Need motivation to eat less meat and more plants? . . . part 9 of 12

Some stats on hormones and  antibiotics in our meat supply, and Mad Cow disease:

U.S. beef cattle that receive hormone implants: 90% (100% in larger feedlots)

 

Independent European Union scientists’ report on the effect of hormones added to U.S. beef: they are “complete carcinogens” (able to cause and promote cancer by themselves) (hormone 17 beta-oestradiol)

 

Antibiotics administered to people in the U.S. for treating disease: 3 million pounds

 

Antibiotics administered to livestock in the U.S. annually for purposes other than treating disease: 24.6 million pounds

 

Antibiotics administered to livestock in Demark annually for purposes other than treating disease: zero

 

Adverse health effects as a result of Denmark’s elimination of antibiotic use for purposes other than treating disease: none

 

Prevalance of antibiotic-resistant bacteria in chickens in Denmark prior to ban on routine use of antibiotics: 82 percent

 

Prevalance three years after the ban: 12 percent

 

CJD or Mad Cow Disease: caused by feeding cows their own meat and bones

 

Still legal and widespread in the U.S.: feeding pigs and chickens their own bones, brains, meat scraps, feathers, and feces

 

Finding of Yale study examining brains of Alzheimers brains post-mortem: 13 percent of them actually had CJD or Mad Cow disease

 

How many Americans currently are diagnosed with Alzheimer’s: 4 million

Tell me: Why risk it?

Need motivation to eat less meat and more plants? . . . part 8 of 12

Today stats about where foodborne bacteria E. coli, campylobacter, and salmonella come from, and irradiation consequences.   And which foods you should be most concerned about.   (Each of these stats/quotes has a corresponding source in Robbins’ The Food Revolution.)

 

The deadly E. coli 0157:H7 bacteria has occasionally been found in sprouts and raw apple juice.   The vast majority of E. coli has been found in: GROUND BEEF

 

Tom Billy, administrator of USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service, estimates how many cases of beef contain E. coli: 50 percent of U.S. cattle carcasses

 

Reuters News Service quote: “A report by the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture estimates that 89 percent of U.S. beef ground into patties contains traces of the deadly E. coli strain.”

 

Leading cause of kidney failures in U.S./Canadian children: Hemolytic Uremic Syndrome, 85 percent of cases caused by E. coli

 

Estimate of how many E. coli cases are actually reported: 2% (William Keene, epidemiologist)

 

Salmonella has been caused by tomatoes, mustard cress, bean sprouts, cantaloupe and watermelon.   Far more cases have been caused by: EGGS AND ANIMAL PRODUCTS

 

Americans sickened by Salmonella-tainted eggs in the U.S., annually: 650,000+

 

Americans killed by eating Salmonella-tainted eggs in the U.S., annually: 600

 

Salmonella cases in U.S. versus Sweden: 1 in 200, compared to 1 in 10,000 (you’ll know why later in a blog about the way animals are raised/processed)

 

Campylobacter is occasionally detected on vegetables.   It’s widespread in: CHICKENS

 

American turkeys sufficiently contaminated with Campylobacter to cause illness: 90 percent (side note: if you don’t get sick, thank your immune system, which incidentally is nourished with antioxidant-rich plant foods)

 

Number of hens screened for Campylobacter by Univ. of Wisconsin researchers: 2,300

Number that were NOT infected with Campylobacter: 8

 

Cause of Milwaukee’s cryptosporidium outbreak in ’93 that sickened 400,000 and killed over 100: dairy manure

 

Campylobacter kills more Americans every year than E. coli and is increasing more rapidly, according to CDC numbers.   The poultry industry does not dispute that most chicken sold in the U.S. is contaminated.

 

Quote by former USDA microbiologist Gerald Kuester of today’s processed chicken: “(The) final product is no different than if you stuck it in the toilet and ate it.”

 

Evidence of that: Univ. of Arizona found higher levels of coliform bacteria in the American kitchen than on the toilet rim because of “a bonus on the animal foods people bring into their kitchens.   The bathroom is cleaner because people are not washing their chickens in the toilet” (Nicols Fox, foodborne disease authority).

 

Listeria has been found on cabbage grown in fields fertilized with listeria-infected animals.   Far more often it’s found in: SOFT CHEESES AND PROCESSED MEATS

 

The U.S. government’s answer to microbial contamination: irradiation (no long-term studies have been done)

 

Consequences of irradiation: Vita A, B-1, C, K, and E are destroyed, and new and potentially carcinogenic chemical compounds are  created (also mutant bacteria and viruses are a possibility)

Need motivation to eat less meat and more plants? . . . part 7 of 12

Today, good stats about the fact that Americans need EDUCATING on the subject of a plant-based, whole-foods diet. (You know GSG.com has an agenda to get YOU to help spread the word–and many of you already do so, brilliantly.)

 

98 percent of the wheat eaten in the U.S. is eaten as white flour.   Only 2 percent is eaten as whole wheat flour!   In traditional diets, 75-80 percent of total dietary energy comes from whole grains.

