Coming clash of titans over the healthiest diet: Global sugar vs Global life insurance

By Jerome Burne

On Monday I watched the C4 documentary ‘Food Unwrapped: Diet special’ because I’d been alerted to the fact that it featured Dr David Unwin and his success with the low carb diet as a way of treating diabetics.

I understood that the C4 team had spent a long time at his surgery in Southport and talked to a number of the people involved, so there was the hope, foolish as it turned out, that it might be a thoughtful and useful program. The intention of the production team, however, was for something else entirely. Words like thoughtful, informative or challenging, were nowhere on their story board.

What they created instead, with a remarkably generous budget, was a product packed with byte sized chunks of information that slid in one eye and out the other without troubling anything in between.  Odd facts were at a premium such as one from Dr Unwin that a serving of supposedly healthy cereal can contain the equivalent of 19 teaspoons of sugar or the revelation that ram testicles are a popular breakfast item in Iceland.

No fact was more or less important than another and none was explored any further. To be ponderously serious for a moment – not something the cheeky-chappie, hyperkinetic presenters would have dreamt of as they switched between Iceland, Netherlands and Bondi beach faster than a costume change on the catwalk – telling people with diabetes that it’s OK to pack in 19 teaspoons of sugar equivalent at breakfast is not just mildly interesting; actually it is – culpable? dangerously irresponsible?  a serious failure of the dietetic profession? Take your pick.

A program that’s part of the problem

Even with the entire population prostrate after the massive Christmas sugar/carb binge this was not a place this candyfloss vehicle was remotely interested in going. In fact it soon became clear that the program was simply adding to the confusion about diet that fuels the diabesity epidemic rather than being part of any solution.

Since it assumed viewers had an attention span with a 60-second half life the snippets of dietary information it flashed up were as nourishing as rendered meat. Any viewers who weren’t diet geeks could only conclude that so many people ate so many odd and different things that their own diets were probably OK too.  A conclusion guarenteed to keep people eating and behaving in ways that ensure the diabesity stats, and all the expense and misery that accompany them, keep rising.

So just how spectacularly did the program miss the boat? For a start it went out on the same day that The Case Against Sugar by Gary Taubes was published. In essence it claims that sugar is not just another carbohydrate but that the body handles it differently from other carbohydrates  so that it is especially likely to encourage a condition known as insulin resistance.

This in turn is strongly associated with not just obesity and diabetes but also cancer and quite possibly Alzheimer’s For an edited extract of the book see the Daily Mail.

It’s not the final word but it makes it very obvious that the appropriate response to being told that a’ healthy’  breakfast for diabetics and the overweight could contain 19 tablespoons of sugar is not to treat it as just  one more “well who’d have thought it” fun fact.

Why low fat is not the way to lose weight

Taubes is also relevant to the diet that Dr Unwin is recommending – a low carbohydrate high fat diet (LCHF) –  because he wrote a ground-breaking and serious critique of the idea that a low fat diet is the way to lose weight and protect the heart back in 2008 – The Diet Delusion.

His book was followed in 2014 by another rigorously researched dissection of the claim that fat is a factor in obesity – Big Fat Surprise – by another American science journalist Nina Teicholz. Along with many others, including several hundred thousand diabetics, who are reporting impressive results with the HFLC diet on the website, I find it impossible to understand how anyone who relies of scientific evidence could have read both those books and still make statements such as:  ‘following a low fat diet is in line with the best evidence we have at the moment’.

This was one of the comments made by Dr Alison Tedstone Director of Diet & Obesity, Public Health England in the program. Surely it’s not possible that she, the top nutritionist in the country charged with managing this disaster, hasn’t read them?

She of course wasn’t challenged on this in any way – it was just another fun fact, even though if she is wrong it’s a mistake that could turn out to be on par with the infamous claims by South African authorities that the HIV virus didn’t cause AIDS. For more details on the failings of the evidence base supposedly supporting the low fat approach, see a previous post on HealthInsightUK.

How many very similar anecdotes can be safely ignored – 10, 100, 1000?

At the very least you would expect that there would be some interest from the authorities about the experiment that Dr Unwin has been conducting with diabetes patients for four years now, and publishing on it, that is leading to an average weight loss of 9 kilos with a low carb high fat diet plus a significant cost-saving drop in drug use.

Dr Tedstone is after all director of **Public** Health England. But when the program, in a rare flash of curiosity did ask: What about Dr Unwin’s findings? She replied that you couldn’t base anything on that because they merely involved anecdotes.  The obvious response would have been that a large number of very simiilar anecdotes are precisely what should trigger research by a public body such as Public Health England, rather than something to be ignored.

But all of these strands of evidence suggesting that there is indeed a strong case to upend the Food Pyramid are but small and feeble blows against the nutritional empire presided over by Dr Tedstone compared to what is coming her way in the battle over evidence. If I were Dr Tedstone I would be very afraid. (What follows is taken from a post just published on the excellent health blog run by the journalist Marika Sboros writing at

A clash of titans on the way

Two global companies, one earning 23 billion dollars a year and the other 35 billion dollars,  have become very interested in findings of clinicians like Dr Unwin and investigators like Teicholz and they are both putting their money on the low carb approach.

For years a standard explanation for the resolute way the nutritional establishment has clung to the low fat theory is that it suits the big food manufacturers. Many of the leading nutritionists work for big sugar and grain companies and the companies fund research. The list of these companies sponsoring the British Nutritional Foundation goes on for pages. How can a couple of American science journalists and some maverick GPs prevail against that sort of financial muscle?

The answer seems to be by having a major Swiss bank, Credit Suisse, and the global reinsurance company Swiss Re to ride into the lists on your side.  In 2015 Credit Suisse issued a report which concluded that the growing popularity of high fat foods, together with research showing that they offered a safe and effective way to prevent and treat obesity, diabetes and heart disease, ‘offers powerful investment ideas’. When that sort of finding is backed by serious money, things can start to happen.

And this becomes even more likely when it was joined towards the end of last year by big brother Swiss Re. Reinsurance companies are where other insurance companies insure their policies and life insurance companies have many billions of dollars riding on how long people are going to live. So they really need to have the best information about life expectancy and long term illness. They also need to know how big their reserves should be to be to pay future claims.

Banks and insurance companies back winners

So if the research that Unwin, Taubes and Teicholz are relying on is correct and if it has the potential to prevent and reverse diabesity on a large scale, that will have a major financial impact on the whole health insurance business. Companies will be able to cut their rates for new business (people less likely to die or be expensively ill for years) and they won’t have to hold such large reserves making them more profitable.

The banks also have an interest in backing winners because they make their money by providing sound financial advice. And that include which food and medical companies to invest in. Marika’s blog goes on to identify some of the research that the big companies were persuaded by, including one showing how sugar companies wrongly promoted fat as the dietary danger and Teicholz’s study in the BMJ questioning whether the American guidelines supporting the low fat approach were scientific.

