Dr McDougall in Shocking Vegan Interview

McDougall

Let me start by saying this: Being a vegan is fine. I find the ethical arguments compelling and I’m impressed by people who manage to avoid animal products for ethical reasons. Also, I believe that most vegan food (supplemented by vitamin B12) is healthier than a standard Western diet.

That said, I was shocked when listening to a new interview with low-fat vegan advocate Dr John McDougall. A couple of days ago he was on Jimmy Moore’s podcast and, really, you have to hear it to believe it:

The LLVLC Show (Episode 686): Dr. John McDougall Pushes Starchy Diets For All

Here’s the problem:

Agricultural bliss?

Dr McDougall believes that everybody should eat a low-fat high-starch diet comprised of potatoes, rice, beans etc. and avoid meat, dairy and even olive oil. His main argument? Throughout “all of recorded history” every successful major civilization based their food intake on that kind of food.

That’s correct. It’s called agriculture.

Agriculture supplied the plentiful source of calories that allowed populations to grow big, starting 10,000 years ago or so. But that does not mean it’s healthy. Fossil records show a decline in human health and stature at the start of agriculture.

Furthermore, history did not start 10,000 years ago. Human evolution (depending on where you draw the line) has been going on for hundreds of thousands of years if not millions of years. Back then there was no agriculture.

Finally there were no vegan cultures, ever, during all of human history. People who completely avoided animal products for a long time died from vitamin B12-deficiency. So while agriculture supplied a lot of food it was never the only source.

Refined carbs

It’s quite possible that eating unprocessed starchy food like potatoes and rice, á la McDougall, is better than a standard American diet. After all, the refined carbs, processed food and enormous amounts of sugar are lost.

Jimmy Moore repeatedly tries to discuss this, but McDougall does. not. want. to. hear. it. He just won’t discuss that possibility.

Nasty personal attacks and hypocrisy

What’s really shocking on the podcast is the nastiness and the number of personal attacks. McDougall repeatedly brings up mr Moore’s weight struggles – “I’ve seen your pictures!” – as evidence that a high-fat diet does not work.

Then mr Moore tells him that he has lost 100 pounds eating like that and weighs less now than ever before in his adult life. McDougall’s answer? “You’re a study of one”, implying that it does not count, probably forgetting his own attack one minute earlier. Then McDougall repeats the personal attack again and again. I’m impressed that Jimmy Moore did not lose his temper.

McDougall’s next argument? “I’m a doctor and you’re not”, implying that it makes him right and mr Moore wrong. I wish life was that simple!

Low Carb vs. Plant Based

What shocked me even more was Dr McDougall’s repeated insistence that people watch a YouTube video called “Low Carb vs. Plant Based“:

It ranks among the most infantile things I’ve ever seen. Is this really the best argument Dr McDougall has? “I’m thin, you’re fat, therefore I’m right”?

PS

The vegans in the video are *extremely* thin, good for them. However, I wonder if they wouldn’t benefit from more high-quality protein, to put on some muscle mass. That may be a matter of taste though.

By the way I’ve met professor Loren Cordain and Dr William Davis recently and they’re in fine shape. Check them out on the Dr Oz show earlier this year: Cordain / Davis. And Jimmy Moore is thinner than ever.

And let’s not mention the high-fat badass #1, Mark Sisson, who was somehow not chosen to appear in the video. Update: But he was on “Vegan Island” with Dr McDougall six years ago. Check out his report.

More reactions to the show:

Controversial Interview Raises Ire, Rises To Top Of iTunes Health Podcast Charts

What do you think about it?

 

208 Comments

Top Comments

  1. Martin,
    I believe that many of the diseases of civilization are caused by the Western diet, that's high in sugar and refined starch, among other things.

    I'm not at all surprised if most (maybe all) people switching from a Western junk diet to a low-fat vegan diet will improve.

    Basically the Western processed food diet may be the worst ever in history. That's why "all diets work". Switch from the worst one to any other and it's an improvement.

    Reply: #16
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  2. Dan
    You know, there's another angle to this we should all remember--the rise of LCHF and the revelation of the good science behind it that refutes so much of the trendy-but-bad science that people like McDougall have been living off of for years (perhaps with good intent and just ignorance as their excuse--even "medical doctor" "qualified" ignorance is still dumb, y'know) means that many, many people who've been making a good living and a great deal of ego boosting fame out of that BAD science are now faced with a very real threat to their livelihoods and their egos. It is no different to note, as you've done on this site, the amazing hypocrisy of Coca-Cola sponsoring diet conferences than to see that a whole lot of McDougall's belligerence and attitude is because he's like any cornered animal--threatened, angry, and afraid. It doesn't make his position any more defensible or right, but perhaps it can help us to be a little less insensitive to his fear and anticipation of pain. Presuming, as we must unless we know otherwise, that he began his rise to prominence out of good intent and with honest motives, now that he's standing on top of, well, only slight joke re. the USDA intended, a "pyramid" whose foundations are crumbling and which he has to KNOW intellectually are at least threatened with utter collapse, no wonder he's so darned arrogant and angry! Granted, a more mature and self-enlightened person would have the grace that another one did in an earlier posting (sorry I forget the name) who told Gary Taubes "You were right, I was wrong." but most people aren't like that, alas. Basically, McDougall is in the position of the classic semi-joke statement "I'm not a brat! I'm NOT! I'm NOT! I'm NOT!" When "experts" with great prestige in the vegan/vegetarian community like him are this way, we certainly must expect even more nasty attitude from those lay people who've followed that misguided cause and invested not only money and effort into it but have, because like all such cults it demands and encourages this, invested a huge chunk of their self-identity and self-worth in it. I don't know about the rest of you, but I EAT a LCHF diet and feel better and am measurably healty for it, but I am NOT ANYTHING LIKE an "LCHF-ian" or an "LCHF-itarian" or whatever. My identity is based on my values and my character and not on my diet, but for Vegans and Vegetarians, that's not so. When you question what, to you as an enlightened sensible person, is their dietary science and choices, THEY HEAR you attacking them PERSONALLY. So let's not be too harsh on the sad case of Dr. McDougall, and let's remember this when we talk to less-famous folks who, like he has, simply got sold a bill of goods or wandered down the wrong path when searching for the truth.
    Replies: #138, #163
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All Comments

