Monday, May 23, 2016

Nutrition columnist Dr. David Katz slams NFL star Vince Wilfork and his namesake pizza & sandwich sold by Big Y supermarkets, but doesn't mention his business relationship with Big Y

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After I broke the story last September, the Huffington Post deleted two columns by David L. Katz MD in which he'd lavishly praised a fantasy novel called reVision.

The problem was that Dr. Katz failed to disclose to readers that he wrote the book under a pseudonym.

A recent column by Dr. Katz -- whose website describes him as "an internationally renowned authority on nutrition, weight control, and the prevention of chronic disease" -- raises new disclosure questions.

Published last week in the Huffington Post and yesterday in the New Haven Register, Dr. Katz tore into NFL star Vince Wilfork, diagnosing him as "severely obese," suggesting that his health may be "a ticking bomb," and even criticizing his parenting skills.

The focus of the brutal critique was a giant-size pizza and sandwich named after the giant-size defensive tackle, and sold by Big Y, a New England supermarket chain which has a high-profile marketing campaign built around Wilfork's namesake "In-Vince-ible" menu.

What Dr. Katz's column doesn't mention is that since 2010 he's had a business relationship with Big Y.

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Dr. Katz doesn't mince words about what he thinks of Big Y's In-Vince-Ible menu:
This particular pizza, and the marketing campaign in which it figures, are both noteworthy in a variety of deeply disturbing ways for anyone who has heard the rumors about the state of either public health (i.e., epidemic obesity, epidemic diabetes, etc.), or the planet (i.e., climate change, water shortages, habitat destruction, etc.). You see, it is not just any pizza.

The pizza in question is called the In-Vince-Ible pizza, presumably both because it is just too “good” to be beaten by any other pizza, and because it is fronted by Vince Wilfork, a NFL defensive tackle currently with the Houston Texans, but known and loved here in Connecticut for his 11-year-run with the New England Patriots. This pizza is the younger sibling in the franchise, expanding the brand established with the In-Vince-Ible sandwich.

The sandwich features a pound of meat, comprising ham, pepperoni, hard salami, and capicola ham. The pedigree of the meats in question is not provided, but given the prevailing norms, one presumes that both cattle and pigs were harmed in the making of this meal.

...Where the likes of this pizza and sandwich...are introduced, health is devastated, and in short order.

...If our culture tells us it’s fine to market even to children the very products most certain to steal years from their lives and life from their years...
...And all of this says nothing about the environmental costs of that pizza and sandwich.
Providing no indication that he examined Wilfork or consulted his physician, Dr. Katz diagnoses Wilfork as "severely obese" and adds, "I very much suspect his health is a ticking bomb, and retirement will markedly trim the fuse."

Here's how the "internationally renowned authority on nutrition, weight control, and the prevention of chronic disease" says he arrived at those conclusions:
Studies show that the “eyeball test” differentiates fat from muscle nearly as well as fancy measures of body composition. Meaning no disrespect whatever to Vince, an especially perspicacious eyeball is not required to see that his health is in peril. There are plenty of images on-line; search them and see for yourself.
Dr. Katz even criticizes Wilfork's parenting because the big guy's son appears in a Big Y video:
I confess to even greater concern about Vince’s young son, who also figures in the ad campaign. We look on as Vince encourages his son to eat like a man. Alas, this young boy is learning to eat in a manner that threatens to give his generation a shorter life expectancy than ours...



According to this screenshot from Dr. Katz's website bio, his writing attracts plenty of eyeballs --  perspicacious or otherwise.



In multiple tweets and Facebook posts, he steered his many social media followers to the column.
 

source and source
(Dr. David) Katz was at the Big Y store in Ansonia Friday to help promote the store's implementation of NuVal, an index that ranks food items from 1 to 100, with a higher ranking signifying a healthier food. More than 30 nutrients and nutrition factors are taken into account in the ranking. The system, which Katz helped create a few years ago, takes the guesswork out of healthy eating.

