LOW-CARB ON TRIAL (GALILEO HAD IT EASY)

Galileo facing the Roman Inquisition

Galileo facing the Roman Inquisition

A recent exposé in the New York Times[1] revealed massive and pervasive fraud and collusion between the sugar industry and certain medical authorities in the 1960’s designed to erroneously promote saturated fat as the culprit behind heart disease. Effectively diverting attention from the real source of the problem (the increasing consumption of dietary sugar), the food industry conspired with key authorities within the medical establishment to serve their own best interests at the expense of public health.  Historic documents showed that they were intentionally concealing the fact that sugar, instead of fat, was knowingly to blame.  These historic documents were discovered by a researcher at the University of California, San Francisco and were recently published in the journal, JAMA Internal Medicine this year.  The researchers who evaluated the data concluded that, “Together with other recent analyses of sugar industry documents, our findings suggest the industry sponsored a research program in the 1960’s and 1970’s that successfully cast doubt about the hazards of sucrose while promoting fat as the dietary culprit in CHD [coronary heart disease].”[2]  In the NY Times piece, one of the study’s authors, Stanton Glantz, professor of medicine at The University of California San Francisco was quoted as saying, “They were able to derail the discussion about sugar for decades.”  The fact is that government dietary policies throughout the industrialized world are still being influenced by this fraud. It is far from over.

By the way…am I the only one who thinks this should qualify as a prosecutable offense?

The fact that the criminal behavior of the sugar industry executives concealing the even then known dangers of their own products, which have resulted in the deaths of countless millions since, has now finally been exposed in no way implies that the global mainstream medical or dietetic establishment is any wiser or even inclined to alter their stale and disproven dietary recommendations. The fact that this is all coming out now leads many to complacently believe that such nefarious scandals and clandestine activities are somehow a thing of the past.  A mere historic footnote, as it were.

Au contraire.

The New York Times article went on to say that, “Even though the influence-peddling revealed in the documents dates back nearly 50 years, more recent reports show that the food industry has continued to influence nutrition science.”  Indeed… and not only at the expense of public health, but also at the expense of certain conscientious medical and nutritional practitioners, as well.   Those still wed to an antiquated nutritional paradigm or to multinational corporate profiteering are pulling out the stops these days to make an example of anyone daring to question the old, shaky, crooked (and still profitable) status quo.

In fact, any medical practitioner deviating from the traditional (low-fat, ‘carbophilic’ dietary recommendation-based) party line on this matter may still— to this very day– be subject to extreme harassment, ridicule, investigation, intimidation, discipline, loss of employment, and even loss of licensure.  We all-too often forget that medicine basically ceased to be an altruistic profession it once was (then inspired by the honorable dictates of the Hippocratic oath and with the best interests of patients in mind) close to a century ago, and particularly after World War II.  It has since burgeoned into a predominantly profit-based, full-fledged Industry, driven by the interests of mainly pharmaceutical cartels motivated by one primary equation:

Sickness (and fabricated sickness) = BIG profits.

The long-term reciprocal economic relationship between multinational industry interests of all kinds (including the food industry, of course) and the medical industry are well known and well documented. The pharmacologically based hegemony of mainstream medicine dominates and controls the nation’s definitions of so-called “healthcare” while handsomely profiting from disease management instead.  After all, a patient cured (or prevented from getting disease in the first place) is a customer lost. Does it really matter WHO pays for our so-called healthcare today (government programs or insurance companies) in a corrupt and broken system where illness = profitability? Mind you, emergency medicine is a genuinely lifesaving and often-heroic branch of western medicine. But when it comes to chronic or even terminal conditions, much less psychiatric care, where is the institutional incentive to truly heal anything? And even among caring physicians with a genuine passion for helping their patients, having both a conscience and a clear awareness of the problem (a number of whom I consider friends and greatly admire), their caring hands are repeatedly tied by so-called established “standards of care” and the profit-based dictates of the institutions through which they may be employed. They are forever under threat of investigation or worse should they deviate from the party line. I even know those who ultimately elected to leave the mainstream medical profession in futility and disgust.

Even peer-reviewed research these days is becoming a hall of mirrors. If there is major pharmacologic profit to be made, then the questionability of published research results begins to correspondingly mushroom. The all-too common phenomenon of industry-sourced, ghost-written “scientific” articles supporting various profit-driven motives within peer-reviewed journals has been a well exposed scandal in recent years, and has not remotely gone away simply because such growing and obvious improprieties were exposed to the light of day.[3]

WHAT WE NOW KNOW, BASED ON NON-INDUSTRY DRIVEN SCIENCE  

The fact is that metabolic diseases, in general, have literally skyrocketed over the last century with the promotion of carbohydrate-based foods/diets and government dietary guidelines promoting low-fat diets. The first comprehensive analysis of the NHANES (National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey) data documented how macronutrient consumption patterns and the weight and body mass index in the US adult population have shifted since the 1960’s.  Here’s what the analysis of NHANES data had to say in the resulting peer reviewed journal analysis:  “Americans in general have been following the nutrition advice that the American Heart Association and the US Departments of Agriculture and Health and Human Services have been issuing for more than 40 years: Consumption of fats has dropped from 45% to 34% with a corresponding increase in carbohydrate consumption from 39% to 51% of total caloric intake. In addition, from 1971 to 2011, average weight and body mass index have increased dramatically, with the percentage of overweight or obese Americans increasing from 42% in 1971 to 66% in 2011.”  And their conclusions based on all the available data?  “Since 1971, the shift in macronutrient share from fat to carbohydrate is primarily due to an increase in absolute consumption of carbohydrate as opposed to a change in total fat consumption. General adherence to recommendations to reduce fat consumption has coincided with a substantial increase in obesity.” [4]  I write about some of this in my upcoming new book, Primal Fat Burner.

Heart disease is but one metabolic disease on the long list of high carbohydrate-based dietary casualties.   When it comes to type II diabetes, it is abundantly clear that this is a disease caused primarily by diet and evidence has repeatedly shown that diet is, in fact, the best and only true means of successfully managing and even reversing it.  In fact, many of the most common medications used to treat diabetic conditions (including insulin and other medications used to enhance its activity) have demonstrated an overwhelming tendency to only deepen the problem over time and shorten lives. Erroneously treated as a “disease of blood sugar” (supposedly brought on by genetic factors), diabetes is instead clearly a disease of insulin resistance brought on by chronic excess carbohydrate (sugar/starch) consumption.  Fructose, in particular, and the overwhelming prevalence of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) added to most processed foods has proven to be an especially lethal potentiator of all forms of metabolic disease (clearly including diabetes and obesity).

LOW CARB ON TRIAL (IN A KANGAROO COURT)

Evidence for the considerable safety and long-range benefit of low-carbohydrate dietary approaches is replete in a large number of published, objectively written peer reviewed research studies in medical journals over the last few decades; yet in Australia one medical doctor—Dr. Gary Fettke, is facing the wrath of those threatened by this much needed paradigm shift. Using the available valid evidence provided in medical journals designed to educate doctors in order to help his patients has resulted in both an indictment and now literally a “permanent silencing” by the Australian Health Practitioners Regulatory Authority from ever so much as mentioning nutritional approaches to diabetes ever again to anyone, in any format.  Never mind the fact that many of Dr. Fettke’s patients flourished as a result of his advice, which essentially promoted a low carbohydrate and higher fat approach to eating.[5] By even so much as admonishing his patients to eat less sugar (in alignment, by the way, with current NIH standards) Dr. Fettke incurred the relentlessly destructive wrath of his establishment peers.

Mind you, these allegations were not a result of so much as a single complaint from any of his patients.  The allegations emerged entirely from industry-based interests (and were mercilessly pursued by their well paid political minions), which currently dominate the whole of Australia’s mainstream health and medical system to an embarrassing— and one could even argue, criminal degree.

Gary Fettke, MD was recently at last called before Australia’s Senate and asked to testify on his own behalf (after 2 1/2 years of extreme harassment by colleagues and officials, and hostile investigation by medical authorities).  Within a mere 3 1/2 hours of delivering his testimony, the Australian Health Practitioners Regulatory Authority (AHPRA) offered their dismissive, ill-considered (read: pre-determined) and final ruling on the matter. As of November 1st of 2016, Dr. Fettke has been permanently forbidden from openly discussing the role of diet in the prevention or management of any disease for the remainder of his entire medical career, under any and all circumstances. No chance for appeal.

It begs the question of “who’s next?” and “where is all this going?”

Mind you, had Dr. Fettke been promoting the standard (read: failed) government dietary guidelines–all a by-product of industry-driven interests, not science– he would never have been given a second glance by the establishment for doing so.  Ironically, in their prosecution of Fettke, the Australian Medical Board insisted that there is “nothing associated with medical training or education that makes a doctor an expert or authority in the field of nutrition.” I can’t exactly argue with that given the deplorable state of nutrition education in medical schools.  But the official statement in this regard seems only to apply to those medical providers exercising deviation from the antiquated “low fat” party line.  Nonetheless, the evidence for the advice Dr. Fettke was offering his patients WAS, in fact, based upon solid peer-reviewed evidence found in medical journals, not to mention widespread clinical evidence.

The following represents a minute, cursory handful of research studies (a mere sampling of what is actually out there) for purposes of illustrating the medically researched evidence in support of the low carbohydrate (and higher fat) dietary approaches to addressing diabetes, as promoted by Dr. Gary Fettke (and as denied by the DAA and Australian, UK and many US medical authorities):

Allick G, Bisschop PH, Ackermans MT, Endert E, Meijer AJ, Kuipers F, Sauerwein HP, Romijn JA.  “A low-carbohydrate/high-fat diet improves glucoregulation in type 2 diabetes mellitus by reducing postabsorptive glycogenolysis.” J Clin Endocrinol Metab 2004, 89(12):6193-6197.

Boden G, Sargrad K, Homko C, Mozzoli M, Stein TP. “Effect of a low carbohydrate diet on appetite, blood glucose levels, and insulin resistance in obese patients with type 2 diabetes.” Ann Intern Med 2005, 142(6):403-411.

Dashti HM, Mathew TC, Khadada M, Al-Mousawi M, Talib H, Asfar SK, Behbahani AI, Al-Zaid NS. “Beneficial effects of ketogenic diet in obese diabetic subjects.” Mol Cell Biochem 2007.

Daly ME, Paisey R, Paisey R, Millward BA, Eccles C, Williams K, Hammersley S, MacLeod KM, Gale TJ. “Short-term effects of severe dietary carbohydrate restriction advice in Type 2 diabetes–a randomized controlled trial.” Diabet Med 2006, 23(1):15-20.

Gannon MC, Nutgall FQ. “Control of blood glucose in type 2 diabetes without weight loss by modification of diet composition. Nutr Metab (Lond) 2006, 3:16.

Vernon M, Mavropoulos J, Transue M, Yancy W, Jr, Westman E. “Clinical Experience of a Carbohydrate-Restricted Diet: Effect on Diabetes Mellitus.” Metabolic Syndrome and Related Disorders 2003, 1:233-237.

Yancy WS, Jr., Vernon MC, Westman EC. “A Pilot trial of a Low-Carbohydrate, Ketogenic Diet in Patients with Type 2 Diabetes.” Metabolic Syndrome and Related Disorders 2003, 1(3):239-243.

Reaven GM. “Effect of dietary carbohydrate on the metabolism of patients with non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus.” Nutr Rev 1986, 44(2):65-73.