  1. erdoke
    Tina,
    I am not sure that LCHF implies a lot more meat than an average SAD.
    Competition level sports excluded, 15-20 % protein is perfectly fine in an LCHF depending on activity.
    On top of that there are some interesting theories about more efficient land use by grass fed animals: http://freetheanimal.com/2013/03/sustainability-sushmainability-grass...
  2. Carol
    I just visited Dr. McDougal's website and read through the material. For most of the time since 1987 and up to about 2 years ago I followed a diet pretty close to what Dr. McDougal recommends, and during a few of those years (recently) my diet was exactly as described. The closer I got to the McDougal diet, the higher my TGs went (reaching 453), the more weight I put on, and the more foggy my brain was and the greater my hunger between meals, which ultimately I scheduled 5-6 times per day so I could function without extreme hunger cravings. I now realize that I was pushing myself closer toward diabetes. Thankfully I was able to turn this around last year thanks to LCHF. I have also seen video lectures by Dr. Loren Cordain, and I am convinced of the evolutionary arguments against grain and high-carb diets. At least for me, the vegan/veg diets are just wrong, and I have the health markers to prove it.
    Reply: #153
  3. Galina L.
    I was never a vegetarian, but a no red-meat diet with the minimization of saturated animal fats and the emphasis on a lot of whole grains and vegetables and fruits was disastrous enough for me. I also have medical records to prove it. Before that I ate a home-cooked traditional Russian food, so I can testify that removing red meat and most saturated fats from a traditional diet makes such diet worse. Removing grains and seed oils(most Russians nowadays cook with sunflower oil), and adding saturated fats made my diet much healthier judged by results.
    I also want to add that in my opinion the indicator of a wrong diet is the increase of the sense of hunger and the need to eat more volume and more frequent than before.
  4. Chupo
    LCHF ≠ lots of meat especially If you follow anything like what Dr. Gundry or Nora Gedgaudas advocate.. A serving of meat about the size of a deck of cards would be all the animal protein you'd be eating PER DAY. The rest would come from plants. Then there is Eco-Atkins which is a high fat vegan diet.

    In my opinion, veganism would be a lot more successful if Eco-Atkins were embraced. Too many people just don't do well on typical low fat vegan diets.

  5. Chupo
    My last post was meant to be in response to Tina. As for "proper" LCHF, it would depend on whose definition you were using.
  6. Vfran
    Dr. Atkins was thin too - then they did an autopsy and found his LCHF diet caused him to have carotid artery blockage galore and he died of a heart attack. The Paleo people seem to not have learned from this and are repeating the way of Dr. Atkins.
    Read the China Study - which is a longevity study on cultures that have long life expectancy on a plant based diet vs. modern animal product consuming cultures - which have lower life expectancies and higher incidences of disease issues: diabetes, high blood pressure, etc. Perhaps Dr. McDougall did not articulate this but the evidence is out there. Also - you can follow the research of Dr. Neal Barnard and Dr. Dean Ornish - both who have spent their lives in research showing that plant based diets reverse Diabetes and Heart disease. People want to believe what they want to believe.
    Also - raising cows in particular is a high contributor to greenhouse gases - some say as much as cars.
    Replies: #157, #158, #159, #160
  7. erdoke
    You should do some reading before posting a bunch of wild claims. Every single sentence is full of evidence lacking statements.
    I don't understand the urge to play the missionary though. I have never had a similar temptation to visit vegan forums and plant the seed of my belief.
    NB, an LCHF can easily be plant based, even vegetarian.
  8. Chupo
    Every disease you listed has been shown in controlled trials to be improved by LCHF diets including carotid intima media thickness . I encourage you to take your blinders off and do research outside of the low fat vegan circles.
  9. Tina
    Vfran, Atkins did not die from a heart attack caused by artery blockage. He had an Iceskating accident and as a result a severe head injury, that made it necessary to take high dosages of steroids over a long period of time. His death was a result of the side effects of these steroids. And as for the China study: pretty much everything than a normal Western diet is healthier than a Western diet, so I would not be surprised that people live longer than that with a natural vegan diet. But that does not mean that a diet consisting of leafy vegetables and fish or grass fed beef isn't better for people with a wacky insuline sensitivity.
  10. Galina L.
    Actually, Dr.Campbel's take on the China study had so many flaws , that it allowed a young person who was interested in numbers enjoy tearing it apart http://rawfoodsos.com/the-china-study/.
  11. GoodStew
    I've never heard a more unethical, insecure response/interview from a professional in my entire 65 yrs. EVER. Dr. McNoogles clearly made a fool of himself and his so-called ethical followers should be embarrassed for him. If that's his best shot, it's time to retire "starch man"
  12. Truth
    To all leaving encyclopedia comments - you are missing the point. The last phrase pretty much sums this up- if these gurus follow their own diet, their results should speak for themselves. Either the diet doesn't work long-term or they're not following it. Any intelligent person should look at not just theories and innuendo - but results. That's what matters in the end.
  13. Truth
    All these words are just ranting. Where is your justification for anything you've said? Low carb diets deplete your body stores of glycogen, lack vital nutrients and create excess nitrogenous waste that are a burden on the kidneys. Multiple studies have show strong and irrefutable correlations with excess protein intake and cancers (breast, prostate and others) and destructions of the endothelial cells of human vasculature.
    Please do your research and try to avoid knee-jerk defensiveness and consider the facts, research them, and come to an intelligent conclusion based on facts.

