THE ONE-HUNDRED-NINETY-TWO-COUNTRY STUDY
Advice to eat a lowfat, low-cholesterol diet accelerated in the late 1970s and early 1980s based on Ancel Keyes’ Seven Countries Study, which created the impression that high cholesterol levels in the blood were associated with increased risk of heart disease. Keyes handpicked these studies to get the results he wanted—he left out France, for example. Some years ago, Zoë Harcombe analyzed all the data available for the one hundred ninety-two countries in the World Health Organization (WHO) database. What she found was that in both men and women, higher cholesterol levels had an inverse relationship with both heart disease and all-cause mortality, and in the latter category, the inverse relationship was statistically significant. As Harcombe concludes, “. . . the last thing we should be trying to do is lowering cholesterol—unless we’re trying to lower life expectancy for some reason” (zoeharcombe.com, November 23, 2010). Since dietary policies have not changed since Harcombe’s findings, we might in fact conclude that lowering life expectancy is the goal—another quiet way of reducing the world’s population and getting rid of useless eaters.
MASK-INDUCED EXHAUSTION SYNDROME
A systematic review and meta-analysis of over two thousand studies on adverse mask-wearing effects, published April 2023 in Frontiers in Public Health (and later, under pressure, retracted), found many alarming effects of long-term mask wearing. These included increase in blood carbon dioxide, decrease in blood oxygen saturation, increase in heart rate, shortness of breath and difficulty breathing, headache, dizziness, drowsiness, decreased ability to concentrate, itching, acne, skin lesions and overall perceived fatigue and exhaustion—hence the term mask-induced exhaustion syndrome (MIES). The study’s authors suggest that “long Covid” symptoms might be the result of “long masking” instead. Long- Covid symptoms such as fatigue, dyspnea, confusion, anxiety, depression, rapid heartbeat, dizziness, and headache overlap with those of MIES. Seems like the first thing that long-Covid sufferers need to do is take off their masks and breathe!
CAN CEREAL BOOST SLEEP?
So many folks in our caffeine-addicted world can’t sleep these days; now, the cereal companies have a solution for you. Post Consumer Brands, maker of Raisin Bran, Grape-Nuts and Fruity Pebbles breakfast cereals, has launched a line of cereals as “nutrient-dense before-bed snacks.” Called Sweet Dreams, the cereals propose to “boost melatonin” with “notes of lavender and chamomile,” and added vitamins and minerals like zinc and iron. A cereal called Honey Moonglow contains extruded whole grains, almonds, cocoa, blueberry and carrot concentrates, canola and/or soybean oil, “natural flavors” and about thirteen grams—almost one tablespoon— of refined sweeteners, mostly as sugar and corn syrup. The ingredients in Blueberry and Almonds are similar, with the addition of real blueberries, embalmed with invert sugar, glycerin, sunflower oil and natural flavor. Consumers can also buy “sleep-friendly” cookies and ice creams with added B6, magnesium and zinc; candy bars infused with melatonin; and PepsiCo’s Driftwell brand of bottled water containing L-theanine and magnesium. Reported in The Washington Post (March 21, 2023), an author fingers “diets high in sugar, saturated fat and simple carbohydrates” as contributing to poor sleep. Simple carbs and sugars will indeed keep you awake by stimulating the release of adrenalin, but the big secret is that the body uses saturated fats (and cholesterol) to make chill-out relaxing hormones that help you get to sleep.
MAKING IT OK TO EAT CHIPS
Speaking of PepsiCo, try as it may to cultivate a healthy image with foods like hummus, yogurt, kombucha, vegetable crisps and fruit-and-nut bars, the company relies on junk food for the lion’s share of sales. According to a report in the business section of The Wall Street Journal (April 22-23, 2023), the company is “quietly working to make its snacks and drinks a little less bad for you. . . gradually lowering the amount of sodium, saturated fat and sugar in its products.” PepsiCo is trying to “gradually reduce the sodium in Lay’s while keeping the snack brand tasty enough that consumers won’t notice. Experimental approaches include new salt crystals that deliver salty flavor faster to the taste receptors on the tongue, substitutes such as potassium chloride, different combinations of herbs and spices, and potato varietals developed at the company’s plant-breeding research station. . . that have a naturally saltier flavor without being higher in sodium.” The problem is that when people eat potato chips, they want a salty taste. Although it is not stated in the article, we surmise that a nasty little additive called Senomyx will be the main way that companies like PepsiCo achieve “sodium reduction.” Not listed on labels, but lurking as “natural flavors,” Senomyx tricks the taste buds into thinking they are tasting salt. But the body is not so easily fooled and might just eat a lot more potato chips to get the salt it needs.
