The Real Dirty Dozen: The 12 Deadliest Lifestyle Factors

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The Real Dirty Dozen: The 12 Deadliest Lifestyle Factors

Postby JeffN » Mon May 12, 2014 8:26 am

The Real Dirty Dozen: The 12 Deadliest Dietary & Lifestyle Factors & What You Can Do About Them

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) publishes an annual rating of conventional foods with the most and least pesticide residues called "The Dirty Dozen" so that consumers "can have the health benefits of a diet rich in fruits and vegetables with less exposure to pesticides."

However, as I pointed out many years ago in my article, “The Flaw In The Dirty Dozen,” the methodology for the list is highly flawed...

http://www.jeffnovick.com/RD/Articles/E ... Dozen.html

There are other problems with the Dirty Dozen list, which are discussed here...

http://appliedmythology.blogspot.com/20 ... t.html?m=1

You can also find a discussion on my overall thoughts about organic food here...

http://www.drmcdougall.com/forums/viewt ... =22&t=6229

In response to the discussion of whether or not someone should choose organic food or which things are the most harmful and should be avoided, it often seems that we have our priorities mixed up. I often see well-meaning and good intentioned people who are trying to do the right thing and put tremendous amount of time, energy and effort into avoiding things that may not have much of an impact on them at all while, at the same time and without realizing it, indulge in things that are very harmful to their health.

To this end, I wrote the article “Triage Your Health Efforts” many years ago to help people prioritize their health efforts.

http://www.jeffnovick.com/RD/Articles/E ... _Ugly.html

The article was an outgrowth of this discussion on the same topic…

http://www.drmcdougall.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=7875

… and this discussion on the top 10 harmful chemicals causing health problems and death...

http://www.drmcdougall.com/forums/viewt ... =22&t=6502

All of the above-referenced articles and discussions were based on my presentation, “Lighten Up: Weighing In On The Weight Debate,” which also highlights this very important issue of focusing on what matters most.

The EWG has just released their newest list of the “Dirty Dozen.”

http://www.ewg.org/foodnews/list.php

In response, I have created my list, “The Real Dirty Dozen: The 12 Deadliest Dietary & Lifestyle Factors & What You Can Do About Them.”

The Real Dirty Dozen: The 12 Deadliest Dietary & Lifestyle Factors & What You Can Do About Them.

1. Smoking (including 2’nd & 3’rd hand smoke)
2. Excess Calories/Body Weight
3. Inadequate Diet (fruits, vegetables, intact starches)
4. Alcohol
5. Inactivity/Sedentary Lifestyle
6. Added Sodium/Salt
7. Saturated fat
8. Dietary Cholesterol
9. Added Sugars/Caloric Sweeteners
10. Added Fats/Oils
11. Refined Flours/Grains
12. Hydrogenated/Trans Fats

And one more...

13. Illicit Drugs & Prescription Drugs


What you can do...

1. Smoking (including 2’nd & 3’rd hand smoke)
- Don't smoke. If you smoke, quit. Avoid 2’nd & 3’rd hand smoke.

2. Excess Calories/Body Weight
- Maintain a healthy weight with a BMI of 18.5 to 24.9 (a BMI of 18.5-22 may be optimal), and a waist circumference of <35 for women and < 40 for men, and a waist to height ratio of < .50

3. Inadequate Diet (fruits, vegetables, intact starches, fiber-rich foods)
- Eat a diet based predominately on a variety of minimally processed whole plant foods (fruits, vegetables, starchy vegetables, roots/tubers, intact whole grains and beans).

4. Alcohol
- Don't drink. If you drink and it is a problem, quit. If you do drink, limit the intake to occasional light drinking (<1 drink/day & <4 drinks/week).

5. Inactivity/Sedentary Lifestyle
- 150 to 300 minutes per week of moderate activity (or 75 to 150 minutes of vigorous activity) that includes aerobic and resistance exercise. The inclusion of some balance, flexibility work is also recommended.