NuVal is a collaboration between Griffin Hospital in Derby and Topco Associates, an Illinois-based food industry cooperative whose members include Big Y.
On Sept. 9, Massachusetts-based Big Y became the latest chain to adopt the system.
The program fits in perfectly with the chain's nutrition program "Living Well Eating Smart," said Big Y dietician Carrie Taylor during a Friday press conference at the Ansonia store.
...Most people don't have time to thoroughly examine the nutritional labels on every item they buy and assess which choices are the healthiest, Katz said. Thus, they're susceptible to misleading packaging that touts a product as "reduced fat" or "low sugar." "If you try to improve health one nutrient at a time, you're probably going to get duped by Madison Avenue," Katz said.

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Here's a 2012 Big Y video in which Ms. Taylor and Ms. Luttrell explain the NuVal system:



Should Dr. Katz have disclosed NuVal's partnership with Big Y?

Presumably that determination falls to the Huffington Post and the New Haven Register.

Does Big Y continue to use the NuVal system? And what's the company's response to Dr. Katz's allegations about their In-Vince-Ible menu?

Last week in mulitple e-mails and phone messages, I posed those questions to Claire D'Amour-Daley, Big Y's Vice President Corporate Communications. I haven't received a response.

Here's some interesting information I did manage to find.

Click here for the 2015 issues of Big Y's free in-house newsletter Living Well Eating Smart newsletters.

For every issue up to and including October, when I keyword searched "nuval, I got multiple hits like this:

October 2015

But an identical keyword search of the next issue (November 2015) and every subsequent issue posted on Big Y's site failed to produce any hits.

November 2015

January 2016
March 2016

June 2016

If Big Y is still a NuVal client, whether or not you agree with his conclusions, Dr. Katz should be commended for disregarding financial repercussions and speaking his mind about what he considers to be the public health and environmental dangers posed by the ginormous pizza and sandwich.

On the other hand, if Big Y is no longer a NuVal client, it appears that Dr. Katz bit the hand that used to feed him.

Monday, May 16, 2016

UK homeopathic hospitals: Belfast blogger and I ask oversight agency for a standard of care review

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On April 25, my Belfast, Northern Ireland, blogging buddy Dean Sterling Jones and I co-signed and co-blogged a request for a review of "crystal therapy" and other dubious medical treatments being offered by a Liverpool hospital. On May 2, we blogged about a similar request we made re: a Derbyshire hospital offering "energy therapies." On May 11, we blogged about a similar request we made re: a Norwich area medical facility offering "Thought Field Therapy" and other iffy treatments.

We filed our requests with the Care Quality Commission (CQC), "the independent regulator of health and social care in England."

Today we filed the following request with the CQC re: the Royal London Hospital for Integrated Medicine, Glasgow Homeopathic Hospital, and Bristol Homeopathic Hospital.

Incidentally, my mother -- a freelance writer who advocated of all sorts of dubious "alternative" medical treatments -- co-authored the 1981 book, Homeopathic Medicine At Home.



Friday, May 13, 2016

Did USDA executive Angela Tagtow violate agency guidelines re: author/journalist Nina Teicholz getting kicked off a national conference panel last month? I've asked USDA's inpector general to investigate

Angela Tagtow (source)

Last week I blogged Ultimatum by US Dietary Guidelines chair Barbara Millen led to author/journalist Nina Teicholz being kicked off National Food Policy Conference panel.

E-mails I obtained via a FOIA request showed that Dr. Millen and USDA executive Angela Tagtow had tag-teamed to pressure conference organizer Thomas Gremillion to give Ms. Teicholz the boot.

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Were the actions of Ms. Tagtow, Executive Director at the USDA's Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, in compliance with USDA policy?

Per the letter below, today I asked USDA Inspector General Phyllis Fong to investigate, and I'll report the results in a future item.



Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Why is UK's Hoveton & Wroxham Medical Centre offering dubious "alternative" therapies? Belfast blogger and I have asked UK oversight agency


On April 25, my Belfast, Northern Ireland, blogging buddy Dean Sterling Jones and I co-signed and co-blogged a request for a review of dubious medical treatments being offered by a Liverpool hospital. On May 2, we blogged about a similar request we made re: a Derbyshire hospital offering "energy therapies."

We filed our requests with the Care Quality Commission (CQC), "the independent regulator of health and social care in England."

