A podcast you may want to listen to

9th February 2020

The good thing about having different ideas about diet, obesity, diabetes and heart disease and suchlike, is that you get to meet with such interesting people. Steve Bennett is one such. He set up successful businesses, that have nothing whatsoever to do with health, and only came to diet and health from his own interest and passion.

He then established a brand called Primal Living, based on eating food that we used to eat in the past. Woolly mammoths and suchlike and avoiding processed foods and carbs. In addition taking supplements that have been removed from our diet by the mass food manufacturing industry. It has improved his own health, and the health of many others.

He is, essentially, on the same pathway as Aseem Malhotra, Tim Noakes, Ivor Cummins, Zoe Harcombe, Gary Taubes, David Unwin – and anyone else who has looked at diet, and health, and possess a fully functioning brain.

They have all – we have all – recognised that the current dietary guidelines are complete dangerous bunk, doing harm rather than providing benefit.

He was also good enough to allow me to outline my ideas on CVD, and the process of CVD, which his team has put together into a podcast. It can now be seen here https://podcasts.apple.com/gb/podcast/fat-furious/id1495158540

As always, I feel I have not really explained things as well as I can, but I hope you find it interesting, and I would welcome feedback and constructive criticism. I would further recommend looking at the other podcasts under the ‘Fat and Furious’ banner.

248 thoughts on “A podcast you may want to listen to

    1. bluecat57

      Ecc. 1:9 …nothing new under the sun
      This was in my newsfeed in the last 24 hr. From engadget .com
      ‘Resurrected’ mammoth DNA helps explain why the species went extinct
      Genetic defects might have played a part. Jon Fingas
      You may find woolly mammoth soon in your grocer’s frozen food aisle.

      Reply
      1. AhNotepad

        No problem, do as some food suppliers do, return the out of date items to the packaging depot and stick on new labels, simples. 👍🏽

    2. Anne

      No wooly mammoths available for us these days ! Palaeolithic hunter gatherers were such good hunters that they were very successful at killing a lot of them, and then climate change hit them ! The world got warmer, but mammoths were adapted to cold climates and that was probably the lastl straw for them along with disease or food shortage.
      There’s a wonderful cave in the Dordogne, the Grotte de Rouffignac, the ‘Cave of the Hundred Mammoths’ – there are 158 huge drawings and paintings of mammoths done around 13,000 years ago. The Dordogne in those days was very cold, nothing like today !

      Reply
      1. Harry de Boer

        My Goodness, what a hereticism!
        How do you even dare to implicate that there has been a global warming before without us humans causing it?
        Mann and NASA are doing their utmost best to remove the medieval and more recent warmings from the written records, duping our governments into spending of trillions of dollars to fight an artificial guilt of ‘Anthropogenic Global Warming’ caused by ‘our CO2’, and you even dare to suggest that indeed global warming has occurred before without gaz guzzling hummers and other SUVs running around the planet?
        Burn, you heretic!

      2. AhNotepad

        Harry de Boer, humans did cause the global warming. They killed off all the wooly mammoths whose thick coats were preventing the sun’s heat reaching the ground and thus heating it up, which is exactly what happened once the wooly mammoths were gone.

      3. Harry de Boer

        @AhNotepad (anything by chance to do with Albert Heijn?)
        It must have been the ‘back radiation’ then, which, ignoring thermodynamics (heat doesn’t flow from a low to a high temperature) heats up an object that’s hotter than itself.

        The proper way to do it, even if we ignore that earth’s surface and a cloud of CO2 molecules aren’t exactly what’s defined as ‘black bodies’–how in heaven is a cloud a ‘body’, for instance, and even more a perfectly-black-cavity radiatior–, is not to simply write the radiated energy according to Boltzman, but to take the difference between the radiated energies of the two ‘bodies’.

        So as earth is at absolute temperature Te and the ‘cloud of CO2’ at Tc, then with k being Boltzman’s constant, the power P transfered from the CO2 to the earth equals:
        P = k . ( (Tc)^4 – (Te)^4 ) and as even the climate scarists don’t deny that the CO2 is colder than the earth, that would be negative. So much for ‘back radiation’.

        Not that our politicians would bother about such small details…

        Another small detail: in what direction is a CO2 molecule radiating it’s ‘heat’?
        Right, In three directions, the two directions in the plane parallel to earth’s surface don’t matter (this is a little bit of an exaggeration) and in the third dimension half is going up and half is going down. So even IF ‘back radiation’ were a thing, it would merely be 1/2 . 1/3 . 1/3 = 1/18th of that thing.

  1. dearieme

    On the matter of diet, an anecdote. About fifteen years ago I began to feel uncomfortable after eating mixed nuts – the sort you crack yourself at Christmas. So I eschewed them for a few years. Then I read Jim Watson’s book on DNA and guessed that the problem was with Brazil nuts (his book is American and therefore has a lousy index – to find his remark about the relevant enzyme in Brazil nuts you’d have to turn the ruddy pages). So I banned Brazils from my diet.

    But I noticed that I was still getting tummy trouble after nuts as Xmas. I eventually solved the problem by examining every hazel nut after I’d cracked it. Just a sharp bite with the canine teeth to break the kernel in two, and inspect for discolouration. Problem solved! But I was struck to see how many hazelnut kernels are internally discoloured. Beware, folks!

    Note that cracking your own hazelnuts is what the Mesolithic people of the British Isles did. So much for the food-of-our-ancestors argument. Meanwhile Brazil nuts, the food of someone else’s ancestors, are just fine for me.

    (I do not deny that it’s possible that modern hazelnuts have been processed (dried?) in a way that the nuts of the ancestral inhabitants of, say, Islay were not – Islay being an island where lots of ancient discarded hazelnut shells have been unearthed.)

    Reply
  2. Tom Welsh

    The podcast is really worth while. I think it hits the “sweet spot” for reasonably intelligent listeners. You explain things that need explaining, in simple terms; and Steve’s remarks are very harmonious with yours. I would recommend this to any lay person who wants to learn something about doctors and medical treatments.

    Maybe it’s because I too am Scottish; but I like your (and Steve’s) style. There are so many Americans and others copying them who gabble away twenty to the dozen, making little or no sense. Your calm, conversational way of talking is ideal for getting ideas across; as is the leavening of wit you and Steve skilfully add.

    Reply
    1. karenwatcher

      I’m so glad you said that about the gabbling away making little or no sense, and the length of the gabble!! I might actually try to listen to this podcast on a dogwalk, if it goes on for longer than I walk the dogs then so be it I shall just hope all the important stuff is at the beginning!

      Reply
    2. mmec7

      So agree – great podcast, plus the others that upped along the way. And, so refreshing not to have to put up with inane gabble plus the umms and ahhs and errs – dementing. Am on my second round of delving in, and, have sent to friends (to those to whom I dare send…) and to family.
      Would love to know my CAC score, but only as am curious, though being in my 80s, would I do owt about a high score ? Possibly.
      I join in the vote of thanks – Good job Dr Kendrick.

      Reply
  3. Tom Welsh

    Dr Kendrick, I note that you want to lose weight. I have been around the block with this for the past 50 years, and although you are an experienced doctor and I have no medical or scientific qualification, I’d like to offer what I have learned.

    1. Trying to eat a little less, or a little different, doesn’t usually work. You lose some weight, then when you start eating in your usual way it all comes back on – if you’re unlucky, with some interest.

    2. The 4lb you refer to may include some glycogen and water, so don’t count on it. Calculate 1/2 lb per day of fasting or near-fasting and don’t hope for more.

    3. I finally struck on fasting rather than dieting, and I think it does work. Dr Fung’s books and blog are a good guide, although he doesn’t seem to be quite right about everything.

    4. Another heart doctor who had difficulty losing weight is, of course, Dr William Davis (of “Wheat Belly” fame). I don’t know if you are acquainted, but perhaps you should be! He would tell you simply to give up beer completely, because it’s made with grain.

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    1. Harry de Boer

      I have no idea why any Scot (I’m not) would want to drink beer when such a treasure of famous and good tasting whisky is available. However, lately I found a ‘light beer’ in the stores, in bottles of 330 ml with 5% alcohol content and touted to contain 100 kcal each (it says so on the label).

      Now alcohol is said to contain 7 kcal/g and weighs about 0.85g/ml so as 5% of 330 ml is 16.5 ml one bottle of this light beer would contain around 0.85 g/ml x 16.5 ml = 14 g of ethanol or 14 g x 7 kcal/g = 98 kcal of energy.
      As the light beer is specified to contain 100 kcal, my reasoning would be that it can only contain a mere 2 kcal of energy from anything not being alcohol. And if we would assume that all of these 2 kcal came from carbohydrates then the upper limit of the carbohydrates in this light beer would be 2 kcal / 4 kcal/g = 0.5 g only.

      So the fact that beer ‘is made with grain’ would not in itself be a good reason to stop drinking beer. However, the alcohol in one bottle can reasonably be expected to constitute roughly 5% of a doctor’s daily energy expenditure.

      Therefore my more or less educated guess would be that drinking light beer by someone who is in the state of ketosis won’t bring him or her out of ketosis unless consumed by the case and that it’s ok if the consumption of fats is reduced by 100 kcal for every bottle that is consumed.

      Cheers!

      Reply
      1. Shaun Clark

        Mmmm. Me thinks you mean 0.5% alcohol and not 5% Mr de Boer. 5% is strong-ish beer my friend! I too am now drinking this 330ml AF beer that comes with 0.5% of your earth measures and, which is made by a good newbie Scottish-based ‘Mohican’ brewer. Its not cheap, but I do need to try to break the few beers-in-evening habit.

        Slanite

  4. Frederica Huxley

    I cannot give any constructive criticism, as I feel you are an excellent educator! Just to underline a point that few if any participants in a Oxford trial were over 75, how many women were there? By the way, cardiologists do not like patients questioning studies, or, even worse, quoting NNT.

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  5. tonykerstein

    I’ve ordered the book Doctoring Data. I’ve saved two people from being diagnosed with memory loss by referring them to Malcolm’s the Great Cholesterol Con. it saved me from memory loss as well as muscle pains and serious damage from a very brief haemorrhagic stroke which I quickly recovered from

    Reply
  6. Soul

    I’ll have to give that podcast a listen to in the near future. I currently find my self busy and with that worn out of late. It doesn’t take a whole lot to tire me out. It would be nice though if more was done with diet and health. I suspect it to be an area were some people with health issues can find health improvements with trying different diets.

    That is something I work on myself all the time, diet.

    I’m also in the planning of an operation to help a nephew with anxiety/ depression. He’s coming to visit in a few weeks, staying for spring break. Doctors so far have not been able to help all that much with his depression issues. Anxiety caused him to drop out of college. It came as a shock to many as grade wise the nephew is very smart. He has tested near the top in America while in high school. Then again though in retrospect he has displayed some depression issues when younger, in my opinion.

    So while on spring break I’m serving sweet gluten free/ wheat free delights. I’m not kidding myself. It will be likely be met with resistance if not rejection. But it’s worth a try to see it helps the nephew. I hope all works out for the best for him, but do worry that he might have a tough road ahead of him in life if better answers are not found for his depression/anxiety. The medications prescribed don’t appear to be all that helpful. Maybe a simple wheat free diet will be of benefit in his case.

    Reply
    1. Martin Back

      A colleague of mine was 80 years old, very fit and mentally sharp, still putting in a full day’s work, and he maintained depression was simply a lack of physical fitness.

      As someone who for much of his life was depressed and suicidal, I agree with him. The breakthrough for me came when my car packed up and I had no money to fix it. I was forced to walk everywhere and the depression gradually lifted. I suspect also that sugar is a depressant. It gives you a temporary lift when consumed, but you crash into depression afterwards, much like with alcohol. I feel much better since I gave both up.

      Reply
      1. Soul

        Martin – I’m very sorry about the mental health and financial struggles you have experienced in your lifetime. I wish you the best in the future and glad to read you have found something with your diet and with being outdoors exercising being beneficial with your depression. I hope you see continued improvement.

        Thank you for the suggestion of limiting sugar, but in this case I’m thinking I can’t be a purist. It’s not likely I’ll be listened to if I mention big changes to try in ones diet with my nephew or with my family. My best bet is simply to advise that possibly avoiding wheat/gluten can help with his depression. I’m pretty sure his doctor has not mentioned dietary ideas for him to try. Doctors have him on medication and with seeing a therapist to talk with. Neither idea appears to be helping. If anything he is becoming worse from what I hear.

        So maybe my dietary idea will be listened to with the idea that all the time foods can be eaten, just instead of wheat to eat rice or some other gluten free food item. It’s might work, it might not, but it’s worse a mention for him to try.

        I’m afraid with the current course my nephew is taking with his doctors that little to no improvement will be seen. Like so many Americans he will then essentially be warehoused by the government to some point, buildings were people live that that the government and medical community don’t know what to do with.

  7. johnplatinumgoss

    It is a worrying world. That your opinions and your person have been removed from Wikipedia is no surprise. Wikipedia has a big reach. Your unconventional opinions are unlikely to be welcome there. It is controlled by editors, very powerful editors, who Wikipedia says are voluntary. What the truth is I don’t really know except that the very rich Jimmy Wales is forever begging for money from people who use the site – which in fairness is useful as a quick check – but often weak as an authority.
    Curbing the voices of dissent from mainstream (in this case Big Pharma) opinion is one of its tasks. In a way you should feel lucky that you are not in prison, like pilot Field McConnell, who believes 9/11 was orchestrated by the US state department (you won’t find him either on Wikipedia). Equally as bad is the imprisonment of researcher, Lynda Thyer, who is in a French prison still, as far as my latest information goes, for being part of a team successfully curing patients with cancer using “a glyco-protein macrophage activating factor that is naturally produced in every healthy human” with “success rates of 75-100% – at 1% of the cost of conventional treatments!”
    https://thenhf.com/2019/12/13/breaking-news-on-gcmaf-scientist-lynda-thyer-gcmaf-executive-david-noakes-cases/
    It strikes me that every professional who has taken the Hippocratic Oath should be mightily concerned at what is happening to Lynda Thyer and David Noakes. In the same way every honest bread and butter journalist, and every medic, should be protesting the prolonged incarceration of Julian Assange, whose physical and psychological condition is very fragile.
    Sadly, they are not!

    Reply
    1. AhNotepad

      johnplatinumgoss, thank you for that post. It is well to remember the people at the top of the MHRA that was instrumental in getting Lynda Thyer put on remand (yes, she has not been tried, and may well die before her (sham) trial) in a French prison, are also employed by pharmaceutical companies.

