Category Archives: Uncategorized

Life Expectancy In 35 Industrialized Countries, US Ranks Among The Lowest

Just saw this:

Life Expectancy To Break 90 Barrier By 2030, BBC, 22 Feb 2017

The 90 barrier will be broken in South Korea, not here in the US. In fact, among 35 industrialized countries:

The US performs poorly and is on course to have the lowest life expectancy of rich countries by 2030.

“[The US is] almost opposite of South Korea,” added Prof Ezzati [author of the study].

Why are people in the US dying at younger ages than in 34 other industrialized nations?

“[Society in the US is] very unequal to an extent the whole national performance is affected – it is the only country without universal health insurance.

Prof Ezzati said: “Places that perform well do so by investing in their health system and making sure it reaches everyone.”

Here’s the study, along with an excerpt about the US:

Future Life Expectancy In 35 Industrialised Countries: Projections With A Bayesian Model Ensemble, The Lancet, 21 February 2017

Notable among poor-performing countries is the USA, whose life expectancy at birth is already lower than most other high-income countries, and is projected to fall further behind such that its 2030 life expectancy at birth might be similar to the Czech Republic for men, and Croatia and Mexico for women. The USA has the highest child and maternal mortality, homicide rate, and body-mass index of any high-income country, and was the first of high-income countries to experience a halt or possibly reversal of increase in height in adulthood, which is associated with higher longevity. The USA is also the only country in the OECD without universal health coverage, and has the largest share of unmet health-care needs due to financial costs. Not only does the USA have high and rising health inequalities, but also life expectancy has stagnated or even declined in some population subgroups. Therefore, the poor recent and projected US performance is at least partly due to high and inequitable mortality from chronic diseases and violence, and insufficient and inequitable health care.

Also: “South Korea … has some of the lowest obesity rates in the world.”

New: Energy Expenditure And Fat Loss Are Greater In Low-Fat Diets, Analysis of 32 Controlled Feeding Studies

Benji Kurtz lost over 100 pounds in a year by eating a low-fat, plant-based diet.

Obesity Energetics: Body Weight Regulation And The Effects Of Diet Composition, Gastroenterology, Online 10 Feb 2017

Weight changes are accompanied by imbalances between calorie intake and expenditure. This fact is often misinterpreted to suggest that obesity is caused by gluttony and sloth and can be treated by simply advising people to eat less and move more. However, various components of energy balance are dynamically interrelated and weight loss is resisted by counterbalancing physiological processes.

While low carbohydrate diets have been suggested to partially subvert these processes by increasing energy expenditure and promoting fat loss, our meta-analysis of 32 controlled feeding studies with isocaloric substitution of carbohydrate for fat found that both energy expenditure and fat loss were greater with lower fat diets.


These results are in the opposite direction to the predictions of the carbohydrate-insulin model.

The carbohydrate-insulin model predicts that the more carb we eat, the more insulin we secrete – and since insulin directs fat-storage, the more fat we will accumulate. This study found the opposite. It’s not carbs that make us fat, it’s fat that makes us fat.

By the way, the carbohydrate-insulin model does not take into account insulin resistance. If you eat carbs but don’t have much insulin resistance, those carbs will be cleared from the bloodstream without need to oversecrete insulin. You know what increases insulin resistance? The fat we eat, as I’ve written about ad nauseum.

The lead author, Kevin Hall PhD, lists as his conflicts of interest “funding from the Nutrition Science Initiative (NuSI) to investigate the effects of ketogenic diets on human energy expenditure.” Ketogentic diets are low-carb diets. NuSI is Gary Taubes’ well-funded initiative that I wrote about here:

Gary Taubes Is A Low-Carb Advocate. His Multimillion-Dollar Start-Up, NuSI, Found Low-Carb Diets Don’t Work.

Recall that studies conducted by NuSI are “more rigorous than all of the nutrition research conducted to date,” and “most of the existing nutrition research amounts to junk science.” So, this study, conducted by a NuSI fund recipient, should be pretty telling. Right?

Great Site For Air Quality Forecasts

AQI is Air Quality Index. You can home in on your locale. This is mine:

Why I post this, apart from it being a great resource, is that it shows no matter how rich or privileged a person is, they breathe the same air as everyone around them. Air doesn’t discriminate. That’s why we need strong air pollution regulations. Like the Clean Air Act. That’s why we need a strong EPA, to enforce those regulations.

