A very frank discussion about the current "standard of care" for type 2 diabetics and how you don't want to sucked into it.

The Primal Blueprint PodcastThe Primal Blueprint Podcast wrote the following post Mon, 03 Sep 2018 14:45:52 -0400
Ken Berry MD
Elle Russ chats with Ken Berry MD about the epidemic of Diabetes and how a patient can navigate test results, treatment, prevention, and reversing the disease. Dr. Berry is also the author Lies My Doctor Told Me which reveals the truth behind the lies told by well-meaning doctors. Whether it’s recommending a low-fat diet, or warning you to avoid the sun, these medical lies can cause really harm to your health. This book will help you sort through the medical myths and the outright lies, and begin to develop a health partnership with your doctor.

Dr. Berry has been practicing Family Medicine in rural Tennessee for over a decade.  He is board certified in Family Medicine, and was recently awarded the degree of Fellow by the American Academy of Family Physicians. Having seen over 20,000 patients of all ages over his career, he is uniquely qualified to advise on both acute and chronic diseases. Dr. Berry has focused of chronic disease caused by the Standard American Diet and Lifestyle, and has made it his mission to turn the tide on the epidemic of Type 2 Diabetes, chronic inflammation and dementia.

Selected Links:

Lies My Doctor Told Me

Dr. Ken Berry – Facebook

Dr. Ken Berry – Twitter
Dr. Ken Berry – Instagram
Dr. Ken Berry – YouTube
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Health Care without Health Insurance

What if there was a way your family doctor could provide you with better care for less money and do it without using health insurance at all? Dr. Ryan Neuhofel joins us to discuss what direct primary care is and how it might benefit you.

Doctors offices spend an inordinate amount of time and expense filing paperwork with health insurance companies. By not taking health insurance, direct primary care physicians, like our guest Dr. Ryan Neuhofel, can simultaneously increase the amount of time patients get with their doctors, create price transparency for medical services, improve the work-life balance for physicians themselves, and save money doing it. It’s a radical idea when the conversation about fixing healthcare involves getting more people on health insurance and spending more money in so doing, but it could transform how 80% of Americans access healthcare for 80% of their lives.

What is direct primary care? Is it a more efficient way to deliver care? What is “telemedicine”? Has primary care become a gate-keeper rather than an actual provider? In the future, could we have a system that is like “uber for doctors”?
  
Sign The Petition for Change to the U.S. Dietary Guidelines

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Time to change the US Dietary Guidelines so that they're evidence-based--and make America healthy again. Find out what reforms we're recommending and how to support.
  
I haven't stopped cooking my morning eggs in coconut oil.

The format of the posts that come in via RSS from this particular site is basically non-existent. It is a lot easier to read the original (link at bottom).

Mark's Daily AppleMark's Daily Apple wrote the following post Mon, 27 Aug 2018 10:50:00 -0400
Dear Mark: Is Coconut Oil Pure Poison?
It appears that we're well into "outrageous media frenzy over terrible or misleading claims by nutrition scientists" season.... Last week I covered the "low-carb" and mortality study, and for this week's edition of Dear Mark I'm covering the (latest) coconut oil controversy. A Harvard professor recently launched a dramatic harangue against coconut oil, calling it "pure poison." Is it true this time? Are we indeed killing ourselves? Let's find out: Speaking of fat, I’d be interested in Mark’s take regarding the latest attempt to put the kibosh on consumption of coconut oil–specifically, a Harvard professor saying it’s pure poison, probably because it’s so heavily saturated. I can’t stand the stuff, personally. I don’t like anything made with coconut, and it doesn’t like me either, possibly because I’m sensitive to the overload of lauric acid. However, this and many other websites tout coconut products as being super healthful. So is there any truth to these new claims that coconut oil is actually bad for us? Is there any hard evidence that points to related health issues? Or is this just more of the same-old, same-old that we saw with eggs, red meat, etc.? Here's what Shary's talking about. I won't even talk about the Tokelau, a Pacific Island people who obtained most of their calories from coconut. Or the Kitavans, who ate a relatively low-fat diet but got most of their fat from coconuts. Both showed pristine metabolic health, and in the case of the Tokelau, they actually got incredibly unhealthy after switching from their coconut-rich diet to one rich in mainland foods, including seed oils. Nor will I talk too much about the animal studies, most of which have found favorable effects on health as a result of eating coconut oil. Let's just focus on the human trials—the intentional studies in which actual living humans ate coconut oil and then underwent lab tests to determine the health effects. Concrete, objective effects. If coconut oil is as toxic as this Harvard professor claims, the evidence should be overwhelmingly negative. A Harvard professor would never misrepresent the evidence, right? First, there is 2017's Effect of a Diet Enriched with Fresh Coconut Saturated Fats on Plasma Lipids and Erythrocyte Fatty Acid Composition in Normal Adults. Healthy adults either added coconut oil or peanut fat to their diet for 3 months, and researchers examined how the different fat sources affected their biomarkers. Coconut oil increased HDL levels and the proportion of an anti-inflammatory lipid subfraction in red blood cell membranes. All told, coconut oil had a neutral to beneficial effect on health. 2017 also had Physical Form of Dietary Fat Alters Postprandial Substrate Utilization and Glycemic Response in Healthy Chinese Men. As far as coconut oil's toxicity goes, this one was a dud. Whether the men ate coconut oil or sunflower oil made no difference in their metabolic response to meals (though when the fats were in gel form, there was an effect). Oh, but this one sounds negative: Coconut Oil Has Less Satiating Properties Than Medium Chain … Continue reading "Dear Mark: Is Coconut Oil Pure Poison?"

