FEATURE: High Protein Diets – BEWARE!

There has been a craze sweeping across America, Britain and the rest of Europe over the past several years, both for a slimming diet and a diet being ‘prescribed’ for diabetic patients – its called the high-protein diet. I wanted to point out that firstly this diet can be fatal, and that secondly it will not promote slimming or diabetes control in the long-run, in fact, on the contrary! It will lead only to further ill-health.

It is a fact that most people in this country are slowly and some cases quickly dying from malnutrition – that’s poor nutrition. They overfeed on high-protein foods at the expense of carbohydrate foods and this, in turn, leads to heart disease, cancer, diabetes, etc., etc. I repeat, most people in the Western world have an excess of protein (and fatty) foods, in the form of animal proteins usually.

According to the PCRM, though these high-protein, low carbohydrate plans differ in details, they share some common claims:

Myth 1:If we eat too many carbohydrates, we’ll have too much insulin in our bodies. Excess insulin places us in what one writer calls ‘carbohydrate hell’; The result is supposedly increased risk for heart disease, cancer, arthritis, and a host of other health problems.

Myth 2:Human beings originally enjoyed a diet that was high in protein. Our bodies are genetically to this way of eating.

Myth 3:You can lose weight quickly and permanently by consuming more protein and eating fewer carbohydrates.

These diets therefore advocate a high animal-protein diet, rich in all flesh foods, eggs and milk, etc., but low in carbohydrate foods like fruits and vegetables.

The Facts
High-protein foods are likely to be high in cholesterol and saturated fats – substances that can promote heart disease and various cancers. Weight loss from high-protein diets comes at first from losing water. However, long-term weight control means losing fat, a goal that calls for changing eating habits over time and from taking more exercise. On high protein diets people can temporarily lose large amounts of weight, and can even lower their blood cholesterol, sugar, and triglycerides, says John McDougall, M.D., but the method is unhealthy. On a very low-carbohydrate diet, like the Atkins diet, the body burns fat, and byproducts of this are ketones, which suppress the appetite and can cause nausea. McDougall points out this same condition of ketosis occurs when people are ill; so they are freed to rest and recuperate, rather then be forced by hunger to gather and prepare food – because they simulate a state seen with serious illness.

These diets contain significant amounts of the very foods, i.e. meats, that the American and British cancer societies and heart associations tell us contribute to our most common causes of death and disability. The reason blood cholesterol, sugar, and triglycerides may be reduced on high protein diets is that people are eating much less because of their loss of appetite, and sometimes nausea. In general benefits are temporary because it is too unpleasant to be sick – so people go back to their old way of eating!

I, of course, would be the first to agree that yes, you can manipulate symptoms through diet but I would qualify that manipulation is not the same as healing and furthermore, it does not address the cause of the problem. Protein has such a high profile – courtesy of the meat and dairy industries, of course. Of course, we know that certain individuals who eat carbohydrates experience a sudden drop in blood sugar. These symptoms include lethargy and fatigue, poor concentration, mood swings, “foggy” brain, misperceptions, panic attacks, hot and cold sweats, and heart palpitations. We believe that the cause of this could be an inappropriate insulin response – too much insulin being secreted bringing the blood sugar levels down too much. So these sufferers are recommended to eat high protein/low carbohydrate diets. The symptoms will abate, according to Kathryn Alexander of the Gerson Institute because protein doesn’t stimulate such a strong insulin release as carbohydrate. But, continuing a high-protein diet is what caused the diabetes on the first place, and continuing will not make us any healthier, in fact, quite the contrary!

The new wave of “hyper-insulinaemia” where we have moved on from hypo-glycaemia (low blood sugar) to high amounts of insulin in the blood stream. Alexander argues that the symptoms appear to be more-or-less the same along with the discovery of excess insulin in the blood stream. What’s the answer? Reduce the secretion of insulin by omitting carbohydrates and increasing your protein intake. Once again manipulation of symptoms with diet – but as soon as you go back on the carbohydrates the symptoms return. Not only this – six months down the track on such a diet you start to experience new symptoms of a more chronic nature.

Good quality protein is essential for growth and tissue maintenance particularly during infancy, childhood, adolescence and pregnancy. However, excess protein creates acidity and puts a strain on the kidneys which will later affect the heart. Protein metabolism is under the control of our hormones. Insulin, growth hormone, and the sex hormones for the laying down of protein, and the corticosteroids for the breaking down of protein cortisone is the natural stress hormone, which is why one cannot heal if one is under stress as it opposes tissue synthesis and regeneration. The growth spurts from childhood through to adolescence are controlled by high levels of growth hormone and the sudden increase in sex hormones which, during puberty, rise to eight times the adult levels. Growth hormone and the sex hormones begin to fall after puberty until they reflect the stable adult levels by the early 20s.