      Reply
    2. Frances

      Julian Assange, Australian citizen, is not getting any help from the Australian Government as PM Morrison says that he takes his cue from Washington and does not want to offend Pres. Trump. Abolutely no backbone this govt. and its PM and overweight Foreign Minister.

      Reply
      1. johnplatinumgoss

        And, Frances, the politicians before Morrison and Co. With two fellow campaigners, the late Rafik Saley and Okoth Osewe in Sweden, I wrote to Bob Carr complaining about lack of support for Julian Assange from the Australian Embassy. His office’s response, which was delegated, claimed he got the same support as all other Australian citizens – which was not what Assange’s mother claimed.

        http://newsjunkiepost.com/2013/02/08/pressure-australia-to-act-on-behalf-of-wikileaks-assange/

        In opposition Julie Bishop had made noises about Assange’s treatment being unfair so when she took Carr’s position I wrote again only to get a similar response.

  8. Håkan

    Malcolm, thanks for the link to the pod. I have listened to it, interesting I would say. Please, elaborate on the efficiency/unefficiency of by-pass surgery.

    Reply
    1. JamesDownUnder

      Yes, with ORBITA pricking the balloon of elective stenting, it’s only logical that a different process but based on the identical foundation needs be questioned . – I still suspect my CABG x5 was at best premature…

      Reply
  9. Roger Needham

    I’m not sure that I see the success of the modern necessarily being outrageously successful in all respects. As some who up until summer 2019, was not a ‘worried well’ person, I was merely reasonably healthy until I suddenly started getting chest pains – never smoked, moderate drinker, no diabetic. Fast forward to Jan7th and I had a stent fitted to my left arterial descending artery as it had pretty much completely occluded.
    Much Like Mike Stone did c.2007, I started reading more around just how our outrageously successful world (for the profitable large food conglomerates) and for myself (happy to do the family shopping at supermarkets for my own convenience), had been impacting my heart health over the past 57 years.
    How could I prevent it happening again (if possible) and were veins really clogged with ‘evil’ cholesterol? – then I got to understand that our brains quite like the stuff.

    And let’s not forget my father, who for many years was a Type 2 diabetic and after 3 years of diet modification has not been on any medication to treat the condition. He had a heart attack at the age of 73 – he’s now a sprightly 87.

    I am not medically trained but there does seem to be some common sense to the view that our bodies have definitely evolved to a certain extent from eating wooly mammoths, but they do not seem to have evolved sufficiently to cope with refined sugars (in plain sight and hidden), man-made fats (in plain sight and hidden) and copious amounts of wheat based products – yes I like my beer.

    Someone, somewhere noted that humans are basically lazy and want the easy way out. That is, please let me eat all this stuff our bodies aren’t really designed to cope with, but (if) when it go goes wrong just give me a pill (or several pills) and all will be well.

    Being a bit of petrolhead, I do know that if you put poor grade oils and fuels in your engine, it may work in the short term, but it is unlikely to perform well in the long term.

    I’m not looking for a ‘fad diet’ – I’m reading up on dietary info that to a non-medic seems to make sense and will hopefully mean I don’t need to take atorvastatin for years to come, just because it seems to be convenient.

    My LAD occluded for a reason and I’d like to know more about why!

    Reply
  10. bluecat57

    Why do you need supplements if you are eating the right things like our ancestors did?

    I asked someone about probiotics wondering why you need to take them every day if you are eating right. Shouldn’t you be able to STOP taking them once your gut bacteria has reestablished itself?

    Bottom line of every diet is to eat a balanced diet of all different types of food and be active outdoors.

    Doesn’t hurt if you won the gene pool lottery.

    Reply
    1. AhNotepad

      bluecat57, where food is grown on agricultural ground, it is not possible to obtain the same nutrition as our ancestors. The ground has been depleted of the minerals that were in the ground, and available to plants. With the widespread use of glyphosate, the mineral problem has been compounded because glyphosate chelates minerals and so stops the transport into the plants. Glyphosate is also antibiotic (it was patented as such), so it will kill gut bacteria.

      Things ain’t what they used to be.

      Reply
    2. James DownUnder

      Simple.With poisoned and depleted souls, plants cannot take up non-existent minerals, and any animals dining on them will be likewise deprived.

      Reply
      1. shirley3349

        I have been having a lot of trouble with my WordPress account recently. My posts are just disappearing into thin air. I don’t think I am writing anything rude, boring possibly.

        A week or two ago I wrote a long account about the work of farmers practicing what they call regenerative agriculture. Their primary aim is to return what they regard as the natural fertility to the soil. To answer JamesDownUnder’s point, the minerals are usually still present in the soil or in the underlying rocks, but the crops cannot access them because modern chemicals have destroyed the network of fungal, microbial and insect life in the soil, which once served to convert the minerals into a form the plants could absorb. The plants in turn exude a carbohydrate substance from their roots which once fed this network of living organisms in fertile soil.
        The regenerative farmers plant a mixture of perennial plants, including some with very deep roots, (several metres long), which bring up new minerals. These plants are then eaten by ruminant animals. The grazing is managed in highly controlled way so that layers of manure, urine and trampled plants build up over time. This covering restores the network of life in the soil and its fertility then increases year on year. It still takes decades to do build any depth of good soil, but not the hundreds of years that nature would take unaided. As the land recovers, the grazing become increasingly profitable and almost valueless land becomes a worthwhile asset.

        Above is just a summary of what I wrote which disappeared, but those interested in regenerative agriculture can find many interesting lectures and day to day accounts of their work on YouTube. I don’t want to be accused of advertising on their behalf, but if anyone shows interest I will post the names of those farmers I find most interesting later on.

      2. mmec7

        Shirley – Excellent post, pertinent information. For my wee potagere I plant various varieties of green rich and flowering winter plants to act as feed to the soil. Come early spring, I dig these in to the soil to act as a natural fertiliser. Though this winter has been four months almost solid rain and now two storms have left nowt but a sodden mess. We’ll see what planting out time can bring to rescue what looks likely to make but a highly dismal show !
        Do post the links to your farmers, as would like to read up onem.

      3. Shirley3349

        mmec7
        The posts I like best are:
        1. Greg Judy’s accounts of livestock farming in Missouri, several times a week. Highly practical with strong personal opinions.
        2. Gabe Brown’s lectures on regenerating cropland in North Dakota. More scientifically oriented, a mixture of crops and livestock farming.
        3. Joel Salatin’s accounts of livestock and multi animal species farming in Virginia. Again highly practical, more emphasis on marketing.
        4. Charles Massy’s lectures about restoring degraded land in Australia.
        The leading pioneer of these methods is Allan Savory in Zimbabwe, who developed the approach of using highly controlled grazing, which mimics the movement of wild herds of herbivorous animals in the once widespread natural grasslands of the world, to regenerate the soils on worked out and degraded land. He has many talks and lectures on YouTube too, but I find him inspiring and irritating in equal measures.

      4. Shirley3349

        Just to add to my previous posts.

        Greg Judy does give his grass-fed cattle mineral supplements. They are offered a kind of buffet of the various minerals to eat as they individually want. He presumes that the animals know what they need. As about 80% of these minerals are then excreted onto the pasture, they are recycled through the soil and the plants, apart from what is now minimal run-off after heavy rain. The mineral requirements of his cattle have now reduced to about 30% of what they were when he commenced his current grazing method about 15 years ago.

  11. Jerome Savage

    Got half way thro. Missed my walk with my dog as a result (hope your proud of yourself Malcolm!) Anyway, the interviewer is obviously a fan and is less of a Melvyn Bragg than he should be ie dispassionate but interested. The term feeding the scrum comes to mind, once penalised but absolutely acceptable now, as per yesterdays Ireland Wales rugby game.That aside the contents should not affect a glazing over of the eyes, as this is or should be directed at medical professionals who are capable of thought and critical analysis. It will be a struggle for some who are just being introduced to the subject. That’s not a criticism however. I think those discerning minds who look at this will either be surprised or shocked that an advertising standards authority do not take an interest. That might be worth touching on. Much of the Trump agenda is directed at multi millionaire senators and Congress folk – Democrats of course. Given that Pharma is the lobbying giant with the biggest paycheck to pursue these elected people for influence, could that relationship be dependant ? I know what I think ! Finally for this reader, I find that the statistics re 1 benefit per 300 doesnt sit easily with 3 days extra of life for (was it) 5 years of usage ? Is that for the one in 300 ? Are we in to Oscar Wilde territory here – damn statistics and all that !
    Another brick in the wall. Round 2 after I walk the dog tomorrow ! Thank you

    Reply
  12. Ennis Greene

    Very interesting. I have been concerned about statin use since meeting an old friend who was walking with a cane. I asked her if she had recently had a hip or knee replacement. No, she said it was muscle damage from a prescribed statin, The heart is a muscle. I have a diabetic relative who has early onset dementia and continues to be on a prescribed statin that did not prevent him from requiring a pacemaker some years back. I fail to see how he has benefited and am suspicious of its negative side effects. His doctor is reluctant to deprescribe. I have become very interested in intermittent fasting and low carb eating. We have a doctor shortage and it seems to me that doctors are overwhelmed by patients with obesity and auto-immune disease. Health care is broken. It is not easy being a disruptor but I am heartened by blogs such as this.

    Reply
    1. anglosvizzera

      @ Ennis Greene, just to say that a pacemaker is needed for different (electrical) problems with the heart, not blocked arteries etc.

      Statins themselves can cause memory issues often diagnosed as ‘dementia’ as Dr K will confirm; and they can trigger type 2 diabetes, especially in women, I believe

      Reply
  13. Bev

    Enjoyed the podcast, even though I would rather watch a video than listen and you came across just as you do on the blog….knowledgeable with a touch of wit. Keep doing what you’re doing and may that statue of you (gazing pensively into the distance) eventually appear somewhere.

    Reply
  14. Craig E

    Dr Kendrick I cannot fault your series on heart disease…it’s had me from the start and it would be hard to argue with conclusions you’ve drawn.

    My constructive criticism is on the diet side. I might say from the outset I have a great deal of respect for Zoe Harcombe and Aseem Malhotra. Equally I was appalled at the way Dr Noakes and Dr Fettke were treated by the establishment for giving reasonable advice. However I don’t agree with everything they say… and…you also mentioned Gary Taubes. To me, Taubes has refused to let go of the notion that carbohydrates are uniquely fattening and that high insulin levels lead to obesity – this despite Taubes’ own NuSI studies (eg Dietfits) thoroughly disproving the above hypotheses.

    What actually matters most with weight gain or lost is how and how much matter enters and leaves the body.

    The main atoms taken in via food/drinks are Carbon, Hydrogen, Nitrogen and Oxygen. At the time we ingest a food our weight will increase by exactly the weight of that food. Whether that mass stays in the body depends what it is and what your body is doing at the time.

    The four primary ways our bodies lose mass are via respiration, perspiration, urine and faeces. Very little food ends up in our faeces. Water is lost via all four. Nitrogen (from protein) can only leave the body via urea in urine. The vast amount of carbon leaving the body is via respiration (some in faeces via dead cells etc and in diabetes type 1 carbon as glucose can spill into the urine). Any carbs/fats not used are stored as either glycogen or in the adipose tissue for later use as substrates for respiration.

    So how much you eat does make a difference as to whether you put on weight or not, as does how much you exercise. There are around 40 essential vitamins, minerals, amino acids and fatty acids. To me, seeking foods that are rich in these makes sense…as well as minimising foods that are nutrient poor/contain artificial chemicals.

    Reply
    1. Sasha

      I agree. There’s a podcast debate between Taubes and the scientist who wrote “The Hungry Brain” (whose name I forget). Taubes doesn’t do that well in that debate.

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      1. Sasha

        Yes, I was blanking out on his name at the time of writing. Thank you. I read the book, it’s excellent. His blog is also very good on all things nutrition.

      2. Göran Sjöberg

        When I ten years ago got interested in what Guyenet claimed in defense of our “official ‘calorie count’ line”, or ‘overeating’, as the EXPLANATION to our obesity epidemic I was, as a researcher in the natural sciences, taken aback by his categoric nonsensical stance on nutrition and lost interest in him.

        What I would like people like Guyenet to do is instead to explain why we just LIMIT our overeating to about three grams per day and in order to gain those 30 kg extra over as many years. Actually, one gram extra on your plate is not very much if controlled by “the brain”. Why doesn’t you brain tell you to put two or even three grams extra on you plate and thus gain 60 or even 90 kg extra kg over the same period of time.

        To me anyway, Gary Taubes has shed light on this issue in his great book. I am not very impressed by ‘scholastic’ and categoric attacks on his book from people like Guyenet.

        BTW, to our own experience (N=2) a very low carb diet, devouring on a lot of the fattest pork or like for ten years now, is an excellent way to loose weight (myself about 30 kg i a couple of years, my wife 16) if this is what you are interested in though in our case it was for purely health reasons we ‘jumped on the train’ an aim which also worked far above any expectations.

      3. Sasha

        I would suggest reading his book before calling his arguments “nonsensical”. The book is very good, imo.

      4. andy

        HI Göran: Understanding of nutrition is not complete without considering the alchemy happening in the gut.

        https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/31460832
        The Microbiota-Gut-Brain Axis
        “Much recent work has implicated the gut microbiota in many conditions including autism, anxiety, obesity, schizophrenia, Parkinson’s disease, and Alzheimer’s disease.”

      5. mmec7

        Many with arthritic conditions : Rheumatoid arthritis; Ankylosing Spondylitis; Becets Disease etc find that they need to drop the red meats, sometimes also dairy – can send them into a flare.
        https://www.healio.com/rheumatology/spondyloarthropathies/news/online/%7B47729d65-828c-4471-83d5-ec097ab7508a%7D/patients-with-ankylosing-spondylitis-display-distinct-fecal-microbiota-signature

        “We have demonstrated a distinct fecal microbiota signature in the patients with AS, which differed from the patients with UC and healthy controls,” Klingberg and colleagues wrote. “In the AS patients, fecal microbiota signature was linked to fecal calprotectin levels, a marker of intestinal inflammation, but not to other clinical parameters. This suggests that the intestinal microbiota may be involved in an interplay with subclinical gut inflammation in AS.” – by Jason Laday

      6. andy

        mmect: now a word from our sponsor (of Arthritis Foundation)
        “Today, we are pleased to announce that our collective effort is now that much stronger, thanks to the makers of Advil®. Advil is our first official “Champion for Life” corporate sponsor.”