6. Excess Added Sodium/Salt (3)
- Keep total sodium from all sources to <1500 mg/day.

7. Excess Saturated Fat (1) (3)
- Keep saturated fat to <5% of total calories

8. Dietary Cholesterol (1)
- Keep total cholesterol to < ~25 mg/day.

9. Added Sugars/Caloric Sweeteners (2) (3)
- Keep added sugars/sweeteners (including fruit juice and natural sweeteners) to <5% of total calories.

10. Added Fat/Oils (2) (3)
- Keep added fats/oils to <4% of calories.

11. Refined Flours/Grains (2) (3)
- Less than 5% of calories.

12. Hydrogenated/Trans Fats (3)
- Avoid these.

13. Illicit Drugs and Prescription Drugs
- Avoid illicit drugs. Avoid prescription drugs except for short-term use when unavoidable. There are exceptions where Rx drug are often necessary, sometimes for life (insulin, thyroid, etc). In these situations, make sure the benefits clearly outweigh the risks and that you are informed and aware of the risks.

(1) While these are found in several places, that are mostly a marker for animal product consumption. Limit animal products to no more than 5% of calories, regardless of saturated fat and cholesterol.

(2) The total intake of added sugars, added fats/oils, refined flours, animal products, etc., if included, should not exceed 10% of calories on any given day.

(3) While these are found in several places, a large percentage of them comes from intake of Overly Processed foods, which should be avoided.

In Health,
Jeff
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Distracted Health:The Power of Marketing, Media & Misdirecti

Postby JeffN » Sun Aug 17, 2014 7:46 am

Distracted Health: The Power of Marketing, the Media and Misdirection
Jeff Novick, MS, RDN

As outlined in the article above, our nation is literally dying from excess calories, fat, sat fat, cholesterol, refined carbs/grains, added sugars, added salts, added oils, hydrogenated/trans fat. And, it seems that we have our priorities mixed up. Many well-meaning and good intentioned people who are trying to do the right thing are putting tremendous amount of time, energy and effort into avoiding things that may not have much of an impact on them at all while at the same time, and without realizing it, are indulging in things that are very harmful to their health.

The following survey confirms that.

Instead of trying to avoid the issues that are known to be responsible for the most sickness and disease, most shoppers are looking to avoid other issues. And, while these other issues may have some importance, they have absolutely nothing to do with our epidemic of lifestyle related chronic disease.

From Consumers Union...

http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/maga ... /index.htm

"Consumers care a lot about how their food is produced, and they have some specific concerns. Based on a recent national survey of more than 1,000 Americans by the Consumer Reports National Research Center, most told us that they want their food produced in an environmentally friendly way, and they look to labels for cues as they make their decisions. When purchasing food, they want to support local farmers. Their other concerns include finding food that’s locally produced. And most are even willing to pay more for food to ensure that it was produced in fair working conditions."

What consumers look for when it comes to food labeling:
66% - - Locally grown
59% - - Natural
50% - - No artificial growth hormones
49% - - Pesticide-free
49% - - Organic 
48% - - No artificial ingredients
40% - - Non-GMO
39% - - No antibiotics
36% - - Certified humane
31% - - Fair trade 

If all our food was to meet all the above criteria that consumers are looking for, it would have virtually no impact on our epidemic of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, stroke, etc and overall, we would not be any healthier

A locally grown, all natural, fair-trade, certified humane, Non GMO, no artificial ingredients, organic, pesticide free potato chip or french fry is still unhealthy junk food. Even if it is vegan.

However, avoiding the 12 items I listed above, would prevent and reverse over 90% of CVD, DB, Stroke and about 70% of lifestyle related cancers.

In Health
Jeff
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Re: Distracted Health:The Power of Marketing, Media & Misdir

Postby JeffN » Wed Jan 21, 2015 4:51 am

This recent Nielsen survey further confirms the above

Snack Attack: What Consumers Are Reaching For Around The World
The Nielsen Global Snacking Survey
September 2014

http://www.nielsen.com/content/dam/niel ... 202014.pdf

The Nielsen Global Snacking Survey polled 30,000 online consumers in 60 countries to identify which snacks are most popular around the world and which health, taste and texture attributes are most important in the selection criteria.

