The Hispanic Paradox: Why Do Latinos Live Longer?

The Hispanic Paradox: Why Do Latinos Live Longer?
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Despite less education on average, a higher poverty rate, and more limited access to health care, U.S. Hispanics tend to live the longest. Why?

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Hispanics living in the United States tend to have less education, a higher poverty rate, and worse access to health care. They represent, like, the ultimate paradigm of health care disparities. The highest rate of uninsured, the lowest rates of health screening and counseling, and the poorest levels of blood pressure and blood sugar control, and other measures of deficient quality of care. So, wow, Hispanics living in the U.S. must just have dismal public health statistics, right?

According to the latest national data, the life expectancy of white men and women was 76 and 81. The lives of black men and women, cut short by years. How do Hispanics do? Amazingly, they beat out everyone. Hispanics live the longest.

This has been called the Hispanic Paradox. Hispanics have a 24% lower risk of premature death, and lower risks of 9 out of the leading 15 causes of death—notably less cancer and heart disease. This was first noticed 30 years ago, but understandably met with great criticism.

Maybe the data were unreliable? No, that did not seem to be it. Maybe only the healthiest people migrate? Turns out the opposite may be true. Then there’s always the salmon bias theory—proposing that maybe Latinos return to their home country to die, and so, aren’t counted in our death statistics. But that theory didn’t pan out, either.

Systematic reviews confirm the existence of this Hispanic paradox. And so, given the strong evidence, it might be time to accept it and move on to figuring out well, wait a second, why do they live so long? Figure out the cause.

The very existence of the Hispanic Paradox could represent a major opportunity to identify a protective factor for cardiovascular disease applicable to the rest of the population. After all, whatever is going on is strong enough to overcome the disadvantaging effects of poverty, language barriers, low levels of education, health literacy, quality of health care, and insurance coverage.

Before we get our hopes up too much, though, maybe it’s just genetic? No, because as foreign-born Hispanics acculturate to the United States, as they embrace the American way of life, their mortality rates go up. So, what positive health behaviors may account for Hispanic longevity?

Maybe they exercise more? No; Hispanics appear to be even more sedentary. Hispanics do smoke less; however, the paradox persists even after taking that into account. Maybe it’s their diet. As they acculturate, they start eating more processed foods and animal foods, and fewer plant foods—and perhaps one plant food in particular: beans.

Maybe a reason Hispanics live longer is because they eat more beans. Although Hispanics only represent about 10% of the population, they eat a third of the beans in the United States, individually eating four to five times more beans per capita; a few pounds a month as opposed to a few pounds a year.

And that may help explain the Hispanic Paradox, because legumes—beans, split peas, chickpeas, lentils—cool down systemic inflammation. This is the mechanism they propose in terms of lung health. While cigarette smoking and air pollution cause lung inflammation, which increases the risk for emphysema and lung cancer, when we eat beans, the good bacteria in our gut take the fiber and resistant starch, and form small-chain fatty acids that are absorbed into our system and decrease systemic inflammation—which not only inhibits lung cancer development, but also other cancers throughout the body.

Here’s the lung data, with Hispanics in red, having the lowest rates of COPD and lung cancer, and also tending to have lower rates of bladder cancer, throat cancer, and colorectal cancer, for both men and women.

This whole systemic inflammation concept is also supported by the fact that when Hispanics do get lung cancer, or colon cancer, or breast cancer, they have improved survival rates, and maybe the same with heart attack and stroke survival. Decreasing whole body inflammation may be important for both prevention and survival.

Now, Asian Americans, here in green, appear to have some protection, too, which may be because they eat more beans, too, in the form of tofu and other soy foods, as soy intake is associated with both lung cancer prevention, and lung cancer survival.

Now, Hispanics also eat more corn, tomatoes, and chili peppers. A quarter of the diet in Mexico is made up of corn tortillas, and Mexican-Americans born in Mexico, and Mexican-Americans born in the U.S., continue to eat more than the general population. Looking at cancer rates around the world, not only was bean consumption associated with less colon, breast, and prostate cancer, but also rice and corn consumption appeared protectively correlated, as well.

Of course, since NAFTA, the Mexican diet has changed to incorporate more soda, processed, and animal foods, and their obesity rates are fast catching up to ours.

In the U.S., Hispanics eat more fruits and vegetables than other groups; about six or seven servings a day—but still don’t even make the recommended minimum of nine servings, though. So, their diet could stand some improvement. So yes, Hispanics may only have half the odds of dying from heart disease, but it’s still the #1 cause of death among Hispanics.

Therefore, the current results should not be misinterpreted to mean that cardiovascular disease is rare among Hispanics. So, ideally, they’d be eating even more whole plant foods. But one thing everyone can learn from the Hispanic experience is that along with a shift towards a more plant-based diet in general, beans may be potent tools in the prevention and treatment of chronic disease.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Katie Schloer.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image thanks to Robert Judge via flickr.

Hispanics living in the United States tend to have less education, a higher poverty rate, and worse access to health care. They represent, like, the ultimate paradigm of health care disparities. The highest rate of uninsured, the lowest rates of health screening and counseling, and the poorest levels of blood pressure and blood sugar control, and other measures of deficient quality of care. So, wow, Hispanics living in the U.S. must just have dismal public health statistics, right?

According to the latest national data, the life expectancy of white men and women was 76 and 81. The lives of black men and women, cut short by years. How do Hispanics do? Amazingly, they beat out everyone. Hispanics live the longest.

This has been called the Hispanic Paradox. Hispanics have a 24% lower risk of premature death, and lower risks of 9 out of the leading 15 causes of death—notably less cancer and heart disease. This was first noticed 30 years ago, but understandably met with great criticism.

Maybe the data were unreliable? No, that did not seem to be it. Maybe only the healthiest people migrate? Turns out the opposite may be true. Then there’s always the salmon bias theory—proposing that maybe Latinos return to their home country to die, and so, aren’t counted in our death statistics. But that theory didn’t pan out, either.

Systematic reviews confirm the existence of this Hispanic paradox. And so, given the strong evidence, it might be time to accept it and move on to figuring out well, wait a second, why do they live so long? Figure out the cause.

The very existence of the Hispanic Paradox could represent a major opportunity to identify a protective factor for cardiovascular disease applicable to the rest of the population. After all, whatever is going on is strong enough to overcome the disadvantaging effects of poverty, language barriers, low levels of education, health literacy, quality of health care, and insurance coverage.

Before we get our hopes up too much, though, maybe it’s just genetic? No, because as foreign-born Hispanics acculturate to the United States, as they embrace the American way of life, their mortality rates go up. So, what positive health behaviors may account for Hispanic longevity?

Maybe they exercise more? No; Hispanics appear to be even more sedentary. Hispanics do smoke less; however, the paradox persists even after taking that into account. Maybe it’s their diet. As they acculturate, they start eating more processed foods and animal foods, and fewer plant foods—and perhaps one plant food in particular: beans.

Maybe a reason Hispanics live longer is because they eat more beans. Although Hispanics only represent about 10% of the population, they eat a third of the beans in the United States, individually eating four to five times more beans per capita; a few pounds a month as opposed to a few pounds a year.

And that may help explain the Hispanic Paradox, because legumes—beans, split peas, chickpeas, lentils—cool down systemic inflammation. This is the mechanism they propose in terms of lung health. While cigarette smoking and air pollution cause lung inflammation, which increases the risk for emphysema and lung cancer, when we eat beans, the good bacteria in our gut take the fiber and resistant starch, and form small-chain fatty acids that are absorbed into our system and decrease systemic inflammation—which not only inhibits lung cancer development, but also other cancers throughout the body.

Here’s the lung data, with Hispanics in red, having the lowest rates of COPD and lung cancer, and also tending to have lower rates of bladder cancer, throat cancer, and colorectal cancer, for both men and women.

This whole systemic inflammation concept is also supported by the fact that when Hispanics do get lung cancer, or colon cancer, or breast cancer, they have improved survival rates, and maybe the same with heart attack and stroke survival. Decreasing whole body inflammation may be important for both prevention and survival.

Now, Asian Americans, here in green, appear to have some protection, too, which may be because they eat more beans, too, in the form of tofu and other soy foods, as soy intake is associated with both lung cancer prevention, and lung cancer survival.

Now, Hispanics also eat more corn, tomatoes, and chili peppers. A quarter of the diet in Mexico is made up of corn tortillas, and Mexican-Americans born in Mexico, and Mexican-Americans born in the U.S., continue to eat more than the general population. Looking at cancer rates around the world, not only was bean consumption associated with less colon, breast, and prostate cancer, but also rice and corn consumption appeared protectively correlated, as well.

Of course, since NAFTA, the Mexican diet has changed to incorporate more soda, processed, and animal foods, and their obesity rates are fast catching up to ours.

In the U.S., Hispanics eat more fruits and vegetables than other groups; about six or seven servings a day—but still don’t even make the recommended minimum of nine servings, though. So, their diet could stand some improvement. So yes, Hispanics may only have half the odds of dying from heart disease, but it’s still the #1 cause of death among Hispanics.

Therefore, the current results should not be misinterpreted to mean that cardiovascular disease is rare among Hispanics. So, ideally, they’d be eating even more whole plant foods. But one thing everyone can learn from the Hispanic experience is that along with a shift towards a more plant-based diet in general, beans may be potent tools in the prevention and treatment of chronic disease.

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by Katie Schloer.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image thanks to Robert Judge via flickr.

Doctor's Note

Data like this support my Daily Dozen recommendation for eating legumes ideally at every meal, and we have free apps for both iPhone and Android that can help you meet these dietary goals. If you want to help improve the apps, please check out our Open Source Initiative.

For more on the wonders of beans, split peas, chickpeas, and lentils, see my videos:

What’s the best way to eat them? See Canned Beans or Cooked Beans? and Cooked Beans or Sprouted Beans?.

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

244 responses to “The Hispanic Paradox: Why Do Latinos Live Longer?

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  1. Tortillas were once commonly made with just corn, lime and water. Now however, things have changed. I haven’t been able to find them unless they consist of a plethora of strange-named chemicals. So, I haven’t had tortillas in a long time. Does anyone know where you can buy decent healthy tortillas?




    6
    1. We buy Food For Life Sprouted Corn Tortillas. Ingredients: Organic sprouted corn, filtered water, sea salt, lime. They’re found in the frozen section, usually in health food stores.

      Actually my husband and I have been thinking of making our own corn tortillas by soaking dried corn in lime, mashing it, patting into tortillas and cooking in a fry pan. If anyone has any pointers for us, please let me know.




      2
        1. Why would I want to use processed flour? I do not even wish to eat the way Hispanics do. Whole plant-based diet is the way to go and everything else is noise!




          1
          1. Because corn tortillas taste good, don’t have any added fats and you can use them as wraps? Plus they offer resistant starch if you let them get cold and re-heat. Nixtamalization is a good thing, IMO. Hispanics eat some d–n good food, so I think I’ll keep eating the healthier options offered up by Hispanic cuisine. You can take the unprocessed thing to the limit, if you like, so long as you are happy and healthy – that’s all that matters.




            8
      1. Just in case there was any confusion the lime used isn’t citrus lime, it is hydrated calcium Ca(OH)2, also known as slaked lime which is slightly soluble in water. Water that has run through/over limestone rocks is naturally saturated with calcium hydrate. Big portions of Mexico where corn was domesticated sit atop huge limestone formations with many underground rivers and natural springs that are naturally saturated with calcium hydrate.

        The calcium hydrate interacts with the corn kernel by loosening the hull on the kernel. It also changing the structure such that the niacin in the corn can be absorbed by in the digestive track. It also changes the physical structure such that the dough made from it is more playable than that made with unprocessed corn meal so the tortillas made from it hold together much better. Like lemonhead said, masa harina is made from corn soaked in lime water, dried and then ground. BTW, the soaked corn kernels can be cooked and eaten directly, and is in fact very popular in the American south where it is called Hominy, and of course coursely ground masa harina is called hominy grits or just grits and is used to make a porridge also just called grits.




        7
          1. hi thea,

            again, one of my posts to Tone Stette has been deleted after I verified that it was there after posting it.

            is there any way you can find out who’s flagging my posts and ban them?

            this is getting ridiculous.

            thanks,
            donald.




