Saturday, July 7, 2007

2005/03/08: Lack of trust in official health advice

In the Age ( a nutritionist gets stuck into people like me who are trying a gluten free diet without having probes inserted and biopsies taken. It claims that only people with full celiac disease should avoid gluten.

Why don't we trust these official pronouncements on diet? We just suspect that they are working for segments of the food industry. Gluten is associated with other health problems, particularly autism.

There are plenty of other cases. There is a compelling case that the western diet is magnesium deficient. And there is the amazing suppression of the A1/A2 milk story. Here is an extract from the NZ Food Safety Authority's study:

The best study was the most recent one which had a better design with blinded assessments where possible and a random allocation to diet or no diet. The majority of the measurements showed significant improvements on the diet (casein-free, gluten-free).

4.4 Summary and implications

The available evidence is suggestive of a role of reducing the casein and gluten in the diets of people with autism to improve the autistic behaviours and overall functioning of the individual. Further research is needed. The evidence is not strong enough for clear dietary recommendations to be made for people with autism and schizophrenia.

You'd think that governments would spring into action to evaluate the health risks of milk and whether it is particularly A1 milk that causes problems. But no: silence has descended over the whole matter and A2corporation has been beaten up in the courts to stop "false claims".

It is hard to think what could be done to restore my faith in nutritionists. Robust public debate without law suits. Funding of serious trials. Extricating nutritionists from the grip of the food industry. These would certainly help.

P.S.2003/03/09: Another example of failure to act where there was good cause for concern was the issue of honey with toxins from Patterson's Curse (aka Salvation Jane). The issue of the need for more sun exposure (with lack of sun exposure strongly implicated in various problems including osteoporosis and cancer) is another where people have to find out for themselves: official sources are silent. For most health issues you have to find out for yourself and weigh the evidence yourself without trustworthy guidance. It is then really stupid for the people who should be providing sound guidance to criticise us if we get it wrong by being overcautious.