Remembering Kevin Moore

Vegan Propaganda Movie ‘Forks Over Knives’ Set To Hit Theaters On May 6

Look out America, the vegans are coming for you! Just when you think it’s safe to enter your local movie theater again, along comes a new film slated to hit theaters in 19 major markets, including Los Angeles, New York, Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Fort Lauderdale, Houston, Miami, San Francisco, Seattle, Phoenix, Washington, DC, Denver, Detroit, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, and San Diego, beginning on Friday, May 6, 2011. It’s called Forks Over Knives and features many of the most famous names and faces of veganism in the world today–The China Study author T. Colin Campbell, PhD, vegan-promoting physician Caldwell B. Esselstyn, Jr., MD, PCRM President Neal Barnard, MD, USDA Human Nutrition director David Klurfeld, PhD, low-fat vegan diet author John McDougall, MD, among many others in the medical community, competitive athletes and average, everyday people. The film’s creator and executive producer Brian Wendel read The China Study in 2008 and decided that a vegan diet needed a lot more publicity than it was getting on a grander scale to get the message out to the public who needs to hear it. Thus was born the idea for Forks Over Knives culminating in the release of this film which I first heard about when I interviewed Denise Minger for my “Encore Week” podcast in January.

The self-described purpose of the movie is that it “examines the profound claim that most, if not all, of the so-called ‘diseases of affluence’ that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by rejecting our present menu of animal-based and processed foods.” The film zeroes in on the work of Dr. Campbell and Dr. Esselstyn who are described on the Synopsis page as “under-appreciated researchers” for their examination of the vegan diet as a “single solution” to heart disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes, and obesity. It examines how they both came to similar conclusions about the relationship of diet to health which they began investigating and researching for themselves. It’s their sincere belief that a vegan/vegetarian lifestyle change is all that is needed to prevent and reverse most chronic, degenerative diseases that plague the modern world. Even Oprah Winfrey has gotten in on the act promoting the idea of a vegan diet.

Of course, it’s very interesting that they’ve made sure to steer clear of using terms like “vegan” in the film deliberately so as not to incite any negative connotations in the minds of those who would hear it. In fact, there’s only ONE mention of “vegan” in Forks Over Knives when mixed martial artist and Ultimate Fighting star Mac Danzig says it in one of the segments featuring his vegan eating plan. Dr. Esselstyn explains why in this CNN story about the documentary and he was quite candid in the reasons why the word “vegan” is not used more prominently.

If you start to use the v-word, people get nervous. Somehow, there’s a feeling from years ago that vegans are strange. There are so many negative connotations.

I suppose it’s difficult to shake negativity about a phrase that people have made up their minds about already based on their prior experiences with it. That’s what has happened to “low-carb” unfortunately which has been tarnished ironically by people like Dr. Campbell and other vegan activists as being an unhealthy way to eat. I find this vegan movie idea intriguing because we live in a culture that is so media-driven. Although it’s only going to be released in limited markets, the potential impact of a film like Forks Over Knives is tremendous, especially with the backing of a major corporate sponsor like Whole Foods (who now has a “Healthy Eating Specialist” in each of their stores promoting the vegan diet to customers). It makes me long for someone who can articulate the healthy low-carb message through the medium of filmmaking in an entertaining, yet informative and persuasive way. My buddy Tom Naughton did just that with his DVD-only release FAT HEAD. But it was never shown in theaters. And the long-awaited release of In Search Of The Perfect Human Diet from filmmaker CJ Hunt will not likely make it to movie theaters either despite having an amazing message to share with people who are looking for a way of eating that could quite possibly change their lives forever for the better.

The quality of Forks Over Knives seems to be pretty good too:



And here’s a video featuring the filmmakers talking about why they made this film:


While I may not agree at all with the propagandist message of a film like Forks Over Knives (and lest you think I’m overstating it, be sure to watch all of those YouTube video clips above again to see what I mean), I do think this is an idea that an aspiring or veteran filmmaker whose life has been radically changed by the work of someone like Gary Taubes, Dr. Robert C. Atkins, Robb Wolf, or any of the other low-carb/Paleo superstars should take and run with it. No more sitting on the sidelines waiting for someone else to do it. That’s not my skill or I would be working on it myself. But I know there is someone reading this right now who has the talent for creating a full-length feature film that can be ready-made for movie theater audiences both to educate about how an animal-based low-carb lifestyle change could improve their weight and health as well as entertain them to remain focused on why low-carb living may be an option for them.

However, unlike Forks Over Knives which seems to put forth the mistaken notion that there is some mystical “single solution” to the problems of obesity and chronic disease, this film about healthy low-carb living would acknowledge quite clearly that there are different plans that work for different people. The fatal error we have made in nutritional education in America that has led to increased frustration and failure among the populace is we’ve put diet in a box and told people it has to look a certain way or it’s not a valid “healthy” diet. That’s precisely what the vegans have done with their heavy emphasis on the “plant-based diet” concept making people who choose to consume meat as part of their menus for the sake of improving their health seem inferior.

While I applaud anyone who can go on a vegan/vegetarian diet and be successful like my high school friend Evelyn Parham, the fact is you may not have to eat that way to attain the health improvements you are longing for. Heart disease, diabetes, cancer, stroke, obesity and more can also be improved and prevented on a low-carb nutritional approach as well as I’ve highlighted in studies shared at my blog and in my latest book 21 Life Lessons From Livin’ La Vida Low-Carb. The idea that there is just one path to being optimally healthy nutritionally just comes across as so incredibly arrogant and condescending in light of what we know from science revealing the benefits that come from a variety of eating plans. Maybe it’s the elimination of sugary, processed foods that makes both vegan and low-carb diets work so well. Nevertheless, I do think going vegan is certainly a step in the right direction from the Standard American Diet, that’s for sure!

The bottom line is it’s time to end the nonsensical debate of which diet is better and instead focus in on which diet is best for the individual. Plant-based, animal-based, low-fat, high-fat, low-carb, high-carb…put all the information out there for people to see, ponder, consider which is right for them, and then implement into their lives. Demonizing a diet that you don’t agree with doesn’t convince anyone why your diet is any better. I implore supporters of both a plant-based diet and an animal-based diet to simply state your respective cases to the public with the positive benefits of what your preferred way of eating is all about citing scientific evidence to support your position without denigrating the discussion with innuendo and sensationalism about the other side’s position. Deep down inside, I think we all want the same thing–to help the average person realize that there is a way to naturally through nutrition improve the state of their health in a way that will keep them off of prescription medications, prevent the development of diseases of modern man, and help them achieve a healthy weight in the process. Whether it’s low-fat vegan or low-carb Paleo, let the people decide based on the preponderance of the evidence.

What do you think about this new film Forks Over Knives? Do you think people have become too apathetic about diet that they just don’t care anymore or will this film have the kind of impact the vegan supporters are hoping it will in changing public perception about consuming a “plant-based diet?” And what about my idea that we could use a pro-low-carb film from a professional filmmaker who read Good Calories Bad Calories, for example? Do you think these kind of efforts are worth the time and energy invested in them as a means for educating and inspiring the public to give them a go for themselves? Share what YOU think in the comments section below.

9-22-11 UPDATE: for a complete analysis and critique of the film Forks Over Knives, don’t you dare miss Denise Minger’s outstanding 15,000-word response.

  • Andrea

    Oprah? Pushing veganaism ? Oh Broooother. Let me guess, the next show after the vegan diet is “AMERICA’S GREATEST CUPCAAAAAAAAAAAAAAKE!!!”

  • Kim

    Overly dramatized lies! There is clearly an agenda and it ain’t health!

    • mark

      Have you seen the film? I’m guessing not.

      You’re absolutely wrong.

    • Dan

      Kim, I am guessing that you have not actually seen the movie in its entirety or went further as i did (a life long meat eater and dairy lover) to learn more. While I agree that the film has an agenda (what documentarian ultimately doesn’t), it is clear in the film alone that health is first and foremost on the list.

  • What I’m worried about is the availability of foods I want to eat. It’s already hard to find full fat dairy. I can’t imagine how mad I’d be if I was unable to buy, for example, butter.

    Yes, I’d like to see a movie that focuses on terrible mainstream nutrition ideas, but Fat Head has already kind of done so. I don’t think it would do much good to have someone who simply read Taubes make a movie though. The majority think saturated fat and red meat is bad, so it would take more than just another few people to say it isn’t true: it would have to be very thorough and detailed; unfortunately, it would be tough to make entertaining to the average person with little scientific background.

    I think someone like Stephan Guyenet, who could approach nutrition from several angles (large-scale studies, physiology, traditional diets) would be the best person, but I doubt there’s much of a chance of that happening. The problem is that Joe Schmoe just doesn’t care if you can cite studies that show a lack of relationship with sat fat and heart disease, even if the studies are prospective or interventional–he just wants someone to follow and “believe,” without really thinking.

    “Paleo” has a somewhat “mystical” appeal to it as it seems veganism does, so perhaps that would be a good approach to begin getting rid of the sat fat phobia.

    • Yes, FAT HEAD did share that info, but it wasn’t distributed to a large-scale audience like a theatrical release would. If it was presented in a compelling enough manner I think it could make a difference. I agree Paleo is probably the thing to promote.

  • Clark

    I believe vegans work against Nature as well as science itself. As an individual choice, I do not mind someone practicing veganism – that’s their choice and their consequences. However, they have no right to manipulate people like that with their bunk science. If they cannot clinically prove that veganism is good for everyone, they should just drop it.

    • steve

      I thought that was the whole point…it HAS been clinically proved to be better

      • zimel

        Steve, you are correct. It has been clinically proved. Clark, I suggest you read The China Study and then rethink your silly comment: “If they cannot clinically prove that veganism is good for everyone, they should just drop it.” To all those who think this is nonsense, I suggest you keep eating that way and then when heart-disease, cancer, diabetes and other such diseases come into your life – try changing your diet then (may or may not be too late, but at that point, what do you have to loose)?

      • Perry N.

        Better for who?????????

        I’ve seen my share of Vegans who look absolutely wretched everytime I’m in Whole Foods or Fresh Market. Most of them sporting stringy, dried hair, drawn faces with aged skin, waaaaaay beyond their chronological age. Please don’t tell me they are specimens of a high-quality diet!

        While I loved Adkins, I plateaued far earlier that I had hoped. Because of such, I wasn’t able to reach my optimum goal-weight. Then it was a low-protein diet my wife insisted we try. (Yeah, good luck staying on one of those sprout diets beyond two weeks!) Now we’re on the “Limbaugh diet” which he refused to market, but offered the name of only twice on two different shows. While I’m not crazy with the results to this point (It’s called the quick weight-loss diet for a reason) the fact is; the weight is coming off, I get to eat wide varieties of foods from three of the four food-groups (Breads, cakes, and high-sugar content foods like ice cream are a big no-no) I’m rarely hungry and when I am, there are all kinds of supplements from baked potato chips to specially formulated chocolate bars to quell my cravings. Best of all, I can still go to most quality restaurants and be able to select from more than three quarters of the menu. Since last week, we have combined this diet with the “17-day diet” which has helped double the pounds coming off from the previous week. (about 1.5lbs a day)

        In my opinion, it all boils down to balancing what you eat with how you eat. Although I have never been a glutton in my life, fact is, eating processed foods for more than a quarter-century (not to mention all those trips through the lanes of the fast-food giants, simply because I didn’t make the time to plan lunch or dinner on far too many occasions) take their toll on us all. What I was able to get away with in my teens and twenties, began to show up in my thirties and forties. No that I turned fifty, I’m twice the man I want to be! (Facetiousness intended) The answer does not lie in ridding ourselves of red meat, or ANY meat for that matter; it lies in returning our diets to that of reasonableness, and moderation. How else can any of you alfalfa heads explain the enormous health improvements achieved by near-death obesity victims who within one year of going on an Adkins diet-plan are now healthy, half or less than half the size they once were, and are now off all drug therapies? Such results could never be accomplished with a vegan diet in the time Dr. Adkins’ plan did. NEVER. No one has ever said the Adkins diet was for everyone; but isn’t that exactly what the producers of this film “Forks over Knives” are trying to convince their audience of? Sure they are.

        • Jenny

          Perry, please prove that it couldn’t be done on a vegan diet. Also, I am vegan and everyone is shocked when they hear my age (everyone guesses 10 years younger). At 27 a doctor asked if my parents signed a consent form before he started my knee surgery (he thought I was a minor). That said, just because someone is vegan doesn’t mean that they have a healthy diet. You can be a junk food vegan just like you can be a junk food omnivore. In the end, no one diet is right for everyone, fad diets don’t work in the long run, and exercise should be a part of every healthy lifestyle.

    • Julia

      I think those with that much vengence against a very healthy, compassionate eating style that prevents all kinds of disease might just be living in a state of denial, not wanting to look at reality because of the lack of desire to change for the better.

  • I would guess those Vegan “Doctors” couldn’t bench press 50lbs. They both look like they’re in their 90’s.

    • Lisa

      Yes, they’re very old. An impressive feat for “unhealthy” vegans, don’t you think? Campbell was raised as a farmer and discovered all this pro-plant information while trying to find faster, more effective ways to raise livestock.

      Just out of curiosity, how many omnivorous 90-year olds do you know that can bench press 50 pounds?

      • Herb Strange,same age as T. Colin Campbell. Omnivore.November 2009 in Las Vegas. He broke his own record when at age 77 he pressed 225 lbs.
        google Herb Strange Kansas City. But I’m sure there are lots more.Ever heard of Art DeVany?Sure, he’s three years younger than Campbell,but looks 10X healthier. Paleo Diet.Lots of meat.

        • And supplements. That’s cheating, imho. I ask any athlete, regardless of what/how you eat, to compete and live strong without supplements.

      • Perry N.

        Plenty my dear; PLENTY!

  • Marci Wyzdyx

    I was vegan for 5 years in the 1970s; in the first six months i gained 50 pounds and became hypoglycemic. I also never overcame the craving for meat — I used to sneak out and buy cooked chicken and eat it in my car where no one could see me. Now I’m diabetic and I wish I had a time machine so I could go back and kick my ass. LOL

    • ddk

      If you were sneaking chicken in your car … you weren’t vegan.

      • DHG

        Ah, yes, all or nothing. Is there a set duration that one must avoid any animal foods before one can use the label VEGAN without recrimination?

    • Marci, lots of “vegans” and “vegetarians” gain weight because they add lots of fat (oil, usually olive oil or canola oil) to their dishes. If you want to loose weight then keep your total dietary intake of fat to less than 15% of total calories … not an easy feat, and most vegan dishes are WAY higher than this. Try this for 4 weeks (whether you eat meat, whole foods and/or plant based foods, as long as the total fat calories is under 15%) and you will notice a difference. It will be difficult to find any variety, but very possible … I’ve learned to “hunt” for foods served at various food venues, but mostly I just make my own stuff so I know what’s in it.

  • Lawrence Louis


    Thanks for informing us about this documentary. We, in the low carb community, need to be cognizant of what people, such as vegan groups, are doing because their message is diametrically opposed to ours, and they seem very strident in their endeavor to undermine the scientific credibility of the health benefits of a low carb lifestyle. I don’t mind if someone chooses to practice veganism, or even advocates veganism for others, if they are doing it on the basis of ethical reasons (though I don’t even entirely agree with their thinking on this either). However, when they contend that veganism is a scientifically more valid approach for optimal health and performance and a meat based diet is destructive to health, then I do have a problem with it because it is a falsehood, and it is a falsehood that is particularly pernicious to those who have weight problems resulting from insulin resistance, since veganism is almost always a high carb diet.

    I think your idea of having a film which represents our side of the case is a good one. I think a film, along the lines of Tom Naughton’s Fat Head movie, but with a wider distribution, would be just what is needed to get the public interested in hearing the other side of the debate. What our Dr. Oz/Jillian Michaels dominated media dietary discussion needs is a little bit more of a dose of Gary Taubes/Robb Wolf, and having a feature length film, which articulates their points in an entertaining fashion, will do a world of good.

    On a side note, and speaking of Robb Wolf, I am proud to say that I submitted a question last week to Robb Wolf asking him to address the Dr. Oz T.V. interview with Gary. I am flattered to say that my question was read, verbatim, on their latest Paleo Solution Podcast (Episode 71 – March 15th). Unfortunately, and much to my embarrassment, I accidently referred to Robb as Scott, because I was thinking about another person that I was writing to while I was writing to Robb. Despite this little faux pas, I am proud to say that my question elicited a pretty lengthy response from Robb and Greg on their podcast. Check it out Jimmy if you get the chance.

    -Lawrence Louis

    • I’ll have to take a listen to that, Lawrence.

    • The “carbs” are not the problem. (though note a difference between “carb” and “carbohydrate” – but that’s another story. Hypoglycemia is a condition of too little sugar in the blood. Why is there too little sugar? Usually, because of excess fat. The fat causes the pancreas to put out a double or even triple dose of insulin, because initially the insulin released doesn’t effectively lower blood sugar. The excess insulin then results in a blood sugar crash. Give it a few years of overproduction, and eventually the pancreas begins to fail (and expect the adrenals to eventually as well as the adrenals are a backup system for the pancreas), resulting in either Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, depending upon the nature of the failure. Eating the excess protein delays digestion enough to slow sugar uptake into the blood, hence minimizing (masking) symptoms to some degree. But, with extra protein comes liver disease, kidney failure, high blood pressure, stroke, and still we are on the road to diabetes, just no longer on the “express train”.

      • …and heart disease and cancer. This has been shown in the laboratory. Usually fat is the culprit. However an acid environment caused by animal protein can also be caused by grains. (read grain damage). An acid environment leads to osteoporosis as well, and promotes an environment in which cancer can thrive.

  • Is this like rock-paper-scissors? Knife-spoon-fork? Spoon scoops fork, fork pokes knife, knife cuts both? LOL

    “The problem is that Joe Schmoe just doesn’t care if you can cite studies that show a lack of relationship with sat fat and heart disease, even if the studies are prospective or interventional–he just wants someone to follow and “believe,” without really thinking. “

    Actually, I think the problem with “Joe Schmoe” is that he doesn’t care about diet, period. It’s what prevents most Americans from eating either way. They continue to eat their standard American diet, they know it’s not good for them, and they don’t care.

    In many ways it’s like my grandmother. She died of lung cancer. She smoked since she was nine. She knew the cigarettes would kill her. She didn’t care enough to stop. She said this many times to me. She liked her cigarettes and by god she was going to keep smoking them. The general public likes their processed junk food, and by god they’re going to keep eating it, even if it kills them in the end.

    What I think a lot of them don’t realize, is that it’s a quality of life issue. My grandmother was pretty healthy until a year before she died. In the case of diabetics, the disease can go on for a very long time, decades even, before it kills you.

    • Perry N.

      One of the most intelligent points made in this entire thread!

  • Jimmy – do you know why “In Search Of The Perfect Human Diet” will not likely make it to movie theaters? Seems a lost opportunity.

    • Yes–lack of funding. It’s taken all of the resources just to make the film.

  • Hi Jimmy, Over one year back I made this provisional story board for a documentary http://www.youtube.com/cutthecarb#p/u/17/Y12hRcg4-Uk. Since then I learned a lot and my view has changed quite a bit. I would certainly make another story board today. I’ve shifted from very-low-carb/anti-carbs towards paleo/lower-carb/anti-leaky gut/save-the-world. I’m still working on (next to a lot of other projects) setting up such a documentary. People like Cordain, Wolf, Lalonde, Lierre Keith, De Vany, Bernstein, Feinman, Westman, Taubes and Colpo could for instance be in it. It’s very likely that I contact you when this plan becomes more concrete.

    • COOL! Lemme know how it’s going. I wouldn’t forgo some key people in the low-carb community with such an effort like Taubes, Volek, Westman, Feinman, Vernon, Eades, Phinney, etc. I’m happy to help connect you to anybody you want.

      • I was already hoping for that. I keep you posted.

  • Sean B.

    It’s funny, it was actually watching a documentary on Hulu about Dr. Caldwell B. Esselstyn’s work reversing heart disease with diet, while at the same time reading GCBC that lead me to low carb again. It clicked to me, both what Gary was saying and Esselstyn was saying was pretty close. Get rid of all the refined processed foods in your diet. I was in documentary mode watching things like food inc and future of food. Then I saw fat head as well. That lead me to Tom’s blog then to yours. Now I’ve got a list of people I check out daily to get the latest info.

    • Welcome to healthy low-carb living, Sean! 🙂

      • Bon

        Low carb is dangerous! That is if you are an physically active, which I’m guessing most of your supporters aren’t so much. The body needs carbs for energy and shame on you for advocating the cultish low-carb BS!

  • KittyAtlanta

    I’m sure there are folks out there who do well on a vegan diet. I don’t dislike vegans, unless they start bad-mouthing what works for me. I’d have to see the whole movie to see if they deride other WOE.

    I wonder who funded this movie? ConAgra?

  • I watched the trailers. I’m wondering if the movie makes it clear that turning the cancer on and off with protein is based on a rodent experiment, or that the China study was an observational study, which, by its nature, doesn’t show causes.

  • Peter Silverman

    To me the question is why both vegans and low carbers tend in general to be healthy. As Taubes said once on your show, vegetarians tend to avoid processed food, though it would be good to know just what about processed food is harmful: all the sugar, or flour, or soy oil, or what. Wheat, for instance, or flour, or white flour?

    What vegans and low carbers have in common is much more important than how they differ, since both diets often work well.

    • That’s what I was saying in my post, Peter.

  • Jill in Chicago

    Dear Mr. Moore,
    I just want to clarify your sentence “Whole Foods (who now has a “Healthy Eating Specialist” in each of their stores promoting the vegan diet to customers).” The focus of Whole Foods’ Health Starts Here program is not to eat a vegan diet, but to eat whole, unprocessed foods. I am currently in the midst of a Health Starts Here 28-Day Health Challenge, and the Healthy Eating Specialist who is assisting the group does not discourage meat and dairy consumption. The idea is to eat less of them.

    On a side note, I just happened to skim your comments. Lawrence Louis’ comment is meant to be satirical, yes? (hilarious!) He’s showing that people enjoying other diets can be just as fanatical (and have negative connotation) as the vegan diet. Good one, L.L.

    • Just going by what a reader shared with me about that position.

    • “The idea is to eat less of them.”

      So that eventually you’ll stop eating them all together.


    My wife and I have been no processed fat + vegans for 18 months. Works for us, all of our “numbers” are down. Our bodies are working like 35 year olds (we are 60). We eat as much as we want of the “right foods”. Spicy foods are no problem. I can keep up with my sons (western diet boys) at work (construction). My wife started working with us doing manual labor (even roofing!) – she’s got tons of energy… No pills or sugeries in my future is the plan.

    • There’s a problem….you don’t want ALL of your numbers to go down. You need HDL to go up, and you NEED a certain amount of animal fat to properly maintain your brain function. You absolutely cannot get 100% of the nutrition your body needs from a Vegan diet without eating lots of Soy products and supplements. A Paleo approach is complete nutrition in a nutshell.

      • Susan

        “You absolutely cannot get 100% of the nutrition your body needs from a Vegan diet without eating lots of Soy products and supplements.”

        Nope. Absolutely untrue.

        • Bon

          Nope, you are misinformed. Please educate yourself more appropriately before you start telling people they cannot get the proper nutrients with a vegan diet. Just exactly what is it that a vegan diet cannot provide? Can you be VERY specific instead of the typical anti-vegan generalized bull.

          • I get all the nutrients my body needs from a healthy high saturated fat, animal-based nutritional plan.