            0
            1. AZ DONALD: I just checked. None of your posts have been deleted. Sadly, disqus lacks in key ways and finding your own posts can be one of them. You can find your posts by looking on your own profile page in disqus and then click, ‘view in discussion’ to find it on the NutritionFacts site. As an example, here is your post to Tone: http://nutritionfacts.org/video/the-hispanic-paradox-why-do-latinos-live-longer/#comment-2825802936 As you can see, it has not been deleted.




              1
        1. Jim Felder, Thanks for the helpful information! In “The Blue Zones” they describe how Costa Ricans make tortillas from corn grown in their own gardens. They explain how the calcium hydrate, in addition to making the niacin in the corn absorbable, also adds usable calcium to the tortillas.




          1
        2. I made some corn tortillas from scratch once starting with deer corn and I used way more lime than is usual, in fact so much they had a faint white sheen to them, and everyone went crazy over them. A different world from store ones.




          0
      2. Making your own tortillas from the actual dried corn is a long process…However depending on where you live you may be able to buy fresh masa, and most likely you can find organic dry masa harina at a whole foods or sprouts. Bob’s Red Mill makes it. Its not cornmeal, has to say masa harina. To the masa harina you just add water. Not that I’m discouraging you from making your own from scratch! Its a beautiful learning process, but a lot of work.




        4
    2. Corn/lime/water tortillas are readily available at Hispanic markets, and there are at least two national brands (La Banderita is one) of these available locally. If you’re lucky, you’ll find a tortilleria nearby for freshly made tortillas. Really good, but they taste the same as the packaged ones after a couple of days.




      0
      1. I also buy the Food For Life Sprouted Corn Tortillas per Dr. G’s reco in his book “How Not to Die” but I noticed the carbs are 23g per serving and fiber 3 g which is a ratio of 7.67 which exceeds the reco he has for whole grains in his book i.e. he recos a ratio of 5 or less as a test, wondered how that applied to the tortillas but I like them.




        1
            1. Starch retrogradation is an annealing process where starch chains align, expel water, and hydrogen bond. When heated, a fraction (but not all) of the RS thus generated gets knocked about and becomes digestable. Generally, repeated cycles of heating/cooling increase RS (akin to the annealling of steels).

              Freshly made corn tortillas are about 2% resistant starch, and as they undergo retrogradation, they become stiffer and more brittle (this accounts for some qualities of stale bread, too). Additives like cellulose gum added to long-shelf life corn tortillas are there to prevent retrogradation.




              0
          1. Now wait Darryl (Hi by the way). Are you saying there is something wrong with our homemade corn tortillas? They are amazing. Fresh and delicious! But trust me I am not giving them up. Fresh made at home salsa (2 different kinds) homemade pintos, black rice, fresh smashed avocado. Saturday night ritual. My husband has perfected the meal. No dairy or meat required!




            2
            1. Not in the least. Only pointing out that Dr. Greger’s 5:1 target for carbs to fiber isn’t a particularly useful metric, as it would exclude most whole grain products, even those with no added refined flour* or added sugar. Whole wheat pastas fall around 6-10, corn products are around 7-9, and brown and wild rices are around 12-13.

              * in reality, roller mill whole grain flours are produced by adding bran back to refined flour, but you know what I mean.




              0
              1. but shouldn’t we consider the totality of the food for the 5:1 ratio?
                once you include the beans and chopped veggies and such for the entire meal wouldn’t that ratio be right in line with his target?




                0
            2. “But trust me I am not giving them up.” Almost every single person I have worked with as a nutritional counselor for 30 years, has made the very same comment when I show them a list of bad foods for their metabolic profile :( And that is why they are sick. They just won’t give some things up :(




              2
              1. It’s sad isn’t it. I am a sugarfree-gluten free-vegan. I will not give up my corn tortillas. No additives. No oil. Fresh off the grill. Well ok. I would if I developed a corn allergy but without eating gluten my choices are limited.

                People are funny that way.




                1
        1. I would think that a whole (low fat) plant food would take precedence over the 5:1 ratio rule. I think Dr. McDougall would agree as potatoes don’t have all that much fiber either compared to beans.




          1
          1. I have to agree with you, bhrollin.

            5 years ago I had inoperable, progressive brain disease (think heart disease), was told there was nothing medical science could do for me and to go home and get my affairs in order and wait for the big one. don’t change anything I was doing and keep eating whatever I wanted as diet would have no effect on the disease “progression”. I specifically asked 2 doctors about diet one being a vegetarian (indian) and was told that diet change will make no difference, period.

            overnight (well, a week later after researching 24/7) we went on a NO OIL plant based diet.

            I never had another stroke after changing my diet. they’re technically TIA’s or mini strokes but they were anything but mini. I was having 10 to 15 episodes of left sided paralysis per day for 3 months, that’s about a thousand of them. i’m talking anything from left face paralysis to full on left sided entire body paralysis, like the poor souls you see in the grocery store on those motorized things with one side of the body completely dead. my neurologist said his patients always fully stroke or die after their second TIA and cannot understand how I made it, I just never had a major plaque rupture.

            within 20 months, the 3 blockages in my anterior cerebral arteries had completely reversed and were patent (open) without ANY HINT of blockage. it took awhile longer for my left medial cerebral artery to open up but it eventually did too.

            I had nobody to talk to, nothing but the internet and especially dr esselstyns videos on how to prevernt and reverse heart disease. I figured if it worked on hearts then it would work on brains. I really had no other choice after all the research I did but I was convinced that it was the fat and oil which was the cause.

            at the same time, my neurologist had another patient with an almost identical MR Angiogram of the brain. he said you could almost lay one on top of the other.

            that patient was also told to go home, there’s nothing they could do and don’t change his diet as it won’t make a difference, enjoy what time he had left. he’s been dead for 3 years now…. my disease has completely reversed.

            keep an eye out for a book in the next year or so by dr crawford of oracle arizona. he’s a plant based doctor and is going to use my brain MRA images and story in it.

            I think we can way over analyze everything like the 5:1 ratio, or this and that.

            just eat a plant based diet with NO OIL.

            oil and fat is the key to all of our western disease. it’s the poison that’s killing us all and I firmly believe that anything over 10% is when disease states begin.

            it worked for me.

            ps. my diabetes cleared up in 3 days. diabetes is NOT a disease of carbohydrate metabolism but a disease of fat poisoning. take away the poison and the inflammatory disease(s) go away too.

            .




            6
            1. AZ DONALD: We get powerful stories on this site from time to time. Your story has to be right up there at the top. Really amazing. Thank you so much for taking the time to share. That’s just amazing.




              0
              1. hi Thea.

                I wrote a very long reply to Sandy about avocados, I saw it and EvidenceBasedNutrition even replied to it but it’s gone now.

                when EBN replied to me, the first few lines were there in the email so it must have posted but then seems to have disappeared.

                here’s the beginning of what I wrote but that’s all I have of the entire post.

                “avocado is the fattiest fruit out there and it’s loaded with saturated fat, exactly the type which promotes arterial plaque. there was no way …”

                is there any way you can retrieve it somehow, I must have spent almost an hour composing it.

                .




                0
                1. AZ DONALD: This is a first. You are the first person that I can remember who complained about a deleted post which was actually deleted. I have reinstated your post. Thanks for bringing this to my attention.

                  FYI: If a post gets “flagged”, the post sometimes gets moved to the deleted section automatically. But I review all flagged posts and reinstate the ones that are legitimate. I usually do that before anyone notices that anything happened. I find it strange, but people don’t seem to understand what the “flag” feature is for…




                  0
                    1. AZ DONALD: I did not say that EvidenceBasedNutrition did any flagging. When I get a flag, I never know who did it. It could be any random person on the internet, and I can almost guarantee you that it was not EvidenceBasedNutrition.

                      I know how frustrating it can be to spend time on a post and have it deleted. Glad I could help.




                      0
                    1. AZ DONALD: I’m sorry, I don’t know what is going on. I did go to that page and kept clicking the button on the bottom of the comments which says “load more comments”. Eventually your post appeared. The post is definitely there. It is just an issue of when. Also note that anyone who was already on the page got an e-mail with your response. That’s all I can say right now. Sorry.




                      0
                    2. Oh wait, I think I just figured it out. The link you included in your post above was for the link to *Richard’s* post. Not to your post. When there are a lot of posts on a page, that’s just how disqus works. Disqus will show the post you wanted to see, but not all the posts that follow–not unless you click that button I mentioned, “load more comments” until the button goes away.
                      .
                      This has long been one of my beefs with disqus. When you specifically ask to see a post, you want to see all upstream and downstream related posts. But disqus does not work that way by default.




                      0
                    3. ‘violet’, I think you’ve got it!

                      LOL

                      thanks, I kept thinking my posts were going into cyberspace.

                      you would really think that disqus would have this one figured out and solved by now.

                      thanks for searching and finding the answer.

                      donald.

                      .




                      0
                    4. also, I just realized that there’s a “SORT BY NEWEST” tab at the top right which organizes everything by the most recent comments.

                      that solves the problem COMPLETELY.

                      I wish it were more noticeable like in RED !

                      LOL

                      thanks again thea.

                      check out in between all of this, I posted my newest lipid panel.
                      I never thought i’d get it so low without drugs and just diet.

                      donald.

                      .




                      0
              1. avocado is the fattiest fruit out there and it’s loaded with saturated fat, exactly the type which promotes arterial plaque.

                there was no way I was going to risk it and be a guinea pig when I successfully reversed my arterial disease in 20 months (and along with that my terminal diagnosis) by cutting out ALL fats and animal products concentrating only on plants, fresh veggies and fruits.

                over millions of years, we have evolved to be truly healthy on the fat and protein ratios in non fatty plant foods like rice or beans or bananas or apples, etc.

                we’ve evolved to be able to survive on animal products but we can only THRIVE on a plant based diet.

                after all, for the first 5 million years of early man we lived in trees eating fruit and a few types of leaves. eventually, when we migrated into northern Africa and into Europe we gained the ability to digest meat but we didn’t lose the original 5 million years of our evolution on plants.

                rabbits, like man, are herbivores and are an excellent example to study.

                if you feed rabbits animal products and saturated fat, within weeks they develop severe arterial disease and die. they are extremely sensitive.

                man is a little more resistant taking decades, look back at our old schoolmates. by about age 30 you would begin to hear that joe or john died of a heart attack. by about the 40’s or 50’s is when we start to see friends and acquaintances dying off regularly from clotting diseases like heart attack and strokes. it’s all due to the very fatty western diet loaded with omega 6 fatty acids.

                the average western diet consists of about 35-40% fat.

                i’m guessing that i’m at about a 6% fat intake.

                to be in optimum health we need to have a good balance of omega 6 to omega 3’s and the only way to achieve that is on a no fat, plant based diet just like all of the long lived rural peoples of the world.

                .

                .




                1
            2. Our whole “health care system” is really just a disease production and management system constructed solely for the purpose of all participants to gain profit at the expense of the consumer’s health. Read “Whole” by T. Colin Campbell. It’s an eye opener.




              0
              1. :o) :o) :o)

                two years ago we finally found a local plant based doctor who ended up retiring about a year ago, bummer.

                he was so impressed with my journey and results that he had put my before and after images on 2 foot square foamboards in every single one of his exam rooms as teaching aids for all of his patients.

                once a month he would put on a lecture at the local hospitals’ wellness center at the mall entitled “how to prevent and reverse terminal illness with a plant based diet”.

                the very first image that came up in his presentation was my before/after brain scan images.

                the first time we attended my wife leaned over and asked what it was like being a celebrity.

                I smiled but then thought, ‘I wish I was a celebrity for something else’, lol.

                .




                1
            3. Well, that’s great to hear. I agree completely with what you say. By I would also add that protein, in particular animal protein, is another highly toxic substance. Not my idea at all but what T. Colin Campbell shows in his books “The China Study” and “Whole”. Animal protein causes cancer cell expression and proliferation. Vegetable protein prevents and reverses cancer cell expression and proliferation.




              1
      2. Seems to me that Latins are less insecure and less obsessive than Americans, less worrying about the correct ratio of carbs to fiber, etc., and just try to make and eat healthy food. Less concern about how quickly they can prepare food, less rushing in general. More of a healthy philosophy.




        1
    3. I live in Canada and eat Buenatural stone ground organic corn tortillas. Ingredients: “organic whole corn, water, trace of lime.” They’re also non-GMO, if that matters to you.