    The Truth

    Reply: #164
  14. erdoke
    I feel like feeding the troll, so here you go:
    - What is the truth about LCHF providing "excess protein"?
    - What is the truth about LCHF "lacking vital nutrients"?
    - What is the truth about LCHF "create excess nitrogenous waste that are a burden on the kidneys"?
    - What is the truth about the connection of cancer and whole, natural foods high in protein?

    Please do your research and without that next time comment with a nickname of The Blatant Lies.

  15. Arletta
    There have been vegan cultures. Most notably, the Yowli tribe, who used to be cannibals but decided they would prefer a more peaceful way of life, so, started eating fire roasted yams - exclusively. They ate nothing but those yams for decades, before they were interrupted by white people, and, they were not crazy and they did not die.

    There is absolutely no proof that there were any humans more than 10,000 years ago or that agriculture did not start almost immediately after humans did. There is evidence that humans were created about 6,000 years ago and that they immediately became agriculturists.

    There is an extreme amount of evidence, undeniable even by people who believe in Darwinian fairy tales, that many cultures, for thousands of years, engaged in extensive fasting - 10 days, 20 days, 40 days, sometimes longer. Some of them did it on purpose and some of them did it under siege. None of them went crazy or died due to lack of meat, until they actually went crazy and died from STARVATION. As long as they were eating, or not starving to death, they were sane and alive.

  16. Arletta
    PS: Lest anyone burst a blood vessel whilst making an ineffective argument that doesn't need to be made, let me assure you of certain facts that I know:

    Many Native Alaskan tribes were almost exclusively meat eaters. Not exclusively, but, almost. Many Asian people were almost exclusively rice eaters, because, they couldn't get anything else.

    The aforementioned Yowli tribe was exclusively vegan and so exclusive that they only ate one vegetable, at all, ever.

    Now, crazy is a relative state of being, so, one could argue that any of those people were crazy. However, taking the broad view of sanity, wherein one is considered sane if the children are fed and whatever passes for house cleaning gets done, and other needful. things occur on a regular basis for most people involved, I would say they were all sane and they were, none of them, dying from their diets. Most of them were thin (enough), muscular (enough), and active (enough) to be considered healthy.

    The same is true, however, of many farmers and ranchers, many people who ate what they raised, etc. for thousands of years. Most of them were thin, muscular and active enough to be considered healthy, while eating the produce of agriculture.

    So, what changed?

    Science. Weird chemicals being added to foods. Pasteurization. The same few ingredients (like soy) being added to mostly everything, using thickening agents that are known to sicken people (carrageenan), and other unnaturalness. This includes what they pump into animals and then pump into their meat, once they are dead. And, it includes the way the animals and the plants are treated, while being raised, and, while being slaughtered.

    Those are the things that changed. Otherwise, humans have mostly adapted to be able to eat and be healthy wherever they are, so long as the food is natural, raised happily, and, remains mostly unprocessed.

  17. Chupo
    "There is an extreme amount of evidence, undeniable even by people who believe in Darwinian fairy tales, that many cultures, for thousands of years, engaged in extensive fasting - 10 days, 20 days, 40 days, sometimes longer. Some of them did it on purpose and some of them did it under siege. None of them went crazy or died due to lack of meat, until they actually went crazy and died from STARVATION. As long as they were eating, or not starving to death, they were sane and alive."

    What do you suppose they were living on during those fasts or periods of famine? Think about it.

    Reply: #186
  18. Tina
    Arlette, as long as you seem to define "evidence" as something you have read in a well known book and that you take literally, we are not coming together. However I think you are right about the fact that humans have adapted to different foods, that were available where they lived. But this is where evolution kicks in again. People with diabetic disposition in Asia have dies out long ago, because only carbs were available for most, and so everybody who's metabolism didn't thrive on them simply died too early to procreate. the same happened in other regions. People with very fragile kidneys probably didn't live long in innuit populations. People who had enough natural sources of Omega 3 fats and B vitamines did not any have evolutionary pressure to successfully digest milk. their offspring remained lactose intolerant. so, depending on our ancestors living conditions, we have different abilities to metabolise different foods. However on this page are people who ran into huge problems with their carbohydrate metabolism and they try to solve those by changing their diet. It does not really help them to be told by people with OTHER genetic dispositions, that carbs are great because THEY happen to be able to metabolize them properly. Good for them. But if I was one of them, I would never have typed "cannot lose weight despite extreme calorie restriction" - or "added weight on a pinapple diet" in google and would never have come across pages like this.

    I have no idea, Chupo, what your fasting argument has to do with it, Of course you can fast for 30-40 days or more. It's however, easier to start fasting, if your body runs on ketones anyway, because that's what it runs on, when you eat very few carbs. You will feel less hunger then.

    Reply: #191
  19. Paul
    Here's video of McDougall being dickish during a presentation. I follow his stuff, and he seems to be closer and closer to completely losing it. I'm looking forward to seeing it when it happens.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RhdiEYm26lI

  20. Christina
    I think parts of the article result from a lack of understanding. Firstly, he isn't saying that people have been eating starch for 10 thousand years. In various other talks, he gives evidence that even Neanderthals were eating starchy grains. More importantly, the theory that people ate low-carb in pre-agriculture times has been disproved by several leading anthropologists, some of which Mc Dougall cites in his works.
    It's also important to note that these vegans are not lean because they are not eating enough "high-quality protein". 15-20% of protein is way more than the body needs, even if you are an athlete. The WHO suggests that you should get 5% of your calories from protein, which is what you get when you eat nothing but potatoes all day. In fact, it is pretty hard to not get enough protein as long as you have enough calories. Protein is needed for growth and the time we grow most (as infants), we get all our nutrition from mother's milk, which does not have more than 5% protein. So, please, could anyone tell me why I would need more protein than an infant that doubles in size within a few months? Unlike fat and carbs, the body can't actually store protein and only turns it into energy when all other energy sources are unavailable, because it is such an inefficient source of energy. So, I'd rather get my glycogen levels up with carbs than eat unnecessarily much protein, which tends to come along with a lot of unhealthy fat. To anyone suggesting that starchy foods don't give you the "right" kind of protein, I would suggest testing the app cronometer, which tracks nutrition. Even on a vegan, high carb diet, I always get 100% of ALL essential aminoacids from my diet. There is no aminoacid that I cannot get in adequate amounts from a high carb vegan diet. None. I didn't believe it myself. I checked and it's true.

