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Diet and Autism – Is High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) the Culprit?

Warning: some may find this treatment offensive. Please refrain from ad hominem attacks on me and internet marketer web site citations as “proof” of your rightness and my wrongness. Use logic, science and facts!  That I respect.

This is a follow on the autism info I published last week; trust me, you will want to read more, if you want a truthful look at the information.  I have looked over the article regarding high fructose corn syrup and autism rates, as well as looking carefully at the posts and comments on various sites that mention it.

I need to apologize again; this is a long blog but it needs to be. It could easily be 3 or 4x as long, but in our ADHD, text, FB etc. culture, most would never read it, and so here is the summary:

High Fructose Corn Syrup combined with heavy metal exposure and essential mineral deficit, lead to the epidemic of autism in the U.S. In at least one country where this does not occur, there is less autism and no epidemic.  Does it or doesn’t it?

Now, once again, the ability to actually read scientific articles is essential.  This was never more apparent than in this particular article.

Allow me a little interpretation, for those of you who don’t want to, or can’t read this article.

The article starts off with the hypothesis that it is diet that has caused the current epidemic of autism we are currently enmeshed in.  It then goes on to look at regional distributions of autism and how they correlate with autism, using Italy (stable and lower incidence of autism), with the U.S.

For the scientific equivalent of a “modus operandi”, it uses mercury toxicity and correlate s the changes, seen in genetic expression, with dietary intakes and dietary exposures.  As I have said and spoken about, at length, at various meetings, this is the crux of epigenetics – how the genes interact with the environment.  It is also “nutrigenomics”, how the genes are directly affected by nutrition.

I pause here, for a moment, so anyone who has decided that food and supplementation are worthless and can’t possibly replace or augment prescription drugs, can digest what I just said. Because, in a nutshell, it says we have been ignoring the way Mother Nature has organized and designed “us”, as we try to fit what goes wrong with us, into drug pathway models.  While drugs may not become obsolete in our lifetimes (unless you are taking TA-65 and plan on sticking around for another 100 years!), the merging of epigenetics and nutrigenomics is the very faint death knell of our “modern science”, as we get one step closer to truly understanding who and what we are! It’s going to get a lot louder very fast!

Ok, off the soap box and back to the study.

The study proposes that Heavy Metal toxicity is a likely cause for autism and its current rise.  It shows how mercury, lead, arsenic, cadmium and other heavy metals like copper, commonly found in our food chain, interfere with selenium and zinc levels, which in turn decrease the production of the body’s most important naturally occurring antioxidant; glutathione.

These problems are worsened by lower consumption of calcium, phosphorus and magnesium, which are also common in the American and other Western diets.

Similarly, it goes on to attack the presence of organophosphates in the diet.  I will abbreviate these as OP’s.  Think of them as byproducts of the plastic and fertilizer industries.  In my own study of raw material purity in Omega 3’s, I can tell you that our oceans are the major source of most of these dietary metals and OP’s.  Remember this when I mention my toxicity studies on krill in the upcoming paragraphs.

The study then goes on to hypothesize that the combination of the lack of these essential minerals (calcium, magnesium, selenium and zinc), causes the problem with glutathione production, which leaves the developing fetus and later developing child, at risk for epigenetically induced misfires in gene expression, because they are unable to detoxify the dietary toxins so common in our eating choices.

This then leads to that child landing somewhere in the spectrum of autism disorders. It points out that these defenses are normally able to handle these insults and children who are not exposed to the sources of these toxins, are exposed at lower levels, or who have a more robust genetic/epigenetic constitution, which allows them to overcome these deficiencies, are most likely not going to wind up autistic. This is still the bulk of most kids, by far.

The real bomb this paper drops is that it does not really implicate vaccination. It states that HFCS contains the toxic heavy metals and that mercury and others are found in certain food colorings in tiny amounts, fish and other ocean dwelling animals in not so tiny amounts and yes, even in HFCS in measurable amounts. Similarly OP’s are found in high amounts in marine borne animals and many other food stuffs, due to the use of pesticides. Can you say “fruit bars” anyone!