      1
      1. Where in Canada do you get Bueno Foods tortillas? I live in Hamilton (near Toronto) and have not seen them in any store (Whole Foods, Fortinos, etc.) Looked up their website and they don’t seem to include Canada in their store locator. Thanks.




        0
        1. Pomme Natural Market. Unfortunately for Torontonians this small chain appears to comprise three west coast locations only. I haven’t seen Buenatural tortillas elsewhere, but in Nanaimo where I live, healthy-food specialty stores are few–mostly big chain supermarkets here.




          0
    4. They have them at Whole Foods in the frozen section. Don’t drop them, they will shatter. They also have wheat flour tortillas that aren’t too bad, but for the soybean oil.

      I miss the wheat flour tortillas in San Diego, made by ‘tortilla ladies’. They use manteca, pork lard – not a health food, but they were so good.




      0
        1. Is that why they have the largest number and variety of organic products of any grocery store in my area?
          (but Kroger seems to beat them on organic fresh produce for some strange reason)




          0
          1. Just because they are organic, dies not mean the were not grown with GMO seeds. If GMO means anything to you :) P.S. I believe that Costco is the largest seller of organic produce in America. :)




            0
            1. USDA Organic certified products are by definition non-GMO.

              “The use of genetic engineering, or genetically modified organisms (GMOs), is prohibited in organic products. This means an organic farmer can’t plant GMO seeds, an organic cow can’t eat GMO alfalfa or corn, and an organic soup producer can’t use any GMO ingredients. To meet the USDA organic regulations, farmers and processors must show they aren’t using GMOs and that they are protecting their products from contact with prohibited substances, such as GMOs, from farm to table.”
              http://blogs.usda.gov/2013/05/17/organic-101-can-gmos-be-used-in-organic-products/




              0
          2. I don’t know why Whole Foods has been behaving in this manner, but would speculate that it considers the DARK Act anti-labeling law to be in its financial interests, i.e. consumers who are determined to avoid GMOs would have little option but to shop at Whole Foods.




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            1. That’s actually a plausible theory, though one of the ‘bad actors’ listed in the article you linked to is the EDF, and for me, that casts doubt on the whole article.

              As far as Whole Foods goes, John Mackey is, I believe, a libertarian who opposes the minimum wage and I can see parallels between that issue and the GMO issue with respect to the WF business model (competing by offering high-end products and services).

              I have a love/hate relationship with libertarianism; I laughed yesterday when I read a comment by someone who quoted one of their biochemistry professors, “A tumor is what happens when cells become libertarians.” On the other hand, my hard-learned understanding of human nature seems to be pushing me towards the conclusion that it is the only approach to political philosophy that makes any sense. Certainly, a lot of intelligent people seem to be libertarian, but then they also seem to tend towards an unreasonable level of techno-optimism (e.g., Vernor Vinge).

              Then there’s the libertarian socialism of Murray Bookchin, which I like. Libertarian socialism sounds like an oxymoron, but it isn’t. When I look back on my life, though, I think, hmmm… would that ever really work for any length of time?

              Sorry for the digression, I don’t feel like doing the vacuuming.




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          1. This particular article doesn’t appear to be dated, however I found it via a link in an Organic Consumers Association e-mail newsletter dated 10 July 2016 and under the heading “Essay of the week” suggesting the date of the article may be up to six days earlier. A second, earlier, article, referenced within the first, is dated 28 June 2016.

            Whole Foods, it seems, has been selling GM products for some time, as it admitted in this article from 2012, below; so, to correct another comment I made, if you are determined to avoid GMOs then you still can’t rely on Whole Foods Market: http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/blog/whole-story/gmomonsanto-buyout-rumors-untrue




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    5. You might try making them yourself. Look for Maseca corn flour, which is corn and lime. An awesome twist is add some lemon zest and juice to the masa. They come out so much better than premade. Black beans tacos are one of my favorite meals.




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      1. The lime being referenced with respect to this particular corn meal is mineralized water that has passed over limestone. Used to be that it came from underground streams since much of southern Mexico lays atop vast limestone deposits and so the water was naturally mineralized. Today limestone water is made by soaking limestone chips in water. The dried corn is soaked in the limestone water to make what we call hominy. The corn is then dried again and ground. The resulting corn meal is called Masa Harina. This process results in a different nutritional profile than ground corn meal that didn’t go through the soak in limestone water. Also it cooks completely differently as anybody who has had the disastrous experience of using plain corn meal and not Masa Harina to make corn tortillas

        But adding the juice and zest of the sour citrus fruit of your choice sounds super awesome too. Especially for black bean tacos with cumin and fresh cilantro with some diced fresh onion, jalapenos and tomatos on top. Oh, I’m hungry!




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        1. What you described is almost exactly how I make my tacos. Fresh onions, jalapenos, cilantro, tomatoes, and I add cabbage. The zest really makes the tortillas interesting (its been a hit even with my authentico relatives), and they go well with my tacos for sure.




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    6. I made a tortilla press from scraps of birch, cherry, and walnut (hard woods) and buy fresh masa made from yellow corn nixtamal by Diana’s Market on Normandie Ave in Gardena, CA. Nothing like a thick homemade tortilla from fresh masa. Yum, I’m getting hungry! My taco fillings are usually a quinoa & black bean or sweet potato & black bean or potato & bell pepper & onion mix (with other veggies,spices, and salsa of course).




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    7. Tortillas take about 5 minutes to make and 2 minute to cook. And actually they only require 2 ingredients, masa harina corn meal (corn soaked in slaked lime water, dried and ground) and water. However, without all the added salt and fat they will taste different than commercial tortillas. You can add those things if you need to, but they are healthier without.

      Mix the masa with the water to make a ball of dough that isn’t crumbly (too dry) or sticky (too wet) (2 cups masa 1 1/2 cups hot water). Pinch off a golf ball sized bit, flatten it to about 2-3 mm thick (1/8″) (with practice you can do it with your hands, but good tortilla press or even a pie plate pressing down on a countertop can make it go faster and more uniform, just put between two layers of plastic, a zip lock with three sides cut off works great). Then just cook on a medium-hot dry skillet for 1 minute a side, flipping when the edges beginning to curl up. Place cooked tortillas in a tortilla warmer with a kitchen towel to self-steam for a few minutes, but you can just use a towel on a plate and another plate turned upside down or domed lid to cover them. And then eat! Tortillas will stay fresh in the refrigerator for about 3 days, just rewarm them in the microwave or toss them back on a hot skillet for a few seconds.




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    8. I buy organic masa harina from Goldminenaturalfoods.com. When time allows, I’ll make my own to have on hand during the week and freeze a few more. Easy to make with a press. Occasionally, I’ll also buy MiRancho.com (organic) tortillas from the grocery store or a Whole Foods brand. You can also try a Mexican restaurant or market, find out what ingredients are used and order a good amount for fridge and freezer storage.




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    9. your local CO OP. or a grocery store named El Rey in Milwaukee, WI, they’re gmo free, and most of their chips are low fat and gmo free, too.




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    10. El Milagro brand tortillas, if you can find them, are pure masa flour with nothing added. They’re available, to my knowledge, in Chicago and Austin, so there must be lots of other places in between, if that helps you.




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      1. Though I guess, it’s not the same as using organic corn. It does work well in a pinch though, and the taste is great. I haven’t conducted much research on cassava.




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    1. Hi Richard, I can’t speak to the validity of that product because i haven’t tried it and don’t know anyone who has. I did however look at the sales letter and I reviewed the ingredients. I noticed that all the extracts and other non-nutrient substances (like silicon dioxide) were listed higher on the ingredient label than the “whole fruits and vegetables” so that already raises a red flag for me.
      My take on these kinds of products in general is that you won’t need them if you eat a whole foods plant based diet. I’m confident in saying that one tablespoon of that powder in 12 oz of water once a day can’t possibly have the nutritional punch of a days worth of fresh whole plant foods containing whole fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains, seeds and beans. I would stick to eating in line with Dr Greger’s daily dozen and you won’t need a “magic” green powder.




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    2. This is the scientific reductionist fallacy at its worst (that you can reduce everything down to a single component that is responsible for the observed effect) teamed up with snake-oil market definitely at its worst. The first step of the con is to find real whole foods that have been observed to have some health promoting effect. The health effect of the whole food is likely real. Being real has the advantage that you can point to actual research by actual researchers and infer that your claims are supported by that research. Then isolate the “one-thing” that is solely responsible for this health effect (or at least claim that you have because there is no regulation of these claims made by supplement makers since in myopic eyes of federal regulators extracts of whole foods are still just foods). Then take that “one-thing” and make a product out of it and claim that it is magical! These con artist even go one step further and say that they are taking the magical ingredients of a whole bunch of different foods and distilling them down to a single tablespoon of their unique powder to make it SUPER MAGICAL. Then take a page from 19th century snake-oil salesmen to set the hook and create ad copy that claims that this product used to be a super secret restricted to some elite group, but now though this special limited time offer you have an opportunity to join that elite group and benefit from their inside knowledge for the low low price of not $150, or even $100, but just $49.95. And they will even throw in these “valuable” free gifts! And of course you want to have a real doctor on the team or at least an outside doctor to say that all the claims are true to make everything feel super-sciency. And is likely is a real doctor too. Not all prostitutes make their living on their backs. Plus with this product you can bask in the glow of joining all these patriots and heros in their secret to eternal youth. Pardon me, I have to go and try to get this foul taste out of my mouth.




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      1. Jim Felder, THANK YOU for your delightful tongue-in-cheek truths on the cheeky liars out there working so busily to suck us all in.

        Today’s UPS delivery brought me Mike Adams’ new book, Food Forensics, The Hidden Toxins Lurking in Your Food and How You Can Avoid Them for Lifelong Health. He’s been doing the scientific detective work to find out all the nasty things in all kinds of foods and supplements that labels don’t bother to mention. This includes high levels of toxic heavy metals, especially in foods and supplements from China, and I haven’t even gotten through the introduction yet! Yikes! Adams built a laboratory with a powerful inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry instrument (ICP-MS) which detects metals at very low levels. This should be an interesting, and very telling, book. However, there are many of you out there who understand such instruments and what they do far better than I do. Any comments about this?




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        1. While I read all sides of the arguments including Mr Mike Adams point of view and I do get some good info from him, in general Mr Mike Adams tends to be on the fear monger hypster type of person. I take a grain of salt to a lot of things he said.




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    3. Even if that product had only 1 ingredient the process used to extract and dry needs to be done in a manner that keeps the ingredients alive. There are companies or at least one I know of that has improved their methods to the point that vitamin c is showing up in the after processed tests. Not just their tests either. And they keep looking for ways to make their products healthier. So researching a company IF one is going to go for this type of product is very important.




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  2. What this video fails to mention is that both Hispanics and Asian are well connected to their extended families and often live with him. Their diets are pretty unhealthy frankly, lots of cheese and meat, and they are often overweight. I think social isolation, which they don’t seem to experience, is more of a factor than their diet. Same goes for people in Okinawa, Japan, as well as Greece?




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    1. I was thinking exactly the same thing. Social connection, friendliness, compassion for other human beings. How often do you see white people go out on a picnic in a park, with teenagers and people in their 20’s? It’s right their in “The Blue Zones” and “Healthy at 100”.




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      1. Yep, and elderly Hispanics and Asians are more likely to live with family members than be left to live out the rest of their lives in a nursing home:)




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    2. Or, it might also be that the anti-inflammation properties Dr G mentioned in beans and the fiber in the plants foods are able to offset the lousy parts of the diet. This seems likely given that that other populations mentioned in the study all have crappy diets. The only diet difference seems to be the addition of beans, which have unique antioxidant and phytonutrient properties.




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  3. How does the rate of diabetes among Hispanics compare? They tend to eat a lot of sugar. Also, are there studies about the effect of the Hispanic diet on the eyes? I am a 68-year old Cuban and we do eat a lot of beans and rice. Just about all our food is made with olive oil, onions, garlic, and tomato sauce. Every time I go to the ophthalmologist, he is amazed because I don’t have any signs of macular degeneration. The same thing happens to my husband. His doctor told him that his eyes are like those of a much younger person. He is 72.




