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  • kimyo

    if animal fat is the problem, then you need to explain why human breast milk contains 50-60% animal/saturated fat (by energy content). there cannot be a more suitable food for infants. this is proven by the fact that we’re here today, after ~7,500 generations, not to mention the hundred of thousands of generations of those who came before us.

    Breastfeeding could prevent 800,000 child deaths, Lancet says

    Children who are breastfed for longer have higher IQs, lower death rates and less risk of infection than those who are breastfed for shorter periods or not at all, the research found.

    if there is data which shows that infants fed a vegan/vegetarian diet show similar or improved weight gain/brain function/resistance to disease, provide it. i’ve looked, to no avail. if anything, the conclusion is quite the opposite.

    (i’ll admit i had to turn off the video after 5 minutes, the know it all tone was just too much. broken heart disease is real, for sure. but that certainly doesn’t deliver any confirmation that in vitro studies of testicular cells dosed with cortisol provide useful, real world, actionable data.)

    • Robert Barsocchini

      nutritionfacts.org for all the info you requested. Another benefit: longer life. Eating mostly unprocessed vegan may add 14+ years.

      Couple books to check out: How Not to Die, and Proteinaholic

      • kimyo

        nutrition facts has bupkiss on comparative studies showing positive or negative outcomes of infants fed a vegan/vegetarian diet. why would you make such a claim?

        we’ve been here before. that 14+ years claim is not supported by any real data. please link to scientific journals, instead of giving me book titles.

        Mortality in vegetarians and nonvegetarians: detailed findings from a collaborative analysis of 5 prospective studies

        Further categorization of diets showed that, in comparison with regular meat eaters, mortality from ischemic heart disease was 20% lower in occasional meat eaters, 34% lower in people who ate fish but not meat, 34% lower in lactoovovegetarians, and 26% lower in vegans. There were no significant differences between vegetarians and nonvegetarians in mortality from cerebrovascular disease, stomach cancer, colorectal cancer, lung cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer, or all other causes combined.

        NO SIGNIFICANT DIFFERENCES. comprehend?

        • Robert Barsocchini

          You seem very emotional and ideological about this. This is just about science. Specifically it is about meta studies of all available nutrition science. There is info at the site on everything you asked about, all sourced from journals, and much more in the books. If you are really interested in your health and the health of your family, take time and read the books and go through the site. If you insist on getting the info from me giving it to you personally, not just in sporadic WB posts or book titles, I’ll need money for that bc I’m not going to take the time otherwise. however I have given you the resources and you can use them if you choose.

          • kimyo

            if you truly believed it, you’d provide the link to support your ‘add up to 14 years’ claim. where is that study? the readers here would benefit greatly from this information.

            when you bring my motivation into the discussion we stop talking about the problems with your ‘solution’. it doesn’t matter if i’m emotional or if i’m a vulcan. that has zero bearing on the matter at hand.

            previously you’ve claimed that ‘everyone knows americans get too much protein’. that is false.Increased protein requirements in elderly people: new data and retrospective reassessments.

            Together, the current and retrospective nitrogen-balance data suggest that the mean protein requirement in elderly adults is considerably greater than the 0.60 g.kg-1.d-1 established by the 1985 Joint FAO/WHO/UNU Expert Consultation. A safe protein intake for elderly adults would be 1.0-1.25 g.kg-1.d-1 of high-quality protein

            a 150 lb senior requires 68-85 grams of protein per day.

            thats more than 2 pounds of tofu per day. if one prefers veggie dogs, you’d have to eat 10 a day. like edamame? 5 cups please. every day. grilling this weekend? how does 6 1/2 veggie chick’n burgers sound to you?

            an active teenager of similar weight has similar requirements. none of the teenagers or seniors i know are getting enough protein.

            finally, ask yourself – cui bono if the world switches to a soy-based diet? why, it’s monsanto, saving the world by giving us gmo soy dessicated with roundup.

          • Robert Barsocchini

            So, science isn’t about belief. It’s about looking at the evidence comprehensively and objectively. Your statements illustrate that you haven’t done that, hence some of your current misconceptions and disbelief. What I’ll go ahead and do is give you some exact references, then I’ll give you some quotes from a free source. Going forward, what I’ll probably do is put together a pamphlet with full quotes and references and make it available for a modest fee, and donate any profits over a certain amount.

            On adding 14 (to 20) years of life see Proteinaholic chapter 14, Preventing Premature Death, particularly page 235, and How Not to Die, pp. 133-4, for example (though the whole book is rife with such info and approaches 800 pages).

            Here’s some info you would have found if instead of getting mad you had taken some time to look at some of the sources I had already provided:

            “We know vegetarians live longer, but because a pure vegetarian diet might not easily be embraced by many individuals, maybe it would be easier to swallow if we just tell people more plant-based foods, less animal-based foods. But would just moving along the spectrum towards more plants actually enable people to live longer? They thought of this food pattern as a “gentle approach” to vegetarianism, figuring that if it improved survival it would be an easily understandable message for health promotion: more plant foods, less animal foods.

