Eggs are good for you – who knew!?

29th May 2018

I was sent this article a few days ago: ‘Associations of egg consumption with cardiovascular disease in a cohort study of 0.5 million Chinese adults.’ Now, there would be a time when such an article would excite me and fill me with an urge to tell everyone ‘Eggs are good for you.’ Nowadays I tend to sigh and think: “another study for everyone to ignore”. Move along, nothing to see here.

Then I thought again. No, here we have yet more evidence, from a truly enormous observational study, that eating a substance with a very high cholesterol content does not increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. Instead, it protects against cardiovascular disease – not by a massive amount, but not that shabby

So, I decided I should make the effort to spread the message far and wide and throw down a challenge to the ‘What The Health’ brigade.

Here was the main conclusion of the study:

‘Among Chinese adults, a moderate level of egg consumption (up to <1 egg/day) was significantly associated with lower risk of CVD, largely independent of other risk factors.’

Yes, I know, how can you eat <1 egg/day (less than one egg per day)? That is a dietary intake that includes zero. Such is the joy of scientific literature. What they meant was, eating almost one egg a day – I think it was 0.88 of an egg – on average.

Expanding it a bit: compared with non-consumers, those who ate (almost one) egg daily had a lower risk of CVD. An 11% reduction (relative risk).

Splitting that down further:

  • Death from Ischaemic heart disease was reduced by 12% (0.88 [0.84-0.93])
  • Death from haemorrhagic stroke reduced by 26% (0.74 [0.67-0.82])
  • Death from ischaemic stroke reduced by 10%. (0.90 [0.85-0.95]).

There was also a significant dose-response relationships of egg consumption with morbidity (non-fatal illness) of all CVD endpoints (P for linear trend <0.05). Which means that the more eggs you ate, the greater the benefit. Daily consumers also had an 18% lower risk of CVD death and a 28% lower risk of haemorrhagic stroke death compared to those who ate no eggs at all.1

Of course, the demonization of eggs has become somewhat of a thing of the past by many of those who used to be very firmly ‘anti-egg’. Here is what the British Heart Foundation has to say on the matter:

‘Now current research shows that for most healthy people, cholesterol in food, such as eggs, has a much smaller effect on blood levels of total cholesterol and harmful LDL cholesterol, especially when compared with the much greater and more harmful effects of saturated fatty acids found in foods such as butter and fatty meat. Eggs are, in fact, low in saturated fat. Recent research has also shown that moderate egg consumption – up to one a day – does not increase heart disease risk in healthy individuals and can be part of a healthy diet.

As such, since about 2000, major world and UK health organizations, including us and the Department of Health, changed their advice on eggs and there is now no recommended limit on how many eggs people should eat, as long as you eat a varied diet.’ 2

Given that the BHF are no longer that concerned about egg consumption, based on several other studies, what does this Chinese research add? Well, it demonstrates that eggs are not simply neutral, they are positively beneficial for health.

The reason for highlighting this fact is, in part, to counter some of the ridiculous claims made by the massively influential documentary ‘What The Health.’ For those of you who have not heard of it, you can search it on the Internet.

It was created by a vegan network, and – amongst other ridiculous statements – made the claim that eating a daily egg was the equivalent of smoking five cigarettes a day. Now it turns out that eating an egg is the equivalent of going out for a five-mile run. Well, not quite, I exaggerate for effect.

I would like to know how the vegan network will decide to ignore and/or rubbish this study. Which they will undoubtedly try to do. Perhaps we should await some more pseudo-science from Dr Bernard, of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM). This sounds like a proper scientific organisation, but it is, at core, a highly vociferous, vegan pressure group.

Dr Bernard, up to now, has this to say about egg consumption:

‘Since one egg has the same amount of cholesterol as a Big Mac, it is unnecessary – even detrimental to your health – to consume eggs or egg products. One egg has more cholesterol than your body needs. In fact, any added dietary cholesterol is unnecessary because our bodies already produce more than the amount we require.

An excess of cholesterol leads to heart disease, so it’s no surprise that a 2010 study in the Canadian Journal of Cardiology found that those who consume the most eggs have a 19 percent increased risk for cardiovascular problems.3

One egg has more cholesterol than your body needs? What, per day, per week, per month…ever? In fact, a large egg contains around 185mg of cholesterol. An average adult will synthesize about 1gram of cholesterol per day. So, please try getting your facts somewhere close to correct.

I should add here that I have nothing against anyone deciding to be vegan. It is a lifestyle choice that I respect and can understand. I don’t agree with it, but everyone is free to make their own decisions. What I do not like is when science is sacrificed at the altar of a belief system, and people are then persuaded to take unhealthy decisions. Such as avoiding eggs.

Having got that off my chest, I will say that, to those who made the “What The Health” documentary, to those in the PCRM and the wider vegan community, I invite you to attack this study. Or maybe you are too ‘frit’ to enter the battleground.

References
1: http://heart.bmj.com/content/early/2018/04/17/heartjnl-2017-312651

2: https://www.bhf.org.uk/news-from-the-bhf/news-archive/2015/may/eggs-and-cholesterol

3: http://www.pcrm.org/nbBlog/index.php/the-incredibly-inedible-egg

403 thoughts on “Eggs are good for you – who knew!?

  1. Jean Humphreys

    Thank you for that. I shall share it with the daughter who has eggs for breakfast every day. Unfortunately, there is no point in sharing it with the daughter who never eats eggs as themselves – she just does not like them. Still, at least she is not afraid of them as a well concealed ingredient.

    Reply
  2. Bill In Oz

    Wonderful post ! Thank you.. I eat an average of 8 large eggs a week so this is exactly what I needed to know…

    However we will now need to watch out for the incoming veganista brigade corps missiles ..

    😦

    Reply
    1. Gary Ogden

      Bill in Oz: I gotcha beat. I eat 12, and would eat more were there not so many other fun things to eat. As for the vegans, they remind me of those with strong political or religious views. It is a belief system, and to hell with the evidence.

      Reply
      1. Bill In Oz

        Yea Gary, veganism is definitely a belief system which reminds me of a religion ….even though there is no promise of paradise…. Very curious !

      2. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

        I think I may draw a line under the moral and ethical issues with a vegan lifestyle. In my experience things can end up rather heated – with very little light. You can argue it is my fault, as I started it. Perhaps so, but there we go.

      3. Kay

        Vegans can only hold onto their moral and ethical beliefs because they either genuinely don’t know about, or refuse to listen to, the reality that many animals are run over in the fields when people raise the grain and legumes that figure so heavily into a vegan diet.

      4. Leon Roijen

        Dr Malcolm Kendrick:

        “I shall refer you to a previous comment of mine. Discussions on vegan lifestyle usually end up getting a big heated – with little light.”

        Then at least let’s try not to get heated up and look at the facts:

        1. A vegan or a vegetarian diet can be as healthy or unhealthy as a meat-based diet. I said that before.

        2. The “belief-system” term I believe you and others brought up here is rubbish. Why? Because everybody has a belief system and those who think it is ethically ok to eat meat hold that particular belief system. So you can’t point at the vegans and say “you have a belief system” while thinking you don’t have one yourself.

        3. People who think there is ethically nothing wrong with killing simply are amoral as far as this topic is concerned. They think there is nothing inherently wrong with it. Well, let me tell you, taking a life – be it a human or an animal life- is always wrong, especially when we can feed ourselves without having to take lifes.
        If there is nothing inherently wrong with killing – then, what would make me stop coming across you in the street and shoot you? Just because you are a human and not an animal?
        We humans have evolved brains, we can think about ethics and morality – the animals eat each other, they are beasts, literally, but aren’t we considering ourselves a “higher species” and shouldn’t we know better and understand that taking lifes is wrong – as all living beings want to stay alive?

        That is what it basically boils down to, every living being wants to stay alive and all those fallacies put forward by meat-eaters can’t beat that argument. Don’t do unto others what you don’t want others to do unto you.’

        I can’t respond to all, but for example, comparing putting down a pet because it is severely ill cannot be compared to slaughtering an animal for food.
        Likewise, it’s nonsense to talk about Western sensitivities – Buddhism for example doesn’t originate in the West.
        And concerning the animals that are killed during the farming of crops: We humans must eat, that’s a fact, we need vegetables, fruits and possibly other plants, but at least we can lessen the suffering and prevent the unnecessary killing.

        I’m not vegan, I simply never liked the taste of meat and I am basically a vegetarian apart from a little fish once a week.
        I am not taking the moral high ground here – I just want to show what sounds logical to me and I am well aware that my logic isn’t necessarily yours.

        One last thought: Isn’t it compeltely illogical, that a farmer, or any meat eater has pets, loves them, cares for them, maybe even pays 1000 of dollars (or euros or pounds) for them to heal them while at the same time he kills (or has killed) others to eat them?
        For me that is illogical, unless you see it all for what it is: egoism.

        Attention: These are just some unstructured, quickly typed thoughts 🙂

      5. AH Notepad

        Leon, you wrote “Well, let me tell you, taking a life – be it a human or an animal life- is always wrong, especially when we can feed ourselves without having to take lifes.
        If there is nothing inherently wrong with killing – then, what would make me stop coming across you in the street and shoot you? Just because you are a human and not an animal?

        Regrettably you do not have the absolute authority to make such a claim. The is much killing that goes on in nature. For something to live, something has to die. I suggest you read Simon Fairlie’s book “Meat – A benign Extravagance”. I know you will learn something, even though I suspect you will not agree with it.

      6. Leon

        “Regrettably you do not have the absolute authority to make such a claim. The is much killing that goes on in nature. For something to live, something has to die. I suggest you read Simon Fairlie’s book “Meat – A benign Extravagance”. I know you will learn something, even though I suspect you will not agree with it.”

        We are not living “in nature” anymore these days. We are evolved and we’ve got brains we can think with (whether we use them is another thing…).
        We do know that to be healthy, there is NO need whatsoever to kill animals for their meat.
        This all has nothing to do with “absolute authority” or agreeing or not agreeing… it’s a fact.
        If Olympic champions can be vegetarian or vegan, everybody can:

        https://www.peta.org/blog/6-olympic-champions-probably-no-clue-vegan/

      7. Gary Ogden

        Leon: We most certainly are “living in nature now.” We always have been and always will be. Nature looks different in a city than in a forest, but nature it is. Are you not aware that natural disasters afflict the comfortable city dwellers and forest creatures alike? Like it or not, everything in our biosphere eats something else. Among humans, we have rules about what is acceptable as food, which varies by culture, region, and accessibility, but no culture in human history has entirely eschewed eating animals except under religious strictures. The reason is simple: animal foods are the most nutrient dense of all. All of the world is nature.

      8. Gary Ogden

        Craig E: Me, too. I’ve tried three, but it’s a bit much. On my hiking day I eat only trail food (cheese, nuts, raisins, chocolate, and a bit of smoked salmon) until supper, or I would be at 14 per week.

  3. AH Notepad

    Ah ha! Gotcha! Now we have a topic with implied diet in the title, this should be fun. 😁. I eat at least two eggs most days, otherwise it might be 3 or maybe more.

    Reply
  4. Robert Dyson

    I guess another paradox to research. I have a friend who worried about cholesterol and removed the yolk of any egg, and went on statins, and then still needed coronary bypass surgery – it just shows you can’t be extreme enough in dealing with heart disease.
    I am killing myself on two eggs a day, fried in ‘best’ butter (as my mother used to say). Being well past that three score years and ten, I can live dangerously now. I might be that paradoxical anecdotal data point, but … we do have detailed understanding of the biochemistry/physiology now.

    Reply
  5. AH Notepad

    PS while anyone might be looking for aany possible downside, you are extremely unlikely, (or even definitely not going) to get bird flu from chickens, or any other non-human for that matter. The claims that you would were made by Albert Osterhaus, whose Dutch countrymen refer to as “the swine flu pope”. He apparently has some link with flu vaccine manufacturers, so maybe has an interest. Just saying.

    Reply
  6. Agg

    Eggs are such a perfect food item, so versatile and keep you full for longer.
    How someone once decided they are bad for you is beyond me.

    Reply
    1. AH Notepad

      Agg, it’s easy to make that decision if you happen to be Kellogs and your paid stooge has just said “breakfast is the most important meal of the day” and you add iron filings to the cornflakes. You wouldn’t want people eating eggs.

      Reply
    1. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

      It was a comment attributed to Margaret Thatcher

      In the early 1980s, Mrs Thatcher accused the Labour politician Denis Healey of being “frit”, corresponding with modern day “frightened”. It was widely reported, at the time, that she had employed a Lincolnshire dialect word, demonstrating her Grantham roots. This wasn’t quite true – “frit” is used much more widely in English regional use that just Lincolnshire. The term was seized upon by her political opponents and cries of “frit”, “is she frit?”, and even “Madame Frit” could be heard in the House of Commons for a good few years afterward.

      Reply
      1. Gary Ogden

        Dr. Kendrick: Thank you for introducing us to another fine Anglo-Saxon word. The American dialect is the poorer for lacking such.

      2. Jennifer

        Enjoying the post so much….but the mention of Mrs T has just sent me into a decline. As I was advised as a youngster….keep away from politics, religion and money….but really, there isn’t much to talk about that doesn’t include 1 or 2 or all 3 of them….especially food, as demonstrated on this blog.
        Back to basics….just made the loveliest, traditional, rock buns…(sans sugar, of course). I have returned to all the lovely recipes learned from my mother, and also include some great new healthy food ideas. Eggs are wonderful…it is the deadly chemicals added to them in processed foods that are the problem.

  7. Kurt

    Emma Morano. Died last year. 117 years old.
    In 2013, when asked about the secret of her longevity, she said that she ate three eggs a day, drank a glass of homemade grappa, and enjoyed a chocolate sometimes, but, above all, she thought positively about the future.

    Reply
    1. Celia

      A dear friend of mine who ate a daily egg for breakfast had a mild stroke at age 93, from which she recovered – except that the hospital in their wisdom put her on statins and a concerned friend persuaded her to give up her daily egg in favour of cereal. She declined over the next 2 years before her death at age 95.

      Reply
    2. BobM

      My theory about long life. Start with good genetics. Have a positive outlook, be happy. (The latter may be associated with the former.) Do something to develop a support system, which could be family, religion, support groups, etc. Don’t smoke too much. Look forward to and enjoy life.

      As for the current topic, supposedly the “What the Health” is so fraught with poor science as to be unwatchable. But Dr. Kendrick’s epi (epidemiological) evidence is, well, crap, the same as is the What the Health’s. If What the Health really wants to prove that eggs are bad, have them run a randomized controlled trial: one group has no eggs, and one eats as many as they can. I’d like to see the outcome of that one.

      Reply
      1. Celia

        BobM, did I read what you said correctly? Did you really say Dr Kendrick’s epidemiological evidence is crap???

      2. sundancer55

        @ BobM: “Start with good genetics”?? Genetics is the study of heredity. However, I’ve never been a big believer in heredity as being the deciding factor about *everything we are*.

        Personally, I’ve never put much stock into “inherited” diseases either. It just never made good sense to me, because I’m not entirely my Mom, I’m not entirely my Dad, and I’m not my brothers and sisters – – I’m a totally different person with a totally different lifestyle. Nowadays we also have to take into account the fact that we all live in different areas of the country or the world and each of those areas is subjected to different toxic loads – in the air, in the water, and in the local foods.

        Take a look at this article and see what you think. I don’t rely all that heavily on the American Cancer Society, as a rule, and I don’t know if their opinion or their “science” or anything else they say can be taken seriously in this article either. They are more about raising money for their upper tier leadership than dealing with reality, but it’s explained in much the same way I believe cancer happens to each individual person.

        I usually try to post links with these things, but I didn’t copy the link I guess and I’ve had this article saved in the draft section of my email for about a month now.

        ********************************************

        Debunking cancer myths: Few cancers come from an inherited gene, according to the scientists

        Is cancer genetic? While many people believe that cancer simply runs in their family, science tells us that very few cancers are actually caused by genes inherited from our parents. In fact, estimates suggest that only about 5-to-10 percent of all cancers stem from an inherited gene. Even the National Cancer Institute admits the fact that hereditary cancers are, in reality, quite rare.

        In spite of this, many people wrongly believe that they are doomed to get cancer just because a family member had it. But as the American Cancer Society notes, cancers that appear to run in families are not inherently caused by faulty genes. Families often share similar lifestyle habits — whether it be in regards to diet, exercise, tobacco use or alcohol consumption, these are all things that can influence your cancer risk independent of your genetics. It’s well-established that kids often pick up on their parents’ habits.

        By definition, cancer is a genetic disease — but not in the way we typically think of “genes.” This too can be confusing; we often think of genes as being what we inherit from our parents and pass down to our children. But your genes are so much more than that: They are the blueprint which lays the foundation for every cell in your body.

        Cancer is caused by changes to genes which disrupt the way your cells function, particularly regarding cell growth and division. In this way, cancer is a “genetic” disease — if effects genes. But for the vast majority of cases, these are not cellular changes passed down through families. As the American Cancer Society explains, most cancers are caused by acquired mutations.

        These kinds of mutations are changes that are acquired throughout the course of a lifetime — often thanks to exposure to carcinogenic substances. Whether it be the food you’re eating, the cigarettes you’re smoking or the pesticides you’re spraying on your lawn — these are the kinds of things that silently cause cancer over time.

        There have been reports on cancer-causing foods and chemicals for years, and even the lowly cancer industry admits that these are things that cause cancer. Yet few people are truly aware of this fact, and many erroneously believe that if cancer runs in their family, they’re out of luck.

        The truth is that nearly half of all cancers can be directly linked to lifestyle factors — with some research suggesting that figure is even higher. Some researchers believe that upwards of 90 percent of cancers are caused by some sort of controllable factor.

        A recent study found that 24 lifestyle factors contributed to 41 percent of cancer cases. As the study authors noted:

        “We estimated summary population attributable risk estimates for 24 risk factors (smoking [both passive and active], overweight and obesity, inadequate physical activity, diet [inadequate fruit and vegetable consumption, inadequate fiber intake, excess red and processed meat consumption, salt consumption, inadequate calcium and vitamin D intake], alcohol, hormones [oral contraceptives and hormone therapy], infections [Epstein-Barr virus, hepatitis B and C viruses, human papillomavirus, Helicobacter pylori], air pollution, natural and artificial ultraviolet radiation, radon and water disinfection by-products) by combining population attributable risk estimates for each of the 24 factors that had been previously estimated.”

        These are not genetic cancers — they are cancers caused by the litany of toxins we expose our bodies to, in one way or another, on a daily basis. Indeed, there is no shortage of cancer-causing chemicals in modern life; from added sugars and artificial dyes to pesticides and herbicides, these hazards are virtually everywhere. And to make matters worse, modern medicine often relies on more cancer-causing chemicals to treat disease.

        Fortunately, there are alternatives. Read more stories about cancer myths and truths at Cancer.news

        Sources for this article include:
        NewsWise.com
        Cancer.org

      3. Andy S

        sundancer55, re cancer society and genes
        The term “epigenetic factors” to explain gene expression/silencing would be closer to the mark. Stress, thoughts, feelings, depression are part of equation. Possibly all diseases could be explained epigenetically, including the main topic CVD.
        Gene mutation is debatable. Reversing/stabilizing a disease should be possible if gene environment is improved. Optimism is an epigenetic factor.

      4. chris c

        Yes genes load the gun but the environment pulls the trigger. They are not just passive things that sit there, they need to be expressed, or not.

        There is no cancer at all on one side of my family, and hardly any on the other. One line has this weird form of skinny Type 2 diabetes which I obviously inherited, but if I had only kept my carbs under control all my life it would probably never have been a problem. It might even have helped if I had eaten more eggs, but unfortunately I just don’t like the flavour or texture. I wait until they have grown up.

      5. Socratic Dog

        So far as genes and cancer go, the original metabolic theory of cancer, based on the old work of Otto Warburg, is making a comeback, and has a lot to commend it. The genetic theory, no matter how you parse it, may well be nonsense. Like other established medical paradigms with which we are all familiar, it is hard to overturn.
        So far as genetics and heart disease go, I’ve long suspected that “bad genes” are what gets the blame by doctors when no other accepted risk factors are present; “good genes” get the blame when those with one or all accepted risk factors fail to come down with heart disease and embarrass the experts.
        So if you take statins and are a vegan, and drop dead from an MI, well <> can’t beat your genes eh? 5 eggs a day and a serum cholesterol of 300, get run over by a bus at age 105, well <> amazing what good genes can make up for.

      6. annielaurie98524

        Ah, yes, the Procrustean scientific method. If the fact is too long to fit your theory, you lop off his legs and call him a budgie. If your fact is too short, you just put him on the rack and stretch him. None of that weak-kneed “pure” scientific method where we change our theory when it doesn’t fit the facts. That’s for sissies. But then there’s that pesky epigenetic stuff that makes hash of the good gene/bad gene excuse. We’ll just yell “Lamarckians!” at those guys.

      7. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

        Like it.

        The major problem, as I see it, is that people grab at an answer when they have about one per cent of the facts at their disposal – if indeed they have that many. Once they have their ‘answer’ they look everywhere for support, defend with great tenacity when attacked, and will never, ever, change their minds as new facts emerge. There are no facts that cannot be simply dismissed – it would seem.

      8. AH Notepad

        The difficult part is working out which “facts” are not, in fact, fiction, or in current parlance “alternative facts”.

      9. Andy S

        Ossified thinking, brain plasticity, artificial intelligence, facts, programming: affect how opinions are generated and maintained.
        Ossified thinking- inability to make new synaptic connections, opinions become facts
        Artificial intelligence- fact based human intelligence, no thinking outside the box
        Brain plasticity- lateral thinking, connecting dots, change opinion
        Programming- primitive brain instincts (herd instinct, safety in group, groupthink), laws and regulations, obedience to authorities, dogmas

      10. BobM

        Celia: All epidemiological evidence is crap. All of it. It’s garbage in, garbage out. It starts with food frequency questionnaires, which are inherently awful (i.e., What did you eat last week/last month/last season?). Then it gets worse from there.

        There was a study looking at epi evidence that was later tried in an RCT (randomized controlled trial). NONE of the epi theories turned out to be true. In fact, several were actually wrong according to RCT, including hormone replacement theory (epi= women who took HRT had fewer heart disease deaths; RCTs: HRT CAUSED more heart disease deaths).

        The best you say about epi evidence (*assuming the actual risks are not that high) is that it can be used to disprove something, which is what Dr. Kendrick is using it for. The problem with this is, of course, the data is bad. But it’s the best you can do.

        It’s like the posts I see justifying vegan/vegetarian lifestyles based on epi evidence: it’s useless to do so, as the data are worthless. (We can find as many epi studies indicating there’s no benefit to veganism/vegetarianism, so it’s a battle of really bad data.)

        While I’m firmly in the low carb/keto camp, I believe the best an epi study can do for my position (or any position) is to say that something might not be bad — they cannot say something is good. And this goes for studies that are in favor of my position, such as the recent PURE study.

        And if we continually allow people to put such weight on epi studies, we’ll continue to get garbage like the American Heart Association’s recent “saturated fat = bad” study. You just set your criteria as being “saturated fat = bad”, add and remove studies until you get that result, and then set your criteria so you add the studies that “prove” your hypothesis while excluding those studies that don’t. (NOTE: The AHA combined studies, but what I said applied here too.)

        We do ourselves a disservice to provide weight to epi studies, when little to no weight should be given to them.

        Bob

        * Obviously, if the actual/relative risks are shockingly high, then that might indicate causation. But studies that look at eating and try to ascertain outcomes are always bad in these risks.