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      1. From the website above:
        The rates of diagnosed diabetes by race/ethnic background are:

        7.6% of non-Hispanic whites
        9.0% of Asian Americans
        12.8% of Hispanics
        13.2% of non-Hispanic blacks
        15.9% of American Indians/Alaskan Natives
        The breakdown among Asian Americans:

        4.4% for Chinese
        11.3% for Filipinos
        13.0 for Asian Indians
        8.8% for other Asian Americans.
        The breakdown among Hispanic adults:

        8.5% for Central and South Americans
        9.3% for Cubans
        13.9% for Mexican Americans
        14.8% for Puerto Ricans.
        – See more at: http://www.diabetes.org/diabetes-basics/statistics/#sthash.YKLPukea.dpuf




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        1. Yes, but what are the rates with the given groups segregated by percentage of calories from animal and highly refined plant foods? These are statistics for people of these ethnic groups living in America. Most people living in America largely eat the standard crappy American diet. Sure Americans of Mexican descent might tend towards eating more Mexicanized American crap as opposed to Italianized American crap of Italian-Americans. So the fact that 14% of Mexican-Americans have diabetes doesn’t in any way indicate the risk of developing diabetes when Mexican-Americans, or anybody else for that matter, eats a traditional Mexican diet centered around corn, beans, and potatoes with a small amount of flesh and eggs and no dairy. The same is true for the traditional diets of any of the other groups.




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        2. A while back I saw a travel/cooking show with a segment on some town deep in Mexico, with its’ “wonderful” food. I was shocked when I saw how fat and unhealthy the people in the video were. Shocked! I really think that had to do with this village having reached a prosperity level where they eat a lot more pork and chicken than they once did, and likely more fat, too, with all that handy ad tasty lard.




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    1. See comments above. Family connections are likely more in play here than diet, and if you are happy, then you have happy thoughts, and happy thoughts lead to a happy/healthy body, but NutritionFacts is all about food, just like doctors are all about medicine. They don’t take into account how much the mind has to do with our health!!




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      1. commenter: re “…likely…” I don’t know about that. It’s an interesting opinion, but my opinion is that family connections is just like exercise. Both ingredients are important, but unlikely to trump an unhealthy diet. NutritionFacts has videos showing that it is very hard to exercise your way out of an unhealthy diet. Similarly, I have a hard time believing that all the family connections in the world are going to trump an unhealthy diet. I look all around me and see emotionally healthy, close families who eat terribly and have the health problems to show for it (despite the emotional support).

        Of course, being happy is important! I’m all for working toward happiness. But to suggest that being happy will keep someone from disease caused by an unhealthy diet seems far fetched to me.




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          1. Many authentic “Latin” dishes do not contain cheese. That seems to be a common misconception based on the dishes served by Americanized latin restaurants.




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        1. I think Dean Ornish has developed a good plan because it incorporates a plant based whole food diet, exercise and social support. Again, we have to look at life as a whole, not just one thing at a time under the microscope.




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          1. Rebecca Cody: Sounds like a great plan. Sounds like Dr. McDougall’s program too, though I don’t know enough about the details of each to do a good comparison.




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      1. Soft drink (hence sugar) consumption is very high in Mexico. Any benefits of higher fruit, vegetable, and bean consumption are likely to be offset by extremely high sugar consumption.




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  4. While I would agree with more beans. I think the dates of some of the studies are less impressive as the Latino community where I live is obviously shifting more to the American diet as obesity becomes more and more common




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    1. Without talking about race or anything, Mexicans tend to be obese just from my impression while they eat mainly bean. A while ago I don’t eat bean but I eat a lot these days but bean does not make me gain weight. I wonder where their weight problem comes from, just from the impression and not from any scientific statistics.




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      1. There’s an interesting series of studies on the Pima tribe, part of whose territory the United States acquired (or took) from Mexico in the nineteenth century. The Mexican Pima largely adhered to their traditional diet and lifestyles, and stayed relatively slender, while the Arizona Pima adopted more Western diets after WWII and now have high obesity and a fivefold greater diabetes rate. A trial with the traditional Pima diet (the Native American trinity of beans, corn, and squash) was successful.

        1993: Obesity in Pima Indians: large increases among post-World War II birth cohorts
        1993: The traditional Pima indian diet: composition and adaptation for use in a dietary intervention study
        1994: Effects of a traditional lifestyle on obesity in Pima Indians
        2001: The effect of Indian or Anglo dietary preference on the incidence of diabetes in Pima Indians
        2006: Effects of traditional and western environments on prevalence of type 2 diabetes in Pima Indians in Mexico and the US
        2010: Risk factors of type 2 diabetes in Mexican and US Pima Indians: Role of environment




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      2. Well, if you cook all your beans in lard or oil (refried beans), you will get fat. And the more beans you eat, the more fat you will consume




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  5. According to the Wikipedia, Mexico ranks 46 in the world in longevity while the U.S. ranks 31. Am I missing something?

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_life_expectancy

    Mexicans also rank 6th in the world in diabetes cases according to the following article.

    http://www.economist.com/blogs/americasview/2013/04/diabetes-mexico

    I am not discounting the benefits of bean but I wondering if I miss something from looking at the statistics?




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    1. It would be very interesting to see the trajectory over time of longevity and diabetes rates in Mexico over the last 40-50 years along with the trajectory over time of the percentage of calories from animal foods and highly refined plant foods and refined vegetable oils (animal and junk plant foods for short). I would bet real money that longevity is declining, diabetes not to mention a host of other diseases is increasing as consumption of animal and junk plant foods is increasing in Mexico in a very strongly and statistically significant way. The “Latino Paradox” might then be a thing of the recent past and is fading away as latinos in the US and in Mexico and beyond move towards the standard American diet.

      Now that would of course only show that there is a correlation, and as so many critics of eating patterns other than their favorite readily point out, correlation does not equal causation (they/we aren’t so fussy about correlation not equalling causation when the correlation supports their/our preferred eating pattern (I say “they/we” because everybody is susceptible to confirmation bias)). But strong correlations do set some bounds on what the true causal relationship is likely to be, especially when there are biological pathways that can explain how the correlated factors can be causally linked.

      If there is a statistically significant positive correlation between disease rates and consumption of animal and junk plant foods (increased disease rates with increased consumption) (and everything I have read here and elsewhere says there is), and there are plausible biological mechanisms of action (again everything I have read/seen says there is), and yet there is in fact no causal relationship between disease rates and consumption rates of these foods two things have to both be true. First there has to be another biologically plausible factor that is also correlated with the observed disease rates that is the actual causal factor. And two this other factor has to be correlated with the consumption of animal and junk pland foods in such a way as to make it look like it was these foods were the cause when in fact it was this other factor. I have never heard of such a factor that could simultaneously be the actual cause of increased disease rates while simultaneously the amount of this factor in the diet or environment is correlated with the consumption of animal and junk plant foods in such a way as to make it appear that these foods are correlated in a causal way with the rates of the diseases/health outcomes in question when in fact they are protective or at least neutral. Such a scenario appears to me to be very highly improbable. Much more likely is that the correlation between animal and junk plant food consumption and disease rates does in fact reflect causal relationship.




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      1. My ad-hoc method is as followed:

        – There is a correlation between BP and cholesterol with CVD and other diseases.
        – I monitor my vital signs (BP and cholesterol) frequently.

        As I consume foods and exercise, I correlate them with my vital signs, and if they improve then I deduct that the foods (and exercise) are beneficial.

        But to wait for the researchers to confirm the causal relationship then I will be dead by then :(




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    2. Amongst older people around the world, consumption of beans and other legumes is apparently the single most important predictor of longevity:

      “Based on an alternative Cox Proportional Hazard model adjusted to age at enrolment (in 5-year intervals), gender and smoking, the legume food group showed 7-8% reduction in mortality hazard ratio for every 20g increase in daily intake with or without controlling for ethnicity (RR 0.92; 95% CI 0.85-0.99 and RR 0.93; 95% CI 0.87-0.99, respectively). Other food groups were not found to be
      consistently significant in predicting survival amongst the FHILL cohorts.”
      http://apjcn.nhri.org.tw/server/APJCN/13/2/217.pdf




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      1. Interesting info.

        Tom, can you help me read table 2? Why a lot of food groups have the same low risk ratio (close to 1)?

        So legumes are even more important than vegetables.

        Legumes have been associated with long-lived
        food cultures such as the Japanese (soy, tofu, natto, miso),
        the Swedes (brown beans, peas), and the Mediterranean
        people (lentils, chickpeas, white beans).




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        1. Unfortunately, my statistical skills are pretty basic and I start to founder once we begin talking about clever analytic techniques like the (Cox) proportional hazards ratio.

          However, we have two sets of relative risk (risk ratio) in this table. The two sets differ in the (possibly confounding) factors that have been adjusted for. What it shows is the relative risk of mortality for each increase of 20 grams of a particular food item consumed (or 10 grams of alcohol or unit change in the MUFA/SFA ratio). In most cases, there was no or very little calculated effect (ie no change in mortality risk). This is shown by the figures all being one or very close to one.

          The other point here is the P value. P values address only one question: how likely are the results, assuming a true null hypothesis? The null hypothesis here is that an additional 20 grams of a particular food will have no effect on mortality in a population of older people. A very low P value means that the data are unlikely if the null hypothesis is true. With legumes row in this table it means that, if the null hypothesis is true, and the lower mortality figures are just due to chance (random sampling error etc), then such results would only be expected to be found in 2% of all such studies.

          Note that we cannot say that this proves the null hypothesis in untrue. All it means is that there are two possible explanations:
          1. The null hypothesis is untrue
          2. The null hypothesis is true but the sample studied was very unusual

          Does this make it a bit clearer? Note that the article itself discusses the implications of table 2 and this is worth reading again.

          Finally, I apologise to any statistically-literate readers who are offended by my bumbling attempt to explain this .




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  6. I taught primarily Latino students for many years with the LAUSD. This is only anecdotal evidence but Latinos tend to be more family oriented than do white Americans. They don’t place grandma, grandpa or great aunt in a Senior Rest home. They take care of their elderly relatives. The older people feel more loved and cared for and live longer. When one of our white elderly relatives get s to the point where he or she can no longer function, we put put in assisted living or in a rest home. Often these elderly people are forgotten or only seen at Christmas time. I don’t have statistics to back up my observations but I would like others to comment on what I have have experienced. Thanks, David K




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  7. I live in Bakersfield where it’s 51% Hispanic. I think this finding missed the mark. The Mexican diet is really not that healthy — yes, they eat a lot of beans, but many of their dishes use beans fried in lard — refried beans. Most corn tortillas & corn products are GMO now, & Hispanics RARELY, if ever, shop in health food stores where non-GMO is found. What has always been pointed out in cultures with longevity is the socialization of the group. Hispanics have huge families, always celebrating weddings, birthdays, quinceaneras (huge, all day celebration for the 15-yr-old) & all other holidays together. They celebrate all day. They attend church together, then have a huge meal afterward — always together in huge groups. AND, they generally take life easy. There isn’t a lot of stress in most of these families — poor, but loving & supporting each other. The famous siesta. First the fiesta, then the siesta. It’s a completely different lifestyle from the stressed out, isolated white family who keep to themselves. Many of the Hispanics are gardeners or they work in the fields. They work hard, but it’s physical labor & not mental — big difference. I don’t put a lot of stock in this bean theory. A great film to see this playing out is McFarland USA with Kevin Costner & Maria Bello. True story.




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    1. I agree with your story but I put a lot of stock in the benefits of eating bean, because since eating it, I have more energy and my blood pressure drops like a rock because I take BP measurements twice a day so I know (it works just for myself and my family). Yes mental health plays a big role in longevity.




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    2. The bean hypothesis is certainly not the whole story, but any excuse to trot out this title:
      Legumes: the most important dietary predictor of survival in older people of different ethnicities

      To identify protective dietary predictors amongst long-lived elderly people, the “Food Habits in Later Life” (FHILL) study was undertaken among five cohorts in Japan, Sweden, Greece and Australia. There were 785 participants aged 70 and over that were followed up to seven years. The legume food group showed 7-8% reduction in mortality hazard ratio for every 20g increase in daily intake with or without controlling for ethnicity. Other food groups were not found to be consistently significant in predicting survival amongst the FHILL cohorts.




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      1. I wonder if it’s the increase of fiber from the beans that’s helpful. Americans definitely don’t get enough fiber & beans are loaded with them. Possibly psyllium would give the same benefits.




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  8. Maybe they have better gut microbes from the old country. Around here I see a lot of meat eating and obesity and diabetes. I came across a cookbook called “Decolonize your Diet”.




