. Which I did, and won’t have to worry about ever again. Then I started buying the fruit again, but it kept rotting on me. I just never could restart that program. I was banana’d out!

          I’m not sure exactly when I discovered Dr. Greger and NF.O but know that it was not long before my going WFPB. At that point in time I thought I was eating “OK” but just maybe too much and too little exercise.

          This coming St. Patrick’s Day will mark my second anniversary of going WFPB (5/2). Well to be clear, five days on and two off is how I’ve learned I can make ANY dietary transition, but isn’t actually how I practice it now. Now I’m much more likely to “slide” just for one or two meals over the weekend or on holidays.

          I lost 30 pounds without trying or exercising in the first two months. No counting nothing, but a strict daily record of weight-showing all the humps and bumps. It’s nice watching the numbers shrink.

          BUT NOT so nearly nice as the overall “better” feeling that nearly washed over me about three days into my first week without animal products or sugar or over-processed “foods”. I didn’t need ibuprofen on a nearly daily basis anymore. Most all the little aches and pains just went away.

          I got off the PPI’s after a few weeks. I’ve taken less ibuprofen since I went WFPB than I used to take in a week. Flaxseed meal has eliminated my need for Saw Palmetto (BPE).

          While I never had a big scare, I did hit 50 years of age a few months ago both lighter and healthier than when I was 40, maybe even 30. I may do it again at 60.

          Hope our society finds out how this works sooner than later. They don’t listen to me much, but I do have a friend who just “came out” with his change and his greatly improved BP numbers and weight loss. He’s getting a lot of support too, which is great to see.

          THANKS to all here for supporting Dr. G, and for letting me play along!




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          1. Nice going. So you knew something(s) was wrong and you kept at it until you found what works. would you say you were your own “guinea pig” or reasoned it out from journals and the media?

            If we want to help others sift through the noise, one possible way is to consider the ways we’ve individually gotten here. If it worked for us then it might point the way for encouraging others. I know we won’t get everyone. Some people still smoke too. At least they know the risks, unless they live in a cave I guess.

            Copy you on that Saw P thing : )
            What are PPI’s? and if you don’t mind, what do you do on the “2”s after the 5th day?

            Hey, St. Pat’s Day is my big turing point too.




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            1. Proton Pump Inhibitors. The tummy pills that everyone takes now to combat the damage done by SAD consumption.

              2 days are “optional”. I’ll have whatever anyone else is having, but I might not have as much.




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              1. Wade,

                Have you considered using deglycerized licorice extract if you’re going to have what others are eating ? Not a direct substitute by a safer approach while changing one’s diet. Dr. Alan Kadish Moderator for Dr. Greger




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                1. I’ve already transitioned, I don’t eat enough CRAP (er you know SAD) food to make myself sick anymore. I’m aware of the “special licorice supplement” but have no desire to buy any. Simplicity rules for me. Thanks.




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          2. Wade: I finally got around to reading your post. I’ve seen parts of your story over time, but appreciated reading this more comprehensive account. Thanks for sharing! It will serve as nice inspiration for others. Also, congrats on all the progress you have made. Nice job.




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    4. Isn’t that a rather strange non-sequiter? Does it follow that if an eating plan is plant-based then the soil the plant grew in was deficient? What about the plants the pig ate the comprises the meat eaters diet. Is that pork somehow not deficient by the same pretzel logic?

      FWIW, When I saw the film “Forks Over Knives” …well they had me at hello. At least by the time it was over I knew it had ‘the ring of truth’. Then I actually spent some time digging out some of the studies they cited and started to learn how to tell a good study from “bought and paid-for science”. Now, some 5 years into WFPB eating I’m living proof.

      I think if you can get them to watch even the first few minutes…if they are not engrossed by then, i don’t know. But it really has helped me convince some close friends to change their thinking. Sadly only one of my family members has followed me into health. Its so weird how otherwise savvy folks just won’t accept delivery of this life changing information. Good luck!




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  17. Wonder what cost-benefit ratio is for low-dose aspirin taken before a long drive or plane trip? We try to walk a bit every 2 or 3 hours, but frequently take a baby aspirin before long trips with hope of preventing clots.

    (Nick Presidente–who dat? :-)




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    1. I would really like to know that too. The risk varies with activity level. Would be nice to know if popping a LDA was effective that way.