        Warning: don’t trust “foundation”s that warn about dangers of meat consumption

      7. mmec7

        Well now Andy – the link I posted bears out what most spondys find out for themselves – no, I am not a particular fan of Helio, but from time-to-time they put up a pertinent study, this one was from Norway – Northern peoples found to be Dx with AS and also MS is more often found in Northern peoples.
        Relating back to the study, suggest you check out KickAS.org, about the best support group and most knowledgeable on AS. I have been a very active member for 16 years : AS and also MS, plus a hammered gut due to the initial prescriptions for NSAIDS. However, I will not take up Dr Kendrick’s blog space with my overly tedious health details. But, suggest you perhaps visit KA, read the diet forum posts and also bone up on the ‘Success Stories’ written up by members. Findings : red meat can lead to flares; starches can lead to flares; milk products can lead to flares.

        Here are a couple of links where you can get your microbiome fully checked out – posted up recently on KA, in response to a new member who has been yo-yoing highs, lows, flares, diets various, water fasts, apple fasts, a nose dive in to the biologics (not good) and all ideas in between. An interesting background. The KS support group will help him to get a handle on his problems.

        One could have wished that the Microbiome Research Project was around when Prof Alan Ebringer doing his own research into gut, leaky gut, and AS. However, we now have their excellent finds to help us deal with AS, and all comorbidities in between IBD / IBS, Crohn’s, uveitis – and all comorbidities in between, mine also include : MS – demyelination, nodules, blind in one eye; A-fib; Prinzmetal – variant angina; 3x MI; hypertension; DVT and pulmonary embolism; severe glaucoma. (Don’t weaken, ban the pills, look to your diet and don’t forget to exercise, Oh…and, laugh !)

        You can have your own microbiome checked out by :-
        the American Gut project – http://humanfoodproject.com/americangut/

        and here for the UK – http://britishgut.org/

      8. andy

        Hi mmc7: thanks for the info on AS, I sympathize with anyone suffering with gut issues. I do not have IBS or any other gut problems that I am aware of. My interest is to keep an eye on the gut in order to avoid potential problems, especially that I have now suddenly joined the 80 age group.
        From what I understand is that the colon is where the microbiome resides. Anything undigested that ends up in the colon, proteins (meat, milk, plant) and starches (fibre) will feed the gut bacteria. Proof of this is that people who eat a lot of vegetables especially beans will also generate a lot of greenhouse gasses. Undigested proteins in the colon might also produce interesting results. A nose test might be an indicator of microbiome health. Someone might be able to develop a test kit for this purpose.

      9. mmec7

        Hi Andy – I am in the 80+ group and assuredly gut problems aint funny…monstrous alarming when they decide to go haywire ! The jolly colon can play some nasty tricks, so well done to keep an eye on dietary factors. For myself, much as I love veggies, cannot cope with them – fibre is deadly, spinach is about my limit though I do enjoy stepping out of line now and again – b-sprouts, cabbage, kale and runner beans – though the side effects are anything but joyful ! As for legumes, no way. Lived in India for 7 years, but those dahls…murder. Some rice, but limited.
        As for the olfactory matter – a trained dog would do the trick. Brilliant animals. Cost factors : a well trained dog v. medical appliances !
        Thanks for stepping back in – AS aint much fun.

      10. andy

        Flatulence as risk factor for CVD or plaque: couldn’t find any connection but found connection to colorectal cancer.Tried to stay on topic. Had a colonoscopy, inspired by a friend who passed away from this disease.

        Here is a preliminary hypothesis: (could be basis of a bestseller)
        Part 1: A high fat adequate protein carnivore diet is healthy unless one adds fibre and other plant materials.
        Part 2: Meat requires longer to digest, speeding up transit time will result in meat protein putrefaction in colon
        Part 3: Plant based diets have fastest transit times, resulting in plant protein fermentation in colon. More gas and more stools per day.
        Part 4: Hydrogen sulfide can be generated in colon from meat and sulphur rich vegetables and is a factor in cancer initiation
        Part 5: Gut microbiome composition is result of diet composition

        https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/apt.13456
        Review article: insights into colonic protein fermentation, its modulation and potential health implications
        https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/142427#1
        Vegetarians Have Fewer Cancers But Higher Risk Of Colorectal Cancer, Study
        https://www.livestrong.com/article/441273-how-long-does-it-take-a-meat-diet-to-digest-compared-to-a-vegetarian-one/

      11. Sasha

        mmec: your experience and that of others is very valid. It agrees with TCM thinking on this. I don’t know where you’re based but if you’re in UK, look up Mazin Al-Khafaji (i might be butchering the spelling). His specialty is dermatology but he can most likely point to a good TCM herbalist. Or acupuncturist. Either one would work as long as they’re good.

      12. mmec7

        Well done Sasha – your spelling of Mazin Al-Khafaji was not macerated ! I live in Brittany, France. Am still trying to locate a holistic doctor or a homeopath in my vicinity. A big problem being that France has decided that such only warrant a thumbs down…and such who practice (dare to practice) are given a hard time. Could do with consulting with one re hypertension; mine is startling to silly levels, but pharma’s answers have only given rise to alarming and decidedly unwanted side effects. So, one staggers onwards : can find the odd one or two homeopaths in Paris – but fares, consultations and additional expenses add up to being a bit beyond my purse strings !
        As for getting to Hove, Brighton, no way. My driving is confined to very local stuff, plus, the roads in Brittany are relatively quiet, UK is way beyond this 82 year old now (terrifying…!)
        Would certainly love to get this blasted hypertension under control, but find an anti-H. that does not cause horrible unwanted side effects, Ho-Hum…
        Thanks for piling in – I have kept the name, and see he has written a book on acupuncture, available from Amazon – though I don’t purchase anything – ever again – online. Got truly hammered once. Still smarting.
        Be well – I enjoy your posts.

      13. Sasha

        Yes, if you ever decide to ask him for local TCM recommendations for you, he might be able to help. He is a legend in herbal dermatology, he should know good general herbalists, including in France. As far as acupuncture, from my experience, it addresses hypertension pretty effectively in many cases but you need to find someone knowledgeable. France used to have a distinguished acupuncture tradition, I don’t know what the situation is like now… I wish you much success in addressing the challenges facing you.

      14. Sasha

        Andy, from my experience, more than likely. People with joint issues, more often than not, will have a weak Stomach pulse. It indicates Stomach Qi deficiency in TCM. The solution (one of the solutions) is to eat soups in the morning.

      15. mmec7

        I love soup – homemade bone soup – has to be wild fowl though – Will take note to take in the morning.

      16. Sasha

        In my opinion, also make sure you balance the soup by adding good quality veggies and carbs. From what you’re describing, you have a weakness in Spleen/Stomach. Can’t say about what’s going on with your Liver/Gallbladder and Kidney/Urinary Bladder without hearing your pulse. (This is all TCM classification). But good carbs strengthen Spleen/Stomach and veggies clear Heat (inflammation in modern terms). This is coming back to Five Phases in TCM (roughly corresponds to Systems biology in modern days). And if you can find a good TCM herbalist or acupuncturist in your area, they could be of tremendous help. I hope you see improvement in your condition!

      17. mmec7

        Thank you Sasha – I value your good advice. And, you about hit the old health nail !
        Yes, I add organic veggies : sweet potato, potatoe, carrots, celery, pumpkin, a variety of French beans – and whatever else in season that I can take. Tends to be on the starches side, but find I can cope. Also add turmeric, black pepper, a pinch of this and that, an organic lemon, a bunch of Herbs de Provence, fresh if possible and certainly coriander and parsley. Soup is one of my stand bys.
        I put up the details of Mazin Al-Khafaji and the Avicenna on the ‘Healing MS Naturally’ f/b site. Again, my thanks for all your input.

      18. Sasha

        Yes, it’s very good that you put up TCM information on the site. If people find their way to a good TCM herbalist or acupuncturist, they will be helped greatly, in my opinion.

        I had an acquantance once who began studying kung fu in the late 1950’s in California. His teacher was Chinese and one of the first, I think, who began to teach the locals. Shortly after, in the early 1960s, my acquaintance began to develop severe joint issues and he was diagnosed with AS. Back then there was even less in pharma than there’s now for AS so he was told to just go home and make peace with it. He went to his kung fu teacher who told him to continue coming to classes and he also started treating him with acupuncture. Under the table, back then there were no acupuncture regulations in the US. 6 months later the guy was symptom free and stayed symptom free for the rest of his life. I met him when he was in his 70’s.

        So, the earlier your support group fellows find their way to proper treatment, the better, I think. Lots depends on the state of one’s Qi and young people have more Qi by definition. Even when they develop health problems, they are easier to address in the young.

      19. Craig E

        Hi Goran

        I have read a little Guyenet and I too struggle to see the logic in most of what he says.

        To be honest I have always struggled with the pure Calorie theory too but only in the sense that humans are not bomb calorimeters. Although energy can neither be created or destroyed, within the body as reactions occur some is lost as heat etc. So one can’t simply say I ate a 150 Calorie muffin then ran two hours to cancel it out.

        However, given what we eat has mass, we can account for the weight. Matter can neither be created or destroyed. If you put something into your body it has to go somewhere. In a hydrated state, when you drink water, most of it will be lost in the urine. However as per my post above, when you eat carbon it has to go somewhere. If it doesn’t leave via respiration it remains in the body, no matter whether it came from fat, carbs or protein. So I think logic would suggest that if you put more matter in than comes out, you gain weight

        I have no doubt that a low carb works in the sense that people can remain lean…but this is equally true for low fat. And Taubes’ NuSI studies proved that varying macronutrient ratio doesn’t lead to any great weight loss.

        The best thing about this blog aside from Dr K, are the insights gained from commenters. Happy to hear alternatives.

      20. Sasha

        I think meats increase your basal metabolic rate to a greater extent than most carbs. This may account for greater energy expenditure with a low carb diet.

      21. Sasha

        Also, there are lots of factors in nutrition. For example, Italians make their pasta al dente because it takes more energy to digest it. Therefore, you don’t gain as much weight as you would from pasta cooked to the full.

      22. Göran Sjöberg

        To reply to some comments made here I am not saying that you can not starve yourself to death or that it is impossible to eat yourself to obesity even on a low car diet but it is certainly much easier to gain weight on carbs than on seal blubber.

        And from what I read by Gueynet those ten years ago I realized that he, as a researcher, had deep knowledge about the details in how our “reward systems” work. The nonsensical part of his message, in my eyes, is that he at the same time missed the complete broad picture of the issue which is precisely what Gary Taubes brings to me through his thorough and comprehensive research (five years!) and his survey of the subject of obesity in his book

        If you happen to be right about some details it doesn’t necessarily mean that you have grasped the essence of the subject at stake. (I noted that among my own research students now and then.) And when you on top turn out to be categorical in your statements your credibility for me is lost.

        Nutritional science is by nature extremely complex which certainly doesn’t merit categorical statements and such I don’t find with Gary Taubes who always present modest views but arguing for his hypothesis of the “danger” with excessive carbs – thus high credibility in my eyes.

        The best thing in my view is to do nutritional experiments on your self with carbs/no carbs and see the effect on you own belly to get convinced or not. (I think even Malcolm mentioned something about the effect of a few beers on this subject in this podcast 🙂 )

      23. Sasha

        That’s interesting. I see the situation as completely reversed. As far as I can gather, it is Guyenet who doesn’t make categorical statements, while Taubes certainly does. Guyenet is a scientist, he doesn’t make categorical statements, at least not so far from what I have seen. It shows in the podcast if you care to listen to it. Guyenet makes a point to say that he is not there to exonerate sugar or junk carbs. But to claim, like Taubes does, that sugar (and carbs by extention) are at the root of all evil simply doesn’t hold up scientifically. And NuSi experiments showed exactly that, as far as I know. Those experiments falsified Taubes’ and Attia’s hypothesis.
        As far as personal experiments with diet, for every low carber who lost weight, there’s probably a low fatter who lost weight. As long as they did it correctly. The reason it’s easier to gain weight on carbs than on seal blubber is simple, I think. A meal consisting of meat, mashed potatoes, and then dessert is much more palatable to us than a seal blubber by itself on a plate. You end up consuming more calories eating a western diet versus an Inuit diet.

      24. AhNotepad

        According to Robert Lustig, and reference to John Yudkin, sugar comes pretty near the root of most dietary evil in the quantities that people consume it today. It wouldn’t be right to blame the consumers because advertising influences peoples actions. Surprise, surprise, reports on sugar funded by the sugar industry conclude it is beneficial when consumed as part of a balanced diet, then go on to advertise it in a way that people consume it in an unbalanced way. Who would have thought it?

      25. Sasha

        Just because people snort cocaine with lots of detrimental effects, doesn’t mean that coca leaves don’t have medicinal value. I agree that sugar, in the amounts typically consumed, has detrimental effects. However, when you take a macronutrient (carbs) and label it bad, no matter how you slice it, it leads to all sorts of problems. That’s how religions start. When you refuse to accept the evidence because you have a dogma.

      26. AhNotepad

        That is true in some respect, but Lustig demonstrates that carbohydrates are not essential nutrients. While sugars are contained in foods which occur naturally, and are useful to indicate something safe to eat, refined sugars are something entirely different.

        Cocaine is not relevant here. Nor is heroine, from which people die, not because of the heroine, but because of the toxicity of the aluminium in the refined product.

      27. AhNotepad

        ”However, when you take a macronutrient (carbs) and label it bad, no matter how you slice it, it leads to all sorts of problems. That’s how religions start. When you refuse to accept the evidence because you have a dogma.”

        Or label it good. You are right that’s how religions start, as did the Seventh Day Adventists in the form of Ellen White and John Cornflake Kellogg. They labelled cereals (carbs) as good, and meat as bad because it gave rise to impure thoughts. They have since run a-mock over the world promoting veganism and deleting truth mongers from wikipedia. They refuse to accept the evidence, as you say correctly, because they have a dogma..

      28. Sasha

        Yes, but what does it have to do with what I’m trying to say? I never said I agree with 7th Day Adventist thinking on this.

      29. AhNotepad

        I think the problem is understanding what you are trying to say. I interpreted it as “there’s not much wrong with sugar”. That seems a bit dogmatic. My dogma is “there’s plenty wrong with sugar in the way most people encounter it.”

