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Let me introduce myself. My name is Mark Sisson. I’m 63 years young. I live and work in Malibu, California. In a past life I was a professional marathoner and triathlete. Now my life goal is to help 100 million people get healthy. I started this blog in 2006 to empower people to take full responsibility for their own health and enjoyment of life by investigating, discussing, and critically rethinking everything we’ve assumed to be true about health and wellness...

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August 16 2011

Does Eating Red Meat Increase Type 2 Diabetes Risk?

By Mark Sisson
153 Comments

If you already eat Primal, your email inboxes are most likely filling up with links to the story. Concerned mothers clutching the local paper’s “Health” section are calling (or, if they’re hip, texting). Smug vegetarian Facebook friends are posting the story on your wall, sans commentary. Yes, it’s about that time again. It’s another week, it’s another observational study by data-mining researchers hoping to establish a solid link between red meat and some chronic, horrific illness. So, what’s killing us this time? Well, considering that they’ve already done studies linking red meat to colorectal cancer, heart disease, and outright death, type 2 diabetes is next.

Here’s a link to the full study (PDF). Researchers drew on data from three large-scale dietary habit questionnaires of medical professionals to explore how red and processed meat intakes associated with the incidence of type 2 diabetes. The first set was the Health Professionals Follow-Up Study, which comprised 37,083 male physicians followed for 20 years; the second was the Nurses’ Health Study I, which included 79,570 female nurses followed for 28 years; and the third was the Nurses’ Health Study II, which followed 87,504 women for 14 years. These data were pooled with additional data from 442,101 participants in existing studies, so it was a big pile of numbers with which to work.

Sure enough, they found a link between processed meat intake and type 2 diabetes, with a smaller link between unprocessed red meat and the illness. A daily 50 gram serving of processed red meat was associated with a 51% greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes, while a 100 gram serving of fresh red meat represented a 19% increased risk. Unprocessed meat included “beef, lamb, or pork as main dish” (roasts, steaks, chops), “hamburgers” (but I’m sure they got bunless burgers, right?), and “beef, pork, or lamb as sandwich or mixed dish” (served up on coconut flour bread, no doubt). Processed meat meant “hot dogs,” “bacon,” “sausage, salami, bologna, and other processed red meats.”

To give a complete picture of the data, I’ll briefly discuss what the “heavy meat eaters” did when they weren’t eating red meat. You tell me if you notice any alarming trends that might have something to do with type 2 diabetes. Folks in the highest quintiles of meat intake were the least active and the most sedentary. They exercised the least and smoked the most tobacco. They drank more alcohol than any other quintile. They guzzled more soda and other sweetened beverages. In the high meat quintiles, folks ate 800 more calories per day than folks in the low meat quintiles. They were much heavier, too (all muscle, I’m sure). Trans fat intake was higher in the high-meat quintiles, too, as was potato intake (since these data included the years before trans fats were taken out of fast food deep fryers, I’m thinking these guys enjoyed a burger and French fry value meal on occasion). They ate the least amount of fiber from grains, indicating they probably ate the most refined grains, drank the most coffee, and ate the fewest fruits and vegetables. In short, people who ate the most red and processed meat were also the unhealthiest by both Primal and mainstream standards. And if what they were doing was actually healthy or neutral (like drink coffee and avoid fiber from grains), it wasn’t by design. These people (all health professionals, ironically) most likely didn’t particularly care about their health.

There are also variables that weren’t even considered that could have impacted the results. Added sugar, which many people heap into their coffee, wasn’t covered. They did cover the polyunsaturated fat:saturated fat ratio, but those numbers only incorporated the fat content of whole foods like nuts, meat, eggs, and dairy, not whatever cooking oils were used to fry up all that meat. So there are a couple other significant confounders.

You know how we’re always making the point that people who eat the most meat, except for us weirdo Primal types, are also the most likely to be unhealthy in other areas, to eat fast food, to be sedentary, and to smoke? Well, here’s direct evidence that this actually is the case.

And then there’s the issue of relative versus absolute risk (for a good primer on relative risk, check out Dr. Eades’ post on the subject). 51% greater risk sounds pretty awful, right? I mean, that’s over half. And when most people hear a figure like that, they take notice. They don’t really think about what the number means in terms of absolute risk, but they immediately link whatever risk factor is being highlighted to the big scary percentage figure – and the damage is done. In reality, the effect size is tiny. The absolute risk of getting diabetes was rather small for a participant of the studies mined for their data – about 7% over the course of the 14-28 year range. A 51% increase in risk bumps that up to about 10.5%, not 58%, while a 20% increase bumps risk up to around 8.4%, not 27%. I don’t fault the researchers for using statistics, because they’re totally valid, but I worry that the average person will see those big percentages and think that represents absolute risk. And then they give up their meat.

So what’s the problem with observational studies?

It’s not that there’s anything inherently wrong with an observational study. In fact, they’re extremely useful and downright necessary for generating hypotheses, but they cannot establish causality. As both Mat Lalonde and Tom Naughton consistently emphasized during their presentations at the Ancestral Health Symposium, we do science and we do our cause a disservice when we overstate the evidence drawn from an observational study. The same goes for health researchers, who to their credit usually do a good job keeping their conclusions (if they make any at all) conservative. It’s the science reporters that love definitive headlines and concrete conclusions.

“Associated with”? Ha!

“Relative risk”? Never heard of it!

“Causes”? Now we’re talking!

Check out the headlines, which range from the conservative “Red Meat Linked to Increased Risk of Type 2 Diabetes” to the bordering-on-unequivocal “Bacon ‘increases risk of diabetes.” The former hails from the Harvard School of Public Health’s PR department, which actually conducted the study, while the latter comes from the Irish Independent. It’s a perfect example of what’s wrong with science reporting. Those headlines are designed to draw you in and precondition your expectations for the content. Heck, you might not even have time for the full text, in which case you’ll be left with the idea that bacon causes diabetes. Maybe it does, maybe (probably) it doesn’t, but we can’t know from observation.

As I read the study, I was pleasantly surprised by the restraint of the authors. Sure, the science reporters took the limited evidence and ran with it, but you expect that from them. It doesn’t surprise me anymore. The actual researchers, though, seemed to make it abundantly clear that no concrete conclusions about causality could be inferred from the data analysis. They even went on to propose a few potential mechanisms, as if to suggest that, I dunno, more studies were required to establish any sort of causality. In fact, they fully and continually admitted the limitations of the study as they composed the text. Until, that is, the very last sentence of the full text:

“Therefore, from a public health point of view, reduction of red meat consumption, particularly processed red meat, and replacement of it with other healthy dietary components, should be considered to decrease T2D risk.”