As if this were not enough “food for thought” cooked up by Dr Unwin’s maverick approach to his patients,  the wider picture is evern more packed with possibilities. By just offering the low carb diet to his patients several years ago he was bravely ignoring the official guidelines for treating diabetes. This is something doctors are hauled before disciplinary committees for doing. Two such cases are ongoing in S. Africa and Australia at the moment.

Now nearly 100 UK GPs have contacted him asking for more information on the low carb diet so they can offer it to their own patients. This looks like a growing grass roots revolution. If doctors are going to start being more relaxed about guidelines and relying more on their clinical judgement, what happens to formal scientific evidence based medicine? Does it mean that hugely expensive randomised trials should no longer be regarded as the only way to test out lifestyle approaches to health and prevention?

It’s the human touch that makes the difference

And then there is a very important element in Dr Unwin’s approach, which the gold-standard randomised trials appraoch doesn’t even begin to take into account, the way he gets such a high compliance rate. It’s almost certain that Dr Unwin’s success is not because he simply replaces low fat diet sheets with ones for low carbs.

His consultations with patients are unusual and apparently very effective. Rather than the patients explaining their problems to which he offers a solution, usually in the form of a pill, Dr Unwin listens to the problems and then responds by asking questions along the lines of: What would it be like not to have that problem? How could you start to achieve that? It’s a way of leading patients to uncovering and becoming involved in the solutions themselves.

The other element of his technique is to have regular meetings with ten or so patients in a group. It’s impossible to explain why the low carb diet makes sense in a seven minute consultation. In an hour or so it’s much more feasible. What’s more, patients start to make connections and support one another. Getting patients informed about lifestyle changes and motivated to make them sounds like a brilliant way to begin to tackle an epidemic of lifestyle disorders.

Is there no one at C4 who can see what a heartening and uplifting New Year story this could have made? Heroes and villains, clash of titans and a happy ending that could put the human touch back into medicine.

Jerome Burne

Jerome Burne

Jerome Burne is the editor of HealthInsightUK. He is an award-winning journalist who has been specialising in medicine and health for the last 10 years and now works mainly for the Daily Mail. His most recent book “The Hybrid Diet” was written with nutritionist Patrick Holford, published 2018. Award: 2015: Finalist for 'Blogger of the Year' Medical Journalists' Association.


  • Fantastic stuff, thanks Jerome

    Change takes time, usually too much time.
    Maybe now, with some really big titans on the side of real food, change will happen sooner.

    The interesting thing will be when Swiss Re penalise reinsured life insurance policies that do not require the insured to follow a “generic” LCHF real food diet. This can be measured by improving (and then maintained) metabolic syndrome.

    Then there is medical aid, health insurance, Obama care, or whatever finding that their members can be stratified for premiums by metabolic syndrome numbers.

    There is a changing health world waiting to happen. Huge reductions in health funding costs.

    in South Africa many are following Prof Noakes Banting / LCHF real food guidelines and managing T2DM with less or no insulin.

  • ‘following a low fat diet is in line with the best evidence we have at the moment’.

    Fact – in every diet trial where the calorie restricted low fat diet is compared to an alternative dietary intervention – be that ad lib LCHF, Paleo, Mediterranean or vegan – the low fat diet is inferior to (usually) or no better than (rarely) the competition.

    In trials where the low fat diet does as well as the competition, it’s often because adherence was relatively poor in that trial. You see, the low fat diet seems to be less effective the harder people try.

    Hu et al tested the effect of adherence in their NIH-funded LCHF vs low fat diet trial, and concluded

    Our findings do not support the conclusion that all weight loss diets are equally effective and that individuals should choose a diet based on the ease of adherence. Given the profusion of low‐fat and reduced‐fat food products in the US marketplace, adherence to a low‐fat diet may be substantially easier than adherence to other dietary patterns; however, the results of our study suggest that important differences in efficacy do exist between diets. In the real practice, if a low‐carbohydrate diet is not tolerated or feasible for an individual, a low‐fat diet should not be recommended as an alternative.

  • ‘following a low fat diet is in line with the best evidence we have at the moment’.

    Fact – in every diet trial where the calorie restricted low fat diet is compared to an alternative dietary intervention – be that ad lib LCHF, Paleo, Mediterranean or vegan – the low fat diet is inferior to (usually) or no better than (rarely) the competition.

    In trials where the low fat diet does as well as the competition, it’s often because adherence was relatively poor in that trial. You see, the low fat diet seems to be less effective the harder people try.

    Hu et al tested the effect of adherence in their NIH-funded LCHF vs low fat diet trial, and concluded

    Our findings do not support the conclusion that all weight loss diets are equally effective and that individuals should choose a diet based on the ease of adherence. Given the profusion of low‐fat and reduced‐fat food products in the US marketplace, adherence to a low‐fat diet may be substantially easier than adherence to other dietary patterns; however, the results of our study suggest that important differences in efficacy do exist between diets. In the real practice, if a low‐carbohydrate diet is not tolerated or feasible for an individual, a low‐fat diet should not be recommended as an alternative.

  • Alison Tedstone is just one more public official who finds it easier to bury her head in the sand. When this low-fat nonsense is finally behind us, her reputation will be destroyed. It is difficult to know whether she really believes the nonsense she spouts or whether it is just too difficult to acknowledge the scale of the disaster she’s played a part in promoting.

    In any other field there would be serious and urgent interest in the work of Dr Unwin. In medicine, the orthodoxy clings on until all the believers are dead and all the public are diabetic or obese. The more they delay, the angrier people will be when the truth is finally acknowledged. Are they just too afraid to admmit that they’ve spent their whole careers harming people? Is this just too big to admit or are they in thrall to junk-food producers? Do they fear legal action? Something must be driving such wilful blindness.

  • I think that one way or another, the truth is starting to leak out about a number of medical scandals (LF diet, cholesterol, statins, etc) but the truth has been held back for so long that many prominent scientists, such as Dr Alison Tedstone, must be very fearful indeed.

    They could be left trying to explain how they managed to advocate such an awful diet for diabetics, when even the most basic knowledge of carbohydrate digestion, as taught in schools, would have told them that carbohydrates are equivalent to sugar!

    I find that many people are already aware of fragments of these various issues, but many think that the official advice is changing, and now supports, for example, eating butter rather than margarine! There also seems to be a widespread caution about taking statins. Several people have told me that they refused their doctor’s suggestion that they take a statin!

    The inevitable crash in confidence in medical science will come with shocking suddenness.