Today we filed another request with the CQC re: Hoveton & Wroxham Medical Centre (see the map) which, according to their website, is offering these treatments (all links to Quackwatch.com):

“Hypnotherapy”
“Neuro-Linguistic Programming” (NLP)
“Time Line Therapy”
• “Life Coaching”
“Emotional Freedom Techniques” (EFT)
“Thought Field Therapy” (TFT)
• “Eye Movement Integration”
• “Energy Healing”
• “Mindfulness”
“Reiki”

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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Prominent Harvard prof/researcher Frank Hu solicited European colleagues to sign/circulate demand for BMJ to retract article by author/journalist Nina Teicholz -- she says her article criticized a fed gov review headed by Hu

This item is reported by me, journalist Dean Sterling Jones of Belfast, Northern Ireland who's cross-posting at his Shooting The Messenger blog, and New Zealander Kelsi White. Given the content of the story, our "hands across the water" effort seems fitting.

Frank Hu MD PhD MPH (source)
On Monday I reported how Barbara Millen PhD, chair of the 2015 US Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGAC), and USDA executive Angela Tagtow tag-teamed an effort that resulted in author/journalist Nina Teicholz being kicked off a panel at a national food policy conference held last month.

Teicholz is a high-profile critic of the DGAC's methodology and findings (which have been widely criticized by medical experts and organizations).

It's not the first time Millen tried to muzzle Teicholz.

Last November, Millen signed a public letter to the BMJ (formerly the British Medical Journal).

The letter demanded the retraction of a September 23 article by Teicholz which -- you guessed it -- criticized the methodology and findings of the DGAC.

Claiming Teicholz's article was "riddled with errors" -- a claim disputed in a recent Guardian article (see below) and elsewhere -- the letter was organized by the DC advocacy nonprofit, Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI).

E-mails obtained via a public records request (embedded below in reverse chronology) show that another DGAC member, Dr. Frank Hu, a prominent professor/researcher at the Harvard School of Public Health, asked a colleague to sign and circulate the retraction demand which resulted in a chain letter exchanged by European medical professionals and university faculty.

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It started with an October 31, 2015 "Dear Colleague" e-mail in which CSPI executive Bonnie Liebman asked dozens of nutrition science professionals to sign the letter.

The next day, Hu e-mailed this to Prof. Miguel Miguel A. Martinez-Gonzalez at the University of Navarra, Spain:
Hi Miguel,

Would you like to sign the attached letter to retract the BMJ article? if so, please email Bonnie Liebman.

I would greatly appreciate if you can ask your colleagues in Spain and other European countries to sign the letter. I think it is extremely important to retract the terrible BMJ article for the sake of science and public health.

Many thanks

frank

Miguel A. Martinez-Gonzalez (source)

Later that day in this e-mail (slightly re-formatted for ease comprehension), Martinez-Gonzalez copied Hu on an e-mail he sent to about 20 colleagues, stating "Yes, of course, Frank."
From: Miguel Ángel Martínez González <mamartinez@unav.es>
Date: 1 November 2015 at 11:36
Subject: Fwd: Letter to BMJ re Dietary Guidelines--Please respond by Nov. 3
To: Antonia Trichopoulou <atrichopoulou@hhf-greece.gr>, denis.lairon@univmed.fr, Katia Esposito <katherine.esposito@unina2.it>, giuseppe.grosso@studium.unict.it, Federico Jose Armando Perez Cueto Eulert <apce@plan.aau.dk>, "ligia.dominguez"<ligia.dominguez@unipa.it>, Matthias Schulze <mschulze@dife.de>, Iris Shai <irish@bgu.ac.il>, elliotb@ekmd.huji.ac.il, dario.giugliano@unina2.it, Angeliki Papadaki <Angeliki.Papadaki@bristol.ac.uk>, Arne Astrup <ast@nexs.ku.dk>, ricardo.uauy@lshtm.ac.uk, jose luchsinger <luchsin@hotmail.com>, Nikolaos Scarmeas <ns257@cumc.columbia.edu>, Christian Carpéné <Christian.Carpene@inserm.fr>, Olle Melander <olle.melander@med.lu.se>, boeing@dife.de, Marc Molendijk <m.l.molendijk@fsw.leidenuniv.nl>, Adriano Marçal Pimenta <adrianompimenta@yahoo.com.br>, Helfimed Study UniSA <Dorota.Zarnowiecki@unisa.edu.au>
Cc: Frank Hu <nhbfh@channing.harvard.edu>

Yes, of course, Frank.