      • Jenny

        Barry, that is absolutely not true! Isn’t the point of this website to begin to dispel myths about alternative diets? There is not a single nutrient that can’t be provided by a properly planned vegan diet (emphasis on the planning, no diet consisting mostly of processed foods would be healthy whether it contains animal products or not). Read “Becoming Vegan: The Complete Guide to Adopting a Healthy Plant-Based Diet” if you don’t trust me that supplements are unnecessary (excluding B12 – which is made by bacteria and would be unnecessary in a supplement if we stopped washing our veggies). Additionally, you do not need animal fat for brain function! If you’re thinking of omega fatty acids, you can get them through plant oils (nuts and cooking oils). You do not need soy in a vegan diet (I am vegan and am allergic to soy, so obviously I don’t eat it). My LDL is 42 and my HDL is 58 (raised by eating nuts). Making fallacious statements won’t help your cause. I don’t think that there is one right diet for everyone, but I am certain that a vegan diet can be perfectly healthy.

    • Jill in Chicago

      Barry, you can increase your HDL cholesterol by eating more fiber, and healthy fats like avocados and nuts; and by losing weight and limiting alcohol [Source: MayoClinic.com]. Harold, you and your wife are an inspiration!

  • Frank

    It was not funded by Con Agra. The food pyramid is designed by the dairy industry, I call that skewed. Jimmy you should read the book The China Study. Dr Campbell set out to show that consuming more animal protein made you healthy. The stats kept coming back showing just the opposite.. He has done 50 years of research. You have done how many years of research?

    • Doing research isn’t my calling…sharing the truth about what changed my life forever is. That’s what low-carb, high-fat, animal-based living has done for me. This isn’t a contest about who’s better. It’s simply a way to promote what works for you. I’m happy veganism helps you be healthy, Frank. 🙂

    • “Dr Campbell set out to show that consuming more animal protein made you healthy.”

      If you believe that, I have a bridge in New York to sell you. Why would someone who is a vegan set out to prove that animal protein is better for you?

      “You have done how many years of research?”

      I love how people resort to ad hominem attacks when others disagree with them.

      • MikeSP

        Dr. Campbell wasn’t vegan when He started his research.

        I think the dig about “years of research” is just pointing out the differences between and expert in nutritional research vs the opinion of someone with a little anecdotal experience.

    • Obviously you enjoy reading fiction. 🙂

      • JohnNJ

        I heard Dune is a pretty good read. A lot of Timothy Zahn Star Wars novels are good too, however stretching the facts of Jedi vs. Sith history, still entertaining. And the book of Genesis…which is actually a recent book, a non fiction focusing on one of the greatest bands to ever play rock and roll, Genesis. The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway! Better git yur knives!

  • Martin

    I’ll start this by saying that I’ve changed my diet to match the one that Dr. Esselstyn promotes and have amazing resutls in both weightloss and in dropping blood pressure, cholesterol and Triglycerides. I had the opportunity to watch this film last month at a screening.

    The reason that the term “vegan” is avoided is because their sugguestions go beyond what is traditionally viewed as being vegan. Most vegans are junk food vegans, there are no animal products in a lot of fatty high sugar foods that can wreck a person’s health. What Esselstyn and Campbell are promoting is a diet that is made up of whole foods. What makes this lifestyle appealing is the amazing results that Esselstyn has received from his patients.

    Campbell grew up on a dairy farm and his findings rejected everything he knew about animal proteins. The study was one of the largest (if not the largest) study of cancer rates in throughout multiple counties in China the results of research dating back from the 70s.

    This isn’t soft science, these are published peer-reviewed studies that do have some legs on them. I’m a newcomer to this site so I do look forward to seeing what findings from various nutritionists about this lifestyle. I don’t think either man has an agenda, they’re just scientists promoting their findings.

    While I’ve adapted this lifestyle I believe that whatever works for an individual works, but to dismiss their findings as propaganda is jumping the gun. There is no doubt that there is a health crisis in this country that is directly attributed to diet in this country. Like any documentary this movie is just addressing the issue from the experience of the filmmaker.

    • David in Long Beach

      Martin, I am totally in agreement with what you have said. I too have gone plant-based and can attest to quite a transformation in my health. Weight down 25 pounds, but even more surprising to me has been the elimination of my allergies… never expected that. I feel terrific and have had no problem adapting to this program… don’t miss meat at all and have no “cravings” for it, just fond memories of lamb chops, meat balls, etc. which I’m happy to give up for the health benefits. It took me awhile to get off dairy protein only because I wasn’t aware of it’s insidious presence in so much stuff. Now I watch for it and avoid it. I can honestly say I’ve never eaten healthier than I am now, and meals are far more creative and interesting. I’m sold on this!

      The resistance (hostility even) to the clear evidence about plant-based eating really astounds me. Some of the writers here sound like religious fundamentalists of any persuasion in their fear(?) of something different from what they have experienced. It’s a pity. Reminds me of the furious arguments of smokers who refuse to acknowledge what they’re doing to their bodies. Well, I know I’ve done the right thing for me. If others want not to go another path, I’m sad to see what they’re doing to themselves, but it’s their health.

      Here’s to brown rice, garbanzo beans, and dark leafy greens!

      • “The resistance (hostility even) to the clear evidence about plant-based eating really astounds me. Some of the writers here sound like religious fundamentalists of any persuasion in their fear(?) of something different… Well, I know I’ve done the right thing for me. If others want not to go another path, I’m sad to see what they’re doing to themselves, but it’s their health.”

        I’ve lost a lot of weight eating meat, cream and cheese. I feel better than I have ever felt in my life, and I no longer hurt when I work out.

        If something works for you, then fine, do it. But shut the hell up about it. If you think we all sound like fundamentalist preachers here, why are you wasting time commenting on it? Scurry off to some vegan blog where you’ll feel safer and agree with everything.

        There is no clear evidence that a plant based diet is better. In fact there’s plenty of evidence to the complete contrary, despite whatever the mainstream press may tout. Perhaps you can thrive on a plant based diet if you cut out all the sugar and wheat. I personally couldn’t. I would still be obese if I ate primarily vegetables and fruit. And if you don’t believe that, there are plenty of obese and overweight vegetarians and vegans, and I happen to personally know two of them.

        You’re right, it is my health. The “resistance” and “hostility” isn’t to your diet. It’s to you. You’re telling me what I should eat based on your ethics. I don’t know when it became socially acceptable for people to comment on what others eat. It’s really none of your concern. That would be like me coming to your blog and asking you if you’re taking enough supplements to cover the deficiencies in your vegan diet, like B-12? Lack of B-12 can be fatal. But why would I bother asking? I could give a rat’s ass.

        • Anyone who eats like a pig, will be and look like a pig.

      • I’m betting 10lbs of that weight lost was muscle mass. Pea and rice Protein just doesn’t cut it I’m afraid.

        “Eat what you are”…which is Soy and Whole grains right? LOL!

        • JohnNJ

          Barry, you is the best! B-12, nutritional yeast. B-12 is present in animal flesh because of external causes, so vegans can get their B-12 just fine without eating animals. Cutting out wheat and sugar for plant based diets is not necessary. I just find the one aspect of cholesterol to be good enough a point to stop eating meat and dairy. That clogs arteries no matter how fat or skinny you are and it ONLY COMES FROM ANIMAL AND DAIRY PRODUCTS. We have our own natural store of cholesterol which is absolutely maintainable on a plant based diet.
          Again, yes, whatever works for the individual…but facts are facts and cholesterol is a BLINDING FACT.
          I wish all the best and great health! This is what this is all about after all, why it is so important. I am just trying to imagine what the food-iverse will be like in a future inhabited by our grandchildren. I am really hoping for the not so bleak picture. There are many rippling effects beyond the dinner table and our own health.
          Also, I don’t want to die young. Health in the present is great. Sustainable health over time, is something else.

          • Fat and protein from animal sources does NOT “clog arteries” as you claim. There is no evidence that supports such an argument.

            • JohnNJ

              I did not say fat and protein….I said cholesterol. That is kinda different.
              I know FAT and PROTEIN does not clog arteries. Cholesterol does.

              I mean, if cholesterol doesn’t clog arteries, then I can’t wait to wake up from this sordid nightmare.

              There are many dead people from clogged arteries…don’t we both know some ourselves? I do.

              • Same point applies…dietary cholesterol does not “clog arteries.” Carbohydrates that raise small-LDL particles that penetrate the arterial wall and lead to inflammation are what leads to heart health issues.

    • Martin, you express my sentiments … having adopted a low fat, plant based and whole food diet for the last 2 months, following 3 years of eating “healthy” (hardly any red meat, very little pork and lesser portions of cheeses and icecream and sugars) I can say emphatically that eating this way makes a HUGE difference in how I feel … and this coming off of eating a fairly health diet.

  • It’s not just the awesome film FORKS OVER KNIVES that is presenting this message to the world. It’s the research behind it and the case studies as well. I understand the “v-word” thing…..veganism means a whole life-style commitment…clothing etc…..plant-based foods can be a different, less-threatening thing. Go plant-based, whole foods, and your body will thank you.

    • If I went “plant-based” foods, I’d still weigh 250 lbs, and probably then some. I also hate taking pills, and let me tell you, the supplements that you vegans have to take really ought to tell you something about your diet. It’s deficient. But hey, if you don’t mind having to choke down pills and it’s working for you, then more power to you. Just don’t tell me what to eat.

      • Thomas Vanes


        Just for the record I’m vegan and have been for many years. I take no supplements. I eat a lot of green leafy vegetables. My doctor was worried so she checked out all my levels (including B12) and guess what? No deficiencies! It truly is all about what works for you (or in this case, me). This works for me. If your lifetyle works for you then great! Done properly a plant-bsed diet is not deficient in anything that a non-plant based is not deficient in.

        To eat and be well nourished takes work, regarless of the lifetyle you choose to follow. I think it’s great your body does well with animal products. But based on that research please tell me your at the very least eating organic meat products and still eating 10 servings of plants per day! Without plants your digestive system won’t work as well and wel…elmination becomes an issue.

        Ok…I’m off to grab a snack.

        Have a happy day! 🙂

        • Grass-fed beef and pastured eggs for me. Veggies aren’t as necessary when you’re eating nutritious foods.

        • I eat organic meat. I eat venison that I shot myself, thanks.

          “Without plants your digestive system won’t work as well and wel…elmination becomes an issue.”

          That’s bullshit, pun intended. Ask the Inuit. But thanks for inquiring as to my digestive health.

          Great for you that you’re not deficient. I’ve read about people who were vegan who wound up in the hospital because they obviously metabolized B-12 quickly. I personally metabolize potassium quickly, and low potassium can lead to irregular heart beat. I wound up in the emergency room once. I don’t have any problems with my potassium on a meat based diet, nor do I have arrhythmia any more.

          • JarJar

            One issue is cost, grass fed beef is expensive. I heard tracker say he shoots his own venison. That’s great, but how many hunters come home empty handed?

            I thought about trying vegetarian but never bothered. I went palo and I found I could handle some meat but not others. I decided to go raw and I feel better and I’m saving a lot of money. I was thinking about buying a new stove, since a power surge destroyed my stove. If I don’t have to cook my food I don’t need a stove.

            I believe palo/low carbs is a step up from the standard American diet, yet I don’t think the diet is feasible for the average American. For example at my favorite restaurant a veggie platter is $5.50 where most of the meat platters are $8+. I still think fast food trumps all diets when it comes to cost. 🙁

            From best to worse in my opinion:

            1. Raw diet
            2. Palo diet
            3. Whole plant based diet
            4. Standard American diet

            The reason I place Palo above whole plants is because of cravings. Simply put on the Palo/low carb diet I had no cravings, I’m eating about 3000 calories of raw and losing weight. I can’t imagine doing the same on a cooked whole plant based diet. Look at the calories in vegetables, you want to eat as little veggies as possible and if you cook the vegetables you gotta eat more to make up for the lose of nutrition via cooking, its dumb. Blend up your veggies in a smoothie to rupture the cell walls. Life is meant to be enjoyed in my opinion, eat fruit on the go, rather than slaving over a stove top.

      • I take no supplements and haven’t for over 4 years. My website is http://www.justcanoeit.com. And I’ve competed against women half my age.

    • Evolve with the rest of the species, your brain will thank you for the continued Omega-3 support.

  • Internal Medicine

    The poor author of the article bemoans the fact that there are no good movies out there displaying the superior health benefits of the low-carb diet — maybe because . . . uh. . . aside from weight loss and modest improvements that may happen because of weight loss, we don’t have epidemiologic or RCT evidence that such diets reverse disease. The evidence does exist, across ethnic, gender and age for a diet that avoids animal based and processed foods. In my own practice, we have conducted multiple programs over the years that have reversed type II diabetes and lowered cholesterol in patients – simply by eliminating animal products.

    • Low-carb living goes much deeper than mere weight loss. It is a total body health booster that has revolutionized the lives of millions. If there wasn’t such bias in the research and medical communities against this healthy way of eating which also happens to improve lipids and reverse diabetes, then more mainstream media attention would be given to it. There’s an obvious double standard at work here.

      • Internal Medicine

        I appreciate your comments.

        There is a reason why the ‘bias’ exists. The medical community is well acquainted with facts stated by Dr. Esselstyn, Campbell and Barnard. Physicians know the lifestyle measures outlined by these men regarding a plant based diet works. Years of research, myself included, is not an attempt to find a ‘good-enough’ option. The objective is an optimal formula that yields greatest results. Time has shown us that pharmacology is not the answer, nor is surgery, and unfortunately neither is a low-carb diet if it includes animal products. The optimal diet, as proven, is 100% whole food plant based. And while I understand and am happy that a low-carb diet has proven successful for you, for the general population and in the interest of the financial crisis of health care, many of us in the medical community choose to endorse the optimal solution. Unfortunatly most patients are not willing to make the significant lifestyle changes you have made or that their physician is asking of them.

        • Or perhaps they’re so caught up in conventional dietary wisdom that they refuse to listen to any alternative hypothesis.

    • “…aside from weight loss and modest improvements that may happen because of weight loss, we don’t have epidemiologic or RCT evidence that such diets reverse disease.”

      LOL, except for this one and this one and this one.

      That last one has to do with Flow Medial Dilation. Low carb diets improve it. In other words, your arteries are healthier on a low carb, high fat diet.

      And if you had half a critical thought in your head, you’d realize that epidemiological studies don’t show jack. There are too many confounding variables. Which is why we want double blind placebo controlled studies. I think you’ve been listening to too many big Pharma reps in your practice.

      • Internal Medicine

        Check the following link http://www.llu.edu/public-health/health/references.page for example. The Adventist Health Study has been cited in hundreds of scientific references over 3 decades. The evidence sited, among others is the lower levels of coronary heart disease mortality (American Journal of Clinical Nutrition), cancer mortality (Journal of the National Cancer Institute), the association of meat and coffee with cancers of the large bowel, breast, and prostate (Cancer Research), meat consumption and fatal ischemic heart disease (Preventive Medicine), dietary relationships with fatal colo-rectal cancer (Journal of the National Cancer Institute), animal product consumption and subsequent fatal breast cancer risk (American Journal of Epidemiology), animal product consumption and mortality because of all causes combined, coronary heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and cancer (American Jourcan of Clinical Nutrition).

        There are hundreds more.

        • I’ve seen the studies. But what about the hunter-gatherer tribes who lived on mostly meat? How did they do so well?

          • Internal Medicine


            Did they do well?

            In the age we live in, that we have a wide range of choices, with a Safeway on almost every corner; to ignore these facts are shown to be unfortunate for individuals and their families. The 100,000+ study group live longer, with significantly lower levels of cancer, among other chronic diseases, then the general public. This is the message that Dr Esselstyn, Campbell and all are delivering. It’s not a discussion of ‘vegan’, it’s about optimal dietary choices that promote the best physical condition for the human body.

            • My point is that while it’s great you and others have done well eating a vegan diet, perhaps there are other nutritional choices that are just as healthy for people who are metabolically fit for consuming animal foods for example. That’s my position.

              • Mark Haub, Ph.D.

                Kudos Jimmy and the science supports both lifestyles (and then some – Medit Diet, Zone, etc). We have lost site of how our bodies adapt and metabolize chemicals. Also, it is hard to sell or scare people to follow their options — “Do this or die” sells better than “Do this, or this, or this, or this to be healthier and live better, happier & longer, but you’ll still die”. Thanks again for the article and work you do Mr. Moore.

              • Ouch, I’m mister now? 😉

  • jbr

    Name dropper and shameless self promoter. At least thats how this author come off here. Seemed more a soap box to promote his book not a review of forks over knives. It was a good informative film.

    • Never claimed this was a review of FOK. I was simply making my readers aware of the film.

  • Doug

    Thanks for sharing the YouTube clips…hadn’t seen them before.

    “The bottom line is it’s time to end the nonsensical debate of which diet is better and instead focus in on which diet is best for the individual”… For me, it isnt about diet; rather, I care more about how we treat other living beings. Seeing how poorly animals are treated in the Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations and slaughterhouses just turned me off completely from eating animals.

    • I agree about industrialized meats. That’s why I choose farm-raised meats for my diet.

      • Hey Jimmy, did you know that only about 10% of the cattle in this country are ever in their lives in industrial feed lots, and when they are only for an average of two months (they do it primarily to fatten them up in a short time for slaughter). I figured that out from statistics given by the USDA once, after I drove down our road and got to thinking that all the cattle I ever see are out in the fields grazing, doing cow things. I think most of the cattle around here are slaughtered at small operation meat processors, like the one where we get our deer processed. Feed lots are a problem, and no one with half a brain would think they’re a “good” thing. It directs attention away from the problem to say that everyone simply ought to stop eating meat.

        Because what if everyone in the country stopped eating meat, what would happen to the hundred million cattle we have? Do you think the farmers and ranchers would keep feeding them for the hell of it? I shouldn’t have to point out what kind of end they’d all have.

        There’s a thing called the food chain, and we’re a part of it whether we like it or not. And when we try to screw with it, we wreck the earth.

  • DHG

    RE: China Study. Hardly conclusive evidence there:


    There is no “clear evidence” that veganism is healthier than a whole foods, meat-based diet.

    Stupid title, though. This goes much further back than the invention of eating implements. How about Teeth Over Fingers?

  • Enrique

    Why I am not a vegetarian,Why so much hostility?It is just another point of view. We know that Agri-business used tons of pesticides in our vegetables and fruits. We also know that beef and poultry use antibiotics in their animals.

  • First of all, I’d like to say that I’m a vegan. Secondly – I’d like to say that I appreciate your viewpoint. Vegans coming to this website & badmouthing you certainly are NOT helping people’s perceptions of vegans as being an elitist group of radical hippies. 🙂 I think that what you are saying is key – limiting processed, sugary, junk foods is the basis of both a healthy vegan diet – as well as a healthy low-carb diet. This probably leads to a bulk of the good results!

    While going vegan was a personal choice for me in order to help manage my type II diabetes, I have done the Atkins diet in the past. Ultimately it wasn’t sustainable because I had insane migraines, and it actually made my blood sugar counts worse. So…I went another path in trying a vegan diet.

    So far I’ve had a lot of success with my vegan diet. In 6 weeks I’ve lost almost 10 lbs, have a ton of energy, and generally just feel better. Plus my twice a week migraine is nonexistant. But I think it’s important to remember that what you put into your body is a personal choice. No one is going to research your health as clearly as YOU will, so only YOU know what is best for you. While a strict vegan diet might work for me – it might make someone else feel like crap. Same with Atkins. It’s important to take control of your own health. 🙂

    • Jenn, thanks for your reasoned response and congratulations on your success.

      • Absolutely. If the low-carb diet hadn’t given me such bad headaches…I would probably still be doing it. I miss cheese. 🙂

        • I hear ya! I’ve limited my cheese in 2011 to see if it impacts me positively.

  • Michele

    Umm… here’s a novel idea to those who left comments: how about watching the film first, finding out exactly what they are saying and the extensive studies and data behind it, and then bashing it? I am in a college level Biology lab class right now, called Human Nutrition, and though our teacher (who has 4 master’s and in the middle of getting his Doctorate) is not vegetarian himself, he has stated more than once, that study after study has proven that a plant based diet is far more healthy than any other type. We also learned about Ketosis – you know, what happens to the body when it has less than 50 grams of carbs a day – very dangerous and unhealthy. This is all medically proven, not my opinion. By the way, I myself keep my carbs down as much as possible while still being in the ‘healthy carb level’, because I tend to put on weight from more than 50% of my daily calories coming from them. So, I hear ya’ about not putting everyone into a cookie cutter diet. But, without films, just basing it all on science, the length our digestive tracts and our sizes as the human animal, speaks volumes about what we were meant to consume more of, as well as less of. Look at all species, look into it and decide for yourselves. 🙂

  • Having screened the movie and met some of the cast, I believe the term “vegan” is rarely used because it misses the point. The film encourages a “whole foods, plant based” diet and sheds academic light on little known dangers of excess protein from cholesterol-rich animal sources. It discourages refined carbs and supports consuming a “rainbow” of natural whole fruits, veg, legumes, etc. It also offers hope for those interested in a non-pharma solution for life-threatening diseases. Worth a watch.

    • I appreciate the whole foods, refined carbohydrate free aspect of what is promoted. Kudos! I’ll watch the movie, but I think eliminating animal-based foods is unnecessary since I receive incredible nutritional value from my grass-fed beef and pastured eggs.

  • It’s this simple…go to places where cancer, heart disease, and diabetes don’t exist and folks live into their 90s. Then, see what they’re doing and eating. Now, come back to the United States, open your eyes.

    The movie is NOT about “veganism”. It is about the benefits of a whole-foods, plant-based diet.


    • Actually, that’s not true. Here’s what is directly from the film’s web site:

      The self-described purpose of the movie is that it “examines the profound claim that most, if not all, of the so-called ‘diseases of affluence’ that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by rejecting our present menu of animal-based and processed foods.”

  • Peter Silverman

    As Denise Minger pointed out on your show, people wrongly attribute the health of their diet to how much carbs they eat or avoid. A better index would be the S&M index: people who get their food from Safeway and MacDonalds tend to get sick more.

  • Gene

    The really good news here, Jimmy, is you’ve sparked debate (most of it healthy) about food and diet. The key to getting back to eating a solid, healthy diet lies in raising our collective awareness to the point where we are truly conscious about what we are eating. It’s my opinion that too many in our culture fail to pay attention to what what we’re eating and how much of it we eat. All too often, our food choices are driven by habit and creative marketing and we poison ourselves in the process. Once the larger populace awakens and begins to ascribe to the “food as medicine” philosophy then we’ll see a large-scale shift in the food choices we make. I personally practice the whole foods, plant based diet promoted by Dr. Campbell and it works for me. That said, I think the biggest favor we can do for ourselves is to learn as much as we can about the foods available to us and to be very conscious of the choices we make.

    • Gene, you hit it dead on my friend. Food awareness is such a foreign concept to most folks and they don’t have any idea where that McDonald’s French fry or Twinkie came from or what it’s made of. They just shove it down the hatchet no questions asked. It’s a real pity that state we find ourselves in regarding nutrition and health these days. Poison is a great word to describe it both figuratively and even literally. If we just got people to move away from their poisonous lifestyle and to one that removes these toxins from their diet, then we’d certainly be a lot better off. THANKS for your comments!

  • Gene

    My pleasure…may we all take charge of our own health.