      Ummm… the devil in waiting?




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  18. The lack of scientific monitoring to head off side effects is the same with aspirin as with other drugs. You’d think that prescribers would test each patient’s risk factors for a bleed, first with a baseline test and then with periodic monitoring. We have a family member that had both a hemorrhagic stroke as well as an intestinal bleed requiring a transfusion of several packs of blood. Primitive.




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  19. Cut down on Omega 6 and increase Omega 3 and you will cut down on inflammation, obviating the need for aspirin. You don’t need a fire extinguisher if you aren’t starting fires.




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  20. Hi Michael,

    I’m a big fan of your work. We’ve met before, I’m an interventional cardiologist in Los Angeles, vegan for nearly 12 years, and a big proponent of plant-based diets for heart health.

    I watched your recent presentation on aspirin for preventing cardiac events with great interest. I do agree with you, aspirin is not a catch-all, and not everyone should be on aspirin. However, I think the end of your presentation was misleading. You state that a plant-based diet can prevent and reverse heart disease, which of course is true, but your implication seems to be that a plant-based diet can REPLACE aspirin, which I think is a dangerous suggestion.

    I have a number of patients who are plant-based who have had cardiovascular events. No matter how stringent their diet, I still strongly recommend a baby aspirin daily for secondary prevention. We just don’t have the data, to my knowledge, to suggest that plant-based eating is a substitute for aspirin, or even a statin.

    Keep up the good work, and I’ll keep watching and learning from you.
    Heather Shenkman MD
    Sherman Oaks, CA
    veganheartdoc.com




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    1. Hi, Dr Shenkman,

      As a heart attack survivor who was fortunate enough to discover the benefits of whole-food plant-based (WF-PB) dietstyle, I really appreciate your comment. Beyond eating WF-PB, I also avoid adding salt-oil-sugar (SOS).

      To be honest, while I faithfully take my prescribed daily 81 mg aspirin, I always have a nagging concern about its potential damage to my GI-tract. From the good Doc G’s video, seems to me a good tactic might be to take my aspirin close to when I’m eating some of my daily greens. Thoughts?

      Regarding statin usage… I used to take a statin but developed piercing muscle pains during the night and went off them under the guidance of my vegan-cardiologist. Even though my cholesterol is at 119 without use of a statin, the traditional-cardiologist before my vegan-cardiologist was insistant about taking a statin for other ancillary beneficial effects which he never detailed. While I’ve scoured the Internets looking for specifics about these beneficial effects, all I can find is blanket statistics telling of population reductions of stroke and recurrent heart attacks. I’m assuming that those studies are working with people who continue to eat sugar-oil-protein laden dietstyles. Can you provide any insights or links to info about how specifically statins help myocardial infarc survivors?

      I had the good fortune to meet you at the South Bay Adventist Cooking School back in October. I appreciate all that you do to educate cardiac patients and their families/loved-ones on how to care for their hearts through WF-BP nutrition.




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    2. Heather Shenkman: Thanks for your comment. I enjoyed reading it and wanted to comment back. You wrote: “No matter how stringent their diet, I still strongly recommend a baby aspirin daily for secondary prevention. We just don’t have the data, to my knowledge, to suggest that plant-based eating is a substitute for aspirin, or even a statin.”. I’m just a lay person, but I wonder if you are familiar with Dr. Esselstyn’s work? It seems to me that he has shown that a plant based diet can reverse heart disease and prevent any further heart attacks as long as someone sticks strictly to the diet. I wonder how strictly the patients were following Esselstyn’s diet who had the events you mentioned? Are you thinking that Esselstyn’s studies are not conclusive enough? I’ve read the following book and found it pretty compelling, but as I said, I’m just a lay person: No matter how stringent their diet, I still strongly recommend a baby aspirin daily for secondary prevention. We just don’t have the data, to my knowledge, to suggest that plant-based eating is a substitute for aspirin, or even a statin.
      .
      I’m also wondering about your statin comment. I’m sure you weigh the pros and cons of every drug. What do you think about these cons of statins pointed out in the following (admittedly older) NutritionFacts video? http://nutritionfacts.org/video/statin-muscle-toxicity/ here’s a newer video on statins from a different angle: http://nutritionfacts.org/video/diet-versus-drugs-for-high-cholesterol/
      .
      I’m not saying you are wrong. I don’t know. Also, while Dr. Greger doesn’t often have time to reply to all the comments, I believe he generally keeps an eye on them. So, I’m sure he will take your feedback into account. I just thought I would converse with you and let you know your comment was read.




