Hey, it’s Mic here and today, a public service announcement: What The Health, the documentary, has officially been debunked by a doctor. Maybe his name is ZDogg, maybe he comes off more as a bro comedian than a doctor, and he might not cite any studies or anything like that, but he is a doctor nonetheless. A few days back, he posted this video on Facebook which went more or less viral there. It got over a million views in less than a week. But on YouTube, it got torn to shreds and way less views. I’m really going to try and make an effort to not criticize the name ZDogg. I get it. He’s trying to appeal to a larger audience. His real name is Zubin Damania. That’s hard to remember. So this isn’t going to be an ad hominem situation. I’m going to go through his main points and rebut them. And unlike him, I can’t lean on the word doctor. I am not a doctor. So I’m going to instead use peer-reviewed research and actual sources instead of just saying things like “Dietary cholesterol doesn’t raise cholesterol,” and then not backing it up at all.
Now before I get into the specifics, I want to mention that he claims to not be against a vegan diet. He’s just out to fight that despicable “one diet fits all” mentality which is allegedly so harmful. Like way more people die every year from vegans saying veganism is the only way than our leading killer, heart disease. Don’t mind that a whole food vegan diet is clinically proven to reverse heart disease.
Whatever. All right, now that you have some background, let’s cover his main objections to the movie. What exactly are you documenting in this documentary? Like the fact that you’re an idiot for most of your life and are just now realizing that life causes cancer? Like wow, like maybe this shit in the supermarket that’s highly processed is bad for you? That’s news? Now right off the bat you can see that he’s exhibiting the backfire effect, where you have an overly negative reaction to views that conflict with your own views.
You can tell that he knows this is a vegan documentary and he is there to smear it. Here is his response when What The Health explores the meat-carcinogen connection and uses the cigarette analogy. WTH: “I wondered if things would have been different had they known the link between diet and this terrible disease.” No, it wouldn’t have been different because they still would have eaten shit. That’s what people do. You tell people cigarettes cause cancer, they continue to smoke. This is actually an argument for eliminating all health education.
I can’t believe I’m actually taking this seriously, but this is a chart of smoking prevalence since the Surgeon General report connecting smoking and cancer in 1964. As you can see, smoking has dropped by about 60%. That is a direct response to health education. Imagine going back in time and telling the Surgeon General to shut up about smoking and cigarettes because people are just going to keep smoking anyway. That is the doctor you’re listening to. That is ZDogg’s logic right now. One thing that really emphasizes the lack of thought put into the video was when he tried to discredit Neal Barnard. Ok, hold on. How is it that Dr. Neal Barnard gets the title “Premier Researcher and Diabetes Expert,” like what do you need to do to have that? Well as many people have already mentioned, including one of the doctors from the movie, Joel Khan, in the comments to the YouTube video actually, he has published multiple peer-reviewed studies including this 74 week trial, and also has an award-winning paper. But I’m sure he’s only ever written a book about cheese. Another thing that was pretty low or maybe just from a lack of knowledge was was repeatedly flashing “not actual science” over various parts of the video including the one that explains the connection between fat and diabetes.
The diet that builds up the amount of fat into the blood, I’m talking about a typical meat-based, animal-based diet, into the muscle cells of the human body. You find that they’re building up tiny particles of fat, it’s causing insulin resistance. Maybe he just hasn’t seen them, but there are several papers on intramyocellular lipids and insulin resistance. It is actual science. But people are just going to come and see that a doctor is saying that it’s not actual science, believe them, and move on.
Zdogg of course appears to be of the view that fat does not cause diabetes. It’s all sugar. But how can you explain things like Walter Kempner’s rice diet, where he fed people rice, fruit, and table sugar and reversed diabetes? Including a 25% of diabetic retinopathy cases, that’s diabetic blindness. And to drive the animal fat-diabetes connection home in particular, from the Adventist study, vegan populations had a 78% lower risk of diabetes. All diabetes, that is not from eating less sugar. And this is sort of where the real controversy happened, when Garth Davis explains that it’s really hard to get fat on carbs. Carbs cannot make you fat in and of themselves. When we eat carbs, we either store it or we burn it. Eat fat? It goes straight to your fat. Your body can’t turn those carbs into fat, unless you’re really overdoing it. This guy actually take a physiology class? Like are you kidding me? Wait, carbs can’t be turned into fat? Like fat goes right into fat? No. Fat can be absolutely metabolized into ketone bodies and used for fuel especially in the setting of a low carbohydrate diet.
