The Role of Diet vs. Exercise in the Obesity Epidemic

The Role of Diet vs. Exercise in the Obesity Epidemic
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The common explanations for the cause of the obesity epidemic put forward by the food industry and policymakers, such as inactivity or a lack of willpower, are not only wrong, but actively harmful fallacies.

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

Obesity isn’t new, but the obesity epidemic is. We went from a few corpulent kings and queens, like Henry VIII or Louis VI (known as Louis le Gros, or “Louis the Fat”), to a pandemic of obesity, now considered to be perhaps the most dire and poorly-contained public health threat of our time. About 37 percent of American men are obese, and 41 percent of American women, with no end in sight. Earlier reports had suggested at least the rise in obesity was slowing down, but even that doesn’t appear to be the case. Similarly, we had thought we were turning the corner on childhood obesity after 35 years of unrelenting bad news; but, the bad news continues. Child and adolescent obesity rates have continued to rise, now into the fourth decade.

Over the last century, obesity appears to have jumped tenfold, from about 1 in 30 to now 1 in 3. But it wasn’t a steady rise. Something seems to have happened around the late 1970s, and not just here, but around the globe. The obesity pandemic took off at about the same time across the world in most high-income countries in the 1970s and 1980s. The fact that the rapid rise appeared almost concurrently across the industrialized world suggests a common cause. What might that trigger have been?

Any potential driver would have to be global in nature, and coincide with the upswing of the epidemic. So, the change would have had to have started about 40 years ago, and would have been able to spread rapidly around the globe. Let’s see how all the various theories stack up. For example, some have blamed changes in our “built environment”––shifts in city planning that have made our communities less conducive to walking, biking, and grocery shopping. But that doesn’t meet our criteria for a credible cause, because there was no universal, simultaneous change in our neighborhoods within that time frame.

If you do a survey of hundreds of policymakers, most blame the obesity epidemic on “lack of personal motivation.” But do you see how little sense that makes? Here in the U.S, for example, obesity shot up across the entire population in the late 1970s. Are you telling me that every single sector of the entire population suffered some sort of simultaneous decline in willpower? Each age, sex, and ethnic group, with all their different attitudes and experiences, coincidentally lost their collective capacity for self-control at the same time? More plausible than a global change in the nature of our characters would be some global change in the nature of our lives.

The food industry blames inactivity. “If all consumers exercised,” said the CEO of PepsiCo, “obesity wouldn’t exist.” Coca-Cola went a step further, spending $1.5 million to create the Global Energy Balance Network to downplay the role of diet. Leaked emails show the company planned on using the front to serve as a “weapon” to “change the conversation” about obesity in its “war” with the public health community.

This tactic is so common among food and beverage companies it even has a name: “leanwashing.” You’ve heard of greenwashing, where companies deceptively pretend to be environmentally friendly. Leanwashing is the term used to describe companies that try to position themselves as helping to solve the obesity crisis when they’re instead directly contributing to it. Indeed, the largest food company in the world, for example—Nestlé—has rebranded itself as the “world’s leading nutrition, health and wellness company.” Yes, that Nestlé, makers of Cookie Crisp and historically more than 100 different brands of candy, including Butterfinger, Kit Kat, Goobers, Gobstoppers, Runts, and Nerds. Another of their slogans is “Good Food, Good Life.” Their Raisinets may have some fruit, but they seem to me more Willy Wonka than wellness. Let’s just say that on their “What is Nestlé doing about obesity?” webpage, their “Read about our Nestlé Healthy Kids programme” link gives you a Page Not Found error.

The constant corporate drumbeat of overemphasis on physical inactivity appears to be working. In response to a Harris poll question, “Which of these do you think are the major reasons why obesity has increased?”, a large majority chose lack of exercise, while only 34 percent chose excess calorie consumption. That’s actually been identified as one of the most common misconceptions about obesity. The scientific community has come to a fairly decisive conclusion that the factors governing calorie intake more powerfully affect overall calorie balance. It’s more our fast food than our slow motion.

There’s even considerable debate in the scientific literature as to whether changes in physical activity have had “any role whatsoever” in the obesity epidemic. The increase in caloric intake per person is more than enough to explain the obesity epidemic in the United States and around the rest of the world. In fact, if anything, the level of physical activity over the last few decades has actually slightly gone up in both Europe and North America. Ironically, this may actually be a result of the extra energy it takes to move around our heavier bodies, making it a consequence of the obesity problem, rather than the cause.

Formal exercise is only a small part of our total daily activity, though. Think about how much more physical work people used to do in the workplace, or on the farm, or even in the home. It’s not just the shift in collar color from blue to white. Increasing automation, computerization, mechanization, motorization, and urbanization have all contributed to increasingly more sedentary lifestyles over the last century. But that’s the problem with the theory. The occupational shifts and advent of labor-saving devices has been gradual, and largely predated the dramatic recent rise in weight gain the world over. Washing machines, vacuum cleaners, and the Model T were all invented before 1910. Indeed, when put to the test using state-of-the-art methods to measure energy in and energy out, it was caloric intake, not physical activity, that predicted weight gain over time.

The common misconception that obesity is mostly due to lack of exercise may not just be a benign fallacy. Personal theories of causation appear to impact people’s weight. Those who blame insufficient exercise are significantly more likely to be overweight. Put them in a room with chocolate, and they can be covertly observed consuming more candy.

Those holding that view may be different in other ways, though. You can’t prove cause-and-effect until you put it to the test. And indeed, people randomized to read an article implicating inactivity went on to eat significantly more sweets than those reading about research that indicted diet. A similar study evidently found that those presented with research blaming genetics subsequently ate significantly more cookies. The paper was entitled “An unintended way in which the fat gene might make you fat.”

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Video production by Glass Entertainment

Motion graphics by Avocado Video

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

Obesity isn’t new, but the obesity epidemic is. We went from a few corpulent kings and queens, like Henry VIII or Louis VI (known as Louis le Gros, or “Louis the Fat”), to a pandemic of obesity, now considered to be perhaps the most dire and poorly-contained public health threat of our time. About 37 percent of American men are obese, and 41 percent of American women, with no end in sight. Earlier reports had suggested at least the rise in obesity was slowing down, but even that doesn’t appear to be the case. Similarly, we had thought we were turning the corner on childhood obesity after 35 years of unrelenting bad news; but, the bad news continues. Child and adolescent obesity rates have continued to rise, now into the fourth decade.

Over the last century, obesity appears to have jumped tenfold, from about 1 in 30 to now 1 in 3. But it wasn’t a steady rise. Something seems to have happened around the late 1970s, and not just here, but around the globe. The obesity pandemic took off at about the same time across the world in most high-income countries in the 1970s and 1980s. The fact that the rapid rise appeared almost concurrently across the industrialized world suggests a common cause. What might that trigger have been?

Any potential driver would have to be global in nature, and coincide with the upswing of the epidemic. So, the change would have had to have started about 40 years ago, and would have been able to spread rapidly around the globe. Let’s see how all the various theories stack up. For example, some have blamed changes in our “built environment”––shifts in city planning that have made our communities less conducive to walking, biking, and grocery shopping. But that doesn’t meet our criteria for a credible cause, because there was no universal, simultaneous change in our neighborhoods within that time frame.

If you do a survey of hundreds of policymakers, most blame the obesity epidemic on “lack of personal motivation.” But do you see how little sense that makes? Here in the U.S, for example, obesity shot up across the entire population in the late 1970s. Are you telling me that every single sector of the entire population suffered some sort of simultaneous decline in willpower? Each age, sex, and ethnic group, with all their different attitudes and experiences, coincidentally lost their collective capacity for self-control at the same time? More plausible than a global change in the nature of our characters would be some global change in the nature of our lives.

The food industry blames inactivity. “If all consumers exercised,” said the CEO of PepsiCo, “obesity wouldn’t exist.” Coca-Cola went a step further, spending $1.5 million to create the Global Energy Balance Network to downplay the role of diet. Leaked emails show the company planned on using the front to serve as a “weapon” to “change the conversation” about obesity in its “war” with the public health community.

This tactic is so common among food and beverage companies it even has a name: “leanwashing.” You’ve heard of greenwashing, where companies deceptively pretend to be environmentally friendly. Leanwashing is the term used to describe companies that try to position themselves as helping to solve the obesity crisis when they’re instead directly contributing to it. Indeed, the largest food company in the world, for example—Nestlé—has rebranded itself as the “world’s leading nutrition, health and wellness company.” Yes, that Nestlé, makers of Cookie Crisp and historically more than 100 different brands of candy, including Butterfinger, Kit Kat, Goobers, Gobstoppers, Runts, and Nerds. Another of their slogans is “Good Food, Good Life.” Their Raisinets may have some fruit, but they seem to me more Willy Wonka than wellness. Let’s just say that on their “What is Nestlé doing about obesity?” webpage, their “Read about our Nestlé Healthy Kids programme” link gives you a Page Not Found error.

