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Scott Adams

How a Miracle Cure for Celiac Disease Backfired

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Once upon a time, bananas were thought by many doctors to possess tremendous healing properties. Bananas were used to help diabetics to use weight. Doctors told mothers to feed bananas to their infants starting at 4 weeks. And for a long time, the diet seemed to help people "recover" from celiac disease.

Invented by Dr. Sidney Haas in 1924, the high-calorie, banana-based diet excluded starches, but included bananas, milk, cottage cheese, meat and vegetables.

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"Haas arrived at his banana diet through an honest error — one that, unfortunately, had serious repercussions for people with celiac disease. In his 1924 paper, he wrote of a town in Puerto Rico where "dwellers who eat much bread suffer from [celiac] sprue while the farmers who live largely on bananas never."

Classic correlation is not causation!

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