More than 100 million U.S. adults are now living with diabetes or prediabetes, according to a new report released today by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The report finds that as of 2015, 30.3 million Americans – 9.4 percent of the U.S. population –have diabetes. Another 84.1 million have prediabetes, a condition that if not treated often leads to type 2 diabetes within five years.
Don’t you think there’s a major problem going on here?
That 100 million number should also look familiar. It’s the same as the number of Americans with fatty liver disease slowly creeping up on them. Clearly, something has gone drastically wrong with human health in North America, and worldwide. And, it’s forecasted to just get worse.
The prevalence of diabetes (type 2 diabetes and type 1 diabetes) will increase by 54% to more than 54.9 million Americans between 2015 and 2030; annual deaths attributed to diabetes will climb by 38% to 385,800; and total annual medical and societal costs related to diabetes will increase 53% to more than $622 billion by 2030
To help put that $622 billion dollar cost into perspective, that is almost twice as much as the total amount that all of America spends on gasoline annually. Yes, just the one disease of diabetes is hugely more costly, and of course profitable, than oil! But, that’s still only a fraction of the nearly four Trillion dollars Americans now spent annually on all health care costs. Of course, the human costs and long term suffering are much more devastating. The annual death rate due to diabetes is 2-3 times that of the current Covid-19 disaster. Naturally, we are not talking about just about North America. The diabetes pandemic now afflicts about 500 million worldwide.
If we don’t get this diabetes disease crisis under control it will surely destroy our economy. I do think we can bring this under control… but it’s not going to be easy. Continuing with the current band-aid type treatments is obviously not working. So, to have any chance at effectively turning this crisis around we need to first get to the correct root cause of it.
The last big breakthrough in diabetes research was back in 1921. Canadians Frederick Banting, Charles Best, and James Collip identified and isolated insulin and quickly went on to develop a process for extracting it from animal sourced pancreases. They licensed the patent for that process to the University of Toronto for the princely sum of $1. With that, insulin went into mass production, was priced at pennies per dose, and saved millions of lives. Today insulin is still the primary treatment for the disease. However, insulin is obviously just that; a treatment, and not a cure. And, today the giant pharmaceutical companies have worked their way around that pesky make it free-to-everyone patent and now sell synthetic insulin at what many consider to be extortionary prices.
The question that Banting and Best did not answer was why was the human pancreas failing in the first place? Maybe, like with most doctors today, they too were taught to believe that diabetes, and all chronic diseases, are just “bad luck”. Sadly, that ridiculous “bad luck” theory of disease causation is very widely accepted and has gone almost unchallenged even today. But, obviously “bad luck” does not cause organs to fail. It’s equally obvious is that the stupid “bad luck” theory is dead wrong because North Americans could not have gotten vastly more “unlucky” over the last several decades. There’s also no way that people living in the American Southeast are significantly more unlucky than those living in the Northwest.
Back in 1921 we did not have an epidemic of obesity and therefore obesity couldn’t be blamed for the cause of diabetes either. And, obesity most certainly can’t be blamed for Type I diabetes since the wasting the disease causes in children is the direct opposite of that. The presumption is that Type I diabetes is just another auto-immune disease, and auto-immune diseases are just more “bad luck”. We are supposed to believe that it’s the confused and rogue immune cells attacking their own host body. Well, if you’ve read my eBooks you’ll know what I think of the “auto-immune” disease theory. In a nutshell, it’s a bunch of rubbish. No, it’s not a confused or defective immune system. Rather, it’s that tissue cells have been poisoned. With their DNA/RNA being poisoned and damaged they then produce defectively structured proteins. To the immune system those defectively structured proteins appear to have come from a foreign source. The immune system then correctly attacks those cells.
To help better understand the root causes of diabetes we need to know that there’s a similar U-shape curve in the incidence rates that so many of the other chronic diseases follow. There’s a high incidence rate in young children, with a drop-off in rate during youth and teenage years, and then a slow progressive climb in rates with age in adults. Therefore, in adults it’s pretty clear that the disease is one of a slow accumulation.
Source: Rogers, M.A.M., Kim, C., Banerjee, T. et al. Fluctuations in the incidence of type 1 diabetes in the United States from 2001 to 2015: a longitudinal study. BMC Med 15, 199 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12916-017-0958-6
Now visually sync that chart up with the one I presented in my COVID-19 Vulnerability blog post showing the liver vitamin A concentrations by age. Note the huge spike in early childhood.
Obviously, there’s a lag time between the elevated liver vitamin A storage levels and the onset of the disease. Not at all unexpectedly, it does take some time to burn out the pancreas.
