USDA: Don't go meatless, not even one day a week

The U.S. Department of Agriculture is in a peculiar position.  They are tasked with two potentially contradictory missions: 1- promoting the sales of American agricultural commodities and 2- providing dietary recommendations to guide Americans toward healthy choices.  Clearly, this is a conflict of interest. For example, the USDA advises reducing saturated fat (“solid fats”), while simultaneously promoting sales and consumption of cheese, the primary source of saturated fat in the American diet.

USDA MyPlate

If the USDA aims to help Americans make healthier choices, they need to recommend eating less of something – and the meat, dairy, egg and sugar industries all put pressure on the USDA not to single out of any of their products as a “food to reduce.”

Science-based guidelines constructed by the USDA are inevitably corrupted by political and economic forces. As a result, the USDA’s Dietary Guidelines for Americans has consistently included recommendations for excessive amounts of meat, eggs, and dairy products, and underemphasized the importance of vegetables, beans, fruits, and nuts. Consequently many Americans think that humans need dairy products to get adequate calcium, meat to get adequate protein, etc. Any advice that refers to reducing animal foods is purposely vague, referring to food components rather than specific foods: “Consume less than 10% of calories from saturated fatty acids” and “Consume less than 300 mg per day of dietary cholesterol” rather than explicitly “Limit meat, eggs and cheese.”

The USDA’s inability to produce science-based recommendations was clearly illustrated in events that transpired earlier this week. An internal USDA newsletter that discussed ways that staff at USDA headquarters can reduce their environmental impact, circulated earlier in the week, offering a suggestion that employees consider taking part in the Meatless Monday initiative:

Meatless Monday“One simple way to reduce your environmental impact while dining at our cafeterias is to participate in the “Meatless Monday” initiative http://www.meatlessmonday.com/. This international effort, as the name implies, encourages people not to eat meat on Mondays. Meatless Monday is an initiative of The Monday Campaign Inc. in association with the John Hopkins School of Public Health.

How will going meatless one day of the week help the environment? The production of meat, especially beef (and dairy as well), has a large environmental impact. According to the U.N., animal agriculture is a major source of greenhouse gases and climate change. It also wastes resources.  It takes 7,000 kg of grain to make 1,000 kg of beef. In addition, beef production requires a lot of water, fertilizer, fossil fuels, and pesticides.  In addition there are many health concerns related to the excessive consumption of meat. While a vegetarian diet could have a beneficial impact on a person’s health and the environment, many people are not ready to make that commitment. Because Meatless Monday involves only one day a week, it is a small change that could produce big results.”

This newsletter provoked a harsh response from the National Cattleman’s Beef Association (NCBA).  The President of NCBA called the Meatless Monday initiative “an animal rights extremist campaign to ultimately end meat consumption,” claimed that the newsletter “calls into question USDA’s commitment to U.S. farmers and ranchers,” and even went so far as to say, “When it comes to health, beef has an amazing story to tell. Beef is a naturally nutrient-rich food, helping you get more nutrition from the calories you take in.”

Of course, abstaining from meat one day a week is not nearly enough to bring about excellent health (and it is astounding that so many Americans consider going without meat for one day a hardship). However, healthful, plant-centered eating is gaining momentum: news reports about the disease-reversing power of plant foods are becoming more and more common. The lack of safety of factory-farmed animal products are coming to light with more and more food recalls and stories of dangerous contaminations with fecal bacteria. The public was outraged about “pink slime.” People are looking for ways to reduce the amount of animal products in their diets. The cattlemen are worried, and rightfully so.

The USDA quelled the NCBA’s outrage by responding with a statement saying that the newsletter was posted without proper clearance, and bluntly stating “USDA does not endorse Meatless Monday.”

Several studies have drawn links between higher red meat or total meat consumption and premature death.1-5 The links between meat and chronic disease are numerous:

  • Cooking meats (not just red meats) at high temperatures produces dietary carcinogens.6  
  • Additional carcinogens are formed from meats during the digestion process.7-9 
  • Excess heme iron (found only in animal foods) is an oxidant that contributes to cardiovascular disease and dementia.10, 11
  • High milk consumption is associated with increased risk of prostate and ovarian cancers.12, 13
  • Animal protein raises blood IGF-1 levels, and elevated IGF-1 is linked to increased cancer risk.14, 15
  • The World Cancer Research Fund, in a 2011 update of their comprehensive report Food, Nutrition, Physical Activity, and the Prevention of Colorectal Cancer,, has declared that red and processed meats are a convincing cause of colon cancer.16

 

Yet, the USDA cannot make a simple suggestion to abstain from meat one-seventh of the time.