            So you get points for eating fruit, vegetables, nuts, grains, beans, olive oil, and potatoes, but get docked points for any animal fats, eggs, fish, dairy, or any type of meat or meat products. Of course that means you get a higher score the more potato chips and French fries you eat. That’s why I prefer the term “whole food plant-based” diet since it’s defined by what you eat, not by what you don’t eat. When I taught at Cornell, I had “vegan” students who apparently were trying to live off French fries and beer; vegan does not necessarily mean health-promoting. But did it work? Regardless of healthy vs. unhealthy, if you give points to people for any kind of plant food, processed or not, and detract points for any kind of animal product consumption, do people with higher scores live longer? Yes. The maximum pro-vegetarian score is 60, but even just scoring 40 or more was associated with a 40% drop in mortality. In fact, there were so few deaths in the highest category of adherence to the pro-vegetarian diet, they had to merge the two upper categories for their analysis. This is evidence that simple advice to increase the consumption of plant-derived foods with reductions in the consumption of foods from animal sources confers a survival advantage, a live-a-longer-life advantage.”

            http://nutritionfacts.org/video/do-flexitarians-live-longer/

            A Trichopoulou, C Barnia, D Trichopoulos. Anatomy of health effects of Mediterranean diet: Greek EPIC prospective cohort study. BMJ. 2009 Jun 23;338:b2337.

            M L McCullough. Diet patterns and mortality: common threads and consistent results. J Nutr. 2014 Jun;144(6):795-6.

            A Trichopoulou, M A Martinez-Gonzalez, T Y Tong, N G Forouhi, S Khandelwal, D Prabhakaran. D Mozaffarian, M de Lorgeril. Definitions and potential health benefits of the Mediterranean diet: views from experts around the world. BMC Med. 2014 Jul 24;12:112.

            M A Martinez-Gonzalez, A Sanchez-Tainta, D Corella, J Salas-Salvado, E Ros, F Aros, E Gomez-Gracia, M Fiol, R M Lamuela-Raventos, H Schroder, J Lapetra, L Serra-Majem, X Pinto, V Ruiz-Gutierrez, Ramon Estruch for the PREDIMED Group. A provegetarian food pattern and reduction in total mortality in the Prevención con Dieta Mediterránea (PREDIMED) study. Am J Clin Nutr. 2014 May 28;100(Supplement 1):320S-328S.

            C Chrysohoou, C Sefanadis. Longevity and diet. Myth or pragmatism? Maturitas. 2013 Dec;76(4):303-7.

            J Reedy, S M Krebs-Smith, P E Miller, A D Liese, L L Kahle, Y Park, A F Subar. Higher diet quality is associated with decreased risk of all-cause, cardiovascular disease, and cancer mortality among older adults. J Nutr. 2014 Jun;144(6):881-9.

            G E Fraser, D J Shavlik. Ten years of life: Is it a matter of choice? Arch Intern Med. 2001 Jul 9;161(13):1645-52.

            D B Panagiotakos, C Chrysohoou, G Siasos, K Zisimos, J Skourmas, C Pitsavos, C Stefandis. Sociodemographic and lifestyle statistics of oldest old people (>80 years) living in ikaria island: the ikaria study. Cardiol Res Pract. 2011 Feb 24;2011:679187.

          • kimyo

            since when is the mediterranean diet a vegetarian diet?

            the cultures with the highest longevity are not vegetarian. on okinawa, sardinia, and ikaria they not only eat plenty of seafood, they also consume pork belly (see here and here)

            We know vegetarians live longer

            this claim is not backed up by any of articles you listed (i wasn’t able to read all of them, as some are behind a paywall).

            the wsj banners: Vegetarians Live Longer Than Meat-Eaters, Study Finds (but it pays to read the fine print)

            The Loma Linda researchers used a questionnaire to categorize participants into groups based on their diets.

            The categories include nonvegetarians and people considered semi-vegetarians, who eat meat more than once a month but less than once a week. In addition to meat, vegans eliminate dairy and eggs from their diets.

            Others eat fish, in addition to the cohort that eats no meat but consumes dairy and eggs. For many of the analyses, the researchers lumped all of these subsets of people together as simply “vegetarians.”

          • Robert Barsocchini

            I haven’t seen the term “plenty of” too often in scientific literature. Probably because it’s not very specific. But in the Blue Zone diets – the diets of the longest living people – the vast majority of their calories do not come from animal sources, but from unprocessed plant foods (ie sweet potato in Okinawa, where premature mortality rates are rising with incursion of Western diet). “Through the history of our time on Earth, no culture that has thrived on a high protein diet. Some culture have eaten such a diet. But when they do, they do not thrive. Without a single exception, they survive while suffering higher rates of disease, disability, degeneration, and premature death”, as in the US and other Western countries. Proteinaholic, pp 18

            Here’s my original quote again: “Eating mostly unprocessed vegan may add 14+ years”. That’s what they do in the blue zone diets, and is apparently why they live so long. Proteinaholic looks at the Blue Zone diets at length; see cited chapter for example.