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      1. Thea, great questions. In addition to being a cardiologist, I am a vegan of twelve years, and am very familiar with Dr. Esselstyn’s work. Just because a plant-based diet is good for the heart does not mean that an aspirin or a statin is not good. In fact, in my daily practice, I counsel my patients on the benefits of a plant based diet, and am one of few clinicians who do so, and I take pride in being able to meld traditional medicine with nutrition to help my patients. Years of evidence-based medicine that demonstrates significant mortality benefit of aspirin and stating. (By the way, I am speaking here about patients who have had a cardiovascular event, not about people who have never had an event. There is a significant difference.

        Esselstyn does not outright reject statin therapy either. This statement is taken from his web site: “Statins appear to have modest benefit in primary prevention but are of some help in slowing disease progression for those who already have an established diagnosis of cardiovascular disease”

        I’ve commented here on statin therapy: http://veganheartdoc.blogspot.com/2014/06/stuff-vegans-ask-me-part-two.html




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  21. I see that a recent (01 December 2016) report of a long term Japanese study of low dose aspirin for primary prevention in T2D patients, found no benefit for cardiovascular event prevention.

    “The researchers wrote that one possible reason for the negative aspirin findings was the evidence for aspirin benefit for primary prevention was documented in the 20th century prior to the availability of intense-dose statins.”
    http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/872590




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  22. Hi NutritionFacts.

    I have a question, which is unrelated to Aspirins. So i apologize if its in the wrong video, since i saw that if i had a question i should comment on a video.

    Anyway, my question is a bit complicated, so i’ll try and explain it as well as i can without it being too long.
    I’ve been eating a vegan diet for close to 1 year now. I did start one and a half year ago, where i did start adding vegetable and slowly adding vegan and cutting down meat and etc.
    I did this for health reason, while i was losing weight, since i had become really overweight.

    I’ve lost 45 pounds in 8 month-ish, by going on a low carb – high protein and high vegetable diet, where i would simply eat 50 gram carbs from rice/pasta/etc and rest would be combination of beans, soy, meat replacement, such as vegan burger with a lot of vegetable. It worked fine, though i was low on calorie, i was around 1100, eventho i was fine and wasnt starving, since a lot of the vegetable did fill me up and i felt fine and so on.

    My question or problem i am facing at the moment is,
    Now i am trying to build up muscle slowly, as i dont want to eat as i please and become fat again.
    at the moment, i am eating around 100 carb of rice, so ive doubled it and was thinking, as i progress, ill turn up the carb slowly, so i can start eating a normal diet and not a diet where i have to weigh everything and where i cant eat more then 2 meals with carbs.
    However the problem i am facing, is that it feels like im just slowly getting fat again, like i did increase my carb up to 150 gram (2 x 75 gram carbs) where i had the previous week turned it up to 140 gram total, then when i did this, i gained 7 pounds in a weekend, so i had to turn it down and since its just plateu. even now where i am at 100 grams of carbs.

    Am i carb sensitive or why cant i have a vegan diet where i can eat without having to messure and worry about becoming fat?

    I figured asking here, as i do follow on youtube and i do really trust the science here!