Garg A, Bantle JP, Henry RR, Coulston AM, Griver KA, Raatz SK, Brinkley L, Chen YD, Grundy SM, Huet BA et al. “Effects of varying carbohydrate content of diet in patients with non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus.” JAMA 1994, 271(18):1421-1428.

Westman EC, Yancy Jr. WS, Haub MD, Volek JS. “Insulin Resistance from a Low-Carbohydrate, High Fat Diet Perspective.” Metabolic Syndrome and Related Disorders 2005, 3:3-7.

Nielsen JV, Jonsson E, Nilsson AK. “Lasting improvement of hyperglycaemia and bodyweight: low-carbohydrate diet in type 2 diabetes–a brief report.” Ups J Med Sci 2005, 110(1):69-73.

Feinman RD, Fine EJ. “Thermodynamics and Metabolic Advantage of Weight Loss Diets.” Metabolic Syndrome and Related Disorders 2003, 1:209-219.

Volek JS, Feinman RD. “Carbohydrate restriction improves the features of Metabolic Syndrome. Metabolic Syndrome may be defined by the response to carbohydrate restriction.” Nutr Metab (Lond) 2005, 2:31.

Yancy WS, Jr., Foy M, Chalecki AM, Vernon MC, Westman EC. “A low carbohydrate, ketogenic diet to treat type 2 diabetes.” Nutr Metab (Lond) 2005, 2:34.

Westman EC, Feinman RD, Mavropoulos JC, Vernon MC, Volek JS, Wortman JA, Yancy WS, Phinney SD. “Low-carbohydrate nutrition and metabolism.” Am J Clin Nutr 2007, 86(2):276-284.

Foster GD, Wyatt HR, Hill JO, McGuckin BG, Brill C, Mohammed BS, Szapary PO, Rader DJ, Edman JS, Klein S. “A randomized trial of a low-carbohydrate diet for obesity.” N Engl J Med 2003, 348(21):2082-2090.

Samaha FF, Iqbal N, Seshadri P, Chicano KL, Daily DA, McGrory J, Williams T, Williams M, Gracely EJ, Stern L. “A low-carbohydrate as compared with a lowfat diet in severe obesity.” N Engl J Med 2003, 348(21):2074-2081.

Volek JS, Forsythe CE. “The case for not restricting saturated fat on a low carbohydrate diet.” Nutr Metab (Lond) 2005, 2:21.

Forsythe CE, Phinney SD, Fernandez ML, Quann EE, Wood RJ, Bibus DM, Kraemer WJ, Feinman RD, Volek JS. “Comparison of low fat and low carbohydrate diets on circulating Fatty Acid composition and markers of inflammation.” Lipids 2008, 43(1):65-77.

Volek JS, Sharman MJ, Gomez AL, Judelson DA, Rubin MR, Watson G, Sokmen B, Silvestre R, French DN, Kraemer WJ. “Comparison of energy-restricted very low-carbohydrate and low-fat diets on weight loss and body composition in overweight men and women.” Nutr Metab (Lond) 2004, 1(1):13.

Le KA, Tappy L. “Metabolic effects of fructose.” Curr Opin Nutr Metab Care 2006, 9:469-475.

Rutledge AC, Adeli K. “Fructose and the metabolic syndrome: pathophysiology and molecular mechanisms.” Nutr Rev 2007, 65(6):S13-S23.

WHO SHOULD REALLY BE ON TRIAL HERE?

Australia’s DAA (Dietitians Association of Australia)—long known to have a questionable relationship with the processed food industry (corporate representatives of which actually provide portions of DAA “education”[6]), have also been persecuting and ousting low-carb proponents within their ranks in recent years.[7]  Apparently dietitians seem additionally to be ‘unqualified’ to provide nutritional advice to the public based on updated clinical and peer reviewed evidence and stand to face similar consequences for following more up-to-date, clinically proven and non-industry driven science.  Conventionally trained nutritionists and dietitians in the US are likewise subject to pressures from the same profit driven market forces and receive much of their so-called “education” from these interests.[8]

In December of 2013, the Public Library of Science Medicine published a research article titled “Financial Conflicts of Interest and Reporting Bias Regarding the Association between Sugar-Sweetened Beverages and Weight Gain: A Systematic Review of Systematic Reviews.”[9]  The findings included (among other things) that, “The researchers identified 18 conclusions from 17 systematic reviews that had investigated the association between SSB [sugar-sweetened beverages] consumption and weight gain or obesity. In six of these reviews, a financial conflict of interest with food industry was disclosed. Among the reviews that reported having no conflict of interest, 83.3% of the conclusions were that SSB consumption could be a potential risk factor for weight gain. By contrast, the same percentage of reviews in which a potential financial conflict of interest was disclosed concluded that the scientific evidence was insufficient to support a positive association between SSP consumption and weight gain, or reported contradictory results and did not state any definitive conclusion about the association between SSP consumption and weight gain.”  The big bottom line?  “[…] systematic reviews with financial conflicts of interest were five times more likely to present a conclusion of no positive association between SSB consumption and obesity than those without them.”  In other words, hidden interests, profit and not wellness has reigned supreme in the realm of (quasi) science and resulting official nutritional policy.

Dr. Marcia Angell, the former editor of The New England Journal of Medicine had the following to say:

“It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgment of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines. I take no pleasure in this conclusion, which I reached slowly and reluctantly over my two decades as an editor of The New England Journal of Medicine.”

 

She went on elsewhere in the same article to say,
 

“Consider the clinical trials by which drugs are tested in human subjects. Before a new drug can enter the market, its manufacturer must sponsor clinical trials to show the Food and Drug Administration that the drug is safe and effective, usually as compared with a placebo or dummy pill. The results of all the (there may be many) are submitted to the FDA, and if one or two trials are positive-that is, they show effectiveness without serious risk-the drug is usually approved, even if all the other trials are negative.”

 

AND:

 

“In view of this control and the conflicts of interest that permeate the enterprise, it is not surprising that industry-sponsored trials published in medical journals consistently favor sponsors’ drugs-largely because negative results are not published, positive results are repeatedly published in slightly different forms, and a positive spin is put on even negative results. A review of seventy-four clinical trials of antidepressants, for example, found that thirty-seven of thirty-eight positive studies were published. But of the thirty-six negative studies, thirty-three were either not published or published in a form that conveyed a positive outcome.”

 

~Marcia Angell, former editor-in-chief of The New England Journal of Medicine

 

Many supposedly independent medical “experts” and even some state officials publicly supporting certain mainstream treatment approaches are actually very much on Big Pharma’s payroll.  As reported by The American Scholar back in 2011, “Today, medical-journal editors estimate that 95 percent of the academic-medicine specialists who assess patented treatments have financial relationships with pharmaceutical companies, and even the prestigious NEJM [New England Journal of Medicine] gave up its search for objective reviewers in June 1992, announcing that it could find no reviewers that did not accept industry funds.”[10]

Overwhelming peer reviewed and clinical evidence points to the fact that diabetes is at its core a disease of insulin resistance driven by diets that are dominated by carbohydrate-based foods—particularly refined carbohydrates.  Anyone saying different either has no idea what they’re talking about or they are taking money under the table from some corporate interest. Period.  Or both. And anyone who insists upon recommending a carbohydrate-based diet to anyone having a diabetic diagnosis should be automatically culpable to charges of medical fraud.

Dr. Gary Fettke is far from alone in his unjust persecution, however. Dr. Timothy Noakes in Cape Town, South Africa has also been standing trial this year for similar allegations that involved offering scientifically validated dietary advice, in which he was amply versed, to those that needed it. In this case the uproar was related to advice given by Noakes to a nursing mother over Twitter, where he suggested she eventually “wean [her] baby onto a low carb, high fat diet”.  South Africa’s regulatory body for health professionals has been holding a series of tribunal-type hearings against Noakes and threatening to revoke his medical license over his support of a more high-fat and low carbohydrate dietary approach.  Much as with the case of Dr. Gary Fettke, the allegations are being leveled by mainstream authorities’ objection to non-mainstream dietary recommendations— but not as any result of so much as even one single patient complaint or any claimed harm.

His trial can be virtually likened to the trial of Galileo by the Catholic Church during the Inquisition in 1633 (for promoting the evidence for a heliocentric vs. earth-centric solar system).  As we know, things didn’t work out so well back then for Galileo…  But hey, close to 500 years later the Catholic Church has finally come around to officially conceding to the inconvenient notion that the earth does, indeed revolve around the sun after all (and not vice versa), and they have at last issued a conciliatory (albeit tardy) posthumous apology to poor Galileo.

Similarly antiquated notions of a “carbo-centric” dietary model drive these modern day witch-hunts.  Only this time, instead of the Catholic Church preserving its own vested interests at the expense of honest science, humanity faces a cataclysmic deterioration in health and burgeoning metabolic diseases due to the vested interests of Monsanto and other facets of Big Agribusiness (Big Oil’s #1 customers), the Food Industry (which still includes the nefarious sugar and HFCS industry), various chemical industries (supplying herbicides and pesticides), phosphate strip-mining industries (through which synthetic fertilizers…and unconscionably profitable, “fluoride” (hydrofluorosilicate) are also produced as a toxic waste product of the industry and forcibly sold to municipalities the world over for “water treatment” purposes), Big Pharma, the profit driven mainstream Medical Industry as a whole, and more.  Every one of these multinational corporate interests (and others) would have every profit-based reason to want to see every man woman and child on planet Earth dependent on a carbohydrate-based diet and metabolism.  Sugary and starchy foods are, after all, dirt cheap to produce, highly profitable and basically keep the population perpetually hungry.  What’s not for the food industry, et al to love?  And the health-related problems generated by a world-wide, modern day unnatural dependence on carbohydrates as a primary source of food/fuel (a unique dietary deviation in human evolutionary history) are only going from bad to worse:  Over 95% of the world population currently suffers health-related issues, with more than a third struggling with more than five ailments, according to the Global Burden of Disease Study (GBD) 2013, published in The Lancet.[11] One can reasonably surmise things have not been improving since 2013.  Currently, the #1 source of bankruptcy in the US is due to a bad health diagnosis.

Still think that those medical authorities prosecuting people like Gary Fettke and Timothy Noakes are really motivated by wanting to protect the rest of us?

 

“Six years ago, John Ioannidis, a professor of epidemiology at the University of Ioannina School of Medicine in Greece, found that nearly half of published articles in scientific journals contained findings that were false, in the sense that independent researchers couldn’t replicate them. The problem is particularly widespread in medical research, where peer-reviewed articles in medical journals can be crucial in influencing multimillion- and sometimes multibillion-dollar spending decisions. It would be surprising if conflicts of interest did not sometimes compromise editorial neutrality, and in the case of medical research, the sources of bias are obvious. Most medical journals receive half or more of their income from pharmaceutical company advertising and reprint orders, and dozens of others [journals] are owned by companies like Wolters Kluwer, a medical publisher that also provides marketing services to the pharmaceutical industry.”

 

Here’s another quote from the same article:

 

“The FDA also relies increasingly upon fees and other payments from the pharmaceutical companies whose products the agency is supposed to regulate. This could contribute to the growing number of scandals in which the dangers of widely prescribed drugs have been discovered too late. Last year, GlaxoSmithKline’s diabetes drug Avandia was linked to thousands of heart attacks, and earlier in the decade, the company’s antidepressant Paxil was discovered to exacerbate the risk of suicide in young people. Merck’s painkiller Vioxx was also linked to thousands of heart disease deaths. In each case, the scientific literature gave little hint of these dangers. The companies have agreed to pay settlements in class action lawsuits amounting to far less than the profits the drugs earned on the market. These precedents could be creating incentives for reduced vigilance concerning the side effects of prescription drugs in general.”