            From there, you can go further and see what happens when you look at the effects of specific animal products on people:

            “Meat consumption is correlated with all-cause mortality, heart disease, and diabetes. Egg consumption is correlated with mortality and heart disease in women, and colon cancer in men and women. And as milk consumption increases, so does prostate cancer.” Proteinaholic, pp. 236

            If you would like to respond, I would ask that you first read the topic pages on nutritionfacts.org for any specific product you have questions about, be it fish, eggs, milk, land animal meat, etc. You will see that consumption of these products increases rates of disease, cancer, etc..

            For example, from the topic section on Fish: “Fish consumption has been linked to a wide range of conditions including amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), type 2 diabetes, kidney stones, atrial fibrillation, lower child intelligence, smaller infant brain size, shortened telomeres, lower sperm counts, lower testosterone, more symptoms of depression, anxiety, and stress, and earlier puberty.”

            http://nutritionfacts.org/topics/fish

          • kimyo

            The one population that appears to live longer than Okinawans eats a
            100% meat-free diet, and lives ten to fourteen years longer than general
            US population.

            which population is this? also, what is your source for ‘okinawans eat 1% fish’?

            i have reserved ‘proteinaholic’ at my local library. i promise to read every page. perhaps in return you will consider reading denise minger’s take on dr. davis’ work. if nothing else, you will have to admit that she’s ten times cuter than him (plus, 100x more hilarious. her book ‘death by food pyramid’ is a great read.)

            Proteinaholic: Is it Time to Sober Up From Animal Foods? (A Review and Critique)

            CLAIM: Continuing with the primate theme, Davis writes: “If you look at comparative anatomy of humans and other animals, we are much more related to chimps … What do chimps eat? Plants, plants, and more plants, with an occasional insect chaser. Very rarely do they eat other monkeys, and only in times of food scarcity” (page 100).

            REALITY: This is a two-part blunder. One, although humans are definitely more anatomically similar to chimps than to, say, a duck or a set of Yahtzee dice, the differences we do possess are important ones. The chimpanzee gut is dominated by the colon, while the human gut is dominated by the small intestine—a proportional shift that indicates we’re better equipped to handle dense foods like meat and cooked starches than bulky plant roughage (7). So, comparing human anatomy to chimps’ actually undermines the idea that our optimal diet resembles theirs.

            CLAIM: Regarding Sylvester Graham, an early pioneer of the vegetarian movement (and originator of the much-loved Graham cracker), Davis says, “My favorite argument of Graham’s which has lost no validity over the years, is that orangutans and gorillas clearly prove that you don’t have to eat meat or dairy products to remain strong” (page 60).

            REALITY: If this claim hasn’t lost any validity, it’s only because it had none to begin with. Unlike humans, orangutans and gorillas are fabulous hindgut fermenters—boasting huge colons full of cellulose-degrading bacteria that turn otherwise indigestible food into energy. (Think: twigs, bark, pith, and tough-as-leather foliage that make kale seem like tissue paper by comparison!)

            Gorillas can wolf down over 40 pounds of vegetation in a day, and due to the sheer volume of food they consume, actually ingest an incredible amount of protein. Depending on the season, their protein intakes range from “similar to those recommended for humans” to “close to the maximum recommended for humans and similar to high-protein human weight-loss diets”
            ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
            A recent combined analysis of the Oxford Vegetarian Study and the EPIC-Oxford cohort found no overarching mortality benefit from nixing all animal foods (164). And although vegetarians and vegans as a collective group seemed to have some advantage, it disappeared for vegans when they were analyzed as a separate category. According to the researchers:“Separating the vegetarians and vegans for the 6 most common causes of death did not reveal any statistically significant differences in mortality between vegans and regular meat eaters.”

            In fact, although the numbers didn’t reach statistical significance, vegans actually had the highest rates of all-cause mortality, respiratory diseases, cerebrovascular disease (including stroke), and malignant cancer.
            ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
            ….here’s Davis’s take on this paper: “When vegans, lacto-ovo-vegetarians, pesco-vegetarians, and semivegetarians were combined into one group, they had a 12 percent lower risk of mortality than the nonvegetarian Adventists. … Vegans by themselves had a 15 percent lower risk of death, but it did not quite reach statistical significance” (page 228).

            What’s missing from this picture? Something fishy! When each diet group was analyzed separately, seafood-eaters actually came out ahead, beating the vegans for all-cause mortality, ischemic heart disease, and cardiovascular disease protection.

          • Robert Barsocchini

            I will certainly look into the book and put it on my reading list, though Minger appears to be an English major from Arizona state. Dr. Davis addresses and debunks some of the major claims made by lifestyle bloggers in the book in question.