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    1. Ilovetrainalldaya: Congratulations on sticking to a diet change for an entire year and for losing weight. That’s great. I have some information for you that might help you move forward from here based on your post.
      .
      First, you wrote that you want to build up muscle. You added calories to your diet and you are gaining weight, but you are worried that you are gaining fat and not muscle. Assuming that you are doing effective weight training during this time period, how do you know you are gaining fat and not muscle? Here’s an idea for you: There is a device you can get for your home that shows you what percentage of your body is fat. I forgot what it is called, but it’s not all that expensive, at least not the last time I looked. So, you could use such a device at the same time every day or once a week to figure out what is happening inside your body as you make changes.
      .
      Second, your focus or concern about carbs seems misplaced. The traditional Okinawans were one of the healthiest and long-lived people (lots of strong, 100+ people!) on the planet. A survey of their diet found these percentages: 85% carbs, 9% protein, 6% fat. That diet included about 70% sweet potatoes. http://nutritionfacts.org/video/the-okinawa-diet-living-to-100/ Whole plant foods containing lots of carbohydrates are an important part of a healthy diet.
      .
      The devil is in the details though. What exactly is a healthy diet? What kind of diet will allow you to lose weight in a healthy way? And what kind of diet will allow you to gain some muscle in a healthy way? To understand what it takes to lose weight in a healthy way, check out the following talks. You will see that it is not about focusing on restricting carbs. Losing weight is about eating low calorie dense whole plant foods until you are full (and no more). In other words, you should be able to “eat without having to measure and worry about becoming fat.” But you have to know *what* to eat. Eating low calorie dense foods to lose weight is what Dr. Greger recommends on this website and in his book. The following talks explain the concept very well: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xAdqLB6bTuQ and http://www.jeffnovick.com/RD/Calorie_Density.html or if talks are not your thing, here is an article from Jeff Novick with some good charts: http://www.jeffnovick.com/RD/Articles/Entries/2012/5/20_A_Common_Sense_Approach_To_Sound_Nutrition.html When you are ready to put this principal to action, you might check out the free 21 Day Kickstart program, http://www.pcrm.org/kickstartHome/
      .
      Which leaves us with gaining muscle. This site is about nutrition more than exercise (though of course, Dr. Greger recommends exercise in his Daily Dozen!). It’s my understanding that gaining muscle has a lot to do with exercise. So, I don’t have detailed suggestions. Happily, though, I can give you lots of encouragement/inspiration, because vegan athletes are setting world records and taking home world class metals right and left. I’ll do a second post with some information about these people in the hopes that it will give you leads on where you can find more information about gaining weight on a vegan diet.

      .
      Hope this helps!




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      1. PART 2: Vegans who are building muscles and taking home the trophies. (To WFPBRunner: Notice that I added Rich Roll ;-) )
        .
        These are just anecdotes, but you can look up their websites and maybe get some tips on what to do.
        .
        ****************************
        (article from meatout mondays)
        Vegan Bodybuilders Dominate Texas Competition

        The Plant Built (PlantBuilt.com) team rolled into this year’s drug-free, steroid-free Naturally Fit Super Show competition in Austin, TX, and walked away with more trophies than even they could carry.

        The Plant Built team of 15 vegan bodybuilders competed in seven divisions, taking first place in all but two. They also took several 2nd and 3rd place wins.

        For More Info:
        http://www.plantbuilt.com/

        ———————
        When Robert Cheeke started VeganBodybuilding.com in 2002, being the only vegan athlete he knew of, he may not have imagined that the website would quickly grow to have thousands of members. Robert says, “We’re discovering new vegan athletes all the time, from professional and elite levels… to weekend warriors and everyone in between.”

        For More Info:
        http://www.veganbodybuilding.com/
        —————–
        There was that other guy who just did a world record in weight lifting. “Congratulations to Strongman Patrik Baboumian who yesterday took a ten metre walk carrying more than half a tonne on his shoulders, more than anyone has ever done before. After smashing the world record the Strongman let out a roar of ‘Vegan Power’…” For more info:
        http://www.onegreenplanet.org/news/vegan-strongman-patrik-babaoumain-breaks-world-record/
        another article on the same guy: http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2013/09/08/vegan_strongman_shoulders_550_kg_a_record_perhaps_at_vegetarian_food_fest.html
        And another article: “I got heavier, I got stronger, I won the European championship title in powerlifting, I broke three world records so everything was going perfect … my blood pressure went down, and my recovery time was so much faster so I could train more.” http://edition.cnn.com/2016/07/06/health/vegan-strongman-patrik-baboumian-germany-diet/
        —————–
        Here’s a story about a bodybuilder who doesn’t use any supplements. Just eats whole plant foods:
        http://www.forksoverknives.com/vegan-bodybuilder-plant-based-diet/?mc_cid=b8b1865825&mc_eid=09aaf03269
        —————–
        Mr Universe – “Since going vegan, he has actually gained even more mass, now at 107 Kilos…”
        http://www.thediscerningbrute.com/2015/07/14/mr-universe-goes-vegan/
        —————–
        Bite Size Vegan has a youtube channel
        “In this video series, you’ll hear from various vegan athletes from all walks of life and athletic abilities speaking to such topics as vegan athletic performance, building muscle on a vegan diet, vegan endurance running, bodybuilding, body image, and more!”
        https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLmIqdlomtuSv9FQJgdj3Bwg9Nh9MNjKg4
        —————–
        Here’s another site that I like:
        http://www.greatveganathletes.com/