In other (my) words, “Despite our repeated insistence on the limitations of observational data analyses, and the fact that both causality and biological mechanism have yet to be established and indeed cannot ever be established through an observational study such as the one described in this paper, we recommend that the public reduce their consumption of red meat. The evidence in favor of such a recommendation is weak, poor, inconclusive, and highly confounded by listed variables like sedentary lifestyles, smoking, alcohol consumption, caloric intake, soda drinking, and bodyweight, plus the variables we didn’t even consider, including the oil the meat was cooked in, the baked goods the meat was served upon, and sugar intake, but do it anyway. We’re from Harvard, by the way.”

So, in the end, should this observational study cause red meat-eaters to worry? No. The confounding variables are vast and the absolute risk is low. Plus, remember: you are not the typical meat eater. You cook your meat in good fats, you eat plenty of vegetables, you lift heavy, you walk, you enjoy life, you savor relaxation and understand the pitfalls of stress, seed oils, sugar, and sunlight deprivation. Should any observational study in the future force you screaming from your butter/red meat/full-fat dairy/deep squats/barefoot running, remember that fact. No observational study should make you fear anything – not if you’re thinking clearly, can make the distinction between relative and absolute risk, and are able to identify potential confounding variables. But it should keep you questioning things, which is exactly what we need if we’re to keep learning, growing, and progressing.

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153 thoughts on “Does Eating Red Meat Increase Type 2 Diabetes Risk?”

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  1. When this story hit last Thursday, my mother made sure to tell me about it, in an effort to get me back on a government-approved diet so I don’t die of a heart attack. Everything you said in this post is exactly the reasons I gave her for disregarding this sensationalist observational study. But nope, I’m not a scientist, so therefore I am not reliable on any kind of dietary/health advice. Good article, makes me feel like I really am learning something! (7 months primal)

    1. Isn’t’ that nuts!! My stepdad was told that he is pre-diabetic and so in an effort to decrease his blood sugar levels they told him to take out sugary foods and drinks, starchy veggies and white processed grains, and in the same breath made sure to tell him to get his 6 servings of WHOLE GRAINS!!! GAAAHHH! Conventional Wisdom is madding!! Its so hard to break our loved ones of CW, but like you said I’m not a scientist so what do I know!! Geeze!

      1. The confusing part about that study is that they put red meat and processed meats in the same category, and that is a huge mistake, they dont account for the unsurmountable quantity of additives that deli meats have added to them.

        1. Hmm. I bet the inclusion of unprocessed meat actually brought the risk down a little. HAHAHAHA. I mean, funny-weird.

        2. Also, you have to wonder what they would find if the red meat came from 100% grass fed animals.

          I bet they didn’t look at that, they never do.

          They can make any study have an outcome with any story they want to tell. Similar to the China Study.

        3. Many studies do, this one did not. They had 2 categories “processed meats” and “red meat”. That is what makes this observational study somewhat more interesting than most. I assume they have tried to corrected for confounding factors, but there is always the risk of missing ones. That is one of the dangers of observational studies.

          As Mark wrote: Unprocessed meat included “beef, lamb, or pork as main dish” (roasts, steaks, chops), “hamburgers” (but I’m sure they got bunless burgers, right?), and “beef, pork, or lamb as sandwich or mixed dish” (served up on coconut flour bread, no doubt).

          Processed meat meant “hot dogs,” “bacon,” “sausage, salami, bologna, and other processed red meats.”

      2. I am borderline preD. I decided to join up with the PreD center in Austin. They take extensive blood work every quarter with diet, exercise and a few supplements. They have a very high success rate in reversing PreD w/o drugs. I was Gestational as well. My first initial BW everything looked great except the insulin. My diet consisted of grassfed milk, butter, GF meat, fermented foods, etc. and I was overweight not able to lose it, about 50 lbs. Since I have been on their diet plan my results have been short of amazing. Even the doctor couldn’t believe my BW could get even better than it was in just 3 months. What does this diet consist of? 3-6 sv of whole grains, 5 sv veg(1/2 raw), 3 sv fruit(1 berry), 1-2 sv beans, 1/2 – 1 nuts/seeds, 1-2 tb evoo, fish 1-2 times a week, with exercise, with fish oil as a supplement. I also have lost 25 lbs. I think we have to be careful when we say we can eat what we want for everyone. That is clearly not the case. I love meat, dairy, but I am one of those people that no matter how slim I am, chances of getting diabetes for me is 60%. If I can hold it off for as long as possible I will do so. You have to remember that meat whether chicken or beef is still higher in calories and is not going to fill you up say like beans can. Okay, not as much fun of course, but when people read articles like me and make a decision to eat a low carb diet, when more and more studies are coming out to prove otherwise, an that eating a nutrient dense diet mainly of plants is showing pretty amazing results. Joining up with the PreD center has been the best thing I could have done. The proof is in me, looking right at the BW.
        For people who have no problems with insulin resistance, chol etc. great, eat away, and enjoy it. But for those who are going down the slippery slope to bag fulls of medications may need to adjust their diets.
        So, I am saying one case doesn’t fit all.

        1. I want to add, that I have never been overweight till menopause. The pic of me was in my 40’s. When I became pregnant I weighed 125 lbs, at a height of 5’7, I was 30yo. I gained only baby weight, yet I was diabetic during my pregnancy. When you are pregnant your risk of Diabetes when you are older is 50%.

  2. In other (my) words, “Despite our repeated insistence on the limitations of observational data analyses, and the fact that both causality and biological mechanism have yet to be established and indeed cannot ever be established through an observational study such as the one described in this paper, we recommend that the public reduce their consumption of red meat. The evidence in favor of such a recommendation is weak, poor, inconclusive, and highly confounded by listed variables like sedentary lifestyles, smoking, alcohol consumption, caloric intake, soda drinking, and bodyweight, plus the variables we didn’t even consider, including the oil the meat was cooked in, the baked goods the meat was served upon, and sugar intake, but do it anyway. We’re from Harvard, by the way.”

    My favorite part of this whole article

    I love my Daily reading of MDA

    1. yeah, i “pointed” on that, too…. 🙂 those people sure put drs. Emily and Shou-Ching in poor company!

  3. After I read this article I went to the freezer and took out a grassfed/finished fatty steak…boy am I hungry!

    1. LOVE it. I am getting hungry too… lunch is something with chicken but dinner will be some BABY BACK RIBS!!

      Ay, can’t wait!!