            For example, in chapter 8, Research Truth and BS: How to Speak Science, he addresses a simple error he has seen made by non professionals: “many weight loss and fitness bloggers confuse lean body mass with total body weight”. This kind of confusion is apparently common.

            As to your question: “which population is this? also, what is your source for ‘okinawans eat 1% fish’?” see first link in previous comment.

            Glad to hear you will read Proteinaholic, and I hope you read How Not to Die (also by a doctor), spend time on nutritionfacts.org, run by a doctor, and keep up with updates.

          • kimyo

            can’t you just name the population? i follow the link and i find nothing…..

            i’m a reader, i don’t do videos. the transcript says nothing about 10-14 years longer life expectancy.

          • Robert Barsocchini

            The link works and the transcript does indeed say it. You can read and copy and paste it here yourself. Since we are winding down I will make this my last comment for now, but I’m sure we’ll talk again soon. – RB

          • kimyo

            it didn’t dawn on me that you were referring to adventists. have you chosen to ignore the wsj quote?

            Others eat fish, in addition to the cohort that eats no meat but
            consumes dairy and eggs. For many of the analyses, the researchers
            lumped all of these subsets of people together as simply “vegetarians.”

            that’s gotta skew the results a least a little, yes?

            ps: “English major….lifestyle bloggers”. if your arguments are strong enough, ad hominems wouldn’t be necessary.

          • Robert Barsocchini

            All right, ya dragged me back in 😉

            I’ll paste it for you: Okinawans, the second longest living population: “Less than 1% of their diet was fish; less than 1% of their diet was
            meat, and same with dairy and eggs, so it was more than 96% plant-based,
            and more than 90% whole food plant based—very few processed
            foods either. And, not just whole food plant-based, but most of their
            diet was vegetables, and one vegetable in particular—sweet potatoes.

            The plant-based nature
            of the diet may trump the caloric restriction, though, since the one
            population that lives even longer than the Okinawa Japanese don’t just
            eat a 98% meat-free diet, they eat 100% meat-free. The Adventist
            vegetarians in California, with perhaps the highest life expectancy of
            any formally described population.

            Adventist vegetarian men and
            women live to be about 83 and 86, comparable to Okinawan women, but
            better than Okinawan men. The best of the best were Adventist
            vegetarians who had healthy lifestyles too, like being exercising
            nonsmokers, 87 and nearly 90, on average. That’s like 10 to 14 years
            longer than the general population. Ten to 14 extra years on this Earth
            from simple lifestyle choices. And, this is happening now, in modern
            times, whereas Okinawan longevity is now a thing of the past. Okinawa
            now hosts more than a dozen KFCs.”

            I hope you won’t be surprised to hear that the Adventists are one of the most studied populations. There are many studies over many years. Dr. Gregger notes the population studied above is 100% meat free, close to the Okinawans being at least 96% meat free, including 1% fish. If you actually looked at my source material you would have learned this.

            Media reports notwithstanding (Davis discusses the specific study wherein vegetarianism was conflated with low meat consumption, etc.), veganism, in addition to vegetarianism, has also been studied in the Adventists: “We’ve seen that populations that eat less meat tend to have less cancer. Adventist studies show that vegans are more protected than vegetarians and moderate meat eaters. We know that vegans have lower levels of IGF1 and PhIP, and we know people with high IGF1 are predisposed to a variety of cancers.” Proteinaholic, 229

            There are also other studies you may be interested in looking at: “Ornish and Blackburn have shown us that a low fat vegan diet can control prostate cancer, not just by altering out hormonal balance but also changing our very chromosomes.” (229-30 ibid)

          • kimyo

            please do me the courtesy of a yes/no response.

            The best of the best were Adventist vegetarians who had healthy lifestyles too

            did this group include individuals who ate cheese, fish or eggs?

          • Robert Barsocchini

            So, the question was, can eating mostly unprocessed plant-based lengthen your life by 14+ years. To answer in scientific terms, it appears that may be the case, as noted by professional sources quoted and cited above. (The + comes in when you look into specific ailments like diabetes; I gave you a page number reference in HNTD that discusses how vegetarian/vegan can add 20 years to life in this regard.)

            Here’s some more info on eggs: ”

            Despite the powerful egg industry’s best efforts to put a “healthy” spin on egg consumption, eggs contain high levels of cholesterol and may contain carcinogenic retroviruses, heterocyclic amines, toxic pollutants (such as arsenic, perfluorochemicals like PCB, phthalates, flame retardant chemicals, dioxins), and Salmonella (see here and here). Consuming just one egg per day may significantly shorten our lifespans, increase the levels of the cancer-promoting growth hormone IGF-1, and increase our risk of heart disease, kidney stones, stroke, type 2 diabetes, gestational diabetes, and some types of cancer (such as pancreatic, breast, and prostate).

