Bad Diet, Race, and Cancer

According to a new report poor black women living in the United States and eating an unhealthy diet face a higher risk of developing of cancer. Reuters is on it:
The goals included adequate consumption of fruit and vegetables, a low percentage of fat intake, consuming no alcohol, eating moderate calories and adhering to a U.S. government Healthy Eating Index, which measures overall quality of diet.


"African-American women ... face a worse cancer incidence and mortality rate than most other ethnic groups and poor African-American women are at an even greater disadvantage," said Ann Klassen, an associate professor at Johns Hopkins University's Bloomberg School of Public Health.

"Improving diet is one effective way to help these women lower their risk for developing cancer," Klassen said, adding that the women in the study went on to participate in a program aimed at improving nutrition.
More often than not, race is a major factor in health-related issues. Here’re a few examples from the past:

Wash Your Hands!

Do you wash your hands? Aside from after doing my business, I admit, I don’t wash my hands as often as I should—dumb! A couple years ago Laura Landro of The Wall Street Journal wrote that hand washing is an important part of disease-prevention. Have a look:
The most important way to prevent the spread of colds is frequent hand washing. But experts say that following the most basic tenets of good nutrition -- consuming a balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables and low in saturated fats, and eliminating highly processed and junk foods -- can actually help ward off illness.
Okay, a reporter is one thing. What are Dr. Fuhrman’s thoughts on hand washing? In short, he thinks it’s a good idea, especially when it comes to warding off colds and the flu. He talks about it in this post about Avian Flu. Here’re some relevant pieces:
If this virulent form of the flu does appear in our region we are not without protection. We have control over the size of the exposure, because we can avoid hand to mouth and hand to nasal contact and we can wash our hands after touching people and birds…

…Wash your hands after you touch something that other people have touched like a doorknob or gas pump…

…If you use a public bathroom, use a paper towel to turn off the water knobs and then to open the door to leave the bathroom, to keep your hands clean.
I agree. I don’t DARE grab anything in a public bathroom with my bare hands. In fact, there should be decontamination showers setup outside most of them—EEK! Now, new research contends hand washing is more useful than drugs for virus control. Reuters reports:
Physical barriers, such as regular handwashing and wearing masks, gloves and gowns, may be more effective than drugs to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses such as influenza and SARS, a study has found.


The findings, published in the British Medical Journal, came as Britain announced it was doubling its stockpile of antiviral medicines in preparation for any future flu pandemic.

Trawling through 51 studies, the researchers found that simple, low-cost physical measures should be given higher priority in national pandemic contingency plans.

"Mounting evidence suggests that the use of vaccines and antiviral drugs will be insufficient to interrupt the spread of influenza," they wrote in the report.
I don’t know how practical a mask and gown would be, but, if you’ve ever peed on a 6108032618 Transit train, you’d think about it.

Rickets, Milk, and Lack of Exercise

New research claims not enough milk, exercise, and sunshine is causing rickets in some children. Lauran Neegaard of the Associated Press reports:
It's not just that they don't drink fortified milk. Bodies make vitamin D with sunlight. With teen computer use, urban youngsters without safe places to play outdoors and less school P.E., it's no wonder D levels are low. Because skin pigment alters sun absorption, black children are particularly at risk.


Rickets marks the worst deficiency, where bones become so soft that legs literally bow. Rickets was once thought to have been eradicated with milk fortification, but "I am now treating rickets in a way that I never treated it 20 years ago," says Tosi, who diagnoses rickets or super-low D levels in children every month at a bone clinic she runs for mostly inner-city children.

Doctors who've never seen rickets can miss it. Charlene Bullock repeatedly asked her 5-year-old's doctor why his leg was bending inward and he could no longer run with his playmates. It took a trip to Tosi's special clinic to learn Na-shun had rickets — the once energetic child had quit running because his bones ached like an old man's.

Fortunately, rickets caught early is easily cured with high-dose infusions of vitamin D and calcium, and Bullock's son quickly rebounded. "He's doing everything with that little leg."
I wasn’t sure how to approach this report. So, I asked Dr. Fuhrman for his input. Here’s what he had to say:
I saw plenty of kids with rickets in my medical school and residency days in the inner cities. Clearly, lack of exercise and sunlight, especially in those with darker skin is creating an epidemic of bone disease. Milk is fortified with Vitamin D, and can be the only D and calcium source in people who do not eat vegetables. I agree that the public needs to be better educated in these important nutritional issues.
Now, in regard to milk, exercise, and sunshine, these posts should explain things. Take a look:
Regular Exercise Pays Big Health Dividends
“As we condition our muscles and gain strength, our bones thicken and strengthen along with the muscle. Without regular exercise along the way, your bone structure can deteriorate as you get older. Some people survive with weak bones, but their quality of life suffers when they are immobilized by arthritis and osteoporosis.”


Cow's Milk and Kids Aren't Made for Each Other
“Milk, which is designed by nature for the rapidly growing cow, has about half its calories supplied from fat. The fatty component is concentrated more to make cheese and butter. Milk and cheese are the foods Americans encourage their children to eat, believing them to be healthy foods. Fifty years of heavy advertising by an economically powerful industry has shaped the public's perception, illustrating the power of one-sided advertising, but the reality and true health effects on our children is a different story.”

Importance of Vitamin D
“Sun exposure is perhaps the most important source of vitamin D because exposure to sunlight provides most humans with their vitamin D requirement. The further you live from the equator, the longer you need to be exposed to the sun in order to generate vitamin D. Season, time of day, cloud cover, smog, and sunscreen affect UV ray exposure and vitamin D synthesis.”
In a nut shell—good, bad, good.

High-Carb Diet Icky-Sticky for Diabetes

I don’t subscribe to "carbophobia", but, refined grains, rice, and cereals are bad news. Here’s a brief lowdown from Dr. Fuhrman. Take a look:
White pasta, white rice and white bread are just like sugar; because their fiber has been removed, these nutrient deficient foods are absorbed too rapidly. This, in turn, will raise glucose, triglyceride, and insulin levels in your blood. Refined grains are undesirable and will sabotage your weight-loss and cholesterol-lowering efforts…


…White or "enriched" rice is just as bad as white bread and pasta. It is nutritionally bankrupt. You might as well just eat the Uncle Ben's cardboard box it comes in. Refining removes important factors: fiber, minerals, phytochemicals, and vitamin E. So, when you eat grains, eat whole grains…

…As we change food through processing and refining, we rob the food of certain health-supporting substances and often create unhealthy compounds, thus making it a more unfit food for human consumption. As a general rule of thumb: the closer we eat foods to their natural state, the healthier the food.
So, it shouldn’t surprise you that a new study has determined that a high-carb diet raises women's diabetes risk. More from Robert Preidt of HealthDay News:
Black American women and Chinese women who ate foods high on the glycemic index -- which measures the effect of carbohydrates on blood glucose levels -- were at increased risk for developing type 2 diabetes, two new studies found.


One of the studies also found that eating more cereal fiber may be associated with a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes in black American women…

…Women who ate high-glycemic index foods or ate a diet with a high glycemic load were more likely to develop diabetes. Women who ate more cereal fiber were less likely to develop diabetes.

"Our results indicate that black women can reduce their risk of diabetes by eating a diet that is relatively high in cereal fiber," the study authors wrote. "Incorporating fiber sources into the diet is relatively easy: A simple change from white bread (two slices provides 1.2 grams of fiber) to whole wheat bread (two slices provides 3.8 grams of fiber) ... will move a person from a low fiber intake category to a moderate intake category, with a corresponding 10 percent reduction in risk."
The answer? Stick to wholesome natural nutrient-dense foods. Dr. Fuhrman explains that plant foods are the real diabetes-fighter. Check out Starch-Based Diets No Answer for Diabetics for more.

Money, Medicine, and Influence

One psychiatrist realizes that being on a pharmaceutical company’s take can influence your judgment. More from The New York Times:
I had already prescribed Effexor to several patients, and it seemed to work as well as the S.S.R.I.’s. If I gave talks to primary-care doctors about Effexor, I reasoned, I would be doing nothing unethical. It was a perfectly effective treatment option, with some data to suggest advantages over its competitors. The Wyeth rep was simply suggesting that I discuss some of the data with other doctors. Sure, Wyeth would benefit, but so would other doctors, who would become more educated about a good medication…


…Michael Thase, of the University of Pittsburgh and the researcher who single-handedly put Effexor on the map with a meta-analysis began by reviewing the results of the meta-analysis that had the psychiatric world abuzz. After carefully pooling and processing data from eight separate clinical trials, Thase published a truly significant finding: Effexor caused a 45 percent remission rate in patients in contrast to the S.S.R.I. rate of 35 percent and the placebo rate of 25 percent. It was the first time one antidepressant was shown to be more effective than any other. Previously, psychiatrists chose antidepressants based on a combination of guesswork, gut feeling and tailoring a drug’s side effects to a patient’s symptom profile. If Effexor was truly more effective than S.S.R.I.’s, it would amount to a revolution in psychiatric practice and a potential windfall for Wyeth…

…When it came to side effects, Effexor’s greatest liability was that it could cause hypertension, a side effect not shared by S.S.R.I.’s. Norm Sussman showed us some data from the clinical trials, indicating that at lower doses, about 3 percent of patients taking Effexor had hypertension as compared with about 2 percent of patients assigned to a placebo. There was only a 1 percent difference between Effexor and placebo, he commented, and pointed out that treating high blood pressure might be a small price to pay for relief from depression.
Now, psychotropic medications are probably a bit of a grey area, but there’s no question. Doctors and patients are too drug-conditioned. This pharmaceutical rep remarks:
This is the problem with our society today. It's easier for physicians to just throw medications at patients, rather then really consult with them about diet and exercise.