 

Although the USDA’s original position was related to environment not health, it is clear to see that the USDA is not prepared to make any recommendations that might upset the giants of animal agriculture.  Although USDA’s MyPlate was a small positive step, recommending that half of Americans’ plates consist of vegetables and fruits, this Meatless Monday situation shows that how heavily the USDA is influenced by the meat industry; they cannot possibly make recommendations that are science-based.

Bottom Line: don’t trust the USDA to tell you what to eat.  Let science guide your food choices; the foods consistently associated with reduced risk of heart disease, cancer, and premature death are not meat and milk; they are vegetables, beans, fruits, seeds and nuts.

 

References:

1. Pan A, Sun Q, Bernstein AM, et al. Red Meat Consumption and Mortality: Results From 2 Prospective Cohort Studies. Arch Intern Med 2012.
2. Sinha R, Cross AJ, Graubard BI, et al. Meat intake and mortality: a prospective study of over half a million people. Arch Intern Med 2009;169:562-571.
3. Major JM, Cross AJ, Doubeni CA, et al. Socioeconomic deprivation impact on meat intake and mortality: NIH-AARP Diet and Health Study. Cancer Causes Control 2011;22:1699-1707.
4. Key TJ, Fraser GE, Thorogood M, et al. Mortality in vegetarians and nonvegetarians: detailed findings from a collaborative analysis of 5 prospective studies. Am J Clin Nutr 1999;70:516S-524S.
5. Fraser GE. Associations between diet and cancer, ischemic heart disease, and all-cause mortality in non-Hispanic white California Seventh-day Adventists. Am J Clin Nutr 1999;70:532S-538S.
6. Zheng W, Lee S-A. Well-Done Meat Intake, Heterocyclic Amine Exposure, and Cancer Risk. Nutr Cancer 2009;61:437-446.
7. WCRF/AICR Expert Report, Food, Nutrition, Physical Activity and the Prevention of Cancer: a Global Perspective.: World Cancer Research Fund; 2007.
8. Lunn JC, Kuhnle G, Mai V, et al. The effect of haem in red and processed meat on the endogenous formation of N-nitroso compounds in the upper gastrointestinal tract. Carcinogenesis 2007;28:685-690.
9. Kuhnle GG, Story GW, Reda T, et al. Diet-induced endogenous formation of nitroso compounds in the GI tract. Free Radic Biol Med 2007;43:1040-1047.
10. Brewer GJ. Iron and copper toxicity in diseases of aging, particularly atherosclerosis and Alzheimer's disease. Exp Biol Med 2007;232:323-335.
11. Brewer GJ. Risks of copper and iron toxicity during aging in humans. Chem Res Toxicol 2010;23:319-326.
12. Larsson SC, Orsini N, Wolk A. Milk, milk products and lactose intake and ovarian cancer risk: a meta-analysis of epidemiological studies. Int J Cancer 2006;118:431-441.
13. Qin LQ, Xu JY, Wang PY, et al. Milk consumption is a risk factor for prostate cancer in Western countries: evidence from cohort studies. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr 2007;16:467-476.
14. Thissen JP, Ketelslegers JM, Underwood LE. Nutritional regulation of the insulin-like growth factors. Endocr Rev 1994;15:80-101.
15. Kaaks R. Nutrition, insulin, IGF-1 metabolism and cancer risk: a summary of epidemiological evidence. Novartis Found Symp 2004;262:247-260; discussion 260-268.
16. Continuous Update Project Interim Report Summary. Food, Nutrition, Physical Activity, and the Prevention of Colorectal Cancer. . World Cancer Research Fund / American Institute for Cancer Research.; 2011.

