On Nutrition: Check Your Sources for Nutritional and Medical Information |

Dear Doctor. Blonz: I watched some online videos from a doctor who confidently stated that there are five foods we should never eat. His list: ice cream, popcorn, cookies, fruit juice, and burgers with buns. He made some pretty baffling statements about the first four, saying they were “poison” because they cause blood sugar levels to rise and insulin levels to rise. The burger and bun were included because they combine protein with carbohydrates, which he said does the same thing.

I checked him out and found out that he is not a doctor and sells products related to his message. Is someone responsible for checking the accuracy of the online presentations? – GR, Scottsdale, Arizona

Dear GR: My compliments on your detective work. Whenever I read nutritional or medical advice, I always check the sources. Specifically, I am looking for the scientific background and positions of the cited expert as well as objective work in the scientific literature that supports the advice offered. Does the proponent have training and expertise in the relevant area or is the material a self-serving sales pitch?

The special message here relates to certain foods and their effects on blood sugar and insulin. What is lost is the big picture of the whole diet. Calling these foods “poison” and implying that a lot of insulin causes them to “go through the roof” is nonsense. Overconsumption becomes a problem for many foods, especially those with added sugar, but there is no logic or evidence to suggest that avoiding it completely is essential to health. Anything can work with a whole plant-based diet and a healthy lifestyle.