The company I work for has kicked off a new health initiative. It is extremely fun and exciting. One aspect of this initiative is a discussion board/forum where people can go and talk about health. I posted a discussion on there regarding Paleo; mainly to see if anyone else in the company was Paleo. I got a few responses, but no one had really heard of Paleo. Then today I opened it up and had this response.
It is too bad that there is so much misinformation about healthy diets out there. Low carbohydrate diets like the Atkins, South Beach and Paleo are faddish and can be very dangerous. These high protein diets rich in animal products favor the development of many Western diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, obesity, Kidney diseases, autoimmune diseases, cancer, high cholesterol etc and development of these diseases starts early. One study of young adolescents that died from suicide, murder or accidents showed that all autopsied had early stages of coronary artery disease. This need not be the case though. Chronic diseases like those listed above should be considered a food borne illness and the food and lifestyle choices we make every day can either help us or harm us.
It has been shown that through dietary intervention alone diabetes and heart conditions can be reversed easily. (Watch the movie Forks Over Knives) Dr Caldwell Esselstyn in his study of patients with severe cardiac diseases showed drops in cholesterol from 260 to 126 routinely in only 10 days and showed that these individuals could become heart attack proof in only 21 days. I believe it is important that people are aware of the hand they play in the development of these medical conditions. We have extremely high levels of chronic disease in the United States and all developed countries for that matter. Our obsession with meat and dairy products are at the core of these diseases. Dairy products should be completely eliminated from the human diet. Most people are lactose intolerant and the proteins in milk are associated with autoimmune diseases, type 1 diabetes in children, and prostate cancer in adult men. Do you really think that cow made that milk for you? Cows milk is very high in protein and formulated to take a baby cow from 70lbs to 700lbs in one year. No wonder 2/3 of adults in the US are overweight. I challenge anyone to name another animal species that consumes any milk past weaning much less the milk from another species!!
I am just completing a course with the Wellness Forum. They recommend a diet based on fruits, vegetables, starchy vegetables, legumes, whole grains. Higher fat plant foods such as nuts, avacados should be used more sparingly as should more processed grains such as breads, crackers. Refined oils should be avoided (no olive, canola, flax). They are not heart healthy and are all FAT. I don't know anyone out there that needs to consume that many empty calories. Meat and seafood, if consumed at all, should be limited to 2 servings a week and of the organic variety since pesticides accumulate in meat.
Just a little food for thought. But seriously, do watch Forks Over Knives!
I've never seen Fork Over Knives. I watched 5 minutes of it and turned it off. Looked like a bunch of Vegan Propaganda. I would normally research some of what he is saying and formulate a rebuttal but I really don't have time. Can you in the Paleohacks community help me come up with a response that has some science to support it and is acceptable in a work environment. I'm really not trying to get fired over this but if hundreds of people are going to read this they should have a balanced view of the facts.
asked byCaveman_formally_known_as_Dan (4303)
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on September 24, 2012
at 11:35 PM
Well most of that is just blustering, so it should be fairly easy to criticize the actual points.
Most people being lactose intolerant: It depends on where you are from, clearly http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/187249-overview#a0199 Most people from Europe are not. And of course there are people who should avoid dairy, and in those people it might be harmful, but shouldn't people be able to get tests to see if they are or not instead of simply being told that everyone should avoid it because they are lactose intolerant when this isn't true? That sounds like the reasoning of someone who is inherently biased against dairy. There are also dairy products with very little or no lactose, what I would do is get some lab work done to see if dairy is compatible with health. Many people have a wide range of food sensitivities, are they telling people not to ever eat gluten again no matter who you are? If not that is rather inconsistent of them.
Dairy makes you fat? If you read the literature the evidence just doesn't support this assertion, if anything dairy has been shown to help with fat loss http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.ca/2012/07/new-review-paper-by-yours-truly-high.html (best to reference the paper itself, but the summary is in the blog post) and there is no evidence that dairy causes metabolic diseases or cardiovascular disease. There is also this older one http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21068345 I eagerly await real controlled trials that isolate dairy consumption and mortality risk.