            Eating a plant-based diet may improve mood, lead to weight loss, lower the risk of cataracts, neurological diseases, food poisoning, heart disease, diabetes, asthma, help reverse rheumatoid arthritis, and may increase lifespan. This may be due in part to the arachidonic acid, cholesterol, sulfuric acid, choline, methionine, and sex hormones in eggs and the relative lack of antioxidant phytonutrients.”

            Lot of these terms are links but don’t paste in. http://nutritionfacts.org/topics/eggs

            Here’s some on dairy (same with links): ”

            The first US dietary guidelines were issued in 1980 and recommended against saturated fat intake (found primarily in dairy), which was highly protested by the dairy industry. The dairy industry has sponsored groups that minimize the potential health risks of dairy, using misleading studies that confuse the public into thinking saturated fat intake is not harmful. Dairy industry funding may be so influential that no studies financed completely by the industry had any unfavorable findings.

            Dairy products are not only high in saturated fat, but they are low in a number of beneficial dietary components such antioxidants, ergothioneine, an amino acid that may help protect our cells; and fiber, a nutrient that 97% of Americans are deficient in. Along with saturated fat, dairy products also contain cholesterol, trans fats, endotoxins, Neu5Gc, choline, all of which may raise the risk of inflammation, heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and increased overall mortality risk.

            The hormones in dairy products (including skim milk) may not only promote acne, but also contribute to risk of premature puberty, multiple pregnancies (which are riskier to both mother and children), breast cancer, prostate cancer, other hormone-dependent cancers, declining sperm counts, excess estrogen, and heart disease.

            Industrial toxins such as dioxins, flame-retardant chemicals, PCBs, and perfluorochemicals in the dairy supply may in part account for the relationship between dairy intake and increased risk of cancer, Parkinson’s disease, lower testosterone levels, and obesity. Pesticides and antibiotics can also build up in dairy fat. An analysis of the diets of California children found the top food source of lead as well as banned pesticides and dioxins to be dairy products.

            Overall, then, the health conditions dairy intake appears associated with is wide-ranging, including accelerated aging, being overweight, canker sores, kidney stones, childhood asthma, constipation, prediabetes and diabetes, prostate and other cancers, heart disease, imbalanced hormones, mucus, Parkinson’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis, rising blood pressure, skin wrinkling, sudden infant death syndrome, ulcerative colitis, bacterial vaginosis, and Multiple Sclerosis. Dairy intake may also impact global warming. Dairy production contributes a large amount of greenhouse gases.”

            http://nutritionfacts.org/topics/dairy/

            Fish was covered above.

          • kimyo

            was that a yes or a no?

            if you google ‘okinawa diet percentage fat protein carb’ the top result shows okinawans eating either a diet of 9% or 15% protein.

            isn’t it fraudulent to define vegetarians as those who consume eggs, fish and dairy? don’t we want the best science to surface?

            can’t we agree on this one statement? ‘the best of the best’ include those who eat eggs, fish and cheese.

            that’s the conclusion of the adventist study. yes?

          • Robert Barsocchini

            “was that a yes or a no?” I don’t see professional sources making highly certain proclamations. The answer is that it appears to be the case, as quoted and cited above, at referenced sources, and I will reprint again here, below, one more time.

            The longest living people appear to eat at least 96% plants, 90% of that unprocessed, with the remaining four percent going to 1% fish, 1% meat, 1% eggs, and 1% dairy. The very best then take out meat completely, resulting in up to 14 added years of life compared to the general population.

            When you begin to add in more animal products and processed food, as is being done in Okinawa where the diet is being Westernized, life expectancy goes down.

            My original statement in question, the one that apparently shocked and scandalized you (though to be fair you are the first to admit, and you have illustrated well and repeatedly, that you are pretty unstudied in these topics), was that “Eating mostly unprocessed vegan [which means plants] may add 14+ years.” (I stated and referenced above where the + comes in.)

            Anyone reading this can judge for themselves, but a reasonable person would probably now see why I made the statement and that indeed it may be correct, as I originally said.

            You ask above: “that’s the conclusion of the adventist study. yes?”

            Likely you are not reading what I’m saying (you have stated at least a couple of times you aren’t reading/watching provided information), or if you are, maybe much of this isn’t sinking in, but I already mentioned above that there are many studies of the Adventists. Thus it is wrong to say “the conclusion”. There are multiple conclusions from multiple Adventist studies. Here is one:

            “Meat consumption is correlated with all-cause mortality, heart disease, and diabetes. Egg consumption is correlated with mortality and heart disease in women, and colon cancer in men and women. And as milk consumption increases, so does prostate cancer.” Proteinaholic, pp. 236

            If you ever feel up to reading the information on meat, eggs, dairy, fish, etc. provided above, you may come to a better understanding of why this may be the case.

            Here is another conclusion from a study of the Adventists:

            “they found a graduated increase in the risk of developing diabetes depending on the amount of animal protein consumed. Vegans had an extremely low prevalence of diabetes (2.9%) followed by vegetarians who included dairy and eggs at 3.2 percent, pescatarians (adding fish) at 4.8 percent and meat eaters at 7.6%.” Davis, pp 155

            I understand you weren’t aware that there are many studies of the Adventists so this may come as another surprise, if you read it.