This paper also correlates low magnesium, calcium and intake with a diet rich in HFCS and that low levels of these essential minerals and high levels of the toxic ones (mercury, lead, arsenic), are found in SOME children with autism.  As far as the OP’s go, the article suggests that a much needed enzyme, which detoxifies heavy metals in humans, is also decreased by the very same combination of toxins and missing minerals. It then correlated the incidence of HFCS intake with OP exposure as well, saying that children aging from 6 to 12 have the highest OP burden, because of the dietary choices they make and are exposed to.  Developing fetuses are obviously at much greater risk, but since the enzyme that detoxifies OP’s naturally lags behind in children, all these kids are at risk to land somewhere on the spectrum of autism disorders if they are genetically/epigenetically vulnerable.

The final very interesting point brought out by this paper, is that in Italy they consume different sweeteners and not HFCS. In the Italian population studied, there is not a deficiency in the enzyme that detoxifies OP’s.  But guess what – they still have autistic children – just not as many!

Finally, the paper looks at B vitamin consumption during pregnancy. The finding should not surprise you. Mothers who take a multi-vite during pregnancy, have fewer autistic children, especially if they were on them at the time of conception and soon thereafter. Once again, I call out the docs and scientists who say vitamins just give you expensive urine.

So, in a nutshell, this paper says that the combination of High Fructose Corn Syrup and heavy metal toxins found in our food chain, are magnified in the U.S by our food industry, our dietary choices and what we feed out kids.  Some children, who are especially vulnerable, will develop an Autism spectrum disorder because of increased oxidative stress and metal/ OP toxicity. It links the increasing rise in autism to these factors and cites a control population in Italy that has a stable incidence of autism to show that, in a country where HFCS is not common, or increasing as it has in the U.S., for the past 30 years, there is no epidemic.

Great, right!? All this human suffering all wrapped up in a tidy little bow and laid at the feet of our Food Industry. The food branch of the FDA (hey, isn’t it their job to prevent this!) is also at fault.  And let’s not forget our schools, especially public schools, for serving our kids this “pink slime” that is so very toxic.

Now here is the truth. Con and Pro in that order…

Con

1)      This is a hypothesis, not a real study. While compelling papers were cited and the logic is strong, scientifically, no actual new studies were done to prove any of this is real. This is a literature review and I suspect it was done fairly quickly to capitalize on some of the most popular search terms like “epigenetics” and “nutrigenomics” and of course autism itself, is a huge search term.  Sadly, scientists and researchers are not above thinking this way. It gets them exposure and grant money!

2)      There are a lot of uses of qualifying words and phrases like “if one assumes”, “model” and other terminology that “wiggles”, or as Wikipedia calls it, ‘weasels’ too much to be ignored.  For instance, the association of HFCS with low magnesium, low calcium, zinc and selenium is weak and not causative. The two conditions may, or may not, coexist and one does not lead to the other.

3)      This paper generates more questions, like any good paper does these days. The hypothesis does little to ease the suffering of those with autism and their care givers. It points blame to what I call the “usual suspects”, with the exception of vaccines, but fails to explain why Italy still has autistic children. So it leaves us in the U.S. with a lot of anger and angst but no real answer. This leads to exactly the reaction you’d expect.  People with “I hate” agendas and conspiratorial theorists, with more ammunition based on hypothesis and conjecture, not fact. There is already too much of that for the beleaguered parents of autistic children. That said, no one questions the need to get our kids to eat better, but folks, whose ultimate responsibility is that, if we ourselves don’t do it first!  The very same things that are cleverly (and who knows, maybe correctly) implicated in this paper as the cause for autism, are playing a gigantic role in our obesity epidemic.

4)      The paper makes no attempt to address “the epidemic of autism” question. The awareness of this disorder and the permutation of the “spectrum” must account for some of the rise we are seeing. It also does not mention how the Italians define autism and whether they are likely to use the same criteria.  My bet is, they don’t and it makes a huge difference.

5)       Similarly, the authors flat out state that the seafood, dental amalgam, thimerosal mercury containing food colorings and additives and food preservative intake in Italy is similar to the U.S. That leaves only HFCS as the culprit. So, come out and say those other things are not the likely cause and blame HFCS full on. Put your money where your mouth is and be willing to incur the critiques from the conspiracy theorists, who’ve built their reputations on selling unsubstantiated theories to people who are suffering.  Was that strong enough?