That being said, those that do consult with these patients--a lot of the patients are not compliant. It's like asking an alcoholic to quit drinking. These behavioral patterns are embedded early into these patients.
Here’s Dr. Fuhrman’s hope for this dubious relationship, “Some day the public will wake up to the medicalization of America and the collusion between the drug companies.” Hopefully.

School Kids Will Eat Well

A new study has determined that school children will eat healthy food. Steve Karnowski of the Associated Press is on it:
When the researchers crunched all the numbers they found that schools serving the healthiest lunches did not see a falloff in demand.


While serving better meals does entail higher labor costs, the study found, that's offset by lower costs for more nutritious foods such as fruits and vegetables compared with processed foods. However, many districts need to upgrade their kitchens and train their staff to prepare these foods, the researchers said.

The study's conclusions rang true for Jean Ronnei, director of nutrition services for St. Paul Public Schools, which serves more than 46,000 meals daily. The district was held up by the authors as a model for others.

Ronnei said the percentage of St. Paul kids eating school lunches has increased in recent years at the same time the district has been offering more fruits and vegetables.

"That doesn't mean we don't have a hot dog on our menu. We do. ... In our case it's a turkey low-fat hot dog," she said.

Margo Wootan, director of nutrition policy at the nonprofit Center for Science in the Public Interest in Washington, said she was pleased to see evidence that schools can offer nutritious meals kids will eat without higher costs.

Turkey Day: White or Dark?

“To be or not to be? That is the question.” But for the person carving the Thanksgiving turkey this is the question, “Whatcha want? White or dark meat?” Speaking of that, which is healthier white or dark meat? Anahad O’Connor of The New York Times investigates. Take a look:
Many people choose white meat over dark because of its lower caloric content. But according to the Department of Agriculture, an ounce of boneless, skinless turkey breast contains about 46 calories and 1 gram of fat, compared with roughly 50 calories and 2 grams of fat for an ounce of boneless, skinless thigh.


But dark meat has its benefits. Compared with white meat, it contains more iron, zinc, riboflavin, thiamine, and vitamins B6 and B12. Both have less fat than most cuts of red meat, so you can’t go wrong either way.
This doesn’t affect me much because this Thanksgiving I’ll be having fish with plenty of veggies, but the claim that poultry is some heaven sent compared to red meats is incorrect. According to Dr. Fuhrman white meat still doesn’t do your body any favors. From Eat to Live:
Unknown to many is that animal proteins have a significant effect on raising cholesterol levels as well, while plant protein lowers it.1Red met is not the only problem. The consumption of chicken and fish is also linked to colon cancer. A large recent study examined the eating habits of 32,000 adults for six years and then watched the incidence of cancer for these subjects over the next six years. Those who avoided red meat but at white meat regularly had a more than 300 percent increase in colon cancer incidence.2 The same study showed that eating beans, peas, or lentils, at least twice a week was associated with a 50 percent lower risk than never eating these foods.


Chicken has about the same amount of cholesterol as beef, and the production of those potent cancer-causing compounds called heterocyclic amines (HCAs) are even more concentrated in grilled chicken than in beef.3 Another recent study from New Zealand that investigated heterocyclic amines in meat, fish, and chicken found the greatest contributor of HCAs to cancer risk was chicken.4 Likewise, studies indicated that chicken is almost as dangerous as red meat for the heart. Regarding cholesterol, there is no advantage to eating lean white instead of lean red meat.5
And Dr. Fuhrman makes it pretty clear, if you’ve got heart problems you should be especially mindful of animal products. More from Eat to Live:
The patient's diet must be nutrient-dense. Animal products and detrimental fats must be avoided to prevent the after-meal fat surge.6 Refined carbohydrates should also be avoided to prevent the after-meal glucose surges and to control triglycerides. Homocysteine levels should be normalized, by supplementation with appropriate nutrients if necessary.
Figured I’d remind you about those nasty refined carbohydrates too. Think of this when you’re tempted to reach for that extra scoop of stuffing—Eek!

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Trans-Fatty Foods

I doubt someone reading this blog would eat any of this stuff, but just in case, A Calorie Counter has pulled together a list of the 88 Fast Food Items Highest In Trans Fat. Here’s 1 through 10:
  1. White Castle Homestyle Onion Rings – Sack; Trans Fat: 30 grams
  2. White Castle Fish Nibblers - Sack; Trans Fat: 16 grams
  3. KFC Chicken Pot Pie; Trans Fat: 14 grams
  4. Burger King Hash Browns - Large; Trans Fat: 13 grams
  5. White Castle Chicken Rings - 20 rings; Trans Fat: 13 grams
  6. Jack in the Box Fish & Chips - Large; Trans Fat: 12 grams
  7. Jack in the Box Bacon Cheddar Potato Wedges; Trans Fat: 12 grams
  8. White Castle Clam Strips - Sack; Trans Fat: 12 grams
  9. Dairy Queen Chicken Strip Basket 6-piece; Trans Fat: 12 grams
  10. White Castle French Fries - Sack; Trans Fat: 11 grams
Bad day for White Castle! You know what’s funny? There’s actually a White Castle next door to my gym. Talk about yin and yang!

No Salted Added...Good Idea!

A new study has determined that avoiding salty foods and not adding salt to food can help lower blood pressure. Reuters reports:
A modest reduction in dietary salt, measured by sodium content in the urine by about 35 percent and lowered daytime blood pressure by 12.1 mm Hg systolic and 6.8 mm Hg diastolic in patients with high blood pressure (hypertension) not taking anti-hypertensive medications, reports Dr. Javad Kojuri. Blood pressure readings at night were slightly lower.


Kojuri and Dr. Rahim Rahimi, both from Shiraz University in Iran, assessed blood pressure and 24-hour urinary sodium excretion in 60 individuals before and after instructing them to follow a 'no salt added' diet for 6 weeks.

Twenty subjects who did not follow the diet were used as a comparison group ("controls"). All of the subjects were similar in age, gender, weight, blood pressure, and initial urinary sodium excretion.
“For optimal health, I recommend that no salt at all be added to any food,” said Dr. Fuhrman. And for good reason, just look what it does to our tastes buds. More from Dr. Fuhrman:
Salt addiction has developed throughout civilization in the last 5000 years, creating a worldwide epidemic of high blood pressure and resultant strokes. Besides fatigue, cravings, and uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms, salt use gradually deadens your taste.1 The more salt you consume, the more you lose the ability to appreciate the subtle flavors of natural food. As salt deadens taste, it makes you want more and more salt to get back some of the missing flavor.
Sounds almost like a drug addiction.
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CNN: Fast Food Ban, Healthy Fats, and Mandatory Vaccinations

It’s certainly a noble idea. Especially when you consider how bad trans-fat is for you. More from Dr. Fuhrman:
Hydrogenation is a process of adding hydrogen molecules to unsaturated fats which makes plant oils that are liquid at room temperature, solidify. An example is margarine. These fats are also called TRANS FATS. The hardening of the fat extends its shelf life so that the oil can by used over and over again to fry potatoes in a fast food restaurant or be added to processed foods, such as crackers and cookies. While hydrogenation does not make the fat completely saturated, it creates trans-fatty acids, which act like saturated fats. These fats raise cholesterol and increasing evidence is accumulating demonstrating the harmful nature of these man-made fats and their relation to both cancer and heart disease. Avoid all foods whose ingredients contain partially hydrogenated or hydrogenated oils.
The link between omega fats and mood disorders has long been established. In case you need a refresher, here’s Dr. Fuhrman:
When we have insufficient omega-3 fat, we do not produce enough DHA, a long-chain omega-3 fat with anti-inflammatory effects. High levels of arachidonic acid and low levels of omega-3 fats can be a contributory cause of heart disease, stroke, autoimmune diseases, skin diseases, depression, and possibly increased cancer incidence.1 Most Americans would improve their health if they consumed more omega-3 fats and less omega-6 fats. I recommend that both vegetarians and non-vegetarians make an effort to consume one to two grams of omega-3 fat daily.
This is utter insanity! Rest assured, drug-makers companies make enough money without mandatory vaccinations. Dr. Fuhrman doesn’t like it either:
This is not about arguing about the effectiveness or value of vaccines, just whether we should mandate medical care and take another freedom away from Americans. We no longer have the freedom to take or not take medications. Sounds like the Taliban to me.


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Diabetes: A Racial Divide?

HealthDay News reports that black children are amongst the hardest hit by diabetes. Steven Reinberg reports:
While this racial disparity has been evident for more than two decades, the trend has been accelerating among children ages 1 to 19, according to the study in the Nov. 16 issue of the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.


"Although the numbers are small, in absolute terms, these deaths are still preventable, which is why it is important to examine those disparities and work toward eliminating them," said CDC epidemiologist Dr. Laura L. Polakowski, who co-authored the report.

Looking at death certificates from 1979 to 2004, the researchers found that between 2003 and 2004, there were 89 deaths among U.S. children and teens from diabetes. During that time, the annual diabetes death rate for black children and teens was more than double that for white children.

Low-Carb-Prostate Cancer Study--WRONG!

