Interesting phenomenon: large number of material has appeared on various blogs and youtube recently, debunking the low carbohydrate diets. Most of them appear to be produced by very dedicated individuals with no apparent science background though with very good communication and media skills. The presentations are well written in terms of English and well presented with illustrations and video. It looks like a considerable time effort has been expended by some vegan English Major graduates. 8-:)
It puzzles me because for me personally, nothing seems more fruitless and useless than trying to convince another person how to eat! What is the point?
It is impossible (and unnecessary) to argue against that material because it is too much verbiage with very little hard data, quotes are misrepresented and the references are often either missing or misleading. A good illustration of this is the following example:
Take for example this graph:
The reference link points to a paper:
Explaining the Increase in Coronary Heart Disease Mortality in Beijing Between 1984 and 1999
Julia Critchley, et al.
- which does not implicate meat or animal produce at all, rather points towards the Westernisation of the modern Chinese diet as the main culprit. Anyone visiting China recently remarks how much Western junk food are young Chinese now consuming, pop soda, wheat rolls, sweets and other carbohydrates.
Conclusions - Much of the dramatic CHD mortality increases in Beijing can be explained by rises in total cholesterol, reflecting an increasingly "Western" diet. Without cardiological treatments, increases would have been even greater.
Contrary to what the blogger seems to believe, there is nothing here against or for Paleo Diet, nothing that would single out meat, carbohydrates or anything!
Healthylongevity blogger conjures a link between CHD and a consumption of animal produce based on a second-removed correlation between cholesterol and meat. However, high consumption of both carbohydrates and fat or meat calories can also increase blood cholesterol, as witnessed by the Western SAD stats, so it is not really proven that what has caused both cholesterol and CHD in the West is one and the same thing, and it is a completely unproved Healthylongevity's opinon that supposedly, the culprit must be animal produce, not the mountains of sugar, grains or vegetable oils introduced into the world diet!.
It's the Wheat!
The next group of graphs of mysterious origin really fascinates me, since I have never seen a better example of misinformation dressed up as scientific quotation. The first of the graphs looks like this:
I presume mIHDc stands for mortality from Ishaemic Heart disease (group c=adults) so it seems to stipulate that more wheat = lower IHD mortality! I was not able to find any source of those graphs, since the only link above them points to some deleted blog article by Michel Blomgren titled "Elektromagnetisk överkänslighet", where the graphs are nowhere to be found! There is a verbal "explanation" that it was supposed to be some "regressed" scientific data with no comments on the nature of regression, what variables was it regressed against and under which assumptions and models was it calculated, other than it was based on China Study II. IHD is only one of many (and the less prevalent in China) of mortalities due to cardio-vascular causes. Would you like to take a look at the total cardiovascular disease mortality instead? Much higher statistics and therefore much more reliable correlation. Well, the China Study raw un-massaged data does show the total cardio-vascular disease versus wheat trend, albeit a completely opposite one! That is, the more wheat one consumes the higher the rate of cardio-vascular disease (in terms of correlation), for example look at the graphs here and there which I generated last 3 years ago (I can send anyone the original spreadsheet, upon request), based on the original China Study data from the Oxford University web site. Incidentally, Oxford data graphs on Wheat vs Cardio-Vascular are very consistent with the Julia Critchley et al. paper quoted above, since Chinese appear to have been recently consuming a record amount of wheat due to Westernisation of their diet!