"Snacks with all natural ingredients are rated very important by 45% of global respondents and moderately important by 32%—the highest percentages out of the 20 health attributes included in the study. The absence of artificial colors (44%), genetically modified organisms (43%) and artificial flavors (42%) are also rated very important when it comes to the snacks we eat. Caffeine-free (23%) and gluten-free (19%) snacks are very important for about one-fourth and one-fifth of global respondents, respectively."

In Health,
Jeff
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Re: Distracted Health:The Power of Marketing, Media & Misdir

Postby JeffN » Fri Jun 05, 2015 5:32 am

The power of distracted health in action

Subway to unveil all-natural menu by 2017
USA TODAY
June 5 2015


"Subway Restaurants announced Thursday it will eliminate artificial flavors, colors and preservatives from the menu over the next 18 months, joining the ranks of restaurants hoping to cash in on consumer demand for healthy food. Among the axed ingredients is the caramel coloring added to steak and pastrami.

Healthy ingredients draw more customers, according to Nielsen studies, which found that more than 40% of consumers view labels like "all natural" "no artificial colors" and "no artificial flavors" as very important when making purchasing decisions. Yet the build-your-own sandwich giant, which has the most restaurants of any fast-food chain worldwide, has lumbered behind smaller competitors like Taco Bell(YUM) and Panera Bread (PNRA), which also recently announced a nix on artificial ingredients.

http://usat.ly/1ImKTck

Didn't you know? The problem with steak and pastrami is the caramel coloring! Once the caramel coloring is removed, it will be "healthy!"

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Re: Distracted Health:The Power of Marketing, Media & Misdir

Postby JeffN » Fri Jun 05, 2015 5:37 am

We have to ask ourselves, why Is there such a focus on the elimination of individual ingredients &/or substances (trans fats, pink slime, High Fructose Corn Syrup, azodicarbonamide, etc) and not the elimination of the food (donut, ground beef, soft drink, white bread, etc)?

Simple.

If the focus is on the food, people have to change how and what they eat. No more donuts, ground beef, soft drinks or white bread, etc. However, if the focus is on the ingredient/substance, they can remove or change the ingredient/substance and still serve the same CRAP (Calorie Rich & Processed) food. People can now eat trans-fat free donuts, pink slime free ground beef, HFCS free soft drinks & azodicarbonamide free white bread, etc.

Unfortunately, this approach does not work and will not work. It just gives people a false reassurance that the CRAP they are eating is somehow a little healthier. But it is not healthier, it may just be a little less harmful. So, instead of eating CRAP, they are now eating Premium CRAP, CRAP that has been modified to advertised and marketed to be a little less harmful. And, because it is now Premium CRAP, they get to charge people more for it. Oy!

This is why focusing on and removing isolated ingredients misses the main point as the main problem is not isolated ingredients and substances (though they may not be healthy) but the foods we are choosing are unhealthy for many reasons, not just an individual ingredient or substance or two.

When trans fats were first being eliminated we saw advertisements for donuts, french fries and even crisco as being "new and improved".

http://images.teamsugar.com/files/usr/1 ... review.jpg

This sent the wrong message as they were still unhealthy.

Avoid CRAP Food, Premium or Regular :)

CRAP:The Illusion & Delusion of Healthy Processed Foods
viewtopic.php?f=22&t=44276

In Health
Jeff
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Re: Distracted Health:The Power of Marketing, Media & Misdir

Postby JeffN » Sat Apr 08, 2017 7:20 am

More on Distracted Health


Vitamin-Fortified Snack Food May Lead Consumers to Make Poor Dietary Decisions
Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietitics
March 2017Volume 117, Issue 3, Pages 376–385

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jand.2016.10.008 |

Abstract

Background
The US Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA’s) fortification policy discourages the fortification of certain foods, including sugars and snack foods such as cookies, candies, cakes, chips, and carbonated beverages, yet manufacturers sometimes add vitamins and minerals to snack foods.

