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Old 08-20-2011, 08:34 PM   #21
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Life is short, whether you live to be 65 or 95. Might as well enjoy you're limited time on the rock. Besides, one thing all these studies fail to really impress upon people is that an increase in something statistically is not necessarily a major concern.

For instance, if cancer rates among people that eat too much bacon goes up 50% that sounds bad. However, if only 1% of people get bacon cancer to begin with, now it's a whopping 1.5%. I'm not sure the people doing the study intend some journalist to cherry pick headlines from their study to scare people, but it's done. Not to mention some studies are performed and or funded by groups with an agenda.

I still subscribe to the "eat right, exercise die anyway" and "everything in moderation" philosophies.
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Old 08-20-2011, 09:04 PM   #22
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Life is short, whether you live to be 65 or 95.
So, it's only a 30 year difference -- who really cares about that? On a geological time scale, it's hardly even discernible.
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Old 08-20-2011, 09:09 PM   #23
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Old 08-20-2011, 11:09 PM   #24
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So, it's only a 30 year difference -- who really cares about that? On a geological time scale, it's hardly even discernible.
Exactly!
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Now it's pesticides
Old 08-21-2011, 01:14 AM   #25
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Now it's pesticides

From Association Between Type 2 Diabetes and Exposure to Persistent Organic Pollutants

Quote:
CONCLUSIONS This study confirms the association between type 2 diabetes and adult-only exposure to organochlorine pesticides in a general urban population.
Wonder what the next study will find?

And as for the study that spurred this thread....
Quote:
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
Does Eating Red Meat Increase Type 2 Diabetes Risk? | Mark's Daily Apple

If you look at table 1 of the study you will find all of the above (with the exception of the conclusions drawn about their fiber intake and how it relates to the rest of their diet).

What is not mentioned above is that in two of the three study groups the heaviest red meat eaters were also the groups with the highest reported family history of diabetes.

From the ADA's website:
Quote:
Type 2 diabetes has a stronger link to family history and lineage than type 1, although it too depends on environmental factors. Studies of twins have shown that genetics play a very strong role in the development of type 2 diabetes. Lifestyle also influences the development of type 2 diabetes. Obesity tends to run in families, and families tend to have similar eating and exercise habits.
So, the red meat chowhounds were also the boozers, smokers, trans-fat fried potato eaters who eschewed veggies and were a bunch of sedentary fat bastards who showed up to the party bloated on carbs and blessed with a greater genetic predisposition to diabetes 2....

...and the study concluded it was all about the red meat consumption.

Damn, them Hahvahd boys really are wicked smaht.

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Old 08-26-2011, 01:38 AM   #26
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...and the study concluded it was all about the red meat consumption.

Damn, them Hahvahd boys really are wicked smaht.
If you will look back at the first post of this thread, you will find:
Quote:
After adjusting for contributing risk factors like age, weight, exercise habits, smoking, genetic predispositions and other dietary factors, the researchers found a strong association between eating red meat, particularly processed meat, and risk of Type 2 diabetes.
Maybe you and Mark missed that "after adjusting ..." part.
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Old 08-26-2011, 02:40 AM   #27
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If you will look back at the first post of this thread, you will find:Maybe you and Mark missed that "after adjusting ..." part.
It's always awkward when real science comes to conclusions which people don't like. See also "stem cell research", "global warming", and "homeopathy". Science has the ability to tick off people on the left and right, because it turns out that politics is just opinion; science is what works even when you don't believe [in] it.
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Old 08-26-2011, 10:05 AM   #28
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If you will look back at the first post of this thread, you will find:Maybe you and Mark missed that "after adjusting ..." part.
Damn.*
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It's always awkward when real science comes to conclusions which people don't like. See also "stem cell research", "global warming", and "homeopathy". Science has the ability to tick off people on the left and right, because it turns out that politics is just opinion; science is what works even when you don't believe [in] it.
It's not that I don't believe in science, it's more that I don't necessarily believe I need to change things in my life based on one study. There are too many that contradict each other, that have been poorly designed or executed, or in which the results have been poorly reported.

When there is a preponderance of evidence supported by multiple studies showing the same conclusion then I'm going to make some changes if necessary. If you hang your hat on the results of one study it seems it is only a matter of time before another study comes along that claims the complete opposite. It's not necessarily the researchers to blame as much as it is the media that picks out some factoid that looks like it makes a good story and runs with it - even if they don't understand what the study really reported.

*My first reaction: "How did I miss that?"

My second reaction: Diabetes is an incredibly complicated disease and I think there is still a lot to learn about what causes it, and what is the best way to treat it. The researchers may have adjusted their findings to eliminate the statistical significance of the effect of those other risk factors, and then again, maybe the interaction between the factors is greater than we know or that can be accounted for.