 

~Helen Epstein, “Flu Warning: Beware the Drug Companies”. The NY Review of Books (May 12, 2011)

 

Consider carefully the fact that low carbohydrate, higher fat dietary approaches to eating (particularly any approach emphasizing food quality and sustainability) are anything but profitable to any existing multinational corporate industries (much less drug companies).   This isn’t to say that there cannot be bad studies promoting this type of dietary approach or occasionally inappropriate biases or special interests held by its researchers on occasion, but the rational implication is certainly there to suggest that there is little financial incentive for mainstream medicine to publicize or adopt many of the solid and verifiable conclusions from the rich plethora of research supporting this point of view. In fact, given the startling effectiveness of this dietary approach for improving a vast variety of conditions, one would (in light of the evidence presented throughout this article) expect far more suppression than support of ancestrally oriented, fat-based, ketogenic approaches to eating.  In other words, don’t expect anyone to ‘officially’ flip the USDA Food pyramid upside down anytime soon (much less revamp the existing food production system to embrace truly healthy food production or sustainability).

 

The truth only stands a chance against these bullying, misanthropic behemoths if we are willing to recognize the truth for ourselves, and then actually stand up for it. Don’t expect meaningful changes in official policy, much less any effort to put any ‘official’ stop to the ongoing misinformation and disinformation coming from the “top-down”. Our government officials mostly no longer work for us. When it comes to taking charge of our health, we are all very much on our own.  We must maintain our vigilance against insidious laws and practices, while questioning questionable authority. We must also become educated on these matters and take charge of our own health and severely compromised food supply. WE are the ones we’ve been waiting for! Always remember that the price for health in today’s world is vigilance (if not hyper vigilance).

And courageous physicians such as Dr. Gary Fettke and Dr. Timothy Noakes (and others similarly being harassed and destroyed by establishment cronies) deserve our outspoken support, from around the world. It is time to bring this modern day, profit-driven and insidious, draconian Medical Inquisition to an end, once and for all.

~ Nora Gedgaudas, CNS, NTP, BCHN

 

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REFERENCES

[1] O’Connor, Anahad. “How the Sugar Industry Shifted Blame to Fat.” New York Times, Sept. 12, 2016

[2] Kearns CE, Schmidt LA, Glantz SA. “Sugar Industry and Coronary Heart Disease Research: A Historical Analysis of Internal Industry Documents.” JAMA Intern Med. 2016;176(11):1680-1685

[3] Wislar JS, Flanagin A, Fontanarosa PB, DeAngelis CD. “Honorary and ghost authorship in high impact biomedical journals: a cross-sectional survey.” BMJ 2011; 343: d6128

[4] Cohen E, Cragg M, deFonseka, J, et al.  “Statistical review of US macronutrient consumption data, 1965–2011: Americans have been following dietary guidelines, coincident with the rise in obesity.” Nutrition.  May 2015, Volume 31, Issue 5, Pages 727–732.

[5] http://www.nofructose.com/introduction/help-be-a-voice-for-lchf-after-gary-is-silenced/

[6] http://davidgillespie.org/do-we-really-want-our-nutrition-advice-sponsored-by-the-food-industry/

[7] http://www.babyboomersandbellies.com/blog/2015/06/expelled-by-daa-dietitians-association-of-australia/

[8] http://www.eatdrinkpolitics.com/wp-content/uploads/AND_Corporate_Sponsorship_Report.pdf

[9] Bes-Rastrollo M, Schulz MB, Ruiz-Canela M and Martinez-Gonzalez MA. “Financial Conflicts of Interest and Reporting Bias Regarding the Association between Sugar-Sweetened Beverages and Weight Gain: A Systematic Review of Systematic Reviews.” PLoS Medicine. December 31, 2013.

[10] https://theamericanscholar.org/flacking-for-big-pharma/#

[11] Global Burden of Disease Study 2013 Collaborators. “Global, regional, and national incidence, prevalence, and years lived with disability for 301 acute and chronic diseases and injuries in 188 countries, 1990–2013: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2013.” The Lancet, 2015

Recently Revealed Shady Shenanigans of the Sugar Industry

shady-guyThe Associated Press just published an article in the Los Angeles Times revealing how the sugar industry “began funding research that cast doubt on sugar’s role in heart disease—in part by pointing the finger at fat—as early as the 1960s, according to an analysis of newly uncovered documents.”   The article underscores this revelation as the “latest example showing how food and beverage makers attempt to shape public understanding of nutrition.”

 

What the AP article is referring to is the recent publication of an industry expose in JAMA Internal Medicine titled “Sugar Industry and Coronary Heart Disease Research: A Historical Analysis of Internal Industry Documents.” [JAMA Intern Med. Published online September 12, 2016. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2016.5394]

 

Of course, there’s nothing that moves the sale of “food-like substances” faster than bogus health claims.  If you can get a group of supposed scientists to create a sham study saying, for instance, that “kids that eat more candy weigh less” (and no, I am not making this one up) and the public eats that up (excuse the pun) then from a profit motive standpoint almost anything is possible—ethics and true science be damned (along with the health of the nation).  It turns out this is all far more commonplace a tactic than anyone wants to believe. It all goes WAY beyond the recent AP headline. [http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21691462]

 

And it has all been going on for a very, very long time.

 

Another relatively recent (2013) study published by the Public Library of Science Medicine evaluated whether “industry sponsors’ financial interests might bias the conclusions of scientific research.”  Ya think?  The study was titled, “Financial Conflicts of Interest and Reporting Bias Regarding the Association between Sugar Sweetened Beverages and Weight Gain: A Systematic Review of Systematic Reviews.”  It was a juicy read.  Among the many bombshells within it, they offered the conclusion that “Reviews in which a potential conflict of interest was disclosed were five times more likely to present a conclusion of no positive association between SSB [sugar-sweetened beverages]  consumption and weight gain than reviews that reported having no financial conflict of interest.”  Ummm yeah.  Is this any surprise?  And then these companies store up the contrived “peer reviewed evidence” to use as “scientifically validated proof” for supporting either health claims or a lack of harm.  Slick.

 

This news is far from the only smoking gun. Not only is there a long and sordid history of industry-funded “research” designed solely to market their versions of “food”, but there is quite a bit of conclusive evidence to suggest that the same related industries have been involved for quite some time in establishing educational curriculums for dietitians, medical students and other forms of healthcare professional “higher education”.  For instance, registered dietitians are now given formal education by the Coca-Cola Company on how safe its ingredients are, by the very admission of the American Dietetic Association, itself.  One meticulous 51 page report in 2013 written by Michele Simon for EatDrinkPolitics was titled, “And Now a Word from Our Sponsors… Are America’s Nutrition Professionals in the Pocket of Big Food?”  It is well worth reading.

 

The ADA/American Dietetic Association (and don’t think it is any different from the DAA/Dietetic Association of Australia, by the way) regularly hold professional conferences that feature exhibits by General Mills, Coca-Cola and other processed food and junk food behemoths.   The lineup of speakers at these conferences have similar industry ties and offer messages ensuring that processed foods are an important part of the diet and are to be consumed right along with fresh produce and mother’s milk.   According to the readily accessible American Dietetic Association’s 2010 annual report, for instance, their corporate partners and sponsors include Coca-Cola, Pepsi, General Mills, Trivia, SOYJOY, ConAgra, Mars, Inc. and Kellogg’s… along with Unilever (which owns a variety of processed food product brands),  as well as the National Dairy Council and Abbott Nutrition, involved with producing and marketing infant formula companies (don’t even get me started here).

 

Yep— these are the supposed “nutritional authorities” supplying the public with what passes for nutritional education.  Like, WOW. These are also the same folks bringing you hospital food and school lunches. Just do the math. These are the very institutions that are involved in counseling and credentialing the people doling out dietary advice to the American public, along with hospitals and nursing homes, schools (including medical schools), colleges and virtually everywhere else.   Mind you, not all mainstream nutritionists and dietitians are as ignorant and industry driven as their curriculum (and I personally know more than a few conventionally trained dietitians who are embarrassed by all this, and know better),  but all too often the “official” advice and the policies that emerge from that are the result of industry-driven propaganda, having nothing whatever to do with the advancement or protection of human health. Period.  And the rest of us get to suffer the consequences when that advice converts to official public policy.

 

Just keep the following thought in mind:  If a diet based on whole, naturally raised and unadulterated food purely in alignment with our genetic/evolutionary heritage and (god forbid) modern day human longevity research that minimizes unhealthy cravings and health care costs wins…then virtually every single multinational corporate interest (right down to Big Oil) loses.

 

It is hard not to be extremely angry about all this, as millions have died as a result of policies instituted through sham studies and institutionalized industry propaganda of all kinds. Like the so-called studies (many now since debunked) pointing their crooked finger at natural dietary fat for the epidemics of heart disease and diabetes, while “carbage” (carbohydrate-based foods) rests comfortably at the broad base of the USDA (US Department of AGRICULTURE’S) Food pyramid as something everyone is supposed to eat the most of.  The same shenanigans are responsible for EPA and FDA approvals for all kinds of harmful substances, pharmacologic agents and practices, along with the increasing laxity of laws regulating these things. Laws are even being passed (like the recent Monsanto protection bill) that actually protects these misanthropic corporations from having to even disclose the presence of their questionable ingredients in our food.

 

Nearly all of the major mainstream media is owned by those with interests in these corporations,  so seeing an article like this one slip out through the Associated Press and hitting the headlines is truly a rarity. Mostly, public thinking is shaped by the corporate advertisers that own media institutions. And our politicians have mostly become the minions of multinational corporate interests, under the guise of working “of, by and for the people”.   And the American public is caught up in a thinly veiled reality TV show depicting an all-too dramatic race for the White House currently, which purports to be all part of some democratic process. And in the end, multinational corporations will have their newly elected/selected puppet and Manchurian candidate… and we all will have more of the same.

 

Do you want REAL change?

 

Then it is time we stopped looking to our officials to guide our health and well-being. It’s time we took responsibility for our own lives, become the changes we want to see in the world and begin voting for the kind of world we want with our dollars (perhaps the only vote left that has any meaning), spending them more consciously and purposefully in order to create a better future for our health, our children, this country and the rest of our beleaguered planet.

 

Be awake and be well,

 

Nora

 

conversations-with-nora

Is There One Universally Foundational Human Diet?

Is There One Universally Foundational Human Diet? Too many of us I think have bought into the idea that “everybody is different” (as though this were stating some deep, rational and solemn wisdom)—therefore where being a vegetarian works for me it might not work for you—or where being a sugar burner is better for me being a fat burner works better for you…  Yes, we are technically omnivores, and some of us get away with certain things better than others. But by no means does this imply that ALL foods we are capable of consuming are all equally optimal for us–or that we somehow need to consume a little of everything to be optimally healthy.  Variety in some respects is good (our microbiome certainly likes variety—especially when it comes to fibrous vegetables and greens), but that by no means implies anything and everything goes with respect to our likes and preferences if we want to be optimally healthy in a world today where health compromises are hitting us from all sides and easily exceed health promoting influences.

