Top 11 Biggest Lies of Mainstream Nutrition

Woman Confused About What to EatThere is a lot of misinformation circling around in mainstream nutrition.

I have listed the worst examples in this article, but unfortunately this is just the tip of the iceberg.

Here are the top 11 biggest lies, myths and misconceptions of mainstream nutrition.

1. Eggs Are Unhealthy

There’s one thing that nutrition professionals have had remarkable success with… and that is demonizing incredibly healthy foods.

The worst example of that is eggs, which happen to contain a large amount of cholesterol and were therefore considered to increase the risk of heart disease.

But recently it has been proven that the cholesterol in the diet doesn’t really raise the cholesterol in blood. In fact, eggs primarily raise the “good” cholesterol and are NOT associated with increased risk of heart disease (1, 2).

What we’re left with is one of the most nutritious foods on the planet. They’re high in all sorts of nutrients along with unique antioxidants that protect our eyes (3).

To top it all of, despite being a “high fat” food, eating eggs for breakfast is proven to cause significant weight loss compared to bagels for breakfast (4, 5).

Bottom Line: Eggs do not cause heart disease and are among the most nutritious foods on the planet. Eggs for breakfast can help you lose weight.

2. Saturated Fat is Bad For You

Foods High in Saturated Fat

A few decades ago it was decided that the epidemic of heart disease was caused by eating too much fat, in particular saturated fat.

This was based on highly flawed studies and political decisions that have now been proven to be completely wrong.

A massive review article published in 2010 looked at 21 prospective epidemiological studies with a total of 347.747 subjects. Their results: absolutely no association between saturated fat and heart disease (6).

The idea that saturated fat raised the risk of heart disease was an unproven theory that somehow became conventional wisdom (7).

Eating saturated fat raises the amount of HDL (the “good”) cholesterol in the blood and changes the LDL from small, dense LDL (very bad) to Large LDL, which is benign (8, 9).

Meat, coconut oil, cheese, butter… there is absolutely no reason to fear these foods.

Bottom Line: Newer studies have proven that saturated fat does not cause heart disease. Natural foods that are high in saturated fat are good for you.

3. Everybody Should be Eating Grains


The idea that humans should be basing their diets on grains has never made sense to me.

The agricultural revolution happened fairly recently in human evolutionary history and our genes haven’t changed that much.

Grains are fairly low in nutrients compared to other real foods like vegetables. They are also rich in a substance called phytic acid which binds essential minerals in the intestine and prevents them from being absorbed (10).

The most common grain in the western diet, by far, is wheat… and wheat can cause a host of health problems, both minor and serious.

Modern wheat contains a large amount of a protein called gluten, but there is evidence that a significant portion of the population may be sensitive to it (11, 12, 13).

Eating gluten can damage the intestinal lining, cause pain, bloating, stool inconsistency and tiredness (14, 15). Gluten consumption has also been associated with schizophrenia and cerebellar ataxia, both serious disorders of the brain (16, 17).

Bottom Line: Grains are relatively low in nutrients compared to other real foods like vegetables. The gluten grains in particular may lead to a variety of health problems.

4. Eating a Lot of Protein is Bad For Your Bones and Kidneys

A high protein diet has been claimed to cause both osteoporosis and kidney disease.

It is true that eating protein increases calcium excretion from the bones in the short term, but the long term studies actually show the opposite effect.

High Protein Foods

In the long term, protein has a strong association with improved bone health and a lower risk of fracture (18, 19).

Additionally, studies don’t show any association of high protein with kidney disease in otherwise healthy people (20, 21).

In fact, two of the main risk factors for kidney failure are diabetes and high blood pressure. Eating a high protein diet improves both (22, 23).

If anything, a high protein diet should be protective against osteoporosis and kidney failure!

Bottom Line: Eating a high protein diet is associated with improved bone health and a lower risk of fracture. High protein also lowers blood pressure and improves diabetes symptoms, which should lower the risk of kidney failure.

5. Low-Fat Foods Are Good For You


Do you know what regular food tastes like when all the fat has been taken out of it?

Well, it tastes like cardboard. No one would want to eat it.

The food manufacturers know this and therefore they add other things to compensate for the lack of fat.

Usually these are sweeteners… sugar, high fructose corn syrup or artificial sweeteners like aspartame.

We’ll get to the sugar in a moment, but I’d like to point out that even though artificial sweeteners don’t have calories, the evidence does NOT suggest that they are better for you than sugar.

In fact, many observational studies show a consistent, highly significant association with various diseases like obesity, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, heart disease, premature delivery and depression (24, 25, 26).

In these low-fat products, healthy natural fats are being replaced with substances that are extremely harmful.

Bottom Line: Low-fat foods are usually highly processed products loaded with sugar, corn syrup or artificial sweeteners. They are extremely unhealthy.

6. You Should Eat Many Small Meals Throughout The Day

The idea that you should eat many small meals throughout the day in order to “keep metabolism high” is a persistent myth that doesn’t make any sense.

It is true that eating raises your metabolism slightly while you’re digesting the meal, but it’s the total amount of food that determines the energy used, NOT the number of meals.

Small Plate of Pasta

This has actually been put to the test and refuted multiple times. Controlled studies where one group eats many small meals and the other the same amount of food in fewer meals show that there is literally no difference between the two (27, 28).

In fact, one study in obese men revealed that eating 6 meals per day led to less feelings of fullness compared to 3 meals (29).

Not only is eating so often practically useless for most of the people out there, it may even be harmful.

It is not natural for the human body to be constantly in the fed state. In nature, we used to fast from time to time and we didn’t eat nearly as often as we do today.

When we don’t eat for a while, a cellular process called autophagy cleans waste products out of our cells (30). Fasting or not eating from time to time is good for you.

Several observational studies show a drastically increased risk of colon cancer (4th most common cause of cancer death), numbers going as high as a 90% increase for those who eat 4 meals per day compared to 2 (31, 32, 33).

Bottom Line: There is no evidence that eating many small meals throughout the day is better than fewer, bigger meals. Not eating from time to time is good for you. Increased meal frequency is associated with colon cancer.

7. Carbs Should Be Your Biggest Source of Calories

Food Pyramid

The mainstream view is that everyone should eat a low-fat diet, with carbs being around 50-60% of total calories.

This sort of diet contains a lot of grains and sugars, with very small amounts of fatty foods like meat and eggs.

This type of diet may work well for some people, especially those who are naturally lean.

But for those who are obese, have the metabolic syndrome or diabetes, this amount of carbohydrates is downright dangerous.

This has actually been studied extensively. A low-fat, high-carb diet has been compared to a low-carb, high-fat diet in multiple randomized controlled trials.

The results are consistently in favor of low-carb, high-fat diets (34, 35, 36).

Bottom Line: The low-fat, high-carb diet is a miserable failure and has been proven repeatedly to be vastly inferior to lower-carb, higher-fat diets.

8. High Omega-6 Seed and Vegetable Oils Are Good For You

Polyunsaturated Oil

Polyunsaturated fats are considered healthy because some studies show that they lower your risk of heart disease.

But there are many types of polyunsaturated fats and they are not all the same.

Most importantly, we have both Omega-3 fatty acids and Omega-6 fatty acids.

Omega-3s are anti-inflammatory and lower your risk of many diseases related to inflammation (37). Humans actually need to get Omega-6s and Omega-3s in a certain ratio. If the ratio is too high in favor of Omega-6, it can cause problems (38).

By far the biggest sources of Omega-6 in the modern diet are processed seed and vegetable oils like soybean, corn and sunflower oils.

Throughout evolution, humans never had access to such an abundance of Omega-6 fats. It is unnatural for the human body.

Research that specifically looks at Omega-6 fatty acids instead of polyunsaturated fats in general shows that they actually increase the risk of heart disease (39, 40).

Eat your Omega-3s and consider supplementing with cod fish liver oil, but avoid the industrial seed and vegetable oils.

Bottom Line: Humans need to get Omega-6 and Omega-3 fats in a certain ratio. Eating excess Omega-6 from seed oils raises your risk of disease.

9. Low Carb Diets Are Dangerous

Woman Standing On The Scale Frustrated

I personally believe low-carb diets to be a potential cure for many of the most common health problems in western nations.

The low-fat diet peddled all around the world is fairly useless against many of these diseases. It simply does not work.

However, low-carb diets (demonized by nutritionists and the media) have repeatedly been shown to lead to much better outcomes.

Every randomized controlled trial on low-carb diets shows that they:

  1. Reduce body fat more than calorie-restricted low-fat diets, even though the low-carb dieters are allowed to eat as much as they want (41, 42).
  2. Lower blood pressure significantly (43, 44).
  3. Lower blood sugar and improve symptoms of diabetes much more than low-fat diets (45, 46, 47, 48).
  4. Increase HDL (the good) cholesterol much more (49, 50).
  5. Lower triglycerides much more than low-fat diets (51, 52, 53).
  6. Change the pattern of LDL (bad) cholesterol from small, dense (very bad) to Large LDL, which is benign (54, 55).
  7. Low carb diets are also easier to stick to, probably because they don’t require you to restrict calories and be hungry all the time. More people in the low-carb groups make it to the end of the studies (56, 57).

Many of the health professionals that are supposed to have our best interest in mind have the audacity to claim that these diets are dangerous, then continue to peddle their failed low-fat dogma that is hurting more people than it helps.

Bottom Line: Low-carb diets are the healthiest, easiest and most effective way to lose weight and reverse metabolic disease. It is a scientific fact.

10. Sugar is Unhealthy Because it Contains “Empty” Calories

Junk Food

It is commonly believed that sugar is bad for you because it contains empty calories.

It’s true, sugar has a lot of calories with no essential nutrients. But that is just the tip of the iceberg.

Sugar, primarily because of its high fructose content, affects metabolism in a way that sets us up for rapid fat gain and metabolic disease.

Fructose gets metabolized by the liver and turned into fat which is secreted into the blood as VLDL particles. This leads to elevated triglycerides and cholesterol (58, 59).

It also causes resistance to the hormones insulin and leptin, which is a stepping stone towards obesity, metabolic syndrome and diabetes (60, 61).

This is just to name a few. Sugar causes a relentless biochemical drive for humans to eat more and get fat. It is probably the single worst ingredient in the standard western diet.

Bottom Line: The harmful effects of sugar go way beyond empty calories. Sugar wreaks havoc on our metabolism and sets us up for weight gain and many serious diseases.

11. High Fat Foods Will Make You Fat


It seems kind of intuitive that eating fat would make you get fat.

The stuff that is gathering under our skin and making us look soft and puffy is fat. So… eating fat should give our bodies even more of it.

But it isn’t that simple. Despite fat having more calories per gram than carbohydrate or protein, high-fat diets do not make people fat.

As with anything, this depends on the context. A diet that is high in fat AND high in carbs will make you fat, but it’s NOT because of the fat.

In fact, diets that are high in fat (and low in carbs) cause much greater fat loss than diets that are low in fat (62, 63, 64).

12. Anything Else?

This is just the tip of the iceberg.

Feel free to leave a comment if you want to add to the list!


  1. *Applaud*

    • Right on right on

    • Don’t forget SOY.

      • Good point. Soy is nasty stuff used in a lot of bread products. It has to be processed to within an inch of destruction to be made non toxic and is incredibly allergenic. Love to see your thoughts on this.

        • I am allergic to soy and trying to find ANYTHING that doesn’t have soy in it is a huge challenge. Even if you go to a restaurant and get a chicken salad, the seasoning/spices on the meat have soy on them. Soy is a HUGE problem because, like corn, it is over used.

          • My hubby is too… I have to make everything from scratch bc even organic broth often has that mystery “natural flavor”… Takes planning and practice. It’d be nice to have a few easy convenience foods tho.

          • I think you can have tamari which even tastes better than soy sauces and a lot of places, like PF Changs, have gluten free menus where the soy is replaced with tamari.

          • Tamari is not an option either. Both soy sauce and tamari are fermented soy sauces. The difference has to do with wheat and not soy.

          • Even the chicken you buy in the grocery store or restaurants have been fed soy in their diet….. unless they are organic, non-soy grain fed. So we must be vigilent even in knowing what our food eats before we get it if we want to avoid certain toxic elements!

          • Coconut aminos are the best soy sauce substitute I have found.

          • Cheryl James says:

            I am also allergic to soy. I have had to stop eating out, I don’t purchase much at the store anyone. Most of what I eat has to be made at home including noodles for pasta dishes. Soy is so over used.