More importantly, we need to understand the exponential growth rates in the incidence rates of both Type I and Type II diabetes over just the last few decades. There is simply no way that this can be naturally happening in the human population. Something is clearly causing it to happen. We also can’t confuse something being really common for it being normal. Sure, diabetes is now very common, but in the historical context that is exceedingly abnormal.
Here’s a chart showing the diabetes prevalence rate here in Alberta.
And for across Canada the regional clustering looks like this:
Any disease that exhibits an exponential growth rate and a geographic clustering pattern like this is clearly a poisoning. It’s a slow poisoning from something that is obviously slowly accumulating and or picking away at cells in the body. It’s just that simple.
With the data presented above, if anyone tries to tell you that the root cause of diabetes is somehow rooted in genetics then simply ask them if they finished their grade 9 math.
Okay, now that we’ve agreed that diabetes is the result of a slow poisoning, let’s find out how likely it is that so-called vitamin A is responsible for it.
Type I Diabetes
As shown in the chart above, type I diabetes is most commonly occurring in children. It is considered to be an auto-immune disease where the defective immune system has wrongly killed off the pancreatic stem cells. With that, the pancreas is no longer able to produce adequate amounts of insulin. What “vitamin” do you know of that causes the rapid mitosis and apoptosis of stem cells?
Retinoic acid induces apoptosis by a non-classical mechanism of ERK1/2 activation Alfeu Zanotto-Filho, Martin Cammarota, Daniel P. Gelain, Ramatis B. Oliveira, Andres Delgado-Cañedo, Rodrigo J.S. Dalmolin, Matheus A.B. Pasquali, José Cláudio F. Moreira
Even though RA is involved in differentiation and apoptosis of normal and cancer cells, being sometimes used as adjuvant in chemotherapy, its mechanisms of action involve multiple overlapping pathways that still remain unclear. Recent studies point out that RA exerts rapid and non-genomic effects, which are independent of RAR/RXR-mediated gene transcription.
Yes, that’s the very functional definition of what the active form of “vitamin A” does to our stem cells. So much so, that it is regarded as the essential molecule that’s somehow needed to “differentiate” our stem cells. What does “differentiate” really mean? It means it causes stem cells that normally reside along a basement membrane to quickly mature into adult cells and separate off. This effect and process of vitamin A’s action is abundantly documented in many fields of medical science, and especially so with its use in dermatology and chemotherapy.
Type II Diabetes
Type II diabetes is characterized by the pancreas still able to produce insulin but for some unknown reason that insulin becomes less and less effective. The pancreas tries to compensate for this ineffectiveness by producing even more insulin. The condition is known as insulin resistance.
As with so many other metabolic diseases there’s a circular blame game going on. Many “experts” believe that obesity is the root cause of type II diabetes. But, of course, that can’t be correct because there are many type II diabetics who are lean. Other experts will claim that it’s the diabetes that’s causing the obesity. I think these guys are significantly more correct. But, not precisely correct. I think obesity is the body’s defensive response to a much more sinister and ongoing threatening condition that we need to be protected from. In other words, what if there’s some other driver that’s causing both obesity and diabetes at the same time? Likewise for the assumed to be diabetes caused comorbidities of kidney disease, cardiovascular disease, macular degeneration, dementia / Alzheimer’s, and, and you name it. Is there something else that could cause all of them to happen? Well, you bet there is. Vitamin A toxicity can, and is proven to, cause all these same comorbidities.
Except, what about this insulin resistance condition? What could be causing that? As I wrote about in a previous blog post, researchers are now identifying the association of elevated RBPs with insulin resistance.
“Until 2005, the sole known function for RBP4 was to mobilize retinol from tissue stores and deliver it to vitamin A-responsive cells where it can be converted to retinoic acid for use in regulating vitamin A dependent transcription and functions. In 2005, Kahn and colleagues reported that circulating RBP4 levels affect glucose clearance, with high RBP4 levels inducing insulin resistance (Yang et al., 2005; Graham et al., 2006). Specifically, Kahn and colleagues proposed that adipocyte-derived RBP4 is a signal that contributes to the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes, linking obesity with type 2 diabetes, as well as other obesity-related metabolic diseases.”
So, retinol is definitely involved in insulin resistance. Next, we need to appreciate that all cellular receptors are actually proteins intrinsically made by the cell. We need to remember that vitamin A (the retinoic acid metabolite) has been shown to cause more than 500 different gene expressions. What are gene expressions? They are changes in the DNA structure that are detectable by variations in the different proteins that a cell manufactures. So, it’s very possible that the failing insulin receptor is just another protein that has been defectively produced as the result of retinoic acid induced gene expressions (a.k.a. DNA/RNA damage).
That outcome is not at all surprising because we now know that RA fractures and fragments DNA.
