Anyone watched "what the health"

(Adam Kirby) #21

Why do so many health markers improve on a heavy diet of meat and dairy, then? For tons of people they result in a reduction or complete abandoning of pills.

Honest question because I don’t know: are there vegan special interest groups behind this film?

(bulkbiker) #22

debunked on this thread
Anyone watched "what the health"

(bulkbiker) #23



Debunked is a rather strong term for what happened in that thread. It looks like it was mostly rejected, but I didn’t see anyone offering any particular counterarguments to it or showing where it’s claims go wrong or anything, other than claiming it was from people with a vegan bias.

I’m not saying it’s right either, just that there wasn’t any debunking of the particular film in question.

(Crow T. Robot) #25

No kidding. This is a standard vegan trope, but if anything Big Pharma push vegetable oil for the LDL lowering effect (which promotes their sales of statins), and a “balanced diet” with plenty of carbs to keep the money rolling in from insulin sales.

(Tom Seest) #26

The favorite of the industry seems to be either the “high carb” or the “well balanced” diet. But, I could be wrong.

(bulkbiker) #27

OK maybe debunked was too strong however once you see the names Neal Barnard and Michael Greger you can normally assume its something untoward… at least that Is what I think…

(Crow T. Robot) #28

You might want to read ‘The Big Fat Surprise’ if you haven’t already. Once you have read it, you will see through all the phoney-baloney “science” that you see in these vegan propaganda films.

(Anderson Herzogenrath Da Costa) #29

I watched until the part they say sugar was never a problem and fat causes diabetes.

(Suzie) #30

Yeah that was early on in the doc, and I was hoping the guy would come back and show what a silly statement that was.

(Ellie Baum) #31

There’s a subtle difference between how that movie talks about science and how the fathead movie and the dudes talk about science. Fathead tries to explain all the science and assumptions it makes. “What the Health” assumes the link between cancer and red meat. That is a clue that it is based on bad science. It’s forcing information on you that it does not expect you to be able to understand.

The dudes try to explain the science on their show and expect that you are not an idiot and can learn it. If they are wrong, they want to know about it.

“What the Health” didn’t try to get you to understand the science. They were hiding the science. And that is a tip off to me that it is bad science


To be fair, this kind of thing is sometimes done because either the party takes the ideas as common, non-controversial knowledge, and thus doesn’t want to insult the audience by pounding in the reasoning behind it, or because there are large swaths of people that really prefer the harder science just be left out and you get to the point, as they don’t want to deal bother with going through the science themselves or whatever their reason may be.

There are, after all, people who really do prefer the Time Magazine report on some research to the actual papers, aware or not of how inaccurate they can be. This kind of thing is seen in other fields as well, where sometimes people get almost angry at those who present too academic of an approach to a given important subject.

(Ellie Baum) #33

And that’s what I don’t like about it.

People. Stop reading headlines and assume that’s all there is. There are people who devote their lives to this stuff (whether this is politics, nutrition, another type of science, etc) and you think you can understand it and get angry about it in by reading one line. Just stahp it…

I get what you’re saying though. Some people do just want headlines and summaries. And that’s why Time magazine makes money. But Time magazine doesn’t have our best interests at heart. They make what sells. That’s why it’s super important to me to dig deep. Because if you can at least learn the science behind it you can start to separate the truth and learn for yourself what is good for you. It’s not going to easy all the time. But the more you learn the better and better you get at it.

I’m cut from the same cloth as the dudes since I’m a programmer too. And if you’re going to have opinions about things you need to be well informed. And the internet has made it real easy to be well informed…and really difficult as well.

This is why the fat phobia gets perpetuated. We need to dig deep in all areas of our lives.

There are plenty of sugar documentaries out there. Some I like a lot. Some I agree with but don’t like because they don’t focus on the science; they do the same sort of things that “What the Health” does. They don’t explain the science and that makes me uneasy.

If you just watched something and it causes you to want to change your life in some way, STOP. And think about it for a while. Dig up some research. Ask a question on ketogenicforums like @Susazimm did.

I get your point, I do. I know people that read Time Magazine. I just don’t think we as humans should skim the surface and then get angry about an inference with such shallow knowledge about the topic.

(Sorry for the rant @djindy . You hit a sore spot with Time Magazine, clearly :wink: )

(Keto in Katy) #34

A lot of us (me for sure) eat plenty of dairy and meat and don’t require pharma industry products.

As others have mentioned, if your diet (keto or whatever) keeps you feeling good, and your metabolic markers are in a good place, then how could it be detrimental? Our bodies tell us loud and clear if we are doing it right or not.


I’m actually with you on how people should act, and I think most of the people on this forum are more of the “I want to know more and look at the real research” crowd. But, that’s simply not everyone, and sometimes you just won’t get the message to people if you can’t simplify and shorten the message (which, to do well is a skill of it’s own. Personally, I often just end up with the ‘tl;dr’ reply when I try to explain things in better nuanced detail, but it just seems so incomplete otherwise).

But, then again, perhaps there are different people for different roles. Most people simply can’t specialize in everything, and to be honest as much as I like learning and digging into the real research, I certainly have limitations due to biology (or chemistry, or even physics, as the case may be with the scale I’ve seen some or heard some indications or research on related to health and nutrition) not being my primary field. I do like to ask people I know for whom that is their field for their take from time to time, but even they will have limitations as it won’t be their specialization usually. That’s just to caution that even if we like to read the research and dig in, some of us may still get things wrong or not realize which research is valid or which is poorly done sometimes.