The constant corporate drumbeat of overemphasis on physical inactivity appears to be working. In response to a Harris poll question, “Which of these do you think are the major reasons why obesity has increased?”, a large majority chose lack of exercise, while only 34 percent chose excess calorie consumption. That’s actually been identified as one of the most common misconceptions about obesity. The scientific community has come to a fairly decisive conclusion that the factors governing calorie intake more powerfully affect overall calorie balance. It’s more our fast food than our slow motion.

There’s even considerable debate in the scientific literature as to whether changes in physical activity have had “any role whatsoever” in the obesity epidemic. The increase in caloric intake per person is more than enough to explain the obesity epidemic in the United States and around the rest of the world. In fact, if anything, the level of physical activity over the last few decades has actually slightly gone up in both Europe and North America. Ironically, this may actually be a result of the extra energy it takes to move around our heavier bodies, making it a consequence of the obesity problem, rather than the cause.

Formal exercise is only a small part of our total daily activity, though. Think about how much more physical work people used to do in the workplace, or on the farm, or even in the home. It’s not just the shift in collar color from blue to white. Increasing automation, computerization, mechanization, motorization, and urbanization have all contributed to increasingly more sedentary lifestyles over the last century. But that’s the problem with the theory. The occupational shifts and advent of labor-saving devices has been gradual, and largely predated the dramatic recent rise in weight gain the world over. Washing machines, vacuum cleaners, and the Model T were all invented before 1910. Indeed, when put to the test using state-of-the-art methods to measure energy in and energy out, it was caloric intake, not physical activity, that predicted weight gain over time.

The common misconception that obesity is mostly due to lack of exercise may not just be a benign fallacy. Personal theories of causation appear to impact people’s weight. Those who blame insufficient exercise are significantly more likely to be overweight. Put them in a room with chocolate, and they can be covertly observed consuming more candy.

Those holding that view may be different in other ways, though. You can’t prove cause-and-effect until you put it to the test. And indeed, people randomized to read an article implicating inactivity went on to eat significantly more sweets than those reading about research that indicted diet. A similar study evidently found that those presented with research blaming genetics subsequently ate significantly more cookies. The paper was entitled “An unintended way in which the fat gene might make you fat.”

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Video production by Glass Entertainment

Motion graphics by Avocado Video

Doctor's Note

When I sat down to write How Not to Diet, I knew this “what triggered the obesity epidemic” was going to be a big question I had to face. Was it inactivity—just kids sitting around playing video games? Was it genetic? Was it epigenetic—something turning our fat genes on? Or was it just the food? Were we eating more fat all of a sudden? More carbs? More processed foods? Or were we just eating more, period, because of bigger serving sizes? Or just snacking more? Inquiring minds wanted to know.

This is the first in an 11-part video series to answer this question, which I originally released in a two-hour webinar earlier this year. If you can’t wait and want to get all of the videos at once, check out the webinar digital download here.

Or, just stay tuned for the rest of the series (note that each link will be live when that video is published over the next few weeks):

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

149 responses to “The Role of Diet vs. Exercise in the Obesity Epidemic

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  1. I find it fascinating that obesity shot up so quickly in the late 1970’s, all around the world. Was it due to an increased availability and marketing of processed foods and beverages?

    1. He just left us hanging–but also artificial sweeteners in the form of soda/pop/colas came into full swing about that time-I remember, although I was a kid. I remember the snazzy advertising for Diet Rite, and Fresca long before “diet” Pepsi and Coke became the big sellers they are today. I even tried some of them and was disgusted by the terrible tastes of the chemicals used back then.

      And then I drank sugary drinks for the next 38 years. Haven’t had more than a taste of one in 5 years now, zero interest in them these days.

      Another thing that happened in the late seventies or so (in my region) was that fast food places started serving breakfast. I think adding another out-the-window, drive through “meal” was a mighty powerful factor in blowing people up. Back in the early days of fast food, burger joints didn’t open before lunch, and folks weren’t so fat.

      1. I learned exactly what made me fat when I tried eating WFPB and kept a daily log of my weight, because I didn’t go “100%” all in. I went 5 days on and 2 days off in order to find out if I could to it and also to have a plan that I thought would possibly work. It HAD to be better than “trying to eat better” as most folks say they are doing.

        And it DID. Not only did 5 days prove to make me feel better and start losing weight, but 2 days off allowed me to see exactly what happened by the daily weight fluctuations. Most weekends had little effect because I knew what foods to keep limited. But then one weekend I really went nuts with non-WFPB food and on another weekend it was a big holiday with family gathering and all their foods–of which I ate a SMALL plate only and maybe one single dessert. BOTH of those weekends put big blips in my steady-until-then weight loss.

        But by Tuesday or Wednesday of the following week my weight would be back on the steady decline it remained on for three months. Then it stabilized. And I was losing so much I didn’t work out-at all. I’m an active person, but also used to ride quite a bit. I’m not riding much at all now, but my weight has been the same for five years since I started my WFPB life–which is no longer 5/2 but I yet make some infrequent exceptions for circumstances as deemed reasonable and appropriate by me–and it WORKS great.

        Best of luck to any who have yet to make the leap. Yes, in our society it’s a BIG leap, but I think you can find more support now than ever before. WFPB can change everything. There’s nothing to lose by giving it a few weeks trial- That’s how I started. Thanks for reading.

        1. Nice going, it shows the diet can work if given half (or even less) of a chance! I see the same Nanny Effect, with sometimes even one “naughty” meal, BTW, on wfpb now for 4 years due to high coronary calcium score. Lost 40 lbs stayed off, no effort at all except stay out of the fun part of town. I’m 73 people say I look skinny at 6’1″ and 178 (yeah with BP 110/70, no more worries about heart disease, mission exceeded). Today people like me from the 40’s and 50’s look skinny but I remember the old normal, just see some old movies, ONE fat person, the rest “all skinny” by today’s twisted standards. When I weighed 215 people said I “looked great, muscular, etc” Now my workouts go easier, more of them, and I am even stronger than when I was 215. Too bad started at 70 is all I can say, don’t wait, start now, you won’t be the ONE exception to the rule of all these great results with WFPB, go for it. hell, I even saved money on my diet. My results are so great I don’t even bother with more tests, since my doc says since my ED is going away that alone is a better test than the coronary calcium score or carotid artery ultrasound. Those machines will gather dust soon.

          1. Robert,
            It’s great to hear that you have good EF at age 73 on WFPB. Reason alone to eat right. Mine ain’t what it used to be (age 60), but I still got it. Now, if I can just find something for my Peronies (curvature).

        2. Hi, I have eaten organic, non gmo, very little processed food for the last 25 years. Even so, I gained weight with each pregnancy. I definitely loved carbs, especially bread. I have been following a WFPB diet for four weeks now and the scale has barely moved. I sometimes use a little olive oil but not every day. I am healthy, except for my weight. It’s depressing because maybe I will have to give up grains in the form of Ezekiel bread or whole wheat. Any suggestions?

          1. Cynthia,

            There are so many other factors that you might want to start with a food journal for a few weeks.

            There are online ones you can use for free.

            Doing a fearless inventory of what you eat may help.

            Compare what you eat to the Calorie Density list.

            But I will be honest that I switched from dairy and junk food all the way over to salad and I didn’t lose much weight either, but I was not sleeping, was not eating breakfast, I ate too late at night, and I would eat a whole package of oil-free hummus because I found it comforting and my stretch receptors would tell my brain, no, she is on to the hummus thing, so let’s try getting her to crave peanut butter, which I do powdered peanut butter on Ezekiel bread, but what I know is that I genuinely started craving fatty foods, as if my body had read all of the packages, even though my vision is poor and my eyes and brain hadn’t read the packages. I.used peanut butter powder and my brain started craving Amy’s bean burritos and it submits its suggestions and the other part of my brain said, “You already did read that package and the refried bean can” but we have these deep multiple-brain section conversations anyway.

            Dr. Greger’s book has tweaks that might help you.

            And if you don’t want to read a book, go back through the videos and particularly watch the circadian rhythm and sleep and breakfast ones.

            I only eat Ezekiel bread very occasionally and don’t do oil, but no matter how clean I try to eat, I still eat too late at night and still struggle with eating breakfast and the pandemic isn’t helping me with sleep. Plus, I forget to take my Vitamin D, and if I miss even one dose, I don’t sleep that night.

