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Re-evaluation of the traditional diet-heart hypothesis: analysis of recovered data from Minnesota Coronary Experiment (1968-73)

BMJ 2016; 353 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.i1246 (Published 12 April 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;353:i1246

Re: Re-evaluation of the traditional diet-heart hypothesis: analysis of recovered data from Minnesota Coronary Experiment (1968-73)

There may still be a confounding variable in this study. In 1978, a researcher on aflatoxins in grains told me that the USDA or FDA (been a long time) was allowing farmers in places like Georgia where mold in corn is not unusual to sell corn heavily contaminated with aflatoxin that was unfit for animal feed, even diluted, to be used for corn oil extraction for human consumption. The idea was that the proteins and aflatoxin from mold in the corn was separated out in the oil extraction. The researcher went on to tell me that at that time the assays used for aflatoxin did not work in a high oil sample, so obviously you would not find it: a catch-22. That no protein would remain in extracted oil would put in question why people who eat food cooked in peanut oil would or could have anaphylaxis or death (the son of a friend of mine died from eating a donut in an Amsterdam bar cooked in peanut oil). Is it possible for low levels of these toxins to produce enough inflammation over time to produce the results in a high corn oil diet?

Competing interests: No competing interests

23 April 2016
Jean Ikeson
retired
Dundas, ON Canada L9H 5E2