Dr. Steven Gundry says plant-based diets are the problem

Have you seen the clickbait campaign that focuses on the research of Dr. Steven Gundry. It employs a slimy, photo-tile lure that asks you to turn up your speakers and then hawks a product or service disguised as a breakthrough discovery. These scams force the viewer to stay on the page. Typically, there is no indication of how long the video is, or any way to skip forward,

But often, it is hard to tell if a photo tile is news or clickbait. Big companies like Yahoo and Outbrain intermingle genuine news with marketing scams, teasers and outright fake news into an array of little photos at the end of every feature. This particular clickbait may be a story of a dogged counter-cultural researcher with a genuinely relevant finding. It could be newsworthy…I’m just not sure. Dr. Gundry clearly believes that our health is adversely affected by many of the plant based foods that we thought was healthy, because of a defense mechanism linked to lectin.

Steven Gundry Food Pyramid

Passing judgement on Dr. Gundry’s evolutionary claims and diet recommendations begs for independent clinical studies, or at least the analysis and commentary of scholars in nutrition, gastroenterology and evolution. But, like Robert Atkins and Dean Ornish, Dr. Gundry seems earnest in his research and motives. I don’t think that he is selling anything other than his opinion.

I found web sites and white papers that summarize his research and conclusions without a scammy video. If true, this would be an eye-opener—completely unexpected! While his points fascinate, I don’t have the tools to determine if this may be legit. This certainly merits vetting.

For example, Gundry claims that farmers have selectively reinforced a genetic mutation in cows, which appeared only two thousand years ago—and that this has resulted in a lectin-like protein in milk called Casein A1. (Normal cows make Casein A2, a safe protein). Apparently, the only herds of “normal” cows are on farms in southern Europe. Could this result in food poisoning for the rest of us? Dr. Gundry is pretty convincing that the answer could be “Yes”.

This article is a stub without a conclusion. Rather than passing judgement, I encourage further inquiry. Reader feedback is invited. What do you think about Dr. Gundry’s analysis and claims. Might there be adverse problems associated with many “healthy” vegetables and out of season fruits? Tell me, doctor: Must I give up sun-dried tomato and eggplant?!

5 thoughts on “Dr. Steven Gundry says plant-based diets are the problem

  1. I have read a lot of Dr. Gundry’s articles &find them interesting, but still question the information!!

  2. I find it difficult to take advice from Dr. Gundry, who claims his diet reverses aging. So i pulled up a current photo of Dr. Gundry, and asked students in my freshman Organic Chemistry Class to tell me what they see. The basic response i got was:

    • An old man, wearing glasses, with grey combed over hair and a grey beard.

    Then i showed them a dated photo of Dr. Gundry from just that 11 years earlier, and I asked the students: “Do you think that Dr. Gundry has ‘reversed aging’?”

    The students all began laughing. I decided to skip the pop quiz i had planned that day because they made me laugh too.

  3. I was diagnosed with cellulitis over two years ago. Had big infected bumps and rashes all over my body. Went to four different doctors who all prescribed antibiotics and prednisone. Symptoms came back worse each time, and I had some VERY bad reactions to the antibiotics…..PLUS I ended up developing a nasty recurring candida problem in the aftermath of all those antibiotics. Spent over $2,000 on all these doctors and finally decided they were failing me. We ended up coming to the conclusion that leaky gut might be a big contributor to my symptoms, and after looking at several doctors who wrote extensively about healing leaky gut, decided to try Dr. Gundry’s Plant Paradox Diet.

    It was ridiculous how fast my symptoms cleared up….a matter of a few weeks. No more doctors. No more drugs. No more constant diarhhea. And my wife decided that she might as well follow the diet too, since it’s just as easy to cook for two. She has had problems losing weight all her life, and been discouraged to the point of giving up. She didn’t go into this expecting to lose weight, but ended up dropping 25 pounds in just a couple of months. She was absolutely thrilled when people started noticing.

    I hate seeing sites like this and Quackwatch that scare people off from things that might actually be beneficial to their health. Dr. Gundry is a renowned heart surgeon with impeccable credentials who has seen first hand the results of poor diet in all the people he has operated on. I’ve never gone on a diet of any sort before in my life, and only went on this one because my health began to take a scary turn for the first time in over 60 years. I would highly encourage anyone to watch some of Gundry’s Youtube videos, and try this for themselves before letting someone else’s ridicule rob you of the opportunity to improve your health.

  4. Hi Doug. Thank you for your feedback.

    You said:

    > I hate seeing sites like this and Quackwatch that scare people
    > off from things that might actually be beneficial to their health.

    I understand why you group my article with articles that call Dr. Gundry a quack or “scare people off”. You probably read my introduction about scammy attention-grabbing tactics (i.e. click bait and videos that cannot be paused). But, I wonder if you read the rest of the article. In the very next paragraph, I explain…

    > This particular clickbait may be a story of a dogged counter-
    > cultural researcher with a genuinely relevant finding. It could
    > be newsworthy.

    I lament the lack of clinical studies and acknowledge that I lack the tools & expertise to investigate. But, I also explain that Dr. Gundry and his work may be perfectly legitimate. In summary, I state “This certainly merits vetting”.

    The article is not meant to condemn Dr. Gundry or his diet. I wrote and published it specifically to highlight an intriguing approach to health and ongoing maintenance, but without personal experience or summary conviction regarding its long term effectiveness.


    • Thanks for the clarification. I am guilty as charged. I did not read carefully, or I would have realized that you are encouraging an open mind. 🙂

Ellery reads all feedback. 1st comment delayed for moderation