I’m not the kind of person that likes to leave matters to someone else without getting a fuller explanation either, of course, but I can understand why some would rather leave matters that aren’t their field to someone else and just get whatever they get as they go along. I like the idea of gaining at least a decent understanding of a broad range of fields to be able to at least communicate and understand basic concepts between disciplines, but alas some think it’s a waste of time to bother with much outside a particular discipline or it’s closely related fields (actually, I hear such sentiments somewhat commonly from developers who seem to think colleges shouldn’t even be allowed to teach non STEM fields anymore).

(Richard Morris) #36

This movie appears to be vegan propaganda. If you search say on Youtube for the video you’ll see a load of links like this one by vegan activists giving what they promise is a review of the film … it turns out to be just more marketing for the movie.

I did find the movie eventually and watched it - there’s 92 mins of my life I’ll never get back

The movie asserts without evidence that meat causes cancer. There has never been a randomized controlled clinical trial that has been able to show this, despite well funded attempts.

The only evidence has been observational. It has been observed, for example, in the data from the Nurses health study, or the Healthcare professionals followup that when they asked hundreds of thousands of people once a year to write down all the food they ate the previous year, and to summarize their health status … that people who said they ate a LOT of preserved meat APPEARED to get slightly more bowel cancer.

It was also observed in the same data that people who ate less saturated fat and more polyunsaturated oils had slightly less heart disease.

What is interesting about that last assertion, is that we have ACTUAL randomized controlled (in some cases “Double blind”) clinical trials to show the opposite. When you take a large group of people for whom you provide all their food, and randomly give half saturated fats (eg: butter) and the other half polyunsaturated replicas that look identical (eg: margarine) and even the researchers are unaware who is getting what — then the ones who got the polyunsaturated oils were SIGNIFICANTLY more likely to get heart disease or die of other cause at a higher rate.

See, what I believe we see in the data from the Nurses health initiative and other large epidemiology studies is what is called the “Healthy user bias”. These studies collected data over the time when the AHA and the dietary guidelines and the Surgeon general were giving the population a concerted message to do more exercise, reduce smoking, reduce saturated fat, get more vegetables in your diet, take essential vitamins, treat stress, get more sleep. A lot of this data was collected from health care professionals on the theory that they would be reliable source of diagnostic information … but they would ALSO be well aware of the health messages.

What if a significant amount of the people who lowered saturated fat also got exercise and took vitamins and got 8 hours sleep every night and quit smoking? You would see in your data an ASSOCIATION between saturated fat consumption and heart disease (because smoking is a major risk for heart disease). You might also OBSERVE a link between red meat (which has more saturated fat) and Cancer (which smoking is a major risk factor for). You might also find that people who ate a lot more processed red meat were poorer, and people who ate filet mignon instead had spent more money on preventative health care.

The studies they refer to that observed an association between processed red meat and coronary artery disease and type 2 diabetes (Mozzafarian) was from the same epidemiological data collected from annual food frequency recall surveys (ie: dodgy data that has been math tortured). If you read that study they observe no effect with unprocessed red meat, and a small effect observed with processed red meat. The movie performs some hand waving in the general direction of that study then asserts that “The link between eating meat and Diabetes is UNDENIABLE”.

Neal Barnard, Michael Greger and Caldwell Esselstyn have been vegan propagandists for decades. They appear to believe that eating animals is bad, and that the science will eventually show them to have been correct all along, but in the meantime they will cherry pick studies and torture their conclusions to try to convince us that the science is settled.

All they need to do is one Randomized controlled clinical trial over a significant fraction of a human lifespan where one cohort had animal based food and the other had identical essential nutrition from plants … and they might be able to make their case about the health outcome difference between herbivorous, omnivorous and carnivorous diets.

But I guess making quips about people eating coagulated cow pus (AKA cheese) is a substitute for doing actual work.


I’m enjoying a plant-based keto diet. I still eat the occasional salmon or kangaroo steak and I eat eggs too. I feel great on this diet and have tonnes of energy. Neither coconut oil nor bacon agree with me at all… which sucks because bacon is delicious! Or maybe it’s a blessing… if it turns out to be harmful.

The trouble with most vegans is their morality blinds them. The biggest logical fallacy I see is that the odds that every single animal product on the planet is bad for your health is so ridiculously small. Yet vegan propaganda consistantly states exactly that. Nothing, nada, zilch. They can’t find one single animal-cell from even the tiniest amoeba that is useful nourishment. Also, they say there’s nothing neutral or benign. It’s just ALL BAD according to vegans.

Anyone with an ounce of sense knows that vegan “facts” are far too conveniently aligning perfectly with their morality and the real science is likely to lie somewhere in the grey area.

(Crow T. Robot) #38

Thanks for the taking one for the team. That was an epic response!

It really comes down to this. These are ‘true believers’, which is not to say it means everything they say must be false – that would also be a logical fallacy – but that you have to be doubly careful to verify their statements. However, their presentations are exclusively as Richard described them: big assumptions based on confounded associational data, a big helping of moralizing, and they declare the science unquestionable. For anyone with some critical thinking skills, it’s as transparent as anything.


A review of What the Health by Robb Wolf:
I watched the movie and provided a time index for the various portions that I felt were particularly important to comment on. The time refers to the duration of the movie remaining. There are some things that I know I missed as there are sections of the movie in which claims are made in a rapid fire fashion …

(Jim) #40

I couldn’t make it past the 1/2 hr mark