Faux Press Release

Following is a class assignment from my course in plant-based nutrition. I chose to write about dairy products as it was the most striking of issues which I learned during the course. It is downright criminal what we have done to our bodies by believing in all of the information out there about how good milk and dairy products are for our bodies, and from an early age our constant access and education about drinking milk.

There is a new book out, which I have begun reading and plan to write more about later. The book Whitewash: The Disturbing Truth About Cow’s Milk and Your Health is now available, and I hear it is being made into a film. I strongly encourage everyone to get a copy and begin to understand what are the realities of lifelong milk consumption.

I had some fun with this assignment, so it is a bit tongue-in-cheek, and I may have written things slightly different with all the additional information I have acquired since taking the course, but I hope you will take away the important message that we have been hoodwinked with our understanding of dairy products.

Here is the Assignment:

From what you have learned in the course, write a press release on an issue you found particularly compelling regarding the benefits of a plant-based diet in chronic disease.

Note: I decided for this assignment to step into the future. In all likelihood, some of the specific names and organizations will need to be edited before its final release.


EMBARGOED UNTIL January 16, 2012

Supreme Court: Dairy Products Must Have Warning Labels

Parents of Diabetic Children Lawsuit Halts Retailers and Manufacturers from Selling Dairy Products Without Warning Label.

Minneapolis, MN (January 16, 2012) — Major dairy product retailers and manufacturers will no longer be permitted to sell dairy products without a warning label, according to a settlement in a lawsuit brought by the Parents of Children with Diabetes (PCD).

“Parents need to know the risk of serving dairy products to their children,” said PCD member Frances Bovina. “Warning labels will make mothers aware of the extreme risk to their children and families.”

Under the settlement, over 6,000 product retailers and manufacturers, including Associated Milk Producers of New Ulm, MN and Dean’s Foods of Dallas, TX, agreed not to distribute or sell dairy products without a warning that they have been shown to cause Type 1 diabetes in infants. By law, these products should bear warning labels as of January 30, 2012.

PCD filed the lawsuit against the companies citing the Food Safety and Modernization Act passed by the 111th Congress and signed into law by President Obama on January 4, 2011. Under Section 105 of this strengthened act, a hazardous substance is in part defined as a “substance or mixture of substances may cause substantial personal injury or substantial illness during or as a proximate result of any customary or reasonably foreseeable handling or use, including reasonable foreseeable ingestion by children.” According to the act, these substances “require labeling in accordance with 105 CMR 650.000 in order to protect the public health.”

The prosecution brought as their most powerful witness Dr. T. Collin Campbell, who during his testimony cited numerous studies including a Finnish study in which children aged 4-12 had antibodies measured against BSA (bovine serum albumin). Of the 142 children with juvenile diabetes, every one had an antibody titer greater that 3.55 and not one of the 79 non-diabetic children had an antibody titer greater than 3.55. Many other studies supported this evidence that the defendants were unable to construct a strong counterargument.

According to a doctor and member of the Parents of Diabetic Children, “We were tired of letting the powerful lobbies for the National Dairy Council defend themselves with biased studies and corporate sponsored research.”

The new label will read “Dairy products are the primary cause of Type 1 diabetes in children.”

In an interview shortly after the decision, Lawrence Green, one of the lawyers hired by the National Dairy Council, in a moment of suprising honesty said “I think my clients knew it was only a matter of time. After hearing the testimony of Dr. Campbell, my family and I have made the decision not only to take dairy products completely out of our diets, but to also move toward a complete plant-based whole food diet.”

Other organizations including the American Heart Association and the American Cancer Society are preparing their own lawsuits, hoping to expand the extent of the warning labels on dairy products.

Parents with Diabetic Children is a non-profit group to be formed sometime in the coming months to demand justice from those that seek profits over public health concerns.



Healthy Mashed Potatos

I love mashed potatos, however I have been avoiding making them because milk and butter and salt seemed to be the important components that turned pure starch into something tasty. After making a vegan “cheese” spread from the Forks Over Knives cookbook, I felt like I had some ideas about how to create tasty mashed potatos. Here is the result. I am sure I will be tweaking it each time I make it, and I hope you will add your own ideas and thoughts as comments or emails.