          • We were told for years to feed our babies formula made from soy milk. We were told that it is healthier than mothers milk. I wonder how many problems this has caused in our kids.

          • Roseanne – how does a soy allergy manifest itself? Thanks.

          • The other thing that is rampant in foods is modified food starch which is nothing more than potato starch and I am allergic to potatoes, it is even in many soft drinks and almost everything you buy, I have to search every item that I buy to make sure it is not in there. Eating in a restaurant is a nightmare as they cook everything on the same grill and all the potatoes are cooked where they cook the eggs and steaks, just walking into a fast food place is also dangerous because of the residue coming off the deep fryers.

        • Soy does not “need to be processed to within an inch of destruction to be made non toxic.” It needs to be *cooked*. You’ll find most people cook eggs and meat before eating them, too. I don’t especially like soy and don’t eat it much, and I realise that in the USA it’s ubiquity alone makes it objectionable. But I do think that on a blog purporting to deflate some lies about nutrition you might have made more effort to stick to the truth.

          • Precisely. Edamame is a common component of Japanese cuisine, and it is nothing more than steamed soy beans with a pinch of sea salt.

          • False. Cooking does not render soybeans fit for human consumption. The only thing that does that is fermenting. Contrary to popular myth, most likely originating from the food companies trying to market their new “wonder” food, soy in Asia is *traditionally* eaten as a condiment, not slugged down as “milk” or seasoned and shaped into meat or cheese like substances.

            Modern Asians ARE eating more unfermented soy… and are reaping the deleterious effects, as are we in the United States. soy is one of the most indigestible substances ever to be marketed as “food”.

            “According to KC Chang, editor of Food in Chinese Culture, the total caloric intake due to soy in the Chinese diet in the 1930′s was only 1.5%, compared with 65% for pork. For more information on the traditional use of soy products, contact the Price Pottenger Nutrition Foundation.”

            Soy milk was reserved for times of food shortage and for the infirm, when they could eat nothing else. Soy beans were also planted as nitrogen boosting cover crops.

            Modern marketing at its finest. BTW, another thing about that statistic above concerns the pork the Chinese ate: approximately 50% of it was eaten as fat. Yep, they knew about soy, so they ate little, and they knew about where to get the most bang for their buck from food, so they ate lots of fat!

          • You might want to take a moment and research the phyto-estrogen content in soy beans. Unfermented soy bean products can cause hormonal imbalances which can delay puberty in boys, accelerate it in girls and increase the risk of breast cancer!

          • Jonathan comments: “But I do think that on a blog purporting to deflate some lies about nutrition you might have made more effort to stick to the truth.” The blog author isn’t the one who mentioned soy. It was someone else commenting on the post.

          • Regardless the debate on soybeans and how Japan uses them is irrelevant in the USA. Why? Because 95% of USA soy is genetically modified (GMO) and processed using HEXANE. If there is a debate on clean organic soybeans, then fine. But there is no arguing that GMO’s are healthy or that hexane is healthy. That is absurd. There is a bigger picture with soy in the USA and it does not compare to Japan.

          • David Olson says:

            The big problem with soy in America is that American grown soy is all gmo.

          • Soybeans need to be cooked before eating; not fermented, just soaked– if they are dry, and boiled just as you would kidney beans or any other dry bean; then season to taste (or don’t use what you are allergic to; we grow organic soybeans. Definitely not genetically modified.)

          • McDuderson says:

            Calm down about GMO soy being somehow worse, you nuts. There has been absolutely no evidence that GMO foods are any worse for you than non-GMO foods grown in the same manner.

          • The writer of this article did not write that. It was a comment.

          • Meredith says:

            For the love of all that is holy, people, GMOs are not inherently unhealthy. Genetic Modification does not automatically make something bad for you. Now, if a plant is genetically modified to produce a synthetic pesticide or to contain an excessive amount of fructose, then sure, that could be a problem.

            But the simple act of changing genes does not do that. Humans have been genetically modifying their crops since the Neolithic Revolution. It was called selective breeding, and we would not have agriculture as we know it otherwise. Literally every agriculturally-grown plant you eat is genetically modified. That is how it has been for thousands of years.

            The domestic animals you eat, your neighbor’s Golden Retriever, and the flowers in your front yard are also genetically modified, but you don’t object to them. If you oppose the use of vectors in modern biotechnology or the particular choice of modifications undertaken on a species, that is defensible. Just saying “GMOs are BAD” is not.

        • Spread your disinformation elsewhere. I think you mean Soy Lecithin specifically, not plain old Soy.

          • I think you mean *misinformation* lol.

          • No, he means disinformation ((false information deliberately and often covertly spread (as by the planting of rumors) in order to influence public opinion or obscure the truth)).

        • Myth: soy is “dangerous.”

          Actually it’s generally safe, and contrary to “anti-soy” proponents who recommend fermented soy only, it’s actually fermented soy that appears to be worse for you.

        • Soy also inhibits the exchange from T4 thyroid to T3 thyroid. As I thyroid patient I was told this was the one thing I could not have because it would block my medicine and render it useless. And without thyroid your whole hormonal system will be out of whack. It is more important than pituitary function.

          • I was told the same. After years of starting my days with soya cappuccinos I have been told to stop and my thyroid hormone levels have stabilized. My thyroid replacement medication is now working as it should and I feel so much better.

        • Great article, I agree with everything. After years of research, it’s what I have found as well. Someone mentioned soy, I agree, it’s bad, and soy oil is in everything.

          Salad dressing is a big one. We make our own ranch dressing, using pasteurized eggs, mustard, and olive oil, for the mayo, sour cream, buttermilk (without gums or stabilizers), onion powder, garlic powder, dill, and some vinegar, salt, and pepper.

          We make two quarts of it, and have salad everyday.

      • What about soy milk?

        • Rephrasing one of my favorite comedians, Lewis Black, I believe the right term is “soy juice”. They just couldn’t sell it as soy juice so they called it soy milk. In my opinion, it’s the single most vile tasting liquid I’ve ever had the misfortune to drink.

          • Soy “milk” is called that even in Japan (to nyu)… and i love it! Also love edamame and cook often with tofu. Agree with Jonathan; soy as it is eaten in Japanese cuisine, not used as an additive, is a good thing (unless you are allergic). We rarely eat bread, but love noodles, veggies, meat. Difficult to get my Japanese husband to eat brown rice, but he is such a great cook we compromise… 1/2 and 1/2 for now.

          • TruthSeeker says:

            As a doctor of oriental medicine for more than forty years, having lived in both china and japan, etc. I will tell you that soy milk is good for NO ONE – PERIOD! Likewise with TOFU…it is pleasant, eat a bit here and there, and that’s it…it is NOT a good food. The ONLY way Soy is a good food is when it is FERMENTED – these people are absolutely correct. The fermenting process detoxifies the Soy, which otherwise inhibits mineral absorption. There are other problems also. Miso, Shoyou, Tamari, NATTO (especially good)…etc. are very valuable foods, ALL fermented….

          • In many Asian culture, when first introduced to cow milk, they gave it the term used for soy milk.

      • For sure – I’ve found out in the past year an a half that some of my worst migraines are from Soy, even soy sauce is no go for me. Much better avoiding it but as many say, it is not easy to avoid it if you buy processed foods or eat out. Do what you gotta do!

      • For clarity, eating non-gmo edamame that has been steamed or boiled is bad? My kids love these things and this information is freaking me out.

      • I have a feeling my hubby has an allergy towards soy because every time he eats it, he has these fits of throwing up that last for hours, like food poisoning; but no one, not even doctors have been able to figure it out. I made him aware of what he was actually eating and we were able to mark soy as something to avoid as much as we can and he seems to be doing way better without it. I feel since there is so much soy in everything, we get overloaded by it and it start causing problems(esp. since everything is all GMO now.) We try to avoid GMO’s as much as we can.

        • Meredith says:

          There is nothing wrong with GMOs in principle. It is only the modifications undertaken that might be a concern. Might there be regulatory issues in assessing GMOs for toxicity or allergen content? Maybe, but they don’t generally assess normal, selectively-bred crops for those things either.

          “There is a handful of papers that suggest negative findings (but that have been heavily criticized by many other scientists in the field) and then there are hundreds of studies from all around the world that do not support concerns about the safety of GM food. If the popular media and activist groups cite safety concerns as an argument to stop GMOs, they do so based on a very small selection of carefully cherry-picked (and otherwise disputed) papers out of a trove of other papers that contradict their position.”

          You need to do intensive research on the allergen potential of particular varieties of crops before deciding against them. You don’t refuse to eat anything at all just because there is the potential for anything to cause an allergic reaction. I can’t say anything about you in particular, but most people who tell me they don’t eat GMOs haven’t the foggiest what genetic modification entails, or why they are against it.

    • Yes! I’ve lived most of my life eating low carb and higher protein, eggs, vegetables, berries, nuts and the like. For grains I eat Dreamfield’s pasta and 45 calorie bread. At 65 I look 45-50 and I have more energy and strength than I had before I decided to live my life this way. I don’t count calories, I don’t look at scales–I count the way my clothes fit and they still fit from ten years ago. When I had my cholesterol checked, the good cholesterol was high, and the bad was almost non existent. Of course I attribute my health to my attitude as well. Forgiving, being generous, caring, staying out of dangerous situations, keeping spiritually healthy as a Christian and living a sensible, wise life sure helps.

      • Pola, you obviously haven’t heard about the Dreamfields pasta fraud. It behaves exactly like standard pasta in the body. Dr. Andreas Eenfeldt in Sweden ( was the first one to notice this in own blood sugar response tests. In his speaks available on the Internet he mentions this and he also spread the word to his friend Jimmy Moore. Soon the whole low-carb movement on the internet started knowing about this and other people started testing this pasta. So please avoid the Dreamfields pasta, it’s a fraud.

      • Cheryl Dee says:

        That’s very encouraging :)

      • Pola,
        Thank you! I live my life in the same manner, so it’s nice to see someone else doing the same and truly enjoying it. I’m 38 and look 28, so I hope to be on the same path as you. Although not a Christian, I am spiritual and find that it has guided my health and food choices more now as I am older. Keep on living!

    • This article was amazing! Thank you. My husband and I have cut out carbs as he is showing signs of an inflammatory bowel disease and has struggled with weight. We feel so much better!

      • Rosemary says:

        Hannah, if he has inflammatory bowel problems, cutting out wheat products might cure him. It did me.

      • Gluten free would be something to check into, Hannah. Read up on it… it is also one of the components of “natural flavors”. I am so disgusted by our industrialized agriculture system. It is appalling what the USDA and FDA allows us to ingest, deeming them “safe” UGH! So frustrating.

        Down with GMO, down with Monsanto, down with the USDA and FDA for not requiring the labeling. WE HAVE A RIGHT TO KNOW! This crap was allowed in the marketplace without our knowledge… and though I believe there were food allergies prior to this epidemic, I would say they are far greater because of these products. Just my humble opinion.

  2. Great job on exposing the Myths!
    Now, the folks that have been telling you about all 11 of these lies, have done three other things: 1) they’ve been silent on Fluoride & Mercury’s devastating effect on your health; 2) they’ve NEVER told us how CENTRAL Magnesium is to the proper functioning of our body; and 3) now they’re telling us to take copious amounts of Vit-D. All I can say is “Caveat Eator!” You have been misled, you have been misfed…

    • One warning about taking Vitamin D supplements is that you must ensure you’re getting enough Vitamin K2, or you will end up with calcium deposits in your arteries, as Vitamin D increases calcium absorption. Vitamin K2 ensures that the calcium is directed to bones and not arterial walls.

      • And A. And probably E on top of it.
        Like so much in the body, it’s less amount amounts as percentages and ratios. And there’s definitely a connection between A and D in terms of toxicity for both. Given how much both play with K2, it seems plausible to me that all the fat soluble vitamins are linked.

      • Wrong. Please verify your facts before you make comments like this.

        • Sorry Rachel,
          These are true facts and anyone who “really knows” nutrition and physiology knows that this article is about 95% dead on correct.

          • The article, yes, the comment she replied to, no.

          • *Face Palm*
            She was replying to the comment… as to the reply about Vitamin D, I am not in a position to comment.

          • I have a degree in human nutrition and think that a lot of this article is incorrect. There is some good stuff in it, but also some things that are incorrect or misleading.

          • DG, I mean no disrespect, but your nutrition degree has been bought and paid for by companies like Coca-Cola. There is a reason these “food” manufacturers sponsor all of the continuing ed seminars, and it’s got nothing to do with health.