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    1. Many, but probably not all, gut microbes come and go with various diets. Eat beans, whole grains, veggies & fruits and your microbes will change to accommodate the diet. Change to animal proteins and they change again.

      Eating a lot of meat and fat will favor diabetes, as cells become clogged with fats, making them resistant to insulin, causing blood sugar regulation to decline, leading to diabetes.




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  9. Tortillas are not eaten by all Hispanics/Latinos, they all eat more tomatoes and spices that are high in antioxidants. They are usually shorter in height than other races and that has been proven to live longer. Hispanics/Latino’s have a higher incidence of diabetes.

    http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/science/2013/07/height_and_longevity_the_research_is_clear_being_tall_is_hazardous_to_your.html

    http://www.diabetes.org/diabetes-basics/statistics/?referrer=https://www.google.com/




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  10. Another great video! I worry a little, though, that some will walk away thinking that they should eat every day at health-food restaurants such as Taco Bell and El Torito. Should we start with a big plate of nachos? :)




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    1. Good point! I wonder if somebody will do a study to compare people who eat the Standard American Diet (SAD) diet with those who eat at “health food restaurants” such as Taco Bell and El Torito.




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  11. I have cancer.Im afraid to eat food.I am vegan now but very strictly.I dont know if i can eat bread.im afraid that its inflammatorisk.I thought mabye Ezekiel bread.Is it anyone here who is in the same situasjon ? Im from Norway and i have to order from iherb to by tortillas and stuff.i have not yet.But is it no gmo ? I think what its cald. I cant find corn here who say not.And snacks,i eat before way better chips but they are a little fried.I miss bread….




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    1. Hi Tone, I hope you can find a good doctor, who understands nutrition and can help you. You obviously have to eat, and you have to fight the cancer and heal. So it would really help you if you can find a doctor who can guide you with a plan that you will feel comfortable and relaxed with, and that you will also enjoy. As much as it is important to get good clean nourishing food into you, it is also important to be able to relax. Personally I don’t think you need to search for expensive or foreign foods, but to use the best quality local foods. If you are in Northern Eruo




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    2. If you haven’t already, please read The China Study by T. Colin Campbell. It can make a huge difference in your attitude. My daughter and a friend left this book on our coffee table and I was floored when I started reading it. I couldn’t put it down! T. Colin Campbell is a bionutritionist with many years of experience studying food and he addresses cancer, as well, in his book. I had cancer in 2001. Thankfully, in 2011, I was pronounced cured. I am sure the book made a difference in my life and wish good health again for you.




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        1. the china study is an incredibly difficult and boring book to read. I only made it a little into it. here’s a very excellent synopsis of it in case you’re interested:

          SYNOPSIS OF THE CHINA STUDY
          Condensed Synopsis Compiled by Nathan Batalion ND

          INTRODUCTION

          When this study began in the 1980’s, it appeared the death rate from heart disease for males in the US was 17x higher than in China. The death rate from breast cancer was 5x higher. The China Project set out to find out why. Rural China was an ideal living laboratory for the most comprehensive study ever made of whole and entire diet and lifestyle patterns. This involved looking at not just one or another food nutrient in isolation but rather roughly 1000 different items of information per person gathered in a 1989 survey. This was an ideal study because the average Chinese spent most of their lifetimes in the same region eating similar foods – unlike restless Americans and Europeans whose daily dietary choices can vary with each city street residence and ethnic restaurant visited.

          Secondly, diets in China varied dramatically in different provinces, as did the disease and death rates. A massive data base was used to focus on these differences. It contained the death and disease rates of some 80 million Chinese. This was used to select 65 Chinese counties for study. Sometimes the death rates varied several hundredfold, begging us to ask – why exactly! Regions with the highest and lowest rates were chosen and the pursuit began to relate many chronic diseases, including seven major cancers such as stomach, liver, lung and breast. Researchers asked themselves why did men in one part of China die of esophageal cancer at rates 435X higher than in another part.

          DISEASE ORIGINS & CAUSES

          CLUSTERED DISEASES OF AFFLUENCE AND POVERTY
          Among the first startling finding was that certain groups of diseases kept occurring together, clustering in certain regions. For example, there were regions with simultaneously high diabetes, coronary heart disease, and cancer disease rates while other regions had simultaneously high levels of pneumonias, infections, digestive ailments, nephritis, and rheumatic heart disease rates. Somehow lifestyle differences caused not just different disease rates but higher or lower disease clusters. The first group of diseases were correlated to more affluence regions and the second to more poverty-ridden ones. This implied some common causes further related to the degree of access to expensive food and health services.

          BLOOD CHOLESTEROL AND UREA NITROGEN
          The second major finding was that the “rich disease cluster” was highly correlated to raised levels of blood cholesterol and urea nitrogen. Thus the highest blood cholesterols had the highest cancer and heart disease rates. The lowest cholesterol levels, the lower such disease rates were.

          EFFECTS OF SMALL INCREASES IN ANIMAL PROTEIN AND FAT
          Such correlations held up even though the highest blood cholesterol rates in China (90-170) matched the lowest in the US (170-290). Still even a tiny increase in blood cholesterol levels was tied to a about half as much cholesterol blood levels. This implied even eating quite small amounts of animal protein products (like once a week) significantly matched a rise in clustered degenerative diseases. By contrast, eating high levels of plant foods did not and they rather brought down the cholesterol levels! This startling result was not anticipated.

          OSTEOPOROSIS
          The Chinese have had a much lower risk of osteoporosis than Americans, even though the Chinese consume far less dairy. We know that high levels of protein intake is tied to high levels of calcium being lost or excreted in the urine. We know that calcium is an alkaline mineral that neutralizes acids, and that animal protein digestion leaves acid residues. Thus animal protein intake, even in small amounts, could cause a drawing out of calcium and other alkaline minerals from our bones and teeth. Eating vegetables, often high in calcium, doesn’t have this effect.

          HEART DISEASE
          17x as many Americans die of heart disease compared to the Chinese who have half as much blood cholesterol. Studies show that eating animal protein raises blood cholesterol levels. Thus lean meats are no escape.

          BREAST CANCER
          The China Project highlighted a worldwide chart that showed breast cancer rates in about 40 countries rose in parallel with the amount of animal protein intake. Besides the rise in cholesterol levels, other factors were significantly linked with higher breast cancer death rates. These included dietary fat, estrogen and blood testosterone levels, and the earlier onset of a first menstruation.

          LUNG CANCER
          Researchers found a low rate of lung cancer up until the introduction of cigarettes. China’s ministries of agriculture and commerce promoted tobacco for economic reasons with tragic results. Approximately 50 million Chinese now are projected to die from lung cancer.

          BOWEL CANCER
          The China Project conclusively found that the higher the intake of fiber (derived from plant sources), the lower the rate of colon cancer. The Chinese eat three times as much fiber and starch. At present approximately 140,000 Americans die each year from colon cancer.

          LIVER CANCER
          While China-wide rates are low, certain regions had high levels. Previously scientists believed that aflatoxins in moldy grains and beans were a primary cause, but this did not bear out in the China Project. Instead, those infected with viral hepatitis (an astonishing 12-13% of Chinese compared to less than 1% of Americans) were predisposed to liver cancer. A second correlated factor was high cholesterol levels – tied again to animal-protein diets. In the west, alcoholic consumption is also associated with liver cancer.

          STOMACH CANCER
          Individuals commonly infected with bacterium Heliobacter pylori were at an increased risk of stomach cancer. Both of these disease patterns remind us of relatively high levels of infectious diseases a century ago in the West and relatively low levels of contemporary chronic ailments. No doubt those predisposed to liver and stomach cancers in China would have had much higher rates if they ate the sweet and sour pork that is typical of Americanized Chinese food. What the above also reflects is a lack of modern refrigeration in China at the time. Foods were most often preserved via fermentation or salting (also a stomach irritant), and this allowed for bacteria and mold to sometimes contaminate the process, as a precursor to these two chronic ailments.

          OVERALL FINDINGS AND DIETARY SUGGESTIONS

          All in all, the single most dramatic finding of the China Project was the degree and strength of the correlation of animal-origin foods to a variety of cancers. Dr. Chen Junshi, the chief Chinese researcher was not surprised with this result of comparing villages with the highest and lowest cancer rates. “We expected that because it followed animal experiments.” He was referring to a series of animal experiments where rats were fed animal proteins and had a rapid cancer etiology. When the diet stopped, the tumor growths halted or the cancers were routinely turned on and off by diet alone. Why? One explanation is that the digestion of excess protein releases several acids, more than the bloodstream can handle or effectively alkalinize. This then acidifies the blood stream causing chronic ailments, including cancerous tumors and precancerous growths. It leaches alkaline minerals from the bones to trigger osteoporosis. While the China Project led to the recommendation of an 8-10% vegetable-protein diet, the standard American diet (SAD) has 11-22% protein with 70% from animal sources. This again may be compared to 10% from animal sources in China with total protein intake at least a 1/3rd less.

          In China most cancers, cardiovascular ailments and types of diabetes were linked to high animal protein diets, and with significantly less intake than with the Standard American Diet. Powerful companies selling meats have influenced major media and institutions to keep Americans misinformed about this most potent connection.

          MOVING AWAY FROM ANIMAL-BASED DIETS

          PROTEINS
          Reducing animal protein intake will reduce blood cholesterol. Reducing animal protein intake by 1% tended to reduce the chance of heart disease by 2-3%. FATS – The Chinese eat 6-24% fat compared to 36-46% in the US where chronic ills are more prevalent.

          MOVING TOWARDS VEGETARIAN BASED-DIETS

          CALORIES
          The Chinese eat close to 300 more calories per day but were not obese. It seems easier to burn calories with a high carbohydrate (2x the starch), and low animal protein diet (2x the plant protein instead) and low fat (1/2 or less as a % of calories).

          ANTI-OXIDANTS
          The China Project found eating more anti-oxidant and vitamin C-rich whole foods (not synthetic isolates) lowered the relative risk of many cancers. The Chinese took in about 2x as much Vitamin C.

          SUFFICIENT IRON
          The Chinese had about 2x the intake of iron. This is contrary to the myth that a vegetarian diet results in an iron deficiency. A Harvard study showed that an increase of iron from vegetable sources lowers the risk of heart attack.

          PLENTY OF FIBER
          It used to be thought that a high fiber diet might bind with minerals to cause deficiencies. In the China Project, subjects with high fiber vegetarian diets had more minerals in their blood and the higher the intake of their fiber, the lower the bowel cancer rate. Meat products offered little or no fiber.

          MORE FOR FOLLOW UP

          COPPER
          High levels in the blood correlated to certain cancers.

          CADMIUM
          High levels in the urine correlated to liver cancer.

          HERPES SIMPEX
          This correlated to heart disease.

          HEIGHT
          Increased animal protein intake, including milk, was not connected to increased height in the subjects. The Chinese generally tend to be shorter perhaps because of a combination of childhood infections and genetic determinants.

          MENOPAUSE & PMS
          A high animal protein diet may be correlated to elevated hormones and the triggering of earlier menopause. In China women tend to have fewer symptoms of menopause, including hot flashes was well as lower estrogen levels. When not so high, their fall has less steep. Foreign hormones fed to animals may be a trigger for breast cancer. Diets rich in plant-based foods have ingredients like magnesium that calm PMS symptoms. Plant foods like soy have phyto-estrogens that ease symptoms.

          MALE PROSTATE DISEASE
          A study of 68,000 men showed that those who ate the highest animal fat diets had about 80% more prostate cancer. The worst foods included red meat and butter. China had the lowest prostate cancer rates in the world, about 1 in every 100,000 compared to 19 out of 100,000 Chinese-Americans living in San Francisco. About 10% of American males will get prostate cancer in their lifetime (compared to less than 1% in China). A low-fat, high fiber diet lowers the triggers.

          CONCLUSION

          The China Project showed that animal-based foods should be replaced by plant-based foods with health benefits. This could significantly reduce obesity, heart disease, cancers, high blood pressure, diabetes, osteoporosis, kidney ailments and much more. A study of Seventh Day Adventists who are vegetarians has corroborated this. As Dean Ornish writes, “Animal products…are the main culprit in what is killing us. We can absolutely live better lives without them.” This transition in diets can take time, but even small steps toward a plant-based diet yield positive results. According to nutritional scientists, here are a list of further dietary suggestions that may help avoid 80-90% of premature deaths from chronic diseases.