Please note, I did not say all that stuff was good for you!

6)      I gotta say it. I am already cringing at what the “usual suspects” are going to do with this. I guarantee you they will leave out the most important fact: this is not a scientific study; it’s a literature review that supports a theory – no more, no less. It will be presented as fact and bent to their sales agenda – mark my words! Also mark my words, if they don’t leave it out, it will be because they read this first and know I will call them on their misrepresentation.

OK now the pros

1)      The hypothesis is smart and well thought out and researched. I hope they paid their interns well!

2)      The focus on organophosphates and mercury, arsenic and other heavy metals reinforces what I have been saying for years.  Seafood can be dangerous, so get your Omega 3’s from a highly purified source of pharmaceutical fish oil. By the way, it further underlines the need for the krill marketers to do and publish 3rd party data. I found scary levels of mercury, lead, arsenic, cadmium and OP’s in the krill sample I bought from a famous marketer of the product. This was 3rd party independent testing and I showed it at the Longevity Now Conference, the next of which is happening soon!

3)      The importance of glutathione and B vitamins are reinforced for yet another reason – the health of our kids, rubbing it in the face of the “nutritional naysayers”, who say all you should do is eat right and skip the supplements.  By the way, glutathione is notoriously hard to get, so consider using N-acetyl cysteine as its precursor. It is well researched and raises glutathione levels, at a lower cost than most of the glutathione based attempts out there.

4)      It clearly points out that autism is a complex disorder, likely to have many causes and contributing factors and basically minimizes the conspiratorial role of vaccination in causing it.

5)      If the hypothesis is actually ever proven, it will revolutionize our food industry and what we serve our kids in school, raising the current practice to the level of criminal neglect, which I think we all agree on already!

6)      It gives a real world application for both epigenetics and nutrigenomics and in time it might, if proven, lead to therapies for kids who are already affected, as well as minimizing the risk for those who aren’t!

Dr Dave

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Does flax or soy increase the risk of breast and prostate cancer?

I have said, I would admit when I was wrong and when I changed my thinking.  Back in 2005, I mentioned an article that suggested that flax increased the risk of prostate cancer. Specifically, it referred to alpha linolenic acid, the main short chain source of Omega 3’s in flax. I suggested it might overlap to breast cancer as well, since (yes, a little ahead of my time here) the issue was of increased Estrone, a pathogenic form of estrogen that seems to accumulate in men and women, after menopause and andropause.

Similarly, there was a lot of concern about soy based phyto estrogens in people who already had breast cancer. Lately my stance is I would not worry about it too much. Most of the studies I have seen, since 2005, suggest positive health benefits from lignans (phytoestrogen precursors in brans and flax) of which flax does really seem to have a huge amount. There is at least one older study, suggesting an increase in prostate cancer, with flax, but there are a lot of unanswered questions, such as: how was the study done?  Most are either the notorious “food questionnaire”, or lab cell cultures meaning – well, who knows what they really mean in free living people.  If you have had either of these cancers though, you might want to avoid flax just in case!  You see, the issue is not totally settled.  But it is clear to me I was heavy handed back then and I want to make amends!

A much bigger issue is the poor conversion of medium (also called short in the industry) chain 18 carbon fatty acids, from plants and seeds, which is about 5%. I did a finger stick Omega 6/3 test on over 100 vegetarians and vegans, many of whom were supplementing with flax or algae-derived Omega 3’s.  Not one of them had anywhere near a healthy ratio. Bottom line, if you are going to use flax, you pretty much need to use the straight oil and consume a minimum of 4 ounces a day, to get your levels anywhere near a healthy ratio for primary prevention.

I would remind you that marine-based Omega 3 supplementation has positive effects on the incidence of both prostate and breast cancer, far outweighing flax.  The amount of studies is about 12,000 for fish oil in human health, with no specific manufacturer funding and 60-ish for flax and other plant-based sources. It’s about 10 and all company funded, for krill.

