COVID: Your opinion counts

Grant Schofield PhD, Professor of Public Health AUT On robust debate Everyone has an opinion on COVID and the public policy that goes with it. We all think differently and all of our opinions matter.  Some have opinions counted more than others because they have experience or specific expertise in the area. Some are simply saying a lot and doing so often.  I’m a Professor of Public Health, so I feel I have at least some understanding of the issues we face now. I feel that I have some duty to voice… Read More

Metabolic health in the time of COVID-19 – an update.

By George Henderson and Grant Schofield Topics covered here Metabolic health and COVID-19 risk Possible roles of HDL in lung disease The microbiome and viral resistance Selenium and COVID-19 Vitamins D and K2, and COVID-19 Bottom line for all of this: Eating whole unprocessed food, especially that low in sugar, refined and processed carbohydrates, is likely to have benefits for your immune system and viral resistance generally. If you are pre-diabetic, diabetic, overweight, or insulin resistant then this effect may be even more important. COVID-19 numbers are falling sharply in NZ and… Read More

The mouth is missing out too…

Hot off the press is a paper published in the NZ Medical Journal on the problem with the dietary guidelines for a healthy mouth (oral  health) and the evidence they are based on. Its the usual issue, same as for rest of the body really, fat turns out to be protective in the mouth, all fermentable carbs harmful. Poor dental health is an issue for us, especially our kids. So we’ve gone about raising this issue. This work was lead by doctoral candidate Sarah Hancock with me, Dr Simon Thornley, and D… Read More

Talking about what went wrong with school lunches and what to do about it

Some fun media with me….A public health professor believes New Zealand schools should run lunch programmes to reduce the consumption of processed and packaged food. Listen to the interview (4 min and fun – tight here): Schools encouraged to run lunch programmes to promote healthy eating

Why fitness is medicine, and you should learn about Fasting Mimicking Exercise (FME)

Dr Richard Babor, a cancer surgeon, and his new TV show “How not to get cancer” attracted loads of attention. There was some negative reaction because people felt they were being unfairly blamed for getting cancer, because poor lifestyle was pinned as a major cause of cancer. I doubt that was the intention of the show. In fact, Dr Babor clearly started in the intro that “it’s no one’s fault personally” and this is an important point. But it is a big public health issue. No one wants cancer, and we want… Read More

Here we go again – is a saturated fat tax back on the table?

The other day a new paper modelling a saturated fat tax came out in the journal PlosOne.[1] In order to improve the population’s diet, the World Health Organization has called for the taxation of foods that are high in SFA.  Oh no not this again! There are very strong socio-economic reasons why such a tax makes no sense, and would probably have the opposite effect of a sugar tax, but before we get to discussing that we’ll look at what the authors did, what they got right, and where they went wrong…. Read More

The UK Biobank Study; Meat and Cancer, Science Reporting and Invisible Women

By now you’ve seen these headlines. But what can we learn from the study behind them, and the way it was reported? The UK Biobank study was a prospective epidemiological study, using the following methods to look at several foods and their association with colorectal cancers: We used Cox-regression models to estimate adjusted hazard ratios for colorectal cancer by dietary factors in the UK Biobank study. Men and women aged 40–69 years at recruitment (2006–10) reported their diet on a short food-frequency questionnaire (n = 475 581). Dietary intakes were re-measured in a large sub-sample… Read More

Aseem Malhotra’s talk to the UK parliament

This is well worth the watch. Some NZ twists in here from our team and the battles going on (see the last post for more on the spoiler plays against low carb and diabetes reversal coming out of NZ that were mentioned by Aseem)

Jim Mann’s new study: are high fat diets really dangerous, or is soybean oil toxic?

We were surprised to hear this Radio New Zealand interview with Jim Mann regarding a Chinese study he co-authored.[1] In it he predicts various terrible things for people eating LCHF diets, which we think is out of line and not supported by the study. In fact, the LCHF and Paleo community have been warning about exactly the type of diet that was used in the study – high in energy from soybean oil, rice, and wheat – for years, and Jim Mann’s crowd have attacked us for that, while the NZ Ministry… Read More

Science in a minute: Which diets work for who?

SCIENCE IN A MINUTE: @Caryn Zinn Nutrition reviews the latest Lifestyle Medicine research released two weeks ago in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) on weight-loss maintenance. Which diet works best for maintaining weight loss? Find out… #foodismedicine Follow our science in a minute series at Click here to see the full paper.