            I had been doing better at breakfast and sleep, but there is anxiety since our worker tested positive and I know that I am back to not eating breakfast and eating later at night and I have to take my Vitamin D now, but I am supposed to be taking it in the morning.

            1. Hi Deb and Cynthia, I eat regular bread, white and whole meal, olive oil, coconut oil and basically whatever I want really, but I generally eat a whole food plant based diet (WFPB). And I lost half my body weight within 3 weeks of switching to a raw WFPB although I haven’t stuck with that, I’m on a slow (very slow) transition back to it but I’ve kept all the weight off.

              But I think the thing is, I wasn’t trying to loose weight, I just wanted to find a simple, easy, quick and healthy way to eat and the weight loss and increased energy etc came as a bonus part of that.

              I think what I’m saying is mindset has a lot to do with good health and it sounds like you both deny yourself some foods, labelling them as bad or not good or healthy but when we do that, we deny ourselves everything else in the process, including our success at weight loss.

              Have you considered your goal in detail? This I find is the best and only place to start for success and once you have that clear, the rest is not only easy, it just comes naturally as your brain is now geared to what you want and will guide you to what you need to make your goal a reality.

              Best of luck anyway and don’t ever forget, despite the progress you want just now, you are in the minority because you are taking responsibility for your health and you are making amazing changes and you can give yourselves massive credit for that, everyday. Always be delighted with yourself and for this fact alone, you have more than enough reason to always be delighted with yourself.

              1. Hi Neikka,
                I think it’s a bit irresponsible to be dropping phrases like “I eat regular bread, white and whole meal, olive oil, coconut oil and basically whatever I want really” as suggestions for people trying to make the change toward healthy choices. This fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants philosophy has gotten the American public into the obesity problem we are in. Only after watching/understanding a handful of Greger’s videos will show that certain foods must be discriminated for or against – green/yellow/red light foods.

                Your moderation philosophy: “I think what I’m saying is mindset has a lot to do with good health and it sounds like you both deny yourself some foods, labelling them as bad or not good or healthy but when we do that, we deny ourselves everything else in the process, including our success at weight loss” besmirches the work done on this site.The information provided in these videos/podcasts is about informing the public to make life altering choices.

                It’s only when we consciously make the decision to deny ourselves (aka Okinawan style) AND not to eat CRAP (calorie-rich and processed foods that kills us) will the majority of people improve their BMI/health. Your statement above about eating coconut oil – 90% saturated fat is worse than butter – is just comical. (Oh, and olive oil is just liquid fat.) The issue of weight loss is not merely the number on the scale, it’s also what’s coursing through your arteries that makes a huge difference.

                Bread – major difference between white to wheat – 75% loss of fiber – that makes a difference. If Cynthia switched to Ezekiel or bet yet to whole rye bread or even better, reduced bread intake overall, changes would move forward faster. Best would be to incorporate dietary fiber in the form of legumes and whole grains and treat bread like cake, something to have occasionally.

                I hope you see/hear my intention,
                Matthew

          2. Cynthia,

            Dr Lisle has a video on “mistakes” people make that prevent them from losing weight.

            Things like juice or smoothies.

            High Carb Hannah has gained weight with too many fruit smoothies.

            She lost when she switched to The Starch Solution.

            I think choosing one of the doctors and reading their book and doing their plan might help.

            But add Dr Greger’s concepts in no matter which doctors diet you choose.

            And I say it as a hypocrite because the pandemic came and I stopped eating breakfast and I started eating later at night again and there has been more stress and I have had more cups of coffee and some Lara bars and I am back to too much oil-free hummus because I stocked my Symbolic pantry but haven’t figured out what to cook and hummus is what Whole Food had tons of in stock, so I bought 12 packs of oil-free hummus so I didn’t have to worry while I waited the two weeks to see if any of my loved ones show symptoms.

            My brother who has been walking through with cancer started over-sleeping and I started eating packages of hummus every day again.

            And, yes, gained back a few pounds, but honestly it isn’t my focus at all right now and I will figure out what recipes to cook eventually.

          3. It looks like you received some helpful advice. I’d encourage you not to give up. Have you read Dr Greger’s new book How Not to Diet? There are so many helpful suggestions. I would say instead of giving up your bread, since it’s whole grain (and hopefully you are not eating several slices a day) why not give up the oil? That’s what could be contributing to your difficulty losing weight.
            Best of health to you as you eat fully plant-based and soon that weight should be coming off.Four weeks may just not be enough time to get there.

        3. What did you used to ride?‍♀️ And well done on switching to a whole food plant based diet. It was also one of the best decisions I ever made. I feel better and much prefer the raw food, for so many reasons, but that hadn’t yet been fully established in my life yet but I think it will be as it’s simply the best thing for me.

      2. Fast food joints in general really started proliferating in the 70’s and have been on steroids ever since. Eating out when I was a kid (prior to the 70’s) was relatively unusual and considered a special occasion. For many, perhaps most in some areas, eating out is now the norm.

        1. Rick,, You are correct. For most people, “eating out” was a treat while today it is the “norm”. I have acquaintances that eat out/or take out more frequently than they prepare food at home. Also it seems that there are more sedentary occupations than in the not too distant past. Many physicals jobs have been taken over by machines.

    2. Absolutely availability. Availability of the glutamate in MSG that kills brain cells leading to obesity, infertility and behavior studies. Mass production began in 1957. Brain damage was first reported in 1969.

  2. My personal experience certainly supports this theory.

    About 22 years ago (as I entered menopause, actually), I was overweight and out of shape. So, I started a home exercise program, and after one year, I was much more fit, but hadn’t lost any weight. (Though I hadn’t gained any, either). Then I changed my eating habits, practicing portion control and making healthier choices (eg: substituting a banana for a pastry with my morning coffee) — and over the next 18 months, I lost about 25 pounds.

    And my husband, too: he was overweight when we met 12 years ago, but he wanted to lose weight, so he started practicing portion control and making healthier choices (eg: he started eating my vegetarian cooking, and stopped eating the prepared and processed foods he was eating as a widower) — but he didn’t change his activity levels. And he lost about 35 pounds over about 18 months.

    And, when we both switched to whole plant food eating a few years ago (we were vegetarian, but dropped the dairy products and eggs), we each lost more weight without even trying: I lost about 10 lbs, and he lost about 20 lbs. Now we are close to the weights we were in high school.

    Anecdotal. But it supports the summarizing adage: Get thin in the kitchen. Get fit in the gym.

    1. Dr. J,
      Dr. Greger, in the past, and others, have said, “It’s the food.” Dr. Esselstyn did a video saying the Okanawans are not big exercisers. Guess they must be eating right. We know that eating large amounts of high fiber WFPB does not cause weight gain. It does help one poop more often and excrete toxins. Exercise is great! Eating the right way is even better.

    1. Pat,

      You can skim the transcript, to see what the conclusion is. Click on the “View Transcript” button under the video title and blurb.

      From the transcript: “ Indeed, when put to the test using state-of-the-art methods to measure energy in and energy out, it was caloric intake, not physical activity, that predicted weight gain over time.”

  3. Back in the late 1960s when I was in 5th grade. I was a chubby boy and took a lot of teasing. We had a health book which had an chapter about weight lose and diet. What stuck with me was how far you had to run to burn off one candy bar or a bag of chips. All much smaller back than. All through HS and my adult life I’ve keep my weight down by running and just not eating unless I’m hungry. My friends who teased me not keep saying I thought you were going to be the fat one not me

  4. I believe it is not just coincidence that both high fructose corn syrup and glyphosate inundated our food supply in the late 1970’s. Both of these substances can make you fat.

    1. According to a Cornell University study (Dr. Greger’s Alma Mater) and other credible sources, glyphosate doesn’t cause weight gain in people- but it does in bacteria. Nevertheless, there are persistent rumors and stories in the popular press that it’s a cause. It is fairly safe for animals and insects- and is poorly absorbed into the gut, although I wouldn’t deliberately expose myself to it if I can help it. You may however be on to something with high fructose corn syrup. It was introduced at the right time: 1970 and because it’s so cheap, food manufacturer load it up in their products to make them sweeter and more palatable and addictive, thus increasing the number of calories in their servings as well as the amount eaten. They also use more cheap fats as a flavor and texture enhancer which also adds calories. We also eat more grain products, probably refined grains in snack products. These are less filling since they have less fiber than whole grains. And so, we tend to eat more, especially if they have more added salt. As a result we went up from an average of 2,016 to 2,390 calories per day since the 1970’s. This extra consumption of 374 calories a day may be the real cause of the obesity epidemic. Solution: avoid packaged and processed foods and eat only whole natural unprocessed plant products.

