Sunday, April 24, 2016

Would Franklin have taken a statin if they had been available in the 1800s?

The Franklin expedition of 129 men perished in the Arctic, primarily of scurvy and related illnesses, in its entirety. I've been reading Stefansson's retrospective account and speculation written in the 1950s. This paragraph stuck out as a nice warning, still applicable to the lipid hypothesis today, which we see crumbling before out eyes. How many have died prematurely of medical dogma?

"We concede that Franklin had the excuses which many others have used; that medical men told him nothing about meat being preventive of scurvy, and that they told him instead about lime juice and lemon juice as preventatives and curatives. But we return to our point that a man who makes exploration a profession, as Franklin had done, has no business to sacrifice his men to the dogma of current therapeutics when he can divide the entire literature of his own craft into two chains of events; the expeditions which had a good deal of fresh food [meat] and little or no scurvy; and those which had little or no fresh food and much scurvy".

Fat vs sugar. PUFA vs saturates. Statin vs giving the finger to Keys for the buried Minnesota data.



JohnN said...

Hi Peter,
Perhaps more than a middle finger is needed. Nothing short of a class action suit to posthumously prosecute those responsible for unleashing the lipid hypothesis on the unsuspecting public.

Peter said...

That would be nice.


Stuart in Austin said...

Read: Frozen in Time: "The Fate of the Franklin Expedition" for a more recent and through examination of the fate of the expedition. Seems that the culprit was lead poisoning.
Also look for: Identification of the Probable Source of the Lead Poisoning Observed in Members of the Franklin Expedition by William Battersby.

Peter said...

Stuart, yes, I picked up lead poisoning while checking the number in the expedition via Wiki. Doesn't come with the nice quote tho'...