Monday, November 23, 2020

Weird Dietary Science

The New York Post reports results of a study, done in the United Kingdom, looking at dietary restrictions and bone breaks. The study, published recently in BMC Medicine, found serious drawbacks to a vegan diet.

This is the first comprehensive study and the largest study to date to look at the risks of both total fractures (fractures occurring anywhere in the body) and fractures at different sites in people of different habitual dietary habits.

On average, vegans with lower calcium and protein intakes saw a 43 percent higher risk of fractures anywhere on their bodies, and specifically in the hips, legs and vertebrae.

Vegetarians and pescatarians had a higher risk of hip fractures than meat eaters — but when researchers factored in body mass index and adequate consumption of calcium and protein, that risk was lessened.

But the heightened risk still existed for vegans, even with those factors taken into account.

Unmentioned, because it is unflattering to non-meat eaters, is that vegetarian or vegan diets are often adopted by those attempting self-treatment for psychological or physical issues for which modern medicine has few comprehensive answers. 

In other words, people who are somehow uncomfortable in their own skin. It doesn't require a gigantic leap of logic to imagine such discomfort can be associated with self-destructive acts, inattention or poor coordination contributing to fractures. 

In spite of these findings, avoiding meat and animal products is less harmful than self-medication with street drugs, another route those with "issues" sometimes take.