      30. AhNotepad

        Ok, I’ve told you my interpretation, which apparently was wrong, so what were you trying to say? Unfortunately I haven’t yet mastered telepathy.

      31. Sasha

        AHNotepad: Really? After what I wrote on this thread to Andy and Goran, your interpretation of what I’m saying is: “there’s not much wrong with sugar”. Which sugar do you mean by “sugar” by the way? Refined sugar, sugar that the body produces after breaking down simple carbs, complex carbs, or some other kind of sugar?

        And also you think that I’m being dogmatic.

        The beauty of these threads is that all responses are there for you to see and to revisit if you forget. Can you please go back to what I wrote and show me where it says that I think “there’s not much wrong with sugar”. And also show me examples of where you think I’m being dogmatic. I’m really curious.

        I like arguing when it produces some sort of positive, I don’t like arguing for the sake of arguing. You don’t need to learn telepathy. As far as I can see, you would do well by learning how to read and interpret things correctly. Your responses sometimes read like Wiki’s list of fallacies.

      32. AhNotepad

        Sasha, a point I picked up on was ”But to claim, like Taubes does, that sugar (and carbs by extention) are at the root of all evil simply doesn’t hold up scientifically.”

        I responded with ”According to Robert Lustig, and reference to John Yudkin, sugar comes pretty near the root of most dietary evil in the quantities that people consume it today.” Lustig has been reasonably scientific in presenting the evidence IMO. You may not agree.

        You suggested labelling carbs as bad was dogmatic, I pointed out labelling them as good could be seen as dogmatic.

        I obviously must not present any thoughts as “Your (i.e. my) responses sometimes read like Wiki’s list of fallacies.” (Whatever that is).

        That statement does not appear to be one from someone interested in what I would term a “discussion”, where you used the term “argument”, and I do not expect discussions to result in only “positives”, sometimes a “negative” is unavoidable, but acceptable.

        In this particular case, given your last remark above, further discussion is best avoided. I will accept you may wish to make a further point, but this will be my last comment on the subject.

      33. Shaun Clark

        Mr AhNotepad,

        Thank you for your very considered and balanced comments. You are seemingly a very decent fellow, but methinks we have one of them there Troll-thingy’s on the loose hereabouts? Sadly, they do get everywhere these days.

        You, my friend, have a great deal of patience, and I do greatly admire you for it, but just as religion could be considered allegorical science such run-away ‘threads’ are again expanding to over-the-hill-far-off-and-mystical allegorical medicine. So, take a break, settle down, have a beer or two, and don’t feed the buggers too much sugar.

        Shaun C.

      34. Göran Sjöberg

        Posting problems,

        Funny!

        Among women it has been known for a long time (e.g. by my mother in law who was very keen on this when young) that to stay slim you had to keep away from the carbs (bread, rice pasta etc.) and among men the beer belly problem has been known for centuries.

        Though I have never heard about any “meat belly”.

      35. Sasha

        That doesn’t negate “calorie in, calorie out” theory. And it doesn’t mean that one calorie you get from carbs somehow magically adds more in weight than one calorie you get from fat or protein. That’s why, I think, NuSi studies failed.

      36. Craig E

        I’m not sure this reply is in the right spot but it’s on the thread with Goran, Sasha and AhNotepad. With respect to Lustig and others claims that carbs are non essential, although true the same can could be said about half of the amino acids but I rarely hear that we should avoid these. In terms of Taubes I am all for people having researched their position but one can’t cherry pick data to support their argument. Goran I know that you read Alberts in terms of cell biology and use that as reference. I think to explain what goes on in the body one has to start with the biochemistry…and what goes on in most of the human body at a biochemical level has been clear for a lot longer than all these nutrition science theories. Just like the cholesterol hypothesis and Saturated fat hypothesis is bunk I think the focus on sugar/carbs being evil is overblown. I do think too many cause problems but it’s arguable what are too many. If one is getting regular exercise, most carbs ingested will be used for energy or stored as glycogen. My own philosophy has always been to eat the foods I like that give my body the nutrients it needs. Perhaps Gorans approach of doing n=1 experiments and working out what’s best for you is the way to go…

      37. Sasha

        I agree very much. I read two books by Taubes and read Guyenet’s and Harcombe’s books. While I like very much Harcombe and Guyenet, my feeling is that Taubes does cherry pick and Guyenet’s criticism has a point. Taubes is a bit “married to his ideas”. From the podcast I assumed that Taubes struggled with weight during his college years (I might be wrong about this). However, if I’m correct and he resolved it the way he resolved it, it may be coloring his thinking on this now.

      38. Craig E

        @Shaun Clark one of the things Dr K encourages is respectful debate. Although the discussion between Sasha and AhNotepad is getting a little heated both are regular contributors to this blog. In essence at the core of the debate is whether carbs are evil. Well, in excess they most certainly are but…glucose is such an important molecule that your body goes to extreme lengths to manufacture it to keep us from slipping into a hypoglycemic coma. So when people like Taubes and Lustig dogmatically claim that sugar/carbs are evil (whether it’s glucose, fructose, galactose), I call it. Lustig even claims fructose is akin to poison! So while conversations on here can sometimes get out of hand…we shouldn’t stifle debate. Not all with alternate views are trolls…

      39. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

        Indeed. I have been watching the debate and come close to intervening. When does heating debate (good), become too aggressive etc. I don’t really know. But I don’t think it has happened yet.

      40. AhNotepad

        Sasha, no need to apologise, it’s easy to put something down that hindsight reveals was not the best idea. There’s quite a lot I write that I edit (more like censor), before I press the POST button, as I think it would fail the Kendrick test. I accept you probably know a lot more than me about various subjects (who doesn’t that posts on this blog?). I’m not sure how I’ve been able to get away with it for so long without being found out. I thought it best to stop the earlier discussion as I could see a deep hole being dug, and me probably being at the bottom of it.

      41. Sasha

        I especially liked the bit about “over-the-hill-far-off-and-mystical allegorical medicine”. Shaun Clark seems to be confusing his ignorance with others’ mysticism. Happens all the time.

      42. Harry de Boer

        @Sasha, February 12, 2020 at 1:01 pm Yes of course meat increases metabolic rate compared to carbohydrates as those (carbohydrates) increase your insulin level which is known to slow down metabolic rate.

    2. andy

      Hi Craig E: what you eat also affects how much you want to eat to be satiated. Cooked up some pork hocks and pork rinds, energy dense and need very little to be satiated for a very long time. My mitochondria prefers to be fuelled by fat. Low insulin allows access to stored fat in adipocytes. No problem with maintaining weight.

      Reply
      1. Craig E

        @Andy I love pork. I do think that certain foods are being made to be hyperpalatable, such that they are easy to overconsume. With regard to satiation, I did read somewhere that protein is the most satiating and carbs and fats are about the same. The most evil ‘foods’ IMO are energy laden drinks like coke that have zero of the 40 odd essential nutrients but are easy to overconsume. Closely followed by seed oils. The carbon in these can really only be lost via respiration…if not needed for energy it’ll be stored. BTW I am neither low carb nor low fat – I just eat a variety of foods that’ll get me my 40 nutrients.

  15. Patricia Oakes

    Thank you, I started reading your wise words because my Mother in Law had been put on statins as she ‘reached the catchment age’ and the had turned her from a fit and active senior lady into as dried up husk of her former glory. I have subscribed and will listen with interest, it would be good to get sensible advice rather than faddy ‘media hype’ rollocks!

    Reply
  16. Julia Colton

    I listened to, and very much enjoyed, the podcast. Interestingly, I had read on Twitter, only the day before, that @DrEades had posted a claim by ‘Vegan Sarah’ that a vegan organisation had removed you and others from Wiki. I wasn’t aware of your link to anti-vegan propaganda!! 😉

    Reply
    1. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

      I am not particularly anti-vegan. But there are some very fundamentalist vegans who attack anyone, and anything, which suggests that eating animals may not be bad for human health. they are definitely trying to re-write the historical record.

      Reply
  17. Jess

    Malcolm, I have read with interest your series on heart disease, but I am heartened to see that diet (not dieting) has come up for discussion viz-a viz human health. I have been reading/researching on this subject for many years now and the best example that I read in relation to diet and obesity was an example from American cattle farmers. When young cattle are being raised they are supplied with additional nutrients to build lean healthy bodies. At sometime before they are ready for market, the additional nutrients are withdrawn and the cattle start to put on weight. The takeaway message from that is that obesity will follow when there is a lack of adequate nutrition.

    In my opinion, the importance of food/diet/nutrition seems to have completely eluded our medical system. However, I do think it is an uphill battle for anyone to get sufficient nutrients these days from food, even eating organic, liberal crop spraying over the decades has destroyed many of the essential enzymes in the soil, if its not in the soil it won’t be in your broccoli, and that’s not to mention the effects of GMO crops. If you add to that the multitude of chemicals that make their way into our lives from things like fire retardants et al, it is not surprising that eventually our bodies will fail us. So what do we do, we rely on pharmaceutical drugs to mend what has gone wrong. With the exception of infectious diseases, drugs certainly have a place in our lives short term, but they only manage symptoms, never cure them. Added to which most drugs further deplete the nutrients from the body making the situation worse, and so it goes on ad infinitum….now more than at any other time in our history we need good nutrition because we rely on it to also get rid of the toxins we are subjected to.

    If the body has its full quota of nutrients its quite capable, all by itself, to figure out how to keep us healthy. I think there is a tendency to overthink this process, you cannot change the way the body naturally works, you can try to understand it, even interfere with its natural processes, but if you deprive it of its needs it will always bite you on the bum eventually!!

    Reply
    1. Harry de Boer

      I find it a very interesting side note that cessation of supplementation would lead to weight gain.
      I made a mental note to consider this in my future searches regarding health and nutrition. Thanks for the suggestion.

      Reply
      1. Jess

        Harry, yes it is an interesting side note, and the more I thought about it the more it made sense. Obesity is not just being overweight but brings with it many other health issues many of which can be directly linked to lack of specific nutrients. Moreover, fats are consistently demonized and seen as something that should be avoided at all costs when trying to lose weight. You might find the link below interesting. I came across a thought provoking article some time ago that highlighted the correlation between the rise in statin use and the rise in dementia/alzheimers. The brain contains 25% of the body’s entire supply of cholesterol, so if you are overweight, on statins and reducing your fat intake from diet, it doesn’t seem to me to be a great leap of imagination to figure out why dementia may be increasing.

        https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12566139

  18. Tish

    Malcolm:
    Bearing in mind that researchers into alcohol and longevity might well enjoy a drink themselves, how free from bias and how robust do you consider their studies to be?

    Reply
      1. JDPatten

        The article you cite is more than thirty years old. Now, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s wrong. But it is old by any stretch.
        This one is a handful of days old, and neither does that mean it’s true:
        https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/326731.php#1
        Go to the original research. Check them both out for bias, as Dr Malcolm just told us there’s no research completely without it.
        That said, I’ve as recently taken that new research at face value and quit my daily sip of Lagavulin 16 year or Laphroaig 10 year.
        Ah, Islay, I miss ya!
        Having had atrial fibrillation, I can tell you I’d jump through tougher hoops to avoid a recurrence!
        Only question: Is either research at all true?

      2. Tish

        Hello JDPatten
        But the atrial fibrillation of daily low consumption drinkers may have nothing whatsoever to do with alcohol. It could even be caused by the thing we seem to avoid speaking of – stress/strain. It could be a matter of the sensible worried (careful daily drinkers doing their best for themselves generally) versus the weekend revellers (not so worried, enjoying the moment, drinking with friends). A huge generalisation on my part, I know.
        As you say, we just don’t know.

  19. James

    The 11 minute intro to Fat & Furious made me pause, it felt like I was going to be sold something.

    But then the line up of speakers was really impressive, non of them would put their names to something that wasn’t going to be good.

    And I really liked Steve Bennet, he’s the man in the street, admittedly a very successful one, which maybe explains the sales pitch I thought I was listening to.
    And he’s angry; really, really spitting feathers angry, in fact he’s furious.
    He thinks he’s been lied to, conned, not given all the facts.
    And he’s right.

    When Richard Horton, the editor of the Lancet said he thought perhaps half of published research was simply untrue and we had taken a turn towards darkness, he wasn’t alone. Marcia Angel editor of the New England Medical Journal, felt the same, so did Richard Smith editor of the BMJ.
    I thought ‘this is dynamite!’
    Except it wasn’t.
    Somebody blew the fuse out.
    It was completely ignored by most of the media.
    You may wonder why.

    Which is why Fat and Furious is such a good idea.

    Dr Kendrick is brilliantly outspoken, an entertaining writer and speaker. He’s prepared to fight to the death for a principle, and I’m sure his discovery of the truth of pharmaceutical practice has left him as angry as Steve. But Dr Kendrick’s anger is contained, focused, he wants to win by rational argument, as do all the other speakers lined up on the podcasts.

    But Steve’s the catalyst.
    He’s a civilian, not a medic, he can say things in ways his guest speakers either can’t, or are more reluctant to articulate.

    This is really good stuff, full of unexpected gems.

    I’m hooked

    Reply
  20. JDPatten

    Wooly mammoth: still very useful.
    Violins played in top orchestras are valuable – several hundreds of thousands of $ is not uncommon. An excellent bow to match the violin is generally worth 15% to 20% of that.
    Hey. You get what you pay for. With fiddles and such, anyhow.

    And then, it gets taken away from you at customs!
    https://www.google.com/search?q=ivory+bows+confiscated+orchestra&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&client=firefox-b

    Well, You cannot kill a mammoth or a mastodon for its ivory! That ivory is legal. And it keeps.
    My wife’s bow is fitted with mammoth ivory at the tip, reinforcing the mortise that holds the hair.
    It’s documented. No worry at customs.
    (Now THAT’s a digression!)