    Moreover, people in ancient times did NOT die from B12 deficiency. When the soils where still rich in nutrients and people didn't have to wash their produce vigorously because there was no pesticides, they got all the B12 they needed from the produce.

    I agree that Dr McDougall can come across as angry, but that is because he is passionate about his message. I do believe that the diet he suggests is healthy, but even if it wasn't, he is trying to counteract those diets that lead to an increased consumption of meat, dairy and eggs. Even if those foods were healthy, they still have absolutely devastating effects on the environment. If everyone ate a SAD, we would need 2 to 3 more planet Earth's to feed our population. With every pound of animal products consumed, we use up huge quantities of foodcrops and water that could be used to feed the 1 billion people who are currently starving. And live stock is the biggest emitter of greenhouse gasses, much worse than traffic. It's true that there are vegan low carb diets, but you cannot deny that since the Atkins diet came out, meat consumption has steadily increased and is often used to justify high consumption of animal products. This is a death sentence for future generations. It sounds drastic, but it's true. And that's why people have to argue passionately about these things, even if it seems offensive to some.

    Reply: #171
  21. erdoke
    Christina,
    Your post needs correction at several places, but I only have time (and knowledge) to add a few comments:
    – Protein intake should not be determined based on energy content as this macronutrient is ideally not utilized by the body as energy. Every single scientific paper I read on this topic talks about a range of 0.8-2.0 g protein on lean body mass as the adequate supply for both maintenance and growth where appropriate. A sedentary adult would still need that 0.8-1.0 g high quality protein (with great attention to methionine-glycine ratio) per 1 kg of lean body mass, regardless of talking about a 55 kg female or an 85 kg male. It is also worth mentioning that during weight loss, undergoing a hypocaloric diet, this amount might be higher due to decreased efficiency of protein metabolism under starvation.
    – I have high doubts about the app 'Cronometer' using the latest scientific evidence to calculate a balanced amino acid intake. Just imagine that the above mentioned important balance between methionine and glycine has not been taken into consideration by the USDA when forming dietary guidelines...
    – Diet speculations about what cavemen ate are of little value. On the other hand we do have a rather good picture on what native people ate from different places of the world just one or two hundred years ago. These are well documented and provide a much more accurate view on the topic. Even in the early 20th century, the Kitavans were a good example for a high plant and low animal based traditional diet. Eating coconut and fish is still an extremely healthy option today, I myself could easily go on such a diet to maintain my weight and stay healthy. Actually I include both options in quantities in my current diet. Guess what, it would contain around 65-70 % fat, 15-20 % protein, 10-15 % complex and 4-5 % simple carbs (all energy based).
    – Going vegan would only (very) temporarily release pressure from the human food chain and subsequently from the planet. Our fate is unavoidable as there is clearly no sustainable solution for an ever growing population. I don't see a significant difference between billions falling during a food war and billions being severely deficient in important nutrients. One or both are imminent... Death sentence is coded in our genes and then selection will go wild and determine which genes are fit for survival. There is going to be no place for altruism when those times arrive.
  22. Galina L.
    At the moment humanity should be more concentrated on the avoiding a food waste while discussing environmental impact of a food production. It is especially important for Western countries . It is ridiculous to complain about resources required for meat production versus grain production when substantial portion of all manufactured food ends up damped into a garbage. From the perspective of a waste avoidance animals provide a good outlet for the utilization of the food rejected by humans. Chickens and pigs eat everything, grass-eating animals could be raised in the areas unfit for an agriculture. I think, while a gloomy future of humanity is more likely unavoidable, in a meanwhile peoples will have to find different models of food production. May be cow manure should be utilized for raising worms which would be fed to chickens and farmed fish, may be more households would keep chickens and give to the chickens their leftovers, potato peels and stale bread, may be restaurants would be selling food leftovers to pig farmers.
  23. WDevil
    Why are vegetarians so angry? I did a vipassana meditation course a while ago and found a lot of people there, after the ten days of silence, very argumentative with things in the world and they were near on aggressive towards each other when they agreed about issues. I am glad I didn't bring up the word paleo.
    Joke for all:
    Q, How do you somebody is a vegetarian?
    A, they will tell you after they say their name.
  24. Carpl
    When I was a vegetarian, almost vegan with respect to diet, I was gaining weight steadily. Now, as a not quite paleo, my weight is stable, and I'm pretty sure I am consuming fewer calories without trying. During my days of weight gain, I was spending a lot of money replacing my wardrobe every so often, as my clothing from six months before was getting small. My health was poor, and I was going to the doctor more often. Given the obvious benefits of my current diet, I would guess that my carbon footprint is no larger now than it was then. A common argument forwarded by vegans in favor of their philosophy, including dr mcdougal, is that the vegan diet reduces carbon footprint. I am doubtful. I would like to see a rigorous calculation to support that notion, taking into consideration the collateral damage to the individual and to society of following a vegan diet vs vegetarian vs omnivore vs paleo.
  25. Justin