  • Athena-Edwina

    I just have to say that changing to a Vegan diet changed my life. It was the single best thing I have ever done in my life. It not only has helped my weight, my bodily functions, my hair, nails and skin but it has also helped billions of animals. I think this is an oversight that people are forgetting to look at. You can make fun of me, or disagree with me but the truth cannot be overlooked. Showing compassion and love toward others is important. I understand the difficulties and the obstacles for many people, I once shared them. Denying what is healthy for you, the animals and the earth could be changed. Arguing about what diet works better is selfish and silly. The world does not revolve around one individual, it revolves around you and me and every being along with the soil, the grass, the trees and one day our children. If we take the bigger picture into consideration, there is no argument.

    • Good for you regarding the vegan changes that have made a difference in your life. But I can certainly say the same thing about my healthy high-fat, low-carb animal-based diet. Vastly improved health and vitality like I’ve never experienced before. Nobody is making fun if you. Everyone needs to find their own path to success. You found yours and I found mine. As for this business of equating human life with that of a tree or the soil, that’s about the silliest thing I’ve ever heard. But thanks for sharing your opinions here.

  • Leigh

    As an observer, what do you find objectionable to the claim of the movie’s purpose? It sounds to me like they are merely examining the claim. Whether or not one chooses to believe or follow what is presented is personally up to them. It’s not offensive, just another opinion or point of view. I’ve read through the replies and I don’t think anyone has bashed your point of view, but I have read a few replies against the professed vegans doing just that (not necessarily by you). The fact that people are interested enough to consider the various aspects of their diet, whatever that is, gives me hope that there are some who do want something better.

    • THANKS Leigh. They’re not merely examining the claim…they’re actually promoting and advocating for a vegan diet as the ONLY way to prevent disease and that meat consumption along with refined carbohydrates are leading to a decline in health according to my understanding. That’s not merely giving people information, that’s persuading them to choose which path they want to try. Why not just give the benefits of eating plants without denigrating people who choose to eat meat as part of their healthy lifestyle? That’s the kind of film that I think would be most compelling regardless of which nutritional plan you are in favor of. I do think people will have their opinions about this issue and some will be more forceful in their responses than others. But that doesn’t take away from what I’m saying here.

  • DHG

    “…he has stated more than once, that study after study has proven that a plant based diet is far more healthy than any other type.”

    The trouble is that these studies have NOT “proven” anything. All the claims that it’s been “proven” and the “truth” that vegan diets are THE healthiest are fictionalizations. Many former vegans and vegetarians abandoned this WOE because of health issues that were resolved by resuming the consumption of animal products. If this WOE works for you, great, but the problem that most LC’rs have is that the V perspective is a one-way street. They drag morality and environmental benefits into the argument as well.

  • DHG

    “The self-described purpose of the movie is that it ‘examines the profound claim that most, if not all, of the so-called ‘diseases of affluence’ that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by rejecting our present menu of animal-based and processed foods.'”

    Yes, it “examines it” and then comes to what conclusion?

    Ironically, those of us who’ve gone to the carnivore side would also maintain that “most, if not all, of the so-called ‘diseases of affluence’ that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by rejecting our present menu of [grain-based and/or plant-based] and processed foods.”

  • Leigh

    Just so that it is clear–what do you advocate about the meat consumption diet? May I assume that you also advocate eating from the vegetable and fruit and grain food groups?
    I just want to say that giving me information does not equate to persuading me to choose a path–unless it’s one I was wanting to explore. I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to follow a plant-based diet before. If you weren’t really motivated, you wouldn’t be able to stick with it. So are you more upset about being portrayed as unhealthy because you eat animal products?
    Trying to understand.

    • THANKS Leigh. My personal ideas on diet are not necessarily applicable to the entire population because I believe we are all individuals with a customized nutritional approach that will work for us. That said, my diet is indeed mostly meat with a few non-starchy vegetables, very little fruit and next to zero grains. Providing information without proselytizing is extremely difficult when you have a specific persuasion in mind that you are trying to share with others.

      People like Dr. Campbell and even Dr. Neal Barnard from PCRM who has been on my podcast previously all talk about how a vegan diet is necessary to reverse diseases and end obesity. And yet the same can be said about high-fat, low-carb, animal-based diets as well. The biggest difference is Campbell/Barnard/Ornish all seem to think that it’s their way or the highway. Most low-carbers I know acknowledge there are many ways to attaining optimal health based on your own personal metabolic needs. I don’t need to follow a vegan diet because I’ve found the diet that’s right for me–that’s healthy low-carb, high-fat, meat-based living!

      I’m not really upset about anything because I know what I’m doing for my body is optimal for me. I only wish vegans would be open to the idea that there are alternative hypotheses to the monopolistic thinking that veganism is the only way to be healthy. It’s just not true.

  • Sonya

    HA! The vegans come out of the woodwork to defend their religion…. If it works for you, great! It didn’t work for me – made me sick and insulin resistant. Why attack people who don’t live the way you do? I don’t get it.

    To the commenters telling Jimmy to read The China Study, I say, do YOUR homework and listen to his interview with Denise Minger as he mentions above in the post, which you obviously didn’t actually read. Your precious China Study is seriously flawed.

    Whole Foods DOES sell a vegan lifestyle. I just took their 28 day personalized menu quiz and was told to quit eating meat and dairy and to eat more fruit, grains and legumes. UGH! The very things that made me sick & fat to begin with!

    • It’s a shame people get so defensive about how other people eat. I don’t care if someone chooses to eat dirt if it makes them feel good and be healthy. The problem comes in when others try to tell me how I’m supposed to eat when I never asked them for their opinion on the matter.

  • Leigh

    Well, I’m neither vegan nor low carb. I have explored in both areas but would not call plant-based vegan by any stretch. I did low carb before it was popular for a number of years. It worked for me then but no longer does. As I have aged I can’t keep my labs in the right zone and that has caused medical issues for me, including by-pass surgery. I used to feel that low carb was the only way but have begun to explore other options that are working for me now. For me, the proof that I am on the right track is the fact that I no longer require medications to maintain appropriate health. It just so happens that it is as a result of following Dr. Campbell’s recommendations and diet. I was busting my butt trying to get these same results from the low carb that had always served me so well before.
    I’m glad low carb is working for you and hope that it always will. The movie, however, brought to light for me another possibility and believe me I was skeptical. But without being exposed to it and WILLING to try something else, I would not have gotten to the place I am today, drug-free. Am I just a freak incidence? Or is there something to their point of view. You decide.

    • CONGRATS on finding what works for you. And you bring up a good point–sometimes that will change over time. I LOVE my low-carb lifestyle now but am open to making any necessary changes to my diet to keep my health in order as time progresses. I don’t ever see myself eating any other way, but I suppose it is possible. We’ll just have to wait and see. Again, I’m very happy that you’ve found a way to be happy and healthy. KEEP IT UP, Leigh!

  • LCforevah

    I’m puzzled that no one as yet has brought up the China Study Smackdown Roundup at FreetheAnimal.


    It’s impressive that there are 43 blog posts refuting Dr Campbell’s study. What is really telling, though, is the doctor’s incoherent response to Denis Minger’s criticism. She attempted a dialog at his website and he couldn’t answer her questions–to the point that the comments section was taken down, and then sometime later put back up.

    If Dr Campbell really understood his own statistics as thoroughly as Minger understands them, he should not have had any problem refuting her.

  • happyvegan

    The populations on earth who live the longest have been studied by Dan Buettner/National Geographic. These longest living communities live in places like Costa Rica, Japan, Italy, Greece. But there is one long lived population in the United States. Can you guess where – near Los Angeles, CA. LA has dense population, traffic jams, smog, stress, fast food restaurants, mixed ethnicities. How can a long living community be near LA?

    Lifestyle. Not lack of stress, not genetics, not environmental toxins, not doctors, not hospitals, not education. The answer is lifestyle – food, exercise, family, culture. They enjoy the longest lives in the US because of how they live their lives – healthy food, healthy drinks, some exercise, contented lives.

    The latest official current world population estimate is 6,852,472,823. Most of these people do not live in the US and most do not eat diets with lots of milk, cheese, or meat. And these longest lived people enjoy good health from the beginning to the end of their lives, rather than being incapacitated by obesity, cancer treatments, heart or stroke attacks, diabetes symptoms.

    So who exactly are these long living Americans – The Seventh Day Adventist community of Loma Linda, CA. The SDA religion encourages vegetarian/vegan foods, drinking healthy water, being actively engaged in a community and provides support for learning healthy recipes. They live about seven years longer than the general US population.

    I am one of five siblings, aged 60 to 75, who grew up on a Wisconsin dairy farm. My family genetics predict death from colon cancer or heart attack. By age 45, I had ulcerative colitis (severe colon inflammation), numbness in my arms, heart ischemia, cholesterol of 312, shortness of breath. These symptoms have all gone away on a vegan diet and my EKG is now normal. My four siblings are meat eaters and all have heart problems, two have colon issues, but not me, the vegan. Three of my siblings have stents, one had a heart attack. Perhaps I am just lucky – but I strongly believe that my lifestyle changes have changed my destiny and delayed my year and cause of death. I would like to be an energetic, happy person that can play and keep up with future grandkids.

    By the way, I am not SDA, but I try to learn from whoever has the “secret to long life”.

    My research and also my observation of the checkout lines at grocery stores tells me veggie eating immigrants, especially first generation from Asia, look healthier, happier, harder working than the people loading up on meat, milk, chips and soda. The checkout lines do not often contain a mixture of foods – either it is all produce/beans/grains or it is highly processed bags, cartons, boxes, cans, bottles that are generally addictive red and yellow colors similar to MacDonalds.

    As we export more of our US restaurant chains, other countries are increasingly getting our “western diseases” – heart disease, diabetes, cancer, high cholesterol, high blood pressure.

    Throughout history, civilizations have been lost to disease whenever two cultures meet. Tongue in cheek, perhaps exporting our bad habits and foods will be our best hope to compete against the Asians! As we export more of our foods to them, they are getting sicker. When they do not feel well, they cannot work as hard or think as well. Each sick person requires people and money to care for them. Then we can sell them our prescription medicines and advanced surgeries to save them. They have an almost unending supply of workers, so the importance of one individual’s health is not important, until their country gets weighed down with an enormous health care burden. Sound familiar! That will give our country a chance to compete.

    Also, our nation will be unable to fix our health care costs, unless we fix the problem source that continues to create vast numbers of new expensive patients. The cause of most disease is poor quality foods that are available everywhere to us and our children, and to which they and we are becoming addicted for life. We are facing a huge increase in obesity, diabetes, heart disease, cancer in our younger generations. Medicines will not be able to save most of them and our health care system will not be able to afford to save them. We are looking at a lost generation due to what I call WWIII – our own national war with food.

  • Patricia


    You say that “research isn’t your thing”.. but it isn’t “research” when you are just reading a book. The diet that changed your life is just starting to have its side effects. Low carb living is absolutely the worst thing you can do to your body. If you just read the china study… then change nothing about your diet.. at least then you will have the info. Thats all. You don’t have to be vegan.. but you should have the info about low carb. Im glad you think your diet is the best. Whatever works for you. But you ARE wrong. And you WILL have negative side effects. It’s just a matter of when.

    • What is the evidence that “low-carb living is absolutely the worst thing you can do to your body?” What if I said that about the vegan diet? It would be absurd because there are people who are doing that diet because it’s what is right for them. The same goes for high-fat, low-carb, animal-based diets for me and so many of my readers. Who’s to say I haven’t read The China Study? There’s a whole lot of assuming going on about what knowledge I have armed myself with about health and nutrition. I’ve read the literature and I know what works for me. That’s healthy low-carb living. So why exactly am I “WRONG” and when am I supposed to have these imaginary “negative side effects” take place?

  • Sonya

    You vegans posting here are just making yourselves look stoopid and proving the “rabid, zealous freak” stereotype. 😀

    You don’t know squat about Jimmy, you obviously haven’t even read his post on this flick and you certainly don’t know that he’s done quite a few posts on your beloved yet extremely flawed China Study. Please, listen to his interview with Denise Minger – then tell Jimmy (and us) that we don’t know squat about the China study.

    You’re attacking someone who does not attack you. Really, it just makes your community look sad and pathetic.

  • RiverFlow

    “high-fat, low-carb, animal-based diets” What a total crock! And the entire scientific research community is unanimous on this… “Jimmy’s” so-called diet is, quite simply, a scam, a fraud, and a great way to ruin you health. Hard to believe ANYONE would be so stupid to follow this misinformation… I thought these nutty fads died out years ago when they were first totally and unequivocally discredited!

    Vegan, Vegetarian, Whole foods with meat, dairy and fish in reasonable proportions, basically ANYTHING is better than this nonsense, maybe even the standard American junk diet! Seriously…

    • Uhhhhhh, okay. THANKS for your contribution…I think. LOL! Anyone who thinks the SAD diet is better than livin’ la vida low-carb is living in la-la land.

  • Melanie

    Interesting how you call this propoganda. And exactly what science are you basing your ‘diet’ on? The facts speak for themselves and particularly as I had an extremely sick child and only after taking her off all animal products did she stop her chemo medication and all other meds she had been on for nine years. No doubt you must have something to do with the corrupt industries that support the eating of animal flesh and their products. My husband who is a physician and my son who is in medical school only had to read the science and change their diets to a plant based one. All five of us have never felt better, more energetic and besides support kind cruelty-free choices. I have met countless people who have kicked the SAD diet and are now healthy and feel wonderful. So sad that you would knock this movie. We do not eat a low carb diet at all. We eat a one hundred per cent plant based diet, love it and cannot believe we once ate dead animals and their flesh. How vile.

    • Actually, there’s a wealth of science supporting low-carb diets that I share about quite often here on my blog. Congratulations on your vegan diet working for you and nobody here is telling you to stop doing what works for you. There’s nothing corrupt about consuming grass-fed cuts of beef produced from humanely-treated cattle as well as pastured eggs and green, leafy, non-starchy veggies. It’s the right diet for me to keep me healthy and fit for a lifetime.

      SAD is awful indeed and I think people would be better off on a vegan or low-carb diet than that. Not knocking the movie because I haven’t seen it yet. But I am concerned people who will watch it may get the wrong impression about the role of meat in the diet. Some like yourself choose not to eat it. Some of us do.

  • Valmer

    The Vegan Propaganda

    First of all the Chinese incorporate meat in their diet ,albeit not a lot from what I have read. So to say that the Chinese are vegans or even vegetarian is incorrect. As far as who who lives longer vegans or meatatarians I think the jury is still out on that one .And I cite the example of the Japanese whose diet is basically the same as the Chinese with the exception that the Japanese eat more meat(fish some raw and they eat meat) Both the Chinese eat a lot of rice but what they don’t eat is all the highly refined sugars found in the western diet.
    That said I would like to point out several facts that many bloggers here have forgotten or perhaps didn’t realize. First of all as Gary Taubes pointed out both in print and verbally is that if you get rid of highly refined carbohydrates (sugars starches etc) you will lose weight. So vegans if you lose weight on your diet great!But know the reasons why. And because you have gone vegan you probably now eat more complex tightly bound carbohydrates found in many vegetables(starchy ones aside) there fore your insulin levels won’t spike .This brings me to my second point. As Tubes so meticulously pointed out in his research on the facts , it’s insulin that is the driving force behind fat storage. Thirdly insulin is behind many of the wild hormonal changes in our bodies and insulin is responsible for the erratic behavior and creation of free radicals.
    Its well known and documented fact that insulin resistance is also the driving force behind obesity which results in increased risk of heart disease ,type II diabetes hypertension and all forms of chronic diseases afflicting at least 60% of the north American population today.
    So I really don’t think its vegans vs. meatatarainas ( although vegans and their ilke try to impose their agenda on the rest of us including their deep seeded so called ethical views about eating meat) what whats really driving the disease and obesity epidemic.
    Could it be that its INSULIN that the culprit..So if both plant style diet or meat style diet or a mix of both until a balance is achieved, works ,which side is right (and I hesitated using the word side but it looks like the FOK movie is and will do just that create sides) is going to be debated for a long time.
    And that’s my point people. Look at the science.
    But before I finish this rant I do have a question for the evangelical vegans on this post or anywhere for that matter who try to impose their will on the rest of us.. How does one account for the lack of what is now termed as western chronic diseases among the Inuit people before the introduction of the so called western diet which was incidentally the European diet since the Inuit people were a meat eating people?

    • Great points to ponder, Valmer! Will those who have been militantly posting about how glorious their vegan diet is respond?

  • Daniel

    Dear vegan evangelists. Stop criticizing our healthy low carb lifestyle. Both diets have many similarities like eschewing processed food and eating whole food.

    Also according to this site:

    “But why are the initial months such a rush? Why is “going vegan” such a drug-like high at first?
    You feel good because you’re going Hannibal Lecter on YOUR OWN BODY.
    It’s because vegan diets—especially raw vegan diets—are so short on calories and basic nutritional needs, that during those early stages, the new vegan’s body is eating itself!
    It’s a metabolically delicious meal of fatty human meat, high in saturated fat and complete protein—and it’s the most nutritious meal you can eat. Of course it’s what your body needs: it is your body!”

    See, our diets are very similar

  • pjnoir

    These people are a distructive cult. And totally out of touch with their food source. If it wasn’t for the interstate highway system and tons and tons of spent carbon, Vegetarains wouldn’t make it thru to many winters. Vegans destory more of the planet than they will admit. Paleo and Low Carb is old school and Vegans are modern new world and dangerous to me. Campbell the phoney Lair makes me sick.

  • Carol

    Okay Jimmy, so you were once a big person who lost a heap of weight. Good on you, I am truly happy for you. But from what I can determine, you’re not a scientist nor someone with any medical training whatsoever. How can you dispute what Dr Campbell and his colleagues are saying when you don’t have the knowledge to counter the argument with anything but anecdotal evidence of what worked for you? It’s not really fair is it? You talk about ‘the bottom line …’ well, the bottom line is you’re not qualified to label anything scientific or medical or dietary as ‘propaganda’. You’re just someone who is passionate about what worked for you. I applaud your enthusiasm for the regimen that effectively saved your life, but I’d have a lot more respect for you if you’d encourage others to find the same freedom in their life by exploring paths that might be the solution for them.

    • It’s more than anecdote, Carol. Is someone like Dr. Campbell so above reproach that nobody can question him? My qualifications are not relevant to this conversation. But anyone who reads my blog knows that I’m all about people finding what works for them, following it exactly as prescribed by the author and then doing it for the rest of their lives. If veganism works for you then GO FOR IT! No argument from me. But there are some serious flaws in the research shared by Dr. Campbell that have been raised by Dr. Michael Eades, Chris Masterjohn, Anthony Colpo, and Denise Minger, among many others. Questioning credentials is a nice straw man argument, but can Dr. Campbell explain these discrepancies pointed out by those who have examined the actual evidence he presented?

  • jeff

    If anyone wants more proof that a plant based lifestyle is better for you, watch the “Gerson Miracle”. Too bad there so many closed minded individuals who think everyone who goes against the norm has some sort of agenda. The sheep tend to get very angry at those who don’t “listen to the establishment”. Pharmacology is certainly not a cure for anything. Just a corporation for profit. Vegans aren’t trying to make a buck, just trying to make a difference!

  • Bob

    Perhaps you should retract the word “propaganda”. I notice that in all your replies that you do not say that perhaps this was an incorrect word to use. The word, by it’s very nature, is derogatory.

    • No, I won’t change it. Propaganda is what it is.

  • Bob

    Then to be fair, I suppose plant eaters can also call any movie that you make about your lifestyle propaganda as well. The heading on a vegan blog criticizing your meat eater movie could read something like this: “Low-Carb Propaganda Movie set to hit theaters in June”. (I surmise that you would not be prone to viewing your movie as “propaganda” either.” Just saying.

    • You can call it what you want based on how you see it. The fact remains that veganism is not supported by any real science for health. That makes the promotion of it pure unadulterated propaganda. Whereas there’s ample evidence in the literature and historically that meat is an essential part of a solid nutritional plan. Just sayin’.

  • Bob

    I appreciate where you are coming from. I am an obese meat eater but am considering to stop eating meat. I think that a plant based diet is good for folks despite you saying that a plant based diet is “not supported by any real science for health”.

    As a side note, I was comparing your November 2005 photo with your recent April and October 2010 photo’s, and I noticed that you appear to be quite thinner in your 2005 photo (the one with you and your lovely wife) than you are now. The one with you at the Seattle Space Needle almost shows that you have a small “muffin top”. I certainly mean no offense by this, but have things changed in your diet over the last couple of years? How do you compare this with someone like Dr’s Esselstyn and Campbell who appear to be much thinner than you are even though they are in their advanced years?

    I am just trying to figure out the best route to take for the rest of my life. Thanks…good discussion.

    • THANKS Bob! Thin doesn’t mean healthy. Metabolically speaking, all of my health markers are that of someone who is vibrantly healthy. I’m better off with my health than at any other time in my life. And my animal-based diet is what gave me this.

  • Scott

    I personally cannot understand how one doesn’t see the negative effects meat has on all aspects of society. From the minute were born our environment shapes what we eat, but more importantly what we enjoy. So if your fed meat your entire life most likely that’s what you will prefer to eat. Only when education is introduced you can begin to make rational decisions on what you put into your body and the effects it has on society. The majority of the meat americans consumes comes from factory farms thus producing one of the worlds leading pollutants!!!(methane). This fact alone should be enough to reconsider meat based diets. Were killing the already depleted environment and filling ourselves with meat based products that are awful for our bodies. Our sheer biology suggest and proves we aren’t carnivores!! My real questions is given this knowledge why would one insist on still eating meat? We do no need it. it’s simply an unnecessary part of our life. Jimmy you claim to eat all healthy meats that graze on greenest of grasses and the best feed around. If this is the case its a rarity the rest of the meat goes to the Fast food corporations and major meat producing tycoons. By allowing americans to over indulge in meat based products were straining the health care systems, environmental systems, and its simply not right!!

    • So it’s not so much that we need to slow down or stop our consumption of meat, per se. It’s that we need to change the way meat is produced and distributed so that only the highest quality grass-fed and pastured is made available. I’ll agree with vegans who are disgusted by the industrialized production of meat. That’s so not cool.

  • Scott

    The problem is that if everyone on the planet chose to eat all meat based diets we couldn’t environmental afford that…. due to land restrictions, waste run off, methane gas pollution etc. Unfortunately for people choosing to partake in all meat based diets it wont be a readily available option in the future. New technologies are breaking through that will allow us to build skyscraper tall gardens eliminating soil derogation, pesticide, long transpiration of the food and all virtually all other negative side effects. The future just isn’t in meat based products with the the U.N predicating an estimated 9 billion people by 2050 the world couldn’t afford to consume all that meat. If you approach this with a logical mind frame one should ethically and morally choose NOT to eat meat simply because of all the adverse effects it has. I haven’t seen one post on here or anywhere ( excluding extreme situations) where they switched to a plant based diet and felt awful had horrible side effects and completely destroying the environment etc. It’s really just about educating yourself about your surroundings.

    • There’s no ethical or moral dilemma about eating meat if you realize what that food that God created is doing for your body. I’m quite educated about my surroundings and what’s best for me. And that includes a few veggies and plants now and again with my meat.

  • Chad

    This is not a film about vegans. It’s about a 100% plant based diet. Vegans eat french fries, processed oils, processed foods and junk food. This film is about consuming only whole plant based foods. Get your facts straight.

    • HAHA! Now that’s funny. A vegan who doesn’t want to be associated as one. HAHA!