I'm forwarding to my friends and colleagues this invitation to sign the attached letter:
I have read the full version of the attached letter and I agree to include my sign on it.
I endorse its full content and the request to the BMJ to retract the journalist's article.
Dear colleagues,
if you agree, you can send an email to Bonnie Liebman <bliebman@cspinet.org> with a similar content to what I have written above in blue font.


I would thank you all very much if you are so kind as to ask also to your friends from different European countries to sign the attached letter for the sake of science and public health.

Best regards,
miguel
--
Miguel A. Martinez-Gonzalez
University of Navarra-CIBEROBN
www.unav.es/preventiva
www.proyectosun.es
www.predimed.es
www.predimedplus.com
www.ciberobn.es
Research Gate
 Here's one of the recipients of Martinez-Gonzalez's pass-along...


...who obligingly added another link in the chain letter which she states was "instigated by Frank Hu."
From: Angeliki Papadaki [mailto:Angeliki.Papadaki@bristol.ac.uk]
Sent: 01 November 2015 12:48
To: Arne Astrup; Saris, Wim; Inge Huybrechts; manios@hua.gr; Inga Þórsdóttir; Andy Ness; susan.jebb@phc.ox.ac.uk; Agneta Yngve; Sibylle Kranz; lmoreno@unizar.es;
clare.collins@newcastle.edu.au; Antonis Kafatos; Jayne Woodside; Janet Cade; Dianne Ward
Subject: Fwd: Letter to BMJ re Dietary Guidelines--Please respond by Nov. 3

Dear colleagues,

Please see attached a suggestion for a BMJ retraction letter, instigated by Frank Hu at Harvard. We were asked to circulate the letter for signatures.

If you agree, please send an email to Bonnie Liebman (bliebman@cspinet.org) with a similar content to the below, in blue font, and circulate to your colleagues.

I have read the full version of the attached letter and I agree to include my sign on it.
I endorse its full content and the request to the BMJ to retract the journalist's article.

Kind regards,

Angeliki
Why did Hu encourage colleagues to demand a retraction of what he called "the terrible BMJ article for the sake of science and public health"?

We don't know because he hasn’t responded to multiple inquiries.

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But here’s what Nina Teicholz e-mailed me today:
My BMJ article was a critique of the science used in formulating the 2015 DGA expert report. Frank Hu chaired the review on saturated fats, which I critiqued in a number of ways: it did not consult the "Nutrition Evidence Library" per standard USDA practice, and although the studies covered in the review had conflicting and contradictory conclusions regarding whether saturated fats do in fact cause death from heart disease, the review nevertheless concluded that the evidence on this point was "strong." (Neither of these facts is disputed as part of the retraction request.) The question of whether sat fats cause heart disease has, over the past 5 years, undergone tremendous re-analysis and challenge, yet the Hu review did not reflect that ambivalence. In effect, it did not comprehensively review the most current science on this subject.
So was Dr. Hu making a good faith effort to address “an article riddled with errors” or was he attempting to censor a high-profile critic?

If he made himself available, along with that question, I'd ask him for a reaction comment to this section from Ian Leslie's lively and informative April 7 Guardian article about the nutrition science wars:
In September last year [Teicholz] wrote an article for the BMJ (formerly the British Medical Journal), which makes the case for the inadequacy of the scientific advice that underpins the Dietary Guidelines. The response of the nutrition establishment was ferocious: 173 scientists – some of whom were on the advisory panel, and many of whose work had been critiqued in Teicholz’s book – signed a letter to the BMJ, demanding it retract the piece.

Publishing a rejoinder to an article is one thing; requesting its erasure is another, conventionally reserved for cases involving fraudulent data. As a consultant oncologist for the NHS, Santhanam Sundar, pointed out in a response to the letter on the BMJ website: “Scientific discussion helps to advance science. Calls for retraction, particularly from those in eminent positions, are unscientific and frankly disturbing.”

