Are the Food Police killing us?

by Kerry Cue

 Sibylesque diet Quote

Who are the Food Police? Epidemiologists. They juggle statistics and advise governments. They do good work with diseases. Where? Why? How?

But their diet advice is often iffy.

‘At best they can show only association, not causation. Epidemiological data can be used to suggest hypotheses but not to prove them.’

Nina Teicholz, The Government’s Bad Diet Advice, NYT, 20 FEB, 2015

So what are some of the backflips in Government dietary advice in recent years:

  • salt is not that bad
  • red meat is not that bad
  • fat is not that bad
  • and now, guess what, cholesterol is NOT THAT BAD.

See Why we eat ourselves crazy on this blog.

Sibylesque desserts

The US Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee’s hysterical fear of fat in recent decades gave support to low-fat foods, which, because of their high-sugar content, may have significantly contributed to obesity and therefore other chronic diseases.

‘Over the past 50 years, we cut fat intake by 25 percent and increased carbohydrates by more than 30 percent, according to a new analysis of government data. Yet recent science has increasingly shown that a high-carb diet rich in sugar and refined grains increases the risk of obesity, diabetes and heart disease — much more so than a diet high in fat and cholesterol.’ Mark Bittman, How Should We Eat?, NYT, 25 FEB 2015.

Meanwhile, cholesterol has come in from the cold. All those eggs you didn’t eat and all those egg white omelets you did eat have not helped your cholesterol levels. The US Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee has recommened that dietry cholesterol is not much of a problem. Mark Bittman, How Should We Eat?, NYT, 25 FEB 2015.

In other words, when dealing with the Food Police take their recommendations with a grain of salt, a lashing of cream, a scrambled egg and some leafy green vegetables (everyone thinks they’re a good idea).

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Why we eat ourselves crazy

by Kerry Cue

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dark green quote 1A big, juicy burger to anyone who knows what healthy eating is any more.

dark green quote 2

Owen Jones, The Guardian, 22 May 2014

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Sibylesque Mad Professor labOnce all scientific research was filtered through the peer review process. Initial studies were tested by others and if the results could be replicated, they were eventually published in mainstream papers.

These days, to get funding, researchers release their results directly to newspapers. Later studies may show that the initial research was flawed but the damage is already done.

Here are 6 ways the healthy food message messes with our minds:

1.Oops! Crazy Professor (Superfood Claim Superbollocks)

2. Too many statisticians spoil the broth (Eat Meat and Die. Oops! Got the maths wrong.)

3. Seemed like a good idea at the time (Stop Oxidants? Stop Breathing! The Antioxidant Hoax)

4. Just made that one up (Drinking 8 glasses of water a day for Dummies),

5. Getting carried away with numbers again ( Winning the Salt Wars or Never Trust a statistician)

6. How marketing controls your mind (Would you eat a button? Millions do!)

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