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Dr. Neal Barnard -Roger Mason
Neal is a nice, sincere person who runs the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM). He also appears on TV on Public Broadcasting advocating a vegan diet. The PCRM does a lot of good work, including ending animal cruelty. The Young Again Foundation contributes to the PCRM. However, he is a licensed medical doctor and knows very little about natural health. Let's look at his premier book Dr. Neal Barnard's Program for Reversing Diabetes.
He is completely right that diabetes and other diseases should be cured with diet and lifestyle, and not toxic, dangerous, harmful drugs. He is to be given credit for this. Unfortunately, he fell for the glycemic index (GI) stupidity. This is the theory based on white bread (seriously) as the Gold Standard. The GI proponents claim whole grains raise blood sugar more than fruit, fruit juice, cookies, pies, cakes, or candy bars. What could be more ridiculous?
While Neal promotes some whole grains some of the time, he calls them "carbohydrates". This is a meaningless term the Paleolithic crowd loves to use. White sugar and brown rice are both carbohydrates. He claims whole wheat and oatmeal have a higher GI than fruit. In fact, he tells diabetics to eat as much fruit as they want, and fruit should be a mainstay of their diet. Read Fruit Has Almost No Nutrition. Fruit is just sugar (sucrose and fructose) and water, with a little fiber and almost zero nutrients. He claims, "fruits are loaded with vitamins". What vitamins? He is also unaware that tropical fruits and tropical foods are meant for tropical people in tropical lands. They are not meant for Europeans, or tropical people who have moved to temperate lands. Eat the foods Nature gives you for your genetics and environment.
Being a vegan, he loves Nightshade vegetables like potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants. He doesn't understand these are full of toxic solanine, and should only be eaten occasionally in small amounts. The Nightshade family also includes poisons like belladonna, jimson weed, and tobacco. They were not meant as foods.
My book The Natural Diabetes Cure has an entire chapter on supplements, and recommends 20 separate nutritional supplements for anyone over 40. There is a separate chapter on minerals. which recommends 20 separate minerals for everyone of any age. There is an entire chapter on lipoic acid alone. He merely recommends a multivitamin, magnesium, cinnamon (!), and chromium. Cinnamon is worthless. He actually says lipoic acid is unproven and we don't know what the dose should be!!! He says we don't need vitamin D (except in our vitamin supplement), and is completely unaware of the world-wide vitamin D deficiency epidemic.
In macrobiotics people can eat 10% seafood if they don't want to be a vegetarian. He lumps seafood with poultry somehow. You can't compare fish to poultry! The longest lived people on earth are the Okinawans, who eat fish as a staple. The Japanese are the second longest lived, and also eat fish as a staple. There is no evidence whatsoever that eating a vegan diet has any advantage at all over one with that includes 10% fish.
When it comes to diagnostics, he totally falls on his face. He does not once mention your blood sugar must stay under 85 mg/dl. Not once. This figure is vital for everyone. You must keep your fasting blood sugar under 85. He goes on to say your HbA1c (glycated blood sugar) should be 6.0 to 6.5%. This is preposterous!!! Your HbA1c needs to be 4.7% or less, as this equates to a blood sugar level of 85.
He does not discuss the GTT (glucose tolerance test) which is the Gold Standard of blood sugar. This is the very best test of all, as it shows how your cells actually react to blood sugar. You have your fasting blood sugar measured, drink a measured cup of glucose, and have your blood sugar tested again an hour later. You want a result at least 10 points lower than the accepted medical standard- just like you want a lower blood sugar and lower HbA1c result than the usual medical standard. There is no reason to measure your fasting insulin per se, but you can if you want to.
It gets worse as he tells people your triglycerides need to say under 150!!! They need to stay under 100.
As a medical doctor you would think he should have some idea of hormone balance. He doesn't. Insulin is obviously a hormone, and all your hormones work together in harmony as a team. All your basic hormones should be balanced. Read How to Balance Your Hormones. The published worldwide research proves hormone balance is essential to healthy blood sugar and insulin levels. The Natural Diabetes Cure devotes two entire chapters to hormone balance and hormone testing. He doesn't devote one word.
Caffeine in any form will completely wreck your blood sugar and insulin function. Just one cup of coffee or one energy drink a day (120 mg of caffeine) will raise your blood sugar to pre-diabetic levels. no matter how well you eat, how many supplements you take, how much you exercise, and how well your hormones are balanced. What does Neal say about coffee? Heck, go ahead and drink all you want. This is hard to believe.
The word "fasting" is not in Neal's vocabulary. The most power healing method known to man. Outright diabetics cannot fast, but everyone else certainly should. Everyone should fast one day a week on water from dinner to dinner.
He tells people with hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) to eat sugar and candy when they feel weak. That's crazy! Such people should eat something healthy like oatmeal or rice cakes and sit down for a half hour and recover. Eating sugar will just make them worse, not better.
He also adds sugar to some of his recipes.
This is just more proof you cannot look towards medical doctors to help you with natural health. They're all clueless. Please go to the D section of the articles at www.youngagain. org and you'll see over a dozen so-called natural health doctors reviewed. Research is the key to writing effective books on natural health. Research is the secret. Research has made Young Again the premier natural health website in the world.