15 red potatos (is what I used for this first run)
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
3 tbsp miso paste*
3 tbsp hot water
1/2 tsp sweetener (like honey, I used agave*)
2 tbsp nutritional yeast*

Quarter and boil potatos until tender (about 10 minutes)

In a bowl, add other ingredients except yeast, and blend with a fork until smooth. Drain the potatos, return to pot and begin mashing over a very low heat. Gradually add blend and yeast while mashing until well blended.

* These are ingredients you can find in any grocery coop or grocery health food store and they’re handy to have for adding flavor to your recipes. They are not perfect foods, but when used in moderation are great resources.

Been doing some studying

Sorry about the absence lately, I have been spending much time in research. I continue to realize tremendous effects of my own change of nutrition and lifestyle, however I started becoming overwhelmed with differing opinions on what is the ideal diet, so I have been digging into the books. The snow outside my window reminds me that this is a good thing to do here in Minnesota this time of year.

While I continue to stand behind everything I have posted so far, and remain completely committed to learning more, I may be making some changes, or adding comments as well as putting up some new information soon. Please don’t loose any interest, and keep the questions coming as I am here to help anyone who wants to follow me to a longer healthier life.

I will leave you with some reading from an article published a few years ago that helps to better explain why most doctors don’t give us the information we need, and next time you are encouraged to take a medication, you might want to look for another opinion.

Harvard Medical School in Ethics Quandary






What About Vitamins

I was asked today what I think about taking vitamins. There has been a lot of news recently about whether we should be taking vitamins, and some news stories are even telling us to “throw them away.” I’m not convinced that vitamins are bad for you, however I have believed for a long time that they are mostly just going through your system and into the waste stream, which is bad for the environment. That aside, I do believe that if you are purchasing quality vitamins made from food products, they are not only not harmful, but may offer marginal protection against gaps in your diet.

This is what brings me to the important point about vitamins. If you are missing vitamins from your diet, it implies that you are not eating enough fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and whole grains (in that order). If you follow a plan of nutrition through whole plant-based foods, you do not need a multi-vitamin.

There are unfortunately two vitamin factors that are important to keep in mind with plant-based nutrition is vitamins B-12 and D(3). B-12 is found in the soil, but now that we wash our vegetables so thoroughly we wash away the B-12. Vitamin D comes from the sun, and thanks to all the time we spend indoors, or wearing sunscreen we limit our exposure. Both of these vitamins are needed in very small amounts. If you are getting plenty of sun you don’t need to worry about D until you are older (people over 60 have a harder time turning the sun into vitamin D). B12 can be obtained through a very small sub lingual dose a few times a week.

After 6 months to a year of following a plan of plant-based nutrition you can go to a clinic and have your blood tested for both of these vitamins, and of course if you are feeling uncomfortable about any new problems see your doctor right away.

Lasting Weight Change

I read recently that of the so very many weight loss programs, there are many success stories, but far more stories of people that may have lost some weight, but then return to their previous weight, or even end up heavier months after completing a program.

The only real success happens with changing permanently the way we eat. Many find it difficult to embark on a diet that is forever. This is why I don’t like calling whole-food plant-based nutrition a diet as this word is associated with a temporary program. Long term change means behavioral change. I believe the best way to see behavioral change is with strong motivation. This motivation can come from a wake up call such as a disease, a report of high cholesterol or other dramatic lesson, but wouldn’t it be better to achieve this change before this point.

The other way that we can achieve the motivation needed is through education. This is why I post videos by doctors that have spent their careers understanding how the body works, and links to books that you can read to better understand the damage we have been doing to our bodies, especially our immune system by consuming oils, animal-based foods, and other damaging foods. By truly coming to understand the science behind why plant-based nutrition is so life giving we eventually get to a point that we can no longer deny that this is the right choice for our lives.

Red Pill or Blue Pill

From Wikipedia Red Pill or Blue Pill, click on image for article.

If I offered you a red pill or a blue pill, where the red pill would lead giving you the nutrition you need while helping you feel healthier, more energetic, maintain your ideal weight and reduce your risk of illness and disease, or a blue pill which will also provide you with your nutritional needs, but will have bad side effects including making you feel tired, offer poor sleep and lead to a weakened immune system that may lead to disease and premature death, which pill would you take?