 

 

A Perk of Going Veggie: Improve Your Mood

A recent study published in the Nutrition Journal reports that eschewing animal products in favor of plant-based foods helps improve mood in just a few weeks.  This short-term study incorporated thirty-nine omnivores.  Each participant was randomly assigned to a control group consuming meat, fish and poultry daily, a group consuming fish 3-4 times per week but avoiding meat and poultry or a vegetarian group avoiding meat, fish and poultry.  At the outset of the study and after two weeks of making assigned dietary transitions, participants were asked to complete a Food Frequency Questionnaire, the Profile of Mood States questionnaire and the Depression Anxiety and Stress scales.  By the conclusion of the study, mood scores remained constant for the omnivore and fish eating group but several mood scores for vegetarian participants improved significantly.1  These findings might be surprising given that people who eat fish regularly increase their intake of healthy eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) fatty acids, fats that are critical for optimal brain health.  This is what makes the study’s results so surprising.

Vegetables. Flickr: Bruce Guenter

Research evidence has frequently linked long-chain omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA, to mood- a substance primarily found in fish and shellfish.  Conversely, meat and poultry are high in arachidonic acid (AA), a potentially neuroinflammatory long-chain omega-6 fatty acid.  Omnivores who consume large amounts of meat and poultry and low amounts of fish, with their elevated AA to EPA/DHA ratio, have been known to be at increased risk of depression.2 Omnivorous diets rich in fish and low in meat and poultry have been linked to a lower risk of depression.3 Vegetarian and vegan diets tend to be low in both long-chain omega-3 and long-chain omega-6 fatty acids, but prior to this study, there has been limited research examining the effects of a vegetarian diet on mental well-being. 

Potential confounding variables such as a prior history of mental disorder, alcohol or substance abuse, BMI, age, gender and exercise frequency were accounted for and a general health history was completed at baseline.  After two-weeks, the vegetarian group’s levels of EPA, DHA and AA dropped to negligible amounts while the fish eating group exhibited a 95-100 percent rise in dietary EPA/DHA.  This evidence is indicative that manipulation of fatty acid concentrations in each of the participants was successful.  In every individual on the vegetarian plan, stress and anxiety scores decreased after the two weeks, indicative that those who eliminate meat, fish and poultry may be better able to cope with mental stress than omnivores.  The results of this study support another cross-sectional study which found that vegetarians report significantly better moods than non-vegetarians.4

While warranting further investigation, the results may be due to increased antioxidant consumption on the vegetarian plan leading to a reduction in oxidative stress on the brain.5 These findings are fascinating and while we might not completely understand the mechanisms involved in why a vegetarian diet likely leads to enhanced mood, the results are certainly worth pondering.  I know I feel good as I finish off my huge salad or green smoothie!   

I know my father gets excellent results with those suffering with depression by combining his nutritarian diet with added EPA and morning light therapy.  He always uses nutrition and lifestyle medicine as the primary intervention, not drugs, which can lead to dependency, side effects and long-term health problems.  It is good to know that the scientific literature is slowly catching up to Dr. Fuhrman (my dad).   Who knows, maybe next year some other study will show that combining green vegetables, onions and mushrooms prevent cancer (Ha Ha)!

 

References:

1. Beezhold BL, Johnston CS. Restriction of meat, fish, and poultry in omnivores improves mood: A pilot randomized controlled trial. Nutr J. 2012 Feb 14;11:9.

2. Kiecolt-Glaser JK, Belury MA, Porter K, Beversdorf DQ, Lemeshow S, Glaser R: Depressive symptoms, omega-6:omega-3 fatty acids, and inflammation in older adults. Psychosom Med 2007, 69:217-224.

3. Colangelo LA, He K, Whooley MA, Daviglus ML, Liu K: Higher dietary intake of long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids is inversely associated with depressive symptoms in women. Nutrition 2009,25:1011-1019.

4. Beezhold BL, Johnston CS, Daigle DR: Vegetarian diets are associated with healthy mood states: a cross-sectional study in Seventh Day Adventist adults. Nutr J 2010, 9:26.

5. Szeto YT, Kwok TC, Benzie IF: Effects of a long-term vegetarian diet onbiomarkers of antioxidant status and cardiovascular disease risk. Nutrition 2004, 20:863-866

 

How Much Rainforest Do You Eat?