Objective
To assess whether vitamin-fortified snack foods affect consumers’ information-seeking, purchase decisions, and product-related health perceptions.

Design
For this experimental study, participants were randomly assigned to study conditions to compare products that varied in product type, nutrition profile, and fortification and nutrient claim status. Data were collected via an online consumer panel.

Participants/setting
US adults aged 18 years and older were randomly selected from Research Now’s e-panel online household panel. Data were collected during fall 2014 (N=5,076).

Intervention
Participants were randomly assigned to one of 24 conditions: two products (vegetable chip/potato chip), two nutrition profiles (healthier/less healthy), two fortification scenarios (not fortified/fortified), and three nutrient claim conditions (two no claim/one with claim). The design was not balanced; claims were not shown on products that were not vitamin fortified.

Main outcome measures
Outcome measures were information-seeking (viewed the Nutrition Facts label), purchase decisions, perception of product healthfulness, and correct selection of product with the healthier nutrient profile.

Statistical analysis performed
Logistic regression was used to test all models. Analyses was adjusted for general label use, consumes product, health status, age, sex, level of education, presence of children in the household, and race/ethnicity.

Results
When the snack food carried a nutrient claim for vitamin fortification, participants were 1) less likely to look for nutrition information on the Nutrition Facts label, 2) more likely to select the product for purchase, 3) more likely to perceive the product as healthier, and 4) less likely to correctly choose the healthier product.

Conclusions
Snack foods that have been vitamin-fortified may cause consumers to make poor dietary decisions.



American Institute for Cancer Research
Blog
March 17, 2017

Study, That Nutrient Claim on Your Snack Food May Lead You to Buy the Less Healthy Choice

http://blog.aicr.org/2017/03/17/study-t ... hy-choice/

It’s no secret that marketing affects the foods we choose, including which foods we think of as more nutritious. Back in 2013, AICR wrote about how the so-called “health halo” effect can make people think organic cookies are lower in calories and all-around healthier than the exact same cookies not labeled organic.

A new study published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics finds that this effect may extend to claims about foods with added vitamins and minerals.

For this study, researchers surveyed over 5,000 people who were selected based on age, sex, race, ethnicity, and education to mirror the U.S. population.

Each participant who took the online survey was randomly assigned to view one package of vegetable and one package of potato chips. Chip packages varied in their health claims and in the amount of key nutrients they contained.

Some of the packages featured a healthier nutrition profile, with relatively fewer calories; less total fat, saturated fat, and sodium; and more fiber than the less healthy chips. (See image below.)

Image
If you wanted to buy the healthier product, which of these products would you buy?

Some chip packages participants saw were also fortified with vitamins and minerals. Added nutrients were listed below the ingredients and had higher percent daily values on the Nutrition Facts label. For chips that were fortified, the product sometimes included a nutrient content claim on the front of its package advertising the fortification, such as “Good source of calcium and vitamin D!” Other times, people viewed fortified chips that had no nutrient content claims.

After viewing two bags of chips randomly assigned to them side-by-side, each participant chose which bag of chips they would purchase and which was healthier. They could view the Nutrition Facts labels for both bags of chips before answering each question by clicking on a link below the products.

Participants were 30% less likely to click on the Nutrition Facts label before deciding which bag of chips to purchase if it had a nutrient content claim

The researchers found that nutrient content claims on fortified products influenced whether people clicked on the Nutrition Facts label and which bag of chips they ultimately chose to purchase. Participants were 30% less likely to click on the Nutrition Facts label before deciding which bag of chips to purchase if it had a nutrient content claim.

Those who didn’t look at the Nutrition Facts label were also 21% more likely to choose the product with a nutrient content claim over an identical product without one.