  • Chad

    One more point to add is follow the research and your own results. I can tell you first hand I was the biggest meat eater on the face of the planet my first 37 years on this planet. Until a cardiologist handed me a box of simcor and told me to take these or you’ll not see 45. I decided to not take them and drop all animal products over a 6 month period and track my labs/results. I cut my cholesterol by half, my triglycerides went from 220 to 50, all my blood tests improved to the levels of a teenager. Even my B-12 that all the meat eaters talk about increased from the 300’s to 896 on a 1100 point scale. My vitamin D, and calcium scores increased. Everything went to excellent.

    I do not eat any processed foods at all. 100 percent plant based and no processed oils of any kind. We make all our own sauces, bread, chips, etc, etc at home without using oils.

    The first 6 weeks are tuff. Your body goes through serious DT’s just like your coming off an addictive drug. I even had nightsweats from the the addiction to sugar, HFCS and animal fats.

    This has such an impact on my family doctor who is well into his 60’s that he switched to Dr. Esselstyn’s lifestyle plan and started recommending this to his patients.

    The proof is in the numbers for me and I’ll never go back to the typical American diet again.


    • Congrats on your success, Chad. But it’s not the meat that would harm you. To each his own.

  • Chad

    You might be right on the meat that wouldn’t hurt me. It’s all the processed fat that comes from the meat ie. dairy products, and all the harmones, antibiotics, feed, etc, etc that are being pumped into the animals.

    Corn has even been destroyed by all the by-products that are produced from it. HFCS being one of the top hitters.

    Having personally seen this film it is not telling anyone to go “vegan”. It’s pointing out the hard facts of the American diet and all the diseases that have came along with it.

    For me, I’ll never eat animal products again but I do believe that the age of the farmer will return eventually and all the corporatism will fall. Everyone should understand what they are putting in between their lips and where it comes from. If you can’t pronounce an ingredient you shouldn’t eat it.

    I also do not believe we should be taking vitamins or supplements. Why take them when we can get them naturally from our food? I’ve seen first hand the results of eating real food.

    So per say, I will agree with you and say that meat is not the problem but until animals are raised and live they way they were meant to people will continue to get sick from them. And as long as people are living off of processed food and the animal products of today we’ll continue to have heart disease, diabetes and cancer as our top 3 killers in this nation.


    • So only consume meat that’s been grass-fed.

  • Chad

    Yeah, and only if you raise it along with your own vegetable garden. Even then it should only be in very small qty’s with fresh vegetables and fruit being the bulk of your diet. To me that’s common sense.

    America has proven that Gluttony is truly a deadly sin.

    I’ll stick with my processed free plant based diet.


    • No argument about the gluttony. But it’s not the meat that’s causing it. It’s the sugar mostly and fattening carbohydrates.

      • Mark Haub, Ph.D.

        Hey now, watch the sugar-bashing 🙂 to each their own right. Why is everyone against plant-derived carbohydrates? And no, I can’t eat a twinkie right now as I have my tongue in my cheek.

        Koom by ahh…

  • Chad

    So I just got back from having my carotid arteries scanned and my results were under 200 when the nurse said the average is 530’ish for my age. I got that a lower number is better and she told me I had the arteries of a teenager at 37 years old!

    Yeah! Plant based for life baby! =)

    And you should stay away from refined carbs. Natural carbs are great for your body. Nothing wrong with whole wheat and potatoes. =) Eat as much as you like.

    • Chad, my heart scan calcium score is ZERO eating lots of saturated fat like butter, cheese and animal foods. Avoiding sugar, starch and wheat makes that happen for me.

      • you’re still young so all that built up cholesterol hasn’t calcified yet … or maybe you have some kind of unusual genetics or metabolism that “burns off” the excess cholesterol, because the data shows that it normally accumulates.

  • Greg MD

    Perhaps you’ve asked the question –

    If you only drink Pepsi and eat potato chips and you call yourself vegan, will you get fat, sick and die in short order?

    If you only drink vodka and eat hot dog weiners and you call yourself a low-carb person, will you get fat, sick and die in short order?

    If you only eat fruits, nuts, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains, will you get sick and die of a heart attack or some other deadly disease?

    If you only eat butter, cheese, beef, pork, chicken, and lard, will you get sick and die of a heart attack or some other deadly disease?

    The confusion abounds.

    An old proverb states, “There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.” Do each of us know which diet is really the best? Do we really know? Upon what evidence can one know for sure?

    For me a major line of evidence is this – Which people groups live the longest in the world? Find out what those people are doing and do what they do. The Secrets of Long Life feature on National Geographic had an interesting investigation on this question. http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/ngm/0511/feature1/index.html

    When we box in or out certain categories of food by our own preconceived mental constructs, we set ourselves up for being misunderstood and fighting against those who are really on our team. Rather each food should be evaluated for its own merits within the situations people find themselves in. If the movie Forks Over Knives, wishes to encourage more eating of the foods most of us would consider healthy (fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes, and whole grains), why not support that part and provide encouragement in that regard. There will be opportunity to discuss differences. Why attempt to pigeon hole the movie and discredit it when those involved are putting blood, sweat, and tears into moving Americans toward healthier foods, albeit maybe not all the same foods are agreed upon.

    • Not trying to discredit anything…simply stating my opinion (this is my blog after all where I do that kind of thing) based on the people involved and what they have said about what healthy is all about. If you think Campbell is objective about what diet he deems “healthy” then you don’t know him very well.

  • Susan

    I’m a 53-year old athletic woman, and have been enjoying a whole-food, plant-based diet for 18 months. It works for me. I’ve never felt or looked better in my life. My doctor was astonished at my numbers at my annual physical last month.
    I am astounded at the antagonism directed towards vegans; we’re not all preachy granola crunchers in sensible shoes, you know. Hey, I’ll be the first to admit that it’s not a lifestyle for everybody (just ask my husband). But I do think that we all could benefit if we added a few more leafy greens to our diet. Hooray for kale!

  • Tara

    I’m glad that I know what’s healthy and what’s not-So there really is no debate for me-those of you that want to live a low carb life high in animal fats go to it-I’ll live a much healthier, happy, energetic life and probably a longer one at that with my fruits, veggies, nuts, grains, etc……Love well!!!!

  • John

    Wow, why are so many of you down on vegans? I’m in my mid 50’s, been vegan over 5 years, my wife has been vegan her entire 50+ years and she is healthy and has a better figure then most 30 year olds!

    A little over 5 years ago my dr told me I would be bound to a wheel chair in a few years due to a sever case of RA. After a little research I went vegan, all symptom disappeared. 2 years into going vegan I had some chicken, after a month of eathing lean meats and cheese I was laid up again. Gave up the animal products, symptoms went away and I’ve not looked back.

    All grains, fruits & veggies for me. I could care less what you eat but dont give me crap for what I choose to eat.

    • John, you could have just as easily switched to an animal-based diet without grains, sugar or refined, processed foods and received the same results. It’s not the vegan diet necessarily that helped you, but rather coming off of the SAD diet. CONGRATULATIONS on your improvements and keep it up!

  • Leah Jacobs


    You can’t argue with the facts:
    Plant based nutrition does not contain cholesterol
    that causes atherosclerosis.

    Why don’t you see the movie first before spewing negative opinions about people trying to help themselves, animals, and the earth’s environmental problems (caused by meat consumption) by avoiding the animal industry?

    Your nasty wording “Propaganda” is pathetic.
    You’re doing a disservice to all the americans trying to save their lives by staying away from animals.

    • Leah, there’s nothing negative shared here. Just positive and healthy low-carb animal-based high-fat nutrition.

  • Rebecca Foxworth

    I’m shocked that this film could be reviewed so negatively before it is even released. I’m not a vegan (my family and I shared a delicious tri tip last night, but I digress), and believe there are many excellent diets out there. People can live healthy by controlling their calories with “counting” diets, by eliminating processed foods (this is one thing that nearly EVERYONE agrees on), by living a low-carb lifestyle, and by living a vegan lifestyle. Both whole foods low-carb and whole foods vegan diets (whole foods…because there are processed crap products available for both diets) can reduce weight, blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes, many types of cancer, and c-reactive protein. The difference, from what I can gather, lies in the following areas: Vegan diets can be deficient in B12(B12 deficiency was available through bacteria in previous generations, but our modern sanitation in food production has eliminated them as a good source; this can be remedied with a simple multivitamin) and D (our indoor lifestyle severely lessens the production of D…fortified milk is a supplement for non-vegans). Ultra-low-fat vegan diets also increase the possibility of late-life hemorrhagic stroke. The above facts are backed up by research. Low-carb diets also have their problems. It does take much more of the earth’s resources to produce a pound of beef than it does a pound of grain (whether or not you believe it to be at all feasible to feed the world’s starving populations with grain grown from lesser use of these resources, the fact that they DO take more resources is undeniable). Additionaly, low-carb diets increase the risk of colorectal cancers and lung cancers in patients of mid- to late-life age. The increase in cancers is also backed up by research. What’s wrong with conveying that through film? You just said you *wish* the same thing would happen for the diet you espouse. What’s good for the goose…

    • Nobody is speaking negative of anything. But claiming meat causes cancer is patently wrong with no evidence.

  • Alms

    Thanks Jimmy, at least in your post you state that different things work for different people. When I was back home in Kenya and I asked my mum what was for supper, she said either ‘rice’ or ‘potatoes’ or ‘beans’ etc but after moving to the UK, it became ‘lamb’ or ‘chicken’, you get the picture. 80 pounds heavier and I’m suddenly supposed to blame carbs for my weight problem?? Come on! In Kenya we all know that it’s the rich city folk who can afford to eat meat every day that get gout and diabetes, if it was the carbs then most Africans would be diabetic!

    I am a refugee from the low-carb community and now firmly in the vegan camp. I find it easier and more natural to give up meat, fish eggs and milk than fruits, veggies(in copious amounts) and starches.

    My view on nutrition was coloured by the fact that the first diet book I ever read was Atkins where I learned that low fat was nonsense etc. After my initial stint on eating Atkins style 10 years ago I gave up after 6 months with only a little weight loss to show for it. I tried unsuccessfully in the following years to go back but was unable to stick to it for more than a couple of days. Even in the 6 months I was low carbing, I was waiting for the increased energy everyone kept talking about in vain.

    Now eating vegan style, I’ve finally found lots of energy! Of course vegan-ism has it’s problems, no society has ever lived without eating animal products successfully and with longevity but the same could be said for low carb (Inuits eat mainly fish so it’s very different from the land animal based low carb diets that are recommended, in any event the Inuit also have greater bone loss than people who eat SAD style!)

    Yes I have read GCBC but I have also read the China study. The Japanese or Okinawans are no doubt the longest living people and their diet more closely resembles veganism with the addition of fish than it does low carb. No doubt both vegan-ism and low carb approaches are reversing chronic disease diabetes heart disease etc. so who is right? The conclusion I came was to eat plenty of veggies for vitamins, antioxidants etc. then pick your poison, STARCH or MEAT.

    • Meat makes me healthy which is why I consume it. I’d love to interview you sometime about why you left low-carb. Email me.

  • Jenni

    I think the issue is that this film is not promoting a “diet” at all. It’s promoting a way of life. I don’t think there is anything wrong with getting the information out there. People will not be brainwashed by this movie. Anyone with half a brain will see the movie, decide if it sounds interesting to them, do some research and go from there. I am not vegan but I will see the movie. If you feel more comfortable eating the “western world” way, then go for it. I already eat healthy and the more I can learn about health and wellness, the better off I’ll be in the end I hope.

    • With people like Campbell as part of this film, you won’t learn much that’s not propaganda.

  • Rebecca Foxworth

    As I said before, I enjoy your blog. I see you treat even guests whose view is quite the opposite of yours, respectfully. That is why I was so shocked at the word “propaganda” and the fact that you responded to my comment by asserting that no one was speaking negatively. Hmmm. I assumed the word “propaganda” was negative (it is often coupled with the word “lies”), but figured that perhaps I was wrong, so I looked it up. Several reliable dictionary-type websites (i.e. not wikipedia)state that while the word (of Catholic and Latin origin) was originally neutral, and meant only the dissemination of information to change another’s point of view (specifically to Catholicism), it has acquired a negative connotation in modern times. As we’re not speaking Latin, and neither are we time traveling away from modern times, the word “propaganda” DOES have a negative connotation. In fact, you use it in a negative way in a comment above where you state “With people like Campbell as part of this film, you won’t learn much that’s not propaganda.” If you’re truly using the word “propaganda” in its original, neutral sense, then OF COURSE the film is intended to change others’ point of view and persuade them to adopt a vegan diet…in the same way that your website is intended to change others’ point of view and persuade them to adopt a low-carb diet. Yet, I feel quite certain you would never refer to your own dissemination of information as “propaganda”. You ARE speaking negatively about the film, and of the trustworthiness and motives of Dr. Campbell. I’ve seen you disagree with others before (Neal Barnard comes to mind) without labeling their opinion as “propaganda”. Splitting hairs, but still…if you’re referring to another person’s work or opinion as unsubstantiated, ill-researched, or untrustworthy (or even just plain made-up)…then say so. And then own your opinion.

    • Fair enough. Haven’t seen the film yet, but am happy to learn as I do on my podcast as you noted. However, I’ve blogged many times about how vile and vicious T. Colin Campbell has been towards those of us who choose to make our diets an animal-based one. This lack of acceptance of an alternative viewpoint makes what is shared in this new film propaganda from the start. Look up Campbell’s name in my blog to see the kind of stuff he has stated about Atkins and low-carb before. I’ll be away on my annual Low-Carb Cruise this week but will return on May 9th.

      • Mark Haub, Ph.D.

        I’m with you Jimmy, if the primary image was not a scalpel, I would not be as active now either. But instilling fear that only eating one way will elicit health is not supported by science. Sure, one can cherry pick data to support one side, but the entirety of science has yet to conclude that a specific lifestyle is healthiest for everyone.

        Anyone up for Matrix gruel 24/7?

  • Andrea

    Let us know when you GET Cancer!

    • Who is gonna get cancer?

      • Andrea

        Meat eaters are going to get Cancer. Mongolia is the country with the highest rates of Cancer, look at the mongolian cuisine wikipedia page and tell me what you see. People that think low-carb diet is the way to go don’t know anything about how the biochemical processes work in the human body. Vegan diet is a great transitional detox diet to the diet all primates eat. Tropical fruits and tropical nuts. In all reality, we are primates. Tropical fruits are high in potassium(muscle lubricant), high potassium will give anyone that has eaten meat fatty acids or processed oils a heart attack. AKA HIGH POTASSIUM + HIGH BLOOD FAT = HEART ATTACK. Now you know why they say not to eat too many bananas.

        • That has got to be the dopiest comment anyone has ever left at my blog.

  • Patrick

    I agree it is the processed foods in most peoples life that make them sick. Eskimos eat almost exclusively unprocessed meat only diet and have been doing so for thousands of years. The issue is one diet supports a industry raising, feeding, and killing 10 billion animals a year, not including fish, millions of tons of waste, and consumes a huge amount of oil. And the other supports farming, hopefully local farming. That along is enough for me to support a vegan lifestyle. Either way you get a health lifestyle, try to support one that isn’t devastating the planet. One of the best book i have read on the subject is a new book called Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer. Jimmy you seem like a well read person please read. Thank You.

    • Sure! I’d love to interview the author.

    • Patrick – you it the nail on the head. Following a plant based diet is a “Triad of Health” – compssion for self, compassion for animals and compassion for the environment/planet. Everyone wants data. The data on this are too overwhelming to ignore. I turned to a plant-based diet initially for health. But the more I read about the horrific treatment of and impact on animals and the planet, my way of living was clearly a triad of death. Others come to a plant based diet for ethical reasons and this film has the science and clinical practice to support movement in this direction. If everyone took a step away from fried foods and processed foods, we’d be half way there.

  • Frank

    I’m sorry a blog purportedly promoting “healthy” eating is slamming a film that’s goal is to help educate people about how to eat a healthier diet.

    The doctors behind the film advise whole grains, fruit, vegetables, nuts and legumes.

    How on EARTH can you call that propaganda?

    • Grains and legumes as well as some fruits and veggies are toxic to me and many of my readers.

  • Paul

    Paleo is the way to go! Humans should eat what we were designed and evolved to eat. Grains and dairy ain’t it. Diseases of civilization started when we began eating these so called healthy foods. The China study is and OBSERVATIONAL STUDY; CAN NOT BE REPEATED OR PROVEN. FRIUTS, VEGGIES, NUTS AND SEEDS AND “CLEAN” PROTEINS ARE BEST. DIETARY EXTREMES ARE NOT.

  • I appreciate the article and it is very well written, and correct. I abhor the term “vegan” as it has so many political and “righteous” connotations. Even many in the raw food movement have a holier than though attitude which I have struggled with. Having said that – I follow primarily a low fat raw plant based diet (mostly fruits and vegetables) — between 80-95% of calories. There is emphasis on low fat, as many in the raw food movement eat a very high fat diet and include much salt, and have the same problems as those on the SAD. I have seen both fat “vegans” and skinny vegans. And I’ve seen fat “raw foodists” and skinny raw foodists. The skinny ones with drawn faces and bad skin – IMHO – are those who have not eaten sufficient calories and who caloric choices are very poor. I am a competitive athlete who has competed at the World Championships level since 2001. I get most of my calories from fruits (which have the highest nutrient to calorie ratio of any food on the planet). I get more volume, fiber, minerals, etc. from greens and vegetables. People ask me where I get my protein from. I ask “how much do I need?” Society does not suffer from a protein deficiency. I am stunned someone said that this movie was an obersvational study and couldn’t be replicated. If you watched the movie, that’s exactly what Dr. Campbell did. And what is science anyway? Science is an art and you observe and you write down what you see (if you’re honest). But back to the author – I agree wholeheartedly with your point and have felt this way even in the raw food movement. I have felt alienated from “vegetarians” and “vegans” and left out of “the group” of the perfect raw fooders. My premise is: I don’t care what you eat. If it’s working for you – good for you. And let me continue doing what I’m doing as a fellow free spirit. And note that being muscular and “in shape” does NOT mean you are healthy.
    Lastly –
    If you live a life without adequate fresh air, sunshine, pure water, daily physical activity, getting out into nature, and nurturing relationships, and live it with anger, negative stress, a judgmental and negative attitude, etc. you’ll die eating a bowl of bananas.

    • And I forgot to say – you can’t be healthy without adequate sleep. That’s right up there in the top 5 above.

  • Richard

    To me the movie was using the worst case scenario. Comparing veggie eating with meats that are from fast food restaurants is not a proper comparisons. You’re eating meat from an animal that has been processed and needs antibiotics or some sort of drug to keep it looking well. Most cow food is cornmeal which be proven not to be a proper source of food (thats why they need the drugs.. All milk is pasteurized then fortified with calcium, vitamin D. I think this movie would have been more creditable if they would of compared it with none pasteurized milk and animals that are not shot up with drugs that eat there correct food. Wheat also courses disease, I talking about gluten, It is in every processed food that you eat. which can stop the body from getting nutrition by covering the distributors in your stomach. This is a complexed subject. There is not one answer. Everything should be in moderation. People need to take responibillty and be accountable for there eating habits.
    Organic foods, grass feed cows should have also been part of this movie as a comparisons. Meet is good, vegetables are good, we just need to stop messing around with it. It’s all about money.

    Obviously fast food is just not good for anyone.

  • Lee

    It’s real simple, he who lives the longest with the lowest medical bills wins.

  • Cindy

    This way of eating has made a real change in my life. The concept is eating whole grain foods, eliminating meat, fish, Oil and dairy. I can say my cholesterol numbers dropped by 60 points after only 5 weeks following the food plan. The idea is not new. The China Study has been around for a long time and no one has been listening. I am more interested in the Quality of my life and preventing heart disease. Read the book “Reversing and Preventing Heart Disease” by Dr. Esselstyn for the facts. WAKE UP AMERICA…YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT!

  • C. Geier

    I am always astounded by the amount of resistance to something so factual and basic. I agree with many of the comments that “Americans just don’t care”, well they better start caring because the health issues Americans are grappling with as a whole…are causing this country BILLIONS of dollars. And to those that claim the vegans “they see at Whole Foods look sickly”, please, just stop.

    I’ve been a VEGAN for 20+ years….yeah that’s right….not an egg, or piece of FLESH or a pat of butter….or GOD FORBID OUR BELOVED CHEESE…have found their way onto my plate…and yet….guess what? IM FINE….no wait…BETTER than fine. I feel good, look good, and all of “my numbers” (YES I WAS TESTED) are FANTASTIC.

    OH wait, it gets better….I’ve raised TWO more vegans….yeah, from BIRTH. SHOCKER…not only are they ALIVE…..they are THRIVING….neither is OBESE, OVERWEIGHT, SICKLY, or has STRINGY hair…..They are bright, aware, smart, responsible, productive adults who have no health issues to speak of. As young children they were rarely sick….and now as young adults, are rarely sick.

    People, wake up. You are what you eat. And no, a plant based diet will NOT turn men into women. If this was the case I would have 2 daughters and be married to a woman….LOL
    Oh and if anyone wants to SEE what I look like….with pleasure.

  • Mike

    After going over three months of back and forth hate between the dietary extremes in these comments I feel I can trust none of you. Moderation and exercise still seems the best approach. It is just too simple an approach to pad out to an entire book or movie. It is also too uninspiring to bring about the heights of zealotry that all you people exhibit. Forget your movies, books and thinly veiled new age religions.

    • Ha ha ha! Moderation is the biggest joke we’ve ever been fed.

  • Markl

    Hi Jimmy

    We have a world food shortage. Eating animals takes much more resources than eating grain or veggies! Your diet contributes to pollution and starvation. live stock consumes most of our water and at the same time is the #1 polluter of water. We can not support a planet of meet eaters with the current population, do you agree? What is your thought on this?


    • Actually, that’s a myth regarding meat. Read Lierre Keith’s book.

  • Ira Luft

    Yes, lots of people can lose weight and get “healthy” on a Paleo or Atkins style diet, reducing obesity and diabetes. But in the long run, they are still likely to have problems, since a high-protein, high-animal-fat diet is (a) acid-forming, (b) too low in protective phytonutrients, (c) inflammation-promoting, (d) cancer-promoting, and (e) rough on the kidneys. Sure, some people are genetically lucky, and will live to 100 on *any* diet. Thus everyone’s choice is, do you want to push your luck, and hope you’re among the few who can get away with eating whatever you like and live to tell (there’s no genetic test yet, for who can do this!), or do you want to go with a nutrient dense, mostly plant based diet that offers weight loss AND a greater statistical likelihood of reaching a healthy old age? Have a nice day, everybody!

    • Ira, most of my readers wouldn’t accept your premise regarding animal-based diets. There’s no supporting evidence for your claims and plenty of science stating just the opposite which I share about often on this blog. The most nutrient-dense diet on the planet for many of us is one that is high animal-fat and protein based as the primary source of energy. Why does it have to be a one-size-fits-all vegetarian diet?

  • phatboyfromla

    Dr. Max Gerson proved this over 80 years ago. He even brought his cured patients in front of a Senate hearing on Cancer. Nobody wanted to hear of it and they still don’t today. Our bodies are poisoned by so many things. Propaganda? Keep eating what you want. Say hi to your oncologist for me.

    • This is exactly why people can’t take vegetarians seriously. Hyperbole and dogma rule the day.