There is the contention that fat (FAT) is bad. They supply no argument that fat is bad, and I haven't seen Forks Over Knives because I don't care about nutrition movies, I just read the scientific literature for myself. As I just illustrated, there is no evidence that dairy fat contributes to heart disease, and the idea that fat isn't heart-healthy seems to be at odds with the evidence from controlled trials that the Mediterranean diet which allows processed oils is more effective at reducing risk factory than a low fat diet http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21854893 However there is some evidence that a low fat diet can worse mood in humans, and it makes much sense to me on a mechanistic basis as illustrated by Emily Deans here http://evolutionarypsychiatry.blogspot.ca/2012/07/eat-fat-be-happy.html and here http://evolutionarypsychiatry.blogspot.ca/2011/07/fat-and-happy.html
I'm sure there are people who feel good on a low fat diet, maybe even better than they did before they made the dietary switch, perhaps due to changes in nutrient intake like magnesium, b vitamins, vitamin c, potassium, and other nutrients that are useful (this is not limited to low fat diets, merely the product of switching from a junk food diet to a whole food diet). However some people are more susceptible than others, and everyone has the potential to have their mood deteriorate in the future, and thus we want to maximize our resilience and so I can't agree with a low fat diet. And "feeling good" oftentimes can become "feeling better" upon a change in attitude or lifestyle, including diet.
Denise Minger has a critique of that movie here http://rawfoodsos.com/2011/09/22/forks-over-knives-is-the-science-legit-a-review-and-critique/ I have read it but can't endorse it because I haven't watched the movie. That doesn't mean it's bad, it just means that I can't tell if it's good or not. You and they may be be the judges. Chris Masterjohn has a critique too http://blog.cholesterol-and-health.com/2011/09/forks-over-knives-pictorial-review.html
Chris Masterjohn also has a critique and fascinating discussion of this belief that they espouse where they think that casein protein is a promoter of cancer http://www.westonaprice.org/blogs/cmasterjohn/2010/09/22/the-curious-case-of-campbells-rats-does-protein-deficiency-prevent-cancer/ http://www.westonaprice.org/blogs/cmasterjohn/2010/09/29/addendum-to-the-curious-case-of-campbells-rats/ It it quite obvious that protein acting as a substrate for cancer's metastasis can promote it, but it is not right to say that casein causes it, in Dr. Campbell's experiment the rats who were most immune from cancer were the ones who had a high protein intake in the aflatoxin poisoning stage, and then went to low protein afterwards. They also survived the death from toxicity more frequently. None of us have cancer at present, and thus the higher protein group would improve our life-long prognosis if we are to extrapolate from rat models like Forks Over Knives apparently does.
Whey, a dairy protein, is present where casein is in food and is even more effective at preventing some toxicant-induced cancers via its generation of glutathione. And much better than soy protein, which is generally promoted by Forks Over Knives advocates. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7722681 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11352868 http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10667471
Best of luck.
on September 24, 2012
at 11:24 PM
Practically everyone in today's society will have signs of heart disease, not just the 'crazies'.
Forks over Knives: http://rawfoodsos.com/2011/09/22/forks-over-knives-is-the-science-legit-a-review-and-critique/ Seriously get him to read this. It's the biggest load of crap ever.
126mg/dl for total cholesterol?! Greatly increases your risk of infection and cancer; that's deadly, cholesterol is vital part of the immune system. Lowest all-cause mortality rate is 200-240mg/dl: http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-pttFtp8eZx0/T3IFYTDzEwI/AAAAAAAAAQ8/Grmm-gHD1yI/s1600/CholesterolMortality.jpg
Agree that USA is very unhealthy, but didn't used to be, back before people were told to limit their fat, especially saturated fat, and started eating more vegetable oils, skimmed meat, more grains and less fat.
Lactose intolerance is null when you're drinking raw milk as it contains the lactase enzyme, pasteurised milk is a modern invention. The milk protein associated with all those diseases is the A1 casein protein, but all non-cow species and the old breeds of cows like Guernseys produce A2 which doesn't do any of these.
No other species drinks milk past infant-hood? Then we'd better quit his job, and move into the jungle cos no other species lives/works in buildings in order to pay others to hunt/gatherer their food.
on September 25, 2012
at 12:33 AM
"One study of young adolescents that died from suicide, murder or accidents showed..."
Interesting, can you show me that study and where in the study it showed these kids were on "fad diets" -- No, oh ok. Great point?
"It has been shown that through dietary intervention alone diabetes and heart conditions can be reversed easily"
Yup, the Paleo style of eating is pretty rad isn't it.