      1. yeah i just wish nature would take care of this problem without the long slow deaths that cost us so much of our health care dollars

      2. Ha! Maybe it is mother nature taking over?!

        Most of us are safe from natural disasters in todays world. We get warned about hurricanes, tornados, tsunamis, severe t-storms, etc.

        I guess your right – it has to happen somehow!

      3. “Stupidity is just another natural disaster”

        Wow! That is funny, sad and true. I’m going to steal that one.

    1. @Primal Toad Not until they stop making money by employing such tactics.

      Google ‘Relative Risk — Absolute Deception
      Why “Studies” are Misleading — Studies Aren’t Science.’

  4. It confuses our friends that they know my family highly values things that are “healthy” AND that we eat a ton of red meat.

    I get a little weary of defending ourselves….thanks for this post. It’s very encouraging to those of us with non-primal friends and family!

    1. I love your comment Anne, precisely because it draws attention to the mental short hand that people use. Thinking in depth is expensive (metabolically) and a lot of us prefer to make snap judgements so we can easily make decisions without having to dig into it. Advertisers and industry know this very well, which is why they choose what healthy is and market it to us as a set of choices: Healthy whole grains coupled with gallons of pasteurized skim milk, low fat chicken, vegetables out the wazoo and truckloads of soy. These are the prescribed healthy choices. When they think of these things they imagine a svelte physique jogging with a huge smile. Why? because that’s the person on TV who always eats like that. It’s ingrained.

      I’m finding that telling people about my diet is not worth it. Most will either: 1) think I’m lying about what I eat, that I don’t really eat that many eggs, steaks, sardines, and bacon strips or 2) think I’m lying about my exercise, that I must actually workout for six hours a day rather than the 30 minutes every other day that’s closer to the truth. This is especially the case when I tell them my cholesterol numbers (they are awesome, 1 yr Paleo this month).

      Under no circumstances do people think.. hmm.. maybe the CW is wrong. One caveat being those who already are skeptical of the mainstream medical community. For pretty much everyone else, the cognitive dissonance is just too much, and the pull of the crowd too strong.

      1. Tim, I completely agree. Generally anyone I tell about my eating habits has already guessed them from our spending lots of time together and my constant refusal of grains.

        I find its better to not give much of a reason other than I don’t like that food. (I also try to sneakily go to restaurants where I know there is a variety of dish choices so I can choose something primal.)

      2. I agree. If I try to explain Primal/Paleo to people, they respond with “Oh, so you’re just doing Atkins?” or “Oh, so its low-carb?” I’ll say kinda, and try to explain further & their eyes just glaze over. It’s very sad & frustrating to me that people don’t and won’t take the time to learn about what they are eating.

  5. Great post! Definitely clears up some misconceptions in the world of food.
    Thanks!

  6. So this means I can go live off of fast food meals, as long as there’s no burger involved.

    Yay health!
    Awesome(or not)

  7. I just wonder what kind of people do these studies…

    I mean it baffles me that so many people listen to these “health experts” when in reality the experts themselves aren’t even healthy!

    My advice, eat foods that make you feel good about yourself. Nothing better than having a nice piece of steak with some vegetables and feeling great afterwards!

    Once people give Primal eating a try, they will realize how awesome it is.

    1. Unfortunately, there are a lot of problems in the System of scientific research, and most of them revolve around funding. Medical studies funded by pharmacy companies often are pressured to find favorable results. Even independent, academic-only studies have to fight the endless fights for grants, and having a pedigree of showy conclusions that grabbed national attention ups your likelihood next time NIH grants roll around.

      I am by no means condoning what my fellow scientists do, but I do understand why they are often forced into this position.

    2. I agree, specially of those Dr Oz fans, he looks like a wax figure, wtf that is not healthy

  8. I hate when crap studies are passed around to continue to make people think that CW is the way to go!! I am sure CW people reading this study are appalled and will go back to their whole sandwiches licky split!! To bad when they read the articles/studies they don’t even get that these people were eating all kinds of grains and sugars, so what does that really say!!

  9. Excellent takedown. I wish there was a way to instill this skeptical mentality into every persons brain… sigh.

    Mark, we need to find a way to get articles such as this (your post, not the study) as overtly in the public eye as possible!

  10. It’s so funny that I don’t have colorectal cancer, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and I’m not dead. I eat red meat every single day, oh and extra lard and bacon grease on EVERYTHING!

  11. As a scientist, I 100% approve the deconstruction of the conclusions of the study as described in this post here.

  12. Mark didn’t mention that they tried to correct for the differences in other health factors between the high meat and low meat populations.

    Adjusting for BMI reduced the correlation with diabetes a little, other adjustments such as sugar-sweetened drinks did not.

  13. Aw Mark, give ’em a break. These science writers are just playing. It’s a game to see how far they can bend science. They learned it from Big Pharma. lol

  14. I love red meat, I can’t help it. I’ve got fresh baby chicken legs that have been sitting in my freezer for a couple of weeks now, but I pass by Whole Foods on my way home every day. I pass by the fish section thinking that I should buy fresh salmon instead since as with most things, and especially food, variety is the spice of life. But not tonight, I have got leftover veggies (plenty of them of the T-boosting cruciferous variety) and steak that I plan on stir-frying with garlic butter and Braggs’ Aminos. More red meat tonight, I’m afraid. the chicken and fish can wait another day.

  15. Is beef heart considered red meat? I still have some left in the fridge and was unsure whether I would catch the diabetes as soon as I finished it. What is life without risk? mmmmm tasty risk.

    1. Nooo, if you eat the heart, then it will make your heart stronger!

      Good logic, just like this study.

  16. It is possible red meat can trigger diabetes, but we have to practise caution the amount we eat. I used to eat two steaks a day, no exercise, and developed insulin resistance during the course of several months.

    1. How do you know that it was the steaks and not the lack of exercise? Or something else that you haven’t thought of? Unless you have a detailed log of everything you did during that period and controlled for the one difference (the steaks), which you didn’t, then you can’t make that inference.

      1. Seriously… a fit and active person could easily get away with 2 steaks per day in the context of a healthy paleo diet rich in vegetables and natural foods. What an absurd conclusion.

        “We have to practise caution [in] the amount we eat” is true for anything, and depends on our own fitness and activity level amongst other things.

    2. It is possible but it’s also possible that bowling causes you to be fat–just look at all the fat bowlers then next time you go to a bowling alley.

      Jen, all the studies done on the subject of red meat so far have neglected to control for other factors. So while red meat might make you insulin resistant (with the knowledge we have of human physiology, there is nothing in red meat alone that should cause this) there is no way we could honestly know, because no one has run CONTROLLED experiments on red meat.

