NC Dietetics/Nutrition Board Wants To Shut Down Low-Carber’s Blog

April 23, 2012

NC Dietetics/Nutrition Board Wants To Shut Down Low-Carber’s Blog
Unbelievable story at carolinajournal.com by Sara Burrows about a blogger the North Carolina Board of Dietetics/Nutrition is trying to shut down over his blog posts about his battle with diabetes which encourage others to follow what he’s been doing:

Chapter 90, Article 25 of the North Carolina General Statutes makes it a misdemeanor to “practice dietetics or nutrition” without a license. According to the law, “practicing” nutrition includes “assessing the nutritional needs of individuals and groups” and “providing nutrition counseling.”

Steve Cooksey has learned that the definition, at least in the eyes of the state board, is expansive.

When he was hospitalized with diabetes in February 2009, he decided to avoid the fate of grandmother, who eventually died of the disease. He embraced the low-carb, high-protein Paleo diet, also known as the “caveman” or “hunter-gatherer” diet. The diet, he said, made him drug- and insulin-free within 30 days. By May of that year, he had lost 45 pounds and decided to start a blog about his success.

But this past January the state diatetics and nutrition board decided Cooksey’s blog — Diabetes-Warrior.net — violated state law. The nutritional advice Cooksey provides on the site amounts to “practicing nutrition,” the board’s director says, and in North Carolina that’s something you need a license to do.

Unless Cooksey completely rewrites his 3-year-old blog, he could be sued by the licensing board. If he loses the lawsuit and refuses to take down the blog, he could face up to 120 days in jail.

The board’s director says Cooksey has a First Amendment right to blog about his diet, but he can’t encourage others to adopt it unless the state has certified him as a dietitian or nutritionist.

Hilariously, nutritionists give some of the WORST, non-evidence based advice on what to eat — which is why people like Cooksey get fat and diabetic.

Per Gary Taubes’ massive vetting of what is dietary science and what is “science” in “Why We Get Fat” and “Good Calories, Bad Calories,” it is carbohydrates — sugar, flour, starchy vegetables like potatoes, apple juice — that cause the insulin secretion that puts on fat.

Of course, the problem in North Carolina is not about who’s putting out good science; it’s really one of competition — those with licenses to dispense dietary information wanting to keep Cooksey down:

Jan. 12, Cooksey attended a nutrition seminar at a church in Charlotte. The speaker was the director of diabetes services for a local hospital.

“She was giving all the wrong information, just like everyone always does — carbs are OK to eat, we must eat carbs to live, promoting low-fat, etc.,” Cooksey said. “So I spoke up.”

After the meeting he handed out a couple of business cards pointing people to his website.

Three days later, he got a call from the director of the nutrition board.

“Basically, she told me I could not give out nutritional advice without a license,” Cooksey said.

He said she also told him that his website was being investigated and gave him some suggestions about how to bring it into compliance.

Feebie, who sent me this link, added below it:

Lost seven pounds so far on Taubes’ diet plan, with ten or so more to go – because of your relentless hauranging (smile). Came to find out I am insulin resistent and gluten intolerant. Wish I’d listened to you sooner… But no time like the present to correct actions and move forward.

I love reading your posts on the subject – THANK YOU.

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  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1418855707 Monique DiCarlo

    I better keep my mouth shut ;-) LOL Hang in there Cooksey, just put a disclaimer on your site! …from a Paleo friend :-)

    • zack passman

      He’s got several why this is even more outrageous than it seems

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Angelica-Christi/1149970572 Angelica Christi

    I say keep blogging… and as Monique mentioned, put a disclaimer, (maybe like the drug people do :) …but theirs have 3 pages of the side effects that can destroy  all the other parts of the body with their drugs!) You can then mention all the great things it has done for you and let other people send you what it has done for them. They can’t stop you from sharing your experience… so don’t tell 2nd hand stories of others… let those people write their own in the 1st person.
    Telling people that this isn’t for everyone and to consult your doctor first (which most people who find you won’t because they know that most medical doctors went to colleges funded buy the drug companies and don’t trust those doctors that had between 2 days and 2 weeks of classes on nutrition and the human body… when I found that out in 1990 I told my 3 specialist to ‘take a hike and was going to a nutritionist to be healed. They said I would never have another child and by this time I had so many drugs in me that only made me sicker and could barely walk up stairs and use my hands … 6 weeks later, with no drugs, just by balancing my body with the right minerals and nutrition I was running up and down stairs and playing tennis again.
    I walked by the doctors office less than 2 years later and stopped to show them the child ‘I would never have’… who was happily walking down the  hall with me at 11 months.
    I wish you the best… and if you have to, shut that one down and have them posted from somewhere else.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000030914966 Jack Nales

    The dietics/nutrition board director says ”he can blog he can’t encourage others to adopt it unless the state has certified him as a dietitian or nutritionist” ?  Better warn Jarad, Maria Carey, Charles Barkley, and all the others who encourage others to eat at Subway, or use Jenny Craig or Weight Watchers through their endorsements.

