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VeganThink

Dr. John McDougall Tries to Explain the Death of Steve Jobs

By Dr. Kaayla T. Daniel, Ph.D., C.C.N. via Psychology Today

apple jobsSteve Jobs lived more than 30 years after developing pancreatic cancer thanks to his vegan diet.

That’s the preposterous claim made by Dr. John McDougall in a lecture that has been viewed by more than 52,500 people on YouTube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=81xnvgOlHaY  and widely touted in the vegan community as a scientifically sound example of VeganThink.

McDougall speculates that Jobs first developed cancer in his twenties, which might well be the case given that most cancers develop years before diagnosis.  But by that line of thinking, anyone diagnosed with cancer who has made it to mid life could be living thirty years past the initial cancer cell divide.  Most of those people will have been on Standard American Diets, high in sugar, starch, factory-farmed animal products and all American junk food.  Somehow McDougall holds that animal products caused those cancers but Jobs’s nearly lifelong obsession with veganism could only have prolonged his life!

So why did Jobs develop cancer despite what McDougall himself concedes was a “strict vegan diet” with few lapses over his lifetime?  1108 McDougall’s position — and he’s sticking to it!  —   is vegan diets prevent and cure cancer.   Therefore, it must have been bad luck — the equivalent of “being struck by lightning” or “hit by a car” –  that caused Jobs’s cancer and fueled its progression.  How else to explain the fact that Steve Wozniak (an overweight fast-food junkie), Bill Gates and other computer pioneers are alive despite similar exposure to carcinogenic lead and cadmium from soldering computer parts, long-term bombardment from radiation and EMFs, and other lifestyle risk factors that would have put all of them at increased risk for cancer?   The reason those things caused cancer in Jobs but not the others must have been luck of the draw because Jobs’s vegan diet “could only have helped him.”

None of us, of course, can say for certain what caused the pancreatic cancer that led to Steve Jobs’s death, or what, if anything could have saved him.   Dietary, lifestyle, environmental and genetic factors all must have come into play.   But McDougall’s failure to even consider the role that Jobs’s vegan diet –  and frequent fruitarianism — may have played in his death is unhelpful at best and irresponsible at worst.

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