        I found this story on the above site: “Pat Reeves has set a new world powerlifting record at the WDFPA World Single Lift Championships. The 66 year old lifter, who has been vegan for 46 years, lifted 94 kg to set a record for the under 50.5kg weight class while competing in France in June 2012. The lift was more than 1.85 times her bodyweight, which is exceptional for her division. Pat is now officially the oldest competing weightlifter in Europe.”

        Hope everyone finds this helpful.

        ————————-
        Story of Mac Denzig, winner of season six of The Ultimate Fighter
        http://www.ufc.com/news/Mac-Danzig-Diet-The-Truth-About-Vegan
        http://www.sherdog.com/fighter/Mac-Danzig-3396
        http://www.mikemahler.com/online-library/articles/mma-training/ufc-fighter-mac-danzig-vegan-diet.html
        ————————–
        Book: Vegan Bodybuilding And Fitness by Robert Cheeke
        http://www.amazon.com/Vegan-Bodybuilding-Fitness-Robert-Cheeke/dp/0984391606/ref=sr_1_1_title_0_main?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1396982744&sr=1-1&keywords=vegan+bodybuilding

        ————————–
        And another article from Meetout Mondays:

        Vegan Figure Skater Takes Silver
        Canadian Olympian Meagan Duhamel and her partner Eric Radford won a silver medal in pairs figure skating at this year’s Olympic games in Sochi, Russia.

        Duhamel proudly took to Twitter announcing that she is an “Olympian, vegan, yogi and nutritionist.” Wonderful! Congratulations to Meagan for being an outspoken and shining example of what healthy vegan eating looks like. …

        —————–
        (from Meetout Mondays)
        Plant-Powered Athlete: Griff Whalen [NFL Player]
        His teammates say he has the most enviable body on the team. They say he consumes an average of 6,000 calories and 200 grams of protein a day. They also say, he does it all by eating plants!

        In a recent interview on IndyStar.com, Indianapolis Colts’ wide receiver Griff Whalen, talks about his vegan ways.

        “I feel a lot lighter, faster, quicker on the field. There isn’t that heavy feeling, that groggy feeling after I eat,” says Whalen.

        Hooray for another plant-powered athlete for us to cheer on. w00t! w00t!

        Read the full article on :
        org2.salsalabs.com/dia/track.jsp?v=2&c=X9u7eAG%2FDmVet3kwZgrmHD5TipkEhWa4
        ****************
        Rich Roll is quite an inspiration. From his bio page
        “… Rich is a 50-year old, accomplished vegan ultra-endurance athlete … In May 2010, Rich and his ultra-colleague Jason Lester accomplished an unprecedented feat of staggering endurance many said was not possible. Something they call the EPIC5 CHALLENGE- a odyssey that entailed completing 5 ironman-distance triathlons on 5 islands of Hawaii in under a week. Commencing on Kauai, they travelled to Oahu, Molokai and Maui before finishing on the Big Island, following the course of the Ironman World Championships on the Kona coast.”

        And that was just for starters. Then: “But what makes Rich truly remarkable is that less than two years prior to his first Ultraman, he didn’t even own a bike, let alone race one. … Everything came to head on the eve of his 40th birthday. Defeated by a mere flight of stairs that left him buckled over in pain, he foresaw the almost certain heart attack looming in his near future. … The day immediately following his staircase epiphany, Rich overhauled his diet, became a dedicated vegan, put on his running shoes and jumped back into the pool.”

        To learn more: http://www.richroll.com/bio/

        ****************
        (from Meetout Mondays)
        NFL’s David Carter on Living Vegan: In an interview last month on Rich Roll’s podcast, 27 year old Chicago Bears’ defensive lineman, David Carter spoke of a day in the life of the NFL, what he eats daily, his vegan journey, and his commitment to animal advocacy.

        “I can honestly say that being vegan is not only the most efficient way to be full-body strong, it’s also the most humane; everyone wins,” Carter said on the podcast.