It seems like anytime the phrase “low-carb” is mentioned in research, you can pretty much just assume it’s wrong. Like this study claiming fat and meat are unlikely to impact prostate cancer risk. Reuters reported:

In an email to Reuters Health, principal investigator Dr. Laurence N. Kolonel and first author Song-Yi Park of the University of Hawaii, Honolulu, said: "Although diet is likely to influence prostate cancer risk, the intake of total and saturated fat do not appear to be important contributors. However, because high intake of fat can lead to obesity as well as other cancers, the consumption of high fat foods should be limited."

How can this be? When foods like meat, cheese, and animal fat have all demonstrated a positive correlation with prostate cancer and all these foods are staples of low-carb living. Check out this quote from Dr. Fuhrman:

When the death rates for prostate cancer and testicular cancer were examined in forty-two countries and correlated with dietary practices in a carefully designed study, they found that cheese consumption was most closely linked with the incidence of testicular cancer for ages twenty to thirty-nine, and milk was the most closely associated with prostate cancer of all foods.1 Meat, coffee, and animal fats also showed a positive correlation.

Now, this new report will have you saying, “What the—” Apparently researchers from Duke University Medical Center have determined that a low-carb diet may slow prostate tumor growth. Robert Preidt of HealthDay News has more:

"This study showed that cutting carbohydrates may slow tumor growth, at least in mice. If this is ultimately confirmed in human clinical trials, it has huge implications for prostate cancer therapy through something that all of us can controls, our diets," lead researcher Dr. Stephen Freedland, a urologist at Duke University Medical Center, said in a prepared statement…


…They compared tumor growth in mice eating either a low-carbohydrate diet; a low-fat but high-carbohydrate diet; or a Western diet high in fat and carbohydrates.

Wow! What a measuring stick, the Western diet? No doubt this report will spur the latest wave of low-carb fanaticism. So, let Followhealthlife be your beacon of truth. Here’s more of Dr. Fuhrman talking about animal products and prostate cancer-causation. Check it out:

A study in the December 2006 American Journal of Clinical Nutrition shows that less animal products result in less cancer and more animal protein raises IGF-1 and promotes breast and prostate cancer...


…Studies have repeatedly shown the correlation between consumption of [fruits and vegetables] and a lower incidence of various cancers, including those of the breast, colon, rectum, lung, stomach, prostate, and pancreas.2

Clearly, animal products are no ally in the fight against prostate cancer and it’s pretty obvious that increased consumption of fruits and vegetables is the key, but with that being said, the dangers of refined carbohydrates should not be overshadowed. Dr. Fuhrman explains:

Medical investigations clearly show the dangers of consuming the quantity of processed foods that we do. And because these refined grains lack fiber and nutrient density to turn down our appetite, they also cause obesity, diabetes, heart disease, and significantly increased cancer risk3...


…The combination of fat and refined carbohydrates has an extremely powerful effect on driving the signals that promote fat accumulation on the body. Refined foods cause a swift and excessive rise in blood sugar, which in turn triggers insulin surges to drive the sugar out of the blood and into our cells. Unfortunately, insulin also promotes the storage of fat on the body and encourages your fat cells to swell.

So after considering all this, one should hardly take this low-carb endorsement seriously. To close, I’ll let Dr. Fuhrman’s colleague Steven Acocella, DC, MS, DACBN offer up his reasoning why anyone would choose to go low-carb. Take a look:

Addiction is the only reason that anyone would continue to maintain that a pro-Atkin’s, low-carbohydrate diet is health promoting. One would have to literally ignore thousands of studies that irrefutably support these findings. For every research article that dispels the direct relationship between a low-carb, high protein/high fat diet style and disease promotion there’s about 500 studies that refute it.

Kind of hits the nail on the head—don't you think?

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Thursday: Health Points

In California, 86% of the women who gave birth in 2006 nursed their newborns in the hospital, according to a report being released today by the UC Davis Human Lactation Center and the California WIC Assn., a federally funded nutrition program for women, infants and children.

Half of them -- 43% of the total -- fed their newborns only breast milk. The other half supplemented with formula.

The gap between breast-feeding a little and breast-feeding exclusively in the first 24 to 48 hours that mothers typically spend in the hospital matters because that's when a mother's milk supply is established. The act of nursing causes milk-producing hormones to be released. The more the baby nurses, the more milk the mother will produce, and vice versa.
  • Lacks scientific evidence to support claims, instead relying on glowing testimonials (which may or may not be authentic)
  • Claims you can lose weight without exercising or making dietary modifications.
  • Claims to remove fat from certain areas of your body (can you say “thigh master?”)
  • Uses terms such as “miracle”, “scientific breakthrough”, “secret formula” and “revolutionary” to describe their product.
“The answer is no, because the risky fat is inside the abdominal wall, in and around the organs,” said Dr. Louis Aronne, director of the comprehensive weight management program at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center in New York.


A tummy tuck or liposuction “removes superficial, subcutaneous fat, which has little or no risk,” he said. “In such procedures, there is no change in what we call cardiometabolic risk factors, like insulin activity, blood sugar, triglycerides or any of the lipid parameters.”
Synthetic hormones have been used to improve milk production in cows for more than a decade. The chemical has not been detected in milk, so there is no way to test for its use, but more retailers have been selling and promoting hormone-free products in response to consumer demand.


State Agriculture Secretary Dennis Wolff said advertising one brand of milk as free from artificial hormones implies competitors' milk is not safe, and it often comes with what he said is an unjustified higher price.

"It's kind of like a nuclear-arms race," Wolff said. "One dairy does it, and the next tries to outdo them. It's absolutely crazy."
The CDC said about 20.8 percent of American adults are smokers, with 80 percent, or 36.3 million, of them smoking every day. That rate has been unchanged since 1984.


The county smoking rate was not available, but Health Director Dr. Bruce Dixon said he knows the problem of smoking and its effect on health remains a concern.

"We don't have really good numbers to say [how many county residents smoke], though we do look at high-risk groups, minorities, youth," he said, adding, "Sales to youth are off" but they still find ways to purchase.

"The marketing has not backed off ... I think we still have a disproportionate level of smoking among pregnant women and minority groups."
  • Staphylococcus seems to be the countries newest boogieman. Julie’s Health Club discusses an interesting way to stop it—garlic. Read on:
Garlic, well known for its natural antibiotic properties, contains an ingredient that has been shown to effectively kill methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), a virulent microbe that wreaks havoc in skin and soft-tissue wounds, several studies have shown.


The nasty superbacterium that now defies most drug treatments infected more than 90,000 Americans last year and killed 19,000, making it a significant public health problem, according to a new federal report. Though 85 percent of the staph infections were in hospitals or other health-care facilities, MRSA also is marching into schools, health clubs and other crowded places.
After hearing that contestants on the recent series of The Biggest Loser have been advised to chew gum in a bid to suppress their appetites, I decided to look around to see if I could find a study to back it up. I couldn't find the actual details of the study but here is a section of a press release:

"A separate study, carried out by researchers at Glasgow Caledonian University and the Wrigley Science Institute, found that chewing gum can be a good appetite suppressant. The study found that by chewing gum before an afternoon snack, one would consume 25 less snack calories. While that is not a high number, according to nutritionists, even a slight reduction in caloric intake can have significant effects in the long term. This study was comprised of 60 adults between the ages of 18 and 54. Each participant consumed a sweet and salty snack after either chewing sweet gum or not chewing gum at all. Hunger, appetite, and cravings were then monitored throughout the remainder of the day. Along with reducing caloric intake, participants reported feeling an improved mood due to reduced anxiety and stress, and increasing contentment and relaxation. "
About three-quarters of the people of Utah are Mormons, and many of them fast for a day every month. Benjamin Horne from the Intermountain Medical Center in Salt Lake City, Utah, asked 515 elderly people undergoing X-ray examinations for suspected heart disease about their lifestyle. Those who fasted were 39 per cent more likely than non-fasters to have a healthy heart. The results were presented at the American Heart Association's Scientific Sessions in Orlando, Florida, on Tuesday.
The report, called Food, Nutrition, Physical Activity, and the Prevention of Cancer: A Global Perspective, urges people to stay at a healthy weight, which means having a body mass index (or BMI, a ratio of weight to height) between 18.5 and 24.9. And it recommends regular physical activity as a way to control weight.


"The recommendation reflects what the science is telling us today," says W. Phillip T. James, MD, DSc, a member of the panel that wrote the report. "Even small amounts of excess fat, especially if carried at the waist, increase risk."

The report also makes recommendations for eating more healthfully to reduce cancer risk. It says people should eat mostly foods from plants, limit red meat and alcohol, and avoid processed meats like bacon, sausage, and lunchmeat.

Pregnancy: Bad Diet, Fat Kid?

Wait, a pregnant mother’s diet might affect their baby’s health—NO—you don’t say? Shari Roan of The Los Angeles Times reports:
Multiple studies have shown that either underfeeding or overfeeding the fetus during pregnancy can affect how a child's body will respond to food over a lifetime, increasing the risk for diabetes, heart disease and hypertension.


Pioneering research in the late 1980s by British physician David Barker showed that babies weighing 6 pounds or less are more likely to have an increased risk for heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and hypertension. It is the disparity between the prenatal environment and the nutritional environment after birth that appears to cause abnormalities in energy metabolism, endocrine functions and organ development.

Given the modern environment of preschoolers in Western countries -- marked by a lack of exercise, and diets high in calories, fat and sugar -- this disparity creates a problem, Barker and other researchers say.