    Reply
  21. Jerome Savage

    You make the comment that no “terrible harm ” arises from stopping statin use. What sort of harm then, we are inclined to ask, average harm or fairly significant harm. I found myself wondering about that comment. Suggestion is that harm is caused by stopping statins, just that it’s not so terrible ! From earlier blogs we learned that the NO content of statins reduced inflammation of the artery wall (Atherosclerosis) thro a healing influence if memory serves me right. Additional benefit of statins is clot reduction. Both conditions might be dealt with naturally, the former thro exercise & vitamin D and the latter thro natural blood thinners, eg garlic. (Aspirin, as I know only too well, is not easy on the stomach). Unless these options are advised to the listener/reader or anyone with reason to be interested, confusion will reign and the medically established line will be followed. (If doctors can’t differentiate between absolute & relative risk, then they are likely to have a similar bias towards the accepted bias). We might like some clarity on why a bypass doesnt work (did I hear that right?) We know these veins have a tendency to clog more so than the original arteries due to the wall composure ?. The listener would like to know what is the alternative to a bypass is – if not a stent. We would also like to know in order of the degree of harm caused, in your opinion, by statins in terms of muscle, cognitive or liver damage or other. We might assume it varies among patients, nevertheless there must be a primary negative followed by a 2 & 3. Finally, regarding newspaper articles on statins, you only need to look at the comments to realise that the public have serious concerns with statins, many of which are 1st hand. Not so with other medical treatments. Comments on vaccines for example are almost all in favour.
    PS Is there a market for a decent, non contaminated, honest & intelligent medical journal ? Thanks again.

    Reply
    1. AhNotepad

      Jerome, for all treatments, it might be worth asking nonchalantly “Is there a figure to give me an idea of the benefits of …….?” Once you have an answer, probably in the region of several tens of per cent, ask “Interesting, what about the risks of ………?” The unfortunate practitioner has probably fallen into the trap. Your third and final question might be “Mmmmm, the benefits sound like relative risk, and the harms sound like absolute risk, can you explain the difference between the two?

      Reply
      1. David Bailey

        I feel a conversation like that would just set the GP’s back up against you. I mean we do need GP’s for lots of things – like diagnosing what is wrong, or treating us when we are actually unwell, so making them feel embarrassed and defensive isn’t the way

        Mind you, I don’t know what is the answer – in my case, I can just fall back on my polio leg (so to speak!), and blame it for the reason I won’t take statins under any circumstances.

      2. AhNotepad

        David, if it gets his/her back up, you don’t need them. If they know their stuff they should be confident and not display insecurity. Lots of people say things to me they have found from other sources, I just explain the reasoning. If they are ok with that, theres no problem. If they don’t like the answer, they don’t need me, and I don’t need them. You can’t please all of the people all of the time, and it works both ways.

      3. Jerome Savage

        AHN. I agree that we should have an honest discussion with our GP. We are after all paying them, they hav a duty of care and they need to set us at ease – never mind being aware of all associated & relevant topics out ther. (Is CPD a requirement for GP’s?) Leading your GP in to a trap (of sorts), tho, might not engender trust.

      4. David Bailey

        Well sorry, I think it is important to remember that every GP has a heavy work load, and may not come primed for a discussion about all the statin evidence. They can’t possibly mug up on every single medical issue to the extent that Malcolm has done on everything CVD related and still do their work!

        Asking them to explain a statistical concept as a test, relevant though that question is – is pretty discourteous. At most, I would say, “That is obviously a relative risk, and I find the absolute risk to be more relevant”. Maybe that way they might take note and read up about the distinction.

        We shouldn’t be in this mess, but we are, and the GP’s are being duped (i.e. are victims) just as much as their customers.

      5. AhNotepad

        If someone, even a GP, is trying to give you something which they use the amplified figures for the benefits, and the attenuated figures for the harms, it is hardly discourteous to ask without leading, if they understand the relevance of the claims. It isn’t good enough for them to say “we have such a big work load that I can’t be expected to give correct information”, when they are giving something that may cause significant harm. It would only sound like a trap to someone who didn’t have the knowledge, to someone who knew, it would be a simple question to answer.

        How many people here would accept being harmed by drugs because their doctor was busy? There are plenty of examples on this blog series of people getting questionable information particularly from cardiologists, according to the posts, is that acceptable?

    2. AhNotepad

      Contains information about harm caused by stopping taking statin https://youtu.be/eb5SmhY30kw

      GP:“you will die if you stop”

      Figures: Failure to achieve the possible 4.1 days life extension following 5 years of taking statin.

      Ignore any adverse effects as the chance of having them is very small. Prof Rory Collins
      To see if you’re one of the 29% susceptible, buy test kit from, er, Prof Rory Collins.

      Reply
      1. Harry de Boer

        The GP (“you will die if you stop”) is absolutely correct!

        Everybody ‘will die’ eventually, whether he/she stopped statins or not.

    3. David Bailey

      I only know abstractly that aspirin is bad for the stomach, I have taken a daily low dose aspirin for 20 years without ill effect. It is nice to know that Big Pharma makes almost nothing out of this treatment.

      I wonder if people who do get bleeds from Aspirin get any advance warnings?

      Reply
      1. andy

        Thromboxane A2 (TxA2) is derived from arachidonic acid (AA) and is completely inhibited by long term aspirin use. Just restricting excess AA from linoleic acid and avoiding hyperglycemia may be an alternative protocol that does not interfere with normal biological functions.
        There must be some useful function for a bit of TxA2?
        Mucosal injury may be an early warning sign.

  22. AhNotepad

    I wonder if any of this blog matters for those in the UK. I heard, on the local radio this morning, a discussion about the forthcoming arrangements for seeing a GP. GPs here will probably know about this already. The approach will be you use the app on your phone to make an appointment. Then you get to talk to someone at the end of the 111 phone, who does the triage. They decide if the powers want you to live or die, and make an appointment for you to see the next GP in the line. Apparently they finish an appointment then join the queue until they are allocated another patient. So seeing someone like Dr. Kendrick, or Dr David Unwin, or one of the others you know about, and who are interested primarily in the well being of their patients, will be uncertain. You could finish up with anyone, of any ability, who may be more interested in funding the interests of manufacturers. I hope someone can tell me I’m wrong about this, otherwise we’re doooomed, doooomed I tell ye!

    Reply
    1. Jess

      Gosh, does that mean that if I use Patient Access to make an appointment with a GP I am going to have go through that process every time and that I would speak to a random GP not allocated to my surgery?

      Reply
      1. AhNotepad

        When a similar question was posed on the program, the reply was “We can no longer expect the privileges of a private style of service.”

      1. AhNotepad

        Sasha, sounds me like an attempt to make access to a public funded system so awkward that people give up and start paying directly for access to a GP. Not so much a soviet system, more to drive it towards a US style system. It will be far more expensive for a lower quality “service”.

    2. David Bailey

      I doubt if that is really true. There is a scheme for booking an appointment on the internet, which I used to find quite convenient, but this seems to have broken down at our surgery, and you have to ring up just as you used to do.

      Even now, not everyone is comfortable using a fancy phone or a computer. Malcolm, can you comment – is a change like that being planned?

      Reply
    1. Jess

      Thanks Eric, that was very interesting, The ‘rain’ and ‘pavement’ analogy reminded me of another one I heard on cardiovascular disease and cholesterol. “If you had just landed on earth from another planet to witness a major fire (damaged artery) where hundreds of fire engines (cholesterol) were surrounding the fire, you could think the fire engines were causing the fire”. The speaker believed that the presence of cholesterol is actually to stop a major bleed in the artery from prior damage, and not the cause.

      Perhaps The Sun could be persuaded to run the article!!

      Reply
  23. Soul

    It is something I’ve known about me for awhile for heart/breathing health. Thought to mention in case it might be of benefit to someone else. When I eat beef and dairy products I become short of breath. It’s also more difficult for me to do exercises which is understandable. As an example, when I avoid beef and dairy products I’m easily able to do 25 pushups or more. When I eat beef and dairy products I struggle to do even 10 pushups.

    This is likely a problem that is my issue. I figure most do not experience the same as me. Possibly it is an allergy I have with beef and dairy. Since dairy is listed as a leading allergen just thought to mention what I’ve noticed about me.

    I’ve run across many people that are short of breath and have wondered if they have the same reaction that I have with cow products.

    Reply
    1. Jess

      It could be that you are experiencing a deficiency in the digestive enzymes required for those foods. Many enzymes are produced in the body by the pancreas and others are contained naturally within foods. An allergy to milk is far more severe and can lead to anaphylaxis, most likely to be an “intolerance” if you lack the enzyme to break down lactose but this in itself would produce symptoms like bloating, cramps and flatulence. You could try taking probiotics and/or plant based digestive enzymes before a meal and see if this improves the situation. But do your homework, I am not a doctor.

      Reply
  24. AhNotepad

    It’s pretty obvious that all calories are not equal. People who switch from high to low carb intake, and still consume all the calories they feel they need, generally lose weight. The non-carb calories allow peoples system to reach a state of satiety, where the (refined) sugars do not, and they don’t feel full, but carry on eating.

    This https://youtu.be/Kc0_4HDZZqI on artificial sweeteners contains useful comparisons with the sugars. Sugars don’t tend to be a problem in foods, which have fibre to moderate the glycemic effect, they do tend to be a problem in processed “foods”

    Reply
  25. mmec7

    In continued response to Andy – Re the Microbiome –
    http://www.mdpi.com › pdf
    Undigested Food and Gut Microbiota May Cooperate … – MDPI
    PDF
    by P Riccio – ‎2019 – ‎Related articles
    Nov 9, 2019 – Therefore, it is at the same time foreign to us (non-self), if not yet … Keywords: diet; gut microbiota; inflammation; intestinal barrier; … as if it were a relatively fixed property to be mapped and manipulated—one that it is … Schematic representation of the metabolic processes, from digestion of … remyelination.

    Reply
    1. Martin Back

      I too have ankylosing spondylitis, and I must say I have never been able to associate any food with it. I was free of flare-ups for years when out of the blue I got uveitis and nearly lost an eye. Again, no idea what triggered it.

      These days I eat a bit of everything — sourdough bread, cheese, meat, fish, eggs, fermented dairy, leafy and carby veg, fruit, black tea and coffee, no alcohol, but very little junk food. No flare-ups since the uveitis, touch wood. Oh, and I take turmeric if I feel something coming on (usually pain in the Achilles heel in the mornings), no meds.

      Reply
      1. mmec7

        Hi Martin – Your gut sounds to be in good condition – mine is somewhat rubbished Sourdough bread is good, and will get around to making up my own ‘mother’ as have a bread maker, just got to get round to using the darn thing… Fermented dairy, excellent. Fermented dairy is a Breton speciality, as is fermented cabbage, one can even buy one that has a base of white wine – plain, no sausage.
        Re meat. Basically no red meat – can’t stand the smell of beef, occasionally lamb. Wild fowl is good, though here in France is all too often reared, fed GMO etc etc and that includes rabbit. So, chicken, which one can purchase organic, though not overly keen on chicken. As for turkey, fed GMO, horrible.
        Re pastas, pizza, pastry, cakes, biscuits, no. Basically dislike, and, detest chocolate and sugary items ! TG. And no fast foods.
        As for alcohol, I do enjoy and am not prepared to forgo – am over 80, so, heck man ! (Though have cut down a trifle.) Oh dear.

        No. I don’t take meds. Have a list as long as your arm of ones I have tried and fallen foul of. Have a large shelf burdened with such items…kept as ‘evidence’, items go back more than 20 years. Gotta larf, innit ?
        Having bearded one doctor here who refused to believe me, so I brought in a suitcase *full. Collapse of stout party ! Turmeric, *yes. Great on fried eggs with black pepper. Thoroughly recommend, and sprinkle over with Herbs de Provence, and cook in coconut oil, totally yummy. Follow up with a decent coffee
        Heigh, nice touching base again – keep kicking –

      2. Martin Back

        Hi mmec7,
        Fermented cabbage — Check. I make my own sauerkraut.
        Eggs in coconut oil — Check. Tonight’s supper was green pepper, garlic and black pepper fried in coconut oil until soft; add eggs beaten with salt, black pepper and mixed herbs, scramble gently.
        Must try adding turmeric. Usually I dissolve it in boiling water with coconut oil and black pepper.

      3. mmec7

        Sounds good, just drop the garlic – used to love it, especially crushed on a chunk of bread, eaten under the stars at Plaka, Athens – with a bottle of Retsina ! Dunno what happened, but now…garlic makes me heave. But cheers – with a mug o’coffee.

      4. andy

        mmec7: what to do with garlic
        Purchased a black garlic fermenter. Can now eat a bulb at a time without side effects.

  26. Martin Back

    Gabor Erdosi has a nice explanation for the fattening effect of carbs.
    https://www.bbdnutrition.com/2018/06/08/the-perils-of-food-processing-how-the-preparation-of-food-affects-how-quickly-it-is-absorbed/

    The detail is quite complicated, but in simple terms, the gut has two types of sensor cell that respond to nutrients by releasing hormones — K-cells found only in the upper intestine, and L-cells which are more abundant lower down. When they sense glucose, both types stimulate insulin production, but in addition the K-cells stimulate fat storage while the L-cells stimulate satiety signals.

    So if you eat simple carbs, which are quickly digested to sugars and absorbed in the upper intestine, they don’t reach the L-cells lower down and don’t stimulate satiety signals which tell you to stop eating. So you keep eating more and more, and getting fatter and fatter.

    Reply
      1. Martin Back

        There’s a lot more. You’ll have to read the linked article and the next one. But a couple of quotes:

        – there are no naturally occurring cases where a food has both high carbohydrates and high fat at the same time. Our bodies have not evolved to see these two macronutrients together.

        – Processing, whether grinding, pureeing or cooking disrupts the plant / grain structure and accelerates absorption of the carbohydrate, which triggers an intestinal hormonal response which results in reduced satiety. Excluding most carbohydrate-based foods also solves this problem

        – Consume carbohydrate foods at the end of the meal (after protein and fat foods)

        – Have fewer, larger meals vs small, frequent ones. Avoid “snacking” between meals

        – Eat meals slowly to maximize the satiety effect and increase the release of the lower intestinal hormones.

      2. Sasha

        There are also no “naturally occurring cases” in which a food would have a high percentage of denatured protein. Does it mean we should stop cooking meat?
        According to this article “cooking disrupts the plant structure and accelerates absorption of the carbohydrate”. A very bad thing, I suppose. Cooking also disrupts the animal structure. Is it just as bad as disrupting the plant structure?

      3. AhNotepad

        Sasha, I have seen, on various videos, the suggestion that cooking is almost arguably necessary for humans to obtain sustenance from food, unless you have access to large quantities. (That’s a bit of a mouthfulI know). Herbivores generally seem to have large digestive systems for their body size, where humans have quite a small system. Chimpanzees don’t cook their food, but they have the chance to spend much of their time looking for food, and eating it. I think this applies to most animals, other than humans, who spend lots of time doing things other than eating.

      4. annielaurie98524

        “no food high in fats and carbs” — there is one, but it’s only available to us for that short period in our lives when we are meant to gorge and grow — human breast milk.