  • As a type 2 diabetic 6ft 3″ 180llbs who is taking medication to control, I am on the maximum before the next step Insulin. My blood sugars have never been below 7 in 6 years after been diagnosed. With spikes of upto 14 for several hours.
    I read about LCHF diet before Christmas, started Jan 1st, today my sugars are now 6 with spikes of 7.2 after meals. Fasting readings 5.2.
    This has changed my life.

    • Editorial

      What a fantastic and remarkably rapid result. How shocking no medical professional thought to mention that this might be an option worth trying. Have you checked out the site: (not the official charity which has been so unhelpful) where there is a lot of info on LCHF and support from the large numeber of members. There must be a lot of queries you have around trying something so new.

  • I was diagnosed T2DM in October 2015 with Hba1c of 93. As soon as I got home I read up on LCHF and Prof Roy Taylor of Newcastle University and his reasearch into this disease.

    I immediatley switched to LCHF diet of aroud 800 Kcals per day for eight weeks.

    At my next HbA1c test in February 2016, my HbA1c had dropped to a very mormal 35 and I had lost 7kgs.

    I continued with LCHF, but with a higher calorific intake, amd in August 2016 my A1c had dropped to 35 and I had lost another 3 kg.

    82kg with T2DM to 72kg with normal blood sugars in a matter of months.

    Unwin, Noakes, Taubes, Teicholz, Harcombe and Taylor rock.

  • Should have read:

    A1c October 2016- 93

    A1c February 2016- 36

    A1c August 2016- 35

  • October 2015- 93

  • Happy to publish scans of my lab results to confirm.

    • Editorial

      Don’t suppose your doctor had anything useful to say such as: That is fantastic, do tell me what you did so I can suggest it to some of my other patients. After all it is just anecdote number 8,905 and anecdotes mean nothing

      • My (ex…) cardiologist has a disparaging “n=1″ answer for any and all ‘anecdotal evidence’.. like my dropping huge kgs and Normalising BP – by LCHF and generous intake of pink Himalayan salt.
        A1c to normal, from 3x above.
        But I dug in over statins… (“your imagined adverse reaction is only ONE..”)

        • Editorial

          Evidence for benefits of low carbs not special to you.if you run into your pseudo-science cardiologist, who will almost certainly have had virtually no training in nutrition – you might point him in the direction of where 10,000 diabetic have uploaded details of their favourable response to the diet. Mass data makes the study of 1 gibe redundant.

  • Why don’t you try debating with Dr McDougall, Mr Burne. He has a weekly online Youtube webinar everyweek. Do you have the confidence as an award winning journalist to debate with Dr John McDougall all your points raised.
    (you might like to update your colossal fuckup in paragraph 11)

    • Editorial

      I think the “colossal fuck up” you mention is the typo that refers to a HCLF diet when it should, of course, been HFLC. Annoying for both of us but hardly a source of confusion given the context. Thanks for pointing it out; it has now been corrected.

  • ” I find it impossible to understand how anyone who relies of scientific evidence could have read both those books and still make statements such as: ‘following a low fat diet is in line with the best evidence we have at the moment’. ”

    I hope Mr Burne you encourage Dr Unwin to also debate Dr John McDougall on his open weekly webinar on YouTube if you both find it so impossible to understand that a High Carb/Starch diet is the human diet.

    • Editorial

      Can’t speak for Dr Unwin but I’m aware that traditional diets and life style are often largely vegetarian and people following them are rarely obese or diabetic, however these diets bear little relationship to the low fat diet that diabetics are recommended to follow today. For a start these contain high levels of sugar and their empahasis on low fat makes for a varity of problems around the omega3/0mega 6 ratios. I also wouldn’t claim that a high fat low carb diet is ideal for everyone all the time but I would argue that if you are looking for a “human diet” that the low carbs one (and exactly what it should/could contain is subject of a lot of debate) is closer to it than the low fat one which includes such unatural elements as margarine, skimmed milk and a variety of low fat products packe with sugar. It is the failure of the likes of Public Heath England to even consider the benefits in weight loss and a drop in need for medication that low carbs produce that is so irresponsible.

    • Matthew, as you clearly believe that the high-carb diet is the human diet, what do you think our pre-agriculture ancestors were eating? I think we can probably agree that it wasn’t sugar, bread, rice, pasta and potatoes, all staples of the modern diet. Our ancestors weren’t eating vegetable oils, margarine and low-fat milk. They weren’t eating much fruit and what they did eat contained a tiny fraction of the sugar contained in modern fruit. I think our ancestors ate as much fatty meat and fish as they possibly could and the analysis of human bones and discarded animal bones confirm this.

      All these foods are essentially glucose in a world where rates of diabetes and obesity have exploded. If a high-carb diet is natural to us, why is the essential carbohydrate intake zero? Why can we store so little glucose without it being converted to fat? Why were obesity and diabetes so rare when dietary guidelines discouraged carbohydrates and not fat? It would be good to hear genuine answers to these questions.

        • Matthew, attaching a talk from someone you admire isn’t answering the specific questions I posed to you. Your inability to answer them speaks volumes.

          Similarly, attaching links to vegetarian websites in your previous answers doesn’t convince anyone who’s aware of the laughable things they say. It’s why these sites will always be for the true believers on the fringe and of no use to anyone interested in facts. My rational vegetarian friends openly refer to such sites as ‘veg science’.

          If Dr McDougall truly believes our ancient ancestors were eating cooked starch when they could get meat, he’s another deliberately blind believer in your religion. The archelogical findings have been clear for well over a century. I know of no serious debate on this, but it’s not about facts.

  • I must be very lucky in my choice of GP, because suprisingly, my doc’s advice on diet at the time of diagnosis was- animal protein, oily fish, dairy and green leafy veg in abundance!

    Told me T2DM was reversable, and that I was to ignore everything the dietitian he had to refer me to was going to tell me!

    On my second A1c result, he did in fact say well done, fantastic and pointed me in Tim Noakes, Jeff Volek, David Unwin et al direction.

    Doc said he’d never seen such a rapid and significant improvement.

    I’m left wondering:

    1) What the fuss about diabetes is. if it can so repidly be crushed with LCHF, and

    2) whether or not I was ever truly diabetic in the first place

    • Alastair, your dramatic improvement is good news and repeated by the thousand for those who abandon the NHS’s truly stupid position. It’s heartening to hear of a doctor gives advice that helps his patients rather than doling out drugs and telling them diabetes is ‘progressive.

  • But it does, they just have to tell diabetics to stop eating the animal products, everything else diabetics are told to eat is primarily fruit vegetables and starch, the margarine and the skimmed milk is again the unhealthy isolated fat (including all they mention oils) and animal products that should all be removed entirely from their diet.

    This website is encouarging everyone to eat more animal products and blaming the carbohydrate as the source of all thier woes.