      11. annielaurie98524

        There is a lot of truth in what you wrote, BobM. You are in synch with Marcia Angell and Richard Horton, former editors of JAMA and Lancet, respectively, who condemn much of “modern study results” as garbage or worse. And remember, that AHA “metastudy” that condemned sat fat especially bashed coconut oil. Except that NONE of the data they used had anything to do with coconut oil, so this was a “fact” pulled right out of their… bums (to use the polite British term instead of my more explicit American one). Just the “findings” that the seed-soy oil manufacturers financing the “study” wanted. And, if I remember correctly, the most recent study AHA used was about 20 years old.

    3. SW

      Show me a long lived person who avoided eggs! I eat 12-14 eggs a week, I hope that sees me through to a nice long life! If not, they sure were yummy!

      Reply
  8. Mr Chris

    Dear Malcolm
    thank you for bringing this interesting research to our notice. I used to eat a lot of eggs, then was brainwashed into believing the cholesterol thing , but have now gone back to them, especially bio eggs, so full of flavour.
    interesting the way institutions react not to new facts, but to justify their existing prejudices, axes for grinding. What the Health gives us made up facts. The BHF manages quickly to change the subject to saturated fats and anti-meat;
    Finally how is your man in the street mr Joe Six-pack supposed to decide for himself, trust the experts? but who are they? I despair

    Reply
  9. Sylvia Brooke

    Loving this Dr. Kendrick. Just had my breakfast – Bacon and Eggs. Will digest it all later (your email I mean, of course!!)

    Reply
  10. Rich Smith

    Brilliant! I must be super healthy because my egg consumption is at least a dozen a week – usually more like two dozen!

    For anyone who ever believed that eggs were bad for them, they should consider this; we evolved from tree creatures which of all the animal kingdom have the greatest opportunity to eat eggs. Anyone who knows anything at all about evolution will immediately realise that a tree creature that gets sick from eating eggs isn’t selected by survival of the fittest. Eggs must be good fo us by evolution!

    Reply
    1. sundancer55

      That is providing you believe in evolution, which I do not. Just like I do not believe in the vegan or even the vegetarian way of eating (WOE). But hey, that’s just me.

      Reply
      1. Gary Ogden

        sundancer55: Evolution is a concept in science; belief has nothing to do with it. Evidence from a wide range of scientific disciplines show that Darwin, in the main, got it right. What is your scientific criticism of evolutionary theory?

      2. Andy S

        Gary, hard to accept that there is a rat in our family tree. We owe a lot to that ancestor.
        “Ancient rats may be among our ancestors. Creationists bothered by the thought of humans descending from apes won’t like this one bit. After a six-year study of the mammal family tree, scientists now believe that many mammalian species (people included) originated with a tiny rat-like creature that crawled the Earth tens of millions of years ago.”

      3. sundancer55

        I don’t HAVE a “scientific” criticism. I simply do not BELIEVE we (mankind) came from frogs or lizards. This is my personal belief, if you want to have something different going on in your head, be my guest.

        Why did evolution stop when it got to mankind? I mean, why aren’t we still evolving? Are we going to end up looking like the science-fiction characters on tv before long?

        I prefer to believe we came from the breath of God.

      4. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

        Honest of you to say so. My own view is that we are still evolving – whether in a good way or not. I was recently reading that increasingly women are unable to have a ‘natural’ childbirth because so many women with a narrow pelvis have had their children born by caesarean section. Then their children have a narrow pelvis. Therefore a trait that would have been selected out, remains in the population.

        The regular use of Caesarean sections is having an impact on human evolution, say scientists.

        More mothers now need surgery to deliver a baby due to their narrow pelvis size, according to a study.

        Researchers estimate cases where the baby cannot fit down the birth canal have increased from 30 in 1,000 in the 1960s to 36 in 1,000 births today.

        Historically, these genes would not have been passed from mother to child as both would have died in labour.

        Researchers in Austria say the trend is likely to continue, but not to the extent that non-surgical births will become obsolete.

        Dr Philipp Mitteroecker, of the department of theoretical biology at the University of Vienna, said there was a long standing question in the understanding of human evolution.

        “Why is the rate of birth problems, in particular what we call fetopelvic disproportion – basically that the baby doesn’t fit through the maternal birth canal – why is this rate so high?” he said.

        “Without modern medical intervention such problems often were lethal and this is, from an evolutionary perspective, selection.

        “Women with a very narrow pelvis would not have survived birth 100 years ago. They do now and pass on their genes encoding for a narrow pelvis to their daughters.” http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-38210837

      5. Andy S

        Epigenetics drives evolution. Softer foods and less chewing results in narrow jaw bones and not enough space for teeth. Hence need for more orthodontists.

      6. Gary Ogden

        Andy S: I just listened to an interesting interview with Paul Erlich, who recently co-wrote a book called, “Jaws.” I’m very familiar with Dr. Price’s work in the 20th century devolution of the human jaw, but I never thought about the importance of chewing, and especially suckling at the breast, in jaw development.

      7. AH Notepad

        sundancer55, if you look at embryo development in humans, there are very close similarities with various other species at certain times in the development.

        Most species are evolving, including humans. Crocodiles seem to have reached an optimum for their environment, but if the environment changes enough, so will they.

      8. sundancer55

        @ Dr. M: That whole thing about women developing narrower pelvic bones sounds like something that Alfred Hitchcock would dream up. Did those “scientists” (or whoever wrote the article you were reading) say anything about boys developing narrower pelvises?

        And although I do not think C-sections are a good idea, I really have trouble believing stuff like this and certainly (if evolution WERE a factor) it would not take place within one generation. Sounds like nonsense to me, but that’s just my opinion.

        Back in 1975 my first baby was breech and transverse and I had her naturally, no C-section. In fact, my doctor never even mentioned a C-Section to me because he was not a fan except in dire circumstances. Nowadays you wouldn’t even have a choice – – they would schedule you for a c-section without even asking the patient/mother-to-be. Medical autonomy has gone out the window thanks to insurance companies and now FORCED insurance coverages. Mankind is backing up, I fear.

      9. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

        Of course, evolution can happen in one generation. In fact, that is the only way it can happen. An adaptation/mutation that is successful will pass on the genes. That is how it works.

    2. Kay

      Rich, that’s an interesting point. I’ve never seen that possibility mentioned by the folks who claim that our original diet was fruit.

      Reply
      1. LA_Bob

        It probably was fruit as well as the eggs. Heck, maybe that’s where orange juice for breakfast came from.

        Yes, I realize that’s different, but still…

        Oh, and it seems to me both fruit and eggs would be seasonal even in the tropics, wouldn’t they?

    3. chris c

      Interesting factoid from a recent Springwatch – film of a lamb, and later a sheep, and a deer, eating eggs out of birds’ nests, so not just tree creatures. Supposedly vegetarian creatures too.

      Reply
  11. peterlepaysan

    I am nearly 76 years old. I tend 2.4 ha of land that provides for cattle, sheep, horses. I can still tip a stroppy ram over to check its feet. I still pick up and stack hay bales. I still fell trees and convert them into firewood, which I stack and dry.

    As a child I recall being fed a minimum of an egg a day (cheap and easy). As an adult I have been eating a minimum of ,at least, two eggs a day, (yes chickens share the land with us).

    My latest quack (sorry, doctor) recently queried my cholesterol level, it was identicall to what it what it was when I was in my early 40’s. My response was “who cares?”

    With the livestock on our block protein is not a problem.

    Eggs are dangerous? Sigh!

    Reply
    1. Bill In Oz

      Pter, having farmed from 1985 till 2015, and am now retired on a 1200 square meter house block. I have my large organic gardens with vegetables and lots of fruit trees. But I envy you !

      Reply
  12. JanB

    Haven’t read the post yet, but I can tell you that a day without 2 or 3 eggs for breakfast (apart from my fasting day,natch) is bleak indeed.

    Reply
    1. sundancer55

      I agree with you, JanB. A “no egg day” would be bland indeed. When my babies were little (eons ago!) one of their first foods was a hunk of my toast dipped into the yolk of an over-easy egg. They loved it and thrived.

      Reply
    1. Hugh Mannity

      Eggs have nothing to do with type 2 diabetes, which is a dysfunction of carbohydrate metabolism. Eggs contain virtually no carbohydrate, which makes them an excellent food for people who can’t metabolise carbohydrate.

      (and 0.88 egg/day = a fraction over 6 eggs a week, though why they couldn’t have come out and said that is beyond me!)

      Reply
      1. Micki Jacobs

        Hugh,

        Are you aware of the more recent findings that impaired mucus layers in our gut, which protect the epithelium from bacteria in the gut, are highly correlated with diabetes?
        In rodents, manmade emulsifiers made this bacterial encroachment happen, but this was rodents.
        So they looked for evidence in humans.
        Folks who went for colonoscopies agreed to a tissue analysis of this mucus layer and whether bacteria had encroached – the health status of all of them was blinded for those who evaluated this. The correlation between this encroachment and diabetes was very strong. It didn’t matter their BMI, if they had bacterial encroachment of this mucus layer, they tended to have diabetes.
        So what acts to make this happen?
        One thing are these novel emulsifiers. As an aside, eggs have been a long-time emulsifier, but since we disparaged saturated fats, the food industry and many folks began to shun them.
        Since this quality was valued in foods – oils mixing in evenly in foods – the food industry created these emulsifiers. Turns out, not a good idea.
        Other artificial agents in food also act as detergents.

        While sugar is lousy, it looks like we missed some important etiological factors in diabetes.
        Not to mention the other weird ways we dink with our microbiomes and that of livestock and the soil and even our pets.
        We have asked the wrong things, therefore have flawed data, and are now in a morass of bad ideas and misinformation.

      2. Gary Ogden

        Micki Jacobs: Absolutely crucial point. We must ask the right questions in order to find useful answers. I think part of the reason Science has gone astray is that the institutional monetary incentive has overwhelmed curiosity as a driver of discovery. Professor Chris Exley made an important observation in the High Wire interview, something to the effect that a successful academic scientific career is based upon the amount of grant money a researcher brings to the institution; doing good quality science being of less value.

      3. Hugh Mannity

        Miki — Correlation does not imply causation. Has it been established that the impaired mucus layers existed prior to the onset of diabetes? If that is so, then there might well be something in it — or there might be a 3rd factor influencing both.

      4. Micki Jacobs

        Hugh,

        Right… correlation does not imply causation.
        This colonoscopy thing is new in Nature.
        No one has looked further.
        It just shows that alternatives seem to exist for etiology of diabetes, a disease we have tended to blame on sugar or foods we turn to sugar.
        This whole gut/microbiome thing is inchoate.
        But…huh.
        You’ve heard of ‘leaky gut?’

      5. Micki Jacobs

        Gary and Hugh,

        This article about food intake over time – comparing 1970 to 2014 – is interesting
        https://www.vox.com/science-and-health/2017/2/2/14485226/americans-avocado-consumption-usda-report
        You will notice that the big change is in fats and oils – not nearly so much sugar intake.
        So much for Taubes’ The Case Against Sugar.
        Not saying sugar is good, just noting the real data.

        It is my contention that the 1980 dietary guidelines from Stare and Hegsted (who have more recently been outed as supporting and being paid by the sugar industry to quell the increasing blame on sugar for cardiovascular disease), which put the blame for CVD on saturated fats and ascribed overweight to an energy imbalance (calories in minus calories spent), made for some devastating unintended consequences which remain unidentified to today.

        Instead, most double down on blaming the ‘usual suspects’ rather than thinking for alternative explanations.

        The change in fats from saturated to others led to hydrogenated high vitamin K1 oils (soy and canola) which actually makes the K1 become a novel/aberrant form of vitamin K that is dubbed dihydrophylloquinone or dihydrovitamin K1, which does not act as normal vitamin K. These fats are now known as manmade trans fatty acids and it is widely acknowledged that they damage health. But it is not because of their bonds – because of their trans fat status – but because of this weird form of K that makes calcium dysregulated.

        I claim that the way we have categorized fats, by their bonds, is flat-out not pertinent to their health effects. Instead, we need to look at the fat soluble nutrients (A, D, E and K) in them and understand how to maximize their actions and not inhibit them. So saturated fats is simply NOT the right question. This is why equivocal results have happened: we did not ask the right things.

        Some nice and more recent examples of incorrect questions now outed are the folks who looked at C diff as potentially caused or increased by trehalose. The usual explanation has been antibiotic resistance for the epidemic of C diff, but it turns out that C diff has a couple really heinous strains that LOVE trehalose.
        It is put into a bunch of foods and has remained off the radar of most as something potentially bad.
        Or look up neotame.
        Or consider what all the gums in foods do to microbiomes.
        Or what antibiotics added to huge amounts of products do to microbiomes – like triclosan.
        My mention of mucus layers/manmade emulsifiers and the mechanisms is one that needs expansion.

        So when we disparaged sat fats and calories, we began to add weird things to foods and make for some really weird oils. I blame them for problems that remain mostly unidentified for this mechanism of etiology of a variety of diseases. We asked the wrong things.
        The history of blaming cholesterol is fun. We asked the wrong thing. But since it was Keys that made this hypothesis so prominent, and he was revered, it really got going.
        It, too, is not the right question.
        Calories? Not the right question.

        My hypothesis of calcium dysregulation can be supported from many angles. It can explain what has been observed from a different angle(s). We have made fundamental mistakes about fats (labeling them incorrectly – rather, the bonds ARE accurate, just not pertinent).
        Obsessing over the wrong stuff, and not the right.
        By changing fats and adding weird things to foods to replicate the food qualities that the so-called ‘saturated fats’ had offered, we are now down the rabbit hole. It is a morass of misinformation, faulty data, and no one looking for the forest as each looks to the trees.

        We have a hard time finding the truth, don’t we?

      6. Hugh Mannity

        I think the answer is simple: Just Eat Real Food.

        i.e. unprocessed, or minimally processed (e.g. frozen veg.) aiming to get a nice broad variety of foods, some raw, some cooked, and throw a good quality multivitamin in on top just in case. Add in some fresh air, sunshine, exercise, a good night’s sleep, and you’re probably good to go.

        IMHO the worst possible thing is to worry about it all. None of us are going to get out alive, so relax and enjoy the ride.

  13. Vlad

    Let’s not forget that egg protein is perhaps the best quality protein there is – you want strong bones and muscles, you got to eat quality proteins (and do resistance training). If one wants to be thin and frail like Barnard or Michael Greger, then eat like they do. 🙂

    Reply
  14. Helen

    I gave up this delicious source of cholesterol for a very long time, along with other fatty foods from natural sources. At age 25 my cholesterol was “too high” and apparently I was about drop dead of CVD. I was tormented by this possibilty, having seen close relatives succumb.

    The high serum cholesterol was actually due to hypothyroidism, undiagnosed when symptoms were obvious in infancy until age 22, then given the wrong treatment for another 20 years or so. I took matters into my own hands around 2005. Ahem…you did promise to write more about this subject…

    Reply
    1. sundancer55

      Any corononer will tell you (my husband included) that most people, when they die, have very low cholesterol in their bloodwork. That should tell us how very important HIGH cholesterol readings are. But mankind is very slow to learn.

      Reply
    2. Micki Jacobs

      Helen,
      Hypothyroidism is a huge passion of mine.
      Are you aware of vitamin K2?
      It is an incredibly fascinating vitamin/hormone that factors into many diseases and there is rodent evidence that it’s really big in thyroid woes.
      We don’t know for humans…I think it’s because endocrinologists are morons, but each of us can decide for ourselves.

      New info:
      We consume vitamin K as K1, in plants, and many forms of K2, in a wide variety of foods, mostly animal but it is also in fermented plants such as natto or sauerkraut.
      Turns out that we convert much of these K forms into vitamin K3, menadione, in the gut and then package this K3 into chylomicrons which transport the K3 via the lymph system to distant tissues where an enzyme, UBIAD1, turns the K3 into a form of K2, MK-4.
      MK-4 is the form of K most found in us.
      And UBIAD1 also controls calcium and cholesterol.
      That is a huge statement, BTW.
      We eat K2 and it appears to reduce cholesterol and ensures that calcium goes where it should – bones and teeth…and not in arteries or soft tissues.
      A CAC=0 is a 15 year warranty from death by all causes. We measure CAC via a CT scan to determine if atheroscerosis exists.
      When rodents were followed to understand how they ate K1 and yet stored K2 as MK-4, various organs and tissues we’re analyzed for their K forms and amounts of K.
      Thyroids were off-the-charts in MK-4.
      Super high.
      Humans? Who knows? We tend to stuck in stupid and endos…well, they’re right up there.

      I have my story about thyroid maltreatment, too.
      I was the walking dead until T3 was added to my treatment. Subsequent to that, I discovered K2 and eat lots daily.
      It has helped a great deal.
      Maybe you would benefit, too?

      I happen to think lots of messed up thyroids are out there, unable to be diagnosed because of endocrinology mistakes about 4 decades ago, etiology unidentified because of stuck in stupid, and messed up calcium and messed up K actions are behind it all.

      See?
      You CAN connect thyroid, cholesterol, CVD.
      Only no one seems to because we are rather like the blind men and the elephant.

      Reply
      1. Lynda Cooper

        The treatment of people with hypothyroidism is nothing short of a National, if not worldwide, scandal, is one of the major failures of the NHS and another example of pharmaceutical companies calling the shots as their desire to make money from the dreaded T4 treatment clearly overrides what is best for the patients ( a bit like statins). GP’s are, as a general rule,completely inept in their knowledge of, and their abiilty to treat this life defining illness. I thank you for the knowledge that you have shared. However my only difficulty with this information is sharing it with my Daughter a fellow hypo sufferer. As she takes Warfarin increasing vitamin K would have an effect on her blood clotting level (INR). A doctors opinion would normally be useful in these circumstances but we all know that it would be virtually impossible to find a doctor who would consider the information regarding vitamin K helping hypothyroidism as of any value at all and would just keep on spouting the ” you only need T4″ line and disregarding any other evidence that might be beneficial to their patient.
        Dr Kendrick please could you cast you logic onto the treatment of hypothyroidism?

      2. Bill Logan

        I am on the rat poison for life but I supplement vitamin K2 and have done for over 2 years. My INR levels are very stable. There is research out there that confirms K2 supplementation stabilises INR levels.

      3. Andy S

        Bill, I declined rat poison for afib and went for fish oil, garlic and vit E. Pharmacist and dietician warned about vit K, clots blood! Never heard of K2.

      4. Mr Chris

        Andy S
        If your dietitian etc had never heard of Vit K2, that seems to me to be good reason for not talking to them.

      5. Andy S

        Mr Chris, That was the first and the last time that I have talked to a dietician. Where do they get their information from?

      6. Bill Logan

        DVT in the legs Andy. Second event 2 years after the first condemned me to a life on warfarin. Since the second event I have taken more interest as there was a distinct lack of information from the hospital.

      7. Micki Jacobs

        Lynda Cooper,

        We agree!

        Your daughter on warfarin is set up to calcify. Warfarin, by interfering with vitamin K makes for dysregulated calcium.
        Are you aware of nattokinase?
        It is a much better alternative, but it’s not mainstream.
        Check out A clinical study on the effect of nattokinase on carotid artery atherosclerosis and hyperlipidemia
        From 2017
        Sublingual nattokinase can prevent clots without making for soft tissue calcification.
        Or she could switch to NOAC.
        Warfarin is a bad idea. Sorry.

        Also, long chain K2 is high in cheeses. Real ones, not the strange orange slices.
        Check out the various K2 forms in fermented dairy that finally was evaluated by the USDA.

        And, interestingly, statins also mess with K actions to increase CAC.
        Cardiologists have spun this awkward finding as ‘plaque stabilization.’
        Bwahaha!

        So…my hypothesis is that we have messed up K actions to make for calcium dysregulation and this is a shared etiological factor in all the common chronic diseases: CVD, T2D, cancer, dementia, obesity, fractures, and likely autoimmune diseases, too.

        Calcium is found in us as hydroxyapatite and it is a signaling molecule. All these diseases have dysregulated calcium.
        But since this blog focuses on CVD, it is important to know that atherosclerosis BEGINS with microcalcifications! Not lipids, but screwed up calcium starts plaques. Seriously. Huh.
        Cardiology has gone off the rails and we have inadvertently lost K2 in diet because it’s in the fats! Plus the go-to heart drugs – dear statins – MAKE CAC.

        About 17 years ago I began to search for answers to my hypothyroidism. I began with endocrine disruptors. Then I morphed into diet and expanded disease focus and lo…I noticed calcium dysregulation. I called it the meh, meh, meh calcium hypothesis.
        I read the Pizzorno (sp?) Vitamin K monograph and began to really focus on vitamin K.
        Many are now. But not so much US nor UK. The Netherlands, Japan, and a few others are where most investigations are happening. Search it! Crazy important, but some only look at intake, some at pharmacology, some at only the relationship of increased fractures/CVD, some at K mechanisms…and so on.
        I have put it all together – the factors that improve K status and the factors that inhibit K status.
        I need to publish.

        Dr Kendrick, I claim that this IS the real cause of cardiovascular disease:
        Dysregulated calcium.

        K does not work alone, though. Mg is important as are other nutrients.
        Humans need enough vitamin D to make osteocalcin, a vitamin K-dependent protein huge in bone health and insulin sensitivity, for example.

      8. Andy S

        Micki, you might find the effect that the endocannabinoid system has on calcium signalling interesting. I will soon be supplementing with exogenous phyto cannabinoids from my garden.

      9. Leon Roijen

        Helen,

        “However my only difficulty with this information is sharing it with my Daughter a fellow hypo sufferer. As she takes Warfarin increasing vitamin K would have an effect on her blood clotting level (INR).”

        I have seen some research with people on Warfarin taking vitamin K, to stabilize their INR. Closely working with your doctor, your daughter *might* be able to take vitamin K. The most important thing with Warfarin and vitamin K seems a stable amount of intake, so everyday the same amount of vitamin K (in food and supplements) instead of big day-to-day changes.
        Oh, now I see Bill Logan wrote that already, too.

        Helen, Micky Jacobs,

        Warfarin is not worse than NOACS.When you get serious bleeding, there an antidote for Warfarin: vitamin K. But for most NOACS, there still is no antidote and if you get a serious bleeding, you have a big problem. Also, doctors don’t have a test to measure the efficacy of NOACS (they might have a too weak or a too strong effect), this contrary to Warfarin which effect can easily be measured.
        In the US, there have been lawsuits and the pharmaceutic industry has paid millions because of deaths from NOACS.

      10. JDPatten

        Not all NOACs are equivelant. I’ve been on three. Dabigatran can severely disrupt your digestive system. I can testify to six months of diarrhea after only six days of dabigatran.
        The Xa inhibitor rivaroxaban was the first alternative I was put on. That was fine. Then, since there was an apparent issue with bleeds on R, I was switched to what seems to be the overall best Xa NOAC, apixaban – brand name Eliquis: at least as effective as warfarin or the other NOACs to prevent ischemic stroke; substantially better than any other in avoiding brain bleeds or any other bleed. These Xa inhibitors now have antidotes that will be generally available this Summer, so that’s really no longer a worry.
        There is no interaction with any of the various Ks and the NOACs.

      11. Helen

        Micki, thank you for all the information. I do take K2, but I wasn’t aware of all the physiological processes you mention.

      12. Leon Roijen

        Hello JDPatten:

        “Not all NOACs are equivelant. I’ve been on three. Dabigatran can severely disrupt your digestive system. I can testify to six months of diarrhea after only six days of dabigatran.”

        Of course. They all belong to the same class of medicines but nevertheless they are all different and what works in one person won’t necessarily wor in another.

        The Xa inhibitor rivaroxaban was the first alternative I was put on. That was fine. Then, since there was an apparent issue with bleeds on R, I was switched”

        Well, consider yourself lucky that you were switched. My father-in-law died from the side-effects of Rivaroxaban/Xarelto.