  • Anne

    I read all the posts. I agree that different diets work for different people. I have good numbers and I eat meat and fish. Yes, my portions are reduced compared to what I used to eat. I also eat carbohydrates (rice, quinoa, fruit, bread). I eat lots of fresh organic vegetables–salads and steamed vegetables, seeds and nuts. I don’t eat junk food or highly processed foods. My cholesterol is 193, my fasting blood sugar is 89 and I am diabetic with no medications because my A1C is excellent. I read and weigh the evidence. I have extremely unhealthy vegetarian friends. I don’t believe a vegan diet, long term, is healthy. The “bottom line” is that we all have a choice and the right to make that choice without being slammed by any one fanatic from either side. I believe we are omnivores. My diet includes meat and fish with lots of plant-based choices including beans and lentils. I wish all of you excellent health and hope you make the right choices to optimize it. Trial and error will tell you what’s right. In ending, I truly love animals and vehemently oppose big agra and the inhumane way animals are grown, fed and treated. The meat we eat is without hormones or antibiotics and is grass fed. The fish we eat is low mercury and at the top of the recommended list. All of you, please read and study the information, on both sides. Keep an open mind. Don’t snipe at each other. Realize also that large corporations are poisoning our food supply. Don’t eat GMO food; soy and corn have been largely GMO for 30+ years. Many are allergic to soy, including my husband and me. Tofu is crap. Read about soy beans and their toxicity before they are made edible. Learn that soy is estrogenic and goitrogenic. If you are to be a vegetarian, eat all the other non-soy based foods–beans, lentils. All the fake “milks” are highly processed. Get refined sugar out of your diet. Pasta and noodles are highly processed. If you are going veggie, eat VEGETABLES! not just a few of your favorites leaving all the rest out. Have your blood tested and know your numbers. For those thriving on a veggie diet, good for you. For those omnivores, good for you. I have made my choices and they work for me. Thank you for all your comments, Jimmy and others. Get allergy tested so you can avoid hidden food allergies (soy, gluten, the nightshades, nuts, dairy). You’ll be glad you did. Signed: A 67-year old retired female who believes “you are what you eat.”

    • Thanks Anne. I appreciate your comments. But I’ll only add that you aren’t what you eat, but rather you are what your body can do with what you eat. Best wishes to you for a long and happy life.

  • Leila

    Actually, this is not a vegan film and although some of the individuals involved are vegan, not all are. The film promotes a plant based DIET. Veganism is not a diet, but extends to clothing, entertainment, etc. It’s based on respect for animals, not health concerns. There is even a section of the film discussing Dr. Campbell’s testing on animals (not vegan AT ALL).

    • There are no animal-based diet people in the film. Veganism/Vegetarianism by very definition.

  • Loretta

    Some of this comments are just stupid! You can live a happy healthy life as a vegan! For those of you who think you must eat meat to be healthy you’re just plain wrong! So much of what we eat our bodies really don’t need! Before you comment do your research please!

    • Nobody claims you “must eat meat to be healthy,” but the claims by the plant-based advocates that say meat will harm you are absurd. Choose the plan that’s right for you, but don’t tell someone else how they eat is somehow wrong because it’s not something you would do.

      • Jimmy, I’ve recently read E2 diet (Rip Esselstyn), Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease
        (Caldwell B. Esselstyn, Jr., M.D.) and China Study (Dr. T. Colin Campbell) and the evidence is compelling. For 6 weeks now I’ve been eating low fat, plant based diet … Low fat is the difficult part, finding plants and “whole” foods is rather easy. Giving up eggs and milk products as not difficult (icecream always gave me a hangover anyway) and I had stopped eating (mostly) red meats for a few years now and always felt sort of nauseous after eating pork products so that was easy to give up too. Chicken is disgusting if you think about it, the health department is forever training food handlers and now general public to wash up and clean up or you (will) get salmonella … why would you want to eat that? So chicken was easy to give up. What’s the point? well, since eating “strictly” plant based, whole food, low fat now for 6 weeks and as an avid 50+ athlete (cycling 100+ miles/week plus hiking 10-20 miles/week plus yoga 3-4 times/week) I’ve noticed a significant change in my performance, recovery times, NO MORE residual joint pain (due mostly to OA), and I do have more energy during the day. I don’t count carbs but it doesn’t matter because I’ve also lost 10+ pounds. These guys don’t make the claim, per se, that eating meat will harm you but they do present overwhelming evidence that peoples that survive off of mostly plant and whole food diets do not develop many of the diseases that meat/high fat (western) eating cultures do. AND I can attest to the fact that (for me at least) eating plant based, whole food, low fat does make a significantly noticeable difference in how I feel. Have you read China Study? there’s interesting information on autopsies that were done on WWII vets (average age like 22) and what they found in their hearts … and that as a society we eat about 30% more fat now than in the 1940’s … that’s an eyeopener.

  • Bridget

    Being Vegan goes beyond just our health. We kill 1 billion animals a year. No one thinks about the amount of water and grain it takes to feed those animals. We don’t think about the amount of waste they produce. We don’t think about how much land we clear to raise these animals. There is more CO2 released into the environment from deforestation than from all cars/trucks/planes etc from the world transportation sector. This goes beyond our health. I don’t necessarily thing everyone should become vegan, but we need to cut back on the amount of meat we eat. Even if humans were meant to be omnivores, they were not meant to eat the amount of animal protein that we eat today.

  • Barry

    Your comment on May 5 regarding the vegans at Whole Foods made me laugh. ( I’ve seen my share of Vegans who look absolutely wretched everytime I’m in Whole Foods or Fresh Market. Most of them sporting stringy, dried hair, drawn faces with aged skin, waaaaaay beyond their chronological age. Please don’t tell me they are specimens of a high-quality diet!)
    Do the words Stereotyping and Ignorance mean anything to you? Do you really think you can look at a person in a grocery story and determine whether they are Vegan merely by what they happen to have in the cart that day. I shop at Whole Foods and many days I look AWFUL. And I’m not Vegan. So don’t blame my stringy dry hair and aged skin on the fact that I might be a Vegan just because I shop there. Please.

  • Laurie

    Okay. Haven’t seen the movie yet, only watched the trailers. All I know is that a couple of years ago I started cutting out meat and meat products. The first year I went full on vegetarian (not vegan), for my annual physical they did my labwork. The results were very different than the previous year -for the better. My sugar was down, my bad cholesterol was waay down and my good cholesterol had increased. Now, this was a couple of years ago. Before this this movie had come about. I haven’t read The China Study or any other veg-touting books. I just know that when I eat less animal products = I feel better. So, I have to believe (from a personal standpoint) that a diet with limited animal can only be good for a person. I’m intrigued with this movie and I hope that it will help people live better lives. Before anyone criticizes it’s credibility, why don’t you test it yourself? Get your bloodwork done, try to eat as little animal products as possible for a couple of months. Then see how you feel and get tested again. Don’t feel good or not seeing results? Go back to how you were eating. It’s your life.

    • That’s EXACTLY what happened to me when I started eating LOTS of animal-based foods as the basis of my diet, Laurie. It just goes to show you that there is no monopoly on what makes you healthy. I’m happy vegetarianism works for you and WAY TO GO! I just wish people wouldn’t be so arrogant to think that their way is the only way to good health. Very clearly, the agenda of FOK is to make the claim that meat is the reason for obesity and disease when there is no scientific evidence to support any such position.

      • Laurie

        I understand and I can agree with the whole propaganda thing but for some it might be what it takes for them to atleast try vegetarianism. I wish there was a way of saying “Hey, try this. See if it works. If not? Oh well, you tried.” without shoving it down peoples’ throats. But hey, look at the meat, dairy, cotton, oil industries. They wouldn’t be where they are today without propaganda.

        • And PCRM and PETA have put vegetarianism out there in the public eye. Nothing wrong with stating your case for what you believe in. But denigrating other lifestyle choices to make your own look good is reprehensible. That’s what the “plant-based” movement is doing to those of us who have become healthier eating an animal-based high-fat, moderate protein, low-carb diet.

  • Seb

    You paleo/primal/atkins/low fat/whatever diet fans are really funny to watch… you’re saying the vegan diet is against nature and science, that it’s not proven to be healthier. But the truth is that while a strict vegan diet is not proven to be the healthiest diet (no diet is absolutely proven to be and will never be) the massive amount of studies done on nutrition show that a whole-food plant based diet is the healthiest. There’s no point in claiming otherwise it just make you look like a fool to those who really studied nutrition and health.

    You should really learn about the politics of food. The meat industry, the dairy industry, the egg industry, the sugar industry, the fast food industry, the refined oil industry, the supplements industry and the pharmaceutical industry make profits beyond imagination. It’s not even in the millions or the billions it’s in trillions! Let met assure you that those industry will make sure their product aren’t seen as unhealthy and will do all it needs to make them see as healthy or even essential. I won’t go into details on this subject the bottom line is that there’s is a massive amount of evidence against animal foods and processed foods but those evidence are prevented from being given too much attention to protect those food indusstries and the pharmaceutical and medical industry (do not forget that they make money from you being sick).

    Now with that said here’s my take on the vegan and the paleo diet and why they’re both healthier that a conventional diet.

    The paleo diet his much healthier than a SAD diet simply because you cut out most or all the processed food in your diet. The problem is that replacing it with too much animal foods is NOT healthy. This diet may cause problems for some people, especially endurance athletes, while you can still be a endurance athlete on the paleo diet, you won’t perform as well. Even author like Loren Cordain and Joe Friel admits that it will decrease your performance. You need to supplements with high carbs supplements (energy bars, gels, sports drinks, etc…) which obviously should not be considered paleo.

    Now what about the vegan diet? Well the reason vegans in generals are healthier is that obviously they cut out all the animal food in their diet to replace it with more plants. Not all vegans are healthier and the reason is that a vegan diet can consist of many different things. You can have a junk-food diet that could be considered vegan, this diet would NEVER be healthy. But a whole food plant-based diet his without any doubt the healthiest diet out there, this ”diet” doesn’t prohibit any food it simply mean that you eat mostly whole plant foods. The only problem I see with a vegan diet would be a slight lack of calories or variety due to lack of options.

    • Follow the money with anything…it’s the way of the world–sadly.

  • Merry

    Great post and thread…I read your blog, but haven’t yet commented on anything! First comment! Away I go:

    I used to be a vegetarian. Then I tried the vegan lifestyle in my twenties. During this period of time, I wound up with diagnoses of: Celiac Disease (goodbye all grains!), mold intolerance (goodbye raw fruits and vegetables!), severe salicylic acid allergy (goodbye most cooked fruits and vegetables!), Hashimoto’s disease (goodbye soy!), severe low blood pressure (goodbye consciousness, hello floor!) and a slew of other horrible maladies.

    I met a nutritionist who took into account my PERSONAL needs…what I was allergic/sensitive to, what my genetic heritage is…how my parents have aged and what their health is like…what my lifestyle is like (I’m a writer and a runner)…and where my health went askew. She blamed my high rate of inflammation (C-Reactive something or other…) on…vegetables!! I was shocked to learn that I’d essentially been poisoning myself for a decade!

    She cleaned out my diet thoroughly…I eat as much clean meat as I want (no sausage or sauce-laden meat, just how it comes off the animal), coconut oil, avocado oil and plain white potatoes…and some nuts during some seasons–that part is confusing and has something to do with ragweed or pollen or something…. It’s not really any mainstream diet…it’s just literally a “meat and potatoes” diet. I try to eat about 2,300 calories/day (I’m a female, 5’10” and about 130) and my blood work is aces…cholesterol is perfect, blood sugar is 70 non-fasting…and best of all, I’m 34 and everyone thinks I’m about 22 when they meet me (I get carded when I go out with my 20-something friends–they don’t…). When I was a vegan, everyone assumed I was older, which, granted, isn’t a huge deal in your teens/early twenties, but I’m glad it’s not the case now!

    I’m not propagating any “diet” at all…I think that given the franken-processing of food, the junk we’re given as kids, the abuse our bodies take from the time we’re conceived and our general lack of immunity, food has become such a complex issue. I really believe some people do well with low-carb, some do well with a lot of plants, some do well with a raw lifestyle. I wish nutritionists and allergy blood work was available to everyone because it changed my life–probably saved my life.

    Good luck to all!

    Good day!

    • Great first comment and I hope we hear from you again soon. 🙂

  • Joe

    Great comment by Seb.
    Top 5 reasons not to eat a high animal protein diet.

    5.) The idea we need high levels of protein was disproven already in the 70s.
    4.) Any animal product you cook turns to a carcinogen. Eat ore meat you eat more carcinogens.
    3.) Carbohydrates is the primary full for the body. If you don’t eat carbs your not fueling your body. Pretty simple. This is basic nutrition learned at a grade 10 high school level. This leads to sub point that self proclaimed experts like Denise Minger and Gary Taubes should at least get a foundations in nutrition before they go on nonsensical rants about what Dr. Campbell says.
    2.) Animal Products are not a food group. You cut out a massive amount of nutrients from your diet doing so by just eat them alone. Phytochemicals and Antioxideants are the very things found in plants that protect you from cancer and other degenerative diseases. Basing a lifestyle or diet around that is at best illogical or at worst could potentially kill you which leads to my number one reason…………….
    1.) Probably the most famous promoter of an Animal based diet was Dr. Atkins and what happended to him. He had 2 massive heart attacks. Its amazing he survived the first one. The same diet he promotes in his book. He died from. Pretty ironic. He promoted a diet to help people and it ends up killing him.

    In summary you can survive on a cardboard diet if you want. Will you thrive on it, probably not. A lot of people mistake surviving with thriving. The optimal diet for health and thriving is a plant based diet but you can survive on a animal based diet.

    • Really, this is the best you can do, Joe?

      5. An animal-based diet is high in dietary fat, not protein
      4. What about raw food meat eaters? Where’s the evidence cooking produces carcinogens in meat 100% of the time?
      3. The body doesn’t need carbs for fuel when you burn fat for fuel instead. Look up gluconeogenesis dude.
      2. Animal-based foods are the lifeblood of a healthy nutritional lifestyle
      1. Dr. Atkins died of massive brain injuries sustained when his head slammed into an icy New York City sidewalk. Not his diet.

      Sounds like someone needs to get an education before attempting to spout of nonsense that demonstrates he knows nothing.

  • Jock Rogers

    I get as caught up in taking sides as everyone else. I think, for me, the solution is to sit, close my eyes, count my breaths, and clear my mind. I’m never able to do it for more than a few breaths without a lot of static intruding. But I know in my heart, that if keep at it, I’ll be able to ultimately think about something with a clear mind rather than with a lot jumble. I wish everyone clarity–and ultimately, good health.

  • JohnNJ

    I am an omnivore, striving to become vegan when I am financially independent. My best friend’s father tried the Atkins diet years ago, then one day, turned white, passed out, and was taken to the hospital for malnutrition. If not done correctly, any eating plan, diet, or whatever humans call it these days, is unhealthy.
    Humans want instant gratification. Instant gratification is an illusion. A product of human culture which floats precariously above reality in its own dimension.
    By the way, our teeth look awfully good for gnashing, don’t they?
    In the wild, with no tools present, let’s all take down a gazelle with our fierce claws and killer teeth! I think that gazelle might run, then laugh, then kick ALL of our asses.
    We can also hunt down the cheese animal so we can have cheese steaks, cheese chops, and cheese ribs.
    Seems un natural. If we can all agree that instant gratification is an illusion, then the logical connection can be made between that and the mass populace’s cravings for foods highly dense in calories, that being, animal based products. Let us not forget cholesterol…I mean….HOLY SH*T, that will KILL YOU YOUNG…we ALL know someone that died WAY TOO YOUNG from something related to cholesterol and its artery clogging properties.
    Finally, I recently discovered animal proteins make your blood acidic…uric acid…it is what causes gout in some…in our evolution, our bodies adapted to balance out this otherwise potentially fatal level of acidity with some base, phosphorous which is found in our bones which are made from calcium phosphate. This leads to bone mass loss over time, leading to osteoporosis and other degenerative bone disease.
    Things like this, coupled with supporting an industry which is, on a global scale, incredibly wasteful and inefficent, will mean I will be a vegan very soon…almost there anyway, but almost is never close enough.
    As long as we all eat animal products, factory farms will exist to supply the demand of over seven billion humans. Low carb or vegan, we can all agree factory farms are BAD on MANY levels.

    • There’s so much wrong with this I don’t even know where to begin.

      • JohnNJ

        Please, start somewhere…always the most difficult part, I know.
        I think what I was getting at in my over coffee-ed state is…

        Any diet is unhealthy if not done correctly.
        Malnutrition can occur, whether you are ‘livin la vida low-carb’ or ‘hit me vegan, one more time.’

        Oh baby, baby!

        There are unhealthy low-carbers, and unhealthy vegans. My friend’s father earned an ER visit for his Atkins misguidance, whether that was all on him or the plan is still up in the air.

        And if we take a good look at ourselves as humans…don’t try this without a mirror, you will be standing there for days…and compare it to the rest of the animal kingdom….the tools we are naturally given by god, or Charles Darwin, or both, kind of naturally sits in the herbivore category. Teeth for gnashing, not tearing or cutting…look at carnivores in nature…pretty different set of teeth and guts than us humans. If we had sharp razor like teeth and a digestive tract to crap out all of that extra unneeded cholesterol, I MIGHT be singing a different tune.

        Could this unnatural diet of butter (still havent seen butter in the wild, I have been looking!) cream, steak, etc. cause certain devastating genetic maladies in the human population? I do not think that is a very far fetched idea.

        I do not really need to get into the link between animal/dairy and heart disease, do I? I feel like that explains itself.

        So yes! There is a starting point….please explain how low-carb high animal consumption is NOT dangerous when taking things like cholesterol and heart disease into consideration.


        • Agreed that any diet done incorrectly can be unhealthy–just don’t agree with your conclusions that a healthy animal-based diet isn’t optimal for human health. There’s just no evidence that supports such a claim. There is NO danger from high cholesterol and heart disease on a high-fat, moderate protein, low-carb diet based on animal foods. None.

  • Leslie

    I just wonder why it is that lowfat plant based diets have been proven to reverse heart disease, without question. Even a small amount of animal protein will affect results. Medicare and insurance and many insurance companies now pay for the Dean Ornish program, which is proven to work. Also, regarding “animal rights,” it is such an abstract term until you see it up close. There is a dog down the street from me tied to a doghouse for the last 9 years, all his life. I have tried everything including changing local ordinances to help him. I tried to just visit him and alleviate his loneliness but his people yelled at me and won’t let me visit. He still sits there, day after day, under the trees, tied to the same spot his entire life with almost no human interaction or with those of his own kind. Would you say that he has rights? The right to run free through a field, to feel the sun on his back, to splash through water on a beach, to play with children and be loved and counted as part of a family, dog or otherwise, to lay by a fire at night with someone he loves? Or would you say, rather, that we humans have overstepped our rights in allowing him to be chained without mercy, ignoring his plight, his painfully lonesome existence? It is all he has, this life. Animals have basic rights, the right to live as nature intended. And this dog’s life is a paradise compared to the billions of animals in factory farms. Basic rights are about more than just food and water or something that we supreme humans mete out, food and water to this one, love and luxury to this other one. When we are in touch with this reality, it is hard to keep silent because it is so immense and seems so obvious. And yet there was a time when I wore a rabbit fur coat and didn’t ever think about such things and would have felt put upon if someone had brought it to my attention. It’s a cruel world and only made worse when we allow ourselves to lift the curtain and see that cruelty, care about it, and feel it. Because then it must be confronted, what we personally do. That’s why vegans are the way they are and that’s also why people confronted with it have a hostile reaction, there must be some reason, I believe all people believe themselves to be compassionate and the possibility that we may not be all that we think we are. Aside from that, it has been proven beyond a doubt that a low fat plant based diet has the power to reverse artery blockages, and with heart disease being the #1 killer of americans that seems too significant to ignore.

    • Where’s the “proof” that a vegan diet reverses heart disease? I’ve heard it stated, but never seen the science.

  • Leslie

    Also wanted to put in my 2 cents regarding veg diet, although I probably eat too much processed, everything great health-wise after 11 years (vegan). I don’t have stringy hair LOL and look great at 53, hard to believe men still hit on me. Good grief. Don’t buy those stereotypes, that’s just ridiculous. Lots of great-looking people are vegan, look at Alicia Silverstone, for heaven’s sake! I will say that when I cut out all sugar, and fill the diet with nutrient-dense foods I feel really really good, the best, nothing like it. Sugar is evil.

    • Sugar is indeed evil. And a healthy nutrient-dense animal-based diet is awesome.

  • Melissa

    I am awaiting this movie being released in my area. I believe it is going to probably tell me many things I have found true in my life. Here is the story. My top weight was 318.5, I had sleep apnea, my blood pressure was 157 over 90, and I was diabetic. All of this and at this time I was 35. I also had rosacea and was looking rather pathetic. 2 years later I have lost 50 pounds, no sleep apnea, I know just have a history of diabetes. My blood pressure is in the 120’s over 60’s.My rosacea cleared and at 38 I look like I am in my 20’s. NO one can guess my age which is wonderful since I am attending college as an older student. I have eaten a plant based diet for the most part for over 2 years. Now I will never tell myself no pizza or steaks. I am a foodie…I simply love good food. But I eat them way less…maybe fast food every other month. I also watch the gmo products… I watch the source of my meat also if I decide to eat it. I rarely have diary. I also have no health insurance, so I have been on a mission to heal myself.

    • CONGRATS Melissa! I eat a meat-based diet with some plants because I want to be optimally healthy without health insurance myself. 😉

  • Shawn

    I’m 48 years and did a pure vegan diet for nearly 5 years. My health dramatically improved, but my muscles were wasting slightly. I have since added some fish to my diet. My health improved even more dramatically. My skin improved, my endurance and recovery improved as well as all of my muscle mass returned. It is just feels right for me. I do believe that a person should eat what they feel is right for them. We should all make our own decisions.
    If we took all the lions in africa and feed them only fruits and veggies, would they be healthier? If we took all the gorillas and feed them only raw meat what would happen? My point is that we are all unique. Do what works for you. Use common sense and stay away from processed junk and sugar!

  • Linda

    I fail to understand why some people feel so threatened by people who don’t eat meat. I’m from Texas and when I became vegetarian at 15 my family reacted as if I’d become a Soviet spy (this was in the mid-80’s). I have NEVER tried to push a vegetarian diet on another person, although I have been taken to task at many meals for not eating the meat dishes. Not eating meat and not having children just seems to drive some people bonkers like nothing else… If asked about my dietary choice, I simply tell people the truth, i.e. I don’t believe in taking the life of a living creature if I’m not willing to kill it myself. (I never offer this up without considerable prodding.) The majority of the people on the planet eat meat and the meat “producing” industries generate no lack of pro-meat advertising/propaganda. Why the big issue with a documentary with an alternate point of view? No one is proposing to take your meat away from you. Again, how does it affect you if others don’t eat meat and how does it help you if more people do eat meat? Just makes no sense to me.

    • People can eat however they want. But the notion that a vegetarian/vegan is somehow eating better than a meat-eater is nauseatingly wrong.

  • mark p

    If plant based diets are the best diets for human mammals then should we force all omnivores onto the diet?
    my dad turns 85 this year and eats like a normal Canadian. he just put a new roof on his house himself and walks 5 miles per day. My grandmother lived till 97 and only like the fat on the porkchop and never tasted kale, brown rice or any fruit other than oranges, apples and bananas.
    follow the fricken Canada food guide, exercise (walk and resistance training), don’t smoke, drink moderately (12,9,2,1,0), wear a seat belt, life jacket and don’t be poor and you will live till 90.
    vegans are a cult like any other religion. they want the extinction of the chicken, cow, lamb, goat, and pig.
    Read the Omnivore Dilema!!!!!!!