We seem to rationalize every indulgence with the other pseudo–wise mantra, “everything in moderation.”  Why everyone silently nods their heads in reverent agreement every time they hear this phrase as though some great wisdom is being spoken is beyond me.  REALLY? That’s not wisdom, that’s politics and/or wishful thinking! How much of anything metabolically dysregulating or inflammatory or disruptive to your endocrine and immune system or even potentially autoimmune provoking do you really want to enjoy “in moderation”?  Are you really that completely healthy and symptom-free? And if you’re lucky (or young) enough to say yes—do you really think it’s always going to be that way?  It is an almost unavoidable fact that we will all choose moments of some compromise in life, but these moments need to be chosen carefully and consciously, and compensated for as much as possible.  And some compromises– especially in light of the dangerous autoimmune epidemic— should never, ever be made at all…by anyone. Case in point: gluten.

And yes—it IS possible to enjoy what you eat while also do the right things. Eating for joy does not need to mean “a little bit of everything goes.”

So getting to the first important point that needs to be made here….There isn’t a separate anatomy and physiology book written for everyone in this room. There are fundamental principles of anatomy and physiology that apply to each and every one of us as human beings.  From there, we extrapolate from nuances and polymorphisms…but those nuances do not necessarily change the solidly established foundations we all share in common.

We each have unique fingerprints, but everyone has fingers.

As human beings we are all much more alike than we are unalike.  We are all the same species (we are even all the same race for God’s sake–the HUMAN race, and we need to start acting like it) and we are ALL bound by the same fundamental anatomical and physiological laws.  There isn’t a lot of wiggle room here. We all share a hydrochloric acid-based digestive tract that’s designed to make optimal use of animal source foods—-including animal fats—and not a fermentative-based digestive tract designed to make optimal use of plant foods (we can eat them, and benefit from them as omnivores, but they cannot supply any of us with everything we need to be optimally healthy on their own).  There isn’t a different digestive design between any one person and another.  We all physiologically have the same complement of digestive juices (namely HCl and pepsin) and digestive pancreatic enzymes. We all are SUPPOSED to have gallbladders to help us digest fats and fat-soluble nutrients. We all have the same basic skeletal structure, tissues, hormones, glands and neurotransmitters. We all share the same kinds of organs, the same type of unique brain (although some clearly work better than others). And unless something important has been amputated, we all share the same complement of appendages that work in roughly the same way (some of which are admittedly gender-specific). We all have a blood pH that ranges very narrowly between 7.35 and 7.45…or else. We all have and rely upon minute intracellular fat-burning factories known as mitochondria that make up close to 10% of our total body weight they are so numerous in us. Our cells all make energy—a-la something called the Krebs cycle, breaking down fat and/or glucose for generating the ATP that fuels our human machinery.

We all require the same ranges of macronutrients. We all need complete source protein.  We all need a significant amount and variety of quality dietary fats, critical (animal source) fat-soluble nutrients and certain essential fatty acids that simply cannot be gotten from plant-based foods in order for us to be optimally healthy.  And I am not saying we should not eat plants.  Not at all. Far from it. But the fact is that there is no human alive for whom carbohydrates are dietarily foundationally essential, therefore there can be no such thing as a sugar or starch deficiency in anyone. There is no denying that. There are those that like to debate this.  Within the actual science of human physiology there really is no debate.

All the same foundations are foundational for all of us in an extremely basic way. The rest is all nuance…

A few takeaways from my AHS16 talk:  

1) The most important key to optimal health and to what makes us human in the first place lies not in our individual differences, but in that which we all have in common.

2) “Biochemical individuality” supplies the nuance, but it is our common physiological design that supplies our most essential foundations, which ALL humans share.

You can watch my full length talk for FREE here: https://youtu.be/8k5QixWL0fU

(If you like it, please comment on Youtube, thank you!)

To Your Health and Self-Empowerment,

~ Nora

 

Don’t fall for this new study about the new “key to burning fat” (please!)

obese mouseAccording to an article published in the University of California New on June 6th, a research team led by a scientist at the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and at UC Berkeley has (supposedly) found that copper plays a key role in metabolizing fat. The article can be accessed here: http://universityofcalifornia.edu/news/copper-key-burning-fat.

In their news article was stated the following: “We find that copper is essential for breaking down fat cells so that they can be used for energy,” said Chang. “It acts as a regulator. The more copper there is, the more the fat is broken down. We think it would be worthwhile to study whether a deficiency in this nutrient could be linked to obesity and obesity-related diseases.”

The one wise statement made in this article about the study (which focused on mice, by the way, not humans) is the following:  “But Chang cautions against ingesting copper supplements as a result of these study results. Too much copper can lead to imbalances with other essential minerals, including zinc.”

Ummmm yeah.  Here’s the skinny on that:

I predict that this article is going to cause a LOT of big problems!

There is already a lot of copper in our diets. It is really high in shellfish, kale, cashews, sesame seeds, shiitake mushrooms, eggs, spices and herbs, beans, dried fruit (including sun dried tomatoes) avocados, goat cheese and fermented soy foods, and dark chocolate (and even black tea, cocoa, coffee, beer and wine). But it’s in lots of other foods and beverages, as well. People also get it from water they drink from copper pipes in their homes and from copper cookware. In my experience most people probably get more than plenty. In fact, copper excesses may affect nearly 80% of all men, women, children, and unborn babies. Also, according to Ann Louise Gittleman (who has written extensively on this subject) copper tends to accumulate over our lifetimes and can even get passed on to future generations in a negatively cumulative way.

The bigger health issue (and my major concern about this article) may actually be zinc deficiency, which is far and away more common. In fact, zinc deficiency—arguably a runaway rampant issue– frequently leads to copper dominance (which can result in ADD symptoms, depression, major fatigue, anxiety, hair loss, etc—and even ironically thyroid problems and weight GAIN). Excess copper also has the potential to displace zinc. Copper can even rise due to fluctuations in estrogen/progesterone in women following pregnancy. Estrogen dominance (invariably resulting in weight gain and resistant weight loss and all-too common) is automatically a copper magnet!  And testing for copper is anything but a precise science. Copper dominance may not even be easily diagnosed through any available testing means.

It is ALWAYS a problem when research is done on a single nutrient in isolation like this.  –And in genetically mutated mice, no less (automatically extrapolating to we far more complex, non-herbivorous humans).  Many of you might recall all the hubbub around chromium picolinate supplements in the 1980’s, which promised to make everyone thin. They didn’t. Women were buying up chromium supplements in droves back then, likely creating more imbalances than anything else. Now, overweight (and probably zinc-deficient) women will be stampeding to health food stores to buy copper supplements, and then stop at Sur La Table (or other kitchen store) on their way home to grab whole sets of copper cookware, then maybe jewelry stores to buy copper bracelets (a fad some years back…actually, some older health food stores still sell these—purportedly good for arthritis. Not.). Heck, young women might even excitedly opt for those copper IUD’s from their doctors…

But in real life zinc is supposed to exist with copper in an 8 to 1 or 12 to 1 ratio normally in order for a healthy, functional balance that allows both to work normally. Zinc is actually the mineral that NEEDS to dominate, but the two (zinc and copper) must of necessity work together in a healthy person. And this is more to the point—no nutrient exists in isolation from another. It’s ALWAYS about a relative balance and a broader nutrient interplay. Stress, infection, poor digestion due to issues with producing enough stomach acid, etc. (almost universal in those with thyroid issues also struggling with their weight) rapidly result in zinc loss. And if you don’t have enough zinc, you can’t make hydrochloric acid which (as you undoubtedly know from reading my book) opens up a whole other unsavory can of worms that adversely impacts your health on multiple levels, including the health of your brain and immune system. Stress, alone can easily triple your zinc loss. Undiagnosed pyroluria (a not uncommon genetic metabolic condition afflicting millions) is also worth screening for (I wrote about it toward the end of my book, and also have an extensive article on the subject, together with a free preliminary screening tool available on my website at http://www.primalbody-primalmind.com/do-you-have-pyroluria/). And once a real zinc deficiency takes hold it typically takes supplemental sources of liquid ionic forms to replete the coffers and restore balance again. Food, alone may not do it.

I am happy for the poor mice with Wilson’s disease whose fatty livers were lessened by all the extra copper. Really. As for the rest of us there are no single nutrient “magic bullets”.

To Your Health and Self-Empowerment,

~Nora

ps. To get the latest nutritional and health information from me, please subscribe to my weekly emails!

LCHF Diet Bad for Mice But Not Humans

paleo mouse study

Low Carb, Higher Fat Approach To Eating Bad For Mice, NOT Humans

By Nora Gedgaudas, CNS, NTP, BCHN

An article titled “Paleo diets = weight gain” released through the University of Melbourne has hit the mainstream press in no small way.  In it, researchers are extolling the virtues of their new mouse study being used to decry low carbohydrate/high fat Paleo diets as “causing weight gain” and leading to other adverse metabolic changes leading to diabetes and other related symptoms.

In the ill-conceived but much ballyhooed study, two groups of overweight mice with pre-diabetes symptoms were split into separate groups. One group was placed on a  low-carbohydrate (20%), high-fat (60%) diet (LCHF) supposedly “similar” to certain Paleo diets. The other group remained on their normal diet.

After eight weeks, the group on the LCHF diet gained more weight, their glucose intolerance worsened and their insulin levels rose. They gained 15 per cent of their body weight and their fat mass doubled from two per cent to almost four per cent.

Researchers pretended to be surprised that what they referred to as the “Paleo approach” didn’t help, and seemed to make the diabetic mice worse.  This news made headlines everywhere in Australia where the Paleo diet has been gaining some real traction in recent years.

But is this study really an indictment of low carbohydrate, higher fat Paleo approaches to eating in humans… Or is it really just a carefully orchestrated attempt by certain vested interests to stop a growing trend toward improved health and away from corporate industrial profits?

There is so much wrong with this study it is hard to know where to start.  If this wasn’t a blatant effort to intentionally smear the growing low-carb and Paleo movement, then at the very least someone who should have known better wasn’t thinking or paying attention.

For starters, the only way to fairly judge the effects of an ancestral diet on a mouse is to feed that mouse its own “ancestral diet”— not a human ancestral diet, which in truth bears no resemblance to the natural diet of a mouse.

But the real kicker here is the fact that the diet that the mice were eating doesn’t even come close to replicating– in any manner shape, or form–any existing manner of Paleo or ketogenic aproach to diet.  In fact, I wouldn’t recommend this version of a supposed LCHF diet to my worst enemy.  What did the mice’s supposed LCHF daily diet consist of?