    Apologies for my langauge used

    • Editorial

      Realistically you are not going to get a mass conversion to vegetarianism – however beneficial it would be to the planet let alone the animals. And I don’t agree, for what it is worth, that we are not “meant” to eat animals althought personally I avoid industrially farmed ones. Lots of tricky ethical and practical issues. I think you need to look more closely at the clear health benefits being reported by ten’s of thousands of diabetic and overweight people from following the low carbs appraoch. There are also very intersting health aspects of a ketogenic diet. Low fat makes it tharder to get adquate vitamin D and E, manageable if you look into it but we are talking an official national policy which has clearly been a disaster.

      • Where do you think the fat stored on the body of the “ten’s of thousands of diabetic and overweight people following the low carbs approach” comes from Mr Ed in the first place.

        The doctor can take a biopsy/extraction of the fat on their bodies and it will show that it came from the fat of the animals or the oils they use in their diet.

        Stop eating them and you will easily lose it without resorting to making yourself sick by going into ketosis.

        Chemotherapy would make people lose weight, certainly not a recommendation for someone who is obese and diabetic.

        Ketosis should be considered in that light, a totally unnecessary condition to put your body into, making yourself sick, to lose the fat off your body that came from the fat in your diet.

  • You concern about a small amount of the ‘unatural elements’ margarine and skimmed milk in a diabetics diet but if Zoe Harcombe and Dr Unwin appear on the BBC and tell everyone to eat ‘unlimited pork’ and ‘lard is fine’, do you not see this as more irresponsible.

    • Editorial

      I doubt that Zoe talked about ‘unlimited pork’ or if she did she would also have stressed the benefit of whole foods, large amounnts of vegetables plus nut,s fruit and healthy fats and no processed foods, which seems pretty sane to me. While I do beleive the demonisation of saturaed fat has been a disaster – and it now becoming clear that considerable funding to support that view came from the sugar industry – i don’t think it is at all helpful to attempt to set vegetarians against omnivores. For a look at how a discussion betweem well-informed doctor’s from either side can be both mutually respectful and informative. look at this exchange between Dr Asseem Malhotra and Dr Joel Kahn.

      • Linus Pauling Institute website linked all these studies.

        The more fruit/veg we eat is not associated with type2 diabetes.

        The more fructose in the diet showed significantly lower levels of glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c).

        The science isn’t confused on sugar maybe practitioners are confused on sugar causing diabetes.

        They are digested down into simple sugars in the intestine and then absorbed into the bloodstream.
The trillions of cells in the body want it as simple sugar to provide us energy.
        Jennie Brand-Miller also found that obesity was going up while sugar consumption wasn’t in her study.
The more fructose in the diet showed significantly lower levels of glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c).

Why would sugar alone be any different, as this study comparing intake with risk of developing type-2 diabetes shows that high-sugar diets are less likely to get diabetes.

        Why does no one ever mention here the fact that there are huge numbers of fruitarians thriving on it and they have far better health and fitness than these experts telling us the opposite.

        CNN’s Dr. Gupta: ‘Fruitarian’ eats 25 lbs of fruit.

        Healthy sugary fruit and juice does not make people fat it is a lie.

        The Mexicans not on their traditional diet.

        Professor Graham MacGregor Chairman of Action on Sugar made a point here, where he compares eating 18 oranges with a Big Mac and fries on calorie intake. His premise that we wouldn’t eat that amount of calories from fruit but do very easy with junk food.

        The pecentage of calories coming from fat in the diet via a Big Mac and fries is the problem.
        If people did try eating/juicing and enjoying the sugar carbohydrates from 18 oranges or other fruit and got a thousand calories in energy they would be far healthier in my opinion.
        It’s far easier to consume what nature provides us without the need to even cook anything.

        • Editorial

          Impressed by your energy on this Mathew – what do you do, as a matter of interest? How come it is such a passion? Latest post has enough references for a weekly essay on a nutrition degree course so don’t expect an immediate response. But do keep them coming; there are clearly perfectly reasonable areas for disagreement on on areas where ketones/low carb and vegetarian overlap. Microbiome is going to pay an increasing part. I’ve written about Israeli research which found a wide range of individual responses to the glucose/insulin levels to identical meals. The researchers linked it to variations in the microbiome and that of course responds strongly to diet.

          • Just a layperson, who has witnessed so many family, friends suffer and go blind lose limbs and die of diabetes CHD, believing in conventional medicine hoping that they’ll get better.

          • Just a layperson. Is it only genuine disagreement or deliberate distraction from the truth.

        • The amount of fructose in the diet that reduces HbA1c (slightly) is 10g per meal – if it replaces other carbohydrate.
          This is basically having a carrot instead of a potato.
          It can’t be extended as proof that sugar is benign. And HbA1c would be even lower if no carbohydrate at all is eaten.
          This is an interesting study on replacing a high starch diet with a lower carb, higher natural sugar diet.

          As for fruitarians, public health science needs to be about what supports the health of many, not what a part of a small group of self-selected individuals has been able to get away with so far.

        • Editorial

          Have now read some of your links and am not about to recant. First one from Dr MacDonald is just so far from mainstream physiology that it is as convincing a flat-eather’s claim. Sugar prrevents diabetes and the more you eat the better your insulin sensitivity will be! He’s obviously a well-read and bright man and often I find myslef siding with mavericks but this is too much of stretch for me.

          Several of the other papers were observational studies showing that people who ate more fruit and veg – and so more carbs – had a lower blood glucose level than those on less. I’m sure that’s true but it doesn’t say anything about consuming vast quantitites of sugar. The observational study showing that obesity levels fell in Australia during which sugar consumption incrreased was odd. No explanation but I would have lots of questions about how the data was collected.In fact I have a memory of an analysis of that paper which pointed out changes during the period in way sugar imports were calculated. Then there were sudies on fruitarians which found they were healthy. Ovious point is that their sugar came in a natural package with fibre and so on. Again not relevant to cutting down carbs – to lower blood sugar and so reverse symptoms of diabetes,

          While we are swapping references, here are two for you from this blog. Both are about a recent paper by Professor Richard Feinman of New York State University on why the low fat advice to diabetics has not only been a disaster but makes no sense physiologically, One is summary of his paper for the non-expert and the other is an interview with Feinman as to how he got involved in the field. He is among the world experts on carbohydrate metabolism.

          • People who eat the most fruit and vegetables, and whole grains for that matter, tend to be the people who consume less biscuits, sweets, soft drink, desserts, cake and so on.
            They usually exercise more too.
            Anyway, you can eat lots of fruit and veges while reducing carbs. Tomatoes, zucchinis, avocados, berries, peppers are all fruits.

          • Editorial

            Mathew – respect for you persistence and wading into a place where you have little support. Having taken the time to follow a number of your links i would now ask you not to post anything more here until you have read and throughtly digested a brilliant post by the excellent Zoe Harcombe – even though you clear have little respect for her and she regards you as a troll.

