PROFESSIONAL REACTION TO THE CHINA STUDY

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We will be posting comments on THE CHINA STUDY from professionals as they are received. We have two from major public health institutions. The first is from Walter Willett. He was also involved with Harvard’s NURSES HEALTH STUDY another major study of foods relationship to major disease and has made comments to the Washington Post on the National Cancer Institute’s large human study on the relationship between red meat and early death.

WALTER WILLETT- Department Head Harvard University-School of Public Health, Nutrition and Epidemiology– He was featured in the documentary King Corn where he discussed the adverse health effects of High Fructose Corn syrup.

I certainly agree with the point about the adverse environmental effects of our current ag system, and the adverse effects on human health.

However, it is magical thinking that we would have a society that is free from all the diseases that you describe, but we could greatly reduce the rates by not smoking, better diets, and more physical activity.

However, the optimal diet, or environmental situation, does not have to be completely free of animal products, but should move in the direction of being more plant based.  E.g., there is room in a healthy food production system of some pasture cropping and fish raising.

Processing is also a complex issue; surely hydrogenated oils and refined grains have been a disaster for health, but some processing is necessary for digestion, and also for preservation as we can’t produce a year round supply of food locally in the North East, especially at the current population levels. What we need is smart processing that is aimed at optimizing both health and environmental impacts…..fortunately these are not mutually exclusive.

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