Although vegetarians and vegans all have the avoidance of meat eating in common, their reasons for eschewing animal products are diverse. After all, in addition to the health benefits from abstaining from meat, many are motivated by animal suffering and certainly there are compelling environmental reasons. Meat-free followers of Dr. Fuhrman obviously do it for health reasons or a combination of health reasons and other motivations. I respect my father for providing information on nutrition and nutrition alone, without animal welfare or environmental motivations, as that is not his field of expertise.

However, I think it would be wonderful, perhaps even a necessity, if everyone understood the powerful connection our own health has with the health of the planet and the animals we share it with. My last post discussed the relationship between meat production, global warming, and world hunger. I learned much of this information at a global warming conference conducted by the World Preservation Foundation based in London. Let’s all open our eyes to the possibility here that this information may be critical for all of us.Rainforest.  Flickr: Webbaliah

It is no secret that the rainforests of the Earth are a truly magical, natural wonder. It also happens to be a place that we are massively, rapidly, and irreversibly destroying. The rainforest is home to intricate ecosystems and more unique plants and animal species than anywhere else in the world.

Amazingly, two-thirds of all known plant and animal species are found in the rainforest while rainforests themselves cover just 2 percent of the Earth’s surface. Not only are rainforests home to countless plants and animals, but they are literally the “lungs of the Earth”. Rainforests are the single greatest terrestrial source of the oxygen in the air that we breathe. Keep this information in mind while reading the following statistics about how quickly we are destroying it to meet global demands for meat:

  1. We are currently facing one of the greatest mass extinctions ever to occur on Earth. Over 30 percent of the biodiversity on this planet has been lost since 1970. In the tropics, we’ve already lost over 60 percent of its biodiversity. A study conducted by the United Nations found that the rate of current plant and animal extinctions is over 1000 times the natural rate of extinction. This is by no means a natural phenomenon. The majority of these extinctions are due to abolition of the rainforest in order to grow soy and corn to feed livestock.
  2. Brazil is the largest beef industry in the world; the country produces roughly 7 million metric tons of beef every year from a total population of 165 million cattle.
  3. According to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), 91 percent of the Amazon rainforest that has been destroyed since 1970 can be attributed to cattle raising, including the growing of feed crops
  4. Rampant deforestation for cattle-raising is becoming popular in Central America. Since 1960, more than 25 percent of the area’s rainforests have been cleared for pastures alone.
  5. The United States is the largest beef importer in the world, importing beef from Uruguay, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Brazil and most recently, Costa Rica. Many US livestock companies are reported to have purchased tracks of rainforest in Costa Rica for cattle-raising, which is sold back as beef to the United States.
  6. The Cerrado, or Brazilian Savannah, is home to 5% of global biodiversity, but is being rapidly converted into farmland used to produce soy to feed agricultural animals. 400 square kilometers of the Cerrado is cut down each year to meet beef demands in the UK alone.
  7. Overstocking and overgrazing leaves the land depleted of most nutrients, which accelerates desertification. Chopping down the irreplaceable and wonderfully gargantuan rainforest trees results in the abolition of our huge carbon dioxide conversion tank and the world’s primary oxygen supply.
  8. If global warming rates continue as they currently are, within a few decades the earth’s temperature will rise 3.5 degrees C. This will be enough to complete destroy the Amazon Rainforest and further accelerate the rate of global warming, the melting of the ice caps and the rise of sea level, obliterating costal human habitats.

For those of you who have commented, “I don’t believe in global warming.”
I wish you could have been there to see live satellite photos of thousands of square miles of the forest up in smoke, with huge clouds of black soot rising into the clouds. The amount of oxygen-producing forests that already have been decimated is clearly measurable and not a belief option. Why would one deny this exists, that humans contribute to it or that the ice masses are melting? It is not a myth that humans are destroying the natural habitats, and the species of plant life that are important for the health of our planet and that this, among other human activities, contributes to global warming.

I realize there are people who have an opposing view, but the increasing demands for meat-eating by formerly underdeveloped, highly populated nations, could dramatically increase the rate of destruction of the forest, over-utilize limited fresh water supplies, and dramatically add to pollution, in addition to increasing carbon dioxide and the gradual warming of the planet.