Think on this: Ten years ago what did the studies say about low-carb diets? And, how many studies available today show that a low-carb diet way of eating may be just the thing for T2 diabetics, pre-diabetics, and those who don't want to join their ranks? But we still are faced with conflicting schools of thought on how diabetics should be eating - low-carb, low-fat, vegan, paleo, high-fiber, etc.

Now, there is one thing that I think that there is no disagreement on is that physical activity is an important factor in diabetes - maintenance and prevention.
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Old 08-26-2011, 10:51 AM   #29
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When there is a preponderance of evidence supported by multiple studies showing the same conclusion then I'm going to make some changes if necessary.
I was completely convinced by Linus Pauling's little book Vitamin C and the Common Cold. It reported lots of experimental results, made arguments that made sense to me, and was by a scientist with a considerable reputation. I took large doses of Vitamin C for a number of years. But then results of follow up studies started to come in. Nothing there. It became clear that vitamin C does not prevent colds. So, I stopped believing stuff like that, until hearing of confirming evidence. By the way, though, observational studies have had at least one success story -- smoking.
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Old 08-26-2011, 11:19 AM   #30
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I was completely convinced by Linus Pauling's little book Vitamin C and the Common Cold. It reported lots of experimental results, made arguments that made sense to me, and was by a scientist with a considerable reputation. I took large doses of Vitamin C for a number of years. But then results of follow up studies started to come in. Nothing there. It became clear that vitamin C does not prevent colds. So, I stopped believing stuff like that, until hearing of confirming evidence. By the way, though, observational studies have had at least one success story -- smoking.
Pauling and his work make for a great example of what I'm talking about. He found some study from the 1940's and ran with it to the exclusion of any evidence to the contrary. From almost the start he was in confrontations with other researchers who held different views about Vitamin C. It appears that Pauling promoted studies that agreed with him while poo-pooing those that did not. He criticized the Mayo studies that disagreed with him and said they were poorly designed and executed.

So, almost from the beginning of Pauling's advocacy, and flawed studies, there were conflicting studies that said Pauling was wrong as can be. Yet he continued to research and publish - and people like you continued to alter their nutritional intake based on that one guy's work.

Interesting factoid: Although we know that Vitamin C does not prevent the common cold the Mayo Clinic currently says....
Quote:
Notably, some studies of people living in extreme circumstances, including soldiers in subarctic exercises, skiers, and marathon runners, have found a significant reduction in the risk of developing a cold, by approximately 50%. This area merits additional research and may be of particular interest to elite athletes or military personnel.
They still maintain that Vitamin C does not prevent the common cold, or alleviate the length or severity (excepting the polar bear types mentioned above). And that all the studies show no benefit for people with cataracts or CVD, and the studies on benefits for those with asthma, cancer, and diabetes remains inconclusive.

The disagreement between Pauling and Mayo et al took a couple of decades to play itself out. How much Vitamin C was purchased and pissed out with no benefit and at what collective financial cost during that period?

See why I'm not going to change my life because one study that reviewed self-reported information came to a conclusion that red-meat causes T2D?

Edit: I'm not hating on all things Linus Pauling. The man was an incredible chemist, but the preponderance of evidence says he was wrong on Vitamin C preventing the common cold. However, on the internet his legacy lives on in his claims about Vitamin C and cancer. There sure are a number of websites saying that there is a vast conspiracy to discredit his work in that area. I make no comments on Pauling and any of his work outside that on the common cold.
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Old 08-26-2011, 11:36 AM   #31
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How much Vitamin C was purchased and pissed out with no benefit and at what collective financial cost during that period?
Am I angry at all the money I wasted on Vitamin C? Not really. It's quite cheap, no side effects other than kidney stones (if you don't drink enough water), and doesn't require you to go far out of your way to take it (not a major lifestyle change like giving up red meat). I now take several supplements in this general category: some suggestive evidence for a benefit (though nothing persuasive), few reported bad side effects, cheap, easy to take. I don't think that's irrational.

Oh, and I did pretty much give up red meat, anyhow, and I don't have diabetes. So there you go.
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Old 08-26-2011, 12:05 PM   #32
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It's always awkward when real science comes to conclusions which people don't like. See also "stem cell research", "global warming", and "homeopathy". Science has the ability to tick off people on the left and right, because it turns out that politics is just opinion; science is what works even when you don't believe [in] it.
And then we have exact sciences and in-exact sciences
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Old 08-26-2011, 06:42 PM   #33
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I rarely post but frequently check in. Lots of good information here. Thanks to all.

Lately have been paying a lot of attention to health posts. My Dad recently died from a heart attack. He was close-mouthed to the extreme. We his family had not known that he had CHD and was (probably) diabetic. Even his SO with whom he lived didn't know. He'd seemed to be, and certainly portrayed himself, as unusually healthy for mid-80s. More, it's not clear whether his heart issues developed relatively late in life or had been present in his early 50s (i.e., apparent early heart attack), which - if so - has familial implications.