    This article is loaded with so many discrepancies and flaws I actually laughed more than a few times. John Mcdougall along with all the rest of the highly respected plant based "real" doctors have not only treated but cured and reversed the vast majority of our most deadliest degenerative diseases in their patients because this is truly how we are by nature designed to eat. We are herbivorous mammals and we always have been since our creation (yes I believe in the bible) when god created Adam and Eve he told them eat the vegetation. Never mentioning anything about slaughtering animals and eating their flesh. Even if you look at it from a evolutionary stand point our bodies are and biology are consistent with all other herbivorous animals on this planet. And as for the b-12 malarkey you went on about and saying primitive humans who ate plant based foods died out from lack of it is absurd and just flat out moronic. You need to educated yourself before you speak. B-12 is a vitamin that is only produced by bacteria. The problem is that we overly sterilize and sanitize everything in our culture forgetting that we need that benefitial bacteria to help provide us with b-12 among other things. We actually produce small amounts of it in our gut and out mouths (again, provided we don't sterilize out mouths with mouth wash and other thing of the like) before you try to delve into this please get informed and educated to the truth because you're way off the mark pal
    Reply: #176
  26. erdoke
    "Even if you look at it from a evolutionary stand point our bodies are and biology are consistent with all other herbivorous animals on this planet."
    I am somebody who actually learned evolutionary biology. This is a lie to put it simply. Even chimpanzees are omnivorous and humans to a much greater extent. Just dissect both and check the gastro-intestinal system, this is quite obvious. I did.
    It is not my intention to shake you in your beliefs, and it is always dangerous to enter into a debate with blind believers, but I'm sure you would be astonished the same way if I went to a forum where a bunch of the guys of your profession discusses related matters and started stating blatant lies.
    The final recommendation about getting informed and educated is outright ridiculous. If you have any education in evolutionary biology or even in animal physiology then urgently hand qualifications back and take some real courses. If you don't (in what I'm confident) I just don't see the basis of your statements.
  27. Tina
    Justin, are you serious? You mean the same God who loved Abel's sacrifice of a lamb and wasn't impressed by Kain's agricultural products? The one who helped harvesting fishes? The one who helped Isaak to slaughter a goat to betray his older brother for his inheritance. I'd find it pretty hard to come up with a vegan friendly bible analysis.
  28. steve
    His arguments are biased. He is an animal rights guy who doesn't like meat. He continually talks about what people used to eat, back in the day. He forgets that people used to perform manual labor to burn up the carbs.
  29. Mac
    You can debate this till the cows come home (no pun intended) but I am very grateful to Dr McDougall. On the day I was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes I happened to tune in to a public TV program featuring the said doctor. I was so impressed by his scientific reasons that I started the Starch Diet next day and I've kept to it ever since (3 years now). On my first A1C my figures were back to normal and have remained so ever since and I take no medication. I also lost 28 pounds and have never felt better in my life.
    For me the proofs in the eating.
    Reply: #180
  30. erdoke
    There are different ways of eating for improving insulin sensitivity. I prefer those that contain nutrient dense foods providing abundant source of amino acids, fatty acids, vitamins and minerals that my cells, tissues and organs need and also some fermentables fibers that nourishes my gut flora. All this while keeping insulin low.
    I just cannot understand why we should consider any special diet lacking or being low in some or many of these. Why mess with anything, but natural whole foods?
  31. cc
    You are very poorly educated on the subject. Its painfull to read.
    Reply: #182
  32. erdoke
    You should use the 'Reply' button, otherwise it is impossible to tell who you referred to.
    As far as I'm concerned, I have an MSc in molecular biology and did take some endocrinology courses as well. On top of that I've spent quite some time studying the underlying science of obesity, diabetes and CVD over the past 1.5 years. On the other hand I have to admit that my education was the kind of typical one with regard to failing to connect the dots between biochemistry, endocrinology and way of eating.
  33. Kiah
    There is never any point arguing on these types of posts. There's always someone trying to out score another with scientific fact etc so what's the point? What I would like to do is speak from personal experience. I was always a meat orientated type .Cooked traditional yet what I thought were relatively low fat healthy meals for my family with plenty of veg, dairy etc. Yet I struggled with my weight, my periods were painful and I had acne, even though I was approaching 40.Unlike so many others here, eating meat seemed to trigger an overeating response in me.When I ate that way with minimal carbs , I just wanted to keep on eating.I went to a plant based diet after reading Neal Barnards book and finally understanding the addictive nature of meat, dairy ( esp chocolate ).In just a few months I lost a heap of weight( around 25 pounds) people I hardly knew would stop me and comment . My skin cleared and my periods regulated .Friends say I'm "glowing".Now I want to be very clear. I haven't gone as low fat as the plant guys suggest. I still cook with a little oil, enjoy the odd hot chip and eat coconut yogurt, coconut ice cream and avocado. I also eat hummus , nuts , tofu cream cheese and taco shells. I drink beer! Guess what? I've still lost weight! I don't eat a lot of these foods and my urge to binge has disappeared.I eat a heap if fresh veges, fruit as well as starchy veg and whole grains. They keep me full for hours and result in none of the negative side effects I've heard about. Seriously , the poor ol complex carb the evil villlan?Even low fat beef has way more potential for harm. My blood pressure is super low and I feel vibrantly alive and happy . Ethically I am overjoyed I no longer contribute to the death of animals. In a well planned vegan diet, it is possible to stay super healthy and keep plenty of muscle mass. Just check out the vegan body builders and athletes if you're sceptical . I would never go back to animal products.