The post Dear Mark: Is Coconut Oil Pure Poison? appeared first on Mark's Daily Apple.
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Fat HeadFat Head wrote the following post Tue, 07 Aug 2018 19:31:55 -0400
From The News …
Interesting items from my inbox and elsewhere: Kiwi cows are changing color for the butter … er, better How’s this for a sign that sanity about fats is finally prevailing?... Read more »
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Meet the Anarchists Making Their Own Medicine

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The pharmaceutical industry is valued at $446 billion in the US and its walls are tightly policed by regulatory agencies like the FDA and Drug Enforcement Administration. By freely distributing plans for medical devices and pharmaceuticals, a loose collective of anarchists and hackers is threatening to pull the rug out from under one of the most regulated and profitable industries in the world. And they’re just getting started.
  


N.C. Doctor Sues to Break Up State-enforced Medical Monopoly
by InstituteForJustice on YouTube

Dr. Gajendra Singh knows first hand how frustrating it can be to find quality, affordable and transparently priced health care. As a surgeon practicing in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, he’s seen countless patients find themselves deep in medical debt after having to pay thousands of dollars in out-of-pocket expenses for medical imaging. Dr. Singh knew he could do better.

In 2017, he founded Forsyth Imaging Center to provide medical imaging services at a fraction of the prices charged by hospitals and other competitors.

In addition to X-rays, ultrasounds and other diagnostic imaging services, Forsyth provides MRI scans. On average, an MRI at a North Carolina hospital costs upwards of $2,000. At Forsyth, Dr. Singh charges $500 to $700. But keeping prices affordable is difficult. That’s because North Carolina’s outdated laws prevent Dr. Singh from owning an MRI scanner.

Instead, in order to provide MRI scans, Forsyth must spend thousands of dollars each day to rent a mobile MRI scanner. Dr. Singh would like to purchase a fixed MRI scanner to keep costs low, but he cannot because North Carolina prohibits doctors from offering new services or buying new equipment without first obtaining a government permit called a “certificate of need” (CON).

Unfortunately, Dr. Singh cannot even start the costly and cumbersome permit process because a board dominated by regulators and industry insiders has determined his community is not in need of any additional MRI scanners. And even if the board did find a “need” for a new scanner—which it has not—that doesn’t guarantee Dr. Singh could eventually purchase one. The law allows other providers, like the hospital down the street from Forsyth, to fight him at every step of the way. When all is said and done, obtaining a permit for an MRI scanner can cost upwards of $400,000.

North Carolina’s CON regime has nothing to do with protecting public health or safety. In fact, it is one of the worst laws of its kind in the country. By stifling competition, CON laws prevent innovative medical professionals from offering affordable care to patients who need it. CON regimes are designed to create monopolies for established providers, like large hospitals that charge patients high prices, at the expense of smaller innovators like Dr. Singh.