          ELIMINATE: ANIMAL PROTEINS AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE
          We only need 8-10% proteins in our diets, and a plant-based diet provides that and is the healthiest.

          ELIMINATE: ANIMAL FATS & REDUCE PROCESSED FATS
          Skip animal proteins and processed fats and you will skip most cardiovascular/heart diseases and cancers.

          INCREASE: FIBER-RICH FOODS
          This lowers cholesterol and avoids bowel cancer.

          EAT: WHOLE PLANT-BASED FOODS
          This includes roots, stems, leaves, flowers (such as broccoli florets) for a symphony of nutrients. Be careful with supplement isolates (not compete substitutes for whole foods). Ultimately moving to a diet of whole, plant-based foods plus the use of modern refrigerators gives us the best of both worlds. The China Project was the most comprehensive nutritional study ever, but it still does not address many issues, so that we have room for more exciting findings.

          ORGANICS
          What is the impact of eating foods grown in enhanced organic soils?

          ALKALINE/NUTRIENT-DENSE DIETS
          What is the impact of incorporating more alkaline and nutrient-dense superfoods, such as green kale, collards, sea algae, herbs and sprouts for further benefits?

          LOW GLYCEMIC & FAT /LIVING RAW
          What is the impact plant-based diets that are raw/living and low-glycemic and low fat?

          DETOX & EXERCISE
          What is the impact of green juices, blends, periodic fasts, saunas, chelation, and regular exercise routines?

          MIND/BODY CONNECTION
          How can our lives be enhanced through meditation and spiritual support? We can expand our horizons to use more natural healing methods, but the most powerful first step is suggested by the China Study. We now have the opportunity to live the very longest in a disease-free way. Taking a first step offers a most exciting and health-liberating opportunity.

          THE CHINA STUDY ODYSSEY AND INSPIRATION

          Dr. T. Colin Campbell, Professor of Nutritional Biochemistry at Cornell University, was raised on a Virginia dairy farm. In his early years he thus developed the strong faith that ingesting milk and meat gave everyone a stronger constitution. This belief was ingrained despite his father having died of a massive heart attack. Colin later went to veterinarian school. He pursued his graduate work at Cornell University, further studying animal nutrition. At Cornell, his assigned lab work was to search for better means of animal-protein production (making cows and sheep grow fatter faster). This tied into the underlying belief, held throughout his college years and expressed in his Ph.D. thesis, that eating more animal protein equaled better health. A subsequent career jaunt at Virginia Tech involved working in the Philippines and investigating a disturbing rise in liver cancer rates among young children. Typically this was just an adult-onset disease. The suspicion also arose that the main culprits were some local peanut and corn crops that showed high aflatoxin contents. Aflatoxin lives in molds that develop during crop storage and is a most potent of carcinogens. Lower rates of liver cancer then might logically proceed if his project worked to change agricultural growing and storage procedures plus offered malnourished Pilipino children more animal proteins to build greater immunity. In fact, Colin helped establish 110 nutritional education centers all over the Philippines for this purpose.

          Colin, however, later was disturbed by the finding that children from the wealthiest families (those who ate more animal proteins) had the highest, not lowest, liver cancer rates! Because of his grave aflatoxin suspicions, he was piqued by an Indian research paper that outlined how an equal level of aflatoxins was fed to two groups of rats where one feasted on an animal-protein-rich diet and the other not. The first group all died because they developed fatal liver cancer, and the other not. The score was actually an outrageous 100 to 0! Dietary effects here trumped a most suspected and potent of carcinogens.

          Since the Indian study violated established beliefs, there was natural suspicion that the Indian study was flawed or fraudulent! Might sloppy or deceiving researchers have accidentally switched the two rat groups, but what if not? Thus Colin was driven to conduct some animal experiments to resolve this hugely nagging and vital question. The results were absolutely astonishing. Other studies later corroborated his startling findings. The low-animal-protein diet inhibited cancers (despite aflatoxins being present) and the high-animal-protein diet did not. Colin also uncovered something still more earth-shaking. He could affect pre-cancerous and cancerous growths in a decisive “on/off” way and simply and again via diet changes. Raise the rats’ animal protein intake and the cancers grew. Lower the rat’s intake, and surprisingly, cancers stopped growing! Using wheat and soy or high-plant-proteins did not have this effect. These studies made him yearn to explore such remarkable finding using human research studies. Would humans have similar reactions or not? When Dr. Chen Junshi of the Chinese Academy of Preventive Medicine introduced Collin to a massive and unique compilation of mainland Chinese death rates and their disease correlates, the two realized they now had a vast opportunity-of-a-lifetime to map diet and illness connections on an unprecedented scale. This was the inspiration behind the China Study and how it was born.

          .




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    3. http://nutritionfacts.org/topics/cancer

      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/which-fruit-fights-cancer-better/

      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/anti-cancer-potential-of-sweet-potato-proteins/

      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/citrus-peels-cancer-zest-life/

      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/cancer-interrupted-garlic-flavonoids/

      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/breast-cancer-prevention-which-mushroom-is-best/

      Hi TC- There is a lot of information on this site you will
      find useful. I have selected a few links here that would be a good start if you
      are searching and English is not your first language.

      Regardless of your status, whether you are recently diagnosed,
      in treatment, or in remission you have to hit your numbers in terms of nutrient
      profile in blood tests. I am sure there is an equivalent support service in
      Norway but here is an example of what a professor of Oncology uses in the UK;
      the levels of micronutrients and other biomarkers tested would give you a
      baseline indication of your status at a point in time. I don’t agree with his
      recommendations on how to make up a deficiency detected, nutritionfacts.org has
      better information. It is just a point in time and may vary significantly, but
      will give you an idea of what you need to focus on. As mentioned already here
      you need to have the right medical support team. In the UK such medics are more
      typically called Functional Medicine practitioners.

      Because of your condition, you will need to not only hit
      your nutrient profile numbers, but significantly feed your body to support the
      defence of your healthy cells. You can only control what you can control. This
      should be your focus with sufficient sleep, recovery and exercise. It just
      happens that what is fuel for your healthy cells makes life difficult for your
      cancers cells. While your medical team’s job is to identify the cancer tumours
      and terminate them, it is a very different focus to yours. Hold them
      accountable for their job, but make sure you are focusing on yours.

      You are already on the right track with a plant based diet, but
      don’t forget the need for sublingual Vitamin B12 supplementation. You have not
      mentioned what type of cancer you have, which would emphasise some food types over
      others. But Garlic and Leeks appear in the lab to inhibit most cancer cells
      from spreading so it makes sense to introduce them to your daily meals. The
      garlic needs to be crushed 15 min before use and introduced late in sauces and
      other cooked applications. Some foods should not be combined together and so on,
      so a lot depends on your circumstances. As you know nutrient absorption depends
      on how the food is presented to the gut; cooked or uncooked, whole or blended
      so this would usually be matched with your status and condition. The primary
      concern about bread is the presence refined flour in its production, so you
      should focus on wholegrain loaves. You don’t want to eat foods that spike your
      blood sugar quickly which generally means no white flour products no white rice
      or white pasta. This may mean you will miss what you are used to eating but
      that is a sacrifice you have to make. While this is an area I work in, my focus
      is on London, but if you have further questions feel free to ask and we will help
      if possible. Good luck.

      http://www.cancernet.co.uk/nutritional-tests.htm




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      1. Thank you.That is a lot to think about.I have colon canser,liver and lung.Its small lumps. Whats it’s called ? I think its called lumps.i do every morning juice of Beats,celery,ginger,carrot,turmeric.And eat broccoli,spinach,garlic,onion,lemon….and more.Beans,lentils,brown rice,chia,flaxseed…and more.Thank you for you care.




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        1. Hi Tone -You seem to be eating a lot of good stuff.

          If I am not mistaken Tone is a woman’s name in Norway. There are big gender differences
          regarding the human gut, that make whole food plant based diets of even greater
          benefit and importance to women in general, and to your situation in
          particular. Insufficient fibre leads to poor gut health and gut healing. The
          gut uses fibre digested by your gut bacteria as a source of energy. The
          compounds produced by the bacteria for this source of energy are acidic. Women
          naturally have lower acidity in the colon – significantly lower than men. It
          would be better to encourage greater production of these compounds by eating
          foods that promote it. This was mentioned by Dr. Greger in this video and
          others http://nutritionfacts.org/video/stool-ph-and-colon-cancer/

          While eating a lot of fruit and vegetables will provide this,
          in your case you need to refine the selection of which types drive this best,
          and overlay on that the foods that have been seen to inhibit, in the laboratory
          setting, the proliferation of cancer cells. This is based on Dr. Richard Bêliveau’s
          work, also referenced on http://www.nutritionfacts.org.

          Previously shared on here was this link https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/

          you could use it to assess which foods work best. The
          Potential Renal Acid Load (PRAL) in column CB is either a negative or positive number.
          Negative numbers are for foods that should make up the bulk of your diet, with
          the following cautions: (1) avoid tarragon (2) avoid peppers and chillies.

          Given bread plays an important part in Norwegian cuisine,
          dropping it must be difficult, but as you can see from the googledocs sheet,
          grains tend to be PRAL positive. You will notice that dried spices are strongly
          PRAL negative and can be blended according to preference to add flavour to your
          food options. Brussels sprouts need to be added to your diet and like other Brassicas should be chopped 15min before use. They are difficult to include for a lot of people, but you may find a spice
          blend that makes them more palatable. Their bitterness can also be counteracted by blending with other foods. With regard to the food you mentioned, I would suggest dropping the carrot and celery and adding cooked sweet potato to your smoothie. Of the greens you mentioned you should emphasise kale, cauliflower and cabbage, over spinach and broccoli. And don’t forget to freshly grind your flaxseed. All the best.




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    4. Tone, for inspiration about beating cancer, go to the website http://www.chrisbeatcancer.com and read the stories or watch the interviews with the many, many people who have cured cancers using mostly foods. I had an aggressive type of breast cancer six years ago and at least one oncologist was surprised to see me still alive three years ago, and said so. I had some regular treatments, but I attribute my thriving even through treatments to paying a lot of attention to my diet, flooding my body with super nutrition, avoiding animal foods, etc. There are also good survivor stories on www,drmcdougall.com. It helps a lot to know that others have gotten well and did it using mostly diet.




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      1. Hi.im happy for you.I have seen Chrisbeatcanser.I eat all greens who is good for cancer.I have searched for every thing who helps and eat it,But do you eat bread ? Im afraid to.Some say its not good for you and some say its good for you.Thank you for care…




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        1. I don’t think bread is automatically bad. But you should only eat bread that is made from whole grains, not from white flour.




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        2. The protein of wheat is difficult to digest, and causes inflamation, I’d better not to eat bread, there are healtier options, like beans or sweet potatoes.




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  12. Excellent information. Before the entry of fast food industry and highly process foods we tended to cook more fresh foods and every neighboor had some good veggies including variety of legumes on the family gardens. As a child I remember to sit in the balconies with the neighbors to open the legumes and collect the different beans! It was fun! It’s very easy to cultivate beans!
    My ancestries passed away on their 90’s and some reached their 100’s thin but very healthy. After the next generations (my parents and us) started eating the “tasty” new fast foods they/us started to get bigger and getting sicker on their 40’s, 50’s, 60’s and passing around their 70’s or 80’s overweight and sick. That’s a ton of years less than our old people! How can we reverse this?… changing our lifestyles and going back to our oldies ways. Is not easy… but we have to figure it out soon and reverse it for our own good.




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    1. Sounds like the observation of Dr. John McDougall about the Asian workers on the sugar plantation for which he was the resident doctor early in his career. Those that immigrated kept to the old ways and were lean and healthy (especially with a good doctor like Dr. McDougall to see to injuries and infectious diseases where western medicine can actually cure patients rather than trying to manage chronic disease symptoms). The first generation started adding in more western foods and were fatter and sicker while the second and third generations had gone completely “native” and ate like the society around them and as a result were just as fat and sick as the rest of us.