So the health/sport professionals found that if they wanted to increase body muscle mass then it was necessary to take anabolic steroids along with a high protein intake. High protein intake on its own will not increase muscle size. Muscles store a very limited supply of protein and after this capacity is reached excess dietary protein has to be broken down and discarded. Exercising increases muscle tone and size because the more you “work” your muscles the greater their capacity to store carbohydrate fuel (not protein – muscles do not use protein for energy). Beware of the high protein message if you are seeking fitness. But the question arises, why should a person appear to have too much insulin – we can address “how” to reduce its secretion, but unless we address the why or the cause, then nothing is going to change and on a high protein diet the situation will inevitably deteriorate.

In order for the body to heal, no matter what the imbalance, it has to release its toxic load and rebuild its nutrient status. When this occurs, the vitality rises and healing begins. The body’s intelligence will determine which areas will be healed and in what order. So again we see that the answer to disease lies in a plant-based diet, not in a calorie-rich but nutrient devoid animal-based one.

It is important that, when seeking medical advice one attends an examination by a qualified medical practitioner and that, when seeking dietary advice and wishing for a change in diet and lifestyle, then one seeks the competent advice of a nutritional adviser. The author makes no claim herein this article to be curing or treating any medical condition whatsoever.

Physician’s Committee for Responsible Medicine

Dr Gina Shaw DSc MA AIYS Dip Irid Dip NH is a health and nutrition consultant and Doctor of Complementary Medicine, iridologist and fasting and detox plan supervisor. Gina has helped people recover from a plethora of acute and chronic diseases and has appeared in The Times after healing a client of Ulcerative Colitis. She has been on local radio and has lectured around the country. She is the author of several health books and offers personal and group detox and fasting retreats both in the UK and in Europe.

Follow Dr. Gina Shaw!

Dherbs Solutions:


Related Questions

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    Q: I read your article on protein. Will I lose muscle mass if I cut the protein out? I have already done away with meats and I don't want to become skinny. How do preserve my muscle tone with out taking the whey protein?

    A: You can still receive your daily required value of protein from vegetarian sources, such as avocado, almonds, and pumpkin seeds. You can also add vegan protein powder to smoothies.

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    Q: I would like to find an herbal treatment to high protein levels, I am diabetic and have that under control but I need to lower to do my job. I would like to order or pick up something what would you suggest?


    The goal should be to heal from diabetes. Look into our Pancreas Kit and Regimen and perform it at least twice a year.

    To lower high protein levels, cut out meat and dairy products (or greatly lower them), and give our Kidney-Bladder-Adrenal and Electric Greens Cell Food  a try.

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    Q: I have read about your detox system on your site and others. Here is the product that I am thinking about purchasing: Full Body Detox I have some questions... 1) Is there a diet plan or eating plan that comes with this order? and 2) I have 100 pounds to lose and am thinking about going on the Medifast plan. That is a high (vegetable) protein diet with no fruit and not a lot of vegetables allowed. Would these supplements in the detox plan help my organs that might be taxed a bit on this diet with very little vegetables and no fruit? I am skeptical about #2...I think raw fruits and vegetables are so important inour diets, yet, I do need to drop weight fast. I look forward to any thoughts that you might have.


    Yes, the Full Body Cleanse comes with a dietary regimen prescribing an all-raw foods diet (fruits, vegetables, raw nuts and seeds). This means no meat, dairy, grains, or processed foods.

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    A: The cleanse is still okay for you to do. Some people experience difficulties digesting capsules after having the procedure. If this applies to you we recommend doing the Liquid Version of the Full Body Cleanse. The capsules are always more potent however. You do have the option of emptying the contents of the capsules into freshly squeezed juices, smoothies or herbal teas.

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    Q: What is the best supplement (protein or herbal) to take to help build muscle for strength training and bodybuilding? All these protein powders on the market I've stopped taking because of all the sugar, whey and casinete; among other weight (fat) inducing ingredients.


    Try Vegan Protein on our site. It's all natural and 100% absorbable! You'll find it beneficial. There's a capsule and a powdered version. Take both if you're really into protein.

    Spirulina is the BEST individual natural source of protein (75% bio-protein)!

