A new documentary produced by Joaquin Phoenix is coming under fire from doctors and scientists over its bold claims about the adverse effects of consuming eggs and meat.
A recent arrival on Netflix, What the Health asserts that eating one egg per day is equivalent to smoking five cigarettes and consuming a single portion of processed meat increases the risk of diabetes by 51 per cent.
These facts are listed on the documentary’s homepage, along with links to sources from medical journals but a handful of venerable doctors and scientists recently spoke out to the British press, saying that these sources can’t be trusted.
Alexandra Freeman, the executive director of the Winton Centre for Risk and Evidence Communication, told the Times UK that the statistic about eggs is from ‘an extremely controversial paper,’ while a cancer researcher named Alice Howarth remarks: ‘What the Health overwhelms the viewer with scaremongering ‘facts’ which do not hold up to scientific investigation.’
As for the meat-diabetes connection, that statistic comes from one journal that cited the relative risk of increase, not the absolute risk. Freeman notes: ‘An ‘increase’ can be made to look huge, but if it’s an increase from a tiny value to another tiny value then that puts a whole different perspective on it.’
Have you seen What the Health?