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  13. I don’t think it just have to do with the social aspect, although it is true that Latinos have a very strong family connection and love to make family gatherings to celebrate anything with lots of food. But think it has to do a lot with the food! Next time any of you go to a supermarket, pay close attention to a Latino shopping cart and compare it to a non-Hispanic white cart. I am sure the typical Latino will have meat, cheese, and junk food for their kids but I am sure you will also see more vegetables, fruits, legumes, and grains vs. mostly processed foods in the other shopping cart. The traditional Hispanic likes to cook their breakfast, lunch, and dinner from scratch which translates to more fresh foods in the diet. Although, not all Hispanics eat Mexican style as many of you might think, it is true that most of us grew up eating and loving beans! black, red, white, pinto, garbanzo, lentils, fava, peas, etc! ……and most of us cook them from scratch too…..yes, we boil them!




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  14. Does anyone know about the connection between a plant based diet and reversing hearing loss?

    This is a topic I am very interested in, but as far as I can tell the good doctor has yet to make a video on it.

    Input much appreciated.




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    1. Hi Mykamakiri. Hearing loss has many causes such as damage from chronic noise exposure etc. I am sorry that I can’t find the reference but I have the impression that vascular (blood vessel) factors and be important i.e. atherosclerosis or hardening of the arteries, so called. Diets which reduce injury to the blood vessels and promote their healing could then be expected to be helpful. A plant based, whole food, low fat, diet such as described by Dr Esselstyn in Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease, has been shown to be of great benefit to blood vessels throughout the body. Of course in an individual case there may be numerous factors causing hearing loss, so it would be important to get a proper hearing evaluation and see an ear nose throat doctor (ENT). I hope that is helpful.




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      1. Hi Miriam,

        Thank you so much for the terrific response!

        I am going to remain hopeful that my hearing loss (normal, subtle, age related loss of higher frequencies) may be reversible via diet and lifestyle. After all: hope is the last thing you lose, right? :)

        If anybody reading this has anecdotes or actual studies to share, please do.

        Thank you.




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  15. There might be strong correlation between having a strong/supportive family (extended family) ties and better outlook towards life’s hardship. A better outlook on life prevents stress and that lesser stress among Hispanics and Orientals may be the cause of better health outcomes… I hope psychologists/psychiatrists expand on this concept.




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    1. Hi NormanAllen- You might be interested in reading more about the Blue Zones, areas of the world where people both live the longest and the healthiest. It has been observed that in these areas, social ties are strong. You’re absolutely right that decreased stress and supportive social networks are part of a lively longevity (along with a whole foods, plant-based diet, of course!).




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  16. Yes, I grew up eating this Mexican way and if nothing else, I do know the value legumes add to my daily meals. I am glad that Mexican rice tastes just as good, if not better made with brown rice. I don”t cook my own beans and have to rinse off the additives in canned beans but, lentils are cheap, cook quicker and taste great.
    I also am worried about the all the bad ingredients in ALL tortillas now. The solution is to make like my mother and aunts did with just flour, baking powder a tsp. of oil, and some salt.




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  17. I live in a Blue Zone, Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica. The people are generally poor and can not afford much meat, fish, dairy. Rice and beans and corn tortillas are the predominant aspect of the diet surrounded by salad, cooked vegetables, and fruit. When eaten, as discussed about many Chinese in The China Study, meats, fish, and dairy are more flavouring, too expensive to be the core of the diet. People walk and bike mostly in very hilly country; social bonds and spirituality are also very strong. The water, also, is laden with great minerals such as magnesium and calcium. There is also a lot of manual work in tropical heat. I think all of he above are important.




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  18. I live in Houston , as a French M.D. I did my own fact checking about Mexican food in Texas. Yes rich and poor Mexicans keeping the Mexican food look younger and live longer as the very white scandinavians or the brown people, it is not genetic it is nutrition and it is not clear for every one. I had an argument with a British health care executive because she was mixing epidemiological parameters. As for Japanese it is the food not the genetic. I explained what is healthy in Central America Food. I had documents from Spain explaining how the conquistadors destroyed the staple food to decrease the strength of the natives. Quinoa plantation grown with an ancestral irrigation system were totally destroyed, rebuild few decades ago to be now a source of healthy nutritious business. Yes Beans are a reason of the longevity of Mexican food but not only, I have just finished a book, now in pre-order on my website to be available in print . The Incas had also weight loss programs .




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    1. Very true, Jane. Along with a plant-based diet, strong family and social ties are characteristic of the Blue Zones (areas of the world where people live the longest and healthiest).




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  19. There are many confounding variables not discussed in the video. Migration selectivity, social support, socio-economic, and behavioral characteristics other than diet.
    For example:

    To what extent are Hispanic individuals who emigrated to the US hardier?
    Perhaps due to having survived the higher infant mortality rates in their country of origin?
    https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/rankorder/2091rank.html

    And how protective is a childhood diet with less processed ingredients?
    And how protective is a childhood with more vigorous physical activity?

    But in other studies, Japanese (and Chinese and Filipino) immigrants have lower life expectancy in the US.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15191127




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  20. There is another variable that seems to have been ignored.
    Height is negatively correlated with longevity.
    Latinos are shorter than the average US resident, so this needs to be factored out before drawing final conclusions.




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  21. Hey, I have NO IDEA where this video is headed as I just “tuned in” and have only seen the image hung on it. AND THAT LOOKS JUST like my suppertime three for four days per week. I love black beans and also good tortillas (making my own with a press (I also made) sometimes) and usually “green it up” with spinach until I get a hankering for iceberg (yeah it happens). Plus salsa/onions/peppers/tomatoes (home grown only). Black beans and tortillas are staples for this homie.




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  22. Interesting in the light that I know a mexican lady married to a man (farmer from the midwest). They live mid west coast summers and go to Mexico every winter. While in Mexico she teaches cooking, nutrition and healthy living classes (WFPB).




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  23. All my Hispanic friends love Beef especially TriTip beef highly spiced and burnt on the outside. Yes, they eat a lot of refried beans with their morning eggs. They also us a lot of lard. But their favorite is my Reed Avocadoes for Guacamole. They sure also eat a LOT of pork and chicken.




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    1. As I understand it, it is the less acculturated latinos that have the lower mortality rates. The more acculturated latinos have mortality rates more like non-latino whites.
      “Fruit, rice, and beans are negatively associated with acculturation (less acculturated eat more fruit/rice/beans than more acculturated individuals), as are reports of total fruit and vegetable consumption.”
      http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3727241/




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  24. It is obvious that IP6/Inositol Hexaphosphate derived from Beans is the primary active Phytonutrient, as Hispanics Consume IP6 many times the rate of the American people.




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  25. I work at a supermarket where Latinos consists of nearly half our customer base. In addition, nearly all my co-workers are Latino and meals are centered around them, so I observe a lot of the shopping/eating habits.

    While Latinos do consume a good amount of junk food and meat, at the same time I would say they consume more fruits, vegetables, and especially beans than your typical White or Black American, so I do think diet likely plays a role in addition to some of the other factors mentioned in this discussion.




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  26. I was really impressed and excited about watching this video. I watched it 3 times already and I had my wife listen to it while she prepared dinner. I eat at least one can of black beans everyday. This video just validated for me that I am doing the correct thing in eating a can of black beans everyday. This is why it is IMPORTANT to listen or watch Dr. Greger’s videos because he VALIDATES what you are doing or he corrects what you are doing. The important thing about validation is that it also kicks in the benefit of the placebo effect. For example, if you are convinced that eating a lot of beans is beneficial to your health then your strong positive belief will just add to the healthy biology going on in your life by eating beans. Watching these videos allows you to utilize the placebo effect to add a psychological dimension to your health, along side of the biological advantage of doing what these videos recommend.




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    1. Perhaps this is the moment to point everyone to John Steinbeck’s novel ‘Tortilla Flat’. Not all that much social cohesion there and the local MD who for once ventures in the Hispanic slum to check up on the many children of a prostitute, sees that these kids are wiry, strong and have good teeth. On a tortillla diet, regularly eaten from the floor of their shack… Later, some local thugs take pity on the mother and bring her stolen meat and vegetables. The children get weak and sickly. The mother complains to the thugs and they steal sacks of beans for her. The health of the children rallies… Read this book and eat your beans…….




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      1. Great reply. I’ll have to get the book and read it. The sad thing is that the PALEO DIET people think that eating beans is bad for their health. They think that grains, legumes are bad for the gut and cause you to develop metabolic syndrome. The leaders of the Paleo Diet are leading a lot of people in the wrong direction by telling them not to eat beans. It’s funny how they cannot see and understand that all of Mexico, and South America eat beans continually from childhood all the way up to old age……and according to Dr. Greger’s research they LIVE LONGER.
        How can the Paleo people argue against an enitre continent of bean eating people.




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    2. A valid pint. The placebo effect, or positive thinking on any action certainly enhances the health benefits. Dinning should be no exception. Another good example is exercise. If you’re doing something you enjoy, all the better. If you don’t enjoy what you’re doing for exercise, time to make some changes.




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  27. What I’m wondering here is if eating legumes (given their anti-inflammatory properties) can help against rheumatoid arthritis? I have RA and have been at least vegetarian for several years but am trying to steer to a more vegan diet. I do love legumes but probably don’t eat enough of them. Has anybody seen any postings about healthy eating and rheumatoid arthritis?




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    1. If you search for any topic at the top of the webpage, you will be taken to a list of all the past videos and articles on this website on that subject. For “rheumatoid arthritis”, the search results can be found at this link:

      nutritionfacts.org/?fwp_search=rheumatoid+arthritis&fwp_content_type=video




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  28. I make my own corn tortillas, its an awesome, tasty, easy, fun, cheap way of putting together a great meal. There are a couple of Vegan Taco cookbooks out there that can add variety to your taco/enchilada/burrito repertoire, however, keeping it simple, just about anything can be used to fill and top a tortilla.




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    1. Olga: Your confusion is understandable. Here’s the deal as I understand it: There really isn’t a page on this site which goes over the Daily Dozen. However, if you watch the Book Trailer video, you will see the Daily Dozen briefly mentioned and you can freeze on the screen shot of the list if you want to get an overview of the eating plan.




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    1. Thanks for your question Shaia,

      In my opinion, it depends on the context. As a sports dietitian & according to the Sports Dietitians Australia:

      What are BCAAs?
      “The three branched-chain amino acids (leucine, isoleucine and valine) are also essential amino acids as they cannot be synthesised by the body and must be obtained from dietary sources. BCAA’s have a unique characteristic in that they can be metabolised in skeletal muscle (other essential amino acids are metabolised via the liver).”

      BCAAs & performance:
      “BCAA’s have been proposed to benefit performance in several ways including as a stimulant for muscle protein synthesis (through leucine). BCAAs may also prevent muscle protein breakdown and reduce markers of exercise induced muscle damage. There is also some research suggesting that BCCA’s have the potential to act as a fuel source for muscles during exercise, although the research surrounding this is inconclusive. Lastly, BCAA’s may interfere with the transport of tryptophan into the brain, reducing the synthesis of serotonin thereby reducing feelings of fatigue.”

      However, “the incorporation of BCAA supplementation into an athlete’s nutrition plan should be considered on an individual basis. Working with an Accredited Sports Dietitian will help to ensure that the most appropriate dosing strategy and best results are achieved.”

      On the other hand, because it is a supplement high in leucine, from a health perspective, some caution is required while increasing the intake of this amino acid, mainly because it stimulates TOR activation (1, 2, 3). This is one of the reasons why a plant based diet is beneficial, as plant foods (including plant protein rich foods) are low in leucine (4).

      Hope this answer helps.




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  29. What are the most used beans in hispanic home-cooked meals? I’m asking because sometimes what we get at ethnic restaurants doesn’t accurately reflect what is eaten at home.
    Based restaurant fare and frozen packaged foods, I would guess they would be pintos, black beans and red kidney beans, in that order. Is this correct? I suppose there are also regional variations in cuisine to consider.




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  30. I don’t think there was any scientific evidence that it was the “Beans” that directly caused the longevity (it’s a “Guess”). It may be eating beans instead of french fries or more of boiled chicken instead of fried chicken (they eat less of a bad food). Since they are poorer, and processed foods are more expensive, perhaps they cannot afford fast food joints expensive processed foods (crap) and since they cannot afford to buy health insurance and go to doctor, they are more careful, take less medication and take better care of their health.




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  31. I have been vegan for over 15 years and eat mostly unprocecssed food. I make most of my own meals, I am a health coach and I know I am in the 3% of Americans who are eating a healthy diet. I just turned 40 last winter. However, I have been dealing with extreme fatigue, even though I sleep 8 to 9 a night. I have dark circles under my eyes and other symptoms that lead me to believe that I have adrenal fatigue. I am considering eating some minimal amount of meat, since based on my research I am wondering if my body is not producing enough cholesterol. My father, despite eating meat, had very low cholesterol. I really do not want to start eating animal products but I am at my wits end. Please help! I am about to get some labwork back and will have more info soon. Thank you in advance!