As I write this, I think of the movie Wall-E, in which the Earth became one big wasteland and the obese, lazy humans of the future have to move to a spaceship because planet Earth is no longer hospitable. I do not speak for my father, but as a young adult interested in the future of this world, clearly, saying no to meat-eating is a simple change that we can all make to protect the world’s precious natural resources. Maybe we’ll save a few human lives too in the process.

Centenarian, Nutritarian, and bodybuilder Joe Rollino tragically killed in car accident

While taking his daily five-mile walk on Monday, 104 year old Joe Rollino was crossing Bay Ridge Parkway in Brooklyn when he was struck by a minivan. Sadly, he died a few hours later at a local hospital.

In the 1920s, Mr. Rollino was a strongman on Coney Island billed as “The World’s Strongest Man.” He got his start in boxing and bodybuilding at age 10. Mr. Rollino became a vegetarian in his teens and firmly believed in fueling the body with natural, health-promoting foods.

He once lifted 475 lbs. with his teeth, 635 lbs. with one finger, and 3200 lbs. with his back. Even more astounding is that he did all this standing at 5’4” and weighing less than 150 lbs. 

Joe Rollino

Mr. Rollino was not only strong and muscular, he was agile. In the 1920s, he boxed as “Kid Dundee,” often against boxers 50 pounds heavier than he was. He was a World War II veteran, and he swam daily laps in the ocean year-round. He was a classic example of all-around fitness and good nutrition. Joe Rollino, like other fit nutritarians such as Herbert Shelton and Jack LaLanne occasionally corresponded with Dr. Fuhrman on the subject of nutrition. These men provide proof that aging doesn’t have to mean heart disease, diabetes, dementia, and physical fragility.

On his 103rd birthday, Joe Rollino put a quarter between his teeth and bent it with his fingers. He skipped the cake.

Joe Rollino on his 103rd birthday

March 19, 2010 would have been his 105th birthday. Imagine how long he could have lived. 

 

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/12/nyregion/12ironman.html?ref=nyregion

http://www.thesweetscience.com/boxing-article/5769/joe-rolino-103-still-fit-fiery/

http://weightlifting.org/aobsnews/aobsnews.htm

 

Processed foods, low-carb diets linked to depression

 

depressed man

(Image credit: Fakeelvis @Flickr)

Three recent studies document that consumption of processed foods increase odds of depression, and not only that, but those high protein, high fat diets (high in animal products) are also linked with more depression. The diet to protect against depression – that is simple, a high nutrient, plant-based diet outlined in my books, Eat for Health and Eat to Live

In one study, middle-aged subjects were categorized by their dietary patterns based on how much “whole” or “processed” food they consumed. The high processed foods group was characterized by high intake of sweetened desserts, fried food, processed meat, refined grains, and high-fat dairy products. Five years later, the researchers evaluated how many of the subjects had reported depression symptoms.

Subjects who ate the most whole foods had the lowest odds of depression, and those who ate the most processed foods had the highest odds of depression – 60% increased odds compared to those who ate the least amount of processed foods.1

Another study compared the effects of low-fat plant-based diet and low-carbohydrate animal-product-rich diet on mood in overweight women. Although both groups lost similar amounts of weight over one year, measures of mental health and mood only improved in the low-fat group. The low-carb dieters eating more fat and animal products had higher depression scores. The authors also cited previous human studies in which high protein, low-carbohydrate diets have resulted in cognitive impairment.2

A third study measured scores of depression before and after removing meat, poultry, and fish from subjects normally eating a typical American diet. Indicators of depression significantly decreased after removing all the animal products and shifting to a plant-based diet for 2 weeks. 3

Nutrition is crucial for regulating mood – high oxidative stress in the brain and low levels of several micronutrients have also been linked to depression.4  

These studies are a reminder that what we eat affects not only our physical health but our mental health as well. Combine great diet with light therapy, exercise, sufficient Vitamin D and the right fatty acid balance for the brain, and you have my protocol to beat depression

 

References:

1. Akbaraly TN et al. Dietary pattern and depressive symptoms in middle age. Br J Psychiatry. 2009 Nov;195(5):408-13.

2. Brinkworth et al. Long-term Effects of a Very Low-Carbohydrate Diet

and a Low-Fat Diet on Mood and Cognitive Function. Arch Intern Med. 2009;169(20):1873-1880

3. Beezhold BL et al. Preliminary evidence that vegetarian diet improves mood. American Public Health Association 2009 National Meeting, Abstract 206464. 