"The fetus is reading the environment during development and is using that to predict what the environment will be once it's born," says Jerry Heindel, a fetal-programming expert at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. "If the fetus gets poor nutrition, it will set itself up to be able to adjust to that. If it has poor nutrition during life, it will do quite well. But later in life, if nutrition changes and becomes like the food we're eating today, that is a mismatch, and that will increase the susceptibility to disease."
Eating right during pregnancy is a hot-button issue for Dr. Fuhrman. He talks about it in his book Disease-Proof Your Child. Here’s an excerpt:
The time to begin paying attention to a child’s health is long before birth. Even the mother’s diet twelve months before conception can influence the child’s future health. It is important to eat healthfully prior to conception as well as once pregnancy has begun. Proper nutrition and good health habits are more important than ever during pregnancy and can help in maintaining good health for both mother and baby.
Perhaps even more important are those foods mothers should completely avoid while pregnant. More from Dr. Fuhrman:
  • Caffeine
  • Nicotine, including secondhand smoke
  • Alcohol
  • Medications, both over-the-counter and prescription drugs
  • Herbs and high-dose supplements, vitamin A
  • Fish, mollusks and shellfish, sushi (raw fish)
  • Hot tubs and saunas
  • Radiation
  • Household clear, paint thinners
  • Cat litter (because of an infectious disease called toxoplasmosis caused by a parasite found in cat feces)
  • Raw milk and cheese
  • Soft cheese and blue-veined cheeses such as feta, Roquefort, and Brie
  • Artificial colors, nitrates, and MSG
  • Deli meats, luncheon meats, hot dogs, and undercooked meats
That’s why this makes me shudder. A couple weeks ago I saw a pregnant mom eating an Egg McMuffin at the gym of all places—very disturbing.

Are We Over-Vaccinated?

Dr. Fuhrman’s colleague Dr. John Abramson thinks we are. Here’s a bit of his book Overdosed America:
What I found over the next two and a half years of “researching the research” is a scandal in medical science that is at least the equivalent of any of the recent corporate scandals that have shaken Americans’ confidence in the integrity of the corporate and financial worlds. Rigging medical studies, misrepresenting research results published in even the most influential medical journals, and withholding the findings of whole studies that don’t come out in a sponsor’s favor have all become the accepted norm in commercially sponsored medical research. To keep the lid sealed on this corruption of medical science—and to ensure its translation into medical practice—there is a complex web of corporate influence that includes disempowered regulatory agencies, commercially sponsored medical education, brilliant advertising, expensive public relations campaigns, and manipulations of free media coverage. And last, but not least, are the financial ties between many of the most trusted medical experts and medical industry.
Now, Julie’s Health Club is pondering the same question over some new research. Take a look:
The problem is that doctors often underestimate how long vaccines will be effective, meaning people are getting booster shots when their immunity levels most likely do not require it, according to the study by researchers with Oregon Health & Science University published in the New England Journal of Medicine.


The researchers were initially trying to figure out how long immunity could be maintained after infection or vaccination. They expected immunity would be long-lived following a viral infection and relatively short-lived immunity after vaccination, especially because this is why booster vaccinations are required.

Instead, they found that "immunity following vaccination with tetanus and diphtheria was much more long-lived than anyone realized and that antibody responses following viral infections were essentially maintained for life," explained study co-author Mark Slifka, an associate scientist at the Vaccine and Gene Therapy Institute.
Well, we’re certainly hypochondriacs to say the least.
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Beta-Carotene and Dementia

Beta-carotene has received some mixed press over the years. Lots of hoopla over one little vitamin, Dr. Fuhrman explains:
Years ago, high doses of betacarotene were shown to increase the risk for cancer and death in smokers. In the last few months, beta-carotene has gotten more bad news. Six years after a study was halted early because a risky association between high-dose beta-carotene supplementation and heart disease and cancer was detected, follow-ups showed that for women, the bad effects lingered. The participants took 30 milligrams per day of beta-carotene plus extra vitamin A.


Researchers found that the increased risk of heart disease and cancer disappeared when the men in the study stopped taking the beta-carotene supplements, but the risk for women continued. Before the study was halted, the participants who took the supplement had a 28 percent greater incidence of lung cancer and 17 percent more deaths from all causes compared with those who didn’t take the beta-carotene. In the follow-up, women were 30 percent more likely to develop lung cancer, 40 percent more likely to die of heart disease, and 30 percent more likely to die of all other causes.

This lingering increased risk for women may be because beta-carotene and vitamin E are both fat-soluble, allowing any excess to accumulate in fat-cell membranes. This could explain the adverse effects of beta-carotene in women, who have more body fat than men. Vitamin C is water-soluble, and any excess leaves the body via urine.
And today, there’s some good news. Ed Edelson HealthDay News reports that beta-carotene may protect us against dementia. Take a look:
Taking supplements of the antioxidant beta carotene for a long time -- 15 years or more -- appears to lessen the decline in thinking ability that comes with Alzheimer's disease, a study finds…

…The idea that antioxidants such as beta carotene can help protect against Alzheimer's disease is not new. But the idea remains controversial, because a number of studies have not produced positive results. This latest trial, which started as the Physicians Health Study II, stretches back to 1982…

…The idea that long-term use of the supplements is necessary "is certainly plausible, given that the neuropathologic changes underlying clinically significant impairment appear to take years, if not decades," Dr. Kristine Yaffe, professor of psychiatry, neurology, epidemiology and biostatistics at the University of California wrote. But evidence for that concept would be difficult to obtain, since it would require trials lasting 25 to 30 years, she said.
Now, if you’re curious about veggie sources of beta-carotene, here’s a list from Dr. Fuhrman. Check it out:
Dark leafy greens (spinach, kale, collard greens, turnip greens, mustard greens, beet greens, broccoli, and asparagus); deep orange fruits (apricots, cantaloupe, mango, and papaya); deep orange vegetables (squash, carrots, sweet potatoes, and pumpkin).
You can’t beat a nice ripe cantaloupe—so good!

Fat and Healthy?

Okay, I’ve heard this kind of talk before, but is it really possible to be overweight and still live a long-healthy life? My guess is no. Now, for more on this, check out “Chubby Gets a Second Look” by New York Times report Gina Kolata. Here’s a bit:
Chubby, it turns out, may be the new healthy. Who knows if it will be the new beautiful.


Two years ago, federal researchers found that overweight people had the lowest mortality rate of any weight group. Investigating further, they were able to link causes of death to specific weights. Obese people had more deaths from heart disease, they reported last week. And thin people? They had more deaths from everything but cancer and heart disease.

But there were 100,000 fewer deaths among the overweight than would have been expected if those people had been of normal weight. This is what might politely be called the chubby category, with body mass indexes (a measure of weight for height) of 25 to 30. A woman, for instance, who is 5 feet 4 inches tall and weighs between 146 and 175 pounds.

About a third of Americans fall into that range, defined, less politely, as “overweight” by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
I’m not buying it, but maybe this study in The Journal of the American Medical Association will convince you it’s a good idea to pack on some extra pounds—I doubt it—but have a look anyway. From the abstract:
Objective
To estimate cause-specific excess deaths associated with underweight (BMI <18.5), overweight (BMI 25-<30), and obesity (BMI ≥30).


Results
Based on total follow-up, underweight was associated with significantly increased mortality from noncancer, non-CVD causes (23 455 excess deaths; 95% confidence interval [CI], 11 848 to 35 061) but not associated with cancer or CVD mortality. Overweight was associated with significantly decreased mortality from noncancer, non-CVD causes (–69 299 excess deaths; 95% CI, –100 702 to –37 897) but not associated with cancer or CVD mortality. Obesity was associated with significantly increased CVD mortality (112 159 excess deaths; 95% CI, 87 842 to 136 476) but not associated with cancer mortality or with noncancer, non-CVD mortality. In further analyses, overweight and obesity combined were associated with increased mortality from diabetes and kidney disease (61 248 excess deaths; 95% CI, 49 685 to 72 811) and decreased mortality from other noncancer, non-CVD causes (–105 572 excess deaths; 95% CI, –161 816 to –49 328). Obesity was associated with increased mortality from cancers considered obesity-related (13 839 excess deaths; 95% CI, 1920 to 25 758) but not associated with mortality from other cancers. Comparisons across surveys suggested a decrease in the association of obesity with CVD mortality over time.

Conclusions
The BMI-mortality association varies by cause of death. These results help to clarify the associations of BMI with all-cause mortality.
Certainly, I could easily make a ton of smart-alecky remarks about this research, but, you guys don’t come here for the jokes. Dr. Fuhrman wanted to weigh in on this study—no pun intended—so here’s what he had to say:
When we look to researchers to interpret the findings of data collection we most often find that their knowledge about the causes of health is inadequate.


If we put 100 people on the SAD diet, we would have to assume that those that were healthy would gain more weight than those who had chronic diseases or undiagnosed cancer. Having cancer, chronic disease (even if sub-clinical and not yet diagnosed) alcoholism, depression and autoimmune illnesses all cause people to be thinner and lose weight.

The bottom line is that Americans of all weights (because they eat like most Americans eat) are very unhealthy with high rates of cancer and heart disease in all weight categories.

If you want to be healthy, live long, with a healthy life expectancy, then you want to be slim and have earned that with an excellent diet. There are no overweight centenarians.
No doubt the fast food companies are loving this—fatten up for life! My goodness.

Weather Weight

According to the Associated Press it is possible to beat the battle of the bulge, and, prevent climate changes. Seth Borenstein is on it:
How? Get out of your car and walk or bike half an hour a day instead of driving. And while you're at it, eat less red meat. That's how Americans can simultaneously save the planet and their health, say doctors and climate scientists.


The payoffs are huge, although unlikely to happen. One numbers-crunching scientist calculates that if all Americans between 10 and 74 walked just half an hour a day instead of driving, they would cut the annual U.S. emissions of carbon dioxide, the chief greenhouse gas, by 64 million tons.

