Dieticians Gone Wild…And why we All need to keep our thinking caps On

usda my plate

Welcome back and lordy, lordy, it would appear that the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) has sold out, like clueless girls pulling up their shirts so a schlameel far away can cash in on the spectacle. Read this excellent article from our favorite food advocate, Robyn O’Brien, about their recent national conference:

As Robyn explains, the dieticians were treated to nutritional advice from (SARCASM MINE) paragons of health, wellness, and GMO transparency Coca-Cola, with their “Balancing Act” pamphlet. It emphasizes “energy balance”, and recommends burning 100 calories by gardening for 19 minutes, playing soccer for 13 minutes, or climbing stairs for 10 minutes. The pamphlet also reminds readers that soda and juice can all help meet hydration needs.  What Coca Cola fails to mention, despite the fact that almost 70% of our country is overweight or obese, is the role that sugar plays in disease.

They call for moderate exercise followed by ingesting enough junk food to negate the benefits an “energy balance”? The ingredients in Coke include artificial colors, aspartame, and a couple of acids (from!). Issues with prolonged Coke ingestion include Ca depletion, osteoporosis, weight gain, and leaving the body in an acidic state and hence vulnerable to disease. I am not a dietician, but I am going to proclaim that Coke is nasty and has no business being considered healthy in any sense of the word (I welcome a rebuttal to this logic from the credential endowed). My concern here is that professionals in the nutrition world were told that this stuff can meet hydration requirements, and there is the thus the possibility that someone will pass this wisdom along in their professional capacity.

Which brings me to my next point.

Just because someone has an impressive professional credential does not mean they will give you advice that is in the best interests of you or your family, and not because they are being dishonest or malicious. Instead, there may be limitations to their knowledge, it may be dated, they may be oblivious or biased in certain directions, etc. My point being that you must consider whatever anyone with a credential recommends for your health with a critical mind because they are not perfect. I can’t emphasize the points below enough:

–          Do not just accept the status quo as being the best option simply because “that’s how it has always been, so how bad could it be” (spoiler alert: in some cases, pretty bad)

–          Do not accept that because someone has a credential that they are above being asked questions, defending their position, and even being disagreed with; after all, it’s your body and your life

Just as an example of the lack of blind trust we should have in government agencies and experts, a prominent Harvard University professor has compiled a new report that slams the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for its failure to honestly and ethically approve new drugs. Set to be published in a special issue of the Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics, the damning report declares that the FDA “cannot be trusted,” noting that virtually all new drugs approved by the agency over the past 30 years are little or no better than existing drugs already on the market. Read the whole post here:

Also see the link below from a Mom who thinks that her lack of critical thinking and questioning the status quo led to her son getting autism:

One could argue whether, or not, there is “incontrovertible scientific proof” that she gave her son autism. However let’s see the forest for the trees. The totality of what happened to her son from the time he was in the womb through the first few years of his life represents the status quo and is concerning. It seemed that the medical professionals had blinders on and were concerned only with what they were doing, getting their bit done, and not the cumulative effect of what all the procedures, chemicals, medications, vaccines, antibiotics, etc. could have on a tiny, young body. Would the outcome have been different if the child had a different medical history? We’ll never know. However what she points out quite poignantly is that she did not approach each and every medical decision with a critical mind and will spend the rest of her days regretting that fact. Her thinking cap was NOT on.

Which brings me to my final point!

I love it when courageous men and women put their thinking caps on and stare down the status quo (which likely does not make a lot of sense, but is making entrenched interests a lot of cents). I’ve mentioned such courageous people in this blog, such as Prof. Brene Brown , Robyn O’Brien, and Dr. Mark Hyman. Now I’d like to add Dr. David Perlmutter to the list. His book Grain Brain (Hachette Books, 2013) is all the rage amongst the Nutritionista set (yeah, like me), and hopefully it will gain mainstream acceptance as well. He turns around the status quo by expertly pointing out the following:

–          Per Dr. George Mann (researcher with the Framingham Heart Study):  The diet heart hypothesis that suggests that a high intake of fat or cholesterol causes heart disease has been repeatedly shown to be wrong, and yet, for complicated reasons of pride, profit, and prejudice, the hypothesis continues to be exploited by scientists, fund-raising enterprise, food companies, and even governmental agencies. (See USDA My Plate dietary recommendation above for proof!) The public is being deceived by the greatest health scam of the century. [p.78]

–          Not only is the high carb, low fat useless for preventing heart disease, the notions that the intake of high dietary fat = high body fat and high dietary cholesterol = high body cholesterol ARE WRONG! Both have to do with our addiction to carbs. [p. 72]

–          What the high carb, low fat diet does do is starve our brains of required cholesterol and fat, leading to higher incidents of neurological diseases like dementia and ADHD. Furthermore, recent findings indicate that gluten, and a high-carbohydrate diet, are among the most prominent stimulators of inflammation pathways that reach the brain. This is very concerning because researchers have known for some time now that the cornerstone of all degenerative conditions, including brain disorders, is inflammation. [p.33]

The net is that the USDA My Plate ideal diet starves the brain of necessary fat and cholesterol (note that fat is not even included in the plate!) and bathes it in carbs and gluten which lead to inflammation.


I highly recommend that you get your hands on this book because it is full of much more fascinating information that is worthy of consideration. I don’t know if I an on board with the elimination of all grains and starches at this point, but his hypothesis that they should be limited and that good fats and cholesterol need to be present in substantial quantities, makes sense. How can you resist an opener like this:

Your brain…

weighs three pounds and has one hundred thousand miles of blood vessels.

contains more connections than there are stars in the Milky Way.

is the fattest organ in your body.

could be suffering this very minute without your having a clue.

Pardon me while I get back to my hard-boiled eggs for breakfast…


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