            As I mentioned and cited above, preventing diabetes is one of the areas where you are talking about possibly adding 20 years of life.

            All right, I think we’ve gone as far as we can go. I’m going to give you some time to study more, read the cited materials, but also feel free to add anything else you feel is important.

            “The traditional diet in Okinawa is based on vegetables, beans, and other plants. I’m used to seeing the Okinawan diet represented like this—the base being vegetables, beans, and grains, but a substantial contribution from fish and other meat. But a more accurate representation would be this, if you look at their actual dietary intake. We know what they were eating from the U.S. National Archives, because the U.S. military ran Okinawa until it was given back to Japan in 1972. And if you look at the traditional diets of more than 2,000 Okinawans, this is how it breaks down.

            Less than 1% of their diet was fish; less than 1% of their diet was meat, and same with dairy and eggs, so it was more than 96% plant-based, and more than 90% whole food plant based—very few processed foods either. And, not just whole food plant-based, but most of their diet was vegetables, and one vegetable in particular—sweet potatoes.”

            “…the one population that lives even longer than the Okinawa Japanese don’t just eat a 98% meat-free diet, they eat 100% meat-free. The Adventist vegetarians in California, with perhaps the highest life expectancy of any formally described population.

            Adventist vegetarian men and women live to be about 83 and 86, comparable to Okinawan women, but better than Okinawan men. The best of the best were Adventist vegetarians who had healthy lifestyles too, like being exercising nonsmokers, 87 and nearly 90, on average. That’s like 10 to 14 years longer than the general population. Ten to 14 extra years on this Earth from simple lifestyle choices. And, this is happening now, in modern times, whereas Okinawan longevity is now a thing of the past. Okinawa now hosts more than a dozen KFCs.”

            “The dietary guidelines recommend that we try to choose meals or snacks that are high in nutrients but lower in calories to reduce the risk of chronic disease. By this measure, the healthiest foods on the planet, the most nutrient dense, are vegetables, containing the most nutrient bang for our caloric buck. So, what would happen if a population centered their entire diet around vegetables? They might end up having among the longest lives in the world.

            Of course, any time you hear about long-living populations, you have to make sure it’s validated, as it may be hard to find birth certificates from the 1890s. But validation studies suggest that, indeed, they really do live that long.

            The traditional diet in Okinawa is based on vegetables, beans, and other plants. I’m used to seeing the Okinawan diet represented like this—the base being vegetables, beans, and grains, but a substantial contribution from fish and other meat. But a more accurate representation would be this, if you look at their actual dietary intake. We know what they were eating from the U.S. National Archives, because the U.S. military ran Okinawa until it was given back to Japan in 1972. And if you look at the traditional diets of more than 2,000 Okinawans, this is how it breaks down.

            Less than 1% of their diet was fish; less than 1% of their diet was meat, and same with dairy and eggs, so it was more than 96% plant-based, and more than 90% whole food plant based—very few processed foods either. And, not just whole food plant-based, but most of their diet was vegetables, and one vegetable in particular—sweet potatoes. The Okinawan diet was centered around purple and orange sweet potatoes—how delicious is that? Could have been bitter gourd, or soursop—but no, sweet potatoes, yum.

            So, 90 plus percent whole food plant-based makes it a highly anti-inflammatory diet, makes it a highly antioxidant diet. If you measure the level of oxidized fat within their system, there is compelling evidence of less free radical damage. Maybe they just genetically have better antioxidant enzymes or something? No, their antioxidant enzyme activity is the same; it’s all the extra antioxidants that they’re getting from their diet that may be making the difference—most of their diet is vegetables!

            So, six to twelve times fewer heart disease deaths than the U.S.—you can see they ran out of room for the graph for our death rate; two to three times fewer colon cancer deaths; seven times fewer prostate cancer deaths; and five and a half times lower risk of dying from breast cancer.

            Some of this protection may have been because they were eating only about 1,800 calories a day. They were actually eating a greater mass of food, but the whole plant foods are just calorically dilute. There’s also a cultural norm not to stuff oneself.

            The plant-based nature of the diet may trump the caloric restriction, though, since the one population that lives even longer than the Okinawa Japanese don’t just eat a 98% meat-free diet, they eat 100% meat-free. The Adventist vegetarians in California, with perhaps the highest life expectancy of any formally described population.

            Adventist vegetarian men and women live to be about 83 and 86, comparable to Okinawan women, but better than Okinawan men. The best of the best were Adventist vegetarians who had healthy lifestyles too, like being exercising nonsmokers, 87 and nearly 90, on average. That’s like 10 to 14 years longer than the general population. Ten to 14 extra years on this Earth from simple lifestyle choices. And, this is happening now, in modern times, whereas Okinawan longevity is now a thing of the past. Okinawa now hosts more than a dozen KFCs.