          • TN is correct. Orthodox nutritionists have perpetuated the myths which are killing us. They are about as relevant today as mainstream medicine.

          • Westcoastcora says:

            TN – truth! I am in my 5th year of a combined Bachelor of Kinesiology, Minor in Psychology/Minor in Nutrition an only through NON-course-related research was I ever educated on anything other than “grain=goodness, fat=CVD.” Just because you have a degree in Nutrition does NOT mean you have all of the facts! The government subsidizes (read: lines pockets with) grain crops and mega farming… You should all watch the documentary “Fat Head”

        • [citation needed]

      • You all seem to know a lot about nutrition that I don’t so is there a multi-vitamin out there worthy of taking? I’m a 46 yr. old male and want to make sure I’m taking something worth the money I’m spending for my health. I’ve been trying to eat a lot better by cutting out a lot of high carb foods, sugar (tough) and packaged meals. I eat lots of greens, lean meats, and fish. Just want to make sure I’m getting all the nutrients i need. Thanks.

        • Supplements should be used to make up for specific deficiencies in your body. The only way to know what you’re deficient in is to (a) track what you eat in software that tells you how much of various macro- and micro-nutrients you’re getting and (b) to do specific lab tests that measure how much of those nutrients your body’s assimilating, and/or (c) having a well-educated health professional deduce your deficiencies based on an array of specific symptoms.

          Taking supplements without knowing what you’re deficient in wastes your money and risks unbalancing your body. You’re generally much better off by incorporating nutritionally-dense foods, like liver (from grass-fed animals), chia seeed, and natural cod-liver oil than by taking supplements “just in case.” You’re already doing well in your transition. Add some fat from pasture-raised animals, start tracking your food in a web app (PaleoTrack, Cron-o-meter, SparkPeople, MyFitnessPal, LiveStrong, etc.) pay attention to your body, and you should be good to go.

        • Opti-Men by Optimum Nutrition is one of the better multivitamins out there.

        • Nothing wrong with a multivitamin that supplies RDA of everything (except iron), the best would have P5P form of B6, and at least 50mg of absorbable magnesium such as citrate, more if possible.

          But, if you ate fatty meats and organ meats and bone broths, and cut out grains and most legumes, you might not need any supplements at all except vit D in winter.

          Overall probably worthwhile taking RDA supplement while you transition to better health then only using it occasionally at times of stress.

        • Make a vegetable smoothie every day and drink it. You’ll be amazed at the amount of veges you can fit in to a smoothie and that’ll give you better vitamins than a pill.

        • Great article on which supplements are necessary (or not):

          • *Face palm* – blending veggies does not reduce fiber, in fact it breaks it down. In the case of Kale, it probably is a boost more than anything.

      • Good news… vitamin K can be found in butter, cheese and livers from pastured animals!

    • Susan. You are eating processed soy when you eat the tofu noodles, tofu, soy sauce, etc. I agree that soy is incredibly unhealthy, over processed, and over used. I know those who eat these over processed products are typically substituting for other “bad foods.” They are touting for a healthier plant based or vegan diet and are trying to eliminate all the fatty foods or animal products. They are only harming themselves by eliminating real food and substituting with a processed food. It’s sad, the disinformation out there. I’m just lucky that my diet follows this article and then some. It’s just too bad for those who don’t seem to understand natural health and whole foods and how the body processes food. (And when I say food… I mean Real Food!)

    • What’s wrong with fluoride? I’ve always used fluoride toothpaste…. It’s not added to our water and compared to a city the same size where it is added our teeth are much worse. Incidences of gum disease, dental caries and dental abscesses in children are almost 3 times here than they are there and that’s been linked directly to the addition of fluoride to the water supply.

      And if you’re just going to spout off about it being bad because it’s used as a poison or that it’s used in nuclear weapons then don’t bother, it’s all been said before and if it’s used in the right quantities it is perfectly safe and beneficial to health. Salt could also be a poison at the right levels as can oxygen when it’s mixed correctly with carbon which, incidentally, is what most of us are made from so that can’t be poison can it? EVERYTHING is bad in certain quantities, you can’t just right it off in a broad sweep.

      • It is a waste product. It is toxic. Small amounts can KILL. Why champion it? It does nothing to build tooth health which is really where we want to be, right?

        • McDuderson says:

          It is not a “waste product”, it is a “by-product” of aluminum production because it is also present in large quantities in the same bauxite ore that aluminum comes from. Just because something is co-produced with another product doesn’t make it a “waste” nor does it say anything at all about its safety or health impacts. This shows you are arguing from emotion and not facts.

        • Adam Weishaupt says:

          Fluoride is not “made of metal”. It is an element. And in small doses it is beneficial as it helps to protect teeth from decay. The trick is that commonplace tea is a very effective source of this element and it is estimated that 2-3 cups (~35 oz.) is enough to satisfy the daily recommended dosage.

          This means that people who drink a lot of tea, use fluoride-rich toothpaste and fluoridated water face a risk of mild overdose that, although not very dangerous, is still detrimental to one’s health.

      • Crystal says:

        You need to do some research about fluoride as it is not good for human consumption. My dentist gave it to me for sensitive teeth and when I found out how bad it was I went off of it. I now have no sensitivity. Fluoride gets into the thyroid gland and keeps out iodine which is very necessary.

        A water delivery person told me that if their company wants to dispose of fluoride they have to pay a hazardous disposal fee but they can put it in the water and not have to pay. That sure told me something!

      • You know what’s AMAZING for tooth health? BUTTER. Seriously. I had a friend who could not afford a root canal so she did the research and found that butter has properties that help your teeth heal. She HEALED her tooth that needed the root canal by increasing her butter intake (yay that’s ok in a low-carb diet!) But if you’re uneasy about that, I believe you can buy butter oil supplements.

    • Fluoride strengthens tooth enamel uhg it others me when non dental health professionals spout off about fluoride. Fluoride in our water like 1pp million has been proven to help children in poorer community’s as a preventative cavity measure. Fluoride restrengthens tooth enamel from acid wear as well. Those myths are old wives tales and as for silver fillings the amount of it u would be exposed to is almost negligible. Dental assistants use mercury suppressant measures and the patient doesn’t breathe any of it in. As for x rays u get more radiation being on an airplane.

      • Can you quote one peer-reviewed study showing any benefit from human ingestion of fluoride?

        • McDuderson says:

          R. Aasenden, T.C. Peebles, Effects of fluoride supplementation from birth on human deciduous and permanent teeth, Archives of Oral Biology, Volume 19, Issue 4, April 1974, Pages 321-326

          • Do you mean CALCIUM Fluoride or SODIUM Fluoride or HYDROGEN fluoride?

            Calcium Fluoride is naturally occurring in many foods & utilized effectively by our bodies. Sodium Fluoride has been recorded to do damage to teeth & bones. Hydrogen Fluoride connected with the Manhattan Atomic Bomb Project.

            The latter 2 have been associated with studies revealing toxicity & fluoride’s affinity for magnesium and manganese ions enabling it to deplete their availability for vital enzyme functions. (Borei, H., “Inhibition of Cellular Oxidation by Fluoride”, Arkiv.Kemi,Mineral,Geol., 20A, No. 8, 1945).

      • It bugs me when dental health professionals spout off about the safety of poisons. Believe me, there are many dental health professionals who are aware of the dangers. But they acquired that knowledge from sources other than dental school. You are spouting party rhetoric.

        George Meinig, DDS, FACD and Weston A Price, DDS were a couple of dentists ahead of their time. Have you read their works?

        Teeth need to be remineralized… through diet. Bone broths, butter from pastured cows, vegetables grown in nutrient laden soil, organ meats and fermented cod liver oil are the top foods for tooth health.

  3. This is a great article. Clear and concise. I suppose the only other thing that I would add as a commonly believed myth is that soy is a “health food”. On that thread. I have often perplexed over why such unhealthy items such as soy, margarine and breakfast cereals are advertised as healthy, and able to reduce cholesterol, improve heart health and more when it is simply not true. Rather, it is quite the opposite. How insane has our nutritional counselling become? It does seem as though we need to do exactly the opposite of what mainstream media and health professionals tell us… eat lots of what they tell us to avoid, and eat none, or very little, of what they promote.

    How about the red meat myth?

    • I agree, some is good but I think some is just off the mark, maybe over simplified.

    • Barb, I couldn’t agree more! Doing the opposite of what mainstream media suggests can only help us all. In all things! :)

      • Venita Garner says:

        Exactly barb! esp when it also comes to vaccines and using any RX product. RX drug related interaction deaths are more common than they want us to think. The amount of meds that some people are on, it fills their plate! Half of them are to counteract the side effects of the other pills.. so you’ve got a domino effect of the amount of pills, all with their own side effects.

        • Oh sweet Jesus! A vaccine denier. Met anyone with smallpox lately? Better still, polio – only still endemic in areas without vaccination programs…

          • No, but I have 2 autistic cousins and an autistic kid in living in the house to my left as well as the one to my right. Talk to the parents sometime and ask them about the the onset of autism following vaccinations. It is chilling to say the least! Does the idea of injecting thymersol (aka mercury) into your bloodstream strike you as risky? I’ll take my chances with polio and smallpox.

          • Jono: my grandmother had smallpox when she gave birth to my father! She spent a few days in the hospital but went on to live a very healthy life till she was 82.

            Our pediatrician stopped vaccinating his own children when he witnessed neurological damage after vaccinating his third child. I was able to sit and have a frank discussion with him about the what ifs. He was very confident that any diseases contracted could be handled with a combination of modern medicine, homeopathics, herbal medicine, magnetic therapy and so on.

            There will always be vulnerable people who will get sick and die but the solution lies in health building rather than herd immunity.

          • This confusion around Autism is aggravating. The reason that they get linked so often is that Autism is diagnosable around the same time as the First year shots. There are few things studied more than Immunizations (excepting the Flu Vaccine, which I openly oppose). I talked to my Vaccine nurse frankly about it when I was getting some Immunizations before my trip to the Philippines. I asked about the Autism link, heavy metals, and all this other mumbo jumbo that media/scare tactics would have you believe.

            All the “free people” not vaccinating their children is leading to risk. Tetanus alone is enough to justify the risk. As a kid that stepped on his fair share of nails as a kid, building forts, etc, I will immunize my children. If you watched a child’s muscles spasm so hard they break bones, tear muscles, and cause difficulty eating/breathing, I am sure you would stick your kid yourself.

          • Adam Weishaupt says:

            Please, let us remain rational here, so we avoid generalisation. Yes, I agree that vaccines per se have nothing in common with autism. In my country and in many other European countries vaccination for many severe diseases (polio, smallpox, rubies, diphtheria etc.) is mandatory for 60 years or so, and did not correlate with occurrence of autism (curiously, autism become slightly more prevalent recently, when some of the mandatory vaccinations became cancelled due to total eradication of some diseases).

            On the other hand, this increase may be an artifact of changed classification of disorders (few decades ago autism have been often misdiagnosed as other developmental problems).

            But the vaccines, as any other drug may be made in a way that is detrimental due to improper research, testing or manufacture procedures. For example, thiomersal mentioned by Genita was banned here precisely because of potential side-effects. No one ever mentioned stopping vaccination, the authorities just removed all preparations containing harmful substances.

            Fearmongering is one thing, security monitoring is another. No one (I hope) says that using analgesics and anti inflammatory drugs is inherently bad, but some of these drugs have been withdrawn in the past due to side-effects, usually hepatotoxicity and chance of marrow damage.

        • Venita that goes right along with what our chiropractor told us the other day. He was hosting a health and vitality seminar and was talking about the leading causes of death. 1 is heart disease 2 is cancer and 3 is doctor misdiagnosis and mis-treatment of symptoms. Then he went on to say that only about 15% of these cases are reported so if 100% of these cases were reported it would be more than heart disease and cancer combined! Very scary if true!

        • McDuderson says:

          Your ranting against vaccines is a danger to society.

        • I can’t speak for all vaccines, but the MMR (measles-mumps-rubella) vaccine is NOT actually linked to autism. The man who conducted that study was not only being funded by lawyers working against the vaccine, but also he used a small sample and fudged a lot of the data. Please, please, get your kids vaccinated to keep all children safe from these diseases!

    • And the cholesterol myth, tho it is approached, is not tackled head on; low cholesterol does not protect against disease.

    • I think the big problem these days about eating healthy really comes down to… no one uses their stoves anymore to cook healthy food. Everybody wants express! Meaning eating out most of the time… just saying.

