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Historical Event

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July 8, 1964

Short Description:




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Mann describes how dairy fat and meat were eaten by Masai leading to a paradox.





Cardiovascular Disease in the Masai

George V. Mann


Important Text:

"These studies, like those of SHAPER among the Samburu and of GSELL AND MAYER among the mountain Swiss show no support for the contention that a large intake of dairy fat and meat necessarily causes either hypercholesterolemia or coronary heart disease. Indeed, if such dietary habits are causes of hypercholesterolemia, atherosclerosis and clinical cardiovascular disease, one must invoke overriding protective mechanisms among the Masai. It cannot be a failure to reach the susceptible age. We should have found coronary heart disease among the 233 Masai men examined who were 30 years or over if the prevalence rate is near that of American men."


A field survey of 400 Masai men and additional women and children in Tanganyika indicates little or no clinical or chemical evidence for atherosclerosis. Despite a long continued diet of exclusively meat and milk the men have low levels of serum cholesterol and no evidence for arteriosclerotic heart disease. The reasons for this disagreement with the popular hypothesis relating animal fat intake to coronary disease are examined. The authors concede that some overriding protective mechanism such as freedom from emotional stress or abundance of physical exercise may be present. They favor the conclusion that diet fat is not responsible for coronary disease.

Topics: (click image to open)

Heart Disease
Heart disease, also known as cardiovascular disease, refers to a range of conditions that affect the heart and blood vessels. It is a broad term that encompasses various conditions, including coronary artery disease, heart failure, arrhythmias, and valvular heart diseases, among others. Heart disease is a leading cause of death worldwide.
Anthropology is the scientific study of humans, human behavior, and societies in the past and present. It is a broad discipline that encompasses various subfields, including cultural anthropology, biological anthropology, linguistic anthropology, and archaeology. Anthropologists seek to understand the full range of human diversity, from our biological origins to our cultural practices and social structures.
Fat is a term used to describe a group of compounds known as lipids, which are organic molecules made up of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen atoms. Fats are an essential part of our diet and play important roles in our bodies. Animal fats with low linoleic and arachidonic acids are preferred.
Carnivore Diet
The carnivore diet involves eating only animal products such as meat, fish, dairy, eggs, marrow, meat broths, organs. There are little to no plants in the diet.
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