Anyhow, I pulled up the original study from the Mark's Daily Apple link. WOW !!!

All of the forum comments - family history, the "Big Mac" factor *are* highly relevant and *would* distort results. Based upon a granted quick perusal, the adjustments made by the authors - including the dietary - seem to have been pretty sophisticated. That's not to say there isn't room for a critical evaluation ... but it should be that, particularly for publication on a website that I assume purports to provide health advice.

My beef is that it's hard enough for those of us trying to sort it all out ...

But the OP wanted to know what others thought.

My take is that the bottom line of the study isn't that earth-shattering - even assuming there a real-world 19% increase in type-2 diabetes among red meat eaters. That does NOT strike me as "large" enough that many otherwise healthy folks would then choose to avoid red meat. The nitrites maybe (personally).

More, what does strike me about the "meat wars" is that at least some studies showing benefits to an Atkins-paleo approach are predicated upon simultaneously reducing the carbo load - not just McD FFs, but a broad range of carbs. What is the impact of saturated fats if carbs aren't removed from the diet? It's possible for vegans to point to health benefits in societies that have limited meat resources and for paleos to reference groups that have existed largely on meat-based proteins. But high-fat *and* high-carb (our society)?

Here, found a new study potentially interesting - coffee with a high fat intake can inhibit the availability of insulin to remove the sugars in the blood from carbohydrates. High fat alone struck me as potentially problematic, although that wasn't the study focal point.

Coffee with a fatty meal raises blood sugar to diabetes level

Sorry for being so long-winded (particularly since I don't post much). Probably not good forum behavior.
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Old 08-27-2011, 12:01 AM   #34
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Anyhow, I pulled up the original study from the Mark's Daily Apple link. WOW !!!

All of the forum comments - family history, the "Big Mac" factor *are* highly relevant and *would* distort results. Based upon a granted quick perusal, the adjustments made by the authors - including the dietary - seem to have been pretty sophisticated. That's not to say there isn't room for a critical evaluation ... but it should be that, particularly for publication on a website that I assume purports to provide health advice.
I am not sure what you mean by this. Do you position ER.org as a website
that purports to provide health advice, or are you talking about some other website? Because I believe the organizers would be shocked indeed to find out that this is a website giving any sort of advice, particularly health advice.

We are a bunch of amateurs who purport nothing, except that we don't have a clue among the entire bunch.

Now my very stupid and completely unifomed take on the section on covariates in the article about meat and diabetes is that they are genuflecting very skillfully, but really, how would they allow for any of these covariates? If they found out that someone in the heavy meat eater group also smoked, would they throw out his data? They don't say this. Did they ask if roast beef was eaten with mashed potatoes and a dessert? They didn't say this.

I think the study may say something important, but we have no compelling to reason to believe that it does. At the same time, "paleo/primal" sites like Mark's Daily Apple have a viewpoint to sell, and pouring cold water on studies that are interpreted to be challenging to their viepoint is part of their mission. After all, people rarely go to the trouble of putting up websites unless there is a monetary or psychic reward being sought, and ofen both.

A former member here always stressed that the most important thing to know about any "study", is who is paying and what results provide what payoffs to whom.

In particular, dietary research seems to be an area where original thinking is actively suppressed.

Ha
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Old 08-27-2011, 12:20 AM   #35
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My first question was to wonder what was in the "lipid cocktail" they were giving the participants, and then I wondered what was in the sugary drink. I already knew that studies have found that coffee consumption decreases the risk of T2D in healthy, non-diabetics, and that is countered by a single study that found caffeine consumption in type II diabetics may cause a slight increase in blood glucose levels.

Googling lead me to this blog entry that asks the same questions I do, and gives some more information than I found in the news story. The Confusion of Science & Medical Research (Part I) - Acronym Required

Quote:
The 2011 paper used 11 volunteers. Being that this was a controlled experiment, subjects fasted for 12 hours after going two days without coffee, exercise or alcohol. The researchers then had participants drink a "fat cocktail", which consisted of 1 gram of fat/1 kg of body weight. I don't know what the exact fat composition of the drink was because I couldn't find the "Supplemental Table II".