    2. Roudup (glyphosate) didn’t go into wide spread use until the mid 1990’s with the development of GE roundup ready crops.

      1. Of course Roundup will not cause problems. Seems I heard that line before. Remember all the Vietnam era guys that were told that about Agent Orange. No problem GI until is was one years later.

        1. Wolf,
          Some years back I saw a pair of quite hefty husband and wife ranchers buying weed killer at the farm store to spray their fence line. Knowing that this substance stores in fat like no bodys business I must have been thinking to myself, this can’t be for real.

  5. Newer technological innovations that happened over the last 50 years has allowed people to not need to move to be entertained beyond their thumbs. This has resulted in more and more inactivity. We all know people who got fat sitting for years in front of a television. It only got worse with internet, cell phones, and video games.

    1. Kids now are locked inside to spend days on a game or computer. They grow into adults following the habits they were taught.. Obese parents also seldom want their kids to exercise or eat better as it reflects on themselves.

  6. Brian Rich,

    Correlation is not causation; at best, it’s an invitation to further study.

    For several entertaining examples, check out this website: http://www.tylervigen.com/spurious-correlations

    For example: Who knew the US spending on science, space, and technology correlates with Suicides by hanging, strangulation, and suffocation? But yes, it does. Really, really well. But do you think it shows causation?

    There are plenty more.

    Perhaps you have some evidence that HFCS and glyphosphate can make people fat that you can share? Beyond a simple correlation.

  7. Dr Greger I am a reasonably intelligent person and have been listening to your videos with great interest have read your books etc… However I am finding it extremely challenging to listen to your pontification, constant sarcasm and confusinging sarcastic analogies….. Please could you please get to the point in the first 10 seconds of you videos? Because by the time we get to the ending you have basically lost me and the point you are trying to make…
    Also sarcasm only works if the audience you are communicating too fully understands the subject matter so if you could be a little more “to the point” I am sure your audience will enlarge…. I used to forward your videos I don’t anymore because quick frankly it seems your “losing it a little”

    1. Brian, it’s funny how each person sees things differently. I don’t see any pontification, constant sarcasm and confusing sarcastic analogies. I don’t think his audience will be lacking.

  8. There are 240 million adults in U.S. 72 million are obese (30%) and 168 million (70%) with normal weight. Of the obese 80% were sick [57 million]. Of the normal weight 40% had metabolic dysfunction [67 million] . The total is 124 million sick U.S. adults. 57 million are obese and 67 million are normal weight. Obesity is increasing worldwide by 2.78% per year 1975-2015 (Lancet Oct 10, 2017). and diabetes is increasing worldwide by 4.07% per year 1980-2014 (Lancet Apr 6, 2016).
    Food sizes, according to the CDC, since the 1950s have increased – soda 7 oz. now 42 oz., hamburger 3.9 oz now 12 oz and french fries 2.4 oz now 6.7 oz. The average restaurant meal today is more than four times larger than in the 1950s. Is it possible that obesity isn’t the cause? Newborns have increased in weight yet
    Moms don’t report less kicking before birth. Maybe something else is responsible for for the illness and not obesity.

      1. Thanks Tom, for your reply. My main point was that obesity may not be the issue with regard to sickness. The data were provided by Dr. Robert Lustig in one of his talks – https://youtu.be/zx-QrilOoSM which I’ll include a reference for.
        Information is evolving. Chronic disease has become an expensive and important issue – $3.4 trillion a year. Unless corrected that is unsustainable and threatens Soc. Sec. and healthcare. We all need updated information about how to prevent illness.

        1. Lee, obesity IS the issue with respect to illness . https://nutritionfacts.org/topics/obesity/ Take a look at the second paragraph in the intro to the topic. Obesity is a risk factor for the most prevalent chronic diseases of our country: heart disease, cancer, diabetes, nonalcoholic liver disease, kidney disease, acid reflux .. the list goes on. Attaining and maintaining a healthy weight at the lower end of the normal bmi section is one way to help stave off the illnesses rampant in society today. Eating a wfpb diet is one of the easiest, healthiest ways to get there.

          1. Thanks, Barb, for your reply. Six months ago, I would have said what you did.
            Since then I’ve been trying to better appreciate the metabolic syndrome. In my research I’ve learned there is no “definition”. I did, however, com across Robert Lustig’s talk. He’s an emeritus professor from the med school in San Francisco and this is the video he did talking about metabolic syndrome https://youtu.be/zx-QrilOoSM

            Information and knowledge are still evolving or changing. If you have a chance to watch his video, I’d be very interested in your thoughts. Insulin resistance is what causes type 2 diabetes, the “cause” of which has undergone different accountings in the past few years.

            Thin people acquire diabetes, heart diseases and cancers as I tried to show so it’s hard to “blame” obesity. But since these chronic diseases cost tax payers $3.4 trillion a year and the sick individual a good last part of his/her and family life it becomes important to determine the cause in order to be able to help better. I heard once that if they just tried to make a better typewriter and stopped there we wouldn’t have word processors.

            Incidentally, I became a vegan 10 years ago and at 83 need no prescriptions and still worked until a week ago.

            Stay healthy,

            1. Thanks Lee, I have seen Lustig’s videos. I’ve been watching uctv for almost a decade now. I still am of the opinion that obesity is a major problem. I have been watching Dr Greger’s videos since 2008-2009, and heard from folks over and over again that losing the weight meant ditching the diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, etc.
              The American Heart Association encourages people to adopt the Simple Seven. Dr Greger has a video about it too. https://www.heart.org/en/healthy-living/healthy-lifestyle/my-life-check–lifes-simple-7
              Be well!

              1. Dr Lustig is a favourite of the low carb community. His assertions are music to their ears.

                While a long-established academic, he has nevertheless made a number of stupid statements. Factually incorrect to the point of stupidity.that is.

                http://plantpositive.com/display/Search?moduleId=19496100&searchQuery=lustig
                https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a7QXFJNKWXs

                That’s why I don’t bother watching Lustig videos whether they are on UCTV, Found My Fitness or whatever. it’s just impossible to know whether his assertions are correct or just more bunk

                Talking about “the” cause of diabetes is also misleading. Risk factors is probably a better way of thinking about it. There are also very many different diseases lumped under the headings cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes etc. Their ’causes’ and risk factors may differ. For example,

                ‘Misdiagnosis as having type 2 diabetes is common.
                Around 15-20% of people diagnosed with type 2 diabetes may actually have Type 1.5 diabetes.’
                https://www.diabetes.co.uk/type15-diabetes.html

                ‘Type 1.5 diabetes can easily be — and is often — misdiagnosed as type 2 diabetes. If you’re in a healthy weight range, have an active lifestyle, and have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, there’s a chance that what you actually have is LADA.’
                https://www.healthline.com/health/type-1-5-diabetes

                Arguing that because, some slim people get cancer, diabetes, heart disease etc, obesity therefore cannot be ‘the’ cause of these things seems a mistaken chain of reasoning to me.

                Every international and national health authority accepts that obesity is a significant risk factor for a range of diseases.

  9. Wonder when Dr. G will tone down his ego and keep his gesticulating presence out of the clips. It detracts from the message. For this particular clip, you can skip the first 6 minutes.

    1. DFR we are all clearly very different as I love Dr Greger’s presentations and the way he presents the information really helps me to understand it. Couldn’t you just not look at the video and listen instead or maybe just read the transcripts so you can skip to the parts that you’re interested in?

      It’s interesting that the biggest thing you see in this video is his ego and you (wrongly) assume that everybody feels the same way about Dr Greger as you do and that you have all the answers by clearly advising the audience that they will be better off if they skip the first 6 minutes!

    1. Maybe the grain of salt would taste better on the spider that’s crawling down your neck, Lon — once you toast him/her. Although, you’d probably consider the spider to be “meat.”

      April Fool! :-)

      1. Maybe the grain of salt would taste better on the spider that’s crawling down your neck, Lon
        ————————————————————————————————————————
        So! you’re practicing voodoo now? (I have a pain in the neck at present ‘-)

          1. Never voodoo the teacher… unless you are sure you have passed the teacher’s powers ‘-)

            Didja feel that? How about that?

  10. I’m not sure I’m following the directions correctly. But I thought to understand that if I had a question in regards to the webinar on April 8 that I could ask it on any of your posts.

