Saturday, 19 July 2014

Diet and coronary thrombosis. Hypothesis and fact, by John Yudkin. The Lancet, 1957.

Twitter did it again. From http://www.abc.net.au/catalyst/heartofthematter/download/Yudkinssugartheory.pdf
This looks like bad news for the fat-lovers.

There's good correlation between Coronary mortality and total fat intake, for countries 15 to 7. For countries 7 to 1, there's no correlation between Coronary mortality and total fat intake, suggesting that other differences (e.g. quality of health-care, social stress, antioxidant status etc) are significant factors.

This looks like bad news for the meat/fowl/fish/cheese/egg-lovers.


This looks like bad news for the sugar-lovers.

Of course, association ≠ causation.
This looks like bad news for rich people.

In conclusion, total fat intake, animal protein intake, sugar intake & annual income are all associated with increased Coronary mortality, over a certain range of values.

11 comments:

ian said...

I acn understand how stats can be created by income from other records, but I am amzed we know how much fat the deceased ate for example. for how long was their diet analyzed?

billy the k said...

Let's not forget other culprits:

"It seemed appropriate to look much more closely at the figures of mortality and fat consumption than had been done hitherto, and this I did in 1957.  By putting down all the information from available statistics, I found that there was a moderate but by no means excellent relationship between fat consumption and coronary mortality, which did not become closer even when one separated the fats into animal and vegetable.  A better relationship turned out to exist between sugar consumption and coronary mortality in a variety of countries.  The best relationship of all existed between the rise in reported coronary deaths in the UK and the rise in the number of radio and television sets." [John Yudkin. Pure, White and Deadly. (1972) Penguin; p86]

Nigel Kinbrum said...

Epidemiological studies are on populations, not individuals. The diet stats were/are worked out by dividing the total amount of "X" consumed by the whole country in "Y" period of time and dividing that by the population, probably with correction factors for the young & the old.

Nigel Kinbrum said...

Looking at the above plots, there's a very strong association between fat intake & Coronary mortality, up to a certain intake. Above that intake, other factors make the results spread out excessively. The same thing happens on the animal protein intake & sugar intake plots.

But yeah. The use of Radio & TV sets signifies sedentary behaviour.

Michael Trumper said...

Proof positive that coronary disease is a disease of affluence.

Nigel Kinbrum said...

Was a disease of affluence. Back in the 1950's, crap-in-a-bag/box/bottle wasn't as ubiquitous as it is now.

Nowadays, heavily-subsidised raw materials make crap-in-a-bag/box/bottle look like better VFM than produce.

Welcome! You're now white-listed.

ian said...

Total fat sold may well not correspond to total fat eaten.

Nigel Kinbrum said...

I don't know exactly how wastage is corrected for.

ian said...

Precisely, or indeed, probably not precisely.

MacSmiley said...

Enlightening…in more ways than one. ;-)

Nigel Kinbrum said...

There are databases of food consumption, waste etc that I don't have access to, as I'm not an epidemiologist.