The letter lists “11 errors”, which on close reading turn out to range from the trivial to the entirely specious. I spoke to several of the scientists who signed the letter. They were happy to condemn the article in general terms, but when I asked them to name just one of the supposed errors in it, not one of them was able to. One admitted he had not read it. Another told me she had signed the letter because the BMJ should not have published an article that was not peer reviewed (it was peer reviewed). Meir Stampfer, a Harvard epidemiologist, asserted that Teicholz’s work is “riddled with errors”, while declining to discuss them with me.

This item has been slightly revised with an updated, but near-identical quote paragraph from Nina Teicholz.



Monday, May 2, 2016

Ultimatum by US Dietary Guidelines chair Barbara Millen led to author/journalist Nina Teicholz being kicked off National Food Policy Conference panel

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On March 30 I reported Craven cave-in: How journalist/author Nina Teicholz was "disinvited" from the National Food Policy Conference: My item led with some paragraphs from Teicholz disinvited from food policy panel by Catherine Boudreau, Politico, March 25, 2016):
...Nina Teicholz, an author who has publicly criticized the science behind the government's low-fat dietary advice, was recently bumped from a nutrition science panel after being confirmed by the National Food Policy Conference.
...Thomas Gremillion, director of food policy at the Consumer Federation of America, which is organizing the conference, confirmed he’d hoped to have Teicholz on the panel “but it didn't work out,”
......Margo Wootan, director of nutrition policy at the Center for Science in the Public Interest, will speak on the panel, along with Barbara Millen, the former chairwoman of the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, and Angie Tagtow, executive director of the USDA’s Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion.
Records I recently obtained via a FOIA request to USDA (embedded below) reveal that Teicholz was kicked off the panel the morning after Millen, founder/president of a health screening company, sent this "URGENT" e-mail to Tagtow. (I've redacted her cell number. My bold red highlighting throughout.)
From: Millen, Barbara E [mail to:bmillen@bu.edu]
Sent: Wednesday, March 09, 2016 5:33 PM
To: Tagtow, Angela - CNPP
Subject: URGENT: Panelist info for Natl Food Policy Conference

Angie,

I just had a rather long conversation with Thomas [Gremillion] and expressed my great concern that he invited Nina Teicholz to the panel without informing us. I apologize for this email. I would have called but I’m sure it is well past your office hours. I will convey the main points of my conversation with Thomas and ask that you email him or call him directly.

Basically, I said that this development and specifically the inclusion of Ms. Teicholz changed the panel quite negatively and could result in quite antagonistic situation. I suggested he reconsider including her and indicated that I would hate to withdraw but would do so if necessary.

I also expressed that to Thomas that he and other in his organization should have been aware of Ms. Teicholz’ public views on the DGAC report and the DGAs and that I found it very surprising that they included her at all but certainly without discussing the possibility with the other panelists in advance of making the invitation.

I hope you agree. I imagine you do. Thomas would like to hear from you directly and hopes you can call or email him in the morning. He called me back within minutes of getting my email this evening.

If you wish to try to reach me, I am traveling but can be reached at 781-413-XXXX (my cell). I have intermittent service but I will call you back if I don’t answer.

Best, Barbara

Dr. Barbara E. Millen
bmillen@bu.edu

Angela Tagtow (source)
About a half-hour later, Tagtow apparently tried to carry Millen's message to Gremillion by phone rather than in writing.
On Mar 9, 2016, at 6:11 PM, Tagtow, Angela - CNPP <Angela.Tagtow@cnpp.usda.gov> wrote:

Thomas, good evening and thank you for the update. I would like to visit with you tomorrow about USDA's concerns about this change of course for this panel presentation. Is there a good time for a phone call on Thursday? Let me know the best time and number to reach you and I'll give you a call. Best, Angie

On Mar 9, 2016, at 6:14 PM, Thomas Gremillion <tgremillion@consumerfed.org> wrote:

Hi Angie,

Thanks for contacting me. My morning is free tomorrow. Does 9:30 work for you? Best, Thomas

