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Author Topic: The China Study - Links between diet and disease  (Read 6654 times)

Offline Lijahdia

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The China Study - Links between diet and disease
« on: June 12, 2008, 06:33:33 PM »
Hi everyone,

If anyone is interested in the links between diet and disease (particularly animal protein), the China Study is a thought provoking and thoroughly researched book.

Drawing on project findings from a study in rural China, but going far beyond those findings, the China Study details the connection between nutrition and heart disease, diabetes and cancer. The report also examines the source of nutritional confusion produced by powerful lobbies, government entities, and opportunistic scientists. The New York Times has recognized the study (China-Oxford-Cornell Diet and Health Project) as the “Grand Prix of epidemiology” and the “most comprehensive large study ever undertaken of the relationship between diet and the risk of developing disease.”

For more than 40 years, T. Colin Campbell, Ph.D. has been at the forefront of nutrition research. His legacy, the China Study, is the most comprehensive study of health and nutrition ever conducted. Dr. Campbell is the Jacob Gould Schurman Professor Emeritus of Nutritional Biochemistry at Cornell University and Project Director of the China-Oxford-Cornell Diet and Health Project. The study was the culmination of a 20-year partnership of Cornell University, Oxford University and the Chinese Academy of Preventive Medicine.

Dr. Campbell received his master’s degree and Ph.D. from Cornell, and served as a Research Associate at MIT. He spent 10 years on the faculty of Virginia Tech’s Department of Biochemistry and Nutrition before returning to the Division of Nutritional Sciences at Cornell in 1975 where he presently holds his Endowed Chair (now Emeritus).

His principal scientific interests, which began with his graduate training in the late 1950s, has been on the effects of nutritional status on long term health, particularly on the cause of cancer. He has conducted original research both in laboratory experiments and in large-scale human studies; has received more than 70 grant-years of peer-reviewed research funding, mostly from the National Institute of Health, and has served on several grant review panels of multiple funding agencies, lectured extensively, and has authored more than 300 research papers.

He is the recipient of several awards, both in research and citizenship, and has conducted original research investigation both in experimental animal and human studies, and has actively participated in the development of national and international nutrition policy.

Offline jodi f.

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Re: The China Study - Links between diet and disease
« Reply #1 on: June 14, 2008, 11:16:31 AM »
For a slightly different take on this book, you may like to read the review of this book on the Weston A. Price Foundation's website. It, too, is well-researched.

Offline Lijahdia

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Re: The China Study - Links between diet and disease
« Reply #2 on: June 17, 2008, 05:56:17 PM »
T. Colin Campbell's response to questions raised about the book, "The China Study. Startling Implications for Diet, Weight Loss and Long-Term Health". This includes a response to the review by Chris Masterjohn, featured on the Weston Price website.

Offline Lijahdia

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Re: The China Study - Links between diet and disease
« Reply #3 on: June 17, 2008, 06:18:24 PM »
To be fair, here is the link to Chris Masterjohn's response to Dr Campbell.

Offline RosaR

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Re: The China Study - Links between diet and disease
« Reply #4 on: June 18, 2008, 02:50:29 PM »
Thanks for the links to the review/rebuttal/rebuttal of the rebuttal.

I read The China Study a few years ago, and, while it provided some validation of my lifelong eating habits, it left me wondering: What kind of processes were used to prepare the casein used in the animal studies? Was it subjected to pasteurization? Homogenization? I bought the book for family and friends, but the longer I pondered it, the more I felt something was missing, mainly because the vegetarians I knew (myself among them) seemed to be more fragile than our omnivorous friends.

More recently, due to worsening health issues, my husband and I began to eat wild game, and more eggs, and cheese, butter, raw cultured milk, and coconut oil. Our health has improved, our energy has increased, and we eat far less grain (and almost no processed food) as a result of being so satisfied with healthy fats, vegetables, meats, dairy, eggs, nuts, and fruits. We have lost weight, and digestion has improved dramatically.

I have to say I agree with Chris Masterjohn's critique that T.Colin Campbell ignores the allergenicity of gluten as a cause of autoimmune conditions, and that his conclusions re: animal proteins feeding cancer are simplistic and do not take into account the health of the person or the quality/preparation of the animal food....

However I will admit, as I down a quart of raw kefir, that I do sometimes wonder if this will increase my risk of getting cancer. But then I remember that most likely all that milk in the studies was subjected to many unnatural processes, and my kefir makes me feel much better than the soymilk/ricemilk etc that I used to drink...