 

U.S. children who eat the recommended levels of fruits, vegs, and grains: 1 percent

 

American who are aware that eating less meat reduces colon cancer risk: 2 percent

 

American men who are aware of a link between animal products and prostate cancer: 2 percent

Tell me: How can YOU help, you being much more educated about nutrition than, well, basically almost everybody?

Need motivation to eat less meat and more plants? . . . part 6 of 12

Are plant sources of protein sufficient?   Today, good stats about the need for protein:

 

Protein in human mother’s breast milk: 5 percent of calories

 

Minimum protein requirement according to the World Health Organization: 5 percent of calories

 

U.S. Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for adult protein intake: 10 percent of calories

 

Percent of calories from protein in broccoli and spinach: more than 40 percent

 

Percent of calories from protein advocated for by Dr. Atkins, Dr. Sears (The Zone), etc.: 30 percent or more

 

Organizations that have condemned high-protein, low-carb diets: World Health Organization, American Heart Association, American Cancer Society, American Dietetic Association, Surgeon General of the U.S., and American Institute for Cancer Research.

 

Two Barry Sears’ (The Zone Diet) quotes: “Humankind has been genetically unable to cope with . . . grains.”   Also, “About one-third of Americans are . . . suffering from protein malnutrition.”

 

Most of the human race for thousands of years has relied on, for most of its caloric energy: grains

 

Position paper quote from the American Dietetic Association:   “Plant sources of protein alone can provide adequate amounts of the essential and nonessential amino acids.   Conscious combining of these foods within a given meal as the complementary protein dictum suggests is unnecessary.”

 

Tell me: Have you given up the idea of needing to pack in more protein to your diet every day?   Or are you still clinging to some of that brainwashing you’ve received over many years?   Try it out.   Switch to plant sources of protein (or just quit worrying about protein altogether) and see what happens.   Give it some time, because  detox symptoms of going off meat/dairy are likely.

Need motivation to eat less meat and more plants? . . . part 5 of 12

Today, some good stats about eating a vegetarian diet:

 

According to Journal of the American Dietetic Association (this research was published in other journals as well), the average IQ of U.S. children is 99, and the average IQ of vegetarian US children is 116.

 

Obesity rate among the general population: 18 percent

 

Obesity rate among vegans: 2 percent

 

U.S. children who are overweight: 25 percent

 

U.S. vegetarian children who are overweight: 8 percent

 

U.S. children who eat the recommended levels of fuits, vegs, and grains: 1 percent

 

U.S. vegan children who eat the recommended levels of fruits, vegs, and grains: 50 percent

 

Average blood pressure of non-vegetarians: 121/77

 

Average blood pressure of people who eat a vegetarian diet: 112/69 (ideal is considered to be 110/70)

 

Incidence of high blood pressure in meat eaters compared to vegetarians: almost triple

 

Incidence of very high blood pressure in meat eaters compared to vegetarians: 13 times higher

 

Incidence of high blood pressure among senior citizens in the U.S.: more than 50 percent

 

Incidence of high blood pressure among senior citizens in countries eating  plant-based diets: virtually none

 

Average U.S. cholesterol level: 210

 

Average U.S. vegetarian cholesterol level: 161

 

Average U.S. vegan cholesterol level: 133

Number of times the huge Framingham study (35 years) had a study participant have a heart attack with cholesterol under 150:   zero

 

Tell me:  Are you reaping health benefits from adopting a more vegetarian diet?   Or do you still have the idea in your head that not eating meat/dairy means you’re going to be sickly and underweight?

Need motivation to eat less meat and more plants? . . . part 2 of 12

Today, great stats on whether dairy products contribute to health:

 

Asians have little or no osteoporosis.   They also (until recently) have been nonconsumers of dairy products.   (Besides eating much less meat and almost no dairy products, they also drink few sodas, get lots of exercise, and eat more vegetables.)

 

The huge nurses’ study (75,000 subjects) by Harvard School of Public Health found that women with the highest dairy consumption had substantially more bone fractures than women who drank less milk.

 

The highest dairy-consuming countries are Finland, Sweden, the U.S., and England.   The countries with the highest rates of osteoporosis are Finland, Sweden, the U.S., and England.

 

Black South Africans consume 1/10th the amount of calcium that African Americans do.   But African Americans have 9 times as many hip fractures!   (Our obsession with eating massive amounts of calcium is unwarranted.   We just need to eat bioavailable sources of calcium.   These foods high in calcium include greens, nuts, grains, etc.)

Researchers studying diet and hip fractures in 33 countries found this “absolutely phenomenal correlation”:   the more plant foods people eat (primarily fruits and vegs), the stronger their bones, and the fewer fractures they experience.   The more animal foods people eat, on the other hand, the weaker their bones and the more broken bones they experience.