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    Q: Good morning. I tried the WEIGHT RELEASE CLEANSE AND REGIMEN and followed the diet. I must say that I am amazed at how good I feel. Energetic and focused but alas, I only lost 3 pounds in the 3 weeks. I am 5'5 and currently at 181 pounds. My body is extremely resistant to weight loss. I have done several different types of detox including the IZO juice cleanse in the last year and had not lost weight. I don't even seem to respond to a very low calorie diet. I do have elevated liver Enzyme levels and a recent blood test showed low B6 vitamin and not proper protein digestion. I exercise 3 times a week and I eat rather health and mostly organic. Please HELP. Thanks


    This means that your body focused on another area that was of more importance than weight release. your mind wanted weight reduction but your body intelligence focused on something else. Go with the flow of the body intelligence and trust it. You apparently have an energetic block that prevents you from physically releasing weight (since you've tried other programs). Consider scheduling a consultation so we can get at the energetic/emotional root of your problem. Simply stop worrying about "losing" weight. Focus on what you desire (to see yourself in the size you desire). Don't focus on what you don't want (i.e. to lose weight).

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    Q: Hi, I am a 59 yr old female who has diabetes and weighs aprox. 425 lbs. I also have Lymphedema along with a bad case of tendonitis in my left rotator cuff, as well as kidney disease. That being said, I guess I am a mess! I have tried loose weight and eat normal but after all these years I am asking myself, "what is normal"? I have been thinking about going on a raw food diet but, have no idea where to start! I know it includes salads but, I am sure I will get board quickly eating just that. I also am wondering what does one eat for breakfast other then fruit of which I have to be very careful of because I am a brittle diabetic and am on insulin. I am so tired of failing and want to succeed this time! I want to be able to walk and stand for long periods of time and be independent again. I do have an under-active thyroid and am currently taking 137 mic. of thyroid. Can you send me some information on an anti inflammatory, low protein,low carb. diet? Thank you.


    I can definitely help you! 

    I run an online vegan health/fitness/nutriton program over skype at www.theveganeffect.com. I have coached many to their best health and have reversed all of the problems you have. Please check out the site!

    Let's go through them one by one shall we? Lymph-edema is a build up of fluid. Your lymphatic system like your liver and kidney are your bodies garbage men. When toxicity gets to overwhelming your garbage men go on strike or are just overwhelmed. You should do a cleanse/detox and do exercises that stimulate the lymphatic system. The best would be a mini trampoline. Just 15 minutes a day goes far. Lympedema is healed by a high alkaline diet. Increasing greens and fruits while decreasing dairy, meat, alcohol, salt, and processed food.

    Tendonitis can be healed also by an anti-inflammatory diet . Increasing berries and greens while decreasing dairy, meat, salt, and alcohol. 

    Thyroid can be repaired also by an alkaline diet and detox. You can find a thyroid support formula at dherbs.com.

    Diabetes is reversed using a low fat raw vegan diet. In 30 days you can completely get off insulin if you cut out the fat and get on a high carb raw vegan diet. The only programs who are actually reversing diabetes are using the same protocol as my program. I do not do a low carb diet especially when reversing diabetes. None of the programs healing your condition do either. Diabetes is not a carb issue but a fat issue. Fat coats your cells and blocks the sugar insulin connection. A low carb diet is a high fat diet and will only manage your condition at best.

    The first of many ebooks I will write for Dherbs is titled "Go Vegan the Healthy Way!" It is being edited nowe and hopefully soon it will be available at a low cost. Look for it on Dherbs. I will email you when it is available as well.

    A typical detox raw food program looks like this


    Green smoothie: 1 1/2- 2 cups water / 1 cup greens / 3-5 medium pieces of fruit blended.

    (see "Green Smoothie Revolution" Boutenko for more info)


    Bridge: 2-3 medium sized fruits



    Raw Wraps: collard greens as wraps/ tomato, cucumber, bell pepper / fresh herbs / Sauce (salsa/tahini/guacamole/ etc))


    Bridge:2-3 medium pieces of fruit



    Raw pasta: Zuchini sliced with a potato peeler / veggies / Homemade pasta sauce made in blender 