That is completely irrelevant for 99.9% of the population of Earth who aren’t in ketosis. When you overload your body with carbohydrates, the liver turns it into fat and triglycerides, and it’s stored as fat. While technically true, we need to put this in perspective of actual pounds stored which is what people are really concerned about. From this study on novo lipogenesis, even if you were really overdoing the calories, they found that 97% of fat stored was from fat. Only about 3% was derived from carbs. To extrapolate that and put that into perspective, if somebody is a hundred pounds overweight, probably only three of those pounds are actually from carbs. Some of you may have seen that Garth Davis actually made a response video. He had several good points in it. Right here, so ZDogg, who is now coming in as the expert, was a hospitalist. A hospitalist is someone who works in the hospital treating people that are acutely ill.
They never have any outpatient setting where they’re treating patients. He has no, and I mean no background in long-term preventative maintenance of health through diet. They put people in wards and they studied this, and they found that when you really carb-load somebody for four days, giving them tons of carbs, a very, very, very, small percentage of that gets turned to fat. If you radioactively label fat and eat it, it does go very fast to the fat stores. And apparently, ZDogg might bring Garth Davis on the show for some healthy debate. We’ll see. So why is he so against these one-size-fits-all diets? One size doesn’t fit all. These guys are making statements that immediately discredit them because they’re saying “this is true for everyone.” It’s not. Everybody’s genetics are different. Yes. Everybody’s genetics are so drastically different that while What The Health might be good for some of you rabbits, some of us are hyenas that require large amounts of rotting flesh.
No. We are all human. We are all the same species. We all have very long digestive tracts that are adapted to eating large amounts of plant and animal fat clogs our arteries and causes inflammation, unlike say, a lion. Yes, there are some minor genetic variations, like how the Inuits are genetically adapted to not go into ketosis, which is inconvenient for the keto narrative, But overwhelmingly, populations around the world that eat the least amount of meat have the longest lifespans like the Okinawans. Back when they were raised eating 97% plants and 80% carbohydrates from whole sweet potatoes and other whole foods They were the longest-living population on Earth. But since they became a pork producer and started eating more of a Western diet, their health has suffered.
Now the longest-living population on Earth is the Adventist vegetarians, many of which are vegan. At the same time, those with the highest animal product consumption have the lowest life expectancies, like sadly the Inuit populations. And we see that low-carb diets that are high in animal products increase all-cause mortality according to this meta-analysis. I want to explore just for a second that maybe a vegan diet is a one-size-fits-all diet by looking at the case of Esselstyn’s study where he put 200 people with advanced cardiovascular disease on a whole food vegan diet.
The ones who went off the diet had about a 60% chance of adverse effects like heart attack and stroke over the next 12 years. But of the 177 people that stuck with the diet they had a 0.6%, a 100 times lower rate of adverse events. No, it’s not like a third of them were so “genetically different” that they ended up getting an increased risk of stroke from that severe lack of animal protein. In this case, it quite literally is a one-size-fits-all diet in terms of our leading killer. Maybe not emotionally one-size-fits-all, but physiologically? Yes.
The next point is like, the biggest bro science thorn in my side in existence. Here it is. Dietary cholesterol is not associated with coronary artery disease. Period. I have a somewhat older video on this topic, but I have another video coming out soon about the low-carb narrative which relies on industry funded science and just poorly, purposefully designed studies to ignore reality. But really quickly, this study shows the direct effect on your blood cholesterol after eating cholesterol. Large amount of cholesterol, bam. Big spike. No cholesterol, no spike.
And as this study of 350,000 men found, higher cholesterol has a direct relationship with premature death from coronary heart disease. But what about all those studies showing that eating a couple more eggs worth of cholesterol doesn’t actually raise cholesterol? This is the result of the cholesterol plateau from studying a sick population that all has high cholesterol. And more bluntly, the main risk of death for these people is heart disease. But as this chart illustrates, going from no cholesterol consumption to even small amounts of cholesterol can skyrocket your levels. But if you are already eating a lot of cholesterol, a couple eggs won’t change anything.