About 6.5 billion gallons of gasoline would be saved. And Americans would also shed more than 3 billion pounds overall, according to these calculations.
And don’t forget! Cow Farts are bad news too, and, is it true? Less Meat, Cooler Temps?

Beefy Loophole

This will make you think twice about eating a steak. Apparently a “loophole” exists that allows E. coli tainted beef to reach consumers. Stephen J. Hedges of The Chicago Tribune reports:
The officials are referring to the little-discussed fact that the Department of Agriculture (USDA) has deemed it acceptable for meat companies to cook and sell meat on which E. coli, a bacteria that can sicken and even kill humans, is found during processing.


The "E. coli loophole" affects millions of pounds of beef each year that test positive for the presence of E. coli O157:H7, a virulent strain of the bacteria.

The agency allows companies to put this E. coli-positive meat in a special category: "cook only." Cooking the meat, the USDA and producers say, destroys the bacteria and makes it safe to eat as precooked hamburgers, meat loaf, crumbled taco meat and other products.

Some USDA inspectors say the "cook-only" practice means higher-than-appropriate levels of E. coli are tolerated in packing plants, raising the chance that clean meat will become contaminated. They say the "cook-only" practice is part of the reason for this year's sudden rise in incidents of E. coli contamination.
Yuck! Good thing I don’t eat red meat. Now, for more reasons to skip on the steak, check out these previous posts:

Dieting and the Emotional Eater

Emotional eating, I’ve been there. I used to pound chocolate cake like nobody’s business! Not anymore of course. Now, according to Dr. Fuhrman breaking the chains of your emotional attachments to food is a major step towards superior health. He explains:
Most overweight individuals are addicted to food. This means almost all Americans are food addicts. Addicted means that you feel ill or uncomfortable should you not continue your usual habits. Unlike tobacco and drug addiction, however, food addiction is socially acceptable.


Most people thrust into an environment with an unlimited supply of calorie-rich, nutrient-poor food will become compulsive overeaters. That is, the craving for food and the preoccupation with eating, and the resultant loss of control over food intake, are the natural consequences of nutrient paucity. The resulting stress on our system can be toxic.

Obviously, there are complicated emotional and psychological factors that make it more difficult for some to achieve success at overcoming food addiction. Additionally, some physical changes may initially discourage you. Stopping caffeine, reducing sodium, and dropping saturated fat from your diet while increasing fiber and nutrients may result in increased gas, headaches, fatigue, and other withdrawal symptoms. These withdrawal symptoms are temporary and rarely last longer than one week. Eventually the high volume of food and high nutrient content will help prevent long-term food cravings.
I got to agree with Dr. Fuhrman on all Americans being foods addicts on some level. Heck, just look at the Atkins crowd, but get a load of this new report. New research has determined that dieting is hardest for emotional eaters. Reuters is on it:
The study included 286 overweight men and women who were participating in a behavioral weight loss program.


A second group consisted of more than 3,300 adults who have lost at least 30 pounds and kept it off for at least one year.

Niemeier and her team analyzed responses to an eating inventory questionnaire.

They focused on people who ate because of external influences, such as people who eat too much at parties, and people who ate because of internal influences, such as feeling lonely or as a reward.

What they found is that the more a person ate for internal reasons, the less weight they lost over time.
Lucky for us being addicted to fruits and veggies isn’t a bad thing!

Achy Joints, Breaky Heart?

A new study claims being diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis ups your risk of developing heart disease. Alan Mozes of HealthDay News reports:
Those screening checks include high blood pressure, high cholesterol, older age, and family history of cardiovascular illness. And people diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) should be screened using those risk factors as soon as possible following their diagnosis of RA, the study authors said.


"The bottom-line is that RA patients are at increased risk of heart disease," said lead researcher Dr. Hilal Maradit Kremers, a research associate with the Mayo Clinic Department of Health Sciences Research in Rochester, Minn.

"But we need to know how can we predict which RA patients are at a higher risk than others, so that we can then put more effort in the prevention of heart disease in these people," she added. "And so, here we attempted to do just that, by using a typical cardiovascular risk profile to predict heart disease among these patients."
Okay then. What if there was a diet that could help treat arthritis, and, reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease. Dr. Fuhrman on rheumatoid arthritis:
Working with patients with autoimmune diseases such as connective tissue diseases, myositis, rheumatoid arthritis, and lupus is very rewarding. These patients had been convinced they could never get well and are usually eternally grateful to be healthy again and not require medication.


An aggressive nutritional approach to autoimmune illnesses should always be tried first when the disease is in its infancy. Logically, the more advanced the disease is, and the more damage that has been done by the disease, the less likely the patient will respond. My experience with inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis is that some patients are more dietary-sensitive than others and that some patients have very high levels of inflammation that are difficult to curtail with natural therapy. Nevertheless, the majority benefit—and since the conventional drugs used to treat these types of illnesses are so toxic and have so many risky side effects, the dietary method should be tried first.
Now, what about heart disease? Is there a diet out there that protects your ticker? I once again turn the microphone over to Dr. Fuhrman. Take a look:
Make no doubt about it: lowering your LDL cholesterol below 100 offers powerful protection against heart disease. The evidence is overwhelming today that heart attacks, which kill half of all Americans, are entirely preventable. Heart disease is a condition that is preventable and reversible through aggressive nutritional intervention and cholesterol-lowering.


The latest recommendation from most medical authorities and medical organizations such as the American College of Cardiology is to lower LDL cholesterol level below 100. This is in accordance with what has been observed for years in epidemiology studies. People in countries who ate a more simple plant-based diet did not have heart attacks and those populations are always found to have much lower cholesterol levels than was thought to be acceptable in the past. For instance, the average total cholesterol in rural China was 127 and the average LDL was below 80. Heart attacks in rural China were exceedingly rare. The same thing was observed in multiple interventional and population studies, such as the Harvard Health Study; those with LDL’s below 100 were not observed to have heart attacks. Medical authorities are now finally in agreement that much lower cholesterol levels are needed to be truly protective.
Pretty cool—right? This type of disease-prevention was one of the major reasons I decided to…to be continued.

Run a 6k, Drink a 6-Pack?

Not sure about this one, but you got to hand it to Diet Blog for finding this stuff like this. Apparently one researcher thinks beer is a better post workout drink than water. I thought dodo birds were extinct? More from Diet Blog:
Professor Manuel Garzon, of Granada University in Spain has decided that beer is better for post-workout hydration than plain water.


The research included 25 students (not a particularly diverse sample group given that many students are seasoned beer drinkers).

The students were asked to run on a treadmill in very hot temperatures. After the exercise half the group were given a pint of beer, while the others received the same volume of water (from The Telegraph).

Professor Garzon concluded that beer had a 'slightly better' hydrating affect than water.
Is it safe to have a runner’s high and a beer-buzz? Now, in case you’re interested. Here are some of Dr. Fuhrman’s thoughts on alcohol. Take a look:
Researchers have found that even moderate consumption of alcohol—including wine—interferes with blood clotting and, thereby, reduces heart attacks in high-risk populations—people who eat the typical, disease-promoting American diet.


Moderate drinking is defined as a maximum of two drinks for men. Consuming more than this is associated with increased fat around the waist1 and other potential problems. For example, alcohol consumption leads to mild withdrawal sensations the next day that are commonly mistaken for hunger, which leads people to eat more than is genuinely necessary, resulting in weight gain.


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Bad Piggy, Bad!

Aetiology explains that pigs might be bringing us a disease worse than anything pork chops ever could. Check it out:
Both Mike and Revere have new posts up documenting swine as a new threat to human health (beyond the pork chops and bacon), via carriage of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus in these animals. Several papers have been published recently documenting high rates of MRSA carriage in swine in the Netherlands, and also have documented transmission of this bacterium from swine to humans. However, even more worrisome to me than the Dutch publications is a new one out in Veterinary Microbiology, showing high rates of MRSA in Canadian swine--and guess where we import about 9 million hogs from every year…


… To sample farmers, the investigators took only nasal swabs (Staph aureus is typically carried in the nose), but another recent paper suggests that the use of nasal swabs combined with throat swabs captures additional carriers (in their study, almost 13% of those who were positive for Staph aureus carried it in the throat alone--so even higher levels of farmers may be colonized than this study detected).
A new reason for me to avoid bacon.

Healthy Living Whacks Cancer Risk

A new study has determined that a healthy diet and physical activity successfully lowers cancer-risk; specifically avoiding red meat and alcohol. More from the Adventist News Network:
After a mega-study of 7,000 previous studies, scientists have offered 10 recommendations for avoiding preventable cancer, including maintaining a healthy weight and limiting consumption of red meat and alcohol.


The report, released by the London-based World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) on October 31, is the largest collection of data ever brought together on the subject, researchers said…

“…This report is a real milestone in the fight against cancer, because its recommendations represent the most definitive advice on preventing cancer that has ever been available anywhere in the world," project director Martin Wiseman said in a media release.