        These Xa inhibitors now have antidotes that will be generally available this Summer, so that’s really no longer a worry.

        Well, at least that’s good news.
        But these XA inhibitors will only be used during serious bleeding. My father-in-law suffered from “micro-bleeding”, probably at several sites in his body and finally something like this happened to his lungs: https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S2213007115000441

        He had been using Rivaroxaban for 3-4 years. His serum iron and ferritin was always too low and GP’s kept pumping high doses of iron in him… I had warned my parents-in-law for years that this was not normal but they trusted their GP.

        Before, he had been using Warfarin for more than a decade and never had problems until a cardiologist thought he should be switched to a NOAC…… for no good reason… undoubtedly big Pharma was paying him for NOAC prescriptions.

      13. chris c

        Some of this WAS known and since ignored. I have heard of more than one elderly/retired doctor stating that when they saw high “cholesterol” they suspected hypothyroid and ran a TSH. Then statins so the connection was broken. Personal experience – hypERthyroid knocked my LDL down exactly as much as simvastatin, HypOthyroid. (overtreated -,it dislikes being stable – and the LDL is jacked up again). Yet when the thyroid is high is when my leg arteries fur up – when the LDL is low. Oops!

        I also ponder the lack of micronutrients in manufactured foodlike substances – eggs are a powerhouse of stuff and I wish I liked them, but I do eat liver and also Real Cheese for the K2 and CLA. Add in the antinutrients and non-nutrients in the likes of this

        https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2015/feb/21/a-feast-of-engineering-whats-really-in-your-food

        https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2018/apr/12/ultra-processed-truth-10-bestselling-foods-cherry-bakewell-fray-bentos-pies

        (yes I know it is the Guardian, bastion of veganism and virtue signalling but even a stopped clock is right twice a day)

        Fascinating how hypothyroid has become so much more common since low fat diets. In fact it may be a shorter list to consider the diseases that have NOT increased in the last half century.

    3. Micki Jacobs

      Those interested in hypothyroidism should read this gem:
      https://academic.oup.com/jcem/article/101/12/4964/2765082
      Is a Normal TSH Synonymous With “Euthyroidism” in Levothyroxine Monotherapy?

      The whole thing is amazing – and a former president of the American Thyroid Association is a co-author…the heretic – but this is fun:
      “In fact, an animal model of primary hypothyroidism supports the hypothesis that LT4 monotherapy does not achieve systemic euthyroidism. Thyroidectomized rodents treated with LT4 at doses that normalize serum TSH exhibit relatively lower serum T3 and higher serum T4 levels as well as markers of hypothyroidism within their brain, skeletal muscle, and liver tissues (10, 11). However, studies in humans are necessary given that interspecies differences could limit the translatability of these findings (5).”

      And no one has looked if this is the case for humans.
      Plus those on T4 are fundamentally different than euthroid folks in 7 of 21 objectives they considered.
      And since this affects mostly women and they tend to be disparaged (at least, I was when I complained that I did not feel well when I was told I should). I finally fell asleep while driving on the highway and it shook me so much that I decided to change doctors (again) and say that my thyroid was NOT right. F the TSH. Turns out, I needed T3. Lots do, but since doctors don’t believe what they are told by their patients and believe tests instead, many of us are impaired due to doctors screwing up. Endos…which is worse, a cardiologist or and endocrinologist? This question may not have an answer since they all suck. And folks who complained about muscle pains on statins were also not heard. Doctors ought to listen to patients.

      In short, endocrinology folks don’t understand the thyroid – and about 4 decades ago, they lost their moorings completely to put all their belief in T4 monotherapy and the TSH to monitor it. Just search about the conundrums some published about their patients who still complained that they felt terrible when the docs were following guidelines. There are a slew of them, yet the seeming ‘science’ basis of T4 monotherapy and the TSH were never questioned. Only the women were disparaged.

      And you can see about the rodent MK-4 thing here:
      https://www.google.com/search?ei=ADIPW5PlHeSsjwS8-IHAAQ&q=recent+advances+in+vitamin+K+metabolism+slideshow&oq=recent+advances+in+vitamin+K+metabolism+slideshow&gs_l=psy-ab.3..33i21k1j33i160k1l2.2838.4444.0.4813.10.9.0.0.0.0.300.816.2-2j1.3.0….0…1.1.64.psy-ab..7.3.815….0.I9wtnJaepao
      See slide 4

      Oh, BTW, egg yolks are good sources of K2.
      I

      Reply
    1. Andy S

      Good point about an egg goran. The hen egg is one cell, a complete food to our trillions of cells. My only concern is that commercial egg production relies on feed composed of genetically modified corn, soybeans and miscellaneous byproducts.

      Reply
  15. Andy S

    I have been eating eggs for a long time, way before 1998 when choline became an essential nutrient. Good for rats and mice too.

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2782876/
    Choline: An Essential Nutrient for Public Health
    Abstract
    Choline was officially recognized as an essential nutrient by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) in 1998. There is a significant variation in the dietary requirement for choline that can be explained by common genetic polymorphisms. Because of its wide-ranging roles in human metabolism, from cell structure to neurotransmitter synthesis, choline-deficiency is now thought to have an impact on diseases such as liver disease, atherosclerosis and possibly neurological disorders. Choline is found in a wide variety of foods. Egg yolks are the most concentrated source of choline in the American diet, providing 680 milligrams per 100 grams. Mean choline intakes for older children, men, women and pregnant women are far below the Adequate Intake established by the IOM. Given the importance of choline in a wide range of critical functions in the human body, coupled with less than optimal intakes among the population, dietary guidance should be developed to encourage the intake of choline-rich foods.

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5579609/
    Neuroprotective Actions of Dietary Choline

    Abstract
    Choline is an essential nutrient for humans. It is a precursor of membrane phospholipids (e.g., phosphatidylcholine (PC)), the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, and via betaine, the methyl group donor S-adenosylmethionine. High choline intake during gestation and early postnatal development in rat and mouse models improves cognitive function in adulthood, prevents age-related memory decline, and protects the brain from the neuropathological changes associated with Alzheimer’s disease (AD), and neurological damage associated with epilepsy, fetal alcohol syndrome, and inherited conditions such as Down and Rett syndromes. These effects of choline are correlated with modifications in histone and DNA methylation in brain, and with alterations in the expression of genes that encode proteins important for learning and memory processing, suggesting a possible epigenomic mechanism of action. Dietary choline intake in the adult may also influence cognitive function via an effect on PC containing eicosapentaenoic and docosahexaenoic acids; polyunsaturated species of PC whose levels are reduced in brains from AD patients, and is associated with higher memory performance, and resistance to cognitive decline.

    Reply
  16. Antony Sanderson

    Great post . . .
    One of your last comments really resonated with me . . .
    “What I do not like is when science is sacrificed at the altar of a belief system”
    It applies far more widely than just nutrition science . . .

    Reply
  17. TS

    There are 2 battles to be won aren’t there?
    The first is for people to embrace cholesterol.
    The second is for people to stop associating fats with fatness.
    I imagine that many who appreciate that cholesterol is a healthy fat will still need convincing that eating fats in general will not make them fat. Even with an appreciation of cholesterol, low fat products will be flying off our supermarket shelves into the baskets of fat people.

    You’d like to think that a basic education in biology and nutrition would help but it doesn’t seem to have done dietitians much good.

    P.S. Yes, let’s hear it for the eggs!

    Reply
    1. sundancer55

      Avoid “dieticians”. Follow only those who have studied actual nutrition (like certified nutritionists). That’s the first point I wanted to make. The second point is that people need to be aware of how much healtier it is to eat real butter than it is to eat or cook with oils. Most of the oils are intermixed (especially olive oil – laced with cheaper oils, as a rule) and that makes them very unhealthy. Avoid soy oil and corn oil and canola oil COMPLETELY if possible. Most oils are rancid upon purchase – at least that’s been my experience so now I avoid oils and use butter for everything. Eggs fried in butter – what could be better than that for the human body and soul?!

      Reply
      1. AH Notepad

        Eggs fried in butter – what could be better than that for the human body and soul?!

        Um……….two eggs fried in butter?
        Some bits of onion now and then make it taste even better.

      2. sundancer55

        Yes, Notepad! Toss in some multi-colored peppers and you’ve got eggs O’Brien.

  18. annielaurie98524

    Thank the food gods that, foodie though I am, I have fortunately missed being exposed to the “What the Health” documentary! Now knowing that it is the product of people that follow a completely unnatural lifestyle, ignore their diet’s contribution to the earth’s problems, and generally promote a science-free version of human evolution/physiology (i.e., vegans), I doubt I’ll waste any time remedying this gap in my life. For millennia, wild animals have eaten eggs. So-called “primitive” people have eaten eggs. Farming folk have eaten eggs. For a considerable, although lesser, duration, the French have eaten eggs (maybe it’s really the eggs, not the wine, that makes them healthier than Yanks & Brits?). Etc., etc. And I continue to shudder every time I think of the vast quantity of nutritionally-dense egg yolks that were tossed in the garbage for so many years by smug, ignorant yuppies, while children in famine-stricken areas of the world were going blind and/or dying of deficiency diseases that those egg yolks could have prevented.

    Reply
    1. BobM

      Have to see I ate a very low fat diet for years, but I wasn’t a “yuppie” at the time. I just thought it was healthy, because it was in all the magazines and books: fat and particularly saturated fat is deadly!

      Now, of course, I thinks that’s at best misleading, at worst a complete lie. But I was one of the sheep then.

      Reply
  19. Sylvia

    I suppose some may say about eggs or other foods that the rearing matters so much, so called enriched caged birds are still in small areas. Eggs are a wonderful food and our household eats a lot and I bake with butter and eggs.. But, we do need to think about the importance of good husbandry with compassion. Gone off track again, just a little.
    Thank you Dr Kendrick

    Reply
    1. Helen

      An excellent point, Sylvia. I live in a rural area where true free range eggs are not difficult to buy. Failing that, I buy only the organic eggs from a supermarket, because the welfare standards are guaranteed; supermarket ‘free range’ is nothing of the sort. Organic = expensive, so I just eat fewer of them.

      Reply
  20. Nana's Guide to a Healthy Life

    I think that the quality of the eggs makes a big difference. I only buy from local small farmers–who raise hens who are allowed to run around and eat what hens should eat and get fresh air and exercise. Our favorite farmer also raises his own beans and seeds for a mix to supplement the hens diet–no soy or corn(which are almost always GMO and contaminated)

    Reply
    1. Bill In Oz

      GMO’s corn & soy are not allowed to be grown here in Oz so generally these items are not in livestock feed here..( Occasionally during droughts we import the stuff from overseas. )

      But I still prefer eggs & meat from animals allowed to roam & feed on the pasture in paddock…

      Reply
  21. Jack Williamsen

    Another nutrition observational study with findings based on recall of food eaten over past year. Enough said. The authors should have 0.88 egg on their faces!

    Reply
  22. Green granny

    Oh, if I could only have persuaded my children to eat more eggs! ” Eggs come from chicken’s bottoms, Mummy, and they have poo on them”.
    Maybe now they are older they will be persuaded by Dr Malcolm. I certainly am.

    Reply
    1. dearieme

      Childhood joke.

      Mummy: “Shall we have ox tongue salad today?”
      Child: “Oh no, Mummy, it comes from a cow’s mouth. Ugh!”
      Mummy: “Then what would you like, dear?”
      Child: “Egg salad, please, Mummy.”

      Reply
  23. Kay

    4 eggs a day, cooked in butter. No signs I’m going to clutch my chest and fall to the ground with a heart attack any time soon.

    Reply
    1. LA_Bob

      Six egg yolks here, gently fried in butter (the yolks should come out runny, mmmmm…), garnished with tabasco sauce, cooked spinach, and grated parmesan cheese, sometimes with chopped onion and / or bell pepper. I eat them right out the hot pan, typically with a little cold salami to keep from burning my otherwise happy tongue.

      Reply
  24. Leon Roijen

    “I should add here that I have nothing against anyone deciding to be vegan. It is a lifestyle choice that I respect and can understand. I don’t agree with it, but everyone is free to make their own decisions. What I do not like is when science is sacrificed at the altar of a belief system, and people are then persuaded to take unhealthy decisions. Such as avoiding eggs.

    It’s an ethical issue, basically it has nothing to do with lifestyle.
    Vegan is not the healthiest way to go, indeed. Vegetarian is much safer, diet-wise.

    If I were vegan, I would say that contrary to European eggs, Chinese eggs obviously are healthier, problem solved 🙂

    Personally I don’t find these kind of studies interesting or convincing, whether they come with positive or negative results. It’s very hard to measure the health effects of just one food item.
    For example, examining the role of flavonoids (which are eabundant in many food items, especially fruits and vegetables) in CVD is a little easier already.

    As for eggs, I think it is still too early to jump to conclusions. This study only included healthy people and especially people with diabetes and those who already had cardiovascular disease were exluded. I think we can only speak of an association, nothing more.

    You have to feed eggs (in different amounts) to people with diabetes and CVD and have control groups – and only then you can get some idea of how (un-)healthy eggs are.
    And you also need a group of healthy people that eats eggs, compared to healthy people who don’t.
    A real clinical trial is what it takes before one can make a claim as to the (un-)healthiness of egss.

    Also, the Chinese study did not examine total mortality….. just CVD risk and deaths.

    Reply
    1. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

      I agree with most of your points. The problem is that if you were to do a proper randomised controlled clinical trial on egg eating it would cost several hundred million dollars – and no-one is ever going to fund that. You cannot patent eggs, so if you were a commercial egg producer you would have spent several hundred millions dollars that you would never, ever, get back. But I do like studies on 500,000 people, because that tends to smooth out all the other variables. Anyway, I am guessing they thought they were going to show the exact opposite of what they found.

      Reply
      1. Leon Roijen

        I agree with you that -based on this study- we can quite safely assume that eggs for the population as a whole pose no risks regarding CVD.

        But, I cannot agree with your conclusion that “it protects against cardiovascular disease – not by a massive amount, but not that shabby”. This conclusion could be right or not but cannot be put to rest with this Chinese study:

        There could be reasons why eggs *seem* to protect against CVD. One of the biggest reasons being “substitution”, I think: For example, people who eat eggs for breakfast might tend to put less sweet, sugary products on their bread and that could well explain why eggs seem to protect against CVD.
        If that’s the case it would not be correct to say that eggs protect against CVD. The conclusion then should be that sugary products increase CVD risk.

        Another reason could be that eggs contain a lot of proteins and fat, the two macronutrients that attenuate a quick rising (or spike) of glucose caused by “quick” carbohydrates, which also might confer some protection. In that case, of course it’s not just the egg that protects but many other products rich in proteins and/or fat could deliver the same protection.

      2. LA_Bob

        This is the fourth time I’ve seen this study referenced. The first time was on Stan Bleszynski’s blog (Heretic), then on Yahoo (without attribution, I think), then on Instapundit. I browsed the study itself. Seemed like kind of a nothingburger to me. An average of less than one egg a day in a sea of other dietary elements (not to mention even more environmental elements). Their multivariate analysis included quite a wide range of dietary and demographic factors, and the modest egg consumption correlated with better morbidity and mortality. It also correlated with higher education. I don’t know that they actually proved anything.

        Still, yeah, kudos to the Chinese and British researchers for not burying an inconvenient result.

      3. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

        Yes well, nutritional research is always tricky. You are always hoping you know the variables, and you are always substituting one thing for another. But I think we can say. At worst, eggs do not cause CVD. At best, they protect against CVD. Also, I can never resist prodding Shelob.

      4. Bill In Oz

        I’ve been waiting for a reaction.. But nothing from Shelob so far.. Or are you not letting them through ?

      5. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

        My rules are simple. No advertisements, no personal insults (people can say what they like about me) and nothing that I can make absolutely no sense of. Otherwise nothing blocked. In short, nothing yet.

      6. SW

        Well… I am in Hong Kong 6 months of year. Been there a long time. HK has longest lifespan in world now when you seperate out Mainland China. We eat a TON of eggs! Eggs are sold very well in shops as are century old eggs. Meat is very high on the list and the vast quantity of rice eaten is partly myth…

      7. chris c

        Always nice when a study gets published that shows the opposite of what they expected to find “it’s a paradox!”

        Historically there was a lot less diabetes before we were terrified off eating eggs, and also diabetes has increased while (red) meat consumption has declined, both things that make the vegan claims look somewhat suspicious.

  25. David Bailey

    Anyone who has eaten breakfast in a US restaurant, will have heard of “Egg Beaters” – ersatz eggs for those who fear the real thing. I GOOGLEd them to find their website, but when you try to reach their website you get the following terse message:

    “This page is not available in the European Economic Area. We apologize for any inconvenience.”

    In the circumstances, some might see sense in screening EU citizens from such a useless product, but what a sinister, paternalistic way of doing so!

    However, EU censorship is rather pathetic as you can break it using a proxy:

    https://us1.proxysite.com/process.php?d=UKSaZ%2FOn6AjedWbkxvA4RJ%2BsNd95O0E%3D&b=1

    From the website it would seem that Egg Beaters are made from egg whites only – discarding the yolks, which they say contain most of the cholesterol.

    Mad!

    Reply
    1. sundancer55

      Yep, and then they add in food coloring to make it yellow to look like a real egg. The coloring is usually made with some toxic chemical. It’s hard to think of anything that is powdered and boxed as being “healthy”. People will believe just about anything, though. They buy bottled TAP water, of all things. The brain of the average American today has gone completely on tilt.

      Reply
      1. sundancer55

        @ David Bailey: “worldwide science establishment”??? If the average american cannot read an ingredient list AND/OR is dumb enough to buy “boxed and powdered” eggs – – they deserve to be blamed.

      2. David Bailey

        Sundancer55,

        ” If the average american cannot read an ingredient list AND/OR is dumb enough to buy “boxed and powdered” eggs – they deserve to be blamed.”

        No! If people study medicine and/or science for many years, and then give out rotten advice (often not even based on the actual studies) and extol artificial food as better because of their special knowledge (for which they receive handsome salaries), I think they are totally to blame. I am not talking about the regular doctors, but those in research institutes that produce this crazy advice.

        The mix for a nut loaf is powdered and boxed, but I don’t think that invalidates its contents! You can’t even expect people to easily decode the ingredients on the side of a packet, many of them are concealed as E-numbers (at least on this side of the pond). Furthermore, to muddy the water, some natural chemicals have an E-number – for example citric acid can be referred to as E330 – while its salts have different E-numbers!

    2. David Bailey

      A little GOOGLing reveals that the web censorship is actually part of a spat about the GDPR rule about sites that hold on to people’s personal data! It would have been amazing if he EU was really concerned about people’s health!

      Reply
  26. Jean Humphreys

    Just want to say what I have thought for years. It would be hard to think of a more complete food than an egg. When a hen lays an egg, there is a complete chick inside it, just awaiting construction. Nothing goes through the shell, apart from a little air, once it starts to breathe, and a little moisture which helps the inner membrane stay flexible. Makes these “nose-to-tail” eaters look a little less virtuous – I bet they don’t eat the toenails, etc, but egg eaters do – albeit disassembled.
    Now I feel the need to go boil a couple for my tea.

    Reply
    1. Marguerite Harris

      Such a wonderful description of an egg, from Jean!
      I am lucky to get eggs from a local farmer, from hens who are out and about all day. I marvel at these lovely brown eggs… so simple and perfect.
      The farmer told me that they don’t wash them, just wipe off any obvious poo or whatever, and the “bloom” keeps them fresh. We don’t wash them till just before we use them.
      Thanks, all very interesting.

      Reply
  27. David Winter

    Dear Dr Kendrick.

    Thanks for the excellent article regarding eggs. I am old enough to have lived through the whole gamut of reactions by differing institutions to full cream milk, egg and just about any other food you might mention.. I just kept eating sensibly. Now 70 and owner of a big frame, i have lost three stone over the last ten years in order to relieve my heart of unnecessary stress. This was achieved largely by exercise and a high protein diet.

    I see today that there is a report about the high protein low carbo diet leading to heart failure. Do you have a reaction to the revelations ???

    Kindest regards, David.

    Sent from my iPad. Website: http://www. Davidjwinter.co

    Reply
  28. Old fogey

    Thank you, Dr. Kendrick, for another excellent post. My younger son, famous when a teenager for habitually sitting down and consuming two large hamburgers as an afternoon snack, became a vegetarian in his early 30s and then, to my horror, actually tried to subsist on a vegan diet for a while, until his love of pizza won out over his scruples.

    Needless to say I have tried to wean him away from this new religion without antagonizing him. My one success was in convincing him that no chickens are killed when we eat eggs by pointing out that eggs sold nowadays are not fertilized. I am still trying to get him to eat shrimp and other sea-food, using the argument that they are far apart from humans on the evolutionary track, thus far unsuccessfully.

    Happily, he, his wife, and their two teen-age children remain healthy under their vegetarian regime.

    Reply
    1. TS

      Old Fogey

      For some time we kept a small number of cattle and we loved both them and their meat. After an outdoor life for the animals we had a kindly slaughterman come to our home to stun and kill whilst the animal was enjoying its favourite food. But guess what – that is illegal now – nobody can be trusted to deal with the brains and spinal cord properly.
      If we didn’t eat farm animals they would cease to exist except in some zoo or safe wildlife park. Health and safety would not allow wild bulls, boars and rams to roam the countryside. At least our eaten animals enjoyed some healthy years. If animals are well and kindly treated, eating them after a good, though shortened life, is in my opinion a good option.

      Reply
      1. AH Notepad

        Read “Meat – a Benign Extravagance”. by Simon Fairlie.
        ISBN 9 78856 230551.

        An astute analysis of livestock agriculture.

      2. Old fogey

        Thank you so much for your comment, TS. I have used this argument with my son and his family, pointing out that if all humans became vegetarians the number of cattle, chickens, ducks, etc., would decline precipitously. Thank God we humans are omnivores.

      3. Leon Roijen

        “For some time we kept a small number of cattle and we loved both them and their meat. ”

        People who say they love an animal or a person and kill it/him/her next…, sorry, but that sounds to me like Abraham who wanted to sacrifice his son, and honestly that sounds creepy to me.

      4. AH Notepad

        Leon, you should get to know some of those people, then you might modify your judgement.

      5. Gary Ogden

        AH Notepad: One thing which strikes me as odd about the vegans is that, in their view, it is perfectly OK to murder plants, but not animals. Must be some sort of -ism. Kingdomism, perhaps?

      6. AH Notepad

        I am so cross, BBC in the UK have just broadcast a program “Pain, Pus and Poison” lauding the fraud Edward Jenner and his smallpox scam. Then went on to talk about the WHO in 1966 who supposedly reduced smallpox by vaccinations. The BBC should talk to Suzanne Humphries.

        Apologies for off topic rant, but misleading information can’t go unchallenged. CDC still holds smallpox virus.

      7. Bill In Oz

        @Leon… You wrote “People who say they love an animal or a person and kill it/him/her next…, sorry, but that sounds to me like Abraham who wanted to sacrifice his son, and honestly that sounds creepy to me.”
        Sorry but that is a very weird comment.
        1 : NOBODY here approves of killing people.. We are all even against doctors killing people ‘iatrogenicly’

        2: I suspect that nobody here approves or even accepts, the biblical story of Abraham almost killing his son… There is lots of God ordered killing in the old testament which is one reason for me long ago giving it the flick…

        3 : In all traditional farming societies domesticated animals were raised and then killed at home for food…That is the norm. And many farmers in western countries still do this for their own consumption. Here in Oz home raised & killed meat is prized by farm families for it’s better taste and because we know what the animal has eaten and been treated with.

        4 I admit it is a bit of a shock to those of us with western ‘sensitive’ sensibiltiies. We are used to eating meat which comes from animals that have been killed & processed in ‘secret’, in abattoirs which means we don’t have to ‘know’ how the meat on the plate got there.

