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How the American Public is “Healthying” Itself to Death

Why Low Fat Foods Actually Make You Fat

David S. Klein, MD

As alarming as it might seem, those ‘common sense’ nutritional recommendations that we have taken as ‘fact’ may actually result in tremendous damage to our patients. The wonder food that provides low-cost, low-fat protein to our patients is also delivering a pair of insidiously acting poisons that are fattening our patients, like so many cattle.

Lessons from the farm: Cattle will graze until they are sated. They will eat and become meaty. Cattle are then given corn and soybeans, in a feed lot. Cattle become ‘beefy’ when allowed to graze. Cattle become ‘fat’ when given low-fat diets consisting of soy and grain.

Humans are not all that dissimilar to cattle. When given soy and corn, cattle become fat. When given soy and carbohydrates, humans become fat. The ‘low fat,’ low-cholesterol soy diet fattens cattle, and the same ‘low fat’ diet fattens humans. When the medical community opted to support the elimination of cholesterol from the American diet, the population was set on a path towards wholesale obesity.

To the Europeans, soy and corn are considered to be ‘cattle feed,’ and are therefore beneath human consumption. Europeans will not permit the introduction of soy into their diet, and the resulting difference between the North American and European populations is striking.

Soybeans are harmful to human metabolism due to the presence of two chemicals that cause direct, metabolic harm, to human physiology. These chemicals, daidzein and genistein, inhibit thyroid function, bind essential minerals, thereby preventing absorption from the gut, and directly inhibit certain digestive enzymes. In short, this is exactly opposite of what we have been told is ‘healthy.’ Soy is, however, cheap. It is the cheapest source of protein, phytochemicals, and cooking oil. Foolishly, we place our infants on soy-formula instead of milk, we diet our way into obesity with a plethora of protein meals, shakes and ‘low fat’ meals. When our grand-parents ate their meat & potatoes, gravy & butter, they rarely became obese. As children, it was truly rare to encounter an obese child. Old school photos rarely demonstrated a single fat child. Magazine photos, movies, newsreels rarely demonstrated obese adults. In the movies of the 30’s, 40’s and 50’s, the ‘fat kid’ or ‘big man’ would not be considered to be particularly corpulent, by standards of today.

There is a scientific basis for this phenomenon. The molecular basis for many of the problems associated with soy result directly from the similarity in size, polarity and shape to the mammalian hormones T-3 and T4. The physiological effects of the isoflavone daidzein and genistein result due to the competitive antagonism of the enzyme, Thyroid Peroxidase. This enzyme is critical in thyroid hormone production. Further, these isoflavones inhibit the enzyme 3,3’5’-deiodinase, which is instrumental in the conversion of T-4 to T-3. Daidzein and genistein inhibit the production of thyroid hormone and inhibit the conversion of (inactive) T-4 to (active) T-3.

Soy also binds up zinc, thereby rendering unavailable, this essential mineral. The protease trypsin is inhibited by these isoflavones, thereby harming normal digestion of protein.

The soy isoflavones are estrogen agonist-antagonist. That is, the soy isoflavones work against estrogens in females. This is actually beneficial for the treatment of symptoms attributed to PMS. By acting as estrogen antagonist, patients can decrease the complaints of “hot flashes.’ The chronic use of the isoflavones as estrogen antagonist may have unfortunate long term effects. By antagonizes estrogen effect on bone, skin, and other tissues, the soy isoflavones may accelerate the development of osteoporosis and fibrocystic disease of the breast.

The mild estrogenic effects in males can be very detrimental. The soy isoflavones, or ‘soy estrogen's’ as they are sometimes called, can increase in male breast tissue. The estrogens also result in balding and testicular wasting.

The net physiological effect of the inhibition of thyroid function:

  1. ‘Normal serum thyroid values,’ e.g. T-3, T-4, TSH
  2. Hypothyroid with ‘normal blood studies.’
  3. Antagonism of protein digestion in the gut with resulting dyspepsia and reflux esophagitis.
  4. Mixed agonist-antagonistic effects on estrogen metabolism, with resulting central obesity, gynecomastia, erectile dysfunction.

Soy is present in many processed foods, including:

  1. Soy meal, Soybean oil.
  2. Soy milk.
  3. Non-dairy creamer.
  4. Many “low fat” prepared foods.
  5. Bread (soy meal is often mixed with the flour).
  6. ‘Veggy burgers,’ some hamburger meats.
  7. ‘Lecithin’- short for soya lecithin (as opposed to the more expensive egg lecithin, used in Europe.

To a lesser extent, these isoflavones can be found in Chick Peas (Garbanzo Beans,) and Peanuts. Pinto Beans also have a lesser isoflavone content. Some health foods and supplements are rich in thyroid-inhibiting isoflavones, including Black Cohosh, Grape Seed Extract, and Ginko Biloba.

Other foods that are of concern include:

  • Candy, American chocolate (Europeans use egg lecithin)
  • “Low fat” and “diet” foods
  • “Natural” Vitamin products.
  • “Natural” Vitamin E.
  • “Natural” Co-Q10.
  • Muscle-building supplements.
  • Crackers, cakes, cookies.
  • “Light, vegetarian cheeses.”
  • Deep fat fried foods (cooked in Soybean Oil).
  • Salad dressings.
  • Sausage, hot dogs.
  • Bologna, Spam.
  • Salami.
  • “Baco’s.” “Bacon bits.”
  • Processed delicatessen products.
  • Peanuts.
  • Some Herbal teas.
  • Grapes, some wine (grape seed)

The net effect on human physiology is remarkable. To prove the point to the skeptic, a person takes their temperature, then drinks a cup of coffee with non-dairy creamer. After 60 minutes, re-determination of temperature will demonstrate a drop of 0.3-1.0 deg Fahrenheit. The effect of dietary soy can be observed in sequential body temperature readings, and foods with suspect isoflavone contamination can be identified.

  • The effects of dietary soy will manifest within an hour after ingestion, and can last as long as 24 hours.
  • It may take several days to eliminate the isoflavones from the system.

In summary, epidemic obesity is probably the single greatest public health threat to our society. As we look for fancy medications and expensive interventions, the answer may be as simple as soy/peanut avoidance. We are and have been ‘healthying’ ourselves to death.