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Dynamic Chiropractic – June 17, 2009, Vol. 27, Issue 13

We Get Letters & E-Mail

If Coconut Oil Is So Dangerous...

Editor's note: The following letter to the editor was solicited by Christine Farlow, DC, who was "extremely disappointed to see the article on 'Coconut Oil: A Potentially Dangerous Source of Fat' in the April 22 edition of DC."

Dear Editor:

If coconut oil is so dangerous, why is it that people who have consumed large amounts of coconut oil for thousands of years have not suffered the adverse health effects described by Dr. Meschino? In fact, the inhabitants of the South Seas, Thailand and the Philippines have low rates of heart disease (and cancer) compared to populations that do not use coconut oil regularly.

Contrary to the assertions of Meschino, coconut oil and the types of medium-chain triglycerides (MCTG) found in coconut oil have shown benefits in many published scientific studies. Established benefits include increased metabolism, effective weight loss, protection against infection (including Candida and MRSA) and enhanced brain function. MCTGs are a component of some medications for Alzheimer's and are used in enteric feeding to protect patients from endotoxins. Research is showing that the types of fatty acids found in coconut oil are involved in intercellular communication, a fact that explains the low rates of cancer in coconut oil-consuming areas of the world.

Dr. Meschino states that after the age of 5, the body can make all the saturated fat and cholesterol it needs from carbohydrates. This statement is technically correct, although reliance on carbohydrates will ultimately lead to nutrient deficiencies that will inhibit the various enzymatic mechanisms needed to make these conversions. But this begs the question of why, if the body needs and makes saturated fat and cholesterol (which it indeed needs in large amounts), the chemically identical saturated fats and cholesterol found in food are so harmful when those the body makes are so necessary? Furthermore, the body does not make the very beneficial shorter-chain saturated fats found in coconut oil.

Healthy, natural coconut oil is a victim of decades-long demonization by the vegetable oil industry, as it competes with processed and partially hydrogenated vegetable oils. What a disappointment to find this one-sided and unscientific attack in your publication.

Sally Fallon Morell
President, Weston A. Price Foundation
Author of
Eat Fat Lose Fat

Pushing Us Farther Into the Fringe

Dear Editor:

I am writing in response to the article, "Subluxation, Science and the Flat Earth Society" that appeared in the March 26 issue of DC. I feel that this type of attitude is counterproductive. Presently, less than 10 percent of the population uses the services of a chiropractor. We are already the ones viewed as being on the fringe, and most people simply don't accept the notion of subluxations.

If we are not only to survive, but also thrive in the future, I feel that in the long run it is better to start thinking mainstream. By doing so, we can begin to change the public's perception of chiropractors and gain access to the more-than 90 percent of the population that currently does not seek our services.

There is no doubt that manipulation is safe and effective for treating musculoskeletal conditions; that is something we can all agree on. We can continue to debate subluxations, but in the final analysis, we are still left with the conclusion that it is not a proven concept. (See Craig Nelson's "The Subluxation Question." Journal of Chiropractic Humanities, 1997;7:46-55.) The majority of the public and other practitioners already know this, and to argue they are real reinforces the notion that chiropractors are on the fringe.

Craig Wiens, DC, PhD
Wooster, Ohio

No Testable Definition of Subluxation

Dear Editor:

Talk about the pot calling the kettle black! Dr. Kent, in his most recent article (March 26 issue), refers to those chiropractors who question the veracity of the current definition of the subluxation as a "radical fringe." He goes on to cite "evidence" supporting the existence of the subluxation and has the temerity to say that "entire textbooks from mainstream medical publishers have addressedit."

In keeping with circuitous logic form, he cites the ACC definition of subluxation as the accepted model, I presume, for scientific testing. The ACC definition of subluxation is clearly a political definition, and certainly not a testable model for scientific purposes. We are able to scientifically evaluate outcomes related to what a chiropractor does, but we have not tested the validity of the subluxation, primarily because we do not have a definition of subluxation that would allow it!

John Ventura, DC
Assistant Clinical Professor
New York Chiropractic College

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