Leaders of the Seventh-day Adventist Church said the international Protestant denomination's emphasis on healthful living and celebration of life is now further backed by evidence.
I’m not a religious guy, but kudos to the Adventists for endorsing this. Dr. Fuhrman is also a big fan of healthy diet and exercise for a cancer-free life. Here are some quotes:
Researchers at the University of Tromsø in Norway report that women who exercise regularly reduce their risk of developing breast cancer substantially. Their study involved more than 25,000 women age twenty to fifty-four at the time of their energy into the study. The researchers found that younger, premenopausal women (under forty-five years old) who exercised regularly had 62 percent less risk than sedentary women. The risk reduction was highest for lean women who exercised more than four hours per week; these women had a 72 percent reduction in risk…


…Studies have repeatedly shown the correlation between consumption of raw vegetables and fresh fruits and a lower incidence of various cancers, including those of the breast, colon, rectum, lung, stomach, prostate, and pancreas.1 This means that your risk of cancer decreases with an increased intake of fruits and vegetables, and the earlier in life you start eating large amounts of these foods, the more protection you get.
So I guess I had a good day today then? Veggies and fruit for breakfast, lunch, and dinner and running, weight-training, and yoga tonight.
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More Body, More Cancer

Dr. Fuhrman sent this over. A recent study showed that as body mass increases, so does cancer risk in women. From the BMJ:
Objective
To examine the relation between body mass index (kg/m2) and cancer incidence and mortality.


Results
45 037 incident cancers and 17 203 deaths from cancer occurred over the follow-up period. Increasing body mass index was associated with an increased incidence of endometrial cancer (trend in relative risk per 10 units=2.89, 95% confidence interval 2.62 to 3.18), adenocarcinoma of the oesophagus (2.38, 1.59 to 3.56), kidney cancer (1.53, 1.27 to 1.84), leukaemia (1.50, 1.23 to 1.83), multiple myeloma (1.31, 1.04 to 1.65), pancreatic cancer (1.24, 1.03 to 1.48), non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (1.17, 1.03 to 1.34), ovarian cancer (1.14, 1.03 to 1.27), all cancers combined (1.12, 1.09 to 1.14), breast cancer in postmenopausal women (1.40, 1.31 to 1.49) and colorectal cancer in premenopausal women (1.61, 1.05 to 2.48). In general, the relation between body mass index and mortality was similar to that for incidence. For colorectal cancer, malignant melanoma, breast cancer, and endometrial cancer, the effect of body mass index on risk differed significantly according to menopausal status.

Conclusions
Increasing body mass index is associated with a significant increase in the risk of cancer for 10 out of 17 specific types examined. Among postmenopausal women in the UK, 5% of all cancers (about 6000 annually) are attributable to being overweight or obese. For endometrial cancer and adenocarcinoma of the oesophagus, body mass index represents a major modifiable risk factor; about half of all cases in postmenopausal women are attributable to overweight or obesity.

Caffeine Buzzed Chi-Town

We’ve talked about it before, but, here’s an important reminder. According to Dr. Fuhrman, caffeine hardly does your body any favors. From his book Eat to Live:
Caffeine addicts are at higher risk of cardiac arrhythmias that could precipitate sudden death.1 Coffee raises blood pressure and raises cholesterol and homocysteine, two risk factors for heart disease.2
I guess people living in Chicago didn’t get the memo because a new survey shows that Chi-Town is the most caffeinated city in the United States. Kristina Cooke of Reuters has more:
Chicagoans eat more chocolate and drink more cola than other U.S. urbanites, and are among the top consumers of energy drinks and coffee.


They are also likely to say caffeine is good for you, according to the poll conducted by Prince Market Research…

"…It's surprising perhaps that some places you may think have a lot of hustle and bustle like San Francisco, Philadelphia and New York, were the least caffeinated cities," said Todd Smith, a spokesman for HealthSaver, a healthcare discount service that commissioned the poll.

The survey looked at consumption of coffee, tea, chocolate, sodas, energy drinks and caffeine pills in 20 major cities in the United States by interviewing 2,000 people.
Maybe they should call it the “Jittery City” instead of the Windy City. Dr. Fuhrman’s colleague Jeff Novick, MS, RD isn’t a fan of caffeine either. Check it out:
In a Finnish study reported in the Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases, Dr. Maarku Heliovaara of the National Public Health Institute in Helsinki and colleagues found that people who drank four or more cups of coffee each day had twice the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis, compared with people who drank less coffee. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease in which the body’s defenses attack its own tissues, resulting in a chronic destruction and deformity of the joints. Smoking, high cholesterol, being overweight, and certain dietary factors also have been linked with a higher risk of the disease.


Too much caffeine also has been shown to raise women’s risk for incontinence. According to a report in the July 2000 issue of Obstetrics and Gynecology, women who drink more than four cups of brewed coffee a day—or consume a lot of caffeine from other sources, such as tea, cola, or cocoa—may be more than twice as likely to suffer incontinence from a weakened bladder muscle as women who consume less caffeine.

A study reported in the February 2002 issue of Diabetes Care, found that moderate consumption of caffeine reduced insulin sensitivity by 15 percent. The researchers also found that caffeine increased catecholamines, plasma-free fatty acids, and both systolic and diastolic blood pressure. The moderate consumption of caffeine caused a fivefold increase in epinephrine. Epinephrine increases the production of glucose in the liver and interferes with the ability of muscle and fat cells to use glucose.
I used to drink a lot of coffee, but I kicked it cold-turkey almost two years ago.
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Atkins...The Worst

Now, I know it’s a dead horse, but, I can’t resist beating it! Sorry horse lovers. We all know that The Atkins Diet and other high-protein low-carb diets are dangerous and based in nutritionally folly, but don’t take my word for it. Here’s Dr. Fuhrman:

As much as I hate to keep talking about the high-saturated-fat, low-antioxidant-nutrient Atkins diet, I am forced to because his diet continues to make front-page news and stays on the tips of everybody’s tongues…


…Any diet high in animal products and low in fiber, fruit, beans, and yellow vegetables is going to shorten life span significantly. If Robert Atkins follows his own dietary advice, he is a perfect example of what you would expect from such unhealthful dietary recommendations. He was overweight and developed heart disease. Do you think he needs to eat more cheese and pork rinds to thin up a bit, as he recommends; or do you think he just might be better off on a diet rich in raw plant foods, beans, steamed greens, carrots, and fresh fruit such as berries and peaches…

…Atkins devotees adopt a dietary pattern completely opposite of what is recommended by the leading research scientists studying the link between diet and cancer.1 Specifically, fruit exclusion alone is a significant cancer marker. Stomach and esophageal cancer are linked to populations that do not consume a sufficient amount of fruit.2 Scientific studies show a clear and strong dose-response relationship between cancers of the digestive tract, bladder, and prostate with low fruit consumption.3 To the surprise of many investigators, fruit consumption shows a powerful dose-response association with a reduction in heart disease, cancer, and all-cause mortality.4

May I interject my own theory? Again, I’m just a layman with an opinion, but, I think I’m onto something. I contend that The Atkins Diet is simply a money-making scheme that exploits people’s emotional attachments to “good ole American” food. Check this post out:

Food Face-Off
What does 200 calories of food look like? Actually, that’s kind of a trick question because it depends on the food. According to Dr. Fuhrman small amounts of some foods like meat and diary are more calorie-dense than larger amounts of fruits and vegetables. Check out the chart in Foods That Make You Thin for more.


Of course, if you prefer pictures, take a look at what’s going on over at WiseGeek. You’ll see that the portion size of 200 calories worth of celery, baby carrots, or broccoli, dwarf what you get from 200 calories of canola oil, uncooked pasta, or cheddar cheese. Gee, I wonder, which foods help you lose weight? Now that’s not a trick question!

WiseGeek: What Does 200 Calories Look Like?

Here's a comment to this post by a known low-carber and Followhealthlife blog troll:

Which of these foods leave you with a deep down to your bones satisfied feeling?

And here's my reply:

For me its the Kiwi, I eat them almost everyday.

“Deep down to your bones satisfied feeling?” What the heck does that have to do with good nutrition? Marijuana gives you that feeling—so they say—so is smoking weed healthy? Hardly! Sounds like an emotional attachment to food to me. Here’s another example:

Meat: Grill, Fry, or Broil it?
...So, will people heed these warnings and cut back on the amount of animal products they eat and be careful not to dangerously cook their food? My guess, probably not, especially with this kind of rhetoric kicking around the blogosphere. Like LivinLaVidaLowCarb’s ringing endorsement of frying meat in butter—sadly, I’m not kidding. Proceed with caution:
I agree with the advice to shun the fried foods specifically because of the breading. But if you want to fry up your meat in a pan full of butter, then knock yourself out. It’s a healthy way to enjoy that succulent protein-loaded food.


While it’s nice to bake, broil, and especially grill meats, don’t fall for the illusion that cooking these ways is any healthier than cooking meat in fat. Avoid the trans fats, of course, but you shouldn’t worry about saturated fats as long as you are livin’ la vida low-carb.
Take a moment to note that butter is also on Dr. Fuhrman’s list of the seven worst foods. Okay, it gets worse. Check out this quote from Carbohydrate Addict, apparently this Atkins dieter thinks grilled-cheese is fabulous—sigh. Here it is:
I think one of the reasons Atkins was so perfect for me was because I was on low fat/low cholesterol for sooooo many years. All of the forbidden foods suddenly became okay to eat without guilt and my cholesterol is finally FABULOUS. I'm still on a high when I eat them! Egg salad, bacon, chicken wings, mac and cheese, grilled cheese.... YUM!
Yum? For bacon and egg salad? Whoa! What a world we live in...