        Carter is also the founder of The 300 Pound Vegan, a lifestyle blog where the NFL player writes about his journey through veganism and shares plant-based recipes. If nothing else, Carter shows us that living on plants is not just for endurance athletes or yogis but can positively impact heavy hitters in terms of their size, speed, agility, power, and quickness. Aww, yeah! Thanks for being so rad, David. We love it!

        Listen to the full interview on Rich Roll: http://www.richroll.com/podcast/david-carter-300-pound-vegan/
        Or for a written story with sample menu plan: http://www.gq.com/story/vegan-diet-of-nfl-player-david-carter

        ——————————
        And another article from Meetout Mondays:

        Record Setting, 92 Yr Old Vegan Runner

        Mike Fremont has been vegan for over 20 years, and has been setting single age marathon running records just as long.

        “At age 88 [Mike] ran a 6H5M53S marathon in Cincinnati Ohio and at age 90 ran a 6H35M47S marathon in Huntington West Virginia. [He] also set a single age world record for 90 years old in the half marathon in Morrow Ohio in August 2012,” said Veg World Magazine.

        According to an interview with Veg World Magazine, Fremont credits his vegan lifestyle for his continued record setting runs, at his age.

        We love seeing vegans making positive media waves, and what better way to showcase the health benefits of plant-powered living than Mike’s awesome running career. Here’s to you Mike, and vegan athletes of all ages!

        Learn more about Mike Fremont a VegWorldMag.com.
        http://www.vegworldmag.com/amazing-92-year-old-vegan-runs-another-half-marathon/

        ——————————
        from Meatout Mondays:

        World’s First Vegan Pro Soccer Team

        The Internet went wild last week as the news that English soccer (A.K.A football) team, the Forest Green Rovers, announced that the entire team and club is going completely vegan.

        “We stopped serving meat to our players, fans and staff about four seasons ago,” said club owner Dale Vince (via a recent article on Edition.CNN.com). He continued, “We’ve been on a mission since then to introduce our fans to this new world.” The article explains that while the club has been vegetarian for the past few years, they’ve decided to take the next step in going fully vegan (including their beer and cider options). Also cool to know: the club’s field is organic and they collect rainwater to use for irrigation. This is seriously super cool, you guys. Keep it up!

        Read the source article on: http://edition.cnn.com/2015/10/30/football/world-health-organization-meat-vegan-football/

        ——————————–
        from Meatout Mondays:
        Vegan Arm Wrestler: Rob Bigwood

        “Some of his opponents say that since going vegan Rob is stronger, his stamina grew, and he became more difficult to pin,” notes an interview-style Facebook post by ‘Starry N Ight.’

        A competitive arm wrestler since 2000, Rob Bigwood has been making a name for himself in the arm wrestling community—not only as the one to beat but also as the guy who eats plants. Rob has said, “I was concerned at first [about not eating meat for strength] but didn’t care. I made a conscious and ethical decision to give up meat…It is more important to practice what I believe in than to worry about being a strength athlete. I have never felt better in my entire life and it was one of the smartest decisions I ever made.”

        Check out one of Rob’s interviews on http://www.scribd.com/doc/39221267/Interview-with-a-Vegan-Arm-Wrestler

        ——————————–
        from Meatout Mondays:
        Vegan Bodybuilder Bucks Stereotypes

        Vegan bodybuilder Joshua Knox shares his game changing and inspiring vegan story during a TEDxFremont, California presentation.

        In this five-minute long video, shared by Mercy for Animals, Knox talks of his ‘meat and potatoes’ upbringing and what led him to give veganism a try. The results were nothing short of wonderful.

        “Not only was I able to continue increasing my strength and performance but also saw massive gains in endurance as well… [and] rather than feeling like I was missing out on foods I really felt that I was opening my mind to so many things I would have never put on my plate…” Knox said during his presentation. Joshua also noted a drop in his cholesterol, while experiencing mental and emotional health improvements as well. Rock on, Josh! Thank you for sharing your story

        Watch the short video on Mercy for Animals’ youtube channel: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=43f2qWARXnA

        ——————————–
        from Meatout Mondays:
        Vegan Breaks World Record in Push-Ups

        A vegan from Kerala (a South Indian state) has just broken the Guinness World Record for knuckle push-ups (press ups). K.J. Joseph—a manager of an ayurveda centre in Munnar—completed 82 push-ups in 60 seconds, beating out Ron Cooper from the US who held the record at 79 push-ups in 2015. “Joseph has already entered the Universal Record Forum by doing 2092 push-ups in an hour. He is currently the record holder in the India Book of Records,” notes OnManorama.com. Thanks for making us vegans look good, Joseph. And congrats on your win!