Offline GailB

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Re: The China Study - Links between diet and disease
« Reply #5 on: June 24, 2008, 11:46:53 AM »
I am very new to the study of nutrition.  I attended the Optimum Health Institute for 3 weeks back in November 07, since then my quest for knowledge has not stopped.  I began the Nutritional Educators program at Bauman College in March of 08.

This past Feb. I read the book The China Study and was shocked by it's findings.  At the time I was about 95% raw with little to no animal protein.  Ironically, the next book that I read was The 80/10/10 Diet by Dr. Douglas Graham.  This book is written by a long time marathon runner who eats copious amounts of fruit with just a few nuts and seeds.  The books dovetailed nicely and I thought I had found the secret that the dairy and beef council had tried to hide (as well as Nabisco & Keebler).  HOWEVER.... after a blood test due to my long term hypothyroid condition, I found out not only my thyroid was off, but I was also anemic for the first time in my life, and there were a few vitamins and minerals that I was very deficient in.  I began adding animal protein back into my diet and also taking supplements to help me along.  I feel much better now.

Our Nutritional Education class is now studying Macro-nutrients, and after completing the section on Protein and Amino Acids, I have been adamant about spreading adequate amounts of protein in my diet throughout the day.  I now realize the importance of balance in my diet, I did not grow up a vegetarian, my body has never had to rely on vegetables, nuts & seeds as it's only source of protein.  For me to ask it to do so now at age 49 is not realistic, although I can see it obviously works for Dr. Graham and his devoted followers.

Now.... to tie this back in with the China Study.  As I studied proteins, the findings in this book haunted me.  As I sat and listened in class I wondered what the difference was between the proteins I was consuming and what we were shipping over-seas as a dietary supplement.  The best I can come up with is that the proteins that we have the ability to consume here are fresh, whole foods.  It is not the isolated protein powders and supplements that are processed to ship over-seas efficiently.  Also, the people in those regions had not grown up with protein sources readily available.  Just as my body did not respond well to a radical dietary shift, neither did theirs. 

I think all of these books, studies, findings, opinions etc. are valuable so that we can always continue to explore and analyze our own personal health; not only for ourselves but our loved ones and clients as well.  Somewhere in the midst of all this reading and information, hopefully we will all find the balance that works for each of us.  Right now, despite the China Study findings, I'm choosing to make sure my protein intake is adequate so that I feel good and function well.  AND I'm still reading and still learning.

Offline KristinZ

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Re: The China Study - Links between diet and disease
« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2008, 11:32:06 PM »
I have really enjoyed reading through all these comments about the Chinda Study because this was one of the first books I read that really made me connect diet and disease and started my lifelong passion for whole food nutrition. Colin Campbell was able to write a book that is very compelling and does a fantastic job of connecting the dots between diet and disease rates.

On the other hand though, I have just recently switched from a vegan diet to include eggs, fish, and some dairy because I, like many others, was feeling worn out and fatigued and have realized it was due to a lack of adequate protien. I have not done any tests to know if this was the problem, but I know my body well enough to say that the extra protein has been helpful.

The part of the China Study that consumed me the most was the section on the government and nutrition policy. I still am frustrated by the misuse of power by big industries, especially when it puts $ before the health of our nation! And to make it worse, this misinformation has been filtrating down the nutrition ladder and becoming common "mis-knowledge" among everyday Americans. I mean, who doesn't know what the food guide pyramid is or who hasn't seen the "got milk" commericals!? It's very sad, but I finally feel that I'm able to get unbiased, uncensored information from Bauman College and am sooo thankful schools like this exist!

Offline PatriciaE

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Re: The China Study - Links between diet and disease
« Reply #7 on: July 13, 2008, 03:59:32 PM »
I appreciate the information you've provided on The China Study.  It is not a book I've read, but I do intend to.  In terms of good nutrition, I believe the key is finding the right balance.  I stopped eating red meat more than 20 years ago, choosing to only use poultry and fish in my diet.  However, after being diagnosed with an early stage of breast cancer, I quickly moved to a raw, vegan diet.  I did this for about six months.  After much research, and keeping track of my mood and energy levels after eating, I discovered I wasn't getting enough protein in my diet.

I have since started eating more fish (namely salmon) and eggs in an attempt to get more protein.  I feel better and have more energy as a result.  Ironically, prior to my diagnosis, I had a CBC panel done and it was determined that my body was NOT deficient in ANY vitamin or mineral.  In fact, my doctor told me my results were the highest he'd ever seen...go figure.

I'm still relatively new to all of this, and I'm sure I have much more to learn and I attempt to navigate dietary fact from fiction.