  • mark p

    The most insulting thing I find about veganism is its feelings of moral superiority. If you believe its tripe then our Inuit and First Nations peoples are morally inferiour because they eat a very high animal based diet.
    To make them vegans would be cultural genocide (and economically impossible).
    George Burns lived a healthy active life literally as many years as long as Dennis Weaver and Linda McCartney combined. Cancer doesn’t care if you are a vegan.
    I am fifty and my health is perfect ( i just had my physical and everything is normal)
    To get my 5to 10fruits and veggies I only eat fruit for breakfast ( a lot of smoothies with frozen bananas and berries )and skip the fries and have a salad with every lunch. at 5’5″ i can bench 255.
    Finally, why are no people allergic to beef, chicken and pork yet kiwis, soy, wheat, peanuts and nuts have the ability to kill people?

  • LuAnn

    Please realize (and please read a little bit more widely on this broad topic) that it’s not really about the MEAT per se being bad for you. It’s about, as Michael Pollan of Omnivore’s Dilemma and In Defense of Food would say, what the ANIMAL has eaten. And since our agricultural food chains hve become so heavily industrialized after World War II, our animals (even the salmon!) are being fed CORN and other GRAIN, which is unnatural for them to eat. They haven’t selected for that in their evolution. Humans force ruminants especially a corn-fed diet for a myriad of reason, mostly financial. There’s a whole complex industry going on here that needs to be altered in order for the eating of meat to be healthy again. True, Paleo is about “eat like a caveman,” but those cavemen ate grass-fed animals. Animals that did not address monoculture in their eating habits (lots of differnt wild growing grasses). We are eating what they ate . . . . and if our meats are all corn at the base, then WE are dealing with monoculture, too. And that is what is at the root of the problem. Investigate modern hunter-gatherer societies and ones that live almost as wholesomely–those who have a truly pastoral agronomy–and you would see those meat-eaters being much healthier than those of us who are in the industrial food chain.

  • Gabe

    I don’t believe anything unless I research it myself. Go out and research the effects of animal protein, plant protein, plant based diet, etc, and come to your own conclusions. Granted it takes a keen eye and some intellect to do so, but the results are no doubt rewarding.

    I guess what I’m trying to say is that the smart and dedicated people will figure out what’s best and the lazy dummies who refuse to question their own beliefs (and those of others) will continue to suffer in ignorance.

    And I’m not surprised that a low-carb site would push to smear a documentary that pushes a diet counter to the beliefs of the author. And without a scientific approach, this is nothing more than fool fodder.

    • How exactly did I “smear” this film. I was simply sharing about it with my readers. If you wanna talk science, then let’s go. There’s ample evidence for low-carb, high-fat animal-based nutrition. And if somebody had been paying attention to my blog for longer than three seconds would know I regularly highlight the latest studies. Now who’s the fool?

  • Jazminluvsyou

    You have missed the boat my friend. You want us to ask the “low carb” experts on your website promoting a “low carb” diet if we can get kidney stones from eating a “low carb” diet. My guess is that they will say no. Everyone associated with your website will advocate what you are saying. If you read the China Study, or any other legitimate study on animal protein and what it does in your body, you may perhaps change your mind about vegan “propaganda” as you call it. The studies are peer-reviewed scientific studies that ALL show the same thing… do some reading.

    • Anonymous

      Read Denise Minger’s dismantling of The China Study:

      • Bob

        This is ridiculous. Did you also read who is that woman and if she has any authority to “dismantle” anything?

        Also ridiculous is how you speak about “propaganda” on such a propagandist site like this one, that is also full of commercial banners.

        • Anonymous

          Anything else you want to complain about. Sounds like you could use some animal fat in your diet.

        • There’s also Harriet “SkepDoc” Hall’s disemboweling of the China Study’s pseudoscience, confirmation bias and deliberate obfuscation of facts, if you’d like to flex your Circumstantial Ad Hominem muscle in that direction.

          Funny that you should take it upon yourself to dole out what is or isn’t ‘propagandist”, considering you’re defending the baseless beliefs of a fellow of the PETA-front group PCRM.

  • Butch

    Your nuts.  And unbelievably incompetent.  I quote you below.

    “The bottom line is it’s time to end the nonsensical debate of which diet is better and instead focus in on which diet is best for the individual”
    Are you kidding.  There is a diet that is better for the human race.  You must be a republican.  Probably driven by “choice.  How you end up writing a column is beyond me.  You’re way out of your league pal.

    • Anonymous

      Wow. Lots of assumptions made in that comment. And anger. Sounds like you need some animal fat in your diet.

    • Ramona

      Jimmy’s doing a great job!  Speaking of out of your league, it’s hard to even read your post!

  • Anonymous

    Wow, somebody who need more fat in their diet for sure! LOL!

  • Anonymous

    Food and nutrition is always a hot topic.

  • Travburke

    If you truly examine the research on food an nutrition, I think you will find that most of it is inconclusive, and offers only correlations. When looking at animal vs. plant based diets, many studies assume that the “animal products” in the diet are the culprit for disease, and suggest the remedy of a plant-based diet. This is not a controlled study, and negates the possibility that the health issues may rise, not from ingestion of animal products, but from lack of enough plants in the diet. Switiching to a plant-based diet may increase health because it includes more plants (not less meat) that are rich in nutrients not present in steak and potatoes. I have self-experimented with the help of docs and extensive research and found that the Paleo diet has yielded the best health, fitness, and energy levels I have ever had. I have been a vegan, vegetarian and every other diet I can think of. The smoking gun on disease, in my findings, is processing. The more a food has to be processed, the more our system does not recognize it as food. Animals and most plants require little processing (cooking, skinning, peeling) and tend to match the needs of our bodies. Packaged foods, refined sugars, grains (just try raw grains), dairy, etc. require technological processing—stuff our ancestors could not manage. I put factory meat on that list because it is processed with grain finishing and “other” processes that make people turn vegan. 

    • Anonymous

      Totally agree.

    • JayMo

      That is so sensible.  While watching the film I was frustrated that the researchers looked only at animal protein consumption and drew their conclusions without mentioning what those people were eating along with animal protein.  I’ve been on a low-carb diet for almost nine years now, and one the of the principle elements of the diet is to separate fatty animal protein (like fat-marbled steak) from carbohydrates.  Without carbohydrates to initiate an insulin response in the bloodstream, excess fat not used for immediate energy usage is simply expelled and not stored.  This is why people can lose weight while eating fatty foods like cheese and red meats.  Whenever people talk about how unhealthy and overweight they were while eating fatty foods, you can bet they were eating carbs along with those fatty foods–that doesn’t usually get a mention.  I was intrigued by the film, but most of the success stories were bolstered by excellent blood chemistry numbers, weight loss, and increased energy.  I’ve achieved all of these on a low-carb diet, and it is the first diet in my life (I’m 50) that I’ve been able to stay on for more than 4 months at a time.  So I’m wondering why I would mess with success and try a vegan diet.  Anyone out there have a compelling reason for me to change what I’m doing?

      • Anonymous

        That’s my question too.

  • Xavier

    It’s a shame that quantity is barely talked about. The use of lab rats. No studies on which fruits/veggies does what to your health. Saying that the asian world lived healthier before the western diet came(protein,protein,protein) yet fails to mentioned a HUGE dependance on fish(protein,protein,protein)

    No mention that pasta is a major contributor to obesity.

    Very little on the benefits of exercise/weightlifting.

    Really seems like a “Oh God, please save the animals!” backed doc.

  • Sam Stone

    Found this article searching for critiques after just having watched the movie. I’m a little relieved you stopped short of attacking the vegan diet, and the video’s identification of the main foe (which was poorly defined. while a “throw out the bathwater” approach seemed to be genuinely successful in dealing with these people’s problems, if any babies went with it, they didn’t seem to care).

    Although I have no interest in taking up a vegan diet (does that include carbs? I have no idea), I have no doubt of its health merits. I do, however, have some doubts about its sex appeal (people don’t smoke cigarettes for the health benefits).

    • 123

      There is no obesity problem, there is a meat & processed food problem.  Food is so processed that it is a drug.  Sugar, salt, fat & other ingredients are  craved.  A drug that is craved and has adverse effects our long term health.

      Hypertension, diabetes and obesity are non existent in vegetarians.

      If a person eats a vegetarian diet, they will not be obese (after they loose the weight they have put on from processed foods), they will have low fat on their system and live a longer healthier life, it is a fact.

      • Anonymous

        I agree we have a processed food problem, but meat that is grass-fed is a real whole food that is healthy.

        • Deekaydan

          Goodbye mr. Moore…it has been nice to follow your blog. But the title here is too much. Peace.

          • Anonymous

            Wow, it took you eight months to notice this post. I don’t think your leaving is gonna be much of a problem to my blog traffic. But the title is absolutely perfect actually.

  • AngelV

    so I wonder what your chemistry looks like, it all comes down to the real numbers…  are you as healthy as you think you are?  I have been a meat eater my entire life and though I am not a total vegetarian, I do not think that high amounts of meat and dairy are a good thing.  I had a friend on the Atkins diet who nearly killed herself following that so its not for everyone.  So through my own research or seeking as much information on all the different methods of eating out there, I find that low amounts of lean, non-chemically treated animal anything and higher amounts of veggies and fruits and whole grains (healthy complex carbs only)… is a good and healthy path for me.  I also juice and do not consume anything thats packaged… I feel amazing and have energy hours.  So in the end its up to what we want to allow ourselves to explore with and think, I have opened myself up as this appears to be only way to seek the truth that works for me.  To comment on something someone said about the asian diet and protein, have had an asian father and a mexican mother…. Asians traditionally, did NOT consume high amounts of meat.  A portion of our meat is enough to feed a small family, it’s typically only used to flavor…  again, this is the method of eating I try to use as my model.  There is validity in what the China study found, if one eats 80% good foods, there isn’t any reason small amounts of meat and dairy can’t be consumed and the file also states this.  It mentions that for OPTIMAL health, one should drastically reduce the intact of those foods targeted as unhealthy.  So I think you guys might viewing this a bit too much bias, I get that.  Much success in what works for you and everyone on the site.  Its too bad this discussion got a bit testy.. Food is a hot topic.  Thanks.

    • QuaySeraSera

      THANK YOU Angel for pointing out what the documentary really says.  A totally vegan diet is not what the study was based on.  Much smaller amounts of animal based products and much higher amounts of plant based products was the diet identified as a healthy diet.  It is also the path I have followed for many years now and consider myself in better health than 90% of my peer group.  If you are 100% vegan and healthy, good for you but it is not necessary for everyone.

      • Anonymous

        And a high-fat, moderate protein, low-carb animal-based approach might be the best for others.

        • ChrisD

          I think you’re confusing best for preference. We all know it’s not the best – seriously! Just because one holds fast to an opinion doesn’t make it true. Opinion and truth are not synonymous. Most people have found ways, or are still looking for ways, to justify their lifestyle – anything that will enable them to continue as they are in the face of facts and reality.

          At the end of the day a pound of raw veggies is healthier than a pound of fat, greasy meat. Everyone know it – not everyone admits it.

          • Anonymous

            Actually, that “pound of fat, greasy meat” (especially if it is grass-fed) is much healthier and satiating than a pound of veggies. Of course, as a healthy low-carber, I’d eat both!

            • Anonymous

              wow, so you actually believe that meat is healthier than veggies? well good for you. And you say even if it is not grass fed? Really, all the antibiotics, disease, gmo corn feed etc? I would put 100 calories of organic broccoli up against 100 calories of any meat any day.

              • Anonymous

                Grass-fed beef is arguably one of the best super foods you can possibly. No question about that. And so satisfying.

          • Bubba

            everybody knew the world was flat, not everyone admitted it.  ANY statement that is not backed up by objective, blind/double blind studies is merely an opinion. if you expect me to believe your pro-meat or your pro-vegan statements, quote your source.  Also, “they” are not a scientific research group (according to a study that they commissioned in 2009).

      • Anonymous

        Disagree that 100% vegan is not for everyone. It is IF AND ONLY IF it is done correctly! Many, many, vegans try the diet and do it wrong so they get unhealthy and stop it. They load up on nuts and seeds and eat loads of soy etc. If you focus on a whole food plant based organic diet you will be healthy but it takes discipline and adherence to a correct vegan diet. I had to study and research what works and is correct fo me to go vegan. Then, and only then, can you see the benefits of a vegan diet. If all the meat on the planet was grass fed and all the fish was safe and mercury free and from a local trusted source, the case for meat would make sense for many. Unfortunately everyone on this site can not say for sure that all the meat and fish is such. So they wind up ingesting antibiotics, mercury and loads of bad things. Even veggies/fruits can be bad if from the wrong source, which is why I buy local from a trusted source. What kind of veggies do I get when I eat out? I do ask but many times it is not local or organic so I limit what I eat. I just feel that any diet that leads to eating more meat/fish from a non trusted source is bad and that is  what is wrong with saying that eating meat is ok, as in the SAD. 

        • Anonymous

          If all you buy is the best possible meats from a local farm, then you can know.

  • Mrmiagae

    Arguing against the vegan diet is mute. It’s a healthy way of eating. It’s a conscious way of eating. The facts are out there, if you would like to live in the denial that a meat based diet is better for you than a plant based diet, you will pay the price.
    Take away the catch phrases and it’s simple. Eating only vegetables is a drastic dietary switch that can be made simply and with out ever needing to see a doctor. The same can not be said for the same kind of drastic low carb diet.
    I applaud steps anyone takes to become healthier. If you have low carved it down to a healthy weight, try the switch, go vegan and your body will thank you. I promise.
    Mom always said: eat your vegetables. And she said it because she loved you. Love yourself.

    • Anonymous

      Why would I change from a diet that made me healthy? The answer is I wouldn’t.

      • Angela

        Karma is a bitch so keep doing what you are doing!!!

        • Anonymous

          I’m a Christian, I don’t believe in karma.

        • Anonymous

          I’m a Christian, I don’t believe in karma.

      • charlie gordon

        How do you define healthy?  Healthy in that you have low cholesterol, less than 10% fat, lean hard muscle, low resting heart rate, can run a mile in less than 6 minutes?  

        • Anonymous

          That’s a narrow definition of healthy. You’re defining athletic.

    • I agree with Mrmiaagae…

      There are two things you can bet on when you stop eating meat / dairy and eat an organic plant based diet..

      1. Your body will become healthy
      2. Meat / Dairy eaters will get defensive and rant and rave why their diet is ideal while avoiding, at all costs, the possibility that animal products are not healthy and no longer needed in our diet

      All I can say is TRY IT. Don’t listen to the blow hards who throw around phrases like “vegan propaganda” with reckless abandon. What exactly are we to believe are the motivations of the nefarious ‘vegan propagandists”? Do these healthy heart disease doctors secretly work for giant vegetable companies? Is The China Study some sort of elaborate hoax designed to damage the profits of the meat industry and re-direct money to the Green Smoothy companies? Is it some sort of turf war between beef and broccoli?

      This blog entry is so condescending and combative that I can’t help but imagine that the author is the true vegan propagandist working to promote Forks Over Knives or The China Study.

      • Anonymous

        Eat however you’d like. But veganism isn’t a panacea for health.

        • Yes, but it is immensely bette than eating animal based products. There are so many ancillary benefits that are not relevant to the health aspects. Have you read “The China Study”? It was tremendously convincing on a scientific basis, on its sheer quantity of evidence. It makes sense. The low carb diets have a sort of sense to them but it just seems unnatural. I lived that way for years and it was not sustainable. I was religious about it and it just did not work. 

          • Anonymous

            What’s unnatural about eating real whole foods that nourish the body?

    • Edog

      What did you eat before adapting a vegetarian diet? Was your diet free of sugar, flour, grains, alcohol; or was it a Standard American Diet? What did your ancestors eat? What did your parents eat? I have yet to meet a 125 year old vegetarian. Don’t forget that almost every successful society, including your ancestors, thrived on an animal based diet! Vegetarian diets are not even humane; have you ever seen the trail of destruction left behind a tractor? Rabbits, rodents, and small animals of all kind are killed in the process of procuring grains. 

      • No one wants to live to 125?  I have met many active 90 year old vegetarians.  Are you serious about rodents being killed in the harvesting process vs food animal slaughter.  Not a very intelligent argument.

      • Sara_sims87

        Our ancestors only had access to the kinds of foods that were locally grown, unless they were wealthy enough to import fruits and vegetables from other countries. Eating meat was a necessity to their diet because crops could be scarce at times. People living in society today have access to pretty much any fruit or vegetable they want at affordable prices. People have the internet to look up free recipes to make healthier foods that they normally would not know how to make. If I were starving to death, then yeah, i would eat meat without any issues, my body would need it. But as of today, I don’t. A person should never feel so full they need a nap, which coincidentally seems to be the topic of choice after lunch in my office, how fat and tired everyone is after shoving their faces full of food. I limit my breakfast and lunch to fruits and vegetables, an occasional vegie sandwich, and i’m the most active, healthy, awake person in my whole building.

    • I believe you meant to say that Arguing against a vegan diet is moot. While I am glad that being a vegan has worked for you, it will not work for 90% of the people out there. The only secret to healthy eating is to do so in moderation. Everything in moderation (including moderation). Think of it this way; if we weren’t meant to eat meat, we wouldn’t be able to eat meat. We are not supposed to eat rocks, so we don’t have the ability to digest them. While you may live to be 100 sleeping your way through your days and avoiding the sun, I will live to be in my late 90’s and enjoy every minute of it. Remember: Meat is murder, tasty, delicious murder.

      • charlie gordon

        “if we were weren’t meant to eat meat, we would not be able to do so”???  you can eat meat, no problem…but just know the facts about eating and your health…and the environment…the amount of grain it takes to produce the meat, and  the harm to the environment from producing.  You could feed the world from the amount of grain used to feed the beef cows.  People do not think of the repercussions from eating meat, maybe we should be more conscious and less self absorbed.

        • Anonymous

          Not if you don’t eat meat that has been fed grains. My healthy grass-fed meat is perfectly good for me.

    • Justacountryboyatheart

      Your right mom always said to eat my vegies at the same time as she served me my slice of the roast, or my steak, and then I washed it down with a tall cold glass of fresh milk. Every person’s body responds differentlly to foods and that should be taken into account for any diet. I’m a 41 year old male who grew up on a farm and lived the meat and potatoes country diet and still do. I’m rarly sick (less then once a year) and I’ve never been over 160lbs (and I’m 5’10”). Once you discover what diet is best for you stick to it, and keep it balanced, and EXERCISE. With a properly balanced diet and exercise you can remain healthy.

      • Anonymous

        Well said.

  • Anonymous

    You’d assume incorrectly.

  • Michelle Black

    Propaganda seems to strong a word for this documentary. However, I’ve found carnivores to be quite testy when encountering herbivores. I am far from an animal lover (beyond humans) and could not care less whether someone eats meat. It is unfortunate that meat has become the center of the western diet. The high rates of hypertension and gout are a testament to that. It is also unfortunate that westerners over-indulge in processed foods; high rates of diabetes are a testament to that. What is most unfortunate is that this blog labels doctors who above all, are advocating healthier humans. If their means of achieving optimal health are in conflict with yours, then in the lovely country we call the USA, you are free to pursue alternatives.

    • Anonymous

      There’s no reputable evidence to support your claims. It’s been my experience that vegans are quite rabid in their response to people who eat meat in their diet. Omniivores eat meat and veggies.

  • Almgates

    Anytime I see the word ‘diet’, I put my questioning and research hat on and in the end, it seems that the FOK DIET is more a you should eat this way or else you gonna die…Duh….It always comes back to ‘Different strokes for different folks”.

    Like Jerry said, “The idea that there is just one path to being optimally healthy
    nutritionally just comes across as so incredibly arrogant and
    condescending in light of what we know from science revealing the
    benefits that come from a variety of eating plans.”

    Do your homework and do what you think is best for you…and when you’re doing it, don’t tell me what’s good for me. Deal? Great.

    • Anonymous

      Find what works for you and do it.

  • Anonymous

    You neglect to mention that T. Colin Campbell and others don’t use the word vegan because you can eat only chips and soda and be considered a vegan.   Cambell insists calling it a whole foods, plant based diet.    Campbell’s China Study changed my life.  99% percent of the time I eat a whole foods, plant based diet, and I have never felt better in my life.  Not only am I thinner, my energy level is up, and I’m much better runner and bike rider.

    • Anonymous

      Sounds like a real foods vegan.

  • Vehgahn

    I was a low-carber for 8 years and kept off the pounds.  Unfortunately, the fats that I was consuming most likely caused type 2 diabetes. It didn’t show up until I went off the diet and ballooned some 30 pounds.  I have since gone vegan and have lost 23 pounds in just over two months.  It looks as though I will be off Metformin, Zocor and a blood pressure med for protecting the kidneys from proteins in 3 months. 

    • Anonymous

      Natural animal fats don’t lead to Type 2 diabetes.

      • Emerson

        Actually, there have been scientific studies showing that consumption of fat can make people diabetic. 

        Anderson creates diabetics in two weeks
        Anderson, J. W., et al. 1973. Effect of high glucose and sucrose diets on glucose intolerance of normal men. Amer. J. Clin Nutr. 26:600-607
        The influence of dietary fat on insulin resistance.
        Lovejoy JC

        AbstractDietary fat has been implicated in the development of insulin resistance in both animals and humans. Most, although not all, studies suggest that higher levels of total fat in the diet result in greater whole-body insulin resistance. Although, in practice, obesity may complicate the relationship between fat intake and insulin resistance, clinical trials demonstrate that high levels of dietary fat can impair insulin sensitivity independent of body weight changes. In addition, it appears that different types of fat have different effects on insulin action. Saturated and certain monounsaturated fats have been implicated in causing insulin resistance, whereas polyunsaturated and omega-3 fatty acids largely do not appear to have adverse effects on insulin action. Given the importance of insulin resistance in the development of diabetes and heart disease, establishing appropriate levels of fat in the diet is an important clinical goal.

        • Anonymous

          This study was from 1973. Got anything more up-to-date than four decades ago? That said, what did they feed the study participants with the dietary fat. If it included carbohydrate, then who’s to say the diabetes didn’t develop from that?

  • Chris

    Paleo all the way… I don’t want to look like a stick… NONE of these people have “any muscle” and muscle is the most healthy thing you could have… marathon, triathlon + only vegetables??? Can they even lift ANYTHING other than a fork?

    • CT

      There’s a section in the movie about an MMA fighter who’s vegan. Protein builds muscle, and plants DO have protein. Being thin is a product of eating healthy and wise, regardless of your dietary choice. Having muscle is the same.

  • Erick

    Jimmy, you are doing a great job! Low carbohydrate diets are the most effective diets! I am a practitioner who has worked with hundreds of individuals and based on my 19 years of work, low carbohydrate diets out-perform vegetarian diets as far as fat loss and muscle hypertrophy are concerned. All the vegetarians I have worked with are weak and frail compared to their meat-eating counterparts. My name is Erick Minor, I own Strength Studio in Texas.

  • Cmurkison

    once again, people let their fear of anything different control them. Because their whole lives they have been told to drink milk, it makes healthy bones. It is beyond me why people still believe every word our government says like it is the gospel. our government has told us more lies than I can even begin to list. And they change their story everytime it suits their need. I can’t even remember or keep up with wether eggs are good or bad for us.
    open your minds a little and see the cold hard facts that are in front of your face. These are not made up statistics. These are real studies and the results seem to me to be more than coincidental. I will be trying a whole grain plant based diet. See ya on the other side……eventually.