From: Tagtow, Angela - CNPP [mailto:Angela.Tagtow@cnpp.usda.gov]
Sent: Wednesday, March 09, 2016 7:01 PM
To: Thomas Gremillion <tgremillion@consumerfed.org>
Subject: Re: Panelist info for Natl Food Policy Conference

I'll be in transit at that time but could do 10:30am. Does that work on your end? Many thanks

Angie Tagtow | Executive Director | Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion | USDA | 703.305.7600 
By the next morning, apparently Gremillion had gotten his marching orders:
From: Thomas Gremillion [mail to: tgremillion@consumerfed.org]
Sent: Thursday, March 10, 2016 9:39 AM
To: Margo Wootan; bmillen@bu.edu; Tagtow, Angela - CNPP
Cc: spitman@foodminds.com
Subject: RE: Panelist info for Natl Food Policy Conference

Hello again,

In light of the feedback I have received from all of the panelists expressing concern about the change in the tenor of the discussion that would result from adding Ms. Teicholz, we are going to go with a different fourth panelist (or possibly only the three panelists).

I will let you know when/if we confirm someone.

Thank you all for reaching out to me with your feedback. Best, 
Thomas
On Mar 10, 2016, at 9:40 AM, Thomas Gremillion <tgremillion@consumerfed.org> wrote to Angela.Tagtow@cnpp.usda.gov:

Just talked with Nina and gave her the news. Let me know if you would still like to talk at 10:30. Thanks, Thomas
But those marching orders apparently didn't come from Tagtow:
From: Tagtow, Angela - CNPP
Sent: Thursday, March 10, 2016 9:53 AM
To: Thomas Gremillion
Subject: Re: Panelist info for Natl Food Policy Conference

Hi Thomas, thank you for addressing the concerns. No, we do not need to visit today. If you are looking for an industry panelist, Philippe Caradec from Danon [sic] has a compelling story on product reformulation. Best, Angie

Angie Tagtow, MS, RD, LD
Executive Director | Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion
United States Department of Agriculture
3101 Park Center Drive, Suite 1034 | Alexandria, VA 22302
703.305.7600 | angela.tagtow@cnpp.usda.gov
A couple of weeks later, it got even more interesting
From: Nina Teicholz [mailto:teicholz@gmail.com]
Sent: Tuesday, March 29, 2016 8:16 PM
To: Tagtow, Angela - CNPP
Subject: CFA Food Policy panel

Dear Angie,

I hope this finds you well.

I guess you know by now that a fan of mine started a petition to reinstate me to the food policy panel from which I was disinvited, and there are now nearly 3,000 signers.

Although you and I may have differing views about how nutrition science has been translated into policy, I'm sure we agree that good science (and thus, good policy) requires open debate. Given the continued rising tide of obesity and diabetes, shouldn't there a frank discussion about different ideas about possible causes and solutions?

And if you believe I've made mistakes in my analysis, then isn't this something to raise in a panel discussion? Thomas Gremillion told me that you, along with the two other panel members, refused to participate if I were included. If that is not true, please let me know.

The question is now how to repair a situation where it appears the government is shutting down discussion. I don't know if you would support inviting me back on the panel, but it seems that this would be the right thing to do. I look forward to hearing back from you.

All best regards,

Nina Teicholz

From: Tagtow, Angela - CNPP [mailto:Angela.Tagtow@cnpp.usda.gov]
Sent: Wednesday, March 30, 2016 12:33 PM
To: Nina Teicholz <teicholz@gmail.com>
Cc: Thomas Gremillion <tgremillion@consumerfed.org>
Subject: RE: CFA Food Policy panel

Good Afternoon Nina,

Thank you for your email and for reaching out. As I hope you’ve experienced with us to date, CNPP is open to hearing all points of view and believes it’s an important part of our process, especially as it relates to nutrition science.

I want to be clear, no one here at CNPP, or within USDA, contacted Thomas to decline participation in the panel after he sent an update saying CFA had identified a fourth speaker – you, at the time. Please feel free to confirm that with Thomas, cc’d here.