        I was called out on this decades ago when I was in a vegetarian phase. I was camping in the Snowy Mountains here in Oz. And I met a bloke who had lived for months by himself eating the fish ( big trout ! ) he caught on the line and the rabbits he caught in simple string traps. He said ” I kill these animals only to live & I know exactly what I am killing to live; I respect & thank them for helping me stay alive.”

        Now that set me pondering..

      8. Micki Jacobs

        Leon,

        In an old National Geographic there was an article about places where healthy longevity was noted. Several cultures were covered and this author has morphed into creating and heavily promoting The Blue Zones.
        But this early article began with Sardinia, where they covered a family who had four dairy cows and a herd of sheep. On a charming table under a tree, there was a huge hunk of pecorrino on the table. The 80 something farmer was pictured with his grandson (or maybe great grandson), tickling his cheek and it was described that he put a little blood on this cute cheek because he had just slaughtered a calf. You know, how to make more milk available, known and common in cultures where they actually produce their food.
        Now the Blue Zones has become a religion with a message, but that first incidence of covering these cultures with active centenarians accidentally showed that they had farm animals, ate their animals and ate their animals’ products. They made cheese, too, which Dr Kendrick has cited as what THEY think has contributed to their health and longevity.
        In fact, Okinawans – also often cited for this longevity thing – attribute their longevity and health to pork. Only now that the Blue Zones and others have distilled their messages to ‘eat a plant-based diet, better yet…vegan diet,’ these facts are diminished.
        This phenomenon of seeing things through a belief – a message – is permeating so much these days. I live in the US and the dichotomy, the inability to see facts due to pervasive propaganda, is mind blowing. I have a best friend who believes what some right wing folks say, in spite of her intelligence and insight. It is maddening to watch the inability of folks to actually think.
        Propaganda is powerful and pervasive now.
        Veganism is that.

        See:
        https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11710358
        History and characteristics of Okinawan longevity food.(2001)

      9. Gary Ogden

        Micki Jacobs: Thank you for your thoughtful comment. A bit of intellectual humility would do us all a world of good.

      10. Martin Back

        Leon,
        There are many pet owners who love their animals yet have them put down when they see they are suffering. I have done so myself. In other words, we have taken it upon ourselves to shorten the animal’s natural life. We are not heartless or cruel, we did it because it seemed a necessity. A farmer who cares for his animals, gives them a good life, then ends it quickly and painlessly, is morally in the same boat, I submit. I don’t think a vegan can claim it is morally wrong. In fact, if a vegan failed to put down a suffering pet I would say he or she is in the wrong. That is, if vegans keep pets. Maybe they don’t want to trap themselves in the moral dilemma of letting them suffer.

  29. Rhod Tibbles

    Well well well, so eggs are suddenly beneficial and have a positive effect on CVD… !!??!! They certainly don’t do chcikens any harm in their development. Aren’t we just about totally p******** off with the plethora of fad diets that do far more harm than good.. and those whose diets are so limited and unhealthy as they omit major food groups…. Mankind has morphed to need a balanced diet of all food groups…. If the veggies and vegans want to limit their lives and the enjoyment of it, and do themselves dietary harm, fine,, but keep your diet preferences to yourselves…. Too many of these minority groups tend to have an almost evangelical need , to ram their beliefs down others throats, often with extremist methods….. To them I say…. leave us our eggs and the range of food creation gave us…… !!!!

    Reply
    1. TS

      Leon Roijen

      It would be hypocritical to eat other beef if you couldn’t eat your own, however much you care for your own.

      Reply
  30. Martin Back

    Looking at things from a chicken’s point of view, it needs a lot of cholesterol, enough for its own bodily needs plus extra to put in the egg. And chickenfeed is not, I think, cholesterol-laden. So it must have a very effective cholesterol-producing liver.

    How much cholesterol in chicken livers, I wonder?

    If you feed statins to a chicken, will it stop laying, or will it lay yolk-less eggs?

    Reply
  31. Chancery Stone

    “What I do not like is when science is sacrificed at the altar of a belief system, and people are then persuaded to take unhealthy decisions.”

    Absolutely – could not have said it better myself. Because I use B12 injections, I’ve discussed B12 deficiency with a lot of people and I find it deeply depressing how many people doggedly ruin their health following allegedly healthy diets. I recently had a conversation with a young woman who was having thyroid problems and her doctors had uncovered the fact hat she was B12 deficient. (It’s a triumph to actually be diagnosed as deficient in the UK since the baseline ‘normal’ is set so low even corpses could pass as normal). This poor girl was a vegan and when I asked her about it, after pointing out to her that veganism was even worse than vegetarianism for producing B12 deficiency, she assured me it wasn’t for ethical reasons but her health. When I enquired further she said she was a vegan because she was lactose intolerant.

    I told her that it was a very extreme way to deal with lactose intolerance and she could simply either skip milk or use lactose free products but she fell silent and it was very clear that being vegan was a ‘healthy living’ choice for her and she wasn’t going to be talked out of it. Given that B12 issues can be permanent and irreversible I consider this kind of health ‘advice’ bordering on criminal. Incidentally, I wonder why her docs hadn’t told her about the health ramifications of veganism & B12, because it was obviously news to her. Very sad when you consider she was much more likely to believe them, as ‘experts’ than me on a forum.

    Reply
      1. Bill In Oz

        Ummmmm yes that’s true.

        But in the past such ‘martyrs’ have had religious ‘ideologies’. Examples are ( were ?) Christian marts, Muslim Martyrs, Buddhist martyrs, even Pagan martyrs !
        Now in our secular world, where Gods & religion have only a minor role, people sacrifice themselves for vegan ideals without even the promise of Paradise afterwards…Very curious !

    1. David Bailey

      Another source of B12 deficiency (as I discovered the hard way) is to take proton pump inhibitors such as Omeprazole to cope with acid reflux. The problem is, the typical dose of PPI seems to push the acidity of the stomach way down so that it can’t absorb B12 from food. I was told I would need B12 injections every 3 months until I GOOGLEd the link to PPI’s (which I had taken for acid reflux caused by diclofenac, that was taken because of pain caused by Simvastatin….

      Reply
      1. Bill In Oz

        David, just restating this so I am clear about the process :
        1 Simavstatin caused stomach pains
        2 Which caused aid reflux
        3: Which was ‘dealt with’ by a script for Diclofenec
        4: Which caused your stomach to have lower acidity
        5 : Which prevented the proper absorption of food
        6 And lead to a deficiency of the essential vitamin B12
        7 Which was ‘dealt with’ by an injection every three months of B12
        Bugger, what a cock up !!
        And at no time in this process no medical person woke up to what was happening. Indeed the doctors CAUSED the illness ! (= iatrogenic disease )

        Did you get an apology from anyone when you told the doctors about this ?

      2. Bill In Oz

        A PS Thought – David, this means they are willing to KILL you rather than give up the cherished beliefs. Do you actually means this ?

      3. Andy S

        Bill in Oz, treating symptoms achieves the same result as well as generating income.

      4. Leon Roijen

        Yup, my husband was developping B12 deficiency on Proton Pump Inhibitors, too. We are living in the Netherlands but fortunately my husband is Belgian , working there and consequently we have acces to the Belgian health system. The Dutch system is not much better than the UK NHS.
        In Belgium GP’s often draw blood yearly, certainly if you ask them, so we discovered in time that my husband was low on B12.
        I read up on proton pump inhibitors and I found out they can cause several deficiencies and associated dieases, including CDV. They also tend to increase the risk of pneumonia.
        So I sent my husband back to his GP and instructed him to ask for Ranitidine. And it works as well. Only, before sleeping he takes Gaviscon suspension additionnally. Safer than proton pump inhibitors.

      5. David Bailey

        Bill,

        You got that list a little wrong.

        Simvatatin caused muscle/joint pains and cramps
        Therefore I was taking diclofenac, which caused extra stomach acidity
        Therefore I was given a PPI, which lowered my stomach acidity so much that I couldn’t absorb B12 from food
        Hence the B12 injections.

        Boy it felt good as the whole thing unraveled and I got back to normal!

        I have described this once before , but I repeated it for Chancery Stone’s benefit.

      6. Bill In Oz

        Thank you David for that clarification…. But the take away message remains the same it seems..

    2. Leon Roijen

      I am sorry to say but these are silly, uninformed remarks.
      Diet-wise, there is nothing inherently wrong with a plant or a meat based diet. You can mess up things badly diet-wise with both diets.
      Fact is that almost everybody who doesn’t analyse his diet has one or multiple deficiencies.
      And yes, a B12 deficiency (in some vegans) might produce more dramatic results in the short run but in the long run mineral deficiencies can cause very dramatic results, too, I can assure you.

      So please let’s stop the diet bashing.
      The problem is two-fold:

      -There are MANY irresponsible websites promoting this or that diet and not informing people of possible deficiencies and the measures against it they can take.

      -Secondly GP’s -in my opinion- have a huge responsibility and should get themselves WAY better informed on vitamins and minerals and be less prejudiced against them.
      As I said, almost everybody has a deficiency here or there and what do GP’s (and health organisations) do? They generally discourage the use of multivitamin/mineral supplements and want to promote “healthy eating”.
      First, it’s up to debate what exactly constitutes healthy eating. But more importantly: Healthier eating means behaviour change and that simply means that most people are going to fail unless they get very sick and have to.
      So what happens: People don’t make good diet choices, GP’s discourage the use of supplements and then you only have to wait until disease strikes.

      There is NO solid, serious proof whatsoever that people die taking a multivitamin/mineral supplement containing 100% (of most vitamins/minerals) of the Recommended Daily Allowance.
      Seriously, I think doctors should be sued because they are promoting illness and death caused by deficiencies.

      Reply
  32. JDPatten

    What better time to celebrate a long healthy life than a birthday?
    Birthday cakes for my family are homemade Viennese style tortes that really amount to a nut souffle using seven eggs.
    A fluffy bit of heaven for another year! Then back to daily omelettes.

    Reply
    1. JDPatten

      Oh, and some nice buttered toast to go with the omelette. My wife invented a concoction of almond flour, tofu, gluten flour and eggs with beaten whites that you’d swear was bread.
      Virtually no carbohydrate!

      Reply
  33. Angie

    January before last, the USDA (which regulates meat and eggs in a tangled network of regulations with the FDA) decided that eggs were ok: https://www.usnews.com/news/articles/2016/01/07/new-nutrition-guidelines-meat-eggs-are-ok-to-eat-after-all-usda-says However the reason is amusing. “Eggs, which the government had warned against for 40 years, are now considered part of a healthy diet…. Evidence has shown that high levels of cholesterol in the blood are associated with saturated fat from fatty meats rather than eggs, leading to a shift in the government’s guidelines.” ??!!

    Wow, talk about holding on to outdated ideas with a vice like grip! Pretty soon we’ll be blaming palm oil for it.

    Reply
  34. goransjoberg2015

    Within the main stream medical profession, diet as a “remedy” (in the Hippocratic sense) has basically been a taboo subject and I for one am now very please to see my favorite subject on “top of the agenda”.

    In fact, it now seems like that even the most conservative parts the medical UK community has converted to LCHF if I believe what I read at Marika Sboros’ blog about the Public Health Collaboration (PHC) conference in London

    http://foodmed.net

    E.g.

    “Are you on a low-fat, high-carb diet because your doctor or dietitian says that it’s “healthy”? That’s “fake news”, says Scottish professor of metabolic medicine Iain Broom.”

    Reply
  35. goransjoberg2015

    BTW, the book, “The End of Alzheimers – The First Program to Prevent and Reverse the Cognitive Decline of Dementia”, I brought up in the pervious post by Dr. Kendrick is a real block buster in the same Hippocratic sense.

    A great reading I must say!

    Reply
    1. Andy S

      goran, scientists/cardioogists have just concluded that supplements are not effective for CVD. You may be a paradox.

      http://www.onlinejacc.org/content/71/22/2570
      Journal of the American College of Cardiology
      Volume 71, Issue 22, June 2018
      “Their systematic reviews and meta-analyses showed generally moderate- or low-quality evidence for preventive benefits (folic acid for total cardiovascular disease, folic acid and B-vitamins for stroke), no effect (multivitamins, vitamins C, D, β-carotene, calcium, and selenium), or increased risk (antioxidant mixtures and niacin [with a statin] for all-cause mortality). Conclusive evidence for the benefit of any supplement across all dietary backgrounds (including deficiency and sufficiency) was not demonstrated; therefore, any benefits seen must be balanced against possible risks.”

      Reply
      1. Micki Jacobs

        They need to ask about vitamin K2.
        Search on PubMed.
        And D works with it…too much D, and no K2 to go with it and you tend to dysregulated calcium.

    2. goransjoberg2015

      Bill, Andy,

      Big Pharma/Big Agro have been fighting supplements/vitamins/healthy food viciously for a hundred years and they have funded numerous papers to “prove” that they are “right” as with the benefits of their statins. There is a hidden agenda here!

      With Linus Pauling I am “faithfully” sipping on my 15 g of vitamin C/day and with a new “brew” on my night table.

      When it comes to Dr. Bredesen’s Alzheimer’s program it is certainly a broad holistic one and against the main stream thinking of curing with “one Big Pharma pill”. In his book he tells about several successful cases in his clinical research and I don’t think he is lying about them.

      There are 36 items on his list to check for, basically in order to build more synapses than those which are continuously being destroyed in the process of cognitive decline.

      A key element in his ReCODE program is to reduce the hyperinsulinemia and here the ketogenic state (no carbs/fasting) is the starting point but if you have leaky guts you must first heal them. He advice that you skip gluten and diary to start with.

      Then he is relying on numerous more or less advanced lab tests (he is a researcher) to find out “what is wrong” and then treat what he find specifically but in a broad manner through food and supplements including herbs of different proven types. Detoxification is important an important part since Alzheimer’s is often related to toxic exposures – lead is a well-known culprit for mental decline. But again Bredesen is relying on lab tests.

      As an old researcher myself I find him scientific in his approach contrary to the Big Pharma’s ubiquitous “cheating”.

      Since there is no Big Pharma pill to treat the Alzheimer’s, people may turn more open to alternatives and you can certainly learn a lot about how to improve a failing memory by reading this book.

      Reply
      1. Martin Back

        I watched Dr Bredesen’s video “Reversing Alzheimer’s Disease” on YouTube. Very interesting. Why would there be a link between AD and the fat transport protein Apolipoprotein E? There are different varieties of ApoE. Most of us have two genes for ApoE3 with about a 9% chance of getting AD. But if you inherited one gene for ApoE4 you have a 30% chance of getting AD, and if both your genes are for ApoE4, you have a 90% chance of getting AD.

        Dr Bredesen looks back to the split with our simian ancestors and speculates why hominids needed the ApoE4 gene. Early hominids all had two copies of ApoE4, it is only in the last few thousand years that ApoE3 appears, and ApoE2 is even more recent. Basically, ApoE4 was protective for our lifestyle then, but is counter-productive now. However, all is not lost, and he has developed a successful lifestyle therapy to counter the three major causes of AD, he claims.

        Something that will please many people here: He condemns statins as “dementogens” and recommends that one should do whatever is necessary to get off them.

      2. Leon Roijen

        Martin,

        “Something that will please many people here: He condemns statins as “dementogens” and recommends that one should do whatever is necessary to get off them.”

        I fully agree. When I started simvastatin a long time ago, I developped terrible backpain with the feeling of having an iron bar in my back. Almost every movement hurt.

        As alarming was what happened to my brain: my short-term memory started dysfunctioning. I forgot a lot of things that had happened only seconds or minutes before. It was quite creepy. I was only 32 or 34 back then.

        With less information available at the time, it took me a while to link these symptoms to simvastatin. Later I learnt that in our neighbour country Germany, older people even were put away in nursing homes because they were supposed to have dementia, while later it was found that it was just the statins and that they turned back to normal after stopping the statins.

        Of course all this is merely “anecdotal” and statins are not dangerous…

        My husband knew an older lady who developped muscle pains while on statins and went on taking them for too long…. there was nothing the doctors could do for her and she died because of this….

        But again…anecdotal…. let’s just continue to enjoy this innocent candy.

  36. Stephen T

    Concerning ‘What the Health’, I’m glad to say that some vegans don’t think dishonesty is justifiable. The following comments on this propaganda come from Virginia Messina, a vegan dietitian

    “But unless you bring in concerns about animals, the environment, and social justice, you can’t make the case for a vegan diet as the only sensible way to eat. That’s why the scientific basis of What the Health was doomed from the start. Instead of focusing on unassailable reasons for being vegan, it focused on the ones that are most easily refuted.

    I realize that some activists believe that using any means necessary to get people to stop eating meat represents a win for animals. But putting aside the philosophical issue of whether the ends justify the means–that is, whether it’s okay to be dishonest if it saves animals–I think there are a number of problems with this argument.

    “. . . the vegan movement’s credibility is undermined when we make claims that are so easily refuted. If we get caught lying or exaggerating about the health aspects of veganism, why should anyone believe us when we try to tell them about the treatment of animals on farms, in zoos, and in research labs?”

    https://www.vegan.com/posts/vegan-dietitian-review-what-the-health/

    Reply
      1. Gary Ogden

        Bill in Oz: Off topic, but I went out to pick a grapefruit from my neighbor’s tree, and he handed me a bottle of 2016 Barossa Valley cab (He’s a liquor distributor). Tasty. He said it is considered the Napa Valley of Oz.

      2. Bill In Oz

        Gary there are about 25 distinct wine growing areas ( terroirs ) in Australia. The Barossa Valley in South Australia is about an hour away by car from my place. It is renowned for the quality of it’s Shiraz wines.. The Cabernet Sauvignon wine you mention is also grown & made there but the wine is not quite as popular…It’s a darker more complex flavoured wine which takes a longer aging to really bring it to perfection..So not a quaffing wine. It trends to be more expensive also…

        I have heard of Napa Valley but never tasted the wines made there…

      3. Craig E

        @Gary Ogden I can vouch for Barossa wines…and the Barossa itself….lovely place and not too off topic as a good red is heart healthy.

  37. goransjoberg2015

    Talking “egg means life” I am presently enjoying the view of 10 (!) very lively ducklings that arrived last week in my large pond, very naturally produced by the two mallards that have been around for a while. I assume that “eggs” even in this late stage of development have a very beneficial effect on my CVD 🙂

    Reply
  38. Errett

    A totally new causal factor in metabolic disease—–nuclear membrane wrinkles—–

    https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/05/180529185351.htm

    The new finding from the University of Virginia School of Medicine suggests that fatty liver disease and other unwanted effects of aging may be the result of our cells’ nuclei — the compartment containing our DNA — getting wrinkly. Those wrinkles appear to prevent our genes from functioning properly, the UVA researchers found.

    There’s no wrinkle cream for nuclear membranes, but there is a tantalizing possibility: We might use viruses to smooth the membranes’ surfaces — and restore the cells to functioning as they did in the glow of youth.

    Lumpy Membranes

    The new discovery from the lab of Irina M. Bochkis, PhD, of UVA’s Department of Pharmacology, shows that the location of our DNA inside the cell’s nucleus is critically important. Genes that are turned off are shoved up against the nuclear membrane, which encases the nucleus. But with age, our nuclear membranes become lumpy and irregular, and that prevents genes from turning off appropriately.

    “We have the same DNA in every single cell but each cell is different,” Bochkis explained. “So how does that work? Well, actually, certain genes need to be on in the liver and they have to be turned off in the brain, for example, and vice versa. If they’re not turned off appropriately, then you have problems.”

    Looking at a model of fatty liver disease, Bochkis found that our livers become studded with fat as we age because of the wrinkly nuclear membranes. “When your nuclear membrane is no longer functioning properly, it can release the DNA that’s supposed to be turned off,” she said. “So then your little liver cell becomes a little fat cell.”

    The accumulation of fat inside the liver can cause serious health effects, increasing the risk of type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease, even potentially leading to death. “The liver can end up looking like Swiss cheese,” Bochkis said.

    The membrane wrinkling stems from a lack of a substance called lamin, a cellular protein that comes in various forms. By putting the appropriate lamin back, we might smooth out the membrane, like Retinol helps smooth face wrinkles.

    Getting it there is the challenge. But Bochkis has an idea: We could use viruses to deliver the shipment. Scientists are already modifying viruses for beneficial medical purposes, and it would be particularly easy to get a modified virus to the liver because of the organ’s role in detoxifying the body. And if it works? “You’re going to have normal cells — normal, healthy cells — and they will appropriately express the genes that should be expressed and … you’re going to eradicate the stuff that shouldn’t be there,” she said.

    Bochkis suspects the wrinkling of the nuclear membrane is responsible for unwanted effects of aging in other parts of the body as well. “Every time I give this talk to colleagues, they say, ‘Well, do you think this is a universal mechanism?'” she said. “In my opinion, I think it is.”

    Story Source:

    Materials provided by University of Virginia Health System. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.

    Journal Reference:

    Holly Whitton, Larry N. Singh, Marissa A. Patrick, Andrew J. Price, Fernando G. Osorio, Carlos López-Otín, Irina M. Bochkis. Changes at the nuclear lamina alter binding of pioneer factor Foxa2 in aged liver. Aging Cell, 2018; 17 (3): e12742 DOI: 10.1111/acel.12742

    Reply
    1. Janet

      Never mind who funded it, think of all those professional ‘Researchers’ who weren’t on unemployment benefits.

      Reply
  39. Aileen

    I’m spending an afternoon a week during this summer sitting on an isolated bank of shingle watching over a rare colony of ground-nesting little terns, the aim being to try and stop predators from taking the eggs, and later the chicks. The eggs are in great demand by kestrels, crows, foxes and hedgehogs, and I suspect others that we haven’t yet cottoned on to. They go to quite some lengths to obtain this good nutritious food – no cholesterol qualms in evidence!

    Reply
  40. johnplatinumgoss

    I am a vegetarian, though I used to eat meat for thirty years. I cannot defend vegans because not being one I have no idea what difference that lifestyle would make to my well-being. Perhaps the two eggs (fried in oil) I had today were excessive. But they were the only two eggs I have had this week which overall is less than the recommended intake in the Chinese study.

    Once I practised yoga and have learned a lot from that about breathing (which I am almost certain for me affects my blood-pressure). My teacher was probably vegan. She said that although there was protein in eggs, there were also toxins. I suspect this is true from the accusatory remark: “Has somebody round here done an egg?”

    Reply
    1. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

      A yoga teacher told you that there were toxins in eggs. I always find it fascinating who people decide to listen to, and believe, for medical and scientific advice. What toxins would these be. Those generated within the chicken – for what purpose?

      Reply
      1. Andy S

        Dr. K, the yoga instructor might have detected hydrogen sulphide gas. Quite toxic if too many egg eaters in a confined space. Food combining might be involved, like beans and eggs.

      2. Joyce

        I presume there are toxins in everything which passes our lips! However, the alternative would mean a quicker death! Personally I’m been back on the eggs for months,served with “soldiers” (wholemeal naturally), slathered in butter. Carbs I know, but who can eat a boiled egg without soldiers? (Asparagus just doesn’t work for me!)

      3. AnnaM

        That cannot be. An egg is a marvel of perfection. Nothing wasted, not a molecule that I can see, and not a molecule short of what’s needed. Then, out comes a perfect little creature, having used every drop within the egg.

    2. Bill In Oz

      You cite this as a saying ““Has somebody round here done an egg?”
      Curious I have lived in the UK, Australia and the USA & mixed with yoga groups.
      I have never heard that saying ever ebfore..