    Unfortunately I waited too long to register and you have filled to capacity. I am so so disappointed that I missed this opportunity because I waited. Can u please tell me how to acquire the exact information once your webinar is over?

    Also , Will u consider replaying it in the future?

    1. Awww, that is sad.

      I do know they will be replaying it. I am wondering if I could gift my spot to you?

      I feel like I have already read the Bird Flu book, plus I have watched the MedCram videos and read PubMed and watched months of Dr. Campbell videos and Trump press conferences, and that I have months worth of hand sanitizer, toilet paper, and food and I am already self-isolated.

      I will see if it can be done.

  11. I remember in the mid-80s I was hitchhiking through the USA in my early twenties. I’m Canadian and I happened to meet a Swiss backpacker in Arizona and all he and I could talk about was obese Americans. We had never seen anything like it in our lives. It was like being surrounded by a circus. The Swiss guy kept saying, “All Americans do is eat, eat, eat! They eat fake food and go to McDonalds. Yuck! In Switzerland, we eat three meals a day, at home, we never snack and there’s no such thing as fast food. (I was recently in France and noticed that fast food wasn’t a thing there. There’s no such thing as strip malls full of fast food joints.) It’s true that the world is getting fatter but nowhere else do you see truly obese people, waddling people, they way you do in the US. In my town in Quebec, for example, there isn’t anyone obese, or actually, even fat. If you do a google image search of American crowds for any decade, say the 1950s or 60s or 70s, you won’t see any fat people. In Target the smallest size of women’s jeans you can get are enormous. I agree with Bill Maher that we need to bring back a little fat shaming the way we shamed people out of smoking and drunk driving and not wearing seat belts. On youtube you can find Bill Maher’s fat shaming editorial. It’s great.

    1. Laurie in Canada,

      “ Adults (18/20 years and over) [Germany]
      Intercountry comparable overweight and obesity estimates from 2008 (1) show that 60.5% of the adult population (> 20 years old) in Germany were overweight and 25.1% were obese. The prevalence of overweight was higher among men (66.8%) than women (54.5%). The proportion of men and women that were obese was 25.9% and 24.4%, respectively.”. (http://www.euro.who.int/__data/assets/pdf_file/0011/243299/Germany-WHO-Country-Profile.pdf)

      “ Adults (15/20 years and over) [Switzerland]
      Intercountry comparable overweight and obesity estimates from 2008 (1) show that 49.2% of the adult population (> 20 years old) in Switzerland were overweight and 17.5% were obese. The prevalence of overweight was higher among men (59.3%) than women (40.0%). The proportion of men and women that were obese was 20.7% and 14.5%, respectively.”. (http://www.euro.who.int/__data/assets/pdf_file/0004/243328/Switzerland-WHO-Country-Profile.pdf?ua=1)

      There’s more detailed information on each site.

      A friend and I were just chatting about the obesity epidemic epidemic in Germany; she included some statistics, fairly staggering, for Germany, and said that a cousin who is a doctor in Germany confirmed that. He reportedly said that he was surprised by how many overweight kids there were in the US 35 years ago, but that now the number in Germany is equal to or greater than what he believes is true in the US.

    2. Laurie,

      I disagree about fat shaming.

      Society has tried that and people kill themselves or 50% of people do things like bulimia and anorexia.

      People are spending BILLIONS and BILLIONS of dollars every year trying to combat obesity and 99.9% fail.

      Shaming them is not going to switch it.

      People are gaining weight all the way back after stomach surgery and there are more and more people getting that surgery.

      Any group that gets ostracized and shamed ends up not getting cared for by health industries and getting discriminated against.

      It is an excuse for not caring and not care-taking.

      Honestly, Dr. Lisle has said that most people fail even with WFPB and Dr. Lustig has shown that people can get a brain injury and become seriously obese and it is a brain problem that no amount of shame will correct.

      I hated it when the homosexual community or the black community or any community have had people shaming them, even prisoners.

      Right now, in the USA, there are places where people who are poor are being put in a debtors prison situation and they are stripped naked every single day and forced to work and not told how long their sentences are so they can be really, really, really, really, really ashamed and it is going to cause PTSD and suicide.

      Anyway, I am very pro this WFPB movement being positive, hopeful, educational and having as many strategies as possible.

      I am against anything that steals the human dignity from anybody.

      1. Anorexia has increased by 36 percent every five years since the 1950s.

        In a study of Division 1 NCAA athletes, over one-third of female athletes reported attitudes and symptoms placing them at risk for anorexia nervosa.

        Among female high school athletes in aesthetic sports, 41.5% reported disordered eating.

        By age 6, girls especially start to express concerns about their own weight or shape. 40-60% of elementary school girls (ages 6-12) are concerned about their weight or about becoming too fat. This concern endures through life.

        79% of weight-loss program participants reported COPING WITH WEIGHT STIGMA FROM FAT SHAMING by eating more food.

        1. In studies, weight teasing predicts weight gain, binge eating, and extreme weight control measures.

          For people who are teased about their weight – in studies they have found, weight-based victimization among overweight youths has been linked to lower levels of physical activity, negative attitudes about sports, and lower participation in physical activity among overweight students. Among overweight and obese adults, those who experience weight-based stigmatization engage in more frequent binge eating, are at increased risk for eating disorder symptoms, and are more likely to have a diagnosis of binge eating disorder.

            1. Plus, it is probably about food access with so many parts of America being healthy food deserts and socially marginalized people are the most likely to have disordered eating.

              Teenage girls from low-income families are 153% more likely to be bulimic than girls from wealthy families.

              Black teenagers are 50% more likely than white teenagers to exhibit bulimic behavior, such as binging and purging.

              In a survey of college students, transgender students were significantly more likely than members of any other group to report an eating disorder diagnosis in the past year.

              1. More than all of those, we have a ridiculous country which has always fat-shamed people, even thin people, children as young as toddlers are already dieting and afraid of being fat, and it is SO OBVIOUS that all of the prejudice and bigotry against obesity which has always been there, particularly since the invention of television and the modeling industry has NOT lowered the obesity rates at all.

                1. “We found that weight control failure was significantly associated with suicidal ideation among obese females, whereas this association was not significant in obese males or overweight populations after multivariable adjustment. This finding can be explained by weight stigma.”

                  Yes, women contemplate suicide and commit suicide because of weight stigma from other people.

                  1. Sorry that I did such an extensive process of standing up against the concept of fat-shaming.

                    This is a site that attracts vegans and there is a subset of this population that already is anorexic and they feel fat and ashamed even when they are size 0.

                    This is also a site where a doctor just wrote a diet book and there will be 600 and 1000 pound people who will show up and they will already struggle so much with fat shaming.

                    To assume that they haven’t been abused enough this year is wrong thinking.

                    80% of them will come from trauma and sexual abuse and their brains will have been damaged during formation from abuse to begin with and they need Dr. Lustig’s understanding and Dr. Greger’s understanding and not bullying of any sort.

                    1. Also, sports radio, which is generally the most insensitive people in the universe have been talking today about how people with addictions and eating disorders and mental health issues and obesity are struggling much more now because of the stress of COVID-19 and they need more support, not more shame.

                      They can’t go to their 12 step groups or counseling groups.

                      They have stress causing them to quit their diets and backslide into old behavior.

                      Plus, healthier foods haven’t been stocked in grocery stores.

                      There was a 400% increase in bean sales at the front of this process. Plus, almost every category of WFPB food.

                      People already lived in food deserts before the panic buying.

                      So many people lost their jobs and, yes, they get 60% of their salary, but grocery stores aren’t stocked and churches aren’t open.

                      They are afraid of dying and all sorts of other things.

                    2. The logic to me is that 80% of morbidly obese people come from sexual abuse and you can’t even find a people group more ashamed than that group and shame didn’t prevent obesity, it caused it.