      You were inactive. Allow me to suggest that this may have had more to do with your unfortunate insulin resistance than the red meat consumption.

      I do hope you’re doing better now 🙂

    3. I used to wear shoes, and I never had a suntan. When I started wearing vibrams instead, I got a tan.

      Vibrams cause suntan. Can I have a Harvard fellowship now?

      1. I got moved over an aisle in the cubefarm at work, and lost 25 pounds! If everyone would move to my aisle they too could lose weight! My old aisle causes weight gain!

    4. It is possible for high fat, low carb diets to cause non-pathological insulin resistance, which can be measured by a glucose intolerance test. In this scenario fasting insulin and fasting glucose would be low.

      T2D isn’t entirely about insulin resistance, a more accurate description could be: insufficient insulin production for the level of insulin resistance. Insulin production can be reduced from inflammation.

    5. If I recall correctly (and I may not), insulin resistance doesn’t necessarily imply T2D. Those on low carb diets become insulin resistant as their bodies adjust to low glucose levels, saving the available glucose for the brain. The difference between low carbers and T2 diabetics is that T2 diabetics display insulin resistance AND hyperglycemia. Perhaps your carb intake was sufficiently low during the blissful two-steaks-a-day period to induce insulin resistance?

    6. Read up on Arctic explorer Vilhajmer (sp) Stephenson, who lived with the Inuit and was healthy. He recreated an Inuit diet by eating only steaks (they were all grassfed in those days) and monitored by a NY hospital for one year. He was in great health at the end of it.

  17. And besides, how can you have your pudding if you don’t eat your meat?

        1. PinkFloyd…album called “the wall”,song called”we dont need no education”

      1. Please forgive my pedanticism. The song is called “Another Brick in the Wall.” Great album. God I’m old.

  18. Strangely, it tends to be after evenings and nights of piggish gluttony and binging on red meat (some nuts and cheese too) that I’m able to fast and grease the groove for a big chunk of the next day, only falling back on unsweetened coffee and or tea, perhaps with a dash of blood-sugar regulating cinnamon, to keep me sated and elated while I work on conditioning my muscles to be able to function during times of starvation. If I’m working on getting diabetes by doing this, I must be some sort of anomoly, because I keep getting more comfortable with these strenuous fasts as long as I’ve had a huge meal of animal parts the night before.

  19. For every piece of red meat that people don’t eat as a result of this study, I will eat two. It’s a sacrifice I’m ready to make.

  20. WARNING: reading of comically bad research papers while eating grass fed Roast Beef may constitute a choking hazard.

  21. Thanks for posting this. I hadn’t heard of this study and as I’m going to be posting shortly on going Primal which will be a new concept I suspect for most of my readers, I feel better armed.

    I already get enough stick in RL for my choices (I had a friend looking up toxic levels of parsley and celery after I offered her a green smoothie last week) and coming out on my blog makes me feel I need to be prepared.

  22. Did some of you folks miss the following from Mark?

    “As I read the study, I was pleasantly surprised by the restraint of the authors…. The…researchers…seemed to make it abundantly clear that no concrete conclusions about causality could be inferred from the data analysis. They even went on to propose a few potential mechanisms, as if to suggest that, I dunno, more studies were required to establish any sort of causality. In fact, they fully and continually admitted the limitations of the study as they composed the text.”

    1. And yet came up with the conclusion that we should reduce our intake even though the study was weak and flawed in so many ways. This is sloppy, sloppy work. It is COMPLETELY USELESS if you don’t control for other factors.

      1. I am with Harry. And I am with Mark: “It’s not that there’s anything inherently wrong with an observational study. In fact, they’re extremely useful and downright necessary for generating hypotheses, but they cannot establish causality.”

        It is a scientific paper, which is written for scientists. The scientists will read the article and use it as inspiration for much more expensive double blind interventional studies, which can establish causality. For scientists this study is thus not “completely useless”, nor is it sloppy; the scientist reading the study will know the limitations of an observational study. And at least they make a distinction between “processed meats” and “red meat”. In that respect it may even be one of the better studies.

        The problem is that people are interested in nutrition and that scientists are nowadays forced to talk to the public. That explains the strange last sentence (one sentence!) and the press release.

        Probably their boss forced them to write this last sentence. A scientist reading the article, will effortlessly notice that there is no relation between the last sentence and the rest of the article, which is emphasized by being the last sentence. Thus scientifically it does no harm.

  23. How about real evidence from type 2 diabetics who are Primal and now have the lowest numbers ever… blood glucose readings, A1c lowered, and weight loss. Such research is always flawed, and I believe people just have to do what’s right for them. Do I miss grains and dairy? Heck no. Do I love bacon and sausage…you bet! Thanks for debunking these studies.

  24. Mark you have a wonderful way with words. The last two paragraphs were my favorite, I wanted to shout Halleluja across campus from my office window.

    Well here’s at least a mental Hurrah! for all of us Primal beings.

    And here’s to many more people doing their own critical thinking and questioning blanket statements in the media.

  25. As soon as I read the article in last Thursday’s newspaper, I just knew we’d be hearing about it on MDA this week!

    This weekend we went to a wedding. There was a nice mix of young people and old folks from about ages 10 years old to around 80 years old (my DH being one of the 80 year olds). Of everyone there except for several of the teenagers and early 20’s types, my DH and I (at 80 and 67 respectively) were the best looking people there as far as body weight, no bulging bellies and activity level! The bulging bellies started with a lot of the men in their 40’s and 50’s and got bigger as they got older in age.

    Of course no one wanted to hear about eating Primal, and we were the only 2 people there who didn’t eat any of the wedding cake – we must have been asked 8 or 9 times if we wanted any cake and why not!

    1. People *really* don’t understand when you turn down cake. I got some odd looks when I declined dessert at a baby shower. I’m thinking of just saying I have a wheat allergy to avoid the hassle.

      1. Dieticians still push the idea that having “treat foods” in moderation (whatever the hell that means) is okay. The one I visited years ago pre-Primal was astounded that I didn’t like junk food.

        I told her I’d had enough of it as a kid and no longer wanted it. (I was one of those eat-all-burn-it-off-later types, which worked well for me before puberty struck.) Even as a kid, people loved having me at their birthday parties because I’d scrape the icing off my cake and give it to them. Never had much of a sweet tooth.

        But oh no. She couldn’t fathom that someone just… didn’t… like… cake. And that while I bake, none of my recipes are standard fare.