DNA fragmentation induced by all-trans retinoic acid and its steroidal analogue EA-4 in C2C12 mouse and HL-60 human leukemic cells in vitro
Raghda S. Alakhrasa, Georgia Stephanoua, Nikos A. Demopoulosa*,
Konstantinos Grintzalisa, Christos D. Georgioua and Sotirios S. Nikolaropoulosb
We have recently shown that retinoic acid induces micronucleation mainly via chromosome breakage.
Do you think that that fracturing of your DNA might cause defectively produced insulin receptors and other proteins? I sure do.
How about conducting a Stress Test
As I mentioned in my eBooks, it is very common in engineering to stress test systems and components to their breaking point. Civil engineers do this everyday with concrete samples as a standard quality assurance practice. Jet engine manufacturers will spin new test engines to incredible speeds, and to the point that the engine explodes or otherwise self-destructs. These types of stress tests are very important as they not only tell us at what point a component will fail, it also helps set the safe operating ranges in real-world usage.
Somewhat likewise, if the theory that vitamin A toxicity is responsible for causing diabetes, then we should be able to conduct similar biological stress tests and see if diabetes can be directly induced by it. Thankfully, that stress test has already inadvertently been conducted for us.
The extreme stress test – Accutane
There have been many accounts of people who have developed type II diabetes shortly after taking accutane. It’s even documented as a known “side-effect”.
The effect of isotretinoin on insulin resistance and adipocytokine levels in acne vulgaris patients.
Soyuduru G, Ösoy Adışen E, Kadıoğlu Özer İ, Aksakal AB.
Turk J Med Sci. 2019;49(1):238-244. Published 2019 Feb 11. doi:10.3906/sag-1806-44
Conclusions: All data suggests that five months of isotretinoin therapy in AV patients causes insulin resistance and the increase in insulin resistance is not dependent on age, BMI, BFM, and lipid levels of these patients.
Although this diabetes causing “side-effect” of accutane has been reported on for decades now, as usual it is downplayed and mostly ignored by the medical establishment. Here’s a great example:
Association Between Oral Isotretinoin Therapy and Unmasked Latent Immuno-Mediated Diabetes
Ilaria Dicembrini, MD, Gianluca Bardini, MD, PHD and Carlo M. Rotella, MD
It is reasonable that latent autoimmune diabetes in adults (LADA) could be clinically revealed by drug-induced insulin resistance. In this case, the only remarkable change of lipid profile consisted in a reduction of HDL cholesterol during isotretinoin treatment; therefore, the previously reported physiopathological hypothesis (1–4) is not completely supported. However, this is the first report of an association between isotretinoin and an unmasking case of autoimmune diabetes.
Isn’t that a brilliant conclusion? Their ridiculous BS excuse is that the diabetes was already patiently sitting there just waiting to be “unmasked” by accutane use. They want you to believe that: No, no, wonderful accutane didn’t cause the disease, it just “unmasked” it. Who could buy such ridiculous nonsense and pharma propaganda? These are MD’s and PhD’s, no less, making such an idiotic claim. What about the many other disease conditions accutane has proven to cause? Were they then just “unmasked” too?
But, my point here is that we now know that many of us are getting small daily doses of “accutane” via our food sourced vitamin A intake. Thus, if a spiked dose of accutane is proven to cause diabetes, then obviously many low doses, but over a longer period of time, can have the same cumulative result. So, it’s just a matter of dose and time.
A lower range stress tests – Gestational diabetes.
“In the United States, about 1% to 2% of pregnant women have type 1 or type 2 diabetes and about 6% to 9% of pregnant women develop gestational diabetes.”
But, why and how does getting pregnant cause a woman to develop diabetes? That seems like a pretty high price to pay for having children. Something that women have been doing for millions of years now. Once again, there’s no way that nature could be that foolish for this to be normal.
Of course, the big assumption made by endocrinologists is that gestational diabetes is caused by some vague hormonal imbalance. But, they in no way can explain why it only happens to some women. More importantly, it in no way explains why it’s become much more prevalent over the last few decades and the large regionally disparities in incidence rates.
To propose a probable mechanism, let’s consider this interesting study on plasma retinol levels in sled dogs (shared by Dr. Garrett Smith).
Effect of Exercise on the Mobilization of Retinol and Retinyl Esters in Plasma of Sled Dogs
From the abstract:
However, retinyl ester levels doubled in the non-supplemented group immediately after the race (p < 0.001), whereas in the supplemented group similar high levels were observed not until 24 h post-racing (p < 0.001). The high levels of retinyl esters were paralleled to some extent by an increase in plasma triglyceride concentrations, which were significantly higher 24 h post-racing than immediately before (p < 0.001) and after exercise (p < 0.001) in both groups. The increase in retinyl ester concentrations might be indicative of their mobilization from liver and adipose tissue.