      Also many many yoga influenced people eat eggs…Especially those eggs which are not fertilised by a rooster.. as technically such eggs are not regarded as ‘alive’ …

      The comment about eggs being thought to be toxic by yoga teachers is also a complete new one for me.. And I have known a large number of yoga practicioners over the decades..

      I suggest that your yoga teacher is being dominated by her veganism is saying this nonsense..

      Reply
    1. Andy S

      alcura, if you don’t eat eggs for breakfast you might eat something else that is not as nutritious; like corn flakes. I always settle for eggs. At 25 eggs a day there would not be much appetite for anything else, like carby stuff.

      Reply
      1. alcura

        Yes, you’re right. I found out in 2012 that I am gluten-intolerant and have to sub the usual bread or pancakes and the nearest I found was egg – that’s also the time when I learned about cosmic heart, that the heart is not merely a pump and started a keto way of eating…

  41. John Collis

    Although not directly related to eggs, there was an interesting programme on BBC 1 yesterday (The doctor who gave up drugs) that looked at milk allergy in infants and the possible reasons for the rise in the condition. It highlighted the association between the manufacturers of hypoallergenic formula and researchers. {the programme also looked at the use of antidepressants in adolescents which is interleaved with the milk allergy}

    Today I found this article which may be of interest https://theconversation.com/food-safety-warnings-are-making-eating-more-dangerous-97023?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Latest%20from%20The%20Conversation%20for%20May%2031%202018%20-%20102959065&utm_content=Latest%20from%20The%20Conversation%20for%20May%2031%202018%20-%20102959065+CID_534b0b5786532905da35f11d0a420056&utm_source=campaign_monitor_uk&utm_term=Food%20safety%20warnings%20are%20making%20eating%20more%20dangerous

    Reply
    1. Martin Back

      I have become allergic to milk in my late 60s. All my life I had milk with cereal (when I still ate breakfast), milk in tea and coffee, and occasional glasses of milk to drink, with never a problem. Then I started drinking black tea and coffee at home in an effort to cut weight, but I would drink tea with milk but no sugar when visiting. Over time the milky tea started giving me diarrhea, with very embarrassing results on two occasions. Now I never touch the stuff, but I can still drink cultured sour milk and eat cheese with no problems.

      Reply
      1. Sasha

        Cereal for breakfast could be one of the reasons you developed the intolerance to milk. You could experiment with having “Asian style breakfast” (soupy noodles or congees) for a couple of weeks and then reintroduce milk later in the day. You may find that your intolerance disappeared.

      2. Martin Back

        I haven’t eaten breakfast for a couple of years now. And I gave up cereal a few years before that. So I don’t think it’s the cereal that caused the intolerance. In any case, I don’t mind not tolerating milk. I can easily live without it.

  42. Philip Thackray

    Egg yolks have a great ability to absorb fats, hence Hollandaise sauce (Eggs + butter). I make my scrambled eggs as follows. I melt 3 tablespoons of butter in a sauce pan and then break 2 whole eggs into the pan. Using a whisk I completely combine the eggs and butter then cook as desired.
    Notes: For non-stick pan search this whisk on Amazon: 1873006030.
    Nutrition data for egg yolk: http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/dairy-and-egg-products/113/2 (select “one large”). For butter: http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/dairy-and-egg-products/133/2 (select “1 tbsp”).
    Three tablespoons of butter is the maximum amount that two eggs (the yolk parts) will absorb.
    I do follow the Omega 6 contents of what I eat. A single egg has 13.3 % Omega 6. The egg butter combination in this recipe has 5.3 % Omega 6.
    Phil
    Renfrew, PA USA

    Reply
    1. shirley3349

      One needs a whisk for Hollandaise sauce as one does not want any lumps to develop. Scrambled eggs, however, gets its character from the varied texture. Stirring intermittently with a wooden spoon is fine.
      My favourite method consists of melting a little butter in a non-stick pan to start with and then adding double cream, salt and lots of black pepper.

      Reply
      1. Bill In Oz

        Shirley I tried your scammbled eggs recipe this morning. Ummmm.Delicious ! Thanks.

  43. TS

    I find it strange, Dr Kendrick, that so many people take drugs to reduce stomach acid as they grow older, when it is said that as we age our stomachs tend to become less good at producing all the acid we need for digestion. Don’t hiatus hernias cause reflux and since our muscles tend to sag with age, aren’t most older people prone to the occasional reflux? We may not all have hernias but the problem must lie on a continuum of sorts. It seems odd to assume that reflux means too much acid when we might be struggling to produce enough sometimes. Is a test ever done to ascertain whether or not we are producing too much? (Or are people just being encouraged to keep buying or using drugs?)

    Reply
    1. TS

      P.S. This was not a personal request for help since I do not have the complaint myself. It’s just that many people I know do. Perhaps people following this blog are free of it too – I’m guessing they may be slimmer than the average.
      (Sorry for being so off topic. Just puzzled as usual.)

      Reply
      1. Mr Chris

        TS
        I used to have acid reflux at night. My doctor said drink more water. I did. The problem disappeared.
        I am against ANY medicine for life.

      2. chris c

        It is very common for acid reflux to resolve on a low carb diet, so I was disappointed when this didn’t happen for me. Giving up wheat did the trick though (also common) and the famotidine I’d been on for years came off the repeat prescription list.

        Yet another disease that has become far more common in recent decades and I wonder if it is a change in the wheat itself or another factor that makes one intolerant to it. Probably gut biota are involved.

    2. Andy S

      TS, maybe they are treating “acid” reflux. Treating acid with an antacid seems so logical. My understanding is that reflux can be reduced by consuming less carbs. Just googled “carbs and acid reflux” and suspicion was confirmed.

      Reply
    3. AnnaM

      I believe the problem is too little acid which paradoxically causes pain, perhaps they cannot digest well. I bought some hydrochloric acid pills and I take one once in a while if my stomach burns.

      Reply
      1. Jean Humphreys

        Funny you should mention too little acid. I was a martyr to heartburn, with occasional reflux, for many years, and followed all the recommendations, avoiding all the controversial foods, and ranitidine only kept a lid on it – it was not a cure. One day I felt really naughty, and said I WILL have a pickled onion, and hang the consequences. Only one consequence – the heartburn and reflux disappeared. Immediately. Permanently. Not controlled by medication, but cured.
        So heartburn and refux can be caused by too little acid.
        Now I just eat what I fancy.

  44. Lynda Thomas

    On a different subject how can I find out if a low carb diet is healthy for your heart.thank you g Thomas.

    Sent from my iPad

    >

    Reply
  45. Dave W.

    A timely article for me since I have ditched the cereal breakfast with milk and substituted it for a small slice of toasted wholemeal bread (with butter) and 2 eggs. So now on a least 14 eggs per week. No side effects as yet other than clucking in my sleep .

    I’ve been looking at the pros and cons of various diets. (hence the switch with my breakfast) The LCHF is winning the argument at the moment.

    I should thank Dr Kendrick here for his 2007 lecture in Leeds (I watched on YT many years ago) for the heads-up on the ‘cholesterol con’ and fat not being the driver for heart attacks and CVD.

    Looking at the ‘Blue Zone’ best diet theory they do tend to lean towards a high veg diet with a little meat. Environment and lifestyle also very important it would appear, with a reduction in stress (which has many different drivers ) high on the list.
    The Okinawans who were some of the longest lived people on the planet, 70% of their former diet consisted of Okinawan purple yams which conta in a lot of sugars apparently. So LCHF diet being the best? How did that song go : ‘ ..and the more I find out the less I know..’

    Reply
    1. Gary Ogden

      Dave W: Bravo! A fully-functioning brain moderated by the proper dose of intellectual humility.

      Reply
    2. goransjoberg2015

      New entry try

      Dave,

      I don’t know if you are familiar with the famous dentist (the best in the world at his time) Dr. Weston Price who toured the world eighty years ago to visit the remaining indigenous peoples who had not been trapped into eating “western style” (refined flour and sugar the main culprits as trade objects here) and to do serious research on the connection between what they ate and their health status, not least with their dental health status.

      He noted that naturally all peoples were adopted to what was digestible in their food environment and that varied tremendously with the local conditions where they were living but basically most of them were in excellent health conditions. Those outside agriculture though fared best which is not a controversial argument in my eyes. The major point Weston Price is making is though about the importance of getting enough of the micro nutrients through the food.

      For me Weston Price is a true scientist – not a fake one main stream medicine suggest.

      He summarized his research in a great book the reading of which I consider a “must” for anyone seriously interested in the connection between food and health.

      https://www.amazon.com/Nutrition-Physical-Degeneration-Weston-Price/dp/0916764206

      Reply
      1. Dave W

        goransjoberg2015

        Yes I have indeed read the book by Western A. Price. Several years ago I was trying to decide if I should go vegetarian or not. What was the best diet? Price never discovered one group that he studied that was 100% vegetarian (correct me if am wrong!) which made my mind up for me. I have asked my dentist if she had read Prices book (no she had not), since it describes how you can fix dental caries with the correct diet. He had actually discovered vitamin K in food although it was not given that name at the time.

        It was a fascinating read and I have to agree he was a true scientist. Travelling all over the world with his wife living the diet of the people he stayed with.

        I had the book on loan from the library so it’s not one on my shelf regrettably, but it did inspire my to buy the book Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon which I try to dip into from time to time. Another book (and Dr Kendrick) that helped me decide that fat was ok. Steering me back away from the advice given to a naive 20 year old in the 80’s that believed the theory that fat in your food ended up in your arteries. Sorry for the slow response by the way.

    3. smartersig

      No you have got it wrong Dave its lots of meat, lots of cows milk plenty of eggs all sloshed down with lashings of butter. Okinawa’s and in fact all the BlueZones thrive on this diet. The only reason they thrive on this diet however is they dont give two hoots

      Reply
  46. Mary Taylor

    You say: “One egg has more cholesterol than your body needs? What, per day, per week, per month…ever? In fact, a large egg contains around 185mg of cholesterol. An average adult will synthesize about 1gram of cholesterol per day. So, please try getting your facts somewhere close to correct.”
    That is duplicitous .

    Try quoting properly.

    “One egg has more cholesterol than your body needs. In fact, any added dietary cholesterol is unnecessary because our bodies already produce more than the amount we require.”

    So really the point is that one egg has more ADDITIONAL cholesterol than the body needs. The Heart and Stroke Foundation say about 300gms a day is recommended ( https://globalnews.ca/news/1849582/reality-check-how-much-cholesterol-should-you-really-be-eating/ ) which might be more than one egg – but not much more. So the claim you criticise is not nearly as wrong as you imply.

    Reply
    1. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

      I think I stand by my criticism. The body needs 1gram a day, an egg contains 185mg. Ergo, the body needs five to six times as much cholesterol as is contained in an egg. Also, I did quote properly. I changed no words. The extended quote is even more nonsensical ‘our bodies already produce more than the amount we require.’ So, our bodies synthesize more cholesterol than we need. Utter biological nonsense.

      Reply
      1. Janet

        “… our bodies synthesize more cholesterol than we need…”

        Who sez so ? – Probably the same Wise Man who determined our RDA of vitamin C as being 90mg / day.
        Guinea pigs can’t read, but much less than 30 mg per kg body weight and they do poorly.
        Apes also ignore his advice…and will forage enough to take in 4+ grams per day.
        I’m aiming for an eventual 12 to 16 gram / day

        As you perceptively observe, Nonsense. (a.k.a. BS, Bilge or pifffle !!! )

      2. Bill In Oz

        It is curious that a veganista would attempt to propagate ‘false data’ here…
        It does say a lot about the strength of her ‘convictions’ but not in a good way.

      3. Errett

        Janet—just one more fact about Vit. C—

        https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/03/080320120726.htm

        Unlike the more than 4,000 other species of mammals who manufacture vitamin C, and lots of it, the red blood cells of the handful of vitamin C-defective species are specially equipped to suck up the vitamin’s oxidized form, so-called L-dehydroascorbic acid (DHA), the researchers report in the March21st issue of Cell, a publication of Cell Press. Once inside the blood cells, that DHA–which is immediately transformed back into ascorbic acid (a.k.a. vitamin C)–can be efficiently carried through the bloodstream to the rest of the body, the researchers suggest.

        “Evolution is amazing. Even though people talk about this as an ‘inborn error’–a metabolic defect that all humans have–there is also this incredible manner in which we’ve responded to the defect, using some of the body’s most plentiful cells,” said Naomi Taylor of Université Montpellier I and II in France, noting that the body harbors billions of red blood cells. “[Through evolution], we’ve created this system that takes out the oxidized form of vitamin C and transports the essential, antioxidant form.”

        Meanwhile, the red cells of other mammals apparently take up very little, if any, DHA, which might explain why they need to produce so much more vitamin C than we need to get from our diets, Taylor said. The recommended daily dose of vitamin C for humans is just one mg/kg, while goats, for example, produce the vitamin at a striking rate of 200 mg/kg each day.

        In essence, the red cells of animals that can’t make vitamin C recycle what little they’ve got. Earlier studies had described the recycling process, Taylor said. “Our contribution to the whole story is to show that this process of recycling exists specifically in mammals that don’t make vitamin C.”

        Scientists knew that the protein called Glut1, found in the membranes of cells throughout the body, is the primary transporter of glucose. They also knew that Glut1 can transport DHA too, thanks to the structural similarities between the two molecules. In biochemical assays, it appeared that the glucose transporter would move glucose and DHA interchangeably.

        But, in the new study, Taylor’s group made a surprising discovery: The Glut1 on human red blood cells strongly favors DHA over glucose. In fact, the human blood cells are known to carry more Glut1 than any other cell type, harboring more than 200,000 molecules on the surface of every cell. Nevertheless, the researchers found, as red blood cells develop in the bone marrow, their transport of glucose declines even as Glut1 numbers skyrocket.

        The key to the glucose transporters switch to DHA, they show, is the presence of another membrane protein called stomatin. (Accordingly, in patients with a rare genetic disorder of red cell membrane permeability wherein stomatin is only present at low levels, DHA transport is decreased by 50% while glucose uptake is significantly increased, they report.)

        Then, another surprise: The researchers found that the red cells of mice, a species that can produce vitamin C, don’t carry Glut1 on their red blood cells at all. They carry Glut4 instead. They suspected that the differences in human red blood cells might be linked to our inability to synthesize the reduced form of DHA, vitamin C, from glucose. In fact, they confirmed Glut1 expression on human, guinea pig and fruit bat red blood cells, but not on any other mammalian red cells tested, including rabbit, rat, cat, dog and chinchilla. Next, they took a closer look at primates. Primates belonging to the Haplorrhini suborder (including prosimian tarsiers, new world monkeys, old world monkeys, humans and apes) have lost the ability to synthesize vitamin C, whereas primates in the Strepsirrhini suborder (including lemurs) are reportedly able to produce this vitamin, Taylor explained.

        Notably, they detected Glut1 on all tested red blood cells of primates within the higher primate group, including long-tailed macaques, rhesus monkeys, baboons and magot monkeys. In marked contrast, Glut1 was not detected on lemur red blood cells. Moreover, they report, although DHA uptake in human and magot red cells was similar, the level of transport in cells from three different lemur species was less than 10% of that detected in higher primates.

        “Red blood cell-specific Glut1 expression and DHA transport are specific traits of the few vitamin C-deficient mammalian species, encompassing only higher primates, guinea pigs and fruit bats,” the researchers concluded. “Indeed, the red cells of adult mice do not harbor Glut1 and do not transport DHA. Rather, Glut4 is expressed on their cells. Thus, the concomitant induction of Glut1 and stomatin during red blood cell differentiation constitutes a compensatory mechanism in mammals that are unable to synthesize the essential ascorbic acid metabolite,” otherwise known as vitamin C.

    2. Craig E

      @Mary cholesterol biosynthesis is subject to negative feedback loops. More dietary cholesterol = less de novo synthesis. In any case…using your logic one could argue that eating anything that the body can produce itself in adequate quantities is unnecessary. Would you argue that? If not what exactly is your vegan point of view? People don’t eat eggs for the cholesterol…they eat them because they taste great and are packed full of nutrients.

      Reply
    3. David Bailey

      Mary,

      I think you need to clearly distinguish between your views as a Vegan – presumably concern for animal welfare – and the science of nutrition. For a while these seemed to coincide to some extent, as meat and saturated fat were condemned on essentially spurious grounds, but really these are two distinct concerns.

      There seems to have been some extraordinary misinformation regarding the dangers of meat eating – for example, here is an expose of the research that claims that meat causes cancer:

      http://www.diagnosisdiet.com/meat-and-cancer/

      The problem faced by such researchers is that insufficient rats actually get cancer naturally on a high meat diet – so a huge number of rats would need to be tested to come to any conclusion. To reach a conclusion, they prime both sets of rats with an injection of a carcinogen! Even then the results seem utterly inconclusive – yet the meat causes cancer message has been screamed around the world.

      Reply
    4. Leon Roijen

      If you do a little research, you’ll find that dietary cholesterol only minimally contributes to cholesterol blood levels. For example, see Mayo Clinics and Harvard. And there are studies out there, too.
      It’s a joke, we all have been told nonsense for decades.

      Reply
  47. Andy S

    Thank you Dr.K. this episode has led me to a better understanding of CVD/diet

    Connecting dots has led me to connect flattus to H2S and CVD.
    : study shows eggs are beneficial
    : yoga instructor, eggs are toxic
    : yoga instructor can sense egg consumer via H2S in fart
    :sulphur containing foods are considered healthy; eggs, garlic, onions, cabbage etc.
    :H2S is a toxic gas as is NO, CO
    : But NO is good for CVD
    : gut microbiome produce H2S from sulphur in food
    :googled H2S and discoverd benefits of this compound to gut and CVD

    Conclusion: eggs benefit CVD because of H2S

    Some references to show that I m not making this up:

    https://aspirenaturalhealth.com/sulfur-and-sulphate-reducing-bacteria-another-piece-in-the-puzzle-post-149-by-dr-tim-gerstmar-3262012/

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/29025733
    “Hydrogen sulfide (H2S) has emerged as an important mediator of many physiological functions, including gastrointestinal mucosal defense and repair.”

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/27869680
    “Thus far, research has focused on the effects of H₂S enzymatically produced by cardiovascular tissues. However, some recent evidence indicates that H₂S released in the colon may also contribute to the control of arterial blood pressure. Incidentally, sulfate-reducing bacteria are ubiquitous in mammalian colon, and H₂S is just one among a number of molecules produced by the gut flora. Other gut bacteria-derived compounds that may affect the circulatory system include methane, nitric oxide, carbon monoxide, trimethylamine or indole.”

    Reply
  48. goransjoberg2015

    Since “healthy” food now is an approved subject to discuss on this blog entry I would like to bring in what I learnt from the Mercola newsletter this incredibly sunny Sunday morning while looking at the ten ducklings roaming around looking for nutritious food in the pond outside my bedroom window.

    What Mercola now brings into my “innocent” head is the importance of flavor in the food we are exposed to and how we are being fooled/hoodwinked by flavor additions in junk foods in order to not being able to stop eating this cheap stuff with poor nutritional value.

    The newsletter is all about a book from the award-winning journalist and author, Mark Schatzker who investigates the introduction of flavor into the industrialized food supply: “The Dorito Effect: The Surprising New Truth About Food and Flavor”

    As a lover of serious books about food and health this one is now on top of my “to buy” books.

    https://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2018/06/03/truth-about-food-and-flavor.aspx?utm_source=dnl&utm_medium=email&utm_content=art1&utm_campaign=20180603Z2&et_cid=DM216901&et_rid=325988165

    Reply
    1. Martin Back

      “Between 1989 and 2012 … Americans collectively spent more than $1 trillion on weight loss.” — The Dorito Effect

      In a world where people are starving, this is obscene. Something is very wrong with the food industry.

      Reply
  49. smartersig

    I am actually one or two feet in this camp in that I dont think eggs are a major problem, especially if you avoid the poor quality eggs in the UK. However its remarkable how veggie points of view on diet get crushed with correllation and causation arguments on here but when an egg study comes up that can be used to beat vegans over the head causation is swept under the carpet. I am often villified on here for being the vegan propaganda merchant when in fact I am not vegan but this post with its inability to deal coldly with the facts and put peoples mind at rest about eggs is lost somewhat by its rather unneccessary attack on Vegans and Veggies. If the UK went whole food plant based Dr Kendrick in his private consultancy would be out of business even without the benefit off the odd egg.

    Reply
  50. smartersig

    What would happen to your supply chain of patients if the whole UK population went whole food plant based ?.

    Reply
    1. AH Notepad

      They would say that. A case of “my god is greater than your god”. We’re all going to die, sometime.

      Reply
    2. Martin Back

      From the Oxford study: “Nonvegetarian subjects were recruited by the vegetarian subjects, who were asked to nominate friends and relatives of similar lifestyle and social class but who ate meat, fish, or both.”

      Hmmmm…. Would a vegetarian choose a meat-eater who was healthy, or a meat-eater who was unhealthy, as a control to evaluate the benefits of vegetarianism? Maybe I have a nasty suspicious mind, but I think vegetarians would choose meat-eating participants who make the vegetarian lifestyle look good. Therefore I believe the study is not unbiased enough for me to accept the findings.

      Reply
      1. David Bailey

        Very very many years ago, my partner who was a lacto-vegetarian (though now she also eats fish) signed up to something called the Oxford Research Group that was studying the health of vegetarians vs the rest of us. She got me to sign up as a non-vegetarian control.

        Shortly after, we got instructions to go to our GP and ask him to take blood samples to send to the ORG. We didn’t really want to do that, and we discussed that fact that I wasn’t a proper control anyway because for example, we always ate vegetarian food when at home.

        In the end we dropped out of the study.

        Had we remained, this would have worked in the opposite direction to the above Martin Black effect, but together they show how not to pick a control group!

        Also the paper contains the phrase, “After adjusting for smoking, body mass index, and social class…”. Can you adjust adequately for smoking (because of its huge effect) – I mean wouldn’t you need to know exactly how much each person smoked. Wouldn’t it have been better to accept only life-time non-smokers into such a study?

    3. KidPsych

      David Diamond showed that meat eaters are also more likely to die in car accidents. In other words, disentangling the effects of meat eating from other lifestyle choices is impossible (even when researchers state that they have accounted for other variables). Worth watching –

      Reply
      1. annielaurie98524

        Ah, yes, the straw man project, one of vegans’ favorite logical fallacies! You take a “control” group of average Americans that eat the typical junk food diet, are more likely to smoke, be overweight, over-indulge in booze, and engage in other risky behaviors. Then, you compare their stats to those of your vegan group that eats organically, exercises, etc. And, voila! Veganism protects you from liver damage, overweight, lung cancer, etc., etc. It’s also known as the “Duh! What a waste of research dollars to confirm the obvious” fallacy.

  51. AnnaM

    Meanwhile, one of my alternative cancer treatment sites has an article about hypertension and heart disease, and has some strong claims that chlorine in tap water started in about the 1920s and led the boom in heart disease. It also compares a few regions that did and did not have chlorine.

    https://www.cancertutor.com/hypertension/

    Reply
  52. AnnaM

    Sundancer55,

    For what it’s worth, regarding the above article from the ACS, I think the mainstream has been barking up the wrong tree for too long. Cancer is not driven by mutations to genes. There is a lot of genetic instability in cancer, but it is a side effect, not a cause.

    First, fairly recent genetic analysis of tumors turned up a big surprise. It was strongly expected that there would be genetic signatures to the various types of cancer and targeted chemo would be the result. That didn’t happen. The mutations were completely chaotic. Tumors had different mutations within the cells of one tumor, different mutations in metastases, completely different mutations in people with the same type of cancer, and also some cancers had very few while some had many, even in the same types of cancer.

    Meanwhile, in the book, Tripping Over The Truth I read that some researchers virtually proved that cancer is metabolic in nature, arising in the mitochondria (the energy factories of the cell) and not mutational. Let me see if I can state it clearly enough.