Health care costs and high-deductible insurance plans that charge patients more out of pocket are on the rise. The last thing the government should be doing is standing in the way of doctors who want to invest their own money to provide quality, affordable and transparently priced services. That is why Dr. Singh and Forsyth Imaging Center have joined the Institute for Justice to challenge North Carolina’s CON requirement for MRI scanners in state court.
  
More details:

Exclusive: Surgeon sues to overturn a North Carolina law that blocks him from offering cheaper MRIs

Dr. Gajendra Singh is suing to overturn North Carolina’s "certificate of need" law.
  
Why Does the Federal Government Issue Damaging Dietary Guidelines? Lessons from Thomas Jefferson to Today

In 2015 the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Agriculture released the latest iteration of their dietary advice, Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2015-2020. Upon receiving it, Congress, citing concerns over scientific integrity, commissioned the National Academy of Medicine to review the process of generating those guidelines. In its commission, Congress asked the National Academy of Medicine for full transparency, lack of bias, and the inclusion of all latest available research, however challenging.

By so asking, Congress was suggesting that the federal government’s dietary recommendations — and in particular its long-standing demonization of fats and its praise for carbohydrates — were suspect.

The story starts on January 14, 1977, when the Senate Select Committee on Nutrition and Human Needs published its Dietary Goals for the United States, which, for the first time, attacked overeating. Previously, the Committee had worried about undernutrition, but by the late 1970s it worried that the epidemic of heart attacks could be attributed to an excessive intake of saturated fats. It therefore recommended that Americans eat carbohydrates instead.

Unbeknownst to the vast majority of Americans, however, the theory that replacing saturated fats with carbohydrates would lower the risk of heart attacks was unproven and disputed. Moreover, the government’s dietary advice led Americans to indulge in the widespread consumption of trans unsaturated fats, which are themselves dangerous. Further, this advice coincided with — and probably contributed to — the subsequent epidemics of obesity and type 2 diabetes.

Today, most nongovernmental dietary advice focuses on the benefits of plant-based fats and a Mediterranean diet, and while that, too, may be only a work in progress, it is much better than the paradigm that was disseminated by the government during the 1970s. Yet the government still propagates the oversimplified idea that fats are bad and carbohydrates are good.

In fact, the federal government may be institutionally incapable of providing wise dietary advice, as Thomas Jefferson warned us in his 1787 Notes on the State of Virginia: “Was the government to prescribe to us our medicine and diet, our bodies would be in such keeping as our souls are now.”
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Fat HeadFat Head wrote the following post Wed, 18 Jul 2018 17:30:13 -0400
Horrors! Aussies Are Ignoring The Anointed
As you know if you’re a long-time reader or have heard me as a guest on podcasts over the years, I’m often asked what we can do change government dietary... Read more »
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Diet DoctorDiet Doctor wrote the following post Sun, 24 Jun 2018 11:31:00 -0400
Vested interests and evidence-based medicine
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One of the greatest problems in medicine today is that academic medicine has been sold to the highest bidder. Under the guise of ‘Evidence Based Medicine’ the public has been sold fraudulent goods, and the result is that people suffer from unnecessary but lucrative procedures and take unnecessary but lucrative medications. Let me explain. Much of the data we use in medicine comes from epidemiology studies – where one thing is associated with another. It is easy to prove association, but much harder to prove that one thing causes the other, which is what we want to know.

It is very dangerous to accept data from epidemiologic studies because there are too many confounding factors. That is how we wound up with millions of women prescribed hormone replacement therapy (HRT), which turned out to be giving them cancer. In the late 1990s, there was a very strong association between women taking HRT and reduction of heart disease – about a 50% reduction. Based on this flimsy evidence, millions of women were prescribed the drug. It turns out, that when the trials were finally completed a decade or so later, that HRT did NOT reduce heart disease at all. Instead, women who took HRT were also healthier in many other ways – and these confounding factors accounted for the apparent heart disease risk reduction.