          1. The problem with anti-fat shaming political correctness is that it attempts to legitimise and validate being fat eg

            ‘Fat activists argue that anti-fat stigma and aggressive diet promotion have led to an increase in psychological and physiological problems among fat people.[18] Concerns are also raised that modern culture’s focus on weight-loss does not have a foundation in scientific research, but instead is an example of using science as a means to control deviance, as a part of society’s attempt to deal with something that it finds disturbing.[40] Diet critics cite the high failure rate of permanent weight-loss attempts,[41] and the dangers of “yo-yo” weight fluctuations[42] and weight-loss surgeries.[43] Fat activists argue that the health issues of obesity and being overweight have been exaggerated or misrepresented, and that the health issues are used as a cover for cultural and aesthetic prejudices against fat.[citation needed]

            Proponents of fat acceptance maintain that people of all shapes and sizes can strive for fitness and physical health.[44][45][46] They believe health to be independent of body weight. Informed by this approach, psychologists who were unhappy with the treatment of fat people in the medical world initiated the Health at Every Size movement. It has five basic tenets: 1. Enhancing health, 2. Size and self-acceptance, 3. The pleasure of eating well, 4. The joy of movement, and 5. An end to weight bias.[47]’
            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fat_acceptance_movement

            https://www.campaignlive.co.uk/article/this-not-fat-shaming-cancer-research-uk-stands-anti-obesity-campaign-backlash/1458472

            This attitude does a disservice to people with weight problems because it reduces their incentives to adopt healthy eating and lifestyle practices which will reduce their morbidity and mortality risk. It is also a disservice to everybody else in the developed world (except the US) because the health, care and prescription costs of people with weight problems are borne by everybody in universal health care systems because these are funded by specific national insurance contributions or through general taxation. It is now thought that obesity has replaced tobacco as the biggest threat to public health
            https://www.rand.org/pubs/research_briefs/RB4549.html
            https://ama.com.au/ausmed/obesity-overtaking-smoking-biggest-health-threat-ama

            And given that the majority of the US population is either obese or overweight, I wonder just how much of an issue actual fat shaming is. There must be a balance somewhere between unfair treatment of weight problems and recognising the health risks of overweight.

            It seems to me that fat shaming is much less a problem than obesity is …. and attempts to promote fat acceptance could arguably be said to contribute to the obesity problem.

      2. Deb,
        I get it that some people have a seemingly impossible problem with their weight. For a long time I’ve been aware that diets do not work because most people wind up gaining the weight back. It might be there are few solutions to this situation. If this is so, I might suggest that people eat in a way they think is healthy, get some exercise and good sleep and go on about their lives.

        1. Deb,
          Not very long ago I watched a Rich Roll interview with Chef AJ. She reviewed her distressed, over eating youth brought on by an angry, brain damaged father, who had been kicked in the head by a horse. She is healthy now but you can see her former self by watching a Johnny Carsen video where she stands on her head, in front of Carsen’s desk and plays a yazoo from her nose. Chef AJ claims to have gotten help at True North with counseling from a chiropractic doctor who said, something like, women are estrogen producing machines that store fat. (My emphasis: I think this may be a reason that women are more likely to survive famines). This doctor also told her to eliminate caloric dense foods (even the plant based ones). Chef AJ has a way of life that is working for her now centered around promoting cooking and eating healthy foods.

    3. Laurie in Canada, Bill Maher is a miserable, unhappy, rude, unkind individual. He is such a hater. There is no truth or goodness in any thing I have heard him say. When I hear his name I cringe. You and your friend sound very sanctimonious. Sometimes it’s best to keep uncharitable comments that do nothing to help others, to yourself. Joyful, kind people know how to communicate truth in a way that motivates and encourages others.

  12. Laurie in Canada,

    PS:

    “ Highlights [Canada]
    One in four adult Canadians, or about 6.3 million people, were obese in 2011–2012. Since 2003, the proportion of Canadians who were obese has increased 17.5%.
    More men than women were obese, and obesity has increased more for men than women over the past eight years.
    The lowest proportions of obese people were found in Canada’s three largest cities (Toronto, Montréal, Vancouver) and in areas of southern British Columbia; the highest levels were found in Atlantic Canada, the Prairies, and the Territories, and smaller cities in northern and southwestern Ontario….

    Two provinces stand out for having the lowest levels of obesity—British Columbia, 20.4%, and Quebec, 22.8%…. Broken down by sex, the data showed this same provincial pattern with one exception: the prevalence of obesity among women in Quebec, 22.3%, was not statistically different from the prevalence for all Canadian women. The lower level of obesity in Quebec appears to be the result of less obesity among the province’s men, 23.3%, compared to Canadian men in general.” “ Date modified: 2015-11-27”. (https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/pub/82-624-x/2014001/article/11922-eng.htm#a4)

  13. In the SAME WEEK at my local gym 2 people were carried out on gurneys by Medic One.
    It was shocking and disconcerting. My take is they didn’t eat right, then increased their blood flow in arteries that were loaded with soft plaques that ruptured.
    So, exercise can also raise risk, not lower it, if the diet promotes atherosclerosis. If the diet is non-atherogenic, promotes clean arteries, yeah, most exercise plans will not risk and should actually raise the performance of those arteries. Studies of joggers in Rhode Island around 1975-80 showed 2500 joggers had 7 times the heart attacks as 2500 couch potatoes over 5 years. That’s a risk elevation of 700 percent.

  14. Thanks for these stats. Yes you’re right that all these Western countries including Canada now have obesity but there’s “obese’ (which I believe is a BMI of 30 or higher, or a waist size in women of 35” for women and 40” for men) and then there’s morbidly obese, which is what I was referring to in my story above, as when you see those people in the USA who can barely walk and can’t fit into regular restaurant booths, etc. If you go to Europe or Canada, you absolutely don’t see this level of obesity. You can be 25 pounds overweight and still considered obese but you can still easily walk and barely stand out in a crowd. That’s different from 100 pounds or more overweight which is a pretty common sight in places like Oklahoma or Mississippi. Anyway, I agree with other commenters here that it’s the sugar, soda, fast food, and high fructose corn syrup industries that are to blame. They’re like the cigarette companies, making millions to kill people.

  15. This delusion: “I exercise so I can eat how ever I want.”
    Is a perversion of this fact: “I eat right so I can exercise how ever I want.”

  16. I don’t see why it is either/or diet and exercise. I would guess that people eat out at Restaurants more than they used to. Restaurant food can certainly be higher in calories, sodium and saturated fat than what people might fix themselves. A lot of people have forgotten how to prepare their own meals, which most of them of time would be less fattening than Restaurant or Convenience foods. I bet people eat more Convenience foods like TV dinners than was previously the case. These are often very high in sodium and calories. But people probably also drive their cars everywhere they go even more than was previously the case. I personally lost a lot of weight by bicycling everywhere INSTEAD of driving everywhere. I even ride my bike to work. AND I also find and found it helpful in order to lose weight to fix my own food and not eat out at Restaurants everyday. I only go out to eat once every two weeks and of course I choose Vegan options at these restaurants, although technically it might be more Vegetarian than Vegan. I am as Vegan as possible, but some things I may eat that other people fix might have some dairy or eggs in them. It also must be stated that if everyone gave up meat and dairy and eggs AND drove their cars a lot less, that both of these things would help the Environment a lot.

    1. I don’t know where you live, Daniel, but in my part of the country (East Coast USA) nobody is allowed to eat in a restaurant….pickup or deliver only. Maybe customers will cut down on some poundage as a result?

      I live in a building complex for those over 62. They want us to go out of the building only when necessary (like to buy some food!) or take an “isolated” walk for exercise. Now the office passed around a memo saying to remember to wear gloves when out in public.;…..and to don a mask! (I’ve heard to use them only if you don’t feel good, as they’re needed more for the docs&surgeons; plus they don’t work so good, anyway.) Maybe I’ll wear my Durango Kid bandit tomorrow and make them think I’m carrying a pistol in my pocket. :-)

      On the other hand, some tenants will be so bored out of their skulls, they’ll look for any food (junk or otherwise) they can find.

      “Oh Lonesome Me.”

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xc-2eO8FJzk.

      1. I lost my weight long before there were restrictions on restaurants. Of course, we have the same restrictions here in Georgia on restaurants since this Pandemic started.

        1. “I only go out to eat once every two weeks”
          – – – – –

          Oh, okay. The above sentence had me believe you were still doing this — as you used the present tense.

          1. I actually went to a Subway the last Saturday I was off and got a veggie patty sub. I will do take out this Saturday. All these restrictions are very recent.

  17. Is “How Not To Diet” adequate enough to read for people not wanting to lose weight? Or is it all about weight loss? I’m currently reading “How Not To Die” and I’m almost finished it, it’s a great read. I just don’t want to buy two books if they are essentially the same.

    1. AcidityWormhole,

      I have both books, and read both of them. I found them both fascinating.

      But I read “How Not to Die” first, and somewhere around that time, I transitioned from eating vegetarian to eating whole plant foods (ie, I dropped dairy products and eggs). My transition was gradual, over 6 months to a year, so I didn’t notice that I also gradually lost more weight, as I mentioned above (about another 10 lbs, though I thought I was already at a healthy weight, having successfully lost 25 lbs 20+ years earlier).

