The CDC (Center for Disease Control) web page falsely states that “genetic factors…have a role in causing”… obesity. https://www.cdc.gov/genomics/resources/diseases/obes

Obesity which is responsible for the diabetes epidemic kills thousands every year.  Other established medical authorities such as the Mayo Clinic and the Cleveland Clinic state on their web pages that the causes of obesity include genetics.  The CDC also says on its web page that genes do not cause the epidemic of obesity.   https://www.cdc.gov/genomics/resources/diseases/obesity/obesedit.htm

How can genes both cause and not cause our recent epidemics????

What is going on here?

The CDC and the medical profession are clearly misleading the public by confusing and conflating two different concepts. In this way they obscure and deflect our attention from the socioeconomic causes of these epidemics.

First concept—

Genetic causality: Genetic diseases are inherited mutations of a single gene in human DNA. They are quite rare according to the World Health Organization.

Genes do not cause obesity, diabetes Type 2, or opioid addiction.—“Genetic changes in the human population occur too slowly to be responsible for the obesity epidemic”.  https://www.cdc.gov/genomics/resources/diseases/obes

The “obesity epidemic can be considered a collective response to …environment”. https://www.cdc.gov/genomics/resources/diseases/obesity/obesedit.htm

This is also true for the recent epidemics of diabetes Type 2 and opioid addiction.  Confusion regarding this issue creates the illusion that these new disease epidemics are our destiny over which we have no control. External socio-economic forces which we can control are in fact the causes – a profiteering food industry along with pharmaceutical corporations and the medical profession.

Second Concept–

Our individual susceptibility, vulnerability or risk for any illness or disease, is due to many poorly understood factors, only one of which is our genes.  For example, there are over 50 genes associated with obesity, “most with very small effects”


Not everyone gets the Flu (Influenza), becomes obese, develops diabetes or an addiction to opioids. We all have differences in susceptibility, vulnerability or risk for any disease. How each person responds to the changes in the environment, only suggests that genes may play a role.

The CDC and medical establishment is clearly misleading the public by confusing and conflating two different concepts concerning genes. In this way they obscure and deflect our attention from the socioeconomic causes of these epidemics.  The medical establishment is leading us to believe illness is in our DNA, it is our destiny.  We are all victims of our DNA. https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/obesity-prevention-source/obesity-causes/genes-and-obesity/

The truth is that we are victims of capitalism and our destiny is to confront and change the socioeconomic forces that cause our modern disease epidemics.   The obesity and diabetes epidemics are caused by the profit driven food industry’s introduction of high calorie food and drink.   The opioid epidemic was caused by the criminal actions of a pharmaceutical corporation  and the criminal negligence of the medical profession.



We may have no control over our DNA, but we can and should control our environment, which is the major cause of our present epidemics. https://zcomm.org/zmagazine/genes-cancer-and-capitalism/

If profit over people capitalism is not working for us we should create another economic system that puts the people’s health first.

Dr. Nayvin Gordon  is a California Family Physician who has written many articles on Health and Politics.  He can be reached at: gordonnayvin@yahoo.com

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One Comment

  1. Sally Dugman says:

    The real rule of thumb is that if you eat garbage (such as GMO’s laden with poisons) and other junk food, you WILL assuredly have health problems.

    A few years ago, I was supposed to fast before a blood pull for a workup prior to my annual physical exam. … I remembered that my daughter ate spaghetti before each long-distance running event in high school and so I opted for that to tide me over during the fasting period before the blood workup.

    Poor choice it was. … My MD asked whether I had eaten white flour spaghetti prior to the work up. Had I had it the night beforehand. he said that I looked almost prediabetic given two separate scales and tests that were part of my workup.

    When I replied in the affirmative, he told me to stay away from the “whites.” This means corn, potatoes, sugar, white bread, white flour other products such as desserts and pasta, white rice and sugar.

    He ordered another blood workup and I came back normal that time in terms of being almost prediabetic since I had followed his orders.

    I attended a five hour long, educators’ workshop two years ago. Two of the subjects covered in it involved healthy nutrition and obesity. For example, I learned that in the U.S., obesity doubled from 1974 to 2000. Around ten percent of all U.S. children between four and five years of age are overweight. Girls tend to be overweight more than boys. One out of three children born in 2000 will develop diabetes at some point during their lives.

    –from American Academy of Pediatrics

    All considered, please keep in mind that treats do not have to involve any or much sugar. Indeed, your child’s nutrition is very important, particularly in that: “A [fairly] new study in the Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics says one out of every four youth in the U-S is diabetic or prediabetic. Moreover, the study says those that had Type 1 diabetes also had dangerous symptoms that could lead to diabetic coma or even death if untreated. … Alarmingly, children from infants to 4-years-old were more likely to have a serious diabetic condition …” — Aaron Vaughn, “Study finds one in four U.S. children diabetic, prediabetic”, May 21, 2012

    Similar information exists for childhood heart disease, excess weight and other serious risk factors. Therefore, we should try to limit daily intake of sugary drinks (even juice), excess fruit, the “whites” (white rice, white potatoes, corn and products with white flour like noodles and cookies), as well as sugary and fatty other foods like most desserts.

    In addition, we should encourage children to eat more vegetables, nuts, multigrain products and other healthy choices. Although it is okay to offer occasional sweets or fast-food products like salty chips in a bag, it is best to start a habit early-on with children to try to limit these items, as well as promote healthier choices. Thus, we can start them on a solid path to a life-long habit of making good food choices.

    Keep in mind, too, that other products in large amounts may not be good for your child – i.e., soy regardless of the form that it takes, such as in a milk alternative: “Could Eating Too Much Soy Be Bad for You?” – Scientific American.

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