  • mister

    I had a heart attack in May of this year at age 61.  I was on a loose low-carb diet (mostly the standard American diet with some attention to protein, sugar, calories, and nutrition).  I am 6 feet tall and 185 pounds.  I have been reasonably active with periods of significant activity all my life.  I did 6 triathlons in 2008 but have been much less active since then.  I have a history of heart disease in my family.   

    I saw the film Forks Over Knives  last weekend coincidentally just before my check up with my cardiologist.  I was impressed by the data supporting the benefits of a vegan diet and asked my cardiologist about it.  He agreed with the premise and said; “My job is secure since people won’t even stop smoking much less change their diet but it is true a vegan diet could eradicate heart disease.”  I decided to go vegan at noon on September 7th right after that check-up. 

    But I have a lot of questions.  Why do so many vegans seem fat and unhealthy?    What about the evidence that the Atkins diet lowers weight and cholesterol levels? 
    We’ll see.

    • Anonymous

      It’s good to question anything and everything regarding whatever plan you choose to do. The “date supporting the benefits of a vegan diet” have tended to be over-exaggerated by people like Dr. T. Colin Campbell who was featured in the film in books like The China Study. Read why that “evidence” may not be an unbiased view of plant-based diets:


    • Erica

       I know a couple of overweight vegans – people are overweight because they eat too much, period. It doesn’t matter what kind of ~diet~ you’re on, if you eat too much food, you eat too much food.  A serving of almonds is what, a large handful? For 200 calories? Do you know how easy it is for people to sit in front of a tv with a container of snacks (vegan or not) and mindlessly eat the whole thing? I have a vegan friend who binges on chips & salsa. Vegan =/= healthy, especially considering how much technically vegan food is actually just processed crap. 

    • mister – Yes, there are lots of questions and there are many good answers from the best “Healthy Lifestyle” experts.  Focus on listening to Dr. John McDougall (free website and newsletters), Dr. Neal Barnard, Dr. Joel Fuhrman, Dr. Hans Diehl, Dr. Matt Lederman, RD Jeff Novick, Dr. Dean Ornish, Dr. Sanjay Gupta (watch his recent TV show “The Last Heart Attack”) and Pres. Bill Clinton!  My family of four has been on Dr. McD’s plant-based, whole-foods nutrition for almost nine years after taking his 10-day clinic on “Total Health Solution.”  I am 75 and take no drugs, have no known chronic diseases, and do moderate exercise.  Optimal health comes ~80% from optimal nutrition — looking at human anatomy you’ll see that we are designed from mouth to anus to be herbivores = plant-eaters.  Exercise gives the other 20% (or more).

      • Anonymous

        There are also excellent answers about what a healthy diet looks like from top-notch experts such as Dr. William Davis, Dr. Andreas Eenfeldt, Nora Gedgaudas, Dr. Stephen Phinney, Dr. Uffe Ravnskov, Dr. Larry McCleary, Dr. Arthur De Vany, Dr. Loren Cordain, Robb Wolf, Dr. Robert Lustig, Dr. Mary Vernon, Dr. Eric Westman, Dr. Jeff Volek, Mat Lalonde, Dr. John Briffa, Jackie Eberstein, and so many more to name. My wife and I have been on a high-fat, moderate protein, low-carb animal-based nutritional approach for nearly eight years and take no drugs and have never been as healthy as I am right now. I play 5-8 hours of competitive volleyball each week and do 1-2 hours of strength training as well. I used to weigh 410 pounds back in 2004 before the Atkins low-carb approach saved my life. It’s very obvious my body was designed to be fueled best on animal fats and proteins and I’ll never eat any other way again. If you can do veganism and be healthy, then more power to ya. But it’s not the ONLY way to health.

    • Tone Comic

      Ok, I have known people who call them selves vegans and are fat, that’s because those people are not eating a full healthy diet.  They have taken meat out of their food intake but they still drink soft drinks, eat cakes and pies……that’s why they are fat.

  • DM

    My blood numbers are incredible, I am a competitive athlete, and I have not had any health problems in over 15 years. I eat meat and dairy. I just know to eat different things in moderation. I certainly do not eat the typical western/American diet, though, and do understand that the average american does eat quite poorly. However, pushing any type of behavior on anyone else is a disgusting display of poor emotional control and lack of self-worth. Other people’s diets should not bother any one of you tossing around insults. 

  • DM

    My blood numbers are incredible, I am a competitive athlete, and I have not had any health problems in over 15 years. I eat meat and dairy. I just know to eat different things in moderation. I certainly do not eat the typical western/American diet, though, and do understand that the average american does eat quite poorly. However, pushing any type of behavior on anyone else is a disgusting display of poor emotional control and lack of self-worth. Other people’s diets should not bother any one of you tossing around insults. 

  • Whoever the author is, I didn’t find your name anywhere. For starters I haven’t seen the movie but I read your review and I noticed you are missing some crucial parts. You are comparing Vegan with other diets. Well, let me tell you Vegan is not a diet. That would be over-simplifying it. Vegan is no just health based. Vegan is a life style. It’s environmentally friendly, it’s cruelty free, it’s economical, it’s for Christian, Hindus, Jews, Muslim and it’s healthy. None of your simplified diet comparisons can claim that.

    • Anonymous

      My name is all over the top of this blog. And this wasn’t a review of the film. I wrote this before FOK released. Veganism as advocated by Campbell, etal seems to be mirror a religion than anything. Anyone straying far from the reservation is chastised for their nutritional choices. Compare that to the loving Paleo/low-carb community dedicated to helping others attain optimal health through quality animal-based nutrition–the contrast is stark.

  • Westoncorder

    Just watch the movie on netflix
    I’m a 32 man who is not over wieght and the film got me. Not going the vegan route but going to star eating better. Thx for the article well written

    • Anonymous

      I already eat better.

  • Spx

    I studied nutrition in college. I was a vegan and as a matter of fact a weight lifter at the same time. Those were days when I had the time to count every nutrient. There is a reason people including me respond poorly to vegans. More often than not they are for lack of a better term, pricks. Thats not to say I dont have some very close friends who are vegan, they just are not the preachy PETA sort. Nor was I when I was vegan. Is vegan the only answer? No. One thing all of these diets add but people seldom talk about in these ridiculous interweb flame wars, is exercise. It is truly amazing what that will do for your body.

    Also something to consider and I have seen time and time again. If you ask any Doctor or teacher of nutrition, who is not publishing a book or has some sort of agenda, they all will say just eat sensibly, balanced and get plenty of exercise. Three things most Americans dont do. If you look at these other countries highlighted as having so few health problems you will notice things like a lack of a huge car culture. The lack of giant grocery stores and a healthy habit of cooking meals from scratch. 

    Its so American to expect/ believe there is one magic bullet/pill/diet. Well there kind of is, take a little from everyone, they are all a little right.

    • Anonymous

      What does “balanced” mean for someone who is metabolically deranged?

  • Arch Stanton

    I ran into this blog after just seeing the documentary on Netflix.

    I rather like the idea of manipulating diet for health benefits, but it’s a pity there’s such a political undertow with this sort of question.  Frankly, I don’t much care if somebody (or me) hits Bessie the Cow on the noggin with a hammer if the food produced is better for you than bagels with soy cheese.

    The upshot is that you simply can’t trust statements by committed vegans since they bring a philosophy to the table.  It’s not a dissimilar problem to the one presented by anthropogenic global warming.  The strongest proponents wish to change the world in a thousand ways (for your own good, of course) and aren’t scared to fib a little bit.

    • Anonymous

      Great point, Arch! That’s why I try to remain objective even about the diet I choose to eat and I recognize that we are not all the same. Unfortunately, vegans and vegetarians don’t give this same courtesy to people who choose to eat differently from them.

    • Bigdaddybuddha

      “The upshot is that you simply can’t trust statements by committed vegans since they bring a philosophy to the table”….What does that even mean?  What philosophy? What vegan propaganda? What kind of philosophy do you subscribe to if “hitting Bessie the cow in the head with a hammer” is an acceptable method of death?  There are a lot of keywords being thrown around on this discussion board without ANY real substance behind them.  
      And of course Einstein below here, LLVLCBlog, agrees with this post because you made a “great point”?  What point was that? That “proponents of global warming are not scared to fib”?  What fibs might these be? Who are these proponents of global warming you speak of? Jesus. People are so quick to eat up a couple statements they hear on whatever media outlet they subscribe to and ignorantly regurgitate them again as fact to whoever is lazy enough to accept them as fact again and continue the cycle of stupidity.  The only intelligent thing I have read on this board is that we should examine our diets scientifically, find out what works best for us and run with it. That being said I would love to see those of you who are so threatened by this tidal wave of “vegan propaganda” intelligently refute the most major claims made in the movie.  Scientifically of course….without copy and pasting a website link.  Think for yourselves…. 

      • Anonymous

        Find what works for you and do it. It’s no more simple than that.

    • Jem_mr_e

      Um, peer reviewed science is as close a picture to actual reality that we will ever get. Any one who claims otherwise is arguing against all the technological and scientific progress made in the last 200 years. Did you people go to school, or were you raised on a diet of creationist mythology? The only agenda science has is depicting the world as it is, not distorting it for any purpose or ideological reason. Some times the truth is hard to swallow (love all the food metaphors), but if you are honest to yourselves, you will see that this is the case. Knowledge, skepticism and an open mind are all tools that will show you the truth.   

      • Anonymous

        No sense in being insulting to make your point.

  • Jem_mr_e

    If by propaganda you mean science. Then yes you are right. But most rational and educated people call this reality. Where is your counter evidence (comprehensive epidemiological studies)? You can’t just fall back on the old, individualism argument, because as we know with smoking, yes some people live long and relatively healthy lives whilst smoking, but the majority don’t and we have evidence to prove it. Same thing goes for a diet high in saturated animal fat and protein. Time for evidence to speak louder than opinion, cultural tradition and ignorance.  

    • Anonymous

      The evidence is speaking loud and clear…for both approaches.

    • Edog

      Meat is good!! http://www.charlespoliquin.com/ArticlesMultimedia/Articles/Article/689/The_Meat_and_Testosterone_Connection.aspx

    • “But most rational and educated people call this reality.” except any doctor not trying to sell you a book.

  • StudentOfFeinman

    I’m a second year medical student, and with the rising trend of actually
    teaching nutrition to doctors I can say that Forks Over Knives lacked a
    certain je ne se qua. I just watched it last night, and I must say that you articulated every hesitation I had about this film. I think the word propaganda is fitting, as they never explained- and I’m still left asking- what is the major difference between animal protein and plant or grain based protein? Instead, they offered one personal story after another, which is compelling but sensationalized. The epidemiological study in China was not elaborated either, and again, no mechanism was ever elucidated. Despite all of these limitations, they are driven to sell the vegan diet (that you so well quoted) as “the single solution.” That is simply bad science. People are defensive on both sides, but it should be obvious to anyone that there is no right answer for everyone. What’s good for a 50 year old man with high cholesterol and inflammatory markers might not be good for the rest of the population. The low-carb diet has a lot of evidence and science behind it, and there should be a movie made to bring its attributes to the public. Your point is well made, and God willing, the debate should continue in the same constructive way you present your arguments in this blog.

    • Anonymous

      Thanks Murray.

    • dave

      It’s well known that med school does not really teach nutrition. I have 2 docs in my family and they admit this readly. I don’t think the issue with meat is the protein it’s the other thigs like fat and the cholesterol you get from meat and dairy. Are you going to say that cholesterol is good for you to consume? From the Mayo Clinic:

      Choose healthier fats. Saturated fats, found in red meat and dairy products, raise your total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, the “bad” cholesterol. As a general rule, you should get no more than 10 percent of your daily calories from saturated fat. Instead, choose leaner cuts of meat, low-fat dairy and monounsaturated fats — found in olive, peanut and canola oils — for a healthier option.

      Limit the cholesterol in your food. Aim for no more than 300 milligrams (mg) of cholesterol a day — less than 200 mg if you have heart disease. The most concentrated sources of cholesterol include organ meats, egg yolks and whole milk products. Use lean cuts of meat, egg substitutes and skim milk instead.

      • Anonymous

        There is no evidence supporting the claim that fat and cholesterol in foods is harmful to human health.

    • Well vegetarians have been found to have low levels Salicylic Acid (like aspirin) circulating  
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BZIGKEmTb0Y&feature=BFa&list=PL53AA35449C7DD652&lf=PlayList#t=3m35shttp://is.gd/GHc8Bl ‘fruits and veggies.pdf’ and ‘ASA.pdf’ http://nutritionfacts.org/videos/repairing-dna-damage/ 

  • Terry

    Are we or are we not mammals?  If we are mammals, isn’t our first food mother’s milk?  Why all the heat on dairy?

  • Edog

    Why are vegetarians posting on a pro low-carbohydrate site. How bout we settle this with arm wrestling or kick-ball. Meat-eaters win every time!

    • dave

      Not likely. Don’t have to eat meat to be strong, that’s an old wives tale long debunked. http://www.veganbodybuilding.com or the famous http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jack_LaLanne who apparantly didn’t mush care for meat either.

      LaLanne blamed overly processed foods for many health problems. He advocated a mostly meatless diet but which included fish (see Pescetarianism)[18][19], and took vitamin supplements.[20][21][22]
      He ate two meals a day and avoided snacks. His breakfast, after working out for two hours, consisted of hard-boiled egg whites, a cup of broth, oatmeal with soy milk and seasonal fruit. For dinner he and his wife typically ate raw vegetables and egg whites along with fish. He did not drink coffee.
      LaLanne said his two simple rules of nutrition are: “if man made it, don’t eat it”, and “if it tastes good, spit it out.” He offered his opinion of the average person’s diet:
      “Look at the average American diet: ice cream, butter, cheese, whole milk, all this fat. People don’t realize how much of this stuff you get by the end of the day. High blood pressure is from all this high-fat eating. Do you know how many calories are in butter and cheese and ice cream? Would you get your dog up in the morning for a cup of coffee and a donut? Probably millions of Americans got up this morning with a cup of coffee, a cigarette and a donut. No wonder they are sick and fouled up.

      I eat the occsional burger because I like it but I don’t try and fool myself into thinking it’s healthy. There are simply too many studies done over the years that prove the health benifits of not eating meat thats its simply silly to argue the point. If you want to eat meat or smoke then do so and be happy but don’t kid yourself that it’s good for your health.

  • Not A Hippy

    This documentary doesn’t strike me as propaganda (unlike some other pro-vegan videos I’ve seen), but I agree that the vegan side can be a bit on the arsehole train when it comes to the issue of what is good nutrition.

    I’ve tried keto, general low carb, low-fat (and correspondingly high carb), and vegan diets, and what has worked best for me in the long run is….a moderate paleo eating lifetsyle.

    It is a fact that veganism, when done correctly, results in lower rates of cardiovascular and endocrine disease than the Standard American Diet.  It is also true that it is very easy to become malnourished trying to get all your essential amino acids, vitamins, and minerals from grains/plants.  It is also a fact that vegan diets allow for the over consumption of grains, which can lead to elevated blood sugar levels for metabolically sensitive people.  Really, it depends on how “correct” you do it.  I’ve seen people chow down on diet soda, chips and salsa, pasta, and vegan cookies and they are still still technically vegan–but usually develop anemia and other deficiencies within two years.  Plus, they become skinny-fat with poor muscle tone.

    Just as veganism does have sound science behind it (assuming you’re actually eating a wide variety of vegetables with a moderate fruit/grain intake and very little added sugar), low-carb diets have facts to back up their efficacy.  Once again, compared to the SAD, a low carbohydrate, moderate-to high protein/fat diet leads to reduced cardiovascular and endocrine problems.  Like veganism, the problem is that people will often approach it incorrectly.  A truly healthy low carb meal, for example, would be 3oz of salmon, 2 cups of salad with 1-2 tablespoons of full-fat dressing, 1-2 servings of broccoli, and maybe unsweetened Greek yogurt or 1/4 cup blueberries, depending on your carb tolerance level. This is what I have personally seen, though:  a Jack-In-The-Box cheeseburger without the bun, an Atkins snack bar, a cheese stick,  and diet soda.  Yes you will get kidney stones eating that crap!

    I’m not a doctor, but I have found that combining the best of both worlds has protected me from deficiencies and–more importantly–is maintainable over the long haul.  I get on average 6-8 servings of vegetables and 4-5 servings of fruit per day, plus I’ve cut out all dairy except for egg whites, limit my grain intake (no pasta, no white bread, etc..) throw in a lot of seeds/nuts, and eat 2-3 servings of uncooked fish or cooked chicken per week.

    This is a real example of what I had for breakfast and lunch today:

    Breakfast:  egg white omelette made with 1/2 tbsp olive oil, mushrooms, and fresh spinach; 1 ounce raw pecans; 1/2 slice Ezekiel 4:9 sprouted grain bread with 1 tbsp hummus; 1 cup of green tea; 1/2 cup blueberries; 16oz water

    Lunch:  3oz salmon sashimi style (uncooked);  1 tbsp zitzaki; 10 cherry tomatoes;  1/2 cup fresh vegetable juice; 5 asparagus spears; 1 nectarine;  1/2 cup red grapes; 2 gluten-free vegan cookies

    Snack:  1 medium apple,  1 serving of punjab choley (chickpeas, tomatoes, onions and ginger stewed in coconut milk with curry powder)

    Both the vegan and low-carb sides have legitimate scientific claims to back up the efficiency of their lifestyles.  At the end of the day, actually following the diets correctly (vegans:  actually eat vegetables!  low-carbers:  chicken + spinach + feta/dressing > fastfood burger with no bun) seem to have a greater impact on individual health and results.

  • Andrey

    this is such an old discussion really, going back to the ancient Greeks, like Pythagoras. there will never be the one answer to people’s problems. ok, it has been proven that the vegan/vegetarian diet is “good enough”. Pythagoras for example was an Olympic champion in wrestling 4 times in a row, that is over 20 years. there are examples today, like Mac Danzig, the UFC fighter and many ironman triathletes. there is science behind plant-based diets being better for endurance sports, for example, keep googling. but that’s not the point. the thing is… ok it’s proven and, more importantly shown by example (who the f* is mr. Danzig again?), that it is at least good enough for good health. but when we compare that diet with our factory farming effects on environment, then we can start thinking. i tell my buddies to throw garbage in the bin, not on the street. it makes sense to me. essentially, it’s the same thing. if vegan diet is not perfect for our habits (i really love bacon, i do), at least it’s the lesser evil ) imho. 

  • Anonymous

    Don’t mind hearing it. But it is propaganda.

  • Guest

    Your whole review comes off as if you’re somehow feeling threatened by this movie… why might that be?  Perhaps your opinion that a movie saying that ‘less meat and dairy is healthy’ constitutes propaganda, might be somewhat shaded by your economic interests?  I’m sure the guy who owns the company making cigarette vending machines would insist smoking ain’t that bad for you, either… 

    • Anonymous

      It’s not a review of the movie. I simply was letting my readers know about the latest propaganda piece from the vegans. Anyone who denies that’s what this is is delusional.

  • Sara_sims87

    They don’t use the word “vegan” because they aren’t telling you that you can NEVER have meat, they’re saying you should reduce it vastly, take in more vegetables and fruits, whole grains. People keep referring to this as “another movie that promotes vegetarianism, like we need another one…” Well apparently we do because everyone around me is overweight, chronically ill, and lazy. And the critics are right when they say that you could just get this information out of an article, but last time i checked, people are too lazy to even read. It’s pathetic.

    • Anonymous

      You don’t have to say “vegan” to get your point across. And Campbell, Ornish, Esseltyn, etal would love nothing more than for everyone to be vegans. Make no mistake about it. That’s their fatal flaw. Just let people make the decision about what’s best for them and stop scaring people from eating good quality grass-fed meats.

  • Elle

    I just watched the movie last night.  The research is quite compelling.  However, some of the studies did seem to leave room for a moderate amount of animal protein.  The study with the rats showed with 5% animal protein then did not have any adverse effects.  As someone who enjoys eating a piece of meat that looks as though it might crawl off the plate, the idea of becoming a total vegan is not realistic. I also believe that we have teeth meant for chewing meet and a body meant for digesting it.  I don’t think animal proteins should be cut out completely.  I do come from a  family with a history of diabetes, heart disease and thyroid issues, so I am looking for a healthier way to live and avoid the same issues.  Based on the movie, I can see radically changing my diet to a more plant based menu and even cut out most dairy (the stuff I love, but my body doesn’t), but I still intend to enjoy sushi, chicken and beef in much smaller portions.

    • Anonymous

      There are very few added benefits from going more plant-based (vegan) compared with a real foods grass-fed, organic diet.

  • Charlie Gordon

    I am not a vegan, (and I like meat)  but I liked the movie!  The movie is educational and informative. How can you not like knowing that milk does not create strong bones, but causes osteoporosis?  The people with the highest consumption of meat in the world have the highest incidence of heart disease. Regardless of your eating habit, this film explains why eating meat and dairy are not healthy. You decide if you want to continue eating meat and dairy, no one is forcing you otherwise. This film attempts to dispel some myths, and educate you about eating healthy. What could be so wrong with that? 

    • Anonymous

      How many of those meat eaters are also eating large amounts of carbohydrates. Correlation does not equal causation.

      • As I have said above, I followed the low carb died religiously for years. I totally stopped eating pasta, rice, bread and potatoes. I stopped drinking soda. I drank skim milk. I lived on skinless chicken breasts. It was not sustainable. I ate incredibly low amounts of carbs at first. But eventually you just can’t do it. It puzzled me how it was implicit in the low carb diets that vegetables were full of complex carbs. Now I have seen the light. You must stop eating plant based foods. 

        • Anonymous

          Your “low-carb diet” looks nothing like the one I have shared about for years on this blog. I encourage you to read books on low-carb to learn what it is truly about. Your body needs more fat when you cut the carbs.

  • Meat tastes good

    Interesting movie.  I am an anesthesiologist and this movie gets to the heart (pun) of this nations health crisis.  My patients are fat, and they are getting fatter.  
    Doctors have helped solve the worst health problems that the world, but now whats left:  Diabetes, hypertension, heart and vascular disease, and cancer.

    I you want to stand a chance at healthy living, start eating things that grow from the earth….

    Help yourself and your family….we will help take care of the rest.  

  • Anonymous

    I feel this critique is extraordinarily critical.  I thought “Forks over Knives” was terrific  I thought the graphs and diagrams were
    terrific as well as the extent of the studies done to demonstrate the
    importance of vegetables, vegetables, vegetables, fruit and fruit.   


    Think about it.  Our
    DNA was formed over 10,000 years ago and it hasn’t really changed.

    So how can there be more than minute variations in the human
    diet for our DNA to thrive – an allergy here and there.  Most food allergies are lactate and gluten
    intolerance – our ancestors didn’t have animal milk and wheat.  Sure there was an overconsumption of animal protein
    in certain groups because of the lack of plants, but they got osteoporosis – think


    The typical American diet is a killer.  It is well established that grain feed is not
    designed for animals –and animal meat consumption and dairy exceeds by over 3 times what is necessary protein not to mention it is a drain on our planet, even if
    grass fed.  It is as much a part of our
    sick country as overconsumption of sugar, bad fats and salt.  Then there was Atkins (what happens when you
    get ketoacidosis), low carb (what kind of carbs are you talking here – white flour
    – turns into sugar)?  


