Curriculum Vitae

name: Neal D. Barnard M.D.
occupation: President of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine
relevance: Medical Expert.

previous experience:

1/ Since 1985 he has been President of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, a non-profit organisation of more than 3,000 physicians in the United States.

2/ Author of three books on nutrition and health.

3/ He lectures frequently on the role of nutrition in preventive medicine.

4/ Editor-in-Chief of 'Good Medicine', a quarterly magazine on medical issues, including nutrition. He has extensively reviewed the medical literature on nutrition issues.


As a result of their high content of fat and cholesterol, McDonald's products contribute to heart diseases. The links between high-fat diets and certain diseases are established beyond any reasonable doubt.

McDonald's advertising has been misleading regarding its fat content.

Heart disease can actually be reversed in 82% of patients using a combined regimen of a vegetarian diet along with other lifestyle measures(Ornish 1990). .A diet containing lean meat has been demonstrated to make plaques worse over time. (Ornish 1990, Blankenhorn 1987, Brown 1990). A diet including food products such as those sold at McDonald's could not accomplish this result, and, instead, tends to encourage the progression of heart disease.

Cancer risk is elevated by foods that are high in animal fat, such as those sold at McDonald's.

The U.S. National Cancer Institute estimates that more than 30 percent of cancers are linked to foods. The U.S. Surgeon General's Report on Nutrition and Health (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services l988) stated:

"Indeed, a comparison of populations indicates that death rates for cancers of the breast, colon, and prostate are directly proportional to estimated dietary fat intakes."

International comparisons have shown that fat in the diet, especially animal fat, increases the risk of breast cancer. (Armstrong 1975, Carroll 1985, Rose 1986)

Lung cancer rates are significantly lower in vegetarian populations, even in studies which control for smoking.

Strong links have also been found between the consumption of meats and other fatty foods and colon cancer.

Eliminating meats has also permitted hypertensive patients to eliminate medication use.

Those who avoid fatty meat products, such as those sold at McDonald's, have a much lower incidence of non-insulin-dependent diabetes, compared to non-vegetarians.

The McDonald's Corporation aggressively aims promotions at children, using the Ronald McDonald character, Saturday morning advertising, popular movie themes, and bright, attractive play areas at each store.

During March, 1993, (National Nutrition Month), McDonald's distributed attractive plastic toys and booklets on what the restaurant chain considers to be good nutrition. One of these toys is a plastic beef steak named "Slugger," which flexes its toy muscles as if to suggest that meat gives strength. The accompanying booklet states that eating two servings a day of foods in the meat group "can make it easier to do things like climb higher and ride your bike farther." The meat group includes beef, pork, poultry, fish, and also eggs, beans, and nuts.

Foods in the meat group do not increase endurance or athletic prowess, and do not improve a child's capacity to climb or ride a bike. The concept that high-protein foods are essential for endurance was proved false many years ago.

An accurate description of the effects of meat consumption would note its links to heart disease, cancer (particularly colon and prostate cancer), obesity, and other health problems.

As the director of the Framingham Heart Study Dr. William Castelli, has said:

"When you see the golden arches, you're probably on the road to the pearly gates."