    They took mice with cancer, took the cancer cells, removed the nucleus and implanted in its place a healthy nucleus and put that in a healthy mouse. These mice got cancer and they died.
    They then took healthy cells, took out its nucleus and put in a nucleus from a cancer cell. Those mice did fine, no cancer.

    Reply
  53. AnnaM

    Leon,
    I guess my husband and I are pretty hypocritical or schizophrenic or something. Amazing the care we lavish on the chicks! My husband said to me a few weeks ago that such and such a hen was wanting to sit (sit on eggs). Sure enough she began the next day. He could tell because she made motherly calling noises.
    We often bring them in for the night or two under a heat lamp if for some reason we think it necessary. I delivered one by cesarean section a couple of weeks ago and he is doing well. I am in awe of a perfect little living chick with all its body parts magically emerging from a blob of clear and a blob of orange goo, plus heat.
    We find them endlessly adorable. We like the hens and roosters, too. They have a truly wonderful life here, be it long or short. We protect them as best we can from predators and they definitely have the best of both worlds that way. Animals in the wild have much shorter lives.
    The hens often take a notion to sit on a secret nest somewhere, and my husband always finds them and brings each hen food and water wherever she happens to be. Last year one sat outside and he constructed and old umbrella over her.
    We didn’t get them for the eggs, though. I wanted to get them because the store chickens are raised so deplorably. We’ve already had about 40 chicks hatch out and that was before the 1st of June! It’s not that we want so many…they just reproduce so fast and when we get more than a couple of roosters I can’t stand the constant crowing.
    I’m afraid a couple are destined for the pot very soon.

    Reply
  54. susydoo

    Dear Malcom

    I read your article with interest and thank goodness you DID decide to write about it – as an owner of 5 beautiful chickens who lay an egg for me a day – I am joyous to eat these with relish – sometimes one for breakfast or a couple for lunch (hard boiled my favourite).

    I am off to make a poached egg now.

    Best wishes as always

    Sue

    Sue De Cesare
    Executive Director

    Did you know we run talks, seminars and conferences? Check out our latest events here.

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    Reply
  55. James

    DOCTOR Barnard, him in the Dazzling Bright White Coat.. says it SO well ! Such Authority! What Confidence in his pontifications on cholesterol production! Pity, as Dr K reveals, it’s a load of ‘bilge & piffle’.
    -( Am familiar with stinking bilge-water, – don’t want detailed info on piffle !. )

    Once again, Eminence/Reputation-based Science trumps boring EVidence-based stuff.

    Reply
  56. smartersig

    “I invite you to attack this study. Or maybe you are too ‘frit’ to enter the battleground.”

    You appear to be blocking comments that wish to enter the battleground ?

    Reply
      1. smartersig

        Apologies, you are so good at keeping this blog flowing that a small break sets me wondering.

      2. Bill In Oz

        I hope that you are enjoying a peaceful relaxing holiday in warn sunny weather…..
        Perfect for avoiding CVD among other diseases…

      3. Bill In Oz

        Smartersig, having a holiday is not only good for the good doctor.. I notice that it is also good for me.. My pace of life has slowed down slightly with the reduced need to read and understand all the new comments and information flowing into the blog..

        Also an unexpected ‘break’ in the midst of cold Winter here when we in the Adelaide Hills are confronted with an unnecessary by-election campaign to return our popular independent MP to parliament….

        Our wise wizards in our ‘High’ court determined she was a dual ( Australian & British ) citizen when elected – despite having already ‘renounced’ her British citizenship, and thus ‘ineligible’ under a rather quaint section of our constitution.

        For Australia as a strongly multicultural & migrant nation, this is a major judicial stuff up brought on by our highest legal eagles …

        Ahhh well..Twas ever thus…

        Apologies for the very off topic comment Dr. K

      4. chris c

        Who said you could have a holiday? Get back on the treadmill!

        signed, Jeremy Hunt

        Seriously, hope you destressed, caught some rays and ate real food somewhere nice.

      5. Bill In Oz

        Hooray for holidays in the sun !!

        But you do realise that you will exceed your allotted biblical span of ‘three score years & ten” ?

        Hooray to that also !!

      6. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

        Bill. I have knocked a couple of your posts on the head as they were rather too aggressive. As you know I welcome robust debate, but I do not wish to create a bear pit.

      7. Bill In Oz

        As you wish Malcolm. Leon, the Buddhist who has posted below on his veganistic beliefs has already drawn fire from others here.

      8. Leon Roijen

        “As you wish Malcolm. Leon, the Buddhist who has posted below on his veganistic beliefs has already drawn fire from others here.”

        Bill, your status of great assumer keeps rising ; – )
        I’m not a Buddhist —> was.

        You also wrote (in your contentious reply that was deleted by Dr Kendrick but got to my mailbox anyway):

        “you are a Buddhist who is vegetarian for religious reasons”

        Here you are wrong again: In Buddhism Vegetarianism is encouraged by many but there is no obligation for Buddhists to be vegetarian. Even Buddhist monks can eat meat (with some exceptions).

        Also, I hold no veganistic belief.

        Though I don’t doubt that people can stay perfectly healthy on a *sound* vegan diet (—> see the link I already mentioned: https://www.peta.org/blog/6-olympic-champions-probably-no-clue-vegan/ ), I belief a vegetarian diet is more pragmatic.

        Obviously I struck a nerve judging from the way you react to me.
        I am entitled to my opinion, you are entitled to yours.
        But, if you feel that your opinion (on eating meat) is SO valid, then ask yourself why you reacted to me the way you did. A little reflection goes a long way.

      9. Bill In Oz

        Malcolm, the comments I wrote that you have moderated, seem ( somehow ? ) to have reached & been read by Mr Roijen anyway as here he is replying to what everyone else here has not seen or had the opportunity to read.

        That is perplexing.

        Given this has happened could you release my earlier comments on this subject ?
        Bill in Oz

      10. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

        I do not have any idea how this happens? I thought that if I did not approve something it remained in limbo. I did not approve a couple of your comments as they had, to my mind, slipped over into personal insults.

      11. Bill In Oz

        Malcolm I respect your right to moderate and your right to moderate my own comments if you think them offensive.

        How for some perplexing computer reason Leon knows the content my comment as well as you & I. I am mystified just as you are !

        But that means he has an exclusive right of reply to what I said but nobody else has the opportunity here has the right.

        That’s why I asked that you release them.

        Also I find this whole vegan inspired side of this conversation rather boring.. It is ‘stuff’ that I as a former vegetarian, had to learn about, process and change my opinion about, long ago.

        So I will not make any further comments/replies to that aspect of the Great benefits of Eggs blog

  57. biddy99

    I take two blood pressure tablets. Stopped losartan two months ago and getting readings that are lower than when I was taking them. Is this normal. Still taking felodipine 5mg

    Reply
  58. John Burton

    It is not possible to be a vegan or a vegetarian in practice. Every crop requires the destruction of a habitat to create a growing area, the control of pests and changes to soil structure. Millions died creating your field of broccoli.

    A friend of mine won’t kill anything with a central nervous system yet easily discusses getting rid of invertebrate attackers in her garden. Oh dear.

    Death and life on Earth are intimately related.

    Reply
    1. annielaurie98524

      It is not only invertebrates that die due to growing plant crops. One has only to look at the lingering, painful deaths by starvation, poisoning, dehydration and fire of endangered species like rhinos and tigers caused by the palm-oil industry to see this obvious environmental fiasco. Palm oil is a favorite of vegan/vegetarian folks.

      Reply
      1. Martin Back

        And with the decline in invertebrates, a decline in the bird population.

        “Scientists say there is an overall decline in European bird numbers, and this is likely the result of the lack of flying insects – a major source of food – which itself is thought to result from the overuse of pesticide.

        “’Lots of these farmland birds that are declining, they eat invertebrates and they feed their young on invertebrates, and those are the things that are hit by general pesticides in the countryside,’ Professor Richard Gregory, head of species monitoring and research at the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB) told The Independent.”‘Shocking’ decline in birds across Europe due to pesticide use, say scientists

      2. Stephen T

        And all the small mammals mown down by combined harvesters and other machinery. For some reason, they don’t count. Probably not cute enough.

      3. chris c

        Someone I know was doing a survey of small mammals. Interim results suggest populations are highest in sheep fields. Likewise far more insects and wildflowers in grazing meadows than grain monocultures. The better farmers leave the field margins uncultivated and even sow wildflowers, and the birds and predatory insects help with pest control. Also they take off a second crop of pheasants and partridges, In veganworld none of this would occur. See also, massive flocks of gulls including rarities in the pig fields.

      4. Bill In Oz

        Yes, the modern farming monocultures that the veganworld supports, has created a huge amount of environmental damage across the Earth.

  59. HB

    Not on the topic of eggs…

    Did I read that you are going to be publishing a new edition of The Great Cholesterol Con this year, or did I just dream that? If this is true do you have any idea when?

    Reply
    1. Clathrate

      HB – if you check book sellers, such as the one beginning with A, this is Dr K’s next book:
      A Statin Nation: Damaging Millions in a Brave New Post-health WorldPaperback – 12 Jul 2018
      by Dr Malcolm Kendrick (Author)

      On the subject of eggs, I’ve upped my consumption at the start of 2018 to try and have 3 a day from the usual 2 (often means taking 3 hard boiled eggs to work) though today was a ‘failure’ in that it was a only couple of butter fried eggs.

      Reply
      1. HB

        Thank you, @Clathrate. I had checked Dr Kendrick’s listing on Amazon, but I glossed over and ignored the entry with the bottle of pills on the cover thinking that it must be a link to a supplement for sale that had somehow crept in to the list!

  60. Göran Sjöberg

    Let me inform you the LCHF advocate Prof Tim Noakes has won a final (?) victory after several years of harassments from the medical authorities in South Africa but actually over Big Pharma and Big Agro who are ruling “the show” behind the curtains.

    https://www.change.org/p/12991092/u/22855898?utm_medium=email&utm_source=petition_update&utm_campaign=351345&sfmc_tk=TEU05W8dTcBe7fSH57zk5kgUj0T%2fU%2fKeOF4xWColZpDzrim2CfWTrYLHyxayvsJ%2f&j=351345&sfmc_sub=218993811&l=32_HTML&u=62608359&mid=7259882&jb=21

    Reply
  61. annielaurie98524

    A bit off topic here, but, for those of you that signed in support and have not yet heard, Tim Noakes was unanimously cleared of any wrongdoing in his battle with the dieticians and the “eminence-based” medical establishment of S. Africa. (I am stealing “eminence-based” — it will be so handy for fields besides medicine). Anyway, here is a more complete report:
    https://www.change.org/p/12991092/u/22855898?utm_medium=email&utm_source=petition_update&utm_campaign=351345&sfmc_tk=4wItZyjwN5T%2fps1%2bClFoPqVvxUuVtM5VsR6R0aNkFkcUVYvRmF7%2btwYtwypmPML%2b&j=351345&sfmc_sub=8587341&l=32_HTML&u=62608359&mid=7259882&jb=3

    Reply
      1. annielaurie98524

        What a tragedy and waste of capable and productive brain power that Dr. Noakes had to waste so much effort fighting this foolishness for so long. He could have spent that time on more beneficial endeavors. I hope the complainers at the very least had to reimburse him for any financial loss he suffered.

    1. David Bailey

      That is wonderful news – I hope that Tim Noakes can capitalise on this second win to expose this scandal to a wider audience – all those people who still think medical dietary advice should be followed to the letter!

      Reply
  62. T.S.

    Isn’t it possible that plenty of fat people, in eating more, are actually taking in more nutrients in our nutrient depleted countries (those including proper food in their diets). Their bodies may need more since they are taxed more but there may be some benefit to them too – or why would so many of them remain healthy? (Putting aside all the cons for a moment.) We are in Germany at present where supermarket salmon portions are much bigger than in the UK.
    (I’m slim myself – not seeking justification for being fat and not advocating overeating!)

    Reply
    1. Göran Sjöberg

      As far as I have understood this issue our bodies “feel” the need for essential nutrients but in “modern” food these are scarce. As a consequence we are eating more than necessary to satisfy our need for the essential nutrients. In this context there is also a logic behind the present obesity epidemic.

      Reply
  63. Leon Roijen

    The meat-eaters here are REALLY telling a lot of nonsense to ease their conscience.

    Both for the environment and “lower creatures” that get killed during crop growing, meat-eaters are MUCH worse than vegetarians and vegans. That’s SIMPLY A FACT.

    “Though some 800 million people now suffer from hunger or malnutrition, the majority of corn and soy grown in the world feeds cattle, pigs and chickens. This is the case in spite of the inherent inefficiencies: About two to five times more grain is required to produce the same amount of calories through livestock as through direct grain consumption, according to Rosamond Naylor, an associate professor of economics at Stanford University. It is as much as 10 times more in the case of grain-fed beef in the United States.”

    “These assembly-line meat factories consume enormous amounts of energy, pollute water supplies, generate significant greenhouse gases and require ever-increasing amounts of corn, soy and other grains, a dependency that has led to the destruction of vast swaths of the world’s tropical rain forests.”

    “the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, which also estimates that livestock production generates nearly a fifth of the world’s greenhouse gases – more than transportation does”

    source: https://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/27/business/worldbusiness/27iht-meat.1.9525251.html

    For the production of meat, incredible amounts of water are used, see here:

    https://www.theguardian.com/news/datablog/2013/jan/10/how-much-water-food-production-waste

    Reply
    1. AH Notepad

      Leon, I agree that feeding grain to livestock to produce meat is wasteful, but then so is growing grains to feed people. Livestock’s main benefit is they can process grass and associated plants in grassland to produce meat. I have suggested it previously, go and read Simon Fairlie’s “Meat – A Benign Extravagance”. Until then, saying that meat eaters are talking nonsense to ease their consiences is a case of the pot calling the kettle black.

      The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation may have a problem with bias skewing their figures. Citing articles from NY Times and Guardian does not necessarialy show facts since they are main stream media and so are bought by the big ag corporations who make their money by growing arable crops. Neither of those articles would be relevant if livestock was grass fed.

      Reply
      1. Leon Roijen

        AH Notepad:

        “Leon, I agree that feeding grain to livestock to produce meat is wasteful”

        I’m happy you agree.

        “but then so is growing grains to feed people.”

        We have to eat, right? And growing grains, vegetables, fruits… to feed people is MUCH less wasteful than feeding crops to animals to produce meat.

        “Livestock’s main benefit is they can process grass and associated plants in grassland to produce meat.”

        That might have been a sustainable way of living thousands of years ago, but helas, not anymore now, with billions of people on earth.

        “The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation may have a problem with bias skewing their figures.”

        Nice try.

        “Citing articles from NY Times and Guardian does not necessarialy show facts since they are main stream media and so are bought by the big ag corporations who make their money by growing arable crops.”

        Cheap argument. pray, are you sponsored by the meat industry? 😉

        If you don’t believe the facts presented in those articles, you can find other sources, I’m not going to do your homework, but here is another source as to the water needed to produce meat and other food: https://water.usgs.gov/edu/activity-watercontent.php

        “Neither of those articles would be relevant if livestock was grass fed.”

        As I already said, that’s not a sustainable way of living, these days. We would need several Earths all covered with gransslands to feed meat to all those billions of people just on this Earth.

    2. Gary Ogden

      Leon Roijen: You are perfectly correct that the conventional animal food industry is horrid and destructive. However, thanks to Allan Savory and others farmers all over the world are raising livestock in a way which mimics nature, restoring grasslands, reversing desertification, sequestering very large amounts of carbon, greening the Earth. This is the way forward in feeding the Earth’s population and restoring healthy ecosystems. The main reason we have such a terrible, dysfunctional food system is our economic system. Two excellent books: “Cows Save the Planet,” by Judith D. Schwartz, and “Grass, Soil, Hope,” by Courtney White. Read them to understand that eating meat is not the problem. It is a problem of economics. Another very interesting development is 3D ocean farming (GreenWave).

      Reply
      1. AnnaM

        Some of the comments plus the titles of the above books are pointing toward the fact that nature and living things work together in living systems in which all parts are included and needed. And then you go, Well of course! You can’t take parts out, including the microbiome inside your own body, and still have life thrive.

        The idea that you can have farms in which their is no animal input is a very strange idea. It won’t be sustainable, because animals, plants and soil are interconnected parts.

      2. Leon Roijen

        Gary Ogden:

        As I said before to someone else: Meat is not a sustainable way to feed people. Not with 7.6 billion people on earth.
        Thousands of years ago with far less people it might have been, but not any longer.

        Read here: https://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/13/opinion/the-myth-of-sustainable-meat.html

        Grass-grazing cows emit considerably more methane than grain-fed cows. Pastured organic chickens have a 20 percent greater impact on global warming. It requires 2 to 20 acres to raise a cow on grass. If we raised all the cows in the United States on grass (all 100 million of them), cattle would require (using the figure of 10 acres per cow) almost half the country’s land (and this figure excludes space needed for pastured chicken and pigs). A tract of land just larger than France has been carved out of the Brazilian rain forest and turned over to grazing cattle. Nothing about this is sustainable.

        Opponents of industrialized agriculture have been declaring for over a decade that how humans produce animal products is one of the most important environmental questions we face. We need a bolder declaration. After all, it’s not how we produce animal products that ultimately matters. It’s whether we produce them at all.

        And even if eating meat would be sustainable, it wouldn’t make it more ethical to kill animals for their meat especially considering that the consumption of meat is not a strict necessity.

      3. AH Notepad

        You might think eating meat is not a necessity, but that’s merely a belief. You eat fish, that’s animal flesh. Why don’t you demonstrate it’s not necessary and stop eating it.

      4. Leon Roijen

        “You might think eating meat is not a necessity, but that’s merely a belief.”

        That’s stating the obvious…
        Your opinion that humans need meat is as much a “belief” as mine.

        “You eat fish, that’s animal flesh. Why don’t you demonstrate it’s not necessary and stop eating it.”

        I eat a meal with a bit of fish only once a week. I could easily stop eating it. But as I have said before, I’m not a vegetarian for conscience’ sake, though I recognise that killing animals for their meat while you don’t need it is ethically wrong.
        And different persons have different ethics and I have no problem whatsoever with people disagreeing with me, but if you start making unfounded accusations as you did – I think it is better to stop our interaction. I am not here to waste my time with childish quarrels.

      5. Gary Ogden

        Leon: Destroying rainforest to establish pasture is stupidity. Re-establishing grazing on existing grassland (defined primarily by the amount of rainfall) is a sensible solution to a multitude of problems. Prior to European settlement of the U.S. midwest, tens of millions of bison built as much as 30 feet of topsoil as they grazed and migrated. Today both bison and topsoil are nearly gone. Mainly to grow corn for ethanol (which requires more energy input than it produces). This is a political/economic problem. Entirely apart from what we should eat, agricultural cropping on grassland is neither sustainable nor healthful for the ecosystem. Read the two books I referenced above and go to the Savory Institute website to see the contrast between identical landscapes both before and after grazing was re-introduced. A healthy Earth requires the return of properly managed herds of herbivores, wherever possible, to land suitable for them.

      6. Leon Roijen

        Gary,

        ” go to the Savory Institute website to see the contrast between identical landscapes both before and after grazing was re-introduced. A healthy Earth requires the return of properly managed herds of herbivores, wherever possible, to land suitable for them.”

        A sympathetic initiative, but obviously not very serious, at least not from a scientific point of view:

        “I kept asking for details. I wanted to know how holistic management works on the ground. I asked for statistical measurements of recovery on land that had been treated with his method. I wanted to know the metrics of the claimed increases in biodiversity and vegetation density; the number of grazers; the duration of the grazing; the time frame of recovery. Did these explosions of vegetal growth occur overnight or over decades? I wanted specifics. He looked at me with glinting eyes. “There can be no discussion of specifics,” he said. “If I gave you the specifics, it would start an argument.”

        The telephone rang, and Savory stood to take the call. I studied an informational sheet he had handed me when we met. It explained why he couldn’t talk about the science behind his methodology. “Holistic management does not permit replication,” said the document, which Savory had authored. “This point is critical to understanding the great difficulty reductionist scientists are experiencing trying to comprehend holistic planned grazing—because no two plans are ever the same even on the same property two years running.” A stunning admission appeared a few lines lower: “Every study of holistic planned grazing that has been done has provided results that are rejected by range scientists because there was no replication!”

        Source: https://www.sierraclub.org/sierra/2017-2-march-april/feature/allan-savory-says-more-cows-land-will-reverse-climate-change

    3. AnnaM

      Leon, everything you say above is true, but it is not a true comparison with meat eating. You see, our world right now is engaged in a number of practices that are against nature and not sustainable. Modern agriculture, which inputs more calories of energy mostly from fossil fuels than it gets out in food is obviously a slow motion disaster. Furthermore, to treat animals that way requires antibiotics, which is just now getting to the point where we have people dying due to antibiotic resistance. So our foolishness is taking us back to pre 1940’s era of no control of infections.

      But if we are to discuss the right way to eat, we cannot compare one unnatural practice with another unnatural practice. Who cares. They won’t work.

      CAFOs are inhumane, unhealthy and unsustainable. I don’t think anyone here would really argue with that.

      Reply
    4. David Bailey

      Leon,

      Let’s face it, the only way to prevent human starvation is to somehow persuade people to stop having more than two children. Any other approach simply makes the situation worse in the long term. Unfortunately, that too is SIMPLY A FACT.

      As for greenhouse gases, well you might find this link interesting:

      http://www.mediatheque.lindau-nobel.org/videos/34729/ivar-giaever-global-warming-revisited/laureate-giaever

      I feel your angst, but I think the revelation that meat is actually a necessary component of a healthy diet leaves the whole issue very hard to solve.

      We can all do our best to cut down on food waste.

      Reply
      1. Leon Roijen

        David,

        “I feel your angst, but I think the revelation that meat is actually a necessary component of a healthy diet leaves the whole issue very hard to solve.”

        There is no hard proof whatsoever indicating that we absolutely need meat:

        “Rather boringly, the human gut is very similar to that of our closest relatives: monkeys and apes. It follows that, if we are looking to work in harmony with our guts’ design, our diet should be at least similar to our cousins’.

        When we examine the diet of virtually all monkeys and apes, it’s nuts, fruits, leaves, insects, and the occasional snack of flesh. You may have seen rather shocking footage of adult chimpanzees killing and eating baby ones, but that’s a relative rarity compared with the quantities of non-meat products consumed.

        From these observations, we can perhaps conclude that evolutionarily speaking, we shouldn’t necessarily be vegetarian and evolved to eat only the occasional tidbit of animal matter.”

        https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/320047.php

      2. Bill In Oz

        Leon, your argument is facile pseudo scientific claptrap. Why ?
        Because evolution actually happens quite quickly – in fact from one generation to the next. Because that’s the only way it can happen. ( I think I am quoting you Dr Kendrick here )

        Please think about that & it’s consequences…..

        I suggest that omparing humans with species such as Chimpanzees, Gorillas, and monkeys to derive a conclusion that humans should be veganist, is fake science.

        There would be more value comparing the diet of homo sapiens with the diet of other homo’ species. Unfortunately these are extinct so no direct comparison can be made. But curiously nearly the skeletal remains of these species have been found in areas which were extremely cold in fact close to formerly glaciated areas of Europe and Asia …These species did not grow any crops at all. They subsisted on food from hunting and gathering. And the hunting included the woolly mammoth, woolly rhinosceros, aurochs etc..

        Hardly a vegetarian diet, never mind vegan one.