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It further turns out that HRT was giving women breast cancer. When prescribing of HRT increased through the 1980s and 1990s, breast cancer also increased. But tellingly, when HRT decreased around year 2000, breast cancer also decreased by 6.7%. Image/photoAlmost nothing in medicine causes this type of sustained decrease in cancer, and the implication is that HRT caused cancer in millions of women. The worst part is that it was the DOCTORS that caused all these cancers, by widely prescribing a lucrative medication based only on flimsy evidence and lots of encouragement by drug companies.

The problem is not the drug company, which will always do whatever it can do push its drugs. The companies duty is to make money for shareholders, not to safeguard the public. The problem is that the doctors and the universities have financial conflicts of interest by taking millions of $$$ from these companies. The duty of doctors and universities is to guard the public health and to scientific truth – which is much harder when all your funding comes from companies that have vested interests in proving benefits. Doctors and universities, and everybody else in the world knows that you don’t bite the hand that feeds you.

Image/photoThe New York Times reported on the recent CABANA trial of catheter ablation for atrial fibrillation. Once again, a highly invasive but lucrative procedure became widespread based on no evidence at all. But wide promotion by device companies led many doctors to inflict this on unknowing but trusting patients. How are we to protect against this? This is where evidence-based medicine is supposed to shine, but demanding randomized trials to prove that certain procedures/ drugs either work or don’t. Great, right? Well, not so much.

Biased researchers


The problem is when all of these trials are paid for by industry, then the evidence is severely biased. If the evidence base is biased, then evidence based medicine is completely worthless. It’s one thing to say that Harvard researcher prove that XYZ drug cures cancer. We might believe this. But, it’s another thing to say that XYZ drug maker proves that their drug cures cancer. In this case, almost none of us believe it. The solution, if you are XYZ drug maker? Simple. Pay Harvard researchers millions of $$$ to do a study, but bias it so severely that it is a virtual certainty that XYZ drug looks like it works. Then claim that it was the Harvard researcher who proved XYZ drug cures cancer.

It’s a win-win-win situation. XYZ drug maker is happy to have ‘evidence’ that ‘proves’ their drug works. Harvard is happy with all the $$$. Researcher is happy with all the $$$ and the prestige of ‘proving’ the drug works. It actually matters almost not at all if the drug actually works or not. It’s fantastically easy to design a trial and rig the results as we’ll soon see. The only loser? Public health – it spends money on useless or dangerous medications and people die. No biggie for the universities and doctors lining their pockets.

The New York Times recently published an article describing how the NIH, the top American government health research agency pulled the plug on a $100 million trial. This study was supposed to answer the question of whether moderate alcohol intake is beneficial for health. It’s a great question, because much epidemiological data supports this hypothesis, but this data can only be considered hypothesis generating and not definitive. So the NIH decided to do a randomized trial on this to settle the question. But, the researchers from Harvard got all the money from alcohol companies. Five large beer companies, like Carlsberg agreed to foot most of the bill for the trial.

This is crazy, and obviously puts researchers in conflict, because if they are funded by beer companies, then they will be much, much more likely to find results favourable to them. Consider the case in sugar sweetened beverages. When reviewing all the trials that linked sugar sweetened beverages (SSB) to obesity, researchers found 60 published articles.

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26 of the articles found there was no association, and 34 found a positive association – ie. that sugar was linked to obesity. Pretty close, right? If you didn’t know about conflicts of interest, then you would think that it’s equivocal whether sugar causes obesity or not. What if we were to show which papers were funded by the sugar industry?

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This is what you find. 25 of the 26 (96.2%) papers showing that sugar is NOT linked to obesity were funded by the sugar industry! When you look at the papers that suggested sugar WAS linked to obesity, only 1 of the 34 (2.9%) was funded by the sugar industry. The ‘scientific’ result was based almost entirely on who pays the researchers. University professors and doctors have sold their scientific opinions and integrity to the highest bidder. For example, researchers at the University of Toronto, like Dr. John Sievenpiper are regularly trotted out in the national media saying that sugar is practically a health food. It turns out that his group receives millions of $$$ to have this opinion. It sure sounds a lot better to say that ‘Doctors at the University of Toronto say sugar not linked to obesity’ than ‘Sugar company research shows that sugar not linked to obesity’.

