Thanks to the collective enthusiasm for sharing NutritionFacts.org by our subscribers, Twitter and Instagram followers, and over 1.5 million Facebook and G+ fans, we averaged millions of video views a month this year. But it’s not about the numbers; it’s about the people whose lives we’ve touched, changed, or even saved. That is why I’ve dedicated my life to this work. A heartfelt thank you to everyone who has made this public service possible.
NutritionFacts.org arises from my annual review of the medical literature. With the help of a team of hundreds of volunteers, we churned through tens of thousands of papers published in the peer-reviewed scientific nutrition literature and are ramping up to break new records in 2019. How do I choose which studies to highlight? In general, I strive to focus on the most groundbreaking, interesting, and useful findings; but which topics resonate the most? Is it the practical ones, offering cooking or shopping tips? Or those that dissect the studies behind the headlines? Maybe it’s the geeky science ones exploring the wonderfully weird world of human biology? As you can see from the below list, the answer seems to be a bit of all of the above:
#10 Benefits of Lentils and Chickpeas
Too many people know beans about beans…until now! In this video, lentils and garbanzo beans were put to the test. Benefits of Beans for Peripheral Vascular Disease was another popular one, exploring the question: Do legumes just work to prevent disease or can they help treat and reverse it as well?
#9 Does Adding Milk Block the Benefits of Coffee?
Coffee videos are perpetual favorites. A similar effect was found for fruit and tea: Benefits of Blueberries for Blood Pressure May Be Blocked by Yogurt. And you don’t want to mess around with berry benefits. See two other faves from this year Benefits of Blueberries for the Brain and Benefits of Blueberries for Artery Function.
#8 Benefits of a Macrobiotic Diet for Diabetes
I’m glad I finally got around to macrobiotic diets, and seems folks agreed. This is a good one to share with your low carb friends. I also did one on the Pros and Cons of Macrobiotic Diets.
#7 Is It Better to Drink a Little Alcohol than None at All?
The best available balance of evidence is taking a decided shift on alcohol. Check out the video to see why. Others in this video series included Can Alcohol Cause Cancer?, The Best Source of Resveratrol, and Do Any Benefits of Alcohol Outweigh the Risks?
#6 Is Organic Meat Less Carcinogenic?
Organic and conventional meat were put to the test for 33 different carcinogens. It’s a question I get a lot, and I’m glad there’s finally data to share.
#5 The Weight Loss Program that Got Better with Time
The most well-published community-based lifestyle intervention in the medical literature is also one of the most effective. You know I’m definitely going to be talking about it in my upcoming new book on weight control. Others in this series are What Is the Optimal Diet?, CHIP: The Complete Health Improvement Program, and A Workplace Wellness Program that Works.
#4 The Effects of Avocados on Inflammation
Guac this way? Find out, as the impact of high-fat plant foods—avocados, peanuts, walnuts—and olive oil are put to the test. The other one I did this year was also popular: Are Avocados Good for You?
#3 The First Studies on Vegetarian Athletes
Meat-eating athletes are put to the test against veg athletes and even sedentary plant-eaters in feats of endurance at Yale. The other two in the series were The Gladiator Diet – How Vegetarian Athletes Stack Up and Vegetarian Muscle Power, Strength, and Endurance.
#2 Dining by Traffic Light: Green Is for Go, Red Is for Stop
The most popular video of 2017 was Dr. Greger’s Daily Dozen Checklist explaining one of the tools I unveiled in How Not to Die. Here’s the other one, my traffic light system for ranking the relative healthfulness of Green Light vs. Yellow Light vs. Red Light foods.
#1 The Best Advice on Diet and Cancer
The most popular this year was a video I built around one of T. Colin Campbell’s new papers. I also did How to Win the War on Cancer, which details the tragic ineffectiveness of many chemotherapy treatments. But the good news is that the vast majority of premature death and disability is preventable with an evidence-based diet and other healthy lifestyle behaviors. So make 2019 your year to wrestle control back over your health destiny.
And for some New Year, New You inspiration read through the responses on Instagram when I asked everyone what they learned from reading How Not to Die.
Michael Greger, M.D.
PS: If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my free videos here and watch my live, year-in-review presentations:
- 2012: Uprooting the Leading Causes of Death
- 2013: More Than an Apple a Day
- 2014: From Table to Able: Combating Disabling Diseases with Food
- 2015: Food as Medicine: Preventing and Treating the Most Dreaded Diseases with Diet
- 2016: How Not To Die: The Role of Diet in Preventing, Arresting, and Reversing Our Top 15 Killers