"Dairy products should be completely eliminated from the human diet..."
So could vegetables, what's your point? In fact, the only thing that cannot be removed from the human diet are fats and proteins.
"name another animal species that consumes any milk past weaning..."
Name another animal that writes about nutrition on company web forums? Name one that drives a car, or built super malls. Name one animal who created an environment where they can get proper nourishment anywhere at any time.... Setting the bar of human achievement at what other animals are able to achieve is a pretty big step backwards on the evolutionary ladder.
"know anyone out there that needs to consume that many empty calories..."
Fat is the most energy dense macro-nutrient, it is the opposite of empty. It also enables the body's absorption of Vitamins A, D, E, and K and greatly increases the bio-availability of many necessary minerals.
on September 25, 2012
at 04:02 AM
I would say this:
Since we are now in the discussion, I thought its worth mentioning the following:
Low fat high carbohydrate diets have also been linked in several studies with increased heart disease. Correlation is not the same as cause, an important thing to note, but also high carbohydrates raise trigylcerides, and lower HDL, both considered risk factors for heart disease. Sugar is likely worse, as it also raises LDL, and further raises trigylcerides.
Fat consumption has gone down alot in the last 50 years, while equally heart disease has gone up. Fat consumptions effect on blood lipids is somewhat neutral, because though it raises LDL, it also raised HDL, and its the ratio thats considered the risk factor, as HDL is considered protective.
Although, Id be the first to admit, alot of these heart disease theories are partly speculative, as much of it is based on statistics, not proof.
That fat causes obesity is a strange hypothesis, given that since the 1950s, people for epileptics on ketogenic diets (very high fat, very low carb), one of the primary risks has been weight loss.
Alot of nutritional science is soft science, some of it downright misleading. But even within nutritional science the lower-carb versus lower-fat debate is far from over, despite the impression regulatory agencies and school educations would give you. So ingrained is the dogma, that it has become very divorced from scientific studies.
There has been ongoing studies disproving the reputed connection between fat and heart disease (there are plenty of obvious country examples of high fat eaters, with low heart disease rates, such as the spanish, or french too).
Recent studies on weight loss suggest that low carb is superior to low fat with regard to sustained weight loss.
I would rather not too deeply comment on the whole "fad" thing. But actually modern paleo have been around since the 1970s, and is still rapidly growing in popularity. Before its modern inception, obviously it was followed for tens of thousands of years. Comparitively, the low fat diet, is a recent invention. It basically comes from the theories of the 1950s. It depends alot on highly processed food, like low fat yogurt or tofu, for example. From a paleo perspective, its low fat dieting that is the fad.
Either way, even if you deny the evolutionary basis of paleo, something that starts in the 50s, versus something that starts in the 70s is not really the difference between a fad, and something more permenant, nor is the popularity of something, or the permanance, a reflection of its health merits.
For clarity, people often have a misconception of paleo, so heres a defination:
A low, medium or medium carbohydrate diet, devoid of wheat, refined sugar and high omega-6 vegetable oils, focused on real whole foods as found in nature. It is not nessasarily higher in meat than standard diets, nor does it always include dairy (in fact strict paleo often forbids dairy). It is defined more by what it doesnt allow (wheat, sugar, vege oil) than what it includes. It varies alot from person to person. The emphasis is simply to eat unprocessed pre-agricultural foods, such as meats, tubers/roots, vegetables, fruit, nuts etc - things that you could find in a forest, and easily turn into a meal.
It is not the same as aktins. Aktins is very low carb, and alot of the food is very processed. Aktins folk will avoid fruit because of the carb content. A good portion of paleo folks are medium carb, not low (some are lower carb, but very very few are very low carb), and they always avoid processed foods. Youll see plenty of paleo folks eating tubers, and fruit. So just to clear that up, the main thing that defines paleo, is eating real whole foods, not the carb intake...
But, before we get into the specifics of the science, let me just ask...
Most, or all of your post is assertions, rather than mentions of studies. The better way to have this debate, would be to actually cite the studies directly (which I am presuming, so far, you have no wish to do). The one study you mention, refers to cholesterol dropping to an unhealthy level that promotes disease, which I am not sure I can comment on, as this is not a positive thing.