  • Cocoa butter (the mice’s primary source of fat.  Really? As much as many Paleophiles love a bit of dark chocolate here and there, I have yet to meet one that uses cocoa butter as their primary fat source.)
  • Canola oil (a GMO, highly processed, typically partially hydrogenated or interesterified industrial vegetable fat that depletes the body of vitamin E and has so many inherent problems associated with it–including the generation of heart lesions—it does not even deserve to be listed as any sort of “food”.  Canola oil is ANYTHING but “Paleo”.)
  • Casein (THE primary source of animal protein in this study—already known in numerous animal studies to have adverse effects—in fact casein was the animal protein conveniently used to disparage the health effects of animal protein in the massively flawed pro-vegetarian tome, ‘The China Study’ by T. Collin Campbell.  Casein is a poorly digested and commonly antigenic protein found in cow’s milk—not anywhere on the LCHF Primal menu I promote in any way).
  • Sucrose  –  Yes, you read right.  Refined sugar was on the overweight, pre-diabetic mice’s supposedly “low carb” menu!  The combination of sugar and fat is always very, very bad… Which is one reason why sugar is nearly always eliminated in LCHF diets.  To paraphrase professor, researcher and biochemist, Dr. Richard Feinman, the deleterious effects of fat have always been measured in the presence of sugar/starch.  Which is probably why they added it, frankly.
  • Clarified butter fat (ghee).  Again, we’re probably not talking about 100% grass-fed sources here.  And ghee also contains other potentially antigenic trace dairy proteins, including casein.
  • Cellulose (a.k.a., fiber.  From where who knows.  Could even be wood pulp or cardboard.  They don’t specify.  But I digress.)
  • Calcium carbonate – literally the most worthless, least bioavailable form of calcium available.  Known to be associated with arterial and coronary calcification in actual humans, btw.
  • AIN93G vitamins (anyone’s guess as to what that specifically means, and from what sources. Given the menu so far I wouldn’t guess the sources are organic and non-synthetic)
  • Potassium dihydrogen phosphate (inorganic and poorly bioavailable at best)
  • DL-Methionine (What is it?  “The starting materials for production of DL-methionine are acrolein (a 3-carbon aldehyde) derived from propylene (a petroleum derivative), methyl mercaptan derived from methanol and various sulfur sources and hydrocyanic acid (HCN). Acrolein and methyl mercaptan are reacted to form a relatively stable intermediate, 3-methylmercaptopropionaldehyde, known as MMP. The MMP is then reacted with HCN to form a rudimentary mix of DL-methionine and contaminants which is further refined through clean-up steps.”  
  • Sodium chloride (Pure sodium chloride was shown in one study to massively up-regulate IL-17 inflammatory pathways— an alarming recent finding.  Nowhere in the diet I promote is refined salt on any “approved” list.
  • Potassium citrate (ummm…ok)
  • Choline chloride (a synthetic-source B-vitamin)
  • Potassium sulfate (Inorganic and poorly bioavailable.  And why are there three sources of potassium—with only one that isn’t 100% inorganic and poorly utilizable?)
  • AIN93G trace minerals (again—what minerals…and from where?  We are left to guess.  I’m afraid to.)

THIS is the diet that supposedly proves a low carbohydrate/higher fat approach to eating is dangerous?  They have got to be kidding.  The fact that the [LCHF] mice actually improved in areas such as triglyceride levels and elevated HDL (not to mention even surviving the horrid processed nature of their supposedly “Paleo” diet) is a testament to what even a small lessening of the overall carbohydrate load can do.

There are ample HUMAN studies clearly extolling the considerable benefits of low carbohydrate, moderate protein and higher percentage fat “Paleo-oriented” diets in the existing literature.  In fact, an article coming out of the UK in December featured a story about a nine year old Type 1 diabetic boy that came off of the need for insulin entirely following a fat-based, low-carb Paleo-oriented ketogenic diet.  The article, based on a study published in the International Journal of Case Reports and Images stated:  “After 19 months, the child is still on the Paleolithic ketogenic diet, and the researchers report it can ensure normoglycemia without the use of external insulin. No side effects or complications were observed, and the researchers stress the diet is sustainable in the long-term.  They wrote: “We opine that the Paleolithic ketogenic diet ensures normal glucose levels and can be maintained on the long-term in those patients with newly diagnosed T1DM with residual insulin secretion.”

In the comment section of the article, a mother by the name of Beth McNally had the following to share, “Our 9 year old son was diagnosed in Canada in early Sept 2015. He was on the standard high carb diet and required insulin injections. In early November, 8 weeks after he was diagnosed we switched him to a Low Carb/High Fat diet, essentially a Keto/Paleo diet and he has been off insulin ever since. His blood sugars are stable even postprandial they rarely go above a 6.0 mmol/l. He has gained weight and grown in height since November. No hypo moments as he is not being administered any exogenous insulin. We hope to keep this going for as long as we can.”

Co-author of the research study, Csaba Tóth, MD  had the following to add, “This is far beyond Honeymoon. Currently he is on the diet for 22 months. Almost 2 years. Actually “Honeyyears”. Note that the stimulated C peptid was in the normal range. In our previous case study C peptid increased within two months. This is the case in several our T1DM patients who are also on the diet but not yet published their case. Otherwise, on the standard diabetes diet, C peptid continue to decline after diagnosis. At two years the level of C peptide is typically about zero. Our data indicate halted autoimmune process.”  

I, too have received countless emails and other reports from fans of my work over the years citing similar positive benefits as a result of adopting the fat-based ketogenic approach I promote in Primal Body, Primal Mind across a wide range of metabolic and other diseases.  The list decidedly includes positive effects in those having type 1 & 2 diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease, autoimmunity, mood-related and/or cognitive/neurological issues and far more.

For that matter, anyone attending a Paleo event can tell you based on cursory observation that these are (at least on the surface of things) overall some of the healthiest looking people anyone would ever want to see— with the exception of those that are in the earlier stages of adopting this approach and still working toward reclaiming their health.   Even the overweight people you run into at these events will typically tell you how much weight they have already lost, and how much better they feel and function following this dietary change.

The Paleo dietary approach has gained quite a bit of press in recent years and is unnerving the food industry, Big Agribusiness and other corporate interests that profit handsomely from a populace eating a carbohydrate-dominated diet. Low carb, fat-based versions of this are really rocking some boats.  Let’s just say there’s a vested interest in making LCHF Paleo/Primal— and those promoting it— look as bad as possible.  If Paleo/Primal wins, multinational industrial corporate profits lose.

Even if the diet fed to these mice in the Melbourne study consisted of actual food, mice are largely herbivorous creatures (read: naturally eat a high carb diet) and are poorly equipped to make much use of significant dietary fat.  Dr. John Briffa wrote an excellent article titled, “Why Human, Not Mice, Studies are the Most Appropriate for Judging the Effects of Diet on Human Health” following a similarly ridiculous mouse study a few years ago.  In it he points put that “these researchers chose an inappropriate animal model to test their theory on, and then fed the animals an inappropriate diet to boot. These actions suggest that the researchers were doing what they could to design an experiment to produce a desired outcome.”  Dr. Briffa also added, “Such diets [LCHF] generally give better results for weight loss than, say, low fat diets. They also tend to be extremely useful in the management of diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Also, even for those not afflicted by these conditions, they usually lead to changes in physiological and biochemical parameters that are associated with a reduced risk of heart disease such as lower levels of blood sugar and blood fats (triglycerides) as well as higher levels of ‘healthy’ high density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol. In my view, anyone with a special interest in the field of nutrition would have to be unaware of the research or choose to ignore it not to admit to the broad merit in lower-carb eating for human health.”

The glossy, front-page Technicolor emphasis on this one puny mouse study in Australia should have anyone with a modicum of discernment smelling a rat.   It is pure garbage. The fact that they disparagingly—and very specifically mentioned “celebrity chefs” in the article tells you everything you need to know about the motives.  Efforts by celebrity chef, Pete Evans to positively impact the health of Australians with a low carb, more fat-based Paleo-oriented message (largely based on Primal Body, Primal Mind) have ruffled more than a few feathers among mainsteam dietary dictocrats there.  It is also clearly changing the way Australians are eating, to Industry’s/mainstream diet authorities’ considerable chagrin.

I have a question for anyone reading this: if the results of the study were opposite would this story be equally publicized in the front-page news?   No way.  In fact, there have been innumerable studies—human studies— including large meta-analyses human studies clearly demonstrating the exact opposite conclusions of this mouse study… but where is the glossy mainstream fanfare or even basic acknowledgment?  The Melbourne mouse “study” wasn’t remotely designed to lead to any success associated with the LCHF dietary approach whatsoever (much less Paleo).   The idea that the researchers “expected things to improve and were shocked when they didn’t” is an out and out lie.  It’s all a ridiculous, orchestrated sham.  Or if it isn’t orchestrated, then the scientists involved didn’t even really know what they were doing.

What did the mouse study manage to prove? That mice are not designed to thrive on canola oil, casein and refined table sugar…any more than we are.

We all need to exercise discernment when hyped up stories like this get mainstream press. I say we move on and focus on what works best for humans.   And let’s face it, if the Paleo diet didn’t work for us, we wouldn’t be here in the first place.

~ Nora Gedgaudas, CNS, NTP, BCHN

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The World Health Organization Red Meat Brouhaha

red meat

Image source: http://screwyouacne.com/2014/09/30/red-meat-cause-acne/

The World Health Organization (WHO) just announced that red meat is “probably carcinogenic to humans.”

Yep–Right up there with glyphosate, cigarettes, alcohol and asbestos.

——–> insert facepalm <——–

This announcement is absurdly misguided and largely based upon the notoriously two least reliable forms of science we have:

1) Observational studies driven by…

2) Food questionnaires

(By the way, what did YOU have for lunch on Thursday of last week/month year?)

This is all fully based on the idea of “guilt by weak association” and any rational person knows that association is NOT causation.

UGH–Back to the nutritional Dark Ages we go…

The WHO seems to be mostly citing evidence from research based on observational studies and food questionnaires published in the Archives of Internal Medicine in 2012, which included an analysis of “two prospective cohort studies.”[1] Similar in its failures to the ill-conceived and embarrassingly poor 2011 World Cancer Research Fund “Meta-analysis”[2]—also entirely based upon observational studies and questionnaires— ZERO distinction was made between feedlot meat and 100% grass-fed meat (a potentially huge distinction), and no real effort was made to distinguish the effect of the red meat from whatever else people happened to be eating. What did they include as “red meat?”   McDonald’s hamburgers, pizza, hot dogs, tacos, bologna, nitrate-laced bacon and feedlot meat (GMO-fed and God knows what else). Although they did graciously concede that red meat is “only slightly less hazardous than preserved meats.” And red meat consumption was not separated in any way from whatever else anyone was eating or doing to their health (alcohol intake, sugar consumption, grains, etc. or other lifestyle factors). And since 97% of all meat production is commercial feedlot-based, grass-fed meat likely didn’t even factor into these results at all.

Suspiciously, too, the Archives of Internal Medicine study used what is called relative risk to show their results. “Relative risk” is frequently used to make things look far worse than they are—rather than what is called absolute risk, which really tells it like it is (but might make your results look less dramatic and, well, boring and meaningless).

It is a significant fact that cancer has been consistently reported to be extremely rare to even non-existent in red meat-eating, hunter-gatherer societies.[3],[4] What in particular has characterized the difference between even Neolithic hunter-gatherer diets and the modern-day Western diet causing us so much trouble now? Data from 229 hunter-gatherer societies included in the Revised Ethnographic Atlas indicate that hunter-gatherer diets differ from typical Western ones in basically two aspects: first, a strong reliance on animal foods (45-65% of energy or E%) and second, the consumption of low-GI [glycemic index] plant foods such as fibrous vegetables, some fruits, nuts and seeds.[5] But we also need to take the quality of the foods they had available to them into account and the very, very different nutrient/fatty acid profile between feedlot meat and 100% naturally grass-fed meat/wild game. Grain fed meats are predominated by potentially inflammatory omega-6 content (while being nearly devoid of healthy omega-3’s), versus 100% grass-fed and finished meat (and wild game) which supplies a high percentage of highly anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids (EPA/DHA). Omega-3’s have additionally shown some significant anti-cancer benefits.[6] [7] [8]

Quality counts for a LOT and we all need to start taking that seriously. Deadly seriously.