Biased research and overprescription


The same goes for medications. Dr. Aseem Malhotra, a UK cardiologist made headlines writing a paper describing one of the most insidious problems in modern medicine – too much prescription medicine, driven mainly by biased research. Statin medications are one of the most lucrative drug classes of the last 20 years. But almost all trials of these medications have been funded extensively by the companies themselves. Problem? It’s an open secret that doctors and universities are paid millions of $$$ to perform these trials, which then show that statins are the best thing since sliced bread.

Where there any non-drug-company funded trials on statins? Sure. The ALLHAT study, enrolling more than 10,000 patients showed that taking pravastatin did NOT reduce heart disease. Interestingly, this study is all but forgotten in all the drug company driven advertising to doctors about how statins are so amazingly good for health that they should be practically considered vitamin S. Virtually all drug funded studies show statins save lives. The only major non-drug funded study shows it makes little or no difference in primary prevention.

These financial conflicts of interest are not merely academic musings. People die. Take the opioid crisis for example. Drug companies paid lots of money to doctors to prescribe opioids. People got addicted, and many died. CNN showed that a group of doctors who received over $10,000 from the opioid company prescribed $1.2 million worth of drugs, compared to doctors who received less than $20 from drug companies prescribed only $34,000.


These rules are in place for almost every other profession. But for research and medicine, taking money from the highest bidder is not only allowed, it is standard operating procedure.

The solution is really very simply. Eliminate all financial conflicts of interest in research. That is, if a researcher works for Harvard then it is paid by Harvard, not by the drug company. If Harvard researchers want to publish a study, then it should be funded by Harvard, not some drug company that pays millions of $$$ to get a great result. If you work for a university, you should not be allowed to receive any money from anybody else. These rules are in place for almost every other profession. But for research and medicine, taking money from the highest bidder is not only allowed, it is standard operating procedure.

There will be those who argue that there will be no money for research. I say, so what? That supposes that biased research is better than none at all. That is rather like arguing that a corrupt policeman is better than none at all. I would rather have no research than biased ones.


Dr. Jason Fung

Dr. Fung’s top posts


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    1
    How to renew your body: Fasting and autophagy

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    2
    Intermittent fasting

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    3
    What and when to eat to reduce insulin

Videos with Dr. Fung


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    How to Maximize Fat Burning

    03:52
    Dr. Fung's fasting course part 2: How do you maximize fat burning? What should you eat – or not eat?

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    The Top 5 Tips to Make Fasting Easier

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    Dr. Fung's fasting course part 8: Dr. Fung's top tips for fasting

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    The Top 5 Myths of Fasting

    08:23
    Dr. Fung's fasting course part 5: The 5 top myths about fasting – and exactly why they are not true.

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    Breakfast! Is it really that important?

    07:08
    Dr. Fung's fasting course part 6: Is it really that important to eat breakfast?

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    The Most Common Questions

    05:38
    Dr. Fung's fasting course part 7: Answers to the most common questions about fasting.

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    How to Reverse Diabetes Type 2

    10:23
    Dr. Fung's diabetes course part 1: How do you reverse your type 2 diabetes?

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    What To Do Instead of Counting Calories

    16:02
    Why is counting calories useless? And what should you do instead to lose weight?

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    Do You Have to Count Calories to Lose Weight?

    10:22
    Do you have to count calories to lose weight? Dr. Jason Fung explains why you don't.

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    The Power of a 7-Day Fast

    03:34
    How do you fast for 7 days? And in what ways could it be beneficial?

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    The perfect treatment for diabetes and weight loss

    45:20
    Do doctors treat type 2 diabetes completely wrong today – in a way that actually makes the disease worse?

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    How to Fast - The Different Options

    06:47
    Dr. Fung's fasting course part 3: Dr. Fung explains the different popular fasting options and makes it easy for you to choose the one that fits you best.

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    The essential problem with type 2 diabetes

    05:13
    Dr. Fung's diabetes course part 2: What exactly is the essential problem of type 2 diabetes?

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    How to Get Started with Fasting

    02:30
    Dr. Fung about what you need to do to start fasting.

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    The 7 Benefits of Fasting

    07:33
    Dr. Fung's fasting course part 4: About the 7 big benefits of fasting intermittently.

