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Dairy: Friend or Foe? – Episode #5 – Summer Tomato Live [video]

by | Apr 18, 2011

Thanks to those of you who participated in this episode on the role of dairy in health and weight loss. Show notes are below.

Please note that the date for the probiotics episode (#6) has changed to Monday, April 25 @ 6:30p PST (previously Tuesday, April 26).

April 11, 2011 | Does milk really protect against osteoporosis? Will too much calcium give you prostate cancer? Can you reduce acne if you stop eating dairy? What’s the deal with raw milk?

The answers may surprise you.

Tune in tonight at 6:30pm PST to join our live discussion about the pros and cons of dairy.

Live participation is only available to subscribers of the newsletter Tomato Slice. You can sign up at any time, even during the show, and the password for participation will be emailed to you immediately.

Click here to sign up and get the password

Read this for more information on the show and newsletter

To watch live and join the discussion click the red “Join event” button, login with Twitter or your Vokle account, and enter the password when prompted.

I encourage you to call in with video questions, particularly if your question is nuanced and may involve a back and forth discussion. Please use headphones to call in however, or the feedback from the show is unbearable.

Show notes:

There is a huge amount of politics surrounding this science, because of the powerful influence of dairy industries around the world. This makes data difficult to interpret. The following review and its rebuttal regarding the role of milk in type 1 diabetes is a perfect example of what I mean:

Dairy & type 1 diabetes

Dairy and osteoporosis

Dairy and acne

Dairy/calcium and heart disease

Dairy/calcium and prostate cancer

Dairy/calcium and colon cancer

Dairy & breast cancer

Dairy & weight loss (very tough to find studies not funded by dairy industry)

  • Moderate weight loss from dairy (but rarely from intervention studies w/o caloric restriction)
  • Possible mechanisms include:
    • Ca++
    • protein
    • conjugated lineoleic acid (CLA)
    • medium-chain fatty acids
  • My interpretation: dairy not likely to have big impact on body weight

Cheese protects against cancer and heart disease?


  • Processed ice cream contains beaver anal gland?
  • Wikipedia
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    For The Love Of Food

    by | Jul 16, 2010

    For The Love of Food

    Welcome to Friday’s For The Love of Food, Summer Tomato’s weekly link roundup.

    If you are certain milk is good for you, please read the Los Angeles Times article explaining why it may be time to reconsider. There’s also good news this week about the benefits of green tea, exercise, vitamin D and fish oil. I love good news!

    I read many more wonderful articles than I post here each week. If you’d like to see more or just don’t want to wait until Friday, be sure to follow me on Twitter (@summertomato) or the Summer Tomato Facebook fan page. For a complete reading list join me on the new Digg or StumbleUpon. I’m very active on all these sites and would love to connect with you.

    Links of the week

    What inspired you this week?

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    For The Love of Food

    by | Oct 23, 2009
    For The Love of Food

    For The Love of Food

    Welcome to Friday’s For The Love of Food, Summer Tomato’s weekly link roundup.

    The LA Times has a nice review this week about the benefits (or lack of) of different kinds of milk that is worth reviewing. I’m also a bit surprised to see that there is some real science backing the claim that garlic wards of colds (the vampire claim is still pending). You should also check out Dr. Steve Parker’s self-experiment on the ketogenic Mediterranean diet.

    I’m happy to announce that I’ve been nominated for a People’s HealthBlogger Award by Wellsphere! Wellsphere is a fantastic resource for anyone interested in healthy living. To vote for me I think you have to create an account with them, but you can delete it when you’re done (and I have yet to get any spam). I’d really appreciate your support. The guy in 1st right now only has like 50 something votes. We can beat that, right?

    I read many more wonderful articles than I post here each week. If you’d like to see more or just don’t want to wait until Friday, be sure to follow me on Twitter (@summertomato) or the Summer Tomato Facebook fan page. For complete reading lists join me on the social bookmarking sites StumbleUpon and Delicious. I’m very active on all these sites and would love to connect with you there. (Note: If you want a follow back on Twitter introduce yourself with an @ message).