            Their saturated fat tripled. They went from eating essentially no cholesterol to a few Big Macs’ worth, tripled their sodium, and are now just as potassium deficient as Americans, getting less than half of the recommended minimum daily intake of 4,700 mg a day. In two generations, Okinawans have gone from the leanest Japanese to the fattest. As a consequence, there has been a resurgence of interest from public health professionals in getting Okinawans to eat the Okinawan diet, too.”

            http://nutritionfacts.org/video/the-okinawa-diet-living-to-100/

            D C Willcox, G Scapagnini, B J Willcox. Healthy aging diets other than the Mediterranean: a focus on the Okinawan diet. Mech Ageing Dev. 2014 Mar-Apr;136-137:148-62.

            A Drewnowski, J Hill, B Wansink, R Murray, C Diekman. Achieve Better Health With Nutrient-Rich Foods. Nutrition Today: January/February 2012 – Volume 47 – Issue 1 – p 23–29.

            D C Willcox, B J Willcox, H Todoriki, M Suzuki. The Okinawan diet: health implications of a low-calorie, nutrient-dense, antioxidant-rich dietary pattern low in glycemic load. J Am Coll Nutr. 2009 Aug;28.

            S Davinelli, D C Willcox, G Scapagnini. Extending healthy ageing: nutrient sensitive pathway and centenarian population. Immun Ageing. 2012 Apr 23;9:9.

            B J Willcox, D C Willcox. Caloric restriction, caloric restriction mimetics, and healthy aging in Okinawa: controversies and clinical implications. Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2014 Jan;17(1):51-8.

            M Poulain. Exceptional Longevity in Okinawa:: A Plea for In-depth Validation. Demographic Research;Jul-Dec2011, Vol. 25, p245.

            N S Gavrilova, L A Gavrilov. Comments on Dietary Restriction, Okinawa Diet and Longevity. Gerontology. 2012 Apr; 58(3): 221–223.

            B J Willcox, D C Willcox, H Todoriki, A Fujiyoshi, K Yano, Q He, J D Curb, M Suzuki. Caloric restriction, the traditional Okinawan diet, and healthy aging: the diet of the world’s longest-lived people and its potential impact on morbidity and life span. Ann N Y Acad Sci. 2007 Oct;1114:434-55.

            D C Willcox, B J Willcox, H Todoriki, J D Curb, M Suzuki. Caloric restriction and human longevity: what can we learn from the Okinawans? Biogerontology. 2006 Jun;7(3):173-7.

            G E Fraser, D J Shavlik. Ten years of life: Is it a matter of choice? Arch Intern Med. 2001 Jul 9;161(13):1645-52.

            D C Willcox, B J Willcox, Q He, N C Wang, M Suzuki. They really are that old: a validation study of centenarian prevalence in Okinawa. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci. 2008 Apr;63(4):338-49.

            M Suzuki, B J Wilcox, C D Wilcox. Implications from and for food cultures for cardiovascular disease: longevity. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2001;10(2):165-71.

            M Suzuki, D C Wilcox, M W Rosenbaum, B J Willcox. Oxidative stress and longevity in okinawa: an investigation of blood lipid peroxidation and tocopherol in okinawan centenarians. Curr Gerontol Geriatr Res. 2010;2010:380460.

          • kimyo

            davis is dishonestly presenting longevity in adventists as if they were non-ovo/non-lacto/non-pescatarian.

            you cannot go back and tease out the details if the original data is problematic. you should know this.

            also, willcox et al 2007 says 9% protein, not 1%. miyaga/iwama 2003 says “As of 1988, in Okinawa, daily intake of meat and daily intake of pulses were both approximately 90 grams”.

            90 grams of meat is ~ 20 grams of protein. that’s roughly 180 calories. okinawans would have to be eating 18,000 calories per day to arrive at davis’ 1%.

            in a scientific endeavor, you don’t get to make up your own numbers.

            this guy is looking like the 21st century’s version of ancel keys. one hopes he is not given the opportunity to do as much damage.

  • Brockland A.T.

    … So the easy way to boost testosterone is to go back in time and have your mother eat less meat… or something like that…

    • Elizabethjbly1

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    • Robert Barsocchini

      I think the part you are referring to is about cortisol. Here’s the part relevant to the title of the post:

      Transcript: “In a critique of the scientific validity of the dietary advice in Men’s Health magazine, they discovered nuggets like this, claiming meat can give men a testosterone boost. But we’ve known for a quarter century that a meal with that much fat drops testosterone levels nearly a third within hours. In fact, a significant drop of both free and bound testosterone in the bloodstream, within just an hour of it going in one’s mouth—whereas a low-fat meal of mostly carbs has no such effect.

      “…even holding fat levels the same, if you feed people lots of meat, fish, poultry, [and] eggs, and then switch them to a diet with about the same amount of fat, but instead bread, fruit, vegetables, and sugary junk, all their testosterone levels go up.”

