Category Archives: Culinary

Medical Incompetence And Junk Science

This is a frightening story. It’s why I try to avoid hospitals at all costs.

I asked Dr. G, who is now his personal cardiologist, if we needed to do anything to prevent his potassium from going so low again. He said, “If he stays off that drug, he will be fine.” To think that he went through all this because his GP gave him a drug to prevent heart attacks!! What a crazy world we live in.

…The blood pressure medication Dean had taken for 20 years was hydrochlorothiazide. It is the most commonly prescribed medication for blood pressure, not because it is safe or effective, but because it is the one insurance companies choose to pay for!

The dietary and general medical ignorance on display, and the rules, are almost criminal. And I’m sure this is the kind of treatment that my father got when he died of his second heart attack, in 1979. And I consider my high blood pressure (with which I’ve been living otherwise healthily for many decades) to be less risk than most of the prescribed “treatments.”

Travel Update

We celebrated New Years Eve in Paris, in a sixth-floor apartment we rented with a view of the Eiffel Tower. It’s just a couple blocks from the Sorbonne and the Pantheon.

Unfortunately, it’s socked in, but we could see the lights through the mist. They started sparkling an hour before midnight, and then again as the hour hit. Not a lot of fireworks here, but we saw a few out that window, and others out the loft window toward Notre Dame. But the Parisians were cheering in the streets.

The trip has been pretty much stab/explosion/truck-attack free so far. Apparently they weren’t so fortunate in Istanbul; the Jayvee team struck again last night.

But it’s cold. Below freezing last night, and probably tonight as well. But we’re cozy, and we’ll be going out this afternoon to check out the Cathedral. But right now we’re heating croissants in the oven and making scrambled eggs with Welsh cheddar, and gravlox from Norway, with leftover oven-fried potatoes from dinner last night.

[Update a few minutes later]

Oh, and bonne annee to my readers.

[Monday-morning update]

Yes, speaking from current experience, international travel is so much better than it used to be.

We’re off to the Louvre. We could walk, but it’s rainy and chilly. We’ll probably take Uber.

Sugar

Is it killing us?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that some 75 million Americans now suffer from metabolic syndrome. If sugar consumption is the trigger, as 50 years of research suggests, then it might be as much of a direct cause of diabetes as smoking cigarettes is of lung cancer. Without sugar in our diets, diabetes might be an exceedingly rare disease—as it appears once to have been.

When Yudkin and others suggested as much in the 1970s, the consensus opinion among nutritionists and physicians was that dietary fat was the primary dietary evil; they considered sugar relatively benign. We have been living with the consequences ever since.

It’s worth noting this in the context that lifespan has fallen for the first time in decades: “If you like your longevity, you can keep your longevity“:

In story after story, we read about demographers and medical experts puzzling over what’s gone wrong. They point to heart disease, obesity, drug use, stroke, Alzheimer’s, suicide. The USA Today article notes that since World War II, it’s been rare to see a rise in U.S. mortality rates, and such spikes have usually been linked to highly specific events such as the spread of AIDS in the early 1990s, or a “nasty flu season” in 1980. By contrast, what we’re seeing now are rising mortality rates involving a broad range of causes, especially among middle-aged Americans.

Missing from all these accounts is a single word that ought to command unblinking attention: Obamacare.

While I agree that wrecking the medical-insurance industry is part of the problem, and may account for the most recent decline, it’s compounded by criminally awful nutrition advice from the FDA. One way or another, federal policies are killing us by the millions.

[Update early afternoon]

Counting Calories

These may be the stupidest people in the world:

Based on its menu board, Desmond bought a chorizo burrito at the Chipotle restaurant on San Vicente Boulevard in Los Angeles on Nov. 3 believing that it contained 300 calories, the suit states. But after consuming the product, Desmond “felt excessively full and realized that the burrito couldn’t have been just 300 calories,” according to the complaint.

Two days later, Gurevich bought a chorizo burrito at the Chipotle location on Riverside Drive in Toluca Lake and similarly realized after eating it that had more than the 300 calories advertised, the suit says.

You can’t tell how many calories are in food by how “full” you feel after eating it. Nutritional labeling is part of the general public-health disaster that has been nutrition “science” for decades.

And speaking of which, “researchers” are shocked to discover that kids are healthier, with lower body fat and higher vitamin D levels, on whole milk.

No one should be consuming low-fat dairy products, which are a nutritional abomination. Michelle’s school-lunch program literally constitutes physical child abuse.

Whole-Fat Dairy

Five reasons you should be eating it. No one should be eating low-fat dairy, or low-fat food in general. It’s all an abomination based completely on junk nutritional science over decades.

I should note that Costco only sells zero-fat Fage yogurt (last I checked). They make a 2%, but not a whole-fat version. But Trader Joe’s has started to make a whole-milk version, and it tastes great, and is only two bucks, compared to $2.67 for lower-fat versions, and more than that for Fage.