        So came the questions: “What do you bake with? How would you rate your caloric intake vs. your exercise? Do you restrict? Binge, purge? ” She thought I had an eating disorder!

        All because my treat foods were fruits and veg. LOL. Bit of a different situation, but these two comments reminded me of that, as well as the reason I’m glad my actual doctor isn’t a CW obsessed guy.

      2. I took ONE blood test that gave me a fasting glucose of 110 one time…since then I just say, “Oh I can’t eat that, I’m pre-diabetic.” According to CW, I am, so what the heck, I’ll use the CW in my favor for once! It’s easier than explaining all the other stuff that people just tune out anyhow. Now if someone ASKS how I’m losing all this weight, then by all means, I am more than happy to illuminate…

  26. You forgot to add…

    ‘This study was brought to you by The Dairy Association and your Leading Cereal Manufacturing Company”

  27. Just imagine all those poor american indians that evolved on red meat. They had such a hard time to even survive with all those heart attacks, cardiocascular diseases, strokes and diabetes!
    They are so lucky white man came along and introduced them to grains and sugar, so they can finally be healthy.

    1. Love it, awesome. You can’t beat good sarcasm, especially when pan fried in butter. I wish there was a like button here, cuz you’d get one.

  28. Did I miss the part where you explained how the researchers collected the data regarding individuals food intake?

  29. That’s SO interestig! I guess the 25 point reduction in my fasting blood sugar in 6 weeks was from all the…. oh, I don’t know, all I ate was red meat. But it couldn’t be that.

  30. i think i’ll head downstairs now and chow some of the leftover grass fed NY steak that i cooked over madrone coals in my backyard fire pit last night, with a bunch of greens dressed with grapeseed oil and a little balsamic.

  31. Isn’t there another study out there claiming that eating eggs and delicious processed bacon for breakfast helps control the appetite and aids in weight control?

  32. As a PRIMAL statistician with an epidemiology background who works in Public Health, I loved reading your story, especially your comments about confounders, limitations of observational studies, relative risk, etc. (words like that just excite me anyway!) I write scientific articles much like the one discussed here and felt you gave the field credit for what it does well and constructive criticism to be careful about overstating the results that we find. Thank you for your well-reasoned critique of this article!

  33. All this talk about bacon is making me hungry… maybe its that I’m IFing (another thing CW claims to be unhealthy).

  34. I don’t even tell my mom about the fat that I eat. I know where it would lead and I just don’t want the argument or the constant comments. The funny thing is, I eat EXACTLY like she ate growing up. She was raised on a farm and they provided most of their own food. Sadly, neither of my parents eat that way anymore because it’s too “expensive”. My dad even comments a lot that “…we used to have pastured eggs, grass fed beef, etc. growing up and now you have to pay a small fortune for it…” I just agree – because it’s pretty true depending on where you live, but I also tell myself that the “expense” is better spent on food I enjoy and a healthy lifestyle rather than on medication.

    1. Agreed! I’d rather spend my hard-earned money on good quality, fresh/organic foods that are not only a joy to eat but a joy to prepare, as well. Beats giving that money to the pharmacist and adding to your nice collection of little plastic containers with child-proof caps!

  35. Last week I researched the clinical trials that were used to get approval for Plavix, which my mother is prescribed $300 per 30 pills!) I was shocked what I found. The test groups were given Aspirin alone, or Plavix alone.

    The number of re-occurrences of strokes/heart attacks, etc were only 9.8% of the Plavix users. Fantastic! Less than a one in ten chance of a re-occurrence using this wonder drug (with a host of side effects).

    The aspirin only users: 10.6% reoccurrence. I was floored.

    The manufacturer even states that the difference between plavix and aspirin was “marginal.” But the marketing of course focuses on the improvement of Plavix versus taking NOTHING. So the TV commercials suggest “Take plavix to significantly reduce your risks or heart attack or stroke.” But what they DON’T say (you need to look up and read the actual trial results…who does that?) is that just an aspirin a day produces virtually the SAME results.

    Yet this type of research is what is used to get the FDA to approve these drugs and allow them to be advertised with the claims they use. They don’t lie…but they conveniently omit some pertinent factors.

    Another example of “relative” versus “absolute” risk. Compared to doing nothing, the drug produces results. But compared to just taking aspirin…not so much.

    Suffice it to say I have removed Mom from Plavix (saving all of us $300 a month in Medicare costs) and she is using aspirin. And I am COMPLETELY comfortable doing so.

    1. And I’ll add that mom (81 years old) is mostly primal but doesn’t know it. She is with me for the summer. Very little whole wheat bread, NOTHING refined. Mostly meat and veggies,and fruit. The blood pressure meds are next on my hit list.

      1. Peter, I’m impressed that you’re doing so much for your mom. I’m doing what I can for my husband. We’ve only been eating primal for about 3 months but we’re hoping it will help him get off the meds for his recently diagnosed Type 2 Diabetes. I started cooking low sodium about a year and a half ago because his blood pressure was creeping up so we went to a diet of 500-1,000mg sodium per day. Worked like a charm. His blood pressure is the best it’s ever been. Then he goes for his yearly and they tell him he has diabetes! His weight is excellent, he exercises every day, his blood pressure is great but now he has diabetes. Threw us both for a loop. So, in my research to find how to cook “lo-carb”, I came across Mark’s blog and everything clicked. My husband’s off one of the meds for his T2D, in just 3 months! and we’re hoping that by the time he has his next A1C test we might be able to get him off the other one. If not, we might just have to accept that it’s something he’ll have to live with, but we’re not there yet because it’s the only medication he has to take and he’s determined to do everything he can to try to get off of it. Keeping our fingers crossed 🙂

        1. Fantastic! There is no question that nutrition and exercise are the keys to better health. But so is research and knowing the facts about these drugs. Many drugs to wonders, others…what a joke. Plavix was the #3 drug in the U.S. in 2010, with $4.6 billion in sales. And it’s virtually no more effective than a 3-cent aspirin!

          Good luck with hour husband…keep the faith and keep trying!

