Despite a growing body of evidence to the contrary, the dietary guidelines of the American Heart Association (AHA) and American Diabetes Association (ADA) promote high-carb, low-fat diets to reduce the risks for cardiovascular disease and diabetes. But a closer look at those who fund these organizations reveals corporations with a vested interest in maintaining the current dietary guideline regime.
The fact that both of these organizations have been resistant to updating their recommendations in light of new, legitimate scientific evidence could simply reflect their unwavering devotion to beliefs they have promoted for decades. Or it could be due to their significant, longstanding reliance on funding from these interested industries.
Specifically, these organizations are funded by pharmaceutical companies who develop medical devices and drugs aimed at treating heart disease and diabetes and food producers whose products contain high levels of carbohydrates and low-nutritional value as well as the retail companies that sell these products.
For instance, the vegetable-oil manufacturer Procter & Gamble, maker of Crisco, which virtually launched the AHA as a nation-wide powerhouse in 1948 by designating the then-needy group to receive all the funds from a radio contest it sponsored (about $17 million). More recently, Bayer, the owner of LibertyLink soybeans, pledged up to $500,000 to the AHA, perhaps encouraged by the group’s continued support of soybean oil, by far the dominant ingredient in the “vegetable oil” consumed in America today.