        Check out the original story: http://english.manoramaonline.com/lifestyle/society/vegan-most-knuckle-push-up-guinness-world-record-joseph.html

        ———————————
        from Meatout Mondays:

        Professional Bodybuilding Couple Celebrate Veganism
        Named 2014 Mr Universe, Barny Du Plessis and his fiance, named UK’s strongest woman, Josie Keck are excited to share and to celebrate their one year vegan anniversary this month. In a comprehensive interview by British publication, Daily Mail, the vegan (literal) power couple are “…serious about [their] crusade to save the Earth, the animals, [themselves], and our dignity as a species,” said Barny. The articles noted that, “Barny is on a mission to destroy the idea that eating meat is associated with manliness.” He said, “I’m living proof that you simply don’t need to eat meat or animal products to make great gains, be strong, healthy, fit, and feeling mighty.” We couldn’t agree more, Barny. Congratulations to you both on your anniversary! We’re so jazzed you’re passionate about veganism.

        “When training for competitions Barny eats up to 4,500 calories a day, while Josie consumes 2,200 of vegan food. While preparing for a competition their typical diet consists of a wide variety of vegetables; fruit such as apples, bananas, dates and berries; grains such as basmati rice, quinoa and tapioca, pulses like chickpeas and brown and red lentils; as well as powders such as rice protein, hemp protein and vegan protein blend.” And the article includes a sample daily menu for each of them. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-3495676/Obese-woman-met-fiance-gym-vegan-bodybuilders.html

        ——————-
        From PCRM Weekly News Update:
        What do the world’s top male and female tennis players have in common? They love vegan food! In a new Huffington Post piece, Dr. Barnard talks about plant-powered Novak Djokovic’s recent win at the French Open. http://new.www.huffingtonpost.com/neal-barnard-md/plantpowered-novak-djokov_b_10282348.html

        ——————-
        from meetout Mondays

        Weightlifting Record Set by Vegan

        With a record-setting deadline of 452 pounds, Iceland native Hulda B. Waage says it was her vegan diet that helped her pull out the win. “You can be strong without eating meat and animal byproducts,” she said. “I’ve reached the age when the body produces more swelling. I believe my diet helps with this, and I recover more quickly after practices.” Hulda has her sights set on the 2023 World Weightlifting Championships. Awesome, Hulda! Way to represent vegan athletes in a most wonderful way. And thank you for all you do to help inspire and forward a cruelty-free world. http://org2.salsalabs.com/dia/track.jsp?v=2&c=FiCd30wCeTG%2FBmw0po%2FMQXpx0aVdsgbp




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        1. Hi Thea, merry christmas and happy new year! I apologize for not getting back. I’ve basically sat down and did write down what i was eating, since i did add some extra fruits, and i did find out that since i added a banana,apple and orange, among with the little extra carb increase i did, my weight started to fly up, since i apperently did go from 1200cal to around 1600cal. I had no clue that they were heavy in cal, especially orange.. so what also did take a lot of time was to adjust it, so i could remove those 3 fruits and still get vitamines and potassium, which i found out i did with my fruit shake, that contains, strawberries, blueberries, raspberry, pomegranate and a mix of tropical fruits (mango, pineapple peach and etc), and eating potato as my second meal. so right now im at 1400-1500cal and its stable now, also with added sesame, sunflower and pumpkin seeds.. tho i take those in a small amount, as a little snack, so atm my nutrition data is like this
          – 1391,96kcal , 251,64 fat in kcal , 496,88 carb in kcal , 468,44 protein in kcal
          – 100 % , 18,07% , 35,69% , 33,65%

          also i did take my bloodsample.