      Hence the title of the video.

      Sources used in the video:

      K E Anderson, W Rosner, M S Khan, M I New, S Y Pang, P S Wissel, A Kappas. Diet-hormone interactions: protein/carbohydrate ratio alters reciprocally the plasma levels of testosterone and cortisol and their respective binding globulins in man. Life Sci. 1987 May 4;40(18):1761-8.

      K Herrick, D I Phillips, S Haselden, A W Shiell, M Campbell-Brown, K M Godfrey. Maternal consumption of a high-meat, low-carbohydrate diet in late pregnancy: relation to adult cortisol concentrations in the offspring. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2003 Aug;88(8):3554-60.

      R M Reynolds, K M Godfrey, M Barker, C Osmond, D I Phillips. Stress responsiveness in adult life: influence of mother’s diet in late pregnancy. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2007 Jun;92(6):2208-10.

      J Swartz, F Stenius, J Alm, T Theorell, F Lindblad. Lifestyle and salivary cortisol at the age of 12 and 24 months. Acta Paediatr. 2012 Sep;101(9):979-84.

      A W Meikle, J D Stringham, M G Woodward, M P McMurry. Effects of a fat-containing meal on sex hormones in men. Metabolism. 1990 Sep;39(9):943-6.

      T M Cook, J M Russell, M E Barker. Dietary advice for muscularity, leanness and weight control in Men’s Health magazine: a content analysis. BMC Public Health. 2014 Oct 11;14:1062.

      T Buckley, S McKinley, G Tofler, R Bartrop. Cardiovascular risk in early bereavement: a literature review and proposed mechanisms. Int J Nurs Stud. 2010 Feb;47(2):229-38.

      T Buckley, D Sunari, A Marshall, R Bartrop, S McKinley, G Tofler. Physiological correlates of bereavement and the impact of bereavement interventions. Dialogues Clin Neurosci. 2012 Jun;14(2):129-39.

      N Vogelzangs, A T Beekman, Y Milaneschi, S Bandinell, L Ferrucci, B W Penninx. Urinary cortisol and six-year risk of all-cause and cardiovascular mortality. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2010 Nov;95(11):4959-64.

      V Drapeau. F Therrien, D Richard, A Tremblay. Is visceral obesity a physiological adaptation to stress? Panminerva Med. 2003 Sep;45(3):189-95.

      J N Mann. J H Thakore. Melancholic depression and abdominal fat distribution: a mini-review. Stress. 1999 Aug;3(1):1-15.

      J Yin, S Quinn, T Dwyer, A L Ponsonby, G Jones. Maternal diet, breastfeeding and adolescent body composition: a 16-year prospective study. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2012 Dec;66(12):1329-34.

      M F Slag. M Ahmad, M C Gannon, F Q Nuttall. Meal stimulation of cortisol secretion: a protein induced effect. Metabolism. 1981 Nov;30(11):1104-8.

      J P Carter, T Furman, H R Hutcheson. Preeclampsia and reproductive performance in a community of vegans. South Med J. 1987 Jun;80(6):692-7.

      A W Shiell, M Campbell-Brown, S Haselden, S Robinson, K M Godfrey, D J Barker. High-meat, low-carbohydrate diet in pregnancy: relation to adult blood pressure in the offspring. Hypertension. 2001 Dec 1;38(6):1282-8.

      K E Duhig, A H Shennan. Recent advances in the diagnosis and management of pre-eclampsia. F1000Prime Rep. 2015 Feb 3;7:24.

      M N Mead. You are what your mother ate. Environ Health Perspect. 2007 Oct;115(10):A492-3.

  • tom

    It has long been known that the “masculinity” (to use a loose, non-technical term) of a baby can be influenced by the amount of testosterone the mother secretes during pregnancy; and this, in turn, depends partly on how much stress the mother is undergoing at the time.

    Traditionally, throughout history, the eating of red meat has been associated with high levels of testosterone and the associated behaviour. The British used to believe that their soldiers and sailors had a decisive advantage over “natives” who ate mainly grains and vegetables, while the British ate beef and other meats.

  • kimyo

    do you have a non-dr davis source for the 1% protein okinawa diet claim? you’ve quoted it numerous times, but the only source appears to be dr davis himself. bonus points for info on how the data was gathered and what the margin of error is.

    everyone else says 9-15% or more……

    his argument rests on this, but there is no independent support for his claim. if it did turn out to be true, it is huge. you want to prove this, seriously, you do, it’s a so-called ‘slam dunk’. give up the links, or, please have some decency and cease and desist with your ill-advised dietary advice.

    ps: the veracity of dr davis’s claims is not in any way associated with my mental state. describing me as angry or environmentally uncaring is merely your method to turn the conversation away from the obvious weaknesses in davis’ ‘science’ doing so is beneath you, especially given the gravity of the subject matter we’re discussing.