A vegetarian bariatric surgeon is slamming the Paleo, ketogenic and Atkins diets for causing cancer, ruining the environment, and destroying civilization.
Dr. Garth Davis, who performs elective gastric bypass surgeries, says the Paleo diet is “the perfect storm for cancer, heart disease, dwindling water supplies, pollution, [and animal] cruelty.”
He said Paleo is “the diet I see killing patients daily and killing our environment. It must be dismissed.”
Davis made the remarks on Twitter Aug. 7, where he interjected himself onto a Twitter chain about a documentary called The Perfect Human Diet that had concluded the Paleo diet is the optimal eating plan for weight loss and disease prevention.
The documentary cited a long list of respected medical and scientific experts, who said fecal and bone analyses showed ancient man ate a Paleo-style diet that featured plenty of animal proteins and fats, some vegetables, and no grains.
These experts said the tsunami of obesity, diabetes and heart disease we see around us today is the direct result of society embracing a high-carb, lower-protein, grain-heavy diet in favor of the ancient diet that had helped man survive and evolve through the ages.
Scientific Reports Exculpate Unprocessed Saturated Fat
These statements were buoyed by a June 2014 Time magazine article in which scientists conceded they were wrong to say unprocessed saturated fat was unhealthy for the past four decades.
In the provocative cover story, Time said the 40-year demonization of saturated fat as the cause of obesity and heart disease was based on flawed data, citing a March 2014 Cambridge University study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine by cardiologist Dr. Rajiv Chowdhury.
The Time magazine article appeared to vindicate the high-fat, low-carb ketogenic, Atkins, and Paleo diets, whose proponents have said all along that eating unprocessed saturated fat (especially animal proteins) does not make you fat or sick.
Davis, a self-anointed nutrition expert who claims to have helped “thousands see the light,” vehemently disagrees with the mounting scientific evidence and media reports, saying eating animal protein is a one-way ticket to obesity, cancer, and heart attacks.
Garth is a proponent of a high-carb, low-fat diet — the very diet that has been espoused by mainstream nutritionists for the past 40 years, during which time obesity, diabetes and heart disease have exploded in the United States.
Meanwhile, leading cancer researcher Dr. Thomas Seyfried of Boston College told me the high-fat ketogenic diet beats chemotherapy for most cancers. Seyfried’s decades of research suggest the ketogenic diet (which features animal proteins and fats) starves cancer.
The high-fat ketogenic has also been shown to prevent epileptic seizures in children who don’t respond to drugs and reverse type 2 diabetes. Other scientific research suggests both the ketogenic and Paleo diets accelerate weight loss and prevent cancer, dementia and even Alzheimer’s.
Garth was/is an obscure bariatric surgeon who first came to my attention in September 2013 after he did a podcast with vegan ultra-athlete, Rich Roll.
Roll, a Stanford-educated lawyer and elite marathoner, revealed how he lost 50 pounds and dramatically improved his health with a vegan diet in his bestseller, Finding Ultra.
On the podcast, Davis slammed meat-heavy diets such as the Paleo and Atkins diets as unhealthy.
Garth said the current craze touting a high-protein, high-fat diet is killing people. Davis echoes the sentiments of nationally recognized vegetarian/vegan health experts Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn, author of Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease, and Dr. Joel Fuhrman, author of The End of Dieting.
Both Drs. Esselstyn and Fuhrman say a vegan diet is best for weight loss, longevity, and heart health. However, experts on the other side of the spectrum say the opposite is true.
Experts: Eating Fat Does Not Make You Fat
Obesity expert Dr. Eric Westman, author of Keto Clarity, and Dr. Jeff Volek, author of The Art and Science of Low Carbohydrate Living, say low-carb, high-fat diets such as the ketogenic, Atkins and Paleo diets are better than low-fat vegan-style diets for weight loss and disease prevention.
Dr. Westman, director of Duke University’s Lifestyle Medicine Clinic, has helped thousands of people lose hundreds of thousands of pounds (without surgery) on the high-fat, low-carb diets that feature plenty of animal proteins and fats.
“Here at Duke, we use mainly the low-carbohydrate ketogenic diet to treat diabetes and obesity,” said Westman. “Hypertension gets better, heartburn gets better, fatty liver. The list goes on and on.”
At this point, the heated debate between the meat-eating Paleo and ketogenic communities and the vegan/vegetarian factions shows no signs of waning, as both sides proclaim the absolute superiority of their respective eating plans.
While an idealogical truce may be unlikely in the near future, one thing is clear: It’s better to build bridges than wage petty verbal wars, especially if you hold yourself out as an expert.