      • With the economy the way it is everyone has to work just to make enough to get by so we aren’t home enough to “make a healthy meal”. Our whole lifestyles in America especially are becoming unhealthy.

        Not only does the economy effect our diet but because of parents being gone to work so much kids are practically raised by TV and strangers and these bad influences worsen things even more on many levels. How can we have a healthy diet if we don’t have any time to make healthy food? Plus truly healthy food costs way more than “fast” food.

        My family bought a juicer and blender to try and make fruit smoothies and such but buying so many veggies was too much for us. I also don’t have time to keep up a garden nor the energy. (I hate gardening). So what can I do?

    • Health professionals say to eat more of:

      - fruit
      - veggies
      - whole grains
      - lean meats
      - fish

      Eat less of:
      - trans fats
      - saturated fats
      - concentrated carbohydrates (sweets)

      So basically you are telling me to live off of cakes, cookies, candy, pop, and beef.

      I think I’ll stick to the nutrition professionals’ advice.

      • Did you actually READ the article?

      • Whole grains… not something found in a box with HFCS, and 20 other ingredients you can’t pronounce. If it comes in a box, don’t eat it.

        Take the time to make your health a priority or accept the poor health you will have. Processed food as a whole is not nutritious. Look at Subway touted as healthy… EW! Seriously, read labels, educate yourself. Pure, clean foods are the answer.

  4. Maria Rabbit says:

    Great article!

    What always amazes me is the amount of liquids people drink DURING meals. You cannot sit in a restaurant without a drink – be it a glass of water or wine. When I started controlling my drinking, i.e. water/tea before or at least half an hour after a meal, I felt much better and lost weight quickly. I am wondering – are there any studies done about the effects of drinking during meals?

    • Maria,
      You are on the right path.
      By drinking during a meal, you are limiting the effectiveness of the digestive enzymes.
      Good job!


        Maria, you are hurting your digestion and increasing your odds at constipation by not drinking water with your meals. Given, that’s only the researched opinion of Michael F. Picco, M.D. who is board certified in internal medicine and gastroenterology, an assistant professor of medicine at College of Medicine, Mayo Clinic, and a consultant in gastroenterology at Mayo Clinic in Florida.

        But I’d be curious to see rigorous scientific studios pointing out something different.

        • For those of us who suffer from IBS, this is very good advice. Also, just because someone has an MD or RD behind their name does not mean they are giving good advice. I’ve had great doctors and I’ve had bad ones (like the one who prescribed a med that contained ingredients that his office had diagnosed me as being allergic to). Yes, we need lots of water, but it doesn’t need to be with meals.

        • I only take sips of water with meals if I need to since I don’t want to dilute digestive enzymes. I drink lots of water in between meals which seems to work for me just fine.

        • I don’t really trust the Mayo Clinic anymore. Not only did they completely fail to identify my somewhat-obscure disease when I made the trip out there, but from recent readings I’ve seen they endorse acupuncture and a few other odd pseudosciences. I don’t think the Mayo Clinic title alone gives much weight now, and I agree with the comment about M.D. or R.D. not making a source reliable as well.

          This is a common logical fallacy called “argument from authority.” This basically means that if someone in an authority position said it, it must be true. We all fall into this one often, and it can be very difficult to determine which scientific minds to trust. But we must always strive to find the facts.

          (side note, saw in one of the comments above the phrase “true fact.” Lovely, that one – lol)

          • What’s the matter with acupuncture? I would trust my acupuncturist with 95% of my issues and symptoms over my M.D. physicians don’t give Jack shit about prevention, it’s all about racking up your bills with treatment visits.

          • Non-Western medicines will always seem strange to someone with a background only revolving around biomedicine. The concept that is difficult to grasp is that non-Western medicines focus on the body and the mind as one inseperable unit. Thus, they treet both psychological and physiological distress in a similar manner. What a lot of people don’t take into account about any form of health practice is that much of it revolves around the doctor-patient relationship and a belief by the patient that the treatment will work. Hypnosis and mental healing play a crucial role, even in biomedicine, and it’s a role that works even without our direct acknowledgement of it.

            Of course, you’re right about “authority figures” not always have accurate information. Part of the experience of life is only being able to make your best guest. Of course, a doctor’s advice is typically going to be more beneficial than your neighbors when it comes to the internal functioning of the human body, but this will not always be the case.

        • I think Maria said controlled intake of water, not totally with out water… just saying..

      • Why? Can’t the enzymes navigate in liquid?

    • Why yes, in fact, if you look into ancient Chinese Medical practices, it is not advised to drink during meals, unless the beverage is warm, such as tea.

      • Another logical fallacy here – can’t remember the name of it offhand, but in basic terms: “if it’s old it must be true.”

        Science has advanced over the years, we are always performing new studies and learning new things. It always baffles me when people say things like this as if they are relevant.

        In some ancient tribes, people with any kind of medical problem were left behind during migration to die because the tribe couldn’t take care of them. Ancient practice!

    • Hi Maria,

      I have searched for studies regarding water intake during meals. I used to also avoid drinking during meals until I found out that water is actually needed for digestion. It helps with the production of gastric secretions and bicarbonate in the small intestine. These are very important for proper digestion.

      If not drinking water is helping you, I would be suspicious of inadequate hydrochloric acid production. You can get that tested. A zinc deficiency can cause low HCl production, which is worth doing because low HCl can lead to stomach ulcers via H. Pylori infection. Not chewing food thoroughly plays a huge role in improper digestion.

      Usually, I recommend to people that they drink a glass of water 1/2 hour before their meal and take digestive enzymes if they are having digestion problems. Then I suggest drinking during meals as well. If hydrochloric acid is low, then there are supplements that can help. You don’t want to increase HCl if it is sufficient.

      Get it tested. The one study that I did find, found that drinking water with meals has no detrimental effects:

      • IMHO if you’re getting enough water during the day, this should not be an issue. I’m fairly certain, using logic, that our pre-civilized ancestors didn’t have a “skin” full of water with each meal. No one can know for sure, which I why I use logic, but everything I’ve read suggests that not drinking water “during” the meal is better than drinking water. Not only does it do everything the others mentioned, but in greater amounts it fools your stomach into thinking you’re fuller than you are, and you might not eat as much as you should. In turn, this makes you “cheat” or snack later on.

        Just make sure you’re getting enough water during the day and all should be good.

        • It depends what you eat. Unprocessed foods are full of water. Flour isn’t. Only drink if your thirsty, or have a small cup of tea or coffee (without milk) with a meal if you want to reduce iron uptake, or fruit or a little juice if you want to increase it.

        • Our pre-civilised ancestors typically had a life expectancy in the mid-40s.

          • That’s because of high infant mortality, not because of a short adult lifespan. Those that made it to adulthood didn’t live quite as long as we do, but longer than the 30s/40s typically touted.

            A family of 10 (2 adults plus 8 kids) with 4 kids that die at, say, age 2 and the rest living to age 60 will have an average life expectancy of just under 37 years (do the math to see for yourself).

          • John in SC says:

            Infant mortality AND the invention of antibiotics.

    • What I wonder about is the “common knowledge” that when you feel hungry, more often than not your body is actually in need of water and your mind can’t tell the difference. Seems a bit odd that a feeling of biological need could be misinterpreted so grossly before it even reaches the conscious mind.

    • Many macrobiotic dietary sources caution against drinking water or anything else during or even around meals.

  5. Well said! This is an excellent article, and mirrors things that I talk about on my blog and to my friends about ALL the time. (My wheat-free food blog is )

    While my family eats with all of these points in mind (and skips processed foods), the thing that made the biggest difference in our health was omitting wheat and drastically reducing (if not omitting) sugars. I think the vast majority of people benefit from removing wheat (and most grains) due the the serious inflammatory effects (think joint pain, chronic headaches, acid reflux, and visceral abdominal fat) as well as the auto-immune responses and digestive irritation.

    Nice job summing this up clearly; It can be difficult to argue against “conventional wisdom” in a brief way because it’s been so widely accepted (despite the fact that it is deeply flawed and in many cases, the opposite of truth in nutrition.) I’ll definitely be sharing this, and please keep up the good job spreading the word and the knowledge that can help people to regain health through an understanding of what is true, and what is propaganda (or simply bad science.)

    • This is in line with what I intuitively knew all along. We are not designed to eat most of what we are fed. Whenever I see well intentioned families feeding bread to water fowl at parks my heart goes out to the birds!!! I am a bit of a carnivore and I understand meat production takes more of a toll on the environment than vegetarianism and I try to make up for it other ways – strict water conservation, minimize fossil fuel consumption, never waste resources, (including food) etc.

      • I disagree with your premise. Factory farming meat animals takes more an environmental chunk that factory grain and/or vegetable farming, but they’re all terrible. It’s like saying breast cancer is better than colon cancer because we can detect it earlier.
        Traditional farming involves a symbiosis of animal and vegetable life; you can’t have one without the other and together if compensates for and even alleviates environmental degradation.

  6. Kathi Peacock says:

    Yes, please add me – this is great information!

  7. Are you a nutritionist? This is the first time I came to this site, but it seems like telling people, “gluten consumption has also been associated with schizophrenia and cerebellar ataxia, both serious disorders of the brain,” might be creating a new myth and do more harm than good. You’re essentially saying eating bread can lead to schizophrenia.

    • John, regardless of credentials, the claim that gluten leads to serious illness is sourced. Gunnar is not just flying off the handle and making claims, willy-nilly. The science-based evidence is listed in blue next to each claim made in this article, and is in “hyperlink” format. If you click on it, it will take you to the source where the information was gleaned. Eating bread CAN cause serious illness, and it posseses very little nutrition to justify human consumption. Choose vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds, for carb intake that is slower fuel, without all the baggage. Your body will thank you :)

      • I’m with you, Tiff.

      • Stuart Weinberg says:

        Just FYI the article is about Celiac disease and Schizophrenia not simply gluten. Just because there is a documented source doesn’t mean it completely correlates so John has a point. You still have to read the source. Withdrawal of gluten in a certain subset of already Schizophrenic patients reduced their symptoms but no one was diagnosed with Schizophrenia by eating gluten. Big difference.

        • Stuart Weinberg says:

          Although the second article seems to make a more direct correlation with Cerebellar Ataxia and Celiac, but that’s just the summary ; )

        • Great point. Also, I’d like to see several studies before stating there is a direct cause or even a link between gluten and schizophrenia. Just because one study finds something to be true, doesn’t mean future studies will find the same. For results to be truly considered “a fact” I believe a study must be replicated with similar results several times, ideally by multiple researchers.

          To prove gluten is even part of a cause of schizophrenia, you’d have to follow a group of gluten-eaters and low/never-ate-gluten eaters over a long period of time and compare mental health diagnoses some 30-40 years down the road. People can’t take one study and apply it with a wide brush to a whole group.

          • Obviously the author of this article isn’t going to link and list every single study that has ever been done on the subject. There are plenty of articles that have linked schizophrenia to gluten, but not one that I have read says that it is directly caused by gluten and neither did the author of this article. Everyone, make sure that you read things clearly before you start telling someone that he/she is wrong and being irresponsible. Close reading is a very important skill that is sadly lacking in many individuals.

        • Studies are now showing that it is in fact the genetically modified protein, gliadin, that was added to wheat back in the 70′s that is actually causing a lot of the problems many people have when eating wheat today. Take notice, I said a lot of the problems, not all of them. The point is, GMO’s are far more dangerous than they want to admit to and it’s wrecking havoc on people’s health!

      • Although I can see all the points made… however, just because there is “documentation” to back it up, I’ve learned in my stats classes that you can make numbers and findings “support” anything you want. You have to be careful what the “source” is…. otherwise it’s just another myth for some more gullible folks.

      • Michele Foster says:

        My body certainly thanked me for giving up gluten. I started sleeping better immediately and had more energy and mental clarity. I found it was a trigger food for me that caused intense heartburn and bloating. There is much truth to the gluten issue for me personally, and I know several others who also found great improvements when giving it up.

    • Hey John! Something you might be interested in looking into is called “Gut and Psychology Syndrome” or GAPS. Gluten is one of the contributing factors to “GAPS patients” having the difficulties they do, though not the only factor, of course. You can read more about it here:

      Hope that helps!

