Health Surveys

I just took a health survey. It told me I was on track, but needed to eat more whole grains. I knew it was going to do that when I saw question 34. It’s based on the US food pyramid that recommends 6-11 servings of grains. I say no thanks to elevated glucose levels! However, they saw this as a problem.

Here’s a great post from Mark’s Daily Apple that illustrates the grain fallacy.

In all fairness, I’m glad there’s a health survey out there to educate people. How our body responds to different things we eat is a huge labyrinth with many unknown answers. I applaud the survey for just existing.

I did however have feedback for them. Here is my feedback verbatim.

There are two main flaws that I noticed in this data. I don’t blame you for having them, you are following mainstream beliefs. However, you cannot base a health assessment on flawed data.

1. Your survey assumes eating whole grains is healthy. This is NOT true. The majority of the studies used to bolster this belief compares whole grain consumption with processed grain consumption. Of course the disease rates of diabetes and CAD would be lower than processed grains. However, they never compare whole grain disease rates with subjects who consume no grains. While grains provide fiber, they provide little nutrients and high calories. In other words, they are high energy and low nutrient dense. They are high energy also because they supply a large amount of glucose. Glucose raises blood sugar. And, to top it off, I bet you go by the 6 – 11 servings a day recommended by the US Food Pyramid. This means insulin insensitivity for cells and that the pancreas has to continually produce insulin and amylase. By following the whole grain advice, I would actually increase my chances for diabetes type 1 and 2. Also, there is a direct correlation between sugar consumption and blood triglycerides. You ask for my number, but you do not ask about sugar consumption. That is probably the highest indicator of disease there is apart from a sedentary life style.
2. Your survey assumes using plant oils for cooking is healthy. This means you support the Lipid Hypothesis. Actually, the rise of heart disease correlates with the use of plant oils substituting for animal fats. Corn oil, canola, safflower, etc are all extracted from seeds by the use of solvents. Solvents like bleach that still remain in small quantities in the oil. Also, these oils turn rancid in light. Once rancid, they are free radicals. Free radicals contribute to cell wall loss also known as premature aging. Animal fats are much more stable than plant oils. Even olive oil, the best plant oil, that is cold pressed, the best way to extract oil, must be kept in a dark container to prevent it from going rancid.

Another comment: In addition, my body fat has gone down to 10% since I stopped consuming grains. Although, your study mentioned BMI, which should be considered BSI, it did not mention a low body fat percentage as healthy. When I took the survey before it was 17%.

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