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

Thursday, 7 July 2011

Macrobiotic diets lead to growth retardation, very low vitamin B12 levels and iron deficiency

This post contains a synopsis of a paper published in Acta paediatrica Scandinavica. Supplement 1991;374:111-8 and a recipe for curried shrimps and spinach.

Study title and authors:
Stunting and nutrient deficiencies in children on alternative diets.
Dagnelie PC, van Staveren WA, Hautvast JG.
Department of Human Nutrition, Wageningen Agricultural University, The Netherlands.

This paper can be accessed at:

Primal Body, Primal Mind: Beyond the Paleo Diet for Total Health and a Longer Life
Macrobiotic diets are focused primarily on grains and contain little animal fats. Dagnelie notes that studies have shown children fed macrobiotic diets have lower intakes of energy and nutrients, and retarded growth.

The study investigated growth, nutritional status and red blood count in macrobiotic fed infants between 4 and 18 months of age and a control group.

The study found:
(a) The macrobiotic infants had growth retardation which was related to a diet low in energy density, fat and protein.
(b) The macrobiotic infants had very low vitamin B12 concentrations with consequently low values of red blood cells.
(c) Iron deficiency was found in 15% of the macrobiotic group vs. no infants in the control group.

To conclude: Macrobiotic diets lead to growth retardation, very low vitamin B12 levels and iron deficiency.

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Recipe of the day

Curried Shrimps and Spinach

Serves 4

Peeled & Deveined Jumbo Shrimp (2 Lbs)
Food Mall: Peeled and Deveined Shrimps
•2 lbs shrimps, peeled and deveined;
•2 tbsp ghee, butter or coconut oil;
•1 onion, chopped;
•2 tsp curry powder;
•2 tsp tomato paste;
•1/2 cup homemade chicken stock;
•1 cup full-fat coconut milk;
•2 tightly packed cups shredded spinach;
•Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste;

1.Heat a large skillet over a medium-low heat and cook the onion in the ghee, butter or coconut oil until it begins to soften, about 3 minutes.

2.Season to taste with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, stir in the curry powder and continue cooking for a minute.

3.Place mixture in a blender or a food processor, add the tomato paste as well as the chicken stock and coconut milk. Process or blend until smooth.

4.Pour the mixture back in the skillet and bring to a simmer.

5.Add the shrimps and spinach and cook, covered, for about 5 minutes, until the shrimps are just cooked.

Curried Shrimps and Spinach