    • There are studies being conducted to determine the links between illnesses like schizophrenia and gluten. (;jsessionid=12A7DC4873A60E32D300D3BE172399D9.d03t02?deniedAccessCustomisedMessage=&userIsAuthenticated=false)

      It’s a case where not all schizophrenia is caused by gluten, but gluten CAN cause mental illness, seizures, depression… there’s a laundry list. A friend of mine became partially paralyzed, had lost all fine motor control, and was continuing to fall more an more ill. The doctors had no clue what was wrong. He cut out gluten and while he did not go all the way back to normal (retains some muscle tremors and fine motor is not what it once was) he has essentially reversed his condition.

      I’m gluten and casein intolerant. Aside from the horrid gastrointestinal symptoms, there was fatigue, numbness and shooting nerve pain (B12 deficiency) and a number of other disparate symptoms. In the case of gluten grains, intolerant individuals’ bodies end up in a constant state of inflammation which is one precursor to cancer and other autoimmune diseases.

      I’m a medicinal chemist, and the more I read, the more I realized how very flawed the nutritional information we are taught is. This article is on the money. I still think “everything in moderation” is a good motto, but that also involves re-educating ourselves on what “moderation” is.

    • Gluten has been associated with schizophrenia and ataxia. Search on pubmed and you’ll find the research abstracts.

    • I agree with you. Schizophrenia affects less than 1% of the population. I would love to see this guy place these patients on a gluten free diet. Nice hyperbole statement. The general public still thinks schizophrenia is like a ‘double personality.’ Not a fan of this writers comprehension of journal articles and conveying them to the general public. Spreading ignorance makes my job as an ER nurse more difficult. I enjoyed this article until this statement. No credibility.

      • I would say that you need to do a lot more research on these topics before you say he is wrong. You would be part of the Mainstream medical professionals that he is talking about.

    • John et al. Gluten consumption by celiacs ( and gluten intolerance) can cause up to about 225 misc symptom/ ailments/ reactions. It is most certain that schizophrenia is one of them. This is the belief and proven by traditional and non – traditional practitioners alike. This is not misinformation at all. Quite the opposite. Very informative.

      • Joy, Schizophrenia is not a symptom, reaction or simple ailment. It’s an extremely complex disease, with a cluster of symptoms which differ from patient to patient. I can guarantee you that it’s not ‘proven’, and to say that symptoms are reduced on a GF diet does not indicate causality. It does suggest that further research is warranted.

        • Josephina is on the right track here. According to the latest research, schizophrenia is multi-factorial in origin. An individual’s schizophrenia could be related to gluten or other chemical/ food intolerance – such as artificial coloring – with other factors contributing such as genome anomaly (both heritable and spontaneous mutation) or physical brain injury. The cluster of symptoms which differ from patient to patient is indicative of the multifactorial nature.

    • I completely agree with you John. I greatly dislike reading articles like this where people refer to studies but don’t actually site them. For every study you find there are just as many studies contradicting them. The fact is, everyones bodies are different, and everyone processes food differently. I personally don’t believe that doing a “study” on 100 people, hell even 1000 people, is a good measurement of how something will effect society as a whole. In a couple years I’m sure there will be studies showing that everything this person wrote about in this article was wrong too. No one knows your body like you. Pay attention to how you feel after you eat something. If it bothers you, don’t eat it again. Plain and simple.

    • Actually, these ideas for dietary change, as they are being presented, are pretty well-researched and documented, not to mention proven out in the daily lives of many, many much healthier and happier people. I definitely agree with Lola; if you try it and it works for you, go with it.

      As an aside, though, I can certainly see why the grain industry has been bolstered by governments from time out of mind: it’s easier (read as cheaper) to feed the hungry masses of villages, towns, cities and countries with bread and grain than it is meat and fresh veg! Therefore, it is in the best interest of a governing body to promote that which it is best able to continue to provide, or at least subsidize. I’m not asserting that this absolutely IS what is happening with the old food pyramid as we grew up with it, but I can see how Realpolitik suggests that it might.

      And I can honestly say that I do not feel like our government has always been 100% honest with us about what is actually best for our health as individuals, families, or communities.

      So, I will continue my low-carb lifestyle, and I hope we all get to keep arguing about this in 75 years!

  8. @John, there are studies that do relate the consumption of gluten-containing grains to brain disorders including the ones mentioned here, as well as ADHD. The book, “Wheat Belly” by Dr. William Davis touches on this topic and it is covered on his Wheat Belly blog as well. You can also find more information on the research site,

    I don’t think that saying “eating bread can lead to schizophrenia” is quite accurate; however, the consumption of grains can exacerbate the symptoms and severity of those suffering from schizophrenia (look it up.) It is also believed that high-carb diets can lead to dementia according to some studies, as dementia is now being evaluated as to whether it is actually a “type 3″ diabetes.

    To ask whether the author is a nutritionist is an interesting question, as MOST (not all) nutritionists are among those guilty of spreading this MIS-information as fact, because it is what they have been taught. If you dig deeper into the topic of gluten sensitivity and its effects on our bodies (including our minds) you might be surprised at what you find.

    • I agree with John there are some claims here that could do harm. You say “gluten consumption has also been associated with schizophrenia” but the reference you use to does not support this. I’m not sure you even bothered to read the title let alone the whole article. If you follow the link, it’s titled, “The gluten connection: the association between schizophrenia and coeliac disease”. So the article is suggesting a link between schizophrenia and coeliac disease. Not between schizophrenia and eating gluten. That’s completely different to what you said. Oops. (And just to cover my back here no eating gluten does not cause coeliac disease).
      There’s a lot of other problems in this article.

    • & once upon a time everyone thought the Earth was flat…. It’s amazing how so many people can get it so wrong for so long…. I wonder what % of doctors practicing currently would be aware of these issues???

      • Way too many. LOL.
        They only recently confirmed that gluten intolerance/sensitivity is “real”. Patients would test negative for Celiacs but complain of the same symptoms. It turns out that the immune system is highly complex and reaction to gliadin is highly individualistic. People who respond through IgA (there’s IgG, IgA, IgM, IgE) develop Celiacs when the reaction triggers antibody formation against “self”.

        The “acquired” immunity arm of the immune system seems to end up as autoimmunity. The “innate” immunity conveys intolerance/sensitivity. The symptoms are no less severe, but the the type of internal damage differs. In face, the intolerant individual may be more sensitive than the Celiac patient.

        I’ve seen multiple doctors, but very few know much about Celiacs, nutrition, vitamins, etc. My children’s pediatrician told me that the information she learned in school is totally different from current info and that changes regularly.
        The sad thing is that it is often up to the patient to learn this on their own.

  9. Wow Kris good job man, impressed! About time, because …the Truth…shall set you FREE!!! :-)


  10. You left soy off the list. That is definitely number 12.

    • My kids and I have been drinking So Nice Organic Milk for 10 years now!!! Because we are all lactose intolerant. Is that bad and what could be the negative effect?

      • Have you tried Almond Milk? Delicious.

      • Soy milk is bad news. Especially for children. There is estrogen in the soy plant and this causes early puberty for girls and sterility for boys. I have to get my son tested when he is 18. I brought them both to the Childrens Hospital and this is the info they told me.

      • In order to digest lactose you need the enzyme lactase, which is naturally occurring in dairy milk, until it is pasteurized. Have you tried raw milk?

        Whenever I drank pasteurized milk, such as in a cappuccino in a coffee shop, I would get serious bloating and accompanying gas. I can drink a pint of raw milk in one sitting without any discomfort or symptoms.

        Most alternative milks are seriously laden with extras, including sugars, to make them palatable. If you are just looking for a refreshment, have you tried kombucha or water kefir?

        • Growing up on a dairy farm, all 11 of us drank unpasteurized milk. My mother never breast fed any of us and who could blame her with having 11 children but my point to the raw milk is that none of us ever suffered from ear infections etc. and all the things that they like to tell you that can go wrong drinking unpasteurized milk.

      • To Caro and others:

        I have been mostly vegan my whole life. we used soy milk but not a lot of other soy products and we eat mostly whole foods or home processed foods. I would say there is always the possibility of becoming allergic to soy or worse, but I wouldn’t stop using it entirely…. read on…

        I would definitely say that using soy milk regularly is more negative than good seeing that soy bi-products are in almost everything processed. But keep in mind that making your own plant based “milk” is very easy and a good way to get a lot of nutrients besides. Kinda like juicing veggies. All you need is a blender and cheese clothe for making plant “milk”! Look it up.

        A few “milks” besides soy that I keep around are hemp, almond, rice, quinoa and oat milk just to switch it up a bit.

        There is no reason to be scared of the whole plant. It’s the bi-products that are scary when consumed in everything we eat. Whole grain wheat, whole cooked soybeans, whole corn– that stuff is good and where you get your nutrients. It’s when they take it apart down to the chemicals in each whole plant part that is not so good. They also do this with Cow Milk. It too is in almost everything. Lactic acid (a milk derivative) is even in some olives! If you can, get a hold of the documentaries, FORKS OVER KNIVES and GOT THE FACTS ON MILK. Some really cool research on whole foods and the dairy myth.

        BOTTOM LINE: When in doubt, always choose whole foods, regardless if it’s animal or plant.

  11. Great article. How about these 2 myths: Raw milk will kill you myth. Red meat will kill you myth. Thanks!

  12. Regarding all of the above, 1000% correct!

  13. Kris,

    I have become a big fan of your work over the past few months. As I was diagnosed as pre-diabetic, I switched to a low-carb (and low sugar) lifestyle. While I have restarted exercising, I believe this change alone has allowed me to lose 20-30 pounts. I find myself eating less as I am not hungry all the time. Thanks for the valuable information you provide!

  14. So true. Bring on the bacon and eggs! ;)

  15. Completely spot on! I spent a month in Sweden with LCHF guru, Monique Forslund from Lifezone blog….and cut out carbs. Not only did I lose 5kgs, my hair, nails, skin AND energy levels have improved dramatically. I feel completely amazing!

  16. Great article would love to have it more expanded.

    • Zach, I agree, this is an excellent article. It’s time these myths die the death they so richly deserve.

      Not trying to steal the author’s thunder, but the book “Don’t Die Early” covers most of these points in additional detail. Tom Naughton, the creator of the documentary “Fat Head,” reviewed “Don’t Die Early” favorably on his Fat Head blog.

      Full disclosure: I’m the author of “Don’t Die Early.”

      • Tom Naughton’s blog is great and his film Fathead is terrific!!

        I support the lady who mentioned Dr Davis’ book Wheat Belly (also reviewed and supporte on Naughton’s blog). Wheat Belly points out the change in wheat and that the gliadin plus several other elements in modern wheat is responsible for a lot of conditions affecting people . such as dementia, diabetes, asthma, IBS etc.

        I went off wheat last year and my asthma has improved. I still have some allergens but the imrovement has been a great relief.

  17. Fantastic information. I agree that myths about soy, raw milk and red meat should also be included.

  18. While I agree with the vast majority of what you say, I think it’s important to make clear that completely cutting Carbs out of the diet is extremely dangerous. It is important for readers to know the difference between carbs and grains. A low grain diet is wonderful, especially because of all the added sugars in bread nowadays, however, cutting out fruits and vegetables is far from healthy.

    Also I do not agree with your claims about sugar. I agree added sugar is not good for people, however this is where people need to be informed that there are many kinds of sugar out there, the most common being Sucrose (table sugar). All of these sugars however are converted to GLUCOSE in the liver, not fat.

    Like I said earlier though, I agree with the vast majority of your post, and overall great article.

    • I want to second your objection. It’s a difficult topic to discuss quickly, as this article is doing, because both sides tend to overgeneralize. VLC diets can be dangerous. They can be useful as a therapeutic (which is to say, to treat a specific disease) diet, say for seizures, but it’s very difficult to balance properly. Convention medicine sees this as says “See? Low-carb is bad for you”, like there isn’t a difference between <50g and 100-150g. Low carb people see the obvious fallacy in convention medicine, but then get caught into the circle of "if less is good then none must be better", which is just as ridiculous.

      Going zero carb is like trying to eat no omega 6's because only omega 3's are "good", as if the reason they're good isn't that that's the side off balance. I can already predict the diseases that would come from a deficiency in omega 3's.

      Everything sweet or starchy ends up as sugar in the end. It's about not eating isolated nutrients, whether sugar or omega 3 sups, or vitamin D, or protein. It's all meant to work together, so eat it together.