While only 10% of people clicked on the Nutrition Facts label before choosing which product to purchase, those who did weren’t swayed by nutrient content claims and were 5 times more likely to choose the healthier chips compared to those who didn’t look at the label.

Participants were also less likely to correctly identify which product was healthier if the less healthy product included a nutrient content claim, but clicking on the Nutrition Facts label significantly increased the likelihood of correctly identifying the healthier product.

Just because a product is organic, low-fat, sugar-free, or a good source of vitamins and minerals, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a nutritious choice

The takeaway—when comparing packaged foods, always look at the Nutrition Facts label to get the complete picture. Front-of-package claims only focus on one aspect of a product, typically a positive attribute that marketers want to promote. Just because a product is organic, low-fat, sugar-free, or a good source of vitamins and minerals, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a nutritious choice.

Better yet, focus on filling your plate with nutrient-dense foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes that don’t need added vitamins and minerals or nutrient content claims.
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Re: Distracted Health:The Power of Marketing, Media & Misdir

Postby JeffN » Fri Feb 14, 2020 6:52 am

JeffN wrote:We have to ask ourselves, why Is there such a focus on the elimination of individual ingredients &/or substances (trans fats, pink slime, High Fructose Corn Syrup, azodicarbonamide, etc) and not the elimination of the food (donut, ground beef, soft drink, white bread, etc)?

Simple.

If the focus is on the food, people have to change how and what they eat. No more donuts, ground beef, soft drinks or white bread, etc. However, if the focus is on the ingredient/substance, they can remove or change the ingredient/substance and still serve the same CRAP (Calorie Rich & Processed) food. People can now eat trans-fat free donuts, pink slime free ground beef, HFCS free soft drinks & azodicarbonamide free white bread, etc.

Unfortunately, this approach does not work and will not work. It just gives people a false reassurance that the CRAP they are eating is somehow a little healthier. But it is not healthier, it may just be a little less harmful. So, instead of eating CRAP, they are now eating Premium CRAP, CRAP that has been modified to advertised and marketed to be a little less harmful. And, because it is now Premium CRAP, they get to charge people more for it. Oy!

This is why focusing on and removing isolated ingredients misses the main point as the main problem is not isolated ingredients and substances (though they may not be healthy) but the foods we are choosing are unhealthy for many reasons, not just an individual ingredient or substance or two.

When trans fats were first being eliminated we saw advertisements for donuts, french fries and even crisco as being "new and improved".

http://images.teamsugar.com/files/usr/1 ... review.jpg

This sent the wrong message as they were still unhealthy.

Avoid CRAP Food, Premium or Regular :)

CRAP:The Illusion & Delusion of Healthy Processed Foods
viewtopic.php?f=22&t=44276

In Health
Jeff


This article and the accompanying research further supports my comments

How ultra-processed food took over your shopping basket
It’s cheap, attractive and convenient, and we eat it every day – it’s difficult not to. But is ultra-processed food making us ill and driving the global obesity crisis?
By Bee Wilson
The Guardian
Wed 12 Feb 2020

https://www.theguardian.com/food/2020/f ... s-monteiro

For as long as we believed that single nutrients were the main cause of poor diets, industrial foods could be endlessly tweaked to fit with the theory of the day. When fat was seen as the devil, the food industry gave us a panoply of low-fat products. The result of the sugar taxes around the world has been a raft of new artificially sweetened drinks. But if you accept the argument that processing is itself part of the problem, all of this tweaking and reformulation becomes so much meaningless window-dressing.

An ultra-processed food can be reformulated in countless ways, but the one thing it can’t be transformed into is an unprocessed food. Hall remains hopeful that there may turn out to be some way to adjust the manufacture of ultra-processed foods to make them less harmful to health. A huge number of people on low incomes, he notes, are relying on these “relatively inexpensive tasty things” for daily sustenance. But he is keenly aware that the problems of nutrition cannot be cured by ever more sophisticated processing. “How do you take an Oreo and make it non-ultra-processed?” he asks. “You can’t!”



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