In spite of the WHO declaration, other research has shown no meaningful link between diets higher in dietary animal fat and increased cancer risk.[9],[10] With respect to colon cancer, alone, there are many, many more (and better designed) studies finding little to no significant association with red meat and cancer than those that do, some even showing an actual lowered risk![11] [12] [13] [14] [15] [16] [17] [18] [19] [20] [21] [22] [23] [24] [25]

With respect to Paleo—at least the form of Paleo I personally recommend and the form adopted by The Paleo Way, bases its meat consumption overall on two very distinct recommendations:

  • Red meat should only come from 100% pasture fed and finished animals. NO feedlot and/or commercial processed meat!
  • I recommend meat/protein in general to be consumed in strict moderation—no more than about 1 gram per kg of ideal body weight (i.e., approximating the weight of a person’s lean tissue mass)

Excessive protein from any source is potentially bad by virtue of 1) its up-regulation of proliferative mTOR pathways 2) its increase of IGF-1, which increases non-specific cellular proliferation and 3) the excess presence of glutamine and 4) protein in excess of what we need in order to meet our basic requirements is readily (up to 40% or so) converted to sugar and used the same way. –And SUGAR (not red meat) is cancer’s #1 most essential metabolic fuel.

With respect to the benefits of exclusively grass-fed meat (over feedlot meat), a particular form of fat that has been more recently lauded for its anti-cancer benefits is one exclusively found in the fat of animals fed on nothing but natural pasture.[26] [27] [28] [29] [30]    In fact, CLA may be one of the most broadly beneficial and potent cancer-fighting substances in our diet. It is somewhat uniquely able to (in very small amounts) block all three stages of cancer: 1) initiation 2) growth/promotion and 3) metastasis. Most “anticancer nutrients” are typically helpful in only one of these areas. To date, beneficial effects of natural CLA from animal fat have been found in cancers of the breast, prostate, colon and skin. In animal studies, as little as one half of one percent CLA in the diet of experimental animals reduced tumor burden by more than 50 percent.[31]   As if this wasn’t exciting enough, there is more direct evidence that CLA may reduce cancer risk in humans. In a Finnish study, women who had the highest levels of CLA in their diet had a 60 percent lower risk of breast cancer than those having the lowest levels. Switching from grain-fed to exclusively grass-fed meat literally places women in this lowest risk category!

Additionally, French researchers measured CLA levels in the breast tissues of 360 women and found that the women with the most CLA had the lowest risk of cancer. In fact, the women with the most CLA had a staggering 74% lower risk of breast cancer than the women with the least CLA. [32]   In yet another study, human breast cancer cells were incubated in milk fat high in CLA or in an isolated form of CLA without any milk fat. The high CLA milk fat decreased cancer growth by 90 percent but the isolated CLA decreased it by only 60 percent. When the cells were incubated in the omega-6 fat, linoleic acid, found most abundantly in grain and grain-fed animals, cancer cell growth increased by 25 percent![33] Other women with the most CLA in their diets were also shown to have a 60% reduction overall in the incidence of breast cancer.[34]

Other studies have additionally shown breast cancer and even colon cancer preventative benefits.[35] [36] [37] [38] In keeping with this, CLA additionally exerts potent anti-inflammatory effects.[39] The inherent stability of CLA also seems to maintain itself even when meat is cooked.[40],[41] One study pointed out the following, Of the vast number of naturally occurring substances that have been demonstrated to have anticarcinogenic activity in experimental models, all but a handful of them are of plant origin. Conjugated linoleic acid is unique because it is present in food from animal sources, and its anticancer efficacy is expressed at concentrations close to human consumption levels.”[42]   CLA is highly abundant, too, in wild game. The implication here is that naturally occurring CLA in animal fat has always played an important role in our diets and may possibly even be a contributing factor to the near-zero incidence of cancer found in hunter-gatherer populations.[43] For all you Aussies out there, one study reported unusually high levels of CLA in (of all things) kangaroo meat![44]

ONLY CLA from the fat of wild game and fully pastured animals has the real anticancer health benefits you want.[45] Even though synthetic CLA is sold in capsules in health food stores, it lacks the beneficial form found exclusively in grass-fed meats and may even have potentially adverse effects. But I digress…

According to a research collaboration between Clemson University and the USDA in 2009, in addition to cancer-fighting CLA, fully pastured meat contains the following additional, potentially anti-cancer benefits[46]:

  • Higher in beta-carotene
  • Higher in vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol)
  • Higher in the B-vitamins thiamin and riboflavin and B12
  • Higher in the minerals calcium, magnesium, and potassium
  • Higher in total omega-3’s[47] [48] [49]
  • A healthier ratio of (inflammatory) omega-6 to anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids (1.65 vs. 4.84)
  • Higher in trans-vaccenic acid (TVA–which can be transformed into CLA)

Also, lamb/sheep fed exclusively on pasture vs. grain contains twice as much lutein (closely related to beta-carotene but more easily absorbed), which has shown possible preventative benefits with respect to both colon and breast cancer (while additionally reducing the risk of macular degeneration).[50]

So…in a nutshell, this WHO declaration will not change the recommendations I have been making all along. 100% grass-fed and finished meat (not just red meat, by the way) consumed in moderate amounts along with quality, organic fibrous plant-based foods has been and will continue to be among my foundational recommendations for optimal health.

~ Nora Gedgaudas, CNS, CNT, BCHN

 

“Red meat is NOT bad for you. Now blue-green meat, THAT’S bad for you!”

                           —Tommy Smothers

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Citations:

[1] Pan A, Sun Q, Bernstein A, et al. “Red Meat Consumption and Mortality: Results from two prospective cohort studies.” Arch Intern Med. 2012;172(7):555-563. doi:10.1001

[2] http://www.wcrf.org/sites/default/files/Colorectal-Cancer-2011-Report.pdf

[3] Brown GM, Cronk LB, Boag TJ:“The occurrence of cancer in an Eskimo.” Cancer.1952,5:142-143.

[4] Levine I: “Cancer among the American Indians and its bearing upon the ethnologicaI distribution of the disease.” J Cancer Res Clin Oncol 1910, 9:422-435

[5] Cordain L, Miller JB, Eaton SB, Mann N: “Macronutrient estimations in

hunter-gatherer diets.” Am J Clin Nutr 2000,72:1589-1592

[6] Rose, DP, Connolly JM, et al. “Influence of Diets Containing Eicosapentaenoic or Docasahexaenoic Acid on Growth and Metastasis of Breast Cancer Cells in Nude Mice.” Journal of the National Cancer Institute 1995. 87(8): 587-92.

[7] Tisdale, MJ. “Wasting in cancer.” J Nutr 1999. 129(1S Suppl): 243S-246S.

[8] Tashiro T, Yamamori H, et al. “n-3 versus n-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids in critical illness.” Nutrition 1998. 14(6): 551-3.

[9] Enig, M.G., R.J. Munn, and M. Keeney, “Dietary fat and cancer trends–a critique”. Fed Proc. 37:2215, (1978).

[10] Enstrom, J.E. “Colorectal Cancer and Consumption of Beef and Fat.” Br. J Cancer, 32:432, (1975).

[11] Thun MJ, Calle EE, Nambodiri MM, et al. Risk factors for fatal colon cancer in a large prospective study. J Natl Cancer Inst 1992;84:1491–500.

[12] Hirayama T. “Lifestyle and mortality: a large-scale census-based study in Japan.” Basel, Switzerland: Karger, 1990.

[13] Heilbrun LK, Normura A, Hankin JH, Stemmerman GN. “Diet and colorectal cancer with special reference to fiber intake.” Int J Cancer 1989;44:1–9.

[14] Goldbohm RA, van den Brandt PA, van’t Veer P, et al. “A prospective cohort study on the relation between meat consumption and the risk of colon cancer.” Cancer Res 1994;54:718–23.

[15] Knekt P, Steineck G, Järvinen R, Hakulinen T, Aromaa A. “Intake of fried meat and risk of cancer: a follow-up study in Finland.” Int J Cancer 1994;59:756–60.

[16] Gaard M, Tretli S, Loken EB. “Dietary factors and risk of colon cancer: a prospective study of 50,535 young Norwegian men and women.” Eur J Cancer Prev 1996;5:445–54.

[17] Hsing AW, McLaughlin JK, Chow WH, et al “Risk factors for colorectal cancer in a prospective study among US white men.” Int J Cancer.” 1998;77:549–54.

[18] Jansen MCJF, Bueno-de-Mesquita HB, Buzina R, et al “Dietary fiber and plant foods in relation to colorectal cancer mortality: the Seven Countries Study.” Int J Cancer 1999;81:174–9.

[19] Flood A, Velie EM, Sinha R, et al. “Meat, fat and their subtypes as risk factors for colorectal cancer in a prospective cohort of women.” Am J Epidemiol 2003;158:59–68.

[20] Kojima M, Wakai K, Tamakoshi K, et al. “Diet and colorectal cancer mortality: results from the Japan Collaborative Cohort Study.” Nutr Cancer 2004;50:23–32.

[21] Chao A, Thun MJ, Connell CJ, et al. “Meat consumption and risk of colorectal cancer.” JAMA 2005;293:172–82.

[22] Sato Y, Nakaya N, Kuriyama S, Nishino Y, Tsubono Y, Tsuji I. “Meat consumption and risk of colorectal cancer in Japan: the Miyagi Cohort Study.” Eur J Cancer Prev 2006;15:211–8.

[23] Key TJ, Fraser GE, Thorogood M, et al. “Mortality in vegetarians and non-vegetarians: a collaborative analysis of 8300 deaths among 76,000 men and women in five prospective studies.” Public Health Nutr 1998;1:33–41.

[24] Phillips RL, Snowdon DA. “Dietary relationships with fatal colorectal cancer among Seventh-Day Adventists.” J Natl Cancer Inst 1985;74:307–17.

[25] Wei EK, Giovanucci E, Wu K, et al. “Comparison of risk factors for colon and rectal cancer.” Int J Cancer 2004;108:433–42.

[26] Dhiman, T. R., G. R. Anand, et al. (1999). “Conjugated linoleic acid content of milk from cows fed different diets.” J Dairy Sci 82(10): 2146-56.

[27] Pariza MW, Hargraves WA. “A beef-derived mutagenesis modulator inhibits initiation of mouse epidermal tumors by 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene.” Carcinogenesis 1985;6:591–3.

[28] Ip, C., J. A. Scimeca, et al. (1994). “Conjugated linoleic acid. A powerful anticarcinogen from animal fat sources.” Cancer 74(3 Suppl): 1050-4.

[29] Białek A, Tokarz A. “[Conjugated linoleic acid as a potential protective factor in prevention of breast cancer].” Postepy Hig Med Dosw (Online). 2013 Jan 11;67:6-14.

[30] Heinze VM, Actis AB. “Dietary conjugated linoleic acid and long-chain n-3 fatty acids in mammary and prostate cancer protection: a review.” Int J Food Sci Nutr. 2012 Feb;63(1):66-78. doi: 10.3109/09637486.2011.598849. Epub 2011 Jul 15.

[31] Daley CA, Abbott A, Doyle P, et al. “A literature Review of the Value-Added Nutrients Found in Grass-Fed Beef Products.” Nutrition Journal, June 2006

[32] A. Aro et al, Kuopio University, Finland; Bougnoux, P, Lavillonniere F, Riboli E. “Inverse relation between CLA in adipose breast tissue and risk of breast cancer. A case-control study in France.” Inform 10;5:S43, 1999

[33] Donnelley C, Olsen AM, Lewis LD. “Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) inhibits expression of the Spot 14 (THRSP) and fatty acid synthase genes and impairs the growth of human breast cancer and liposarcoma cells.” Nutr Cancer. 2009; 61(1): 114–122. doi:  10.1080/01635580802348666

[34] Aro, A., S. Mannisto, I. Salminen, M. L. Ovaskainen, V. Kataja, and M. Uusitupa. “Inverse Association between Dietary and Serum Conjugated Linoleic Acid and Risk of Breast Cancer in Postmenopausal Women.” s 38, no. 2 (2000): 151-7.)