      3. David Bailey

        Leon,

        I suspect there is no hard proof of a lot of things in medical science, and what seems increasingly clear is that accepted opinion seems to serve as if it were proof.
        I suppose some of the support for low fat diets came from vegans and others that disliked modern food production methods. Look where that has lead – people eating more carbohydrates and sweetened low-fat products of various sorts, and coming down with T2D. Then the T2D was (and is) treated with yet more low fat diets. I suppose you could call it an experiment along the line towards a vegan diet, and it clearly didn’t work!

        Almost all saturated fat comes from animal sources, and the twin goals of better health and less exploitation of animals seemed for a while to coincide. However, the mistake was to confuse the moral arguments against eating meat, with the medical arguments – blurring the distinction between the two. Now those two arguments are clearly diverging.

        Many years ago, I used to be a member of an organisation called Compassion in World Farming

        https://www.ciwf.org.uk/

        Perhaps your letter will prompt me into re-joining, because while I am certain animals need more compassion, I am a lot less convinced that pushing people towards a vegan diet is wise at all.

        I guess that I am like many other readers of this blog – I have increased my intake of saturated fat, and decreased my intake of carbs – particularly sugar. Short of living on coconuts and peanuts, that does mean eating more animals (even milk drinking involves calves being sacrificed) – but we also have a cat, and he too thrives on eating other animals!

      4. Leon Roijen

        David,

        “I suppose some of the support for low fat diets came from vegans and others that disliked modern food production methods. Look where that has lead – people eating more carbohydrates and sweetened low-fat products of various sorts, and coming down with T2D.”

        I didn’t really dive into it, but I think it has more to do with the sugar industry:

        https://www.theverge.com/2017/11/21/16684448/sugar-industry-health-effects-research-funding-project-259-heart-disease-cancer

        Moreover, a healthy vegan or vegetarian diet is not about highly refined sugars.

        “I guess that I am like many other readers of this blog – I have increased my intake of saturated fat, and decreased my intake of carbs – particularly sugar.”

        I have lowered my intake of carbs and increased my intakes of fats, too. Out of necessity, because I am suffering from reactive hypoglycemia.
        Yet I don’t like it one bit: High fat diets might not be as detrimental to the cardiovascular system as once thought, yet they are linked to several common cancers and are thought to be dentrimental to the gut microbiome.
        I am NOT saying all this is clear cut, but at least it’s possible that high fat diets are as unhealthy as high carb diets.

        I think that modesty in everything is best and that normal healthy people should not exaggerate diet-wise: not too many proteins, not too many carbs, not too much fat, not too many refined products….
        I belief that’s the best bet to stay healthy, as far as diet is concerned.

      5. annielaurie98524

        While the “science” on fat causing cancer is, at best, an apparent and weak correlation, and, more likely, some of the same bogus blather that other dietary “research” shows, you have hit on a very important point — moderation in all things. Not too much of any one macronutrient, but, especially, not too much food, period. It’s a little crazy when one sees how our caloric intake, particularly in the US, has soared over the last few decades. A part of that may be an artifact of the huge increase in food wastage (estimated at 33-40% on a worldwide basis) , but there seems to have been a significant increase in actual intake. If the composition of our modern diets runs contrary to our evolutionary norms, our excessive intake of calories is an unprecedented development in human evolution.

      6. Göran Sjöberg

        As far as I understand evolution our “design” is related to the food we are adjusted to or vice verse.

        Gorillas are purely vegetarian and has enormous colons where the grass or whatever vegetables they eat is turned into fat (butyric acid). Humans by contrast have a limited colon to do the same job but elaborate small intestines suitable for digesting meat. In addition we have the frontal lobes of our brains that enable us to socially work together for successful hunting and to make elaborate hunting equipment and to make fires to grill the meat for easy digestion.

        Like it or not!

      7. Leon Roijen

        Bill,

        “Leon, your argument is facile pseudo scientific claptrap. Why ?
        Because evolution actually happens quite quickly – in fact from one generation to the next.”

        (…)

        “There would be more value comparing the diet of homo sapiens with the diet of other homo’ species. (…) “…These species did not grow any crops at all. They subsisted on food from hunting and gathering. And the hunting included the woolly mammoth, woolly rhinosceros, aurochs etc..”

        Facile pseudo scientific claptrap?
        Then your argument must be even worse!

        First you say there is evolution, then you say it happens quickly, from one generation to the next, and then you start talking about extinct “other homo’ species”….

        If evolution happens that fast, your argument for eating meat based on extinct humanoids is extremely far-fetched. Don’t you think so?

        Anyway – same as with Mr Notepad: A discussion can be sharp and I even can appreciate it but gratuitously throwing around insults is something I don’t put up with.
        I like discussions with people but quarrels are not what I am looking for here or elsewhere in the internet: I already have too many with my husband : – )
        So I have no intention answering any of your future reactions to me – I trust that it will make you happier, too.
        I thought it best to let you know as both you and I are not merely passing visitors to Dr. Kendricks website.

      8. Bill In Oz

        I have been pondering my comment in reply to Leon of the 12th of June at 2.02 am ( Greenwich Mean Time ) I was not up then at that time here in Oz…

        My thoughts turned to the continent of Africa and whether there are any vegan or vegetarian cultures in that continent…Certainly there are individuals there who are vegan or vegetarian. And poverty certainly makes animal produce & meat unavailable for many. But I cannot think of a single culture which is.

        And growing plant crops is a relatively new development in an evolutionary sense for our species. It happened in 3-4 places across the planet all within the last 10,000 years. ( The Middle East, Southern China, the Sahel in Africa, the Highlands of New Guinea, and in Meso America)

        And I remember the argument presented so well by Yuval Noah Harari in his book “Sapiens” ( 2015 ) which Goran put me on to earlier this year..

        Harari presents dependence on plant crop growing as a phenomena which gradually happened over time.. And in which those societies were ‘trapped’ into further dependence on plant crops despite the ill health that resulted and the shortened life spans in these societies. These settled farming groups were unable to go back towards more hunting & gathering way of life because of living in a permanent location & especially the very high population numbers that plant crop growing allowed and thus encouraged.

        It is an interesting informed book. Ironically it is written by a vegan !

        I am unable to ‘Go figure” that one. But then he is also a Budho- veganist…

    5. Andy S

      My 3 hens love vegans, but their favourite foods are worms and bugs. Restricting them to an all vegetarian diet would be cruel and egg quality would drop.

      Reply
    6. Martin Back

      When I support the eating of meat, I mean from pasture-raised animals, not the terrible CAFOs with cows standing in their own excrement, or batteries of mutant chickens.

      Plants evolved alongside animals. They are good for each other. Plants feed animals, and animals’ manure feeds plants, and their grazing and browsing prevents any one plant from getting too uppity.

      Reply
    1. Martin Back

      From Mangan’s reference Increase in the intake of refined carbohydrates and sugar may have led to the health decline of the Greenland Eskimos

      “While the total carbohydrate intake of the Greenland Eskimos was just 2–8% of total calories in 1855, this increased to around 40% of calories by 1955. The Greenland Eskimos studied by Bang and Dyerberg in the 1970s no longer consumed a traditional healthy Eskimo diet. Indeed, the intake of refined sugar in the Greenland Eskimos increased by almost 30-fold from 1855 (6 g/person/day or around 1½ teaspoonful of sugar) to the 1970s (164–175 g or around 40–44 teaspoonful of sugar). Moreover, the intake of refined carbohydrate increased 5–7-fold from 1855 (18 g/day from bread) to the 1970s (84–134 g/day from bread, biscuits and rye flour).

      “In summary, the intake of refined carbohydrate and sugar by the Greenland Eskimos increased in parallel to the rise in atherosclerotic disease. Considering that a similar event occurred in the USA and that the over-consumption of refined sugar is a principal driver of type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and coronary heart disease, this most likely explains the health decline of the Greenland Eskimos.”

      Moral of the story: If you must eat plants, be careful what plants you eat, and how they are prepared.

      Reply
      1. Bill In Oz

        Exactly Martin. Australianaboriginal tribal communities went through exactly the same massive chronic disease ‘epidemics’ when they abandoned ( or were forced to abandon ) their traditional hunting & gathering diets.
        I’s best to avoid completely highly processed plant foods…

  64. AnnaM

    I suspect that Leon is truly a vegan, although he denies it. at any rate, his views are vegan. His statement above that we no longer live in nature is really telling, for it is my impression that vegans, who profess to love animals, are very disconnected from nature (therefore from reality to an extent) and in fact dislike nature.

    I also found it annoying to say it is a fact that we do not need animals to be healthy. Find me a population that takes in no animal products and that has produced at least 3 generations of children while provably living that way.

    I think you will find there are none on earth.

    Reply
    1. Leon Roijen

      AnnaM:

      “Leon, everything you say above is true, but it is not a true comparison with meat eating. You see, our world right now is engaged in a number of practices that are against nature and not sustainable. Modern agriculture, which inputs more calories of energy mostly from fossil fuels than it gets out in food is obviously a slow motion disaster. Furthermore, to treat animals that way requires antibiotics, which is just now getting to the point where we have people dying due to antibiotic resistance. So our foolishness is taking us back to pre 1940’s era of no control of infections.”

      See, as I told others, eating meat simply is not sustainable with 7.6 billion people on Earth.
      It’s simply impossible to feed everybody meat while treating animals “humanely” or decently, without antibiotics and without creating environment disasters.

      Ad again, you’re still killing living being. And their death is not a by-product because you are growing crops with which you *have* to feed yourself to live, no, you are just killing them because you like the taste of meat.

      “I suspect that Leon is truly a vegan, although he denies it. at any rate, his views are vegan.”

      I’m not. I eat cheese, butter, and a meal with fish once a week. So no, absolutely not a vegan – mostly vegetarian. And mostly simply because I don’t like meat very much.
      My reasoning on the unethical side of meat eating is simple and rational: Ideology or diet has not much to do with it in my case.

      “His statement above that we no longer live in nature is really telling, for it is my impression that vegans, who profess to love animals, are very disconnected from nature (therefore from reality to an extent) and in fact dislike nature.”

      “I also found it annoying to say it is a fact that we do not need animals to be healthy. Find me a population that takes in no animal products and that has produced at least 3 generations of children while provably living that way.”

      First, we certainly do not need animals for their meat. Secondly if you are referring to veganism: I said before that vegetarianism is more pragmatic. But as far as I know, there aren’t any good reasons to assume that vegans with a well planned diet can’t be healthy.

      Reply
      1. AnnieLaurie Burke

        Having nearly 8 billion humans and counting on this planet is unsustainable in and of itself. I’ll take vegans more seriously as a force to salvage the Earth when they do the thing that will make the greatest contribution toward a sustainable planet, especially if one is an inhabitant of a “first-world” country — forego reproducing. Until then, I am not taking any of them, or their logically flawed arguments, seriously.

      2. annielaurie98524

        Ah, brave new world! Humans eating manufactured foods to an even greater extent than they do now! Look how well present-day manufactured foods have enhanced human health — what could go wrong?

      3. Leon Roijen

        “Having nearly 8 billion humans and counting on this planet is unsustainable in and of itself.”

        Stating the obvious…

        “I’ll take vegans more seriously as a force to salvage the Earth when they do the thing that will make the greatest contribution toward a sustainable planet, especially if one is an inhabitant of a “first-world” country — forego reproducing. ”

        Get your facts straight.
        Population growth is rather a problem of theird-world countries:

        https://www.indexmundi.com/g/r.aspx?v=24

        “Until then, I am not taking any of them, or their logically flawed arguments, seriously.”

        That’s an ostrich policy burying your head in the sand.
        We have a MASSIVE human overpopulation problem. People won’t stop reproducing. So unless you want to start shooting people to tackle the problem, you have to look at solutions.
        Vague utterings about “logically flawed arguments” won’t get you far.

      4. annielaurie98524

        No, Leon, the overpopulation problem is NOT due to the growth in underdeveloped countries. If you look at the relative impact of “first world” countries on the use of the earth’s resources, this will become very obvious. Every first-worlder has the impact of 20-50 “third-worlders”, and the toxic burden to the planet is even more disparate. Please, since you want to be a stickler for “facts”, indeed do get them straight. And, as you know from the news, the historical forces of population limitation — famine, warfare, etc. — are more obviously at work in those countries. No, sadly, the taboo on discussing the impact of population growth is based on religious/political considerations, not on any rational analysis of actual effects on the planet. Again, rampant growth, whether of actual numbers or of impact on the planet, is unprecedented in human evolution.

      5. AH Notepad

        Annielaurie, your recent posts trying to separate the facts from fiction have been very helpful. Unfortunately, rather like the Sun, facts are often discarded if they might spoil a good story.

      6. Gary Ogden

        Leon: In truth the hind gut of a human is very different from that of our simian relatives. Much smaller. Processing plant matter takes a long time and an enormous bacterial colony. True carnivores, such as cats, have a much smaller hind gut. The cow requires a four-chambered stomach, complete with re-chewing, to live healthily and happily on grasses and forbs. The human gut is clearly evolved for omnivory. Some humans can tolerate, even thrive, on an all-plant diet, but most cannot. This is why there simply aren’t any historical accounts of human societies eating this way by choice.

      7. Andy S

        Eating like a gorilla also requires appropriate gut microbiome, perhaps a gorilla/human faecal transplant would be beneficial for those willing to try the diet.

      8. Leon Roijen

        Gary,

        “The human gut is clearly evolved for omnivory. Some humans can tolerate, even thrive, on an all-plant diet, but most cannot.”

        Exactly, humans are omnivorous, we can eat both meat and plants, but I don’t think you can give any definite proof to back your claim that humans cannot thrive on an all-plant diet.

        However, a vegan diet calls for careful diet planning. Of course, as a vegan you need all the required nutrients other people need, too, and to meet the nutritional requirements is definitely more difficult when you eat exclusively plants. But it can be done.

        I repeat: Contrary to a vegan diet, a vegetarian diet is much more pragmatic as it’s much easier to meet the nutritional requirements.

      9. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

        Yes, but for a vegetarian diet to be healthy, it requires that we eat animal produce, such as eggs, milk, cheese and suchlike. Ergo, we cannot be healthy without animal sourced foods. As I used to tell my children (tongue in cheek). Remember that animals are just concentrated vegetables.. Should we just let the animals that provide us with essential nutrients die of old age, or should we also eat them?

        Also, I do not believe that eating animal is ethically wrong. After all animals eat other animals. It is what they are designed to do. Equally, it depends on your understanding of ethics.

        Ethos = an individuals decisions about what is right and wrong – for them to do.
        Ethics = the decision of a group/society about what is right or wrong – for their society to do.
        Morality = laws handed down by an extra corporeal being – for everyone in the world.

        If most people in a society eat animals, and agree that it is acceptable to do this, it cannot, by definition, be ethically wrong. It may go against your personal ethos, but that is a different thing.

      10. Leon Roijen

        Dr. Kendrick,

        “Yes, but for a vegetarian diet to be healthy, it requires that we eat animal produce, such as eggs, milk, cheese and suchlike. Ergo, we cannot be healthy without animal sourced foods.”

        I think we can be healthy without animal sourced foods. If Olympians can, why couldn’t we?
        But agreed, a vegetarian diet includes animal sourced foods per definition.

        “As I used to tell my children (tongue in cheek). Remember that animals are just concentrated vegetables..”

        And do they still believe animals are just concentrated vegetables now that/when they are older? ?
        At least tell me YOU don’t believe this 🙂

        Should we just let the animals that provide us with essential nutrients die of old age, or should we also eat them?

        Some tribes and individuals know that humans also can provide essential nutrients…. 🙂
        So I hope that just the reason that something can provide essential nutrients is not your only reason to eat it 🙂
        More seriously, I get your point and I’m not dogmatic – I think it is quite impossible to let all animals that don’t produce eggs or milk anymore die of old age.
        But here you create a diversion from the fact that millions (billions?) of animals are held exclusively for their meat and that of course is something quite different.

        “Also, I do not believe that eating animal is ethically wrong. After all animals eat other animals.”

        I would agree with you if you would say that often humans behave like animals or even worse, but to conclude that eating animals is not ethically wrong just because animals eat other animals – that’s a bit too easy: We humans are unique in that we possess Reason which comes with responsibilities. That’s why for example terrorists commit atrocities (their weird reasoning) and we bring them to justice (they are held accountable – at least usually).

        “Ethics = the decision of a group/society about what is right or wrong – for their society to do.”

        I cannot agree with that definition. I looked up the word in the Shorter Oxford English Dictionary and I saw the dictionary gives several definitions, one being nearly identical to yours. So I can’t say you’re wrong, but I think what you are talking about is rather democracy than ethics.
        At least your definition of ethics is a very narrow one.

        “If most people in a society eat animals, and agree that it is acceptable to do this, it cannot, by definition, be ethically wrong. It may go against your personal ethos, but that is a different thing.”

        If a people, a country decides it’s right to organise a new Holocaust, would you say that is ethical? Of course per your definition, you would have to answer that for that people or country it would be ethical – but than, to me, the American Merriam-Webster definition is more appealing:

        ” the discipline dealing with what is good and bad and with moral duty and obligation”

        I’m a strong supporter of Natural law (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Natural_law) no matter how complicated and diverse it maybe. Of course I think it should include animals as much as possible.

        The definition of ethics as what a society decides is right or wrong, is problematic as especially in our always more multicultural and highly individualised societies, it always gets more difficult to speak of THE ethics of the UK/The British People, Europe…and so on.
        Again, if you bring ethics down to numbers, it’s rather democracy than ethics, in my opinion.
        Also, if ethics is just about the numbers, it has little function. For me, ethics is more than ever an ongoing and developping debate in which – hopefully – as humanity as a whole, we come always closer to inalienable rights as put forward in Natural law theories.

        “Morality = laws handed down by an extra corporeal being – for everyone in the world.”

        Not necessarily by a being. Think about Natural law or Buddhism which also is not dependent on a “higher” being.

        Sorry, you should enjoy your vacation and not engage in highly philosophical stuff – my fault 🙂

      11. Leon Roijen

        Dr. Kendrick,

        I concluded my reaction to you with “Sorry, you should enjoy your vacation and not engage in highly philosophical stuff – my fault”

        I had only 5 hours of sleep last night and you know that English is not my native language. On rereading this sentence I noticed that it might be interpreted in a way I totally didn’t intend.
        Of course I only wanted to express that if I were on vacation I would prefer other things above philosophical discussions and that maybe I should not have drawn you this deeply into the discussion.

        Please accept my apologies for my uncareful wording.

      12. Leon Roijen

        Andy S:

        “Perhaps vegans can contribute in solving overpopulation problem by avoiding meat.
        https://www.webmd.com/infertility-and-reproduction/news/20050309/sperm-swim-better-with-carnitine

        That article doesn’t tell us whether those with sluugish sperm were vegans or meat-eaters.
        Further, carnitine is no issue for vegetarians/vegans:

        “Nutritional carnitine deficiencies have not been identified in healthy people without metabolic disorders, suggesting that most people can synthesize enough L-carnitine (1). Even strict vegetarians (vegans) show no signs of carnitine deficiency, despite the fact that most dietary carnitine is derived from animal sources (8). ”

        Source: http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/dietary-factors/L-carnitine#deficiency

      13. Andy S

        Leon, thanks for the reference. Reinforced the importance of carnitine in diet.
        What is the definition of “healthy people”? Ageing is not healthy.
        More studies required.

      14. Leon Roijen

        Annielaurie,

        “No, Leon, the overpopulation problem is NOT due to the growth in underdeveloped countries. If you look at the relative impact of “first world” countries on the use of the earth’s resources, this will become very obvious. Every first-worlder has the impact of 20-50 “third-worlders”, and the toxic burden to the planet is even more disparate. Please, since you want to be a stickler for “facts”, indeed do get them straight. And, as you know from the news, the historical forces of population limitation — famine, warfare, etc. — are more obviously at work in those countries.”

        Sorry to say but I got my facts straight. It’s not my fault that you want to reduce a complex problem to a simple statement about first-worlders.

        The word “Third-World” has nothing to do with economic classification and is really outdated:

        “The term “Third World” arose during the Cold War to define countries that remained non-aligned with either NATO or the Communist Bloc. The United States, Canada, Japan, South Korea, Western European nations and their allies represented the First World, while the Soviet Union, China, Cuba, and their allies represented the Second World. This terminology provided a way of broadly categorizing the nations of the Earth into three groups based on political and economic divisions. Since the fall of the Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War, the term Third World has been used less and less. It is being replaced with terms such as developing countries, least developed countries or the Global South. The concept itself has become outdated as it no longer represents the current political or economic state of the world.”

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

        Apart from first and third worlders, there are also second-worlders and guess what? The biggest countries on Earth belong to that class and exactly there your “toxic burden” to the planet is booming:

        ” In economics, BRIC is a grouping acronym that refers to the countries of Brazil, Russia, India and China, which are all deemed to be at a similar stage of newly advanced economic development. It is typically rendered as “the BRICs” or “the BRIC countries” or “the BRIC economies” or alternatively as the “Big Four”. A related acronym, BRICS, adds South Africa. There are arguments that Indonesia should be included into grouping, effectively turning it into BRIIC or BRIICS. ”

        Of course,contrary to your assertion, factors that limit a population, like famine, warfare etc. are NOT at work there.

        I hope this could contribute to a new world view for you.
        Yes, I know, we Europeans and Americans have the highest ecological footprints, but it’s a bit arrogant to assume that the rest of the world is underdeveloped.

      15. AnnieLaurie Burke

        Sadly, the vegan-vegetarian contingent still continues to base its arguments on logical fallacies. Besides the inaccurate labeling Russia and China with a new invented term of “second-world countries”, when for decades they have been amongst the most industrialized in the world, now we have “rewording”, a neat little ploy wherein one claims a commenter said something that the commenter did not say, then proceeds to argue against said “reword”. Sigh. BTW, you might want to check out where a lot of the pollution that China produces really originates, whether from the US sending its trash there for processing, or American firms locating factories there to avoid higher wages and more stringent regulation….

        But this line of discussion just highlights that the vegan-vegetarian diet is a diet for the privileged of the world — it’s not a diet that the bulk of humanity could follow because of the inputs of special resources and knowledge required to maintain health on such a food regimen. When those vegan daydreamers ask, “What would happen if everyone in the world went vegan tomorrow?”, I can predict that there would be widespread malnutrition and an increase in the infectious and non-infectious maladies that are exacerbated by nutrient deficiencies.

        And what’s up with WordPress again (still)? Half the time, at random, it posts my comments using my wordpress account, and the other half, it makes me log in through facebook.

    1. Leon Roijen

      Mercola…. I always like his quick fixes, this time “How to Optimize Your Gut Health”

      Scientists have only started to link diseases to gut health and the microbiome.
      In most cases there is only a very vague understanding as to the microbiome’s role in a certain disease.
      Leave alone that scientists know what the perfect, healthy microbiome should look like. And completely forget that we know how to optimize the microbiome – though Mercola suggests otherwise.

      No – Mercola may do a good job in making people pay attention to healthy living but he makes a lot of unproven claims.
      Not my preferred source.

      Reply
  65. KidPsych

    Add birth month as a risk factor?

    https://academic.oup.com/jamia/article/22/5/1042/930268

    FTL: Looking at all 10 (9 novel) cardiovascular conditions revealed that individuals born in the autumn (September–December) were protected against cardiovascular conditions while those born in the winter (January–March) and spring (April–June) were associated with increased cardiovascular disease risk (Figure 5). Interestingly, one study found that people born in the autumn (October–December) lived longer than those born in the spring (April–June).12 Furthermore the relationship between cardiovascular disease risk and lifespan is established.58 We compared our results to the Doblhammer et al. study investigating lifespan’s dependency on birth month and found 6 cardiovascular diseases were significantly anti-correlated. This indicates that birth months with low risk for 6 cardiovascular diseases in our study were also associated with longer lifespan in Doblhammer’s study12 (Figure 6). Our findings suggest that the relationship between lifespan and birth month12 could be explained by increased cardiovascular disease risk.