            The link below is to a review by Zoe of a book by a nutritionist called Lierre Keith who had been a vegetarian and then wrote a book explaining why she gave it up and why she came to beleve its basic moral and mutritional assumptions were mistaken. I’d highly recomend it for anyone else interested in the wider arguments around vegetarianism,


  • Undoubted.

    So how is two global billion dollar companies set to push low carb view better than just telling people to eat the traditional diets you we already know are best.

    • Editorial

      So extract from prog on chap following low carb high fat diet has Zoe saying fats from natural sources good. Like nearly every point in nutrition it is disputed but I rate Zoe as a Phd-to-be who is a thorough and ferocious researcher. My judgement is that sources demonising fat are much less impressive than the conclusions of Zoe and others who have looked closely at fat. Chap on the diet on TV dropped weight and cholesterol level (for what it is worth – lets not get into the myths on cholesterol).

      As for the findings of the big companies, I’m not sure what you are so aggrieved about. It a very interesting as they have no axe to grind and is added support for the low carb position. As to why they do anything, how am i supposed to know? It’s not relevant to the discussion

    • Matthew – maybe you have a point for the few people who are not insulin resistant – maybe:

      Sure, these billion dollar companies are profit orientated companies. After an independent detailed in-depth analysis they concluded that their long-term profits are under threat BECAUSE their clients# are UNhealthy through an incorrect diet HIGH in bad carbs and bad fats – a diet that causes preventable, self-imposed, chronic non-communicable disease. they have concluded that the current bad/poor health condition of populations# is UNsustainable. that the USA and UK health systems will collapse if something drastic does not change soon.

      The implication is that the bad food (high in bad carbs and bad fats) industry has dominated our food sources for 40 odd years. the bad manufactured food industry knew then and they know now that their products ARE bad for health for many#; their business was not to promote health it was to make profits (your health was your problem) as evidenced by recent revelations from the sugar association archives.

      # applies to mainly insulin resistant persons, not everybody benefits (one diet does not fit all)

      • the problem for the billion dollar companies is that their profit is more dependent upon a healthy population, opposite to the bad manufactured food industry.

  • Does the Five-A-Day doctrine lead to people eating too much fruit or drinking too much fruit juice? That’s “too much” in the sense if delivering too much sugar to the body.

    Would we be better off keeping our fruit intake down, and eating fish, eggs, cheese, fatty meat, and vegetables? Plus chips, of course, preferably cooked in lard or dripping? Or boiled tatties with heaps of butter? Or mashed tatties with not only butter but also cream? And roast tatties cooked with goose fat? One can but dream.

    • Editorial

      All good questions but more appropriate for a clinical nutritionist. I’ll see if i can prompt any to respond

    • Dearie, I heard Dr Michael Mosley on Radio 4 this lunchtime saying that fruit juice was basically sugar and that vegetables are preferable to fruit because many fruits are high in sugar. He specifically mentioned grapes. Of course, rasperies and some other berries are about 4-5% sugar.

      Most people would agree that we need to avoid processed food containing the sugar, refined carbs and vegetable oils that are driving obesity, diabetes and other illnesses. I read a doctor’s account from the the 1960s. He said diabetes was so rare that if he dealt with one, he would ask the patient if other doctors could come into the examination to learn about something rare. Today’s surgeries are packed with diabetics as a direct result of official foolishness.

      • Look at what was done with patients at deaths door with up to 500grams of sugar a day.

        • Question – if the rice diet or high sugar diet was safe and effective, why was it never revived during the low-fat era?
          Lots of things look good used on self-selecting patients. RCTs are a way of checking that this effect is consistent and general. Low fat diets do poorly in RCTs.
          You could argue that they are not low-fat enough. But a low carb diet starts to have benefits at 30% carb, showing the start of a dose-response progression of efficacy. At 30% fat, a low fat diet is worse than useless.
          Further, a diet of rice or sugar would produce diseases of malnutrition if persisted in. We already have rickets making a re-appearance in societies that had it beaten with full fat milk and eggs.
          Public health recommendations need to take such nutritional requirements into consideration.
          P.S. no-one (except the long-suffering Jerome, it seems) watches youtube clips when used as a form of argument. Citations and links to peer-reviewed published work are better.
          For example, our review in the New Zealand Medical Journal.

          • OK, thank you for the readable link over at Mr Burne.

            I think you’ll find readers of this free blog now won’t be able to do the same for any more of her current articles as she has decided to charge a membership for access to even read them.( Why charge to read a blog)

            ” Eat Real foods” but apples bananas dates grapes and oranges are off the menu.

            I did post about 3 or 4 responses on her ‘once free’ blog, but they never remained posted ( she replied to one or two comments with pretty short shrift.

            You have responded to all and allowed all my posts here and that is more than double that may have appeared on her blog from me in all truthfulness.

            I have reached this and that blog from reading Patrick Holfords blog (all free to read Zoe)

            Patrick Halford has always responded to my questions as a member even if I have not agreed with something. You don’t have to have your haircut and salute as it seems you may on Zoe’s blog but hopefully now not here.

            I was about to respond to a few of George Henderson posts if I may with some peer-reviewed published work.

  • Dr Malhotra and the rest of the British Dr Lards always respectful and informative.

  • An interesting debate.
    As I have mentioned before I tried conventional advice for about 25 years You would have to say that was a fair trial, but for me the results were disappointing and I seemed to rely more and more on prescribing medication
    Since recognising that for the great majority of people with Type 2 Diabetes sugar is their main problem and that also starchy carbs digest down into a lot of glucose I now give patients a choice of trying a lower carb diet before starting lifelong medication and I now have many proud, empowered patients
    With regard to green veg – I am a massive advocate of swapping the white starchy stuff for green stuff
    With regards to fats I am working with a cardiologist to look at the lipid profiles of a number of low carbers -so more anon. But early results seem to indicate improvements on a lower carb diet
    Finally having experimented and perhaps rather late in my career I find it works better rather than telling people what to do to give them information, think about what diet would suit them and offer support and then feedback on results

  • Hello Dr Unwin.

    In America and in the UK people are surely eating more meat and dairy than they were decades ago. (Obesity increased over those decades) The very foods that are awash our screens on every channel.

    Edwina Curry bragged fairly recently that she played an enormous role in the massive increase of olive oils in the UK explaining that you could only ever see it available in chemists.(Radio 5 debate from memory)

    Now this huge range in every supermarket a result of her efforts. She was very proud of this outcome. She and obviously a huge number of people have unfortunately are just ignorant of the damage they do.

    The British Medical Journal last year (April) published articles about these isolated vegetable oils explaining that they do not reduce the risk of heart disease, and substitution of them over animal fat also increases the risk of illness and death.

    I am sure that any of your patients that are obese before the embark on a low carb regime could easily have a small amount of body fat extracted to show exactly where it came from in the first place.