      2. Good for you getting her off the expensive and dangerous drug. change her bread to sprouted grains (if you can) just that little bit better 🙂

      1. Kathy, here it is. The bit I was referring to was section 14.2. Look at the chart comparing just aspirin, to just Plavix. The graph they include tells the story…virtually no difference! The other studies cited show similar unimpressive results.

        http://products.sanofi.us/PLAVIX/PLAVIX.html

  36. I get blood tested every 6 weeks to document my progression starting in mid April. My father is a physition and became concerned of my liver enzymes and lipids when I aproached him with this diatary concept. I am one example of a pre diabetic, high cholesteral, morbid obese individual. Lost 50 lbs 80 to go, Glucos numbers are normal, Cholesteral is still a little high but trending better on all counts. Energy is way up, but not able to be measured other than the Honey Dos are almost caught up on, oh and I perform plyometric circut training twice a week and ride a bike 17 miles 3 days a week. But unfortunately this is not a measure of increased energy over my old ways of walking to get snacks or to the john. I sleep better and stopped snoring(Better for the wife) Doctor only seems to be concerned over the constant Keytones in my urine. A product of fat burning. I do not know much about this research however my experience and tests over the past 4.5 months would contradict the research specifically because I eat fish once a day and a rumanent animal(beef, Lamb, buffalo, or venison) every day. After yesturdays review, the doctor has advised me that, I am nolonger a diabetic risk. I am documenting everything including my activity for those of us too big to do too much. But I do like looking at all the graphs. I guess I have made a game out of it. Personally I can not believe my results are an acception.

      1. I watched someone snort coffee grinds up their nose once. He was saying how he’d snort anything for kicks and someone mentioned coffee and he said he’d probably snort it. I had a ziplock bag full of instant coffee in my backpack so I mentioned that and he said he was up to the challenge, sniffed up a huge line, and ended up with a really sore nose and a headache.
        I also saw someone snort nutmeg and salt and pepper, and I think he might have actually snorted ketchup too though I can’t remember for certain. I didn’t see but apparently he also smoked salt, knowing what it was.

  37. My mom gets migraine pills sometimes that cost $15 each. Such a waste! I told her that I bet her migraines are caused by inflammation or something else that can be cured by changing her diet, but no…. food can’t be a factor in these sort of things at all. Migraines just happen, right? Of course our family doctor, who says that you can eat junk like granola bars and “fruit” snacks throughout the day for satiety and be healthy eating “one healthy meal” like a pasta dinner a day, isn’t going to provide any useful information. She doesn’t look that healthy by the way. I bet she gets handouts for all the meds she prescribes. She gave my mom antidepressants, which I bet she wouldn’t need if she wasn’t on the sugar rollercoaster and if she was taking some vitamins to prevent deficiencies which causes brain chemical imbalances? Nah, multivitamins are too expensive, unlike all the cookies, crackers, chips, sugary cereals, and so on that are practically toppling out of the cupboards.
    When I was younger the doctor prescribed me a crapload of antibiotics that I now realize I never needed, with the possible exception of when I had pneumonia. “Here, drink this artificially coloured and flavoured banana medicine, it will make you all better, and have a lollipop before you go.” Holy shit eh. What kind of doctor gives sugar to little kids? Most of them!
    Two winters ago I had bronchitis and didn’t bother going to the doctor – that cleared up on its own, even though I was smoking cigarettes at the time! (Something I’ll never go back to). And I bet the main reason I got sick is because I was living in a shelter where practically every single meal was spaghetti or something else made of flour because that crap is cheap, and I was doing lots of stupid things and not sleeping enough.
    I also offered to save my mom some money by cooking up a batch of herbal brownies or something (costs me a few dollars to cure any headache naturally), which I bet would work just as well if not better with less side effects, but no such luck. She hates the idea (illegal = bad; legal = good , because altruistic angels are in charge of the legal system – I could go on for pages about that, but won’t bother) and would rather take stuff made in a lab by Big Pharma, and drink a couple beers or glasses of wine to feel good. I told my parents that over 60% of liver failures in the U.S. are determined to be caused by aceteminophen. They still went and bought more Tylenol.
    Well to each their own.
    Since going primal I haven’t had as much as a cold and I don’t think I’ve had a single headache, except the strange discomfort I get in my head when I drink too much coffee, which I attribute to a temporary increase in blood pressure in the brain. I look healthier than I used to, and with a history of lots of smoking I can still outrun my mom who’s been doing chronic cardio most of her life, so hopefully eventually the undeniable evidence will be enough to snap them out of their CW hypnosis.

    1. P.S. I know I had bronchitis because I eventually saw a doctor in rehab (a check-up there was required) when the bronchitis was pretty much gone and after listening to my breathing he told me I had a slight case of it, but didn’t prescribe anything since it was going away.

    2. I saw a lady in the store the other day with her brandnew spankin baby. The baby was so tiny, it still was purple and wrinkled.
      The Lady looked extremely exhausted, holding the baby in 1 arm, and a bottle of childrens Nighttime Tylenol in the other hand.

      I almost said something…or slapped her…

  38. A grass fed ribeye stake is so much more than the equivalent protein,fat and vitamins from other sources, and It makes you feel fantastic all day long.

    It’s also possible that these people demonstrating the higher risk link are quite sick from other causes and the meat is having a protective effect.

    Last time I checked spam was better than starvation.

  39. I know the primal community isn’t attached to red meat the way big tobacco is attached to cigarettes, despite the snark.

    It seems quite reasonable that cafo beef WOULD be bad for people. First, it tastes like sh&*. Second, cows are fed toxic crap, confined, their intestines full of genetically modified grains & antibiotics & growth hormones, creating a growth medium for superbugs.

    Then, all the fat & organs that aaccumulate the toxins are mixed w/nitrates for processed meat!

    I don’t find it hard to believe at all that eating those animals is unhealthy. Studies like this, however weak, spur my commitment to local, grassfed beef, pork, goat, bison, chicken, duck, etc. And wild caught sustainable fish.

  40. Great post as always Mark!! You saved my life buddy!!

    Considering that I cured my T2 by eating hardly any other meat except red meat these past 3.5 months I can clearly de-bunk anything that any idiot doctor can come up with.

    I’ve lost 35 lbs, dropped 10% body fat, and now have normal levels of fasting BG when just 3 months ago, my doctor wanted me on Lipitor for having total cholesterol of 212, hdl 48, LDL 130 and trigs of 78…oh yea, and wanted me on insulin too!! I said no thanks, I’ll figure it out, and I found Mark’s Daily Apple!!

    Day 1 my fasting BG was 190
    Yesterday it was 97

    Yea I owe it all to Primal/Paleo life and lots of red meat and Bacon!!

    Thanks Mark!! When I reach my goal weight, you’ll definitely be getting my story to share with everyone!!

  41. Mainstream media pisses me off! Journalists that probably don’t even have their weight in check writing this kind of stuff!

    The media loves this hype. Today I saw an article in Portuguese newspaper stating that “Fatties May Be Healthier Than Thin People”. They dug up a Canadian study that said that obese people with no physical or psychological diseases were healthier than the non obese or overweight people. Basically they compared a minority of obese people with “super genes” to the general population of non overweight people.