While I was looking at flax and soy, I also checked the stats for ovarian cancer.  No solid data either way, it seems. Nothing has reached statistical significance, but again, there seems to be no cause for concern.

What about colon cancer?  Preliminary data in rodents suggests a possible protective effect, but again no clear cut data.

When I reviewed the data on fermented versus non-fermented soy products, I could not find any differences with either type.

So the bottom line is that unless you have already had a breast or a prostate cancer, you probably should not be too concerned about soy consumption. It does not appear to protect you or put you at risk.  So why do we see diminished rates in Oriental populations, with a seemingly direct link to soy consumption? I think I can correctly invoke our old (or new!) friend epigenetics here.  Most of the populations involved in this type of study are more homogeneous genetically, environmentally, socially and epigenetically than in this country, or many Western nations.  And in most of the soy consuming nations, the soy consumption is ongoing from a very young age, including prior to puberty.  Not so in the West.

As far as flax, the conversion of lignans to phytoestrogens yields a different mix than soy and the data is a bit more promising. Remember again, about 5% of the Omega 3’s in flax are effectively converted to the long chain form and this may account for the small but positive data in breast, prostate and colon cancer.  If you are hard core vegan/vegetarian, you will need to consume a lot of flax seeds for lignans and oil for Omega 3, but I suppose it can be done. Also, remember the benefits of sulforaphane and DIM, both from broccoli and broccoli sprouts, and other cruciferous vegetables of the Brassica family.

You really do need to be careful about interpreting studies and of course, much more careful interpreting internet headlines!  A few tricks researchers play include claiming benefits to certain food groups when compared to other food groups.  A favorite is corn or other Omega 6 rich foods, which basically guarantee you will have a higher rate of tumor formation.  This was the case in more than one study I researched and it pretty much deflates those claims in terms of true prevention, although most people do eat too much Omega 6!

It took a long time and lots of studies for me to admit I was wrong, but you’ll pardon me.  Better late than never.

Humbly yours,

Dr Dave

Here are some references:

Soyfoods, isoflavones and risk of colonic cancer: a review of the in vitro and in vivo data

MARK MESSINA PhD, MS

Consultant, Nutrition Matters, Inc.; Adjunct Associate Professor

Loma Linda University, California, USA

MAURICE BENNINK ehD

Professor, Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition

Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan, USA

 

Phytoestrogen consumption from foods and supplements and epithelial ovarian cancer risk: a population-based case control study

Elisa V Bandera1,2*, Melony King2, Urmila Chandran1,2, Lisa E Paddock2,3, Lorna Rodriguez-Rodriguez4 and Sara H Olson5

Anna Hsu, Carmen P Wong, Zhen Yu, David E Williams, Roderick H Dashwood, Emily Ho. Promoter de-methylation of cyclin D2 by sulforaphane in prostate cancer cellsClinical Epigenetics, 2011; 3 (1): 3 DOI:10.1186/1868-7083-3-3

Gynecol Oncol. 2012 Mar;124(3):410-6. Epub 2011 Nov 23.

A randomized parallel-group dietary study for stages II-IV ovarian cancer survivors.

Paxton RJ, Garcia-Prieto C, Berglund M, Hernandez M, Hajek RA, Handy B, Brown J, Jones LA

Nutr Cancer. 2006;54(2):216-22.

Chemopreventive effects of dietary flaxseed on colon tumor development.

Bommareddy A, Arasada BL, Mathees DP, Dwivedi C.

Source

Department of Pharmaceutial Sciences, South Dakota State University, Brookings, SD 57007, USA.

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I want to be liked

Facebook has redefined the word “like”, so let me start out with a simple request. If you haven’t already done so, please “like” me on Facebook.  Do it now; I promise the blog will still be here, when you get back.

Today, I am going to share a bit of a retrospective view with you that spans over a decade.  That view will take you from the halcyon days of early pioneering in internet communications, to today’s explosive and ever changing environment.  As you might expect, the more things change, the more they stay the same. And also, as always, there is a mixed blessing in our current state of things.