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    The Cause of Obesity

    38:45
    What is the real cause of obesity? What causes weight gain? Dr. Jason Fung at Low Carb Vail 2016.

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    A Disease of Insulin Resistance

    09:32
    Part 3 of Dr. Fung's diabetes course: The core of the disease, insulin resistance, and the molecule that causes it.

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    The 2 Big Lies of Type 2 Diabetes

    42:54
    Why is the conventional treatment of Type 2 Diabetes an utter failure? Dr. Jason Fung at the LCHF Convention 2015.

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    Therapeutic Fasting

    46:09
    What if there was a more effective treatment alternative for obesity and type 2 diabetes, that is both simple and free?

More with Dr. Fung


All posts by Dr. Fung

Dr. Fung has his own blog at idmprogram.com. He is also active on Twitter.

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Dr. Fung’s books The Obesity Code, The Complete Guide to Fasting and The Diabetes Code are available on Amazon.

The post Vested interests and evidence-based medicine appeared first on Diet Doctor.
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Fat HeadFat Head wrote the following post Wed, 06 Jun 2018 18:52:02 -0400
The Magic Pill And The Anointed
As I wrote in my review, The Magic Pill is a beautiful film that shows how switching to a paleo diet produces astounding improvements in health for a handful of... Read more »
View article
  last edited: Sat, 07 Jul 2018 14:08:06 -0400  
Fat HeadFat Head wrote the following post Fri, 08 Jun 2018 17:08:18 -0400
It’s Over! Noakes 2, The Anointed 0
The more unjustified a persecution, the more vehement and long-lasting it is likely to be. – Eric Hoffer, who wrote in the 1950s. Well, it’s finally over. The persecution of... Read more »
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Is a medical test that is right 99.9% of the time good enough? It depends.

Let's take two examples. Both have tests that are 99.9% accurate. One tests a condition affecting 1% of the population and one tests a condition affecting 0.001% of the population (1 in 100,000).

After testing there will be 4 groups of people:
True Negative (TN) -- people that don't have the condition and tested correctly
False Positive (FP) -- people that don't have the condition and tested incorrectly
True Positive (TP) -- people that do have the condition and tested correctly
False Negative (FN) -- people that do have the condition and tested incorrectly

Let's see how the numbers work out in our two scenarios.

Scenario 1

Chance of having the condition: .01
Chance of test being correct: .999

TN = .99 * .999 = 0.98901 = 98.901% of the population
FP = .99 * .001 = 0.00099 =  0.099% of the population
TP = .01 * .999 = 0.00999 =  0.999% of the population
FN = .01 * .001 = 0.00001 =  0.001% of the population

Overall, the test was right 99.9% of the time. Of course, since that was a given. But, let's look at the correctness of the negative and positive results independently.

Negative results come back 98.901% (true) and 0.001% (false) of the time. Taking just that negative population, the results are true 99.999% of the time and false 0.001% of the time. So, if you get a negative result, it is probably correct.

Positive results come back 0.999% (true) and 0.099% (false) of the time. Taking just that positive population, the results are true 90.984% of the time and false 9.016% of the time. Well, that's not a slam dunk, but it is probably correct.

Let's take the case of the rarer condition.

Scenario 2

Chance of having the condition: .00001
Chance of test being correct: .999

TN = .99999 * .999 = 0.99899001 = 99.899001% of the population
FP = .99999 * .001 = 0.00099999 =  0.099999% of the population
TP = .00001 * .999 = 0.00000999 =  0.000999% of the population
FN = .00001 * .001 = 0.00000001 =  0.000001% of the population

Negative results come back 99.899001% (true) and 0.000001% (false) of the time. Taking just that negative population, the results are true 99.99999999% of the time and false 0.00000001% of the time. So, if you get a negative results, it has a really, really good chance of being correct!

Positive results come back 0.000999% (true) and 0.099999% (false) of the time. Taking just that positive population, the results are true 0.989% of the time and false 99.911% of the time. Whoa now! What is going on??

Because this condition is so rare, the false positive population greatly outnumber the true positive population even when the test is 99.9% accurate.

If you are testing a rare condition, you need an test as accurate as the condition is rare before you should use it to blindly test everyone and prescribe treatment on that result.