To put this in more simple terms, now to Hippie Science Bro. Hola, bromo esta? All right, let’s begin the presentation. Let’s say that you’ve already smoked four joints. if you’re going to add two joints to that, you will go from high as balls right to high as balls. But if you’re going to smoke the same two joints from being stone cold sober, you will go from stone cold sober to pretty dang high. That’s bro science. Finally, if dietary cholesterol really doesn’t raise cholesterol, how come removing it lowers it so effectively? If you look at the studies of people going vegan, you see that lowering cholesterol every time. And then in all the population studies across the board vegans have way lower ideal levels of cholesterol. And even if you want to latch onto that low-carb narrative, they blame inflammation instead of cholesterol. Well, studies where they put people on a vegan diet you see their inflammation markers lower by about a third.
And I love how he completely dismisses the toxins thing. Just, nope. Oh, Michelle. You use the t-word. Toxins. I get that people throw around the word “toxins” a lot, but if there’s one source that a level-headed person should worry about, it’s animal fat. Because as this study mentioned, 95% of persistent organic pollutants for example, one type of toxin, comes from animal fat. He even mocks the toxins in breast milk part. Imagine as the fetus is developing, introducing these very harmful toxins. Oh my God, like, There are toxins in the meat and they’re going to get in my booby milk, and the baby’s going to get toxified. PCBs are one type of persistent organic pollutant and from the journal Pediatrics, quote: And to tie things together here the Inuits, who have a very high animal fat consumption, also have the highest levels of PCBs in their breast milk.
But telling people not to be concerned about these things just has nothing to do with your anti one-size-fits-all diet. So what’s the deal? One thing that bothers me is that for a doctor, is that he has this whole “everything will be fine” attitude throughout the video. Like, “Oh, watch me eat carcinogens. Watch me eat this processed meat.” WTH: “Not only through their percentages in every single restaurant. We found them in every single chicken sample.” -That’s horrible. Just keep eating all the cholesterol. You’re not going to get an increased risk of heart disease.
Well, guess what? Heart disease and cancer are our two leading killers, so it’s not fine. This next point makes me most disappointed of all. He edits out the part where Milton Mills says that the majority of African Americans are lactose intolerant, and just cuts to the part where he says that the government recommending dairy is then institutionalized racism, and then they just laugh at him and say that he’s so crazy. Government is telling me as an African American to eat food that’s going to make me ill for no health benefit so that it will benefit dairy farmers. That’s a form of institutionalized racism. [laughter] People who are crazy, who are behaving in an insane emotional way around this. It’s really not cool. It’s really low.
And it’s really a theme where he essentially edits out the fact and then he takes it the shock statement that is backed up by the fact, and then just makes the whole thing seem crazy. And it’s all part of the “Hey, don’t even watch the movie!” thing. “Don’t even learn,” which is pretty not cool, considering people should be able to decide for themselves And I think a part that bothers me about the video is in the follow-up he it makes it clear that he thinks the video went viral really because of his amazing ability to bust fallacies.
No, the video went viral because we have millions of people who have watched What The Health and they’re looking for somebody with any vague level of credibility to tell them that they can continue business as usual. Keep eating animal products, keep eating their unhealthy diet, because this vegan diet isn’t actually going to help them. People are really just looking to hear good news about their bad habits. And you don’t need to be showing scientific literature or peer-reviewed studies, anything like that, to confirm people’s biases. But in the end, I want to give ZDogg a little bit of slack here in the sense that I don’t think he’s actually seen all this research on a plant-based diet. He doesn’t know that intramyocellular lipids are actually science. He isn’t aware that vegan populations have 78% lower risk of diabetes, ideal levels of cholesterol, and I didn’t even mention normal BMI on average. You know, I doubt he’s seen these interventionary trials showing that a whole food vegan diet dramatically reverses heart disease. He probably hasn’t seen the numbers on de novo lipogenesis, or maybe even all these studies on all-cause mortality being increased on low-carb diets.
As much as ZDogg is going to hate this statement, a vegan diet is a physiologically one-size-fits-all diet. It can help all these people. But telling them to not watch the video, telling them that it’s all fake and not actual science and just these crazy doctors is just irresponsible as a doctor. You’re passing up a major opportunity to heal chronic diseases and I don’t see him going and attacking these low-carb movies because they’re one-size-fits-all, and that’s pretty telling. All right, that’s it for today. I hope you liked the video. Feel free to let me know down below what you thought and like and subscribe if you haven’t already. Okay. See you next time..
As found on Youtube