Saturday, December 16, 2006



Vegetarians are more intelligent, says study

Another rubbishy finding that ignores social class

Frequently dismissed as cranks, their fussy eating habits tend to make them unpopular with dinner party hosts and guests alike. But now it seems they may have the last laugh, with research showing vegetarians are more intelligent than their meat-eating friends. A study of thousands of men and women revealed that those who stick to a vegetarian diet have IQs that are around five points higher than those who regularly eat meat. Writing in the British Medical Journal, the researchers say it isn't clear why veggies are brainier - but admit the fruit and veg-rich vegetarian diet could somehow boost brain power.

The researchers, from the University of Southampton, tracked the fortunes of more than 8,000 volunteers for 20 years. At the age of ten, the boys and girls sat a series of tests designed to determine their IQ. When they reached the age of 30, they were asked whether they were vegetarian and their answers compared to their childhood IQ score. Around four and a half per cent of the adults were vegetarian - a figure that is broadly in line with that found in the general population.

However, further analysis of the results showed those who were brainiest as children were more likely to have become vegetarian as adults, shunning both meat and fish. The typical adult veggie had a childhood IQ of around 105 - around five points higher than those who continued to eat meat as they grew up. The vegetarians were also more likely to have gained degrees and hold down high-powered jobs. There was no difference in IQ between strict vegetarians and those who classed themselves as veggie but still ate fish or chicken. However, vegans - vegetarians who also avoid dairy products - scored significantly lower, averaging an IQ score of 95 at the age of 10.

Researcher Dr Catharine Gale said there could be several explanations for the findings, including intelligent people being more likely to consider both animal welfare issues and the possible health benefits of a vegetarian diet. Previous work has shown that vegetarians tend to have lower blood pressure and lower cholesterol, cutting their risk of heart attacks. They are also less likely to be obese. Alternatively, a diet which is rich in fruit, vegetables and wholegrains may somehow boost brain power. Dr Gale said: 'Although our results suggest that children who are more intelligent may be more likely to become vegetarian as adolescents or young adults, it does not rule out the possibility that such a diet might have some beneficial effect on subsequent cognitive performance. 'Might the nature of the vegetarians' diet have enhanced their apparently superior brain power? Was this the mechanism that helped them achieve the disproportionate nature of degrees?'

High-profile vegetarians include singers Paul McCartney and Morrissey and actress Jenny Seagrove. Past exponents of a meat-free lifestyle include George Bernard Shaw and Benjamin Franklin. Promoting the cause, Shaw said, 'A mind of the calibre of mine cannot drive its nutriment from cows', while Franklin stated that a vegetarian diet resulted in 'greater clearness of head and quicker comprehension'. Liz O'Neill, of the Vegetarian Society, said: 'We've always known that vegetarianism is an intelligent, compassionate choice benefiting animals, people and the environment. Now, we've got the scientific evidence to prove it. 'Maybe that explains why many meat-reducers are keen to call themselves vegetarians when even they must know that vegetarians don't eat chicken, turkey or fish!'

Source

Vegetarianism is almost solely a bourgeois preoccupation and, as Murray and Herrnstein showed long ago, the middle and upper classes have an IQ advantage. They also, however, tend to overestimate their own wisdom and go off chasing all sorts of rainbows -- in the belief that they can see truth and virtue where most people cannot




ARROGANT B*STARDS

Clothes made in larger sizes should carry a tag with an obesity helpline number, health specialists have suggested. Sweets and snacks should not be permitted near checkouts, new roads should not be built unless they include cycle lanes and food likely to make people fat should be taxed, they say in a checklist of what we might "reasonably do" to deal with obesity.

Writing in the British Medical Journal, the team says that "pull yourself together, eat less and exercise more" is an inadequate response to obesity, voiced only by "less perceptive health professionals" and the media. What fat people need is help, advice and sympathy to overcome their addiction to food, says the group of public health professionals, which includes Sir George Alberti, the Government's national director for emergency care. Their checklist of possible actions includes:

* Printing a helpline numbers for advice with all clothes sold with a waist of more than 40in for men and 37in for boys, women's garments with a waist of more than 35in or size 16 or above, and more than 31in for girls

* Banning the placement of sweets and fatty snacks at or near shop tills and at children's eye level

* Taxing processed foods that are high in sugar or saturated fat

* Introducing health checks for all school leavers, both primary and secondary

* Allowing new urban roads only if they have cycle lanes

* Establishing a dedicated central agency responsible for all aspects of obesity

The report was put together by Laurence Gruer, director of public health science at NHS Health Scotland, and Sir George, who is emeritus professor of medicine at Newcastle University. The Glasgow University professors Naveed Sattar and Mike Lean also contributed to the report, which calls for wider acceptance of drugs and surgery as ways of cutting the health risks that stem from obesity.

The report concludes: "Medical practice must adapt to the current epidemic of obesity and nutrition-related diseases. The profession must unite the forces of public health and acute services to generate sustainable changes in food and lifestyles: matters at the heart of our cultural identities. "Furthermore, training in public health medicine should urge all doctors to contribute towards bringing changes in the food industry and in the environment that will lead to a more physically active, healthier and happier population. "As the prevalence and costs of obesity escalate, the economic argument for giving high priority to obesity and weight management through a designated co-ordinating agency will ultimately become overwhelming. The only question is, will action be taken before it is too late?"