4. Leung BM, Kaplan BJ. Perinatal depression: prevalence, risks, and the nutrition link--a review of the literature. J Am Diet Assoc. 2009 Sep;109(9):1566-75.

 

Eating to Live on the Outside: HanGawi

Ready for a little Eating to Live on the Outside? I know, you can hardly contain yourself! Okay, this week we’re "going" to HanGawi, a Korean vegetarian restaurant in the heart of New York City.

And it looks pretty good. Not a knockout, but workable. After flipping through the internet menu, here’s what I’d consider ordering. Check it out:

HanGawi Salad

  • Mixed greens, diced tomatoes and sesame dressing; works for me, but dressing on the side.

Avocado Lettuce Salad

  • Avocado, lettuce and ginger carrot dressing; same deal with the dressing.

Mango Pear Salad

  • Mango and pear; it doesn’t say exactly what’s in it, but I think that’s a good guess.

Seaweed Salad

  • Assorted seaweeds and lemon dressing; provided the seaweed isn’t salty, I’m cool with it.

Ginseng Salad

  • Vegetables, shredded ginseng roots, bean paste and lemon dressing; I’m digging it.

Tofu Asparagus Salad

  • Tofu and asparagus; again, another guess, but I like it.

Todok Salad

  • Todok, watercress, cabbage, carrots, bean paste and lemon dressing; I’ve never had todok, but I’d give it a whirl!

Tofu and Mushrooms Galore in Lemon Ginger Sauce

  • Tofu, mushrooms and lemon ginger sauce; tofu isn’t my favorite thing, but this sounds good.

Mushrooms and Garlic Medley

  • Sautéed mushrooms, vegetables and garlic sauce; the sautéing is a little iffy, but the veggies kick butt!

Mixed Vegetarian Autumn Rolls

  • Vegetables, tofu, bean paste, cold lettuce and sesame leaves; interesting, I’ve never eaten sesame leaves.

Spicy Chili Mushrooms

  • Mixed mushrooms and spicy sauce; I love mushrooms!

HanGawi Stone Bowl Lunch

  • Chestnuts, dates, pine nuts, read beans, mushrooms and rice; the rice isn’t great, but the rest of the stuff is awesome.

Vegetarian Stone Bowl Rice

  • Vegetables, rice and hot chili paste; same deal with the rice.

Mountain Vegetables and Greens in Wooden Bowl

  • Mountain vegetable, greens, rice and hot chili paste; I’m not sure what mountain vegetables are, but I’d like to find out!

Mongolian Hot Pot

  • Wild bracken shoots, mushrooms and mixed vegetables; wild bracken shoots, very intriguing.

Like I said, HanGawi is pretty good. Some of the rice and sautéing might turn you off, but I can deal with it. My top choices would be either the HanGawi Salad or the Mountain Vegetables and Greens.

But what about you? What would you order? Scope out HanGawi’s menu and let me know how you handle Eating to Live on the Outside. Just make a comment! Until then, eat well. Peace.

Image credit: HanGawi

Eating to Live on the Outside: Magic Apple

I’m excited! This week Eating to Live on the Outside takes a long “trip” all the way to Australia. I’m “off” to Magic Apple, a vegetarian restaurant from the land down under touting good wholesome food. So, how does it stack up? Its okay. Here’s a quick list of stuff that caught my eye.

Tabouleh

  • Iron rich parsley, bourghal, Q’s, tomatoes, springys, black pepper, lemon juice and garlic; I have no idea what “Q’s” or “springys” are, but it still looks good. I’ve had Tabouleh before. I like it.

Tamari/Ginger Rice Salad

  • Brown rice, soy, roasted peanuts and sesames, ginger, red caps, currants and springys; I can deal with the rice, but I can’t figure out what “red caps” are.

Spinach & Tofu Salad

  • Silver beet, soy-marinated tofu, dribbled with toasted sesame seed oil and baked soy-marinated sunflower seeds; I can handle the oil. Beets are always a major plus.