    All the overweight people were commenting and were relieved that they could go on with their “healthy diets”. No matter if you have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, insulin resistance and obesity because everybody was cheering! I know everybody wants to be accepted and feel good… But letting yourself being convinced by this utter nonsense is a big sign of stupidity! I didn’t bother commenting because the character limit of that comment was 150 characters… That is why I am venting here!

  42. people are destoried due to lack of knowledge, seek the truth and the truth shall set you free. question all wisdom!

  43. I love these dissection of studies posts!! Totally awesome and keep it up, please!!

  44. The way that I see it I am healthier eating primal! If I feel better I am going to continue my diet. If a diet really works there is going to be lots of studies that are bullshit.

  45. Screw CW and everything related to it. Try different things out (what you do and don’t eat, how you move around, exercise, etc.) and if it works, great. If it doesn’t, then try something else. Some folks seem to do better on more carbs and less protein– not everything works for everybody. So, even if stuff doesn’t work for us, that doesn’t mean it won’t work for somebody else. Listen, listen, listen to what your body is telling you, and that’s the route you need to take.

    If you look good – and better yet FEEL good! – then just maybe it might be GOOD for you! Duh—

    All I know is that PB is really working for me.

  46. What really got me disillusioned a while back was the magazine ‘Men’s Health’. I was a very regular reader, but then I noticed that they would often publish articles, or short summaries of studies like the one you linked to. Often the same issue would have one piece telling us bacon was good for us, and another telling us it was death on a plate.

    I stopped getting the magazine, but then was really kind of stuck for what to do for a couple of years. Then a couple of months ago I found MDA, and have been going great ever since.

    I’m posting this from the stand up workstation I made yesterday 🙂

  47. Well, I’m a goner.

    I was outside in the sun all day (like I am everyday) standing and working with my hands… When I came home, I push mowed the lawn for the 45 minutes it takes, then did a bunch of other house chores that required all sorts of movement and stairs… and this was all with the anticipation for the 2 cups of creamed leafy greens and the big fat juicy blood red strip steak I had for dinner.

    If only I would have sat my butt down as soon as I got home and read this I could have avoided this certain demise I’m sure to face. I think I’ll sit as still as I can now and hope that no movement will minimize the damage that I undoubtedly will succumb to.

    1. Good grief – whatever you do, don’t even think about moving a muscle! ROFL!!

      (IMHO, you get a heads up for “sarcasm of the day”!)

  48. So if more people stop eating meat, does that mean that prices will drop and make my budget happier?

    1. The secret is buy bulk…..sshhh don’t tell anyone 🙂
      we get hamburger for about $4/pound, we get 20 pounds at a time.

      1. I just picked up my 1/2 angus cow last Friday…steaks, roasts, ground, pot roast….and it wound up being about $5 a pound overall for grass-fed, pastured beef. SO excited. They even saved me the MASSIVE liver and heart, which I cut into pieces and froze in baggies to add into my dogs’ primal meals (and they are thriving too, by the way, 11 weeks primal for them too!)

  49. As a FORMER Insulin using type II Diabetic i can say that the ONLY thing that saved me from death and a life filled with medications was a paleo diet. I eat red meat, unprocessed and grass fed when I can get it. I eat pork, fish chicken, hard chesses and green and colorful veggies with a few berries and raw nuts.

    I do NOT have to use insulin or meds anymore. High healthy fat and limited protein has saved my life and changed my way of eating forever, Screw theses studies, they are full of crap!

  50. Thank you so much for writing about this study!

    When I read that news headline my heart sank. Diabetes runs in the family and I want to do everything to avoid it. I’ve been transitioning to a primal lifestyle and doing a ton of reading and it can be overwhelming sometimes.

    Thank you for writing about this study and breaking it down so that I can understand exactly why I have nothing to worry about!!!

  51. mark, hank you for the great post that spawned so many amusing comments. i love this site almost as much for it’s readers/commenters as i do for the great info that it provides!
    cheers

  52. I skipped straight to the proposed mechanisms where I found some very poor explanations.

    Iron is easily oxidised (think rust) regardless of the form it comes in. The heme structure as part of hemoglobin is used to safely oxidise iron and return it to an unoxidised state. Heme iron is found in all meat, not just red meat. There’s also much more iron in legumes anyway.

    On oxidation, the best antioxidants are glutathione and alpha-lipoic acid. Found where? Grass-fed meat.

    They bring up saturated fat without any discussion on how it may be relevant.

    Then in the ultimate discussion of mechanisms they say that red meat is associated with weight gain, which is associated with diabetes.

  53. Yeah…The Statist Terrorists want to keep you weak and stupid in your tax farms by detroying you with their public schools, TV programming, eating high-carb/low-fat, and staying out of the sunlight. Doing these things make people vote for the political terrorists who want to own and control them. People (Especially American) have never been more stupid and weak since they started obeying the political terrorist over the last 50 years.

  54. When it comes to processed meats, there’s a huge variance in quality and health effects.

    Afterall, you get processed meats loaded with MSG, Dextrose, Maltodextrin, etc.

    Than you have processed meats preserved with nitrates and sodium.

    The differences between the two types of processed meats are stark, and somewhat overblown. After all, bacon cured with nothing more than salt is considered “processed meat” the same as a Johnsonville Brautworst, loaded with MSG, dextrose, corn syrup, maltodextrin, etc.

    But event then…in the worst case scenario….I believe even the worst processed meats are nowhere near as bad for you — especially in terms of diabetes — as so called health food like canola oil-saturated granola and whole wheat bread and whole wheat pasta.

    What these kind of studies really tell us is this: people who listen to conventional wisdom and try to eat healthy, versus people who don’t give a shit and eat anything and everything; including all the neolithic agents of disease (grains, sugars and Omega 6 rich, oxidized vegetable/grain oils) AND red meats and processed meats.

  55. I have noticed people who walk frequently end up in a trauma center. So is walking dangerous or stepping in front of a moving car dangerous? Without mentioning the latter your conclusion may be that walking is dangerous?

  56. Pretty much agree with everyone, these studies are stupid-frustrating. Buuut at least we in this community can make the distinction. Gonna go eat my semi (mostly) raw, grass-fed steak for lunch. STOKED

  57. I got an “observational” study for all of you. Both of my parents were diabetics. I stopped eating meat when I was 12 however I continued to eat all the junk food out there. I am now almost 50 and still NO signs of diabetes. hhhmmmm….maybe it IS the meat? My parents LOVED meat. They both also had heart disease. You meat eaters will argue anything to defend your right to continue to cause suffering, pollution and death…it’s funny actually…

    1. Sorry to hear your parents had heart disease.

      Meat notwithstanding, did they live healthy lifestyles? Exercise? Avoid processed/refined foods? Avoid transfats and fried foods? Are you sure it’s the meat that caused their heart disease and diabetes?

