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Ok so here are all the major China Study critiques on the web I'm aware of, see below.

We need some volunteers to do concise summaries of the argument and content of these critiques.

We're looking for commonalities in subject matter (there are plenty as you'll see) so we can address them all (along with Denise's) in one comprehensive rebuttal.

Let me know if you find any others. Thanks folks.

**Format for summaries:

Title of critique:
(summary should be done on a point-by-point basis for easy reference)

Chris Masterjohn

"The Truth about the China Study" (2005)

"Response to T. Colin Campbell" (2007)

"Denise Minger Refutes the China Study Once and For All" (2010)
(Masterjohn's fawning review of Denise's latest critique)

Anthony Colpo

(originally posted under pseudonym 'JayY')

"The China Study: More Vegan Nonsense!" (2006)

Dr. Mercola

"Why the China Study is Flawed"
(annoyingly you have to subscribe to his mailing list to read the article)


Common Themes/Topics

Thought I'd list these here too, I'll start with the ones I'm aware of:

-Idea that saturated fat/animal fat doesn't cause heart disease at all (skepticism of 'lipid hypothesis'), rather it's refined grains and sugars (compare to Denise's assertion based on the China Project data that wheat is more pathogenic/carcinogenic than meat). Also that high cholesterol is good and dietary cholesterol is a nutrient.

-"healthy animal protein" to counter Campbell's assertion that all animal protein is carcinogenic, whey protein isolate is the sole example.

-cultures that eat tons of animal products are healthy/disease free/long lived (e.g. Masai, inuit, Tuoli, etc.)

-vegan diets are inherently unsustainable and/or unhealthy

-raw/free-range/grass-fed animal products do not pose the same health problems as cooked/pasteurized/grain-fed/factory farmed varieties

Views: 331

Replies to This Discussion

Wow What a great idea B! I can't wait to read them. I just read a good portion of the first link and I can see what a serious issue this is. The China Study's credibility is being questioned by faulty scientific method and evidence. I am not good at doing the kind of analysis you are talking about but find the whole discussion fascinating.

The part that interests me is the cancer corellations with animal protein consumption. There is no question about the validity of this to me. I love how the people on this site are so good at spending the time to analyze everything that is being published and argued. Cancer is a horrible way to die - these things shouldn't be taken lightly. Anyone arguing for meat is leading people to their own slaughter.. it's more than an opinion it is accessory to murder..

"Dietary Protein and Cancer

The first strike against the pro-protein mantra Campbell had inherited from his nutritional forbears came while he was studying the relationship between aflatoxin (AF), a mold-related contaminant often found in peanut butter, and cancer in the Philippines.

Campbell was informed by a colleague that, although the areas with the highest consumption of peanut butter had the highest incidence of liver cancer, it was the children of the "best-fed families," who consumed the most protein, who were getting liver cancer.

Whether the best-fed Pilipino families ate the many staples of modern affluent diets like refined breads and sugars isn't mentioned.6

This observation was corroborated by a study published in "an obscure medical journal," that fed AF to two groups of rats, one consuming a 5% protein diet, one consuming a 20% protein diet, in which every rat in the latter group got liver cancer or its precursor lesions, and none in the former group got liver cancer or precursor lesions.7 Campbell went on to investigate the possible relationship between nutritional factors, including protein, and cancer, a study that proceeded for 19 years with NIH funding.8 His conclusion was revolutionary and provocative: while chemical carcinogens may initiate the cancer process, dietary promoters and anti-promoters control the promotion of cancer foci,9 and it is nutritional factors, not chemical carcinogens, that are the ultimate deciding factors in the development of cancer.10

Yet the 19 years of research into this project leave us with more questions than answers, and have left T. Colin Campbell with a foundation of unsupported conclusions upon which he has built his tower of vegan propaganda.