Thus, a sustained increased heart rate / blood flow stirs up more retinyl esters out of the liver and brings it into circulation.
A similar effect happens in women during pregnancy. Of course, it’s not just for 24 hours, rather it’s sustained for 7 or 8 months.
During pregnancy, the amount of blood pumped by the heart (cardiac output) increases by 30 to 50%. As cardiac output increases, the heart rate at rest speeds up from a normal prepregnancy rate of about 70 beats per minute to 80 or 90 beats per minute.
With that increased heart rate, more of the highly toxic retinyl esters are swept into circulation. Of course, the amount is probably proportional to the concentration already stored in their liver. Remember that retinol outside of the RBP can pass through cell membranes within about one millisecond. With that, there will definitely be a higher rate of conversion into retinoic acid. That prolonged elevated retinoic acid level would certainly explain the development of gestational diabetes. It would also explain other adverse accutane “side-effect” like conditions such as postpartum depression.
Quite interestingly, the same phenomenon has been observed in women recovering from breast cancer. Women who adopt a strenuous exercise regimen post cancer treatment have a much higher chance of their cancer recurring as opposed to women who only adopt a moderate exercise regimen. Likewise, emotional stress can have the same effect. This is why many people have reported that their first encounter with autoimmune diseases and cancer occurred shortly after a period of sustained emotional stress.
If this theory of vitamin A toxicity causing diabetes is correct then we might be able to confirm it with some intervention type studies using low vitamin A diets. There are indeed such studies. Let’s first consider Walter Kempner’s all rice and sugar diet. Kempner had his diabetic patients follow this diet for a period of up to 10 years and they had great results in reversing diabetes, obesity, and diabetic retinopathy.
Walter Kempner’s Rice and Sugar diet of 1958
- 100 consecutive patients
- Over an 11 year period
- ~ 100% carbs – yet great results – go figure??
Interestingly, Kempner would, on occasion, whip his patients to help compliance.
Although some of his patients appear to have taken vitamin A supplements there’s no record of exactly what group those patients were in. Also, it’s very hard to know how much of it would have been absorbed on such an extremely low fat diet. Naturally, I think Kempner’s all rice and sugar diet is ridiculous and very dangerous. However, it completely contradicts the mainstream thinking on the role carbohydrates and sugar play in diabetes. None-the-less, it is very good evidence that we are on the right track here thinking that vitamin A toxicity is at the root cause of the disease.
Next, there’s another extreme diet from about the same era that had similar great results in reversing diabetes.
Blake Donaldson’s Strong Medicine – “big fat steak” diet – 1961
- Steak 3 meals per day, 7 days per week
- Over multi year period
- ~ 100% meat – yet good results – go figure??
No whipping required
Blake Donaldson’s diet is the complete opposite of Kempner’s rice and sugar diet, yet it yields the same results with regards to reversing metabolic disease and diabetes. This “big fat steak” diet it’s now seeing a huge resurgence in popularity today. It’s called the “carnivore” diet. Why has the carnivore diet become so popular? Because it works! Like it or not, we have to look at the real-world results.
How can we explain these two diametrically opposed diets yielding effectively the same results in reversing diabetes? The common factor is that they are both inadvertently extremely low vitamin A diets. I think the carnivore diet is vastly superior to Kempner’s rice and sugar diet. But, in a way, when you combine these two dietary intervention studies they somewhat mutually exclude macro nutrients as being a major causative factor in diabetes. Therefore, that requires us to look deeper for mechanistic molecules. I say we go with putting the blame on the molecule who’s proven and very functional definition is one that destroys our stem cells. Yes, vitamin A is a stem cell killer.
Zinc – here it is yet again.
As with many enzymes, zinc is a key atom needed for the formation of insulin. Insulin is itself a protein based hormone.
The Structure of Insulin:
Zinc is shown as the two magenta coloured spheres in the ribbon diagram on the right.
By Isaac Yonemoto. – Transferred from en.wikipedia to Commons. First upload to en.wp by Takometer, CC BY 2.5, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=1531881
So, with background vitamin A toxicity putting a higher demand on the needed detoxification dehydrogenase enzymes, that could significantly reduce the availability of zinc needed for insulin production.
Could it be this simple?
For me at least, there’s no doubt that vitamin A toxicity is causing the diabetes and obesity epidemics. But, that’s just my own conclusion on it. With diabetes now being a major pandemic, it’s rather imperative that we find out. So, if you can, please help by tracking your A1C or blood glucose levels as you progress with this diet. You can then add more evidence (pro or con) to the case.