  34. Kiah
    Oh and by the way I am not angry. I am more joyous , calm and balanced than ever. I have heard quite a few people say that about vegans and it could be because quite a few of them are into animal activism.I have certainly become more aware of animal rights and the cruelty that can occur to animals pity there since beginning my vegan journey. It is a very eye opening experience.Modern day animal farming practices leave a lot to be desired.You can absorb an awful lot of antibiotics, pesticides and hormones when you eat meat. Even do called " free range". No one has really talked about that.
    Reply: #185
  35. Galina L.
    Kiah,
    My experience almost mimic yours with the only difference that I seriously limited carbohydrates and increased fat and red meat, but I don't eat much of a dairy. I was in a search of a diet for a better health and a weight management, and right before LCarbing I gave a try to the diet recommended by Dr. A. Weils, who is also the member of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine , as Dr.Neil Bernard. It was a complete disaster in my case, but it gave me the clue that limiting meat and increasing vegetables and whole grains was not for me. I started LCarbing for a migraines prevention, and it improved everything else.
    I have been cooking all my food all my life, so I was never a victim of modern industrial foods.
  36. Niki
    Hello vegetarians and vegans,
    I am a carnivor, yet I was primarily vegetarian most of my life. As a vegetarian, with a background in science (4 degrees), I was convinced it was the right thing to do. I went from 150 pounds and healthy to 250 pounds and became ridiculously Ill, so called doing all the stuff that vegetarians and vegans do. Then I experimented with LC and lost 50 pounds. Then I fell into vegetarianism again, worrying about cholesterol and heart disease, and gained it all back. And got sick again--this time almost died. Then I went back Lcarb and lost 20 pounds. Again I was worried about cholesterol etc, and went back on carbs, and gained it all back again. Never satiated. Oh and I have always exercised, training marathons, cycling, swimming, hiking, you name it. Then finally I read about high fat low carb, and decided to try, and also measure triglycerides etc... . My blood pressure went down, my cholesterol is low from high, and my hunger is controlled--really well, weight is dropping again. This time, I have added butter, olive oil, grass fed and raised animals, and I feel really good. I have stopped eating modern veggies, including night shades and cruxiferous, most legumes, and all my pain has gone. I used to suffer intestinal swelling, clogged liver (had to have gallbladder out) swollen joints, muscle pain, and it is all gone. I am off drugs for pain. I eat very little vegetables, and view them as condiments. I ad spices, and herbs, usually turmeric and pepper liberally. I add cream to my coffee, and drink a glass or two of wine a day. I don't drink anything unless it has been fermented. Best thing, the evidence in how I feel and the satiety, and the weight loss, is overwhelming so that this time, I am not going to stray back to my vegetarian past. I buy from the farmer directly, and also eat gags like they are going out of style. And eat fish of course. My stress levels used to be really high, and now they are low. I sleep like a baby, and wake up refreshed. I have a genetic background of Northern European, Central Europe and Middle East, and North Africa, Arabia, and Pakistan, so you cannot play the race card on me as I got it all. The evidence is the truth. I am a carnivor. It is not just a lifestyle choice
  37. Niki
    Correction, I said I do drink anything unless it is fermented, apologies as I forgot to say "juice". I drink water, coffee, teas as long as they are not fruity, and do not add any sugar. I do eat cheese, however it has to be really old, and only now and then. The best thing about the LCHF eating, isn't actually the weight loss. Yes, it is a wonderful side effect. I have lost and gained hundreds of pounds in my life and felt bad at the same time, except on LCHF. The best thing is feeling really good and satiated. My skin looks great! My concentration is awesome. I am not irritated easily, and I laugh so much more than when I was suffering on that rediculous low fat diet that I tortured myself with for all of my adult life. It is hard to smile when your tummy aches and you are hungry at the same time. But now, no tummy issues, and feel great and satiated. I used to have a finish line as a weight, but now the finish line is the rest of my life. I feel good, and the way that I should! So many vegetarians are miserable people, grumpy, depressed, dissatisfied, nasty, trying so hard to be perfect, on antidepressants. Sorry to digress, however life is not supposed to be that way. It is not about being holier-than-thou. I simply want to let you know just how good LCHF makes me look and feel. And the last post said gags--I meant to say eggs. Thank you Diet Dr. Niki
  38. user
    There was a completely vegetarian (what you call vegan, but I just do not like that word) culture in Asia. Buddhists were. And they did not die from B12 deficiency.
  39. Niki
    Hi. Vegans do not eat any animal products whatsoever. That includes milk. So they eat nuts, grains, vegetables, seeds. Oh and fruit.
    If it is meat or from an animal like milk, then it is not vegan. Vegetarians eat everything, or can eat anything that a vegan can, and can include, whether they define themselves as ovos (eggs) and milk. Some include cheese, some do not. How about that?
  40. Niki
    Whoops, I forgot to mention my Budhist backgrou
  41. Arletta
    Tina, I define evidence as evidence: the available body of facts or information indicating whether a belief or proposition is true or valid.

