Diabetes as profit center, a shame like tobacco

American Diabetic Association Chokes on its Own Double-Talk

It’s no secret the drug companies have Congress in the palm of their hand, spending more than $750 million on lobbying–more than any other special-interest group. Yet these handouts from various groups in corporateAmerica, aimed at justifying a point of view that can severely devastate the public’s health, extend farther than Congress …

For instance, the recent $1 million alliance between the American Diabetic Association (ADA) and Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages to support the association in its efforts to fight obesity and diabetes inAmerica is a prime example. Though, when push came to shove, theADA fumbled on its own words in a discussion between Dr. Richard Kahn, theADA’s chief scientific and medical officer, and the Corporate Crime Reporter (CCR).

Getting to the Bottom of It

While the exchange between Kahn and the CCR was certainly intriguing–shedding light on why theADAaccepts money from big corporate donors–one particular bout in the conversation was worth addressing:

CCR: Would you take money from the sugar industry?


CCR: If there were no strings attached?

KAHN: If there were absolutely no strings attached and they couldn’t announce that they were doing it, and they are not putting our name and logo on something, you would have to say yes. I’m giving you all of the qualifications.

CCR: What about if they were allowed to put out a press release saying — we’re giving $2 million to the American Diabetes Association, but they can’t use the logo?

KAHN: Let’s not take hypotheticals. You could say — would you take $2 million from the gun lobby?

CCR: But guns don’t have anything to do with diabetes. Sugar does have something to do with diabetes.

KAHN: What?

What is the evidence that sugar itself has anything to do with diabetes? There is no evidence.

CCR: There is no evidence that sugar has anything to do with diabetes?

KAHN: None. There is not a shred of evidence that sugar per se has anything to do with getting diabetes.

Later in the interview, the CCR again addresses the sugar issue, saying:

CCR: Let’s go over this again. If the sugar industry came to you and said — here is two million dollars, no strings attached, you would take that money?

KAHN: Not the pure sugar industry. If they are selling bags of sugar, that doesn’t satisfy our food guidelines.

CCR: They are not going to put theADA label on anything.

KAHN: They are going to promote the fact that they gave us money.

In the Cadbury case, we have only allowed them to associate their name and ours with diet colas. We think it will be much easier to move the country away from other foods into foods with reduced calories than it will be to just simply to ban the stuff people want and won’t give up. They want it with a passion.

Finally, when the CCR hits a core point about diet drinks and artificial sweeteners, the response is, to say the least, shocking:

CCR: You are pushing diet drinks. Some people say that some artificial sweeteners are unsafe.

What’s your take?

KAHN: I don’t think that there is any artificial sweetener on the market that has been shown to be unsafe.

It appears the sad reality, based on the interview, is that even some of the most well-known health organizations in the world are clueless about promoting good health when it comes to protecting their donors.

Corporate Crime Reporter May 16, 2005 (Free Full-Text Article)

Dr. Mercola’s Comment:

I highlighted the statements by the chief scientific and medical officer for the American Diabetes Association (ADA), and I could NOT believe what I was reading.

The ADA chief medical officer simply does not believe that sugar OR artificial sweeteners have anything to do with diabetes. This can only mean one thing in my view–that this person has sacrificed his integrity for some type of payment.

Nearly everyone reading this newsletter understands the relationship between sugar and diabetes. In fact, my guess is that nearly anyone who has finished fifth grade has this base understanding.

Most of you understand the role insulin and leptin play in sugar metabolism.

If the ADA chief is not on the take, then his delusional ineptitude is quite remarkable indeed. I am still stunned and find it incredibly hard to believe that any physician would state this in public. These types of grossly misleading statements by a supposed expert should be grounds for civil and criminal penalties.

It is this type of moronic nonsense that is contributing to the epidemics of diabetes and obesity that this country is facing. The ADA is not doing one shred of good by promoting this type of misinformation.

If you ever see any request for donations for the ADA, please wake up and inform your friends and family, as with these types of statements and behavior they are actually worsening the plight of diabetics–not improving it.

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