The raison d'etre of this website is to provide you with hard scientific information which may help you make informed decisions in your quest for health (so far I have blogged concise summaries of over 1,500 scientific studies and have had three books published).

My research is mainly focused on the effects of cholesterol, saturated fat and statin drugs on health. If you know anyone who is worried about their cholesterol levels and heart disease, or has been told to take statin drugs you could send them a link to this website, and to my statin or cholesterol or heart disease books.

David Evans

Independent Health Researcher

Sunday, 22 May 2011

The mechanism of how lectins cause food poisoning

This post includes a synopsis of a paper published in PLoS ONE 2(8): e687 and a recipe for grilled pork chops with chimichurri.

Study title and authors:
Lectin-Based Food Poisoning: A New Mechanism of Protein Toxicity
Katsuya Miyake1, Toru Tanaka2, Paul L. McNeil1,3
The Primal Blueprint: Reprogram your genes for effortless weight loss, vibrant health, and boundless energy
1 Institute of Molecular Medicine and Genetics, Medical College of Georgia, Augusta, Georgia, United States of America, 2 Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Josai University, Sakado, Saitama, Japan, 3 Department of Cellular Biology and Anatomy, Medical College of Georgia, Augusta, Georgia, United States of America

This paper can be accessed at:

Miyake notes that ingestion of the lectins present in certain improperly cooked vegetables can result in acute intestinal damage. The study examined the mechanism of lectin toxicity.

Cells in the gut are constantly exposed to varoius toxins which cause damage to their membranes. This damage is repaired by a process called exocytosis which puts a "patch" on the damaged membrane. Repair of this cell surface damage allows the wounded cell to survive: failure results in cell death.

The study found that lectins on the cell surface potently inhibited the membrane exocytosis "patching" and therefore compromised the cell membrane repair process.

To conclude: Lectins potently inhibit cell membrane repair, and hence are toxic to wounded cells. This represents a novel form of protein-based toxicity, one that, Miyake proposed, is the basis of plant lectin food poisoning.

More information on this subject: Books : Scientific Studies : Other Websites : Videos : Food Mall 

Recipe of the day

Grilled Pork Chops with Chimichurri


For the Chimichurri Sauce:
All Natural Pork Loin Chops Center Cut bone in 8. 1' Thick
Food Mall: Bone-In Pork Chops
1 cup packed flat-leaf parsley leaves
1/2 cup packed cilantro leaves
2 tablespoons chopped white onion
2 cloves garlic, chopped
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon crushed red chile pepper
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

For the Pork Chops:
4 thick-cut (1 1/2-inch-thick) bone-in pork chops (14 to 16 ounces each)
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon coarse sea salt
1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper

For the chimichurri sauce, combine all ingredients in a food processor with 1 tablespoon water. Process until blended; set aside.

Prepare a gas or charcoal grill for medium-heat cooking, leaving one area of the grill cool (this will be a place to transfer the chops if they flare up). Brush chops all over with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill, turning once or twice, until just cooked through, about 15 minutes. Watch the chops carefully, and move them to the cool area of the grill if they flare up or brown too quickly. Let rest 5 minutes; serve with the chimichurri on the side.

Grilled Pork Chops with Chimichurri