  • http://www.facebook.com/davidjill Jill-David Boman

    Every mother, grandmother, neighbor, friend, and hairdresser is guilty of giving nutritional advice without a license too!  So the North Carolina Board of Dietetics and Nutrition will have their hands full going after the majority of the population now that they have declared war on non-dietician license wielding folks giving nutrition advice!   

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Fredrick-Hahn/633467863 Fredrick Hahn

    What law protects people from nutritional MISinformation? Were I you Cooskey, I’d keep it up and let them take you to court. I’ll bet the judge has diabetes or knows someone with it. You can then use science to prove you are right and they are wrong. You can’t uphold a law that harms people. 

  • Bob Brandenburg

    Michelle Obama will be in trouble if she visits North Carolina.  No wait, the governor of NC is a fellow Democrat and exempts Democrats from obeying NC law.

  • Dracil

    They already closed the case about 2 weeks ago after he made changes to fall into compliance: http://www.ncbdn.org/file_a_complaint/recent_press_inquiry/

    • http://osdd.com/ Jose

      If you read it carefully they say it is “substantially” compliant.  That means they still have a problem with it and when things get quiet they’ll reopen the case.

  • http://osdd.com/ Jose

    Maybe government is pulling these stunts to see how many people they can get to join the Soveriegn Citizen movement.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1442132087 Pat Robinson

    NCBDN is keeping the door open for further investigation, even after Steve made changes to his website at their direction.

    However, according to the law (§ 90-368.), Steve did not need to make
    these changes because Steve has not claimed to be a dietician, or a
    nutritionist. Nor has he used any state licensed credentials.

    Reference General Statute § 90-368. Persons and practices not affected. Sections (9) and (10). http://www.ncleg.net/enactedlegislation/statutes/pdf/bysection/chapter_90/gs_90-368.pdf

    The NC Board of Dietetics has a pattern of using threats and intimidation above the law, to silence nutritional information. http://www.forbes.com/sites/michaelellsberg/2012/04/05/american-dietetic-association/3/

    The NC Board of Dietetics’ administrative “Rules” reference the
    American Dietetic Association (ADA). The North Carolina State Board of
    Dietetics (which is aligned with the ADA), has just added “Nutrition” to
    its title. And the ADA is maneuvering to monopolize nutritional
    education. The American Dietetic Association (ADA) would like to be the
    state authority of all nutrition information in all states too!

    More details: http://heal-thyself.ning.com/profiles/blogs/action-alert-health-blogger-steve-cooksey-of-diabetes-warrior-nee

    In fact, according to the NCBDN’s “Rules”, their broad
    MISinterpretation of the law, includes providing nutritional advice on the internet, even from people residing
    in other states.

    Any person, whether residing in this state or not, who by use of
    electronic or other medium performs any of the acts described as the
    practice of dietetics/nutrition, but is not licensed pursuant to Article
    25 of G.S. 90 shall be deemed by the Board as being engaged in the
    practice of dietetics/nutrition and subject to the enforcement
    provisions available to the Board. Among other remedies, the Board shall
    report violations of this Rule to any occupational licensing board
    having issued an occupational license to a person who violates this
    Rule. This Rule does not apply to persons licensed pursuant to, or
    exempt from licensure pursuant to, Article 25 of G.S. 90.

    NCBDN “Rules” pdf: http://www.ncbdn.org/images/uploads/Final_Rules_asof_Nov_2011.pdf

    A bit megalomaniac and monopolistic, I think.

    We have created a Change.org Petition to support Steve Cooksey, the Diabetes-Warrior.

    Tell the NC Board of Dietetics and the NC Governor, Bev Perdue that this is a Freedom of Speech issue.

    Write to (info@ncbdn.org) and (governor.office@nc.gov)

    Please write, sign and SHARE!



    Pat Robinson

Right. Man up. Buy the book now on Amazon.com. Or listen to Ronnie tell a story at escaping-from-reality.com.