New twist in Noakes' case
The Medical Research Council is expected to probe a senior employee accused of teaming up with "big sugar" to discredit Banting-diet champion Tim Noakes, reports the Sunday Times.
A recent investigation in the US has linked Ali Dhansay to the International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI), described as a "Coca-Cola proxy". [See story below]
Dhansay, former director of the now defunct nutritional intervention research unit at the council, was president of the institute in South Africa in 2013 and worked with Coca-Cola, Mars and Nestlé.
Last week the MRC's executive committee distanced itself from Dhansay's evidence given at Noakes' Health Professions' Council of SA disciplinary hearing. It said it would investigate his alleged links to the sugar industry.
Spokesman Aziel Gangerdine said the council would investigate "Dhansay's position in his capacity as president of the institute and the funding thereof; any association of research conducted in the field of nutrition, obesity and lifestyle with funding or support from the sugar/beverage food industry; any association by way of expert opinion or scientific advice in the field of nutrition, obesity and lifestyle to the sugar/beverage food industry; and any monies received in lieu of such advisory services."
Gangerdine said the nutritional unit Dhansay headed had been disbanded as a result of "a recent organisational redesign".
"The council is not associated with any of Dhansay's testimony in the Health Professions' Council proceedings, neither can the council be associated with any of the relations Dhansay is reported to have with the sugar industry, Coca-Cola or the institute."
In a statement to the Sunday Times, ILSI said it "does not have activities related to infant nutrition, nor has it ever addressed the health effects of low-carbohydrate diets and has never been part of any discussion related to Noakes or his recommendations for nutrition and health".
[The statement was not published in full and here it is:
“ILSI South Africa does not have activities related to infant nutrition, nor has it ever addressed the health effects of low-carbohydrate diets. Further, ILSI South Africa has never been part of any discussion related to Prof Noakes or his recommendations for nutrition and health.
"We suggest that organisations such the South African Paediatric Association are contacted for information about healthful diets during gestation and infancy. More information about ILSI as an organization can be found at www.ilsi.org and more specifically information about ILSI South Africa, its supporters, and its activities can be found at .”]
Coca Cola said: "The allegations against Coca-Cola are not true."
Dhansay failed to respond to requests for comment.
By Marika Sboros
So, it has taken a brilliant US investigative journalist to expose all the food industry’s “biggies” trying to silence scientist Prof Tim Noakes.
True, signs of food industry involvement were there from the start.joins the dots to confirm it.
However, Greene adds damning dots that don’t just implicate Big Sugar and Big Soda. He joins them in one straight line leading to a big food industry arm. It’s the International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI) that influences global food and health policy.
Click here to read Greene on
He presents compelling evidence of ILSI’s extensive links with assorted doctors, dietitians and academics at Cape Town, Stellenbosch and North-West Universities involved in the case against Noakes. Thus, Greene leaves those universities with uncomfortable questions on how to deal with conflicted researchers.....