    The Bible, in and of itself, has withstood the tests of time as an accurate historical document, as regards to its accuracy as to both events that have transpired in our past and events that were alleged to be going to transpire in the future of the person making prophecy. There have been many people who started out doing studies and archeological digs with the hopes of proving something written in the Bible as false and they have, instead, proven that history happened as it says it did - even though so many historians, before that proof, denied it and told some other version of history.

    Before you judge a book, stop reading the cover and start reading the insides. If you are going to judge it as a scientist, set aside your skepticism, open your mind, and, actually study it as if it is something you want to understand. Many a fine scientist used to be an atheist,but, came to a belief in God due to delving further into their scientific resarch and realizing He is the only answer to their questions.

    I don't care if we come together or not. I mean, it would be nice if you and I believed the same things, but, your lack of belief doesn't change what I know is true. Nor does it change the fact that there is absolutely no evidence that the theory of evolution is either true or truly a theory. The only places it is provably right or the places where it agrees with the Bible. Dismiss the Bible as inaccurate, and, you then have to dismiss those parts of the theory of evolution that come into total agreement with it, and,t hen, where are you?

    That leaves Chaos and Creationism. Forfend we are left with those!

    Regardless of whether you agree on when man started, etc. you have to admit that no one really knows what anyone was up to 20,000 years ago, if they existed. No one knows who was growing plants, where, when or how. No one knows when agriculture started, if they don't even know when mankind started or what happened to him before he started writing books about it. Though, everyone who reads anything worthwhle on the subject, knows that many aboriginal cultures stopped and grew themselves gardens, and, almost all gathered wild plants, including grains and nuts and seeds, to eat; and, that some existed solely on the produce of the land, without resorting to the use of animals as food.

    They may not know about it happening 20,000 years ago, or even 10,000 - but, they know about it happening in the last few hundred years, as solid fact. There have been scientific studies, reports, films, books ... not just one book, and, not religious books, but, social studies books. It can't be denied by anyone who has done a modicum of study and has any truth in them that there are vegan cultures and that the people in them did thrive before they were forced to eat Westernized food products.

    Reply: #192
  42. erdoke
    You are perfectly right in at least one thing: We do know what agriculture has brought to this world during the last 3,000 years. In fact it is the single biggest disaster what humanity has done to this planet. Ruining soil and eradicating complete ecosystems, that's the result. It is way more deleterious than climate change and for some strange reason we still don't talk about it. Just look at what happened to the early areas of agriculture: the Middle East, Greece, the core of the Roman Empire – one thing in common, namely desertification of land. Least surprisingly the same has been happening to all modern centers of agriculture: big plains of China, North America, etc. No soil, no water.
    If there is an apocalypse coming it is mainly due to agriculture.
  43. Galina L.
    According to the scientific evidence, it was one of many glacial periods on Earth 20 000 years ago and the last glacial period ended about 10,000 years ago. During an ice age precipitation dropped significantly on the ares not covered by ice sheets, for example , there are evidence that lake Victoria , the source of Nile was complitely dry 16 000 years ago. I don't think all that was described in a Bible. According to the Genesis, biblical age of the earth and universe is about 6,000. As far as I know , science and Bible are in an agreement about the occurrence of a mega flood which happened as the result of melting glaciers when climate got warmer at the end of the last glacial period.
  44. Mauricio Trambaioli
    McDougall cohort
    http://www.nutritionj.com/content/13/1/99
    must be a joke .. things like that make not believing anylonger on "peer review"
    Reply: #199
  45. Niki
    Interesting that starvation also reduces cholesterol.
  46. Zepp
    Short time starvation is able to reduce several bad submarkers.. for a short time!

    Its not sustaineble for long time use anyhow and not a practicaly díet advice.

    Some have come up whit Itermitent fasting and 5:2 diet to have the best from different approches.

    But long time sustainebility and healt is more about eating real healty food.. what ever eating pattern one use.

  47. Niki
    A friend of mine who became a vegetarian vegan many years ago--gradually moved to being a vegan with no animal products, just died a slow and miserable death. He was in his early sixties, and he got so ill--I am convinced his lifestyle had something to do with it. What do you think? Possible?
    Reply: #198
  48. erdoke
    Yes, I think severe nutrient deficiencies can build up over time. Smart vegetarianism has certain advantages, especially over a so called Standard American Diet, but veganism and especially raw veganism is not only a crazy idea from nutritional perspective, but also from the "save the animal" point. These guys lack basic understanding of life sciences, in fact life itself. There is no life without death and the growing population of humans automatically brings death to plants and animals alike. Producing more plant foods kills as many animals as eating them directly if not more.
    Really environmentally conscious people worry about soil and water the most...
  49. erdoke
    Funny guy, indeed, with this 7 days "study".
    On the other hand there is no doubt that starvation (and I'm not talking about simple calorie restriction) has good impact on many biomarkers linked to modern diseases mainly via restoring insulin sensitivity. There is no need to set up a 7-day biased "study" to prove that.
  50. JerryME
    At 5"9", I've gone from 170 to 280 lbs. in the past 10 years. I've also lost 40 lbs during that time. My wife is 5'10" 140-145lbs during the past ten years. So on examination, she eats one serving of all food items during her meals ( meaning a small "normal" portion). And she eats very slowly and chews alot. I eat more, chew three times and swallow. Then I eat more after 9pm. She does not, well maybe some popcorn or 1/2 an apple. On Saturdays, once she is out of bed at 8, and done with a small breakfast, she normally does not sit down again till about 7pm. Same for a Sunday. Meaning she is active. She is always doing something. I am not like this, but I am trying.

    In regards to weight control, I've done All of the above a as discussed in the above comments, some for years.
    My conclusion is- small portions, one serving of whatever you want, and be active-try not to sit, like I do in car and in an office, and on couch watching tv. Remember, one serving of pasta is 2 ounces, and a serving of animal protein is 2-3 ounces.

    In regards to health, lots of water, small portions of whatever.

