Worship the Medical Gatekeepers

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Major media organs like the New York Times hate it that a growing movement is afoot wherein Americans are becoming self-aware and taking charge of their own health matters. This article, “Gluten-Free, Whether You Need It or Not,” is yet another piece from a writer who is horrified that any person should dare to not consult the established medical “experts” and instead deploy self-experimentation as a direct result of education. The author of this piece on gluten-free diets refers to going gluten-free as following a “draconian commandment” and pursuing a “fad.”

Many advocates of gluten-free diets warn that non-celiac gluten sensitivity is a wide, unseen epidemic undermining the health of millions of people. They believe that avoiding gluten — a composite of starch and proteins found in certain grassy grains like wheat, barley and rye — gives them added energy and alleviates chronic ills. Oats, while gluten-free, are also avoided, because they are often contaminated with gluten-containing grains.

Others see the popularity of gluten-free foods as just the latest fad, destined to fade like the Atkins diet and avoidance of carbohydrates a decade ago.

The author seeks out people who have improved myriad health issues by giving up gluten, and then he makes fun of them and their “anecdotal” reports of improvement. The author repeatedly points to the lack of scientific evidence on the part of people who improve health markers after quitting grains, yet he has no problem writing the following:

It does not make obvious sense, for example, that someone would lose weight on a gluten-free diet. In fact, the opposite often happens for celiac patients as their malfunctioning intestines recover.

That sounds pretty anecdotal to me, and in fact there are numerous studies on grain-free diets and weight loss and/or improved health markers. The author’s knee-jerk contention throughout the piece is to not take matters into your own hands and see a doctor. Dependency upon the state and its established medical gatekeepers is an expectation in the era of robotic subservience to one’s Masters. Anything else is deemed reckless and irresponsible.

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10 Responses to Worship the Medical Gatekeepers

  1. Will C. says:

    March 11th, 2013 at 12:20 am

    Well then, color me reckless!  Thanks Karen for turning me on to primal nutrition through your posts on LRC.  I’ve always enjoyed your commentary on all things.  13 months ago I gave up bread/pasta/flour/sugar and developed a 95% primal diet using research from Sisson, Taubes, Eades, Harris and common sense from Heather Woods and others.  Despite the fact that I haven’t had a single day of vacation from work in over 2 years, I can testify to the supreme physical- and mental-energy benefits of the primal approach.  My body says “thank you” every morning.  If I had consulted my doctor about my previous “lethargy” and other gradual deteriorations, I’d probably be napping off a carb-rush right now and popping pills every morning.  Pretty sure I made the right choice.  Thanks again Karen for keeping the Agra-Pharma-Industrial Complex on the run!!

  2. George says:

    March 11th, 2013 at 8:58 am

    Anecdotal? Try forty pounds lost in four months, accompanied by one-hundred yard uphill dashes. Beforehand, even a short jog inflamed the knees. Waist was 38. Now 32. Wind is that of a twenty-something again. Bloodwork is perfect. Anectdote that…jerks.

  3. Beth Erfert says:

    March 13th, 2013 at 11:08 am

    Just yesterday received one of the medical newsletters I subscribe to online (as a medical transcriptionist, I like to keep an eye on new procedures/equipment/trends to make my job go better). Sure enough, there is a big multipage article about the dangers of a “restricted diet” when a patient is not eating “healthy whole grains.” I skimmed the article and really didn’t quite see exactly where those supposed dangers lay, not sure exactly what people would be depriving themselves of if they chose to not consume grains, but dammit, IT IS DANGEROUS! And TALK TO YOUR DOCTOR BEFORE TRYING THIS!

    Just don’t get it….

  4. Steve says:

    March 13th, 2013 at 12:22 pm

    The author of this article does cite enthusiastically Suzy Badaracco, president of Culinary Tides. Here are her “credentials” http://www.culinarytides.com/credentials.html

    Suzy Badaracco is a toxicologist, certified chef, and registered dietitian. She holds a Bachelors of Science degree in Criminalistics, an Associates degree in Culinary Arts, and a Masters of Science degree in Human Nutrition. Suzy has worked as an analytical chemist, corporate chef, nutrition specialist, trainer, and knowledge manager for organizations including Mintel, USDA, Nestle, T. Marzetti, and Ajinomoto inc. since 1992. Suzy has been trained in military intelligence and predictive analysis techniques used by both corporate and government bodies. Using these techniques she has been able to successfully predict and profile food trends in the United States from health and ingredient trends to restaurants, consumers, fast food and fast casual restaurants, grocery stores, and manufacturing trends.