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    1. find yourself a plant based doctor, sandra.

      they are somewhat difficult to find but it’s getting easier by the month.

      my first PB doc retired and now I have to drive 2.5 hours to one in Oracle Az, north of Tucson and he’s a good guy.

      Dr Crawford is also known as Dr Herbivore… http://drherbivore.com/index.html

      sit down for a few hours and just start searching and searching.

      as for sleep, I need a minimum of 9.5 hours to feel absolutely tip top.

      once I get under 9 I start to feel it and at less than 8 i’m a blob :o)
      way way in the past I studied how much people slept and before electricity and more modern lifestyles with gas lights and candles and such man regularly slept around 10 hours.

      the cavemen sitting around the firepit could only tell so many stories about the dinosaur that got away :-)

      .




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    2. Hi Sandra,

      Are you still around and did you ever see a plant based doctor who knows more about nutrition than every doctor in your local hospital? :-)

      Here’s that plant based doctors list:
      https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1fE8SDNAWkVPxhfpTaleAlZn9ZxmhlkDEomGmTOydCu4/edit#gid=609419254

      Just got my new blood results and have no problems with energy just like the rest of the indigenous peoples of the world don’t.

      chol 101 (100-199) (one day I’ll break 100)
      trigl 53 (0-149)
      ldl 37 (0-99)
      vldl 11 (5-40)
      hdl 53 (>39)

      NO MEDS, JUST A WHOLE FOOD, PLANT BASED DIET WITHOUT ADDED OIL.

      .




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    1. you are right, richard, that asians have the longest life expectancy in the US but I think you are missing the entire point of dr gregers presentation.

      http://kff.org/other/state-indicator/life-expectancy-by-re/?currentTimeframe=0&selectedDistributions=latino&selectedDistributions=asian-american&selectedRows=%7B%22wrapups%22:%7B%22united-states%22:%7B%7D%7D%7D&sortModel=%7B%22colId%22:%22Location%22,%22sort%22:%22asc%22%7D

      first of all, he didn’t say that they live the longest, the title clearly states, “….Why do Latinos Live LONGER?

      and during the video when he says they lived the “longest”, he is clearly comparing against white and black americans with 2011 data.

      DESPITE ALL OF THE NEGATIVE HURDLES that hispanics endure, they STILL HAVE A LONGER LIFE EXPECTANCY than the average US citizen is what I think the point of this video was.

      and the common denominator seems to be …………………..beans.

      .,.
      .

      .




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      1. Nothing new in your comment but fried beans are not my answer to a healthy diet. That it may be more healthful eating than fried chicken and all the processed foods that whites and Blacks consume is without question. Hispanics also consume more vegetables and fruits than the other two so I am not sure how much credit should be given to fried beans!




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        1. And again, you COMPLETELY MISSED THE POINT of Dr Gregers’ presentation and MISDIRECT the argument with “FRIED” beans when FRIED was NOT EVEN MENTIONED IN THE ENTIRE PRESENTATION!

          Dr Gregers intention was to IDENTIFY A PROTECTIVE FACTOR FOR CARDIAC DISEASE AMONG HISPANICS WHICH WAS APPLICABLE FOR THE REST OF THE POPULATION and it turns out that BEANS seem to be it, NOT “FRIED” BEANS.

          Since you don’t care about the point of the video and only care about arguing and winning this discussion by continually diverting it with information that you make up, goodbye.

          .




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  32. I’ve got some debilitating inflammatory and auto immune problems. Last time I ate black beans and organic corn tortillas, everything flared up! It’s been over two months, and I’m still dealing with the reactions.




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  33. I live in El Salvador I avoid eating sugar and red meat too, my compatriots who consume this type of food have health problems later.
    Natives of the American continent should follow this diet.




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    1. I was very surprised that trinidad and tobago would be so low in life expectancy but googling their diet shows why.

      heavy fried foods (mostly plants) and heavy fish, chicken, meat and milk. so basically fried and animal foods which we all know are about the worst foods you can consume. a beautiful paradise yet a terrible diet and early death, what a shame.

      what’s disappointing to me is that okinawa isn’t on there anywhere. i would have liked to see the changes in life expectancy over the last 18 years. i also think that these charts should remove childhood deaths to get a better idea of true life expectancy. that way we could make a better determination of longevity because of diet instead of a skewed chart including children and accidents.

      what’s interesting is that japan is in first place if you move the slider back to 1995 all the way up to 2013.

      i’ve also heard that today’s generation is the first which will live shorter than their parents. i think humans have been saturated with bad food to the point that our life expectancies are now dropping.

      i’d still like to see studies of only rural peoples who eat off the land and not including any urban peoples. there probably aren’t any left except for the old timer okinawans.




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  34. Amongst all the bean/legume videos and after searching the site, I couldn’t find anything about lectins. I’ve read all about phytates (good and bad) but the only thing I have found about lectins in legumes and grains is they are bad. Some of the assertions actually contradict what Nutritionfacts says about legumes and whole grains, specifically the beneficial effects on our gut health. Can you address this topic and shed some light on lectins?




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    1. TheLastbattleStation: I found one blog post on NutritionFacts which talks about lectins. Here is a quote:
      .
      “Modern paleo advocates claim that these foods weren’t part of Paleolithic-era diets, but new research challenges that assumption.5 They also argue that lectins naturally present in these starchy foods are harmful to human health. Consuming too many lectins can cause significant gastrointestinal distress. However, because legumes and grains are almost always consumed in a cooked form—and lectins are destroyed during cooking—eating beans and grains doesn’t result in lectin overload. Sprouting also reduces lectin levels in plants, although not as effectively as cooking. Generally, pea sprouts, lentil sprouts, and mung bean sprouts are safe to consume, as are sprouted grains, which are naturally low in lectins. Most larger legumes contain higher amounts and should be cooked.” from: http://nutritionfacts.org/2014/09/23/will-the-real-paleo-diet-please-stand-up/
      .
      Since I eat my grains and legumes cooked, I consider the lectin brouhaha to be much ado about nothing.
      .
      In the past, Tom Goff has posted some additional helpful takes on the subject. Here are some quotes from Tom Goff’s previous posts.
      .
      “…problem with such claims is that people in the past ate huge amounts of (whole) grains (compared to modern-day Americans). Some people still do. There is no record of such people suffering abnormally high rates of toxicity or inflammation-related diseases. If anything, the exact opposite is the case eg
      .
      “This meta-analysis provides further evidence that whole grain intake is associated with a reduced risk of coronary heart disease, cardiovascular disease, and total cancer, and mortality from all causes, respiratory diseases, infectious diseases, diabetes, and all non-cardiovascular, non-cancer causes. These findings support dietary guidelines that recommend increased intake of whole grain to reduce the risk of chronic diseases and premature mortality.”
      http://www.bmj.com/content/353/bmj.i2716
      .
      Further, reviews of the health effects of grain lectins do not support the wild claims found on the internet or sensational mass market “health ” books
      .
      “We conclude that there are many unsubstantiated assumptions made. Current data about health effects of dietary lectins, as consumed in cooked, baked, or extruded foods do not support negative health effects in humans. In contrast, consumption of WGA containing foods, such as cereals and whole grain products, has been shown to be associated with significantly reduced risks of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, some types of cancer, as well as a more favourable long-term weight management.”
      http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0733521014000228
      .
      Sure, it is possible to find toxic effects from grain lectins in the laboratory or in rat studies. You can find toxic effects from virtually anything if you design the study appropriately. Even water is toxic in high doses and specific circumstances. And you can turn such findings into sensational claims that garner a lot of publicity (and sales) – if you leave out all the evidence that does not suit your argument or book sales.”
      .
      And from another post:
      “The Paleo community attitude is certainly strange because there is evidence to show that humans in the Paleolithic period actually did eat legumes – and significant amounts at that – at least in certain locations and in the relevant season eg
      http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0305440304001694
      .
      However, it seems that once an idea becomes established in the Paleo canon it becomes sacrosanct and no mere inconvenient fact is powerfu l enough to overturn it.
      .
      On lectins and health specifically, blogger has summarised the (Paleo) argument like this:
      “There is evidence that legumes provide health benefits. There is speculation that lectins cause diseases. Unfortunately, the autoimmune diseases some speculate are caused by legume lectins appear to occur more frequently in nations like the U.S., where legume consumption is rather low, than in Asian nations, where legume consumption is higher.”
      http://donmatesz.blogspot.com/2011/08/legumes-neolithic-or-not.html
      .
      Does that help?




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      1. Thanks for update. I wish Dr Greger could site one of those studies that would debunk lectins. You know show me the science. It seems as if the paleo world, and others, want to make all “non-paleo” foods toxic. I don’t buy into the paleo theory that they ate mostly meat — don’t believe a caveman with a spear would have been very successful in the hunt. If our apex predators fail half the time, grok would have failed even more, and gotten himself eaten in the process. I’ve been eating beans all my life. Just been doing whole food, plant based for 9 months.




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        1. TheLastBattleStation: I submitted the topic of ‘lectins’ some time ago. Dr. Greger has so much to cover, I don’t know when/if he will get to this topic.
          .
          I agree with you that it would be great to have a video on the topic of lectins. Let’s keep our fingers crossed.




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  35. What are your thoughts on legumes for those of us with autoimmune conditions or even SIBO? I’ve been told constantly to avoid legumes but I would like to eat them!




    0
    1. Thanks for your comment.

      From what I know and according to one of the reviews mentioned by Dr Greger:

      “nvestigators trying to explain the paradox as a result of bias have failed to convincingly prove that the paradox is artificial.18–22 A recent meta-analysis demonstrated a consis- tent pattern of lower CVD mortality among Hispanics across studies confirming the existence of the paradox.

      Whether it is a genetic trait, a nutritional component, or a result of favorable social dynamics, what explains the Hispanic paradox is still to be determined. Regardless of the nature of this elusive factor to explain the Hispanic Paradox, such a factor surely has a very strong protective effect, so it can explain the lower CVD mortality and longer adjusted life expectancy among Hispanic men and women compared to non-Hispanic whites and African Americans.

      This paradox is strong enough to overcome the disadvantageous effect of a lower socioeconomic status, income, educational level, health literacy, quality of healthcare, insurance coverage and eligi- bility for Medicaid, and the highest employment in high-risk occupations, the barriers for healthcare due to language, a higher prevalence of hypertension, diabetes, central obesity and atherogenic lipid profiles, lower rates of hypertension treatment and control, among several other factors that predict cardiovascular outcomes and mortality. However, for as much as the Hispanic Paradox could represent an opportunity in CV epidemiology to identify a possible protective factor, this idea should not distract policy makers, investigators and scientific organizations from addressing the implications of CVD in Hispanics. After all, CVD is the most common cause of death and disability in Hispanics inside and outside the US.”

      Plus, it seems that the new study has a major limitation: “Answers were self-reported, and the study only included people in the community, meaning it didn’t account for people in nursing homes or otherwise institutionalized. Also, there could be changing trends over time in how people perceive health, so “excellent health” as defined by someone in 2000 could mean something different in 2014.”

      Hope this answer helps.




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  36. I’ve got some debilitating inflammatory and auto immune problems. Last time I ate black beans and organic corn tortillas, everything flared up! It’s been over two months, and I’m still dealing with the reactions.
    IGI Games




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  37. Hi, MT. There are some studies showing this, but they are quite old. This 1988 British study reported that, “The majority of children grew and developed normally but they did tend to be smaller in stature and lighter in weight than standards for the general population.” I did not find anything more recent that reported differences in growth between vegan children and others. If there are differences, it could be due to exposure to hormones in animal products, which I would suggest is not a good thing. I hope that helps!




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  38. The Hispanic paradox is all well and good, but what about the Asian Indian paradox? Asian Indians are among the highest consumers of pulses, have low risk factors for heart disease, yet still have heart problems that their risk factors suggest they shouldn’t have. Why?




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  39. I wondered the same until I read the peer-reviewed published studies. There is no Asian-Indian paradox as they are not WFPB consumers since they eat a very high fat diet, much of it dairy fat which leads to a known significant risk for cardiovascular disease.

    Dr. Ben




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