With the act in place and its many improvements, the U.S. has seen many pollutant levels and associated cases of health complications drop. According to the EPA, the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments has prevented or will prevent:

This is interesting:

Below is a table for the sources of greenhouse gases, taken from data in 2008. Of all greenhouse gases, about 76 percent of the sources are manageable under the Clean Air Act, marked with an asterisk (*). All others are regulated independently, if at all.

That 7% for agriculture seems low. According to Livestock’s Long Shadow, a United Nations report released by the Food and Agriculture Organization in 2006:

The livestock sector is a major player, responsible for 18 percent of greenhouse gas emissions measured in CO2 equivalent.This is a higher share than transport.

Cancer Deaths Across The US: Interactive Map

This study in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA)…

Trends and Patterns of Disparities in Cancer Mortality Among US Counties, 1980-2014, JAMA, 24 January 2017

… links to this great interactive map. Below is just a snapshot I took (of all-cause mortality, not just cancer, although you can select “neoplasms” for that). Clicking the map will take you to the interactive map, where you can chose life expectancy or mortality rates, death by cause, by county, by sex, for the years 1980 to 2014. Mucho info.

You can home in on your county and see how it compares to the rest of the country.

The study itself found that cancer rates overall declined in the last 20 years, but reporting that overall number does a disservice to the places where cancer rates increased (the deep South was a cancer hotbed) and the particular cancers that took off. (Liver cancer and mesothelioma increased in nearly all counties. Liver cancer increased by almost 88% across the country!)

Here’s what the lead author, Ali Mokdad said:

“At the county level, you see huge disparities,” Mokdad said. “Many counties are falling behind while the rest of the country benefits.”

“It makes you wonder: How could this happen in a country like ours, when we spend more money on health than any other country in the world?

Over 19 million people died of cancer in that 24-year period. That is a lot of cancer.

Here’s what they said about diet:

Diet is another risk factor for cancer mortality. Dietary intake in the United States has not improved much since the 1980s. Moreover, fast food quality is not improving, with the exception of french fries. Although recent dietary intake studies in the United States show a sign of improvement and a decline in consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages, US residents are not doing enough to improve their diets. Unfortunately, there are no adequate data on dietary consumption at the local level. The Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System included few questions on fruit and vegetable consumption, which did not allow a proper dietary analysis. Improving and monitoring dietary intake in the United States should be a priority for local, state, and federal agencies.

Please tell me that the new administration recognizes that last sentence and plans to act on it. I’m losing faith.

You Don’t Have To Buy A $4000 Sauna To Fix Your Heart Disease, Just Stop Eating Animal Food

This just tears me up inside. Dr. Joel Kahn, “America’s Healthy Heart Doc” is telling people to buy an infrared sauna to fix their heart disease:

The Best Gift for Heart Month: Infrared Sauna, The Huffington Post, 16 January 2017

The sauna pictured in his article, and above, costs over $4000, not including installation (plumbing, space).

As you know, because I keep saying, the median US household income is around $50,000/year. It’s much lower for single people, females, seniors on fixed incomes, and people who live in Southern states around the Gulf.

Most people in this country, even if they earn over the median income, don’t have $4,000 lying around to buy a box they can sit in that will fix their heart disease. You know what will fix heart disease? Stop eating animal food and added fats. It won’t put you back $4,000.

This article was on a liberal site. What has happened to the liberals? They used to care about people, especially those with meager means. But as I’ve been pointing out to you, they have come to care more about the elite. They have come to champion a lifestyle that only the elite can afford, can access, can have. They have lost touch with middle America.

I’m not knocking sauna therapy. If it really works, then Medicare and other third party insurance should cover it. You know why they won’t? It’s too expensive, even though this article said it wasn’t:

Many doctors aren’t familiar with the strong data supporting infrared sauna therapy. It gets buried by expensive and glitzy therapies that may not prove to be as safe and beneficial.

Beside myself here.

Public Health in this country is dying. Clean air, clean water, food not grown in a chemical bath, sensible nutritional guidelines. We are choosing, have chosen, to sacrifice public health for profit … profit that lines the pockets of the few.