    Vegan is a good – requires more thought, chopping and
    mixing.  I would think if one is a
    serious athlete it is difficult to get enough protein from an exclusively vegan
    diet.  Then there is Paleo – some wild
    animal meat,  fish, maybe some eggs, not the “new grains”.   Both are in the ball park as Michael Pollan’s
    advises: eat real food, not too much, mostly plants.  I think it would be very difficult to eat too
    much plant food (there was a great diagram in Forks over Knives about this..   


    The bottom line is only the vegan and Dean Ornish’s DASH
    diet showed reversal of cardiovascular disease. 
    NO OTHER DIET HAS.  That makes me
    a believer.

    • Anonymous

      This wasn’t a review…it was a preview before the film released. I agree grain-fed meats are unhealthy. But FOK wants people to be vegans to be healthy. Then how do I have a heart calcium score of zero eating lots of grass-fed animal fat and protein?

      • The cancer rates described in “The China Study” were tremendously convincing, given the science and the vast number of people surveyed. The conclusions were breathtakingly convincing. 

        • Anonymous

          They have never studied meat consumption separating grass-fed, grain-fed and processed meats. There is a huge difference.

  • ChrisD

    If you watched this movie – carefully – you’ll have noticed a great deal of study and research went into arriving at the conclusions that they provide. I’m not a vegan – and I’m not about to become one. I love my meat: big, greasy burger with fries and a shake, BBQ chicken, BBQ ribs – I make killer baby back ribs. On the other hand, I think the conclusion they make makes sense – lots of sense – and they have the hard (indisputable) data to back it up.

    Here’s the simple guideline: make sure every meal consists of 80% fruits and/or vegetables (51% of the fruit/vegetable being raw) and the remaining 20% can be whatever you want.

    Even for a meat eater like myself, that’s easy to do. I’ve lost weight following this simple plan; I feel more energetic and sleep better. And yes, this plan can work for 90% of the population out there. Those who’ve tried it have discovered it for themselves. Those who knock it are the ones who haven’t tried it.

    • Anonymous

      The evidence presented in favor of veganism is a house of cards.

      • On what basis do you make that statement–because you make your living selling meat? LLVLCBLog–I googled that and see that you are merely protecting your business interests. You are despicable.

        • Anonymous

          I don’t have a meat selling business. I’m just a man sharing a positive message to a world desperately seeking answers about their health.

    • Elinsky0

      No offense, but “careful” attention to subjects that you aren’t informed enough about to make an opinion on, doesn’t result in a well informed opinion.

      • Anonymous

        Who is this comment addressed to?

    • Anonymous

      good thoughts ChrisD. except one problem. Right now the US eats more of their daily calories from meat than the next 9 countries combined. So people like you who like their meat wind up growing the % they eat on a daily basis. Thus the large obesity, diabetes, heart disease that we all are saddled with by allowing meat and dairy in our diet. It leads to poor choices, processed food and really bad health. And it all catched up to you in later years. But hey, enjoy those ribs, baby! I used to love them too, So I can identify!

      • Anonymous

        Meat doesn’t lead to obesity, diabetes and heart disease. Carbohydrates, especially sugar and grains, do. Period. End of story.

  • BIG GUY turned Vegan

    I am 6’0 270 pounds…I’m a big guy and have been since I was little (out-eating even the larger adults of the family). On Sept. 16 2011 I was really sick and wanted to watch somthing on Netflix…. this was the show (if you couldn’t figure that out).  Since that day, my life has turned over on its head. I am a kind of person who learns facts…. AND DOESN’T DENY THEM!!! I had to change my ways and my life while I still had time…. I no longer eat meat, and have very very few dairy products, but I’ve learned it’s the only way we can eliminate the health problems of America. We have become slaves to food. Ask almost any overweight person, and they will tell you they want to lose weight… but they cant or have failed before. This movie isn’t VEGAN PROFFETS ATTACK, It’s a way to end obesity in the U.S.A

    • Anonymous

      Good luck with your vegan lifestyle. I sincerely hope it does what you think it will do for you. Just know there is ample evidence and facts about meat-eating (especially grass-fed and pastured) that warrant your investigative attention.

  • Scott


    You seem sensible in this comments stream, repeatedly telling people to “find what works best for them and then do it.”

    So why did you choose such a polarizing, inflammatory title for this article? I don’t think anything about this documentary was propagandist. The people in the film certainly hold their beliefs with deep conviction, but I’d wager that you hold your belief in the Paleo lifestyle/diet with a similar conviction – as can be evidenced by the existence of this website as well as your defense of the Paleo lifestyle here in the comments. When you declare something as propaganda (before you’ve even seen it), aren’t you deepening the battle line that has been drawn between the low-carbers and the vegetarians? It makes the issue more emotional and likely shuts down any thoughtful conversation that might otherwise have taken place. I don’t see this as being productive or helpful to anyone, in any way. In fact, it seems irresponsible. We should leave out the buzz words, cut out the hate-mongering, and advocate open-mindedness and individualized plans for health and happiness.

    And for the record, I’d say the same thing to any vegan who would label a pro-meat film as propaganda without just reasoning.

    • Anonymous

      I have been reasonable with Vegans asking for the same respect I have given acknowledging there are many ways for people to choose to be healthy. They don’t agree. After interviewing one of the most famous vegans Dr. Dean Ornish on my podcast, I put out a challenge to vegans and low-carbers alike to come together on areas of agreement:


      I’d love for us to focus on these things rather than people getting all in a tizzy about whether meat from a grass-fed cow is somehow harming them. It is not.

      • I lived the low carb diet for years–and lost weight in the beginning but it had so many negative side effects–and I was only thinking of my weight. I did not do stupid things like eating bacon or fat–the only meat I ate was skinless chicken breasts. I ported over Atkins’ book. It is not sustainable. 
        “The China Study” goes well beyond the simple issue of losing weight and includes that huge study with 800 million participants that shows that heart disease and CANCER are tremendously reduced by eating a whole foods, plant based diet. The vast number of test subjects in “The China Study” is unmistakeable and impossible to argue with. There has been nothing like it in history. I fully understand the theory about low-carb diets–that you avoid eating things that turn instantly to sugar after you eat them. But after researching and living the whole-foods, plant based diet, I regret every bit of meat I eat. I know it’s bad for me. I am not a vegetarian or a vegan. But I simply choose to avoid eating animal-based products. I think you perhaps cannot handle the cognitive dissonance of eating a plant based diet. I think you are harming yourself and the people who you suggest should eat meat. I have no problem with the idea of eating meat–I just think it’s tremendously foolish, health wise. I have seen the light. 

        • Anonymous

          There’s where you went wrong. A low-carb diet is most effective when you rep,ace the cabs with healthy saturated fats from coconut oil, grass-fed beef and many other sources. This is what fuels your body and helps keep you satiated for hours on end. It’s cool if you choose not to enjoy the amazing benefits of healthy low-carb, high-fat animal-based living. But I wouldn’t be so quick as to put yourself and your duet up on a pedestal as the sole purveyors of nutritional truth.

  • Anonymous

    I agree we shouldn’t eat processed foods and that whole plant foods are an important part of a healthy diet. Beans are NOT a good choice for people who are metabolically deranged, though, because they do lead to spikes in blood sugar that are completely unnecessary. Weight/fat loss does not have to be “anti-health and anti-fitness” as you claim. Simply choose the foods that are nourishing to the body while helping you lose weight like grass-fed meats, locally-grown organic green leafy and non-starchy veggies, nuts and seeds, and the like. I agree calorie-counting is a complete waste of time.

  • Emily Bear

    Fully agree with Scott, though I can see that the article states, “choose what works for you”, it has the undertones of anti-plant based diet sentiments. The pot calling the kettle black? I recently watched the film and would like to point out aside from the UFC fighter describing giving up meat neither medical doctor interviewed states that one would have to go vegan for these positive health effects. In fact, in one of the studies cited it stated that eating 5% animal protein in the diet showed no sign of cancer development. It is also mentioned on several occasions by the doctors that eating a predominately plant based diet would harness the positive health effects discussed, not vegan. Plant based does not have to be all or nothing. 

    • Anonymous

      And neither does meat-based have to be an all or nothing proposition. Many of my fellow Paleo and low-carbers consume plenty of delicious veggies and plant-based foods in our diets along with the healthy grass-fed meats. The point is you can get healthy eating this way as well.

  • I tried the Atkins diet for several years and found that it did not work.

    I have had my life changed by following a whole foods, plant-based diet. It was worked fantastically well. It has changed my life for the better. I have read the book that backs it, “The China Study” and found it to be the most important book I ever read.

    After I read that book and then tonight after I just got done watching “Forks over Knives” I went into my fridge, broke all the eggs and put them down the sink. I had a sack of frozen chicken breasts. I carried them frozen to the dumpster. 

    I cannot see any reason to oppose this movie. It is the most sensible thing I’ve ever seen. I tried the low carb died for several years and it was not sustainable. I felt sick. If you want to live, if you want to avoid going on pills, if you want not to spend your money paying your doctor, I urge you to change your life and follow a whole foods, plant based diet.

    • Anonymous

      So, because it didn’t work for you the low-carb diet is now off limits to anyone else? That’s not very scientific. There are plenty of us healthy eating a low-carb, high-fat animal and plant-based diet.

  • I tried the Atkins diet for several years and found that it did not work.

    I have had my life changed by following a whole foods, plant-based diet. It was worked fantastically well. It has changed my life for the better. I have read the book that backs it, “The China Study” and found it to be the most important book I ever read.

    After I read that book and then tonight after I just got done watching “Forks over Knives” I went into my fridge, broke all the eggs and put them down the sink. I had a sack of frozen chicken breasts. I carried them frozen to the dumpster. 

    I cannot see any reason to oppose this movie. It is the most sensible thing I’ve ever seen. I tried the low carb died for several years and it was not sustainable. I felt sick. If you want to live, if you want to avoid going on pills, if you want not to spend your money paying your doctor, I urge you to change your life and follow a whole foods, plant based diet.

  • Anonymous

    And a “healthy diet” can also include grass-fed meats, saturated fats like butter, lard and coconut oil, and pastured eggs. Find what works for you to make you healthy and do it.

  • Anonymous

    Ornish was the only one who said yes. Campbell and Esselstyn both declined interviews.

  • MG

    above article and most naysayer comments below are knee-jerk rhetoric fighting scientific, unbiased study. both esselstyn and campbell came from upbringings and previous strong beliefs contradictory to their current stances. campbell said himself that he had to struggle to change prior beliefs that existed simply from a desire to believe–a logical fallacy that plagues most minds it seems… faith and rhetoric lose, hard study and scientific process win. the china study is a bombshell.

    • Anonymous

      So why wouldn’t Campbell agree to discuss his beliefs on my podcast? Even his buddies Dean Ornish and Neal Barnard have been on. Why is he afraid?

  • I have been reading the different comments everyone is making and I really have to throw my $.02 in…might I start out by saying I’ve had an avid interest in nurtrition for well over 15 years. I have probably been on EVERY diet there is out there INCLUDING vegetarianism (for which I ate for over 11 years). The whole time I believed I was doing something good for the eviornment, my health, etc, etc….I have to say that I while I was eating in said fashion, I wasn’t very healthy at all. My hair didn’t look good, my skin didn’t look good, I was a sort of “skinny fat” even because I wasn’t develpoing much muscle. Now, after starting to eat delicious glorious meat, I look better, I have more energy, and I’m satisfied with much LESS food then when I was eating 80/90% fruits, vegetables, soy, whole grains, and little to NO animal products. I wood like to point out as well that you can not, let me repeat, CAN NOT get all nutrition out of eating a vegetarirn style diet. It’s missing key nutrients from B12, Cholesterol (yes! eeeeeeeevil cholestrol), saturated fat, and Omega 3 fatty acids…know that more then 50% of your brain is made up of both satuarted fat AND cholesterol….and if you aren’t eating it, you aren’t getting it. If you would like further info, try reading Nora Gedgaudas “Primal Body, Primal Mind”, or try watching Gary Taubes lecture on youtube on “What if it’s all been a big fat lie”, or even, look up “Diets A TO Z” a research study done by a Stanford Professor of Medicine named Christopher Gardner on the most common diet’s around (Atkins, food pyramid style diet, Dr. Ornish, and the Zone). Dr. Gardner’s is particularly complelling since right up front he lets you know he himself has been a vegetarian for over 25 years…guess who’s diet came out on top for overall “health”? ATKINS!!!!!!! NO OTHER DIET beat it in any catagory for markers of good health (cholesterol levels HDL/LDL, weightloss, blood pressure, etc). So venture out and do some more of your OWN research…there, that’s my two pennies worth.

  • to me sounds like an unintelligent statement by an overly sensitive omnivore

  • trae

    Mixed emotions about your article. You do a commendable job by not out-right flaming this film. You do take an obvious slant against the thesis of the film and I can respect that. You do however completely fabricate something that was not in the film, “making people who choose to consume meat as part of their menus for the sake of improving their health seem inferior.” I understand that many vegans do have an aire of superiority, but in my opinion this film was free of any notion of that.

    Also your article tries to create an argument that the vegan plan is attacking the viability of your diet plan – which it absolutely is not. This film uses a study to show how effective the vegan diet plan is. If you would like to compare the effectiveness of your plan vs theirs; I would LOVE to see the results. My hypothesis is, your more responsible diet plan would be better than the average diet, but would pale in comparison to a truly vegan diet.  

    • Anonymous

      Thanks for your respectful response. However, my opinions about the feeling toward meat eaters is based on personal interactions with Campbell. He gives no credence to the notion that there is any other way than veganism to attain optimal health. I disagree. While a vegan may be able to become healthy eating that way, so too can someone eating grass-fed, pastured and organic foods.

  • I have been reading the different comments everyone is making and I really have to throw my $.02 in…might I start out by saying I’ve had an avid interest in nurtrition for well over 15 years. I have probably been on EVERY diet there is out there INCLUDING vegetarianism (for which I ate for over 11 years). The whole time I believed I was doing something good for the eviornment, my health, etc, etc….I have to say that I while I was eating in said fashion, I wasn’t very healthy at all. My hair didn’t look good, my skin didn’t look good, I was a sort of “skinny fat” even because I wasn’t develpoing much muscle. Now, after starting to eat delicious glorious meat, I look better, I have more energy, and I’m satisfied with much LESS food then when I was eating 80/90% fruits, vegetables, soy, whole grains, and little to NO animal products. I wood like to point out as well that you can not, let me repeat, CAN NOT get all nutrition out of eating a vegetarirn style diet. It’s missing key nutrients from B12, Cholesterol (yes! eeeeeeeevil cholestrol), saturated fat, and Omega 3 fatty acids…know that more then 50% of your brain is made up of both satuarted fat AND cholesterol….and if you aren’t eating it, you aren’t getting it. If you would like further info, try reading Nora Gedgaudas “Primal Body, Primal Mind”, or try watching Gary Taubes lecture on youtube on “What if it’s all been a big fat lie”, or even, look up “Diets A TO Z” a research study done by a Stanford Professor of Medicine named Christopher Gardner on the most common diet’s around (Atkins, food pyramid style diet, Dr. Ornish, and the Zone). Dr. Gardner’s is particularly complelling since right up front he lets you know he himself has been a vegetarian for over 25 years…guess who’s diet came out on top for overall “health”? ATKINS!!!!!!! NO OTHER DIET beat it in any catagory for markers of good health (cholesterol levels HDL/LDL, weightloss, blood pressure, etc). So venture out and do some more of your OWN research…there, that’s my two pennies worth.

  • This documentary-styled movie was a good portrayal of a different kind of diet, and made an attempt to reinforce it with statistical analysis.  I looked up cancer diagnoses per capita by country as well as per capita meat consumption, and there is some correlation (North America and Australia have the highest in both categories).  The Eskimoes, however, do quite well with their 100% seal, whale, and fish diet.  You put them on a Western, industrial diet, and they get fat and sick.  Some races have changed their physiology to accommodate the foods they have available.  The Western, proper diet should have a variety of foods, but the key that has disappeared is “moderation.” 
    In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, when Americans for example, were physically working, they could eat butter, lard, meat, etc and remained healthy.  Today’s diet has changed: now the butter and fat contains no “healthy” omega-3 fatty acids, due to the industrialization of food: corn fed beef and milk, high calorie fast foods, high-fructose corn syrup, and no one really knows what long term exposure to those genetically modified crops will do to everyone.

    Our diet consists of “Real Foods”:  foods that have not been modified (“USDA Organic”), are preferrably chemical-free, are locally grown (i.e. fresh), or are raised eating what they evolved eating (for cows, grass instead of corn).  Proportions are appropriate- not too much of anything, and fast foods are eaten only out of necessity, not as a staple. 

    Moderation is missing in the Western diet, and cooking your own food would go a long way to improving the health and economies of Western populations.  Forget what the fast food corporations want you to buy, and buy some Real Food:
    localharvest[dot]org, eatwild[com]com are good places to look.

    • Anonymous

      I agree on the call to eat real food. But that includes grass-fed meats and pastured eggs too.

  • Anonymous

    Show your kids and tell your co-workers about a film called FAT HEAD as well.

  • 00meghan00

    How is the pushing of dairy/meat industry into a ‘food pyramid’ any less propagandic? 

    • Anonymous

      Full-fat grass-fed meats and full-fat dairy is NOT pushed by the USDA in their Food Plate ponzi scheme. It’s extremely unhealthy low-fat and fat-free versions of meats and cheeses which I wouldn’t feed to my cats.

  • Emma

    I am a former low-carber. I stopped for a variety of personal reasons and credit low-carbing with getting me off of sugar. But you are way off-base calling this movie “vegan propaganda.” I thought it was thoughtfully done and encouraged people to eat mindfully, which is something everyone should be doing, regardless of how they eat. 

    • Anonymous

      Keep in mind, my opinion that this is propaganda is based on my personal conversations and interactions with one of the principle figures in the film–T. Colin Campbell. There’s more here than meets the eye.

  • Mturnipseed1

    You’re an absolute fuckwit. May death be with you soon. 

    • Anonymous

      Wow. Sounds like somebody is in desperate need of some animal fat in their diet.

  • Gfpstudios

    LLVLC: your comments seem very well thought out except I detect a slight emotional content in your phrasing. I can’t put my finger on it but I percieve your are emotionally invested in your position.

    I too saw the forks over knives movie; I bought the books too.  I could care less about how animals are raised or suffer in slaughterhouses….but I do care about how my body processes animal foods.  I decided to eat more plants.  The statistical significance of the China study is just too stunning to ignore.  May we all find our best paths.

    • Anonymous

      No emotion here. just enough experience dealing with people like Campbell who pretend to be about science and yet they’re not. Read this outstanding series of columns combatting the fallacy of The China Study:


  • joanielspeak

    (This is more in response to most of the other comments.)

    After watching this movie (having viewed MANY other food and diet documentaries including Fat Head, which I found hilarious and great) I came to the conclusion that no one has my best interest in mind. Only I can understand my own health. As an intelligent adult with a college degree, access to medical journals, doctor friends and several research scientists in my family, I get view points from all across the board. They are all very persuading and yet, to believe them all would make my head explode from contradiction. I pick and choose what makes sense to me, who has the least biased results, and who does not have a hidden agenda (which can often be extremely difficult to detect).
    Anyone that swallows everything they read or watch as the whole truth and nothing but the truth is lying to themselves and are just as bad as the overweight folks swallowing cookies and crackers calling them part of the “grain group”. If you want to believe something, than go ahead, but don’t go insisting that other’s beliefs are faulty just because they don’t agree with yours. 

    Being 6 months pregnant right now, diet is extremely important to me. After doing a lot of research on my own I have found three things: real foods are far superior to processed foods, real foods are far cheaper than processed foods, and local non-organic foods are superior to non-local organic foods. These are conclusions that I have made based on nutritional content of food and local, environmental, and life long impact. They are better for me, my family and better for my community. I still eat meat, but it is from a local farm, from pasture and ethically raised animals. I also eat produce either from my own garden or from local farms, including an indoor hydroponic garden in the winter. All my dairy comes from a local creamery. I haven’t set foot in a grocery store in well over 2 months. I don’t eat bananas regularly because, guess what? They are not local to me as I live in rural Maryland. They are a special 2-3 times a year treat (unless we vacation somewhere more exotic). It is fun to eat locally. You become much more in touch with the seasons.

    My 55 and 56 year old parents are active, healthy, and on no medications. My husband and I are in our 20s with no signs of any diseases. All around us we watch our friends become obese and/or depressed. My best friend (26 years old) is on 4 oral medications himself for skin blemishes, allergies, stomach problems and stress. He regularly eats processed and boxed foods.

    I try to explain my own holistic approach to curing my own ailments but people tend to shut down when they hear “holistic”, like I am a witch doctor about to rattle some bones to make cancer disappear. Taking into account a person’s personal life, professional life, mental state and diet are all crucial to understanding how they got to their present condition and it is the only way in which to properly diagnose someone and begin a proper method of treatment. Movies like this fail to recognize this and the “cure-all pills” they despise turn into a “cure-all diet” which we all know simply doesn’t exist.

    Take everything you read and see (and possibly eat) with a grain of salt. Approaching a subject blinded to alternative lifestyles just makes you look like a fool. I enjoyed the alternative viewpoints and the introduction to several research documents that I will now have to look up. I appreciated hearing the vegan diet argument sans the environmental impact issues. It, like many documentaries, offers many valid points. Will I adopt a vegan diet? Probably not, but will I suggest it to a friend looking to feel and eat better? Maybe I will. Then they can draw their own conclusions.

    • Anonymous

      Good for you! I can appreciate your openminded perspective on this.

  • Anonymous

    The use of the word “propaganda” is completely appropriate based on the people who are involved in the film. Campbell is one of the most extremely close-minded people behind-the-scenes that I have ever seen when it comes to discussing what he believes regarding nutrition. Dean Ornish, another prominent vegan, came on my podcast twice to talk about his philosophy as well as Neal Barnard who runs PCRM which is nothing more than a vegan propaganda group. Make no mistake about it, this film was designed to fool people into thinking veganism is the ONLY way to get healthy.

    I agree people who eat meat should get their food from the wild and/or make the meats grass-fed and pastured. The abundance of healthy nutrition in these kind of meats is what draws so many of us to the Paleo/low-carb lifestyle and it has given us optimal health. My wife and I both have a heart scan score of a whopping zero for calcium buildup in our arteries eating a 70% fat, mostly saturated fat from animals and coconuts, diet for the past eight years. We have no worries that we’ll “keel over from heart disease” anytime soon. That’s just a red herring vegan propagandists like to promote to prevent people from trying a way of eating that could possibly prevent them from having a heart attack ever again.

  • Anonymous

    You can get all the glucose and nutrients you body needs from animal fat and protein.

  • Anonymous

    There’s equal real science behind animal-based high-fat, low-carb nutrition.

  • Anonymous

    Luanne, I’m sorry your parents died from cancer. But you can’t automatically assume that it was the meat–whatever the source–that took them. I had a minister of music in my church who was one of the most strict raw vegans I’ve ever met in my life. Meat was totally forbidden on his diet and he never ate at socials. At the age of 47 he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and died less than two years later. If a “plant-based diet” (vegan) is supposed to protect against cancer, then what happened to my beloved pastor friend?

  • Anonymous

    Fat is your fuel source on low-carb.

  • Anonymous

    This wasn’t a review of the film.

  • Lulurecovery

    what an idiot you are. just saying. DUMB

    • Anonymous


  • Anonymous

    Good for you. But it doesn’t change the fact that high-fat, low-carb meat based diets are making people healthier than they ever thought possible.