Campbell began his studies using AF as an initiator of cancer foci and the milk protein casein as the promoter protein of study. His results corroborated the earlier results of other researchers: a dose-response curve existed for AF and cancer on a 20% casein diet, but disappeared on a 5% casein diet.11

He found that adjusting the protein intake of the same rats could turn cancer promotion on and off as if with a switch,12 and found casein to have the same effect when other cancer initiators, such as the hepatitis B virus, were used.13 Rather than throwing a blanket accusation at all protein, Campbell acknowledged that the study of other proteins would be required before generalizing, just as the study of other cancer initiators would be required before generalizing to them. Wheat and soy protein were both studied in lieu of casein, and both were found not to have the cancer-promoting effect of casein.14

Amazingly, Campbell's reluctance to make unwarranted generalizations ends here.

After briefly describing some research finding a protective effect of carotenoids against cancer, Campbell concludes this chapter of The China Study by noting the following overarching pattern: "nutrients from animal-based foods increased tumor development while nutrients from plant-based foods decreased tumor development."15 (His italics.)
Great idea! I'm going to volunteer to tackle Dr. Mercola and also the last point (cultures who eat tons of animal products) since 1) I have an interest in this and perhaps we can bring in some evidence from cultures who *don't* eat a lot of animal products (my grandmother is Okinawan and a healthy 99 years old!). Also, I'll check PubMed for any scholarly articles that may have criticized The China Project.
excellent, we have our first volunteer. thanks veganmama18!

wow, so glad to hear about your grandmother. I assume she eats a diet high in cholesterol and saturated fat rich animal foods like Mr. Masterjohn would expect lol. based on your genetics perhaps you'd have a shot at being a centenarian also. :)

if we can keep the summaries in the following format as discussed above that'd be great:

Title of critique:
(summary should be done on a point-by-point basis for easy reference)
i just checked
"china study" criticism
"china study" critique
"china study"

on www.scirus.com through which you get access to pubmed, biomed and sciencedirect.
didn't find anything, but didn't look past the first page.

didn't find anything about it or colin campbell on http://citeseerx.ist.psu.edu/ either, but i don't think they have a large collection (under 2 million papers)

in friendship,
Oh, nice!
Click on above to link to the article. I hope it's OK that I added a few lines of commentary at the end...

Title: Why the China Study is Flawed
Thesis: Cooking animal protein is what makes it unhealthy, not the animal protein itself
1. "[...] Dr. Campbell failed to appreciate the major dangers of meat and milk are related to cooking them. He makes the invalid assumption that raw and cooked (pasteurized) milk and meat are equally harmful. This is simply untrue and not at all addressed in his study or book."

--> Side note: I'm inclined to believe that the dairy people consumed in rural China at the time (and probably still do today) was primarily unpasteurized.

2. "Another valid point Dr. Campbell has is that there are major problems with most commercial meat sources. We were not designed to eat cattle that were raised on grain and fed hormones and antibiotics to maximize their growers' profits."

3. "Not a month goes by in our clinic where we don't see one or more new patients who have chosen to be a vegetarian and have suffered a loss of their health. Typically, they are able to rapidly recover their health after introducing animal protein back into their diet."

4. "That said, let's be quite clear I am a huge fan of eating vegetables. I believe that we should consume about 1 pound of vegetables a day for every 50 pounds of body weight. Ideally, these vegetables should be organic and eaten raw."

My comments: Mercola isn't attacking Campbell's methodology, per se. Rather, he's pointing out that Campbell should've made a distinction between raw animal proteins and cooked animal proteins. It's obvious from excerpt #3 that Mercola is biased against veg*n diets, and implies that they are actually harmful.
Great, you work fast! commentary is welcome of course. :)

From your summary I've extracted two more themes ("vegan diets are inherently unhealthy" and "raw/free-range animal products = good for you; cooked/factory farmed = bad") which I've added to the top. These are definitely found in the other critiques from what I recall.
My gosh you rock vegamama!
my mother-in-law loooves mercola. :-(
let me see about tackling masterjohn too... might take me a bit longer, but i'll get started on it. :-)
B, have you come across this one? Not sure who wrote it...



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