HOW TO RUIN DINNER
A research and marketing website called factmr.com is predicting growth in reduced-fat meat products at a rate of 4.6 percent per year over the next ten years (December 21, 2022). Since “everybody knows” and the government keeps reminding us that saturated fat and cholesterol are bad for us, “reducing the total content of fat in processed meat is desirable as well as feasible.” Fat reduction will be accomplished with “combinations of various fat substitutes.” The problem is that folks don’t like these substitutes very much, so “. . . manufacturers are . . . trying to prepare meat that is similar to traditional meat based on taste, flavor, color, texture.” Companies expressing interest include vegetarian food producers like Amy’s Kitchen, the Vegetarian Butcher and Beyond Meat, Inc., which begs the question of whether sales of vegetarian products are stagnant. Meanwhile, anti-fat propaganda has already resulted in the reduction of animal fat in our diets. You can’t buy seventy-thirty ground beef any more, nor a rib-eye surrounded by one-half inch of fat. As for pigs, they are leaner these days because of the addition of a chemical called ractopamine to their feed. Ractopamine is banned in one hundred sixty countries, but not in the U.S.
Archeologists have found the remains of a Roman aristocrat woman in a cemetery near the city of Leeds, U.K., hailing the find as a “once-in-a-lifetime” discovery that bridges the gap between the ancient and medieval periods (NBC News, March 14, 2023). Artifacts found in her lead coffin will help investigators determine many things about the woman and how she lived, but what strikes us is the width of her jaw! The lower jaw is as wide as any Dr. Price photographed, and all her teeth are there! From this we can conclude that she grew up eating a nutrient-dense diet that probably included raw whole milk and cheese, butter and organ meats.
NOT SAFE FOR RATS
The plant-based Impossible Burger contains a protein called soy leghemoglobin (SLH) derived from genetically modified yeast. After some hesitation, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) allowed the addition of this novel protein in the burgers. Now it appears that the FDA’s decision was premature. Even though the study lasted only twenty-eight days, and involved only a small number of animals, a number of adverse effects in the SLH-fed group appeared: decrease in weight gain, changes in blood chemistry, decreased reticulocyte (immature red blood cell) count, decreased blood clotting ability, decreased blood levels of alkaline phosphatase (an indication of malnutrition or celiac disease), increased blood albumin (indication of acute infection or tissue damage) and potassium values (a sign of kidney disease), decreased blood glucose, decreased blood chloride (another indication of kidney problems), increased blood globulin values (sign of inflammatory disease or even cancer) and, in females, disruption of the reproductive cycle. Impossible Foods dismissed all these effects as “non-adverse” and “transient” (because some did reverse themselves after a few days). However, a longer-term study that would have provided more solid conclusions was never done. Adding to concerns, in 2019 Impossible Foods added even more soy to their burger product, replacing the wheat protein with soy protein made from genetically engineered soy, a probable source of glyphosate, a “probable carcinogen” (gmwatch.com, September 20, 2022).
CELL PHONES AND SMOKING: SAME PATTERN
A review of the most recent studies on the effects of electromagnetic radiation (EMR) and radio frequency (RF) radiation on various life forms, including humans, provides epidemiological evidence for cancer from cell phone use. The authors concluded that “substantial scientific evidence” indicates that “RF radiation causes cancer, endocrinological, neurological and other adverse health effects.” One of the authors, Devra Davis, PHD, MPH, declared, “This article is a clarion call for prevention and precaution.” Davis was particularly critical of the FDA, which commissioned a thirty-million-dollar National Toxicology Program (NTP) study on cell phone use in 2018. The study showed “clear evidence” that electromagnetic radiation is associated with cancer and DNA damage. The results were not what the FDA wanted, so the agency “began to trash talk their own study.” Davis describes the regulatory battle around RF radiation as similar to the scientific and regulatory battle around tobacco. Scientific debate “went on for years longer than it should have” about whether or not tobacco was safe for the environments of children, said Davis. The debate finally resulted in a ban on smoking in airplanes because “scientists and the public realized the studies suggesting tobacco was safe were ‘manufactured’ by the tobacco industry. . . and the same thing is happening now with RF radiation and the telecom industry” (childrenshealthdefense.org, March 3, 2023). Today we all accept the etiquette of not smoking around other people, and especially not in enclosed spaces such as airplanes, trains and buses. How long it will take before the public follows the same etiquette for cell phones and their use is banned on airplanes and other forms of public transportation?
CELL PHONE ETIQUETTE
Speaking of cell phone etiquette (or lack thereof), the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reports that over one hundred eighty people came down with Covid-19 after attending a conference of CDC’s Epidemic Intelligence Service officers and alumni, April 24-27, held in Atlanta, Georgia. According to a report in The Washington Post (May 27, 2023), “The outbreak of Covid-19 cases at the conference underscores the persistence of an evolving and highly infectious virus.” About 70 percent of the eighteen hundred attendees were maskless as they gathered in small rooms and engaged in lots of socializing, and more than 99 percent had at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine. We wonder whether anyone at all attending the conference suspects the saturation of Wi-Fi communicating with thousands of cell phones might have caused the outbreak.🖨️ Print post