What a great scam/money-maker? Tell people that what they’ve been told is wrong—despite the wealth of information proving otherwise—then convince them that is okay to eat all those harmful foods they love; bacon, red meat, butter, etc. More from Dr. Fuhrman:

It is an interesting phenomenon to me low-carb dieters search to find small pearls of dissent in the scientific literature to support their views as they ignore thousands of well-performed studies, I wonder why they are so attached to their diets or views that they can’t accept the preponderance of evidence and modify their stance…


…To make matters even worse, you pay an extra penalty from a diet so high in fat and protein to generate a chronic ketosis. Besides the increased cancer risk, your kidneys are placed under greater stress and will age more rapidly. It can take many, many years for such damage to be detected by blood tests. By the time the blood reflects the abnormality, irreversible damage may have already occurred. Blood tests that monitor kidney function typically do not begin to detect problems until more than 90 percent of the kidneys have been destroyed…

...Americans already eat approximately 40 percent of their calories from animal products; we have seen a tragic skyrocketing in cancer and heart-disease rates in the past fifty years as a result of such nutritional extravagance.5 You can lose some weight on the Atkins Diet, but you run the risk of losing your health at the same time.

I guess the allure of bacon is just too much for some people—and that my friends is a serious emotional attachment to food! Honestly, is a food-crush really worth it? Especially in light of this news, Reuters reports, “High-fat Atkins diet damages blood vessels.” Here’s a bit:

The high-fat Atkins diet can cause long-term damage to blood vessels, as well as some of the inflammation linked with heart and artery disease, U.S. researchers reported on Tuesday.


In contrast, low-fat regimens such as the South Beach and Ornish diets lowered cholesterol and appeared to benefit artery function, they said.

"It really is the Atkins diet that is the worst," Dr. Michael Miller, director of preventive cardiology at the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore, said in a telephone interview.

"The Atkins diet caused the LDL levels to go up by about 7 percent, whereas in the Ornish and South Beach diets ... they went down 7 to 10 percent."

Low density lipoprotein or LDL is the "bad" cholesterol that clogs blood vessels.

Hungry for an expert opinion on this study, I tapped Linda Popescu one of the Registered Dieticians that works in Dr. Fuhrman’s office. Linda is no fan of The Atkins Diet either, and, she makes it pretty obvious here. Take a look:

“The high fat Atkins diet is dangerous and should not be recommended.” This is news? Eat to Live, which was published 5 years ago, devoted a whole chapter to the negative consequences of following The Atkins Diet. For years, well researched studies have show that this type of meat-based, high protein, fiberless diet can lead to heart disease and cancer. Even basic common sense should tell you eating this way is not good for your health. It’s good to see that this diet has finally run its course. As the article states “Why not start out with a diet that will be healthier for you in the long run after weight loss”?

So then, what is the best diet for disease-prevention, healthy bodyweight, and longevity? This should be a no-brainer! Dr. Fuhrman’s vegetable-based nutrient-dense Eat to Live diet-style tops them all. More from Dr. Fuhrman:

Green vegetables are so incredibly low in calories and rich in nutrients and fiber that the more you eat of them, the more weight you will lose. One of my secrets of nutritional excellence and superior healing is the one pound-one pound rule. That is, try to eat at least one pound of raw green vegetables a day and one pound of cooked/steamed or frozen green vegetables a day as well. One pound raw and one pound cooked--keep this goal in mind as you design and eat every meal. This may be too ambitious a goal for some of us to reach, but by working toward it, you will ensure the dietary balance and results you want. The more greens you eat, the more weight you will lose. The high volume of greens not only will be your secret to a thin waistline but will simultaneously protect you against life threatening illnesses…


…The biggest animals--elephants, gorillas, rhinoceroses, hippopotamuses, and giraffes--all eat predominantly green vegetation. How did they get the protein to get so big? Obviously, greens pack a powerful protein punch, in fact, all protein on the planet was formed from the effect of sunlight on green plants. The cow didn't eat another cow to form the protein in its muscles, which we call steak. The protein wasn't formed out of thin air--the cow ate grass. Not that protein is such a big deal or some special nutrient to be held in high esteem. I am making this point because most people think animal products are necessary for a diet to include adequate protein. I am merely illustrating how easy it is to consume more than enough protein while at the same time avoiding risky, cancer-promoting substances such as saturated fat.

I don’t know about you, but, the choice is pretty clear to me. Oh! And for more information on the dangers of Atkins-type diets check out Followhealthlife’s diet myths category, or, visit our friends over at AtkinsExposed.org.

*FOLLOW UP POST: The Worst...and That's Atkins!

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High-Fat and the Body Clock

New research suggests that a high-fat diet can muck up your body’s 24-hour clock. Robert Preidt of HealthDay News spills the beans:
There's more bad news about a high-fat diet -- it disrupts the body's 24-hour internal (circadian) clock, which regulates sleeping, waking, eating, as well as the daily rhythms of many metabolic functions, U.S. researchers say.


A team from Northwestern University and Evanston Northwestern Healthcare (ENH) found that mice fed a high-fat diet gained weight and showed a sudden disruption in their circadian clock, eating extra calories when they should have been sleeping or resting.

The team also found that a high-fat diet caused changes in genes that encode the circadian clock in the brain and in peripheral tissues (such as fat), resulting in reduced expression of these genes.
Another reason to ditch that nasty cheeseburger!

Zinc vs. a Cold

Anahad O’Connor of The New York Times investigates the claim that taking zinc can help you beat the common cold. Have a look:
One of the most extensive studies appeared in the journal Clinical and Infectious Diseases in 2000. In it, scientists randomly assigned more than 500 people — about half with natural colds, and the other half deliberately infected — to receive placebo or zinc lozenges in various doses. After secluding the subjects in hotel rooms and examining them for five days, the researchers concluded that zinc gluconate lozenges produced “modest” benefit, while zinc acetate lozenges did nothing.


Another study, published this year by researchers at Stanford Medical School, collected and analyzed data from 14 previous placebo-controlled studies of zinc. Over all, the scientists determined, the effectiveness of zinc lozenges “has yet to be established,” while there was some slight evidence for zinc nasal gels.
For advice on how to prevent the sniffles, check out Followhealthlife’s Cold and Flu category.

Bacon Beat Down

Bacon is a rough mission. And yet, millions of people gorge themselves on processed meats like bacon everyday. Hopefully this news changes their minds. A new report claims no amount of processed meat should considered completely safe. Nanci Hellmich of USA Today is on it:
And forget eating bacon, sausage and lunchmeat. No amount is considered completely safe, according to the analysis from the American Institute for Cancer Research and the World Cancer Research Fund…


…"This was a much larger impact than even the researchers expected," says Karen Collins, a cancer institute nutrition adviser. "People forget body fat is not an inert glob that we are carrying around on the waistline and thighs. It's a metabolically active tissue that produces substances in the body that promote the development of cancer…"

…The evidence linking red meat intake (beef, pork and lamb) to colorectal cancer is more convincing than it was a decade ago, the report says. It advises limiting red meat to 18 ounces of cooked meat a week. The cancer risk is minimal for people who eat that amount, but beyond that the risk increases, Collins says.
Wait. Too much fat and animal protein ups one’s cancer risk? No! You don’t say. We talked about this last week, but back by popular demand—and apparent need—here are Dr. Fuhrman’s thoughts on animal protein and cancer-risk. Take a look:
Study after study has shown that as protein consumption goes up, so does the incidence of chronic diseases. Similar studies show that the incidence of chronic diseases also goes up when carbohydrate and fat consumption go up. This is because if the consumption of any of the macronutrients exceeds our basic requirements, the excess hurts us. Americans already get too much protein (and fat and carbohydrates), and this is reflected in soaring increases in the diseases of excess—heart disease, high-blood pressure, diabetes, cancer, arthritis, and numerous others.
Now, too much animal protein doesn’t do your heart any favors either. Here’s Dr. Fuhrman talking about its affects on cholesterol and heart disease-risk. Check it out:
There is a relationship between animal protein and heart disease. For example, plasma apolioprotein B is positively associated with animal-protein intake and inversely associated (lowered) with vegetable-protein intake (e.g., legumes and greens). Apolioprotein B levels correlate strongly with coronary heart disease.1 Unknown to many is that animal proteins have a significant effect on raising cholesterol levels as well, while plant protein lowers it.2


Scientific studies provide evidence that many animal protein’s effect on blood cholesterol may be significant. This is one of the reasons those switching to a low fat-diet do no experience the cholesterol lowering they expect unless they also remove the low-fat animal products as well. Surprising to most people is that yes, even low-fat dairy and skinless white-meat chicken raise cholesterol. I see this regularly in my practice. Many individuals do not see the dramatic drop in cholesterol levels unless they go all the way by cutting all animal proteins from their diet.
Honestly, at this point in my life. The very thought of eating a piece of greasy bacon or sausage makes me want to hurl. I’m so glad I decided to change my life and…to be continued.

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Kids: Less Sleep, More Fat

Oh! If only I had this study growing up. Maybe my mom would have let me sleep in. New research has determined that lack of sleep may increases children’s risk of becoming obese. More from Carla K. Johnson of the Associated Press:
The less sleep they got, the more likely the children were to be obese in sixth grade, no matter what the child's weight was in third grade, said Dr. Julie Lumeng of the University of Michigan, who led the research.


If there was a magic number for the third-graders, it was nine hours, 45 minutes of sleep. Sleeping more than that lowered the risk significantly.

The study gives parents one more reason to enforce bedtimes, restrict caffeine and yank the TV from the bedroom. The study appears in the November issue of the journal Pediatrics
You need your Z’s, that’s for sure! Personally, if I don’t get enough rest I become a raging beast of destruction. Maybe this is why. Here’s Dr. Fuhrman on sleep. Take a look:
Recuperation through sleep is responsible for rebuilding and preparing the body to handle the increasing demands. Rest and sleep enable the body to recover from the effects of these waking stresses, because the body can concentrate its repair efforts most effectively at this time when fewer demands are placed upon it…

…Adequate sleep is a necessary component of good health. Our modern society stays up late into the night and wakes in the morning to an alarm clock—long before sleep requirements have been fulfilled.