What I want to ask you, is are you interested in talking about the science, and specific studies? Are you scientifically minded? (Which is important, because in order to discuss and critique science, you need to grasp the methadology)
Or did you just want to put you opinion forth?
If its the former, ill gather up some studies for us to dissect, and you can do the same. If we can respect each others point of veiw, it could be an illuminating debate.
If its the later, well, every has a right to do with their body as they wish. Its your health, and thus its your mind that is most fit to decide whats right for it, rather than someone else. You want to be healthy, and so do I, so we have that in common :)
Its nice to talk to someone who also cares about their health.
(Okay, that was long....I was bored, hope that gives you some ideas. Theres not point in debating someone who doesnt grasp scientific method about nutritional science. You just want a reply, thats polite, and offers some counterargument and perspective really)
on September 24, 2012
at 11:26 PM
Do what I've done in he past and reply with Denise Minger's review of the Forks Over Knives.
Then, since they seem to be bashing on all fats (even avocados and nuts!), mention the Women's Health Initiative low fat dietary pattern trial where nearly 49,000 women in the study either lowered their fat intake (from all sources) or didn't. Can you guess what happened? There was no difference in mortality or heart disease rates!
The MRFIT trial was similar, except it involved almost 13,000 men at risk of heart disease. In addition to lowering fat (especially saturated fat), the subjects were told to quit smoking. Again, no significant difference in mortality or heart disease was observed, despite much higher rates of smoking in the higher fat group!
Those studies don't exactly ring the bell of support for low fat diets.
WHI low fat trial: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16467234?dopt=Citation
on September 25, 2012
at 12:32 AM
I have formulated two possible responses for you:
I will have no response until I can think of something nice to say.
Do you want to starve your brain and give yourself alzheimers? - for example: http://www.cholesterol-and-health.com/Cholesterol-Alzheimers.html
on September 24, 2012
at 11:49 PM
Oh man, you couldn't have asked for a better introduction to let the education begin. Just think of how smart your coworkers are going to be about all this stuff when all the back and forth is done.
It is important to keep in mind that you are going to be going against the grain, and if someone else's mind is already made up you are going to have to present some very compelling data to make even a dent in "what they know", so research your ass off before getting into this trolling war. I would go into each interaction on a point of agreement, and then point out where they have oversimplified, or been the victim of shoddy research/reporting on research. Like dairy, you could talk about A1 vs. A2 dairy, which is hella complicated.
Positive results will come from both the program being touted by your opposition, as well as paleo, and not because of what the diets include, but what they exclude. You can point out that their program is fabulous for short term use, but for long term healing, health, mental health and vitality, pastured meat, particularly organ meat, fat, and sensible amounts of muscle meat, and avoidance of most grain, is really beneficial.
Mine Mark's Daily Apple for ideas.
Suppversity is also a good source if you want lots of pubmed stuff to link to.
Gnolls.org has some good sciencey stuff to link to.
Hunt.Gather.Love. has good stuff.
As others have said Denise Minger kicks Forks Over Knives ass.
You guys should in theory be 80% agreed on the wanting to avoid modern illness, avoidance of dairy and vegetable oils, etc. You can also likely agree that "too much protein" is indeed bad for your kidneys, etc., but that you are not going to exceed that until you get well over 2 servings per week.
One thing I'd tackle early, is the idea that lower cholesterol is better, one of the likely factors in the suicide of those teenagers who had signs of heart disease, was lack of quality saturated fat in the diet. And the heart disease markers they showed were likely linked to transfats and high fructose corn syrup. Cholesterol under 150 is strongly correlated with all forms of premature mortality, but particularly violent ones. The Evolutionary Psychiatry blog talks a lot about mental health and diet: http://evolutionarypsychiatry.blogspot.com/
You could also counter with the negative effects of grains and legumes on intestinal permeability, and discuss leaky gut and the impact of grains and the sad state of our microbiome.
Get researching, have fun, be respectful, and you'll likely run circles around what they picked up in class. It also doesn't hurt to distance paleo from Atkins, since many of the pitfalls, like consumption of faux foods, vegetable oils, commercial factory farmed meat and dairy, and fake sweeteners, are all considered okay on Atkins, but discouraged on paleo. Doesn't hurt to make the point that paleo isn't low carb either, and touts the importance of many traditional root and green vegetables.