    Sounds like a corp. state food shill to me.

  5. Karen De Coster says:

    March 13th, 2013 at 7:00 pm

    Beth – is there a link you can send to me about the danger of no-grains? Sounds fun!

  6. Beth Erfert says:

    March 14th, 2013 at 7:24 am

    Seems the main danger is of macro- and micronutrient deficiencies. If grains are so nutritious, why is almost every nutrient listed on the label the result of “fortification” of the product? Here are links to some articles–don’t know if you’ll need to open an account w/Medscape to be able to access them, but the account is free and will doubtless provide more articles of interest.


  7. Beth Erfert says:

    March 15th, 2013 at 4:17 pm


    Here is a link to today’s article, titled “Paleo Diet: Did It Ever Work?”

  8. Pam Maltzman says:

    March 20th, 2013 at 4:20 am

    Beth, I am a medical transcriptionist too, although I don’t subscribe to any such newsletters. I have always been interested in alternative medicine, though, and I frequently look up stuff on the internet.
    In the last few years, I have had 2 brief hospital stays. IMO, hospital dietitians/nutritionists are brainwashed and just plain wrong. I, a diabetic, was being given stuff like pasta, crackers, potatoes, sugary drinks, desserts, bread, and other crap that I believe is not fit for a diabetic to eat. Oh, yeah, not a pat of butter anywhere, but there was margarine. As a matter of fact, the so-called “nutritionist/dietitian” came to visit me to see why I wasn’t cleaning my plate. I asked her if she thought that such things were okay to feed a diabetic, and she thought they were. I’m gonna stay away from hospitals and doctors. There is a lot of cancer in my family, and I witnessed what one uncle went through for laryngeal cancer in the name of orthodox “treatment”–surgery, radiation, and using a buzzer which he held up to his throat. I figured there had to be something better out there, and once I got out on my own, I started reading about alternative therapies. I know that none of us gets out of it alive, but we don’t have to submit to barbarity. Oh, yeah, and a lot of the damned doctors just sound like morons when they dictate! Not to mention that some of them make a lot of chewing, smacking, and slurping mouth noises while dictating too… makes me want to pull hair and slap them upside their stupid heads. Were I to somehow win a lottery prize, it’d take me all of 20 seconds to give notice and spend the rest of my life retired and spending prize money. Not to mention that wages have gone down in the industry as a whole…

  9. Pam Maltzman says:

    March 20th, 2013 at 4:26 am

    I’m here to tell you that eating real meat works for critters too. I adopted a tiny female cat, hardly more than a kitten herself, in the middle of her second pregnancy (at only 9 or 10 months old). Well, she had her kittens. I was still feeding all my cats canned commercial (supermarket) cat food. Of the 5 kittens, we gave away the 2 boys and kept the 2 surviving girls. One of the baby girls had a goopy, boogery face. I’d saturate a cotton pad with human-grade eyewash and clean her little face, but it only helped temporarily. What cured her was eating more fat. Remembering the salutary effect of more fat on my own dry eyes, I started giving them canned human-grade salmon, sardines, and tuna, and cooking chicken for them and mixing it with canned tuna. Also updgraded the canned cat food I was giving them to a premium brand. The upshot is that both girl kittens have clear faces and are happie rcampers. They still meow at me when they want something, but they are no longer shrieking at me in distress. They are, in fact, extremely friendly and affectionate. The teen mama cat recently got spayeddd, and I am making an effort to give her extra good food, and she’s not quite so skinny anymore.

  10. Pam Maltzman says:

    March 20th, 2013 at 4:31 am

    A friend of mine on Facebook has gone the Colin Campbell/”China Study” route and is now a believing vegetarian. I don’t wish to get into a big hairy argument with him… I’ve posted some URLs about paleo/primal, and gently stated that I am still a meat eater.

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