“the plural of anecdote is not data” . . . part 4 of 4

Third, is the study reliable?   This is the second basic research standard, and it means is the research repeatable with consistent results? Reliability is one of the best things about Colin Campbell’s The China Study, the largest nutrition study in history, which will be referenced throughout this book.   Dr. Campbell’s animal research showing the benefits of a low-animal-protein diet were duplicated by other researchers, using various animals, all over the world.   The results were very consistent.

 

Finally, have a basic understanding of and consider carefully a few other things before placing much stock in what you read.   Is the study longitudinal (covering a long period of time)?   If none of 500 subjects got cancer in three years, that’s much less compelling than if none of them got cancer in 30 years, like in the Framingham study, the Harvard Nurses’ study,  or the Oxford-Cornell (China Study) Project.

 

Was the study double-blinded, which means that neither the researcher nor the subject knew which of multiple therapies the person was receiving?   Was it placebo-controlled, meaning that some subjects received a placebo (sugar tablet) instead of the supplement or drug?   Was the research published in peer-reviewed journals (often but not always ensuring more scientific analysis)?   How big was the sample size?   Bigger is better, and although case studies (with only a few subjects) are interesting, without further research, you shouldn’t bet the farm on findings of those kinds.

The more you read and study, the more confidence you can have that the very important decisions you make about how to fuel your body are sound.   12 Steps to Whole Foods undertakes to synthesize the research and best practices from around the world, leading to dietary practice that is simple and achievable and customizable for your personal dietary needs–a direct route to optimal health.

“the plural of anecdote is not data” . . . part 3 of 4

This is an excerpt from the intro of 12 Steps to Whole Foods.

 

Advances in the field of nutrition are taking place faster than ever in history.   For example, just this decade, the “master hormone” leptin has been discovered, which governs the other hormones.   New data calls into question the popular counsel of the past decade to eat 4-6 small meals daily: leptin research suggests that we should eat three meals daily and allow our bodies much rest from digestion.   In just 2004, a class of glyconutrients (sugars) have been found to have powerful healing properties, which disputes a decade of anti-carb “experts.”   Many people become frustrated by all the new information and competing voices telling us what to eat, what not to eat, and why.   So that you don’t give up and “throw the baby out with the bathwater,” I have a bit of common-sense advice that super-simplifies the essence of a statistics class.

 

The main way to push through the inevitable cognitive dissonance is to read and learn all you can:  12 Steps to Whole Foods  is a good start, and you may also consider the reading list on www.greensmoothiegirl.com (I am adding to it shortly). When you encounter contradictions, consider several things.

 

First, what is the funding behind the research?   You don’t have to become paranoid to examine whether research was undertaken to objectively examine an issue, or to promote an agenda.   It’s simply a part of being a savvy consumer of information in an age when we are all bombarded with thousands of voices.

 

For instance, if a study tells you that drinking wine daily prevents heart disease, use your critical thinking skills.   Why did researchers study wine instead of grape juice–or better yet, grapes?   Before you go out and stock up on a year’s supply of wine, ascertain if you can who paid for the study.   Was it the wine growers of Sonoma Valley?   Often studies in the modern age are funded, second-level, by an industry wanting to promote a product (often one that is under fire), even if the legitimate-sounding researchers named in the media, such as a university, are not directly linked to a motive.   When that is the case, researchers know they are to publish whatever they can that is favorable to a product or industry, and publish nothing they find that is unfavorable.

 

Second, is the study valid?   This is the highest standard in statistics and research, and it means does the study measure what it purports to measure?   This seems simple enough, but it is in fact a difficult thing for researchers to achieve.   If wine drinkers have much less cancer than beer drinkers, wine must be preventing cancer, right?   Not necessarily.   Maybe wine drinkers are a higher socioeconomic class than beer drinkers, in the aggregate, and beer drinkers also eat more fast food and smoke at higher rates.

 

Third, in tomorrow’s post.

Is the China Study bogus?

Dear GreenSmoothieGirl: The Oxford-Cornell China Project is irrelevant to us, because Campbell studied rats and mice, and then Chinese people.   Not Americans.

Answer:   I’m not going to comment much on the notion that Chinese and American people aren’t alike enough to compare.   Either we all descended from apes, or we were all created from Adam’s rib, whichever belief you subscribe to, and we have the same essential biology, body systems, and health challenges.   That’s like saying that if Big Macs aren’t good for women, they still might be good for men.   Or that if Kool-Aid is toxic for children, it still might be good food for adults.

As for the animal studies that Campbell’s team conducted (which were duplicated by researchers around the world with consistent results), even they have profound implications for humans for four reasons.

First, humans and rats have virtually identical needs for protein.   Second, protein operates in humans the same way it does in rats.   Third, the percentage of protein consumption (20%) consumed by rats in the studies is the level of consumption in the typical American diet.   And fourth, in both humans and rats, the stage where cancer is initiated is far less important that the stage where cancer is promoted.   We all are exposed to carcinogens, but whether we end up with life-threatening cancerous tumors depends on whether or not those cancer cells are “promoted” with excesses of animal proteins.