First, the good stuff. You can find anything you need and find anyone you need, on the internet. You can search out historic places and people and learn more in one hour than you used to learn in a week of class at school.  You can stay current with new developments, literally in real time, as they happen- so no one is truly left out or kept in the dark about important things, or even not so important things. You can find people you haven’t seen or heard from in years and still not see or hear from them, but you can tweet them, text them or IM them. For some, that constitutes meaningful communication.

The bad stuff can be pretty much summarized this way. You have a surfeit of information and a deficit of attention. You also have a surfeit of opinions and a deficit of real expertise. And you have no way to distinguish one from the other.

The internet and its sundry derivatives have created more pseudo-experts and conspiratorial fortunes than at any time in the past. I know of one very famous internet guru who, in addition to paying offshore researchers and a dozen or so big name copywriters, has several people on his staff dedicated to keeping their fingers on the pulse of social opinion.  These people literally look for the “next big trend” and gauge the time to pull the trigger on the next marketing campaign. It’s worked well and this person is so big now, that they can “create” the market, rather than waiting.  Millions of eyeballs, from the internet and TV, create the seemingly most important piece of the puzzle: social proof.  If that many people are interested in it and think it’s good, it must be good.

So were pet rocks and that crawly thing toy that climbed your wall and made its inventor millions. So was the clever website, where you could buy a pixel and send the kid through college. But those were harmless.

The vast array of instant communication has accelerated the “As seen on TV” phrase into another galaxy. I heard it on Twitter, Facebook or so and so’s website, which I trust, because 2 million other people do, so it must be good.

Sadly, it’s not.  The same people who claim to fight the system, on your personal behalf and are dedicated to the “truth” will, in private circles, start off their conversations with how much money they made last month.  The same people, who claim to be pioneers, will scour the globe as “talent scouts”, barely mention the names of the ones who created the invention or idea, at best allowing them to stand mutely, in their shadow on the YouTube video, that has a million visits. Scouts or thieves- you decide.

By the way, a surprising number of them have been sued for misrepresentation and false claims.  Several have gone to jail. But of course, they did it for YOU and YOUR rights, so with the power of social media, they are now heroes.

I guess the world needs a good villain, since everyone who does something wrong is a hero these days.

And then there was me.

For the past decade plus, I have been telling it as I see it. And not without some proof on my side, mind you.  Scientific proof, research based and clinical (as in saving lives, not drinking tea or rubbing on creams) experience.  But, in truth, that has paled in the face of social proof and it always will.  One of my recent newsletters on alkalinity and its real effects is a classic example of how telling the truth offends people and goes totally against social proof.

That often leads to not being liked, in the non-Facebook definition of the term. We tend to want to hear what we believe, not what we do not. We tend not to like people who disagree with us.  I am not different than you, in that respect. But, I hope we are also the same in another respect.

Once I feel challenged by something and am determined to prove it’s wrong –I do something few people do.  I read the literature that my opponent cites as “proof”. Most times it has little if anything to do with the point being made. You’d be surprised how many scientific articles are cited as proof of something at the end of an article or newsletter that has nothing to do with the claim at all. Not even anything! Here is an example.

At a recent conference, the first words out of a prospective customer’s mouth were a scornful, “You don’t use Mag Stearate in your products, do you?!”  Judge, jury and executioner. Based on what?! In point of fact, I have not developed anything recently that uses Mag Stearate. I avoid it like the plague, in my new formulations, although I still have some “old ones” that have served the world exceedingly well and somehow seem to have improved the health of the people who have taken them for years. I now avoid it, simply because of social proof, not scientific proof. It is simply too much trouble to fight against the weight of the great scientists and MD’s, who have lashed out against it in the past decade or so.  Hint: there are none, zip, zero! That created controversy was a brilliant marketing ploy. The person most responsible is not a scientist, doctor or anything close. They did go to jail though, for the very same thing they accuse supplement companies of: false and dangerous claims!

But Mag Stearate is an artificial filler, so it can’t be good!  Stearic Acid is a common fatty acid, found in significant amounts, in meat, poultry, fish, eggs, butter, grains, and milk products.  Magnesium is a common mineral found everywhere, in almost any food group. The combination certainly exists in nature!