Cellular Phones and Brain Tumors

Dr. Fuhrman sent this over the other day. This study claims cellular phones increase brain tumor risk. From the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine:
Aim: To evaluate brain tumour risk among long-term users of cellular telephones.


Methods: Two cohort studies and 16 case–control studies on this topic were identified. Data were scrutinised for use of mobile phone for >=10 years and ipsilateral exposure if presented.

Results: The cohort study was of limited value due to methodological shortcomings in the study. Of the 16 case–control studies, 11 gave results for >=10 years’ use or latency period. Most of these results were based on low numbers. An association with acoustic neuroma was found in four studies in the group with at least 10 years’ use of a mobile phone. No risk was found in one study, but the tumour size was significantly larger among users. Six studies gave results for malignant brain tumours in that latency group. All gave increased odd ratios (OR), especially for ipsilateral exposure. In a meta-analysis, ipsilateral cell phone use for acoustic neuroma was OR = 2.4 (95% CI 1.1 to 5.3) and OR = 2.0, (1.2 to 3.4) for glioma using a tumour latency period of >=10 years.

Conclusions: Results from present studies on use of mobile phones for >=10 years give a consistent pattern of increased risk for acoustic neuroma and glioma. The risk is highest for ipsilateral exposure.
That’s why I text!

Honey, They've Medicated the Kids

“Soon almost all kids will be on medications for something,” said Dr. Fuhrman when I asked him to comment on a report suggesting bipolar disorder may be over-diagnosed in youths. Kind of foreboding, when you read this article by Melissa Healy of The Los Angeles Times, “Are we too quick to medicate children?” Here’s a bit:
In 2005, the latest year for which statistics are available, at least 2.2 million American children over the age of 4 were being treated for serious difficulties with emotion, concentration, behavior or ability to get along with others. It's a figure mental-health professionals say has exploded in the last decade and a half, along with sales of a wide range of psychiatric medications for use by children.


A welter of studies has shown that kids are being diagnosed at younger ages, with a wider range of disorders and with more severe disorders than ever before. And in growing numbers, they are being medicated with drugs whose safety, effectiveness and long-range effects on children have not been demonstrated by extensive research.

A study published in September found that the diagnosis among children of bipolar disorder, a mental illness long thought not to exist in kids, grew 40-fold over the last decade. The prescribing to kids of antipsychotic drugs typically used to treat the symptoms of bipolar illness have soared as well, despite continuing concerns over side effects such as weight gain, metabolic changes that can lead to diabetes, and tremors.

Psychiatrists admit they haven't drawn clear lines between problem behaviors and mental illness, especially in kids, and they are debating future fixes. But until those fixes are made, parents -- with their kids' futures on the line -- are left with little to guide them when a child is tagged with a psychiatric label.
Who am I to say when kids—or any person for that matter—should be given the assistance of psychotropic medications, but at the very least, before we start prescribing kids pills willy-nilly, shouldn’t safer options be tried first. Consider this excerpt from Dr. Fuhrman’s book Disease-Proof Your Child concerning children and ADHD. Take a look:
What has been shown to be highly effective in some recent studies is high-nutrient eating, removal of processed foods, and supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids.1 The difference between my approach and others is that it changes a poor diet into an excellent one, supplying an adequate amount of thousands of important nutrients that work synergistically as well as removing those noxious substances such as chemical additives, trans fat, saturated fats, and empty-calorie food that place a nutritional stress on our brain cells. I believe this comprehensive approach is more effective; the scientific literature suggests this, and I have observed this in my practice with hundreds of ADHD children who have see me as patients.
Eh, I guess its just easier to prescribe some pills and get back to shopping at the mall.

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Women: Artery Disease Rising

It seems more women are developing a type of artery disease. Will Dunham of Reuters reports:
Researchers used U.S. government health surveys to track rates of peripheral artery disease, known as PAD, in people age 40 and up with no outward symptoms of cardiovascular illness. PAD is a circulatory condition in which narrowed arteries cut blood flow to the limbs.


Rates among women rose from 4.1 percent in a nationally representative 1999-2000 survey to 6.3 percent in a 2003-2004 survey. Among men, the rates fell from 3.3 percent to 2.8 percent during the same period, the researchers said.

"In those women with PAD, the increasing prevalence was associated with an increase in the prevalence of obesity," Dr. Andrew Sumner, medical director of the Heart Station and Cardiac Prevention at Lehigh Valley Hospital in Allentown, Pennsylvania, who led the study, said in an interview.

Cancer: More Fat, More Risk

Here’s another report on fat and cancer. The AFP reports obese people face an increased cancer risk. Take a look:
The World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) report, based on analysis of some 7,000 cancer studies from around the world, said there was "convincing" evidence that excess fat can cause breast, bowel and pancreatic cancer.


"We are recommending that people aim to be as lean as possible within the healthy range, and that they avoid weight gain throughout adulthood," said Professor Michael Marmot, who chaired the panel which drew up the report.

"This might sound difficult but this is what the science is telling us more clearly than ever before. The fact is that putting on weight can increase your cancer risk, even if you are still within the healthy range.
For more on cancer, check out Followhealthlife’s cancer category.

Cut Fat, Lower Cancer Risk

Seems like pretty sane advice—right? Okay, before we get into this report. Here’s some info from Dr. Fuhrman. It’ll help refresh your memory about cancer-risk and fat consumption. Take a look:
Study after study has shown that as protein consumption goes up, so does the incidence of chronic diseases. Similar studies show that the incidence of chronic diseases also goes up when carbohydrate and fat consumption go up. This is because if the consumption of any of the macronutrients exceeds our basic requirements, the excess hurts us. Americans already get too much protein (and fat and carbohydrates), and this is reflected in soaring increases in the diseases of excess—heart disease, high-blood pressure, diabetes, cancer, arthritis, and numerous others…


…Protein, fat, and carbohydrate are macronutrients. In fact, they are the only macronutrients that exist. Macronutrients are the nutrients that contain calories; calories supply us with energy. Vitamins, minerals, and fiber are a few of the many micronutrients. Micronutrients do not contain calories; they have other essential roles to play. When it comes to designing a healthful, weight loss diet, micronutrients should be the focus of your attention, not macronutrients.
Alright, now check out this article in The New York Times. A new study has determined that a low-diet may lower the risk of ovarian cancer. Nicholas Bakalar is on it:
Researchers randomly assigned 19,541 women to a low-fat regimen reinforced with behavioral modification that included 18 group sessions in the first year and quarterly maintenance sessions after that, along with careful recording of food intake…


…For the first four years, there was no difference in cancer rates. But for the next 4.1 years, women on the low-fat diet had a 40 percent reduced risk for ovarian cancer. Although that is a substantial percentage difference, the absolute risk for ovarian cancer is not great. Over the eight years of the study, 57 women in the diet group and 103 in the comparison group got ovarian cancer.
Now, you don’t have to be a nutritionist to know that too much fat and animal products in your diet is a bad idea. Let’s check back with Dr. Fuhrman on this. Here’s more:
There is a relationship between animal protein and heart disease. For example, plasma apolioprotein B is positively associated with animal-protein intake and inversely associated (lowered) with vegetable-protein intake (e.g., legumes and greens). Apolioprotein B levels correlate strongly with coronary heart disease.1 Unknown to many is that animal proteins have a significant effect on raising cholesterol levels as well, while plant protein lowers it.2


Scientific studies provide evidence that many animal protein’s effect on blood cholesterol may be significant. This is one of the reasons those switching to a low fat-diet do no experience the cholesterol lowering they expect unless they also remove the low-fat animal products as well. Surprising to most people is that yes, even low-fat dairy and skinless white-meat chicken raise cholesterol. I see this regularly in my practice. Many individuals do not see the dramatic drop in cholesterol levels unless they go all the way by cutting all animal proteins from their diet.
Okay-okay, back to The New York Times report, I wanted to get a comment from Dr. Fuhrman on it and here’s what he had to say:
Interesting that the group with 40 percent lower risk of ovarian cancer only improved their fruit and vegetable intake by one serving a day. So they were still on a very poor diet and still saw that reduction from the diet that was even worse. Imagine the protection against cancer they’d receive if they all adopted a vegetable-based nutrient-dense diet!
Not sure what Dr. Fuhrman’s talking about? It’s true! Fruits and veggies offer excellent protection against cancer. This should help explain it. More from Dr. Fuhrman:
Green vegetables have demonstrated the most dramatic protection against cancer. Cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, kale, bok choy, collards, arugala, watercress, and cabbage) contain a symphony of phytonutrients with potent anti-cancer effects…


…Studies have repeatedly shown the correlation between consumption of raw vegetables and fresh fruits and a lower incidence of various cancers, including those of the breast, colon, rectum, lung, stomach, prostate, and pancreas.3 This means that your risk of cancer decreases with an increased intake of fruits and vegetables, and the earlier in life you start eating large amounts of these foods, the more protection you get…

…A recent study of 61,000 women found that those who consumed more than 2 glasses of milk per day had twice the risk of serous ovarian cancer than women who consumed fewer than two glasses. The risk of those who drank two glasses a day was double that of women who rarely drank milk.4 Lactose in milk seemed to be the primary culprit. Again this larger study confirms earlier studies with the same findings.
Kind of lays it on the line—don’t you think?
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