Roasted and Greens Salad

  • Roasted carrot, pumpkin, beetroot tossed in garlic, sea salt, black pepper and cumin seeds mixed with English spinach, wild rocket, cauliflower and snow peas; if you drop the salt, this is one is pretty impressive. Tons of veggies! But I have no idea what “wild rocket” is.

Salsa/Mediterranean

  • Capsys, zucchinis, tomatoes, cucumber, red onion in olive oil, cayenne and garlic; not bad, hopefully a “capsys” is something good.

First let me say this. If there are any Aussies out there, please help me out with the translations, my head is spinning. As for what I’d order. I like the Roasted and Greens Salad, just too much good stuff for me to pass up, but what about you? What do you like? Do you speak Australian?

Image credit: Magic Apple Gold Coast

Vegetarians Have Less Risk of Blood Cancer than Meat Eaters

Good news veg-heads! A new study in the British Journal of Cancer, involving more than 61,000 people—meat eaters and vegetarians—revealed vegetarians and vegans had lower risk of certain types of blood cancer, such as leukemia, multiple myeloma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

Vegetarians are 12 percent less likely to develop cancer than meat eaters and the advantage is particularly marked when it comes to cancers of the blood, British researchers said on Wednesday.

Past research has shown that eating lots of red or processed meat is linked to a higher rate of stomach cancer and the new study, involving more than 60,000 people, did confirm a lower risk of both stomach and bladder cancer.

But the most striking and surprising difference was in cancers of the blood -- such as leukemia, multiple myeloma and non-Hodgkin lymphoma -- where the risk of disease was 45 percent lower in vegetarians than in meat eaters.

Via Reuters.

 

Image credit: Got Jenna

Cutting Alcohol, Meat and Smoking Lowers Colon Cancer Risk

Geez, I know people who do all three—in one sitting! If you know someone like this too, show them this.

New research in the International Journal of Cancer suggests lifestyle changes—such as eating less red meat, not smoking, avoiding alcohol and exercising—may lower your risk of colon cancer.

Scientists analyzed 100 studies on colon cancer risk, finding that high intake of red and processed meats, smoking, obesity and diabetes were associated with a 20% increased in the risk.

As for alcohol, people averaging one drink or more each day had a 60% higher risk of cancer. However, people who exercised regularly were 20% less likely to develop colorectal cancer.

Makes sense! Especially since last week a report came out saying vegetarians—i.e. people who don’t eat meat—have less cancer than meat eaters.

And previous findings reveal smoking and drinking heighten risk of bowel cancer, but eating fruits and vegetables, protect against cancer. Sweet!

Via Reuters.

Image credit: ilovedthecoffee

Vegetarians Have Less Cancer Risk than Meat-Eaters -- UPDATE --

New findings in the British Journal of Cancer reveal of the 60,000 Britons studied those who were vegetarian—half of them—had a lower risk of developing cancer, compared to meat-eaters. The research followed participants for 12.2 years, with 3,350 incidences of cancer. The number of meat-ears who developed cancer was 2,204 and 829 among vegetarians—only 317 fish-eaters got cancer. Overall, vegetarians were 12% less likely to get cancer; Medical News Today reports.

But vegetarian and vegan diets most often aren’t ideal. Dr. Fuhrman points out many vegans and vegetarians are often deficient in things like omega-3’s, found in fish. Dr. Fuhrman’s DHA Purity can help. It’s derived from microalgae and supplies plenty of brain-building omega–3 fatty acids.

In related news, animal fat was shown to raise the risk of developing pancreatic cancer, while leafy green vegetables—such as kale and cabbage—help fight and protect against cancer.

UPDATE: Dr. Fuhrman had some additional thoughts: 

A vegan diet can be ideal if well designed as can be a diet with a small amount of animal products, such as one or two servings a week. A nutritarian diet is designed to reverse disease and promote longer life, and features:

  • Adequate depth and variety of nutrient-rich natural foods
  • Limited animal products, but adequate ALA/EPA/DHA
  • Adequate whole food plant fats and proteins from seeds, nuts and beans
  • High intake of green and cruciferous vegetables
  • Careful attention to supplements or lab tests to assure no deficiencies are present with genetic variation of absorption and variable needs

Image credit: Carly & Art