    Snack: Sorbet: Blended frozen fruit in a blender


    Hope this helps,

    Gary Gibson HHC CPT BMI VLC

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    Q: For about 2.5 months I have been on the path of taking care of my temple (body). I am more dedicated than I have been in the past. One I was diagnose with so-called diabetes (type II) took the pills (made me sicker than I was) and now my doctor has stressed taking insulin injections. Which I am totally against it. Since I have been taking the Pancreas formula, changed my diet (no meats, juicing, fresh fruits, green veggies (organic))& vigorous exercise (cardio), my A1c has gone from 10.9 to 8.6(should be 6.5) in the span of 2mths. Glucose 137 (should be 70-125) has been high as 238 and higher. However, my doctor insist that my diabetes is not controlled, and will not get better because the pancreas function in type2 diabetics declines as time goes on. Therefore, insulin injection will deter kidney failure, heart attack, body amputations, and blindness. I know our emotions help with the conditions of the disease body. What can I do to continue to lower blood sugars to a healthy level? Lower trigylcerides and cholesterol(lower in the last two months)? My blood pressure is 122/80.


    Performing the Pancreas kit and regimen as much and as often as you can and you'll get your desired results.

    Great maintenance formulas include CIRCUL-AID, PANCREAS FORMULA, SUGAR BUSTER, and BIO-INSULIN.

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    Q: I have been experiencing diabetes for 14 years, using insulin twice daily along with another diabetes control pill (januvia). This has all been to no avail as I continue to suffer from the disease along with hypertension. As someone who has practiced spiritual principles for many, many years, I feel that I am pretty much in tune with my True Spirit. However, I realize that my eating habits and the use of medications are aiding in the continuance of the seeming illness. I would love to try your product but I have for many years suffered from a lost of control of appetite. The only program that has ever really helped to decrease my appetite was Atkins diet, which is near impossible to stay with. I lost weight and the sugars decreased. However, I was not able to continue eating only meats and virtually no fruit or veggies and therefore gained all the weight back. I even has a lap band inserted, which did nothing for the decrease of my appetite and I consequently found foods to eat which would go through the band. Please help!!


    Your situation is psychological and emotional in nature. Our Pancreas kit will greatly assist you (physically) in healing from diabetes. Please read our "Diabetes" article to better understand this insidious disease. You have work to do within, Beloved!

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    Q: What do you tell someone that believes that eating meat is better than eating products not made of meat such as wheat pasta, brown rice, etc. My wife eats way too much meat, and she always says that she needs it for the protein. She doesn't work out or exercise regularly so I see it as just an excuse to continue the same old behavior. She's 5'6" and 205lbs and I think she should weigh 140 - 145 max. She's 43 years old and suffers from high blood pressure and swelling in the legs.


    We provide you with all the ammo you need in our free articles. Read the articles WHAT IS MEAT?, PROTEIN PROPAGANDA, THE DANGERS OF EATING MEAT, etc. You'll have all the ammo you need to counteract or retort any meat-eater's argument about eating dead animal flesh!

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    Q: Is necessary to continue food combining after completing FULL BODY DETOX in 20 Days? For example can you consume sweet fruit with sub acid & acid fruit also starches and vegetable (beans) proteins together? I learned in Nutrition that starches (rice) and beans are complete protein when combined together that our body needs. Are you at risk for protein deficiency if consuming vegan diet?



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    Q: I just purchased the Pancreas Kit for children, for my 4 year old who was diagnosed with type one diabetes. I have been feeding her a raw diet of just vegetables. The diet includes no dairy, no grains, and fruit for a week. I also started the Pancreas kit last week too. I was wondering if there is any reason why her blood sugar levels would go up? All she is eating is veggies, and her sugar levels are at 300 most of the time. Even if she doesn't eat anything, it still goes up to 300. I also know it says you cannot tell us not to give, or not to give her insulin, or not. I am still currently giving it to her. Does the pancreas kit work just as well if the are receiving insulin or not? Or does it hinder the process?. I would really appreciate other advise you would offer. Thanks so much!


    Drugs and herbs don't mix! They cancel each other out. The blood sugar will go up and down due to the body attempting to regulate, and normalize the blood sugar levels. Perfectly normal! It's called "healing crisis. Whatever you guys choose to do, simply keep monitoring the person. Ask the person how he/she feels (very important).

    Healing Crisis

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    Q: What do you recommend for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, high sugar level (not diabetic yet). I need help with excess weight and lack of energy.


    We recommend you perform our Full Body Cleanse. The cleanse will help eliminate toxins, balance your weight, and restore your body to its optimal state.

    After the cleanse, order CARDIOVASCULAR FORMULA, CHOLESTEROL FORMULA, BOWEL MOTION, and SUGAR CONTROL to maintain the healthy progress you have made.