  51. Morgine
    One thing you fail to note is, every single person is UNIQUE. We are from different backgrounds and cultures. We are different genders. We live in different environments. We handle stress differently. Some of us are sensitive to some foods and not others. We are different blood types! Despite being heavy, I am rarely ill like my sister. When ill, I respond great to Echinacea and Goldenseal. I am an AB+ My former partner could not tolerate those. He would max out on Vitamin C and that worked for him and not me. He was an O-. I just want to add to the conversation there is a No One Size Fits All way of eating that is going to necessarily work for everyone on the planet!! That's our problem. We always want to argue what worked for us and it might not work for others. I will note that visiting Dr. McDougall's site is impressive. He gives Everything away free. You can follow his entire eating plan and not buy a thing. You can download all the information you need, no charge. He does not recommend a bunch of EXPENSIVE SUPPLEMENTS AND EXPENSIVE FOODS in order to be healthy! It cost less to eat this way! Free chat group to ask questions. He has more video testimonials than anyone I have seen in my 65 years for any product ever! Then there are the written testimonials. Some big companies like Whole Foods PAY for certain employees to take his 10 day course because it SAVES them on insurance bills! I admit it certainly will not work for everyone, however it is quite OBVIOUS it has worked for a LOT more people than any other diet plan I have ever researched ever... and I have been dieting for over 40 years! I am not recommending his way, just noting.... like someone else said... his manners may be lacking, however, he seems to GENUINELY CARE about our health and helping people and he is not in it "just for the money" as many writers of books who also sell their expensive pills, supplements, spirulina, hemp, chia seeds, mushroom extracts and all the rest! I have read many books written only for people who truly...can afford to pay MORE for those things each month, than the food they eat! Thanks for reading! Love everyone sharing their views!
  52. Donald
    "The Bible, in and of itself, has withstood the tests of time as an accurate historical document"
    -Arletta
    This is complete rubbish and you should take your idiotic proselytizing elsewhere. From (http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Evidence_for_the_historical_existence_of_Jesus_Christ):
    "The early years of the Roman Empire is one of the best-documented eras of ancient history; Jerusalem was a center of education; Jesus is claimed even to have had scribes following him and that the population at large was aware of him. [160] Yet not one single non-Christian document written before 93 CE mentions any 'Jesus', "

    Now to the matter at hand. The reason these vegans are getting more and more defensive if their precious, smug little world is falling apart around them. Witness the FDA's latest guidance that dietary cholesterol is "not a nutrient of concern". Notice how they are finally calling it a -nutrient-, because that is exactly what it is. Here is what is obvious to anyone taking a 30,000 ft view of human diet and its effect on general health: almost all cultures have been meat eating for tens of thousands of years, including the relatively brief flowering of agriculture. It's highly likely our increasing consumption of meat hastened our evolution from ape-like creatures to the humans we know today. When did the real modern problems with health start? When traditional agriculture transformed into high yield agriculture and modern day factory processing, making sweets, pasta, chips, etc. incredibly cheap and easy to consume on a per calorie basis. SOME persons have the genetic ability to eat a vegan diet and be trim and healthy, without very complex additional supplementation to make up for the nutrients lacking in plants. MOST people cannot. The most self-righteous person I've met in my life was a hardcore, in your face vegan from the mid 90s to the late 2000s, when her weight had ballooned up incredibly. She took every delight in telling me how wrong I was about not being vegan. China Study, blah blah blah study, I had to have it rammed down my throat every time we had an encounter. (she was the college best friend of my ex-wife and fiancee back then) Guess who lost about 100 lbs when she started eating meat again? As other people have pointed out in this thread, if people temporarily lose weight on a vegan diet, it's because ANYTHING is better than their previous diets. A 7 day study is a complete joke and proves nothing.
    I'm all for people doing as they please: if being vegan works for you, by all means, be vegan. Even though the vast majority of vegans I've met have been overweight. But please, give up the shaming of the rest of us. It's not going to work anymore. The ruse is up. Guess what? Veganism seems pretty much like a farce to most intelligent non-vegans these days. You might as well be touting scientology. The less meat in my diet, the flabbier and fatter I get. It's as simple as that. I've been progressively cutting carbs out of my diet and people are telling me I look better than I've looked in 15 years. Deal with it.

  53. Rob
    Haha Low Carb is for people who want an easy way to slim down and still eat a tasty but unhealthy diet. Its a free choice but over the long term your heart and colon will not thank you. Low carb gurus are mostly fat and unhealthy. Vegan health gurus are slim and athletic. Who would you listen to?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2zVxA6yipv4

    I'm a vegan, take in 90-100g of veg protein daily and can assisted flat bench 405 lbs, 365 raw with nobody unracking the weights for me. My cholesterol went from borderline very high to low within 6 months after switching to a vegetarian mostly plant based diet. No statins or any other drugs.

    Reply: #204
  54. erdoke
    You do whatever you feel fit, but please stop creating a religious war about your diet. Which in fact never existed in human history. Feel free to ruin your teeth, but leave us alone.
    By the way, have you had the chance to have a look at Dr. Eenfeldt? Does he look like fat and unhealthy?
  55. Kali
    Check out the article "Human Ancestors Were Nearly All Vegetarians".

    http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/2012/07/23/human-ances...

  56. Scott
    Most diet "experts" are missing the point. The point that needs to be stressed is that each of us have our own metabolic profile. If you feel best on a low-fat diet and are healthly on such a diet, then that is the diet for you. If you do best on a reduced carbohydrate diet, then so be it. A healthy diet is one that provides you the nutrients and macronutrient ratios that work best for you. No one diet is right for everyone. With some experimentation almost anyone can fine tune thier diet to provide improved health.
  57. CTFU VEGAN
    Hi,
    The only diet proven to reverse heart disease and diabetes is a: LOW FAT HIGH CARB VEGAN DIET. http://www.pcrm.org
    What you are promoting here is a diet that will accelerate diabetes, heart disease, and cancer risks greatly and should be ashamed at the damage you are doing to people.
    Animal proteins of all kinds are as insulinogenic as pure white table sugar.
    Clean plant carbohydrates are the best cleanest fuels for the human body as all 210 cell types RUN ON GLUCOSE, not fat or protein.
    Please eat some coconut oil and go run a marathon or even a half marathon, then do a mcdougall style dinner based on rice corn or potatoes WITHOUT OIL BUTTER CHEESE LARD BACON AND EGGS OR FISH and then repeat the running trial and let us know your results. K? thanks low carb frauds.
    Reply: #208
  58. Zepp
    The Two Big Lies of Type 2 Diabetes

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FcLoaVNQ3rc

    "LCHF to manage Diabetes"

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=epsSVosmtUc

    One have to make a differens betwen religius belives and science!

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