This is counter-intuitive to most patients and doctors.
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This is counter-intuitive to most patients and doctors.
It is so true !

Statistics is not at all my favorite playground. It is so trikky and, yes, like in your example, counter-intuitive.
I think the situation you've described very well is called False positive paradox

In this context, I found a useful source about health statistics also for non-healthcare professionals:
Know Your Chances (pdf)
  
Looking for that article would have saved me a lot of time composing that message, LOL!

Another innumeracy which throws people off (frequently on purpose by people marketing solutions) is absolute vs relative risk.

If treatment X can reduce your chances of having some condition from 0.02% to 0.01% and treatment Y can reduce your chance of an equally dangerous condition from 0.5% to 0.4%, which should you consider more effective in reducing your overall risk?

The marketing for X and Y will claim relative risk reduction by 50% and 20%, respectively, because those are bigger numbers which will catch your attention, but in absolute terms X is reducing your risk by 0.01% and Y is reducing your risk by 0.1%. Relative to each other, that is a 10 times advantage for the one with the smaller relative risk reduction.

Not as counter-intuitive as the false positive example, but anyone who watches American TV is bombarded by these relative risk statistics all the time in drug ads.
  
:-)
Facts are stubborn things but statistics are more pliable (Mark Twain)
  
Seems apropos in light of more school shootings since this went online.

Peak ProsperityPeak Prosperity wrote the following post Mon, 30 Apr 2018 12:13:14 -0400
Robert Whitaker: America's Prescription Drug Epidemic
Robert Whitaker: America's Prescription Drug Epidemic

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The United States has one of the highest rates in the world of prescription drug use, especially for the psychiatric and anti-anxiety drug classes:
  • 1 in 6 Americans takes a psychiatric drug
  • Over a 130,000 U.S. toddlers, children between zero and five years of age, are prescribed addictive anti-anxiety drugs including the wildly-addictive and difficult to stop using benzodiazepines
  • A very high proportion of the school shootings in the U.S. were committed by young adults on such drugs.
The benefits of these drugs are marketed to us daily, but what about the downsides? What about the side effects? More importantly, do they even work?

Join the conversation »

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Interesting - I hadn't seen the shootings discussed from that angle before.
  
Cod and ‘Immune Broth’: California Tests Food as Medicine

A state-funded clinical trial will test whether nutritious daily meals for chronically ill people can improve health and reduce medical costs.
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30 Ways to Save Money + Eat Healthy on a Budget | Root + Revel

Eating organic can be expensive, but we've got 30 clever, easy ways to help you save money + eat healthy on a budget.
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How Big Government Backed Bad Science Made Americans Fat
by ReasonTV on YouTube
Length: 18:04
"Government made a big mistake with the dietary guidelines," says Nina Teicholz, author of New York Times bestseller The Big Fat Surprise: Why Butter, Meat and Cheese Belong in a Healthy Diet. "Given the track record that they have so far, you can really make a plausible argument that they've done more harm than good."

Consumption of meat, butter, eggs, and cheese were once encouraged as part of a healthy diet. Then in the 1950s, a Minnesota doctor named Ancel Keys put forth his diet-heart hypothesis, claiming that saturated fats raise cholesterol levels and cause heart attacks.

Keys produced landmark studies of the relationship between diet and heart disease that transformed nutrition science. He became a powerful figure in the science community. Contemporaries who publicly questioned the validity of his findings risked losing their research funding or becoming pariahs. When the U.S. adopted dietary guidelines in 1980, Keys' recommendations became enshrined in national food policy.

"We have made our policy based upon this weak kind of science called epidemiology which shows association, but not causation," Teicholz explains. "We have the situation where we just cannot reverse out of these policies that were originally based on really weak science."

Keys' flawed research is one reason Americans have been getting fatter and unhealthier for decades. Despite major advances in treatment, heart disease is still the leading cause of death for men and women.

"The really dominant view is that the dietary guidelines are good...and the reason America is fat and sick is that America has failed to follow them," Teicholz says. "That's when you start looking at the data...By every food category you can find, we have faithfully, dutifully followed the guidelines."

Today the science behind Keys' dietary findings is once again being challenged. Teicholz has launched the Nutrition Coalition, which aims to inform food policy with rigorous science.