      5. andy

        Complex carbs might take a bit longer to digest but produce the same amount of glucose per gram as a simple carb. The area under the curve is determined by integrating the glucose/time response.

      6. Sasha

        Ok, thank you for the explanation. I have a question then.

        Nature is very frugal in how it spends its resources. Developing an elaborate digestive system with pancreas, insulin, etc in us mammals required a lot of time and effort. I am of the opinion that if Nature went through the trouble of developing this system, there must have been some evolutionary advantage for it to do so. What do you think? Because, based on what you have been saying so far, it is my impression that you believe any sort of insulin spike is detrimental to once health and it is best to avoid carbohydrates all together. Is that what you think?

      7. andy

        Hi Sasha: some brief thoughts about evolution and what I think
        Question #1: What are the optimal operating parameters of the human body?
        Glucose is very tightly regulated via insulin. High chronic and acute glucose levels are the root cause of many diseases. All carbohydrates digest to glucose therefore have to consider quantity.

        Question #2: Why are we here?
        This is a good question to ask when one is elderly. Evolution does not care about you any more. You are living in a twilight zone where deviating even slightly from evolutionary parameters can have dire consequences.

        Question #3: What about the wooly mammoth?
        They are gone and now we are expected to subsist on grains and beans to save what is left of the planet.

        Question #4: How safe are plants to eat?
        Limit myself to smaller portions of fruit, berries, and some leafy greens. Humans not evolved to digest large quantities of twigs and leaves as do our primate cousins. Then there is the problem of anti nutrients, lectins, phytates, gluten, oxalates, GMOs, etc..

        Question #5: What about eating carbohydrates?
        I do eat limited portions of rye bred, yams, and other carbs. Maybe eating meat and potatoes or meat and bread together may not be a good idea since different enzymes are needed. Remind myself to looking into food combining.

      8. Sasha

        Andy, in response to your questions:

        Question 1. Yes all carbs digest to glucose. When you say “consider quantity”, how do you determine optimal quantity? Can you tell me more about “the optimal operating parameters of the human body”? How do you define them and which ones do you consider important?

        Question 2 – I’m not sure about this one. Is this in response to something I said?

        3. No need to wait for wooly mammoths. People can move to back country and start hunting elk if they really want to help the planet. How many of present day LCHFers are willing to do that, you think?
        By the way, I don’t think we need to change our ways to save the planet. The planet will continue just fine even if we kill ourselves off through environmental degradation. I think we need to change our ways to save ourselves, not the planet.

        4. I am aware of “anti-nutrient” hypothesis in regards to plants. I think it’s a bunch of nonsense. If you haven’t already, look up hormesis and xenohormesis.

        5. I agree with you on this question even if I don’t follow it. I think we are evolutionary primed to crave carbs together with proteins and carbs with fats. Maybe one day I will get enough mental strength to overcome these evolutionary urges.

      9. andy

        Hi Sasha, learned a new word “xenohormesis” thanks
        You had a lot of questions and the answers might be found in these references:
        Re plant antiutrients:
        https://blog.daveasprey.com/4-top-antinutrients-to-avoid-and-why/

        Re high blood glucose (operating parameter):
        https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2738809/
        Problems associated with glucose toxicity: Role of hyperglycemia-induced oxidative stress

        Re xenohormesis:
        I get my polyphenols from coffee, green tea and herb teas.

        Just ordered seeds for planting in spring, spinach is not on the list (high oxalate).

      10. Martin Back

        Erdosi is tackling the question of why we eat more than we should and get fat. His theory is that if we eat easily-digested carbs and sugars, they are absorbed in the upper small intestine and never get to the lower intestine where they would trigger the L-cells which in turn trigger the satiety hormones which tell us to stop eating.

        If we eat minimally-processed complex carbs which are slower to digest, then they would reach the lower intestine and tell us to stop eating.

        So, although simple and complex carbs generate the same amount of glucose for the same mass of carbs, you wouldn’t eat the same amount of complex carbs because you’d stop when you feel you’ve had enough.

        I note in videos from the Vietnam war, the Vietnamese peasants were all pretty skinny although I’m sure their diet was overwhelmingly rice with some vegetables and a bit of pork occasionally. So not all carbs make you fat.

      11. Sasha

        Thanks. I didn’t know about L-cells. This makes a lot of sense. Kitavans and Okinawans would be good examples, I suppose.
        I worked in rural West Bengal with people who can only afford white rice and some lentils. Not even vegetables most of the time. It’s too expensive for them. They were all thin as sticks. Not particularly healthy: CVD, T2D, etc. But, in my opinion, it’s mostly from lack of nutrients, not white rice itself.

      12. Martin Back

        Sasha, Erdosi is not making any judgements. He is trying to explain the biochemistry of why our modern diets result in our modern problems. Personally I think he makes a good case which is why I mention it here, but if you disagree that’s okay, I’m not going to argue about it.

      13. Martin Back

        annie,
        …then we gorge and grow on sugary, fatty, doughnuts and ice cream, only we’re not meant to.

      14. JDPatten

        Andy,
        Why are we here?

        Our bodies are useful to genes for the purpose of reconfiguring and reproducing themselves.

        To the few fleeting years it takes to reach our sexual maturity, add a decade or two to be able to rear the resulting perversely helpless little bodies that carry the next generation of genes – and then the usefulness is at an end.
        Nevermind that all these bodies house minds able to see into the Infinite and to dream to follow that vision – usefulness is at an end.

        It even seems to be our unwitting nature to struggle against the extension of healthy life beyond the span our genes find us useful for. Reason is essentially helpless in this.
        It is a logical expression of the genes’ own interest – insidious only to the peculiar perspective of the conscious reasoning mind.
        After all, this mind and its products – art, culture, space travel, accumulated wisdom, a somewhat enhanced longevity – are, at best, anomalies unhelpful to the central human animal business of uncoiling and recombining chromosomes.

        It’s our elaborate capacity to re-imagine and impart profound meaning to the pleasures our genes afforded us during the “useful” period that keeps us from just lying down when that period is over.

      15. andy

        JDPatten, thanks for the well worded reply to the question of why we are here.
        Lately I have become interested in how the mind can influence the body, and the concept of consciousness. We experience the world through the brain’s interpretation of the five senses ( touch, sight, hearing, smell and taste). The response to sensory stimuli is controlled by hormones and other regulatory systems that we barely pay attention to or understand. Thoughts like joy or anger can trigger hormonal responses. Suppose that one concentrates deeply (meditation) and visualizes the workings of cells and tissues to influence their behaviour. For example pulse rate can be affected by thoughts, or one can visualize the immune system attacking cancer cels. These are things one can explore when past the reproductive/child rearing stage and brain function is reasonably intact.

      16. JDPatten

        Andy,
        I’ve been told that my little essay is a downer, but, really, accepting that idea affords you the freedom (and personal responsibility!) of being what, who and why you want to be. The best freedom we humans can expect.

        As for controlling cellular activity and heart rate, “You might very well think that, Grasshopper; I couldn’t possibly comment”. (I always visualize saffron robes and privilege.)
        Having had a cryoablation for atrial fibrillation that incidentally destroyed adjacent ganglionic complex cells, I no longer have normal feedback for supply and demand – heart rate accommodating activity. Bummer. Well, for fixing stuff that goes wrong (more as we age!) you have the choice of tried and true researched methods that might seem/be out of date (Conservative), or going for the state-of-the-art (Radical liberal). I went for s-o-t-a before it was clear what all the consequences might be.

        It’s all a big adventure to be enjoyed as you can while you got it.

  27. Shaun Clark

    In the UK Guardian today. An article on Ultra Processed Foods (UPF): A 2018 paper co-authored by Melissa Mialon, a Brazilian nutritionist, identified 32 materials online criticising Nova, most of which were not peer-reviewed. The paper showed that, out of 38 writers critical of Nova, 33 had links to the ultra-processed food industry.

    https://www.theguardian.com/food/2020/feb/13/how-ultra-processed-food-took-over-your-shopping-basket-brazil-carlos-monteiro

    Reply
  28. Göran Sjöberg

    Those who refute the first law of thermodynamic do by definition not belong to my scientific community. This law does state that energy can not be destroyed, only transformed, e.g. from carb to body fat. The point is that it is a tautology to claim that you gain weight since you are expending less calories than you are ingesting and this is by definition not an EXPLANATION to why we get fat – thus ‘a calorie is a calorie’ argument is a meaningless expression or rather a stupidity in my eyes to EXPLAIN why we get fat.

    Then we come back to the question of why we eat those THREE gram TOO MUCH every day to gain those extra 30 kg over the years. Three grams is basically nothing on you plate. So please you who advocate the official overeating hypothesis, explain to me the logic involved. So far (during twenty years) I have not encountered anyone who has dared enter into this minefield. Sasha?

    To say the least – the complexity of the nutritional science is overwhelmingly complex.

    Reply
    1. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

      Calories in calories out is clearly nonsense – as the only argument. Before insulin was discovered, children with type I diabetes turned into virtual skeletons – before they died. When given insulin they became plump again. Where do all the calories go when there is no insulin. Some is passed out as urine, some is breathed out as ketones. The rest?

      My own view is that, when insulin levels get high energy is trapped within the tissues: fat, muscle, etc. The body then tries to reduce energy expenditure, so the metabolism drops. Also, hunger rises. Simplistically, you are putting on fat, and starving, at the same time. If you answer the call to starvation, and eat carbohydrates, you worsen the problems. The insulin goes up further, energy is being stored even more rapidly, less and less is available to drive metabolic processes. You break out of this cycle by eating fat. The insulin level stays low, energy is being released, and the metabolism picks up again.

      Whilst calories cannot simply disappear the calorie argument is a distraction. Weight gain/diabetes is not an energy problem, it is a hormonal problem. Get the hormones right and the calories look after themselves.

      Reply
      1. Göran Sjöberg

        Clearly my own view on the subject.

        That there is a hormonal balance involved in weight gain is evident. Still I have a problem with the minuscule amounts of ‘overeating’ needed to add up over the years. It must be a very complex, intricate homeostatic process at work and I doubt that such a complex process can be convincingly disentangled in detail.

        This is also the view of Gary Taubes as I understand him.

      2. andy

        Göran: Maybe the problem is created by arithmetic.
        Gaining weight in a few bursts of overindulgence and averaging that out over 12 months will produce a very low meaningless daily calorie number.

      3. Sasha

        I have a few remarks about this:

        I assume that in T1 diabetics the sugars not taken up by the cells because of lack of insulin stay in extracellular space. Isn’t that the case? That’s where missing energy is.

        When insulin gets high, the energy isn’t trapped, it’s shuttled into the cell to be made into ATP, correct? So sugar level in the blood drops, the brain senses it and tells you that you’re hungry.

        I don’t see how you’re making a connection between energy being shuttled into a cell which then leads to reduced energy expenditure which leads to dropped metabolism which leads to rising hunger. How are these things connected? They don’t even logically flow from each other. Why would the body reduce energy expenditure following a cell being fed sugars? If anything eating sugar heats you up. It’s a quick way to get energy.

        Why are you saying that when insulin goes high the energy is being stored more rapidly and less will be available for metabolic processes? Insulin is simply a way for a cell to get access to the energy trapped in a carb, isn’t it? If a cell can use it it will. If it’s extra, it will store it. But the same should be happening to extra energy coming from either fats or proteins. If it’s not used, it will be probably stored somewhere.

    2. Martin Back

      If you don’t like Conservation of Energy, try Conservation of Mass.
      https://dothemath.ucsd.edu/2013/12/a-physics-based-diet-plan/

      Quotes from the blog post:

      your body mass adheres to a simple bookkeeping of mass–in vs. mass–out. Mass comes in by ingesting food and water. Mass goes out by many mechanisms: some obvious, some not…. A surprising fraction of our weight loss occurs right under our noses—literally. The air we exhale is loaded with carbon dioxide and water that were not present in the intake. [body fat turns into 84% CO2 and 16% H2O by mass. — http://youtu.be/NGKLpYtZ19Q ]

      The chemistry is straightforward. Taking a unit block of carbohydrates (like sugars: CH2O), reacting with oxygen (O2) produces CO2 and H2O. Conceivably, all of the carbohydrate mass we ingest could be exhaled by combining it with oxygen. The same applies to lipids, which are comparatively oxygen-free—comprised primarily of carbon and hydrogen. But this is why we also get more energy per gram from fats: because there are more oxygen reductions to reap. By having more on-board oxygen, carbohydrates are already half-reacted.

      A colleague of mine once asked how I manage to stay trim, puzzling over my freedom to eat “fattening” desserts and the like. I told him that I skip meals when I see my weight creeping up. “Oh, I couldn’t do that,” he said. I probed, “Why? What would happen if you did?” He looked at me with a curiously shocked expression and said, as to an idiot, “I’d get hungry!” Is that all? That’s hardly a barrier.

      I find that after an initial wave lasting an hour or two, the hunger gives up and stops being so annoying. I wonder how many people in our well-fed society know that hunger will not simply continue to build, if left alone? It comes in waves. I can wake up less hungry than when I went to sleep the night before.

      Reply
      1. shirley3349

        Don’t forget that for every molecule of ketones produced in the liver from fatty acids, energy in the form of 2 molecules of ATP is produced, this is before the ketones are used to supply the body’s energy needs elsewhere. If the liver has no pressing need for this energy, it is gradually released as heat resulting in a rise in the metabolic rate. (see my post of 11th December 2019)

    3. andy

      Göran: maybe the explanation why certain foods increase obesity is related to insulin resistance (IR). At one time I was under the impression that IR was akin to a disease. IR determines how large a fat cell can grow, no IR and there is no limit. Lost the reference but here is the reasoning:
      A- FADH2:NADH ratio at complex 1 of the mitochondria is the key
      B- A high ratio induces reverse electron transport and initiates IR for the cell to restrict energy uptake.
      C- Linoleic acid as opposed to saturated fats has a lower ratio and IR is not activated
      D- no IR and there is no limit on energy uptake, detrimental to cell

      Bottom line: on a ketogenic low carb high fat (mono and saturated) the cells are insulin resistant and it will be harder to gain fat. Carbs and seed oils (soybean, corn etc) will do just the opposite. Olive oil and pasta might be somewhere in between. IR is your friend. Need a bit of reductionism to get to the bottom of this.