But if you were a 160 pound male (72 kg), your experimental "fat cocktail" would consist of 72 grams of fat, which amounts to 5.5 tablespoons of soybean oil (one of the ingredients used in the study); or more familiar to most people, 24 tablespoons of half and half; more than 3 McDonald's Double Cheeseburgers; (.pdf); or about 3 orders of large McDonald's French Fries. I don't know what you think, but any such pile of food would be outside the range of "hearty breakfast" choices for me. The participants then waited five hours, before drinking the caffeine equivalent of 2-3 cups of coffee (5 mg/kg body weight). 1 hour later they were fed 75g of dextrose (like glucose), about 75 grams of high-glycemic carbohydrates. By comparison, a large Coke from McDonalds has about 86 grams of carbohydrates and a package of sugar has about 4 grams of carbohydrates. This protocol caused a physiological response in the participants.
I weigh 86 kilos - that would mean that if I had participated in the study I would get 86 grams of saturated fat in my lipid cocktail. I'm eating high-fat low-carb and looking at this past week's numbers I consumed 30-35 grams of saturated fat a day.

Not counting the fact that the glycemic index is an inaccurate load of crap, my carbs don't have a lot of sugar in them and 75 grams is, again, more than I eat on an average day (although I stumble occasionally like today and had 76 grams).

A lot of T2 diabetics say that they find one of the most critical elements of controlling their postprandial blood glucose is portion control. While I still wonder what was in those cocktails, I have to say that the portions - especially the lipids - were outrageously huge. Not that there aren't some people eating like that these days.
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Old 08-27-2011, 08:05 AM   #36
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By far the biggest problem with looking at medical studies is the problem of definitions. What the author decides to use may not be even close to what you think is reasonable.

Here's a great example:
I recently looked at a study related to measuring LDL in the bloodstream that appeared to be a good, double-blind, randomized bit of research. But they divided the subjects into "high fat" and "low fat" diet groups. So far, all well and good. But the high fat group got 37% of their calories from fat, and the low fat group got 25% of their calories from fat. To me, that's really stretching the meaning of "high" and "low" to the breaking point.
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Old 08-27-2011, 10:12 AM   #37
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I am not sure what you mean by this. Do you position ER.org as a website
that purports to provide health advice, or are you talking about some other website? Because I believe the organizers would be shocked indeed to find out that this is a website giving any sort of advice, particularly health advice.

...

I think the study may say something important, but we have no compelling to reason to believe that it does. At the same time, "paleo/primal" sites like Mark's Daily Apple have a viewpoint to sell, and pouring cold water on studies that are interpreted to be challenging to their viepoint is part of their mission. After all, people rarely go to the trouble of putting up websites unless there is a monetary or psychic reward being sought, and ofen both.

A former member here always stressed that the most important thing to know about any "study", is who is paying and what results provide what payoffs to whom.


Ha
Truly sorry to muddle post ... wasn't at all frustrated at any ER.org postings or quotes to internet websites. Meant Mark's Daily. Once the links are given it's up to the reader to check out the site and evaluate for themselves.

I just sure wasn't impressed and - more - reacted negatively, and admittedly personally, to "Mark" and to what struck me as deliberate distortion for profit/web hits/what-have-you. Silly really - can't trust the web!!! That said, instead of just being irritated I, in responding to the OP, dragged myself further along the path of figuring out how I might want to change diets given our newly discovered family history. For example, maybe there *are* complex interactions between high fat and high carbs. So this is good ...

We are in Irene's path ... I've made successful forays for ice ... and must now return to emergency baking etc. before disappearing into the powerlessness.

Really appreciate this forum ... mainly the quality of the discourse, analysis - pros and cons - that someone like me who wanders in can ponder. It's not easy to find that - on or off the web. Most tend to filter information according to our preconceived beliefs, behavior patterns. Intelligent, thoughtful questioning is hard to come by.
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Old 08-27-2011, 10:35 AM   #38
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Googling lead me to this blog entry that asks the same questions I do, and gives some more information than I found in the news story. The Confusion of Science & Medical Research (Part I) - Acronym Required
Especially if you sometimes skim postings, you might not realize that this post is no longer discussing red meat. Now it's about coffee.
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Old 08-27-2011, 03:30 PM   #39
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Especially if you sometimes skim postings, you might not realize that this post is no longer discussing red meat. Now it's about coffee.
Actually, I think you're the one confused. My post was in response to this comment and link provided by everylady:


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Here, found a new study potentially interesting - coffee with a high fat intake can inhibit the availability of insulin to remove the sugars in the blood from carbohydrates. High fat alone struck me as potentially problematic, although that wasn't the study focal point.

Coffee with a fatty meal raises blood sugar to diabetes level
The link is to a news story that is the subject of the blog that I linked to. It is in fact a study on the effect of fat and caffeine combinations on blood glucose. My take was that it is again a similar case in which the findings of a study have been cherry picked by the media and sensationalized. And a case in which perhaps the design of the study raised some questions as did the OP on the study about red-meat.
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Old 08-27-2011, 04:01 PM   #40
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Actually, I think you're the one confused. My post was in response to this comment and link provided by everylady:
But you didn't link to the post you were responding to, nor did you say there that you were responding to that post. Sloppy.
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