    • Kyle, check out the biochemistry of Fructose metabolism – have you seen the “Sugar the Bitter Truth” video of lecture by Dr Robert Lustig? Google it and have a watch – excellent value…. gives some very good background to how such widespread myths which are taking such a terrible toll on the health of the “modern world” could be propagated…

      • I’m sorry I think I’m on a different kind of subject opposed to you, and Merrylegs… natural fructose in the amounts found in fruit and a natural diet are not bad and will not cause you to retain fat, however added fructose in things such as sweeteners I completely agree with. I also am looking at this from a performance point of view (being focused on sports nutrition) as opposed to just health, in either case though I agree added fructose, especially in the amounts that it is added is a problem.

        • Kyle, I see what you are saying if you are coming from a sports nutrition perspective, but keep in mind that athletes have rather different metabolic requirements to regular people who don’t spend the majority of their time exercising and using up that glucose. Where does the excess glucose get stored by people who aren’t able to use it straight away for energy? It gets stored as fat.

          You seem to have forgotten that rather important part of carbohydrate metabolism… Also, according to Dr Mercola, in contrast to other sugars which are, as you said, converted to glucose by the liver, “fructose is turned into free fatty acids (FFAs), VLDL (the damaging form of cholesterol), and triglycerides, which get stored as fat. The fatty acids created during fructose metabolism accumulate as fat droplets in your liver and skeletal muscle tissues, causing insulin resistance and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). Insulin resistance progresses to metabolic syndrome and type II diabetes.”

          I understand what you are saying about added fructose being such a problem, but please understand that for a lot of people, regular old fruit can be just as detrimental. I am insulin resistant and most fruit is simply too high in sugar for me, and if I eat it in any kind of regular quantity, I will end up with Type 2 Diabetes, it’s as simple as that.

          The problem with making an assumption like “natural fructose in the amounts found in fruit and a natural diet are not bad and will not cause you to retain fat”, is that uneducated people take that to mean they can eat as much fruit as they want because it’s “natural”, and there will be no consequences, when in actual fact, that is just not true. I would recommend you read this article There are also more articles on fruit specifically if you care to look for them.

        • Jasmin, apart from the specific case of Fructose metabolism (in the Liver) contributing to fat its otherwise pretty much down to Insulin, correct? More Insulin in the bloodstream (eg. by eating Carbs –> Glucose) stimulates Fatty Acids to be shunted inside Fat cells for storage (Triglycerides), whereas when the blood is low in Insulin it releases the FA’s back into the bloodstream which can then be burnt up etc., correct?? I understand that a big reason for low Carb/high Fat/Protein diets working to lose weight is that by reducing the Carbs and replacing with the F/P we basically have less Insulin in the blood, hence more fat Release vs. fat Storage, correct??

    • There have been studies that show that not all sugars get converted to glucose. Sucrose is a disaccharide. It is made up of one part glucose, one part fructose, connected to each other by an ester bond. The fructose is a simple sugar. The issue lies within the receptors for fructose.

      Glucose is the energy of life and every living cell on this planet can utilize glucose for energy. But the only parts in the body that is capable of handling fructose is the liver, which when loads of fructose gets processed in excess by the liver, overloads the TCA cycle in the mitochondria and metabolically spits out VLDL (very low density lipoproteins).

      This is the dangerous blood cholesterol we all fear.

    • No argument about different TYPES of sugar being metabolized differently, but, in the end, a dramatic reduction of that stuff in anyone’s diet can’t hurt anything. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a study that illustrates just how necessary ANY processed sugar is to our diets.

      I’m not picking on naturally occurring sugars in fruits, etc. here; just the stuff in sweets, sodas, breads, etc., but it’s not terribly hard to go overboard with fruit and juices, too. In the end, the takeaway seems to be easy to say and harder to do; cut out a lot of carbs and sweets, feel and look better.

  19. Excellent article. I saw the linked on PaleoDocs. Totally awesome. Agree that soy should be #12. Maybe something on Vit D, like get some sun and one on exercise, like less cardio and more high Intensity.

    Well Done!!

    • Why less cardio? I find that concept very interesting…

      • More intensity creates EPOC (Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption), whereas steady-state cardio doesn’t. Wikipedia actually has a good summary, including this: “EPOC is accompanied by an elevated consumption of fuel. In response to exercise, fat stores are broken down and free fatty acids (FFA) are released into the blood. In recovery, the direct oxidation of free fatty acids as fuel and the energy consuming re-conversion of FFAs back into fat stores both take place.”


        “The EPOC effect is greatest soon after the exercise is completed and decays to a lower level over time. One experiment found EPOC increasing metabolic rate to an excess level that decays to 13% three hours after exercise, and 4% after 16 hours. Another study, specifically designed to test whether the effect existed for more than 16 hours, conducted tests for 48 hours after the conclusion of the exercise and found measurable effects existed up to the 38 hour post-exercise measurement.”

        • Well being an Exercise Physiologist I know my EPOC, and your claims, that cardio doesn’t bring it on…clearly you’ve never done a basic Physiology lab. Also the fact that your body is utilizing FFA’s as fuel has absolutely nothing to do with weight loss, you get more ATP from burning fat so you get more energy thus burn less of them opposed to glucose and muscle glycogen, which provide much less ATP but are used quicker.

          Also the whole idea of EPOC is Post-exercise OXYGEN consumption. Lifting is not an oxidative activity…if you believe it is you need to go study up on your energy pathways, as most of it is done through the PhosphoCreatine (PCr) system, as well as through Glycolysis, specifically anaerobic glycolysis.

          • So will you explain why all the fitness articles are promoting high-intensity short-duration exercise over steady-state cardio for fat burning and muscle strengthening? I want to know, I’m not being facetious. And please don’t condescend in your reply; that’s not helpful. Your first comment was misleading. Saying you’re an exercise physiologist up front is better than saying “Why less cardio? I find that concept very interesting…” I truly wanted to be helpful, but now wonder if your comment was just bait.

          • @Lola, most of the articles promoting this aren’t scientific journals/articles, but rather popular news/media outlets. Sorry for seeming condescending earlier, and my question was bait, because this is an article on common misconceptions and that is a major one. So I find it important to understand why people are believing this.

            But in regards to the idea of fat burning and muscle strengthening, a person burns more fat/triglycerides in low impact exercises such as at rest and walking, however this does not cause weight loss. High intensity exercise actually causes the body to burn more glucose, originally in the form of muscle glycogen, but then from blood glucose. As blood glucose decreases this causes a need to increase it, causing fat to be broken down in the liver into glucose. The main reason steady-state cardio doesn’t burn as much fat during exercise is because of blood redirection, etc.

            Currently the most beneficial form of exercise to inducing weight loss is interval training, which incorporates high intensity as well as lower. Overall the thing is burning the calories, increasing muscle mass will help keep them constantly burning, while increasing endurance will help blood transport.

            But cardio training has many more beneficial effects than just weight loss, as does resistance training. Sorry for the long response, some of my facts may be off, it’s a busy day :)

      • Both high-intensity, short-duration and moderate-intensity, long-duration exercises have health benefits. I don’t think you can prove increasing one and decreasing the other is going to be more beneficial. It depends on what works for an individual.

  20. Your list is spot on! Excellent summary!

  21. Sherri Tate says:

    Wonderful info! I have a GI disease, would love more info. I’ve been trying more natural things to try to help it…

  22. Sherry Barry says:

    Awesome read, thank you. I have been living low carb and sugar free for 6 months and feel better physically and mentally.

  23. @Kyle – the fructose component of sugar is converted by the liver to fat. I suggest you take a look at the work of Dr. Lustig and David Gillespie (among others) on the dangers of fructose.

    • If you consume anything in extremely large amounts it will be converted to fat, that’s the body’s way of storing energy… by saying that fructose specifically gets stored as fat is insane, if it is not needed (as is often the case) then yes, but to say that the only thing that happens to fructose is that it is converted to fat is just asinine and goes against everything known to the nutrition world

      • The current research states that humans unlike the great apes may not even be able to metabolize fructose. I don’t know if this is relevant to the article, but a new interesting idea that has come about.

        • Good article Kris! One thing that gets overlooked in fructose discussions is that it is important for the body during exercise as a secondary fuel source. Cyclists who receive an iso-caloric solution of glucose+fructose will outperform cyclists who receive glucose alone, indicating that the body can utilize 2 CHO fuel sources better than 1, just glucose. While we all need to exercise more and watch our overall sugar content, I haven’t seen any research that humans aren’t meant to have fructose at all.

        • Kyle, while fructose can be converted to glucose, the liver is the only organ that can do this and store it as glycogen. So once liver glycogen is full, fructose will get made it to palmitic acid then vldl’s. Also fructose is seven times more reactive than glucose. Limiting fruit and sugar intake for everyone is not a bad idea. Athletes would do better eating starch because it does not preferentially fill the liver.

      • Kyle, as quoted in my previous reply to one of your comments, with a link to the source of info, fructose actually does get converted straight to fat (or fatty acids to be precise). It is metabolised differently to other sugars, and badly at that, which may support @lperlitta’s comment above, though I can not attest to the veracity of this particular claim. It may not make sense to you based on your understanding of “conventional wisdom”, but that is exactly what we are trying to overcome here. There is a lot of information on the subject that is not hard to find…

        • Jasmin,

          You quoted some misleading information from that article. It is true that all cells can metabolize glucose, and that the liver must metabolize fructose. However, both glucose and fructose go through glycolysis, which produces pyruvate. Pyruvate either gets converted to ATP (energy), stored as fat via Acetyl CoA, or converted back to glucose.

          The difference is they enter glycolysis at different stages. The main regulatory enzyme in glycolysis is PFK – if it senses too much energy (citrate, ATP) it does not convert to pyruvate and sends the reaction back to glucose and into the blood for other cells. The problem with fructose is it comes into glycolysis under PFK as DHAP and G3P, so the regulation is not as tight (glucose also breaks down to DHAP and G3P, after PFK).

          The result is too much pyruvate, which gets converted to Acetyl CoA, which under high insulin and low activity will get converted to fatty acids. However, you can apply this last statement to glucose and protein as well. The issue is not that fructose gets immediately converted to fatty acids (there is no enzyme linking fructose to fatty acids), but that it alters the regulation, so Kyle’s statement above is correct.

          Related to above, fructose is recommended to athletes with glucose since it maximizes absorption (GLUT2 vs. GLUT2 + GLUT5 transporters) and some studies show fructose superior over glucose in synthesizing glycogen. Since sugar (sucrose) and HFCS are each about 50% fructose, the simple takeway is limit them unless you’re doing some kind of activity that utilizes them.

          Source: MS in Exercise and Sports nutrition, but a search on glycolysis and the biochemistry of fructose and pyruvate should validate.

    • Hmmm, I don’t think fruit is the problem if you’re overweight. I haven’t personally ever met anyone with a weight problem who bases their diet on fruits and veggies. Show me where they are?

      • Hi, that would be me, Leah. My mother was very anti-sugar. We grew up eating whole grains, fruit at every breakfast with whole grain cereal, fruit at every lunch and a salad and cooked vegetables at every dinner. No desserts, no fruit juices, no candy. I started getting fat right after puberty, yet never developed much of a sweet tooth. When I went to college there was very little meat to eat. Mostly grains and a salad bar. I skipped breakfast, ate an enormous salad with minimal to no dressing or any “fatty” toppings like cheese at lunch and dinner and ate as much or often much less than my skinny friends of whatever else was being offered. I got fatter.

        5 years ago my roommate was diagnosed with “elevated” cholesterol. I doubled down on everything that was supposed to be healthy. All whole grains, upped our fruit and vegetable intake by several servings a day, cut out all cheese, all eggs, all meat but boneless, skinless chicken breasts. We ate nothing but whole grains. We gave up other things so we could afford all those organic fruits and vegetables. I learned how to make things like spaghetti taste edible without any fat, or any sausage/meat. The result of our 5 year experiment is that we both got fatter and fatter and fatter, slower, grumpy all the time and then mildly depressed and then deeply depressed, with a host of other minor health problems, including blood pressure going up, energy down to nothing, resting heart beats high and no change in our total cholesterol. Obligatory exercise did nothing.

        After reading Gary Taubes’ Good Calories, Bad Calories (a long, scientifically based treatis about many of the things the author posts here) we turned our whole diet on its head. We eat nothing but animal products now, with the occasional vegetable or fruit as a side or treat. As a result I’ve lost 65 pounds in three months and my roommate 40. My resting heart beat went from 100bpm to 60. My blood pressure is fantastic. Our cholesterol is great. We have tons of energy. My roommate’s life-long skin problems have all cleared up. Our hair and nails are healthier. Two days in we stopped feeling depressed and haven’t had a “down” day in almost half a year. We’re rarely every grumpy anymore and no PMS. We have energy to burn every day and are no longer tired and unable to work. Every health benefit we saw we saw long before we saw any significant weight loss. We aren’t healthier because we’ve lost weight. We’re losing weight because we’re healthier. We’re both stronger and have more stamina, despite the fact that we stopped exercising when we started this diet.

