Here are 10 things I’ve been looking at this past week:
1. Is heart disease (atherosclerosis = plugging up of the arteries) an auto-immune disease? HERE
DrG – The old model of cholesterol clogging up your arteries like fat poured down a pipe is so incredibly outdated, that if any health practitioner tells you that it’s all about cholesterol you should seriously question their knowledge and recommendations. Clogging of the arteries is, at its basis, inflammatory (involving the immune system). Whether and how much it is actually auto-immunity is open to debate. We do know two things: 1. that there is a component of atherosclerosis that can be autoimmune, and 2. that people with autoimmune diseases may be at greater risk of heart disease and should be more aggressively screwed
2. Humans are not logical, we’re storytellers. HERE
DrG – It’s important when we understand how people make decisions and take stances on things to recognize that humans are not logical. We make decisions emotionally, and then use logic to justify our decisions. We can design system to try to eliminate bias (what science can theoretically be), but it’s important to recognize that even then emotion tends to creep in. For example with Artificial Intelligence (AI), studies have shown that biases have crept into programming from programers – they are not emotionless logic machines.
And it’s important to recognize that we learn best through stories. If we want to change people’s minds we need to help them tell new stories. Such as the article above about cholesterol. The story that it’s like fat poured down a drain makes sense to people, and while we talk about inflammation to most people it’s a meaningless word. If instead we talk about a new story, how heart disease is more like a fire burning in the blood vessels and how those scorched vessels let the cholesterol in and form the blockage. While this story is not technically scientifically correct, it’s good enough for most people and puts inflammation at the center of what is going on.
Ironically the article itself is written in bullet-points and not in story form.
3. How doses bariatric surgery work? HERE
DrG – Weight loss surgeries work (at least for a while), but why? There are many theories, but the data suggests there is no one single way that it works and there is no “magic bullet” way to get the same results. The best guess of how it works is by changing hormone levels, the amount of food people eat, changing brain chemistry, and altering appetite and taste.
It’s also important to emphasize that gastric bypass is not a permanent “cure” “…that diabetes remission rates decreased from 72% two years after bariatric surgery to 30% at the 15-year mark. The results of the LABS study may be more promising, Wolfe said. Fifty-nine percent of patients were still in remission 7 years after gastric bypass…”
4. Cost of lab grown meat plummets. HERE
DrG – Like most things, I’m skeptical but open to the idea of lab grown meat. I’m skeptical that the meat will have the same nutritional and health benefits of “real” meat. Multi-vitamins and supplements for example, despite our best efforts are not the same as food, and neither are “meal replacements” no matter how diligently put together. Plus I’m concerned about the number of antibiotics and other compounds that may need to be used to grow this meat.
Having said that I’m open to the idea if it can be demonstrated to be safe and healthy. Factory farming is an abomination, but a logical path to producing meat as cheaply as possible. If we could replace factory farming with lab grown meat, I am in favor of the idea. We will still need our ruminants for the health of the land, even if we no longer eat them.
5. Gut bacteria may be involved in Alzheimer’s disease. HERE
DrG – More evidence of the gut-immune-brain triad. If you want a healthy brain, have a healthy gut!
6. Last recorded interview with Nicholas Gonzalez, MD – controversial cancer doctor. HERE
DrG – I’ve only begun watching this, but Dr. Gonzalez was a controversial, important, and outspoken figure in the world of “alternative” cancer care. Cancer is a nasty disease. What insights did he have that we can take to move our knowledge and treatments forward?
DrG – Both studies showed improvements for people with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, with a handful showing a “cure” (no thyroid medicine needed) for the 9 month follow-up from the study. This is a therapy we’ll be looking into at ANH in the future.
8. A nice overview of Vitamin D. HERE
DrG – For most people, a dose of Vitamin D3 between 1,000-5,000IU is very safe and effective. Don’t forget some Vitamin A & K (and probably a little Vitamin E) as well to balance Vitamin D. HERE is a good product. Unfortunately most insurance companies seem to be no longer covering a Vitamin D test, so it’s best to just pay out of pocket at a discounted rate rather than try to go through insurance.
9. NAC for autoimmunity. HERE
DrG – Thanks Dr. Vasquez for uncovering yet another tool for autoimmunity. Most people if they know about NAC (n-acetyl cysteine) think of it only for enhancing glutathione production, but here we see it can do so much more.
10. Don’t over-complicate your healthy diet & lifestyle! HERE
EDIT – I thought this was the full video they had available, but it turns out it’s only a preview unless you subscribe. I’m sorry about that, and looking into re-recording that talk myself to make it available, since I think the message is so important.
DrG – A talk by a handsome and wickedly smart doc! 🙂 Thanks to PaleoFX for putting up my talk from 2015.
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