      Reply
    4. Sasha

      Goran: before I try to explain “the official overeating hypothesis”, I would need to know what you mean by it. In the meantime, can you explain this to me: you say that extra energy from carbs gets turned into body fat. I agree with that. What happens to extra energy from fats and proteins? The one you don’t use. What does it turn into?

      Reply
      1. Göran Sjöberg

        The more I have looked into “this issue” the less inclined I have become to cling to any specific reductionist explanation.

        E.g., if you look into the Krebs cycle, well worth its Nobel prize, you get duly impressed by the steps involved and explained how our food is turned into ATP ‘energy’ through the mitochondrion oxidation process. But if you go one step further and look at a map how the individual steps in the Krebs cycle connect in innumerable ways with all proteins involved in the metabolism it is more likely than not that one gets lost.

        That brings up the question: “What is science?”

      2. Sasha

        Goran: before we attempt to answer “what is science”, how about we figure out: what happens to extra calories from proteins and fats? Where do they go?

      3. Göran Sjöberg

        Posting problem – To me this is a “no-brainer”!

        We store excess energy (first law of thermodynamics!) but what about the THREE grams extra per day we are ingesting. In my eyes this is complete nonsense. Why can not intelligent people realize this and see the complexity of the issue? Or try to explain this if they don’t see this nonsense.

      4. Sasha

        I don’t know much about this three grams per day argument so I can’t answer it. If that’s something Guyenet said, I would have to go back to his book and see what he meant by it.

      5. Göran Sjöberg

        Sasha,

        I would be surprised if Guyenet has ventured into this “minefield”. If you find something in his book about this subject – please tell me – would be interesting to know.

        Face it!

        If you see the THREE grams TOO much on your plate per day (which is actually ONE gram on each of your three plates per day – even more ridiculous!) you are entering into a nightmare of OVEREATING EXPLANATION for our obesity epidemic and when looking at ONE GRAM you are lost.

        Just reflect about how much ONE GRAM of food actually is on you plate!

        But good luck!

      6. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

        I agree entirely with this argument Goran. Clearly our weight is controlled (to large degree) by homeostasis. No-one can possibly know how many calories they are eating, day to day, within a range of about a hundred. Maybe more. Arguments about the first and second law of thermodynamics are completely pointless. No-one is saying that energy can be destroyed, or that calories can simply disappear. However, Ancel Keys (yes he) found that weight could stabilise at 1,000 calories a day – human male volunteers during WWII. Clearly, therefore, the metabolism in these individuals slowed right down, and other systems must have slowed down as well. So, the body can alter how many calories it uses depending on what is available to use.

        If you eat a high carb diet, insulin levels rise, energy is trapped inside cells and it can appear to the body that it is starving. So it can reduce calorie consumption to compensate. Fat on the outside, starving inside. If all that happens is that this flips ten calories a day from energy use, to storage, in thirty years you will be thirty Kg overweight. If, that is, you want to turn the ridiculous ten calories a day argument on its head.

      7. Sasha

        Goran, you keep telling me I should address 3 grams per day argument. I have no idea what that argument is. And even if I did, have you considered that I might disagree with it?

        My main point in this debate is this: I agree that over consumption of simple carbs or empty calories (like soda) leads to weight gain and various metabolic issues. I disagree with the current stance in some LCHF/paleo circles that pretty much all carbs are evil. And that we should avoid insulin spikes as much as possible if we want to have a healthy life.

        I might be wrong about this, of course, but until someone shows me evidence that a Masai, Mongol or Kazakh man (or woman) outperforms an Okinawan or a Kitawan on major metrics of health, I will continue to think that complex carbs in balance with fats and proteins can achieve for you the same results as LCHF/paleo.

      8. Martin Back

        Goran, I don’t understand why you object to three grams a day over-eating.

        It’s like saying, “The IPCC claims sea levels are rising three millimeters a year. That’s less than a hundredth of a millimeter per day. Preposterous! No one could measure sea level that accurately.” Well, no one’s trying to. We look at the rise over a long period of time.

      9. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

        I don’t think that is a good analogy. The three trams a day overeating is preposterous because it assumes a steady state of metabolism. Also that people who remain a constant weight are consciously, or unconsciously, able to exactly detect and control energy consumption to a degree that is completely impossible. Also, we know that insulin is obesogenic.

      10. Göran Sjöberg

        Martin/Sasha

        “Goran, I don’t understand why you object to three grams a day over-eating.”

        Well, I don’t object to this. It is frankly a “thermodynamic” fact if you have gained those 30 kg extra during the same number of years.

        I though consider that as a nonsensical argument to EXPLAIN why obesity is “eating too much” but I think Malcolm explains this better than I can and with the good reference to the WWII experiments carried out by Ancel Keys.

        I have always had problems to make people see this “argument” against the very simplistic way of explaining the present obesity epidemic. I guess that people are so ingrained with this litania “you get fat because you eat too much” so they cannot think “outside of the box”.

        This was actually what Gray Taubes managed to do, not least with my own thinking. If you have not read his great book “Good Calories & Bad Calories” i suggest that you give it a try although it is not any easy reading. To me the book is though “tough science” which he is advocating. Taubes is BTW a several times rewarded journalist of science.

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

      11. Martin Back

        Three grams a day is a mathematical abstraction, an average derived from weight gain over many years. It in no way reflects real life where we gain and lose weight in fits and starts. We might over-indulge and Christmas, slim down before a beach holiday (“No carbs before Marbs”), have to loosen our belt a notch, decide to exercise a bit more, etc etc. If it averages out to three grams of overeating a day, so what? I don’t see the significance of the three grams.

      12. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

        Martin, that is not an answer I am afraid, I is still the same issue. If we eat in fits and starts and overindulge, it still means that over a thirty year period an obese person is eating three grams extra per day – on average. There is no possible way that a slim person can be averaging out three grams less per day over a thirty year period than someone who becomes obese. Let me turn it around. How do you think such a level of accuracy with regard to calorie consumption can possibly be regulated. Vision, weight of food. A detailed knowledge of the calorie consumption of every single thing they consume? You can scrape three grams off your plate without even noticing. So, how does someone, on average, manage to consume three grams less per day? Because if you cannot think of any other explanation then the CICO argument is wrong. Homeostasis, with regard to weight, must be achieved by some other means.

      13. andy

        Obesity related to nutrition overload and insufficient autophagy, among other things
        https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4835957/
        Adipose tissue autophagy status in obesity: Expression and flux—two faces of the picture

        Restricting eating window from normal 16 hours per day to 6 to 8 hours would be beneficial to regain homeostasis. Two meals 6 hours apart with no snacks seems about right. Gives stomach time to empty before next meal. Without autophagy every gram will count.

      14. Göran Sjöberg

        To add some fuel to this fire!

        The business idea of the “Weight Watchers” is just brilliant since it is based on the CICO “consensus” so they use balances and energy tables to “control” what the participants put in their mouthes. And the “Weight Watchers” are successful since people loose weight when they are eating less – though they are always hungry!

        The brilliance of the business idea is that the people come back when they have recovered ( 🙂 ) from their weight loss – and they do but feeling lousy about their own bad character while they know that the “CICO concept” works every time.

        But when and if they finally consider WHAT they ingest they might find a lasting remedy if now a few extra kilo is a “disease” to get rid of. (Funny world!)

        My own (n=1) experience of loosing 30 kg on LCHF over a couple of years without ever having felt hunger is at least convincing to me. And when I cheat on the carbs (easily done! e.g.by eating bread) I immediately add on weight again. (So i am actually minus 25, up 5 presently!) But I am just fine! 🙂

      15. Göran Sjöberg

        Sasha, basically we are trying to “keep away” from all carbs. Still my wife is making crispy LCHF-bread based on seeds of different kinds and there, of course, some carbs are hiding under the thick covering layers of butter and cheese.

        Andy, yes we happen to be basically into a “window” habit kind of eating, 6 to 8 hours typically and with one big meal a day at midday. Breakfasts are gone since long and no late evening meals but though occasionally on social events. Being constantly in a moderate ketosis state there is however never any craving hunger involved, funny experience though, so it is actually quite easy to stick to this kind of healthy “life”. And we also have a keton meter working on the exhaust air to tell us if we have seriously fallen off tracks.

        BTW we have never counted any calories during these years though our bathroom scale tells us if we still are on the right track 🙂

      16. andy

        Göran, I now believe that the eating window concept is essential for health via autophagic cell rejuvenation and might even be beneficial for vegans who thrive on carbs. Much easier to ditch the carbs and run on fat.

  29. Charles Gale

    And here’s another podcast you may want to watch – following on from Dr Kendrick’s previous blog on calcium score testing, here’s the debate:

    Reply
  30. Clathrate

    [Apologies have not yet watched the podcast so can’t comment as per the intent of the blog.]

    Aside to all: Peter Gotzche (the subject of a blog on here) had a new book published a week ago (seems to be Kindle only). It is titled ‘Vaccines – truth, lies and controversy’. Vaccines have been the subject of a couple of blogs on this site and something that I’ve followed at a distance, with interest, through the comments on various blogs – I have researched many things but not, to sufficient extent, vaccines (though am extremely interested in the subject). Amazon provides a decent ‘Look Inside’ section for the book – it is interesting and, top and bottom, it surprised me.

    What I’m flagging is not vaccines but Gorzche’s write up on vitamin C (sorry no spoilers). I’m a fan of vitamin C, following extensive research (took me about 6 months before I decided to start supplementing and I have ever since). I take at least 1g supplemental per day though my ‘record’ is probably around 5g – if ever needed to, I wouldn’t hesitate at massive doses. I’m aware of those on this blog who take a daily 30+g (e.g. for a cold, etc.) and those who sip 15g a day.

    Gortzche quotes a reference ‘ … high doses of vitamin C have been associated with multiple adverse effects. These include blood clotting, death (heart related), kidney stones, pro-oxidant effects, problems with the digestive system, and red blood cell destruction’.

    I’ve done enough research that I’m content with what is right for me (and that I impress on my children and my parents). I’m putting this out:
    (i) as a recommendation to read the ‘Look Inside’ section of the book, and;
    (ii) because I’d be interested to read any comments that follow on either vaccines or on high dose vitamin C supplementation.

    Reply
    1. David Bailey

      Clathrate,

      I wonder if the problem with supplements is that some people are short of one supplement, and others something else. I think this is why some people rave about a supplement, but it does nothing much when taken by someone else. For example, my partner got a big boost from taking Q10, whereas I don’t notice any obvious gain.

      I do take a gram of vitamin C per day, two grams seems to act as a mild laxative on me. I dread to think what a high dose might do!

      Reply
    2. anglosvizzera

      Not sure if this is what you were after, but has plenty of references at the bottom:

      http://orthomolecular.org/resources/omns/v16n07.shtml?fbclid=IwAR3z7_nSkuCXof4w-ccZIs8ba3Kxq0SBUrjUGeY5MKQtczFuHbnxLkUZVIU

      Also another vitamin C study (intravenous) :

      https://isom.ca/article/high-dose-vitamin-c-influenza-case-report/

      And suggestions for the current epidemic (oral) with references again – http://orthomolecular.org/resources/omns/v16n04.shtml?fbclid=IwAR3OecmPhYY57PEVn70n6EISe6K1xcXw2bNgcyZt_B5ic-guxumX35-P1uw

      Reply
    1. Göran Sjöberg

      Those twenty years ago when I was offered the very comprehensive CABG I was rather ignorant and asked if they couldn’t do som stents instead. They claimed that stents in my case was not an option and then I opted out on all cardiac interference and today I am very happy about my decision to not be ‘cut up’.

      Well, well, well.

      Now I am instead going out into my garden with my chain saws to cut up some trees fallen in the recent storm. This exercise is in order to flex my capillaries on which I survive today.

      Tonight, I am then going to relax with a good glass of wine with my wife (since forty years) and watch the sun set.

      But one day I will probably die 🙂

      Reply
    2. andy

      Stents- ” New approaches are required to improve long-term outcomes after PCI.”
      How about ditching the low fat diet recommendation?

      Reply
    3. Jerome Savage

      I trusted the medically qualified completely – why wouldn’t I ? If they had been architects or astronauts i would have said NO !

      Reply
  31. Kevin Frechette

    I watched your interviews that were posted yesterday. I agree with you that having a fancy test that leads to ineffective treatment is not worth taking. So the CAC is just another machine that goes BING!!!!

    “https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=NcHdF1eHhgc”

    Reply
  32. Charles Gale

    And here is part 2 of the debate on CAC scans:

    It’s 1 hr 16 mins and you can look forward to the following (and more):

    1. Soft and calcified plaques
    2. statins and warfarin and vit K2 and calcification
    3. density and volume and agatston score…CTCA (?) and plaque characteristics
    4. exercise and CAC score and risk
    5. smoking and calcification and risk
    6. The Masai and atherosclerosis: fibrous plaque but no calcification
    7. Is CAC useful for someone willing to tackle causes? Hedonistic immortals (!) and stenting
    8. LDL and calcification and mainstream risk factors and major drivers of heart disease
    9. CAC is resolvable and life saving but not necessarily through orthodox methods

    Closing comments: current situation is that a positive CAC score might not be dealt with correctly .e.g. a trip to cath lab and a big payday for cardiologists. Empower yourself.

    It’s fascinating (I forgot to take notes at times) and should raise a smile or two.

    Reply
  33. Tish

    It can’t be essential to know lots of science – we surely only need to appreciate that the huge increase in sugar consumption over, in terms of human evolution, a very short period of time, cannot be supported. Common sense (which actually seems rare of course) tells us that the body has not had time to adapt to these enormous changes of habit. Perhaps it’s a matter of survival of the fittest (or most resilient).
    Aren’t we supposed just to have a liking for sweet things so that we pig out on them when opportunities arise in order to fatten ourselves for lean times or famines? Lean times and famines that haven’t as yet threatened a lot of us.
    And nutritional guidelines pile on the agony. What a clever species we are.

    Reply
    1. andy

      Hi Tish: Exploring the problem with nutritional guidelines
      Suppose someone eats one meal per day or maybe 2 or 3 composed of all the recommended portions per guidelines of proteins, carbs and fats. The end result in the colon and bloodstream would be unpredictable. People who eat exclusively meat and fat experience resolution of health issues without the recommended 5 servings of fruits and vegetable. Considering the gut transition time, another option would be to exclusively eat protein/fat one week and carbs the next week to avoid protein/carb combo in the colon. Not sure if metabolism can accomplish the fat to glucose switch effectively. Need scientific studies to determine optimum eating pattern. For n=1 experimenters the quality and quantity of colonic gas generation could be an indication of success.

