Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Is corporate sponsorship standing in the way of nutrition research?

When I look at the list of corporate sponsors providing support to the Canadian Diabetes Association, the Canadian Heart and Stroke Foundation, the Canadian Foundation for Dietetic Research and The Dieticians of Canada, it's crystal clear to me why no time is given to the growing body of peer-reviewed research that shows it is perfectly possible to dramatically improve one's health and lower the risk of heart disease by reducing the amount of grains and sugars in the diet, without the need for drug intervention.

You will not see testimonials like this anywhere near one of these websites:
I am now cured of diabetes type 2 after being diabetic for 28 years, and all without drugs of any kind. My HbA1c blood level taken last week is a fantastic 4.8. I was on a Staten drug and Dr. T stopped my taking it. My cholesterol is fantastic. I also lost 60 pounds and kept it off for the last 4 years.  
We can thank the double-edged sword of corporate sponsorship for that.  I thought you would be interested in seeing the names of major manufacturers of grain products and pharmaceutical giants are represented in the list of corporate sponsors (in alphabetical order):
Canadian Diabetes Association:

Canadian Foundation for Dietetic Research:
Source: 2010 Annual Report.

Dieticians of Canada*:

Makers of Cheerios*. Additional key cereal brands include Honey Nut Cheerios*, Fibre 1*, Oatmeal Crisp* and Lucky Charms*. General Mills also makes Betty Crocker*, Green Giant*, Nature Valley*, Old El Paso* and Pillsbury* products.  *Trademarks of General Mills or its affiliates.

Heart & Stroke Foundation:
2011 Dieticians of Canada National Conference:
Beef Information Centre, Canadian Pork Council, Dairy Farmers of Canada, Egg Farmers of Canada, Campbell's Foodservice, Canola Council, General Mills, McCain Foods, Nestle Nutrition, PepsiCo Canada, Schneiders, Subway Restaurants, Unilever, and more.
*For more information on the Dieticians of Canada's corporate ties, please check out Sybil Hebert's blog.  She is a Canadian Registered Dietician, and is also troubled by this apparent conflict of interest standing in the way of true academic research.

I understand perfectly well that corporate partnerships are essential for these organizations to survive.

However, corporate sponsorship also puts the organizations and their researchers, employees and spokespeople in the difficult position where they cannot speak out about clinical research findings that cast their sponsors in a negative light without jeopardizing future funding.  They are largely able to avoid such difficult situations by simply avoiding doing research that might highlight such findings.

It's something to think about if you are confused about what you're reading on this blog and other low carb sites, and wondering why this is not reflected in the mainstream nutritional information.

No comments:

Post a Comment