        We eat butter, eggs, bacon, steak, ground beef, ribs, hard cheeses, heavy cream, dark chocolate fresh pepperoni, some seafood, some chicken. I don’t touch a boneless, skinless chicken breast now unless I’ve stuffed it with cheese and baked it in butter. We occasionally eat some lettuce to wrap a burger in, or some blueberries or strawberries with cream if they’re in season.

        I feel years younger, and what was killing me wasn’t Twinkies and Wonder Bread. It was whole grain Cheerios, whole wheat pasta, giant salads and 4 servings of fruit a day.

  24. Why not explain that the soybean in its purest form is not evil but the US crop is the evil one?

    • Soy is safe when fermented, such as in soy sauce, natto, miso, tempeh, etc., but not otherwise. Additionally, it’s important to note that no culture in history has been eating soy in the amounts we do today. Soy is a pretty recent food, and in “ancient Asia” it was only really used as a condiment, and in small amounts at that.

  25. Excellent article. Any follow ups with more topics or even more depth on this one alone would be awesome if you ever find the time to do that.

    Shared this all over the place.

    Thank you.

  26. Melinda Peaock says:

    Good read.

  27. Don’t know how much I agree with #3 about grains or #6 about many small meals. Carbs are part of a healthy diet, and if you don’t get enough of them from fruit or vegetables, then there’s nothing wrong with eating grains.

    I’ve come to accept that my frequent eating will not boost my metabolism, but I think small, frequent meals have other benefits. I am never ravenous anymore, thus eliminating the chance that I will overeat. I am far less likely to binge or make unhealthy choices when I have prepared to eat a healthy snack every three hours.

    • I’m the opposite – I call eating six small meals a day, “Six opportunities to over-eat.” Similarly, my husband recently began spacing his meals out and eating only 3x/day. What he said, which I found astonishing, was this, “Before, I never felt hungry. Truly hungry, because I was eating frequently. I think it’s been years since I’ve truly felt hunger.”


    • If you would stop eating grains, then you would stop requiring frequent meals. Your appetite will drop about 400 calories per day.

      • I have found this to be true – for me at least. I stopped eating bread (I know there is wheat in many foods) about two yrs ago and lost 30lbs and have kept it off so far – I exercise most days and also do not eat added sugar, salt, but lead a fairly normal life otherwise.

        I am 70 and feel great, I am told I do not look 70 (my reply to this is “what is 70 supposed to look like?”) I think each body is individual and some can thrive on what does not suit others.

        I feel I have found my own way of feeling good and that is the thing that we all should do.

    • Larry, sorry to tell you this but grains are poison. They contain lectins, protease inhibitors and phytates. All these anti nutrients make you less healthy. Also, there is no dietary need for carbohydrates. Yes it is true that your RBC’s and certain parts of the brain require glucose, but your body is more than capable of making this on its own. Grains are nothing but detrimental and should be the first thing to go when looking for a healthier lifestyle.

      • So you are in a ketonic state then with your absence of dietary carbohydrates? Tried exercising lately? Bet that went well with no stored glycogen.

        • Linda Daniels says:

          An excellent point, Gabrielle. I have been a whole food/non-gluten/low carb nutritional lecturer 37 years now, and well Kris had points I did agree with, taking all carbs/grains out is skewed. I did it in 1988, and of course lost weight, thought I felt marvelous, and collapsed in a ketonic state… and had a “dent” in my right thigh where guess what happened!

          The Paleo folks are right, processed/wheat carbs have been the bane of many of the health challenges and obesity in America. But the huge intake of meat (I doubt everyone eats/checks hormone free/antibiotic free/ etc.) is craziness! Bacon every day! WHY???? I am 64, in perfect health, don’t eat meats, because the thought of them sitting in my yards and yards colon for hours putrifying just seems rather condusive to disease/cancer, etc.

          Milk/cheese is liquid hormones/antibiotics (up to 50 strains) and cause MUCOUS! When my clients quit dairy (NOT butter or eggs) they THRIVE! So I can see some of their points, but again, an extreme diet… why not just a healthy lifestyle, with balance. Whole foods, non gluten, unrefined sugars as much as possible, the right carbs/grains in very moderation, and see what ya get!

          TY Kris for the basic overall, but I disagree with the heavy meat diet (brings you constantly to the acidic ph, instead of alkaline) and the dairy, and the lack of great grains/carbs in moderate amounts, but NEVER gluten. And it is celiac… on the spelling on your linking a mental disorder to gluten. TY Gabrielle.. sorry I got lengthy here!

          • Coeliac, actually.

            Good article, no need for people to make it too complicated though – eat less crap, do more exercise.

            The nutrition and diet industry is no better that the pharmaceutical industry for doing everything it can to maintain its income through repeat business and un-evidenced fads.

          • Celiac is the American spelling, coeliac is preferred in the U.K.

        • I exercised back when I ate nothing but whole grains, 7 servings of fruits and vegetables, skim milk, no fat but olive oil and nothing but boneless, skinless chicken breasts. I could barely get through 20 minutes on the elliptical. Felt like death, and afterward could only lay down until I could eat again. (I had my 1 measured cup of plain Cheerios, my half a cup of skim milk, my fruit and black, unsweetened coffee at breakfast. I shouldn’t need any more food till lunch, right?) I could walk one way to the big mall at the end of our street (about 1 mile), but could rarely walk back home. Usually took a bus or taxi, came home and collapsed so exhausted I could hardly walk from one room to another in the house. I’m 37.

          Then I threw out all those carbs. I no longer exercise, but my muscle tone is great and my endurance is much better. Two days ago I made that same walk I just described. Haven’t done it in more than 2 months, but I managed 4 miles the long way to the mall, home again, out to a restaurant that was closed then backtracking to a different one and then home again. Wasn’t tired at all, or sore. I have extra energy now, so every once in a while I hop on the elliptical just to burn some. I can do 30 minutes easily without exhaustion and go back to normal life, when before I often couldn’t make it through my 20 and then had to lie down till the next meal. I’ve only been on the elliptical four or five times in the last few months, so I didn’t “work up” to this endurance. I just have it. I can lift heavier objects and hold heavy things longer, control a 60 pound dog a friend has with perfect ease, with one hand, for 40 minutes of training. I can swim laps for 40 minutes instead of 10 now, and still feel great afterward.

          So, THAT’S how it’s going Gabrielle. You can keep your carbs. They’re useless junk.

        • I exercise much, much better without grains. My workouts are more intense, they last longer, and I’m less exhausted when I’m done. Without stored glycogen, I wonder where the energy is coming from? :)

  28. Unbelievable how spot on all of this is, with easily grabbable references.

  29. I agree with most of this, except for the nitty gritty about fructose etc.

    I’m a qualified nutritionist about to further my study to become a dietitian. However, I’m increasingly becoming discouraged by the wave of chefs, personal trainers etc. jumping on the “clean eating” band wagon. What seems to be being forgotten is that we are all different in so many ways. Saying that one method of eating is how every single person should be eating seems naive & unfair.

    It would be nice if these types of articles recognised that. Finding a method of eating that you are comfortable with physically, socially & psychologically is often a personal journey.

    • This is the best comment on the page.

    • Wow I agree, this is the best comment I have seen yet, I think having a wealth of information and making educated decisions is fantastic but lets not forget about balance in life, and individuality. As a Kinesiologist, Trainer and Physiotherapist I have seen time and time again that one path will not work for everyone. Each person needs to look at their goals, lifestyle and priorities and create a system which works for them.

  30. Well written article with a lot of great points. I really enjoyed it. However, just a quick question on number 4: with a high protein diet, what about a possible risk of developing ketoacidosis or ketonuria? If a person is eating high protein, they are probably be eating low carbohydrates as well. Similar to what was seen with the Atkins diet and why it failed. I know that such occurrences usually happen with people who are diabetic or in starvation following such a diet, but my main question is simply this: Isn’t possible that a high protein diet could cause one of these issues which in turn would put a strain on the kidneys?

    • Ketonuria = ketones in the urine occurs in fasting or low carbohydrate eating, I haven’t seen it associated with protein per se? Diabetic Ketoacidosis requires high blood sugar levels and ketone levels in the blood (ketonemia) much higher than seen in fasting or low carb eating, and the low carbing rules out the high blood sugar component so DKA isn’t an issue with low carb eating in general. “Nutritional ketosis” is a search term that may help.

  31. As a student who is studying to be a dietitian, I am extremely offended by the following quote of this article “There’s one thing that nutrition professionals have had remarkable success with… and that is demonizing incredibly healthy foods.” We are not taught to “demonize” any of the foods listed in your article.

    As nutrition professionals, we are taught that most foods are good in moderation. For example the title “Saturated Fats are Bad for you” we learn that most saturated fats come from animals, which are necessary for growth and contain most of the fat soluble vitamins.

    Although I agree with SOME of the topics of your article, the rest should be researched more. Anyone can deem themselves a “nutritionist.” Dietitians, in addition to taking many science classes, including biochemistry and physiological aspects of nutrition, also have to go through supervised practice. They are the best source for information about nutrition.

    • The problem with ‘moderation’ that nutrition professionals spout on and on about is that the concept is bullshit because it doesn’t work for a lot of the population. You, personally, might be able to have some potato chips in ‘moderation’ or some bread in ‘moderation’, but a lot of folks find carbohydrate addiction quite a crippling obstacle in life. It’s like telling an alcoholic that drinking in moderation is okay. No one in their right mind would recommend that because it can cause a relapse into damaging behavior. Why are addictive things like sugar and starch any different?

  32. An exellent article of truth, unlike what we are spoon fed in the media. Nice to see such a wide variety of people commenting and adding their slant to things and having the courage to point out the truth also. Will share this post on the Gaps page I am a member of. Congrats again.

  33. I would love to see the whole list so I can share it with those people that don’t believe me or understand why I eat exactly as you describe. I have not eaten wheat for years and am healthier now than ever before. Thanks for sharing.

  34. Cindy Pylman says:

    Can you please tell me if stevia as a sugar substitute is bad for you or okay? I am diabetic, and I have quit using artificial sweeteners in my tea & coffee. I started using Stevia a couple of years ago, and am happy with the taste. I am concerned, though, about metabolic syndrome & whether this sweetener contributes to it. I want to know if I have to quit using any sweetening agent altogether in my coffee/tea. Thank you.

    • Stevia is a herb that helps to balance blood sugar and in general is great to use as a sweetener. There may be some negative effects for some people but Google this and you can find out more.
      In general it is a good sweetener to use. I use it and have found no problems.

  35. Kari Klungler says:

    I was always told that drinking during a meal helped with the digestive process… that not drinking hindered it. My body has a really hard time processing gluten but I cannot afford to go gluten free… sometimes you cannot avoid it not matter what you do. I have a lot of physical disabilities too but will loose the ability to walk if I do not loose the excess weight. I’ve lost 15 kilos over the past 8 months by exercising, cutting out sugars/soda, eating portion sizes, cutting out snacks, and counting my calories. Is this not right? Is there something more I could be doing? A lot of this article is news to me… my nutritionalist hasn’t ever said anything on some of these topics. Any advice… I would appreciate opinions for medical persons.

    • We are a family of 6 and we are gluten free on one income. You can afford to be gluten free if you do not seek to replace gluten filled foods with a gluten free replacement. Instead of a gf hamburger bun, use a leaf of lettuce. Instead of a sandwich, eat some meat and cheese with fruit and vegetables on the side. It is not the real food that costs a lot of money, it is the gf replacements that cost a fortune. I’m sure this will also help with any weight you are needing/wanting to lose. :) Good luck on your journey!

      • Kari Klungler says:

        I have actually been introduced to that just awhile ago how crazy I never thought of using something other than bread to make my sandwich or hamburger.
        Thank you so much!

  36. I can’t believe there was nothing about plain old milk and how putrid it is and how it actually *pulls* calcium out of your bones so that it can be digested. Hence why America is now leading in the Osteoporosis department. NOT winning!!