That said, let me take this opportunity to correct misinformation you may have received. First, it was my understanding from Thomas’ initial invitation and updates along the way was that – in keeping with the discussion being about going from science to policy to implementation – my role was to address how USDA implements the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Second, it was my understanding that the fourth speaker was to be a member of the food industry with a perspective on product reformulations related to the Dietary Guidelines (see below for reference). To that point, I had not received any indication from Thomas that the focus of the session, or my role, had changed to include a debate about nutrition science.

Nina, I am simply an invited panelist. I would not make it my or CNPP’s place to supersede the decisions of CFA on session objectives or who the organization chooses for its panel speakers.

I hope this helps clarify any misunderstanding you may have on this panel session. Again, thank you for reaching out.

Best regards, Angie

On Wed, Mar 30, 2016 at 1:26 PM, Thomas Gremillion <tgremillion@consumerfed.org> wrote:
Good afternoon Nina and Angie,

Angie thank you for including me in this discussion. Everything you have said below is accurate. Nina, I apologize again for my error in extending you an invitation to appear on this panel. As you can see on our website, we now have a full roster of speakers for this panel and we do not intend to change the panel makeup.

Best wishes, Thomas

From: Nina Teicholz [mailto:teicholz@gmail.com]
Sent: Thursday, March 31, 2016 12:13 AM
To: Thomas Gremillion
Cc: Tagtow, Angela - CNPP
Subject: Re: CFA Food Policy panel

Dear Thomas and Angie,

Thanks for your emails. I'm truly sorry to cause you any distress, but there is a strong sense, now shared by some 3500 people, including many scientists and MDs, who signed a petition on my behalf, that I should not have been disinvited from the panel. What prevents from adding another chair to the discussion?

Angie, I'm glad to hear that you had no objection to my participating. My inclusion would serve the purpose of addressing one of the intended topics of the panel, which was (from the text you sent below), "claims that food policy is not keeping up with the latest nutrition science." This point of view unfortunately does not appear to be represented on the now-revised panel. My inclusion would also arguably fill the consumer advocacy position, since CSPI is so close to the government on these particular issues.

The appearance of silencing debate on important issues cannot be in anyone's favor. A better solution would be to appear open to different points of view in the spirit of improving policy so that people might suffer less from nutrition-related diseases. And if "alternative" views on nutrition are wrong and misguided, what better opportunity than a discussion to quell any doubts? I am hopeful, still, that you might reconsider.

My thanks. All best, Nina
Via Tagtow's March 9 e-mail to Gremillion:
I would like to visit with you tomorrow about USDA's concerns about this change of course for this panel presentation.
Among other questions, on behalf of the USDA, did Tagtow help get Teicholz kicked off the panel?

Presumably the best person to answer that question would be USDA Inspector General Phyllis K. Fong.

Another question. Does Barbara Millen have any 'splainin' to do for her conduct?

If any readers get involved, I'd welcome being looped in. Click here for my contact info.

Here's the nine-page pdf of all the e-mails USDA provided in response to my FOIA request, formatted to start with page four when Teicholz was invited. For clarity, I did some very minor re-formatting and arranged them chronologically. (USDA provided some e-mails without complete headers -- I have a follow-up request in for those. If/when I receive, I'll update this item and the pdf.)




This has been slightly revised. Near the top of the item I added that I obtained the e-mails via a FOIA request to USDA.

Why is a UK hospital offering dubious "energy therapies"? Belfast blogger and I have asked UK oversight agency


Last Monday, my Belfast, Northern Ireland, blogging buddy Dean Sterling Jones and I co-signed and co-blogged a request for a review of dubious medical treatments being offered by a Liverpool hospital. We filed our request with the Care Quality Commission (CQC), "the independent regulator of health and social care in England."

Via  People’s Experiences of the Health Psychology Service at Walton Hospital, Derbyshire County Community Health Services

Today we filed a similar request with the CQC re: Derbyshire Community Health Services which is apparently offering “Neuro-Linguistic Programming,” “energy therapies,” and “Emotional Freedom Technique,” treatments discussed in the post Mental Help: Procedures to Avoid by retired psychiatrist Stephen Barrett MD, founder and proprietor of Quackwatch.com.