          Basofilocytter;B × 10^9/L 0,03
          Eosinofilocytter;B × 10^9/L 0,07
          Folat;P nmol/L 47
          Hæmoglobin;B mmol/L 9,1
          Jern;P µmol/L 13
          Leukocytter;B × 10^9/L 6,1
          Lymfocytter;B × 10^9/L 2,22
          Monocytter;B × 10^9/L 0,40
          Neutrofilocytter (segmk.+stavk.);B × 10^9/L 3,37
          Vitamin B12;P pmol/L 412

          Calcium;P mmol/L 2,40
          Kalium;P mmol/L 3,8
          Kreatinin;P µmol/L 78
          Natrium;P mmol/L 140

          Alanintransaminase [ALAT];P U/L 34
          Basisk fosfatase;P U/L 57
          Metabolisme
          Kolesterol HDL;P mmol/L 0,8
          Kolesterol LDL;P mmol/L 2,6

          Kolesterol;P mmol/L 4,1
          Triglycerid;P mmol/L 1,5
          Endokrinologi
          Thyrotropin [TSH];P × 10^-3 IU/L 1,6
          Immunologi og inflammation
          C-reaktivt protein [CRP];P mg/L 90
          Metamyelo.+Myelo.+Promyelocytter;B × 10^9/L 0,02

          But ive basically spent a lot of time trying to get into what was the reason, and sadly i did figure out that since i ate those extra fruits, i was gaining weight, now where i’ve cut that and just sticking to the berries and seeds among with vegan diet and some carbs, it seems to work better and my stomach isnt as bloated..

          to reply on your first post

          what i do to messure myself, is that i weigh myself, look at the mirror and use a messurement to messure my legs, stomach (the thickets and thinest place), my arms, waist (where my pants sits) and i know its not possible to have the stomach staying completly the same while gaining weight, but i wanna do it in a slow and good way so i dont just bulk up and become big and fat.

          i also try and eat till im full without being overfull or hungry. so in simple term. eat till him full. which is also why i adjust it, so at the moment, in the morning, a 50 gram oatmeal with 40 grams of pee protein powder, it enough to make me full.. for couple of hours, then i eat the second meal which is 50 gram rice (turns into 140-150gram) or a piece of potato (around 150grams) with 110 gram of soy-type of meat. and the last 2 meals are then with vegetables with soy.. so i try and eat so im full but not overfull.

          I also really appreciate your help, links and tips. I’ll have to read the second reply, as i am on my way out.
          lastly, i also made a vitamine guide, so i can see which of the fruits, seeds and foods im eating gives what..

          since i did notice before with just simple food i got nothing special, but now with the seeds and berries, im covered in vitamine A, b1, b2, b3, b6, E, iron, zinc, magnesium, potassium, K, copper and C.

          I’ll reply on your second post once ive looked it all though and got some additional questions.




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      2. THANK YOU SO MUCH for the reply Thea! currently its almost 3 in the morning (I live in Denmark) so ill check out the video, links and articale and do a propper reply tomorrow as i’m about to hit the bed – I’ll talk to you tomorrow :)




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  23. I am a fit, slim 63 year old male and 6 weeks ago I developed unstable angina and then a coronary event with significant chest pain. Turns out my left and right coronaries were 80 and 90% occluded. The interventional cardiologist installed two dissolvable stents and perscribed Effient (blood thinner for one year), baby aspirin and Lipitor (Statin probably for many years). In the post op literature from my cardiologist, it indicated adverse drug interactions for the blood thinner with Omega 3. As I am starting a Vegan Diet, Dr. Greger indicated that Omega 3 is an essential fatty acid and needs to be ingested via flaxseeds (1 -2 tablespoons/daily), walnut, etc. My question is: Given my blood thinner intake, how much Omega 3 can I safely consume? Can I also take some Krill Oil supplements? Thank you for your professional response.




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  24. I have been taking low dose aspirin for about 3 years after needing a heart bypass operation. In the last couple days I have had two serious nose bleeds. Yesterday I needed a nasal cauterization to stop the bleeding. I follow the plant based diet. What do you think? Should I drop the baby aspirin? it is the only drug that I take. Also, I read that Tumeric might cause nose bleeds. Any thoughts on that? Thank you for any help you can give me.




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    1. Hi Nancy: I would consult your cardiologist or primary care provider regarding the aspirin. Turmeric root is generally safe to use, however I would not recommend turmeric supplements. Turmeric supplements can lead to bleeding and slow blood clotting. If you’re currently only using the root, you could always cut down and see if that changes your nosebleeds.




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