Skip to content
TC Campbell
jc3737 posted:
T.C.Campbell's reply to Denise Minger.This explains why some of The China studies stats may appear to say have correlations that are not really there.
heretk responded:
JC, I have read all Minger article back then when they were posted, all TCC's responses to them and Minger responses to TCC responses. That's why I am a bit reluctant to rehash the whole thing again.

The way to do it, is to list in points 1,2,3,... all the criticisms that Denise Minger hoisted upon the poor prof, and then sift through his responses point by point figuring out whether he did respond to a particular point or he didn't or not on topic, whether his responses were logical and factual or verbal and vacuous etc. You have to do that for your own sake and make up your mind based on that. This is the only way. One shall use logic and compare facts only, disregarding personal or emotional issues and authority, ignoring the prefixes before the names and other irrelevant attributes. (The last comment is directed for other people, not applicable to you, JC)

I don't really have a time to go through all that again but I remember that ether Chris Masterjohn, Dr. Eades or someone else have taken a trouble to do that kind of comparison. Unfortunately I don't remember where to find it.

jc3737 replied to heretk's response:
I do remember your post on that.I think it was on the McDougall forum right before Dr McDougall banned you.To bad... the debate would have been interesting.At any rate you did have a partial debate with a number of McDougall posters on this same subject.
heretk replied to jc3737's response:
Hi JC,

Here is Minger reply to Campbell response (section 3):

This is her follow up on wheat (that T.C.Campbell has completely missed) and other issues:
heretk replied to heretk's response:
Please notice that this is all old news, from 2010.

Minger original critique was 2010/07 here:

then her two responses linked in the post above, on 2010/08 and 2010/09.

I am used to reading science. I was research assistant in space research between 1981 and 1986. What struck me in T.C. Campbell's response is the lack of specific facts, data, graphs and references. His arguments are wordy not "datey" and that lack of specifics is a stark contrast his frequent hints towards acedemic posture, academic title and experience (his own or his supporters). That is particularly striking in the light of ample references and plenty of specific data presented by Minger, yet in a respectful manner by her.

Campbell's style on the other hand, gave me an impression of an angry old men annoyed by a perceived "attack" (in his mind). Perhaps it's only a matter of writing style and a flair (of which Minger's is clearly superior).

I will give you a small example of the problem with Campbell's response: [below>
heretk replied to heretk's response:
A. Not understanding the book's objectives.
The findings described in the book are not solely based on the China survey data, even if this survey was the most comprehensive (not the largest) human study of its kind. As explained in the book, I draw my conclusions from several kinds of findings and it is the consistency among these various findings that matter most.
Yes, that's why Minger (and Masterjohn in a separate critiques, see here ) have examined your other references, including your own earlier papers, and found them wanting. They described in details and refs why they think so. In contrast, Campbell has just vaguely reiterated his output without addressing none of the issues they raised and without specific references!
More quote:
First and foremost, our extensive work on the biochemical fundamentals of the casein effect on experimental cancer in laboratory animals (only partly described in our book) was prominent because these findings led to my suggestion of fundamental principles and concepts that apply to the broader effects of nutrition on cancer development.
No sir! They don't apply!
T.C. Campbell's conclusions are most likely incorrect! That's why Minger (and others) have written their critiques! All the details are discussed in her articles discussed using logic and data, for all to see. I wrote a short "executive" summary of the arguments and the issues involved for some other post, I will post it (see below).
heretk replied to heretk's response:

This note is compiled and based on two excellent blog articles (1) and (2).
The scientific data provided by Cornell University Dr. T.C. Campbell's own scientific research published years before contradicts his popular "China Study" book or its equally dubious spinoffs such the recent "Forks Over Knives" film.

It is not at al about casein being supposedly carcinogenic while whey protective, and it is not about rats being or not being representative to humans. It is not a small mistake of omission - it is a major scientific blunder!