    For The Love of Food

    • Poring over facts about milk: cow’s, goat’s, soy, almond, rice and hemp <<Very informative article about the pros and cons of various milk products. I get asked about milk a lot, and my usual answer is that the type you choose is mostly about preference. But I would still recommend limiting all milks in general, since too much of any of these comes with associated health problems. Watch the sugar in the vegetarian milks. You should also be aware that calcium probably causes prostate cancer in men. (Los Angeles Times)
    • The Claim: Garlic Can Be Helpful in Warding Off a Cold <<Apparently there is some truth to this claim. I cook with garlic regularly, so maybe I should add this to my reasons that I never get sick. (New York Times)
    • 60 Delicious Detox Dishes <<Beautiful photos and wonderful recipes for post-football detox. You know who (me) is featured 😉 (Macheesmo)
    • 10 Simple Freezer Tricks to Save You Time and Money <<Gotta love kitchen tips. Making good use of your freezer is a great way to save time and money. (Lifehacker)
    • A Few Cookies a Day to Keep the Pounds Away? <<B.S. of the week I’ve mentioned the cookie diet in passing before. Are these people serious? Unfortunately, they are. (New York Times)
    • Web Surf to Save Your Aging Brain <<When pressed I always say that my computer habit is probably the least healthy thing I do (I sit here a lot, in case you haven’t noticed). So it’s good to see there’s a chance it may at least be good for my brain. (HealthDay)
    • My Ketogenic Mediterranean Diet <<Dr. Steve Parker is doing an interesting experiment on himself over at the Diabetic Mediterranean Diet Blog. He put on a few pounds intentionally and is now trying to lose weight and improve his health by following a very low-carb ketogenic diet. His daily trials and tribulations are fascinating to me. He seems to be struggling quite a bit, including leg cramps, potential vitamin deficiencies and food cravings. Major props to Steve for doing this to himself for our benefit. As someone who has been through virtually every diet, I can feel his pain. For me cutting out processed carbs (not all carbs) is the perfect balance.
    • Lard Lesson: Why Fat Lubricates Your Appetite <<Some people say saturated fat isn’t bad for you, but I’m not convinced. This is not the first time it has been linked to insulin resistance. (Scientific American)
    • Salsa de Chile de Arbol Recipe <<Looking for something to do with all those extra chilies this season? Look no further than this delicious salsa recipe. (Over The Hill And On A Roll)
    • Nerdy food photos <<These are some of the most awesome nerdy food photos I’ve seen. Can’t decide what I like best, the mitosis cookies or the chromosome gummy worms. (Kevin Van Aelst)

    What are you reading?

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    Secretary of Food?

    by | Dec 11, 2008

    An article by Nicholas Kristof today in the New York Times calls on president-elect Barack Obama to rename the Secretary of Agriculture cabinet position, suggesting the new title “Secretary of Food.”

    The US Department of Agriculture was originally set up at a time when over one third of Americans were involved in farming. Now less than 2 percent of Americans are farmers. Kristof makes the case that the US needs to completely restructure the way government intervenes in food policy, reflecting the new issues that confront our nation.

    Changing the title of Secretary of Agriculture to Secretary of Food (in essence, changing the name of the entire agency) would imply that government interest would be for consumers and food supply rather than for industrial agriculture.

    Through government subsidies, health standards, farming practices and nutrition guidelines USDA policy has a tremendous impact on how Americans eat, in terms of both quality and quantity. This is particularly important because data on how America’s eating habits are affecting the health of our citizens and climate are staggering.

    Currently, USDA policies are profoundly influenced by industrial agriculture lobbyists resulting in a collection of preposterous rules and regulations aimed to boost agriculture at the expense of, well, everything else.

    One of my favorite examples of this is the USDA food pyramid. That milk represents nearly 25% of your recommended daily intake (of anything) is absolutely ridiculous and a perfect example of the strong influence of the dairy industry. From a nutrition science perspective, it is impossible to see how such recommendations are in the best interest of American eaters (aka you and me). The economy is important, but our health is equally if not more important.

    Whether you agree with Kristof’s argument or not, it is good to be aware of what is at stake when you think about US agriculture and food policy.

    On a related topic, Michael Pollan sat down with Bill Moyers recently to discuss his article “Farmer in Chief.” The interview is available for viewing on the PBS website.

    Do you trust the current USDA to set food policy?

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