5

The New Epidemiology

Since shortly after World War II, when Ancel Keys and wife Margaret concluded that diets high in animal fat were the cause of cardiovascular diseases, an inestimable number of large, long-term studies have been conducted worldwide to look for proof of a causal relationship between the two. Despite a tremendous expenditure of time and money, all studies have failed to give an answer to the question of whether animal fats (primarily from red meat) and cholesterol cause cardiovascular disease. This failure is blamed on the inadequacies of epidemiology rather than the difficulties of proving a negative. When properly conducted, epidemiology has no inadequacies. Any failure of epidemiology is that of modern epidemiologists who equate association with cause.
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16

The Dose Makes The Poison

When I started work as Public Health Toxicologist with the California Department of Public Health a little more than fifty years ago, the word “toxic” was seldom heard much less used as a topic of conversation. In recent years, the word has been discovered and become a fashionable adjective for a wide variety of undesirable things.

This has bothered me because ‘toxic’ has a very specific meaning that makes it an unacceptable adjective to use except when applied to harmful chemicals. Its use otherwise only confuses people and needlessly frightens them. I usually ignore the matter, but when specific foods are labeled as toxic, I can no longer remain silent.
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