    Reply
    1. Andy S

      Simple explanation of how birth month affects health; eggs. Less eggs available in fall/winter will affect health of the mother and the baby.
      Eat more cholesterol and saturated fat later in life to correct for birth month effect. If you are following the dietary guidelines you could be in deep doodoo.

      Reply
  66. JDPatten

    BobM, Dr K,
    Cracking good, except – the best double blinded randomized controlled trials with large numbers of subjects over a long enough period to get sufficient end-points will tell you only what’s probably true and more likely what’s untrue about the question hypothesized concerning Mr or Ms Average-of-the-subject-population.
    Very few are the actual Averages.
    Many are the distinctly individual exceptions.
    It ain’t perfect; it’s the best we got.
    Best admit to, and ready yourself to contend with, the limitations.

    Reply
  67. KidPsych

    Another fun (and I’m sure, entirely uncontroversial) link –

    View story at Medium.com

    FTL: This use of arable land provides ample food for all humans, but it takes away the daily meals of billions of wild animals such as rabbits, bees, rodents, turkeys, earthworms, and endless insects, and it destroys their habitat, family structure, hunting grounds, and nectaries. Not to mention the terrible slave-like conditions that many farm workers in the field are subjected to. Humans are animals as well.

    See, I don’t believe in any way that a vegan diet actually causes less suffering in the long run then any other diet. All annual agriculture provides fertile ground for the casual extermination of hundreds of species of animals on a yearly basis. If I include all the animals harmed in the grand picture of agriculture, not just the large mammals, I have to conclude that cultivating the cornfield is the most murderous of all activities.

    That is why, in truth, a pound of grass-fed beef accounts for less suffering per capita then a pound of corn.

    Reply
    1. Gary Ogden

      KidPsych: Right you are. There are so many other negative downstream effects from monoculture, as well, and conversely these effects are positive when using grasslands for their proper function: Grazing animals which are moved periodically as local conditions indicate (mimicking the behavior of wild herbivores). This was Allan Savory’s great insight. This increases water absorption and reduces both runoff and evaporative loss, enhancing the water table; it increases the health of the soil and its biomass; it sequesters very large amounts of carbon; it greatly increases biodiversity; it produces food on land otherwise unsuitable for food production. The majority of the arable land on Earth is grassland, and much of that is unsuitable for cropping because of insufficient water. Here in the Great Central Valley of California most of the land is devoted to mono-cropping. There is never enough water, and there never will be. Like in the Midwest, the water table is being mined to extinction, and land subsidence threatens the major north/south canal. The solution involves changes in the economic system. It is not rocket science. We could have greater abundance of high-quality food, with fewer economic inputs, less damage to our shared environment, and more good jobs, but there is no political will to do anything except what we’ve always done. We are turning what arable land we have into wasteland by essentially mining the soil to grow varieties with insufficient nutrients to promote health in the eaters. There are bright spots here and there, such as the farmers I buy from, but it doesn’t look good overall.

      Reply
      1. chris c

        Yes and I have no doubt the older farmers and especially their parents would see nothing at all out of the ordinary in the thoughts and works of Allan Savory, Peter Ballerstedt, Joel Salatin et al. Here (UK) cattle and sheep graze lands that could simply never be used to grow crops. They are even used to graze nature reserves to improve them for other species. The fact that meat is nutritious and tasty is just an added bonus.

    2. Bill In Oz

      Kidpsych, this is completely true.
      But you open yourself up to a counterargument from the budho- veganists with something called ‘sentience’..
      All of these smaller forms of life are, in budhist thinking, less ‘sentient’ than us bigger forms and so killing them is of less ‘karmic’ consequence than killing larger forms of life like chooks, cattle, pigs etc….
      Is it true ? I suspect not. Is it relevant ? No. It reminds me of the Catholic escatological discsssions about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin.
      But it serves to ‘kill’ the discussion, No ?
      Meanwhile today i am fasting for my health’s sake apart from coffee with wonderful double cream…Mmmmmm

      Reply
    3. Martin Back

      Eventually, when every square inch of Earth is planted to edible crops, except those growing biofuels and those shaded by solar panels, when every extra person means three meals a day fewer for somebody else, then maybe we’ll realize we took a wrong turn somewhere along the line…

      …as we fall screaming over the Seneca cliff.

      Reply
      1. Andy S

        Eggs and Tim Noakes
        Making people healthier and living longer is counterproductive to the overpopulation problem. The existing dietary guidelines will likely not be changed.

      2. David Bailey

        Martin,

        I agree with your comment completely. We seem to be constrained by PC not to discuss the elephant in the room – overpopulation.

        Our great bastion of Political Correctness – the BBC – mentions the concept as little as possible!

      3. annielaurie98524

        Frustrating, isn’t it, that idea that human population can continue to grow and we just need more land farmed, higher-yielding crops, and/or unnatural diets to feed the ever-increasing horde? It’s part of that science-challenged, magical thinking that is so destructive to finding real solutions to problems. We are a species of animal, and we are not exempt from the laws of Nature. Every natural system has a carrying capacity for each species resident therein. When the population exceeds that level, Nature brings it back into balance. It has happened to humans at least three times in our history. It will happen again. Sadly, in our current state, we will likely wipe out many innocent species in the process. And, far from the use of animal products being a “luxury” we modern humans must give up to feed the horde (and the fantasy), it is plant-based agriculture that allowed us to get to this point.

  68. Bill In Oz

    Malcolm, it seems there is already a budho-veganist ‘bear’ is the pit. And we have already embarked on a major digression from an informed discussion of eggs and how good they are for us in our diet.
    😦

    Reply
  69. David Bailey

    Perhaps there is another question about Vegan lifestyle. If everyone were Vegan – or even vegetarian – vastly fewer farm animals would live their lives at all. Is it actually less cruel to prevent a huge number of animals enjoying some time on the earth? Humans know that in all likelihood the last part of our lives may not be pleasant – indeed some drawn out cancer deaths are clearly worse than any farm animal normally endures – yet very few people wish they had never been born!

    Reply
    1. Gary Ogden

      David Bailey: For me the most important concern is ecological. The Earth’s vast grasslands absolutely require properly managed grazers for their health. The death of the Aral Sea is a glaring example of what happens when grazing lands are converted to cropping (I believe it was mainly cotton, during Soviet times). The U.S. midwest is another destructive example. The bonus is an increase in both nutrient-dense food and jobs. In the U.S. farming has been seriously damaged for decades by economic interests promoted by the Department of Agriculture, but farming, properly done, can lead to abundance, improved ecosystem health, and a decent living for those who choose this life.

      Reply
    2. Martin Back

      As a white man in South Africa I hear day after day, “You whites stole our land” from black commentators.

      If the animals of the grasslands could speak, would they not look on the waving fields of GMO corn and wheat where grass once grew and cry out, “You humans stole our land.”

      When you start justifying things on moral grounds you can disappear down some deep rabbit holes.

      Reply
    3. Leon Roijen

      David,

      “Yet very few people wish they had never been born”

      That argument doesn’t hold up because if you look at it the other way around: people or animals who were never born, also never had the chance to wish they were born…

      And also, how many people would wish to be born to become meat? 🙂 No-one I guess… same goes for animals I suppose.

      I’ve said it before, all these arguments by meat-eaters, even the “best” ones just serve to silence their conscience.

      Scientifically there is not much hard evidence to argue in favour of a meat-based diet as being more healthy than a vegetarian diet (N.B. I wrote “vegetarian”, not vegan).

      Reply
      1. AH Notepad

        ”I’ve said it before, all these arguments by meat-eaters, even the “best” ones just serve to silence their conscience.”

        A statement of belief, but without foundation. I take note of Bill’s post as there is no sense in this discussion. You have your beliefs, I don’t agree with some of them.

      2. David Bailey

        Leon,

        My point was that lowering the birth rate purely to stop human beings suffering near the end of their life, would attract few supporters – yet that is exactly what you would do for animals (we both agree that while they are alive they should be treated decently).

        I guess I’d rather end up as meat rather than endure a lingering death at the hands of modern medicine, and anyway those who are buried end up as meat for worms!

        Meat does prick my conscience, but if I were a dietitian (I’m not), advising people (particularly those with T2D) to consume a low fat high carb vegetarian/vegan diet would prick my conscience far more urgently.

        I don’t think there is as much moral distinction between eating meat and being a vegetarian as you think. Milk production involves the killing of the calves that would normally consume the milk. Also what would you do with all the male calves unless us meat eaters helped out by consuming the beef!

      3. annielaurie98524

        I have refrained from getting involved in more than peripheral comment here and there on this vegan-vs. meat-eater thread. However, as a scientist (retired) and an organic farmer (current), I must say more emphatically how cumulatively annoying the logically-fallacious comments by the vegan contingent (or vegetarian, if you will) have become. The hypocrisy of vegetarian types that continue to cloak themselves in phony moral superiority (accusing the “meat-eaters” of lying or rationalizing for the sake of their consciences) is all too obvious and seems out of line with the spirit of the group. I have yet to see any vegetarian types acknowledge the environmental and animal suffering costs of growing vegetable crops. Perhaps this is done to assuage THEIR consciences? Or would such acknowledgement tip over the phony pedestal of moral superiority?

        Then, there is the name calling. That is exactly what the inaccurate term “meat-eater” is. There is no human group, possibly with the exception of indigenous Arctic peoples at certain times of year, that are “meat eaters”. Humans are “meat-and-plant eaters”, i. e., omnivores. While we ‘e on the subject of inaccuracies, to call the vegetarian diet “plant-based” and the omnivorous one “meat-based” is nonsense. Even the modes of eating that vegetarians love to hate — Paleo and ketogenic — are described by their proponents and experts as being composed primarily of plant foods. Sarah Ballantyne (“Paleo-Mom”) has even published an analysis of traditional (before junk food, not before agriculture) human diets and showed that they typically consisted of 75-80% plants. It’s mathematical inanity to call something that consists of 20-25% of “X”, “X-based”.

        Then, there is the continued citation of “straw-man” studies to “prove” the superiority of vegetarian diets. You know those “studies” — a group acknowledged by all health-conscious eaters to have an extremely unhealthful diet is compared to vegetarians eating organically, with much tut-tutting of how badly said group fares in comparison.

        And, since I am getting long-winded, I won’t even go into the scientific denialism on the part of most vegetarian advocates regarding human evolution and physiology, wildlife biology and related scientific topics.

        So, while such vegetarian shenanigans might temporarily mislead the science laymen, if any, among us, they really don’t fool anyone in the long run. The vegetarian types that have engaged in such antics have no credibility whatsoever, and any pretense to the contrary is laughable.

      4. annielaurie98524

        Thank you. I would hope that we can all share our differing viewpoints without resorting to accusations about our fellow commenters’ motives, without using silly and inaccurate epithets, and without engaging in unscientific, magical thinking. We have members in this group with a wide variety of backgrounds and access to a vast array of informational resources. I would think that we can all learn from sharing some of that without pretending we can get inside someone’s head and “know” what he is thinking.

      5. Mr Chris

        Annielaurie
        I agree with what you say, there are many regular posters on here from whom I have learned an enormous amount, starting with the blog editor himself. I also feel that commenting on blogs requires self-discipline, and that when one senses that the discussion has become entrenched and circular, then it is time to stop, to shut up and not prolong the boredom.

      6. AnnaM

        Leon,

        I can’t fathom how you would ask various animals if they would want to be born if they are going to be eaten. I do get a bit down sometimes about this physical world because that is what it involves. If you are right then all the teeming creatures of nature would mostly rather not be born. Most get eaten, often quite young. Yet what you see in animals is enthusiasm for life.

        You say the arguments of meat eaters are just excuses to ease their conscience. I see some good arguments here and you give glib answers or ignore them, and you have made an assumption that people’s consciences are troubling them.

        I think the scientific evidence that one can live on a vegetarian diet are indeed lacking, especially when you consider that dairy is not digestible for many people.

        There really is not a way to have a dairy industry in which the excess, mostly males, will not be slaughtered. The same is true for eggs. Chicks will be born and most of the males will not be needed. And when the hens get older, what shall be done with them?

        Meanwhile we are to have vast acreage turned to plant crops for people but which relies on huge inputs of fossil fuels and pesticides. The soil gets depleted. The only sustainable way is to have smaller farms and use manure and compost. Where will you get the manure? Is it possible to feed people plants without all the machinery? Yes, but only if you use horses and oxen and such.

        Meanwhile, where I live it is possible to grow only a limited amount of hay or grains because it is very hilly. Sheep country really, but people raise cattle. Most people who raise cattle grow their own hay. The land isn’t suitable for a lot of crops. But the cattle don’t take any of the sort of input you mention. Hay in winter, that’s it.

        The rain falls from the sky and the grass grows for free.

        Of course, the cattle are often sold off to go to a feed lot to get “finished” but that shouldn’t happen.

      7. Leon Roijen

        David,

        “My point was that lowering the birth rate purely to stop human beings suffering near the end of their life, would attract few supporters – yet that is exactly what you would do for animals (we both agree that while they are alive they should be treated decently).”

        Nah, you make a comparision between two different things.
        First of all, the overwhelming majority of animals held for meat are not treated decently.

        Secondly, when animals are slaughtered, they are not “near the end of their life” (Well, wouldn’t be if they were not slaughtered, of course).

        Third: Humans can chose euthanasia (if the law allows it) at the end of their life, but animals don’t chose to get slaughtered.

        “Meat does prick my conscience, but if I were a dietitian (I’m not), advising people (particularly those with T2D) to consume a low fat high carb vegetarian/vegan diet would prick my conscience far more urgently.”

        Dietitians don’t advise low fat/high carb diets for people with diabetes and a vegetarian/vegan diet does not need to be high carb.

        “I don’t think there is as much moral distinction between eating meat and being a vegetarian as you think. Milk production involves the killing of the calves that would normally consume the milk. Also what would you do with all the male calves unless us meat eaters helped out by consuming the beef!”

        Well then, even more reason for people to go vegan, myself included.
        Female calves are not killed but placed on a milk replacer.
        And what concerns the male calves: As I said before, I’m pragmatic, I am well aware that this world is not perfect, but at least their is good news:

        Farmers don’t have to let nature take its course anymore. Instead they can specifically breed calves with the sex they prefer

        http://www.dw.com/en/why-cattle-breeders-arent-leaving-it-to-nature/a-17035212

        I don’t expect animal suffering can be completely removed. But if people stop eating meat, at least no animals are killed just for their meat. Of course that will already make a HIUGE difference.

        Also coming up: lab-made meat: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultured_meat

      8. JanB

        Leon, you say ‘Dieticians don’t advise low-fat/high carb diets to people with T2D.” Really? Are you sure? I speak from experience.
        A vegan diet sounds to me like a disaster for ANY diabetic – no eggs, fish, cheese, butter or meat in addition to severely limited starchy vegetables, fruit, grains, pulses etc. I’ve found a way to keep my Mody diabetes under tight control by restricting ALL carbs. In addition, in the absence of animal derived foodstuffs, surely a vegan must supplement with vitB12 which would suggest to me that the vegan lifestyle is unnatural.
        Oh lawdy – food again. Sorry people.

      9. Jennifer.

        JanB….oh lawdy….it is me again about FOOD. We can’t get away from the topic of the day because I have noticed it is in all the media at the present time. My family ( all diagnosed type 2 over the years) keep asking me to check my Hba1c….generally because they are worried that I discarded all meds 5 years ago, and reversed all NHS diet guidelines as the case was back then. ( don’t know what NHS preaches today). My explanation for not getting blood checks done is that I am WELL. If ill, I assure them I will present at the GP’s.
        I have just slipped into a very nice dress I bought a couple of years before I was ‘diagnosed’ with diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and thus starting the decline of my general health; i.e. an increase in fat deposition and all manner of nasties, no doubt brought on with 55% carbs as advised. My BMI is back to 23.5, and I truly believe it is my food and supplant regime, as frequently mirrored on this blog.
        Now will someone suggest how I can successfully stop the GP surgery from pestering me to go for diabetic check-ups. ( p.s. one exception, I do present for diabetic retinal screening every year, and all is well on that front). I have tried everything to stop the pestering…are the surgeries paid for my attendances?

      10. AnnieLaurie Burke

        I’m not sure how it is in your area, but, in the US, docs are rewarded for promoting the pharmaceutical industry’s profitable business model of making as many folks as possible into chronic patients. “You can keep your diabetes (hypertension, etc., etc.) under control by taking this med for life. And you’ll need regular testing to see if we need to adjust your dosage!” You are not doing your part to support the lifestyles of pharma executives — they are not getting your cash for tests/prescriptions every month, if you’re going to go and spend it on food and supplements 😉

      11. Jennifer.

        Here in the UK, being 70 years of age, I, personally, do not pay anything for drugs prescribed by my health providers. But, by allowing the GP to sign a hefty ‘script for me every month, ( the habit I broke 5 years ago), Big Phara are making a mint out of the NHS. The immoral thing is that (as a GP pointed out to me years ago), patients get their ‘scripts dispensed, but then leave the tablets at the back of the drawer! A sort of compliance to keep the doctor happy, you understand.
        They still attend for blood tests etc, and the cycle of tests, results, prescriptions and non-compliance, continues for the rest of their lives. The GPs get paid for doing the monitoring, Big Pharma get paid for the meds, pharmacists get paid for dispensing the scripts, and disposal of the out of date meds retrieved from the back of the drawer when the old biddy dies.
        Now….wouldn’t it be nice if the GP could give me a ‘script for my vit C, vit D, multivit, CoQ10, fish oil capsule, and a voucher to purchase my ( expensive) kefir, organic milk, grass fed beef, unpasteurised butter and cheese, along with other organic, fresh stuff I choose to feed me and hubby on? I can tell you, it would reduce the endless need for medical tests and prescriptions.
        How about starting by confiscating the obvious statin ‘scripts? Other, unnecessary meds could be reduced eventually, thus relieving the NHS of the burden placed on it by the lobbying institutions, which influence MPs ( generally ignorant of what they are voting for or against).
        I think there are a few decent gems to be gleaned from TV programmes at the moment regarding ‘ healthy eating’, but truly, I feel there is a subliminal message still running through them all, possibly influenced by big business paying for the adverts, or young journalists wanting to give the ‘on the one hand, on the other hand’, fairness of debate ,learned at Uni.
        Let’s come clean and have some genuine, decent discussions, and call a spade a spade:
        1) many medications are killing us, or reducing quality of life.
        2) the agricultural business is producing nice looking crops which are devoid of nutrients.
        3) food manufacturers are using toxins to cause dependence on their unhealthy concoctions.
        Hope you have managed to read to the end of my rant, thanks if you did.

      12. annielaurie98524

        Ah, if all this would come to pass, the suffering that would vanish! Sadly, however, the vested interests raking in the dough would never allow such a thing.

    4. AnnaM

      Alas, one of posts is in limbo, and reading it over I see it is a bit sarcastic. But I’ll repost part of it in light of this question of whether it is better ever to live at all. Again, I’d like to re-emphasize that in the wild animals generally have much shorter and more dangerous lives:

      Killing is a weird fact, I grant you that. I would give up meat if I thought it were healthier, but it isn’t. I’m more or less giving up dairy and I can tell you that is tougher than giving up meat, which at least I’ve done a few times.
      But at least I can say that while we do kill our chickens and eat them, that they still have a way better life with us than wild birds do. Even those we eat usually live about a year. Remember that the reproduction success is in nature has to be quite low.
      But our chickens have such a good time, and your solution is that they not exist. They live wonderful, full lives and it is actually a kind of soap opera. My husband loves them so much and does all sorts of things for them. He knows what they are doing, he can tell when a hen wants to sit on eggs before she does it, he finds their hidden nests by listening to them boast about laying an egg, and he has jumped out of bed in the middle of the night and saved them from a predator. We have revived cold chicks literally by blowing hot breath on them and carrying them about if they get lonely. Newborn chicks are quiet and content with the hen, but if you go to a store where they sell chicks (motherless) they peep constantly. It sounds cute but in reality the mother makes a soft clucking sound all day to keep her chicks together and they peep back. So they are trying to locate a mother. If a newborn chick is alone in a box it cheeps piteously at times, but give it a sibling and all is well.

      Reply
  70. Bill In Oz

    @Leon, scanning through the discussion you have initiated in this post reminds me of the long & long winded battle of words that Smatersig & I had in another post by Dr Kendrick last year…I suspect that neither one of us changed the others opinions and so we both ‘retired’ tired and fractious…. Ummmmmm.

    So back to basics : this post is about the benefits of eggs in the human diet. Do you eat eggs ? The fertilised ones ? Or perhaps only the unfettilised ones ?

    Reply
  71. TS

    Just a little snippet that might interest some:

    We used to keep a pair of mules. At one time we had them in the same field as a cow and her calf. The larger of the mules kicked the calf away and suckled from the cow. I don’t know how well she digested the milk since she was aged about 14. Enterprising though, eh?

    Reply
    1. annielaurie98524

      Interesting that a “vegetarian” animal would go for the milk. There are cases where wild carnivores will drink milk from a lactating animal they’ve killed — Derek and Beverly Joubert (wildlife photographers/writers for National Geo) have documented this among lions. “Man is the only animal that drinks milk after weaning” is another of those silly vegan myths. But a grazing animal evolved to eat a diet that’s low in protein and fat on a unit basis — fascinating. Maybe even herbivores secretly long to be omnivores 😉

      Reply
  72. Sasha

    I think all the debates on vegetarian vs meat eating diets as they relate to the health of the planet will lead to nowhere. We’re probably one of the most successful AND the most ecologically destructive life forms on Earth. Unless we change our ways and do it soon, we may find out that Malthus was right, after all.

    Reply
  73. Sasha

    In related news, a huge study on the benefits of Mediterranean diet is being re-analyzed.

    Apparently, many participants weren’t properly randomized. But Steven Nissen still thinks Mediterranean diet is good for you.

    Reply
    1. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

      Yes. I have been reading about this. The lead investigator has reviewed what happened in the study, and he is now more convinced than ever that what he did was correct. Do you think he may have a possible conflict of interest.

      Reply
    2. annielaurie98524

      The so-called Mediterranean Diet is a misnomer and an artificial construct, just like the “Blue-Zone Diet” and the “Okinawan Diet”. Aside from the fact that there are at least 22 countries bordering/located within the Mediterranean Sea, each having its own distinctive cuisine, many (like France, Italy, and Greece) are at least as well-known for their cheeses and cured meats as for their olive-oil dressed pastas. I’ve noted in previous comments that Marcia Angell and Richard Horton, former editors of JAMA and Lancet, respectively, have stated that most modern “medical research” is “bullocks”. Those issues, and the short duration of most “diet studies” may be reasons why these studies show only correlations with health issues, and often only barely significant and marker-related ones at that.

      Reply
    3. Gary Ogden

      JDPatten: Thanks for the link. Seems that everything that could go wrong in a dietary “trial,” did. We’re left with another big pile of doodoo which sounds like science.

      Reply
  74. Leon Roijen

    Dr. Kendrick,

    I have 7 (!) comments awaiting moderation, written on June 12th.
    I can’t imagine you all censored them.
    Did something go wrong, technically?

    Reply
      1. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

        I think I have blocked two in the last year. Unfortunately, I lose track sometimes as I get around five hundred e-mails a day. At least four hundred of which are no junk mail.

      2. AH Notepad

        That’s ok, I haven’t any complaint, I’m surprised you are as tolerant as you are. I find it a squeeze to just read the 30 or so that turn up on the blog, plus maybe a dozen or so others, but 500!!!!!! AND you take holidays, phew! At least I don’t have to bother with those. 🐒

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