    • Americans, per capita, eat less red meat and less animal fat than they did in the 1960s. They consume more chicken, and more vegetable oil.
      Consider this – reducing the fat in US diets has meant eating more grains. Grains are a source of protein as well as carbohydrate. Extra gluten is always added to bread today, which was not the case in the past. Soy protein was not a generally available food in the 1960s, but is added to everything now, and is available in all sorts of fake meat “foods”. Nuts are more widely consumed than they were in the past (when it was hard to find fresh nuts and nut products).
      If vegetable proteins that were hard to find and only eaten in any quantity by a few health nuts in the past are now not only common items of diet but also used to dilute meat products and added to foods where they are eaten unawares, it is very hard to see how people could have been eating more meat and dairy during the obesity epidemic. In fact, in the 1960s in the UK children were given a bottle of milk free at school, but this ceased during the 1970s.
      The 1960s and 1970s were a time of plenty in the US and UK and people ate better than they had before, but obesity only took off when the dietary advice for people concerned about their weight changed to “fill up on bread, pasta and rice so you don’t eat too much fatty food”

    • Editorial

      Find this post incomprehensible. First you say you are sure people are eating more meat and dairy than they were decades ago. In fact we are eating 13% **less** than we were in 2007 according to this report on DEFRA data in the Guardian – It took me a minute to pick this up on google – why can’t you rely on facts rather than opinions?

      You then go on to link Edwina Curry to an increase in olive oil consumption and cite a BMJ article, which sounds as if you are trying to use references. But the article has nothing to do with olive oil. It is about a very interesting article reporting on an old and ignored study finding that replacing saturated fats with fats high in linoleic acid – specifically corn oil and margarine – had no effect on heart disease risk.Olive oil is actually very low in linoleic acid.

      But not only have you got the details wrong but i don’t understand why you thought they helped your case. You are keen on a vegetarian approach and seem to believe that eating lots more sugar will cut the rate of diabetes and consumption of animal fats and milk is making us ill. This study showed that people were healthier when eating saturated fat rather than vegetable fats.

      I’m afraid like Zoe I have come to he conclusion that responding to your posts is a waste of time. I asked you earlier not to post any more until you have properly read and and responded to a post by Zoe setting out in careful detail why going vegetarian was not going to improve human or environmental health. Your only response was to grumble that Zoe was now charging for access to he blog for some of her posts. I won’t even start to explain just how irrelevant a comment that is.

      In future I will remove any of your posts in future that i consider irrelevant or a waste of time.

      • Well said. You’ve shown great patience.

        Matthew doesn’t apparently know that meat consumption fell during the period in which obesity and diabetes rose dramatically. He clearly doesn’t know when he’s citing excellent papers such as the Minnesota and Sydney studies that they exonerate saturated fat and show vegetable oils to be highly undesirable. He doesn’t seem to understand the difference between olive oil and vegetable oil.

        He’s fully bought into the embarrassing ‘veg science’ that somehow manages to implicate diabetes with eating meat. Meat consumption falls and diabetes rises at an astonishing rate, but people like Matthew still cling to what Dr Greger tells them. Diabetics’ high blood glucose isn’t caused by eating glucose (carbohydrates), but by eating meat that contains no glucose. An argument that won’t convince many adults. Zoe clearly gave him too much science and he couldn’t respond properly.

        Frankly, he’s making a public fool of himself and he needs to go away and think. He’s entitled to his beliefs, but he’s not entitled to side-track sensible debate and bore others with his confused nonsense.

        • Nice volte-face, keep em coming Matthew, now irrelevant waste of time. That’s encouraging debate here.

          I tried ‘facts’ from USDA availability data today. They have documented that Americans are consuming more calories per day than they were 40 years ago.

          They show an increase in mean, daily, total energy intake, per person, per day.

          In 1970, Americans consumed an estimated 2,039 calories to 2536 calories in 2010.

          Of this 497-calorie increase, added fats and oils accounted for 225 calories; dairy, 27 calories; meat, eggs and nuts, 19 calories.

          So thats over 50% of those daily calories are mostly coming from fat from oils and fat from animals.

          The fruit and vegetables accounted for only 10 calories; added sugar & sweetness, 34 calories.

          That’s not opinion unless you doubt that USDA actually wrote that just like you doubted that Zoe Harcombe didn’t say eat an unlimited amount of pork on the BBC.

          • Earlier in your response you indicated you didn’t want vegetarians set against omnivores. Yet have continuously asked me to then respond to a an article about that very subject and why a vegetarian diet would be unable to improve human and enviromental health. (That’s to come or will it be deleted)

            That’s your take on the study but is clearly incorrect. It also increases the risk of bleeding, cancer. Most people heat and cook with it creating more cancer causing byproducts. Animal experiments and epidemiological studies lead to a recommendation that the intake of w-6 linoleic acid should be decreased to as low as 2-4 % of the calories and that of w-3 fats.

            As Dr McDougall explains in more detail.


            “For the past 35 years I have been warning people that so called “good fats,” the isolated vegetable oils (canola, corn, flaxseed, olive, safflower, etc.), are at best medications, and at worst serious toxins. They make you gain weight; “the fat you eat is the fat you wear.” Various forms promote cancer, gallbladder disease, suppress the immune system, and/or cause bleeding. This current report finds corn oil, sunflower oil, safflower oil, cottonseed oil, and soybean oils damage the arteries and increase the risk of death from heart disease and of overall death.
            The authors of the above articles are perplexed about these findings and do not know what to recommend. According to these publications replacing some of the butter with margarine actually makes sick people even sicker. This leads some experts to argue that this research shows saturated fat is not harmful: a wrong conclusion. Saturated fat is synonymous with animal foods (meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy) and these foods are well recognized as “disease producers.” Vegetable oils make a bad diet worse.”

            Your point about the olive oil being lower in linoleic acid, so is better for the heart again is incorrect.


            Greater Risks of Heart Disease:

            Most people have assumed olive oil to be protective against heart disease because of the low incidence of heart disease in Mediterranean countries and that EFA also prevent heart disease. However, research indicates otherwise. A study on humans conducted by David Blankenhorn, M.D., and his associates compared the effects of different types of fats on the growth of atherosclerotic lesions inside the coronary arteries of people by studying the results of angiograms taken one year apart (JAMA 263:1646, 1990). The study demonstrated that all three types of fat–saturated animal fat, monounsaturated (olive oil), and polyunsaturated (EFA)–were associated with a significant increase in new atherosclerotic lesions. Most importantly, the growth of these lesions did not stop when polyunsaturated fats of the w-6 type (linoleic acid) and monounsaturated fats (olive oil) were substituted for saturated fats. Only by decreasing all fat intake–including poly- and monounsaturated fats–did the lesions stop growing.