  58. When you have a line like that which just stands out from the rest of a reasonable article, I wonder if that’s not something put in to satisfy the reviewers.

    And these authors are just trying to get a line on their CV so they can get tenure and keep their jobs most likely. They can’t afford to care about things like critical thinking and proper science.

    Such would kill their career.

  59. Excellent post, I did a similar post on my blog, you’re went into much more detail.

    Problem is red meat consumption will always be correlated with a host of diseases because people were told back in the 80s the red meat is bad for you.

    So health conscious people started avoiding it – leading to the correlation between people who junk and red meat consumption.

  60. I do not get why everyone is so against red meat. It is our best source of iron (especially for athletic women of childbearing age) and high in the b vitamins that most people are defficient in. I am a holistic nutritionist and as long as the meat is grass fed and my clients’ omega 6 to omega 3 ratios are in check I will keep recommending it!

  61. Hi Mark, Many thanks for taking the time to read the report and put up this excellent (as usual!) post. The newspaper article, which appeared in the UK, has no sense of scepticism about it of course and blindly accepts it as CW becasue it’s from Harvard, and accords with previous assumptions about ‘red meat bad lots of carbs good’ philosophy. The primal/paleo scene is much less developed in the UK than it appears to be in the states. One note of interest though – in the UK most red meat is grass fed with possibly some winter grain thrown in, but predominantly grass fed, so buying grass fed beef and lamb in the UK is easy and relatively cheap. well I’ll get back to my yummy chicken breast and bacon with veggies lunch. Thanks again.

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  63. Thanks for this Mark! Being T2 and cutting out the junk, going low carb has improved my T2. I knew something was up with the red meat lol. The news didn’t mention the rest of what they ate! Thanks for addressing that 🙂

  64. Does anyone post on here except to pat each other on the back? Really, your diet isn’t one single thing you avoid, it’s about the overall balance of what you eat. Avoiding carbs isn’t magic any more than avoiding red meat is. How arrogant you all sound – almost as if you have your own CW that is deaf in the face of any evidence to the contrary. How do you explain the fact that many vegetarians have the best health profiles of anyone? What about the people in countries around the world that consume almost no meat (think Asia, before everyone started getting rich and eating like Westerners) who live longer, trimmer, healthier lives than Americans? Let me guess – it’s their special genes?

    I’m not going to knock your diet – it works for you – but don’t get so big headed about it. People have achieved success with balanced whole food diets, Atkins, low fat diets, low calorie diets, South Beach, the Zone, vegetarianism, veganism and so on. All we really know for sure is that the old school American diet is BAD for you. I think beyond that we need more research, not just your anecdotes and self-back patting.

    1. “What about the people in countries around the world that consume almost no meat (think Asia, before everyone started getting rich and eating like Westerners) who live longer, trimmer, healthier lives than Americans? Let me guess – it’s their special genes?”

      Maybe it’s the fact that the typical american diet is loaded with sugar?

      “I’m not going to knock your diet – it works for you – but don’t get so big headed about it.”

      Just do as you preach and avoid writing big headed posts…

    2. You sound a bit angry because people are adhering to and visiting a website that is not in agreement with your philosophy.
      I would have to wonder why, if you hold up the folks where with such disdain, that you lower yourself to visit the board or website. It appears that the only ‘back patting’ is you to you…along with your ‘holier than thou’ attitude.
      I’m guessing you’re just a little chubbier than you’d like and you need someone to blame…anyone.

      1. First person – I happen to THINK it’s refined foods in general and sugar in particular, but I don’t get how you could consider me big headed when my only claim is that maybe we DON’T know everything and maybe we should give people who follow other diet philosophies a break. I wasn’t the one calling people who eat carbs “idoits” – that was one of your users.

        Second person – wow – vitriolic much? What is my philosophy exactly? What did I disdain exactly? How I live my life and what I eat or even what I believe has no bearing on why I posted. I just don’t like to see people be so self-rightous and hatefully about other people’s choices. Do whatever you want, but don’t be hateful because other people do different things from you. And I know it’s a bit hypocritical to post this, but it just irritates me that people feel because they’ve found something that is true for them it gives them the right to denegrate those that disagree.

        And sinking to accusing me of being fat – that’s lovely. Puts you in a very good light.

  65. Mark Sisson deserves the title of “Doctor”. People like John McDougall, Joel Fuhrman, Dean Ornish, T. Colin Campbell should not be allowed to be called as doctors.

  66. yes I hear you but what about the wonderful studies such as The China Study. and the fact that we do have an obesity epidemic. and the fact that my wife and I both feel better and have lost weight due to the changes we have made to a plant based diet huum. Meats are inferior and veges are superior, I mean why should I try to get nutrients from my food second hand. That’s like asking a smoker to get his or her fix second hand. it won’t work. As for me and my house we choose the fork over the knife every time.

  67. Oooh. This makes me very angry. The conclusion of the study, I mean. What about msg? A deadly artificial flavor enhancer found in 95% of processed foods. Especially processed meat. doesn’t it make sense to suspect msg of causing diabetes and canc ers too? meat is delicious and nutritious for sure. Many times I’m sleepy if I dont start the day with good old buddy Protein!

  68. It’s funny, when anyone tried to convince me of the miraculous benefits of a non-celiac going on a gluten-free diet, my first thought was usually, ‘Yes, it means you can’t eat Twinkies. You’re mentioning something that could be linked to eating junkfood.’

    I’d love for them to take the same people from the red meat study and run them through a study on vegetable consumption, see if the numbers still line up.

  69. The ” (PDF) ” no longer links to anything. You stated neither author, date, journal as an alternate source to verify the findings you describe.

    Could you please send me a link to the PDF article referred to:

    Here’s a link to the full study (PDF). Researchers drew on data from three large-scale dietary habit questionnaires of medical professionals to explore how red and processed meat intakes associated with the incidence of type 2 diabetes.

    Thank you in advance

    John Kolstoe

  70. The chemicals and preservatives they put into the meat is the issue. Processed meats have those things in it. We should be avoiding food chemicals and preservatives, not real food. If you cut those things out of your diet, your food cravings will diminish. Its those things that get people addicted to food and not necessarily the food itself..