  37. Thanks!

  38. How about:

    12: Low Salt Diets are Good For You.
    This is horribly wrong. Low salt diets can lead to heartburn, bad digestion, and (recent studies suggest) heart disease. Salt your food to taste (and stop drinking soda with meals) and you’ll be amazed how quickly heartburn goes away. Why? Salt is sodium-chloride – NaCl. One of the key ingredients in stomach acid is hydrochloric acid – HCl. Hydrogen is everywhere in your system (we are like 90% water after all), but chloride? Not so much. So when you ingest salt you’re giving your body access to the chloride it needs for healthy stomach acid.

  39. I agree with most of this except for one key part. You stated that there is no reason to “fear” cheese and butter. The truth is that dairy products affect our metabolism in a negative way, drain energy, and contribute to many diseases. Adult humans are not designed to ingest milk or milk products. Just look at the rest of the animal kingdom, we (humans) are the only ones that drinks milk beyond infancy…. as well as from a different animal. Beyond that, meat, fruits and vegetables, and a few good carbs (brown rice, potatoes, etc.) are what we should stick to.

    • “Just look at the rest of the animal kingdom, we (humans) are the only ones that drinks milk beyond infancy…. as well as from a different animal.”

      The argument that we should not be doing something because no other animal does it is not a really good one. There are millions of things that we humans do that no other animal does, but that does not mean they are inherently bad for us.

      Not saying that dairy is wonderful or anything like that, but that line of argument is not very strong.

      • Ben has a valid point, Sean. Dairy products have scientifically been linked to more negative effects than positive.

        Don’t argue just to argue.

        • Painting whole food groups with a broad brush confuses the issues. You can’t just say “dairy” or “meat” and have it be meaningful. Soy milk is not the same as fermented soy sauce, organic raw milk is not the same as cooked hormone filled milk, and natural grass fed meat is not the same as a big mac.

          We need to define our terms a bit more carefully, most “studies” are flawed because of this to the point of being irrelevant. Also, the animal kingdom does not consume Reishi mushrooms to boost chi and the immune system. I will however, continue to do so. Balance in all things.

          • Well said! Modern food processing has dramatically affected the quality of “whole” foods, rendering them synthetic versions with the same name (i.e. milk, cheese, meat) and harmful, as opposed to nourishing, effects. To be healthy we must consume foods that are in their natural state, or naturally fermented with microorganisms that have evolved with us on this planet over eons!

  40. A man with a history of high cholesterol walks into a dietitians office and the dietitian tells him to limit his egg consumption. He already has enough produced in his body he doesn’t need dietary intake. So the man goes around telling his friends that if they are watching their cholesterol they shouldn’t eat eggs. Nutrition professionals are not always to blame, everyone thinks they can be a nutritionist now a days.

  41. Modern hen eggs are bad for you because modern yellow corn is bad for you. Egg farmers feed yellow corn to hens because it contains lutein and zeaxanthin, those healthy eye vitamins you referred to. Lutein and zeaxanthin antibodies are responsible for increased rates of macular degeneration. 85% of autistic children have antibodies to lutein and zeaxanthin.

    Do your research.

    • So what? That doesn’t mean crap. Just buy eggs from an organic or free-range source that doesn’t use corn to feed their chickens.

  42. A well put together list!

    I do agree with most of items; sugar is obviously a no go, oils are yuck, and grains can do some real damage. But many of the studies sourced in favor of many of the animal products need some closer inspection.

    For instance, the A to Z study, 35 (as I happen to be familiar with this study) looked at the results people had with minimal help after reading each of the diet books. To be fair to the “Ornish” diet, almost none of the participants stayed on or even tried that diet in the first place. The few participants who did lost an average of 50 lbs. While the “Atkin’s” participants didn’t really follow their supposed diet either.

    There is also a very important distinction that needs to be made when comparing high and low fat diets the resulting weight loss. Almost all studies in favor of fat consumption are done on participants with diabetes or obesity (related to diabetes). This is HIGHLY related to the results of almost all macro-nutrient studies and can have its participants broken down into a insulin “resistant” group and a insulin “sensitive” group. Individuals who have insulin resistance will find it very difficult to lose weight on a high-carb diet, while the reverse is true for the insulin sensitive group.

    Also studies comparing high-carb to high-fat, need to take quality of food into consideration. Comparing grass fed beef to a loaf of gmo wheat bread…it’s obvious what is more nutritious.

    What both the high-carb and the low-carb communities need to take into account is that we have a ketogentic bodily state and opposite state for a reason. During colder months humans had more fat options and very little carbohydrates to choose from, the body went into a starvation/fat burning mode. During the warmer months, when our ancestors were close to the equatorial belt, there was a copious amount of fruit. Both diets will work perfectly fine, but they do NOT mix. Eating simple sugar diet such as fruit, with a fat percentage beyond 15% will make your life suck. But keeping fat low allows sugars to burn extreamtly efficiently with low triglycerides, and that is absolutely critical.

    I have tried both diets and can attest to the benefits of both sides. But for me, fruit allows me to perform, compete and transcend my previous self. Saying that “Carbs Should Be Your Biggest Source of Calories” is a “lie”, in my opinion, is quite direct. Rather I’d say it’s just a different perspective. Utmost respect to the high-fat community, I know it does wonders for many. Take care

  43. Great article Indeed! I follow crossfit and paleo diet, the above article is 100% correct, most of the people in crossfit community have the same beliefs like what is being written in this article and they’re the fittest people on earth! Further please refer to professor “google” :)

  44. Whenever I read such articles I am reminded of my grand-father’s practice and advice to anyone who asked (he NEVER preached…

    “eat everything and anything your heart desires but remember do do it in moderation”.

    The key word here is moderation, and that is what we have forgotten as a species.

    My grandpa lived to the age of 96, never had diabetes, never a problem with his ticker, no elevated blood pressure and had a hemoglobin count that made his Medical Practitioner envious!

  45. I really like sugary foods, I guess I’m toast… which is also bad for me!

  46. I would dispute the ‘many small meals’ one.
    The idea is that by eating many smaller meals as opposed to three large meals, you are never hungry enough to over-eat – and it can be helpful for sufferers of reflux, indigestion or IBS triggered by over-eating. But most of the point is to ensure that people are not hungry enough to over-eat.
    Grains…look, if you are actually gluten sensitive, there’s other grains. Like rice. Brown rice is actually not that bad – it does take a bit longer to cook and tastes a little different, but it’s still a good source of complex carbs, which are very much necessary for energy. (You can tell who’s on a low-carb diet in the office – they’re cranky and forever complaining that they’re tired. Protein can provide some energy, but it’s got nothing on complex carbs.) And if you’re not gluten-sensitive, go for the wholegrain stuff as much as you can – I am very much sure that most of the issues will be found to be linked less to gluten and more to the additives to many processed wheat products (white bread etc.).

    Sugars are bad in large quantities, but the sugar from fruit and unprocessed sugar sources (honey especially – there is WAY more to it than just sugar, depending on the variety it can also contain a lot of vitamins and minerals, as well as being an excellent soother for a sore dry throat) is often a much-needed energy boost. Carbs and other nutrients take time to digest; sugars provide an initial energy boost until they can get to work. (Fats and oils too, though I’d be careful to keep the former to small amounts only.) But too much of anything really is bad for you.

    Soy needs to be on the list. Two glasses of soy milk a day contains enough phytoestrogens to push a woman’s menstrual cycle back by a week or more. (Oh, and high unfermented soy consumption will badly screw with any hormonal BC, ladies. Just a heads-up.) Nobody can give much of an answer on what it does to guys, but it can’t be doing anything good. Fermented soy products like miso and tempeh are safe because the fermentation process destroys the phytoestrogens, but unfermented soy products like tofu and soy milk are not. (I know, many people will say ‘why don’t the Japanese/Chinese/insert race that is believed to eat a lot of soy here have any trouble’ – they don’t eat massive quantities of it, they may have only a few grams with a meal once a day or even less often than that.) Another source of vegetable protein that has been in use since the dawn of civilization is the humble legume; beans do take time to cook, but can be frozen in large quantities once soaked, and are just as good.

    I would also strongly suggest boycotts of soy products, soy-fed meat (over 90% of the soybeans grown in the world are destined for cattle feed, not human consumption), all corn products and corn-fed meat and any products containing palm oil. Soybean farming has caused crazy levels of deforestation in Brazil (not to mention the stranglehold biotech companies have on many soy farmers), and palm oil farming in Indonesia has resulted in massive deforestation ( as well as displacement of native peoples and the loss of habitat for many endangered animal species. And that’s without going into how the chemical fertilizers and pesticides used in such intensive farming are causing even worse environmental destruction (and health problems – hundreds of farm workers in Brazil are suffering renal failure caused by pesticides, and I don’t doubt that numbers are similar in other countries).

    Corn is bad, there is no doubt about it. HFCS is known as a cause of some very serious health problems, and cattle fed on corn are reportedly often quite unhealthy (fortunately the majority of cattle raised for beef in Australia are grass-fed, but in other countries grass-fed beef can be an expensive rarity) – but it’s also the social impact to consider. It is agribusiness that is lobbying against all efforts made by governments or even individuals to ensure that everyone in the US has access to affordable and healthy food, and it is agribusiness which is pushing unhealthy food into schools and businesses. And it does have serious environmental impacts too – want to guess how the dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico happened? (

    Basically, you have to not only consider the health benefits/negatives associated with a given food, but also its social impact. If you can condone eating food that required native peoples being chased off of their lands and gunned down to be produced, go ahead. I can’t condone that – and by buying that food, I am condoning it. Yes, it’s hard to avoid all the environmentally-destructive, socially-negative food products – but if you’d prefer to not condone such activities by corporations, you’re willing to make a few sacrifices.

    • Stop being a hippie. The blog you quoted is for “cause of dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico” is not valid. I would love to see the primary source that really claimed that *corns* caused that. Instead they’re like, “yeah of course, other things can cause that too yadda..” UHM OK. FYI, corn is rich in vitamins (especially B1). Unless you’re ready to get beriberi, stop trying to put my corn into your boycott list. Kthx.

  47. Information like this needs to be mainstream.

  48. Briar Bennett says:

    This is absolutely ridiculous. The meta-analysis you quote in point two was methodologically flawed and did not prove that saturated fat is healthy. This analysis did not take into account the nutrient replacing saturated fat, which was found to be refined carbohydrates post-analysis. Refined carbohydrates raise your LDL (bad cholesterol) and triglycerides (also bad), thus when compared it looked like saturated fat is not unhealthy. But it is unhealthy – both saturated fat and refined carbohydrates both contribute to an unhealthy lipid profile.

    I would also like to point out that one meta-analysis’ conclusion does not overide hundreds of systematic literature reviews, meta-analyses and randomised control trials that have proved beyond doubt that saturated fat is not good for you.

    And don’t get me started on the other points (except point 1 about eggs – that’s correct information). Articles like these are only written to try be sensational and controversial so people will read them, but are obviously not written by someone who can critically evaluate scientific articles, and has no “authority” on nutrition. This article does nothing of benefit except confuse the readers and give them misinformation, making my job as a dietitian just that much harder.

    I advise anyone who feels confused about this nutrition information to see a dietitian, nutritionist, doctor, nurse or anyone with a scientific health degree (or half a brain).

    - Briar

    • Well I’m glad someone finally said it. This “information” is not only incorrect but potentially harmful.

      • How can you two be so short sighted? Grains have been clearly studied to the point where we know they are unhealthy. What is potentially harmful about eating fruits, vegetables, meats and fats? Nothing, try it and maybe you two can stop this continuing obesity and bad health trends in this country.

    • Briar,
      Saturated fat is not the enemy. As you are quick to point out in your “meta-analysis lecture.” There are different kinds of saturated fats, lauric acid, palmitic acid and stearic acid. Palmitic acid which is consumed but also made by the liver in response to over feeding of carbohydrates. Palmitic acid is the backbone of the small dense reactive LDL. Other sat fats make benign LDL.

    • “Hundreds” that “prove beyond doubt?” Like to just one, Brian. Please.

  49. Rarely do I come across a blog post with which I agree wholesale…
    I read bits and think, yup, yeah, right on, agree with that, then……Noooooo…What are you saying!!

    Reading your post, the “nooooo!” didn’t come!!

    Bang on my man! Awesome!


  50. I was trying to lose a bit of weight, not a lot though. I exercise 5-6 times a week, for around 45 mins to an hour each time. I was eating a quite healthy diet that included carbs but didn’t lose weight. I’ve recently moved to a low carb high fat nutrition plan and have lost 2kg in 10 days without changing anything else. I can actually *see* the results.

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