            Dietary polyunsaturated fats (EFA), both the w-3 and w-6 types, are incorporated into human atherosclerotic plaques; thereby promoting damage to the arteries and the progression of atherosclerosis (Lancet 344:1195, 1994). In part, this is because these oils are easily oxidized, forming free radicals that damage the arteries. Most research indicates w-6 type EFA are much more damaging to the arteries than w-3 type EFA (Am J Clin Nutr 49:301, 1989).

            A recent study in African green monkeys found when saturated fat was replaced with monounsaturated fat (olive oil), the olive provided no protection from atherosclerosis (Aterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol 15:2101, 1995).

            Furthermore, high-fat meals, in contrast to low-fat meals, can cause considerable increases in plasma triglycerides and plasma levels of blood coagulation factors which lead to a blood clot or thrombosis in the heart artery. One of the most important clotting factors predicting the risk of a heart attack is factor VII. The five fats tested–rapeseed oil (canola), olive oil, sunflower oil, palm oil, and butter–showed similar increases in triglycerides and clotting factor VII after eating. According to the authors, “These findings indicate that high-fat meals may be prothrombotic (causing a blood clot leading to a heart attack), irrespective of their fatty acid composition.” (Aterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol 17:2904, 1997).

            Since w-3 EFA cause a variety of changes that both decrease and increase the risk of a heart attack, the overall impact of consuming these as free oils will have to be determined by future experiments. Undoubtedly, the w-6 varieties are artery damaging. Most likely, the heart benefits of a Mediterranean diet are due to it being a nearly vegetarian diet. The Mediterranean diet is good in spite of the olive oil (Am J Clin Nutr 61:1321S, 1995).
            Higher Cholesterol and More Diabetes from Fish Oils:

            Much attention has recently been paid to the possible benefits of increasing the intake of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) by consuming fish oil. However, this can have adverse effects such as raising LDL “bad” cholesterol levels in patients with already high cholesterol and causing a deterioration in glucose tolerance, in other words, making diabetes worse. (Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids 44:127, 1991). In one recent study of feeding w-6 alpha linolenic acid to obese subjects insulin sensitivity and HDL “good” cholesterol diminished, and the amount of oxidized LDL “bad” cholesterol increased (Aterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol 17:1163, 1997). In most other studies, however, oils high in alpha linolenic acid have little effect on cholesterol and triglycerides (Am J Clin Nutr 65:1645, 1997).
            Increased Risk of Bleeding:

            As mentioned, one of the benefits of EFA is to decrease the risk of a heart attack by decreasing the tendency for a blood clot to form by “thinning” the blood. Alpha linolenic acid is much more effective at decreasing the tendency of platelets to stick together than linoleic acid (Euro J Clin Nutr 49:169, 1995. However, when you decrease the clotting tendency of the blood you also increase the bleeding time and the risk of a fatal bleed after an accident or death during a hemmorhagic stroke. (Rheumatology International 14:231, 1995).
            Nutritional Imbalances:

            When a large amount of one type of nutrient is given then it displaces the metabolism of other similar type nutrients. For example, high doses of eicosapentaenoic (fish oil) given to westerners also lower levels of dihomogammalinolenic acid (DGLA), a substance with a wide range of desirable cardiovascular and anti-inflammatory actions. (Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids 44:127, 1991). Proper balance is more likely the closer the source of EFA is to its natural origin–plant foods.
            Immune System Suppression:

            EFA of both the w-3 and w-6 types inhibit our immune system–especially human lymphocyte cell-mediated and the production and activity of immune substances (Immunology 92:166, 1997). This includes suppression of natural killer cells, the production of immune substances known as cytokines (interleukin-1 (IL-1), IL-2, tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha) and also interferon-gamma production. These immune functions are important for defending ourselves from viruses, bacteria, and parasites, and cancer cells.

            Body fat represents that saved “metabolic dollar” for the day when food becomes unavailable (which hasn’t happened lately). Vegetable fats, including olive oil and EFA are as easily stored as fat from cows, pigs, and chickens. When 54 obese women in a Mediterranean country were studied, they were found to be following a diet low in carbohydrates (35% of the calories) and high in fats (43% of the calories). And 55% of the total of these fats came from olive oil (Horm Metab Res 27:499, 1995).

            It has been suggested that certain kinds of EFA might help people lose weight. However, a 12 week, double-blind evaluation of evening primrose oil as an antiobesity agent on 100 women found no significant difference in the weight loss achieved by those taking primrose oil compared with placebo (Int J Obes 7:549, 1983).

            Hundreds of studies since 1930 have been done on the effects of dietary fat on cancer occurrence in experimental animals. Both animal and vegetable fats have been shown to increase the risk of animals developing and dying of cancer (Cancer Res 52:2040, 1992). The risk of spread (metastasis) is also increased with greater fat intake. Most of the effects occur during the promotion stage rather than at the time of initiation of the cancer (when it begins).

            Linoleic acid found in large amounts in corn and safflower oils is the strongest promoter of cancers of all the fatty acids. Olive, fish, flaxseed and other w-3 essential fatty acids have been shown to inhibit the growth of cancers in animals when fed as pure fatty acids. However, after the addition of small amounts of linoleic acid (like corn oil) they lose some or all of their ability to block tumor growth (Am J Clin Nutr 66:1523S, 1997). Therefore, it appears that a small amount of linoleic acid must be present for a fat to be cancer promoting. Of course, this small amount of linoleic acid will be in all natural human diets.

            The reason some studies have shown olive oil to be cancer promoting and others have not is probably because of the varying amounts of linoleic acid in commercially available olive oils. There appears to be some balance between w-3 and w-6 fatty acids that is ideal for tumor inhibition, unfortunately that ratio varies with different experimental models. Because all of the types of fatty acids have been found to be cancer promoting under some circumstances, prudence would dictate that all fats, regardless of who labels them “good fats,” be kept to a minimum in your diet.
            Heating Oil:

            The heating of oil can produce cancer-causing byproducts. The lung cancer incidence in Chinese women is among the highest in the world, but tobacco smoking accounts for only a minority of the cancers. Chinese women are exposed to indoor air pollution from wok cooking. Cancer causing chemicals from heating cooking oils are dispersed into the air. In a recent experiment several cooking oils and EFA were heated in a wok to boiling (J Natl Cancer Inst 87:836, 1995). The oils tested were unrefined Chinese rapeseed, refined U.S. rapeseed (known as canola), Chinese soybean, and Chinese peanut, in addition to linolenic, linoleic, and erucic fatty acids. Cancer causing substances such as 1,3-butadiene, benzene, acrolein, formaldehyde, and other related compounds were detected, with emissions tending to be highest for unrefined Chinese rapeseed oil and lowest for peanut oil. Among the individual fatty acids tested, heated linolenic acid produced the greatest quantities of cancer causing substances (1,3-butadiene, benzene, and acrolein). Condensates from heated linolenic acid, but not linoleic or erucic acid, were found to be highly cancer causing.
            What to Do?