Source




The feminizing effects of soy

Some interesting claims by Jim Rutz

There's a slow poison out there that's severely damaging our children and threatening to tear apart our culture. The ironic part is, it's a "health food," one of our most popular. Now, I'm a health-food guy, a fanatic who seldom allows anything into his kitchen unless it's organic. I state my bias here just so you'll know I'm not anti-health food. The dangerous food I'm speaking of is soy. Soybean products are feminizing, and they're all over the place. You can hardly escape them anymore.

I have nothing against an occasional soy snack. Soy is nutritious and contains lots of good things. Unfortunately, when you eat or drink a lot of soy stuff, you're also getting substantial quantities of estrogens. Estrogens are female hormones. If you're a woman, you're flooding your system with a substance it can't handle in surplus. If you're a man, you're suppressing your masculinity and stimulating your "female side," physically and mentally.

In fetal development, the default is being female. All humans (even in old age) tend toward femininity. The main thing that keeps men from diverging into the female pattern is testosterone, and testosterone is suppressed by an excess of estrogen. If you're a grownup, you're already developed, and you're able to fight off some of the damaging effects of soy. Babies aren't so fortunate. Research is now showing that when you feed your baby soy formula, you're giving him or her the equivalent of five birth control pills a day. A baby's endocrine system just can't cope with that kind of massive assault, so some damage is inevitable. At the extreme, the damage can be fatal.

Soy is feminizing, and commonly leads to a decrease in the size of the penis, sexual confusion and homosexuality. That's why most of the medical (not socio-spiritual) blame for today's rise in homosexuality must fall upon the rise in soy formula and other soy products. (Most babies are bottle-fed during some part of their infancy, and one-fourth of them are getting soy milk!) Homosexuals often argue that their homosexuality is inborn because "I can't remember a time when I wasn't homosexual." No, homosexuality is always deviant. But now many of them can truthfully say that they can't remember a time when excess estrogen wasn't influencing them.

Doctors used to hope soy would reduce hot flashes, prevent cancer and heart disease, and save millions in the Third World from starvation. That was before they knew much about long-term soy use. Now we know it's a classic example of a cure that's worse than the disease. For example, if your baby gets colic from cow's milk, do you switch him to soy milk? Don't even think about it. His phytoestrogen level will jump to 20 times normal. If he is a she, brace yourself for watching her reach menarche as young as seven, robbing her of years of childhood. If he is a boy, it's far worse: He may not reach puberty till much later than normal.

Research in 2000 showed that a soy-based diet at any age can lead to a weak thyroid, which commonly produces heart problems and excess fat. Could this explain the dramatic increase in obesity today? Recent research on rats shows testicular atrophy, infertility and uterus hypertrophy (enlargement). This helps explain the infertility epidemic and the sudden growth in fertility clinics. But alas, by the time a soy-damaged infant has grown to adulthood and wants to marry, it's too late to get fixed by a fertility clinic. Worse, there's now scientific evidence that estrogen ingredients in soy products may be boosting the rapidly rising incidence of leukemia in children. In the latest year we have numbers for, new cases in the U.S. jumped 27 percent. In one year!

There's also a serious connection between soy and cancer in adults - especially breast cancer. That's why the governments of Israel, the UK, France and New Zealand are already cracking down hard on soy. In sad contrast, 60 percent of the refined foods in U.S. supermarkets now contain soy. Worse, soy use may double in the next few years because (last I heard) the out-of-touch medicrats in the FDA hierarchy are considering allowing manufacturers of cereal, energy bars, fake milk, fake yogurt, etc., to claim that "soy prevents cancer." It doesn't.

Source

There is no doubt that soy products do contain phytoestrogens and that such hormones do have roughly the effects described above. See also here. Whether the quantities ingested are large enough to have any given effect is the crucial question

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Just some problems with the "Obesity" war:

1). It tries to impose behavior change on everybody -- when most of those targeted are not obese and hence have no reason to change their behaviour. It is a form of punishing the innocent and the guilty alike. (It is also typical of Leftist thinking: Scorning the individual and capable of dealing with large groups only).

2). The longevity research all leads to the conclusion that it is people of MIDDLING weight who live longest -- not slim people. So the "epidemic" of obesity is in fact largely an "epidemic" of living longer.

3). It is total calorie intake that makes you fat -- not where you get your calories. Policies that attack only the source of the calories (e.g. "junk food") without addressing total calorie intake are hence pissing into the wind. People involuntarily deprived of their preferred calorie intake from one source are highly likely to seek and find their calories elsewhere.

4). So-called junk food is perfectly nutritious. A big Mac meal comprises meat, bread, salad and potatoes -- which is a mainstream Western diet. If that is bad then we are all in big trouble.

5). Food warriors demonize salt and fat. But we need a daily salt intake to counter salt-loss through perspiration and the research shows that people on salt-restricted diets die SOONER. And Eskimos eat huge amounts of fat with no apparent ill-effects. And the average home-cooked roast dinner has LOTS of fat. Will we ban roast dinners?

6). The foods restricted are often no more calorific than those permitted -- such as milk and fruit-juice drinks.

7). Tendency to weight is mostly genetic and is therefore not readily susceptible to voluntary behaviour change.

8). And when are we going to ban cheese? Cheese is a concentrated calorie bomb and has lots of that wicked animal fat in it too. Wouldn't we all be better off without it? And what about butter? It is just about pure fat. Surely it should be treated as contraband in kids' lunchboxes! [/sarcasm].

9). For a summary of the weak science behind the "trans-fat" hysteria, see here. Trans fats have only a temporary effect on blood chemistry and no lasting harm from them has ever been shown.


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1 comment:

Chuck said...

Your blog about eating more fruits, and vegetables is really cool.I'll be back to visit.