[35] Ip C, Dong Y, Ip MM, et al. “Conjugated linoleic acid isomers and mammary cancer prevention.” Nutr Cancer 2002;43:52–8.

[36] Masso-Welch PA, Zangani D, Ip C, et al. “Inhibition of angiogenesis by the cancer chemopreventive agent conjugated linoleic acid.” Cancer Res 2002;62:4383–9.

[37] Kemp MQ, Jeffy BD, Romagnolo DF. “Conjugated linoleic acid inhibits cell proliferation through a p53-dependent mechanism: effects on the expression of G1-restriction points in breast and colon cancer cells.” J Nutr 2003;133:3670–7.

[38] Aro, A., S. Mannisto, I. Salminen, M. L. Ovaskainen, V. Kataja, and M. Uusitupa. “Inverse Association between Dietary and Serum Conjugated Linoleic Acid and Risk of Breast Cancer in Postmenopausal Women.” s 38, no. 2 (2000): 151-7.)

[39] Yu Y, Correll PH, Vanden Heuvel JP.  “Conjugated linoleic acid decreasesproduction of pro-inflammatory products in macrophages: evidence for a PPARγ-dependent mechanism. Biochimica et Buiohysica Acta 2002. 1581:89-99.

[40] Ha YL, Grimm NK, Pariza MW. “Anticarcinogens from fried ground beef: heat altered derivatives of linoleic acid.” Carcinogenesis 1987;8:1881–7.

[41] Lin Yang, Ying Cao, Zhen-Yu Chen; Cao; Chen (2004). “Stability of conjugated linoleic acid isomers in egg yolk lipids during frying”. Food Chemistry (Elsevier) 86 (4): 531–535. doi:10.1016/j.foodchem.2003.09.006

[42] Ip, C., J. A. Scimeca, et al. (1994). “Conjugated linoleic acid. A powerful anticarcinogen from animal fat sources.” Cancer 74(3 Suppl): 1050-4.

[43] Cordain et al, “A Detailed Fatty Acid Analysis of Selected Tissues in Elk, Mule Deer, and Antelope.” Food Composition 670.1-670.6

[44] “Kangaroo meat – health secret revealed” (Press release). Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO). 2004-04-23.

[45] Information gleaned from abstracts presented at the 91st American Oil Chemists Society April 25-28, 2000 annual meeting. Special supplement to Inform, vol 11, no 5, 2000

[46] Duckett SK, Neel JPS, Fontenot JP and Clapham WM. “Effects of winter stocker growth rate and finishing systems on: III. Tissue proximate, fatty acid, vitamin, and cholesterol content.” Journal of Animal Science 2009. 87: 9:2961-2970. Doi: 110.2527/jas.2009-1850

[47] Rose, D. P., J. M. Connolly, et al. (1995). “Influence of Diets Containing Eicosapentaenoic or Docasahexaenoic Acid on Growth and Metastasis of Breast Cancer Cells in Nude Mice.” Journal of the National Cancer Institute 87(8): 587-92.

[48] Tisdale, M. J. (1999). “Wasting in cancer.” J Nutr 129(1S Suppl): 243S-246S.

[49] Tashiro, T., H. Yamamori, et al. (1998). “n-3 versus n-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids in critical illness.” Nutrition 14(6): 551-3.

[50] Kruggel, W.G., “Influence of sex and diet on lutein in lamb fat.” J of Animal Science 54: 970-975, 1982.

The Savory Institute

Nora Gedgaudas and Allan SavoryI spent this last weekend attending the Artisans of the Grasslands (Savory Institute) conference in the San Francisco Bay area.  What a wonderful collection of speakers and attendees!  I gave my talk on Sustainably Optimizing Human and Planetary Health to a terrific and highly receptive audience Saturday afternoon.  I also managed to squeeze in some quality time with my friends, Allan Savory and his wonderful wife, Jody Butterfield.  I do believe they have absolutely figured out “the” solution to a great many ills plaguing our world and encourage everyone alive on planet earth to support their efforts.  For anyone that has not already watched Allan’s 2013 TED talk (among the most widely watched of all TED talks), I urge you to take a few minutes to do so.

I also believe that the answer to spreading this message (the message behind Holistic Management) en masse may just lie in the message of health.  This is what clearly reaches people closest to where they live.  According to a major new analysis from the Global Burden of Disease Study (GBD) 2013, published in The Lancet in June of 2015, over 95% of the world’s population has health problems, with over a third having more than five health-related issues compromising them!  In the year 2013 no more than one in 20 people were free of any form of illness (4.3%).  And right now in the US the number one source of bankruptcy is simply a bad diagnosis.  The WHO tells us that cancer rates are supposed to increase by 70% over the next 20 years (and frankly, I believe this number may well be low).  Autoimmunity (the greatest, most insidious and most invisible health burden of our time) currently plagues an estimated 53 million Americans—more than heart disease and cancer combined. Also, according to the WHO, by the year 2020 “depression will be the single greatest health burden in the world.”  And depression is anything but an outward (“big picture”)-focused affliction in those suffering from it (I know…I was once its victim).  Given the economic climate worldwide currently (a trend so aptly predicted by Sir James Goldsmith’s 1994 warning about globalization—underscoring the reasons so many are leaving the land and seeking refuge that isn’t there in cities today) most people today are thoroughly preoccupied with mere survival. This is why I believe we all may sometimes feel as though we are spinning our wheels when it comes to reaching others. I believe that this is largely by design, as nothing is more malleable and controllable than a populace living in fear, economic strain, ill health and desperation. And if that bad diagnosis arrives (and more often than not today, it does) then how focused is anyone going to be on the big picture? How focused is anyone going to be on “saving the world” or addressing injustices when they are merely struggling to survive?

The beauty of what the Savory Institute promotes is that it potentially solves so much with its singular objective. I like to think I was able to successfully tie much of this together in my talk on Saturday. Ultimately, I believe that our combined objectives can not only be profoundly synergistic, but also extremely affordable and accessible for the average person— if done the right way.

You all already know from my book that although I advocate strongly for the importance of healthfully produced (100% pastured) animal source dietary meat and fat for optimal health, I also make a strong case for strictly moderating that protein intake—meeting but not exceeding our basic dietary requirements. This is not typical of most popularly promoted versions of the popular “Paleo Diet,” but instead I apply those basic “Paleo principles” to the modern science of human longevity, while also taking into account the uniquely challenging world we live in today.  What this effectively accomplishes is the cultivation of a primarily fat burning metabolism, which is infinitely more efficient than a carbohydrate burning metabolism (albeit far less profitable for multinational industry).  This also has the potential to make anyone’s grocery bill much more affordable while automatically leaving far more high quality nutrient dense food to go around for everyone.   How much more effectively could we feed the world if industrialized nations only consumed what they truly needed to for optimal health?

Nothing in the wilds of Nature normally takes more than it needs in order to survive. We are the only species that habitually devours everything in our path, in perpetual excess of what we need.   If the case can be made for cultivating a fat burning metabolism that eliminates the constant craving or need for replenishment and indulgence, then it’s easier to make the case for spending all that saved money on far better quality nutrition.   And a more physically/mentally healthy and mentally stable population is in a position to make far better and more rational decisions, better choices and becomes capable of entertaining greater visions.  Only then is it possible to see and more actively and effectively care about the bigger picture, and the future.

Not everyone is inclined to think about saving the world today (sadly), but literally everyone needs to eat.  Most people in the world today are desperately concerned about their health and the health of their families. This isn’t just about reaching people in cities (even as that is where most of the population is moving to).  I believe that there is an opportunity for new strength in our greater combined objectives.

The following is a testimonial graciously offered to me by Allan Savory, who experienced positive changes in his own health following the implementation of what he read in my book, Primal Body, Primal Mind a few years ago:

“Without question in my mind we owe a great debt to people like Nora Gedgaudas leading enlightened thinking about the food we eat guided by the millions of years of our own evolution in synergy with all other life forms on land and in oceans.  Where reductionist science, biased all too often by corporate greed, has it seems persistently got our diets precisely wrong she is one of the few getting it right and providing a platform of sound principles from nature that we can build upon as knowledge increases.  I cannot recommend her book strongly enough to anyone concerned with their own, or their children’s, mental and physical health.”  ~Allan Savory

For more information concerning the objectives of the Savory Institute and what you can do to help, please go to www.savoryinstitute.org.

Allan Savory

Announcing The Dawn of A New Ancestral Community

THE FOUNDATION FOR NUTRITIONAL WISDOM

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Yes—the rumors you may have heard in the street are true.

Somewhat forged from the fires of controversy (a whole other story), this newly launched non-profit organization, the Foundation For Nutritional Wisdom (FFNW) emerges from a very real and encompassing need.  Until now, both the Paleo/Primal communities and the Weston A. Price Foundation (WAPF) communities have shared an awkward and strained relationship, at best. While many Paleo/Primal adherents have made an effort to find some sense of home within the WAPF, that effort has often been met with less than open arms. In fact, it has been made more than clear in the last year through an article published and comments made by the very longtime president of the WAPF, Sally Fallon-Morrell that we in the Paleo/Primal community are flat-out personae non grata.

I, for one have been a member of the WAPF (and/or Price-Pottenger Nutrition Foundation) for mostly the last 20 years. I have supported many of its aims and promoted its efforts and membership to many, many people in that time. I have even spoken at some it their conferences in the past.  I have always valued the inherent wisdom in Weston A. Price’s work, and the work of other esteemed nutritional pioneers. I also greatly admired the early work and activism of Sally Fallon and particularly the now late Dr. Mary Enig, whom I had the honor of meeting and spending a couple of days with and learning from.  Together they originally represented a revolution toward understanding our own nutritional ancestral roots and the ways in which the wisdom of our ancestors might very well hold the key to our health and future as a species. As consummate activists, they also represented a certain radical, if not revolutionary ethical foundation of truth in nutritional science; distinguishing themselves apart from misguided and misguiding mainstream health authorities otherwise incestuously bound to the interests of Multinational Industry.  They were true heroes and health activists driven to make a difference.  –And make a difference, they have. No one can deny this, nor take that away from them.  We all owe a great deal to the many critical accomplishments of the Weston A. Price Foundation and its leadership.

But what started out as a seemingly open, inclusive and passionate exploration of and dedication to the truth has become increasingly tainted by more autocratic personal beliefs and agendas. There has been a growing rigidity with in the WAPF organization and–not unlike the current global political climate– a loss of democracy and a growing intolerance of philosophical differences within its ranks. Dissent or mere questioning has been met all too often with cold excommunication and/or legal threats.

Recent controversies concerning the questionable practices of one of WAPF’s most heavily and unquestioningly promoted “platinum level” sponsors have only served to underscore this cancerous problem. And far too many good people within the WAPF organization have been unjustly treated and tossed out by mere virtue of publicly telling their own truth out of a sense of personal responsibility, exposing untruths through reasonable scientific evidence (I suppose one could call it “whistleblowing”), or (god forbid) questioning WAPF authority.