      Studies that show that meat is bad probably did not consider the effect of food combination.

      Reply
      1. Tish

        Hello Andy. Interesting, though our early ancestors, apart from eating seasonally, would have likely eaten whatever was available at any particular time. So that is what our bodies would have adapted to, I’d have thought?

      2. Sasha

        There is a good book that touches on this. It’s called “Paleofantasy” by Marlene Zuk. I recommend it, it’s very interesting.

      3. andy

        Hi Tish: here is an historical example of eating seasonally:
        https://www.pc.gc.ca/apps/dfhd/page_nhs_eng.aspx?id=511
        Serpent Mounds National Historic Site of Canada
        “Two thousand years ago, Aboriginal people gathered nearby in large settlements in spring and summer to hunt, fish and collect freshwater mussels.”

        In the fall they would gather wild rice to sustain themselves during winter months. Basically animal protein consumption alternating with carbs on a seasonal basis. The carbs were a starvation diet. Rice and fish, meat and potatoes, the sandwich, are modern concoctions that might be the cause of gastrointestinal distress.

    2. Tish

      Just a thought, but were it to be true that the Pima Indians acquired the so-called “thrifty gene” that enabled them to store fat for lean times, then might it not also work the other way? People who are surrounded by food all year round could lose some storage ability. Just need a bit of patience🙄

      Reply
  34. wcmozart

    Here is a research paper I stumbled into which addresses the substantial cardiovascular and other benefits of cocoa .. so diet does matter A LOT it would seem .. hopefully many additional studies have been done since this one which was published in 2008 .. read on ..

    Title: Flavanols, the Kuna, Cocoa Consumption, and Nitric Oxide
    Published in final edited form as:
    J Am Soc Hypertens . 2009 ; 3(2): . doi:10.1016/j.jash.2008.11.001.
    article URL:
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3835452/
    Authors:
    Norman K. Hollenberg, M.D., Ph.D. 1, Naomi D.L. Fisher, M.D. 2, and Marjorie L. McCullough,Sc.D., R.D. 3
    1 Departments of Medicine and Radiology, Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts
    2 Departments of Medicine and Radiology, Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts
    3 Epidemiology and Surveillance Research, American Cancer Society, Atlanta, Georgia

    Abstract
    The Kuna Indians who reside in an archipelago on the Caribbean Coast of Panama have very low blood pressure levels, live longer than other Panamanians, and have a reduced frequency of myocardial infarction, stroke, diabetes mellitus, and cancer — at least on their death certificates. One outstanding feature of their diet includes a very high intake of flavanol-rich cocoa. Flavonoids in cocoa activate nitric oxide synthesis in healthy humans. The possibility that the high flavanol intake protects the Kuna against high blood pressure, ischemic heart disease, stroke, diabetes mellitus, and cancer is sufficiently intriguing and sufficiently important that large, randomized controlled clinical trials should be pursued.

    Several excerpts from the research paper follow:

    “[The Kuna] were not protected by genes. The protective factor or factors are environmental. A major investment in studying environmental factors was initially unattractive. What probably played the largest role in our decision to continue was the actual magnitude of the difference in blood pressure between older indigenous Kuna and the “usual” blood pressure in most developed countries. In several hundred Kuna over the age of sixty years, the average systolic blood pressure was less than 110 mm Hg, and the average diastolic blood pressure was less than 70 mm Hg (4). While we know a large number of potential contributors to blood pressure from the diet, including intake of sodium, potassium, magnesium, calcium, soluble fiber, Omega-3 fatty acids, alcohol, protein, and calories, these individually have small effects. These individually have small effects, and even if one added them up, they would not likely account for a blood pressure below 110/70 mm Hg.”

    “ [The Kuna] begin drinking cocoa when they are weaned and seem to stop drinking cocoa only when they die. From our surveys collected over time, we have consistently observed that the Kuna drink more than five cups of cocoa daily (7, 8). Kuna cocoa sources (home-grown and Columbian cocoa powder) were shown to be high in certain flavonoids, especially the flavanols and procyanidins (7, 8). We estimate that the Kuna consume approximately 1,880 mg per day. The several glasses of cocoa consumed daily by island-dwelling Kuna leads to what is probably the highest flavanol intake of any community on earth.”

    “ There are data to indicate that the onset of flavanol response to cocoa is gradual (10). We were not surprised to find no blood pressure influence of a high dose of unambiguously flavanol-rich cocoa in normotensive healthy subjects studied for less than a week (10). An identical comment applies to a recent report (11). In contrast, in healthy elderly subjects with hypertension, both cocoa and chocolate induced a fall in both systolic and diastolic blood pressure (12–14). Blood pressure also fell in overweight subjects given either dark chocolate or cocoa (15). Perhaps the most dramatic results were reported by Taubert, et al who demonstrated a significant blood pressure fall with as little as one square of chocolate a day in subjects with high-normal or mild hypertension (13). Recent meta analyses have confirmed a significant blood pressure fall (16, 17). In the even larger study in 470 elderly male men, cocoa intake was inversely related to blood pressure (18). Despite the absence of very large randomized controlled trials, the hints provided that Kuna appear to have been confirmed in a wide variety of clinical investigations.”

    “(4) Nitric Oxide and Cardiovascular Health
    Of special importance was the discovery that the flavanols activated nitric oxide synthase in humans. Karim, et al (20) documented an influence of cocoa flavanols on endothelial function in the rabbit aorta. We extended that observation to the blood supply of the extremities in healthy humans (10). Flavanols induced vasodilation, which increased gradually to become striking after several days of cocoa ingestion. The cocoa “dose” employed was that calculated from our studies in the Kuna to provide about 900 mg of epicatechin per day. As the vasodilator response was reversed completely by arginine analogs that block nitric oxide synthesis, such as L-NAME, nitric oxide was the major, if not the sole, determinant of the vasodilator response (Figure 1). As flavanol-poor cocoa did not induce the vasodilator response, flavanols were the major determinant of the response (10).”

    “Nitric oxide is a messenger molecule that performs diverse biologic functions, appears to occur in virtually every tissue, and impairment of nitric oxide bioactivity has been documented in a wide variety of diseases (22). Nitric oxide has been suggested to play a role in diseases of blood vessels, the heart, brain, lungs, liver, kidney, stomach, the immune system, musculoskeletal, and reproductive systems. The evidence in most cases has been rather slim involving measures of either nitric oxide synthetic activity or the effects of blockers. The discovery that flavanol-rich cocoa can stimulate nitric oxide synthesis provides a new and powerful approach to assessing the contribution of the system to disease and perhaps to treatment.”

    “(5) Flavanols and Cardiovascular Disease Risk
    The potential role of flavonoids in prevention of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and other diseases has been reviewed often (23–25). Several potential mechanisms for a protective effect of flavonoids, in particular the flavanols, include antioxidant, anti-inflammation, anti-platelet aggregation, and nitric oxide-mediated vascular changes (26).”

    “We used death certificates over five years to address the issue of patterns of death. We had identified four major causes of death that are thought to be sensitive to nitric oxide bioactivity, ischemic heart disease, stroke, diabetes mellitus, and cancer (21). On the mainland over those five years, cardiovascular disease was the leading cause of death (83.4 ± 0.7 age adjusted deaths per 100,000). Cancer stood second (68.4 ± 1.6). The cardiovascular deaths were made up almost equally between stroke and ischemic heart disease. Among island-dwelling Kuna both cardiovascular disease (9.2 ± 3.1) and cancer (4.4 ± 4.4) respectively were much lower. Similarly, deaths due to diabetes mellitus weremuch more common in the mainland (24.1 ± 0.7) than in island dwellers in the San Blas (6.6 ± 1.9). We cannot prove that the relationship between flavanol intake and lower cardiovascular disease and cancer mortality is causal or exclusively due to cocoa, but the data support the hypothesis that the very high flavanol intake and sustained nitric oxide activation protect the Kuna from common causes of morbidity and mortality.”

    hopefully this helps everyone ..

    walt

    Reply
    1. Martin Back

      I enjoy a mug of cocoa in the evening during winter. I drink it with boiling water, no milk or sugar. But it’s not cheap; it’s about the same price as coffee. Drinking five cups of cocoa a day is probably a lot more expensive than taking blood pressure meds, although the cocoa might do you more good.

      Reply
  35. Martin Back

    Interesting comment on “Rockefeller Medicine” on YouTube https://youtu.be/X6J_7PvWoMw

    amommamust, 5 years ago
    I was the clinical manager of a large ophthalmology clinic. We won a contract with Ely Lily to do clinical trials for them. I was sent to Puerto Rico for training. While there, I was taught how to skew and hide data, all very subtly. These trials are all deeply flawed, with everyone getting paid (WELL paid) as long as there are no side effects reported. People having issues are carefully coached into blaming something else, then it is an “adverse event” and the documentation gets stuffed into a box and hauled to the basement. No one ever looks at them before the drug is approved. They are only dragged out if someone dies after the drug hits the market.
    At dinner one evening, one of the trainings explained that “There is no profit in cures, we are looking for treatments” and everyone laughed… such a funny joke…

    Reply
  36. wcmozart

    further digging on the benefits of Cacao .. here’s another research paper by the authors ..

    Published in final edited form as: J Am Coll Nutr. 2012 August ; 31(4): 275–279.
    URL: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3835438/pdf/nihms525396.pdf

    HABITUAL FLAVONOID INTAKE AND ENDOTHELIAL FUNCTION IN HEALTHY HUMANS
    Naomi DL Fisher, MD, Shelley Hurwitz, PhD, and Norman K Hollenberg, MD PhD
    Harvard Medical School, Brigham & Women’s Hospital, Boston MA
    Abstract
    Objective—Endothelial function, as measured by non-invasive techniques, is known to vary widely within populations. Our study was designed to test the hypothesis that this variation is determined in large part by a person’s habitual dietary intake of flavonoids.
    Methods—This was an analytical study examining the relationship between endothelial function and dietary flavonoids in 19 healthy older adults (mean age 72 years). The study took place in the inpatient Clinical Research Center of the Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Habitual flavonoid intake was assessed via a focused food frequency questionnaire. Endothelial function, measured as the reactive hyperemia response to one dose of flavonoid-rich cocoa, was recorded with a plethysmograpic device via peripheral arterial tonometry (PAT).
    Results—Background flavonoid intake and the reactive hyperemia (RH)-PAT response were significantly correlated (r=0.7, p=0.001); subjects with higher habitual flavonoid intake showed a significantly greater RH-PAT response than did lower consumers. PAT response to cocoa was also significantly correlated with simultaneous flavanol concentration in the blood (r=0.5, p=0.03).
    Conclusion—Individual variation in endothelial function among healthy older people, measured as PAT response to flavonoid-rich cocoa, is highly dependent upon usual daily flavonoid consumption. These data raise the possibility that the consumption of fruits and vegetables dictates basal endothelial function, likely related to their flavonoid content and influence on nitric oxide.

    Some excerpts from the research paper follow:

    “DISCUSSION
    This study demonstrated that spontaneous dietary flavonoid intake was associated with superior endothelial function in healthy older people, assessed as the magnitude of the vascular response to a cup of flavonoid-rich cocoa. Evidence was multi-layered. There was a significant correlation between peripheral vascular response and dietary flavonoids as assessed by questionnaire. There was also a correlation between vascular response and flavanols as measured in the blood. Our data indicate that basal endothelial function is largely a reflection of background dietary flavonoids. This study was prompted by the well-described substantial variation in the peripheral vasodilator response to acute dosing of flavonoid-rich cocoa, which cannot be attributed solely to imprecision in measurements [1;2].
    A major role for NO in the vasodilator response to flavonoid-rich cocoa is supported by multiple lines of investigation. We previously demonstrated that a NO inhibitor, L-NAME (NG-Nitro-L-arginine-methylester-HCl), reversed completely the vasodilator response to cocoa [5]. Multiple laboratories have since confirmed that observation [14]. Although we used flavonoid-rich cocoa as a convenient source of flavonoid, others have performed similar studies with grape juice, red wine, and tea [4;15–17].
    The fact that purified epicatechin mimics the response to cocoa indicates at least one responsible chemical moiety for the vascular effects of cocoa [18]. The monomeric flavanolscatechin and epicatechin, as well as their isomers, are absorbed and present in circulation for up to six hours [18]. In addition, however, while larger oligomeric procyanidins are not absorbed and not present in human plasma, many metabolites of flavanols are [19]. Because we saw relationships between endothelial function and flavonoid intake even in the fasting state, our data support the potential importance of these metabolites.”

    “CONCLUSION
    Our data indicate that flavonoid intake is likely a major determinant of endothelial function. If correct, this study may begin to shed light on practical preventive measures against vascular heart disease, stroke, and diabetes mellitus—among the most common causes of morbidity and mortality in the western world.”

    hope this helps everyone .. in the US, Amazon has a large number of organic Cacao brands, so its easy to get

    -Walt

    Reply
    1. Martin Back

      Since reading Dr. Kendrick I’ve become aware that one must follow the money. Harvard of course is the home of Walter Willett, proponent of plant-based eating and the Big Food-influenced (and nutritionally inadequate) EatLancet diet, so one would expect positive reporting on a plant-based food.

      Acknowledgments
      Dr. Fisher’s research was sponsored by RO1HL89570. The project described was also supported by Grant Number 1 UL1 RR025758-01, Harvard Clinical and Translational Science Center, from the National Center for Research Resources, and M01-02635 supported GCRC resources. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Center for Research Resources or the National Institutes of Health. Cocoa was supplied by Mars Inc.

      I googled RO1HL89570, Grant Number 1 UL1 RR025758-01, M01-02635, Harvard Clinical and Translational Science Center, and the National Center for Research Resources, trying to find the sources of their funding. No luck. The NCRR no longer exists. It has been replaced by National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NCATS). The latter has an industry program. “Participating companies provide clinical supplies of drugs and matched placebos to funded investigators at no charge. These companies also provide documentation so that funded investigators can file an Investigational New Drug application with the Food and Drug Administration.”

      The only obvious industry tie-up was the cocoa from Mars Inc. I would feel happier if they bought a variety of brands of cocoa from various supermarkets with their own money. That way we could be sure it was similar to what we ourselves could buy. There is always the suspicion that they would be supplied with specially-selected and/or doctored cocoa, and anyway would be expected to show their gratitude to their sponsors by producing a positive report.

      Reply

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