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    Q: I am a 55 year old female. I have an overactive bladder. I am trying to control it myself, without medication. I have not tried herbs. I eat fruits, vegetables, grains and proteins (not beef or pork). I added back more meat proteins 1 1/2 years ago because I was becoming so tired and lacking energy. (I read The Schwartzbein Diet, which helped convince me to add more protein.) I don't eat much sugar, salt (only 500 mg./day) or hardly any processed foods. I drink water and licorice tea, because it makes me feel good. I believe in the power of positive thinking. Can you help me with this?


    The steps you are taking in your diet are a great start. Try going raw, and eliminating grains and meat altogether. You can get enough protein and healthy fats with avocado, pumpkin seeds, chia seeds, almonds, brazil nuts, coconut. You can also add Vegan Protein Powder to smoothies.

    I also recommend you give our Full Body Cleanse a try to further detoxify your entire body. After detoxing, the ideal formula for you is our Kidneys Bladder-Adrenal formula.

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    Q: My friend is pregnant with her first child and she is due in six weeks. She has an extreme case of high blood pressure and signs of high protein. What would you suggest she take to help lower her blood pressure?


    Oh wow! Have her take Eklampein Formula and Cardio-Vascular Formula . Sounds like she has Eclampsia. Please read our article on â€Eclampsia†under articles on our site.

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    Q: I recently completed the Full Body Detox, which I loved. Now, 2 months later, I am very interested in the weight release program. Last year, I lost 40 lbs in 8 months, in the most healthy way (good nutrition and exercise). This year, I slowly started gaining weight back, and 1 year later, I continue to gain weight much more quickly. I am still working out regularly, and eating well. Would you recommend the Weight Release Kit? I am looking to take off 20 lbs at the most. Is that realistic for this formula? However, I want to build muscle and strength as well. Can I maintain the results of the program with the directed nutrition plan, and add white meat for protein (chicken, turkey, tuna). I am also wondering if the formulas simply release excess weight, or can I expect to lose inches and lower my body fat percentage? Thanks for your time and dedication to natural health!


    Glad to hear about your success with the Full Body Detox!

    I would highly recommend the Weight Release Kit and Regimen. NO MEAT though! Try vegan alternatives if you must have something - but no meats!

    You will release weight (waste)! Your weight is nothing but waste!

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    Q: I just ordered the FULL BODY DETOX and I know there's a dietary regimen that I will have to follow. I was wondering if you would approve of a protein shake that consist of (raw hemp protein powder, raw almond butter, sea salt, flax seed, 100% young coconut water & meat inside the coconut, raw carob powder,) (optional soy or rice milk or soy or rice cream)


    Doesn't sound like it will mess up your FULL BODY DETOX. Go for it! But leave out the rice/soy cream! The rice milk is okay (but it is processed/cooked)!

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    Q: Which are the best fruits and vegetables that promote weight loss during the detox and should the nuts be excluded? Do I need a combination of protein, carbohydrates and fats in order to lose substantially and if so, are there fruits and vegetables in these categories and is there possibly a limit to certain ones?


    All fruits and vegetables help to tone you to the weight you desire. Why exclude nuts? Weight comes from meat, dairy products, refined products, etc. Not natural foods! Don't worry about protein, carbs, etc. It creates confusion! Real food doesn't cause problems. Let all the dietary confusion go and you will be fine!

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    Q: I work out at the gym at 6am till 7:30am hard six days a week. Since I'm eating raw foods while detoxing, what will help me keep up that same intensity in the gym. Will protein bars or protein powder help? Maybe you can recommend something? Thank you!



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    Q: I have the alternative diet and lifestyle manual and want to make sure that this applies to the respiratory condition as well. Can I have the rice bread with no gluten or wheat? or rice pasta being that I have sarcoid? Can I eat cold water fish or venison in small portions along with veggies? What about rice or soy milk or protein whey shake for breakfast once or twice a week? Thank you once again my breathing has improved greatly and I have ordered many more supplies to maintain what I have accomplished thus far due to your regimen. I am not a vegetarian so I want to make sure it is okay to have white meats. I will do whatever I have to do to live. I love and appreciate everything you have done to change and help me to heal myself.


    The manual applies when you are FINISHED with a cleanse or kit. Follow the regimen's diet. It clearly states NO COOKED FOOD. You are asking us about cooked food here. Stick to the diet plan and you will be alright! You are asking about foods no good for your condition. Whey is crap. Meat is no good. Grains are no good for you as well. They all produce too much mucus!