I admit it, they won! I don’t put Mag Stearate in any of my newer products. But, if you read the actual study that is cited, P W Tebbey and T M Buttke Molecular basis for the immunosuppressive action of stearic acid on T cells. Immunology  1990 July  70(3): 379–386, you’ll notice it’s already 22 years old and has never been repeated. Since that time, there have been several studies that suggest the opposite to be true. In this case, Mag Stearate was implicated in causing damaging biofilms that harm our health.

If you care, here is the actual study that shows the OPPOSITE:  Soni KA, Jesudhasan P, Cepeda M, Widmer K, Jayaprakasha GK, Patil BS, Hume ME, Pillai SD. Identification of ground beef-derived fatty acid inhibitors of autoinducer-2-based cell signaling. J Food Prot.  2008 January  71(1):134-8.
Food Safety & Environmental Microbiology Program, Department of Poultry Science, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas 77843, USA.

In my various blogs, Facebook posts and newsletters, I spend a fair amount of time attacking the nonsense that is out there, for those who actually care about the truth.

My comments on cancer, oxygen therapy and alkalinity have not led me to large numbers of favorite site designations.

My recent biochemical evaluation and debunking of the literature on krill, was another example of this. I sampled a famous marketer’s krill and found it to be rife with mercury, lead, arsenic and PBC’s compared to my fish oil product. I pointed out several articles showing how krill harvesting negatively affects the biosphere and debunking its “renewable resource” moniker. I showed how Acker Biomarine’s own study, documented a rise in Arachadonic acid, an Omega 6 derivative, compared to Omega 3 membrane content and how they had no answer, for that potentially damaging situation.  I followed the money trail on the krill “science” and it lead directly to the manufacturers of the product.  And I cited several company-sponsored studies that showed no difference between an inferior brand of fish oil and krill, in real world clinical outcomes.

I don’t always win these battles. As a matter of fact, I usually don’t.  Krill has garnered 13% of the Omega 3 market and websites all over the world are scraping blogs and other contents from the drivers of this “next big thing”.  Not bad, for a little organism that I used to feed my Gouramis and one that has never been a direct part of the human food chain.

I am however, educable and fallible. I admit, I caved to social proof on the Mag Stearate thing and while I am not pro or con, I have not used it in any of my newer supplements.  I guess I DO want to be “liked”. I do make mistakes and I am willing to admit it. Recently, I learned that flammable and inflammable mean the same thing, in a somewhat harsh way.

When I am wrong, I will admit it.  It is my goal, however, to be right, most of the time, for the people who care. I take what I make and I stand by what I say. I called a guy out on his misuse of the word, epigenetics recently. He did the right thing. He deleted my post and ignored me.

Perhaps a better goal would be to emulate another guy (or his copywriters) who admitted he no longer sells cod liver oil, because it might cause colon cancer, due to its huge Vitamin A content.

If the guy really believed that, he would have kept it to himself, because he would have gotten dozens of lawsuits for causing cancer. Instead, because of social proof, he was lauded for his position and people sent ME emails, stating I was using dangerously high Vitamin A levels, in some of my supplements.  If you want to find out the truth on Vitamin A, see my blog: The Return of the Big Bad Wolf – Lessons Learned from Vitamin A Studies.

I will close by saying, I am all for people making a living, an honest living, by providing truth and high quality products or services.  I like it very much. I also like shining the BS detector and opening at least a few eyeballs, to see what is really going on. I really don’t like people, who are not experts, pimping free content, from real experts and not giving the source credit.  It happens to me almost daily, on the telomere front. I despise people, who are sick, teaching people how to be well. I despise people, who use their social proof positions, to create mass influence that harms people. I am sad that so many people knee jerk defend wrong things, because they like the person who said it and never research where it came from. Few of us are really the underdogs we perceive ourselves to be! I admire people who are willing to stand for the truth and are not afraid to say it out loud. Even if they disagree with me. If they can prove what they say, I am a big fan. And I trust them.

Often, people don’t know what to make of me, because I stand for some of the same things they do, but not all of them.  I agree with some conspiracies and fight some of “their” evils of the world (like Big Pharma and Big Food), but not all of them.  Sometimes, I even blame the ignorant consumer, for believing the internet hype behind a product. So, it’s kinda like, right after you decided I am your kind of guy, I come out with something that pisses you off. That is the truth.