"Our goal is educate people about how the dietary guidelines have not been successful...and to bring this alternative policy viewpoint to policy makers," says Teicholz. "More and more experts are willing to talk out about the science, and I think that will support change."
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One of the things that concerns me most is shown here -- the processed foods category. I was hoping to find a graph showing this over time, but after a few minutes looking, this was the best I could do.

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And then there is this:

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Which I think leads to this:

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American Diabetes Association wrote:
The total estimated cost of diagnosed diabetes in 2017 is $327 billion, including $237 billion in direct medical costs and $90 billion in reduced productivity. For the cost categories analyzed, care for people with diagnosed diabetes accounts for 1 in 4 health care dollars in the U.S., and more than half of that expenditure is directly attributable to diabetes. People with diagnosed diabetes incur average medical expenditures of ∼$16,750 per year, of which ∼$9,600 is attributed to diabetes. People with diagnosed diabetes, on average, have medical expenditures ∼2.3 times higher than what expenditures would be in the absence of diabetes. Indirect costs include increased absenteeism ($3.3 billion) and reduced productivity while at work ($26.9 billion) for the employed population, reduced productivity for those not in the labor force ($2.3 billion), inability to work because of disease-related disability ($37.5 billion), and lost productivity due to 277,000 premature deaths attributed to diabetes ($19.9 billion).


These are the trends that scare the crap out of me. When I was a kid, type 2 diabetes (formerly known as adult-onset diabetes) was a disease of old people. Now, even children are starting to get it because of the crappy diet they eat. The CDC estimates that 1 in 11 Americans has diabetes and 1 in 3 has pre-diabetes. What is that going to look like in 20 years? The US already spends 17% of GDP on heathcare (sickcare). How high will this go? Will 1/4 or 1/3 of the entire economy have to be dedicated to medical care to compensate for the processed crap we eat instead of real food? These were the things going through my mind when I wrote my extreme-sounding comment yesterday.
  
I have given up on the "big picture", I believe we know what is wrong and we need to give a viable alternative. When people say healthy meals are "too expensive", I want to slam the cost of 31 different healthy affordable breakfasts, 31 lunches, 31 dinners and 31 suppers on the table.
  
It also doesn't help when they believe the "back of the cereal box" version of a "healthy meal"
  


Big Food and Big Pharma: Killing for Profit?
by EFDD Group on YouTube

A recent presentation at the European Parliament.
 health
  
Fat HeadFat Head wrote the following post Thu, 05 Apr 2018 18:59:41 -0400
Now For The Good News: Young Doctors Want To Learn About Nutrition
If you’re a health and nutrition nerd (and if you’re reading this blog, you probably are), you may have had a frustrating experience that goes something like this: a friend... Read more »
View article


Having had this as an interest for 7 years now, I feel the same way about the likely comparison between myself and my doctor with regard to nutrition. Hmm, maybe that is why he has told me he would gladly trade his bloodwork results for mine.
 health
  
The road to Alzheimer’s disease is lined with processed foods

Dementia haunts the United States. There’s no one without a personal story about how dementia has touched someone they care for. But beyond personal stories, the broader narrative is staggering: By 2050, we are on track to have almost 15 million Alzheimer’s patients in the US alone. That’s roughly the population of NYC, Los Angeles, and Chicago combined. Now add a few more cities to take care of them.

It’s an epidemic that’s already underway—but we don’t recognize it as such. The popular conception of Alzheimer’s is as an inevitable outcome of aging, bad genes, or both.

From a scientist’s perspective, it’s important to remind everyone that we all once believed the same thing about cancer. But just a few days ago, doctors around the world have been considerably shaken up by the breaking news linking cancer to processed foods. In a large-scale study, researchers found that a 10% increase in consumption of ultra-processed foods led to a 12% increase in overall cancer events.

At the Alzheimer’s Prevention Clinic at Weill Cornell Medical, this latest cancer research had our full attention. The findings line up so closely with research in the field, including our own work, linking diet and risk of Alzheimer’s—and underscore how important lifestyle changes can be to delaying or even avoiding the onset of the disease.
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Thanks, the link to the cancer study the article mentions is also very interesting!!
  
Definitely!