      That said, I think “How Not to Diet” has a lot of additional information, and could be useful for those for whom whole eating whole plant foods alone is not quite enough to lose enough weight. It explains why eating whole plant foods helps with weight loss, but there is much more, including effects on weight of eating at different times of day, different types of restricted eating (ie fasting), and tweaks that might help. I really enjoyed reading it, and learned a lot, but I don’t think it’s necessary to lose weight. But if that were my goal, I might try eating whole plant foods for a while, based on information in the first book, then read “How Not to Diet” if I wanted to lose more weight.

      Both books together are a lot to digest!

  18. There have been more younger people having the cytokine storm process

    In France they gave meds to lower Interleukin-6 and they helped.

    https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.nytimes.com/2020/04/01/health/coronavirus-cytokine-storm-immune-system.amp.html

    Bringing down IL-6 can be done with diet.

    Not saying that people should self-treat it.

    People are being sent home or euthanized.

    Boy, I am trying to remember how many things bring it down.

    Was it turmeric or Modified Citrus Pectin?

    1. “People are being sent home or euthanized.”

      – — – – –

      Where did you hear this, Deb? Where, what country? Can you post any links that show this to be fact?

      1. I have been watching Dr. Campbell’s videos.

        A doctor from Madrid was the first to talk about it.

        There are places with not enough ventilators and he was talking about the older people being put on Morphine because of that.

        It came up again today with someplace other than Madrid.

        I looked up Turmeric and there is a company that has developed an IV curcumin.

        https://www.biospace.com/article/releases/signpath-pharma-to-focus-on-coronavirus-disease-covid-19-by-developing-treatment-for-acute-respiratory-distress-syndrome-ards-/

        1. Recently, they talked about people being sent home and told to come back when they are sicker.

          That wasn’t Dr. Campbell’s site, that was another doctor.

          But it was talking about the reality that most places are short of beds and other equipment.

          When I looked at the models given by the Global Burden of Disease guy, there will be thousands and thousands of people who don’t have hospital beds.

        2. That’s triage and rationing.

          It’s incorrect, misleading and irresponsible to call it euthanasia and that Madrid doctor’s YouTube video was taken down.

          1. I heard the first video before it was removed. They were not talking about euthanasia. The doctor was upset, overwhelmed. The old people who were doing poorly were not good candidates for the machines.

            I would have to go pouring through many videos to find it, but the surgeon Dr Duc Vuong was saying that if people are on the ventilator machines for two weeks the chance of them surviving is not good.. like less than 20%. Dr John Campbell talks about it more on the video I linked below.

            The video from today by Dr John Campbell talks about different countries, including Spain. Around the 9 minute mark or thereabouts you hear about the decisions, and morphine is mentioned in the context of palliative care…. not euthanasia!
            https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Kt55EU1T0j8

            1. Thanks Barb

              I didn’t manage to see that video. My objection is to Deb’s repeated claims that ‘they’ are euthanising people in Europe. It’s simply wrong. I wish she would stop doing it.

  19. What happened around the late 1960s that would have produced obesity in epidemic proportions in the 1970s? Quite simply, it was the reformulation and ramped up production of the glutamate in monosodium glutamate, changing production from a slow and costly process to one of bacterial fermentation that enabled Ajinomoto to produce virtually unlimited amounts of glutamate and monosodium glutamate. Enough that someone eating processed foods could ingest sufficient manufactured free glutamate during the course of a day to cause that glutamate to become excitotoxic – brain damaging.

    It is well documented that MSG-induced neonatal brain damage is followed by gross obesity. A recently published paper tells the story: “Dose dependent toxicity of glutamic acid: A review” published by the International Journal of Food Properties. http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10942912.2020.1733016

    1. Also, people have started committing suicide about the finances and out of fear of the virus.

      People are overworked. Government people are overworked.

      Here is one.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TSyh0Yv121k

      But there are other countries talking about it.

      The essential workers like Amazon workers are striking, but they are the other end of the spectrum.

      There are people who are part-time workers making $15,000 who are going to die because they are on the supply chain of getting things like toilet paper to people.

      I talked with an elderly person who works at Stop & Shop and grocery store people and other people who aren’t highly compensated are getting sick.

  20. I had seen a video that said that COVID, so far, has a similar R bought to 1918.

    It causes me to speculate whether it is only modern medicine and global mobilization stopping it from becoming that.

    Though I guess plane travel maybe will contribute to how it spreads.

    But I still don’t understand how that one spread every where.

    1. Though China is having cases they acknowledge again and they may have lied, so we don’t know what will really happen with this yet.

      It just seems like modern plumbing, availability of computer models, modern medicine, modern manufacturing, modern communications, social distancing concepts, modern education, modern sterilization practices and ventilators and masks seems like it might stop this from being worse than that one.

  21. The one thing I am wondering about for my brother who has been receiving immunotherapy, does that process make him more prone to cytokine storms?

    I am wondering because he was the one who was closest in proximity to our worker who tested positive.

    Does immunotherapy mean his immune system is over stimulated?

    1. Deb, just the opposite. They are using one of the immunotherapy drugs normally used for rheumatoid arthritis to prevent cytokine storms in Covid-19 patients. I read the article yesterday, it was in France, I couldn’t find it quickly just now.

      However, immunotherapy suppresses the immune system and people currently on it should be considered high risk for catching Covid-19.

      So immunotherapy is a problem in avoiding the initial infection but becomes a treatment in preventing the complication of cytokine storms.

      I hope your brother avoids both.

      1. Looks like those in his staff agreed with me. They changed the pic since I posted the above.

        (Did they rip it up, do you think? if not, why not? :-)

  22. The question of what could have triggered such widespread obesity during this timeline does have an answer, and hopefully you will be discussing it in one of your episodes. In the 1960s a company called Ajinomoto had just changed its method of formulation for manufactured free glutamate (the toxic ingredient in monosodium glutamate). This new processing method allowed for such abundant production that manufactured free glutamate was added (under a wide variety of names, not just MSG) to every available processed food, including infant formula. This is still true today. Food companies love using manufactured free glutamate in their processed food as a flavor enhancer. It’s cheap and does the job.

    As for obesity, it is well known that excess manufactured free glutamate can cause brain damage (as well as other devastating health issues), and for the fetus and infant such brain damage leads to obesity. Please check out this well-researched paper published here that also has a link to sources (names) of manufactured free glutamic acid: https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/10942912.2020.1733016

    1. This reads exactly like the multiple posts we have been seeing over and over again by the author of that very same article
      Is there some benefit to the author from boosting the number of times the article is viewed?

        1. YR. The way it’s supposed to work is that information presented is given serious consideration by researchers trying to find interventions to improve the health of the nation, and by healthcare professionals trying to help their patients.

        1. Okaaaaaaaay! Wasn’t asking if money was paid for having an article published, just whether it “changes hands” every time an article is read online.

          I’m sure it’s a worthy article (no, I didn’t read it). However, I’ve been avoiding MSG for a long while, anyway.

            1. Reading down your list, I’d have to say ( pretty much) yes. I take only a little apple cider vinegar on my raw salads once a day (the only kind of vinegar). I’m always looking for words like like carraragenan and the stuff they put in gluten-free products. (No problem with gluten anyway.) I look for non-processed stuff with only 2 or 3 ingredients. Yeah, I know about the “natural flavor” b.s. And all those “gums” they add to things. Anything I can’t remember to spell or even pronounce.

              Whole foods like fresh veggies and fruits (hoping the organic label means something) — along with occasional organic/pasture-raised animal foods. One tries one’s best!

    1. Barb, my guess is that its would only be viewed as being repetitive by those who haven’t taken the time to read the message and benefit from it. Or by people who worked for the companies that laced their products with excitotoxic amino acids, and were looking to squelch the truth.

  23. To “Mr. Fumblefingers” and others, 1) I have posted this under my name, I am not the author of that article. 2) Why such hostility when a legitimate point is added to the conversation? and 3) how do your comments enhance or provide thought to this topic?

    1. The link to that article has been posted multiple times over the last week whatever the topic of the video/blog has been. Pretty much every day in fact.

      it comes across as relentless self-promotion.

      Your post used a style and phrases that I thought I had seen in previous posts by the author of that article.

        1. Thanks Deb.

          They appear to be different persons indeed. However, there may be links between these two since Linda has previously supported Adrienne’s long-standing anti MSG efforts elsewhere, not just on this site. She’s not just a random visitor it seems. Both she and Adrienne are ‘activists’ in the same general area.

          https://foodintegritynow.org/2020/02/18/whats-really-in-those-plant-based-meats/
          https://www.truthinlabeling.org/about.html

          1. It’s interesting to see that some people can feel so passionate about one particular thing (in this case MSG), and one thing only. What caused them to concentrate on this item? Did a family member die as a result of it (which they later found out to be a fact), and from there on have they been giving speeches on a TedX shows & etc.?