To be candid, this really isn’t the kind of organization I signed up for– and I’m willing to bet it’s not what a lot of people have signed up for.  As such, other top WAPF sponsors are leaving and there are many other now former members (whether by their own choice or by excommunication) that are trapped in a sort of lost limbo of disillusioned homelessness.  This was once an organization focused on promoting the health of humans through rather diversely focused evidence put forth by a legitimately celebrated nutritional pioneer. It was once a unified front against the machinery of multinational interests. The WAPF has since somehow slipped into a mostly narrow, post-agriculturally focused nutritional agenda (with an added fixation on promoting a type of “fermented” cod liver oil not even recognized by Price, himself).  It’s almost as though any focus on our human pre-agricultural dietary history has been relegated to the back of the bus and essentially marginalized in favor of other agendas.

Something new has been needed by many of us for some time.

I was contacted by my friend, Dr. Ron Schmid, naturopathic physician and author of Traditional Foods are Your Best Medicine, The Untold Story of Milk and his newly-released book, Primal Nutrition, for which I contributed a foreword.  Although we have our minor philosophical differences, I have always respected Ron for his respectful open-mindedness, his thoughtfulness, integrity and tireless passion for doing the right thing– both as a healer and activist. His innovative product line, Dr. Ron’s Ultra-Pure is among the few I have felt comfortable recommending to others over the years without hesitation. When it comes to the details surrounding quality, Ron is the kind of stickler I genuinely value most. So when he contacted me to request my participation in the creation of a new, more inclusive Ancestral community, I was hard-pressed to say no.

This opportunity afforded by the Foundation For Nutritional Wisdom represents, for the first time ever, a true coming together of those seeking to embrace the work of nutritional pioneers such as Weston A. Price (along with other nutritional pioneers) and those embracing diet and health from a more evolutionary perspective.  In such an overlap there is great power of unified principle and a spirit of unified activism that I believe has the potential to move mountains.

These two closely related, passionately idealistic and positive, activist-oriented communities cannot afford to work in a compartmentalized fashion. The stakes in today’s dangerously industrialized and corporate-controlled world are simply too high.  Together we can have a more effective synergy not afforded by separatist attitudes.  The social and political climate of the world we live in is overly polarized as it is, after all.  And while many habitually choose to fruitlessly focus upon seemingly irreconcilable differences, it is the foundational commonalities between us that create the real power to transform that which desperately needs transformation. The very real possibilities here are truly exciting, refreshing and LONG overdue.

This organization will be more “officially” launched through an upcoming first annual conference designed to “Bring together the Paleo, Primal and Weston Price communities.”  The date of the conference is this coming November 21st – 22nd, 2015.  The location of the conference will be the Southbridge Resort & Conference Center in Southbridge, Massachusetts.

The organization’s stated mission and principles are as follows:

MISSON & PRINCIPLES

1. The Foundation’s mission is to bring together the Paleo, Primal and Weston Price communities, united by the belief that the writings of Dr. Weston Price form the core (but not the full extent) of the nutritional wisdom we need to live in optimal health. The research and ideas of current-day pioneers who have enlarged and updated nutritional knowledge for the modern world will be encouraged for presentation and open debate.

2. Democratic governance: Everyone present at the conference will become a Founding Member of the Foundation and have one vote. At the town hall meeting on Sunday morning, we will elect the Board for a one-year term. The Board will elect the officers, also for a one-year term. This procedure will be followed yearly at the annual conference.

3. The Board shall be responsive to the needs of the membership. Open discussion of any issue will be encouraged among members and the Board. Members will be encouraged to question authority. Board members shall make every attempt to see to it that authority is bottom up, rather than top down. We believe that thanks to email and iphones, democratic governance will not be difficult to achieve if we have the will.

4. The Foundation will under no circumstances officially endorse or promote any individual, product or company in any way, financially or otherwise.

It’s important to point out here that there is no dark agenda here or desire to tear down the existing Weston A. Price Foundation or its leadership.  The existing WAPF certainly has its place and will most certainly continue.  There IS a need, however to create a safe haven for otherwise disenfranchised adherents of these diverse philosophies in a way that provides an equal place around the table for everyone. The Foundation is not seeking to create some “melting pot” of homogenous philosophy, but instead a rich mosaic strengthened by its colorful contrasts.  Any tapestry takes on a whole new depth with varying threads of different colors and textures. What the FFNW is shooting for here is a multidimensional meeting of diverse minds with a certain fresh pioneering spirit that has somehow otherwise been lost in the dust of petty politics along the way.

The Foundation for Nutritional Wisdom is an organization centered on respect for nature, respect for our ancestral roots and indigenous values, and (perhaps most importantly) respect for one another.  

I hope many of you will find your way to this exciting and important historic event. For those that can’t make it, the FFNW will be offering live streaming. A vote will be cast by attendees toward the composition of the board of directors moving forward.  The Foundation’s new web site can be found here:  www.ffnw.org

The Facebook page is www.facebook.com/FoundationForNutritionalWisdom

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THE CONFERENCE SETTING

The conference will take place in a beautiful and charming country setting in Southbridge, Massachusetts, at the Southbridge Hotel and Conference Center. This small-town getaway in the heart of New England is surprisingly close in – less than an hour from Boston, Springfield, Hartford, CT and Providence, RI.

The hotel has set aside rooms just for our group at the price of $109/night (plus taxes), for single to quad occupancy. The hotel will reserve these rooms only until October 23rd, and then they will be released.

Even if you are on the fence, go ahead and make your reservation to stay for one or two nights! As we add more exciting speakers, and word gets out and attendance grows, you’ll be glad you did. Meet up with and make new friends. Bring your family and friends! Take some fun time while learning how to use nutrition to heal and move toward optimal health. Join us for a weekend retreat that could change your life. And ours.

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THE FOOD

Ah yes, the food! Wild caught salmon, grass-fed beef, pastured chicken, fresh organic vegetables and fruit, golden ghee and butter, raw milk, coconut oil, and other nutritional and culinary delights including coffee and chocolate! This hotel hosted a WAPF regional conference last fall. We’re in good hands!

Extra care has been given to the creation of an outstanding menu and the finest ingredients.

Your registration fee will include three wonderful, delicious, nutrient-dense meals – Saturday lunch buffet and banquet dinner, and Sunday morning breakfast.  Check out the menus and food donor links.

SPONSORS, EXHIBITORS & FOOD DONORS

Vital Choice Wild Seafood & Organics is graciously donating wild-caught salmon for our Saturday evening banquet.

US Wellness Meats is generously donating pastured chicken and grassfed beef for the lunch and banquet menus.

Dr. Ron’s Ultra-Pure, a platinum sponsor, is offering a wide variety of additive-free supplements, natural body care products, and educational materials, and hosting book signings with your favorite authors.

Ask About Being a Sponsor or Exhibitor

REGISTRATION

The early bird registration fee is just $157 and includes the educational sessions and exhibits on Saturday, the business meeting on Sunday and three meals—a lunch buffet, banquet dinner and breakfast Sunday morning. The early bird registration rate expires on Friday, October 23, 2015. After that date, registration will be $187.

The live streaming registration fee is just $47 before early bird date Friday, October 23, 2015 and $67 after.

As a Founding member of the FFNW, everyone that registers for this event will receive 10% off on all future conferences!

SEEKING WISDOM

Wisdom, regarded as one of the four cardinal virtues, is defined as the ability to think and act using knowledge, experience, understanding, common sense, and insight.  But how do we find wisdom? Why should we seek it? Perhaps Native Americans understood things that we have forgotten.

“Oh Great Spirit, whose voice I hear in the wind, whose breath gives life to all the world, hear me. I am small and weak. I need your strength and wisdom….

“Make me wise, so that I may understand the things you have taught my people. Let me learn the wisdom you have hidden in every leaf and rock. I seek strength, not that I may be greater than my brother, but so I may fight my greatest enemy – myself. Make me always ready to come to you with clean hands and straight eyes, so when life fades, as the fading sunset, my spirit may come to you without shame. ” 

– An Ogalala Lakota prayer translation

Let us seek strength and wisdom together.

Sincerely, the Conference Steering Committee:

Kaayla T. Daniel, PhD

David Gumpert

Ron Schmid, ND


THE FFNW CONFERENCE:

SPEAKERS & TOPICS

Kaayla Daniel, PhD, author of The Whole Soy Story and coauthor of Nourishing Broth

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Hook, Line and Stinker: The Truth About Fermented Cod Liver Oil

Kaayla, a certified nutritionist and acclaimed author, is the former Vice President of the Weston A. Price Foundation and recipient of the Foundation’s 2005 Integrity in Science award. She is at the center of the ongoing storm over “fermented” cod liver oil. She will rock your world with the shocking details. Tonight, she’ll be part of our team of keynote speakers.

Nora Gedgaudas, author of Primal Body, Primal Mind and Rethinking Fatigue

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Primal/Paleo Diets and Weston Price’s Teachings

Nora is a unifying figure in the world of alternative medicine and nutrition. Her best-selling book Primal Body, Primal Mind is meticulously researched, brilliant and innovative. Learn how the principles she has integrated can help you heal disease and move to optimal health.

Joan Grinzi, Executive Director of the Price-Pottenger Nutrition Foundation

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Gleanings: What Dr. Price Really Said

PPNF recently published in the Foundation’s quarterly journal “The Search for the Best Cod Liver Oil,” as well as a report cataloguing all of Dr. Price’s writings on cod liver oil and butter oil. Learn what he actually wrote – or didn’t write – about fermented cod liver oil, butter oil, and much more from an expert and outstanding speaker.

David Gumpert, author of The Raw Milk Revolution and The Raw Milk Answer Book

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Grassfed Dairy in Paleo, Primal, and Weston Price Diets

David is the go-to guy about what happens in the world of raw milk. His blog, The Complete Patient, is widely read and well respected. His objective reporting and discoveries about the fermented cod liver oil controversy led him to work with Kaayla Daniel and Ron Schmid in laying the groundwork for this new foundation. In this talk, he’ll address why grassfed raw milk and milk products may play an important role in healing diets. Tonight, he’ll share the keynote podium with Drs. Daniel and Schmid and others.

Randy Hartnell, Owner of Vital Choice Wild Seafood & Organics

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Seafood in Paleo/Primal/Weston Price Diets

Randy is all you’d expect in an ex-fisherman, and more. He’ll share what Weston Price wrote about seafood in traditional cultures, and the role of seafood in a healing and health building diet. Learn the difference between pollock and cod, and a pollock liver and a cod liver. Hint: they’re not the same.

Ron Schmid, ND, author of The Untold Story of Milk and Primal Nutrition

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How I Nearly Died But Then Recovered from Advanced Heart Failure 

Ron’s dietary principles for recovery from chronic disease incorporate ideas from paleo, primal and Weston Price diets. Based on his 34 years in practice as a naturopathic physician, he reports, “Almost anyone following these principles experiences dramatic improvements in health. Often, serious chronic diseases disappear, and stay disappeared as long as the principles are followed. In this talk, I will spell out exactly what these principles are. I’m retired. I play tennis and write. I want to share what I have learned with anyone who will listen!” Ron will also explain why he is convinced that fermented cod liver oil caused the heart failure that nearly killed him in 2012.

Panel Discussion: What Can the Paleo, Primal and Weston A. Price Communities Teach Each Other

AND MORE EXCITING SPEAKERS AND DEVELOPMENTS TO COME…

Read more about the proposed mission and governing principles of this new organization at the website:  www.ffnw.org

Registration for those physically attending is now available online or by mail.  Livestreaming registration is coming soon!

Click for the conference schedule

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