1. Casein protects rats from high aflatoxin doses long enough to die of cancer!

The main point is that Campbell's own earlier published research with his student Appleton ( ) demonstrates clearly that casein not only IS NOT carcinogenic but in fact protects rats against dying on liver poisoning by aflatoxins, so much that instead of dying of the quickly progressing liver decay, they continue living on until they die of more slowly developing cancer (from aflatoxins!).

In a sense Campbell own research of 1983 undermines Campbells own "China Study" book pivotal conclusion!.

2. Casein protects monkeys from low doses aflatoxin even better!

Another study from India undermines that even more so:

"Effect of Low Protein Diet on Low Dose Chronic Aflatoxin B1 Induced Hepatic Injury in Rhesus Monkeys"

The study done on Rhesus monkeys, showed that the life-prolonging effect of casein under the lower more realistic doses of cancerous poison (aflatoxin) is even more pronounced than under the high nearly lethal doses used by Campbell!

3. Casein acts the same as complete plant protein negating the "animal-bad" argument!

Furthermore, Campbells thesis on the unique role of "animal" (i.e. casein) protein in his rats experiment as opposed to a null effect using plant protein, is totally negated, again by his own earlier research of 1989
where he demonstrated that wheat protein behaved like casein when lysine was added. Note: lysine is not synthesized in animals! So much for his "animal" protein thesis. Incidentally, the China study original monography
Does not correlate animal protein or animal fat with cancer or heart disease!


heretk replied to heretk's response:
(continuation of previous post).


1) Chris Masterjohn's blog:

2) Denise Minger blog:


Post Scriptum:

Question - why is that (quoting T.C. Campbell):

"Animals fed high casein diets during this period exhibited an approximate 6-fold increase in the number of foci, regardless of the level of protein fed during the earlier dosing period. The marked increase in foci number (as well as area of liver occupied) in high casein diet animals during the postdosing period is regarded as an increased tendency for tumor development."

Because a very low protein diet is not sufficient for rats to live, as witnessed by him feeding his rats 20% casein diet prior to administering aflatoxins. Very low protein diet lead to a slow tissue death including death of cancerous tissue. It does not allow cancerous cells to proliferate and it does not allow healthy tissue to grow or regenerate either.

The rapid growth of cancerous lesion is an artifact of using the sub-lethal (near-deadly) doses of aflatoxin. Probably because the cancerous nodes were already widespread but unnoticed, prior to administering the high casein. The casein (as any good nutritious food would have done) simply accelerated the growth of what was already there. Please noticed that while the low casein group did not grow cancers they still lived much shorter spans and died earlier (half of them died), than the high casein cancerous rats, most of whom lived until were killed by the scientists!

The rhesus study I quoted previously showed that at lower doses higher protein causes FEWER cancerous lesions! Because the aflatoxins doses were not as lethal, the low protein fed monkeys lived long enough to grow MORE visible cancerous lesions than the high protein monkeys whose immune system strenghtened by a better diet managed to protect them from cancer to a larger extent.

Chemotherapy drugs also do not allow cancerous tissue to grow just like the plant (wheat) protein did not, as demonstrated in one of T.C. Campbell's own paper

That does not suggest that adding chemotherapy agents as a healthy food ingredient would be a good idea!

By the same token and contrary to the logic, T.C. Campbell does advocate consuming plant protein exclusively, even though he himself acknowledged, in the above-linked paper, that they are inferior to animal proteins.


If I had to write a "sound byte" or an "executive" summary, I would put it as follows:

Poor diet = more degenerative diseases (incl cancer) and shorter life span but slower cancer growth

Spotlight: Member Stories

Long-time fan of the Diet Debate-though infrequent contributor to the discussion.

Helpful Tips

Old Discussions
You can find some of the old discussions from the original diet debate board by looking up keywords or member names using the search on the ... More
Was this Helpful?
29 of 45 found this helpful

Report Problems With Your Medications to the FDA

FDAYou are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.