Hopefully, that will help you decide on what social media has now made the most important question: What kind of guy am I?  I am an honest guy who asks a lot of questions.  Too many for some.

So how do you “like” me now!

Best,

Dr Dave

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Fish oil versus Krill – the Final Chapter

I suppose I will have to tolerate this whole krill thing, as savvy internet marketers are pushing it and frankly doing a good job, by virtue of their popularity, if not their science.
But here are the facts:

The company that makes MegaRed was censured for inaccurate advertising, stating krill was healthier for your heart. The Council for Responsible Advertising found no evidence to support this and the company stopped that campaign, although others, namely internet-based doctors that sell krill, continue to use it in their advertising.

Next, the dosage of Omega 3 in krill is far below what is needed to impact the health of many people, since most have far too low an Omega 3 level to begin with.

Astraxanthan is added to krill; it is not naturally occurring and it can easily be added to Fish Oil.

The increasing use of krill is strictly based on the popularity of Fish Oil as its sales were poor, by comparison, until Fish Oil “hit big”. Using krill will not harm the arctic ecosystem, as most of it comes from farmed sources in South America.

There are approximately 3 studies on krill in human health, most coming out of the University of Guelph or Magill in Ontario and most are sponsored by one of the major manufacturers of the product located in Canada.

The scarcity of fish in the world is a subject of debate as well: the most recent “scarcity” paper was based on fish farming in Argentina and Peru and reflects more the impact of farming quality standards than actual fish counts. The World Fish Council says that fish harvests have been steady for many years now. Who you believe is up to you but the recent “climate gate” issues cast a jaundiced eye on the entire “going green” movement, not in principle but in fact.

Ironically a lot of the people I know who are krill converts are “Raw” or Paleolithic eaters. Somehow they forgot krill was never part of the human food chain!
Some comment on Fish Oil purity. Even the worst brands are pure out to parts per million in terms of heavy metals etc, and pharmaceutical grade brands are pure out to parts per trillion. There are also some “weapons grade” Fish Oils like mine out there that are even tested for radiation!

I have seen no published purity tests on krill, but whale meat is notorious for its contamination with mercury, to the point where its consumption is generally banned in many countries. The whales get their mercury by ingestion of their food source. I will let you fill in the blank as to what that food source is. Hint: it ain’t fish! And while they may get some contamination from swimming around the ocean with their mouths open, clearly there is another source for their mercury toxicity. Yet, on the internet, it just says krill is free of all pollutants. Prove it; do an analysis like I do and publish it like I do.

Even traditional medical organizations have come out in support of Fish Oil including the American College of Cardiology, The American Heart Association, and the American Cancer and the American Diabetes Association. These organizations are primarily drug company funded, so for them to come out in support of ANY supplement is a huge statement.

None of them support krill.

Finally, there are over 10,000 human studies supporting the benefits of Fish Oil. These include several huge studies from around the world including Italy, like GISSI PREVENZZIONE, that prove the benefits of Fish Oil. There are studies on arthritis, cancer, and Alzheimer’s all using Fish Oil, none using krill. So, a recent blog post by a well known internet doc stating “until that research has proven the facts one way or the other, it makes more financial and ecological sense to stick with krill”, borders on nonsense and is clearly biased to me. No major researcher has supported the benefits of krill over Fish Oil .

If you Google “Artemis Simopoulos MD” you will find a wealth of credible info on Fish Oil and nothing on krill.

There are major population based studies using Fish Oil consumption as a marker for heart disease, prostate cancer and breast cancer. Until people begin to adopt whale food as a mainstay of their diets, we will never see such a study on krill.

Once again, you will see a couple of studies on krill in humans all done in Canada and all funded by the company that makes the product. I think we know what that means, from our experiences with Big Pharma. Finally, as vitamin store owners have been telling me for some time now, you couldn’t give krill away until Fish Oil hit it big.

I understand the public’s need for something “new” and I applaud the krill marketers for taking advantage of what will probably be their only opportunity to sell a “me too supplement”, but there is very little science behind this choice and far more marketing.

I will stick with people food, not whale food. Fish oilSuper Omega 3

Doc