            1. YR

              Seems you have painted a picture of Adrienne Samuels (which isn’t quite accurate), but even so are raising some questions. The story of “what caused them to concentrate on this item” is written in a book titled “It Wasn’t Alzheimer’s, It Was MSG.” You can purchase it on Kindle or download it (free) from https://bit.ly/2URGEBx I find this conversation fascinating. Neither you nor Tom Goff nor Deb seem to be interested in learning about the toxicity of MSG. Your only interest seems to be in shooting poison arrows at Adrienne Samuels — as though you were three (or one) agent of Ajinomoto, the leading producer of MSG.

              1. Adrienne

                No, no.

                Don’t you know anything? .

                I am a shill for Big Pharma not Aji-whatever it is.

                I effectively avoid msg as does everyone else here because we eat whole (plant) foods. As for the toxicity of msg, we’d prefer to see scientific assessments by third parties rather then a paper by someone who has been actively campaigning against msg since 1994.

                It’s your constant posting of the same stuff over and over again that is objectionable. The fact that neither you nor Linda revealed your background as long standing activists against msg when you made those posts, doesn’t help your case either.

                Oh, and accusing anyone and everyone who questions your actions, of being paid shills for industry doesn’t much help your credibility. It’s a common tactic of cranks for one thing. Frankly, it says more about you than it does about me, YR and Deb.

          2. Tom, It looks like there may be someone besides myself who believes that toxic amino acids (manufactured) shouldn’t be added to food.

            I’m curious. Is “activist” a bad word? I guess it would be if one was on the payroll of people who lace processed food with toxic amino acids.

            1. The point is that as an activist, you are not a disinterested analyst or researcher. You didn’t reveal that fact on any of the occasions when you posted on the topic before.

              And stating/implying that anyone who disagrees with you or points out your failure to reveal your background as an anti-msg crusader, is on the food industry payroll, says volumes about your beliefs.

              1. Was Albert Einstein an activist? I, just like he, am a student of one area of focus. My credentials are in test construction, research design, methodology, and statistics. Why do you keep referring to me as an activist? I don’t think I have ever referred to myself as an activist. Why are you?

                You’re quite right in saying that I am not disinterested. Great leaps in science are not made by people who are disinterested in their subject matter. And why, when I am an experimental psychologist, should I “reveal” that I am something else?

                And for the record, I neither stated nor implied that anyone who disagrees with me regarding the toxic effects of MSG is on the food industry payroll. I have had personal experience with both academics and people at the FDA who made up stories about me and/or others, and then referred to those stories as if they were true. For all I know, you’re doing the same thing. Look at you, calling me an “anti-msg crusader,” when my stated crusade (on our webpage) is for truth in labeling: the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth about MSG – which neuroscientists (except those on an industry payroll) will tell you contains excitotoxic – brain damaging – glutamate.

                Seems to me that you are rather successfully drawing attention away from evidence that MSG-induced brain damage lies at the root of the obesity epidemic and focusing on making me look suspect. The Glutes have been working on that for many years. You can read up on it at https://bit.ly/2P4ICtd .

                1. I called you an ‘activist’ because you have been actively campaigning against msg since 1994. Incidentally, on that point, you wrote.

                  “And for the record, I neither stated nor implied that anyone who disagrees with me regarding the toxic effects of MSG is on the food industry payroll.’

                  Really, what else does your following statement imply?
                  ‘I’m curious. Is “activist” a bad word? I guess it would be if one was on the payroll of people who lace processed food with toxic amino acids’.

                  Or this one from your post to YR?

                  ‘Neither you nor Tom Goff nor Deb seem to be interested in learning about the toxicity of MSG. Your only interest seems to be in shooting poison arrows at Adrienne Samuels — as though you were three (or one) agent of Ajinomoto, the leading producer of MSG’
                  .
                  Where is the evidence that msg in food causes brain damage in humans and lies at the root of the obesity epidemic? Your paper doesn’t prove anything – it simply presents an hypothesis. Water in sufficient amounts is toxic to humans Presumably a paper ion the dose dependent toxicity of water isn’t far behind?

                  As I understand it, you are a psychologist by training not a biochemist, neuroscientist. food technology scientist or anything.relevant to the subject at hand. Where are the papers by those people?

                  i don’t object to you posting your opinion and linking to your psper. It’s the fact that you’ve been doing it over and over again that has been problematic . And the lack of disclosure. Comparisons with Einstein, and denying that you have implied that people who have disagreed with you are on food company payrolls when it’s written down in black and white, haven’t helped either.

  24. While diet choices and caloric amounts are in deed the main determinant of weight gain, once diet is improved and the weight comes off, exercise does help keep it off. Also muscle uses more calories than flab so weighting lifting of some sort within your capabilities is beneficial too.

    1. Tony, I agree wholeheartedly! It may be an individual matter how many extra calories are burned when building/maintaining muscle, but in my own case it is quite a bit. I say I exercise so that I can eat (more), but exercise also helps to increase energy, sleep much better, provide motivation to continue as we see progress, as well as other benefits.

  25. That one is important because there are doctors who asked people to make masks out of the Hepa filter vacuum bags to send to medical professionals and that is happening left and right and I haven’t seen anybody in the news come against the concept.

    There is a lady providing masks for Johns Hopkins with that Hepa filter material.

    If it causes lung irritation that would be devastating.

    The masks from Ford have already started shipping out. Hoping the MyPillow guy’s masks are shipping out, too.

    There have been errors in this process and those errors are frustrating.

    Eton Musk sent BPap machines instead of ventilators.

    There needed to be medical people approving the designs.

  26. That video disagrees with Dr. Lisle about what type of deaths we are going to have.

    I say it because I am challenging my Christian friends and they feel protected and I said, “Yes, keep praying, no, don’t you dare focus that direction. People’s lives depend upon it” and I feel like the WFPB community (other than a few doctors) have gone straight to comforting people with the other good news and we are going to have more deaths than the Swine Flu and we just haven’t learned math and science well enough to be worried yet.

  27. The USA got to 1000 deaths in a day faster than Italy did.

    And several states have not shut down.

    And people have been fleeing NY.

    And doctors are dying.

    Where I am, all of the essential worker companies are having 1 person test positive, one company after another, but when I talked to our vendor in California, they have 5 people who are still out for it.

    Anyway, I tend to want people to really understand things.

    Eventually, enough people will die that people will take it seriously, but I am still seeing people not be serious versus panicking.

    I guess that is why Dr. Fuhrman and Dr. Lisle’s responses didn’t sit right with me.

    We need to communicate in a way that people will get more vigilant, not calmer.

    We need calm alternating with vigilance so that people will seriously isolate and not kill themselves.

    But the USA is not succeeding right now.

    1. We need to communicate in a way that people will get more vigilant, not calmer.

      We need calm alternating with vigilance so that people will seriously isolate and not kill themselves.

      But the USA is not succeeding right now.
      ————————————————————-
      Deb, it may seem like we are not succeeding, and probably our best hope is to get prepared for the fall when the next round will likely hit. But there are so many things going on like described in the link below that sets this pandemic apart from the 1918 one. We will prevail and things will get back to the new normal.

      https://singularityhub.com/2020/04/02/pop-up-labs-and-a-5-minute-test-the-latest-in-us-coronavirus-testing/

    1. I highly recommend this video. Dr Duc Vuong interviews a friend who is also a bariatric surgeon, but also has a background in virology. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=r_PESzYHMxg

      The questions asked are all on our minds ie difference between flu and covid-19, risk factors, complications, ACE inhibitors, inhalators (wow, hope people are not thinking inhalators will save the day :( , and strategies to staying safe, and more.

  28. So happy to hear Nestle being exposed for the villainous entity that they are! The sickest I’ve ever been in my life was from an expired can of Nestle condensed milk (pre-vegan days). The expiration date was written in code on the can, under the label. So if I had known, I could have removed the label, written to the company to decipher the code for me, waited for a letter back (pre-internet days)…and then known to throw it out rather than make a pie. After my literal brush with death from this poison I wrote to the company to suggest they print expiration dates where we can read and understand them. They sent me some coupons for Nestle products as a reply. I make every effort to never consume any Nestle product of any kind.

  29. Great Video, although I prefer the older formats of the video. Nutritionfacts.org is my go to resource for everything Nutrition. Thank you for doing what you do.

  30. It rose with the decrease in smoking. It would be interesting to see which pathogen, obesity or smoking, is worse and more costly. Nobody will fund this study.

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