            The safest and healthiest way to get your EFA is in their natural packages of starches, vegetables, and fruits. Here they are found in the correct amounts in protected environments surrounded by vitamins, minerals, fibers, antioxidants, and other phytochemicals to make them balanced nutrition. If you desire higher concentrations than are present in these foods then you will want to include more nuts, seeds, and soybean products in your diet. Remember, these are high fat foods and can contribute to obesity. Research suggests that there may be a connection between frequent nut consumption and a reduced incidence of coronary heart disease (Nutr Rev 54:241, 1996).

            Flaxseed (as a whole seed) is one of the richest sources of alpha linolenic acid and is also a good source of soluble fiber. Consumption of 50g (1 2/3 ounces) of raw, ground flaxseeds has been shown to increase the amount of w-3 EFA in the blood and tissues and to lower the cholesterol by 9% and LDL “bad” cholesterol by 18% (Br J Nutr 69:443, 1993). Blood sugar was also decreased. Even though the benefits of EFA as oils on cancer growth are questionable, the lignans present in flaxseed seem to have an antitumor effect when fed at the early stages of cancer promotion (Nutr Cancer 26:159, 1996). Plant foods are the only source of phytoestrogens, like isoflavones, coumestans, and lignans, that are believed to be beneficial for many problems, including menopausal symptoms, osteoporosis, cancer, and heart disease (Annu Rev Nutr 17:353, 1997).

            Flaxseed is also an excellent laxative. The number of bowel movements per week is found to increase by 30% with the addition of 50g of flaxseed daily. The seeds can be added to hot or cold grain cereals and consumed whole. Uncle Sam cold cereal and Prairie Sun Hot Cereal sold in the natural foods store have flaxseed. Or it can be ground in a coffee grinder and applied to almost any dish. About 5 tablespoons of ground flaxseed daily should have a positive effect. A mixture of ground nuts, seeds and vegetables, called “The Missing Link,” is sold in many natural food stores or can be ordered by calling (800) 446-2110. Refrigerate oils and ground seeds because they oxidize easily and become rancid.

            For treating some conditions, such as rheumatoid arthritis or diabetic neuropathy, you may want to try oils high in gamma linolenic acid, such as primrose oil. The doses used are ½ to 1 ½ grams a day of gamma linolenic acid. This free oil is no longer to be thought of as a food–it is a medication used to treat symptoms of a disease with both positive and negative effects.

          • Editorial

            Mathew I relent. For now you are no longer barred. Your river of words has overwhelmed me. I am impressed that you have put so much effort into another post.
            I have to confess that I’m not up to responding to it in any detailed way. A shout out to any one who comment’s here: Can you come back to Mathew on this? I assume it is claiming that vegetarian is the way to go and that low carbs because of the meat/fat component isn’t but I’m not sure. A summary would be a useful start

          • Hi Matthew, I’m sure I could cherry-pick studies from the 1990s to make any point.
            Yours seems to be that a variety of plant-based food products are toxic in particular circumstances, and that this evidence somehow supports vegetarianism.
            I read on the internet once that evening primrose oil was good for PMS so bought some for my girlfriend. Her symptoms after taking it were worse than ever. Never again. It turns out that this recommendation was based on very little scientific testing. Like most things, the PMS eventually got better on a low carb diet with natural animal fats.

        • Has anyone else noticed that both clueless dieticians (there are an increasing number of non-clueless ones!) and vegan trolls have been out in full force particularly on Twitter in the last few weeks?

          Big Carbs and Big Marge fighting back?

          • Chris, – YES. and a few of their ‘Fellow Travellers’.

            And it would not surprise me at all, if there was a Religious influence adding quiet support in the background…
            This organization has dietary doctrines remarkably similar to what the Australian Dietary Association officially espouses.
            This is the same ADA which attacked Dr Fettke for, giving dangerous dietary advice about reversing Type 2 diabetes, – and his support for LCHF.

  • If some people take offence it means that they may well have a different point of view and it’s the point of view rather than what’s being said that causes them distress.

    She may just follow her own twitter advice hopefully.

    (’Another wish for 2017: people stop looking to be offended, especially when none was intended’.)

    • matthew

      give it up – you are not convincing anybody. at best you have become annoying, at worst you belong to a conspiracy trying to disrupt the progress of science for self interest.
      go and play in another sandpit.

  • Is anyone else having difficulty accessing Malcolm Kendrick’s blog? I can’ t.

  • Thank you for sharing: unaware life is not worth living
    Awareness of nutritional needs and preferences.Respect your body’s unique nutritional needs
    Readiness to ignore individual differences says medical researcher Andrew Weil, characterizes accounts for a great deal of the contradictory dogma characterizes the health professions, a problem glaringly visible in the dispute over nutrition.We are each unique genetically, physically, psychologically, biochemically.While certain food choices and combinations may promote your best energy and performance levels, the same dietary choices may be less pleasant or more stressful for others.Moreover, food taste preferences are deepest habits, so it is important to let them change slowly as you introduce healthy new foods into daily menus.
    It makes little sense to carefully select high-quality foods and organize balanced, delicious meals if environmental chaos rings-If each bite is barely chewed and hurriedly swallowed or if your abdomen and neck are tense from bad news or heated discussions., Stress encroaches on digestion .relaxation is one of the missing ingredients in well-designed nutritional programs.Digestion begins in your mouth with each bite of food.Poorly chewed swallowed foods enter with digestion.The hope of humanity lies in the prevention of degenerative and mental disease, not in the care of their symptoms.

  • A few words of well-intentioned advice directed towards Matthew; if one stares too long at the trees it becomes very easy to become blind to the part the forest plays in the wider ecology.

  • Sasa, the story of an Italian village who transplanted themselves to the New World is one of the best examples of how social connectivity, low stress and strong Family bonds benefits everyone. Until recent times, when the young started leaving, modern plagues such as CVD, diabetes 2, were minimal.

    - And this despite eating the local Fine Fast Cuisine, smoking and drinking wine…

  • Back to ‘Insurance’ driven science.

    There are only two ways of making more money in the Insurance game.

    (1) Increase premiums. Either lots more up-front, or allowing smaller multiple payments.. with a small convenience “fee”. This ploy works well…

    (2) Reduce pay-outs. Limit and define exposure. Using the fine print to evade liability is the weapon of choice. This is what Swiss Re and Credit Suisse are doing.
    It is said that the most dangerous place on earth is physically between a Swiss Banker and a Franc or Dollar…
    Being superbly competent SWISS Bankers, their mathematics and conclusions would be unassailable.
    Therefore support for LCHF makes good business sense. – There’s the Truth that so many can’t handle…

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